Aleksander Emelianenko. Photo courtesy of MFC M-1.
Those hoping to catch Aleksander Emelianenko fighting at Affliction’s upcoming next event in October might have to wait a bit longer to see him fight. Ever since he was reported to have failed to meet California licensing requirements prior to his scheduled fight against Paul Buentello last month, rumors have been frequently circulating that Emelianenko may have tested positive for Hepatitis B, a claim that the Russian’s camp has strongly dismissed.
However in a recent interview on Wrestling Observer’s Figure Four Daily radio show, California State Athletic Commission representative Bill Douglas reportedly stated that Emelianenko was not cleared to fight in the state and will not be by any other state athletic commission in the country.
“The one thing that I can absolutely say is that he was not and will not be cleared to fight in California.” Douglas said on the radio show. “He is officially licensed denied and that will stand for all of the United States of America”.
While Douglas refused to elaborate on the reasons behind Emelianenko’s licensure denial due to privacy issues, one has to assume that something serious is keeping Fedor’s younger brother from being able to fight here. MMANews’ Chris Howie points out that it might not be Hepatitis B after all due to the fact that Aleksander was permitted to fight Dan Bobish at a Hardcore Championship Fighting event last fall and that the province of Alberta will not let a fighter compete without passing strict blood tests.
Photo courtesy of TitoOrtiz.com.
It’s official: Former UFC light heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz has signed with Affliction Entertainment. The 33-year-old has stated that the deal he signed with the promotion will be nothing short of “ground-breaking”, likely making one of, if not the, highest-paid fighter in mixed martial arts today.
“I guarantee you that my contract will be like no other,” Ortiz told Sports Illustrated’s Arash Markazi. “It will be a ground-breaking record contract for sure, without a doubt. There’s so much money to be made right now in mixed martial arts and it’s all about the fighters trying to make that money. It’s going to be a long-term deal where I put my heart and soul into the company and help build them. That’s something I’m interested in doing. They’re going to bring me on, not just as a fighter but also doing some of the back work also.”
Ortiz is set to be introduced at a press conference Affliction has slated for tomorrow in Las Vegas. His official defection from the UFC comes just over 24 hours after his non-compete clause with the organization expired at midnight on Monday. It also signals that Dana White and company opted not to match Affliction’s offer. Exact numbers in terms of the money he’s making with this deal have not yet been revealed.
Chris Horodecki vs. Nate Lamotte. Photo courtesy of the IFL.
Rising lightweight prospect standout Chris Horodecki has now become a free agent upon asking for his release from the almost-defunct International Fight League.
Horodecki’s manager, Jeff Clark, confirmed his client’s release from the IFL with Sherdog.com today. Several organizations have reportedly already lined up to bid for Horodecki’s services, including World Extreme Cagefighting and the upstart American Fight League, which has apparently came forward with the most generous offer thus far.
“The AFL has come in with a very generous offer,” Clark said in the report., “but Affliction has said they will match it or beat it. We’re [also] continuing our discussions with World Victory Road.”
Horodecki was previously rumored to have been taking on Takanori Gomi at Sengoku IV later this month but talks eventually broke down. Affliction Entertainment is said to want Horodecki to compete on their recently announced “Day of Reckoning” card on October 11th against a yet-to-be-determined opponent. However at this time, it seems that he is content to weigh his options before making any quick decisions.
Vladimir Matyushenko. Photo courtesy of the International Fight League.
A potential rematch between IFL light heavyweight champion Vladimir Matyushenko and longtime divisional contender Antonio Rogerio Nogueira is reportedly likely to take place at Affliction Entertainment’s recently announced “Day of Reckoning” event, which will take place on October 11th at the Thomas & Mack Center on the campus of UNLV in Las Vegas.
The news comes from Brian Knapp of Sherdog.com, who has learned from sources close to the organization that the bout has been offered to both fighters and is expected to be accepted on both sides as well.
Since suffering a highlight reel knockout loss to Andrei Arlovski over five years ago, Matyushenko has reeled off nine straight wins, most recently a successful IFL title defense against Jamal Patterson this past April. Nogueira scored a first-round TKO of Edwin Dewees at Affliction’s “Banned” show last month. The two originally faced off at a Universal Fighting-Arts Organization show overseas in 2002, where Matyushenko scored a unanimous decision over Nogueira.
Roy Nelson. Photo courtesy of the International Fight League.
IFL heavyweight champion Roy Nelson will return to action with a new deal under Affliction Entertainment in tow as he will take on fellow new acquisition and Xtreme Couture member Jay White at the promotion’s scheduled “Day of Reckoning” show on October 11th at the Thomas & Mack Center on the campus of UNLV in Las Vegas.
White confirmed the bout over the weekend at the International MMA Expo in Long Beach, California, with MMANews.com, stating that he had signed a three-fight contract with Affliction and “that Nelson was the opponent given to him.” Nelson, along with many other IFL-contracted fighers, was reportedly released from the company late last week.
The 32-year-old Lion’s Den product won the vacant IFL heavyweight title belt last December when he bested Bryan Vetell and Antoine Jaoude to win a four-man grand prix tournament. Nelson then made two consecutive successful defenses of his championship, scoring first-round TKO wins over Fabiano Scherner and then “Ultimate Fighter 2” runner-up Brad Imes.
