FX and UFC 'going to switch some things up' for future 'TUF' seasons
While officials say they're satisfied with the first season of "The Ultimate Fighter: Live" on FX, changes are on the way.
This season of the UFC's long-running reality series is the first on FX (after seven years and 14 seasons on Spike TV) and the first to feature live fights.
While UFC president Dana White believes many folks have painted a far-too-bleak picture of "TUF: Live," he told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) some changes are going to be made for future seasons.
"TUF: Live" has recorded the lowest ratings in series history, and episode No. 5 bottomed out with an all-time-low 947,000 viewers earlier this month. But in key demographics, the show continues to be among cable's highest-rated Friday-night programs. But White echoed comments he made to the "Orange County Register" earlier this week that the show isn't doing as well as he personally wants.
"It's not that I'm not happy," he told MMAjunkie.com. "I said it's a home run for them ... since they're dominating Friday nights with 18- to 34-year-old males. It's not the best position for me, though."
Friday nights are traditionally a barren wasteland for TV ratings, specifically among the UFC's targeted demo of young males. White knows that, and so do executives from the FOX-owned FX. But thanks to their seven-year partnership and current relationship, White said that one's thing that could change for future seasons...
Mauricio Rua targeted for tilt with Thiago Silva
It appears former light heavyweight champion Mauricio Rua’s next bout will involve a fellow Brazilian, as UFC President Dana White went on Twitter today to start the rumor mill by saying Thiago Silva would serve as Rua’s opponent though stopped short of confirming the event. Both seasoned scrappers are coming off hard-fought decision defeats and should produce a memorable result given their generally aggressive approach to combat.
With the announcement that Jose Aldo’s title-defense against Erik Koch will indeed take place at UFC 149 a likely landing spot for Silva-Rua could be UFC 147 given the June 23 event’s attachment to Brazil and need for a solid bout alongside Wanderlei Silva-Vitor Belfort.
Hector Lombard vs. Brian Stann targeted for UFC on FOX 4 in Los Angeles
Brian Stann (12-4 MMA, 6-3 UFC) will serve as the UFC's welcoming committee for longtime Bellator champion and recent UFC signee Hector Lombard (31-2-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC).
UFC president Dana White today tweeted the Stann vs. Lombard matchup but didn't reveal a date for it. MMAjunkie.com later confirmed the targeted event.
UFC on FOX 4 takes place Aug. 4 at Los Angeles' Staples Center. In addition to the FOX-televised main card, FUEL TV is expected to carry the prelims.
Invicta: Coenen Vs. Ruyssen Live Stream And Play By Play
Tonight at 8 PM ET, the free live stream of Invicta FC in Kansas City, Kansas will go out across the interwebs for us to revel in a fantastic night of women's MMA.
The entire card is composed of women warriors and headlined by the exciting match-up between Marloes Coenen and Romy Ruyssen. Coenen defeated Ruyssen back in 2008 with a rear naked choke, but Romy has torn through her four opponents since - submitting them all within the first round. This is no mismatch and the matchmaking is of stellar quality throughout.
Join us through the night in the comments and refresh your pages for the official Bloody Elbow play by play by Ben Thapa. We do ask that the commenters here hold off on posting GIFs or large images so those who refresh can do so quickly in order to get up-to-the-second updates.
Champ Jose Aldo vs. Erik Koch title fight headlines UFC 149 in Calgary
A featherweight title fight between champion Jose Aldo (21-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC) and challenger Erik Koch (13-1 MMA, 2-0 UFC) will headline July's UFC 149 event in Calgary.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today confirmed the plans with multiple sources, who said bout agreements will soon be finalized.
At a recent press conference, UFC president Dana White suggested Aldo could be moved from UFC 149 to UFC 147 in Brazil, but a source close to the fighter told MMAjunkie.com the champ wouldn't be ready in time for the earlier date.
Instead, Aldo remains on the Canadian card, which takes place July 21 at Calgary's Scotiabank Saddledome. The main card airs on pay-per-view, and FX and Facebook are expected to carry the prelims.
