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Cain Velasquez will likely get his rematch with fellow ex-UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum in December.
Werdum (21-6-1 MMA, 9-3 UFC) and Velasquez (14-2 MMA, 12-2 UFC), respectively No. 2 and No. 3 in the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA heavyweight rankings, are targeted for a long-awaited rematch at UFC 207.
The fight isn’t signed but has been offered to the competitors, according to people close to both camps who requested anonymity because they aren’t authorized to discuss the booking publicly.
UFC 207 takes place Dec. 30 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. As with other major year-end UFC events, it airs on pay-per-view.
Another fight is close to being added to UFC 205.
According to sources, the promotion has slated Liz Carmouche vs. Katlyn Chookagian at 135 pounds for the historic Nov. 12 card at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
A rematch between Marco Beltran and Guido Cannetti has been added to The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America 3 Finale. The news was announced by UFC Español on Wednesday.
The two bantamweights first fought during the first season of The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America in a fight that had a controversial ending. Cannetti dominated the action for the majority of the fight, but due to an illegal kick on a downed Beltran, Cannetti was deducted a point that would cost him the fight, losing via split decision.
Longtime UFC veteran Gray Maynard and TUF 22 winner Ryan Hall will collide in a featherweight contest on Dec. 3 at The Ultimate Fighter 24 Finale. The UFC confirmed the booking Wednesday following an initial report by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Jones - who is under temporary suspension for testing positive for Hydroxy-clomiphene, an anti-estrogenic agent, and a Letrozole metabolite, an aromatase inhibitor - has been suggesting that investigations before his appeals with USADA and the NAC have turned up good news and that he will "be back in the Octagon really soon." Jones has yet to face his official hearing but his looming presence has called the Cormier-Johnson fight into question. This was exacerbated by comments from UFC President Dana White who suggested that Jones' return could come in an interim title fight against Anthony Johnson instead of the assumed rematch between DC and Rumble.
But not everyone is happy with that idea. Speaking with Brian Stann on Toe-2-Toe on SiriusXM Rush, Cormier addressed the Jones return rumors and Dana White's idea to have Jones and Johnson square off for the interim title.
"Now one thing I completely disagree with, completely - and I don't care who hears it - why in the hell would Jon still be the interim champion? That makes no sense. That makes absolutely no sense. They should not be fighting for an interim championship. That makes no sense at all. I don't even know why he would still be the interim champion. His ass was disqualified. Take that freakin' belt off of him. That's stupid.
"I hope to God Dana misspoke, because that makes absolutely no sense. They aren't fighting for some interim title if they fight. They can fight in the main event because it's a big fight but it's a fun fight. If they fight, they fight to determine the number one contender it's not some interim championship fight. That makes no sense at all... You'd have an interim champion defending the interim championship while the actual champion is actually still there. That makes no sense whatsoever."
It didn't take long for Donald Cerrone to find a new opponent for UFC 205.
According to multiple sources, Cerrone vs. Kelvin Gastelum is in the works for the Nov. 12 card at Madison Square Garden in New York City. If all goes according to plan, the welterweight fight is expected to be finalized shortly.
After an illness scratched Ruslan Magomedov from UFC 204, Daniel Omielanczuk has agreed to step in as a replacement and fight Stefan Struve at UFC 204.
The news was confirmed to MMAjunkie by a person close to one of the fighters. The person requested anonymity because UFC officials haven’t formally announced the bout.
Magomedov (14-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC), who’d won three straight in the UFC, was diagnosed with staph infection.
Sam Alvey will get yet another quick turnaround, and will be in a middleweight bout against Alex Nicholson. After losing a somewhat uneventful decision last June, Alvey picked up two stoppage wins in July and August. This will be his 4th bout in the span of 5 months.
Things might get a little “Touchy” in Portland, with Andre Fili (15-4 MMA, 3-3 UFC) stepping in to replace an injured Brian Ortega (11-0 MMA, 3-0 UFC).
Fili now faces Brazilian grappling standout Hacran Dias (23-4-1 MMA, 3-3 UFC) at UFC Fight Night 96. Dias is currently ranked No. 14 in the latest USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA featherweight rankings.
The new booking was first announced by the Oregonian, and MMAjunkie subsequently confirmed the new contest with UFC officials. MMAjunkie first reported Ortega’s withdrawal.
UFC Fight Night 96 takes place Oct. 1 at Moda Center in Portland. The card will air on FS1 following early prelims on UFC Fight Pass.
