BJJ world champion signs with ONE
The transition between pure Brazilian jiu jitsu and mixed martial arts has proven to be difficult in recent years. As mixed martial artists have become more well-rounded, elite jiu jitsu fighters have began to struggle when they make the switch to MMA. This hasn't put off Michelle Nicolini, who has decided to focus solely on MMA after signing with ONE Championship.
Michelle Nicolini is one of the greatest grapplers alive. Nicolini is an 10-time world champion, an ADCC silver and gold medalist, who has continuously beaten the best over the past decade. After retiring from BJJ after the 2016 World Championships, many believed Nicolini would look to build upon her 2 -1 MMA record, but few expected the grappler to sign with ONE.
ONE Championship Confirms Two More 2016 Cards in Macau and Bangkok
ONE Championship officials on Wednesday confirmed two more cards that for 2016. On Aug. 13, the promotion heads to Macau for the first time. The other new addition to the schedule is a show in Bangkok on Dec. 17.
Venetian MacauNext month’s event will be at the 15,000 capacity Cotai Arena. The venue is situated in the bowls of the Venetian Resort & Casino and has played host to a couple of Manny Pacquiao fights in recent years.
The UFC also held three events at the Cotai Arena between 2012 and 2014, but has not returned in nearly two years. Boxing promoter Top Rank has also held multiple shows in the venue, featuring the likes of Zou Shiming and Rex Tso, as well as Manny Pacquiao.
‘TUF 12’ Winner Brookins Rematches Ishiwatari for BW Crown at Pancrase 279 Title Doubleheader
Pancrase's July 24 card at Differ Ariake in Tokyo will feature a title doubleheader, albeit under unconventional circumstances.
The long-tenured Japanese promotion announced Monday that “Ultimate Fighter” Season 12 winner Jonathan Brookins will return to the promotion to challenge bantamweight King of Pancrase Shintaro Ishiwatari for the title in the main event of Pancrase 279. The 30-year-old Brookins made his promotional debut in November 2014, defeating Ishiwatari by unanimous decision in a three-round non-title affair and has not fought since. Despite not being listed in Pancrase's official rankings and not having fought for over 18 months, the previous win was enough to earn title bid for the yogi Brookins, who now trains out of Tristar Gym in Montreal.
Yuki Motoya Vacates DEEP Flyweight Title; Org Announces Plans For 115-, 125-Pound Belts
Deep already had plans to crown its inaugural strawweight champion in 2016. Now, the company also finds itself in need of a new flyweight ace.
Officials from the Japanese promotion on Tuesday announced that two-time Deep flyweight titleholder Yuki Motoya has vacated his 125-pound title. Motoya, 26, was scheduled to fight Brazilian prospect Allan Nascimento at last week’s Rizin event, but the bout was canceled at the 11th hour after Motoya reportedly suffered health complications related to his weight cut.
Rizin 1 Bout Order Announced; Prochazka vs. Fujita Gets Top Billing Over Wanderlei, Sakuraba
The fight card and bout order have been locked in for Sunday’s Rizin Fighting Federation event in Nagoya, Japan.
The main event of Rizin 1 will see New Year’s Eve grand prix runner-up Jiri Prochazka square off against Japanese veteran Kazuyuki Fujita in a 242-pound catchweight fight. The bout structure will follow the Pride FC model, with an opening round of 10 minutes followed by two five-minute rounds.
Several other fighters from Rizin’s inaugural events are featured on the main card, with tournament competitor Vadim Nemkov taking on Karl Albrektsson in the light heavyweight co-main event. Lithuanian standout Teodoras Aukstuolis will face recent Fedor Emelianenko opponent Jaideep Singh at a catchweight of 216 pounds, while Brazilian jiu-jitsu star Gabi Garcia will make her sophomore MMA appearance in an open-weight tilt against Russia’s Anna Malyukova.
