HDNet

Evening News and Notes: April 24, 2008


Photo courtesy of FedorMMA.com.

M-1 Global has announced the launching of a mixed martial arts-based reality show that will center around former PRIDE heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko.

“Fighting Fedor” will involve sixteen heavyweights from all over the world traveling to Russia to live and train with the Red Devil Sport Club. The fighters will apparently compete against each other in a tournament-style format and the winner will have the chance to fight Emelianenko and pretty much face near-death in the process.

Additional details as well as the list of cast members is expected to be announced shortly.

DREAM Dropped by TBS; Picked up by HDNet?

DREAM live events have reportedly been dropped from the Tokyo Broadcasting System’s lineup due to lackluster ratings. The organization’s inaugural event only drew an 8.9 percent rating average in primetime, which is considered dismal by Japanese standards.

The network will air DREAM’s April 29th event on tape delay one week after the event takes place. It will be the last event the network airs. SkyPerfecTV pay-per-view will then assume duties of airing DREAM events for the future.

However what is Japan’s loss might be the United States’ gain according to our friends at MMARated.com, who report that tomorrow night’s episode of “Inside MMA” on HDNet will feature some interesting news regarding the FEG-owned promotion and the digital cable network.

Yvel-Overeem Scrapped

A bout between Dutch strikers Alistair Overeem and Gilbert Yvel scheduled to take place this Saturday at the K-1 European Grand Prix has been scrapped due to Yvel suffering a left calf injury during a recent training session. The fight was the only MMA bout slated to happen on the card, which will pan out at the Amsterdam Arena in the Netherlands.

“Last Thursday during a training session with Mirko Cro Cop, I suffered an injury which was diagnosed as torn muscle fiber in the hospital,” Yvel explained Thursday at a news conference according to Sherdog.com. “Even after two days of absolute rest and with lots of ice on the leg, I was barely able to stand on my left foot.”

It is unknown if a replacement opponent will be found in time for Overeem.

Cole Replaces Goodridge at “Anger Management”

IFL veteran Wayne Cole will replace an injured Gary Goodridge against heavyweight Eric Pele at the Maximum Fighting Championship’s upcoming “Anger Management” show on May 9th according to The Fight Network.

Goodridge was forced to pull out of the main event bout due to a recently suffered back injury. Goodridge suffered the injury during a recent training session and will be required to undergo surgery to repair the the sciatic nerve in his lower back.

New Info on Zuffa/Couture Lawsuit


Photo courtesy of ProElite.

Three days since a Las Vegas judge denied UFC heavyweight champion Randy Couture’s requests to dismiss parts of the lawsuit Zuffa filed against him in January, new information has already come to light regarding Dana White and company’s suit as well as an attempt to potential declaratory judgment for HDNet Fights.

The news comes courtesy of Sherdog and MMA Payout‘s Adam Swift.

Similar to Mark Cuban’s attempt to find out the contractual status between Couture and the UFC, Zuffa has filed for arbitration on Couture’s promotional contract, seeking to get a definitive answer on Couture’s grievances as well as Cuban’s declaratory judgment.

At the same time, Zuffa has also filed to remove HDNet’s declaratory judgment action brought against the company in Texas district court last month. The move was made because the suit was not filed in Nevada, where Zuffa is based.

However it matters not - HDNet MMA 2008, the name Cuban filed suit under, is a Nevada limited liability company. Zuffa alleges that HDNet’s Nevada address is an attempt to “manipulate the court’s jurisdiction.” according to Swift.

HDNet has now filed a motion to move the case to a Texas court, which the court granted. Zuffa has until March 28th to respond to the move.

On a side note, it seems that the preliminary injunction Judge Jennifer Togliatti granted Zuffa against Couture last month still allows Couture to corner his fighters when they are competing in other organizations.

CKA: Mar 19, 2008

Strap yourselves in, we have a lot of news to report on this morning…

If you haven’t seen Friday night’s episode of Inside MMA on HDNet yet, go ahead and check it out above.

UFC 82 Fighters Test Clean

All of the fighters that were tested following UFC 82: Pride of a Champion on March 1st came back negative for performance enhancing drugs and drugs of abuse.

