With Tristar training, UFC 129 win, Rory Macdonald looks to move up the ladder
Rory MacDonald may have just needed a change in scenery.
A half-year after moving from his hometown of Kelowna, British Columbia to Montreal, Quebec, to work with Firas Zahabi at Tristar Gym, the Canadian welterweight is hitting his stride.
With a key victory over Nate Diaz (13-7 MMA, 8-5 UFC) this past Saturday at UFC 129, the 21-year-old MacDonald (11-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) feels he's ready for the best the division has to offer. Yet he said his skills are still a work in progress, which means he's going to be one scary guy in two or three years.
"I have many years ahead of me, and I have a lot to learn," MacDonald today told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). "I'm going to be much sharper every time you see me in the octagon because my life is training, literally."
Gus Johnson leaves CBS
Richard Deitsch of SI.com broke some news earlier today that many MMA fans will undoubtedly be pleased to hear. Veteran announcer Gus Johnson, who has covered Strikeforce events on Showtime and CBS as well as EliteXC events in the past, will no longer be working with CBS Sports after 16 years of employment:
NICE! One of the top 3 worst commentators in mma is gone.
Alexandre "Cacareco" Ferreire vs. Rousimar Palhares in the works for UFC 134
A middleweight bout between Brazilian UFC vets Rousimar Palhares (12-3 MMA, 5-2 UFC) and Alexandre Ferreira (18-7 MMA, 0-1 UFC) has been targeted for UFC 134.
Sources close to the event today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that verbal agreements are in place for the bout, though contracts have yet to be signed. Brazilian website Portal do Vale Tudo first reported the matchup.
UFC 134, first announced as "UFC: Rio," takes place Aug. 27 at HSBC Arena in Rio De Janeiro and is expected to feature a middleweight title fight between reigning champ Anderson Silva and challenger Yushin Okami.
Gray Maynard Skewers Anthony Pettis, Defends Rashad Evans
UFC lightweight Gray "The Bully" Maynard has never been shy about sharing his feelings or opinions, and he certainly didn't hold back in yesterday's interview with Jon Luther at MMAFA.tv. Whether the topic was top contender Anthony Pettis, UFC 130 opponent and current lightweight champion Frankie Edgar, or even your average internet fan, Gray wasn't afraid to speak his mind.
On his part in Anthony Pettis having to fight Clay Guida instead of getting a straight title shot:
I’ve been in the trenches this whole time fighting the toughest guys. He throws one kick and then he’s the greatest in the world?
Let’s look at who he’s fought. Ben Henderson is the best name. And I don’t mind fighting him; I don’t care if I win the belt and then I have to take him on. But for me, guys like Miller, Melendez and all of these guys who have been on the f***ing grind, fighting the best competition for the past few years… that’s what I look at. Who have you fought? I don’t care about how good you looked when you fought a scrub. That doesn’t matter. If a guy isn’t good then you’re not supposed to look good. And for me, [Pettis] has fought one good guy in Ben, and he isn’t proven yet. He’s tough as hell, but we’ll see.
Soares: Aldo's illness shouldn't overshadow Hominick's "gutsy" UFC 129 performance
It's not the type of story manager Ed Soares wants to tell.
As it turns out, his client, UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo, was recovering from an undisclosed infection and was on antibiotics until the Monday prior to his fight with Mark Hominick at UFC 129.
Aldo's cornerman did, in fact, make reference to medication while inside the cage after his unanimous-decision victory this past Saturday in the co-main draw of the record-breaking event, which took place at Rogers Centre in Toronto.
But Soares in no way wants to take anything from a gutsy performance that saw Hominick fight his way through cuts, bruises and a massive hematoma to dominate the fifth and final frame of the bout.
There are no excuses for Aldo, he told MMAjunkie.com
Maria 'Meg' Melilo Selected as UFC Rio Ring Girl
Bloody Elbow's Tom Mendes tells us Terra.com is reporting that Maria "Meg" Melilo will be one of the ring girls at UFC 134/ UFC Rio, she won the eleventh edition of the Brazilian version of the reality show Big Brother. She's the cover of June's edition of Playboy magazine and also practices Jiu-Jitsu and Boxing and has worked as a ring girl before, so experience will not be a problem.
UFC Rio will be headlined by a middleweight title fight between Anderson Silva and Yushin Okami. Other bouts will include: Forrest Griffin vs Mauricio "Shogun" Rua, Thiago Tavares vs Spencer Fisher, Luiz Cane vs Stanislav Nedkov, Paulo Thiago vs David Mitchell and Edson Barboza vs Ross Pearson.
Ryan Jensen released from the ufc
As per MMADiehards, middleweight Ryan Jensen (15-8) has been released from the UFC following his loss to Jason "The Athlete" MacDonald UFC 129 in Toronto.
Starting to think they would never release him.
Strikeforce Challengers 16 set for June 24th in Washington with Ryan Couture
The next installment of the prospects-driven Strikeforce Challengers series is set for June 24.
The event, Strikeforce Challengers 16, is expected to take place at ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash., and it airs on Showtime. MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today confirmed the plans with an event source.