ROAD FC signs “Ryo” Young Choi, DEEP Champ makes 10-year return to Korea in May
ROAD FC announces the signing of “Ryo” Choi Young, 1st generation Korean MMA star and current DEEP Champion.
29 March, 2016 - ROAD Fighting Championship is excited to announce the signing “Ryo” Choi Young, of one of Korea’s “first generation” of Mixed Martial Artists and current DEEP Middleweight Champion. After almost ten years away from Korea, he is expected to make his promotional debut on 14 May, 2016 at ROAD FC 031 in Seoul.
Choi Young (18-10-3, Shinbukan/Land’s End) is a third generation ethnic Korean who was born and raised in Osaka, Japan. Choi first fought MMA in Japan in 2000, however his MMA career really kicked off in Korea in Spirit MC. In 2004, he faced “Stun Gun” Kim Dong-Hyun in Spirit MC’s first Interleague tournament, and beat him by Unanimous Decision. At the point of Spirit MC’s closure, Choi fought in K-1's HERO’S and returned to Japan where he became a staple of DEEP. Along the way, Choi fought the top in the middleweight division, including Lim Jae-Seok, Ryuta Sakurai, Kazuhiro Nakamura, Tatsuya Mizuno, and Yoshiyuki Nakanishi.
Dana White: ‘I absolutely hate’ the ‘business side’ of Holly Holm vs. Miesha Tate
When Holly Holm knocked out Ronda Rousey to capture the UFC women's bantamweight title in November, UFC president Dana White joked that he and UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta should have their promoters' licenses taken away if they booked anything other than an immediate rematch.
Of course, those statements ended up being premature, considering that Holm is just days out from defending her title for the first time against Miesha Tate at UFC 196, but that doesn't mean White has to be happy about it.
"I'll tell you this, to be brutally honest with you, as a fan, I love her attitude and I love that. As the business side, I absolutely hate it," White said Thursday on The Jim Rome Show. "Holly vs. Ronda is the biggest fight in UFC history, without a doubt. I think this thing does close to two million buys, and she's going in Saturday night against Miesha Tate
Ben Askren to Defend Welterweight Title at ONE: Global Rivals
Ben Askren returns to the cage next month to face Nikolay Aleksakhin in the main event of ONE: Global Rivals. The American will be looking to make the first successful defense of his welterweight title after two scheduled match-ups with Luis Santos last year failed to reach a satisfactory conclusion.
Askren (14-0-0-1) is a former Bellator champion, a two-time NCAA Division One wrestling champion, and a U.S. Olympian. He won the ONE belt in 2014, but saw his first defense against Santos end in a controversial no contest after the Brazilian was unable to continue due to an eye poke.
ONE Championship 40 set for March with Mohamed Ali vs. Aung La N Sang headliner
ONE Championship 40 is set for a March return to Myanmar, and a home country fan favorite is booked for the main event.
Myanmar’s own Aung La N Sang (16-9-1) will take on Egypt’s Mohamed Ali (10-7) in the main event of “ONE Championship 40: Union of Warriors.” The promotion announced the card and headliner today.
ONE Championship 40 will take place March 18 at Thuwanna Indoor Stadium in Yangon, Myanmar. The card will stream as an online pay-per-view in North America.
Yushin Okami Returns to Japan, Meets Ryuta Sakurai in Pride Rematch at Deep 75
Former UFC middleweight title contender Yushin Okami will compete on the Japanese fight circuit for the first time since 2006 when he makes his Deep debut next month.
The organization on Wednesday announced that Okami will square off against Ryuta Sakurai in a rematch of a 2004 bout from Pride FC. The three-round welterweight affair is slated to co-headline “Deep 75 Impact,” which takes place Feb. 27 at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo.
(Courtesy of on Twitter)
All ONE Championship Fighters to Move Up a Division After Weight-Cut Ban
ONE Championship recently became the first MMA promotion to ban weight cutting by dehydration. CEO Victor Cui appeared on Fox Sports Asia to talk about the changes and how the fighters on the roster would be affected.
