Former UFC Fighter Justin Wren Puts Career on Hold to Answer Divine Call
WHEAT RIDGE, Colo. -- When Justin Wren says that God told him to take a break from fighting and go to one of Africa's most dangerous war-torn nations with three other Christian missionaries, he knows how that's likely to come off.
"I hope I don't sound like a religious dude," Wren says, flashing an embarrassed grin from deep within his bushy blonde beard. "That used to be like a cuss word to me."
That was before, back when Wren was not only a non-believer, but openly hostile to religion. If you'd told him a year and a half ago that he'd be putting his MMA career on hold to travel the earth with a small band of hardcore Christians, he'd have asked you what you were smoking, and whether you could spare any. He didn't even want to attend a church service, much less rearrange his life altogether.
Autograph signing raises $12,000 for Constantinides family memorial fund
The MMA community has come together in support of Dr. Alex Constantinides, but more can be done.
An autograph signing this past Saturday in Denver raised $12,083 for The Constantinides Family Fund, which arose in the wake of this past week's tragedy involving the beloved member of the MMA community, Constantinides' friend J.R. Gordon today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). The signing featured UFC vets Shane Carwin, Brendan Schaub, Duane Ludwig and Eliot Marshall.
Donations, however, can still be made to the fund, as well as to a charitable foundation that addresses the needs of orphaned children in China.
UFC Quick Quote: BJ Penn is the only guy in MMA who doesn't use TRT
"I think everyone is really of the same opinion as I am, if they want to admit it or not. Stuff like this is not easy to talk about. We're talking about friends and colleagues of mine. They look at me and they hear me say these things, and they're like, 'You know you're the only guy that doesn't do it, right?' And I'm like, I know. It's a catch-22 for me. I believe so strongly in fair play and all these things, and on the other side, it's people you know and people you look up to, legends of the sport. They've been involved with stuff like that. I guess I shouldn't be so outspoken because I have so many friends and colleagues and so many people I respect in this sport that have gotten involved with stuff like TRT and hormone replacement."
- BJ Penn
Tito Ortiz involved in car accident over the weekend, Rashad Evans fight still on
That's the bad news. The good news is that he's okay and the UFC 133 curse has not claimed another victim.
Over the weekend, Tito Ortiz, driving his coveted -- and ridiculously expensive -- Rolls Royce Phantom, was involved in a three-car collision in Costa Mesa, Calif., according to TMZ.com.
Thankfully, no one was injured; only the grill of that beautiful piece of machinery was damaged significantly. "The Huntington Beach Bad Boy" also said the cash to pay for repairs will come out of his own pocket.
Heading into Strikeforce Fight with Fedor, Dan Henderson Doesn’t Feel Outmatched or Small
Current Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Dan Henderson (27-8) heads into one of the biggest fights of his career when he meets former Pride heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko (31-3) at Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Henderson.
The former Olympian has spent much of his career between fighting at middleweight and light heavyweight, and has won the Pride welterweight (185-pound limit) and the Pride middleweight (205-pound limit) titles.
UFC veterans Sean McCorkle and Efrain Escudero win at Championship Fighting Alliance 2 on July 23
Championship Fighting Alliance (CFA) 2 took place last night (July 23, 2011) from the U.S. Century Bank Arena in Miami, Florida.
The 12-fight card featured a couple of Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) veterans in action, as Sean McCorkle headlined the show in his first appearance since his dismissal from the world's largest fight promotion earlier this year.
"Big Sexy" took on extremely late replacement Cameron Befort and dominated the superheavyweight contest, knocking Befort down before locking in a kimura and earning himself a rather easy first-round submission win.
Dana White, Frank Shamrock and Mike Swick Engage In Twitter War
Tonight people were either watching Strikeforce Challengers on Showtime or Legacy Fights on HDNet. The best fight however is taking place right now on Twitter between Dana White and Frank Shamrock. It all started with a simple tweet to Frank Shamrock where a fan asked him if there was a single fight that could bring him out of retirement. Shamrock's response kicked it off...
After Heartbreaking Tragedy, MMA Community Vows to Rally Around 'Dr. Alex'
In Colorado mixed martial arts circles, he's known simply as "Dr. Alex," a physician with a big love of the sport, and a big heart for the fighters who inhabit it. It's been a world he can't get enough of. At various times, he's been a cageside doctor, a judge, and a referee. And when that was not enough, Alex Constantinides, a man who spent five years in medical school, one year in internship, and two in residency, a man whose brain was his most important asset, decided to fight.
Why would he? Was it for fame, money or glory? Of course not. He fought so he could gain a better understanding of what the athletes were going through. He wanted to feel what they felt, experience what they experienced, so he could better care for them. He did it for a reason that some feel is slowly fading from the medical profession: empathy.
Inside the Numbers: Tito Ortiz Will Become the First to 25 UFC Fights
By agreeing to fight Rashad Evans at UFC 133 on August 6, Tito Ortiz is set to become the first fighter ever to participate in 25 UFC fights -- narrowly beating Matt Hughes to that milestone, as Hughes is scheduled to have his 25th UFC fight in September at UFC 135.
