Chael: "I'm the best MMA wrestler in the world"
After trading words for months,UFC light heavyweight Jon Jones and perennial contender Chael Sonnen finally get to trade blows at UFC 159.
- - - Plus, Michael Bisping and Alan Belcher meet in a matchup of brash middlewieght strikers. - - -
BISPING v BELCHER starts @ the 5:00 mark
Raphael Assuncao vs. Vaughan Lee slated for UFC on Fuel 10
One more fight appears to be on tap for UFC on Fuel 10: Nogueira vs. Werdum in Fortaleza, Brazil. Tatame reports that Brazilian bantamweight Raphael Assuncao will fight England's Vaughan Lee on June 8th.
Assuncao (18-4) recently pulled off an upset win over Mike Easton at UFC on Fox 5 in December. He's now won his last 3 fights (all at 135 lbs) after suffering a KO loss in his UFC debut against Erik Koch at featherweight. It should be noted that Assuncao broke his arm in the Easton fight. Assuncao is the #6 ranked bantamweight in the UFC's official rankings page.
UFC 158 Drug Tests Come Back Clean
Although he cast doubt on his ability to pass a drug test prior to the biggest fight of his life, Nick Diaz is in the clear following UFC 158.
The Regie des alcools des courses et des jeux (Quebec's athletic commission) today passed along word that drug tests for the March 16 pay-per-view event came back clean.
A total of six competitors were tested, QAC rep Joyce Tremblay wrote in an email to MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). The substances tested for are confidential, she added.
UFC exec says English TV deal nearly done, teases launch of weekly magazine show
For years, UFC President Dana White has pinned the potential for U.K. expansion on key factor: the "right" TV deal. Now, it seems, the company may finally be on the verge of signing such a contract.
"What we've worked hard on is finding a TV partner that just doesn't pay money for our rights but actually gives us the opportunity to produce and develop a magazine program that tells the story and creates awareness about the sport," UFC Executive Vice President and Managing Director of Europe, Middle East and Africa Garry Cook told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). "So we've worked with a TV partner. We're very close to having a deal."
Amir Sadollah injured, Nah-Shon Burrell now meets Stephen Thompson at UFC 160
Amir Sadollah (6-4 MMA, 6-4 UFC) has been forced out of his welterweight fight against Stephen Thompson (6-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) at UFC 160 next month, and a Strikeforce vet will instead get his second octagon test.
Nah-Shon Burrell (9-2 MMA, 1-0 UFC) will step in for Sadollah to meet Thompson on the card. UFC officials on Wednesday announced the change.
UFC 160 takes place May 25 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The main card, including a Cain Velasquez-Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva heavyweight title fight, will air on pay-per-view following prelims on FX and Facebook.