MMAPlayground Interview Series - Vol. 4 (Julie "Fireball" Kedzie)
As with any successful professional, mixed martial artists eat, sleep and breathe their craft. They put everything on the line when they wake up, hit the gym and pour their blood, sweat and tears into the sport we all love. When they enter that cage, for the fan, it's all about the entertainment, but these athletes go through the daily rigors with more in mind. For some fighters, it's a paycheck. For others, it's the glitz and glamour, but for some it's a lifestyle fueled by a deep passion and connection to the sport of mixed martial arts.
In our newest site feature, MMAPlayground would like to introduce you to some of these men and women of MMA that you may not know much about.
Our mission? To introduce. To educate. To spread the word.
Julie “Fireball” Kedzie is a female mixed martial artist fighting out of Albuquerque, New Mexico, with a current record of 16-9-0. Kedzie has never been one to turn down a fight, which is apparent with a single glance at her resume where one can find such names as Gina Carano, Tara LaRosa and Jan Finney, among others.
Julie recently took time out of her busy schedule to sit down and answer a few questions for our MMAPlayground.com Interview Series. Read below to find out why she’d love to be matched up against Floyd Mayweather, how she got the name “Fireball” and more!
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MMAPG: We appreciate you taking the time to chat with us, Julie. How’s the rehab coming?
KEDZIE: Much better, thank you! I have been taken very good care of and am able to (finally) jog again. I will hopefully be back in sparring and grappling fully in the next few weeks.
MMAPG: Can you give the fans some insight in to how it happened?
KEDZIE: Ha! The REAL answer is that I didn't show enough respect for my body and over-trained to the point of injury. Don't ever do that - train your ass off but take the time to recover! I'll try to explain these the way they were explained to me, although you have to bare with me because I get hit in the head for a living. The long of the short of it is that I originally suffered a patella subluxation (my kneecap popped out) in training and tried to push through it to the point of stupidity...
UFC Quick Quote: Yves Edwards willing to fight Rafaello Oliveira behind a Walmart
"I still feel like I'm 26. ...The guy that was making his debut in the UFC, he didn't know half the things I know now. The thing is, nobody gets cut off a win. Not unless you've done something and screwed up. That's my only concern, is going out there and winning, keeping my job, and keep moving up the ladder. When it comes to the fight game (being on the pay-per-view card) means absolutely nothing to me. This fight could be behind a Wal-Mart. All I have to worry about is, that's the guy I'm fighting. That's all that matters."
- Yves Edwards
Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson Considering a Move to Boxing
"I hate fighting people who are scared," Jackson told the ESPN UFC Podcast. "When you fight somebody who is scared you never know what they're going to do. They turn and run.
"That's why I'm gonna go to boxing. I'm gonna try boxing because they've got to stand with you. If I get knocked out I don't care because at least it's a fight.
"I've tried a lot of boxing, I'm falling in love with boxing and I know I can put butts on seats over there."
- Quinton "Rampage" Jackson
Champ Ben Askren vs. Jay Hieron targeted for Bellator 56 title fight in Kansas City
One of the biggest title fights in Bellator history now has a date.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today confirmed with sources close to the event that undefeated Bellator welterweight champion Ben Askren (8-0 MMA, 5-0 BFC) will meet recent tournament winner Jay Hieron (22-4 MMA, 3-0 BFC) at Bellator 56.
The event takes place Oct. 29 at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan.
The night's main card airs on MTV2 (and in high-definition on EPIX), and the prelims stream on Spike.com.
UPDATE: Herman tested positive for THC...not Performance Enhancing Drugs
Dave Herman is rethinking the crowd he hangs out with between fights.
In an interview today with MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com), the UFC heavyweight sternly denied using marijuana prior to his since-canceled fight with Mike Russow at next week's UFC 136 event.
But he admitted that he was recently around those who used the drug, which may have caused him to fail a pre-fight drug test requested by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation.
"Everybody out here kind of smokes," he said. "Marijuana is legal in California. Maybe it's just being in the same room. I don't know. I see people smoke every day."
