UFC 142's Mendes more than ready for champ Aldo, no matter what Maynard says
Two-time lightweight title challenger Gray Maynard thinks featherweight Chad Mendes isn't ready for a title shot.
Mendes, who's four years into pro MMA with 11 fights to his name, strongly disagrees.
"Maynard saying that he doesn't think that I'm ready for a title shot – I don't know why Maynard's saying anything about anyone," Mendes (11-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) said today during a media call in support of UFC 142, which he headlines opposite featherweight champ Jose Aldo (20-1 MMA, 2-0 UFC).
UFC 142's Anthony Johnson done for now with welterweight division
After years of cutting in excess of 30 pounds – and sometimes as much as 50 – to fight in the welterweight division, Anthony Johnson likes the idea of fighting at middleweight.
So much so, in fact, that he's "so far" done with his former weight class.
"This is easy," he said. "This is going to be a lot of fun for me."
Johnson (10-3 MMA, 7-3 UFC) is now 215 pounds in advance of his debut at middleweight, which comes Jan. 14 at UFC 142 against former champ Vitor Belfort (20-9 MMA, 9-4 UFC). Johnson vs. Belfort is part of the main card of the pay-per-view event. Preliminary-card bouts air live on FX.
"Everything has come to where it needs to be right now," Johnson said. "I'm peaking at the right time."
Previously, Johnson struggled just to make weight in the 170-pound divisions. On two occasions the 27-year-old failed to get down to 171 pounds, which is the minimum weight required for non-title welterweight bouts. At UFC 104, he was so weak he was carried to and from the weigh-ins, and he was fined 20 percent of his purse for the miss.
UFC on Fuel TV 2 confirmed for April 14 in Stockholm, Sweden
As expected the UFC will makes its debut in Sweden on April 14.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) recently passed along news of the debut, and UFC officials today confirmed that UFC on FUEL TV 2 will take place April 14 at Ericsson Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden.
No fights have been officially announced for the FUEL TV-televised show.
However, welterweights DaMarques Johnson (15-9 MMA, 4-3 UFC) and John Maguire (17-3 MMA, 1-0 UFC) are expected to clash during the landmark show, as previously reported.
Additionally, top Swedish fighter Alexander Gustafsson recently told MMAjunkie.com he hopes his UFC 141 victory will earn him a spot on the UFC on FUEL TV 2 card.
Estevan Payan replaces Bobby Green, completes 'Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine'
Bellator season-one veteran Estevan Payan (12-3 MMA, 0-0 SF) has replaced an injured Bobby Green (17-5 MMA, 2-1 SF) and now faces Alonzo Martinez (35-15-1 MMA, 0-0 SF) in a lightweight contest at this weekend's "Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine" event.
Strikeforce officials recently announced the change.
Featuring a middleweight title fight between current champ Luke Rockhold and longtime UFC vet Keith Jardine, "Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine" takes place Jan. 7 at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.
The night's main card airs on Showtime, and Martinez vs. Payan is one of four preliminary-card fights slated to air on Showtime Extreme.
ONE FC 2: Eric Kelly vs. Bae Young Kwon Round Out the Main Card
ONE Fighting Championship just officially announced the main card for their 2nd event this February. Most of the bouts listed were already mentioned on my last report on the fight card, but there's one match that slipped through the cracks.
That bout, a co-headliner between URCC Champion, Eric Kelly (6-0), and Bae Young Kwon (6-2) of Korea.
The Filipino fighter in Kelly, is considered as one of the best featherweights in the region. He is coming off a very impressive win over Mitch Chilson on the inaugural ONE FC event, and while also dangerous on his feet, he has finished all six of his fights by submission. He will be taking on the very dangerous Kwon, a Road FC contender who defeated Brian Choi of Evolve MMA last month
UFC vet Gerald Harris joins HDNet's Legacy Fighting 10 lineup
Next month's Legacy Fighting Championships 10 lineup has undergone a few changes.
Chief among them? UFC vet Gerald Harris, who's fresh off a pair of Tachi Palace Fights and DREAM victories, has joined the Feb. 24 lineup.
