Sengoku 5 Fights Added, UFC Vet & Japanese Wrestler Featured
World Victory Road yesterday announced 3 more fights for its Sengoku 5 card on September 23, highlighted by UFC veteran Kazuhiro Nakamura making his Middleweight debut and Japanese pro wrestler Takashi Sugiura returning to MMA after a 2-year absence to face the debuting Alexandre Ribeiro in a superfight.
TKO SIGNS NEW TV DEAL, BEGINS AIRING FRIDAY
TKO Championship Fighting on Wednesday announced the signing of a television deal with the TQS television network in Canada.
The sport of mixed martial arts will be seen on network television in Quebec for the very first time beginning Sept. 5. TQS will air “TKO, Friday Night Knockouts” every Friday night at 9pm.
“For over eight years I have been working very hard to make the public understand and appreciate our sport and our athletes,” explained an elated Stephane Patry, president and founder of TKO Championship Fighting.
“When we first started in 2000, our events were held in small venues and TKO was available on DVD and on specialty sport channels only. In 2006, TKO Championship Fighting found a new home at the Bell Centre and our fans began to multiply. Now, thanks to this partnership with the Rémillard brothers and the team at TQS, I am confident that our sport will reach a whole new level of popularity which is exactly what the sport and our athletes deserve.”
AFFLICTION CLEARS ROADBLOCKS, READY FOR MORE
By now, Affliction vice president Tom Atencio has become used to swimming upstream against the doubters of his company. Since he launched Affliction Entertainment as the new fight promotion on the block in early 2008, he has faced naysayers at every turn, despite assembling one of the most talent-packed MMA cards in the sport’s recent history with “Affliction: Banned” this July.
None have been more vocal than UFC president Dana White. Since Affliction’s emergence, his not-so-affectionate moniker for the company, “the t-shirt guys,” has often been followed by a prediction of the company’s approaching demise. In a teleconference on Tuesday announcing Randy Couture’s return to the UFC, he was true to form.
“In this economy right now, losing money is a really bad thing,” White said. “There’s nobody out there looking to fund anything, nobody’s spending any money, nobody’s investing in anything. When you’re losing the kind of money that these guys are losing, you’ve gotta sell a lot of t-shirts to get back that money.”
'Couture Vs Fedor' When Affliction Folds
Randy Couture will remain in the UFC whether he wins or loses his title fight with Brock Lesnar in November.
Dana White told media during a conference call that the heavyweight champion would not be walking away after one fight, regardless of its outcome.
Couture has signed a new three-fight deal while has delivered a severe blow to his hopes of eventually fighting Fedor Emelianenko.
Couture has "made it very clear he wants Fedor," said White. "We will do all in our power to make that fight, but we are not going to mess with other people's contracts."
"Fedor is under contract to another promotion," he explained, referring to the Russian heavyweight's agreement with Affliction that is rumoured to contain a North America no-compete clause.
"If we can work something out, great. If not, we will get him when Affliction folds," he said.
Xtreme Fighting Championships drawing record-setting crowds in Florida
The UFC has been there. EliteXC also has paid a visit.
However, neither promotion is the answer to this question: which organization has drawn the largest mixed martial arts crowd in Florida?
That distinction resides with Xtreme Fighting Championships. If XFC doesn't exactly ring a bell, you're not alone.
"I've never heard of them, and we have 52 fighters under contract and another 45 on our prospect list," said Ken Pavia, one of the sport's top agents and an MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) contributor.
Pavia lives and breathes MMA, and the upstart organization isn't even on his radar, but, amazingly, Tampa-based XFC has staged four shows in the Sunshine State, and each has produced a bigger live gate than any other promotion in the state's history.
Affliction to Air Prelim Fights on HDNet
From an HDNet press release:
HDNet Fights today announced a long-term partnership with Affliction Entertainment to air live MMA events exclusively in North America on HDNet. These live events, featuring the top Mixed Martial Arts fighters from around the world, will be broadcast on HDNet as a lead-in to Affliction's Pay Per View Events.
"This is the beginning of a long-term partnership with Affliction that encompasses live MMA, co-marketing and top fighters for the top weekly show in MMA - Inside MMA on HDNet," said Andrew Simon, CEO of HDNet Fights. "Affliction has quickly become one of the top organizations in MMA which means it is a must have for HDNet."
