The Return of The Old School
Recently an influx of fighter vs. grappler bouts has made MMA fans feel like it's 1998 all over again. Another such example of this comes Sunday at DREAM 4, when kickboxer Melvin Manhoef, a fighter with all but one of his career wins by KO, faces feared grappler Kazushi Sakuraba, who has won 71% of his fights by submission.
JAKKS Pacific® Secures Ultimate Master Toy License For Ultimate Fighting Championship®
MALIBU, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The world leader in fighting action figure toys, JAKKS Pacific, Inc. (Nasdaq:JAKK), announced today that it has signed an exclusive, four year worldwide Master Toy license agreement with the Ultimate Fighting Championship® (UFC®) organization, with a planned product launch expected to commence in 2009.
The new UFC product line from JAKKSTM will be collector-focused, and the license covers UFC legend Chuck "The Iceman" Liddell, Brock Lesnar, Antonio "Minotauro" Nogueira, Michael "The Count" Bisping and UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson "The Spider" Silva, among others. The license also includes the famed UFC Octagon™, and role-play items based on the UFC brand and its classic and current roster of star fighters.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship organization is the world's leading professional mixed martial arts group, regulated by the most prestigious sports regulatory bodies in the United States. UFC live pay-per-view events take place at preeminent destinations including MGM Grand®, MEN Arena, Mandalay Bay® and O2 Arena, and they consistently draw sell-out crowds with record-breaking gates. Presenting more than twelve pay-per-view events per year, the UFC stands as the largest pay-per-view content provider in the country.
The UFC also dominates television with its reality series, The Ultimate Fighter®, now heading into its eighth season. The Ultimate Fighter has reigned supreme for years in the coveted 18-34 male ratings demographic, and it regularly enjoys higher ratings than traditional franchise sports such as the NBA®, NHL® and NASCAR®, as well as NCAA® football and basketball. In partnership with Spike TV® cable network, the UFC also presents ten live UFC® Fight Night™ events and 26 taped programs of the popular program UFC® Unleashed™.
“The UFC is a perfect match for JAKKS, given our extensive expertise in developing and marketing collector driven sports action figures,” said Stephen Berman, President and COO, JAKKS Pacific. “UFC’s enormous and growing popularity amongst adults, coupled with the extensive roster of physically powerful star fighters, gives JAKKS a substantial base to work with, and should be a powerhouse combination for the line. Our objective is to give collectors an authentic UFC experience.”
“We are thrilled to have JAKKS on board as our first official UFC action figure partner,” said Dana White, UFC President. “The demand for UFC is tremendous, and through this relationship with JAKKS, we can present authentic UFC products and have them available to our loyal UFC fans all around the world.”
This is gonna hurt: UFC serves Tito Ortiz with cease and desist for new book
The long arm of Zuffa law apparently extends to estranged former champions who write books and wear their belts on the covers.
Tito Ortiz — who just satisfied the final fight on his contract with the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) — has been served with a cease and desist because his recently released autobiography, “This is Gonna Hurt,” violates the intellectual property rights of the mixed martial arts promotion, according to MMAPayout.com.
“The Huntington Beach Bad Boy,” according to the report, needed to get the stamp of approval from the UFC to sport the belt on the cover of the book. And he apparently did not get the green light or overlooked the clause in his contract.
Donald Trump to Announce Andrei Arlovski at Press Conference Tomorrow
This is something that I never thought I’d type:
Donald Trump — who has forged a partnership with Affliction MMA — will tomorrow announce the acquisition of former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski at a noon press conference at Trump Tower in New York, N.Y., according to MMARated.com.
In addition, “The Pitbull” will take on Ben Rothwell (as expected) during the debut pay-per-view (PPV) event for the promotion at the at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif., on July 19.
Trump is also expected to reveal more details on his partnership with Affliction MMA, which according to the report, he owns a “significant amount” of the upstart promotion.