Invicta FC: Four Of Twenty-Two Fighters Miss Weight For Women's MMA Event
Invicta Fighting Championships is picking up a bit of steam over the past week. This is partially because of the fact that it's the biggest MMA event this weekend with no Bellator, Strikeforce or UFC events and partially because the concept of women's-only MMA is unique.
Unfortunately, the event didn't get off the the greatest start as four of the twenty-two fighters on the card weren't able to make weight. Here are the full weights via MMA Rising:
Featherweight (145 Pounds): Marloes Coenen (146.0) vs Romy Ruyssen (149.8)*
Atomweight (105): Jessica Penne (105.6) vs Lisa Ellis (106.0)
Bantamweight (135): Liz Carmouche (134.2) vs Ashleigh Curry (136.0)**
Bantamweight (135): Kaitlin Young (135.4) vs Leslie Smith (135.0)
Bantamweight (135): Sarah D'Alelio (135.2) vs Vanessa Mariscal (136.0)
Strawweight (115): Sally Krumdiack (113.6) vs Sarah Schneider (115.6)
Atomweight (105): Nicdali Rivera-Calanoc (105.4) vs Amy Davis (105.6)
Flyweight (125): Sarah Maloy (125.4) vs Michele Gutierrez (125.0)
Featherweight (145): Randi Miller (149.0)*** vs Mollie Estes (145.0)
Strawweight (115): Ashley Cummins (115.0) vs Sofia Bagherdai (120.6)****
Atomweight (105): Cassie Rodish (105.2) vs Meghan Wright (103.6)
With UFC deal official, Hector Lombard calls out middleweight champ Anderson Silva
Well that didn't take long.
With the ink barely dry on his new UFC deal, former Bellator middleweight champ Hector Lombard (31-2-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) made his intentions perfectly clear.
"I want to be UFC middleweight champion, and I want to fight Anderson Silva to do it," Lombard stated. "I have such respect for him as a fighter. It would be an honor and a dream come true to test my skills against his."
UFC 150 official for Denver's Pepsi Center, adds Luiz Cane vs. Yushin Okami
As expected, the UFC returns to its birthplace on Aug. 11.
UFC officials today confirmed with "The Denver Post" that Denver's Pepsi Center will play host to UFC 150.
The report also confirmed the previously reported matchup of Dennis Hallman vs. Thiago Tavares while also revealing Luiz Cane (12-4 MMA, 4-4 UFC) will drop to 185 pounds to meet Yushin Okami (26-7 MMA, 10-4 UFC) at the event.
A featured bout for the card was not revealed.
Eight-time UFC veteran Cane fights as the middleweight for the first time after mixed results in the company's light heavyweight division. After opening his octagon career at 3-1, he's since fallen to .500 in the UFC with three losses in his past four fights. Most recently, Cane was handed a disappointing first-round TKO result by Stanislav Nedkov.
Edgar vs. Henderson 2 Targeted for UFC 150
"Benson Henderson's first defense of the UFC lightweight belt is likely to take place in Denver.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today confirmed with sources close to the event that Henderson and former champ Frankie Edgar have verbally agreed to meet at UFC 150, which is expected to take place on Aug. 11.
Edgar (14-2-1 MMA, 9-2-1 UFC), of course, surrendered the belt to Henderson (16-2 MMA, 4-0 UFC) at this past February's UFC 144 event."
UFC 150 likely for Aug. 11, gets Dennis Hallman vs. Thiago Tavares
Dennis Hallman (51-14-2 MMA, 4-5 UFC) and Thiago Tavares (17-4-1 MMA, 7-4-1 UFC) have been added to a new UFC pay-per-view event.
The lightweights are set to meet at the yet-unannounced UFC 150, which is targeted for Aug. 11. Sherdog.com first reported the matchup, and Tavares confirmed it via Twitter.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) sources say Denver's Pepsi Center may host the fight card, but nothing has been finalized to date.
Hallman most recently appeared at UFC 140, where he quickly submitted hometown hero John Makdessi at the Canadian pay-per-view event. That eased the sting of a first-round TKO at the hands of Brian Ebersole at UFC 133. Still, the 36-year-old has in the midst of a career resurgence with an 8-2 mark over the past five-and-a-half years.
