Spike TV Executives Spotted at Bellator 48
Rumors of Bellator moving to Spike TV have circulated since the latter's broadcast deal with the UFC came into question. That move now looks like a forgone conclusion after the UFC's move to the Fox family became official this week.
Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney has played the PR game, telling MMA Junkie that they're only focused on MTV2. Despite Rebney's coyness, MMA Nation's Luke Thomas insists that Spike TV executives have told him that a Bellator move to Spike is "very likely."
The Ultimate Fighter Live on FX Promo
The UFC's new partnership with Fox promises to not only bring new opportunities for the fighters but also to breath new life into a stagnant Ultimate Fighter Product. While at the press conference this past Thursday some details were released on the updated format, FX and the UFC have released the above video which provides some more details about Season 15 of the Ultimate Fighter. The video also shows some of the highlights of this upcoming season. I wasn't able to put any names to the faces but from what they show, the fights look to be exciting.
Brazilian MMA Fans Welcome Chael Sonnen With 'Lynching' Facebook Event
It was bound to catch up with him. Chael Sonnen has been spouting off about Brazil for the past year and it seems that finally MMA fans have had enough. Over 2500 Brazilian fans have "RSVP'd" to a Facebook event called "Linchamento do Chael Sonnen" (English: Lynching of Chael Sonnen). The page has the following description:
"Guys, everyone is aware of what this insect has been spewing about Brazil, the fighters, of the people of this country, of our culture. I think we should give him a "warm welcome" when he comes to attend UFC Rio on the 27th, since Brazilians carries the fame of being sympathetic, hospitable, warm people, how about a big party for our friend Chael Sonnen?"
War Machine planning Oct. 15 return against Gideon Ray
With a one-year jail sentence over, War Machine is ready to get back in the cage.
The former cast member of "The Ultimate Fighter 6" (known then as Jon Koppenhaver) recently announced via Twitter that he'll return to action on Oct. 15 against Gideon Ray at Chicago Cagefighting Championship 4.
The promotion has yet to make an official announcement.
Gilbert Melendez vs. Jorge Masvidal targeted for December
An expected lightweight title bout between Strikeforce champ Gilbert Melendez (19-2 MMA, 9-1 SF) and Jorge Masvidal (22-6 MMA, 4-0 SF) has been targeted for Dec. 17.
Sources close to the event today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) of the date, though a city and venue has yet to be confirmed.
Melendez makes the third defense of his Strikeforce title while Masvidal get his shot after impressive back-to-back victories.
In his most recent appearance, Melendez earned a second victory over Japanese standout Tatsuya Kawajiri and with a first-round TKO stoppage at "Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Daley."
The Cesar Gracie product has since pined for the opportunity to fight the UFC champion, and UFC president Dana White has said he'd love to have Melendez fight inside the octagon. But that opportunity isn't possible as of yet because the champ is still under contract with Strikeforce. And both White and Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker have dismissed a possible crossover fight even as Melendez teammate Nick Diaz was able to relinquish his Strikeforce welterweight title for a shot at UFC welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre.
"Right now, there are no other fighters that are going to go over there," Coker said. "We expect him to continue fighting in Strikeforce and getting ready for a fight in the fall...
Charles Oliveira signs new four-fight deal with UFC
Despite an official two-fight losing streak in the octagon, Charles Oliviera (14-2 MMA, 2-2 UFC) will remain on the UFC roster.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today learned from sources close to the promotion that "do Bronx" has been tendered a new four-fight deal.
Oliveira has verbally accepted the offer, and the new deal is expected to be finalized next week.
Oliveira most recently competed at UFC on Versus 5, where he was felled by a devastating Donald Cerrone bodyshot and lost via first-round TKO...
Lyoto Machida Is Not Apologetic for Asking for 'Anderson Silva Money'
For almost 24 hours, it looked like Lyoto Machida would step in for Phil Davis to fight Rashad Evans a second time at UFC 133.
Tito Ortiz ended up taking the fight instead. After announcing the news, UFC President Dana White painted a picture of Machida accepting the fight in principle before turning around and asking for "Anderson Silva money," sparking a fun meme for everyone to have a fun with on Twitter. White told him "thanks, but no thanks" and calmly hung up the phone.