This is about to get real interesting … as if it isn’t already. Stay tuned. In the meantime, to get some more background on Trump’s involvement with mixed martial arts click here.
Weedman submits Lima to claim AFL welterweight title
ATLANTA - Brent Weedman stunned Douglas Lima with a second-round submission to claim the welterweight title in the main event of the American Fight League's Bulletproof show Friday night at Philips Arena in Atlanta.
As MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) reported Friday, the AFL signed former World Wrestling Entertainment star Bobby Lashley, who was introduced during the show. The deal is a two-fight agreement with an option for a third. The league also inked standout Tara LaRosa (15-1) to head up a new women's division.
Both Lashley and LaRosa are scheduled to be part of the AFL's next event – a pay-per-view show in October. Opponents have yet to be secured for either fighter.
On a crisp November morning in Culver City, Calif., Gina Carano pulled up in front of Sony Pictures Studios. It was the final day of cuts for "American Gladiators," the popular spandex-laden, physical-challenge driven TV series that thrived on Saturday night television from 1989-1996.
Carano hadn't been aware of the show when news leaked of the latest guilty pleasure revival. She hadn't waited in the lines of thousands that churned out as many pull-ups as they could muster at rapid-fire pace or catapulted their bodies from end-to-end of a gymnasium in the hopes of catching the right producer's eye.
Instead, NBC producers had seen Carano -- who had fought two of her five career MMA bouts under the newly-formed EliteXC banner that year on Showtime -- and wanted her. She had turned down audition after audition, until her coach of four months, six-time UFC champion Randy Couture, encouraged her to head down to Los Angeles and at least give it a try.
Sitting outside the studio, looking up at the massive white building in front of her, Carano made a decision. She started her car, pulled out of the parking lot, and kept driving until she reached a friend's house in San Diego.
"I didn't want it to take away from who I am. I wanted to live up to my responsibilities of being a well-known female MMA fighter," says Carano. "I wanted to be good for the sport."
Carano's name, along with her beautiful face and a physique more suited for modeling then fighting, had become a regular fixture of EliteXC advertisements played in diligent rotation on Showtime. Carano's gutsy performance with fellow femme Julie Kedzie for EliteXC "Destiny" that previous February has not only helped launch the fledgling promotion, it had cemented at least a temporary home for female fighters.
The dimple-cheeked 26-year-old was crowned "The Women's Face of MMA," and with good reason. EliteXC executives saw that same intangible quality that fueled NBC producers to go back to the raven-haired beauty one last time and convince her to finally join the "American Gladiators" cast the night before shooting was scheduled to begin. This time, Carano hesitantly agreed.
The Hotbed Is Hot Again-ASU Reinstates Wrestling Program
Less than 2 weeks ago, it was announced that Arizona State University was dropping it's wrestling program for financial reasons. The program was considered an MMA hotbed because of the talent it's produced. But now it's back-the program has been reinstated because the money to save the program was raised by the program's supporters-in only 10 days.
Brian Stann on Howard Stern show
Brian Stann was on Howard Stern today. this is a summary from one of the biggest Stern fan sites out there.
Howard said that they had one of the fighters, Brian Stann, from the World Extreme Cage Fighting in to promote some upcoming fights. Howard spent a minute talking to that guy about his time served in Iraq as a Marine and things like that. Howard asked him about the mixed martial arts stuff that he does. He asked Brian what he thinks of the war over there. Brian said that he thinks that they should finish the war now that they're already over there.
Howard asked Brian if he thinks they should have gone over there to begin with. Brian gave his thoughts on all of that. Gary said that Danielle hadn't taken her eyes off of him the whole time. Brian spent a few minutes talking to Brian about the war, the Marines and the cage fighting stuff.
Brian claimed that he fought 15 gang members at the same time once. Howard that a bunch of the women in the room probably just orgasmed hearing that. Howard told Brian that he's a ''real man'' unlike Brian in the studio.
