Following hospital visits, UFC futures of 'Big Nog' and Tito Ortiz uncertain
Former UFC champions and MMA legends Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (33-7-1 MMA, 4-3 UFC) and Tito Ortiz (16-10-1 MMA, 15-10-1 UFC) may have reached the end of the line.
Nogueira and Ortiz were each transferred to a Toronto-area hospital following losses to Frank Mir and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, respectively, on the main card of Saturday night's UFC 140 event, and UFC president Dana White admitted each of them may have fought for the final time in the octagon.
Following the evening's post-event press conference, which took place at Air Canada Centre, White said he would have to talk with each fighter individually, but he wasn't willing to guarantee a UFC return for either athlete.
BAMMA 8: Manuwa vs. Rea – ‘Quick Results’
The British Association of Mixed Martial Arts held their latest event with BAMMA 8 on Saturday, Dec. 10, from the Capital FM Arena in Nottingham, England.
The main card was supposed to have aired live in North America on HDNet on Saturday afternoon, but issues with the broadcast forced the network to cancel the live telecast.
The event included the appearance of former TUF 9 finalist Andre Winner as he earned a solid unanimous decision over Diego Gonzalez. While Bellator Season Four welterweight tournament fighter Jim ‘Judo’ Wallhead ended his night with a quick first round TKO victory against Joey Villasenor in just 48-seconds
Brittney Palmer Lands Playboy Cover
Popular UFC octagon girl Brittney Palmer, who just returned to the fold after a few months away, will appear in the March issue of Playboy, MMA Fighting has learned.
Sources close to Playboy Magazine confirmed the pictorial to Ariel Helwani.
Palmer had last been seen in the UFC at July's UFC 132, but took some time off to move to California and attend art school.
After her sabbatical, in November, UFC president Dana White announced she would be back walking around the cage soon, and she returned at Saturday night's UFC 140.
Rory MacDonald vs. Che Mills Planned for UFC 145 in Montreal
Welterweight prospect Rory MacDonald will make his return to the UFC in March against Che Mills, MMAFighting.com has confirmed with sources close to the fight.
The Canadian MacDonald, who pulled out of his UFC 140 fight against Brian Ebersole last month due to an injury, will meet Mills at UFC 145 on March 24 at the Bell Centre in Montreal.
Frank Mir - A myriad of threats
Fight day is here! As I get set for my fight at UFC 140 Saturday night, I take great confidence from the belief that I have more ways to win than my opponent Antonio (Minotauro) Nogueira. Although a great fighter in his own right, I truly don't think "Big Nog" has the same options as me going into this fight.
Let me explain. If I'm not happy with the way the fight is going on my feet, I have the option of taking it to the floor and maintaining control there, and the same applies if I'm unhappy with how my grappling is working out. Nogueira will have to be resigned to do whatever I want him to do in this fight.
Sure, he can fight me jiu-jitsu versus jiu-jitsu, but if there comes a point where he doesn't like what's going on down there, he's not going to be able to change that. I can change where this fight takes place, he can't. If he starts getting hurt on his feet in a striking battle, I really don't see how he is going to take me down and take me away from what I was doing with punches and kicks.
Dan Miller schedules surgery for son, camp thanks UFC for financial support
With Dan Miller facing medical bills in the neighborhood of $100,000, things weren't exactly heading in the right direction for the UFC middleweight contender.
Now, thanks to a little help from his employers, Miller is in much better shape.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) recently learned from Miller's camp at AMA Fight Club that UFC co-owners Lorenzo Fertitta and Dana White each made significant private donations to the Daniel James Miller Foundation, which was created to assist in the funding of a kidney transplant for Miller's son, Daniel Jr.
"Zuffa went above and beyond to make sure that Daniel James Miller and his aunt Kathy, who will be the living donor, will have the absolute best health care and the funding possible to make the surgery happen," AMA trainer Mike Constantino told MMAjunkie.com. "In addition to that, Dana and Lorenzo also made a substantial donation to the Daniel James Miller Foundation."
