UFC returns to Atlanta on April 21 for UFC 146
For the first time since 2008, the Ultimate Fighting Championship is headed to the Peach State.
It was announced on Tuesday's new edition of FUEL TV's "UFC Live" that Atlanta's Philips Arena will play host to UFC 146, which takes place April 21.
MMAjunkie.com has since confirmed with sources close to the event that the city's Philips Arena will host the card.
Stumpf injured, replacement Thompson meets Edwards at UFC 143
An undisclosed injury has forced Mike Stumpf (11-3 MMA, 0-1 UFC) out of UFC 143.
In his place goes undefeated welterweight prospect Stephen "Wonderboy" Thompson (5-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC), who fights Justin Edwards (7-2 MMA, 1-1 UFC) at the Super Bowl weekend event, UFC officials today announced.
UFC 143 takes place Feb. 4 at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.
Thompson vs. Edwards is part of the event's preliminary card, which airs live on FX. Main-card action airs on pay-per-view.
UFC on FX 1 adds Easton vs. Papazian, Schilling vs. Pineda
As previously announced, Ken Stone (10-3 MMA, 1-1 UFC) has scratched from next week's UFC on FX 1 event.
In his place steps newcomer Jared Papazian (14-6 MMA, 0-0 UFC), who meets fellow bantamweight Mike Easton (11-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC) in a main-card bout.
In addition to that fight, UFC officials today confirmed that Daniel Pineda (15-7 MMA, 0-0 UFC) will meet fellow featherweight newcomer Pat Schilling (5-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC) on the night's preliminary card.
UFC on FX 1 takes place Jan. 20 at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn. In addition to the FX-televised main card, prelims air on FUEL TV.
UFC on FUEL TV 2 adds Gustafsson vs. Nogueira, Pickett vs. Page in Sweden
The UFC's first event in Sweden will feature a local in the night's headliner.
UFC officials today announced that fast-rising light-heavyweight contender Alexander Gustafsson (13-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) will meet veteran Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (20-5 MMA, 3-2 UFC) in April's UFC on FUEL TV 2 headliner.
Additionally, Brad Pickett (20-6 MMA, 0-1 UFC) will meet fellow bantamweight Damacio Page (12-6 MMA, 0-1 UFC) on the card.
UFC on FUEL TV 2's main card airs on FUEL TV (live on Saturday afternoon in the U.S.), and as MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) first reported, some prelims are expected to stream on Facebook.
The latest UFC on FUEL TV 2 card now includes:
Alexander Gustafsson vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
Alessio Sakara vs. Brian Stann
Siyar Bahadurzada vs. Paulo Thiago
Damacio Page vs. Brad Pickett
DaMarques Johnson vs. John Maguire
Cyrille Diabate vs. Jorgen Kruth
Simeon Thoresen vs. Besam Yousef
Francis Carmont vs. Magnus Cedenblad
Papy Abedi vs. James Head
Dana White: Rashad Evans Wins and Remains Injury Free, He Gets Bones Jones Next
Speculation began to swirl last week after UFC president Dana White said in an interview that Jones was already done with his vacation and looking to get back in action sooner rather than later. He mentioned that Jones could potentially face former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Dan Henderson next, with most pointing at the UFC 145 fight card in Montreal as a possible landing spot.
While anything is still possible, on Tuesday when speaking with the Jim Rome Show, White said that Jones is indeed ready to get back in the cage, but if Evans wins on Jan. 28 and comes out unscathed, he’ll get his chance to face the champion.
“We’re working on it now. We’re going to obviously see what happens in this Rashad fight at the end of the month. The next fight on Fox, Rashad is fighting (Phil) Davis, so we’ll see what happens there,” White said on Tuesday.
“If Rashad wins, if Rashad comes out injury free, we’ll get the Jon ‘Bones’ Jones/Rashad Evans fight going.”
White: Silva vs. Sonnen II would likely take place in Brazilian soccer stadium
If Chael Sonnen gets by Mark Munoz later this month at UFC on FOX 2, his next bout could be a huge one.
UFC president Dana White recently joined "UFC Tonight" on FUEL TV to discuss potential plans for a long-awaited rematch.
In the segment, which ultimately didn't make it to air, White said that if Sonnen gets his rematch with UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva, it'll likely take place in Silva's home country of Brazil – in a soccer stadium.
That means the fight could headline the UFC's second-ever stadium show (the first, UFC 129, took place this past April in Toronto) and its first-ever outdoor event. UFC officials previously have talked about using a Brazilian venue that could accommodate up to 100,000 spectators for a future event...
