UFC Targets Mandalay Bay For July Vegas Event, Fan Expo (Updated)
The Ultimate Fighting Championship will visit the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas for February's highly-anticipated UFC 126 event, and the organization apparently won't take long to book a return trip. UFC is planning to book the same venue for a July 2 event, which could possibly serve as UFC 132. Additionally, the UFC's first U.S.-based UFC Fan Expo of 2011 is also targeted for Sin City's Mandalay Bay Convention Center.
Update: The planned Fan Expo is likely off.
Dana White Confirms Edgar-Maynard 3 For May 28
The growing rivalry between UFC lightweight stars Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard will see its next chapter at UFC 130 in May, when the two square off for the third time. UFC president Dana White confirmed to MMA Fighting that the lightweight championship bout would take place on May 28 in Las Vegas.
Marc Stevens vs. John Cholish set for "Strikeforce and M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Silva"
"The Ultimate Fighter 12" veteran Marc Stevens (12-5 MMA, 0-0 SF) is expected to meet Renzo Gracie pupil John Cholish (5-1 MMA, 0-0 SF) in a preliminary card fight at "Strikeforce and M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Silva."
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) learned from sources close to the negotiations that verbal agreements are in place for the bout with contracts expected shortly.
"Strikeforce and M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Silva" takes place Feb. 12 at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, N.J., and features the quarterfinals of the promotion's eight-man heavyweight grand prix.
The event's televised main card airs on Showtime and features Fedor Emelianenko vs. Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva and Andrei Arlovski vs. Sergei Kharitonov.
Silva: Fedor’s ‘Main Weakness’ Lies in Ground Game
Despite Fedor Emelianenko’s loss to Fabricio Werdum in June, Antonio Silva (Pictured) still views the Russian fighter as MMA’s top heavyweight. However, that does not mean Silva will not try to take a page from his countryman’s playbook when the Brazilian “Bigfoot” meets the “Last Emperor” in the opening round of Strikeforce’s heavyweight grand prix.
“The one thing I have in my mind is: Werdum showed the world [Fedor’s] holes on the ground. I think his main weakness is there,” Silva said during Thursday’s media conference call to promote Strikeforce “Fedor vs. Silva” on Feb. 12 at the Izod Center in East Rutherford, N.J.
“It’s very hard to define how the fight’s gonna be. I’m gonna follow the waves, and if the fight’s good for me in the stand-up, I’m gonna keep it standing up,” Silva added. “He’s a complete fighter. I’m a complete fighter. I’m going to capitalize on anything the fight gives to me.”
Mark Scanlon Off UFC On Versus 3 (Updated)
UFC matchmaker Joe Silva's job is never done. While a bevy of new fight announcements were issued on Thursday, another apparently fell apart during the flourish. Mark Scanlon is now off UFC On Versus 3 for as-yet-unknown reasons. He was to have faced Matt Brown. No replacement named yet.
UPDATE: Matt Riddle is the replacement.
Who Does Anderson Silva Want To Fight After UFC 126?
None other than Michael Bisping, and in England. "The British fans are very knowledgeable and passionate about MMA. I would love to fight there once more. Michael Bisping is very impressive. He's been in the UFC for a long time now and beaten some very good fighters. It would be an honor to fight him, perhaps in England. He is fast, is very busy and makes adjustments quickly. I am the champion of the world, not just Brazil or America. Being a world champion means taking on the best fighters from around the world all over the world. If the chance came I would like to fight Bisping in the UK if that's what the UFC put together."
Dana White: Wanderlei Silva Likely to Face Brian Stann in Comeback Fight
In the months since Wanderlei Silva went on the shelf recovering from a knee injury and subsequent surgery, it seems like practically every middleweight in the division has asked to face him in his comeback fight.
Chael Sonnen, Nate Marquardt, Alan Belcher and Chris Leben are all among the names that have publically lobbied to face the MMA legend. But it seems the most recent man to request Silva may be the one to get the much-desired bout.
Brian Stann is the most likely opponent for Silva upon his return, UFC president Dana White told MMA Fighting.
Josh Barnett out to take states by storm
While Strikeforce was in the process of putting together its heavyweight tournament, some high-profile participants requested specific opponents. No one requested a fight with Josh Barnett.
It wasn't that the higher-profile fighters -- including Fedor Emelianenko and Alistair Overeem -- sought to avoid him. In their minds, they simply had bigger fish to fry.
Emelianenko will take on Antonio Silva on Feb. 12 in Newark, N.J. Overeem is slated to face Fabricio Werdum on a date that has yet to be determined.
When the brackets were finalized, Barnett found himself in the less appealing group. That he isn't in the same group with Emelianenko, Overeem and Werdum reveals how much Barnett's star has dimmed.
Fedor: 'I Never Believed I Was the Best Fighter in the World'
Heavyweight great Fedor Emelianenko will leave it up to observers and pundits to determine who the No. 1 heavyweight in the world is following the conclusion of the 2010 Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix.
