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Raphael Assuncao (23-5 MMA, 7-2 UFC) is set to meet Aljamain Sterling (12-1 MMA, 4-1 UFC) at UFC Fight Night 102 in December. A UFC official confirmed the booking to MMAjunkie following an initial report from ESPN.com‘s Brett Okamoto.
UFC Fight Night 102 takes place Dec. 9 at Times Union Center in Albany, N.Y. The rare UFC Friday night card will stream in its entirety on UFC Fight Pass.
Bellator’s November return to San Jose, Calif., has a pair of new fights for the main card, as well as eight prelims.
Brandon Girtz (14-4 MMA, 6-2 BMMA) is set to take on Adam Piccolotti (8-0 MMA, 4-0 BMMA) in a lightweight fight on the main card, and Francis Carmont (25-11 MMA, 3-1 BMMA) will meet Linton Vassell (16-5 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) in a light heavyweight bout. Bellator officials announced the new bookings today.
Bellator 165 takes place Nov. 19 at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. The main card airs on Spike following prelims on MMAjunkie.
A featherweight fight between Dan Hooker (13-6 MMA, 3-2 UFC) and Jason Knight (14-2 MMA, 1-1 UFC) is slated for UFC Fight Night 101.
UFC officials recently made the bout official.
UFC Fight Night 101 takes place Nov. 26 (Nov. 27 in Australia) at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. The event airs on FS1 following early prelims on UFC Fight Pass, though the bout order hasn’t been finalized.
A bout between Sam Alvey and Alex Nicholson has a new date.
Originally scheduled for the recently canceled UFC Fight Night 97 event, middleweights Alvey (28-8 MMA, 5-3 UFC) and Nicholson (7-2 MMA, 1-1 UFC) instead will fight at UFC Fight Night 98.
Officials recently announced the rescheduled bout.
UFC Fight Night 98, which also serves as the live finale for “The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America 3,” takes place Nov. 5 at Mexico City Arena in Mexico City. It airs on FS1 following early prelims on UFC Fight Pass, though the bout order hasn’t been finalized.
Greg Hardy is making the move to mixed martial arts.
The controversial former Dallas Cowboys defensive end has decided to put his football career on hold to pursue MMA, MMAFighting.com has learned.
Hardy, 28, who does not have an extensive martial arts background, has been training for several months in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, and according to his team, several promotions have already expressed interest in signing him.
"I'm very focused and excited to start my MMA career," Hardy said in a statement provided to MMAFighting.com. "I'm going to do this the right way, I can assure you of that."
According to his team, Hardy currently weighs approximately 285 pounds and is expected to debut as a heavyweight when he fights for the first time, most likely in 2017.
"I'm fully committed to being as successful as I can be in this sport," he said.
It appears Brock Lesnar is preparing a defense following his UFC 200 positive drug test.
In granting a continuance for Lesnar’s disciplinary hearing, the Nevada State Athletic Commission revealed that the ex-heavyweight champ is putting together a case after failing a pair of drug tests for the banned estrogen blocker clomiphene.
During an NSAC meeting today in Las Vegas, commissioner Pat Lundvall said Lesnar’s continuance was based on his need for “more time to do the testing of the supplements.”
A request for comment to Lesnar’s reps wasn’t immediately returned.
Cruz recently appeared on the Fox Sports post-fight show following UFC 204, where he responded to a fan question about a possible McGregor fight (transcript via MMAMania):
"Look everyone's calling out Conor McGregor,” Cruz explained, “and I don't want to be another guy because everybody wants that fight. But, the thing is, McGregor is picking his own fights. So that's not up to me, it's not up to UFC, it's up to McGregor. Now I know as much as McGregor, and more, about this sport than anybody and it seems that the only way to beat McGregor is with your mind. I know I can do that and I know that I can also technically beat him. And I know that at 145 pounds I am extremely fast and hard to deal with. I can beat McGregor, absolutely. And I would love to fight him at 145 pounds or 155 pounds if he wins the title. I don't care, I'm the champion and my style is built for moving up in weight classes because I don't take damage."
Think Conor McGregor is rich?
He is, but even the millions banked by "Mystic Mac" pale in comparison to the revenue generated by Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White (and his 30 Ferraris).
"It's easy to get a ton of money off these UFC guys while they're not really getting paid," boxing's Floyd Mayweather Jr. told Fight Hype. "And he's living better than the UFC guys. They say ‘Oh, Floyd is living better than all his fighters,' well guess what, I was a fighter myself. So I'll put in the work on both sides."
The lineup for next month’s WSOF 34 event continues to take shape.
Officials today announced Josh Copeland (13-4) has suffered a knee injury and been forced out of his bout with former heavyweight champion Smealinho Rama (9-2). Kevin Ray Sears (4-2) has stepped in as a replacement.
In addition to the heavyweight change, officials today announced four vets are scheduled for bouts as part of the organization’s “Who’s The Toughest?” program, which gives military personnel a chance to compete for the promotion.
Those matchups include U.S. Marine Corps veterans Shane Kruchten (11-4) vs. Jeremy Mahon (5-4) in a 150-pound catchweight bout, former Marine Brandon Collins (3-2) vs. fellow light heavyweight Chris Morgan (0-0), and former U.S. Army ranger Nicholi Navarro (3-1) vs. lightweight Alan Gutierrez (2-0).
