Former champ Joe Warren plans return at bantamweight – with Bellator boss's blessing
Bjorn Rebney wasn't happy. Far from it.
Just a few feet away from him, his featherweight title was changing hands. He wasn't upset he had a new titleholder to promote, but he was far from happy with how his champ was taken out – taking what was fairly universally agreed to be far more punishment than was necessary.
But with Bellator 60 and Joe Warren's brutal knockout loss to Pat Curran in the rearview mirror, Rebney said Warren is ready to get back to work.
Warren (7-3 MMA, 5-2 BFC) held his own against Curran (17-4 MMA, 7-1 BFC) for two rounds in the main event of Bellator 60 in Hammond, Ind., not far from Curran's stomping grounds north of Chicago. In fact, Curran's cousin, UFC vet Jeff Curran, told the challenger before the third round that had had lost the first two frames.
But in the third, Curran turned up the heat, and with Warren against the fence, Curran landed blow after blow to Warren's head – with the cage appearing to help keep him upright when he surely was out on his feet. With one final uppercut, and with Curran looking to referee Jeff Malott, seemingly begging him to stop it, Warren finally slumped to the canvas.
"It's the only time I can remember sitting cageside where I actually threw my headset off and started screaming," Rebney recently told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). "It was hard to watch. There are moments in time where you see athletes freeze, and there we saw a referee freeze. For some reason, he was not reacting to it. I don't know if it was the lights or the cameras or what it was, but it was a very poor job. It should've been stopped five, six seconds or more before it was stopped."
Perhaps it was Warren's sheer determination that helped keep him standing so long while absorbing Curran's punishment. He was undersized at featherweight, fighting above his natural 135-pound class the way he did in DREAM – yet he became the promotion's 145-pound champion.
TNA contract nixes Kurt Angle commentator job at World Series of Fighting 1
A contract with Total Nonstop Action Wrestling has forced Kurt Angle to give up a commentary job at the World Series of Fighting's inaugural event.
WSOF President Ray Sefo today confirmed the news to MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) following a tweet from the Olympic gold medalist and pro wrestler.
"There's a conflict of interest, so he won't be able to do the (Nov.) 3 show," Sefo said, adding the split was amicable. A replacement has yet to be found.
Angle was among three personalities selected to call the action at the event, which takes place at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino in Las Vegas and airs live on NBC Sports Network. Original picks Bas Rutten and Michael Schiavello will remain on the team.
Bellator's Rebney expects Lawal TNA Wrestling debut in October, Bellator in January
It will be one of the most unique talent-share deals in sports when it finally gets under way, but Bjorn Rebney already is starting to geek out about it.
The Bellator CEO will have to wait until the new year to utilize Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal in his cage. But later this fall, he'll get to watch his new star build a new fanbase with the pro wrestling audience.
Lawal (8-1 MMA, 0-0 BFC) is expected to make his TNA Impact Wrestling debut next month before returning to MMA in January – when he'll begin moving back and forth between the two.
And though some of the fine print still is being worked out, Rebney believes Bellator and TNA President Dixie Carter nailed it when they signed Lawal to a deal in May that will allow "King Mo" to have his feet in both worlds. TNA's "Impact" airs on Spike TV, the same cable network Bellator moves to in January.
Tito Ortiz Isn’t Retired, He’s Just Graduated From Fighting
A lot of people were taken aback recently when Cris “Cyborg” Santos’ manager said that he believed a Cyborg vs. Ronda Rousey bout would eventually take place, just not at 135 pounds.
It wasn’t so much the rhetoric about the fight, but more so who it was saying those words. And that would be Tito Ortiz, who now claims Cyborg among his charges under his new management company, Primetime 360...
Legacy FC 16 takes shape with Banuelos-Benoit, Hobar-Peterson, Byrd-Leonhardt
Following the announcement of a headlining bout between Will Campuzano (10-4) and Jimmy Flick (5-0) for the organization's inaugural flyweight title, the fight card continues to take shape for Legacy Fighting Championship 16.
The event takes place Dec. 14 at Allen Events Center in Allen, Texas, and the main card airs on AXS TV.
In the co-headliner, bantamweights Matt Hobar (5-1) and Steven Peterson (7-2) meet in a rematch.
Hobar won his first five pro fights, which included a pair of Shark Fights victories, before a loss (due to an arm injury) to Peterson at Legacy FC 13. He gets a shot at revenge when he again meets Peterson, a Bellator vet who's 2-0 under the LFC banner and 5-1 in his past six fights.
Also on the card, WEC and UFC vet Antonio Banuelos (20-8), who meets Josh Sampo this coming weekend at Legacy 14, has already been slated for his second LFC fight. He meets fast-rising Ryan Benoit (5-1), who's already posted LFC wins over Cody Williams and Randy Villarreal, in a 130-pound catchweight fight.