Bas to Cyborg: Send diet aid to AC
Cris Cyborg Santos recently tested positive for Stanozolol, an illegal Performance Enhancing Drug (PED) Stanozolol (better known as Winstrol). Her win over Hiroko Yamanaka was changed to a No Contest, and her legacy was called into question.
Cyborg's camp blamed the positive test on a dietary supplement, which they say unknowingly contained the illegal drug.
MMA legend, former UFC Heavyweight champion and current HDNet fight commentator Bas Rutten has a simple solution for clearing her name, via twitter.
If Cyborg wants to clear her name, simple, send the drink to the athletic commission, let them test it. I just don't believe they put it in drinks to LOSE weight. If they DO put roids in, show the drink and her name is cleared. Its what I would do. Like I said before, they all say "I took something over the counter". What? Tell us what you took? Help your fellow fighters not to make the same mistake by accident, just saying
Ex-champ Sean Sherk aims for spring UFC return, wants to solidify HOF credentials
Inactive since a September 2010 win over Evan Dunham, the oft-injured Sherk (36-4-1 MMA, 8-4 UFC) now is planning for a spring or early-summer return to the octagon.
"I wanted to fight [in 2011]," Sherk told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio) on Monday. "But I had the same issues that held me out of the octagon for 18 months. It's just injuries. It's injuries piling up.
"I fought too many times in the last five or six years with serious injuries. I don't feel the need at this point to fight injured. When you're fighting and not 100 percent, it's not a fun thing. It's not something fun to go through. It's not fun going through training camp when you need surgery."
At 38 years old, Sherk knows he's in the twilight of his career. He still trains five to six days per week, one or two times per day. He's there with the likes of UFC fighters Jacob Volkmann, Paul Bradley and Nik Lentz putting in the work. But for Sherk, he also has to worry getting healthy so he can reach his ultimate goal of getting back into the cage.
"I want to fight again," he said. "I'm a fighter. At this point in time, do I plan on fighting five or six more times? Probably not, to be honest with you. That's why I want big fights. I want co-main-event or main-event type fights that are going to cement my place in the UFC Hall of Fame. Absolutely, I think at this point in time, I've done enough to be a hall of famer, but I'd like a few more fights to make my mark."
"I fought for the world title in two different weight classes," he said. "I was No. 1 or No. 2 in two different weight classes in the world. I won a world title. I defended a world title. I think I've done enough to cement my place in the UFC Hall of Fame
"Most guys in the Hall of Fame right now didn't accomplish what I've accomplished. So I feel like I deserve that."
NSAC's Keith Kizer Had No Issues With Kim Winslow's Stoppage of Lawal-Larkin
Referee Kim Winslow received a fair share of criticism for her work at Saturday night's Strikeforce event in Las Vegas, most notably from Muhammed Lawal, but Nevada State Athletic Commission executive director Keith Kizer did not feel the criticism was warranted.
"I had no issues with the stoppage," Kizer wrote to MMAFighting.com on Monday when asked for a response to Lawal's post-fight comments about the referee.
Lawal felt Winslow stopped his fight against Lorenz Larkin very late, which could have led to Larkin getting seriously injured.
UFC 142's Sam Stout doubtful that Thiago Tavares will trade punches
Sam Stout now finds his own openings.
Five months after the untimely death of his trainer and brother-in-law, Shawn Tompkins, the 27-year-old fighter listens to several voices as he engages a sparring partner.
Before, he had to rely on only one.
"As much as I wish he was here every day, it's been a good camp," Stout recently told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). "I've really found a strength inside myself to be a little more self-motivated and be a little more independent, as opposed to relying on Shawn to tell me what to do."
Stout (17-6-1 MMA, 6-4 UFC) plans to bring longtime teammate Mark Hominick and a jiu-jitsu coach to his fight with Thiago Tavares (16-4-1 MMA, 6-4-1 UFC) at UFC 142, which takes place Saturday at HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro. The main card airs on pay-per-view, and the prelims, including Stout's bout, air on FX.
'Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine' medical suspensions: Four out up to six months
The full of "Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine" medical suspensions included:
Luke Rockhold: Suspended until July 6 due to a right-hand injury, though a doctor can clear him early
Keith Jardine: Suspended until March 8 with no contact until Feb. 22 for precautionary reasons
Adlam Amigov: Suspended until Feb. 7 with no contact until Jan. 29 for precautionary reasons
Lorenz Larkin: Suspended until Feb. 7 with no contact until Jan. 29 for precautionary reasons
Tarec Saffiedine: Suspended until July 6 due to a left-elbow injury, though a doctor (with an MRI and X-rays) can clear him early; regardless, suspended until Feb. 22 with no contact until Feb. 7 due to a left-eye laceration
Tyler Stinson: Suspended until July 6 due to left-thumb an right-knee injuries, though a doctor can clear him early; regardless, suspended until Feb. 22 with no contact until Feb. 7 due to a right-eye laceration
James Terry: Suspended until July 6 due to shoulder injuries, though an orthopedic doctor can clear him early
Trevor Smith: Suspended until Jan. 29 with no contact until Jan. 22 for precautionary reasons
Estevan Payan: Suspended until Feb. 7 with no contact until Jan. 29 due to a right-eye laceration
Alonzo Martinez: Suspended until Feb. 22 with no contact until Feb. 7 due to a bridge-of-nose laceration
Brian Rogers joins Bellator's season-six middleweight tourney
Brian Rogers (8-3 MMA, 1-1 BFC) is the first entrant in Bellator's upcoming season-six middleweight tournament.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today confirmed the onetime Strikeforce fighter's involvement with a source to the promotion.
The eight-man tournament kicks off in March and airs on MTV2.
Rogers, a 27-year-old Ohioan, also competed in Bellator's season-five tournament and scored a vicious first-round knockout win (due to a head kick and punches) over Victor O'Donnell in the tournament's opening round. However, he then suffered a TKO loss to eventual tourney champion Alexander Shlemenko in the semifinals.
The TKO loss marked the first time Rogers was stopped in a pro fight. It also snapped his impressive seven-fight win streak that included seven knockout wins.
Trevor Smith's camp plans appeal of 'Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine' loss
Strikeforce light heavyweight Trevor Smith likes to dive for leg locks when he's in trouble on the feet, and he said he told referee Kim Winslow as much prior to a weekend bout.
"I said if I get hit, I like to dive for legs and go under, so just make sure you don't stop the fight unless I'm out cold and taking a number of blows," Smith today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). "It's your responsibility to protect me, but let it go as long as you can.
"She made some kind of comment like, 'I've been doing this for a while – I know how to stop fights.'"
Smith (9-2 MMA, 2-1 SF) dove for Gian Villante's legs less than a minute into their preliminary-card fight at "Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine," which took place this Saturday at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. It and aired on Showtime Extreme prior to the night's Showtime-televised main card.
Villante (9-3 MMA, 2-2 SF) began firing hammerfists down on Smith's head, some of which went landed illegally. Then, Winslow stopped the fight at the 65-second mark.
Bellator Signs Top Welterweight Prospect Andrey Koreshkov
Less than a day after he was named the top 170-pound prospect in Bloody Elbow's World MMA rankings, Bellator announced the signing of Andrey Koreshkov to a contract.
A teammate of Bellator No. 1 middleweight contender Alexander Shlemenko, Koreshkov (8-0) will bring his undefeated record to the U.S. for the first time in a major organization. The 21-year-old has never gone the distance, finishing all of his fights in two rounds or less with five T/KO victories to his credit.
UFC 141 drug tests come back clean
All 21 fighters who underwent drug testing at this past month's UFC 141 event tested clean for performance-enhancing drugs and recreational/drugs of abuse.
Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director Keith Kizer today e-mailed the drug-testing results to MMAjunkie.com.
UFC 141 took place Dec. 30 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas with an Alistair Overeem vs. Brock Lesnar pay-per-view headliner.
Brandon Vera Calls Out Recently-Returned Thiago Silva
It seems that Brandon Vera wants another shot at Thiago Silva. Silva beat Vera down at UFC 125 and initially won a lopsided decision, but the fight was switched to a no-contest after Silva knowingly submitted a fake urine sample. Silva's suspension recently ended, and it didn't take The Truth long to get wind of it.
'Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine' salaries: Lawler and Lawal top $566K payroll
The full "Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine" paydays included:
Luke Rockhold: $90,000 (includes $25,000 win bonus)
def. Keith Jardine: $30,000
Robbie Lawler: $150,000 (no win bonus)
def. Adlan Amagov: $10,000
Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal: $95,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Lorenz Larkin: $17,000
Tyron Woodley: $60,000 (includes $30,000 win bonus)
def. Jordan Mein: $9,000
Tarec Saffiedine: $31,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Tyler Stinson: $4,000
Nah-Shon Burrell: $8,000 (includes $4,000 win bonus)
def. James Terry: $9,000
Gian Villante: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Trevor Smith: $4,000
Ricky Legere: $10,000 (includes $5,000 win bonus)
def. Chris Spang: $6,000
Estevan Payan: $8,000 (includes $4,000 win bonus)
def. Alonzo Martinez: $5,000