As part of the agreement, HDNet will feature the first ninety minutes of live bouts that are part of each Affliction MMA event. Affliction joins the deep HDNet Fights lineup, which already features more LIVE events than any other network on television today.
MFC adds featherweight class, drops HW
EDMONTON -- The MFC is shifting focus away from the one weight class and into a new one. The Edmonton-based organization announced this week the addition of a featherweight division and the retirement of its heavyweight belt.
"There is such an impressive field of 145ers out there that we felt it was very important to add this weight class and this group of exciting fighters," MFC owner Mark Pavelich said in a news release.
The MFC expects to announce the signing of several featherweights in the very near future and could even have its first meaningful 145-pound bout at MFC 19: Long Time Coming, which takes place on Nov. 28. Pavelich hopes to develop a stable of strong prospects and have its featherweight championship on the line by mid-2009.
Cooper-Speight Finalizes Affliction II Card
A welterweight bout between IFL veteran Brett Cooper and undefeated prospect Patrick Speight will reportedly finalize Affliction’s “Day of Reckoning” card, which will take place on October 11th at the Thomas & Mack Center on the campus of UNLV according to a report by MMA News.
Affliction VP Tom Atencio was said to have confirmed Cooper vs. Speight as the final bout to be signed for the event yesterday. Both fighters were originally scheduled to be part of Affliction’s “Banned” show on July 19 but were removed from the card due to unknown reasons.
Cooper last competed in June, knocking out Dusty Arden in the first round at a PureCombat show in California. He scored consecutive TKO wins over UFC veterans Jason Von Flue and Rory Markham in December of last year. Cooper’s training partners Jason High and Chase Gormley will also be on this card.
The complete card for the event is as follows:
Andrei Arlovski vs. Josh Barnett
Vladimir Matyushenko vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
Pedro Rizzo vs. Ben Rothwell
Chris Horodecki vs. Dan Lauzon
Matt Lindland vs. Trevor Prangley
Jay Hieron vs. Drew Fickett
Roy Nelson vs. Paul Buentello
Mike Pyle vs. Jason High
Jay White vs. Chase Gormley
Antonio Duerte vs. Albert Rios
Brett Cooper vs. Patrick Speight
AFL's Emily Thompson on fast track to MMA success
In the world of MMA, things aren't supposed to come this easy.
But as undefeated 23-year-old prospect Emily Thompson (3-0) told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com), her path to an American Fight League contract began on a whim.
"Originally, I'm from Anchorage, Alaska," Thompson explained. "They would put shows on there monthly. It always was exciting for me to go and watch. I was always like, 'Man, if they had this for girls I would totally sign up. Where do I sign? Let's get this going.'
"At one of the intermissions, actually, during one of those events, they were saying how they were looking for females to get started. So I was one of the few that went down and piqued my interest. I actually took a fight two weeks after that."
Spirit MC 18 Results - Denis Kang On Card (spoilers)
Denis Kang returned to Spirit Martial Challenge last night for its eighteenth outing at the Jang Chung Gymnasium in Seoul, South Korea to defend his Spirit MC middleweight title . Dubbed ‘The Champion’, Kang actually resembled one as he survived an early scare and eventually disposed of Jae Young Kim in their third (and hopefully final) meeting.
Kang is now 3-0 against the Team Tackle slugger and has snapped a two-fight losing streak that dates back to his bout at K-1 Heroes 2007 when he was knocked senseless by Yoshihiro Akiyama.
At one point Kang had gone 23 straight fights without a loss, including a stunning knockout of Murilo “Ninja” Rua just fifteen seconds into their bout at PRIDE ‘Bushido 11'.