Ortiz is obviously on the down side of his career, and until his stunning upset of Ryan Bader at UFC 132 he was treated as something of a punchline. But no one can deny that he's among the great fighters in the history of the UFC.
We'll take a closer look at Ortiz's 24 previous UFC fights below.
Rich Franklin's days at middleweight are done forever
Not exactly breaking news ... more of a confirmation of what's long been thought to be the case.
Rich Franklin, despite his build and natural body type, has seen his last days in the middleweight division. For the remainder of his career, he will compete at 205-pounds, as he tells MMA Weekly:
Video in MMA Playground videos section
Ryan Bader: No More Calling Out Fighters
It seems Ryan "Darth" Bader (12-2) is done with calling out fighters in the future. After being dominated at UFC 126 by current Light Heavyweight champion Jon Jones, Bader decided to call out MMA legend Tito Ortiz. Against all odds, "The Huntington Beach Badboy" produced a stunnung upset and choked out Bader in the first round. That was a wake up call for Bader, who told ESPN.com:
"I lose three in a row, that's tough man. You see guys get cut for that. So yeah, I do feel that pressure.
After life-changing loss, reinvented Mike Ricci looking to extract a little revenge
In April 2010, Canadian lightweight prospect Mike Ricci (6-1) was on top of the world.
Then, following one thunderous right hand from Pat Curran, Ricci was lying flat on his back on a Bellator Fighting Championship mat, wondering exactly what happened.
Following a one-year layoff from competition, Ricci now knows exactly what happened: He got cocky. Things came too easy, too fast, as he quickly worked his way from an unknown to the international stage. Lesson learned, Ricci is now ready to start anew.
Gregor Gracie Returns at OneFC in Singapore to Face Wang Sai
OneFC is on a mission to become the largest mixed martial arts organization in all of Asia, and they are kicking things off with an event on Sept 3 with the goal of being available to over 500 million homes across Asia at their launch.
The first event will be held in the 12,000 seat Singapore Indoor Stadium, with several local and international fighters on the card.
Olympic medalist Yoel Romero eyes UFC Light Heavyweight title
Unless your name is Randy Couture, attempting to launch a mixed-martial-arts career in your mid-30s isn't generally a great idea.
Of course, when you're a chiseled, 5-foot-10 light heavyweight and former Olympic wrestling silver medalist, you get to call the shots.
And so it is for Cuban-born monster Yoel Romero (4-0), an undefeated prospect who, at 34 years old, has one singular goal: to wrap the UFC's 205-pound belt around his waist.
Nogueira: Sonnen Has No Principles Or Character
You can add Antonio Rogerio Nogueira to the Loooooong list of Brazilian fighters who are lining up for a shot at Middleweight motormouth Chael Sonnen. In the last couple of years, Sonnen has made a name for himself as a tormentor of Brazilian MMA, laying into the likes of Anderson Silva, Lyoto Machida and even Nogueira's big brother.
Now, speaking to Sherdog.com, Lil Nogs had voiced his own opinion on the controversial Republican:
“It sure would be a great fight with Chael Sonnen. He’s a guy everybody wants to beat. He’s not a good example for the sport. He talks too much and says a lot of nonsense."
Lyoto Machida: It Was My Fighters Heart Against My Professional Mind
Amid the scramble to find a replacement for an injured Phil Davis at UFC 133, UFC turned to former champion Lyoto Machida. It seemed set at first, with Dana White confident that Machida was stepping up. But it turned out that the only way Machida was accepting the short notice bout with Rashad Evans was if UFC opened up their ever fattening wallet.
After eventually finding Tito Ortiz to fight Evans in UFC 133 main event, UFC president Dana White let it be known that Machida was asking for "Anderson Silva money." Now, speaking to TATAME.com, Machida reveals his take on the situation:
“UFC invited me for a bout with three weeks in advance and I said I wouldn’t take it since the beginning. I wasn’t prepared for it, it’d be against my own principles of professionalism, against what my family and team believe, and didn’t want me to fight." Said former Light Heavyweight champion Machida.
Heavyweight Brett Rogers proclaims innocence following June incident
Former Strikeforce heavyweight Brett Rogers (11-3) claims he is innocent of all charges stemming from a June 28 arrest in Apple Valley, Minn.
Rogers' legal counsel today released a statement professing the fighter's belief he is not guilty of the three felonies and one gross misdemeanor filed against him following an alleged altercation with his wife.
UFC 137: Cheick Kongo vs Matt Mitrione fight booked for Oct. 29 in Las Vegas
The hits, they keep on coming.
Before their most recent bookings at UFC on Versus 4, both Cheick Kongo and Matt Mitrione agreed it would be a gay old time if they got to fight one another.
ESPN brings word that they have been booked to throw hands at the upcoming UFC 137: "St. Pierre vs. Diaz" event on Oct. 29, 2011, at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.