Warren withdraws from Dream 16
One of the top fights slated for Dream 16 on Sept. 25 in Nagoya, Japan, was a featherweight matchup pitting the world-ranked Michihiro Omigawa against newly crowned Bellator Fighting Championships featherweight titleholder Joe Warren.
However, during an appearance on the Sherdog Radio Network’s Savage Dog Show on Friday, Warren said he will not face Omigawa at the event.
DREAM.16 adds Omigawa vs. Escovedo, Takaya vs. Beebe, Ishida vs. Nishiura
Three new bouts have been added to the upcoming DREAM.16 card, officials today announced.
The matchups include Hiroyuki Takaya (13-8-1 MMA, 4-1 DREAM) vs. Chase Beebe (13-5-1 MMA, 0-2 DREAM), Michihiro Omigawa (11-8-1 MMA, 2-0 DREAM) vs. Cole Escovedo (16-5 MMA, 1-0 DREAM), and Mitsuhiro Ishida (19-6-1 MMA, 3-1 DREAM) vs. Akiyo "Wicky" Nishiura (11-5-1 MMA, 1-1 DREAM).
Omigawa initially was slated to fight newly crowned Bellator featherweight champ Joe Warren but instead fights for former WEC title-holder Escovedo.
DREAM.16 takes place Sept. 25 at Nippon Gaishi Hall in Nagoya, Japan. The event airs on HDNet in North America.
Shinya Aoki vs. Marcus Aurelio among three contests added to DREAM.16
With just about three weeks until DREAM.16, the Japanese-based organization has started to reveal a few details about the fight card.
While a light heavyweight title fight between mini-grand-prix finalists Gegard Mousasi and Tatsuya Mizuno was already assured, three additional contests were announced overnight.
The new contests include Shinya Aoki vs. Marcus Aurelio, "Lion" Takeshi Inoue vs. Kazuyuki Miyata and Hideo Tokoro vs. Joachim Hansen.
DREAM.16 takes place on Sept. 25 at Nippon Gaishi Hall in Nagoya, Japan, and airs in North America on HDNet.
Aoki (24-5 MMA, 8-2 DREAM), the DREAM lightweight champion, fights for the first time since a July submission win over Tatsuya Kawajiri. "Tobikan Judan" suffered a high-profile loss to Gilbert Melendez in April, but he still stands at 4-1 in his past five contests.
His opponent, Aurelio (20-8 MMA, 0-0 DREAM), is probably best known for choking out then-PRIDE champ Takanori Gomi in a non-title affair in 2006. "Maximus" also fought six times under the UFC banner and now makes his DREAM debut.
DREAM Rep On FEG Future: We Need Investment Money, That's The Bottom Line
PUJI Capitol is conducting an internal review of Fighting and Entertainment Group's (FEG) assets and liabilities in advance of a push to attract investors to the struggling fight promotion. "The actions they're taking are similar to an audit," FEG's U.S. representative, Mike Kogan, said on Monday. Kogan said the Japanese investment bank hopes to raise $230 million for FEG, which operates MMA's DREAM promotion and the K-1 kickboxing organization, over the next five years. But with the company's current financial condition, that timeline may need to be shortened. More uncertainty arose this past week with reports that FEG had canceled DREAM.17, an event planned for Oct. 25 in South Korea. Kogan, though, said that the event was taken off the table earlier this year when DREAM.14, originally scheduled for April 24 in Seoul, was scratched due to the absence of a television broadcast deal in the country. Only 2 DREAM events are scheduled the rest of the year. But Kogan admitted FEG's future is grim if the Japanese investment bank does not make headway by the beginning of next year.
3 Fights Announced For DREAM 16
Jason Miller isn't getting his hopef-for grudge match with Nick Diaz yet, so he'll have to settle for a legend in his next fight. Miller will return to Japan to face Kazushi Sakuraba in one of 3 fights announced today for DREAM 16. Also announced are Joe Warren vs. Michihiro Omigawa and Gegard Mousasi vs. Tatsuya Mizuno for the inaugural DREAM Light Heavyweight Championship.
DREAM FW Champion Bibiano Fernandes Still Hasn't Been Paid For DREAM 13, Turns Down September Title Defense
Apparently DREAM has become the Michael Lohan of the MMA world. According to TATAME, five months after he won the DREAM featherweight tournament, Bibiano Fernandes hasn't been paid his contracted fight purse. Unlike the Impact FC fighters who haven't been paid for their July fights by the Australian promotion, Fernandes has something over the Japanese promotion he is contracted to for one more bout: his belt. The report says that Fernandes has turned down a title defense on the September 25 DREAM 16 card and maintains that he won't fight for the organization until he receives his check for his win over Joachim Hansen at DREAM 13 back in March.
