Strikeforce open to Werdum-Emelianenko II; exec says pay-per-view still an option
SAN JOSE, Calif. – There were some MMA observers who believed prior to Saturday night's "Strikeforce and M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Werdum" event that a Fedor Emelianenko loss would signal the beginning of the end for both Strikeforce and M-1 Global.
But after Fabrcio Werdum shocked the world – not to mention Emelianenko – with a 69-second submission victory, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker said nothing could be further from the truth.
In fact, while a bout between Emelianenko and Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem had been targeted for a future pay-per-view event, Coker thinks a rematch between "The Last Emperor" and Werdum may now prove to be the more lucrative matchup.
Fedor's loss not end of the world
The UFC loyalists are having their moment. Fedor Emelianenko, the mythic Russian heavyweight who was unbeaten over the last eight years and held the position of top heavyweight in the sport was defeated. All those who have long doubted Emelianenko’s dominance are screaming, “I told you so.” And the reaction is both warranted and unnecessary.
Lawal's First TItle Defense Set For 8/21
During last night's Strikeforce event, the promotion announced that SF Light Heavyweight Champion Muhammad Lawal will make his first title defense on August 21 in Houston. No venue or opponent was announced. The first challenger was expected to be Renato Sobral by virtue of his recent win over Robbie Lawler but Sobral said he'd rather fight Dan Henderson instead.
Frank Shamrock Retires
Frank Shamrock promised a "major announcement" during last night's Strikeforce event and he did make it...he's retiring from MMA. Unless he pulls a Randy Couture and makes a comeback he finishes his career with a 23-10-2 career record and 4 titles to his name including the first-ever UFC Middleweight Champion (now the Light Heavyweight Title). He lost his last 2 fights, both in SF to Cung Le & Nick Diaz.
They Warn You Not To Grab The Cage, Here's Why
Unlike Earl Brown, I will never have to worry about this problem. If, at any point in my life, I find myself locked inside a cage with another man, I will be alcohol-free for the rest of my life. At Ultimate Challenge UK MMA - 'Feel The Pain' this June, Ben Craggy (the guy not on the ground) gives Earl Brown (the guy on the ground) why you should never use your hands to slowly crawl up a cage.
I'm guessing Earl Brown will never be grabbing the cage again. I thought it was pretty funny.
UFC Threatened TapouT With Lifetime Ban Over Fedor Shirts
Co-owner and President of M-1 Global Vadim Finkelchtein accuses the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) of blocking a potential deal between Fedor Emelianenko and TapouT, the world's most recognizable brand of mixed martial arts apparel and merchandise. TapouT produced a Fedor shirt that will probably never see the light of day under threat of a lifetime ban from the UFC. "I'm afraid to disappoint the fans, but it seems like, never. Literally today they called me from the TAPOUT firm and told me that they were contacted by the representatives of the UFC, and that under the threat of tearing up all the contracts with their organization demanded that TAPOUT categorically stop producing all the shirts from the line of Fedor Emelianenko. This is how Dana White feels about Fedor. So tell me, what can we think about such person after this, that even in things that have nothing to do with UFC, he still tries to mess it up for us. So it seems that the shirts will just stay a rarity that fans will see in pictures. Say thanks to UFC and their politics of monopoly."
Mike Swick Makes Top 10 At World Series Of Poker Event
Although best known as UFC welterweight contender, Mike Swick is finding his other job lucrative, as well. On Friday Swick finished a remarkable run in the World Series of Poker event No. 42–a three-day no-limit hold'em tournament with a $3.4 million prize pool. Swick made the final day of competition and finished 10th among the event's 2,521 competitors. The showing allowed him to turn a $1,500 buy-in into winning of $34,748. Swick, a sponsored player of online site Full Tilt Poker, actually played in his eighth WSOP event and cashed in his second. (In addition to the "main event," each annual WSOP now includes more than 50 other, smaller events.) In 2007's event No. 25 ($2,000 buy-in no-limit hold'em), Swick finished 151st out of 1,618 competitors and earned $3,828. He also plans to enter the main event-the $10,000 No Limit Hold 'Em World Championship-which starts 2 days after UFC 116.
Pulver, Sylvia Return at ‘War on the Mainland’
Former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver will meet Diego Garijo in a featured matchup at Powerhouse World Promotions “War on the Mainland” on Aug. 14 at the Bren Events Center in Irvine, Calif.
Pulver has lost five consecutive fights, leading many to speculate he might opt for retirement. The 35-year-old was released by World Extreme Cagefighting following his submission loss to Javier Vazquez at WEC 47 in March. Though he remains one of the sport’s most popular figures, Pulver has not survived the first round in any of his past four appearances. Still, his resume speaks for itself, highlighted by wins against former two-division UFC champion B.J. Penn, one-time WEC featherweight titlist Cole Escovedo, “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 2 winner Joe Stevenson and former Shooto welterweight titleholder Caol Uno. More than half (13) of Pulver’s 22 career victories have come by knockout or technical knockout.
