Brothers Get New Opponents at Brazil Event
Next Saturday's Belfort vs. Bisping fight card continues to be reshuffled as injuries have forced two more replacements on the Sao Paulo card.
Light heavyweight prospect Wagner Prado will now face UFC newcomer Ildemar Alcantara, as original opponent Roger Hollett has been injured. The 17-5 Alcantara is riding a seven-fight win streak, with six of those victories coming via first-round stoppage.
UFC 156 main card set, McCall vs. Benavidez takes final PPV slot
The main card is set for UFC 156, the newest and upcoming edition of the UFC's annual Super Bowl weekend card.
As previously announced, the event takes place Feb. 2 at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, and featherweight champion Jose Aldo (21-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC) meets former lightweight titleholder Frankie Edgar (14-3-1 MMA, 9-3-1 UFC) in the championship pay-per-view headliner.
Taking the final slot on the PPV main card is a flyweight bout between Ian McCall (11-3-1 MMA, 0-1-1 UFC) and Joseph Benavidez (16-3 MMA, 3-1 UFC).
The latest UFC 156 card includes:
MAIN CARD (Pay-per-view, 10 p.m. ET)
Jose Aldo vs. Frankie Edgar - for featherweight title
Rashad Evans vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
Alistair Overeem vs. Antonio Silva
Jon Fitch vs. Demian Maia
Joseph Benavidez vs. Ian McCall
PRELIMINARY CARD (FX and Facebook, 7 p.m. ET)
Evan Dunham vs. Gleison Tibau
Bobby Green vs. Jacob Volkmann
Edwin Figueroa vs. Francisco Rivera
Jay Hieron vs. Tyron Woodley
Yves Edwards vs. Isaac Vallie-Flagg
Chico Camus vs. Dustin Kimura
With cast announced, 'The Ultimate Fighter 17' could prove volatile
More than two dozen middleweight fighters have been selected for the upcoming 17th season of "The Ultimate Fighter," and one of them is apparently capable of reducing his opponents to nervous breakdowns.
Ultimate Fighting Championship officials revealed to USA TODAY Sports the 28 fighters who will compete on the latest edition of the promotion's long-running reality series, which debuts Jan. 22 (FX, 8 p.m. ET).
Now fight fans will inevitably try to determine which fighter UFC President Dana White recently said struck fear in the hearts of his opponents during filming of the tournament-based competition.
"The whole house is terrified of this guy. Everybody," White said. "I picked this fight, and this guy is lined up with the guy I'm telling you about, and the guy has a nervous breakdown in the house over the weekend.
"This guy scared the living s--- out of everyone. It's awesome."
BELLATOR VET ALEXIS VILA RETURNS TO FLYWEIGHT, MEETS JOSHUA SAMPO FOR CFA BELT ON JAN. 19
Bellator tournament veteran Alexis Vila will return to 125 pounds on Jan. 19, when “The Exorcist” takes on Joshua Sampo for the Championship Fighting Alliance flyweight title at CFA 9.
“I decided to move back down to flyweight because it is a more natural fit for me,” Vila said in the promotion’s official release. “I only moved to bantamweight to try to further my career and get into the UFC, but now that they have a flyweight division, staying at bantamweight doesn't make sense.”
UFC featherweight contender Diego Nunes has left Nova Uniao
UFC featherweight contender Diego Nunes (18-3) has left the Nova Uniao camp in Brazil after (understandably) playing second fiddle to reigning division champion Jose Aldo, according to SporTV. "The Gun" will try to unload on Nik Lentz later this month at UFC on FX 7 in Sao Paulo, but does folding the tent on "The Carny" put him on the fast track to a 145-pound title fight? Or too soon?
Ed Herman feels that Jake Shields tested positive for performance enhancing drug
UFC middleweight, Ed Herman, discusses being on the last Strikeforce card, and his suspicions that Jake Shields tested positive for PEDs.