Strikeforce CEO Coker explains why Larkin, not 'Jacare,' for Rockhold title fight
Scott Coker usually is rather reserved when it comes to announcing future plans following events that just happened.
But for a change, in San Diego this past month, he wasn't. Both before "Strikeforce: Rousey vs. Kaufman" and immediately after the card, the Strikeforce CEO thought it was a pretty safe bet that middleweight champ Luke Rockhold would next face Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza.
And wouldn't ya know it? The once-in-a-blue-moon time Coker spoke publicly about a future fight's near-certainty, it didn't happen.
Strikeforce earlier this week announced Rockhold (10-1 MMA, 9-0 SF) next will defend his title against Lorenz Larkin (13-0 MMA, 4-0 SF), not Souza (16-3 MMA, 6-1 SF), who made quick work of Derek Brunson (9-2 MMA, 3-1 SF) in San Diego with a 41-second TKO.
Prior to Strikeforce's most recent show, Coker told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that the Souza-Brunson winner was likely to get a title shot – especially if that winner was Souza, who lost his belt to Rockhold one year ago this weekend.
Jon Jones Says Chael Sonnen’s Time Will Come
Jon Jones Says Chael Sonnen’s Time Will Come to Answer for His Verbal Attacks
Posted on September 9, 2012 by MMAWeekly.com Staff
UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones took the brunt of the initial criticism when UFC president Dana White cancelled UFC 151 just one week out from its scheduled date.
Jones remained fairly quiet about the situation at first, even though White took him and his coach, Greg Jackson, to task for turning down a last ditch effort to match the champ up with Chael Sonnen on short notice.
When Sonnen went into attack mode – almost immediately – Jones could only sit back and take the unanswered blows for so long before fighting back.
Ross Pearson vs. George Sotiropoulos slated for UFC on FX 6 in Australia
As expected, a lightweight bout between "The Ultimate Fighter: Australia vs. U.K." coaches Ross Pearson (13-6 MMA, 5-3 UFC) and George Sotiropoulos (14-4 MMA, 7-2 UFC) will be part of the newly announced UFC on FX 6 event.
UFC on FX 6 is scheduled for Dec. 15 (and airs live in the U.S. on Dec. 14 due to the time difference) in an Australian city and venue still to be determined.
Event sources confirmed the bout with MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
Pearson and Sotiropoulos will be featured on the night's FX-televised main card with a Hector Lombard vs. Rousimar Palhares middleweight headliner. Finals for the show, also dubbed "TUF: TheSmashes," will be part of the main card, as well. FUEL TV and FX are expected to carry the night's prelims...
Paul Heyman backs Brock Lesnar as UFC Hall of Famer, doubts return to octagon
Whether it's WWE or UFC, Paul Heyman believes Brock Lesnar (5-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) is a hall of famer. Lesnar's four-year stint in MMA seemingly challenges the UFC Hall of Fame's undefined, intangible standards. It included three consecutive million pay-per-view buy rates (UFC 100, UFC 116 and UFC 121) with half of his eight career bouts having a UFC title at stake. It helped define the first UFC heavyweight to carry the "baddest man on the planet" moniker – one adopted from a post-Mike Tyson boxing era. Can a fighter be a hall of famer with fewer than 10 career outings? With a UFC record that's one loss short of the .500 mark?
I'm of two minds about this. I'm not Brock fan, but like Mask (another HOFer) he brought a lot of fans to the sport, quality fans or not, MMA needed all the exposure it could get.
He also had fuck all fights (though VS top quality opponents), and barely scraped by with an above average record.
What do you guys think?
Ivan Menjivar vs. Azamat Gashimov added to UFC 154 in Montreal
November's UFC 154 event has a new bantamweight bout with a Canadian fighter.
Montreal-based Ivan Menjivar (24-9 MMA, 3-2 UFC) will fight close to his new home when the Canadian-Salvadoran competitor meets UFC newcomer Azamat Gashimov (7-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) at the fall show.
UFC officials announced the fight late Friday night.
Jon Jones on Vitor Belfort: "I've already fought more tougher opponents than he has."
When Jon Jones steps inside the cage in Toronto on Sept. 22, he'll be staring across at a walking breathing MMA relic. Though only 35-years old, Vitor Belfort began fighting at roughly the same time as retired MMA legend Randy Couture.
In fact, the now 49-year old Couture handed the then 20-year old fresh-faced Belfort his first MMA loss and the two famously battled twice more with Couture taking two of three against the young Brazilian.
Belfort battled old school legends in their prime -- guys like Couture, Tank Abbott, Chuck Liddell, Wanderlei Silva, Kazushi Sakuraba, Chuck Liddell, Tito Ortiz, Alistair Overeem and Dan Henderson.
Since rededicating himself to the sport after testing positive for steroids following a decision loss to Henderson at Pride 32 in 2006, Belfort is 7-1 and has faced notables Terry Martin, Matt Lindland, Rich Franklin, Anderson Silva, Yoshihiro Akiyama and Anthony Johnson.