In Garijo, he faces an unproven commodity. A Total Combat and Bellator Fighting Championships veteran, he has not competed since he submitted Saad Awad with a first-round rear-naked choke at Bellator 10 in June 2009. Based out of The Arena Mixed Martial Arts gym in San Diego, Garijo trains alongside former EliteXC lightweight champion Karl James Noons, 2007 Abu Dhabi Combat Club Submission Wrestling World Championships winner Rani Yahya and 2004 Olympic silver medalist Stephan Abas. In five professional appearances, the once-beaten Garijo has never gone the distance.
In the main event, two-time UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia will lock horns with the well-traveled Paul Buentello.
Rosi Sexton Out Of Bellator Women's Tourney, Frausto Possibly In
The future got a lot less "Rosi" for Rosi Sexton last night. Not only did Zolio Frausto highlight-reel KO her at Bellator 23, but Frausto also KO'd her out of next season's Bellator Women's Tournament. Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney says Sexton will sit the tournament out as a result (Sexton also got a 60 day medical suspension) and Frausto will be considered as a replacement, but she's not guaranteed to be in.
Grove-Reijic Demoted, Petruzelli-Romero Promoted To UFC 116 Prelims
Apparently Kendall Grove has learned the hard way to not badmouth your employer and it's TV partners. A middleweight bout between Grove and Goran Reljic has been demoted to UFC 116's un-aired preliminary card, and a light-heavyweight fight between Seth Petruzelli and Ricardo Romero has been promoted to its slot on UFC 116's "UFC Prelims" special on Spike TV. Grove, who was the season-three middleweight winner of "The Ultimate Fighter" reality series, earlier this week told Tapout Radio that Spike TV officials only care about ratings and getting "as much drama and stupidity out of us" as possible with little regard for the cast members' careers. Grove rejoined the radio show a few days later and apologized to Spike TV officials, UFC president Dana White and UFC matchmaker Joe Silva for passing off his personal feelings as fact. He said he "put my foot in my mouth" and thanked Spike TV officials for "giving me my shot" with the UFC.
An Exclusive Interview With Fedor
Fedor Video Exclusive: Talks UFC, Werdum, Overeem, and More
interviewer: How important is it for you to get the Strikeforce HW championship belt?
Fedor: I do not collect belts
interviewer: Anything you do collect?
Fedor: good deeds.
Forget The UFC 116 Main Event, "Lights Out" Wants You To Remember "Lytle vs. Brown"
And if you don't like it then according to Chris Lytle, you shouldn't be watching among other things. "I thought it was going to be an easy fight (the first time) and that wasn’t the case. [Matt Brown] was tough. I didn’t know what to expect out of him, but he was coming after me. He’s gonna try and knock me out and I’m gonna try to knock him out. That’s the kind of fights I want and (the UFC) gave me a guy I really wanted to fight. He’s improved just because of the experience he’s gained alone. He’s explosive and confident and he’s gonna come after me the same way I’m going after him. I like to fight on the big cards. I want people to be like ‘That main event was cool, but the real fight was the Lytle vs. Brown match.’ This fight should have everything. If you don’t like this, I don’t know why you’re watching." The "first time" he refers to was at a UFL event in 2007, when Lytle beat Brown by submission.
UFC 115 Medical Suspensions
The Vancouver Athletic Commission has announced the medical suspensions from UFC 115. Everyone was suspended for varying lengths of time-8 are suspended for 2 weeks, Evan Dunham & Paulo Thiago got 30 & 45 days respectively, while everyone else-12 fighters in all-got 180 days.
UFC 115 Draws 17,669 For $4.2 Million Gate
The Vancouver Athletic Commission today revealed the attendance and live gate figures from UFC 115. The vent drew 17,669 fans for a live gate of $4,221,787. Dana White originally said 17,000 attended. The figure includes 1296 compes, 1752 "suite" tickets and 138 unsold tickets.
UFC 115 Fighter Payouts
The Vancouver Athletic Commission has revealed the official fighter payouts from UFC 115. The total disclosed payouts were $1,285,000 with the biggest share-$500,000-going to Chuck Liddell.
UFC Cuts Keith Jardine
Class dismissed for "The Dean Of Mean". UFC veteran Keith Jardine has been cut today following his TUF 11 Finale loss to Matt Hamill, his 4th straight. He's gone 6-7 since being a contestant on TUF 2, but Dana White hopes he'll be back someday.
Akiyama-Leben At UFC 116 Still On Despite Akiyama Protests
Fear not UFC fans; you'll get your required dose of "Sexyama" in July. Despite initial resistance and even considering withdrawing from the fight, it's been confirmed that Yoshihiro Akiyama will indeed face Chris Leben next week at UFC 116. Akiyama was to have faced a now-injured Wanderlei Silva.
UFC Cuts Ties With David Loiseau...Again
The UFC has parted ways with veteran David Loiseau following his UFC 115 loss to Mario Mirando earlier this month. Loiseau's agent Ken Pavia confirmed the news with MMA Fighting Thursday.
This marks the third time since 2006 that Loiseau has been let go from the organization.
Pavia said that Loiseau has not decided whether or not he will retire from MMA, but the 10-year veteran will take some time off to regroup and think about his future options.