Charges dropped in UFC octagon girl Arianny Celeste's domestic-violence case
The Las Vegas District Attorney's office has decided not to file charges against UFC octagon girl Arianny Celeste following her arrest for battery domestic violence.
Tess Driver, executive assistant to Las Vegas district attorney Steve Wolfson, today confirmed the news with MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
"After our review of the case, we found that there was insufficient evidence to move forward," Driver said.
Celeste and a male companion, Praveen Chandra, were both arrested in the early hours of May 26 after an altercation at Wynn Las Vegas. Chandra accused Celeste of kicking him in the nose while Celestse indicated that Chandra choked her several times during the evening. The two were booked into the Clark County Detention Center and released on bail.
The district attorney's office also dropped charges on Chandra.
The 26-year-old Celeste, who's also a TV and online host for the UFC, missed most of UFC 146 due to the incident.
NSAC: Nick Diaz's UFC 143 fine officially amounted to $79,500
A full five months since his loss to Carlos Condit in the UFC 143 main event, Nick Diaz is still a point of discussion.
Initially, after Diaz failed a drug test due to marijuana metabolites, the Nevada State Athletic Commission suspended him one year and fined him 30 percent of his fight purse.
But NSAC Executive Director Keith Kizer today confirmed with MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) the fine was more than the originally reported $60,000.
Diaz (27-8 MMA, 7-5 UFC) who announced his retirement after the fight, was paid a disclosed flat sum of $200,000 for his interim title fight with Condit (28-5 MMA, 5-1 UFC). He lost the bout, which took place Feb. 4 in Las Vegas, via unanimous decision.
A 30 percent fine on his $200,000 purse would've added up to $60,000. But Kizer said the actual fine was $79,500.
Back door or not, Joey Beltran ready for 'new tricks' in return at UFC on FUEL TV 4
Joey Beltran might not be sure who would play him, but he definitely feels like he's in a movie all of a sudden.
And now, he says, "I've just got to go out and get that storybook ending."
Beltran was cut by the UFC after a January loss to Lavar Johnson. But after just one fight away, he's back – and with the kind of changes he hopes will rejuvenate his career.
After a 1-4 run at heavyweight that included losses to Matt Mitrione, Pat Barry, Stipe Miocic and Johnson, who handed him the first knockout loss of his career, Beltran decided to make the drop to light heavyweight – and the move paid instant dividends, not just physically, but in the quick return to the UFC.
Dana White, UFC 148 and the rematch that almost wasn't: Silva vs. Sonnen II
Skeptics and cynics, beware: If you think Chael Sonnen is just running his mouth with no substance behind it, he might just be telling the truth.
In late April, just days before he boarded a plane with UFC president Dana White for a news conference in Brazil, Sonnen maintained there was no rematch signed between him and middleweight champion Anderson Silva – despite reports he was going to Brazil to help announce the fight.
On Monday, White told MMAjunkie.com Sonnen's stories were legit and added a little more depth and intrigue to what the UFC is saying could be its biggest fight in history, "UFC 148: Silva vs. Sonnen II" – a fight that nearly didn't happen.
"When we did the press conference down in Brazil, Silva hadn't even agreed to fight him," White said. "That fight wasn't happening. I had them bring Anderson to the place where the press conference was, and we sat in a room for three hours fighting about the fight."
UFC middleweight challenger Chael Sonnen advocates forfeiture to stop injury bug
The way injury withdrawals have ravaged the UFC's 2012 schedule, Chael Sonnen vs. Anderson Silva II looks all the more special.
Sonnen, or Chael P. Sonnen – it's hard to differentiate the two these days – said there's no way he would ever withdraw from a fight. And he has a solution for halting others from doing so.
"I think there should be forfeiture," he today told MMAjunkie.com.
Should a fighter withdraw, Sonnen said, he would take a loss on his professional record.
"It's not realistic with the architecture that we have, but we're the only sport where you can just not show up," he said.
"Every event is set. The Super Bowl for 2015. The kickoff time, the venue – it's set. If one team doesn't want to show up, a Super Bowl champion will be crowned that day."
Anderson Silva Unleashed: Full Transcript with Translations from UFC 148 Media Call
As UFC 148 approached, most people expected the same type of pre-fight banter between champion Anderson Silva and challenger Chael Sonnen.
Sonnen would unleash his normal verbal barrage attacking Silva at every turn, attacking him personally, professionally and even taking pot shots at his home country of Brazil, and in turn the champion would scoff at Sonnen’s outrageous statements and wait untl the fight to show what he’s really made of.
Well that all changed this past Monday when Silva turned the tables on Sonnen and changed a routine pre-fight media conference call into the Anderson Silva show complete with threats that ranged from sending Sonnen to the emergency room to the fact that what he’s about to do on July 7 will forever change the way people look at MMA.
