Youngster Rory MacDonald plans on setting up permanent shop in the UFC
There have been younger fighters in the UFC than Canadian Rory MacDonald (9-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC), but not many.As he prepares to make his debut for the world's largest mixed martial arts organization at tonight's "UFC Fight Night 20: Maynard vs. Diaz" event in Fairfax, Va., the 20-year-old undefeated welterweight finds it difficult to hide his enthusiasm.
Nate Diaz: "I Think I Still Beat Him"
Nate Diaz made an immediate impact upon arriving in the UFC.He made his way to the Octagon via The Ultimate Fighter, where he won season 5 of the venerable reality series, including a semi-final win over his UFC Fight Night 20 opponent, Gray Maynard. He then reeled off four straight victories following the season finale.
Hometown Fighters Added to UFN 21 on Versus: Marshall vs. Matyushenko, Ludwig vs. Fisher
Denver-area fighters Eliot Marshall (3-0 UFC) and Duane "Bang" Ludwig (2-1 UFC) have been added to the card for the UFC's March 21st Versus broadcast from the Broomfield Events Center in Colorado. MMA Weekly reports that TUF Season 8 cast-member Marshall will face veteran Vladimir "The Janitor" Matyushenko (4-2 UFC), while Ludwig will look to rebound quickly from a submission loss to Jim Miller after filling in on short-notice at UFC 108, when he takes on fellow striker, Spencer "the King" Fisher (8-4 UFC)
Paulo Filho back to the octagon on February
Bitetti Combat already started the preparations to the sixth edition of the event, that will happen on February 27 in Brasília, Brazil. Paulo Filho, Glover Teixeira and Fabio Maldonado and already confirmed by the organization.
“Bad” Brad Blackburn: Amir Sadollah or GSP, It makes no difference to me
Although it’s far from his first fight with the promotion, this evening will be “Bad” Brad Blackburn’s coming out party in the UFC, as the heavy handed Washington based Knockout artist is all set to slug it out with Amir Sadollah during UFC Fight Night 20, airing on Spike TV.
“Bad” Brad may not be the first name that pops into your head when considering future threats the the crown at 170 pounds, but with an unblemished record of 3-0 since his arrival in the UFC back in July of 2008 is one statistic that refuses to be ignored.
Tony 'The Viking' Halme 1963-2010
Tony Halme, best known to mixed martial arts fans as the debut opponent for five-time UFC Champion Randy Couture, has passed away at the age of 47 according to The Baltimore Sun.
"The Viking" made his Octagon debut alongside "The Natural" way back at UFC 13: "The Ultimate Force" on May 30, 1997. Couture would make quick work of the pugilist, tapping him out with a rear-naked choke at just 0:56 of the first round.
The loss would be Halme's fourth straight after an unsuccessful stint that saw him go 0-3 in Japan's RINGS promotion. Prior to that, the 6' 4" Finnish Heavyweight Boxing Champion enjoyed a wrestling career from 1990-1995.
UFC 111: Rodney Wallace vs Jared Hamman in the works for March 27
Who is the master? Hopefully "Sho'nuff."
Coming off a disappointing Octagon debut at last month's Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 10 Finale, Rodney Wallace (9-1) will try to get back to his winning ways against Jared Hamman (10-2) at UFC 111 on March 27 in Newark, NJ, according to MMA 4 Real.
"Shonuff the Master" was stymied on Dec. 5 by fellow Tar Heel Brian Stann after the "All American" outworked him en route to a unanimous decision win. The loss snapped Wallace's perfect record at nine wins.
Gray Maynard: I'm the bully -- not the blanket
"My last two (fights against Jim Miller and Roger Huerta) have been pretty much all stand-up. There's people that kind of get it in their head, and they don't let it go. You can't please everyone. I know my stand-up is at the top, so I'm not stressing it at all. I'm really working to improve my skills and to do it right and just not flail around ... I'm ready to go, whenever. But I need to get past Nate first."