The ten fighters that were tested are as follows: Andrei Arlovski, Anderson Silva, Heath Herring, Chris Leben, Josh Koscheck, Diego Sanchez, Yushin Okami, Jon Fitch, Luigi Fioravanti, and Jorge Gurgel.

Clark-Harper Finalizes Next Week’s WEC Show

After opponent Bryan Baker was tapped to replace WEC middleweight champion Paulo Filho against Team Quest product Chael Sonnen, Logan Clark will now take on American Top Team’s Scott Harper in a middleweight preliminary bout.

Clark revealed the news on his official website yesterday.

“Scott may have a few losses but hasn’t dropped a fight since joining American Top Team this last year,” Clark said in the post. “He is on a three fight win streak with three submission stoppages. He looks to have a good ground game but not exceptional stand-up. This means that I will be able to stick with my previous gameplan and look for the knockout standing.”

Two More EliteXC Bouts in March

Light heavyweights Aaron Rosa and Jaime Fletcher will now clash on the televised main card portion of this Friday’s ShoXC: Elite Challenger Series event.

The news comes from ProElite.com, which also reports that a women’s bout between Jen Case and Cristiane Cyborg was scrapped after it was learned that Cyborg would be unable to enter the United States in time for the event due to visa issues.

Luke Stewart will also meet veteran Tiki Ghosn at the upcoming Elite Xtreme Combat and Strikeforce co-promoted “Shamrock vs Cung Le”, which take place on March 29th at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California, according to MMA Junkie.

Report: Lytle Tapped for July UFC Return

The Fight Network is reporting that popular welterweight Chris Lytle will likely return to action at UFC 86 in July against an opponent yet to be named.

Lytle has now won two out of his last three bouts inside the UFC. A loss to Thiago Alves because of a cut is currently sandwiched in between wins over Jason Gilliam and Kyle Bradley.

World Victory Road Announces Fighter for Next Event

WVR officials have announced four confirmed participants for their next event on May 18th at the at the Ariake Coliseum in Tokyo, Japan.

Roger Gracie, Satoru Kitaoka, Yuki Sasaki, and Yoshihiro Nakao, who was originally reported as facing Mirko Cro Cop at this past weekend’s DREAM event, are all expected to be in action. Even though his name was not mentioned, former UFC heavyweight champion Kevin Randleman has stated that he will be fighting at the show as well.

Report: DREAM, HDNet Close to TV Deal


Photo courtesy of Fight Entertainment Group.

Fight Entertainment Group, the parent company of DREAM, a new joint venture created along with officials from Dream Stage Entertainment, are reportedly close to a deal with HDNet that would have the network air six of the organization’s events in 2008.

The news comes from Sherdog, who confirmed the talks with Mike Kogan, director of FEG’s U.S. branch.

According to Kogan, the deal would likely go into effect next week with a delayed broadcast of today’s inaugural DREAM event in Japan.

“FEG has been working with HDNet in bringing the Dream 2008 Light and Middleweight GP events to North America,” Kogan said in the report. “While the deal is not officially signed yet, it is very close to being finalized with most of the important elements already agreed upon.”

Recent speculation suggested that HDNet may have been gunning for the rights to televise DREAM events after they aired DSE-promoted Yarennoka! live on New Year’s Day.

Officials from both HDNet and FEG confirmed that talks were ongoing but also stated that nothing had been finalized as of yet.

Reminder: Team Takedown on HDNet Saturday


Jake Rosholt grapples with Dusty Miller at Masters of the Cage 15. Photo courtesy of Team Takedown.

DALLAS – HDNet Fights has announced that it is teaming with the Xtreme Fighting League for the upcoming “HDNet Fights Presents: Xtreme Fighting League” on March 15 at the Expo Square Pavilion in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The event will air live, exclusively on HDNet.

For the event, Team Takedown will send three of its fighters – and Oklahoma wrestling legends: Jake Rosholt, Johny Hendricks and Shane Roller. All are alumni of Oklahoma State University, so it won’t be too much of a stretch to hope for a partisan crowd. In addition, the remainder of the card will feature additional Oklahoma-based talent and young athletes from Osaka, Japan.

Team Takedown is a fighter management company based out of Texas. It is known for the unconventional method of putting fighters on salary, allowing them to focus on training full-time. In addition, its fighters are making the transition from all-star wrestlers to mixed martial arts athletes.

