Bellator calls Monday press conference, expected to announce signing of Roger Huerta
Former Ultimate Fighting Championship lightweight Roger Huerta (20-3-1 MMA, 0-0 Bellator) is set to test his mettle in Bellator Fighting Championships' season two eight-man lightweight tournament.
Sources close to the situation confirmed to MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that the popular lightweight received his formal release from the UFC this week, which opened the door to finalize a deal with the upstart promotion.
Bellator has called a video press conference for Monday at 3 p.m. ET that will stream live at Bellator.com.
Huerta is the seventh 155-pound competitor added to Bellator’s second season, which kicks off April 8 at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. The twelve-week season airs live on FOX Sports Net affiliates on Thursday nights, and highlights packages air on NBC and Telemundo over the weekend. Tournament participants in the featherweight, lightweight, welterweight, and middleweight classes battle for the right to face season one's tournament champions.
Chuck Liddell vs. Tito Ortiz still on for 115
Former UFC middleweight champion Rich Franklin (25-5) will not face Chuck Liddell (21-7) at UFC 115 on June 12 in Vancouver despite numerous reports that surfaced earlier today.
On the contrary, "Ace" will headline the show opposite former heavyweight and light heavyweight champion, Randy Couture, in a 205-pound showdown, according to UFC President Dana White.
In addition, White assured fans that "nothing happened to Tito" and the he and the "Huntington Beach Bad Boy" are still "cool," indicating that he is still set to battle nemesis Chuck Liddell as planned at the conclusion of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 11.
More on this breaking news as soon as possible.
In addition to Couture vs. Franklin, UFC 115 is expected to feature a heavyweight mash-up between Mirko Cro Cop and Pat Barry while welterweights Martin Kampmann and Paulo Thiago make their case for 170-pound contendership.
Stay tuned to MMAmania.com for future updates on this still-developing fight card.
UFC set to head back to the UK at some point in October
The Ultimate Fighting Championship is set to head back to UK shores at some point during the month of October after almost a year away spent concentrating on expanding into new territories.
The promotion was last in the UK in November when they visited the city of Manchester of the second time, an event headlined by Randy Couture and Brandon Vera. Although nothing is confirmed the O2 Arena in London is expected to play host this time around.
Ryan Bader, CB Dolloway and Aaron Simpson Leave Arizona Combat Sports
The move by the three UFC competitors and Arizona State alums comes at a curious time as all are coming off the biggest wins of their careers. Bader defeated Keith Jardine via third round TKO at UFC 110, Dolloway took home a unanimous decision that same night against Goran Reljic and Simpson defeated Tom Lawlor at UFC Fight Night 20 in January.
Mighty Mo signs to fight Josh Barnett at Dream 13
Dream continues to remain at the top of the Japanese mixed martial arts since, recently announcing the signing of top heavyweight Josh Barnett. A longtime favorite for the defunct Pride organization, now Barnett has an opponent for his March 12 promotional debut.
Siala “Mighty Mo” Siliga, a prominent K-1 fighter with a 3-1 record in MMA, has signed to face Barnett at Dream 13, according to his manager, Steve Rusich of Triple Crown Fighters. Sports Illustrated’s Josh Gross tweeted the probable match-up earlier this week.
No longer a prospect, UFC on Versus 1's Vera predicts epic fight with Jones
Four years ago, Brandon Vera (11-4 MMA, 7-4 UFC) was the new kid on the block that everyone talked about.
But as his March 21 fight with Jon Jones (9-1 MMA, 3-1 UFC) at UFC on Versus 1 nears, Vera is now the veteran, and "Bones" is the new fast-rising hotshot.
At 32, Vera remembers being in that position and liked the pressure it brought. And while he knows can't get that time back, he's trying to go back to that mindset – in spirit if not in reality.
UFC 114 Likely Set For 5/29 In Vegas
Although not yet officially announced by UFC, the NSAC has approved an application from UFC for a May 29 event at MGM Grand in Las Vegas, which likely will be UFC 114. Set to occur during this year's UFC Fan Expo, 114 was also planned originally for Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, the Fan Expo's host, but MGM Mirage Group is spreading them out between the two properties it owns.
Coker: 4/17 Date For SF Stands
After further review, the date on the calendar stands. Despite suggestions Strikeforce could move it's April 17 date to perhaps April 24 to avoid UFC counterprogramming, only to essentially be counter-programming against the WEC PPV debut, SF CEO Scott Coker announced they will stick with 4/17. Coker said talks with CBS about the date move never went beyond initial talks and CBS will give the event a heavy promotional push during the upcoming NCAA Basketball Tournament.
James Toney Wants Brock Lesnar
That's what he says on tonight's "Inside MMA" on HDNet. "I want Brock Lesnar. I'm the heavyweight champion of the world vs. the UFC champion. That'd be a hell of a match ... Chuck Liddell, Brock Lesnar, Randy Couture, Tito, Tito Ortiz-whatever his name is, it doesn't matter. I'm not a sideshow. This is the real deal right here."
Yoshiro Maeda vs. Cole Escovedo Announced For DREAM 13
FEG held a press conference today in Japan to announce an additional fight for DREAM 13 on 3/22: Former WEC fighters Yoshiro Maeda and Cole Escovedo will face off in a match of a former WEC Bamtamweight contender and the first WEC Featherweight Champion. DREAM also confirmed Josh Barnett participation on 3/22, but did not reveal his opponent although a rumor before the presser was that he could face Siala "Mighty Mo" Siliga (again, that is not confirmed).
Fistic Medicine: Becoming Superhuman
Diego's "Yes! Yes! Yes!" battle chant. Guida's pre-fight leaping and face slapping. The fighters staring into the distance, bobbing their heads to music only they can hear. Regardless of the preferred technique, they are all seeking the same thing. They are in search of the Superhuman.
Roger Gracie Slated For 5/15 SF, Could Meet Randleman
It appears that Roger Gracie's much-anticipated Strikeforce debut is finally set. Again. After a couple prior rumored debuts didn't quite work out, Gracie is now set to debut at the SF event on 5/15. Opponent TBA, but the leading possibility appears to be Kevin Randleman but that isn't confirmed, and if that doesn't happen a rumored Plan B is Sokoudjou.