Douglas Lima replaces Josh Koscheck vs. Paul Daley at Bellator 158 in London
That long-awaited Josh Koscheck vs. Paul Daley rematch will have to wait a little longer.
Koscheck (17-10 MMA, 0-0 BMMA), a former UFC fighter who’s yet to make his Bellator debut, was forced out of a Bellator 158 bout with Daley (38-13-2 MMA, 4-0 BMMA) for undisclosed reasons, and former welterweight champion Douglas Lima (26-6 MMA, 8-2 UFC) has stepped in a replacement.
A Bellator rep confirmed the lineup change with MMAjunkie. ESPN.com first reported it.
Rose Namajunas meets undefeated Karolina Kowalkiewicz at UFC 201 in Atlanta
A strawweight bout between Rose Namajunas (5-2 MMA, 3-1 UFC) and Karolina Kowalkiewicz (9-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) is the latest addition to July’s UFC 201 lineup.
UFC officials today announced the bout.
UFC 201 takes place July 30 at Philips Arena in Atlanta. The event airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FOX Sports 1 and UFC Fight Pass, though the bout order hasn’t been finalized.
The latest UFC 201 card now includes:
Champ Robbie Lawler vs. Tyron Woodley – for welterweight title
Champ Demetrious Johnson vs. Wilson Reis – for flyweight title
Siyar Bahadurzada vs. Claudio Silva
Cesar Arzamendia vs. Damien Brown
Michael Graves vs. Bojan Velickovic
Erik Perez vs. Francisco Rivera
Damian Grabowski vs. Anthony Hamilton
Matt Brown vs. Jake Ellenberger
Ian McCall vs. Justin Scoggins
Ed Herman vs. Nikita Krylov
Karolina Kowalkiewicz vs. Rose Namajunas
UFC Restores Ariel Helwani's Credentials
MMAFighting.com reporter Ariel Helwani and his colleagues Casey Leydon and Esther Lin, who were thrown out of UFC 199 on Saturday night and banned for life after Helwani (accurately) reported that Brock Lesnar was in talks to fight at UFC 200 next month, appear to have had their credentials restored by UFC this evening. UFC released the following statement:
Following a conversation with the editorial team at SB Nation, UFC will not prevent MMAFighting.com from receiving media credentials to cover live UFC events. We respect the role the media plays in our sport and beyond, including MMAFighting’s ability to report news. However, in our opinion, we believe the recurring tactics used by its lead reporter extended beyond the purpose of journalism. We feel confident our position has now been adequately communicated to the SB Nation editorial team.
Ariel Helwani discusses his UFC banning
Obviously upset, Ariel didn't want to do interviews about the ban, but thought it was bigger than him and he needed to talk about it.
Ariel was very hesitant about wanting to join Fox.
Said pre-fox deal he was in talks with Fuel for a tv program, while UFC was in talks with NBC and Comcast at the time. Decided against doing it.
Ariel says the only reason he was given for his release was that he reported the Brock Lesnar info before the UFC broke the news.
Ariel also spoke about Dana and the UFC being upset with his Nate Diaz interview, which he thought was great. Evidently during the interview with Nate he was getting calls from a '702' area code that was Dana's number and didn't know if he should pick up in the middle of the interview.
Fox Sports 1 to air CM Puck reality show in build up to late summer early fall UFC debut
Dave Meltzer on The Wrestling Observer Radio shared some details on former WWE Superstar CM Punk and his long-awaited MMA debut in the UFC. According to Meltzer, FOX Sports 1 is planning a reality TV series for Punk and his planned opponent, Mickey Gall. The show is going to reportedly debut in August, and CM Punk’s fight with Gall is expected to happen in the late summer period. The UFC has not yet officially announced Pun
Brock Lesnar meets Mark Hunt in UFC 200's pay-per-view co-headliner
Former heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar is back in the UFC and slated for a milestone UFC event, and he now has an opponent: Mark Hunt.
