Bantamweights Michael McDonald and Nick Pace slotted for UFC 133
A bantamweight bout between Michael McDonald (12-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC) and Nick Pace (6-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC) will fight at UFC 133, UFC officials today announced.
Verbal agreements are in place for the 135-pound matchup, according to the announcement.
Although not announced by the organization, UFC 133 could take place at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia on Aug. 6. The event is expected to air on pay-per-view.
UFC Fan Expo Toronto grappling tourney includes UFC fighter Diego Sanchez
UFC officials have announced a star-studded four-man field for a UFC Fan Expo Toronto grappling tournament.
The tournament takes place April 29-30 in conjunction with UFC 130 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Competitors include UFC lightweight Diego Sanchez, Canadian grappler Andrew McInnes, American jiu-jitsu champion Ryan Hall, and MMA veteran/Toronto BJJ head instructor Jorge Britto.
Rashad Evans Decides Against Training at One Specific Gym for Jon Jones Fight
Instead of joining a new camp, Rashad Evans has decided to train in several different locations in preparation for his light heavyweight title fight against Jon Jones.
Glenn Robinson, Evans manager at Authentic Sports Management, confirmed with MMA Fighting on Wednesday that "Suga" is "not going to train at one specific place" for the Jones fight.
"(Evans) is going to do a private training camp headed by Coach (Mike) Van Arsdale," Robinson said.
Robinson added that Evans' camp will officially kick off in "a couple of weeks," while the light heavyweight showdown between the former training partners is still scheduled to take place in late September or early October.
Anderson Silva versus Yushin Okami in Rio (Confirmed)
Yushin Okami will receive the middleweight title shot he earned last year after all.
UFC president Dana White confirmed with USA Today on Wednesday that UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva will defend his title against Okami on Aug. 27 in Rio de Janiero. The news was first reported by Tatame.com.
Okami (26-5) earned the shot to fight Silva (28-4) at UFC 122 when he defeated Nate Marquardt. However, following Silva's win over Vitor Belfort in February, White indicated that Okami might have to wait while Georges St-Pierre fought Silva first.
Barboza's camp says no Gomi discussions for "UFC: Rio," but lightweight open to bout
UFC lightweight prospect Edson Barboza has been linked to a potential matchup with Japanese superstar Takanori Gomi, but the Brazilian's camp says those reports are premature.
Brazilian-based outlet Tatame suggested Barboza and Gomi would meet at August's "UFC: Rio," event, but Barboza's manager, Alex Davis, told MMAjunkie.com there has been no such discussion thus far.
That said, Davis said his client would be thrilled to fight in his native country, and they welcome any opponent the UFC puts on the table
The Hitman Meets Doomsday On June 26th
UFC President Dana White has announced perhaps the most explosive matchup of the early summer, as two welterweight contenders collide in Pittsburgh on June 26th.
“Verbal agreements are in for a battle between two of the best strikers in the welterweight division as John “Doomsday” Howard takes on Martin “The Hitman” Kampmann,” said White.
TUF Alumni, led by Mitrione, Back in the Octagon updated April 11
Dana White announced that four more bouts have been set for June UFC events.
Heavyweight bangers Matt Mitrione and Christian Morecraft will meet in Pittsburgh on June 26th. “Big men collide as verbal agreements are in for 7-1 Christian Morecraft vs. undefeated Matt Mitrione in a heavyweight matchup,” said White.
TUF 11 star Nick "The Promise" Ring will meet James Head in Vancouver on June 11. "Seven-and-one James head is coming off an impressive victory over UFC veteran Gerald Harris and has verbally agreed to make his UFC debut against the undefeated Canadian middleweight Ring," he said.
In lightweight news, TUF favorite Joe "J-Lau" Lauzon and Curt "The War" Warburton have agreed to throw down. A lightweight bout has also been agreed to between TUF 12 runner-up Michael Johnson and Hawaiian slugger Edward Faaloloto, a WEC alum. Those fights will take place June 26 at UFC on Versus in Pittsburgh.
UFC Middleweight Alan Belcher Eyeing September Return Following Career Threatening Injury
May 8, 2010.
That was the last time UFC middleweight Alan Belcher stepped foot in the Octagon. Since his last appearance, Belcher has undergone two major surgeries and endured a lot of recovery time, but now that he’s back in the gym and training again, a return to action isn’t far off.
It was during training for a fight against Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu whiz Demian Maia that Belcher suffered the eye injury. At one point, it looked like it might end his career altogether.
