UFC 156 prelims score all-time best ratings for FX with almost 1.9 viewers
Dave Meltzer at MMA Fighting is reporting some more good news for the UFC:
Saturday's UFC 156 prelims drew 1,897,000 viewers, topping the previous UFC on FX record of 1,860,000 viewers set two weeks earlier for the Vitor Belfort vs. Michael Bisping card from Sao Paulo, Brazil.
The number was a huge increase from the prelims on FX on Jan. 26 before the FOX network special from Chicago's United Center which did 1,208,000 viewers.
The largest previous audience on FX for prelims before a big show came on July 7 when the UFC 148 prelims did 1.8 million viewers. But that was to be expected, since there was more interest in UFC on that day with the Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen middleweight title rematch than any day over the past two years.
UFC Heavyweight champ Cain Velasquez eyes summer return, won't fight teammate Daniel Cormier
Cain Velasquez shocked most of the MMA world at UFC 155 when he dominated Junior dos Santos for 25 minutes to reclaim the UFC Heavyweight title. After rocking dos Santos with a big right hand in the first round, Velasquez never relented and took back the belt he lost over a year before.
Saturday night at UFC 156, Antonio Silva followed Velasquez's lead by pulling off a huge upset over Alistair Overeem. After giving up the first two rounds to the former K-1 HW GP champion, Bigfoot teed off on The Reem with a series of brutal blows that even had referee Herb Dean cringing before he stopped the fight. At the same time he put down Overeem, Silva squashed the UFC's plans for the next Heavyweight contender.
With his next contender in question, Cain talked to UFC Tonight about when he wants to return and who he definitely won't fight:
I was thinking this summer. But I would not fight [Daniel Cormier]. He's my coach, teammate and my friend.
Thiago Tavares fails UFC On FX 7 post fight drug test, suspended 9 months
Last week rumors abound that UFC On FX 7 headliner Vitor Belfort had failed his post fight drug test. Belfort had impressed in his fight against Michael Bisping with a second round knock out. However, shortly after the rumors began UFC president Dana White assured that, while someone had failed their test, it was not Belfort.
Wednesday morning, Tatame reported that it was Thiago Tavares that popped:
After many rumors, the results of doping tests UFC Sao Paulo left. According TATAME found, the name of the athlete is caught Thiago Tavares. Our sources, however, need not know the substance used for light weight. His suspension will be nine months.
UFC 157 Official Fight Card & Video Preview
After four straight weeks of shows for Strikeforce and the UFC, Zuffa relaxes this week before returning next week in London.
But after that, get ready for a strong assault leading up to the hotly anticipated start of the women's era in the UFC.
"UFC 157: Rousey vs. Carmouche" takes place at Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif., on Feb. 23. The main event is the first women's fight in UFC history as Ronda Rousey (6-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC) puts her new UFC women's bantamweight title on the line against Liz Carmouche (7-2 MMA, 0-0 UFC). In the co-main event, Dan Henderson (29-8 MMA, 6-2 UFC) meets Lyoto Machida (18-3 MMA, 10-3 UFC). Also on the card, "The California Kid," Urijah Faber (26-6 MMA, 2-2 UFC), will feel the home-state love against Ivan Menjivar (25-9 MMA, 4-1 UFC).
MAIN CARD (Pay-per-view, 10 p.m. ET)
Champ Ronda Rousey vs. Liz Carmouche - for women's bantamweight title
Dan Henderson vs. Lyoto Machida
Urijah Faber vs. Ivan Menjivar
Manny Gamburyan vs. Chad Mendes
Josh Koscheck vs. Robbie Lawler
PRELIMINARY CARD (FX, 8 p.m. ET)
Lavar Johnson vs. Brendan Schaub
Mike Chiesa vs. Anton Kuivanen
Court McGee vs. Josh Neer
Caros Fodor vs. Sam Stout
PRELIMINARY CARD (Facebook, 6:30 p.m. ET)
Dennis Bermudez vs. Matt Grice
Brock Jardine vs. Kenny Robertson
Neil Magny vs. Jon Manley
Sean Pierson out at UFC 158, Rick Story now meets Quinn Mulhern
Canadian welterweight Sean Pierson (13-6 MMA, 3-2 UFC) has been forced out a planned UFC 158 matchup with Rick Story (14-6 MMA, 7-4 UFC), and Quinn Mulhern (18-2 MMA, 0-0 UFC) has been tapped as a replacement.
UFC officials today announced the change.
UFC 158 takes place March 16 at Montreal's Bell Centre. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FX and Facebook. Pierson vs. Story was slated for the evening's FX broadcast, but it's unknown if the new fight will keep that same slot.