Harris (19-4) now fights fellow middleweight Artenas Young (7-4) on the night's HDNet-televised main card, Legacy officials confirmed with MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
Young's original opponent, William "Bubba" Bush (3-1), remains on the card. However, an opponent hasn't been determined.
Legacy Fighting 10 takes place at Houston's Arena Theater. At least six fights are expected to be part of the night's live HDNet-televised main card.
UFC targeting summer for Junior Dos Santos vs. Alistair Overeem title fight
The UFC's first heavyweight title fight of 2012 is likely to take place mid-year.
While on Tuesday's debut episode of "UFC Today" on FUEL TV, UFC president Dana White said he's tentatively scheduling a bout between heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos (14-1 MMA, 8-0 UFC) and recent UFC 141 winner Alistair Overeem (36-11 MMA, 1-0 UFC) for the summer.
However, no specific date has been determined.
"Hopefully this summer," White said when asked about the heavyweight tilt. "This summer is probably when it's going to go down.
"Alistair wants to take some time off. Dos Santos is ready but needs to get some training in. So hopefully, this summer."
Anthony Perosh vs. Nick Penner slated for UFC on FX 2 in Sydney
A light-heavyweight bout between Anthony Perosh (12-6 MMA, 2-3 UFC) and promotional newcomer Nick Penner (11-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) has been added to March's UFC on FX 2 event.
UFC officials announced the fight overnight.
UFC on FX 2, which marks the UFC's return to Australia, takes place March 3 at Allphones Arena in Sydney.
Gina Carano Speaks on MMA Hiatus and Future Plans
MMA Fighting recently caught up with the elusive Gina Carano to discuss why she disappeared from the MMA landscape for the last two and a half years, her upcoming film, "Haywire," which opens in theatres nationwide on Jan. 20, how she landed the starring role in the film, whether she will ever fight again, and the emergence of Ronda Rousey as perhaps the new face of women's MMA.
Lyoto Machida Undergoes Successful Surgery, Calls Out Chael Sonnen
Lyoto Machida recently had successful left elbow surgery, and moments after the procedure, he took to Twitter to lay down a challenge to the loquacious Chael Sonnen.
"Chael Sonnen, I just had surgery but I can still give you your present in the octagon with just one arm. All you have to do is accept," he wrote.
Of course, Sonnen dismissed Machida's challenge in classic "Chael P. Sonnen" style.
"I don't have time for 'pee pee' mouth," he tweeted. "All the time I can spare him is enough to cold cock him and walk away."
Amir Sadollah out, Matt Riddle in against Jorge Lopez at UFC 143
After dropping off the recent UFC 141 fight card on the day of the event due to an illness, Matt Riddle is quickly returning to action.
UFC officials today announced Riddle (5-3 MMA, 5-3 UFC) has replaced injured Amir Sadollah (5-3 MMA, 5-3 UFC) and now meets Wanderlei Silva protege Jorge Lopez (11-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC) at next month's UFC 143 event.
UFC officials today announced the change.
UFC 143 takes place Feb. 4 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The event's main card airs live on pay-per-view. Preliminary-card bouts, including Riddle vs. Lopez, are expected to air on FUEL TV.
Ken Stone out of UFC on FX 1 main-card bout due to injury
Just days after he was announced as part of this month's UFC on FX 1 event, Ken Stone has been forced off the card with an undisclosed injury.
UFC officials today announced a search is underway for a replacement for Stone (10-3 MMA, 1-1 UFC), who was slated to fight bantamweight Mike Easton (11-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC).
It was the final fight added to the night's FX-televised main card.
UFC on FX 1 takes place Jan. 20 at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn. In addition to the main card, prelims are expected to air on FUEL TV.
Matt Wiman vs. Mark Bocek added to UFC 145 in Montreal
The dance card is rapidly filling for the UFC's first Canadian jaunt this year.
The promotion today announced that lightweights Matt Wiman (14-6 MMA, 8-4 UFC) and Mark Bocek (10-4 MMA, 6-4 UFC) have agreed to square off at UFC 145, which takes place March 24 at Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec.
It's not yet known whether Wiman vs. Bocek is set for the pay-per-view main-card or the preliminary card, which is expected to air on FX.
