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:
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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.
UFC Welterweight Chris Lytle Eyeing Potential Political Bid in 2012
Chris Lytle has had a lot of experience balancing his dueling careers as a pro fighter and a full-time firefighter. Now he's considering adding a third to the list after forming an exploratory committee to examine a political run for the Indiana Statehouse in 2012.
The 36 year-old Lytle told MMA Fighting on Thursday that he's been discussing the move for the last few months and finally filed the papers to form the exploratory committee in order to begin preliminary fundraising, as well as to "see what people think about it."
Dana White: Brock Lesnar's recovery from surgery has been 'incredible'
Brock Lesnar is a physical freak of nature in every sense of the phrase.
The former UFC heavyweight champion was initially stricken with an illness known as diverticulitis, an intestinal disease, back in 2009. He described the painful stomach sensation as "a shotgun blast to the stomach, and then someone poured some salt and Tabasco and stirred it all up with a nasty pitchfork."
Reagan Penn set to make his mma debut
Reagan Penn, younger brother of former UFC champion BJ Penn, is expected to make his mixed martial arts debut at the upcoming ProElite event booked for Aug. 27 at the Blaisdell Arena in Honolulu, Hawaii. An opponent has yet to be named.
Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission Lifts Nate Marquardt's Suspension
The Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission lifted the former UFC fighter's suspension at noon ET on Wednesday because, according to Executive Director Greg Sirb, "he met all our medical requirements."
Sirb refused to go into detail as to what Marquardt had to do to meet the commission's requirements in order to get his suspension lifted.
MMA Junkie first reported the news earlier in the day.
Lombard Pleads for Marquardt Matchup.
Bellator middleweight champion Hector Lombard has wasted little time in requesting a fight against Nate Marquardt.
The UFC released Marquardt, a former title challenger, after he was not cleared to fight at UFC Live 4 on June 26 due to elevated testosterone levels. Bellator is reportedly interested in signing him.
UFC title hopeful Gray Maynard cleared for training, UFC 136 return possible
Gray Maynard can now resume his quest for gold.
The UFC lightweight contender today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that his doctor has given him the green light to resume training.
"I've been cleared," said Maynard (10-0-1 MMA, 8-0-1 UFC), who mentioned October's UFC 136 event as a possible return date.
The Las Vegas-based lightweight injured his knee in preparation for a highly anticipated rematch with lightweight champ Frankie Edgar (13-1-1 MMA, 8-1-1 UFC) at UFC 130. The injury came to light after Edgar withdrew from the bout with a back injury, which delayed the meeting until further notice.
For the record.... THANK GOD
Dan Henderson Hopes to Defend Strikeforce Belt, Eventually Meet UFC Champion
Dan Henderson has a knack for big performances at contract time: In 2007, he knocked out Wanderlei Silva at Pride 33, becoming a two-division champion and positioning himself to get a lucrative deal when the UFC purchased Pride. Two years ago, he knocked out Michael Bisping at UFC 100, scoring the biggest highlight on the UFC's biggest stage and positioning himself to get a lucrative deal when Strikeforce decided to bid for his services.
And now Henderson is preparing to fight Fedor Emelianenko in the final fight of his Strikeforce contract -- a fight that could position Henderson to negotiate a new deal with Strikeforce's new parent company Zuffa, owners of the UFC. But while a win over Emelianenko could launch Henderson directly into a UFC pay-per-view main event, Henderson says his preference is to stick with Strikeforce.