Penn Wants Late Summer Return
It’s family time for B.J. Penn, which means the UFC lightweight champion might not be back in the cage as soon as others would like.
UFC President Dana White told multiple press outlets last week that Penn’s next title defense against No. 1 contender Kenny Florian was a possibility for UFC 99 on June 13 in Cologne, Germany. However, Penn’s older brother and manager J.D. told Sherdog.com on Monday that the date is not feasible for his celebrated sibling.
“No, it’s too close to BJ’s last fight,” the elder Penn wrote in a text message. “He wants to spend time with his baby.”
UFC Returns To The UK 'At The End Of Summer'
The UFC will be returning to the UK in around seven months, possibly with two shows in close proximity, according to UFC UK division president Marshall Zelaznik.
Speaking to Fighters Only after UFC 95, he said that the UFC would probably return “at the end of summer” and also “possibly stage a show in early fall”.
UFC Building New Stars In England
The Ultimate Fighting Championship's worldwide expansion will grow later this year as the promotion will travel to Germany, but this is only after spending the last couple of years building a brand name in both England and Ireland. That showed true once again with a successful show in London on Saturday night.
As announced at the post fight press conference, UFC 95 drew a crowd of 13,268 rabid MMA fans clamoring to see the show, with a live gate of just over $1 million U.S. dollars. The success of the UFC in the U.K. cannot be denied and UFC U.K. President Marshall Zelaznik agrees with the successful plan implemented so far.
"I still think we're a couple years behind where the U.S. is. I remember being there then," he commented after the show. "We're getting better and better media coverage, which I think is important, it helps spread the word. There's still a lot of misunderstanding about our sport."
The U.K. UFC president added how important it is for the sport to continue to grow in England and beyond.
Pa. to allow MMA bouts in the state
Pennsylvania has joined the growing number of states to allow Mixed Martial Arts, or MMA, events within its borders.
The State Athletic Commission announced today it had adopted final regulations that will allow for the ulta-rough bouts popularized on cable sports networks to be held in the Keystone State.
It's about time!
Bellator FC Open To Working With Strikeforce
You’d be hard pressed to find an avid MMA fan that didn’t want to see Strikeforce lightweight champion Josh Thomson face off with East Coast standout Eddie Alvarez. While Thomson carries the belt of an organization poised to be the next serious player in the MMA market, Alvarez’s popularity in recent years has run parallel to the American Kickboxing Academy product. In November, Alvarez signed a deal with Bellator Fighting Championships, whose 12-week tournament based show debuts on ESPN Deportes in April. But Bjorn Rebney, CEO of Bellator FC, says there is room for Alvarez, and others, to roam. And that includes Strikeforce.
UFC Quick Quote: Dan Hardy locks eyes with Georges St. Pierre, thunder cracks
“There are so many good guys in my division but I managed to lock eyes with Georges St Pierre outside the cage and we had a moment where I was like — ‘I’m coming for you, I’m coming for you.’ But I know I’ve still got improvements to make. There are some guys I need to pick off on my way up to him. But whoever the UFC send me next, I’ll be ready.”
– Dan Hardy talks to The Sun about the moments after his sensational knockout win over Rory Markham at UFC 95: “Sanchez vs. Stevenson” at The O2 Arena in London, England, this past weekend. “The Outlaw” scored his second win inside the Octagon in impressive fashion and now has his long-term sights set on capturing the division title. He’ll need to put together a few more wins for that to happen, which he seems to understand. In fact, he expressed an interest in facing someone like Marcus Davis in his next fight. That sounds more like it … at least for now.
MM-Nay? Poll Suggests Tough Fight For UFC In NY
If a recent poll done by a New York state assemblyman is any indication, MMA is going to remain MM-Nay in the state. Assemblyman Bob Reilly (D) this past Friday released the results of a poll he commissioned to gauge the opinion of MMA among constituents in his district in the nation's third most populous state. 67% percent of the 468 New Yorkers surveyed said they are against legalizing the sport. Just 18% were for it.
Spoiled "Cabbage": Correira Suspended In Contract Dispute
Wesley Correira isn't exactly the most appealing form of "Cabbage" right now. The CSAC has temporarily suspended him for failing to satisfy a one-fight contract to face Buddy Clinton at a co-promoted Wargods and Ken Shamrock Productions event on Feb. 13 in Fresno, Calif. Correira claims it was because his fight purse would be halved to offset costs of last-minute medical tests. As part of the suspension, Correira says he must hold up his end of an agreement he signed with the California-based promotion before he would be licensed to fight anywhere else in the state again. That could be sometime in May.