Herman, who trains at Team Quest in Murrieta, Calif., took the pre-fight test two weeks prior at a local Request A Test drug-testing facility contracted by the TDLR.
Siyar Bahadurzada signs with the UFC
Siyar Bahadurzada (20-4-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) is apparently UFC bound.
As MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) reported this past week, Bahadurzada said he had been offered a deal with the world's top MMA promotion, and he hinted he was likely to accept it.
Today, the reigning Shooto light-heavyweight champion and current 170-pounder took to Twitter to announce a deal has been completed.
"I signed with the UFC!" he tweeted. "I'm very excited to be a part of the UFC and test my skills with the crème de la crème of MMA.
"I wanna thank the UFC and Dana White for this opportunity. I will shake up the [welterweight] division!Also special thanks to my team Golden Glory!"
A debut date and first opponent were not disclosed.
Sylvia-Rizzo, Arlovski-Fulton headline ProElite 2, eight-man HW tourney on tap
The resurgent ProElite has inked Nov. 5 for its next major event, and two ex-UFC heavyweight champions have taken co-headlining fights.
Five-time champ Tim Sylvia (29-7) meets Pedro Rizzo (19-9) in the main event while three-time champ Andrei Arlovski (16-9), who headlined the promotion's first event in August, meets journeyman Travis Fulton (247-48-10).
ProElite 2 takes place at the 12,000-seat iWireless Center in Moline, Ill., which is a stone's throw from part-time cop Sylvia's home.
Broadcast plans for the event have yet to be announced, though the promotion is in talks with HDNet to air the second event and additional ones, sources close to negotiations today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
An eight-man heavyweight tournament also is targeted for the fall event, as ProElite veteran and planned participant Mark Ellis (1-0) today told MMAjunkie.com Radio. It's unknown what position the tournament bouts would take on the card, a source said.
Additionally, ProElite veterans Reagan Penn and top-ranked women's flyweight fighter Tara LaRosa are expected to fight, according to MMAFighting.com.
UFC, fighters visit Ottawa to lobby for MMA
The UFC has already staged successful mixed martial arts cards in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver. But behind the scenes, it has also been regularly taking its fight to Ottawa.
Given the fact the UFC already has a foothold in Canada, some may wonder why bother. But despite its success north of the border, the UFC is dealing with a patchwork of Canadian regulation for MMA.
The UFC is seeking a rewording of Section 83 (2) of the Criminal Code so that MMA -- like boxing -- is exempted from prosecution in a section that essentially covers unsanctioned "prize fights."
Bones Jones says "no thx" to portly B-movie star Seagal
The bloated B-movie action star made a surprise phone call to "Bones" prior to his UFC 135 title fight opposite "Rampage" Jackson back on Sept. 24 in Denver, Colorado. But what did he have to say? Jones details his "strange" conversation with Seagal in a recent appearance on the Jim Rome show.
Luiz 'Banha' Cane Dropping to Middleweight
"Banha will drop to the middle weight. It is something that, in my point of view, will take some time for him to get used to this new division, so I don’t wanna rush anything to make sure he’s comfortable fighting in this new weight class", tells, guaranteeing that the change isn’t related to the defeat in Rio de Janeiro.
"What happened is a part of the fight. I don’t believe this weight drop has anything to do with it, but it’s a wish he has for a long time, and maybe it’ll bring a positive result. It’s something that usually happens in the industry, keep dropping the weight more and more. He wanna do it and I support him, so let’s do it the best way we can. With no rush", explains.
- (Alex Davis, Cane's manager)
UFC on Versus 6's preliminary card to stream on Facebook
As expected, the preliminary card for Saturday's UFC on Versus 6 event will stream live and for free on Facebook.
UFC on Versus 6 takes place Saturday at Washington, D.C.'s Verizon Center. The main card, which includes a bantamweight title fight between champ Dominick Cruz and Demetrious Johnson, airs on Versus.
