UFC 129 Moved Up One Hour; Change to All PPV Start Times Being Considered
The UFC is quietly contemplating a change to move up the start times of its pay-per-view broadcasts one hour, MMA Fighting has learned.
No final decision has yet been made, though a source in the organization confirmed to MMA Fighting that they are "considering the move for all events."
Two sources confirmed that at least one date will definitely be impacted. The change will be in play for the first time at April's massive UFC 129 event in Toronto, which will take place on April 30. On that night, the pay-per-view telecast will begin at 9 pm ET/6 pm PT, one hour ahead of its usual time.
At least part of the idea, according to sources, is to take advantage of the earlier time to attract more east coast viewers going forward.
UPDATE: The new start time is expected to remain in place for future shows, as well, .
Heath Herring Wants MMA Return, but Only on Own Terms
Away from MMA competition for nearly three years, UFC heavyweight Heath Herring says he definitely wants to return to the cage -- but only under the right circumstances.
"It would have to make sense not only business-wise, but financially as well and I just don't know if that's in the cards at this moment," Herring told Ariel Helwani Monday on MMAFighting.com's The MMA Hour.
On the show, Herring said he has not been training MMA full-time and would need to devote the majority of his time towards training if he wants to be fight in today's competitive landscape.
UFC Officially Signs Jon Olav Einemo
Jon Olav Einemo is the newest member of the UFC heavyweight roster.
The organization has officially signed the Norwegian big man, a UFC official confirmed with MMA Fighting on Monday. No word just yet on the exact terms of the deal and when he will debut inside the Octagon.
As MMA Fighting first reported last month, the UFC and Einemo have been in serious talks for several weeks.
UFC 128's Almeida vs. Pyle, Pellegrino vs. Tibau to stream on Facebook
Do you "Like" the UFC?
If so, you'll be able to watch two additional bouts from this month's blockbuster "UFC 128: Shogun vs. Jones" event.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) has confirmed that UFC officials are planning on streaming a pair of UFC 128 preliminary bouts – Ricardo Almeida vs. Mike Pyle and Kurt Pellegrino vs. Gleison Tibau – on Facebook.com.
Diego Sanchez, Martin Kampmann suspended indefinitely following UFC on Versus 3
Welterweights Diego Sanchez and Martin Kampmann have been suspended indefinitely following their three-round slugfest this past Thursday at UFC on Versus 3.
However, both can be cleared to fight if they are able to provide a clean bill of health.
MMAjunkie.com today requested and received the remaining suspensions from the Kentucky Boxing and Wrestling Authority after initially reporting three medical suspensions arising from the event, which took place at KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Ky., and aired live on Versus.
Frankie Edgar wants overtimes in MMA
In this past week's new edition of HDNet's "Inside MMA," MMA legend and show host Bas Rutten addressed a viewer's email that suggested an overtime round be instituted to resolve draws in high-profile bouts such as title contests and No. 1 contender affairs.
"They do it at K-1 in Japan, and I love that idea," Rutten said. "Actually, 'The Ultimate Fighter' does it, too. You fight to a draw, boom, the last [round], whoever wins that wins."
Edgar, who survived a first-round beatdown against Maynard to battle make to a split draw at UFC 125, was a guest on the new edition of "Inside MMA" and also supported the idea.
"I think another five-minute round would be perfect," Edgar said. "You go into a fight, you prepare, and you want a decisive outcome. To have to wait another three months and possibly another fight is kind of annoying. I would say another round would be great. You get to figure out who's the winner right then and there.
Igor Pokrajac and Ryan Bader Call Out Tito Ortiz
Igor Pokrajac defeated Todd Brown via TKO at UFC on Versus 3 and called out Tito Ortiz during his victory speach. Ryan Bader also called out Tito Ortiz in an interview with ESPN:
"I would want to fight Tito Ortiz. Just because I grew up watching him. I want to have one of those guys on my résumé like a Randy Couture or Chuck Liddell. Purely out of respect, he's one I'd like to fight before my career is over ... Really, I didn't even feel like going back and watching (my loss to Jon Jones) because I didn't feel like I fought to even a quarter of my potential."
Tito Ortiz responds on Twitter:
Nice to be infamous! Take a ticket and wait in line.
Three medical suspensions for UFC on Versus 3, main event still pending
Three competitors were suspended following this past Thursday's UFC on Versus 3, though it's highly likely another two will be added to that list: Diego Sanchez and Martin Kampmann.
The welterweight pair delivered a "Fight of the Year" candidate for a three-round brawl that left both bloodied and battered. Sanchez, in particular, took a tremendous amount of damage en route to a controversial unanimous decision.
A rep for the Kentucky Boxing and Wrestling Authority said medical suspensions are not yet available for the headlining fight because the on-site doctor is conducting a follow-up examination on both Sanchez and Kampmann.
UFC on Versus 4 set for June 26; company brass says location yet to be determined
While the books aren't quite closed on UFC on Versus 3 just yet – a stellar main event and hotly contested decision result have ensured that – the former home of the WEC is already looking forward to broadcasting its next event.
