UFC 205: Contract dispute forces Al Iaquinta from Thiago Alves fight on Nov. 12
Easy come, easy go.
By his own admission, lightweight power puncher Al Iaquinta will no longer be competing against Thiago Alves at the upcoming UFC 205 pay-per-view (PPV) event, scheduled for Nov. 12, 2016 inside Madison Square Garden in New York City.
“Raging Al” elaborates to FOX Sports:
"I got the contract and I was just looking at it for a couple of days. I was like I just can't sign it. I can't do it. I felt like it wasn't right. I talked to my manager, I said listen I really want to fight in New York. There's nothing I want to do more than fight in New York, but I can't take a pay cut for this fight. I'm taking a pay cut from all of my sponsors. I'm taking a pay cut of all the last 18 months of the sponsors that could have been. I told (my manager) that I wanted more. I wanted to have a conversation with the UFC and see if they would do some kind of negotiation because when I signed my contract, there was no Reebok deal."
Amanda Cooper vs. Anna Elmose added to UFC Fight Night 99 in Belfast
November’s UFC Fight Night 99 event in North Ireland has its second fight.
Officials today announced a strawweight bout between Amanda Cooper (1-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC) and Anna Elmose (3-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC).
UFC Fight Night 99 takes place Nov. 19 at SSE Arena in Belfast, and the entire card streams on UFC Fight Pass, though the bout order hasn’t been finalized.
Gustafsson vs. Lil’ Nog to headline UFC Fight Night 100
Having recorded his first win since 2014, Alexander Gustafsson is apparently going to headline UFC Fight Night 100. Combate reported that the two-time UFC light heavyweight title challenger will travel to Sao Paulo, Brazil to face Antonio Rogerio Nogueira on Saturday, November 19th. UFC Fight Night 100’s main card airs live on Fox Sports 1 from the Ginásio do Ibirapuera.
Gustafsson (17-4) defeated Jan Blachowicz by unanimous decision in this month’s UFC Hamburg co-main event. He’d previously lost by 1st round TKO to Anthony Johnson in January 2015, then fought for the LHW title at UFC 192, dropping a thrilling split decision to Daniel Cormier.
Nogueira (22-7) halted his own two-fight losing streak with an impressive 1st round KO of Patrick Cummins at UFC 198. The 40-year-old suffered a vicious KO loss to Anthony Johnson in July 2014, then didn’t fight again until August 2015, when he took a unanimous decision defeat vs. Shogun Rua.
Jacare says ‘wonderful’ rematch will be 'a big problem' for Luke Rockhold
Ronaldo Jacare will finally get the chance to settle his score with Luke Rockhold.
Now, as his rematch has been announced, he feels like it's the perfect opportunity to show he's better than Rockhold, as he told Gazeta Esportes.
"This Rockhold fight is going to be wonderful for me, but it's going to be a big problem for him. I need to defeat him so I can get in line for a title shot. I'll show everything I know to win and become the next title challenger. I rather not talk about it, but I see holes in his game. We've been studying his fights and we know he's a tough fighter. Nevertheless, I feel confident and I know what I have to do to win."
BJ Penn on Georges St-Pierre turning down trilogy: ‘That’s why he’ll never be remembered’
BJ Penn was hoping to make a trilogy fight with Georges St-Pierre happen upon his comeback, aiming at UFC 205 in November. But apparently, it is not a plan that GSP has in his immediate future, as he feels it is a risk that is not worth taking.
“I remember when I fought him the first time, when he was nobody, I didn’t think about it being risky for my legacy,” Penn said in an interview with Rapid Fire. “That’s why I believe, when all this is said and done, that’s why I’ll be remembered but he will never be remembered.”
“You know, Anderson Silva was there, he could have fought Anderson Silva, but he never fought Anderson Silva for his legacy. Just as a rule of thumb, for myself personally, I don’t live thinking about my legacy. I’ll fight. I want to fight anyone, you know?”
A.J. McKee vs. Emmanuel Sanchez slated for Bellator 166 in Oklahoma
The first fight is set for December’s Bellator 166 event.
Officials today announced featherweights A.J. McKee (5-0 MMA, 5-0 BMMA) and Emmanuel Sanchez (13-3 MMA, 5-2 UFC) are set as the fight card’s first official matchup.