Gary Goodridge Says He Still Hasn't Been Paid for New Year's Eve Bout in Japan
It's a little more than eight months since MMA veteran Gary Goodridge fought Gegard Mousasi at FEG's Dynamite!! 2009 New Year's Eve show in Japan. Eight months, and still he hasn't seen a single penny of the money he's owed for that bout, Goodridge told MMA Fighting earlier Wednesday.
"I'm pissed off. I'm fed up. I want my money," said the 44-year-old Goodridge. "Of course, you're like any other fighter at first, you stay quiet. You think, I stake my reputation and my whole career with these people. Of course they're gonna pay. Of course they're gonna pay, since my whole livelihood came from them in the last 13 years. Now it's eight months and it's quite obvious I'm not getting paid. So I'm going to open my mouth now."
DREAM 16 Set For 9/25 In Japan
As expected the Japanese-based DREAM organization returns Sept. 25 for DREAM.16. The event takes place at Nippon Gaishi Hall in Nagoya, Japan, and airs in North America on HDNet. No fighters have been announced for the card, but Shinya Aoki & Caol Uno are expected to be on the card. Additionally, mini-grand-prix finalists Tatsuya Mizuno and Gegard Mousasi are expected to fight for the first-ever DREAM light-heavyweight belt. Additionally, a DREAM.16 poster shows potential fighters including Ikuhisa Minowa, Hideo Tokoro, Norifumi "Kid" Yamamoto and Kazushi Sakuraba. Aoki is expected to headline the show and could face Tatsuya Kawajiri.
DREAM Owners Change Business Model, Declare War With UFC
K-1 President Sadaharu Tanikawa leads the charge at today's press conference announcing the financial partnership between Fighting and Entertainment Group (FEG) and Shanghai-based investment bank PUJI Capital. FEG holds DREAM and K-1 under its umbrella and expects great things from a new business model that focuses on a global expansion. And to make this declaration of war sound slightly more ridiculous, they're not just targeting UFC but also...WWE? "This is a declaration of war against the WWE and UFC. From Asia, we will take the world. Mr. Ishii is completely supporting us. We won't stand a chance in the American market so we will spread to the rest of the world. When K-1 and PRIDE were competing against each other, 80-percent of the martial arts market was in Japan. It is now the opposite and Japan is only 20-percent. We were worried that Japan would be left behind if we let this continue, it is unacceptable. We needed to change our business model. We've let Dana White get a lead on us. Before (Shinya) Aoki beats (Gilbert) Melendez, we must win as promoters."
Aoki Wants Melendez Rematch At DREAM 16, SF Says Not Yet
After defeating Tatsuya Kawajiri via submission at DREAM 15 yesterday, Shinya Aoki announced that he would be returning at DREAM.16 and that he wants a rematch with Strikeforce Lightweight Champion Gilbert Melendez. But Strikeforce's Mike Afromowitz says not so fast: The rematch, which likely would be for one or both of the promotions' titles, has not been made yet and may not be-Melendez is out of action due to a hand injury.
Overeem & DREAM 15: No Arlovski, No Title, No "Demolition Man"
That's Alistair Overeem's explanation as to why he's not fighting on DREAM 15 despite rumors he was facing Ricco Rodriguez-he was originally offered Andrei Arlovski to crown the first DREAM Heavyweight Champion. Then things changed. "I knew Dream wanted me on the show, but I didn't want to go back in training preparation. Then, they offered me a fight against Andrei Arlovski for the Dream heavyweight title. As I have said on occasions, fighting for a belt means something more, and I wanted that Dream title so much that so as a result, I agreed to lay off my media and holiday plans, and went back to training. During my training I found out that Andrei Arlovski was not going to be my opponent, and they changed opponents numerous times. I've heard names like Tim Sylvia and Minowa. At one point, I received notice that they had found a opponent but that the Dream heavyweight title was not on the line anymore. With all the changes and the title fight no longer a possibility, I simply had to turn down the opportunity. I want to make it very clear that I never verbally agreed to fight (Ricco Rodriguez) and I never signed a contract with Dream to fight him. I feel very sorry for (the Rodriguez camp) if they still think the fight is on, and I apologize to my fans that have bought a ticket to see me compete. I hope this statement has shed some light on the unfortunate situation."
Four Fights Added to DREAM.15. More Trouble at Featherweight
Only one week prior to DREAM.15 we are finally starting to get some more matches, but it looks like FEG are having troubles. Yoshida Dojo fighters Kazuhiro Nakamura and Michihiro Omigawa have officially made the move to DREAM where they will face Karl "Psycho" Amousso and Young Sam Jung respectively. You can be forgiven for not recognizing the name Young Sam Jung. One of Japan's best at featherweight will be facing an 0-2 fighter. Both losses come by first round KO.
