Rashad Evans thanks ragtag camp's family atmosphere for UFC 133 victory
PHILADELPHIA – Rashad Evans seemingly had every factor working against him.
There was the 14-month layoff and potential cage rust. There was the promised title shot that dissolved for a variety of reasons.
Then there was the very public split from his former training camp and his residence with a new team – one that had some insiders doubting his preparations for Saturday's UFC 133 pay-per-view headliner with Tito Ortiz.
Could Dan Henderson be on his way back to the UFC? "Fatso" needs to talk to "Ugly"
By now, it's no secret that Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Dan Henderson (28-8 MMA, 3-1 SF) is currently a free agent.
And while the sport's newest cliché (other than "stripping down to his Hallmans"), "business as usual," remains the guiding principle behind Strikeforce's business plan, UFC president Dana White admits there's a chance Henderson could soon make the leap back into the octagon.
It all depends on what happens when "Fatso" talks to "Ugly."
"Dan Henderson is in the mix," White told a small group of reporters following Saturday night's UFC 133 event. "Me and old ugly got to get together and talk and figure stuff out first.
"I texted him. I said, 'Hey, ugly. You ready to talk?' He said, 'Whenever you're ready fatso.'"
UFC boss: Jim Miller, Chael Sonnen, Brian Stann all likely on verge of title shots
UFC president Dana White readily admits it's difficult to predict the direction of his promotion's entire roster mere moments after an event concludes.
Who gets cut, who stays, who moves up the ladder – White said he prefers to reflect for a day or two, then convene with UFC officials Lorenzo Fertitta and Joe Silva to make group decisions.
However, White did say a trio of fighters – namely Jim Miller (20-2 MMA, 9-1 UFC), Chael Sonnen (25-11-1 MMA, 3-4 UFC) and Brian Stann (11-3 MMA, 5-2 UFC) – are all within striking distance of a shot at a UFC title and will soon find themselves in potential No. 1 contender fights.
UFC 133 results: After finishing Tito Ortiz, Rashad Evans wants to 'teach Jon Jones a lesson'
Rashad Evans finished Tito Ortiz -- once and for all -- in the main event last night (Aug. 6) of UFC 133 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and earned himself a light heavyweight title shot in the process.
And a ticket to Denver, Colorado, to challenge the winner of Jon Jones vs. Quinton Jackson at UFC 135 on Sept. 24.
Of course, while a win for Ortiz last night would have undoubtedly been good for business as the Huntington Beach hype train would have only built more and more steam, UFC President Dana White is surely seeing nothing but dollar signs at the possible 205-pound title match-ups.
After UFC 133 win, Chad Mendes' title shot could be derailed by hand injury
PHILADELPHIA – Following a convincing but low-key UFC 133 win over heavy underdog Rani Yahya, is Chad Mendes still next in line for a UFC title shot?
Following Saturday's event, it was a question UFC president Dana White pondered aloud.
But he also found a way to divert a direct answer: by pointing out a hand injury that could sideline the young contender for the foreseeable future.
UFC 133 bonuses: Evans, Ortiz and Belfort collect $70K bonuses
PHILADELPHIA – Rashad Evans, Tito Ortiz and Vitor Belfort each earned $70,000 "Fight Night" bonuses for their performances at Saturday's "UFC 133: Evans vs, Ortiz II" event.
Belfort earned the night's "Knockout of the Night" award and Evans and Ortiz took home "Fight of the Night" honors. With no submissions on the night, there was no "Submission of the Night" bonus.
Dollaway vs. Hamman dropped from UFC on Versus 5's four-fight main card
With a high-profile lightweight contest between Donald Cerrone (15-3 MMA, 2-0 UFC) and Charles Oliveira (14-1 UFC, 2-1 UFC) taking a main-card slot at this month's UFC on Versus 5 event, a middleweight contest between C.B. Dollaway (11-3 MMA, 5-3 UFC) and Jared Hamman (11-3 MMA, 1-2 UFC) has officially been relegated to the evening's preliminary card.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today confirmed the switch with sources close to the event.
Featuring a welterweight headliner of Dan Hardy vs. Chris Lytle, UFC on Versus 5 takes place Aug. 14 at Milwaukee's Bradley Center.
One of the best free cards on paper I've ever seen.
UFC 133 weigh-in results
MAIN CARD (Pay-per-view)
•Rashad Evans (204.4) vs. Tito Ortiz (205.8)
•Yoshihiro Akiyama (184.6) vs. Vitor Belfort (185.4)
•Brian Ebersole (170.6) vs. Dennis Hallman (170.8)
•Constantinos Philippou (185.2) vs. Jorge Rivera (184.6)
•Rory MacDonald (170.6) vs. Mike Pyle (170.8)
PRELIMINARY CARD (Spike TV)
•Alexander Gustafsson (204.4) vs. Matt Hamill (206)
•Chad Mendes (145.8) vs. Rani Yahya (145.2)
PRELIMINARY CARD (Facebook)
•Ivan Menjivar (138)* vs. Nick Pace (135.8)
•Johny Hendricks (170.8) vs. Mike Pierce (171)
•Mike Brown (146) vs. Nam Phan (145)
•Paul Bradley (185.2) vs. Rafael Natal (185.4)
* - Menjivar missed weight, and Pace has agreed to fight him at 138 pounds
Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos at UFC 139
Looks like Zuffa is using UFC 133 to unload a bunch of big news today. While it's been reported as far back as June, reports indicate that the UFC is set to officially announce that Cain Velasquez's first title defense will take place against Junior dos Santos at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California.