The official UFC on Versus 6 card now includes:
MAIN CARD (Versus)
Champ Dominick Cruz vs. Demetrious Johnson (for bantamweight title)
Pat Barry vs. Stefan Struve
Charlie Brenneman vs. Anthony Johnson
Mac Danzig vs. Matt Wiman
PRELIMINARY CARD (Facebook)
Yves Edwards vs. Rafaello Oliveira
Michael Johnson vs. Paul Sass
Byron Bloodworth vs. Mike Easton
T.J. Grant vs. Shane Roller
Josh Neer vs. Keith Wisniewski
Joseph Sandoval vs. Walel Watson
Dave Herman says UFC 136 scratch due to failed drug test for marijuana, steroids
A failed pre-fight drug test is the reason Dave Herman was scratched from next week's UFC 136 event.
As MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) reported Wednesday, UFC officials announced that a heavyweight bout between Herman (21-2 MMA, 1-0 UFC) and Mike Russow (14-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC) had been pulled from the Oct. 8 card, which takes place at Houston's Toyota Center.
Herman subsequently told Clinch Gear Radio that failed drug tests due to marijuana and steroids are to blame, though he denies usage.
UFC officials didn't initially cite a reason for Herman's removal from UFC 136's pay-per-view main card.
"Basically, I failed my drug test," Herman, who's now training with Team Quest, told the radio show. "I went in to get in my drug test (on Sept. 15), and a week later, they called me and told me they lost my urine specimen. I had to come in and redo it. That was last week. I went back in that day. And [on Wednesday], they told me I failed.
"I said, 'That's impossible.'"
Herman said he's getting conflicting stories from the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, the state's MMA regulatory body. Now, Herman said, they're claiming the first sample wasn't lost.
"Texas said they never lost it and the first one [tested positive] for drugs and the second was for steroids," he said. "I don't even smoke. ... I haven't even had a beer in two month."
Herman never previously has failed a drug test administered before or after an MMA event.
Mamed Khalidov to Meet Paulo Filho At KSW 17 on November 26th
Pride and WEC veteran Paulo Filho Will return to the international events on November. Coming off a controversial draw against Satoshi Ishii at Amazon FC, in Brazil, the Carlson Gracie protégé is set to battle knockout artist Mamed Khalidov at KSW 17, on November 26 in his opponent’s homeland Poland. MMA veterans Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou and James Thompson are also set to battle on the show.
Report: Tim Sylvia vs Andrei Arlovski IV planned for Nov. 5 in Moline, IL
Former UFC Heavyweight Champions Tim Sylvia and Andrei Arlovski are apparently in talks for a fourth meeting, this time under the ProElite banner on Nov. 5, 2011, in Moline, Illinois.
Cage Potato brought word of the possible match-up earlier today.
The original Sylvia vs. Arlovski trilogy took place under the UFC banner back in 2005-06, with "The Maine-iac" getting a 2-1 advantage. Unfortunately the third (and what at the time was believed to be the final) meeting of the two was a five-round snoozefest that Sylvia won on points.
James Head out, Justin Edwards in against John Maguire at UFC 138
Perhaps the third time will be the charm for an injury-plagued booking.
As MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) first reported this past week, promotional newcomer John Maguire (16-3 MMA, 0-0 UFC) recently replaced injured Mark Scanlon (7-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC) in a UFC 138 booking with welterweight James Head (7-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC).
Now, Head, too, is injured, and in his place steps Justin Edwards (7-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC), officials today announced.
UFC planning two shows in one night, maybe in February
UFC president Dana White laid out ambitious plans for future international live events. White envisions multiple, simultaneous UFC shows, perhaps as early as February.
“When we go to Japan next year, we are going to be putting on a show at the same time in Las Vegas,” he said.
While he didn’t confirm the date, UFC is scheduled for a show on Feb. 26 at the Saitama Super Arena in Japan. The show would take place in the early afternoon in Japan, so it would air in the U.S. on Feb. 25, a Saturday night, live in the usual 9 p.m. Eastern pay-per-view time slot.
When asked how the company was going to handle a dual-show evening from a television standpoint, White just smiled and said, “You’ll see.”