Anthony Johnson Debuts at Light Heavyweight, Braulio Estima Makes MMA Debut at Titan 24
The former welterweight and middleweight contender will face veteran Esteves Jones at Titan Fighting 24, which airs live on AXS TV on Friday, August 24.
“I’m excited to make my light heavyweight debut on August 24 in Kansas City for all the Titan Championship fans,” said Johnson. “I respect my opponent, but he’s in my way to get to the top of this new division. I’m looking forward to showing everyone my strength and power at 205, and exactly what I am capable of at this weight.”
Also added to the Titan Fighting 24 card is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu world champion Braulio Estima, who makes his MMA debut on the upcoming show.
While Estima is considered one of the top grapplers in the world, he came into the MMA spotlight recently when he accepted a jiu-jitsu match with UFC bad boy Nick Diaz. Unfortunately, Diaz ultimately no showed the event and Estima went without a grappling match that night, but the exposure definitely didn’t hurt his introduction to MMA fans.
Former champ Tim Sylvia 'shocked' after latest brush with UFC, vows to fight on
Seven days ago, Tim Sylvia told his friend and longtime training partner Sherman Pendergarst that he was coming back to the big show after four years away from it.
The next day, Pendergarst succumbed to cancer after a long fight, and Sylvia received another punch to the stomach when he heard he wasn't signed. But he held out hope that it was part of a PR plan.
When Sylvia (30-7) learned it wasn't, and later found out that Frank Mir would be fighting Daniel Cormier in Strikeforce instead of him, he was "shocked." But as he today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com), he plans to fight on.
"I love to fight," Sylvia said. "I still want to do it. I still can do it, and I think I'm still one of the top 20 in the world."
Sylvia still isn't sure what happened between this week and last. As far as he knew, he was a lock to fight Cormier in the Strikeforce cage. His manager, Monte Cox, had struck a deal to do a six-week training camp with American Top Team in Coconut Creek, Fla., as part of his preparation.
"I knew that we were in contract negotiations," Sylvia said of a previously reported deal to fight Strikeforce heavyweight grand prix champ at an event planned for Sept. 29 at Power Balance Pavilion in Sacramento, Calif. "They asked if I would fight Daniel Cormier. Monte asked if I wanted that fight, and I said absolutely. He says, 'I'm going to try and work a deal to where you fight him and then after the fight, win, lose or draw, you get to fight in the UFC.' I said, 'That's great. That's what we wanted.'"
Shane Carwin picks Wittman, Marquardt, Barry among others for 'TUF 16' coaching staff
The team that guided UFC heavyweight Shane Carwin to mixed martial arts success should flank him as coaches on "The Ultimate Fighter 16."
Carwin and manager Jason Genet of Ingrained Media today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that Trevor Wittman, Nate Marquardt, Pat Barry, Leister Bowling and Loren Landlow have been targeted for his staff on the reality show.
Taping begins next month for 'TUF 16,' which debuts on FX on Sept. 7. While the show's finale is set for December in Las Vegas, a date hasn't been marked for a season-ending fight between Carwin and opposing coach Roy Nelson.
Carwin's selections include Wittman, who is the head coach at Grudge Training Center where Carwin trains alongside a bevy of standouts including Duane "Bang" Ludwig and Eliot Marshall.
Among the active fighters selected to accompany Carwin is Marquardt, who recently became the Strikeforce welterweight champion, and Barry, a popular UFC heavyweight and former K-1 kickboxer.
UFC 152 is neutral ground for Bisping
He certainly isn’t the first fighter to say it, but UFC middleweight contender Michael Bisping loves Canada and is thrilled that’s where his next fight will take place.
The Ultimate Fighter season 3 winner is set to meet knockout artist Brian Stann in a featured bout at UFC 152 in Toronto at the Air Canada Centre in a few months.
“I absolutely love Toronto. I had an amazing time last time I fought (in Canada) and I can’t wait for Sept. 22,” Bisping told Jim Lang and Mike Farwell on Brady & Lang on Sportsnet 590 The Fan Wednesday morning.
The Manchester, England native is somewhat of a polarizing figure and is a fighter with as many detractors as he has supporters. Stann is military veteran and extremely popular with American fans, so Bisping is happy their fight is taking place on neutral soil.
“Brian Stann is a decorated war hero and good for him that’s fantastic, but it’s perhaps a good thing I didn’t fight him in deep Texas or something, I might have got shot on the way out to the arena,” Bisping said. “I’m proud to be fighting in Canada, part of the Commonwealth, and hopefully on neutral ground.”