"Superman" was supposed to fight "The Ultimate Fighter 13" winner Tony Ferguson at next weekend's UFC on FOX 3 but was forced to withdraw due to injury. His replacement was Tavares, but then Tavares was forced to withdraw due to injury.
So the UFC has taken the injured and put them together.
Anthony Njokuani vs. Paul Taylor added to UFC on FUEL TV 4
A lightweight matchup featuring Anthony Njokuani (15-6 MMA, 2-2 UFC) and Paul Taylor (11-6-1 MMA, 4-5 UFC) is set for UFC on FUEL TV 4, sources close to the event today confirmed to MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
As previously reported, UFC on FUEL TV 4 takes place July 11 at HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif. Broadcast plans for the event haven't been announced, but main card action airs on FUEL TV.
Fighters Only first reported the bout, which was originally scheduled for UFC 138 before a car accident forced Taylor to withdraw.
Njokuani gets a quick turnaround after an impressive showing at this past weekend's UFC 145. The Las Vegas resident outstruck fellow standup specialist John Makdessi en route to a unanimous decision, which put him back on the right track after a split decision loss to Danny Castillo at UFC 141.
Report: UFC 147 To Be Held In A Stadium In Minas Gerais
According to a report from respected Brazilian MMA news outlet Tatame, the UFC has found a home for UFC 147 on June 23: Estadio Jornalista Felippe Drummond in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil. The UFC had originally hoped to book the fight in a Sao Paulo stadium but ran afoul of noise restrictions. Then they planned on Rio de Janeiro but a UN conference that same week threatened to take up too many hotel rooms in the city.
The UFC has already moved the putative headliner between Middleweight champ Anderson Silva and Chael Sonnen to UFC 148 in Las Vegas on July 7th. The card is now expected to feature Featherweight champ Jose Aldo defending his title against Erik Koch as the headliner.
Ultimate Fighter Brazil coaches Wanderlei Silva and Vitor Belfort will face off in the co-main event. The card will also feature heavyweights Fabricio Werdum vs. Mike Russow and the Ultimate Fighter Brazil finals in 2 divisions.
UFC sponsor Anheuser-Busch warns promotion to monitor fighter behavior
Blue-chip sponsor Anheuser-Busch has sent a message that it's keeping an eye on the behavior of UFC fighters outside the cage.
The multi-national brewer, which owns the Bud Light and Bud Light Lime brands prominently advertised in the UFC, reprimanded the fight promotion for a series of sexist and homophobic remarks made by fighters in public and over social media.
"If the incidents continue, we will act," Anheuser-Busch said in a statement prepared for Advertising Age...
Nick Diaz Sues Nevada Athletic Commission, Claims Due Process Rights Violated
UFC welterweight Nick Diaz has filed a lawsuit against the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) for alleged violations of statutory law and his Constitutional rights to Due Process.
Diaz, acting through his lawyer Ross C. Goodman, filed it in Nevada on Tuesday, April 24th. Diaz's motion for a preliminary injunction was filed Thursday.
The lawsuit is related to a failed drug test by Diaz that was conducted by the NSAC. It was announced on Feb. 9th the Stockton, Calif. native tested positive for marijuana metabolites from a test administered after his UFC 143 bout with Carlos Condit. He was subsequently given a summary suspension by the NSAC.
The suit is asking the court to immediately stay the summary suspension handed out to Diaz by the NSAC as well as to enjoin the NSAC from going ahead in any further disciplinary proceedings. Diaz's complaint also asks the court to declare his due process rights have been violated by the NSAC's failure to promptly convene a hearing to determine the merits of the disciplinary complaint against him.
Diaz's suit centers on three allegations, two of which relate to statutory complaints for which he seeks injunctive relief -- namely, to have the temporary suspension lifted and to not be required to go any further punitive proceedings. The other allegation focuses on Diaz's due process rights, the NSAC's violation of which entitles Diaz to both injunctive and declaratory relief, according to the lawsuit...
former UFC fighter Ricardo Almeida will be a judge at next week’s UFC on FOX 3 show in East Rutherford, N.J.