UFC Hall of Famer Tito Ortiz says Jon Jones is mentally weak
Tito Ortiz said Jon Jones essentially threw him under the bus in a recent interview.
"I looked at it as he's just a weak guy," Ortiz told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). "There's a lot of minds stronger than that. It shows how he can just fold.
"Mentally, if he gets pressed and pressed during interviews, and all of a sudden he just totally turns himself around, you can't be like that, man."
Jones told MMAFighting.com that he was hurt when UFC President Dana White compared him to Ortiz when discussing the circumstances surrounding the cancellation of UFC 151, which came after he turned down a short-notice fight with Chael Sonnen and the promotion elected to scrap the entire card.
That disappointed Ortiz, who said he stood up for the light-heavyweight champ when fans trashed him for turning down the fight.
"You can't be like that," he said. "You've got to stand for the things you believe in."
John Makdessi vs. Sam Stout added to UFC 154
Canadian lightweights Sam Stout (19-7-1 MMA, 7-6 UFC) and John Makdessi (9-2 MMA, 2-2 UFC) will square off at UFC 154.
The Canadian Press today brought word of the impending matchup, and MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) confirmed it with officials.
UFC 154 takes place Nov. 17 at Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The event's main card airs live on pay-per-view while preliminary-card fights air on FX.
UFC on FUEL TV 5's Kruth retires, Maldonado gets Diabate at UFC 154
Fabio Maldonado (18-5 MMA, 1-2 UFC) can cancel his ticket to England. Instead, it's off to Canada.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) has learned that after his UFC on FX 5 opponent Jorgen Kruth (5-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC) abruptly retired, Maldonado has instead been called on to fight Cyrille Diabate (18-8-1 MMA, 3-2 UFC) at UFC 154, which.
Verbal agreements are in place for the new matchup, but bout agreements have yet to be distributed. UFC officials have yet to make an announcement regarding the switch or Kruth's retirement.
Rousimar Palhares Vs. Hector Lombard Booked In Australia On December 14th
UFC president Dana White hasn't been on twitter much lately, but he popped back up with a doozy of a tweet today. It had been rumored for a little while now that UFC on FX 6 was going to take place outside of North America. That has turned out to be true - the show will go down in Australia on December 14th. And the first fight announced for the card is pretty good.
Tachi Palace Fights 14 streams LIVE AND FREE TODAY! 9PM EST/6PM PST
Kick off your weekend right
with some free MMA! There are some known names on this card, including Micah Miller fighting Georghi Karakhanyan. Ian Loveland and Jessica Rokoczy are also on the card.
Should take you directly to the Sherdog page with embedded stream
Sadly I won't be around for this one... stupid Friday nights...
(walks away muttering)
Jon Jones To Dan Henderson: 'You Should Shut Up And Be Grateful You Dodged A Bullet'
The day just wouldn't be complete without a little more leftover UFC 151 drama. Today, it's Jon Jones going off about Dan Henderson making fun of him for not accepting the fight with Chael Sonnen.
Henderson's comments seem to have gotten under the UFC light heavyweight champion's skin and the champ is still eyeing a fight with Hendo after fighting Vitor Belfort.
Via Toronto Sun:
"I haven't said that anywhere, but you can be the first to put that out," Jones said over the phone. "There's some unfinished business, for sure. I don't think Henderson handled the situation wisely, by making fun of me for not taking the fight (against Sonnen). Dude, you just dodged a bullet and you're talking trash to me? You got injured and you're going to talk trash that I didn't fight Chael?
Chris Weidman vs Tim Boetsch at UFC 155
Two top middleweight contenders will meet in December at UFC 155 when Chris Weidman (9-0 MMA, 5-0 UFC) takes on Tim Boetsch (16-4 MMA, 7-3 UFC).
Multiple outlets, including foxsports.com and newsday.com, today reported that verbal agreements are in place. MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) subsequently confirmed it.
The fight will be part of the main card of UFC 155, which takes place Dec. 29 in Las Vegas at a venue to be announced.
The main card, including a heavyweight title fight between champion Junior Dos Santos and former titleholder Cain Velasquez, airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FX and Facebook.
Rutten, Schiavello and Angle tapped for WSOF 1's NBC Sports broadcast team
Company officials confirmed with MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that MMA legend Bas Rutten, veteran combat-sports broadcaster Michael Schiavello, and Olympic gold medalist/pro wrestler Kurt Angle have been selected for the broadcast team.
WSOF 1 takes place Nov. 3 and airs live on NBC Sports Network.
The event, which takes place at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, features former WEC champion and recent UFC competitor Miguel Torres in the headliner against an undetermined opponent. Big-show vets Josh Burkman, Gerald Harris, Bobby Lashley, Gesias "JZ" Cavalcante, John Gunderson and others have already been announced for the still-developing card.