Bellator 166 takes place Dec. 2 at WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Okla. The main card airs on Spike following prelims on MMAjunkie.
McKee, the son of MMA vet Antonio McKee, has spent his entire career in Bellator since making his pro debut in April 2015. All of the 21-year-old’s victories, including a recent second-round submission win over Cody Walker at Bellator 160, have come via stoppage.
Jimmie Rivera: T.J. Dillashaw is my ‘top choice’ after UFC 203 win over Urijah Faber
Jimmie Rivera continues to rise in the UFC bantamweight division, and he eyes another former champion next to get closer to a shot at the gold.
Fresh off a unanimous decision win over Urijah Faber at UFC 203 in Cleveland, Rivera spoke with Ariel Helwani on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour and explained why a clash with T.J. Dillashaw makes the most sense for him next.
"I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s T.J. Dillashaw," Rivera said. "Cody and Cruz are going to have a fight soon, I heard, that’s probably gonna be in the works for December. I wouldn’t be surprised. I think it’s gonna be probably T.J. Dillashaw next."
"That would be my top choice because now you have Cody and Cruz," he said. "I think Dillashaw really wants the rematch but Cruz doesn’t want it, and the UFC is not giving to him anyway."
Rory MacDonald up for Chael Sonnen fight at 'gangster weight'
The press release from Bellator announcing Sonnen's signing stated that he wanted to fight in three different weight classes (which he dubbed gangster weight), and one of the specific names he called out was the aforementioned MacDonald. That's a bit strange, since Rory has always been a welterweight. But Chael said he'd take him on at 185, and for his part, it looks like Rory is down with it. He responded to a tweet about the fight by MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani:
Tyron Woodley announces he'll defend title against Stephen Thompson at UFC 205
The suspense is over: Tyron Woodley has his first championship defense set, and Madison Square Garden has a title fight.
Woodley, the UFC welterweight champion, will defend the belt against red-hot Stephen "Wonderboy" Thompson at UFC 205 card in New York City on Nov. 12. He made the announcement on FOX Sports 2's weigh-in show Friday, and UFC sources confirmed that matchup is the plan for the two fighters.
Cody East vs. Curtis Blaydes slated for UFC Fight Night 96 in Oregon
A heavyweight bout has been added to next month’s UFC Fight Night 96 lineup.
Officials today announced Cody East (12-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC) is slated to fight Curtis Blaydes (5-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC).
UFC Fight Night 96 takes place Oct. 1 at Moda Center in Portland, Ore. The card air on FS1 following early prelims on UFC Fight Pass, though the bout order hasn’t been finalized.
Uriah Hall blasts Michael Bisping: ‘I’ve kicked his ass in training before’
Reigning middleweight champion Michael Bisping has drawn the ire of many fighters, due to his brash demeanor. One of them being number nine-ranked contender Uriah Hall, who is apparently aching to get his hands on “The Count.”
“Primetime” takes on number-ten ranked middleweight Derek Brunson this weekend at UFC Fight Night 94 in Hidalgo, Texas. But he is seemingly looking past his task at hand, and is already entertaining the idea of settling an apparent personal grudge against Bisping, as he talked about during a recent guesting on the UFC Unfiltered podcast.
Joe Warren says he has no sponsors for Bellator bout, having trouble supporting family
Joe Warren's shorts will be free of logos Friday night in the Bellator 161 main event. And it won't be him trying to make any kind of fashion statement.
Warren, a former two-division Bellator champion, said he doesn't have any sponsorships for his headline fight against Sirwan Kakai in Cedar Park, Texas. After his first-round submission loss to Darion Caldwell in March, all the companies split, he said.
"I'm not used to losing and people turn and run when you lose," Warren told MMA Fighting. "I know it's only one loss, but they turn and run on you. So yeah, no sponsors for this fight.
"There's fair weather fans out there. I don't believe getting sponsors is as easy as it used to be and it's just kind of sad. What I've put into this game, what I've given into the MMA field, to not even get sponsors, it's sad, man. It's sad. But it's the game. It is what it is. That's not gonna hold me back from performing, it just would have sweetened the pot a little bit."
