From Spirit MC 18 on August 31, here’s PRIDE welterweight grand prix runner-up Denis Kang defending his Spirit MC heavyweight title in a rematch against longtime rival Jae Young Kim.
According to a report on the official American Top Team website, Canadian MMA superstar Denis Kang has signed a 4 fight contract with the UFC.
American Top Team fighter Denis Kang just signed a 4 fight deal with the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Denis made a big name for himself in Japan and Korea fighting in the PRIDE and SpiritMC organizations, where he developed a huge following.
Denis will now be able to showcase his skills to a whole new audience who hasn’t had the chance to see this exciting fighter in action. Denis has always expressed a desire to fight in the UFC and we are pleased we were able to help him get this deal done. Denis will bring a lot of excitement to the 185lb division! Congrats Denis!
This is a solid signing for the UFC. Just two years ago, Kang was ranked in the top 5 of world middleweights before he suffered 3 losses in 4 fights. He has since bounced back with two straight wins against inferior competition. He is extremely well rounded and can finish a fight from anywhere.
Kang had negotiated before with the UFC, but could never come to terms as he always wanted the option to fight once a year for the SpiritMC promotion in Korea, honoring his family heritage. With expansion into South Korea being one of Zuffa’s assigned goals in the next year or two, this signing along with that of Dong Hyun Kim is very helpful. It might be the promised chance to still fight in South Korea eventually that convinced Kang to go ahead and sign with Zuffa this time.
Photo courtesy of DenisKang.com
Former PRIDE welterweight grand prix runner-up Denis Kang returned to his adopted homeland of Korea and earned his third straight career victory over Jae Young Kim, once again successfully defending his Spirit MC heavyweight title Sunday in Seoul.
After connecting with a mix of punches early, Kang was caught by a right hand from Kim and stunned. Kang was able to recover and quickly took Kim down to the mat where he worked some ground-and-pound until Kim was able to sweep Kang and stand back up.
However Kang blasted Kim during the following exchange and dropped him before pouncing on him and finishing the fight with strikes. The win snapped a two-fight losing streak for Kang, who now heads into his scheduled bout against Marvin Eastman in October with some momentum.
If you have some free time on your hands, be sure to check out one of the more exciting fights from the IFL’s first show of 2008 this past weekend, Matt Horwich going up against Ryan McGivern for the IFL middleweight belt.
As always major props go out to the IFL for actually going out of there way to make their fights available for everyone to see.
“Iron Ring” Debuts March 18th on BET
Remember that mixed martial arts project BET was discussing a while back? Well it finally premieres tonight.
From a press release we received:
BET introduces Iron Ring, a half hour weekly series that showcases mixed martial arts, the fastest growing new sports format in entertainment. With $100,000 in prize money up for grabs, these skilled competitors go toe-to-toe using the combined fighting techniques of jiu-jitsu, judo, karate, boxing, kickboxing, and wrestling in teams owned and managed by Ludacris, Nelly, Floyd Mayweather, T.I., Lil Jon and Dipset.
CSAC Suspends Four
The California State Athletic Commission announced the suspension of four different fighters yesterday.
Three fighters who were slated to compete on World Cagefighting Organization’s disastrous San Diego show have all been suspended after testing positive for the steroid Nandrolone, the same steroid reportedly found in Sean Sherk’s system. Carlos Fuentes, Kyacey Uscola, and Gustavo Machado have all been suspended for a year and fined $2,500.
Fabio Costa, who last competed at Fist Series’ WinterFist 2008 last month, tested positive for marijuana. He’s been suspended until May and fined $500.
Jae Suk Lim Wins SpiritMC Middleweight Title
Jae Suk Lim regained his SpiritMC middleweight title with a decisive win over top prospect Yoon Young Kim Sunday night. After the event, Lim announced that he will now be headed to Hawaii to compete under the ICON Sport banner.