With the change to the card, UFC Fight Night 96 now includes:
John Lineker vs. John Dodson
Will Brooks vs. Alex Oliveira
Sergio Pettis vs. Louis Smolka
Josh Burkman vs. opponent TBA
Joachim Christensen vs. Luis Henrique da Silva
Kelly Faszholz vs. Ketlen Vieira
Shamil Abdurakhimov vs. Walt Harris
Nate Marquardt vs. Tamdan McCrory
Hacran Dias vs. Andre Fili
The UFC returns to the Philippines on Oct. 15, and a local fighter is set to make his promotional debut. Riding a four-fight win streak, Jenel Lausa enters the Octagon for the first time against TUF China alum Yao Zhikui, sources told MMA Fighting.
On Saturday night, after almost two years of buildup, CM Punk finally made his walk to the Octagon to fight Mickey Gall. The walk lasted longer than the fight itself. When the opening bell sounded, Punk charged across the cage; Gall changed levels, took him down, and choked him out in just a touch over two minutes. It was a complete drubbing. Though Punk did successfully avoid one submission, he landed no significant strikes and absorbed a healthy number of them in return. And it looks like he may never get to land one.
Speaking with Fight Network's John Pollock after the event, UFC President Dana White said that the UFC "probably" won't have Punk fight again.
The UFC’s next trip to Australia has a big time middleweight bout set when former champ Luke Rockhold rematches Ronaldo Souza.
The bout was announced on UFC Australia’s twitter account.
UFC Fight Night 101 takes place Nov. 26 (Nov. 27 in Australia) at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. The event will air on FS1. The bout between Rockhold and Souza is the first to be announced for the card.
The post-fight skirmish between Fabricio Werdum and Edmond Tarverdyan was an ugly sight, but that's where the story ends.
The Ohio Athletic Commission will not discipline anyone involved in the strange post-fight incident at UFC 203 in Cleveland, executive director Bernie Profato told MMA Fighting on Saturday night. Profato said he spoke with all involved and they apologized to the commission.
"Everyone left on a positive note," Profato said. "They said they respected the commission and assured this would never happen again."
Cleveland, Ohio was home to a night of bizarre night of fights, with four (T)KOs, three submissions and three decisions. We had a fighter get taken out by an elevator, a coach get front kicked post-fight, A pro-wrestler get wrestled by a pro, and a main event that was more track and field contest than fight. Here's who got $50,000 bonuses for their participation in the madness.
Performances of the the Night: Yancy Medeiros and Jessica Andrade
Fight of the Night: Alistair Overeem vs. Stipe Miocic
Those Cleveland elevators strike again.
C.B. Dollaway won’t be able to fight Francimar Barroso tonight at UFC 203 because he was injured while riding a faulty elevator.
According to multiple sources, Dolloway suffered a back injury while riding an elevator that malfunctioned Friday afternoon. It is unclear at this time how serious Dolloway's back injury is but after consulting with doctors and the UFC afterwards he was ultimately ruled out of the fight. One source classified it as a "strain."
"I’m really upset," Barroso said. "That sucks." The Brazilian was looking to return to the win column following a submission loss to Nikita Krylov in May, while Dolloway was hoping to snap a three-fight losing streak.
The UFC has released the following statement:
UFC announced that CB Dollaway has had to withdraw from his scheduled bout at UFC 203 due to an injury he suffered last night as a result of an elevator accident at a hotel in Cleveland.
UFC officials have been in communication with hotel management, and the hotel is currently evaluating and investigating the issues surrounding the incident.
Citing personal issues, Bobby Green (23-7 MMA, 4-2 UFC) has withdrawn from next month’s UFC Fight Night 96 event.
MMAjunkie today confirmed the move with UFC officials. The promotion now seeks a lightweight to face Josh Burkman (28-13 MMA, 6-8 UFC).
UFC Fight Night 96 takes place Oct. 1 at Moda Center in Portland, Ore. While the bout order has yet to be confirmed, the evening’s main card airs on FS1. Prelims are expected to air on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass.
Stefan Struve needs a new heavyweight opponent for next month’s UFC 204 event.
Struve’s (27-8 MMA, 11-6 UFC) original opponent, Ruslan Magomedov (14-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC), has been sidelined with a staph infection, a UFC official confirmed with MMAjunkie. A time table for his recovery wasn’t immediately known.
A replacement search is underway.