Weekend Rundown: Downes Survives Scare, Wins Outside Octagon
Taking a tuneup fight with a regional promotion is a risky move for any fighter under Zuffa contract, and UFC lightweight Daniel Downes nearly demonstrated why.
An import from the World Extreme Cagefighting merger, the 25-year-old Roufusport product had not fought since WEC 53 in December, when he became the first man to top Chinese prospect Tiequan Zhang. Still without a date for his Octagon debut, Downes competed Friday night under the North American Fighting Championship banner at the Potawatomi Bingo Casino Expo Center in Milwaukee, and found himself in danger early against Tory Bogguess, a lesser-known veteran of the Midwest circuit.
UFC Heavyweight Roy Nelson Wants Three Minute Rounds
Roy Nelson is a multi-tasker. While preparing for his May 28 fight with Frank Mir at UFC 130, he is also trying to come up with ideas to improve the sport. Nelson recently spoke to ESPN.com and shared his reasoning for why he thinks three minute rounds are the way to go for MMA.
After Pacquiao vs. Mosley, UFC president White and boxing's duBoef discuss future
LAS VEGAS – Contrary to a popular opinion in the MMA community, boxing most certainly is not dead.
The 16,412 fans that packed Las Vegas' MGM Grand Garden Arena – nearly 1,600 more enthusiasts than the UFC has ever drawn to the venue – for Saturday's Manny Pacquiao vs. Shane Mosley event proved that at boxing's highest level, the sport still is financially viable.
Of course, that doesn't mean there aren't glaring opportunities for the sport to improve and evolve. Nevertheless, UFC president Dana White, who was among the sellout crowd on Saturday night, believes boxing can survive. His organization is not in a competition with boxing, White said, and both fight sports can flourish.
"I think boxing and the UFC can coexist," White told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) after the pay-per-view show. "I'm a big fight fan. When there's a good boxing match, I want to see it."
Rampage Jackson to leave MMA when money is right with Hollywood, still wants Rashad Evans
It was gonna be an exciting fight. Those are the types of fights I'd watch. I'll watch Chuck fight every time he fights. I wouldn't watch a Rashad Evans fight or a "Queen" Mo fight. I wouldn't watch those guys fight but I'll watch Chuck Liddell fight."
Chuck Liddell was recently forced into retirement by Dana White and the UFC due to his growing number of knockout losses. The guys who had built him up into this indestructible force just couldn't bear to see him take so much punishment.
Jackson can be thankful that the same hasn't happened to him yet. He still possesses his iron clad chin that helped him gain the UFC light heavyweight title. He still has the speed and the skills to be competitive with most of the guys at 205 pounds, but that doesn't mean Jackson isn't about to call it quits.
Mike Brown rested, healed and ready to come back 'with a bang'
Less than two years ago, Mike Thomas Brown was the scariest featherweight in the sport.
Now, the 35-year-old mixed martial artist is fighting for job security after a dismal start to his 2011 fight campaign that saw the former WEC Featherweight Champion lose back-to-back contests to Diego Nunes (UFC 125) and Rani Yahya (UFC Fight for the Troops 2).
In fact, the American Top Team standout is 2-6 since dropping his 145-pound strap to Jose Aldo at WEC 44 in late 2009, including a shocking knockout loss to Manny Gamburyan at WEC 48 just a couple of months later.
Spike TV debuts "Frankie Edgar: In the Moment" on May 25 ahead of UFC 130
Following a successful March debut focused on Jon Jones, Spike TV brings back its special pre-event preview show "In the Moment," on Wednesday, May 25.
This time around, UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar takes center stage.
"UFC Presents Frankie Edgar: In the Moment" debuts at 10 p.m. ET/PT ahead of Edgar's UFC 130 main event with top contender and budding nemesis Gray Maynard.
UFC 134 Fight Card Shaping Up
The UFC will return to the country of Brazil for the first time since October 17th, 1998 later this year. UFC 134: Rio is scheduled for August 27th in the HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro, and the UFC is clearly stockpiling the card with popular Brazilian fighters. The top two fights are both rematches, with middleweight champion Anderson Silva defending his UFC middleweight title against the last man to earn a win over him, Yushin Okami. The other top matchup has former UFC light heavyweight champion Mauricio "Shogun" Rua looking to avenge a loss in his first UFC fight at the hands of another former champion, Forrest Griffin.