The reception to the ONE Championship announcement that fighters would be forced to fight at their normal weight was overwhelmingly positive. It did raise a number of questions, though; with many people speculating that the existing champions would be stripped of their titles.
Rizin FF Weigh-in Results: Kazushi Sakuraba, Shinya Aoki Given Go-Ahead in Japan
Rizin Fighting Federation 1: Day 1 Weigh-in Results:
Kazushi Sakuraba (171) vs. Shinya Aoki (169.75)
Satoshi Ishii (219) vs. Jiri Prochazka (211.5)
Goran Reljic (215) vs. Vadim Nemkov (219.5)
Teodoras Aukstuolis (216) vs. Bruno Henrique Cappelozza (218)
Muhammed Lawal (214) vs. Brett McDermott (215)
Yuta Uchida (209) vs. Valentin Moldavsky (215)
Hiroyuki Takaya (143) vs. Daiki Hata (143)
Hideo Tokoro (135) vs. Kizaemon Saiga (136)
A.J. Matthews (184) vs. Anatoly Tokov (185)
Yuki Motoya (125) vs. Felipe Efrain (128)
Kirill Sidelnikov (253) vs. Carlos Toyota (259)
Tsuyoshi Kosaka (220.5) vs. James Thompson (291)
ROAD FC 27 in China Results and Recap: Zhang Lipeng wins, Knockout 8-man Tourney
On December 26th, 2015 in Shanghai, China at the Oriental Sports Center, ROAD FC 27 went down to a packed arena. All four quarterfinal matches in the 8-man openweight tournament ended in a knockout, Zhang Lipeng made an impressive promotional debut, and Zhao Zilong made quick work of “Minowaman”.
ROAD FC 27 in China
December 26th, 2015
Oriental Sports Center
Lightweight Match (155lb/-70kg)
Zhang Lipeng (China) vs Hong Young-Ki (Korea)
Winner: Zhang Lipeng via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) 1R,1:33
Light Heavyweight Match (205lb/-93kg)
Zhao Zilong (China) vs Ikuhisa Minowa “Minowaman” (Japan)
Winner: Zhao Zilong via TKO (Punches) 1R,1:24
Bantamweight Match (135lb/-61.5kg)
Zhao Zhikang (China) vs Choi Mu-Song (Korea)
Winner: Zhao Zhikang via Split Decision (2:1)
Lightweight Match (155lb/-70kg)
Nandin-Erdene (Mongolia) vs Bao Yincang (China)
Winner: Nandin-Erdene via Unanimous Decision (3:0)
Featherweight Match (145lb/-65.5kg)
He Nannan (China) vs Daisaku Tanaka (Japan)
Winner: He Nannan via TKO (Punches) 1R,1:52
Women’s Strawweight Match (115lb/-52kg)
Xiaonan Yan (China) vs Nam Ye-Hyun (Korea)
Winner: Xiaonan Yan via Unanimous Decision (3:0)
Featherweight Match (145lb/-65.5kg)
Choi Jong-Chan (Korea) vs Yibugele (China)
Winner: Choi Jong-Chan via Unanimous Decision (3:0)
*8-man Openweight Tournament Quarterfinals*
Siala “Mighty Mo” Siliga (USA) vs Choi Mu-Bae (Korea)
Winner: “Mighty Mo” via TKO (Punches) 1R,3:43
Choi Hong-Man (Korea) vs Luo Quanchao (China)
Winner: Choi Hong-Man via TKO (Retirement) 1R,3:14
Aorigele (China) vs Kim Jae-Hoon (Korea)
Winner: Aorigele via TKO (Punches) 1R,0:24
Myung Hyun-Man (Korea) vs Liang Lingyu (China)
Winner: Myung Hyun-Man via KO (Punch) 1R,0:13
ROAD FC Eliminates “10 Point Must” Scoring System, Announces “Unlimited Points System”
This new judging criteria is merit-based and will provide a more accurate account of a fighter’s performance than the out-dated “10 point must” system. It will reward exciting and aggressive fighters while penalizing those who repeatedly stall or avoid action. The “Unlimited Points System” will deliver the kind of non-stop, thrilling action for which fans are now clamoring.