Saturday night, the bell tolls for Strikeforce, with the doors closing forever after the event. It is a card filled with talented athletes, looking to make their mark in anticipation of being brought over to the UFC. There is also a lone gunman, if you will, a solid test brought over from the UFC to stand in as a late replacement for Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza. That man, Ed "Short Fuse" Herman, stands ready to engage in a duel that presents a great deal of meaning to both men, and will also determine their career paths. I spoke with Ed yesterday, and got his thoughts about Souza, and about the disappointment he feels in the NC fight he had with Jake Shields.
Bellator fighter Paul Daley scheduled for fight in Ireland on February 23
After some trials and tribulations, it appears that Daley has finally been approved for a fight outside the Bellator umbrella.
Bellator Welterweight Paul Daley was expected to fight on the promotion's Season 8 premier on Spike TV against War Machine next week. Those plans were tossed after a recent arrest prevented Daley from obtaining a visa to travel to the US. After initial struggles with Bellator in getting permission to fight outside their organization, it looks like Daley now has a fight scheduled.
Daley will face Patrick Vallee at Cage Contenders 16 on February 23.
Sean Pierson vs. Rick Story added to UFC 158 in Montreal
The quickly filling UFC 158 fight card has a new welterweight addition: Sean Pierson (13-6 MMA, 3-2 UFC) vs. Rick Story (14-6 MMA, 7-4 UFC).
Officials today announced the bout.
UFC 158 takes place March 16 at Montreal's Bell Centre. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FX and Facebook.
It's not clear where Pierson vs. Story will be placed on the lineup.
The latest UFC 158 card includes:
Georges St-Pierre vs. Nick Diaz - for welterweight title
Jake Ellenberger vs. Johny Hendricks
Carlos Condit vs. Rory MacDonald
Chris Camozzi vs. Nick Ring
Sean Pierson vs. Rick Story
Jordan Mein vs. Dan Miller
Daron Cruickshank vs. John Makdessi
Patrick Cote vs. Bobby Voelker
Johnny Eduardo vs. Yves Jabouin
NSAC to Overeem: "License Granted"
Today, Alistair Overeem is meeting with the NSAC to apply for his license as an MMA athlete. He will be asked to present evidence that he has been clean during his suspension and will find out if he is to be licensed today. John Morgan from MMAJunkie is on the scene:
-Blasting through a few reservation dates and grant requests, and now it's time for Overeem.
-Jovial start to Overeem's hearing, as he's questioned about the weather in Florida, his new home.
-Overeem: "We've done everything we can to correct the errors that were made."
-Kizer said Overeem sent in five tests between June and November that were all clean. Additionally, he was tested by NSAC on 11/16 and 12/21.
-Alistair said he's been training during his time off and is actually bigger than he was before.
-Alistair said he has a new nutritionist and a better medical team to ensure he's always clean.
-Pat Lundvall asking if Alistair has insight on any lessons NSAC can learn from this situation.
-Overeem suggest NSAC needs to address the difficulty of arranging testing internationally.
-Motion is on the table and approved unanimously. Overeem has his license.
Okami vs Lombard Added to March 3 Japan Show
Japanese middleweight contender Yushin “Thunder” Okami has been added to the Ultimate Fighting Championship® card scheduled for Mar. 3 at the Saitama Super Arena. The UFC® announced that the 31-year-old, from Japan’s renowned Wajutsu Keishukai Gym, will meet former Olympic judo competitor Hector “Lightning” Lombard in middleweight (185 lbs.) action when the organization returns to Japan.
Also announced on the main card will be an intense featherweight bout between Rani Yahya and Mizuto Hirota. Hirota (14-5-1), who has never been knocked out in his career, is a veteran of the Sengoku and DEEP organizations in Asia. Prior to his North America debut in STRIKEFORCE last July, he was 4-1 in his past five fights. Brazilian Yahya (17-7) has won all but two of his fights by way of submission and holds notable wins over Mark Hominick and Eddie Wineland.