-Denis Kang (30-10-1) defeated Jae Young Kim (10-6) via KO (1:31 - R1)
-Ui Cheol Nam (8-0) defeated Se Young Kim (0-1) via TKO (0:52 - R1)
-Jin Suk Jung (3-2) defeated Jae Hyun So (2-5) via TKO (1:21- R2)
-Hoon Kim (1-0) defeated Ho Jin Kim (7-4) via KO (4:27 - R1)
-Hoo Joong Kim (1-0) defeated Dae Han Choi (0-1) via TKO (3:10 - R1)
-Dool Hee Lee (2-3) defeated Dae Hyun (0-1) via armbar (3:30 - R2)
-Seung Bae Whi (5-1) defeated Chang Seob Lee (1-2) via TKO (4:28 - R1)
-Seung Hwan Kim (4-3) defeated Ok Myoung Kim (3-3) via guillotine choke (1:43 - R1)
-Ye Won Nam (3-1) defeated Jeong Hyeon Hwang (2-1) via KO (1:27 - R1)
-Dong Hyun Kim (4-3-2) vs Sang Il (0-0-1) ended in a draw
MMA VETERAN PELE SIGNS WITH RAW COMBAT
Following a devastating injury in his last fight, Brazilian fighter Jose “Pele” Landi-Jons has signed on with RAW Combat in Canada, as announced by the promotion this week.
Pele suffered a broken leg during his fight against Brian Gassaway in February 2008, in which the fighter’s shin snapped completely in half, sending him crashing to the mat in agonizing pain.
Questions began to circle immediately if Pele could ever return to action, but that inquiry has now ended with his new deal with RAW Combat.
"I am 100% in boxing, wrestling and jiu-jitsu," explains Landi-Jons. "I'm relaxed. I helped make this sport. The old fans know me from a long time ago. Now I'm sending a message to the new fans. I am a Samurai. I'm not afraid of anything. I'll fight anyone."
During his impressive career, Pele has defeated the likes of Matt Hughes and Pat Miletich and boasts two wins in kickboxing over current UFC middleweight kingpin Anderson Silva.
Overeem: Cro Cop Bout 'Definitely Happening'
Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem (Pictures) confirmed to Sherdog.com that he will meet former Pride Open Weight Grand Prix winner Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic (Pictures) at Dream 6 on Sept. 23 at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan.
No contract signed yet, but this would be a pretty big boost for DREAM if it gets done.
Joachim Hansen Living The DREAM
Fresh from winning the won the DREAM lightweight grand prix in Japan last month, Joachim ‘Hellboy’ Hansen was in a good mood when Fighters Only caught up with him earlier today.
The Norwegian first shot to fame when he beat Japanese standout Takanori Gomi at a Shooto fight in 2003, becoming both the first man to beat Gomi and the first Scandinavian fighter to hold a world title (the Shooto World Welterweight Championship).
“I think it was good for my career because Gomi was unbeaten till that point,” he says with typical understatement.
But his pleasure at being the first man to defeat the highly-regarded Gomi paled in comparison to the feeling of winning the DREAM grand prix. He smiles as he recalls the feeling of taking first place in a hard fought competition.
Duarte vs. Rios signed for Affliction 2
Mexican up-and-comer Antonio Duarte will fight for his first time in the States when he tangles with California teacher Albert Rios at the Oct. 11 Affliction "Day of Reckoning" event in Las Vegas.
MMAFighting.com has confirmed the featherweight bout with a source close to Duarte.
Duarte, a Brown Belt under UFC veteran Dean Lister, holds a 10-1 record and is riding a 7-fight win streak, while Rios is 9-3 and undefeated in 3 fights since Sept. 2006.
Affliction 2: Day of Reckoning
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas
265 lbs. | Josh Barnett vs. Andre Arlovski
205 lbs. | Antonio Rogerio Nogueira vs. Vladimir Matyushenko
265 lbs. | Roy Nelson vs. Paul Buentello
170 lbs. | Mike Pyle vs. Jason High
185 lbs. | Matt Lindland vs. Trevor Prangley*
170 lbs. | Drew Fickett vs. Jay Hieron*
145 lbs. | Antonio Duarte vs. Albert Rios*
155 lbs. | Chris Horodecki vs. TBA
WVR Sponsor Buys Stake In Pancrase
A strong source in the Japanese MMA industry has confirmed to Sherdog that Don Quijote, the primary sponsor of World Victory Road's Sengoku, is now a controlling partner of Pancrase. Pancrase will still operate as a separate and autonomous promotion despite drawing a considerable chunk of their resources from the same pool of capital.