ESPN’s “SportsCenter” today reported that Lesnar (5-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) and heavy-handed Hunt (12-10-1 MMA, 7-4-1 UFC) are set for July’s UFC 200’s co-main event.
The latest UFC 200 card includes:
Champ Daniel Cormier vs. interim champ Jon Jones – light-heavyweight title-unification bout
Mark Hunt vs. Brock Lesnar
Jose Aldo vs. Frankie Edgar – for interim featherweight title
Champ Miesha Tate vs. Amanda Nunes – for women’s bantamweight title
Travis Browne vs. Cain Velasquez
Kelvin Gastelum vs. Johny Hendricks
Derek Brunson vs. Gegard Mousasi
Joe Lauzon vs. Diego Sanchez
Enrique Marin vs. Sage Northcutt
Takanori Gomi vs. Jim Miller
Julianna Pena vs. Cat Zingano
Raphael Assuncao vs. T.J. Dillashaw
MMA Fighting's statement on UFC's media actions Saturday night
MMA Fighting reporter and host Ariel Helwani was removed from UFC 199, along with MMA Fighting photo journalist Esther Lin and MMA Fighting videographer Casey Leydon, after Ariel accurately broke the news of Brock Lesnar's return to the UFC and the forthcoming Nate Diaz vs. Conor McGregor rematch.
MMA Fighting and SB Nation fully support Ariel, Casey, Esther and the entire MMA Fighting staff. And we appreciate the support we have received from the MMA Fighting audience and community.
The UFC has not been in contact with us since revoking the credentials of Ariel, Esther and Casey. But we will keep you, our audience, informed of the situation.
Ariel will address what occurred at UFC 199 on tomorrow's MMA Hour. The show begins at 1 p.m. ET / 10 a.m. PT
Kevin Lockland is the VP of Editorial Operations at SB Nation. Bryan Tucker is the managing editor of MMA Fighting.
With UFC 199, a great night was spoiled by a petty media banning
What a time to be a fight fan, I found myself thinking as Bisping stood there in the octagon, patting that gold belt like he couldn’t believe it was real. If only the night’s news had ended there.
But see, the thing that spoiled the evening for me was when I looked on Twitter and saw a missive from Ariel Helwani (via Twitter), the MMAFighting.com reporter who broke the news that Lesnar was in talks to return to the cage shortly before the UFC 200 promo confirmed it.
According to Helwani, not long after he reported that scoop UFC staff escorted him out of the building, relieved him of his media credential, and – again, according to Helwani’s characterization of events – told he was “banned for life”
Rematch between Nate Diaz and Conor McGregor set for UFC 202
It’s been scheduled, cancelled, talked about endlessly and now it’s done. The rematch between Nate Diaz and Conor McGregor is officially set for UFC 202.
The UFC announced the match-up during the pay-per-view broadcast for UFC 199. The event will take place August 20 from a venue to be determined. The main card will air on pay-per-view.
MMA legend Don Frye set for induction into UFC Hall of Fame
MMA legend Don Frye is the newest member of the UFC Hall of Fame.
UFC officials today announced that Frye (20-9-1 MMA, 9-1 UFC) will be inducted in the UFC Hall of Fame as part of this summer’s International Fight Week festivities along with heavyweight legend Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and UFC co-founder Bob Meyrowitz.
Brock Lesnar close to finalizing deal to fight at UFC 200
Here comes the pain. Again?
The UFC is in serious talks with former heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar to have him fight at UFC 200 on July 9 in Las Vegas, multiple sources confirmed with MMA Fighting.
Both sides are close to finalizing a deal, and if all goes well, Lesnar's return to mixed martial arts could be announced imminently.
UFC 199 pre-fight facts: Inside the numbers for a pair of title-fight rematches in SoCal
The UFC’s second pay-per-view event in a 21-day period takes place Saturday with UFC 199 at The Forum in Inglewood, Calif.
