Randy Brown vs. Michael Graves moves to UFC on FOX 19 FOX-televised prelims
Tonight’s UFC on FOX 19 card has undergone one final (we hope) shuffle.
Late Friday, after the weigh-ins for the card, a lightweight bout between Drew Dober (16-7 MMA, 2-3 UFC) and Islam Makhachev (12-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) was scrapped from the prelims due to a potential failed pre-fight drug test for Makhachev.
The final UFC on FOX 19 lineup now includes:
MAIN CARD (FOX, 8 p.m. ET)
•Rashad Evans vs. Glover Teixeira
•Rose Namajunas vs. Tecia Torres
•Darrell Horcher vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov
•Hacran Dias vs. Cub Swanson
PRELIMINARY CARD (FOX, 6 p.m. ET)
•Michael Chiesa vs. Beneil Dariush
•Bethe Correia vs. Raquel Pennington
•Court McGee vs. Santiago Ponzinibbio
•Randy Brown vs. Michael Graves
PRELIMINARY CARD (UFC Fight Pass, 4:30 p.m. ET)
•John Dodson vs. Manny Gamburyan
•Oluwale Bamgbose vs. Cezar Ferreira
•Omari Akhmedov vs. Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos
Jiri Prochazka, Kazuyuki Fujita on Point for Rizin FF 1; Yuki Motoya Misses FLW Limit
Czech prospect Jiri Prochazka and longtime Japanese MMA veteran Kazuyuki Fujita both hit the scales Saturday morning in Nagoya, Japan, to make their Rizin Fighting Federation main event official.
Rizin Fighting Federation 1 Weigh-in Results:
Jiri Prochazka (217) vs. Kazuyuki Fujita (240)
Vadim Nemkov (204) vs. Karl Albrektsson (205)
Teodoras Aukstuolis (215) vs. Jaideep Singh (214)
Gabi Garcia (209) vs. Anna Malyukova (200)
Tag Team Grappling Bout
Kazushi Sakuraba (181) / Hideo Tokoro (151) vs. Wanderlei Silva (220) / Kiyoshi Tamura (185)
Rena Kubota (112) vs. Cyndi Alves (112)
Daron Cruickshank (154) vs. Shinji Sasaki (154)
Kirill Sidelnikov (259) vs. Chris Barnett (301)
Yuta Watanabe (193) vs. Hisaki Kato (193)
Yuki Motoya (N/A) vs. Allan Nascimento (125)
Kanako Murata (117) vs. Natalya Denisova (115)
Hiroto Yamaguchi (141) vs. Tetsuya Yamato (141)
Danilo Zanolini (161) vs. Norihisa Amimoto (159)
Yuya Yamato (132) vs. Yuki (130)
White says Robbie Lawler targeted for UFC 201 or UFC 202, likely against Tyron Woodley
UFC welterweight champion Robbie Lawler doesn’t have his next fight booked just yet, but UFC President Dana White said that could change very soon.
White told AXS TV Fights broadcasters Pat Miletich and Michael Schiavello that he’s hoping to put Lawler on UFC 201 or UFC 202, and that while his opponent has not yet been secured, “It’s more than likely going to be (Tyron) Woodley.”
Lawler Robbie (27-10 MMA, 12-4 UFC) currently is ranked No. 1 in the latest USA TODAY Sports/MMAunkie MMA welterweight rankings, while Woodley (15-3 MMA, 5-2 UFC) checks in at No. 3.
White was cageside at Friday’s RFA 37 event at Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, S.D., where he was scouting new talent for his web series “Dana White: Lookin’ For a Fight.” He was interviewed during the event’s AXS TV broadcast.
Ben Askren Dominates, Remains Undefeated at ONE: Global Rivals
Ben Askren went the distance for the first time in three years at ONE: Global Rivals. Opponent Nikolay Aleksakhin had his moments at the Mall of Asia Arena, particularly in the third and fourth rounds, on Friday night (local time), but the American’s undefeated record never looked in serious jeopardy.
Askren subjected the Russian to a wrestling clinic. He took him down and kept him down. Aleksakhin spent virtually the entire opening round on his back and found himself in exactly the same position for the majority of the second stanza, as the American attacked with ground and pound from top position.
It looked set to be a long and thankless night for Aleksakhin in this five-round, non-title bout, but at the start of the third, he burst into life with a flurry of punches. A hard right hand knocked Askren’s mouthguard to the floor and, moments later, the Russian connected with a jab followed by a left uppercut, which brought a smile from the champion.
Aleksakhin was given further cause for encouragement when he stuffed a subsequent takedown, although an unfortunate slip left him in the familiar position of being on his back with Askren on top. The reigning ONE welterweight champion stayed there for the remainder of the round, landing some elbows from half guard and then some knees from the north-south position.