Unstoppable UFC lightweight Gray Maynard is hoping to rid himself of the "lay-and-pray" label with a dominating performance against Nate Diaz in tonight's (Jan. 11) main event of UFC Fight Night 20.
Is UFC Fight Night 20 Chris Leben's last stand?
"I'm going to fight my heart out. I love to stand up and bang with guys. This is a make it or break it for me. I have to lay it all on the line. When it comes Monday night, I'm going to go out there with bad intentions, I'm going to go out there with the belief that if I don't win, I go home. I'm not in the UFC anymore and that's not what I want. I need to win. I have to win. Expect some fireworks Monday night."
Embattled Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 1 star Chris Leben hopes to get himself back into the win column against promotion sophomore Jay Silva at UFC Fight Night 20 after back-to-back losses inside the Octagon.
Spencer Fisher vs. "Bang" Ludwig scheduled for March 21
There's at least one bout with fireworks written all over it when the UFC returns to Denver on March 21 as hometown kid, Duane "Bang" Ludwig returns to action to face Spencer "The King" Fisher in a lightweight bout confirmed for the promotion's debut card on Versus.
The bout was confirmed to MMAWeekly.com by sources close to the fight on Monday.
Taking a fight on short notice to return to the UFC, Ludwig came up short in his comeback campaign as he lost to rising 155lb fighter, Jim Miller, by submission earlier this month. Never one to back down from a challenge, Ludwig will look to et back on track as he fights in his hometown, where he has done very well in the past.
WEC Quick Quote: Varner's 'D' was trying to stop the run
Former WEC Lightweight Champion Jamie Varner talks during the WEC 46 post-fight press conference about the effective gamplan Ben Henderson used to unify the 155-pound title via third round submission. "C-4" was trying to explode on the up-and-comer but had no answer for the "Smooth" strategy and left his neck out for a quick tap out. Is Varner trying to take a little something away from the Henderson win with the constant "run" references -- or is it merely a matter of outlining his opponent's strategy and commending him for it?
Randy Couture Says Brock Lesnar Is Back in Training
Well look who's getting name-checked on "Inside MMA." Ron Kruck references our story on Brock Lesnar's ongoing health issues before cutting to Randy Couture, who says he's spoken with Lesnar and things are looking up for the big man. If we can believe Couture (and he doesn't seem the like the type to just make stuff up -- that's Tito Ortiz's game), Lesnar is already back in the gym and ought to be Octagon-ready by this spring. We should probably treat this with the same healthy skepticism we had for "Comprido" Medeiros' assurance that everything was going to be just fine, but at least it's encouraging news.
"WEC 46: Varner vs. Henderson" draws reported 10,027 attendees for $550K gate
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Initial reports from WEC officials indicate the WEC's third trip to ARCO Arena in Sacrmento, Calif., earned another solid live gate.
At the evening's post-event press conference, WEC general manager Reed Harris reported that Sunday's "WEC 46: Varner vs. Henderson" event drew 10,027 fans for a live gate of $550,000.
Official live gate numbers will be released by the California State Athletic Commission later in the week.
Brown pleased with WEC 46 win, wants to remain active while waiting for title shot
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – With the sting of a November 2009 loss still fresh in his mind, former WEC featherweight champ Mike Brown (23-5 MMA, 5-1 WEC) begged the promotion's brass to let him fight at Sunday's WEC 46 event.
The WEC granted his wish, and Brown made quick work of newcomer Anthony Morrison (15-8 MMA, 0-1 WEC) on the evening's Versus-televised main card.
At the evening's post-fight press conference, Brown told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that he viewed the fight as a return to peak form.
MMA Quick Quote: Murilo Bustamante wants to return to fighting in 2010
“Surely it cheers me up. I have got plans of fighting in 2010 and let’s see how it will work. I’m preparing myself, I’m in Brazil also to train and get into the pace. We’re studying proposals and let’s see what happens. There’s nothing set but I have been training to fight whereas last year I didn’t have the time to prepare properly, just training with kimono and giving classes.”
-- Former UFC champion Murilo Bustamante is back in Brazil from United States where he has expanded the Brazilian Top Team headquarters.