Machida spoke to Terra Esportes about the episode, sounding like a man without regret (translation by Tom Mendes):
"I ask forgiveness for the misunderstanding, but not for what I've done, because I was not wrong. I never accepted the fight. I was coming back from injury and I had only been training for two weeks. In fact this training routine was only to keep in shape, and not for fighting.
"To patch a pothole, the price is different. It's my career on the line. As I've said, I was coming back from injury and was only training for a small amount of time. I only asked for the type of money that would guarantee me tranquility for a certain time, because if I were to lose it would put me on the back of the line of candidates for the title. Aside from also being potentially injured, Rashad is not just ‘any' type of fighter."
John Cholish vs. Mitch Clarke targeted for UFC 140
John Cholish and Mitch Clarke are the latest newcomers headed to the octagon.
The lightweights have been targeted to meet at UFC 140, which takes place Dec. 10 at Air Canada Centre in Toronto.
Sources close to the event today told MMAjunkie.com that verbal agreements are in place, though bout agreements have yet to be signed. MMAWeekly.com first reported the bout.
'Minotauro' Nogueira Would Not Train With Gay Student
Way back in 2009, Dana White addressed the issue of a gay fighter in the UFC in a video blog for UFC 98. White, hopefully correctly, said it would be no big deal (transcription by MMA Fighting):
"I honestly think it would have no impact whatsoever, with not only our fighters, but our fan base," White said. "The guys in the UFC, everybody's so cool, there's great sportsmanship, everybody's so respectful. It wouldn't be a big deal to me, and most of the guys I know in this sport, it wouldn't be a big deal to them either."
Kenny Florian Takes Over Commentary Duties for UFC 134 While Rogan Films ‘Fear Factor'
UFC featherweight contender Kenny Florian will take a break from his training camp in preparation of facing Jose Aldo at UFC 136 to head to Brazil for commentary duties at UFC 134: Rio.
Florian, who has filled in as color commentator in several past shows, will be in attendance in Brazil to work alongside Mike Goldberg in the broadcast booth.
Regular UFC commentator Joe Rogan was unable to make the trip to Brazil due to filming obligations for his return to the NBC show Fear Factor that is currently in production.
Bellator target Rasul Mirzaev reportedly arrested for death of Russian student
Rasul Mirzaev's next fight will apparently take place in court rather than a Bellator cage.
Multiple Russian news outlets are reporting that Mirzaev was recently arrested in his native country and charged in the death of a 19-year-old student.
Mirzaev and Ivan Agafonov reportedly engaged in a verbal altercation outside of a Moscow night club before a single punch from the undefeated Russian prospect knocked the student down and eventually unconscious. He died from the blow four days later.
1st UFC on show on Fox will only televise two bouts
The UFC on FOX card begins at 6 p.m. and will feature two fights. It will last one hour and be completed before the start of Pacquiao's bout.
“We’ll be out of there before Pacquiao even walks to the ring,” Fertitta said. “This is going to be a perfect night for any fight fan. Get together with your friends, watch two big fights in the UFC and then change the channel to ride into the Pacquiao pay-per-view.”
Jon Fitch Cleared to Compete, Changes Stance on Who He'll Fight
Jon Fitch has been out for a long time after shoulder surgery, but he finally got the green light from his doctor to return to training yesterday. While Fitch has been on the shelf, all of the big fights he wanted have passed him by. His rematch against B.J. Penn fell apart and Penn is now facing Carlos Condit. He wanted to fight Jake Shields (and Shields wanted to face him), but Shields was paired up with Jake Ellenberger instead. And it didn't help that Fitch had this to say back in early June:
"I'm at a point in my career where I need to be fighting main events and main event fighters," Fitch told MMAWeekly.com. "And if you don't have a belt, currently, or you haven't owned a belt in the UFC, I'm not really interested."
Dan Henderson Wants a Title Unification Fight in UFC
Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Dan Henderson is in a pretty good position right now. He's now a free agent after defeating Fedor Emelianenko in the last fight of his Strikeforce deal, and it seems pretty obvious that he'll end up back in the UFC. He spoke to MMA Weekly Radio about the barriers involved in him making his return, and who he could possibly fight. On the contract negotiations:
"It will probably come down to money, but it’s coming from the same people, so it’s a matter of where they’re going to make the most money off of me as well, and to be able to pay what I’m getting paid, they need to be making money as well," commented Henderson.