UFC 143's Nick Diaz tells 'Inside MMA' villain role effective, not necessarily comfortable
Nick Diaz, PR genius?
The outspoken and sometimes controversial former Strikeforce champion has both delighted and baffled MMA fans with his trashtalking and open challenges to MMA superstars such as UFC champ Georges St-Pierre.
And while his rants often seem a bit random in their focus, Diaz on Monday's new edition of HDNet's "Inside MMA" seemed to reveal that he's been following a master plan all along: To the villain goes the spoils.
Thiago Alves Discusses Possible Fight With Jake Ellenberger
Thiago Alves is coming off a very good win over a solid prospect, but he's not going to get much respect for it. That's the way it goes when you beat a fighter that is off most people's radar like Papy Abedi, no matter how good he is. But now that he has that win, he's looking at bigger and better things. When asked by ESPN UK about a possible fight with rising star Jake Ellenberger, Alves was diplomatic:
"That would be a great fight," he said to ESPN. "But like I said, whoever Joe Silva wants me to fight, I'm ready for it.
"I know I'm a few fights away from title contention, so whoever brings me closer - I'm ready."
Anderson Silva Reacts to Mark Munoz Challenge, Thought He Was a Friend
Mark Munoz came into UFC 138 ranked #4 in the world at middleweight in the USA TODAY / MMA Nation Consensus Rankings and did nothing to lower his ranking with a resounding drubbing of #12 Chris Leben. Following his win, Munoz made it known that he wanted a shot at UFC champ Anderson Silva.
Munoz has trained at Black House several times, increasing his own skills as well as providing men like Silva with a top shelf wrestler to train with. Silva was told by SporTV about the challenge from Munoz and didn't seem too thrilled (translation by Tom Mendes):
I hadn't even seen that (Munoz's challenge). I thought Munoz was a friend, but that's okay...
Terry Etim to fight Edson Barboza at UFC 142
Terry Etim did not waste any time in defeating Eddie Faaloloto at UFC 138, and the UFC has been similarly rapid in arranging the Brit's next contest, sealing a bout with Edson Barboza at UFC 142.
Etim walked away with $70,000 after securing Submission of the Night inside 17 seconds against Faaloloto, sparking the instant question: Who next?
Before Etim's 19-month layoff the lightweight had been heading for a clash with Joe Lauzon, and that is the level to which he wants to return as soon as possible.
Barboza represents a thrilling test. Like Etim the Brazilian loves to strike, and he is currently 9-0 in his MMA career and 3-0 for the UFC. Two of those wins have earned Fights of the Night honours, and he is credited with some of the nastiest leg kicks in the UFC...
UFC on Fox: John McCarthy Likely to Referee Cain Velasquez vs. Junior Dos Santos
According to a report that came out last week, Big John McCarthy was 99% likely to referee the UFC on Fox main event bout between Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos. MMA Mania spoke to George Dodd, the Executive Officer of the California State Athletic Commission and asked for an update today. And it still appears that BJM will be center stage on Fox on Saturday night:
"It's 99 percent still. There's always that last minute thing that could always change something. Obviously something could happen to John or whatever the case may be but for right now, until he steps in the cage, it's 99 percent sure."
With injury woes behind him, UFC on FOX 1's Cub Swanson motivated for debut
It's a nice idea to Cub Swanson that he's fighting at the event where the UFC makes its network TV debut, even if he's not one of those who gets to bask in the spotlight (just like everyone else not named Cain Velasquez and Junior Dos Santos).
But reality is staring Swanson in the face.
This is his first fight in the UFC after injuries delayed his debut. In fact, when he learned he will be in the newest version of the UFC's video game, he tweeted its developer and asked whether his character breaks his hands after every fight.
"I just wanted to know how realistic the game was," Swanson (15-4 MMA, 0-0 UFC), who fights Ricardo Lamas (10-2 MMA, 1-0 UFC) at UFC on FOX 1, joked while on MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio).
UFC on FOX 1 takes place Saturday at Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. Swanson's fight streams live on Facebook while the card's main event airs live on FOX.
UFC on Fox: Clay Guida Wants Title Shot After Ben Henderson Bout
Clay Guida may be getting shafted a bit by it being made clear that his fight with Ben Henderson is not going to make the Fox TV broadcast no matter how quickly the bout between Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos ends, but that isn't keeping him down. Guida knows that the Henderson fight is a huge moment in his career and he seems ready to pounce.
UFC president says U.K. and European expansion hinges on 'right TV deals'
A little more than a week ago at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, the venue was nearly empty for UFC 137's first preliminary-card fight.
A week later, a raucous crowd filled LG Arena in Birmingham, England, and gave every UFC 138 bout a main-event feel.
So why is the UFC much more likely to visit Sin City than other European locales?
UFC president Dana White said it's all about the TV deals. In the U.S., the UFC is wrapping up a seven-year live-events deal with Spike TV and will move to FOX (and FX and FUEL TV) in 2012. In Canada, Rogers Sportsnet has been a dependable home for the organization. The deals supplement and help promote the UFC's usual pay-per-view offerings, which is the promotion's real cash cow.
Chris Leben Reportedly Cut 21 Pounds in 24 Hours
Chris Leben gave it his best shot when he faced Mark Munoz at UFC 138. Leben scored with some punches, came close with a few submissions and even got a pair of takedowns over the much better wrester. In the end Munoz's skills were just too much though and Leben was forced to retire from the bout when he said he couldn't see due to vision problems stemming from a cut over his eye.
Now, Fighters Only Magazine is reporting that Leben had a terrible weight cut:
Chris Leben cut nearly 21 pounds in 24 hours to make weight for his fight with Mark Munoz, Fighters Only was told ahead of last night's bout.