In this system, points will be awarded for specific action and activity. One point will be given for a clear strike, takedown, near submission, full mont or back mount position, clear control on the ground, and aggression. Five points will be awarded for a knock down.
Penalties will be assessed by the referee. A yellow card for fouls will incur a five point deduction. A blue card worth a two point deduction will be introduced for the purpose of eliminating stalling and avoidance, standing and on the ground.
All points will be accumulated through the entire fight, not round by round, therefore a performance throughout the entire bout will determine the clear winner. The “Unlimited Points System” will be in operation starting at he next event, ROAD FC 027 in China on 26 December.
RIZIN NYE 2015 : ALL Fight Cards are set
Yesterday the last fight card was announced and finally ALL Fight Cards are set for RIZIN 2-days NYE event.
On the first day (29th Dec) the event sub-named “SARABA Fiesta” will be held. RIZIN FF says this will be a day which history of Japanese-MMA scene “to CLOSE” (SARABA means Good-Bye with strong saying). They will create the atmosphere with music and directions once used before (means “PRIDE-era”?) and this event will be a compilation of the past (PRIDE?) events.
On the next day (31st Dec) the event sub-named “IZA (Takeoff) Saltation” will be held. RIZIN FF says this will be a day which will “OPEN the DOOR for future” with special direction no one never seen before on past MMA history. New Japanese MMA history will start with saying “IZA (Let’s start from NOW!)” on the last day of 2015.
On 30th Dec. RIZIN will be held many MMA-related event named “Martial Arts EXPO” (I think it’s like a UFC Fan EXPO.) for free include amateur MMA fights (RIZIN FF amateur challenge 1st), Martial Arts MUSEUM (displaying real-once-used gloves and champion belts etc…) and the weigh-in for “IZA (Takeoff) Saltation” (It will start from 3PM).
ROAD FC Middleweight Champion Riki Fukuda faces Cha Jung-Hwan at ROAD FC 028
Riki Fukuda cut a clear path to the ROAD FC Middleweight Championship in 2014 and 2015. The consummate UFC veteran dispatched all comers to end up on a 4-fight win streak of finishes. Earning the championship belt meant earning a 6-figure paycheck as well, and fans can bet that Riki isn’t willing to relinquish either anytime soon. His grinding aggression will surely be turned up a notch as he meets an unlikely – and tricky – first challenger in Cha Jung-Hwan.
ONE Championship announces full calendar for 2016
One Championship has announced its entire 2016 schedule on Monday.
Starting on Jan. 23, with a fight card at the Changsa Stadium in China, the promotion will hold 14 events next year, including trips to new markets in Thailand, Vietnam and Hong Kong. Besides the 14 fight cards announced, the promotion will still put on 10 other shows in China, with dates and locations yet to be announced.
Check out the 2016 ONE Championship schedule below.
January 23: Changsa Stadium, Changsa, China
January 29: Stadium Negara, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
February 20: Istora Senayan, Jakarta, Indonesia
March 18: Thuwanna Indoor Stadium, Yangon, Myanmar
April 15: Malls of Asia Arena, Manila, Philippines
May 06: Singapore Indoor Stadium, Singapore
May 27: Impact Arena, Bangkok, Thailand
June 17: Pho Phu Stadium, Ho Chi Min City, Vietnam
July 01: Asia-World Expo, Hong Kong, China
August 05: Ntu Sports Centre, Taipei, Taiwan
September 02: Stadium Negara, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
October 22: Istora Senayan, Jakarta, Indonesia
November 11: Singapore Indoor Stadium, Singapore
December 02: Malls of Asia Arena, Manila, Philippines