Bellator MMA will host two events in two consecutive nights for the first time in its history on Dec. 2 and 3 in Thackerville, Okla. Bantamweight champion Eduardo Dantas will be defending his belt on the first night against Joe Warren.
On Saturday night, Bellator 167 will feature a featherweight clash between Pat Curran and John Teixeira in the main event.
MMA Fighting confirmed the news with Bellator officials following a report by The Dallas Morning News. Both Bellator 166 and Bellator 167 will take place at the WinStar World Casino.
Conor McGregor's role in the UFC 202 pre-fight press conference ended up being a costly one.
The Nevada Athletic Commission (NAC) on Monday unanimously voted to issue the UFC featherweight champion a $150,000 fine, or five percent of his $3 million show purse, for the bottle-throwing incident that took place between McGregor and UFC 202 opponent Nate Diaz on Aug. 17 at the Copperfield Theater inside the MGM Grand.
The NAC also handed down 50 hours of community service to McGregor and will require McGregor to participate in an anti-bullying campaign for the commission.
Michael Bisping, Dan Henderson, Jimi Manuwa and Iuri Alcantara each earned $50,000 fight-night bonuses at Saturday’s UFC 204 event.
Manuwa and Alcantara earned “Performance of the Night” awards, and Bisping and Henderson took home “Fight of the Night” honors.
The UFC announced the winners following the event.
In the UFC 204 main event, Bisping (30-7 MMA, 20-7 UFC) beat Henderson (32-15 MMA, 9-9 UFC) in Henderson’s retirement fight with scores of 48-47, 48-47 and 49-46 and retained his middleweight title in his first defense. Bisping did it despite getting knocked down twice by Henderson’s famous right hand. Bisping won four of the five rounds from a total strikes standpoint, but had his face badly cut and swollen thanks to Henderson’s early knockdowns. Still, he got the unanimous decision win in front of his hometown fans and avenged a loss from 2009 at UFC 100, when Henderson knocked him cold.
Vitor Belfort fought for the UFC middleweight title just last year, co-headlined UFC 198 against Jacare Souza this year, and tonight he’ll be co-headlining UFC 204 vs. Gegard Mousasi. Even with the loss to Jacare in May, the 39-year-old Belfort is still #5 in the UFC’s middleweight rankings. However, just a few days shy of the 20 year anniversary of his very first pro bout, it looks as if “The Phenom” will call it a career. Brazilian journalist Breno Massena tweeted the news just before the UFC 204 preliminary card kicked off.
Belfort is almost a 3-to-1 underdog on most betting syndicates, as he prepares for his showdown with Mousasi. In addition to Vitor’s reported retirement, Dan Henderson says he plans to retire after tonight’s main event vs. Michael Bisping. So by the end of tonight, we could be seeing 50% of the main and co-main event participants hang up the gloves.
Magnus Cedenblad is on a four fight winning streak in the UFC, and looks to make it five as he faces Jack Marshman at the UFC in Belfast. The fight will go down at the SSE Arena in the city on November 19.
Ramzan Kadyrov, the Moscow-backed leader of the Russian republic of Chechnya, is receiving heavy criticism after video surfaced of his three young sons competing in a mixed martial arts event on the eve of his 40th birthday.
While having his sons fight wouldn’t sound like such a bad idea if the boys were young adults, the fact that the oldest of the Kadyrov sons is only 10 years old is the reason why so much attention has been brought to the event.
Akhmad (10) defeated another boy via technical knockout in what was described as an exhibition fight on a nationally televised card earlier this week. Akhmad’s younger brothers, 9-year-old Eli and 8-year-old Adam, also won their fights in front a rabid crowd of adults on hand at the Grand Prix Akhmat 2016 international tournament in Chechnya’s capital of Grozny.
Rafael Carvalho defended the Bellator middleweight championship in one of the most controversial decisions of the year against Melvin Manhoef in May, and the promotion will give "No Mercy" an immediate rematch.
Bellator officially announced on Friday that Carvalho and Manhoef will headline the Bellator 168 card in Florence, Italy, on Dec. 10. In the co-main event, Alessio Sakara takes on Joey Beltran. Bellator hasn’t revealed broadcast details for the event.
Friday night's World Series of Fighting 33 main event has been canceled.
The Justin Gaethje vs. Ozzy Dugulubgov lightweight title fight is off because Dugulubgov fell ill Friday morning, WSOF president Ray Sefo confirmed with MMAFighting.com. Sefo said Dugulubgov had a headache, low blood pressure and was headed to a local Kansas City hospital for further evaluation.
UFC 204 is down to 11 fights.
Bantamweight Ian Entwistle (9-3) was forced to withdraw from the card Friday afternoon due to illness, UFC officials announced. Entwistle did not show up to the official weigh-in, so it is unclear if his illness was related to a bad weight cut.
As a result, his opponent Rob Font (12-2), who did successfully weigh in, will not compete on the card but will receive his show money.
A light heavyweight bout between two of the division's rising contenders is the latest match-up added to UFC 206, as Nikita Krylov and Misha Cirkunov have agreed to meet on the Dec. 10 card. MMA Fighting confirmed the booking Thursday following an initial report by TSN.
A pair of high-level prospects will make their pro MMA debuts at Bellator 163.
Three-time NCAA Division 1 wrestling champion Ed Ruth and one-time NCAA Division 2 champ Tyrell Fortune will both compete in preliminary bouts on Nov. 4 in Uncasville, Conn., Bellator announced Thursday.