Andrei Arlovski. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Affliction Entertainment has officially announced that it’s next anticipated event, entitled “Day of Reckoning”, will take place on October 11th at the Thomas & Mack Center on the campus of UNLV in Las Vegas. The show’s main event will pit former UFC heavyweight champions Andrei Arlovski and Josh Barnett against each other.
Arlovski was originally rumored to be fighting WAMMA heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko, who was unfortunately pulled from the event due to a lingering hand injury that will leave him unable to compete. Emelianenko suffered the injury in his recent win over Tim Sylvia at Affliction: Banned last month. He’s been medically suspended for six months by the California State Athletic Commission but could be permitted to fight earlier if cleared by a doctor.
Barnett avenged a prior loss to Pedro Rizzo at last month’s show in Anaheim, knocking out the Brazilian with a left hook in the second round. Arlovski meanwhile, battered former IFL standout Ben Rothwell over two rounds before finally putting the Miletich Fighting Systems product down for the count in the third.
Vitor Belfort. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Former UFC light heavyweight champion Vitor Belfort claims that he will be fighting perennial top-ranked middleweight and Team Quest co-founder Matt Lindland at Affliction Entertainment’s second show later this year, whenever that may be.
Belfort revealed the news to Tatame.com. While Belfort suffered a broken hand in the first-round of his knockout win over Terry Martin on July 19th, he says that the injury might not prevent him from returning to action against Lindland in October.
“The doctor will analyze it, but I may stay four weeks out,” Belfort said in the article. “I’ll come back on October 11th to fight Matt Lindland for the belt. It’ll be a great fight, we’ll see who is the best of the world there. I saw his fight with Negao and he’s a warrior. He comes to be over you, but I don’t think he has the strength to stay over me. I’ll go to knock him out… My punches are well-aimed and when it hits he won’t stand.”
The matchup comes at the perfect time it seems. At the post-fight press conference for Affliction’s “Banned” event, Lindland stated that he would love to fight Belfort now that they are in the same organization and weight division. Affliction VP Tom Atencio is expected to announce details for his promotion’s next card at a press conference on August 6th.
Photo by Esther Lin/EliteXC.
The California State Athletic Commission has released attendance figures and salaries from Saturday night’s EliteXC show.
First, the salaries:
Robbie Lawler: $90,000 ($45,000 + $45,000 win)
Scott Smith: $14,000
Jake Shields: $45,000 ($35,000 + $10,000 win)
Nick Thompson: $25,000
Antonio Silva: $200,000 ($100,000 + $100,000 win)
Justin Eilers: $20,000
Nick Diaz: $60,000
Thomas Denny: $8,500
Shayna Baszler: $8,000
Cristiane Cyborg: $6,000 ($3,000 + $3,000 win)
Rafael Feijao: $20,000 ($10,000 + $10,000 win)
Travis Galbraith: $5,000
Wilson Reis: $5,000 ($2,500 + $2,500 win)
Bryan Caraway: $2,000
Mike Cook: $2,000
Carl Seumanutafa: $4,000 ($2,000 + $2,000 win)
Brandon Tarn: $2,000
Drew Montgomery: $3,000 ($1,500 + $1,500 win)
David Douglas: $4,000 ($2,500 + $1,500 win)
Marlon Mathias: $2,500
Jeremy Freitag: $2,500
Anthony Ruiz: $5,001 ($2,001 + $3,000 win)
How they did at the gate:
Photo by Tracy Lee/CombatLifestyle.com
Affliction caused quite a stir earlier this month when right after their successful debut into the world of MMA with “Banned”, VP Tom Atencio immediately started discussing plans for a second show later this year. News floated around and eventually it was reported that the promotion would hold a show right in the UFC’s backyard, even using one of their former champions in the main event.
However those clamoring to see Fedor Emelianenko and Andrei Arlovski duke it out for WAMMA’s “title”, (that would be all of us) may now have to wait a little bit longer for that to happen, and for more than one reason.
It’s not that alarming but the California State Athletic Commission released the official list of medical suspensions from Affliction’s July 19th event earlier today. Normally it would just be protocol to list out the suspensions and their length. However two of the the second planned show’s biggest draws may be unable to participate.
Renato “Babalu” Sobral. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Right after his win over Mike Whitehead at Affliction’s inaugural show earlier this month, Renato “Babalu” Sobral called out Tito Ortiz, who is currently in the midst of his divorce from Dana White and the UFC. Sobral says that fighting Ortiz would be a dream fulfilled. Maybe this dream is a tad weird but we’ll let that slide for now.
Anyway, Steve Cofield reports that Ortiz-Sobral will happen at Affliction’s next show in October, serving as the co-main event. Tom Atencio won’t confirm it but did mention that details concerning the next show’s fight card will be revealed at a press conference on August 6th. According to Ortiz, his non-compete clause with the UFC expires on August 4th.
That technically gives Atencio only two days to talk money with Ortiz but let’s not pretend to be naive here, it’s probably already happened and is a common practice. Let’s just hope that the UFC doesn’t decide to go after Tito because of the rumors because I’m sure paperwork hasn’t been signed yet. With Ortiz’s buddy Donald Trump already connected with Affliction, it’s more than likely that he’ll choose them over EliteXC and Strikeforce, the two other major players that have reportedly been gunning for him lately.
In the end, it’s all going to come down to the big bucks, which the UFC isn’t willing to pay Ortiz any longer because of his recent lackluster performances. He’s a proven PPV draw, just look at the numbers. If Affliction is willing to pay Tim Sylvia $800,000, how much are they willing to shell out for Tito’s services?