Rafael dos Anjos puts title on line against Eddie Alvarez at UFC Fight Night 90
Rafael dos Anjos will be the first male fighter to defend a title on UFC Fight Pass this July when he puts his belt on the line against Eddie Alvarez at UFC Fight Night 90.
UFC Fight Night 90 is a part of the massive week of fights surrounding UFC 200. The event takes place Thursday, July 7 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The entire event will stream on UFC Fight Pass.
Jessica Andrade Drops to Strawweight to Fight Jessica Penne at UFC 199
After struggling to crack the title picture at bantamweight, Jessica Andrade drops to 115 pounds to face Jessica Penne at UFC 199 on June 4 in Los Angeles. UFC officials announced the bout on Thursday.
Andrade (13-5) started strong in the Octagon, winning three of her first four fights. She has since gone 1-2, thus making the decision to give strawweight a go. She’ll be dropping a full 20 pounds to make the shift in weight classes.
Boxing: Adrien Broner Indicted on Assault, Robbery Charges
Multi-divisional world boxing champion Adrien Broner was indicted by a grand jury on Thursday. Broner, who was arrested and put behind bars earlier this week for violating his probation in an unrelated reckless driving case, could face up to 26 years in prison if found guilty.
Broner (32-2, 24 KOs) was officially indicted on assault and robbery charges stemming from a lawsuit filed by a man who claimed Broner pointed a gun at him over a dispute over a high-stakes bowling session in the fighter’s hometown of Cincinnati. The man alleges to have won thousands of dollars from Broner, but when he tried to leave the bowling alley, “The Problem” pulled a gun on him and knocked him out, taking all of his money.
UFC Heavyweight Mark Hunt Signs 6-Fight, Multi-Million Dollar Contract
UFC heavyweight Mark Hunt has signed a multi-fight contract to remain with the Las Vegas-based promotion until the end of his mixed martial arts career.
UFC Tonight confirmed the news on Wednesday, but specific terms of Hunt’s deal were not disclosed on the show. According to a report from New Zealand-based stuff.co.nz, Hunt’s new contract is a “six fight multi-million dollar deal” that spans 30 months in total.
Ben Askren eyeing retirement at conclusion of ONE contract
Ben Askren is one of the best fighters in the world. And we may never get to see him match up with his elite peers.
The ONE Championship welterweight champ said he will likely retire at the end of his current contract, which has six fights remaining. Askren will defend his belt against Nikolay Aleksakhin in the main event of ONE: Global Rivals on Friday in the Philippines.
"I've got six fights left with ONE," Askren told MMA Fighting. "Then I told them, it's not a guarantee I'll be done, but I think there's a high likelihood that after those six fights I'll be calling it a day."
Dan Henderson to meet Hector Lombard at UFC 199
Lyoto Machida's drug testing issues removed him from this weekend's UFC on Fox 19 bout with Dan Henderson, but the UFC is apparently re-booking Hendo fairly soon. According to a report from Sherdog, Henderson will meet Hector Lombard at middleweight at UFC 199 on June 4th in Los Angeles.
The 45-year-old Henderson (31-14, 8-8 UFC) is coming off a quick loss to Vitor Belfort last November. He's 1-2 since he returned to the 185-pound division, with a knockout win over Tim Boetsch along with the Belfort loss and a loss to Gegard Mousasi.
Head coach: Joseph Benavidez no longer with Team Alpha Male
UFC flyweight contender Joseph Benavidez is the latest fighter to leave Sacramento's Team Alpha Male.
Team Alpha Male head coach Justin Buchholz confirmed Benavidez is no longer with the team and hasn't trained at the Ultimate Fitness facilities since December, when Buchholz took over as head coach, on his podcast, Stud Show Radio, Wednesday night.
"He did leave the team," Buchholz said. "I mean, you train here in Sacramento, you're part of Team Alpha Male, or you don't live here.
"He hasn't trained at all since I took over as head coach. I mean, I don't know. I thought Joe would at least give a chance of me, and Danny, and Holdsworth running this new program along with Master Thong and Joey. But he never did. He came in town for one week, he moved his house, did, like, one boxing class.
Ortega Battles Guida at UFC 199
Unbeaten featherweight prospect Brian Ortega will fight in his southern California backyard for the first time as a UFC fighter on June 4 when he faces veteran Clay Guida in a UFC 199 bout at The Forum in Inglewood, California.
Machida admits use of banned substance, UFC scraps Fox 19 fight with Henderson
UFC on Fox 19 just took another major hit. The bad news started rolling in last week, when officials announced that Tony Ferguson had been pulled from his headlining bout against Khabib Nurmagomedov, following a fluid buildup in his lungs. Eventually a replacement was found to fight Khabib on the main card, newcomer Darrell Horcher, but it was a major blow to the card's lineup of meaningful bouts.