Complete results below courtesy of MMA Weekly:
Jae Suk Lim def. Yoon Young Kim - TKO (Strikes)
A Sol Kwan def. Takaaki Aoki - Unanimous Decision
Jae Young Kim def. Soichi Nishida - TKO (Strikes)
Jung Hwan Cha vs. Dong Hyun Kim - Draw
Hans Olson def. Chang Seob Lee - Unanimous Decision
San An def. Dong Yoon Shin - KO (Punch)
Ye Won Nam def. Seung Hwan Kim - Submission (Triangle)
Dae Gun Kim def. Ok Myoung Kim - Submission (Heel Hook)
Kang Still Without Opponent for DREAM Debut
Denis Kang, who is currently training in Montreal, Quebec, Canada along with Georges St. Pierre and Jackson’s Submission Fighting, has informed The Fight Network that he still without an opponent for his first fight inside the confines of DREAM in April:
“I’m just going to go to Montreal, do my thing and get ready for whoever I’m going to face,” Kang said. “I think the Japanese MMA promotions like to keep their fans in suspense, whereas with the UFC, they really saturate the market with advertising well ahead of their events. DREAM has not even finalized the March 15 card. They’ve only announced like five of the fights.”
Touch of gloves to TKO Xtreme for the find.
Next month’s showdown between Chuck Liddell and Wanderlei Silva will finally answer the age-old question that has been haunting the minds of MMA fans for years as to who would win between the two if they ever fought.
The winner of the fight will receive a huge momentum boost going into the twlight of their career. The loser? Well they will have lost three fights in a row. The list of fighters that have lost three fights in a row is astounding in terms of size. The list of notable fighters that have dropped three straight bouts is pretty big as well.
So what does it take to come back from nearly falling into obscurity? Here’s a look at some well-known fighters that came out on the wrong end of the stick three or more consecutive times and managed to turn things around and get back on the winning track.
Hermes Franca: After a stint where he went 2-2 in the UFC, Franca left the promotion to try and work on his skills in smaller promotions before returning to the big show. However Franca ended up dropping three consecutive fights to Yves Edwards, Koutetsu Boku, and Ray Cooper before the end of 2005. Franca rebounded with an 8 fight winning streak and found himself challenging Sean Sherk for the UFC Lightweight Title this past July.
Nick Diaz: After knocking out touted prospect Robbie Lawler at UFC 47, Diaz found himself being advertised as the future of the UFC’s welterweight division. Diaz ended up struggling for the rest of his UFC career and ultimately lost three straight fights to top competition in Sherk, Joe Riggs, and Diego Sanchez before finding himself out of a Zuffa-owned promotion. Diaz was brought back towards the end of 2006 for two fairly easy fights but ended up heading to PRIDE where he pulled off a huge upset over Takanori Gomi before the fight was changed to a no contest.
Tengiz Tedoradze:The Eastern Europe native became one of England’s top heavyweight prospects by 2004. Tedoradze then ran into a brick wall when he lost to Jeff Monson, Antonio Silva, and then Monson once again in three straight fights. Tedoradze turned his fortunes around by racking up a respectable 10-2-1 record while establishing himself as the best fighter over 205 lbs that the U.K. has to offer.
Mark Coleman: Coleman tore through the UFC in his first six fights, knocking off Gary Goodridge, Don Frye, and Dan Severn along the way. Then Coleman gassed in a heavyweight title opportunity against Maurice Smith. The infamous knockout at the hands of Pete Williams followed and a decision loss to Pedro Rizzo forced Coleman to travel to Japan in hopes of jumpstarting his career. “The Hammer” did just that when he won the 2000 PRIDE Grand Prix in impressive fashion.
Denis Kang: Kang struggled greatly in the first few years of his career and dropped three straight fights to mediocre competition at one point. Kang’s inconscitency continued until he found himself at home in Spirit MC where he became the promotion’s heavyweight champion. Two years later Kang found himself nearly becoming PRIDE Welterweight Grand Prix champion and currently is widely regarded as one of the top middleweights in the world by many.
Chael Sonnen:Sonnen had acquired a solid reputation as being a skilled middleweight during the first couple years of his career that found fighting mainly on the West Coast for the most part. The Team Quest product ended up losing three fights in a row in 2004, two of them to MMA veteran Jeremy Horn. Sonnen rebounded and worked his way into a stint in the UFC. Undefeated since leaving the home of the Octagon last year, Sonnen now finds himself challenging an undefeated Paulo Filho for the WEC Middleweight Title on December 12th.
