B.J. Penn, Tito, Kimbo Head Next Round 5 Series
Like most sports today, mixed martial arts has its fair share of fans that also fancy themselves collectors. One of the first companies to really fill that niche for MMA aficionados was Round 5, a Markham, Ontario, Canada based company that specializes in collectible figures.
B.J. Kojima Relinquishes Shooto Belt
Shooto Bantamweight (123 lbs.) Champion Shinichi "B.J." Kojima today announced his decision to vacate the title, citing a slowly-healing ACL in his right knee. Kojima - who has held the belt since October 2006 - suffered the injury in a non-title bout loss to Nova Uniao's rising star Jussier "Formiga" da Silva last July.
Ultimate Fighter International Coming Soon
Over the last three years, the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s plan for global domination has been in full swing, hosting events on three continents and in five different countries, six if you include its home base of the United States. Its first trip to the United Arab Emirates is scheduled in April chalking up another continent and another country.
Dream 13: Nakahara ready for Ryo Chonan
Andrews Nakahara, one of the new promises of Brazilian MMA, is ready to another challenge on Japanese rings. After to debut with loss to the legend Kazushi Sakuraba and two knockout victories, the Brazilian is ready to face the Ryo Chonan at Dream 13, scheduled to March 22.
Kendall Grove Ready To "Make History" Against Mark Munoz
But there are no bad words between the Middleweight fighters facing each other, and both are looking forward to their UFC 112 fight in Abu Dhabi-and perhaps a few rounds at the bar afterwards. According to Grove, "I can't wait to go out there and fight. We get to do it in Abu Dhabi. We're making history; the first outdoor event in the Middle East. We're going to have war in war. Right when I got the word that we were fighting, I shot him a Tweet saying, 'Hey man, I respect you a lot. Good luck and let's put on a show.' He responded back, 'Likewise, it's an honor to fight you and we will give these guys a good show.' To me, that's just how our business is. At the end of the day, I can honestly say no matter if I'm on the positive or negative side of it, I will be the first to shake his hand and say, 'Let's go grab a beer or do something.' There are no hard feelings because business is business."
Martin Kampmann Healing Up To Defend Against Smurf Kicks
No, not kicks from those little blue cartoon characters. In comments made to the Las Vegas Sun, Martin Kampmann tlaked about the cut that forced him off UFC 111 and will likely keep him out past a targeted March return date, namely that it was a deep cut that could open right back up with any impact, but in his words "but as long as it's not going to open up for just a smurf kick, it's good."
Mariusz Pudzianowski Announced For 5/7 KSW 13 Event
"The World's Strongest MMA Fighter" is ready for an encore performance. 5-time World's Strongest Man Mariusz Pudzianowski, coming off his successful MMA debut in December, will return to action on May 7 at KSW 13, though an opponent has not been revealed. The booking means a potential April 23 matchup with ex-UFC champ Tim Sylvia is now unlikely.
Rob Emerson vs. Nik Lentz targeted for "UFC Fight Night 21: Florian vs. Gomi"
A lightweight contest pitting Rob Emerson (9-8 MMA, 3-2-1 UFC) against Nik Lentz (17-3-2 MMA, 1-0-1 UFC) is targeted for UFC Fight Night 21, MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) has learned from sources close to the situation.
Though bout agreements have yet to be signed, both fighters have agreed to the fight and are expected to put pen to paper shortly.
UFC Fight Night 21 takes place March 31 at Bojangles Coliseum in Charlotte, N.C. The main card airs live on Spike TV and serves as the lead-in for "The Ultimate Fighter 11."
The addition brings the event's total number of bouts to 11, a robust card for the promotion's fourth trip to North Carolina. A lightweight showdown between two-time contender Kenny Florian and heavy-handed Japanese import Takanori Gomi headlines.
Lentz was behind on the scorecards in his most recent octagon appearance against Thiago Tavares at UFC Fight Night 20, but a deduction to the Brazilian for an inadvertent groin kick in the final frame left the fight as a majority draw. It was a disappointing result for Lentz, a product of the Minnesota Martial Arts Academy, as he had earned seven-straight win over a near-two-year period since his most recent blemish, which, ironically enough, was a draw against WEC veteran Kyle Jensen.