Here is the full transcript of the questions and answers with Anderson Silva with exact translations from Portuguese to English as provided by Brazilian reporter Fernando Kallas:
Greg Jackson thinks Cub Swanson can eventually contend with UFC Featherweight Champion Jose Aldo
Before Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Featherweight Champion Jose Aldo made his way to the world's largest fight promotion, he built his name under the World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) banner. While with the WEC, "Scarface" terrorized nearly every opponent he stepped inside the cage against.
But perhaps none more so than Cub Swanson.
Indeed, Aldo finished seven of his eight fights inside the blue cage, three of which came inside the first round. But it was Swanson who suffered the quickest defeat of all, falling to a flying knee in just eight seconds.
Embarrassing? Of course. Career altering? Not for Cub.
UFC's Edson Barboza says 2012 ESPY nomination is a win for MMA
Edson Baraboza didn't see his recent ESPY nomination as a personal accomplishment so much as he did a win for the sport of MMA.
Barboza's spinning-wheel-kick KO of Terry Etim at UFC 142 recently was nominated as one of the year's top 16 plays as part of the 2012 ESPN ESPY Awards. .
Baraboza said that having an MMA highlight actually rank among those in the NFL, NBA, MLB and worldwide soccer is already a big win for his chosen sport.
Siyar Bahadurzada Injured, Out of UFC 149, Matt Riddle in
Siyar Bahadurzada, who originally replaced an injured Yoshihiro Akiyama, is the latest scratch from July's UFC 149 event.
UFC officials today announced Bahadurzada has been forced to withdraw from the event due to injury, and Matt Riddle (6-3 MMA, 6-3 UFC) now steps in to face Chris Clements (11-4 MMA, 1-0 UFC).
Sonnen reveals source of anger toward Silva
The dislike that top UFC middleweight contender Chael Sonnen feels toward titleholder Anderson Silva did not begin during the months leading to their first battle in August 2010.
It started much earlier.
Sonnen told ESPN.com this week the reason for his hostility toward Silva, and surprisingly, another high-profile Brazilian fighter.
“Anderson Silva and Wanderlei Silva, who have had me p---ed off for years, have gone around and tried to bully people,” Sonnen said. “That stuff doesn’t work with me.
“The buck stops here.”
On 3-0 UFC run, Chan Sung Jung wants shot at featherweight champ Jose Aldo
Maybe Chan Sung Jung just didn't feel like he said it loud enough after his last fight.
So on Friday, "The Korean Zombie" reiterated what he said after his last win: He wants a shot at UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo, and when he gets it, he plans on leaving with the title.
Jung isn't on Twitter much – he's posted just seven messages since his May 15 upset of Dustin Poirier. But it's his last post that is standing up and asking to be noticed.
Tito Ortiz: Maybe Forrest Griffin Should Retire Too
‘If I lose to Tito, I’m going to retire from life. Seriously’
~ Forrest Griffin – June 2012
On paper, UFC 148 is supposed to be the final event of Tito Ortiz’s Hall of Fame UFC career, but he’s not planning on strolling quietly into the night.
As a matter of fact, what has Ortiz ever done quietly while he’s been in the UFC?
That’s why when the former light heavyweight champion heard about Griffin’s comments about their third and final fight, Ortiz figured maybe it was just his time to walk away from the sport as well.
“I’m excited for the fight. Forrest is a tough guy and I know he’s training really hard. I just heard a little thing saying that if he loses to me he’s going to retire. Well, it looks like he better put on his retirement shoes cause it’s going to be an exciting fight and I plan on having my hand raised,” Ortiz said when appearing on MMAWeekly Radio.
UFC on FOX 4's Vera doesn't care why 'Shogun' chose him to fight
Brandon Vera (12-5 MMA, 8-5 UFC) gets goose bumps every time he thinks about fighting Mauricio "Shogun" Rua (20-6 MMA, 4-4 UFC) at UFC on FOX 4.
Just the thought of fighting an MMA icon offsets the knowledge that Rua picked him as perhaps an easier opponent.
"I don't give a damn what his reasons are or what happened or how this came about," Vera told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
Rua turned down Glover Teixeira when Thiago Silva re-injured his back and was forced to withdraw from their fight at UFC 149. A pink slip was threatened for the former champ, whose pass on the Teixeira fight was aired to the public. Rua countered that Vera's name was more valuable to his career.
Cynics would translate that to mean Vera is an easier fight for Rua than Teixeira, who blasted Kyle Kingsbury in his recent octagon debut. Vera has been around long enough to make that connection, and he's certainly familiar with the disappointment of fans who saw him go from top heavyweight contender to endangered light heavyweight.