Dennis Hallman: The man they nicknamed “Superman” had racked up an eye-opening record of 10-1 before falling to a trio of creditable middleweights in the form of Caol Uno, Paul Rodriguez, and eventual UFC Middleweight Champion Dave Menne in sequential bouts. Hallman ended up turning things around and ended up putting together a respectable career that included three separate stints in the UFC and was highlighted by the second of two quick submission wins over Matt Hughes.
Yoon Young Kim def. Sang Il Ahn - Unanimous Decision
Chang Sup Lee def. Tae Hwa Lee - Unanimous Decision
Gyoung Ho Kang def. Drk Young Jang - Submission (Triangle)
Junggyu Choi def. Kelvin Fitial - Submission (Armbar)
Ryuichi Murata def. Gil Myung Chun - Submission (Keylock)
Ryuichi Murata def. Junggyu Choi - TKO
News and Notes
- The CSAC has announced that the following fighters have tested negative for performance enhancing drugs following post-fight testing for UFC 76: Thiago Tavares, Tyson Griffin, Ryoto Machida, Anthony Johnson, and Rich Clementi. The only test results from the event that haven’t been released yet are of Chuck Liddell, Mauricio Rua, Forrest Griffin, and Keith Jardine. The results for those fighters are expected to be released later in the week.
- Josh Thomson spoke with The Fight Network concerning a possible lawsuit Thomson may file against former UFC Middleweight Champion Frank Shamrock. Shamrock reportedly called Thomson “MMA’s first openly gay fighter” during this past weekend’s Strikeforce broadcast.
“I kind of snickered about it,” Thomson said, “but I also have had some big money sponsors coming up to me and asking me whether it was true or not. That potentially could cost me money, and that, to me, is basically what I’m getting at.”
I know that Thomson has some crazy hair and his appearance on “Blind Date” didn’t really go that well but I don’t believe Thomson is gay.
Thomson and Shamrock have had a feud going for well over a year now. Thomson attributes the tension due to the fact that Shamrock was angry that fighters from the American Kickboxing Academy decided against joining a new gym that Shamrock was opening. Shamrock has claimed in the past that Thomson has been bad mouthing him for years.
- Tonight’s episode of UFC Unleashed will feature Renato “Babalu” Sobral vs Jason Lambert from UFC 68 and Houston Alexander vs Keith Jardine from UFC 71. I’m not sure what the third fight on the broadcast will be. Don’t forget that The Ultimate Fighter is on right after that.
- Punch Drunk Gamer posted a recent interview with Josh Barnett where Barnett states that he would like to fight in Pancrase:
“I would like to be fighting in Pancrase. I would love to continue fighting there and hopefully I will get a chance to defend my belt this year. I have had some trouble with getting promoters to honor what they agreed to and cooperate with Pancrase to get a match set-up. So now that I am a free agent I would like to do it.”
Barnett has always noted in the past that he would like the chance to defend his belt in Pancrase as a stipulation in any contract he signs with an organization. However since talks haven’t gone anywhere with anyone, it seems that Barnett may do that before signing anywhere.
Touch of gloves to Five Ounces of Pain for the find.
- Ricco Rodriguez is going to headline Battle Cage Xtreme III in New Jersey on October 20th. He will take on Kauai Kupihiea for the USKBA Heavyweight Title.
- Speaking of Ricco, he’s apparently going to be a cast member of VH1’s newest reality show, Celebrity Rehab. The series debuts on January 10th.
- Fight Opinion wants you to help decide what they should discuss on their next radio show.
- In a recent interview with Sherdog’s John Lee, SpiritMC CEO Kwang Hyun Park stated that current SpiritMC Middleweight Champion Steve Bruno has signed with the UFC:
As for SpiritMC middleweight champion Steve Bruno, Park says, “As far as I know, Steve has signed with the UFC, but we have made it clear that he needs to defend his title.”
Showtime hosted a conference call earlier this afternoon in preparation for the upcoming EliteXC: Uprising event scheduled to take place on September 15th in Honolulu, Hawaii. The fighters featured on the call were ICON Middleweight Champion Robbie Lawler, EliteXC Middleweight Champion Murlio Rua through the use of an interpreter, Jake Shields, and Gina Carano. Other officials participating in the call were EliteXC President Gary Shaw and ICON Sport President T. Jay Thompson.