The real news, however, is this MMA Fighting bit on Velasquez's shoulder injury:
Velasquez was first injured during his UFC 121 championship victory over Brock Lesnar, tearing his right rotator cuff, a setback that was expected to take between 6-8 months to heal. After a long layoff and rehabilitation, he recently ramped up his workouts and is said to be progressing well.
Sokoudjou Signs to Challenge 205-Pound Champion Ryan Jimmo at MFC 31
The Maximum Fighting Championship on Thursday announced MFC 31: The Rundown featuring a light heavyweight title bout pitting current champion Ryan Jimmo against newly signed Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou. The MFC 31 fight card takes place on Oct. 7 at the Mayfield Conference Centre in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada and will be broadcast on HDNet.
The announced title bout displaces an MFC lightweight title bout between recently re-signed champion Antonio McKee and Brian Cobb. The two will instead clash at MFC 32 in November, although an exact date and location had not been pinned down at the time of publication.
Joe Stevenson cut by UFC after four straight losses
"Daddy's" coming home ... for good.
Former UFC lightweight title contender and recent featherweight debutant Joe Stevenson has been released by the UFC, according to MMAFighting.com.
The move comes on the heels of the biggest slump in the longtime veteran's career. After losing three in a row at 155-pounds, UFC brass gave him the opportunity to reinvent himself at 145-pounds.
Dana White hints Strikeforce champ Dan Henderson could soon return to UFC's ranks
Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Dan Henderson may soon return to the UFC's roster, according to UFC president Dana White.
The 40-year-old Henderson recently ended a four-fight Strikeforce deal with an emphatic TKO win over former PRIDE heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko and is free to test the open waters of free agency.
Now White says he'll at least entertain the idea of the seven-time UFC vet making his way back into the octagon.
Chad Mendes ‘Up There’ But Not Guaranteed a Title Shot With a Win at UFC 133
Chad Mendes may be considered the top contender in the UFC’s featherweight division, but a win at UFC 133 doesn’t necessarily guarantee him a title shot.
When asked by reporters following UFC 133's press conference, UFC President Dana White deferred to matchmaker Joe Silva, who stated Mendes is near the top of the division, but wouldn’t solidify if he was next in line with a win.
“Chad’s right up there,” said UFC matchmaker Joe Silva. “He’s in the mix”
Fedor Emelianenko released from Strikeforce
At the UFC 133 press conference it was announced by UFC president Dana White that Fedor Emelianenko has been released from his Strikeforce contract. Fedor is riding a three fight losing streak while carrying a hefty price tag and a management team with a long history of proving difficult for Zuffa to deal with. That combination makes this a much less shocking cut than the recent release of Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem.
This does, however, continue the thinning out of the Strikeforce roster and the likely eventual dissolving of the promotion once the Showtime deal hits completion.
Reagan Penn makes MMA debut against Paul Gardner at ProElite 1
Reagan Penn (0-0), younger brother to UFC icon B.J. Penn, will make his professional MMA debut against Paul Gardner (2-0) at ProElite 1.
ProElite vice president of fight operations T. Jay Thompson today confirmed to MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that the welterweight bout is signed, sealed and delivered.
ProElite 1 takes place Aug. 27 at storied MMA venue Blaisdell Arena in Honolulu.
The latest card currently includes:
Andrei Arlovski vs. Ray Lopez
Kendall Grove vs. Joe Riggs
Kala Hose vs. Drew McFedries
Reagan Penn vs. Paul Gardner
Mark Ellis vs. Jake Heun
Sara McCann vs. Raquel Pa'aluhi
FUEL TV launches "Punk Payback" with MMA legend Bas Rutten
FUEL TV continues its exploration of the mixed martial arts segment this fall with the launch of a new 10-episode series, "Punk Payback," starring Bas Rutten.
The former UFC champ and King of Pancrase will be the star of the series, which debuts on the cable channel on Nov. 2.
Described as a "comedic, street-fighting survival series," the half-hour episodes promise to showcase "combat moves that can help viewers avoid being 'punked' on the street."
Bobby Lashley enlists fellow pro wrestler Josh Barnett for MMA career guidance
After locking up in rings overseas and rolling backstage between worked wrestling matches, Bobby Lashley (6-1) has found an advocate in Josh Barnett (30-5).
The two recently paired up in Barnett's backyard of Irvine, Calif. After an intense training weekend, Lashley, who hopes to return to the cage in the fall, has seen the benefit of working with the Strikeforce heavyweight and hopes to make it a regular thing.