Jay Hieron works some ground and pound on San Jose Razorclaws' welterweight Donnie Liles at the IFL's event in Los Angeles in March 2007. Provided by IFL. Getty Images.
After close to three years of bouncing from promotion to promotion, Jay Hieron has finally found a home in the IFL, where he has fought six times thus far as a member of the Los Angeles Anacondas.
In those six fights, Hieron quickly established himself as one of the top welterweights in the league. His success earned him a bid in the IFL’s inaugural Grand Prix, pitting four fighters from each weight class against each other in an elimination style tournament, in hopes of crowning a champion.
Hieron sees the Grand Prix as a chance to not only showcase his skills but to prove that he is indeed the best fighter at 170 lbs the IFL has to offer. With the help of those at Xtreme Couture and his former coach Shawn Tompkins, Hieron is set to make the most of the opportunity.
Sam Caplan is reporting that Jake Shields will be part of EliteXC’s next event on November 10th. His opponent has not yet been named but apparently may come out of Xtreme Couture:
After proposed bouts against Frank Trigg and Antonio McKee fell through for an Oct. 20 card promoted by “Brawl for it All” at the Cow Palace in San Francisco, FiveOuncesOfPain.com has learned that Jake Shields’ next fight will be for EliteXC on November 10.
According to his trainer, Cesar Gracie, Shields has signed a bout agreement to fight on EliteXC’s next card against an opponent that has yet to be confirmed. However, Gracie did indicate that Shields’ opponent could end up being someone that is already on the EliteXC roster and currently trains out of Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas.
My guess would be Mike Pyle, who is currently under contract with EliteXC and is one of the few welterweights currently training at Xtreme Couture’s Las Vegas location.
The IFL has announced that it has come to terms on the release of Los Angeles Anacondas head coach Shawn Tompkins.
IFL President Kurt Otto stated that he released Tompkins from his duties after finding that the Anacondas were not receiving enough time with Tompkins due to his duties as a trainer at Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas:
“It was my decision to let him go,” stated Otto. “Shawn is a good guy and a great trainer, but I just think that he spread himself too thin. At this level, you have to be 100% committed. It had to do more internally with the team. I think he spread himself too thin. He was making too many commitments and his team suffered because of that.”
Otto also went on to reveal that Tompkins’ release will not be the only coaching change in the IFL in the near future and that more changes will be announced in the coming months.
A news filled Coffee and Kick Ass today folks…
News and Notes
- Our rumors section has been updated…
- Mark Cuban will be holding a press conference and conference call concerning his new HDNet Fights venture. We will have a full report later today.
- If you haven’t already, please check out Randy Couture’s signed gloves from UFC 74 that are currently up for auction by the Ryan Bennett Memorial Fund. Bidding ends on Thursday night.
- K-1 Hero’s parent company FEG announced a rematch between PRIDE veterans Sergei Kharitonov and Alistair Overeem at the K-1 Hero’s show taking place on September 17th.
- Duane Ludwig will now face Mario Stapel at this Saturday’s Ring of Fire event after his original opponent, Dragan Baklua, broke his hand during a recent training session. Despite all of this, Ludwig has trained hard and is ready to face whomever is standing in front of him:
“I was getting ready to face a stand up guy, but Mario is much more well rounded,” stated Ludwig. “He is more of a true MMA fighter. I changed my game plan accordingly. For this fight, I tightened up my game by training at Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas. The training was great and I feel prepared for whatever happens. I love fighting at home and can’t wait for Saturday.”
- Jeff Monson, Matt Horwich, and Tara LaRosa all won medals in last weekend’s World Grappling Championships in Turkey.
- Spike TV announced yesterday that UFC 75 was the most watched MMA event in the history of North America:
UFC 75 was the most watched mixed martial arts event ever in North America, drawing 4.7 million viewers, Spike TV officials said in a news release Tuesday.