"We couldn’t wait to host our first-ever UFC event in Brazil’s biggest city," said White. "Brazilians have given so much to the growth of this sport. I’m excited that we can give back to the country that has given us so many great fighters. From Royce Gracie and Vitor Belfort to "Shogun" Rua, Anderson Silva and Jose Aldo, these fighters are all champions and are so proud of their roots. It’s time for us to bring a live UFC event here and show the people of Brazil how much this sport has grown."
Dorea: Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira Will Fight at UFC 134 if Healthy
The Nogueira brother's boxing coach Luis Carlos Dorea did an interview with Tatame where he spoke about his disciple Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and how he's coming along in his recuperation from injury. The topic of UFC 134 came up, and Dorea was quite clear that Big Nog could be on the card. But it all comes down to his health:
Everybody's looking forward to see Rodrigo fighting in UFC Rio. Is he getting ready to go and fight on this event?
Dorea: As for Rodrigo, he’s doing super fine. Rodrigo is going through much physiotherapy, he’s seeing how things are, but we first have to check his conditions, his health. If he’s good to go, I don’t see any problems. The thing isn’t about the fight, but the trainings. The trainings are hard, and Rodrigo trains like twice, three times a day, so he has to be good, 100% healed so that he can train hard and don’t feel a thing. Rodrigo’s doing just fine, we’ll all support him.
Wanderlei Silva Had Doubts of Coming Back, Now Holds Chris Leben’s Feet to the Fire
Wanderlei Silva is an icon in mixed martial arts. “The Axe Murderer” ruled the roost as the Pride middleweight champion in Japan. But even after Zuffa bought the venerable Japanese fight promotion and ultimately had to close its doors, Silva is as popular as ever.
He has struggled through his time in the Octagon. His record is just 2-3 in his latest stint in the UFC. Fans, however, forgive his losses because they simply love watching Wand fight. They don’t care if he holds a belt, or is rocketing up the rankings.
He’s well aware of that fact.
Zombieland: Chan Sung Jung calls out Mark Hominick
When Chan Sung Jung submitted Leonard Garcia with a twister back on March 26 at UFC Fight Night 24: "Nogueira vs. Davis," it broke a two-fight skid and gave him just his second win in five fights.
And, not to get greedy or anything, but he feels like he deserves a nice little step up in the featherweight division because of it. He made this clear with a short, but sweet, tweet:
History in the Making: Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson's greatest hits
The chain. The howl. The jovial smile that can turn into a menacing grimace in the blink of an eye.
For over a decade, Quinton "Rampage" Jackson has entertained fight fans with theatrics that are exceeded only by his performance in the ring or cage.
Whether he's knocking opponents out with the cinder blocks he calls fists or he's slamming them through the mat, the Memphis-born fighter almost always manages to entertain his audience.
At UFC 130: "Edgar vs. Maynard 3" on May 28, 2011, he will face off against another American wrestler in Matt Hamill, as both fighters hope to continue their climb up the 205-pound rankings.
But first, a look back.
Hello, Pride... meet "Rampage"
Jackson had a rough debut in Pride FC. He was matched up against the smaller Kazushi Sakuraba and used that size difference to his advantage. But the seasoned grappler was able to score a submission on the American.
When "Rampage" returned to Japan four months later, the result was decidedly different.
He took on professional wrestler Yuki Ishikawa and ragdolled him all around the ring. Punches to the head while on their feet and knees while on the mat were delivered to the Japanese fighter.
A combination against the ropes dropped Ishikawa to the mat and earned "Rampage" his first Pride victory.
But it wouldn't be his last.
Saturday Night's Mania Event: Jake Shields eye pokes Georges St. Pierre at UFC 129 ... but was it intentional?
Saturday Night's Mania Event is back, despite heavy competition from both Bellator 43 and the mega-fight between Manny Pacquiao and Shane Mosley.
That's alright, though, because we've got business to take care of.
In the wake of one of the most successful events in the history of the UFC, there are questions that need asking in regards to the main event that marred the entire show.
Was Jake Shields intentionally trying to poke Georges St. Pierre in the eye at UFC 129 this past Saturday, April 30, 2011, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada?
To start, it should be immediately established that an eye poke did, in fact, occur and it was the main culprit in causing GSP to lose vision in his left eye for most of the duration of the fight.
It was not a punch to the eye, as Shields initially commented at the post-fight press conference. It was a vicious poke, or maybe even scrape is a better term.