Frank Mir - Beware the Rematch
When you get offered a fight by the UFC, you have a choice: either embrace it, get ready for it and win it, or sulk and question whether you are even a fighter in the first place.
I was offered a fight against Antonio (Minotauro) Nogueira on Dec. 10 at UFC 140 and, although I already held a win over the man, I jumped at the chance. It was another big fight in my career, against a legend, and one that will move me a step closer to another UFC heavyweight title shot. What is there not to like about that?
Naturally, some people look at this weekend's fight and think to themselves, 'Damn, Frank already holds a win over that guy -- isn't he going over old ground,' and, in a sense, I guess they are right. I beat Nogueira inside two rounds back in December 2008 and, three years on, it does kind of feel as if I'm going through it all again, especially as I personally believe this rematch will bear an uncanny resemblance to the first fight.
I am a fighter, though, and fighters can't afford to ever think like that. I knew this was a fight I had to take seriously, despite the fact I had already beaten the man. Nogueira is someone I have a victory over, but, right now, that only means he is hungry for revenge and will be much better in this rematch than he was in the first fight.
After camping with Tristar, Mark Bocek wiping the slate clean at UFC 140
UFC lightweight Mark Bocek (9-4 MMA, 5-4 UFC) spent 15 minutes in the cage with current No. 1 contender Ben Henderson and knew something had to change.
Fighting in front of the largest crowd in North American MMA history at this past April's UFC 129 event, Bocek knew he had been defeated, and it was a feeling he didn't like.
So Bocek promptly relocated his camp to Montreal's famed Tristar Gym and reinvented himself. Wipe the slate clean, says Bocek. The real work starts Saturday night.
"I changed the camp up a little bit," Bocek told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). "I did my camp in Montreal at Tristar with Firas Zahabi and all the guys down there. They have a bunch of different gyms. The way they train, it's not all in one place. It's kind of decentralized, so I've got a new look on things. I felt like my learning curve was getting a little flat, but I feel ready.
"I wasn't happy about the Henderson fight, but I've changed things around. I'm 30 years old now. I think things, now, are starting to come together nicely for me in my game. I feel good."
Bocek gets a chance to display his new skills Saturday night, when he faces Nik Lentz (21-3-2 MMA, 5-0-1 UFC) on the preliminary card of UFC 140, which takes place at Toronto's Air Canada Centre.
Rick Hawn dropping to lightweight, joining season-six Bellator tournament
Bellator season-four welterweight-tournament runner-up Rick Hawn is dropping a weight class for the organization's season-six lightweight tournament.
Officials today confirmed the U.S. Olympian's plans with MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
As part of the tourney entry, Hawn (11-1 MMA, 3-1 BFC) has signed a new extension with the organization, though terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Hawn, a judoka who finished ninth in the 2004 Summer Olympics, moved his MMA record to 11-0 with a split-decision victory Lyman Good earlier this year in Bellator's season-four welterweight-tourney semifinals. However, he fell short of a guaranteed title shot and suffered his first career loss when he dropped a close split decision to notable Jay Hieron in the finals.
The 5-foot-9 fighter will join another Bellator tournament, but this time he'll do so in a lighter weight class when the eight-man tourney kicks off in March.
Jordan Mein vs. Tyron Woodley added to 'Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine'
An intriguing welterweight matchup between fast-rising prospect Jordan Mein (23-7 MMA, 1-0 SF) and undefeated contender Tyron Woodley (9-0 MMA, 7-0 SF) has been added to January's "Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine" event.
Strikeforce officials today announced the new booking.
Featuring a middleweight title fight between champion Luke Rockhold and 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, including Mein vs. Woodley, airs on Showtime.
A former collegiate wrestler at the University of Missouri, Woodley turned to American Top Team to help guide his entrance into MMA. The results have been impressive to date with Woodley rattling off nine-straight wins to open his professional career.
