UFC Heavyweight Mark Hunt Signs 6-Fight, Multi-Million Dollar Contract
UFC heavyweight Mark Hunt has signed a multi-fight contract to remain with the Las Vegas-based promotion until the end of his mixed martial arts career.
UFC Tonight confirmed the news on Wednesday, but specific terms of Hunt’s deal were not disclosed on the show. According to a report from New Zealand-based stuff.co.nz, Hunt’s new contract is a “six fight multi-million dollar deal” that spans 30 months in total.
Dan Henderson to meet Hector Lombard at UFC 199
Lyoto Machida's drug testing issues removed him from this weekend's UFC on Fox 19 bout with Dan Henderson, but the UFC is apparently re-booking Hendo fairly soon. According to a report from Sherdog, Henderson will meet Hector Lombard at middleweight at UFC 199 on June 4th in Los Angeles.
The 45-year-old Henderson (31-14, 8-8 UFC) is coming off a quick loss to Vitor Belfort last November. He's 1-2 since he returned to the 185-pound division, with a knockout win over Tim Boetsch along with the Belfort loss and a loss to Gegard Mousasi.
Head coach: Joseph Benavidez no longer with Team Alpha Male
UFC flyweight contender Joseph Benavidez is the latest fighter to leave Sacramento's Team Alpha Male.
Team Alpha Male head coach Justin Buchholz confirmed Benavidez is no longer with the team and hasn't trained at the Ultimate Fitness facilities since December, when Buchholz took over as head coach, on his podcast, Stud Show Radio, Wednesday night.
"He did leave the team," Buchholz said. "I mean, you train here in Sacramento, you're part of Team Alpha Male, or you don't live here.
"He hasn't trained at all since I took over as head coach. I mean, I don't know. I thought Joe would at least give a chance of me, and Danny, and Holdsworth running this new program along with Master Thong and Joey. But he never did. He came in town for one week, he moved his house, did, like, one boxing class.
Ortega Battles Guida at UFC 199
Unbeaten featherweight prospect Brian Ortega will fight in his southern California backyard for the first time as a UFC fighter on June 4 when he faces veteran Clay Guida in a UFC 199 bout at The Forum in Inglewood, California.
Machida admits use of banned substance, UFC scraps Fox 19 fight with Henderson
UFC on Fox 19 just took another major hit. The bad news started rolling in last week, when officials announced that Tony Ferguson had been pulled from his headlining bout against Khabib Nurmagomedov, following a fluid buildup in his lungs. Eventually a replacement was found to fight Khabib on the main card, newcomer Darrell Horcher, but it was a major blow to the card's lineup of meaningful bouts.
And that ball is still rolling, as the UFC announced today via press release that Lyoto Machida has been removed from this week's Fox card as well, and his planned fight with Dan Henderson has been cancelled. It's not injury related though, as this appears to be one of the rare times where USADA testing has cancelled a big fight.
UFC releases statement on B.J. Penn investigation
The UFC made official on Wednesday the return of UFC Hall of Famer B.J. Penn, as well as the results of an investigation conducted into allegations of misconduct.
Penn, 37, will meet Dennis Siver in a featherweight bout at UFC 199 at the Forum in Inglewood, Calif., his first fight since announcing his retirement in the summer of 2014. The bout was initially reported by Yahoo Sports.
The former UFC welterweight and lightweight champion announced his intentions to return earlier in the year, but was put on hold when a string of sexual assault allegations surfaced.
Thursday, the UFC released a formal statement on the matter, which noted that no actions, civil or criminal, have been taken against Penn involving the allegations, but reserved the right to act based should new information come to light.
"Following a review of the matter by Campbell & Williams, a Las Vegas-based law firm hired by UFC to evaluate the situation, UFC has been informed that no criminal or civil charges have been filed against Penn to date, nor has any action been taken by local law enforcement. It should be noted that UFC reserves the right to reevaluate the matter should new information be made available," the UFC statement read.
Mike Jackson released by UFC after just one bout, headed for the boxing ring
The situation was all a little novel, but Mike Jackson -- who made his UFC debut against fellow debutant Mickey Gall on Feb. 6 in Las Vegas -- was never long for the Octagon.
Jackson has been released by the promotion after getting submitted in 45 seconds against Gall, the fighter who was discovered during an airing of Lookin' For A Fight being groomed for the chance to face pro wrestler-turned-mixed martial artist CM Punk (real name Phil Brooks).