Mark Hominick vs. Eddie Yagin on tap for UFC 145 in Montreal
Hopefully, the third time is a charm for Canadian fighter Mark Hominick.
The onetime featherweight title challenger is set to meet Eddie Yagin at UFC 145, which takes place March 24 at Bell Centre in Montreal.
UFC officials today confirmed the bout. It's not yet known whether Hominick vs. Yagin will be part of the event's pay-per-view main-card or the preliminary lineup, which is expected to air on FX.
War Machine, Carlos Alexandre Pereira join Bellator's season-six welterweight tourney
Two fighters are the first confirmed participants for Bellator's upcoming season-six welterweight tournament.
Bellator officials today announced Carlos Alexandre Pereira (33-9-1 MMA, 0-0 BFC) as an entrant in the eight-man tournament.
Additionally, as MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) recently reported, War Machine (12-4 MMA, 0-0 BFC) – perhaps best known as UFC fighter Jon Koppenhaver before a legal name change – also is part of the tournament field, officials today confirmed.
The tourney kicks off in March on MTV2.
UFC making inroads in China one fighter at a time
Zhang Tiequan returned to Beijing after making his UFC debut in Australia last year and was in for a shock when he sat down at his computer.
Weibo is a social networking site in China, similar to Twitter. When Zhang logged into his account after returning home, he had 100,000 friend requests awaiting him.
In a country of 1.3 billion people, 100,000 might not seem like a significant number. But Zhang, who is working with the UFC in an effort to develop mixed martial arts in his country, expects that one day MMA will surpass basketball as the most popular sport in China.
And that’s also why the UFC is making such a concerted effort to develop Chinese talent. Zhang, along with Yao Honggang, Li Jinliang Li, A Mu Ri Ji Ri Ga La and Cui Liucai, are in Las Vegas for the month, training with some of the city’s top fighters and trainers.
The plan, according to UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta, is to properly train the Chinese fighters so they can train others in an attempt to tap into the country’s love of martial arts...
Jimy Hettes represents the next, great generation
I have seen a lot of fighters really early in their career.
I judged Tim Sylvia's first fight. At first he thought his opponent was me. I was glad I wasn't - the opponent ended up in the ambulance with foam coming out of his mouth, and that was with palm strikes only.
I trained with Mike Brown before he ever fought. We touched hands standing, he heel hooked me.
I saw Jon Jones fifth fight. Actually, I missed it, as I looked down, more less.
When you see the ones who are going to be great, you know. I got that feeling Saturday night, but it wasn't an obscure fight in some obscure arena in some obscure place, it was on the main card of UFC 141 in Las Vegas, when Jimy Hettes dominated Nam Phan for three rounds, including two 10-8 rounds on two judges score cards.
I think the undefeated Jimy Hettes is going to great.
30-year old Japanese fighter Tomoya Miyashita dies of Leukemia on NYE
Very sad & discouraging to hear the news about 30-year old DEEP fighter Tomoya Miyashita dying on New Year’s Eve. He had fought one round of cancer (seminoma) and then was diagnosed with leukemia and lost the battle. He had a personal (Japanese language) blog online at Ameba where he commented on his struggles and also posted pictures of those in the fight community who came to visit with him.
Tito: I will be fighting my last fight July 4 weekend
The career of Tito Ortiz spans 15 years. At his peak he was the UFC lightheavyweight champion, the sport's biggest PPV draw, and more. He proved that mixed martial arts could be viable, at a point where its future was in doubt. In now small way, he carried MMA.
As the caliber of the athlete has markedly improved, as exemplified by current lightheavyweight champion Jon Jones, Tito's skill have fallen just, barely, short. He has gone 1-5 his last six fights, although many of them were highly competitive.
After losing to Antonio Rogerio Nogueira in the first round at UFC 140 in Dec. 10, many fans thought that was the end.
It's not. Tito wants one more fight, n July 4th, against Forrest Griffin or Chuck Liddell. As Liddell is firmly retired, that would leave a rubber match with fellow ex lightheavyweight champion Forrest Griffin as the most likely scenario.