“Brian’s a big, tough, powerful striker and I think the most dangerous weapon that he’s got, I’ve got to look out for his big, powerful bombs basically. I’ve got to look out for his big power shots. If I avoid those I think I’m the better technical fighter, so if I avoid those big one punches of his I think I should be able to beat him.
Mir books Strikeforce fight vs. Cormier
USA TODAY Sports confirmed with UFC and Strikeforce officials that Mir has agreed to meet Strikeforce grand prix winner and former two-time Olympic wrestler Daniel Cormier (10-0 MMA, 7-0 SF) in the co-main event of September's Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Healy fight card, on Sept. 29 at Power Balance Pavilion in Sacramento, and airs on Showtime.
Matt Mitrione Explains Why He Turned Down Travis Browne Fight at UFC on FOX 4
Jul 25, 2012 - When the news of Ben Rothwell's injury was first reported, a lot of MMA fans asked, Why not have Matt Mitrione fight Travis Browne?
It's a valid question, especially since Mitrione was once scheduled to fight Rob Broughton at UFC on FOX 4 before visa issues forced Broughton off the card. In fact, the UFC recently asked Mitrione to step in on short notice to fight Browne, but he decided to turn the fight down. Here's why:
With newcomer Camus vs. Pague added to UFC 150, Hallman vs. Tavares stays at UFC 151
It turns out Dennis Hallman (51-14-2 MMA, 4-5 UFC) and Thiago Tavares (17-4-1 MMA, 7-4-1 UFC) won't be needing those tickets to Denver, after all.
Despite initial confirmation from UFC officials that Hallman and Tavares would be competing at UFC 150, the fight will instead remain on the UFC 151 lineup.
In its place now on the UFC 150 card is a bantamweight matchup between promotional newcomer Chico Camus (11-3 MMA, 0-0 UFC) and "The Ultimate Fighter 14" vet Dustin Pague (11-6 MMA, 1-2 UFC).
A Roufusport product, Camus makes his UFC debut on the strength of a three-fight win streak built while fighting on the regional scene. All three of the wins in his current streak were earned by decision, but Camus' first eight career wins included seven stoppages, including four by knockout and three via submission.
UFC on Fox 4 Main or Co-Main Event to Determine Next Title Contender at 205lbs
According to a report from Fox Sports on Wednesday, UFC president Dana White and matchmaker Joe Silva will find the next light heavyweight title contender out of the two main event bouts heading the card in Los Angeles on Aug. 4.
Should Mauricio “Shogun” Rua defeat Brandon Vera in impressive fashion, he’s likely the man who will get the call to next compete for the UFC light heavyweight title. If Rua loses or doesn’t shine the way most expect him to against opponent Brandon Vera then the UFC will turn its attention to the co-main event bout between Lyoto Machida and Ryan Bader.
“These fighters have a huge opportunity to show the world why they deserve to fight for the UFC title next,” White said in an email to Fox Sports. “Winning isn’t enough at UFC on Fox. This division is so competitive these fighters have to look great to separate themselves from the pack.
“I’m expecting all of these guys to go all-out to prove why they should be next in line for a title shot.”
Resurrection Fighting Alliance targets Las Vegas for next event, signs Sergio Pettis
Resurrection Fighting Alliance is heading into the UFC's backyard for an event in early October, and it's made another talent acquisition.
The undefeated Sergio Pettis (5-0), who's the brother of UFC lightweight Anthony Pettis, has signed a multi-fight deal with the burgeoning promotion, RFA matchmaker Scott Cutbirth today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
Pettis will fight an opponent to be determined at the event, which takes place in Las Vegas and airs live on Fight Now TV. A date and venue have yet to be confirmed.
Pettis, a bantamweight, trains alongside his brother and a bevy of top-tier talent at Roufusport Academy in Milwaukee. This past month, he earned a first-round submission win in regional competition.
Additional talent featured on the October event includes Tyson Griffin, Gilbert Yvel, Chidi Njokuani, Chris Holdsworth, Bubba Jenkins and Lance Palmer, Cutbirth said.
Ben Rothwell Out of UFC on FOX 4
Jul 25, 2012 - Heavyweight Ben Rothwell has pulled out of his UFC on FOX 4 against Travis Browne due to an injured ankle, MMAFighting.com has learned from sources close to the fight. The fight was supposed to take place on the FOX portion of the card.
According to other sources, the UFC has offered former Strikeforce fighter Devin Cole the opportunity to fight Browne on FOX, however, MMAFighting.com has been unable to confirm whether Browne vs. Cole will happen next week with anyone close to Cole's camp.