Tito Ortiz suing manager of Jon Jones, Wayne Harriman, for unpaid 'loan'
A lawsuit filed by former UFC light heavyweight champion and current Bellator star Jacob "Tito" Ortiz against veteran MMA promoter and manager Wayne Harriman in Clark County, Nevada District Court last October for "breach of contract" is now progressing to the discovery phase.
In a complaint filed on October 22, 2015 by Tito Ortiz's attorneys, Martin Little and Taylor Waite, it is claimed that on July 19, 2011 Ortiz loaned Wayne Harriman "a sum of money in excess of Ten Thousand and no/100 dollars" (according to the March 30th, 2016 Commissioner's decision on request for exemption the amount was $125,000.) Harriman is alleged by Ortiz to have signed a "Simple Promissory Note (the "Note") wherein he expressly agreed to pay back the Loan, plus interest, by no later than August 1, 2012."
UFC earns best afternoon ratings ever on Fox Sports 1 with UFC Fight Night 86
A heavyweight contenders battle with Junior Dos Santos beating Ben Rothwell on Sunday did 781,000 viewers, the most-watched of the four afternoon live main cards to date on FS 1, and doubling the numbers of a similar show last year.
Sunday's Junior dos Santos vs. Ben Rothwell fight scored strong numbers, setting records for a live UFC afternoon show on FS 1.
The main card averaged 781,000 viewers, airing between 2 p.m. at 5:20 p.m. Eastern time. The UFC led FS1 to first place in viewership among all the sports cable networks in the time slot.
The audience was larger than several shows in 2015 that aired in prime time, as UFC ratings continue to be significantly up from last year's levels.
It was the most-watched UFC Fight Night show that aired outside of prime time on FS1 to date. It more than doubled the previous afternoon show one year ago that did 389,000 viewers, a show headlined by Chad Mendes' win over Ricardo Lamas. UFC had done three previous afternoon shows on FS1.
UFC Statement Following Viscardi Andrade’s Potential Anti-Doping Violation
UFC on Tuesday issued a statement after being informed fighter Viscardi Andrade had been notified of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation.
UFC partners with the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to oversee it’s anti-doping program. USADA was the organization notifying both the UFC and Andrade of the potential violation stemming from an out-of-competition drug test.
Viscardi AndradeThe UFC organization was notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Viscardi Andrade of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collection on March 7, 2016. The sample was collected from Andrade in Brazil and analyzed at the WADA accredited laboratory in Rio de Janeiro, and recently reported to USADA as containing a prohibited substance.
UFC scraps planned April 25 Season 24 flyweight tryouts for 'The Ultimate Fighter'
After announcing a week ago the information for tryouts for a fall season of “The Ultimate Fighter,” the UFC today scrapped those plans.
This past week, the promotion announced “The Ultimate Fighter 24” would feature male flyweight fighters, and the show’s tournament winner will earn a title shot at the show’s live finale. Part of that announcement for “TUF 24? was a casting call for tryouts on April 25 at Palace Station Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.
But today, the UFC released a statement saying those tryouts have been canceled.
UFC announced today that the open casting call for the upcoming season of The Ultimate Fighter originally scheduled for April 25 in Las Vegas has been canceled. UFC apologizes for any inconveniences this cancelation has caused. More information about the next season of the show will be made available in the weeks to come.”
Former UFC fighter victim of assault
Chino Valley resident and former UFC fighter Edwin Dewees was the victim of an assault on Tuesday, April 5.
Chino Valley Police Det. Mark Garcia confirmed that Ladd A. Parker, 30, of Chino Valley, has been arrested in the case. Garcia did not confirm that Dewees is the victim, but he did not deny it when provided the name.
B.J. Penn vs. Dennis Siver slated for UFC 199 in Los Angeles
UFC Hall of Famer B.J. Penn (16-10-2 MMA, 12-9-2 UFC) will return from a two-year layoff to fight fellow vet Dennis Siver (22-11 MMA, 11-8 UFC) at UFC 199.
UFC President Dana White confirmed the fight with Yahoo! Sports.
UFC 199 takes place June 4 at The Forum in Los Angeles. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FOX Sports 1 and UFC Fight Pass, though the bout order hasn’t been finalized.