Lentz made a successful octagon debut this past September at UFC 103, where he defeated Rafaello Oliveira by decision.
Emerson, meanwhile, got back on the winning track earlier this month when he defeated "The Ultimate Fighter 8" finalist Phillipe Nover at UFC 109.
A cast member of "The Ultimate Fighter 5," Emerson fell short against Kurt Pellegrino and Rafael dos Anjos at UFC Fight Night 17 and UFC 103, respectively, and vowed to re-tool his training regimen prior to his meeting with Nover. To that end, Emerson migrated to Hilo, Hawaii, to train with B.J. Penn in addition to his work in Huntington Beach, Calif., and said the experience helped him harness the mental aspects of fighting.
The placement of Emerson vs. Lentz in UFC Fight Night 21's current lineup is unknown at this time.
Jose Canseco admits he was ill-prepared for MMA debut, still angling for second chance
Former Major League Baseball great Jose Canseco (0-1) has often found himself as the center of a controversy.
And from steroid-use tell-all novels to "Celebrity Boxing" appearances, the 45-year-old Canseco has never been one to shy away from the spotlight.
Such was the case in 2009 when Canseco traded in his outfielder's glove for a pair of the four-ounce variety to face Hong Man Choi in DREAM's "Super Hulk" tourney. That effort didn't work out too well, but Canseco hopes fans will see that he's deserving of a second shot.
"I just wasn't ready," Canseco recently admitted to MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). "I had no business being in there. But you know what? I conquered my fears."
Chiefly among those fears was the massive frame of his opponent. While Canseco, at 6-foot-5, typically strikes an imposing figure, he looked tiny compared to the "Techno Goliath."
"The guy is 7-foot-2, 360 pounds," Canseco said. "That's one of the first times a guy has actually made me look small. It was amazing how big the guy was."
Canseco lasted just 77 seconds before submitting due to strikes. The former "Bash Brother" said there were several factors involved in his poor performance, and a series of torn muscles and strained ligaments in his knee certainly didn't help.
"Two or three days before the fight, I tried to say, 'You know what? My knee is really bad. I'm going to have a knee brace on. Why don't I just come down and be one of the announcers or talk about the fight or be there as one of the judges?'" Canseco said. "They said, 'No, no, no. We created this thing around you. You've got to come, and you've got to fight.' I said, 'Well, can I fight with a knee-brace on?' I could barely stand on it. They said, 'Yeah, you can fight however you want – with a knee-brace on, long pants.'
"Ironically enough, just before the fight actually happened, one of the rules guys checked my knee, and I had a metal knee-brace on. He took it off. I was like, 'They said I could fight with this on.' The judge said, 'No, no, no. You can't.' I had to take it off. I threw a kick right before that fight, and my knee went out of place."
Canseco said he elected to fight despite the injury, though his gameplan was admittedly limited.
"I think my gameplan was just not to get killed," Canseco admitted. "I said, 'Listen, either he's going to knock me out really fast, I'm going to try and knock him out right away, or my knee is going to give out.' I told myself, 'Go ahead and run away if I can land a solid punch.'
"People have to understand, he's a real giant. His skeletal structure is different than ours. He's 7-foot-2, 360 pounds. His face and his bone structure is so much denser than ours. I took a shot at him, and any guy my size would have gone down. I hit him decent, but I didn't get him solid enough to knock him off his feet. The man is incredible."
Despite the disappointing initial experience, Canseco has once again made waves by openly declaring his desire to face recent Strikeforce fighter and former football great Herschel Walker.
"I want to come back, and I think this is perfect timing," Canseco said. "We're both about the same age. I'm a little bit heavier than he is. We both have the same fighting experience. We both have the same martial arts background. And, of course, you've got football against baseball. This is perfect."
Of course, while Walker bordered on "Freak Show" status in the eyes of many MMA fans, the thought of Canseco giving it another run seems to border on absurd. However, Canseco believes the matchup is appealing.
"I have great respect for all the fighters, mixed martial arts and martial arts, in general," Canseco said. "I don't see why two ex-athletes who were great at their sport at one time, who follow martial arts, who respect martial arts greatly, can't go in there and do an incredible, entertaining fight.