Howard asked Brian about the kind of guns he was using over there in Iraq. He also figured that he wasn't afraid of black people or anyone like that. He asked Brian about his next fight which is coming up in August on the Versus network.
Brian's wife is a former cheerleader. Brian said that he had to be persistent with his wife to pick her up. She said no to him at first when he tried to ask her out.
Howard said that he felt sorry for Brian if he didn't get to kill anyone over in Iraq. Brian gestured that he had killed some people so Howard was wrong about that.
Artie talked about how he feels kind of like a pussy for going over to Iraq to just do the comedy show over there. Brian told Artie that he should be fine over there when he goes. Howard asked Brian where you jerk off when you're over there. Brian said that you have to find a port-a-John or something to do it in. Brian said that when he was out there he was living in abandoned houses and stuff and it was pretty dirty.
Howard read some notes about Brian and how they were ambushed when they were going over a bridge. Brian told a story about a suicide bomber attacking his group and how he thought that he had lost all of the guys. they ended up having some wounded but no one died so they really lucked out with that.
Howard had Brian present the check to the winner of the contest. Brian told Tiffany that he hopes that she can put the money to good use and presented the 5 grand to her. Tiffany said she's going to use that money for a driving school.
Matt Lindland cruises to Republican primary victory
MMA veteran and aspiring politician Matt Lindland won Tuesday's Republican primary for the Oregon House of Representatives in the 52nd district -- by 14 percentage points.
According to today's report from KATU.com, Lindland secured 2,410 votes (57 percent); opponent Phyllis Thiemann recorded just 1,803 votes (43 percent).
Chuck Liddell and Anderson Silva Scheduled To Appear At Guys Choice Awards
The following is a press release from Spike TV:
New York, NY, May 20, 2008 - Spike TV will once again gather many of the biggest names in music, entertainment and sports that guys love most for the second annual “Guys Choice.” From Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover girl Marissa Miller to “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of Crystal Skull” star Harrison Ford, the night will be a homage to the best in “guydom.” Scheduled to tape Friday, May 30 at the Sony Studios in Culver City, CA, “Guys Choice” premieres Sunday, June 22 (10:00 PM-Midnight, ET/PT).
Scheduled appearances include: Selma Blair, Steve Carell, David Duchovny, Harrison Ford, Brendan Fraser, E!’s “The Girls Next Door,” Summer Glau, Meagan Good, Chad Johnson, Kim Kardashian, Chuck Liddell, Linkin Park, Seth MacFarlane, Jenny McCarthy, Eva Mendes, Marisa Miller, Anderson Silva, Nikki Sixx, Slash, Tila Tequila, Kat Von D and many more to be announced.
Spike TV will pay special tribute to an American icon; Playboy editor-in-chief and chief creative officer, Hugh Hefner. As Playboy marks its 55th anniversary in December, “Guys Choice” will honor Hefner with the first-ever Alpha Male award for his pioneering vision and ground-breaking achievements that forever changed the face of entertainment for men. The night will also offer other discretionary honors to be announced shortly.
Captain America to invade Canada: Xtreme Couture set to open gym in Toronto
Xtreme Couture — the mixed martial arts (MMA) training facilities that are affiliated with none other than Randy Couture — is breaking ground in Canada with the opening of a 33,000 sq. ft. facility in Toronto’s west end.
The grand opening is scheduled for May 31.
The state of the art facility is loaded with a 14,000 sq. ft. health club along with a 19, 000 sq. ft. MMA training facility that comes complete with an Octagon and ring. The instructors who are on the roster so far include accomplished fighters such as Mark Bocek, Chris Horodecki and Mark Hominick.
The club will open with a bang as Randy Couture will be on hand on the Saturday for an autograph signing and meet and greet with the fans during the grand opening party. The following day, Randy will host a two-hour seminar from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
With the explosion of MMA in Canada, Xtreme Couture is seemingly leading the way with this new facility.
Space is limited for the seminar and the gym will be offering promotional membership fees during the grand opening. For more information please click