In the main event, middleweight titleholder Luke Rockhold (15-2 MMA, 5-1 UFC) goes for his first title defense when he takes on Michael Bisping (28-7 MMA, 18-7 UFC).
The co-headliner features a rare championship trilogy contest when longtime rivals Dominick Cruz (21-1 MMA, 4-0 UFC) and Urijah Faber (33-8 MMA, 9-4 UFC) look to settle their differences once and for all with the bantamweight belt up for grabs.
While two title fights would ordinarily be enough to carry a card, the organization has stacked the deck with several other bouts of significance. For more on the numbers behind all those matchups, check out 80 pre-fight facts about UFC 199...
Michael Bisping: ‘A lot of the UFC roster' are ‘posers' -- ‘I'm a real fighter'
As they have been all week, tensions were high between UFC middleweight champion Luke Rockhold and Michael Bisping at Friday's UFC 199 weigh-ins.
After both fighters successfully tipped the scales at the 185-pound middleweight limit, Bisping kicked off the customary staredown with a playful jab to Rockhold's stomach. From there the expletives flew as UFC president Dana White tried valiantly to keep the two rivals separated ahead of their rematch on Saturday night in the main event of UFC 199.
CSAC doctor: Champ Luke Rockhold has Grade II MCL sprain, but OK to fight at UFC 199
The all-clear has been given on UFC middleweight champion Luke Rockhold’s knee, paving the way for his fight with Michael Bisping at UFC 199.
Concerns were raised at Thursday’s news conference for the pay-per-view event when Rockhold claimed to have suffered a torn MCL in preparation for his first title defense, which takes place at The Forum in Inglewood, Calif.
But the fighter passed an examination by a ringside physician from the California State Athletic Commission, which will regulate Saturday’s pay-per-view event. The doctor who checked him out said that while Rockhold has a Grade II “strain” of his medical collateral ligament, he has good stability in his knee and is healthy enough to compete.
“As far as his physical exam, no, (there is no evidence of an MCL tear),” said Dr. Diego Allende, an osteopathic, family medicine, and anti-aging doctor who spoke to MMAjunkie today after preliminary weigh-ins for the event. “He has good stability, good range of motion; he cleared completely on the examination. I have all the confidence in the world that that won’t be an issue in his competition tomorrow night.”
Justin Lawrence vs Isao Kobayashi Tops Bellator 157 Preliminary Card
Justin Lawrence will meet Isao Kobayashi in the featured preliminary bout at Bellator 157 "Dynamite 2" on June 24.
Promotion officials announced the featherweight pairing on Friday. Bellator 157 takes place at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis and is headlined by a heavyweight showdown between Quinton Jackson and Satoshi Ishii. The evening’s main card, which will also see Michael Chandler face Patricky Freire for the vacant lightweight title, airs on Spike TV at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. The preliminary draw will stream on Bellator.com beginning at approximately 6:30 ET/5:30 CT.
Muhammad Ali hospitalized and on life support
According to reports, boxing legend Muhammad Ali is on life support. The 74 year old former world champion was hospitalized Thursday with respiratory issues, but it now appears those problems are worse than originally thought.
Reports indicate that Ali's family has flown in to the Phoenix area to be with him, and that doctors have cautioned that he is "near the end".
Ali has battled health issues over the years, starting with a diagnosis of Parkinson's in the 1980's. In recent years, he has also been hospitalized at times for pneumonia among other ailments.
Ali is considered by many to be the greatest Heavyweight champion of all time. His classic fights with Joe Frazier, George Foreman, and Sonny Liston among many others are all landmark moments in boxing history. Outside of the ring, his loud and brash persona drew numerous fans and critics alike. He made big waves both for changing his name from Cassius Clay to Muhammad Ali and for refusing to fight in the Vietnam War. He was an icon not just of boxing, but of America for many years, and is undeniably one of the biggest stars in the history of combat sports.