UFC president Dana White: "They'll need to kill me" to keep the UFC out of Japan
Despite what he calls extreme opposition, and despite the recent headaches caused by the country's top fight executives meddling in Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic's relationship with the organization, Dana White said the Ultimate Fighting Championship is heading to Japan.
To date the organization has hosted just four events in the country, the most recent of which was "UFC 29: Defense of the Belts," held in Tokyo eight-and-a-half years ago.
Although "dirty, sneaky, bad guys in Japan" allegedly don't want him there, White said they'll need "to kill me" to keep him out.
10 Questions for Lorenzo Fertitta
He’s the majority owner of the most successful fight promotion in the world -- yet Lorenzo Fertitta rarely takes centerstage.
However, to commemorate UFC 100, fans were treated to a special one-hour question and answer session with the reserved billionaire casino owner last Saturday at the UFC Expo in Las Vegas. With the fans at the helm, here are some highlights:
We have “The Ultimate Fighter” for the 155ers on Spike TV, but what about something for the 135- and 145-pounders on Versus?
Fertitta: We talked a lot about developing some sort of reality show for Versus. Now, we certainly don’t want to copy “The Ultimate Fighter” and what we’ve done on Spike, but we have been working on concepts where we can try to find new talent, bring new talent back to the WEC. You will see something happen where we have some kind of a show that will be a breeding ground for new talent to get into the WEC.
There’s an online petition called FedorChant.com, where a thousand people are going to cheer “Fedor” (Emelianenko) during the main event (at UFC 100). Is that going to put more pressure on you, and just the fact that Fedor doesn’t want to sign because of sambo, was that something that you’d ever overlook?
Drew McFedries vs. Tomasz Drwal at UFC 103
A middleweight contest between Drew McFedries and Tomasz Drawl is on tap for UFC 103 on Sept. 19 in Dallas, MMAWeekly.com has learned from sources close to the fight.
The UFC has yet to make its second trip to the Lone Star State official, but the American Airlines Center is expected to host.
UFC 100: In defense of Brock Lesnar
At UFC 100 on July 11, Brock Lesnar soundly defeated Frank Mir in front of a hostile crowd and millions of viewers at home to unify the UFC heavyweight championship.
The former WWE superstar spent eighteen months preparing for that moment. In fact, since his debut at UFC 81 in February of 2007, Lesnar has done nothing but listen to how green he is.
And how he couldn’t finish Heath Herring at UFC 87 despite the fact that the “Texas Crazy Horse” has no ground game. Or how he was losing to Randy Couture at UFC 91 but scored the win because Father Time robbed “The Natural” of his reaction speed and Lesnar has giant mitts.
Leading up to his rematch with Mir, everything about Brock was how awful he was technically, how preposterous it was that a 3-1 wrestler was championship material. Mir even offered to train him after the event to help him become better.
Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic Signs Three-Fight Deal With UFC
Heavyweight veteran Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic has signed a three-fight contract with the UFC, ending weeks of speculation about whether the popular Croatian fighter would return to the UFC or ink a deal with Japan-based DREAM.
UFC co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta announced the signing on Saturday during a Q&A with fans at the UFC Fan Expo in Las Vegas before UFC 100.
UFC 100 was a Flop Outside of the Octagon
Over the last year, Dana White and the UFC spent countless hours and a tremendous amount of money to promote UFC 100 – which was billed as the most important night in Mixed Martial Arts history.
There were countdowns on both Yahoo! and Spike TV leading up to the event. Even ESPN – which had previously given MMA very little coverage in the past – spent all week leading up to UFC 100 promoting the spectacle.
I had waited months to see UFC 100. Yet when it was over I turned to the room full of people I was watching it with and asked, “That was it?”
UFC 100 was no different than any other UFC pay-per-view event. It was a few fights, they showed me Turkish from the movie Snatch sitting in the crowd and then I was given the disturbing mental image of Brock Lesnar mounting his wife.