“I am excited about this partnership with HDNet Fights.” said XFL founder and promoter Dale Cook. “This card and the exposure on HDNet is tremendous for our League, our fighters and our city.”

HDNet Fights President Guy Mezger said Cook has been a long-time promoter of combat martial arts.

“Dale always has a strong regional show and we’re excited about partnering with him,” Mezger said. “He can continue to grow his shows and we’ll have high quality mixed martial arts programming for HDNet.”

Continue reading "Reminder: Team Takedown on HDNet Saturday"

Lesnar-McCully Being Discussed for June


Brock Lesnar knocks Frank Mir down with a right hand at UFC 81: Breaking Point. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

A possible opponent for one-time WWE superstar Brock Lesnar in his expected next fight with the Ultimate Fighting Championship overseas in June has revealed details about a potential heavyweight showdown between the two.

Justin McCully, who served as one of three special guests on last night’s episode of HDNet’s Inside MMA, publicly stated that he is currently in discussions with UFC officials concerning a return fight from recent elbow surgery against the former professional wrestler.

“We’ve been talking about fighting this big huge guy that just crossed over from some wrestling promotion,” McCully told hosts Kenny Rice and Bas Rutten. “Thats in talks right now. We’ll see what happens. I hope it comes through. I really like the fight.”

McCully also mentioned that if the bout didn’t come to fruition for whatever reason, he would still be back in action this summer regardless.

Former heavyweight champion Frank Mir withered a barrage of punishment from Lesnar in their fight at UFC 81: Breaking Point earlier this month before submitting the genetic monster with a patented kneebar midway through the first round.

After missing a deadline to accept a fight against heavyweight contender Cheick Kongo, Team Punishment’s McCully opted to undergo surgery to remove a number of bone chips and spurs that gradually contributed to a nagging elbow injury. McCully last won a unanimous decision over Antoni Hardonk at UFC Fight Night 9.

UFC 85 in June is also expected to feature a light heavyweight dream match between former champion Chuck Liddell and Chute Boxe product Mauricio “Shogun” Rua as well as the next fight for welterweight contender Marcus Davis, who has won six straight fights inside the confines of the promotion.

Team Takedown Takes Over HDNet


Jake Rosholt grapples with Dusty Miller at Masters of the Cage 15. Photo courtesy of Team Takedown.

DALLAS – HDNet Fights announced today that it is teaming with the Xtreme Fighting League for the upcoming “HDNet Fights Presents: Xtreme Fighting League” on March 15 at the Expo Square Pavilion in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The event will air live, exclusively on HDNet. This announcement is the latest is a series of new partnerships formed between HDNet Fights and many mixed martial arts organizations around the country and in Canada.

For the event, Team Takedown will send three of its fighters – and Oklahoma wrestling legends: Jake Rosholt, Johny Hendricks and Shane Roller. All are alumni of Oklahoma State University, so it won’t be too much of a stretch to hope for a partisan crowd. In addition, the remainder of the card will feature additional Oklahoma-based talent and young athletes from Osaka, Japan.

Team Takedown is a fighter management company based out of Texas. It is known for the unconventional method of putting fighters on salary, allowing them to focus on training full-time. In addition, its fighters are making the transition from all-star wrestlers to mixed martial arts athletes.

“I am excited about this partnership with HDNet Fights.” said XFL founder and promoter Dale Cook. “This card and the exposure on HDNet is tremendous for our League, our fighters and our city.”

HDNet Fights President Guy Mezger said Cook has been a long-time promoter of combat martial arts.

“Dale always has a strong regional show and we’re excited about partnering with him,” Mezger said. “He can continue to grow his shows and we’ll have high quality mixed martial arts programming for HDNet.”

Continue reading "Team Takedown Takes Over HDNet"

HDNet to Televise Four Strikeforce Cards in ‘08


Photo by Jon Swenson.

HDNet Fights announced today that it is partnering with Strikeforce to present four mixed martial arts events in 2008. The first of these events will be “HDNet Fights Presents: Strikeforce at the Dome” Live from the Tacoma Dome in Tacoma, Washington, Saturday, February 23 at 10:30 p.m. ET. This live exclusive coverage will only be available on HDNet.