The 31-year old middleweight had "a terrible weight cut" and was in such bad shape before the weigh ins that medical staff were keeping a very close eye on him.
A source close to Leben told Fighters Only on Friday that Leben had been left "shattered" by the amount of weight he had to cut on weigh-in day.
UFC 138's Renan Barao says he's ready for bantamweight title shot
Renan Barao believes he's ready for a title shot.
Of course, his 27 straight victories lend some credence to the argument.
After all, Barao, who scored a first-round submission victory over English fighter Brad Pickett in Saturday's UFC 138 co-headliner, said there's only one reason fighters come to the UFC: to fight for a championship.
Soon after his Spike TV-televised victory, which came via rear-naked choke at LG Arena in Birminghan, England, Barao answered the obvious question: Is he ready for a shot at bantamweight titleholder Dominick Cruz?
UFC boss won't rule out Paul Daley return but admits he's still 'not a fan'
BIRMINGHAM, England – British slugger Paul Daley may have potentially removed himself from UFC president Dana White's "pay no mind" list, but don't expect him to be stepping into the octagon anytime soon.
At Saturday night's UFC 138 post-event press conference in Birmingham, England, UFC president Dana White didn't necessarily uphold his "never again" stance on the banished welterweight but did say Daley wasn't exactly on his radar.
And while making the comment, White also seemed to suggest that the current Strikeforce-Showtime talks, of which he recently took charge, are at least currently ongoing.
Carlos Condit vs. Josh Koscheck in the works for UFC 143 in Las Vegas
BIRMINGHAM, England – After being bumped from a championship fight with Georges St-Pierre in favor of Nick Diaz, Carlos Condit has his new target.
MMAjunkie.com has learned from sources close to the promotion that Condit and Josh Koscheck have verbally agreed to meet at UFC 143 in February.
UFC president Dana White revealed the likelihood of the potential booking at Saturday night's UFC 138 post-event press conference in Birmingham, England.
UFC 138 bonuses(Spoilers Inside)
England – Che Mills, Terry Etim, Renan Barao and Brad Pickett each earned $70,000 fight-night bonuses for their performances at Saturday's UFC 138 event.
Mills earned the night's "Knockout of the Night" award, Etim picked up the "Submission of the Night" bonus, and Barao and Pickett took home "Fight of the Night" honours.
Johnny Eduardo scratched from UFC 139, replacement search underway
Brazilian bantamweight Johnny Eduardo (25-9 MMA, 0-1 UFC) has suffered a shoulder injury and has been forced out of this month's UFC 139 fight with Michael McDonald (13-1 MMA, 2-0 UFC).
UFC officials today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) a replacement search is underway. Tatame first reported the scratch.
UFC 139 takes place Nov. 19 at HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif.
While the main card airs on pay-per-view, Eduardo vs. McDonald was slated for the portion of the preliminary card expected to stream on Facebook.
Title fight in the U.K.? UFC exec says Bisping and Pickett are good candidates
U.K. fans long have complained of fight cards light on significance. To date, just three belts have been put on the line in nine events held in the country.
On the eve of No. 10, otherwise known as UFC 138, it's only natural to wonder: Will another title fight ever make it to the U.K.?
"You've got to figure out – it's all an opportunity cost in some sense," UFC managing director of international development Marshall Zelaznik told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
Opportunity cost, in this case, means the potential loss of pay-per-view dollars. The UFC has cemented Saturday night as the destination for marquee events, and the promotion runs the risk of losing customers by shifting times.
UFC 138 official weigh-in results: Munoz and Leben on weight; Alves heavy on first try, makes it on the second
The official UFC 138 card includes:
MAIN CARD (Spike TV)
Chris Leben (186) vs. Mark Munoz (186)
Renan Barao (136) vs. Brad Pickett (134)
Papy Abedi (170) vs. Thiago Alves (171)*
Cyrille Diabate (206) vs. Anthony Perosh (205)
Terry Etim (156) vs. Edward Faaloloto (155)
PRELIMINARY CARD (Facebook)
Justin Edwards (170) vs. John Maguire (170)
Rob Broughton (258) vs. Philip De Fries (243)
Michihiro Omigawa (145) vs. Jason Young (145)
Chris Cope (170) vs. Che Mills (169)
Chris Cariaso (135) vs. Vaughan Lee (135)
*Alves makes weight on 2nd attempt
FOX Announces Loaded TV Lineup for UFC Debut
FOX has announced its full lineup of programming that will air before and after next Saturday's historic UFC telecast, and it's without a doubt the most impressive TV lineup served up to fans surrounding any UFC event.
In addition to the one-hour telecast on FOX, which will feature Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos for the UFC heavyweight title, UFC programming will air on FUEL TV and FOX Deportes.
Below is an easy to read schedule of everything you can expect to see:
Friday, Nov. 11:
7:00 p.m. ET / 4 p.m. PT -- Weigh-ins live on FUEL TV
7:00 P.M. ET -- Cain Velasquez: Brown Pride, episode 3 on FOX Deportes
Brad Pickett: I'm Not Worried About Renan Barao's Stand-Up
Say this for UFC bantamweight Brad Pickett: the guy's not kidding himself.
When asked by Ariel Helwani on Monday's edition of The MMA Hour if he thought his fight with Renan Barao would be so high up on the UFC 138 main card if the event wasn't in Pickett's home country, the British fighter initially replied, "Maybe, maybe not." Then came a more sober analysis.
"Probably not," he said. While he'd like to believe that he's main card material, he added, it sure doesn't hurt to have the Octagon in your own backyard for one night.