Rothwell (32-8) last competed at UFC 145 when he knocked out Brendan Schaub. Browne (13-0-1) was also victorious at UFC 145, submitting Chad Griggs in the first round.
Cole (20-9-1) last fought for Strikeforce in December. He would be entering this fight riding a two-fight winning streak.
UFC on FOX 4, headlined by Shogun Rua vs. Brandon Vera, airs live on Aug. 4 from the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Rony "Jason" vs Sam Sicilia set for UFC 153
Rony "Jason" Mariano Bezerra (11-3 MMA, 1-0 UFC) likely won't be able to cruise against his next opponent.
The winner of "The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil" is set to meet hard-swinging Sam Sicilia (11-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC) at UFC 153, sources close to the event today told MMAjunkie.com.
Oct 13 - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
- Jose Aldo vs. Erik Koch (fw title)
- Vitor Belfort vs. Alan Belcher
- Glover Teixeira vs. Quinton "Rampage" Jackson
- Rony "Jason" Mariano Bezerra vs. Sam Sicilia
- Cezar "Mutante" Ferreira vs. TBA
- Sergio Moraes vs. Renee Forte
- Cristiano Marcello vs. Reza Madadi
Rory MacDonald Warns B.J. Penn to Get Focused or Risk Serious Beating
Jul 25, 2012 - B.J. Penn was a no-show at Tuesday's UFC 152 press conference. Officially, he had to miss the event due to family circumstances, but his Sept. 22 opponent Rory MacDonald just sees his absence as another sign of an unfocused opponent.
Penn recently came out of a brief retirement to accept the matchup with MacDonald, saying he wanted revenge on MacDonald's camp, Tri-Star, which is also the home of Penn's longtime rival Georges St-Pierre. But on Tuesday, MacDonald publicly questioned whether Penn is truly motivated to return, and warned that if he's not, things will end disastrously for the former two-division champion.
"I'm training for the best BJ, you know what I mean?" he said. "I'm preparing to be the best version, I'm going to come out evolved. I'm going to come out in good shape, explosive, exciting like I always do, and I'm going to be very technical. I'm going to be on point. I don't know where B.J.'s at. He didn't even show up to this. He's dropping out of the VADA testing. The last time I saw him he looked really out of shape. I don't know where his head is at in this, but he better get serious or I'm going to hurt him very badly."
Sergio Moraes vs. Renee Forte added to UFC 153 in Brazil
Sergio Moraes is headed to the welterweight division after falling short in "The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil" as an injury replacement.
Moraes (6-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC) is scheduled to meet fellow "TUF: Brazil" competitor Renee Forte (7-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) at UFC 153, which takes place Oct. 13 at HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro and airs live on pay-per-view.
Dennis Hallman vs. Thiago Tavares fight moves back to UFC 150 from UFC 151
The UFC 150 shuffle continues.
A lightweight fight between Dennis Hallman (51-14-2 MMA, 4-5 UFC) and Thiago Tavares (17-4-1 MMA, 7-4-1 UFC) is back on the August card after a short move to the September UFC 151 event.
UFC officials on Wednesday confirmed the bout's spot on UFC 150 in Denver. MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) earlier this month reported the fight had moved from UFC 150 to UFC 151. Now it is back in its original home.
Rousimar Palhares Out; Buddy Roberts In Against Yushin Okami at UFC 150
A late change has been made to the upcoming UFC 150 card in Denver as Rousimar Palhares has been forced out of his fight with Yushin Okami.
Greg Jackson trained middleweight Buddy Roberts now steps in to face Okami on the show happening on Aug. 11 at the Pepsi Center in Denver. Roberts’ manager Ali Abdel Aziz from Dominance MMA confirmed the news via Twitter late Tuesday evening, and also independently confirmed the switch to MMAWeekly.com as well.
Alan Belcher and Vitor Belfort agree to meet at UFC 153 in Brazil
UFC president Dana White recently teased a few upcoming big fights in the middleweight division, and now the first of those matchups is on the schedule.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today confirmed with sources close to the two fighters that Vitor Belfort (21-9 MMA, 10-5 UFC) and Alan Belcher (18-6 MMA, 9-4 UFC) have verbally agreed to meet on the main card of this fall's UFC 153 event.
Additionally, Belfort late Tuesday took to his Twitter account to call out Belcher for UFC 153, then said in his native Portugese that the matchup was one UFC president Dana White wanted.
Featuring a featherweight title fight between current champion Jose Aldo and challenger Erik Koch, "UFC 153: Aldo vs. Koch" takes place Oct. 13 at Rio de Janeiro's HSBC Arena.