“We’re excited about this new deal with Strikeforce as they are such a well respected MMA organization,” said Andrew Simon, CEO of HDNet Fights. “This announcement reinforces our commitment to deliver a minimum of 24 events in 2008 and the partnership between HDNet Fights and Strikeforce guarantees many great match-ups for MMA fans.”

“We are excited about the opportunity to showcase our brand of mixed martial arts on HDNet,” said Scott Coker, President of Strikeforce. “HDNet delivers television content to viewers in the highest quality format possible and Strikeforce has worked diligently to produce the finest, world-class fights for mixed martial arts fans. Together, the two entities will be able to deliver a superior product.”

The evening’s main event features former University of Washington football standout and NFL lineman turned martial arts fighting sensation, Bob “The Beast” Sapp (8-2-1) meeting 6’11” K-1 kickboxing star and undefeated professional boxer Jan “The Giant” Nortje (25-17).

Continue reading "HDNet to Televise Four Strikeforce Cards in ‘08"

HDNet to Televise First Three IFL Events of ‘08


Photo courtesy of the International Fight League.

NEW YORK - The International Fight League and HDNet Fights today announced an agreement to televise the first three IFL events of 2008 live, beginning with the Friday, February 29 card from the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.

HDNet Fights will also air the April 4 card live from the Izod Center in East Rutherford, N.J., and the May 16 event from Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn. Each two hour show will carry a minimum of five of the eight fights on the card, including no fewer than two championship fights. This is the latest partnership between the IFL and HDNet, which began with the December 29, 2007, IFL Championship event from Mohegan Sun.

?“We are very pleased to be able to offer our fans around the country these next three events live and in HD,?” said IFL President and CEO Jay Larkin. ?The quality of our broadcasts is second to none, highlighting the outstanding athletes and exciting bouts as we start 2008 in Las Vegas, live on HDNet.?”

?“The first event we did with the IFL was a great success, and we are very pleased to be able to expand that relationship into the first quarter of 2008,? said Andrew Simon, CEO of HDNet Fights. ?HDNet Fights Presents: The IFL is a fantastic addition to MMA action on HDNet.?”

The Feb. 29 card will be the first in the IFL?‘s new camp vs. camp format, with Ken Shamrock?s’ Lion?s Den meeting Matt Lindland?‘s Team Quest, and Mario Sperry?‘s World Class Fight Center against Xtreme Couture. The night will also feature three individual championship defenses, with lightweight titleholder Ryan Schultz, who defeated previously unbeaten Chris Horodecki for the belt, meeting John Gunderson, middleweight champ Matt Horwich, a surprise winner over Benji Radach, defending his crown against Ryan McGivern of Miletich Fighting Systems, and heavyweight champ and Las Vegas native Roy Nelson battling Fabiano Scherner. The two hour show will air live on HDNet at 11 p.m. ET/ 8 p.m. PT.

CKA: Dec 21, 2007

Photo courtesy of Xtreme Couture

Two of the best ever in their respective sports right there peoples.

News and Notes

- Our rumors page has been updated.

- HDNet has announced that Yarennoka! will be airing live from Japan at 6:00 AM EST on HDNet on New Year’s Eve. Additional re-broadcasts of the event will take place on the same day at 3:00 PM EST, January 4th at 10:30 PM EST, and January 5th at 3:00 AM EST and 3:00 PM EST.

- The Fight Network is reporting that Jesse Veium will replace an injured Cyrille Diabate against Travis Wiuff at IFO: Fireworks in the Cage IV on December 28th.

Diabate was forced to pull out of his bout against Wiuff after suffering a broken ankle during training.

- Justin McCully has apparently missed the deadline to accept a fight against Cheick Kongo at UFC 82 in February according to Brian Knapp of The Fight Network.

We reported yesterday that McCully had been offered a fight against Kongo but had not yet made a decision.

According to Knapp, McCully can still have the fight but only if he accepts before the UFC finds a replacement opponent for Kongo.

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Media Links

Bloody Elbow: Dear Denny Burkholder
MMA Mania: UFCs Georges St. Pierre and the Fuzzy Brossard
FIve Ounces of Pain: February could be busiest month in MMA history
CBS Sportsline: UFC Tapout video game revisited
Jarry Park: Jamie Varner Really Likes His Chances Against Razor Rob

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