As MMAFighting.com previously reported, Ryan Couture (2-0 MMA, 2-0 SF) is expected to fight on the card, and light heavyweights Lorenz Larkin (10-0 MMA, 1-0 SF) and Gian Villante (7-2 MMA, 0-1 SF) also are slated to match up.
Showtime acquires Dustin Poirier-centric "Fightville" documentary
Showtime Networks Inc. has acquired the documentary "FIGHTVILLE," officials today announced.
The MMA-themed film focuses on regional MMA, specifically Gil Guillory's USA-MMA organization, and current UFC fighter Dustin Poirier's quick rise in the ranks before his call to the big show.
The film has earned rave reviews for personalizing MMA and addressing many of the sports' many preconceptions.
Jon Fitch Understands Criticism of Georges St. Pierre, GSP's Coaches Do Not
Jon Fitch was a guest on Ariel Helwani's latest edition of The Fight Hour today, and had some interesting things to say in regards to the heat Georges St. Pierre is taking for his lack of finish lately. Fitch is no stranger to such criticism, having gone to nine straight decisions spanning three and a half years. Did Fitch defend GSP and his actions in his fight against Jake Shields at UFC 129? Not exactly:
"A little bit," Fitch replied, when asked whether the criticism of St. Pierre is warranted. "I think, you know, I deserve some of that criticism too. But when he's dominating somebody that well, I think it's up to the champ to put a little more pressure on somebody in the fourth and fifth round. When you've secured a pretty solid lead on the scorecards after three rounds, I think a little bit more pressure, because he never really opened up more than a couple jabs and an overhand right. I mean, double up on the right, something."
Fedor Emelianenko vs. Dan Henderson Confirmed for July 30 in Chicago
Details have slowly trickled in, but it now looks like a fight between Strikeforce light heavyweight champ Dan Henderson and former Pride heavyweight champ Fedor Emelianenko is official. Recently-departed Bloody Elbow staffer Jonathan Snowden has the scoop (via Twitter):
Sources close to both fighters tell me the Fedor Emelianenko and Dan Henderson fight has been finalized for July 30th in Chicago on Showtime
Sources close to the promotion say the Fedor-Henderson fight will at a catchweight of 220. It will be promoted as a heavyweight bout.
Jason 'Mayhem' Miller Upset About Being Unaware Of Strikeforce, CBS Ban
May 3, 2011 - I've tried to be sober about criticism of Strikeforce. As an organization with limited financial or logistical capacity, I've found their shortcomings to be as real as they are understandable. However, there's nothing reasonable about the alleged treatment given to Jason Miller during his last year in the Strikeforce. While the controversial fighter and TV host certainly took it upon himself to squander good will from executives, that's a very different concern than being properly informed of his marginalization.
Strikeforce Returning to Chicago Suburbs With Fedor Emelianenko vs. Dan Henderson
It appears as though Strikeforce will return to the Chicago area for the first time since the Fedor Emelianenko vs. Brett Rogers event. That event was fairly well received by the local crowd and there was an atmosphere that seemed to support the idea of Fedor as a superstar. This is valuable since the rumor is that Fedor's next fight will be on the show. Via MMA Junkie:
Multiple sources close to negotiations today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that Strikeforce has earmarked July 30 for a major Showtime-televised event, putting on hold plans for a pay-per-view event.
However, a heavyweight superfight between Fedor Emelianenko and current Strikeforce light-heavyweight champion Dan Henderson, which has been rumored as the headliner to a potential pay-per-view card, is still in advanced negotiations and could headline the late summer event.
A location for the Showtime event has yet to be confirmed, though the Sears Centre in Chicago has surfaced as one possible locale.
Police Investigating UFC Legend Matt Hughes in Alleged Nose Breaking Brawl
UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes is known for his down home mid-western simple man values. He's an outspoken Christian conservative and family man who's been critical of other fighters such as Randy Couture for their lifestyle choices. Now TMZ is reporting that Illinois police want to talk to Hughes about an incident in a bar:
TMZ has confirmed 37-year-old Hughes was named in a police report filed in Taylor Springs, IL ... stemming from an April 23 incident at a place called Trails End Bar and Grill.
According to a source who was inside the bar, Hughes got into an argument with a male bar patron ... which led to some forceful shoving.
Sources tell us ... the woman is alleging Hughes pushed the other man into her ... and she suffered a broken nose in the collision. TMZ obtained a photo of the woman's face taken after the incident.
Cung Le Says He Won't Be Fighting in 2011
In an ESPN story, former Strikeforce middleweight champion Cung Le discussed his future in MMA and it didn't exactly sound too promising. With his acting career going ahead full speed, it doesn't look like there will be any time for the almost 39-year-old Le to step into a Strikeforce (or UFC) cage any time in the near future. In fact, he actually deemed a 2011 return "impossible":
Le says for him to continue fighting it would have "to be soon because the clock is ticking." Yet when asked if that means it would happen in 2011 he says, "that would be impossible" due to his demanding work load.
"I’m doing well right now being in the films," Le said. "A lot of people are telling me, 'you should just retire, you’re not going to fight.' Other people are saying 'you got to fight.' You can’t make everybody happy."