The new UFC Octagon girl is…
Forty beautiful women spiced up the action inside the UFC Fan Expo at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center Saturday in hopes of becoming the next UFC Octagon Girl.
After three rounds of judging, including a sultry bikini competition and a sportswear round, Las Vegas resident Natasha Wicks won the contest.
Around The World, MMA Heavyweight Division Suddenly Riveting
In work places around the country, and indeed around the world, Monday morning water-cooler talk following the weekend at some point turned to UFC 100.
And of course, those conversations eventually moved to UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar, who scored a second-round TKO over Frank Mir, and then outraged some by his postfight comments and actions. Around the world wide web, Lesnar was one of the most written-about topics.
In Search of the Elusive Mainstream
For many fans, mainstream press coverage of MMA is some kind of validation. Having been looked down upon for years for enjoying such a violent sport, seeing it on Sportscenter makes them think everyone else was just late to the party. Going mainstream is now the biggest straw man out there; it's a debate-shifting tactic more than anything else, and bringing it up assumes that going mainstream is actually an option. The idea that ESPN would one day have an "MMA tonight" and anchors of SportsCenter would discuss it alongside football and basketball as an equal was always a preposterous notion. Take away the two most controversial events at UFC 100, and you still have a blood-soaked mat starting the show, a man who couldn't open his eye and could barely walk after his fight, a vicious one-punch knockout, and a main event comprised of one man headlocking the other and beating his head in. After all this, do we really believe it is Brock Lesnar's antics that will keep this sport from going mainstream?
UFC 100 Salaries, Lesnar, St. Pierre get tops
UFC 100's two successful title defenders, heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar and welterweight title-holder Georges St. Pierre, each earned event-high $400,000 paydays from the July 11 event.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today requested and received the list of official disclosed salaries from Nevada State Athletic Commission executive director Keith Kizer.
UFC 100, which took place at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, had a total disclosed payroll of $1,790,000.
Quote of the day : Frank Mir "Within Half-An-Inch Of Catching Brock Lesnar"
"When Lesnar didn't come after me, that really threw me off." "He didn't land any punches on his feet, did he?" "I didn't expect him to run." "He ran like a lightweight. ... It's my fault. I should have trained that he would be intimidated from the standup" fighting position."
This is pretty delusional to me. Does anyone agree with this. I just didn't see it the same way Mir does, and I think he's kidding himself.
Lawal Eyeing Free Agency, Don Frye Fight
Now a free agent having completed his contract with World Victory Road Sengoku, rising prospect Muhammad Lawal is looking to return to action in August for M-1 against Don Frye, but despite plans to sign a non-exclusive contract with M-1 he's open to fighting anywhere-even UFC-provided the money is right. And yes, anybody includes one Brock Lesnar.
Did the judges ‘rob’ Alan Belcher at UFC 100 with Yoshihiro Akiyama decision win?
Ringside announcer Joe Rogan thought so, voicing his disappointment during the pay-per-view (PPV) telecast and following it up on his Twitter.com page in all caps:
“Alan Belcher got ******* ROBBED.”
“The Talent” and “Sexyama” went toe-to-toe for three fulls in their middleweight showdown at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, last night (July 11, 2009). It was an exciting back-and-forth battle with both fighters exchanging several hard shots
Mark Coleman doesn't get tired...he plays possum.
“I had a lot of doubters. I can’t stand being called an old man…. I had to shut a lot of people up. There are reasons why I got tired — distractions — I didn’t train hard enough. But if I put the time in I can compete with anybody. I was about 70 percent tonight [at UFC 100]…. I can get a lot better and [be a factor in this division]…. When I put my mind to it I’m fresh, I’m fast, I’m quick, I punch hard … I’m good…. Everybody else better watch out because ‘The Hammer’ is back…"
K-1 Videos Now on YouTube
I'm a big fan of K-1, the Japanese kickboxing organization, and it's always disappointed me that in the United States, hardly anyone knows what K-1 is. But the folks running K-1 these days seem like they have some smart ideas about promoting their sport in the U.S., and here's another good example of that: K-1 now has a YouTube channel.