Mulhern makes his UFC debut after four appearances under the Strikeforce banner. The Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt debuted in June 2011 with a decision loss to Jason High but then bounced back with victories over Yuri Villefort, David Hulett and Danny Davis.
Manuwa: Diabate not easy, but I'll end it
Jimi Manuwa does not expect an easy night when he takes on Cyrille Diabate at UFC London, but he does predict he will become the first man in the UFC to knock the Frenchman out.
Diabate has fought six times in the UFC, winning four and losing two. Those two defeats both came via submission to Alexander Gustafsson and Anthony Perosh, the latter of which took place during his last visit to the UK.
Phil Davis On Magalhaes: He Doesn’t Deserve To Fight Me
“You know, If I say it simply, he is out of my level, he doesn’t deserve to be fighting me, I feel like that sounds worse than it actually is and it almost sounds like I am talking about his character a person rather than his fighting skills. So let’s say, what he’s done in the UFC which is one win, and I guess if you count his old two losses, it doesn’t really warrant him a fight with me. But, you know, it’s fine. Listen, I don’t do matchmaking, Joe Silva is a genius and I am just going to go with what he says, I don’t question him, the man knows what he’s doing.”
Dana White: 'They’ve got some work to do down there at Blackzilians'
f"Blackzilians didn’t represent [at UFC 156]," White stated following Saturday’s press conference. "It was a bad night for them. In the first round, [Overeem] was running into a clinch. He wasn’t throwing anything. Running into a clinch, his hands were down by his knees. Yeah, it was a weird fight.
"I don’t know if he thought he could out-slick him and … I don’t know what he thought. He looked terrible. Both of them looked out of shape. Rashad did nothing but this all night (mimics catching jabs with hand). They had a bad night. They probably got to reevaluate some things in their camp."
"I think [Overeem] looked terrible [Saturday]. Rashad’s a great fighter, Rashad looked terrible, [too]. Yeah, I agree [Melvin Guillard wasn't good in his loss to Jamie Varner]," White said in closing. "They’ve got some work to do down there at Blackzilians. They’ve got some work to do. Vitor [looked good against Michael Bisping], but they didn’t look good."
Tyron Woodley More Interested in Fighting Rory MacDonald Than Demian Maia
Fresh off a vicious knockout of Jay Hieron in his UFC debut on Saturday, Tyron Woodley is hoping for a busy year in the Octagon.
In fact, he’s already told UFC President Dana White that he’ll be available if someone drops out of the March 16 showdown between Carlos Condit and Rory MacDonald. It’s MacDonald in particular that Woodley has his eye on.
“I want to fight him,” Woodley told the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Beatdown” show. “If anything happens with Carlos Condit, God forbid, or something happens with that fight, I already told Dana White.”
Anthony Pettis drops to 145, meets UFC champ Jose Aldo on Aug. 3
Two of the most dynamic strikers in all of mixed martial arts will meet Aug. 3 as Anthony Pettis (16-2 MMA, 3-1 UFC) is dropping from lightweight to 145 pounds to challenge current champion Jose Aldo (22-1 MMA, 4-0 UFC) for the UFC featherweight title.
USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) on Monday learned of the booking from UFC President Dana White.
"Two of the baddest dudes in the fight business are going to fight at 145 pounds," White said. "These guys are two of the most amazing, gravity-defying athletes in the sport. I am so pumped for this fight."
UFC's First Set of Official Rankings
Rankings were generated by a voting panel made up of media members. The media members were asked to vote for who they feel are the top fighters in the UFC by weight-class and pound-for-pound. A fighter is only eligible to be voted on if they are in active status in the UFC and a fighter can only appear in one weight division at a time. The champion and interim champion are considered to be in the top positions of their respective divisions and therefore are not eligible for voting by weight-class. However, the champions can be voted on for the pound-for-pound rankings.
Jose Aldo-Anthony Pettis considered
"Something interesting happened about 10 minutes ago," said White, at the postfight press conference. "Anthony Pettis said, 'I want to go to 145 and fight Jose Aldo.' He told me he'll make 145."
"It didn't cross my mind until he texted me, but it's crossing my mind now," White said. "I like it, and I like Pettis."
Aldo (22-1), who defeated Edgar via unanimous decision, expressed interest in the fight.
"It's up to Dana, but it's an interesting fight," Aldo said. "I train to fight the best. I respect them all. I think Pettis is close to a title shot in his own division."
Personally it think aldo needs to go to 155, the cut seems to be getting to be too much. he even said he always get sick doing it.