Frankie Edgar vs. Jeremy Stephens targeted for UFC 205
With the UFC's first ever show at Madison Square Garden only two months away, the card is slowly starting to fill up. According to Brazil's Combate, former UFC lightweight champion and perennial featherweight contender Frankie Edgar will fight Jeremy Stephens on the November 12th pay-per-view event. UFC officials haven't announced the matchup themselves.
Ex-champ Chris Weidman vs. Yoel Romero slated for UFC 205 in New York City
Two middleweight notables will meet in November at UFC 205.
Former champion Chris Weidman (13-1 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and fellow contender Yoel Romero (12-1 MMA, 7-0 UFC) are slated to fight at the event.
Although UFC officials haven’t made a formal announcement regarding any fights on the fall card, people close to the event told MMAjunkie that the bout has been finalized. The people spoke on the condition of anonymity since they’re not authorized to announce the matchup.
The long-rumored bout features two highly ranked contenders; Weidman is No. 3 in the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA middleweight rankings, and Romero is No. 4.
UFC 205 takes place Nov. 12 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The event airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass, though the bout order hasn’t been finalized.
Weidman vs. Romero is expected to be part of the main card but not headline it.
Minakov: Contract dispute with Bellator delaying UFC debut
As far as Vitaly Minakov is concerned, he would already be fighting for the UFC had Bellator not interfered.
BloodyElbow's Karim Zidan confirmed that Minakov will likely transition to the UFC in 2017. Speaking to Russian outlet izvestia.ru, the former heavyweight champion revealed that this was indeed likely to be the case, though he was uncertain when the move would occur because of Bellator's "strange" behaviour.
"I had signed a contract with [Bellator], not on the number of matches, but for a certain period of three years," said Minakov. "The three years have elapsed but the conditions if you are the champions of the organization, and I was to them, is that they have the right to extend twice or three times more for six months. And they did.
"My agreement with Bellator will expire in a few months. But now there is strange behavior on their part. They insist that I have to perform a few more fights under their banner, although the contract does not have a word about the number of fights. Now this issue is being studied by my lawyer."
Jose Aldo wants Anthony Pettis next if Conor McGregor doesn’t return to featherweight
Jose Aldo vs. Anthony Pettis can finally happen in 2016.
"I’m already frustrated that it might happen, but we’ll see," Aldo recently told Brazilian TV show Revista Combate. "Every night I ask ‘give me one more chance to get in there again with him and I know it won’t happen again.’ but if it’s not him, I think I’d prefer to fight Pettis. I with them learned that I don’t have to look at the promotion’s side, the title run. A fight with Pettis would sell a lot more than Holloway."
"Holloway is way tougher than Pettis today," Aldo said. "‘Do Bronx’ (Oliveira) was winning the fight, but (his cardio) goes down drastically during the fight. I think that a fight with Pettis would sell a lot and is way easier for me. If I had to choose one of them it would be him because it sells more and I have a better chance, but I respect him."
"It makes sense, but I’m not looking at the whole title thing now," Aldo said of fighting Holloway in New York. "I look at the financial aspect of it. I thought about my legacy and career before, but now I look with different eyes. I think Dana White taught me that. The biggest slice of the cake has to be mine.
"I’m trying to get a fight at this UFC card in New York, but we’ll see what ‘Dede’ (Pederneiras) has to say when he comes back. ‘Dede’ is (in Cleveland) now for a meeting with Dana to decide our future. I hope everything goes right. If it’s not against (McGregor) we fight for the undisputed belt. We’ll see."
Ex-champs Cain Velasquez and Fabricio Werdum likely to meet at UFC 207
Cain Velasquez will likely get his rematch with fellow ex-UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum in December.
Werdum (21-6-1 MMA, 9-3 UFC) and Velasquez (14-2 MMA, 12-2 UFC), respectively No. 2 and No. 3 in the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA heavyweight rankings, are targeted for a long-awaited rematch at UFC 207.
The fight isn’t signed but has been offered to the competitors, according to people close to both camps who requested anonymity because they aren’t authorized to discuss the booking publicly.
UFC 207 takes place Dec. 30 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. As with other major year-end UFC events, it airs on pay-per-view.