Lucky for him, Belcher’s recovery went better than expected. He’s training again and starting to get back into the form that saw him threaten as one of the more dangerous 185-pounders rising up in the UFC’s middleweight division.
“It looks like Alan will probably make his return sometime in September, is what I’m hoping for. It’s the date that we kind of targeted as the date that he wants to come back,” Belcher’s manager, Malki Kawa of Authentic Sports Management, told MMAWeekly Radio recently.
LESNAR: "I want to be a farmer."
Mike Straka: "Mick Foley became a very succesful author. The Rock became a very sucessful actor. John Cena is also doing acting as well ... What do you see as your future?"
Brock Lesnar: "I'm planning my retirement every day. My heart and soul is on the farm. I've got two young boys and a young daughter and a beautiful wife at home that I just love to be around. I just want to raise my kids and be Joe Farmer Jones."
Several Strikeforce employees axed with Zuffa acquisition
But if it didn’t feel like a UFC event on television, behind the scenes, things were much different. The changes actually started at a smaller Strikeforce event, held eight days earlier, in Stockton, Calif., when several of the Strikeforce employees were brought into a room and told they were being let go. They were told they would have the opportunity, if they wanted, to apply for positions in UFC parent company Zuffa LLC. Many noted that while there was clearly uncertainty as soon as the purchase was announced, they were surprised the ax came down so quickly.
UFC 132 Fight Card: Cruz vs. Faber Official as Main Event
UFC.com has confirmed that bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz will face former WEC featherweight champ Urijah Faber at UFC 132 on Pay Per View on July 2. The fight will be a rematch of their 2007 bout at WEC 26 in 2007. That fight, contested at 145lbs, was won by Faber with a first round guillotine choke at 1:38. The Faber loss remains the only blemish on Cruz' record. The champ is on an eight fight win streak and Faber is 2-0 as a bantamweight.
July 2nd, live on Pay-per-view from Las Vegas, Nevada:
Royce Gracie Expecting to Fight at UFC Rio
UFC legend Royce Gracie hasn't fought in the Octagon since losing to Matt Hughes at UFC 60 in what was then the biggest pay per view (PPV) in company history. Gracie was the first star of the UFC, winning the 8 man tournaments at UFC 1 and 4 and the 16 man tourny at UFC 2.
He went on to a second legendary run fighting Japanese superstars Kazushi Sakuraba and Hidehiko Yoshida in Japan's Pride organization. Rumors have been swirling that Gracie would fight at the UFC's first return to Brazil since the 1990s in August.
It sounds like Royce will be fighting at UFC Rio after all, from UOL Esportes comes the following quote from Royce:
"It would be the perfect place to do my last fight. I never fought in Rio de Janeiro and I couldn't be more psyched. We are negotiating [the fight deal], but we should have it finalized in two weeks. We only had an initial contact and I don't even have an opponent yet, but we should have that finalized soon" said the 44 year old Gracie.
He also touched on his weight:
"My weight is the same as it was twenty years ago [80kg], I am still training, keeping the blade sharp. I follow a very strict diet. I never drank, never party, Carnaval, none of that... I'm ready to fight"
Anderson Silva wants to fight Georges St. Pierre, says he is "the best in the World"
Ron Kruck of HDNet catches up with UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson "The Spider" Silva during the grand opening of the Blackhouse gym in San Diego, California. Silva dicusses the facility, as well as the various teams who come together as one big "family." Silva says he is happy with his win over Vitor Belfort, but says he is focused only on preparing for the future. He also talks about the potential "superfight" with Georges St. Pierre, who he considers one of the best fighters in the world.
This past February Silva extended his UFC record for most consecutive title defenses to eight by knocking out Belfort in the opening round of their UFC 126 match-up. Who the consensus pound for pound king will face next is unclear, however should St. Pierre emerge victorious from his April 30th bout with Jake Shields, UFC President Dana White has stated that a "superfight" between the champs would be the likely scenario. Photo by: Francis Specker
Following life-changing win, Edson Barboza focused on UFC's best lightweights
UFC lightweight prospect Edson Barboza will never forget the night he fought Anthony Njokuani.
You see, March 19, 2011, is the day his life changed forever.
"My life changed dramatically because now I can help my family, and my wife's family, too," Barboza told MMAjunkie.com through his interpreter and manager, Alex Davis. "The money is in the bank, and I have to give thanks to God."