Mitsuhiro Ishida will be making the move down to "featherweight" to meet Daiki "DJ.taiki" Hata and the light-heavyweight title eliminator match between Gegard Mousasi vs. Jake O'Brien was made official.
Alistair Overeem vs. Ricco Rodriguez On Tap For DREAM 15
Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem's next title defense is currently uncertain, but his next opponent isn't. Overeem has verbally agreed to face Ricco Rodriguez at DREAM 15 on July 10. Paperwork pending, a formal announcement should soon follow. In related news, as a result of this Rodriguez is now likely off Impact FC 2 on July 18, where he was to have faced Jeff Monson.
Gegard Mousasi vs. Jake O'Brien completes DREAM.15 light-heavyweight grand prix
Gegard Mousasi (28-3-1 MMA, 6-0 DREAM) and Jake O'Brien (13-3 MMA, 0-0 DREAM) have verbally agreed to meet at DREAM.15 in the promotion's scaled-down light-heavyweight grand prix.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) confirmed the fight Monday morning from sources close to the event, who said that while contracts have not been signed, the bout is expected to be finalized shortly.
DREAM.15 takes place July 10 at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan, and features the opening round of the four-man tournament.
The bout is Mousasi's first since a disappointing showing at April's "Strikeforce: Nashville" event, in which he relinquished his belt to Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal, who outwrestled him for five rounds en route to a unanimous-decision victory.
In 2008, the Dutch-Armenian fighter bested four fighters to win DREAM's middleweight grand prix, though he later vacated the belt when he decided to jump to light heavyweight. He defeated Mark Hunt in the opening round of the Japanese promotion's open-weight "Super Hulk" tournament before making the move to Strikeforce.
The 24-year-old Mousasi is currently training in Holland with Team Golden Glory and is expected to meet this week with M-1 Global executive Vadim Finkelstein to discuss the possibility of a European marketing deal.
O'Brien, meanwhile, is three months removed from a unanimous-decision victory over Toni Valtonen at Fight Festival 27 in Finland, which was his second consecutive victory since a submission loss to Jon Jones at UFC 100 brought his release from the promotion.
Cavalcante vs. Kikuno, Manhoef vs. Mizuno Booked for DREAM.15
DREAM Executive Producer Keiichi Sasahara today unveiled to more fights for DREAM.15, the card of "Fated Rivals". Along with the highly anticipated Shinya Aoki vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri title match, former top lightweight Gesias "JZ" Cavalcante will look to get back on track against a rising star in Katsunori Kikuno and Melvin Manhoef will return to the ring against a Tatsuya Mizuno as part of DREAM's four man light-heavyweight tournament.
Also participating in the tournament will be former Strikeforce Light-Heavyweight Champion Gegard Mousasi although an opponent has not yet been named.
First Hands On Look At EA MMA
A lot of competitors can talk a good game, but the true test of a fighter is how he performs in the ring. We have heard a lot about EA Sports MMA, from the developer’s goals when crafting the game to detailed descriptions about the controls, but it wasn’t until yesterday at the EA3 event that we were able to take the Xbox 360 controller and step into the ring. Read on for our impressions of how the controls feel, as well as more details on how submissions are handled (hint: frantic button mashers need not apply).
Ikuhisa Minowa Faces Imani Lee At DREAM 14
Uh...yeah, who? In perhaps the spirit of his constantly getting freak show-type matchups, DREAM announced today that Super Hulk GP Champion Ikuhisa MInowa will face Imani Lee at DREAM 14 later this month. Lee, a former sparring partner of boxer turned MMA fighter James Toney, recently returned to active competition and dropped a first-round submission loss to Geovanni Sarran in April and has a 1-2 career record. At 325 pounds, Lee will probably have around a 130 pound weight advantage over Minowa, who most recently beat 315-pounder Jimmy Ambriz in March. There were rumors that Minowa could've faced Kevin "Kimbo Slice" Ferguson, but a Slice rep called those just that: Internet Rumors.
DREAM Reschedules LHWGP For DREAM 15
The light heavyweight grand prix that was cancelled for Dream 14 has been scheduled as a smaller four-man field at Dream 15 on July 10, FEG president Sadaharu Tanikawa and Dream event producer Keiichi Sasahara announced Thursday at a news conference. The winners of the two tournament bouts at Dream 15 will face each other in September to determine Dream’s light heavyweight champion. Tanikawa and Sasahara also expressed hope for the Dream champion to face the Strikeforce champion in February 2011. No GP participants were confirmed but Gegard Mousasi is a likely entry. Also announced was that Dream 15 will be in the ring and not the cage.