Woodley most recently fought at July's Strikeforce and M-1 Global co-promoted event, where "T-Wood" earned a decision win over dangerous slugger Paul Daley. Woodley also has defeated Tarec Saffiedine and Andre Galvao, among others, during his current run.
Meanwhile, Canadian youngster Mein, just 21 years old, makes his second appearance under the Strikeforce banner. "Young Gun" debuted for the promotion in September and registered a TKO win over Brazilian slugger Evangelista "Cyborg" Santos. Mein currently is riding a six-fight win streak and is 10-1 in his past 11 overall fights.
Is Lyoto Machida Sick Heading Into Fight With Jon Jones?
Lyoto Machida made weight just minutes ago for his UFC 140 bout with Jon Jones for the UFC light heavyweight championship. He looked to be in his usual level of shape while Jones looked very fit but also was booed loudly by the Toronto crowd.
Of course, these are just rumors at this point and it's not the first time we've heard such information heading into a fight. But it is worth noting that the word is out there and Machida may face more than Jones' dynamic attacking style when the two men step into the cage.
We'll keep you up to date on any new information or developments as best we can heading into the event.
UFC 140 weigh-in results: Champ Jones (205), challenger Machida (204) on weight
MAIN CARD (Pay-per-view)
Champ Jon Jones (205) vs. Lyoto Machida (204)
Frank Mir (260) vs. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (239)
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (204.5) vs. Tito Ortiz (206)
Brian Ebersole (170.5) vs. Claude Patrick (171)
Mark Hominick (145) vs. Chan Sung Jung (145.5)
PRELIMINARY CARD (ION Television)
Igor Pokrajac (205) vs. Krzysztof Soszynski (206)
Jared Hamman (185) vs. Constantinos Philippou (185)
Dennis Hallman (158.5)* vs. John Makdessi (155.5)
Yves Jabouin (136) vs. Walel Watson (135.5)
PRELIMINARY CARD (Facebook)
Mark Bocek (156) vs. Nik Lentz (156)
Rich Attonito (170.5) vs. Jake Hecht (170.5)
John Cholish (156) vs. Mitch Clarke (154.5)
What's Missing From UFC's Response to Miguel Torres, Rashad Evans? Consistency.
Here's a question that became very important, yet difficult to answer this week: If you're a UFC fighter living in this wild world of social media, how do you know when you've crossed the line between edgy and irredeemably offensive? Better yet, how do you know when crossing that line will get you chewed out by your boss, and how do you know when you've committed an offense so egregious that it's cause for termination?
Answer: You don't. Not until it's too late. Not until your fate is already sealed. And that, whether you think of yourself as a shockingly clever Twitter comedian or a press conference trash-talk specialist, is a problem.
It's a problem for fighters, and it's a problem for the UFC. It's also a problem that has a solution, if the UFC cares enough about fairness and clarity to implement it.
As you probably know by now, two UFC fighters made the issue of sexual assault into fodder for their own attempts at entertainment this week, but with very different repercussions.
At a UFC on FOX press conference earlier this week, light heavyweight Rashad Evans referenced the Penn State sex abuse scandal when trying to zing former Nittany Lions wrestler Phil Davis. Meanwhile on Twitter, bantamweight Miguel Torres joked about "rape vans," suggesting that if they were renamed "surprise vans," maybe people would be more likely to ride in them.
Go out on the street and present these two cases to strangers who know nothing about the world of the UFC. See if they can guess which guy got fired, and which got off with just a stern talking to. I'll bet you a six-pack of your finest domestic ale that more people guess wrong than right.
Despite Close to UFC Career, Mirko Cro Cop Plans Return to Kickboxing
A third straight knockout loss brought a close to Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic's UFC career, but the Croatian apparently isn't quite ready to call it quits when it comes to combat sports. While he's rehabbing a torn right biceps muscle, he is also plotting a return to kickboxing, and says he will fight in a March 10 show in his nation's capital city, Zagreb.