During Thursday's UFC on Versus 3 event, UFC and Versus executives officially announced UFC on Versus 4 will take place on Sunday, June 26.
Today, the UFC's vice president of regulatory affairs, Marc Ratner, told MMAjunkie.com that a location for the event has yet to be officialy determined, but the promotion is eyeing multiple venues in the Midwest and East Coast regions of the country.
UFC on Versus 3 bonuses: Sanchez, Kampman net $160K bonuses
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Diego Sanchez, Martin Kampmann, Shane Roller and Brian Bowles each earned "Fight Night" bonuses for their performances at Thursday's "UFC on Versus 3: Sanchez vs. Kampmann" event.
Sanchez and Kampmann each earned a whopping $160,000 bonuses for "Fight of the Night" honors.
Roller, who earned the night's "Knockout of the Night" award, and Bowles, who got the "Submission of the Night" bonus, each took home $40,000.
Channelsurfing.net operator arrested, charged with copyright infringement of UFC events
The UFC's war on piracy got some federal help this morning.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) unit today arrested the operator of Channelsurfing.net.
Federal officials charged 32-year-old Bryan McCarthy of Texas with one count of criminal infringement of a copyright. He allegedly posted illegal streams of the UFC, NFL, NBA, WWE and other sports programming.
According to today's release, McCarthy made more than $90,000 in profits from online merchants who paid him to advertise on the site. Since it was seized on Feb. 1, the site has received 1.3 million hits.
Chael Sonnen Completes Suspension; UFC Return Date Still Unknown
Former UFC No. 1 middleweight contender Chael Sonnen has completed a six-month California state athletic commission suspension and paid a $2,500 fine for banned substance use, moving him one step closer to a possible return to the active UFC roster pending the resolution of an ongoing federal money laundering case.
CSAC executive officer George Dodd confirmed to MMA Fighting that Sonnen has fulfilled the terms of his penalty in the state effective Thursday. According to Dodd, Sonnen still has at least one step to take before his license is reinstated in the state, however.
"If Mr. Sonnen wants to be licensed here in California, he will have to appear before the commission to regain his license," Dodd told MMA Fighting in an email. "Every other state will have to make a determination on their process for licensing Mr. Sonnen."
Dodd told MMA Fighting that Sonnen does not yet have a date scheduled to meet with the commission.
"The Ultimate Fighter 14" tryouts set for March 21 with featherweights, bantamweights
Recruiting is underway for the 14th season of "The Ultimate Fighter."
That season of the reality show, which begins production this summer and debuts in the fall on Spike TV, has yet to be officially announced, but may feature the promotion's first-ever lighter-weight contestants.
UFC matchmaker Sean Shelby today announced via Twitter that featherweight and bantamweight fighters are invited to an upcoming open tryout session.
UFC on Versus 3 live and official weigh-in results
The weigh-in results include:
MAIN CARD (Versus)
-Martin Kampmann (171) vs. Diego Sanchez (171)
-C.B. Dollaway (185) vs. Mark Munoz (186)
-Alessio Sakara (186) vs. Chris Weidman (186)
-Brian Bowles (135) vs. Damacio Page (136)+
PRELIMINARY CARD (Facebook)
-Cyrille Diabate (205) vs. Steve Cantwell (206)
-Danny Castillo (155) vs. Joe Stevenson (155)
-Shane Roller (156) vs. Thiago Tavares (156)
-Reuben Duran (136)* vs. Takeya Mizugaki (136)
-Rob Kimmons (185) and Dongi Yang (186)
-Dave Branch (186) vs. Rousimar Palhares (186)
-Todd Brown (205) vs. Igor Pokrajac (204)
Coach Tells Evans He Should Be Willing to Fight Jones
Trevor Wittman has advised Rashad Evans to fight teammate Jon Jones if Jones wins the UFC light heavyweight title from Mauricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC 128.
Evans had been scheduled to challenge Rua at the March 19 event. When Evans sprained a ligament in his knee, however, Jones filled in as his replacement.
“Mentally, I know it’s a little rough for [Evans] to see one of the guys he made a pact with to not fight go out there and take his position,” said Wittman, who is the head coach at the Grudge Training Center, a Jackson’s MMA affiliate gym where Evans has trained. “… I had the conversation with Rashad that I felt Rashad should fight Jon Jones if he wins.”
Wittman does in fact think Jones will beat Rua. He believes the 23-year-old could become one of the greatest fighters in MMA history. However, Wittman doesn’t feel Jones should have moved into Evans’ spot.
Jorge Rivera’s Team Calls Bisping’s Claims “The Pot Calling the Kettle Black”
It’s pretty obvious at this point that Michael Bisping and Jorge Rivera won’t be exchanging holiday cards this year, but the back and forth between their camps isn’t slowing down either.
After a couple of days of silence from Bisping following the controversy that swirled at UFC 127, his team at Wolfslair MMA, specifically manager Anthony McGann, released a statement alleging unprofessional conduct by Rivera and his coach Matt Phinney.
It was that unprofessional attitude, according to the statement, that provoked Bisping during the week of the fight and not necessarily the videos Rivera and his sponsors at Ranger-Up produced mocking the former “Ultimate Fighter” winner.