Chris Wilson - Thinking Upset on Saturday
“Nobody expects me to win,” said Wilson in a tone mixing disbelief and laughter. “I don’t get it; I know how to fight, I come from Team Quest, it’s a great camp, I have an Olympic Silver medalist to train with every single day in Matt Lindland, I train with Ed Herman and Ryan Schultz and these guys go out and put beatdowns on people all the time.
He does have one of the best camps behind him. My money is still on Fitch though.
Lesnar Returns In August, Pulver/Faber For Free
White also said that Brock Lesnar, whose debut on Feb. 2 led the company to one of its most successful pay-per-view events in its history, losing to Frank Mir, will have his second UFC fight in August. No opponent has been named but the leading candidate appears to be Justin McCulley.
He also said the most anticipated WEC match thus far, a featherweight title defense by Urijah Faber against Jens Pulver, will take place this summer from Sacramento as a live special on Versus.
think it's probably a good thing to keep Lesnar out longer. It looks like UFC in June will be on Spike, so they don't really need another draw, and the more time off to train before his next fight the better. There are all sorts of rumors about who he's going to be training with, including BJ Penn, but it's unclear what is true at this point
The Pulver/Faber news is good too, that PPV was going to bomb, but they can probably break a million viewers with this one if hyped well. Lots of exciting news lately!
DANA WHITE TALKS UFC & BUD LIGHT
COLUMBUS, Ohio – On Thursday afternoon, UFC president Dana White along with Tony Ponture, vice president, global media and sports marketing for Anheuser-Busch, announced a new three-year deal between the fight promotion and Bud Light, making it the major sponsor for the organization going forward.
White expressed his excitement about the new deal with Bud Light.
“Not only did we get and land a blue chip sponsor, we landed the biggest. The biggest sponsor in sports, period,” he stated. “Not only are these guys the biggest and the best at what they do in their industry, but they’re the biggest and the best marketers in the world. We’re not talking the United States. We’re talking the world. When I say these guys are No. 1, No. 2 is far behind them.”
Injury Changes Strikeforce Card; “Semtex” Confirms Retirement
Strikeforce lightweight title-holder Gilbert “El Niño” Melendez was supposed to fight Jorge Masvidal at the Strikeforce/EliteXC March 29th event - but the fight has been cancelled due to a shin injury Masvidal received during “Strikeforce at the Dome” in Washington. The injury came in a fight against Ryan Healy, which Masvidal won by decision. A replacement could be named soon to battle Melendez since he is one of the top fighters on the card. Middleweight champ Frank Shamrock will put his title on the line against Cung Le in the highly-anticipated main event.
Exclusive: Eddie Alvarez to fight Andre Dida in first round of DREAM lightweight Grand Prix
Eddie Alvarez confirmed to FiveOuncesOfPain.com (www.FiveOuncesOfPain.com) on Thursday afternoon that he has signed a contract to participate in DREAM’s lightweight Grand Prix.
"The fight is 100 percent,” began Alvarez. “I just got a call from my manager, Monte Cox, everything is underway. Everything is approved and I will be heading over there (Japan) on the 10th to fight in the lightweight Grand Prix. I’m excited.”
"Monte (Cox) talked it over with EliteXC and EliteXC was happy to work with DREAM,” Alvarez responded when asked if special permission was needed to compete in a tournament that could require Alvarez to fight on three separate DREAM shows. “I’m sure they want to do business with them in the future so I’m sure they are more than happy to lend me over and let me do the fight.”
The tournament, which features many of the world’s top lightweights, now includes:
LW GP 1st Round Fights:
J.Z. Calvan vs. Shinya Aoki
Tatsuya Kawajiri vs. Black Mamba
Kazuyuki Miyata vs. Luis Buscape
Koutetsu Boku vs. Joachim Hansen
Eddie alvarez vs Andre dida
UFC Confirms Jardine vs. Silva, Ortiz vs. Machida for UFC 84
The UFC today confirmed that long-rumored fights between Keith Jardine (13-3-1 MMA, 5-2 UFC) and Wanderlei Silva (31-8-1 MMA, 1-3 UFC), and Tito Ortiz (15-5-1 MMA, 14-5-1 UFC) and Lyoto Machida (12-0 MMA, 4-0 UFC), have been booked and are now official.