In an interview with Croatia's Fight Channel, Cro Cop revealed that he injured his right arm before his recent UFC 137 fight with Roy Nelson and decided to fight anyway. Even beforehand, he told fans that it was likely his last time in the octagon, and while he says he's done in the MMA realm, he plans to return to K-1 for the first time since 2003.
"K-1 is the sport where I started," he said. "This is my first love and I find K-1 more attractive and more suitable for our Croatian fans than MMA."
Cro Cop isn't scheduled to have his right arm removed from a cast until December 20, but despite his doctor's advice of staying on the sidelines for eight weeks, he has begun training in preparation for his return...
Punkass Details Forthcoming Tapout TV Show Revival with MMA@Work (powered by MMAPlayground)
If you've been a fan of the sport for any lengthy amount of time, you probably remember the Tapout TV Series that aired on Versus for 2 seasons from 2007 to 2008.
The series followed Mask, Punkass and SkySkrape as they traveled the country in search of up-and-coming fighters to sponsor.
Punkass joined hosts Josh Webb and Tim Herb on the weekly MMA@Work (powered by MMAPlayground) podcast this past Thursday and provided some details on the revival of the show.
Strikeforce Reborn! New Showtime Deal On Tap
It appears the ringing of the death knell for Strikeforce has been a little bit premature.
UFC president Dana White on Thursday, following the UFC 140: Jones vs. Machida press conference, confirmed that Strikeforce is not going away.
“That deal should be wrapped up any day now and then I’ll make the decisions on who goes where and what’s gonna happen,” White said during the press conference, alluding to a pending deal for Strikeforce to remain on Showtime. “We should no, hopefully, by Monday.”
He later said that the deal is mostly complete, but they do need to finalize the details of the agreement with Showtime.
As for what that means for the future of Strikeforce, White was more elusive, saying only that Strikeforce would survive and be operated as a separate promotion from the UFC. He indicated that there could be some format changes in how the promotion operates, but that those details weren’t yet ready for public consumption...
UFC confirms Josh Koscheck vs. Mike Pierce for UFC 143
A day after joining MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio) and starting his campaign, Mike Pierce has his fight.
UFC officials today confirmed Pierce (13-4 MMA, 5-2 UFC) will meet fellow welterweight contender Josh Koscheck (16-5 MMA, 14-5 UFC) in February at UFC 143.
Koscheck became available when his original opponent, Carlos Condit, was promoted to the main event to fill in for injured champ Georges St-Pierre against Nick Diaz.
UFC 143: Renan Barao vs Scott Jorgensen in the works for Feb. 4 in Las Vegas
And this is why we love the bantamweights.
The owner of MMA's longest unbeaten streak, Renan Barao, will face off against perennial bantamweight contender Scott Jorgensen at UFC 143: "Condit vs. Diaz" on Feb. 4, 2012, in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The promotion brought word of the match-up just last night.
Barao was last seen going balls-to-the-wall against British bomber Brad Pickett, cracking the returning brawler's notoriously rugged chin with an enormous standing knee before taking his back and securing the rear-naked choke win.
The victory brought Barao's unbeaten streak to an unbelievable 28 fights. In fact, the badass Brazilian has yet to lose since his professional debut.
There's a certain mohawked wrestler who'd like to change that.
Mike Pierce Confirms Fight With Josh Koscheck At UFC 143
Josh Koscheck was scheduled to be Carlos Condit's opponent at UFC 143 until Georges St. Pierre injured his knee and was forced out of his title fight. The UFC decided to match Condit with Nick Diaz for the interim welterweight title. Koscheck was left without an opponent while the UFC was dealing with the fall out of St. Pierre's injury.
During this time Koscheck was attempting to get a fight at 185, even tweeting that he'll have an announcement soon. Looks like the UFC have decided to keep Koscheck busy at weltwerweight with a fight against Mike Pierce. Piece has a grinding style that could cause Koscheck fits. Pierce tweeted, "It's on! KOS tried wiggling outta this one too, but Feb 4th he's mine #ufc#ufc143".