And that ball is still rolling, as the UFC announced today via press release that Lyoto Machida has been removed from this week's Fox card as well, and his planned fight with Dan Henderson has been cancelled. It's not injury related though, as this appears to be one of the rare times where USADA testing has cancelled a big fight.
UFC releases statement on B.J. Penn investigation
The UFC made official on Wednesday the return of UFC Hall of Famer B.J. Penn, as well as the results of an investigation conducted into allegations of misconduct.
Penn, 37, will meet Dennis Siver in a featherweight bout at UFC 199 at the Forum in Inglewood, Calif., his first fight since announcing his retirement in the summer of 2014. The bout was initially reported by Yahoo Sports.
The former UFC welterweight and lightweight champion announced his intentions to return earlier in the year, but was put on hold when a string of sexual assault allegations surfaced.
Thursday, the UFC released a formal statement on the matter, which noted that no actions, civil or criminal, have been taken against Penn involving the allegations, but reserved the right to act based should new information come to light.
"Following a review of the matter by Campbell & Williams, a Las Vegas-based law firm hired by UFC to evaluate the situation, UFC has been informed that no criminal or civil charges have been filed against Penn to date, nor has any action been taken by local law enforcement. It should be noted that UFC reserves the right to reevaluate the matter should new information be made available," the UFC statement read.
Mike Jackson released by UFC after just one bout, headed for the boxing ring
The situation was all a little novel, but Mike Jackson -- who made his UFC debut against fellow debutant Mickey Gall on Feb. 6 in Las Vegas -- was never long for the Octagon.
Jackson has been released by the promotion after getting submitted in 45 seconds against Gall, the fighter who was discovered during an airing of Lookin' For A Fight being groomed for the chance to face pro wrestler-turned-mixed martial artist CM Punk (real name Phil Brooks).
Don’t blame my son for killing his MMA opponent
Here's why I wanted to post this. Many media outlets are putting a bad spin on this. Obviously it's a bad and sad situation, but I get really pissed when they keep saying "he punched him to death inside the cage". That makes it seem like he died in the cage as the guy was punching him.
The simple wording is giving MMA a bad rep. and people against it will jump on it etc. When it happens in boxing you don't read "he was punched to death in the ring"
Tito Ortiz suing manager of Jon Jones, Wayne Harriman, for unpaid 'loan'
A lawsuit filed by former UFC light heavyweight champion and current Bellator star Jacob "Tito" Ortiz against veteran MMA promoter and manager Wayne Harriman in Clark County, Nevada District Court last October for "breach of contract" is now progressing to the discovery phase.
In a complaint filed on October 22, 2015 by Tito Ortiz's attorneys, Martin Little and Taylor Waite, it is claimed that on July 19, 2011 Ortiz loaned Wayne Harriman "a sum of money in excess of Ten Thousand and no/100 dollars" (according to the March 30th, 2016 Commissioner's decision on request for exemption the amount was $125,000.) Harriman is alleged by Ortiz to have signed a "Simple Promissory Note (the "Note") wherein he expressly agreed to pay back the Loan, plus interest, by no later than August 1, 2012."
Shooto Champ Yutaka Saito, Caol Uno Get Opponents for ‘Fight & Mosh’ Card
Reigning Shooto 145-pound champion Yutaka Saito and onetime UFC contender Caol Uno will square off against American foes later this month in Chiba, Japan.
Shooto on Tuesday announced that Saito has been paired with CFFC titleholder Bill Algeo, while Uno will meet muay Thai practitioner Jason Childers. Both bouts are set for three five-minute rounds and will be contested at 145 pounds.
The matchups are part of the Shooto-produced “Fight & Mosh” event which takes place April 23 at Maihama Amphitheater in Urayasu, Chiba. Two world titles will be on the line that evening, with 125-pound ace Masaaki Sugawara defending against Hiromasa Ogikubo, and Koshi Matsumoto facing Yuki Kawana for the vacant 155-pound strap.
UFC earns best afternoon ratings ever on Fox Sports 1 with UFC Fight Night 86
A heavyweight contenders battle with Junior Dos Santos beating Ben Rothwell on Sunday did 781,000 viewers, the most-watched of the four afternoon live main cards to date on FS 1, and doubling the numbers of a similar show last year.
Sunday's Junior dos Santos vs. Ben Rothwell fight scored strong numbers, setting records for a live UFC afternoon show on FS 1.
The main card averaged 781,000 viewers, airing between 2 p.m. at 5:20 p.m. Eastern time. The UFC led FS1 to first place in viewership among all the sports cable networks in the time slot.
The audience was larger than several shows in 2015 that aired in prime time, as UFC ratings continue to be significantly up from last year's levels.
It was the most-watched UFC Fight Night show that aired outside of prime time on FS1 to date. It more than doubled the previous afternoon show one year ago that did 389,000 viewers, a show headlined by Chad Mendes' win over Ricardo Lamas. UFC had done three previous afternoon shows on FS1.