"It's going to be about the closest, most realistic – same age, same shape, same sports background – I think it would be incredible just to find out who's the bad boy of sports."
Canseco has tried to prove the seriousness of his latest run at MMA by enlisting Cesar Gracie to train him. While that relationship is still in its infancy, Canseco sees the famed coach – and a clean bill of health – as his path to success.
"If the Gracie family would train me – and I met with them last week, and they seem pretty interested – I think it would be a great fight," Cnaseco said.
Whether or not Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker agrees remains to be seen. So far, the executive has seemed uninterested. But Canseco said he'll keep pushing, and this time, he promises to deliver.
"I'm willing to train under the Gracie family or whomever would train me," Canseco said. "I'm willing to put in the time and sacrifice the hours and put up a good fight.
"I don't want to go into the MMA world with Strikeforce and embarrass anybody. ... I will not fight under the Strikeforce banner unless I am completely trained."
Arona Recovering, Hoping to Fight in U.S.
Saturday, February 27, 2010
by Marcelo Alonso
Ricardo Arona is recovering from surgery and hopes to fight again this year, the Brazilian recently told Sherdog.com.
He injured his knee during his win over Marvin Eastman in September at Bitetti Combat 4.
“I injured a ligament in the first round, but at the end of the second round, when I put my foot on the Octagon grid, I must have (torn) my meniscus. From that point on I felt a really hard pain, but I returned in the third round and fought standing up until the bell rang,” said Arona, who had surgery two months ago.
The two-time ADCC submission wrestling champion is now planning a return to training and to the ring
“In July I’ll restart my MMA training,” Arona said. “I got some calls from two American events. I want to be fighting in October or November.”
In the meantime, Arona had some thoughts on the MMA scene. Considered Wanderlei Silva’s top rival during the days of Pride, he liked the former Chute Boxe representative’s recent performance against Michael Bisping at UFC 110.
“It was the first time I saw Wanderlei fighting for real, conscious and managing the result,” Arona said. “He showed a good evolution by studying his opponent’s game.”
Arona did not know that Demian Maia will be challenging Anderson Silva at UFC 112, but he was intrigued of the matchup when told it is set.
“Demian is going to be an excellent test for Anderson,” Arona said, “to show his jiu-jitsu skills and prove if he really has a high level on the ground.”
BJ Penn Unlikely Source of Info for Hawaii Tsunami News Coverage
As the world watched the terrible news of another horrific earthquake -- this one epicentered in central Chile, and waited for news of a follow-up tsunami expected to hit Hawaii, UFC lightweight champion BJ Penn and his website BJPenn.com became a legitimate news outlet for information.
Penn, who incorporates frequent video blogs as part of his website, live streamed video footage of Hilo Bay on his website throughout the day. His videos were picked up by CNN and Fox News and broadcast to a worldwide viewing audience, and Penn was also interviewed by CNN regarding conditions in his area.
Though the tsunami was first expected to hit at 11 am local time, the islands had not suffered any damage as of one hour later, though there were reports of receding shorelines, an early sign of an impending tsunami strike.
The 31-year-old Penn -- a two-time UFC champion in two different weight classes -- lives in Hilo and is considered one of Hawaii's most famous athletes. He's always been among the more tech-savvy athletes in MMA, promoting his website in interviews dating back to his early days in the UFC.
He recently released an iPhone app that was a bestseller, and just a few days ago launched what he calls the "Penn Global Broadcasting Network" on his site, offering 90 channels of content.
"It's the biggest news in the world and it's coming from our iPhones," a member of Penn's entourage could be heard saying while shooting video of the bay.
Tim Sylvia vs. Mariusz Pudzianowski
Like a 59 car pile up plus a train and helicopter up on the highway.You know you should not look but how can you not when something this awsome comes along.
A matchup between former UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia and five-time “World’s Strongest Man” Mariusz Pudzianowski is scheduled to headline an April 23 event in Worcester, Massachusetts near Boston, according to the Boston Herald.
The card, co-promoted by Eric “Butterbean” Esch and Korean-based promotion Moosin, is also slated to include UFC veterans Rich Clementi, Yves Edwards, and Houston Alexander