The Sept. 8 event from the O2 Arena in London, England, featured UFC light heavyweight champion Quinton Jackson’s win over PRIDE champ Dan Henderson in a title unification bout. Airing delayed on Spike, the telecast peaked at 5.6 million viewers during Jackson’s battle against Henderson. The show’s ratings were particularly strong among men age 18-34 and men 18-49. For those audiences, UFC 75 beat everything on television, Spike officials said, including ABC’s NASCAR race and Michigan vs. Oregon college football game, as well as ESPN’s Virginia Tech vs. LSU and Notre Dame vs. Penn St. games.
Spike TV said its telecast of UFC 75 had an overall rating of 3.1 (3.0 million homes), including a 5.7 rating for men 18-34 (1.6 million), 4.5 for men 18-49 (2.5 million) and 6.2 for men 25-34 (1.0 million).
- The Honolulu Star Bulletin is reporting that Justin McCully has been forced to pull out of his scheduled bout against Christian Wellisch for undisclosed reasons. Wellisch will now face Scott Junk”
Kailua’s Scott Junk will make his UFC debut Sept. 22 against Christian Wellisch in a heavyweight fight at UFC 76: Knockout in Anaheim, Calif.
“It’s 100 percent going to happen,” Junk said. Wellisch (8-2) was originally scheduled to face Justin McCully.
Junk was notified about the fight yesterday, just 11 days before the event. He has put together six consecutive wins, including a TKO victory over Jimmy Ambriz back in June.
“It caught me off guard, but it’s good because I have been training this whole time,” Junk said.
Touch of gloves to UFC Mania for finding that interesting piece.
- The Governor of Illinois has signed legislation that will legalize MMA starting in 2008
- Michael Bisping’s father was apparently attacked in the parking lot of the O2 arena after the event.
Hat tip to Fight Opinion for that one.
- Sam Caplan of Five Ounces of Pain is reporting via Tagg Radio that Gilbert Melendez will be taking on Shooto’s Tetsuji Kato at Strikeforce’s Playboy Mansion event on September 29th.
MMA on Tap has learned that former UFC Middleweight Champion Evan Tanner has been proposed a possible bout with Dean Lister at UFC 79 in December.
Tanner has been out of action since submitting Justin Levens at UFC 59 in April of last year. After an attempt at creating a foundation for underprivileged mixed martial artists fell through, Tanner announced his intent to return to the UFC in May. Chute Boxe USA revealed that Tanner had joined the training team in June and stated that he would be fighting at a UFC event in September. Tanner was then heavily rumored to be fighting Marvin Eastman at UFC 76 but that rumor obviously turned out to be untrue.
Lister is coming off of surgery for a torn biceps muscle in his right arm, an injury that he suffered this past April. Lister’s manager, Jerry Villasenor, recently announced that his client was planning on returning at UFC 79 against an opponent that had not yet been named and that he would be running the new Xtreme Couture facility in San Diego. Lister last fought at UFC Fight Night 8 in January, losing an unanimous decision to Nate Marquardt.
Update 2:50 PM: It seems that Ryan from Fightlinker has also been made aware of the Tanner-Lister situation courtesy of Jorge Oliviera, Tanner’s training partner at Chute Boxe.
Dean Lister has become the latest fighter to switch gyms and join the uber-popular Xtreme Couture camp. Lister not only officially joined Randy’s team but will be the co-owner and head instructor at the newest Xtreme Couture facility in San Diego, CA.
Lister’s manager, Jerry Villasenor also told MMA Weekly that his client is planning on returning to the Octagon at UFC 79 on December 29th:
In the swirling waters of today’s mixed martial arts landscape, MMAWeekly has learned that Dean Lister is the latest fighter to join UFC Heavyweight Champion Randy Couture’s camp and is planning a return to the Octagon as part of the UFC’s Dec. 29 event.
According to Lister’s manager, Jerry Villasenor, no opponent has been named yet for Lister’s return bout. He did say that Lister would like to face the winner of the Oct. 20 middleweight title bout between Rich Franklin and Anderson Silva that is slated to take place in Cincinnati.