UFC welterweight contender Jon Fitch says move to middleweight is inevitable
ROSEMEAD, Calif. – Dec. 11 is a huge night for Jon Fitch's career.
That's the date the perennial welterweight contender will get an idea of where he's headed in the near future. He could meet the winner of Martin Kampmann vs. Jake Shields, slated for next month's UFC 121 event, or the winner of UFC 124's Georges St-Pierre vs. Josh Koscheck title fight.
But Fitch also sees a move to the middleweight class not too far down the road, and that trip could be expedited if American Kickboxing Academy teammate Koscheck wins St-Pierre's welterweight belt this winter.
"We have a philosophy at our gym that it would be much better to have three belts at AKA than to have two belts, and then send two guys to fight for the same belt," Fitch told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) during a recent UFC Gym opening event in Rosemead, Calif. "So I feel like I can beat Anderson Silva, too, and GSP."
Japanese MMA Still in Trouble, DREAM.16 Ratings Down
FEG was able to come to terms with WVR and acquire Satoshi Ishii for a fight at DREAM.16. The problem? The fight was announced within days of the event, allowing FEG and TBS to do minimal promotion for the event. This all led to what turned out to be less-than-stellar ratings for DREAM 16, withIkuhisa Minowa vs. Satoshi Ishii as a strong draw in the press, but only Ishii's second bout on Japanese soil and Ishii doing very little press since the loss in December.
The final ratings for the event were 11.9%, almost a full point decline from their last primetime event, DREAM.11. With FEG in dire straights, one has to wonder how this looks to investment bank PUJI as well as what this means for the TBS/FEG relationship.
UFC 119 bonus pay
Sean Sherk, Evan Dunham, Matt Mitrione, Joey Beltran and C.B. Dollaway each earned $70,000 fight-night bonuses for their performances at Saturday's UFC 119 event.
Mir gets a ko, but no bonus!
Mayhem’ Submits Sakuraba at Dream 16
Jason “Mayhem” Miller lived up to his vow, as he became the first man in more than 14 years to submit Japanese icon Kazushi Sakuraba at Dream 16 on Saturday at Nippon Gaishi Hall in Nagoya, Japan. Sakuraba -- who had not asked out of a fight since a July 1996 encounter with Kimo Leopoldo -- met his demise inside an arm-triangle choke 2:09 into round one, the crowd looking on in stunned silence.
V. Overeem-A. Silva Targeted For 12/4, Silva Yet To Receive Offer
Despite reports to the contrary, Brazilian heavyweight Antonio Silva has not yet been formally offered a fight with Golden Glory's Valentijn Overeem. But he's got an answer prepared if the call does come: Yes. Silva's manager Alex Davis today said that Strikeforce has yet to present a potential fight with Overeem for a Dec. 4 event in Missouri, but if the offer comes, his client is game. Overeem's brother, Alistair Overeem, posted news of the potential matchup on his official Twitter account on Friday. But Overeem's words made it seem the contest was official. "My brother Valentijn is fighting Antonio Silva on Dec. 4 for his Strikeforce debut," Alistair stated. "Great news." But Davis insists Silva has yet to receive word of Strikeforce's plans for the yet-to-be-announced "Henderson vs. Babalu" event.
UFC Prelims Returns For UFC 123, But Not 124
The rest of the UFC Prelims schedule for 2010 is now set including tomorrow's UFC 119 episode-the next episode after that will be for UFC 121 with the 10th and final episode for UFC 123, meaning no special before UFC 124. No specific fights have been chosen yet for the 123 special.
Thompson-Kawaguchi Added To DREAM.16
James Thompson's trip to Japan turned out not to be pointless. Less than 24 hours from fight time Japan's premier super-heavyweight, DEEP Megaton Champion Yusuke Kawaguchi has stepped up to face the former debt collector.
Antonio Silva To Face Valentijn Overeem At Dec. 4th Strikeforce
Silva will face an Overeem, the older brother of the Strikeforce Champ who will instead be fighting in the K1 World Max tournament. Dan Henderson taking on Renato "Babalu" Sobral in a light heavyweight contest has already been confirmed for the card as well as Herschel Walker's second mixed martial arts bout, though an opponent has not been confirmed.
Bellator 30 recap: Baker bests Horn
While Bryan Baker came up short in Bellator Fighting Championship's season-two middleweight tournament, he returned to the winner's circle with a decision win over UFC veteran and MMA ironman Jeremy Horn.
Fighters on weight for DREAM.16, Thompson vs. Kawaguchi added to lineup
The full weigh-in results and reverse bout order include:
Champ Gegard Mousasi (205) vs. Tatsuya Mizuno (203.9)
Jason "Mayhem" Miller (184.9) vs. Kazushi Sakuraba (182.6)
Shinya Aoki (153.7) vs. Marcus Aurelio (153.7)
Satoshi Ishii (235.9) vs. Ikuhisa "Minowaman" Minowa (194)
Chase Beebe (141.1) vs. Hiroyuki Takaya (141.1)
Cole Escovedo (143.4) vs. Michihiro Omigawa (143.4)
Joachim Hansen (138.9) vs. Hideo Tokoro (138.9)
Takeshi Inoue (143.4) vs. Kazuyuki Miyata (143.4)
Mitsuhiro Ishida (143.4) vs. Akiyo "Wicky" Nishiura (142.9)
Yusuke Kawaguchi (253.5) vs. James Thompson (291)
Reis vs Taurosevicious at Bellator 33
A featherweight tilt between Wilson Reis and Deividas Taurosevicius is on tap for Bellator 33 on Oct. 21 in Philadelphia. MMAWeekly.com sources close to the fighters said the fight is a done deal and will air on the televised portion of the fight card.
Spencer Fisher wants Thiago Alves at 170
With Fisher putting on more muscle mass due to his weight lifting routine, moving back up to the UFC welterweight division is also something he isn’t opposed to and if he were to move, he knows who he’d like to fight. “I would go back up to 170-pounds. Some of those guys might be a little too big for me, but I'd like to fight Thiago Alves again. I'm sure he'd like to get that back and I'd have no problem going to 170-pounds to fight him. He's a big guy, but I'd like it again. Call me crazy. I'd fight anybody in the UFC. Where would I go if I win this fight? I don't know, but whoever is put in front of me, I'll fight. I'm going to keep on keeping on and hopefully everyone will be glad to see the old Spencer Fisher back.”
UFC middleweight Chael Sonnen withdraws from scheduled "MMA Live" appearance
UFC middleweight Chael Sonnen won't break his silence just yet.
Sonnen has been understandably quiet since reports first surfaced that he failed a California State Athletic Commission-administered drug test prior to his impressive challenge of Anderson Silva's title at August's UFC 117 event.
On Tuesday, "MMA Live" host Jon Anik Tweeted that Sonnen would appear on the ESPN2-broadcast show to address the situation. Today, Anik told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio) that would no longer be the case.
"I regret to inform you that Chael Sonnen will actually not be on the show tonight," Anik said. "Unable to join us. I hate to have to tell you guys that."