The New Jersey State Athletic Control Board announced Thursday that former UFC fighter Ricardo Almeida will be a judge at next week’s UFC on FOX 3 show in East Rutherford, N.J.
Almeida, a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt who fought out of the Garden State and had a UFC record of 6-5, will score the co-headliner bout between Johny Hendricks and Josh Koscheck, as well as a main card heavyweight clash between Pat Barry and Lavar Johnson, according to Sherdog.com.
On a pre-fight conference call Thursday, the two co-main event fighters gave their thoughts on the appointment of Almeida, a New York City native who runs a jiu-jitsu school in Hamilton, N.J.
UFC 145 winner Eddie Yagin: I'm like a wedding crasher – but not
Setup fights can build momentum for the favorite, or they can give an underdog a huge boost.
UFC featherweight Eddie Yagin said he's never been the guy that's supposed to win, so he's learned to relish his role as the spoiler.
"I'm like a wedding crasher – but not," Yagin told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio).
UFC on FUEL TV 2 drug tests come back clean
Every one of UFC on FUEL TV 2's 24 fighters underwent drug testing at March's UFC on FX 2 event tested clean for performance-enhancing drugs and recreational/drugs of abuse.
UFC vice president of government and regulatory affairs Marc Ratner confirmed the drug-testing results with MMAjunkie.com.
UFC on FUEL TV 2, which is the second of six main-card broadcasts planned for the FOX-owned cable station in 2012, took place April 14 at Stockholm's Ericsson Globe Arena.
UFC Reveals Security Steps Taken To Protect Chael Sonnen In Brazil
The UFC had to abandon plans to book UFC Middleweight champ Anderson Silva defending his title against Chael Sonnen in a Brazilian stadium due to logistical issues involving hotel room shortages due to a UN conference. That might not be such a bad thing, for the UFC security team that is since apparently just bringing Sonnen into the country for a press conference is a serious security challenge.
The wise-cracking Sonnen, who gave Silva the toughest fight of his UFC career at UFC 117, certainly knows how to piss off Brazilian fans. He's made a long series of semi-racist remarks about the alleged primitive state of the country, made endless jokes at the expense of the Nogueira brothers and other Brazilian stars and continues to push his luck at every opportunity.
Sonnen and Silva will now meet in the headliner of UFC 148 in Las Vegas. UFC 147 will remain in Brazil, although the promotion is still working to secure a venue. UFC Featherweight champ Jose Aldo vs. Erik Koch is expected to headline that event with a co-main of Ultimate Fighter Brazil coaches Vitor Belfort vs. Wanderlei Silva.
Full card set for Rama return at Bellator 67
Bellator Fighting Championships heads back to Canada, as the promotion returns to Casino Rama in Orilla, Ont., on May 4 for Bellator 67.
The night will feature Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler squaring off against 32-win MMA veteran and Japanese sensation Akihiro Gono. Also, a Season 6 welterweight tournament semi-final bout between Ben Saunders and Bryan Baker will take place in addition to the return of Polish heavyweight sensation Damian (The Polish Pitbull) Grabowski and the Bellator debut of Canada’s own Ryan (The Real Deal) Ford.
Report: Erik Koch Expected To Face Jose Aldo At UFC 147 Or UFC 149
There has been a bunch of confusion over what is actually going to happen at UFC 147 since Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen was moved off the card. Dana White said at the Brazil press conference that Jose Aldo would "probably" be moved onto the card to defend his UFC featherweight title, as opposed to UFC 149 where he was originally scheduled. But who would he fight? Hatsu Hioki was just booked against Ricardo Lamas. Dustin Poirier vs. Chan Sung Jung is only five weeks before UFC 147 (which is tentatively scheduled for June 23rd in Belo Horizonte, Brazil), so who's left? MMA Weekly has your answer:
Erik Koch looks like the "to be named opponent" for Aldo's next title defense, whenever the UFC decides on a date for the featherweight champion to get back in action.
Sources close to the two fighters confirmed that Koch is the likely candidate to get the shot at Aldo, although bout agreements have not been issued for the 145-pound title fight showdown.