Should the winner of the tournament be ranked higher than the UFC heavyweights?
"That's probably something the specialists and commentators should decide," Fedor said Thursday on a conference call promoting his upcoming quarterfinal bout against Antonio Silva.
UFC 125 Draws 12,874 For $2.1 Million Gate
The NSAC today announced the official attendance and live gate figures for UFC 125 on January 1. Although the total attendance was 12,974, only 6978 tickets were sold and there were 5896 comps and 1077 unsold tickets. The total live gate was $2,174,780.
UFC 128 Gets 2 More Fights Including Assuncao-Gamburyan
With tickets already on sale to the general public for UFC 128, the company's executives are busy lining out the evening's official plans. And while a main-card matchup between Yoshihiro Akiyama and Nate Marquardt was confirmed earlier today, the UFC wasn't quite done making announcements. Company brass also announced two additional matchups for the evening's preliminary card, including a previously unreported featherweight bout of Raphael Assuncao vs. Manny Gamburyan. The other confirmed fight is Luiz Cane vs. Karlos Vemola.
UFN 24 Official For Seattle, Garcia-Phan First Fight
In March, the UFC makes its first-ever trip to Seattle, and a highly anticipated featherweight rematch will be featured on the evening's main card. UFC executives today announced that UFC Fight Night 24 takes place March 26 at Key Arena in Seattle and airs on Spike TV. While the card is expected to be headlined by a light heavyweight contest between Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and Tito Ortiz, Leonard Garcia vs. Nam Phan II is the first fight officially announced for the event.
Strikeforce Clarifies HW Tournament Rules
While the buzz surrounding Strikeforce's recently announced heavyweight grand prix has been immense, understanding of the specifics of the tourney has been a bit less than ideal. Today, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker clarified many of the questions that needed to be addressed. First up, Alistair Overeem's title will not be on the line in the tournament. And while there were some suggestions that every fight in the tournament would be contested as five-round affairs, instead, that will only happen in the grand prix finals, when a newly created Strikeforce heavyweight grand prix title will be on the line. "All quarterfinal and semifinal matches will be scheduled for three, five-minute rounds," Coker said. "The tournament final will be five, five-minute rounds for the Strikeforce world grand prix championship." Strikeforce's heavyweight grand prix, featuring such luminaries as Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem, former UFC champions Andrei Arlovski and Josh Barnett, PRIDE great Fedor Emelianenko, and others, kicks off on Feb. 12 at "Strikeforce and M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Silva," which takes place at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, N.J. With the heavyweight grand prix set up as an eight-man, multi-night, single-elimination tournament, draws could prove problematic along the way. In order to address that, Coker said a fourth judge will be on hand in each fight to determine which fighter will advance from the tie. "If any fight results in a draw, an independent fourth judge will determine who advances or who wins based on the fighter's overall performance in the fight," Coker said. "We will have a fourth judge on hand scoring the fight independently of the three that we normally have." The final question mark in terms of tournament format involved potential injuries to the eight competitors. If a winner suffers a serious issue, who continues on in the bracket? "If a fighter qualifies to advance in the tournament but for any reason can not advance, we're forming a five-person tournament-review committee who will select a fighter to advance in his place," Coker said. "This fighter will be chosen from a pool of fighters that will include the previous opponent and the winners of reserve matches."
Thiago Silva Doesn't Care What A "Jerk" Like Jon Jones Thinks
And he certainly didn't appreciate Jones calling him out after his recent win over Brandon Vera, as he tells the TATAME. "This guy is a jerk. Everybody’s a professional fighter and all fights include provocations. Brandon Vera said he’s break my legs, that I wasn’t on his level. I don’t say things, I do. You get recognized when you do things. I’m a professional fighter, but I can’t always please everybody. There’s always somebody behind the computed with a plate filled with French fries, ready to criticize you. I fight for the fans, for the money and to put my name up there. Talking is too much easy, nobody knows what goes on in your life, your trainings… I think I did my job. Who likes it, likes it, but you can dislike it if you want."
Phil Baroni Signs With Titan Fighting Championships
"The New York Bad Ass" will return. Despite his recent release from the UFC, 34-year-old Phil Baroni will fight again, this time with the Kansas-based Titan Fighting Championship. Titan Fighting Championship officials announced late Wednesday night that Baroni has signed a multi-fight deal with the promotion. The company expects Baroni to debut on March 25 against an opponent still to be determined.
Jens Pulver in main event of XFO 38, Jan. 22
Former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver (22-14-1) will whet his appetite for an expected March fight with another booking later this month just outside of Chicago.
Now-featherweight Pulver is set to headline XFO 38 opposite Mike Lindquist (6-19) on Jan. 22 at the Woodstock Harley Davidson in Woodstock, Ill.
It's the former champ's second fight since being released from the now-defunct WEC following a stretch of five losses.