The whys just don't matter to him at this point, he said. He's got the fight, and the fans and Glover Teixeira do not.
UFC 150's Tavares looking for win over Hallman, bout with Diaz or Maynard
Twelve fights into his UFC career, Brazilian lightweight Thiago Tavares is tired of flying under the radar.
He's lost just once since 2009, and three of his four career octagon defeats came along with a "Fight of the Night" bonus.
As he prepares to face longtime veteran Dennis Hallman at August's UFC 150 event, Tavares is ready to make a little noise. Once he puts "Superman" away, Tavares is calling out Nate Diaz and Gray Maynard.
"I will beat Dennis Hallman," Tavares told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). "After that, I want Nate Diaz or Gray Maynard. I really want to prove myself.
"I think Nate Diaz and I would be a crazy, exciting fight. I always try to submit people, and he likes to knock everybody out. Gray Maynard just beat Clay Guida, but I would give him a real fight. I just want to fight against the best names and move up in the division."
Forrest Griffin hints retirement is near
Former light heavyweight champion Forrest Griffin is set to meet Tito Ortiz for a third time in the co-main event of UFC 148 on July 7. It’s expected to be the final fight of Ortiz’s career.
In a candid interview with ESPN.com, Griffin, who enjoyed the birth of his first child last year, spoke on how much time he has left in the sport, whether or not this recent string of losses for Ortiz has tarnished his career, and how comfortable he would be accepting a fight against a dangerous up-and-comer in the division.
ESPN.com: What was the experience of your last fight like, going to Brazil and trying to concentrate on Mauricio Rua while your wife was in labor back in Las Vegas?
Griffin: It really wasn’t that distracting. Maybe some time when I was down there and she was real good about censoring what she told me. The problem with that fight wasn’t anything other than Shogun hitting me in the head. That was more the problem with that fight than my wife being pregnant. It’s funny, I really didn’t think (about the loss). It was a s----- flight, I flew back with Dana (White). That’s a tough flight. You don’t want to sit next to your boss after you don’t do such a great job at work. After that, it was like, “we’re in the hospital.” So, I really didn’t think about it other than the flight home.
ESPN.com: Did you talk to Dana at all on the flight?
Griffin: I watched "Band of Brothers" with headphones on.
Urijah Faber Says MMA Needs Chael Sonnen
One thing most people can agree on about Chael Sonnen is that he is one of the most polarizing figures in mixed martial arts. But that’s about it.
Not many people have the insight into Sonnen’s background to see how he became the brazen character that finally got under the skin of current UFC champion Anderson Silva, pushing and prodding him until he cracked and unleashed the brutal tirade we heard on the recent UFC 148 media conference call promoting their July 7 rematch.
Many will debate whether or not Sonnen even has a place in MMA, a sport that has roots in the more disciplined approach of traditional martial arts. Former WEC champion and current UFC interim title contender Urijah Faber isn’t among them.
“I think this sport needs guys like Chael Sonnen,” said Faber at a recent question and answer session.
Shogun and Lombard Open as Sizeable Favorites In Upcoming Bouts
Injuries have derailed some of the summer’s biggest fights, but there are still plenty of match-ups to talk about including the debut of a former Bellator champion and the return of a former UFC title holder.
Former Bellator middleweight champion Hector Lombard will make his long awaited Octagon debut at UFC 149 where he faces former light heavyweight Tim Boetsch in a 185lb showdown.
According to Nick Kalikas from BetOnFighting.com, Lombard’s reputation as a knockout artist will follow him to the UFC where he has opened as a sizeable favorite over UFC veteran Boetsch.
Lombard comes in as a whopping -310 favorite with the comeback on Boetsch at +240
Rua opens as an expected favorite in the fight with -290 odds in his favor while Vera comes back at the underdog with +220 odds on his side.
Joe Rogan comment leads to Sam Stout game plan change at UFC on FX 4
Sam Stout remembers very clearly what Joe Rogan said during a recent fight.
The longtime UFC commentator said Stout was an easy fighter to train for because he fought the same way every time. Basically, opponents knew he liked to strike, and knew he was more vulnerable on the mat.
So when Stout (19-7-1 MMA, 7-6 UFC) bucked that trend in a rubber match with Spencer Fisher (25-9 MMA, 9-8 UFC) at this past Friday's UFC on FX 4, he had Rogan's statement in mind – and also, Fisher's more accurate punches.
"I decided to go out there and do something about that in this fight," Stout told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). "My wrestling game is something that I've been working on for a long time, and my jiu-jitsu game. I've been saying that for a long time, but I've never really shown it."
Stout certainly put his grappling chops on display when he earned a unanimous decision over Fisher in the co-main draw of the event, which took place at Revel Atlantic City in New Jersey. The bout aired on FX.