The latest UFC 199 lineup now includes:
Champ Luke Rockhold vs. Chris Weidman – for middleweight title
Champ Dominick Cruz vs. Urijah Faber – for bantamweight championship
Bobby Green vs. Dustin Poirier
Evan Dunham vs. Leonardo Santos
Kevin Casey vs. Elvis Mutapcic
Luiz Henrique da Silva vs. Jonathan Wilson
“Maestro” Dong Hyun Kim vs. Polo Reyes
Tom Breese vs. Sean Strickland
John Makdessi vs. Mehdi Baghdad
B.J. Penn vs. Dennis Siver
Chuck Liddell, Forrest Griffin to Coach ‘TUF: Latin America’ Season 3
UFC Hall of Famers Chuck Liddell and Forrest Griffin will serve as opposing coaches on the upcoming third season of “The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America,” UFC announced on Monday.
“TUF: LATAN 3” will be the first season of the reality show to film in Argentina, with production slated to begin in Buenos Aires in late spring. The season premieres in August and will be streamed via UFC Fight Pass in the U.S. Canal 5 will broadcast the show in Mexico, with “14 additional free-to-air networks” airing the series throughout Latin America.
UFC Fight Night 86 post-fight facts: Dos Santos lands record number of body strikes
Former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos (18-4 MMA 12-3 UFC) produced a record output of strikes when he dominated Ben Rothwell (36-10 MMA, 6-4 UFC) for a decisive unanimous-decision win in UFC Fight Night 86’s headliner.
The heavyweight matchup headlined Sunday’s FOX Sports 1-televised event at Zagreb Arena, which marked the organization’s debut in Croatia. The 13-fight card had a mixed bag of results, but in terms of history-making performances, Dos Santos’ was the most significant.
To see what “Cigano” accomplished, as well as notable results from the card, check out 40 post-fight facts to come out of UFC Fight Night 86.
Rafael dos Anjos Will be Ready to Fight in July, Hints Eddie Alvarez Could Be Next Foe
It was a milestone week for Rafael dos Anjos in his recovery process from the broken foot that forced him to pull out of a lightweight title defense against Conor McGregor at UFC UFC 196.
“[It was] my first week without the boot. My doctor cleared me to walk barefoot,” dos Anjos told “Inside MMA” on Friday night. “I started working a little bit, hit some bags, doing some techniques.”
With that progress comes a target date for the lightweight champion’s Octagon return.
“I will be ready by July. I want to fight in July. I’m here. Whatever UFC decides, I’ll be ready,” dos Anjos said. “In three more weeks I’ll be ready to jump, to kick. In July, I’m ready.”
If all goes as planned, that progression could lead to a spot on the UFC 200 card, an event that already features a pair of title fights as well as a welterweight headliner between Nate Diaz and McGregor. Dos Anjos was angling to fight either Diaz or welterweight champion Robbie Lawler on July 9 in Las Vegas, but he was denied by the promotion on both counts.
Oluwale Bamgbose in for Caio Magalhaes against Cezar Ferreira at UFC on FOX 19
Caio Magalhaes is injured and out of his UFC on FOX 19 bout with Cezar Ferreira. Heavy hitting Oluwale Bamgbose will step in to face Ferreira on the prelims of the card.
The change was originally reported by Fox Sports.UFC on FOX 19 takes place April 16 at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla. The card airs on FOX after early prelims on UFC Fight Pass. The middleweight matchup will take place on the early prelims.
Bamgbose (6-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) will look to build on his recent 60-second knockout of Daniel Sarafian at UFC Fight Night 83. He debuted in the octagon with a short notice loss to Uriah Hall at UFC Fight Night 73, the first defeat of his career. All six of his professional victories have come by way of knockout.
Dan Hardy eyeing superfights, not a title run, in potential UFC return
UFC veteran Dan Hardy hasn’t fought since September 2012 – a result of a heart condition known as Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome. He hasn’t taken his eye off a comeback, however, and wants to be in big one-off fights to close out his career.
Speaking with MMAjunkie Radio, Hardy (25-10 MMA, 6-4 UFC) said he has grown as a person while working as a commentator for the UFC, but he views the changing face of the UFC as one where he can re-enter the octagon without concerns of becoming champion.
Instead, he said, the new move toward superfights could provide him with opportunities not to work his way up the rankings, but instead participate in marquee matchups.