The two light-heavyweight bouts are set for UFC 84, an event that takes place May 24 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. UFC lightweight champ B.J. Penn meets former champ Sean Sherk in the night’s main event.
Toe-to-toe with Big Nog
Interview with Big Nog:
On whether Silva is the best striker in MMA:
“I think so, in MMA, for sure. He hits hard, that guy. It’s like someone throw a chair on your head, a big chair. It’s like a heavyweight. There’s not many heavyweights that can hit like him. It’s different because it’s so powerful, but got a good speed. You cannot see the hands coming. When you cannot see, that’s the one that knocks you out, the one you are not ready to get.”
You can listen to the audio of the entire interview, which is about 18 minutes, or you can check out a rundown of the interview at this link:
Stephen Quadros' break down of A. Silva vs. Hendo
This is a match I have personally been waiting for and advocating for years. Believe me, I am excited that it is finally here. If you leave Henderson’s teammate Matt “The Law” Lindland out of the equation (and sadly the UFC seems to have done just that, which to me is the sport’s loss), Anderson Silva versus Dan Henderson is the greatest middleweight fight that MMA has to offer or could produce at this moment in time. Expectation-wise this ranks up there with the first match of Fedor Emelianenko and Rodrigo “Minotauro” Nogueira (Pride 25) or the second clash between Georges St. Pierre and Matt Hughes (UFC 65)....
LOL @ the "Raging Bull" reference later in the article
UFC® Press Conference Special Announcement
UFC® President Dana White will be making a major announcement at the UFC® 82 PRIDE OF A CHAMPION pre-fight press conference in Columbus, Ohio.
UFC.COM will feature the official announcement at 1pm EST. Look for video highlights of the press conference featuring Dana White, along with a special guest, making the announcement later in the day.
Ryan Schultz Ready To Defend IFL Title
Team Quest’s Ryan Schultz seemed like the perpetually snake bitten fighter for much of his career.
Momentum built up by big wins over fighters such as Eddy Ellis, Gil Castillo and Roger Huerta were often derailed shortly thereafter by inexplicable losses. Consistency often eluded Schultz, until last year.
Jake O’Brien Won’t Back Down
The timing couldn’t have been worse for Jake O’Brien. Fresh off the biggest win of his young mixed martial arts career over Heath Herring in January of 2007, the Indiana native had an unbeaten record, a victory over a perennial heavyweight contender, and was a couple of wins away from being in contention for the title.
He was also dealing with ‘stingers’, a nerve injury usually seen on the weekly injury reports in the NFL, and something he had been experiencing since his days wrestling for Purdue. But while he would usually work through the pain, which was then followed by numbness in his arms, eventually it got to be too much.
Heath Herring – A New Beginning
The third time should have been the charm for Heath Herring. In the first round of his third bout with soon to be interim UFC heavyweight champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira last July, the ‘Texas Crazy Horse’ struck ‘Minotauro’ with a kick to the face that dropped the Brazilian as if he had been shot.
UFC 85: London, Free on spike TV?
“UFC 85: London” takes place June 7 at the O2 Arena in London, England. Chuck Liddell is expected to meet Mauricio “Shogun” Rua in the night’s main event.
The UFC hasn’t announced broadcast plans for the event, but MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) was told by a source close to the organization that UFC 85 had been pitched as a possible Spike TV broadcast. The cable station’s executives are expected to make a decision as to whether they’ll carry the event soon.
WOW!, if we get to see chuck vs shogun for free that would be crazy!!!! Kudos to the UFC if they make this happen....2008 so far seems by far the Best year for the UFC and MMA, with PPV events as stacked as 82 through 85, free fight nights like UFC fight night 13 plus a new TUF, now with 32 contestants,and now possibly UFC 85 on the fee market....
Will UFC Counter With Fox?
Adam Swift at MMAPayout has this interesting tidbit in the aftermath of the CBS/Elite XC rumors:
Multiple sources have told MMAPayout.com that FOX is believed to have interest in MMA with rumors suggesting that the network even went so far as to make a bid on the UFC during recent negotiations. UFC President Dana White alluded to an unidentified network bidder in an interview with Steve Cofield earlier this month.