Paulo Filho Looking At April Return
Paulo Filho – Everything points to April 3rd, in the United States. The event will be broadcast on ESPN, and should be in Las Vegas. I don’t know the name of the event yet, my agent is coming to Brazil will all the papers for me to sign. I just know I’ll fight on the 3rd and want to get back in the ring.
2009 M-1 Challenge Season Opener - Results
TEAM FINLAND VS. TEAM BENELUX
* Danny Van Bergen (Benelux) def. Juha-Pekka Vainikainen (Finland) via unanimous decision
* Jane Tulrinta (Finland) def. Tommy Depret (Benelux) via submission (D'arce choke) -- Round 1, 2:30
* Lucio Linhares (Finland) def. Kamil Uygun (Benelux) via submission (arm bar) -- Round 1, 1:22
* Marcus Vanttinen (Finland) def. Jason Jones (Benelux) via unanimous decision
* Toni Valtonen (Finland) def. Sander Dayvis (Benelux) via knockout (slam) -- Round 1, 0:18
Team Finland def. Team Benelux, 4-1
THE IMPERIAL TEAM VS. SOUTH KOREA
* Do Hyung Kim (South Korea) def. Mikhail Malyutin (Imperial Team) via unanimous decision
* Myungho Bae (South Korea) def. Erik Oganov by submission (Imperial Team) via submission (rear-naked choke) -- Round 2, 2:12
* Dmitriy Samoylov (Imperial Team) def. Hyun Guy Lim (South Korea) via unanimous decision
* Jae Young Kim (South Korea) def. Mikhail Zayats (Imperial Team) by knockout (kick) -- Round 2, 4:02
* Alexey Oleinik (Imperial Team) def. Sang Soo Lee (South Korea) by submission (Ezekiel choke) -- Round 2, 4:27
Team South Korea def. The Imperial Team, 3-2
TEAM USA WEST VS. TEAM BRAZIL
* Dave Jansen (USA West) def. Flavio Roberto Alvaro (Brazil) via unanimous decision
* Eduardo Pamplona (Brazil) def. Dylan Clay (USA West) via TKO (strikes) -- Round 3, 2:48
* Reggie Orr (USA West) def. Juliano Cioffe Belgine (Brazil) via split decision
* Raphael Davis (USA West) def. Jair Goncalves Junior (Brazil) via TKO (strikes) -- Round 1, 4:05
* Jose Edson Dos Santos Franca (Brazil) def. Carl Seumanutafa (USA West) via split decision
Team USA West def. Team Brazil, 3-2
Lombard Defends Again At CFC 7 In Sydney
Middleweight Championship bout
-Ron Verdadero v Hector “Shango” Lombard
Crowd favorite and CFC veteran Hector “Shango” Lombard returned to Sydney, Australia, to defend his CFC championship belt against the tough Hawaiian Ron Verdadero.
After a warm welcome, Shango wasted no time landing a big right hand that put Verdadero down. Lombard chased in, but Verdadero was already recovering from the hook. Lombard took the opportunity to get his stunned opponent’s back, standing up and delivering a huge suplex that almost put Verdadero out again. Quick to finish it off, Lombard delivered some vicious ground strikes, eventually forcing the TKO.
The Offense of ‘Intelligent Defense’
It didn't deserve a MacArthur fellowship, but I don't see anything defensively dull or dimwitted about Josh Koscheck turning his hips and extending his arm to shield Paulo Thiago from pouncing on him Saturday at UFC 95.
Brian Cobb butt scooting and attempting a weak double-leg doesn't warrant a Nobel Prize in defense either, but I would hardly call it brainless or idiotic.
Unfortunately, it seems they still weren't "intelligent" enough.
Let me be clear about what this is, or more pertinently, what it isn't. This is not an assertion that any of the evening's contentious proceedings would've wound up with a different victor if allowed to continue. This is not a criticism of any of the stoppages at UFC 95, nor is it an indictment of officials Dan Miragliotta, Kevin Mulhall, Leon Roberts and Marc Goddard.
In fact, given the current climate of refereeing in MMA, all of the event's referees did their jobs to the letter and their stoppages were just.
Instead, this is an inquiry into whether the refereeing standards in MMA are appropriate. UFC 95 was not an assortment of irresponsible stoppages but an illustration of the intensifying issue of what constitutes a justifiable end to a fight, as the margin between winning and losing in MMA has become hideously deformed.
Great editorial by Jordan Breen
Josh Koscheck Is Not Happy
Josh Koscheck is clearly not happy about the stoppage in his UFC 95 fight with Paulo Thiago. In this backstage video from The Telegraph he insists his hands were up, his eyes were open, and his guard was ready. His cornermen seem to feel the early stoppage was part of a trend on the night -- perhaps a dig at "regional referees" in the U.K.?