There are many layers to this occurrence that need to be discussed. Should the fight have been allowed to continue after the infraction, in which St. Pierre's sight was clearly compromised to the point of dangerousness?
Does someone need to tell Greg Jackson, trainer to the stars, that it's simply irresponsible for him to outright dismiss this fact when his fighter made him aware of it between rounds?
Did the ringside doctors and the entire commission drop the ball in regards to this entire incident?
Lots to talk about, ladies and sirs, let's get right to it.
Georges St. Pierre Discusses UFC 129 Eye Injury
UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre has been the subject of much discussion and ridicule since his UFC 129 decision win over Jake Shields. Fans and media alike have been harsh in their criticism, but one of the major game-changers in the fight was Shields inadvertently poking GSP in the eye in the third round. GSP came back to his corner and said he couldn't see out of his eye, and had considerable trouble finding his range for the rest of the fight.
There has been much speculation about the severity of his injury since the fight, so St. Pierre turned to twitter today to give his fans an update on his condition:
"I am so lucky my BJJ instructor Bruno Fernandes is an ophtamologist!!! I'll be in good hands!!!"
"My medical condition is called Hyphema. My vision is still blurry and my eye sensitive but the blood in my eye has now been absorbed..."
"My retina is find as well and my vision will come back to 100%!!! Can't be more happy!!"
Jeff Lacey Signs Agreement To Face Nick Diaz In Boxing Bout
May 6, 2011 - According to a press release, former IBF super-middleweight champion Jeff "Left Hook" Lacy has formally agreed to face Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz in a professional boxing bout. There is no word on whether or not Diaz will agree to the bout or which weight class this fight will be contested at should it be made.
Gleison Tibau Replaces Cody McKenzie, Will Face Bart Palaszewski at UFC 130
Ultimate Fighter season 12 contestant Cody McKenzie has been forced out of his UFC 130 fight with an injury, and Brazilian Gleison Tibau is likely to step in and replace him in facing veteran Bart Palaszewski.
The UFC confirmed that Tibau has verbally agreed to the bout.
McKenzie (12-1) has split his two fights in the UFC octagon, winning his debut with his trademark guillotine choke variation before dropping his most recent fight in a technical submission to Yves Edwards.
Ellenberger healing following successful surgery, eyes Top 10 opponent in return
Jake Ellenberger is a lucky man.
Rather than a mass of ravaged bone and tendon, he broke a single metacarpal on his left hand – the fourth one, to be exact – when he knocked out Sean Pierson this past Saturday at UFC 129. He'll be able to hit stuff again in six to eight weeks following corrective surgery he underwent Tuesday.
That means no zombie hand, as recently seen with UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz's left paw following months of abuse.
As for who Ellenberger (25-5 MMA, 4-1 UFC) is eyeing following his fourth-consecutive win in the UFC, he told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that he'd like a top-10 opponent and feels he's earned the opportunity.
With Tristar training, UFC 129 win, Rory Macdonald looks to move up the ladder
Rory MacDonald may have just needed a change in scenery.
A half-year after moving from his hometown of Kelowna, British Columbia to Montreal, Quebec, to work with Firas Zahabi at Tristar Gym, the Canadian welterweight is hitting his stride.
With a key victory over Nate Diaz (13-7 MMA, 8-5 UFC) this past Saturday at UFC 129, the 21-year-old MacDonald (11-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) feels he's ready for the best the division has to offer. Yet he said his skills are still a work in progress, which means he's going to be one scary guy in two or three years.
"I have many years ahead of me, and I have a lot to learn," MacDonald today told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). "I'm going to be much sharper every time you see me in the octagon because my life is training, literally."
Alexandre "Cacareco" Ferreire vs. Rousimar Palhares in the works for UFC 134
A middleweight bout between Brazilian UFC vets Rousimar Palhares (12-3 MMA, 5-2 UFC) and Alexandre Ferreira (18-7 MMA, 0-1 UFC) has been targeted for UFC 134.
Sources close to the event today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that verbal agreements are in place for the bout, though contracts have yet to be signed. Brazilian website Portal do Vale Tudo first reported the matchup.
UFC 134, first announced as "UFC: Rio," takes place Aug. 27 at HSBC Arena in Rio De Janeiro and is expected to feature a middleweight title fight between reigning champ Anderson Silva and challenger Yushin Okami.