Zelaznik says UFC "very likely" to make Swedish debut in November
The Ultimate Fighting Championship continues to blaze new ground, and Sweden is apparently on the current "to do" list.
While UFC president Dana White in February confirmed to MMAjunkie.com that the organization was targeting Sweden for a 2011 event, UFC exec Marshall Zelaznik has a more defined target in mind.
Two UFC on Versus 3 prelimary-card fights to stream live on Facebook
Two preliminary-card fights from Thursday's UFC on Versus 3 event will stream for free on Facebook.
MMAjunkie.com today confirmed that lightweights Joe Stevenson vs. Danny Castillo and light heavyweights Steve Cantwell vs. Cyrille Diabate will be part of the live one-hour stream, which begins at 8 p.m. ET (5 p.m. PT).
An hour later at 9 p.m., the event's main card airs live on Versus.
Ryan Bader Calls Out Tito Ortiz While Tito Ortiz is Busy Calling Out Forrest Griffin
Contrary to popular belief, the UFC middleweight division has not quite cornered the market on making strategically advantageous call-outs. While the world’s 185-pound fighters are lining up to let everybody know how much they’d all love to fight Michael Bisping – which is like so 2010 – their light heavyweight brethren are also making requests of UFC matchmaker Joe Silva. It seems that at least a couple of 205-pounders have been spending some time on the “Fighters” page over at UFC.com and thinking to themselves, “Let’s see here, who can I beat?”
Ryan Bader, for one, emerged this week from whatever dark room he’s been huddled in, rocking back and forth since UFC 126 to tell ESPN.com he’d very much like to fight Tito Ortiz. Cuz, why not? Sure, just a withered shell of his former self, Ortiz hasn’t won a fight since 2006, is barely clinging to his career and seemingly can’t make it to the cage without a serious back injury, cracked skull or giant laceration over his eye, but still … fighting him would mean A LOT to Bader. You know, on a personal level.
“I would want to fight Tito Ortiz,” Bader told Brett Okamoto. “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.”
Team Wolfslair fires back at Rivera and camp following incident at UFC 127
Michael Bisping's team has issued a statement in response to the controversy following his UFC 127 fight with Jorge Rivera.
The team believes Rivera's cornerman was the primary catalyst for the bad blood that boiled over before, during and after the fight, which took place this past Sunday at Acer Arena in Sydney.
The statement comes one day after UFC president Dana White told MMA Fighting that Bisping is to be disciplined for his behavior following the co-main event fight.
Chris Lytle to Consider Retirement After Secret Surgery, UFC 127 Loss
Because he's a pro's pro, Chris Lytle wouldn't admit it, but he was far from fighting at full strength in his UFC 127 loss to Brian Ebersole. In fact, just four weeks before his fight, he had the injured meniscus in his right knee removed, MMA Fighting has learned.
Lytle chose to keep the procedure quiet to deflect attention and avoid devaluing Ebersole's win. But after MMA Fighting learned of the injury from two separate sources, Lytle's manager Ken Pavia finally confirmed the surgery, which he said began as an exploratory procedure before the doctor removed the meniscus due to the damage.
Lytle chose to fight, and the ensuing unanimous decision loss to Ebersole marked the end of a four-fight win streak. It could also possibly bring a close to his career.
Chael Sonnen calls out Michael “Spitsbing” Bisping.......
now im not Chael fan but i would root for him! he would be my favorite 4 one night!
To: Joe Silva, Matchmaker Extraordinaire, Ultimate Fighting Championship Re: Spitsbing & his tainted victory Joe: If you get a chance to talk with him, please mention to your idiot-in-residence Michael Spitsbing it’ll be a little tougher to knee ME in the head when I’m charging at him like a runaway train and mincing him through the fence like a boiled potato, should we ever have the pleasure of each other’s company for a few (VERY few) moments in the Octagon. Oh; and I’d suggest to him being a little careful about spitting on any of MY cornermen, since any one of them can beat him up as badly as I can. Thanks ever so much. Hope all is well. -Chael Sonnen
UFC Will Match James Te Huna's UFC 127 Fight Purse Donation
Despite his loss at this past weekend's UFC 127 event, light heavyweight James Te Huna donated his entire fight purse to victims of Australia and New Zealand's recent flooding. Following the show, Marshall Zelaznik, the UFC's managing director of international development, announced that the organization is matching the Kiwi's donation. Additional thousands will be raised by a UFC 127 memorabilia auction, which runs through Wednesday. "Jamie Te Huna donated his fight purse," Zelaznik said after the show, which took place at Acer Arena in Sydney, Australia. "The UFC is actually matching that for the relief in New Zealand. We're also still taking bids for UFC 127 memorabilia. We expect to approach $30,000 as part of a donation for the Queensland flood relief." Auction items include the UFC 127 octagon canvas, Jon Fitch's event shorts, Michael Bisping's gloves and walk-out shirt, Jorge Rivera's full walk-out gear, and Kyle Noke's shorts and shirt. Bids as of Monday afternoon ranged from $500 to $1,550. A UFC 127 VIP experience brought in $10,000, according to the auction site, ufc.thegivingbridge.com. Tropical Cyclone Yasi ravaged large parts of Australia and New Zealand in late January and early February. The storm and subsequent flooding caused more than $800 million in damages. Thousands were left homeless, and hundreds of thousands were left without power for extended periods of time.
UFC's Dana White Says Michael Bisping Will Be Punished
UFC middleweight contender Michael Bisping landed an illegal knee to the face of opponent Jorge Rivera during their UFC 127 co-headliner bout. That blow possibly decided the outcome of the fight as Rivera was visibly diminished after getting a very brief pause to recover.
But it's Bisping's actions after the fight which included spitting at Rivera's cornerman that have him in hot water with UFC boss Dana White. Mike Chiappetta reports:
UFC middleweight contender Michael Bisping will face disciplinary action for his behavior following his UFC 127 win, UFC president Dana White told MMA Fighting.
White said he has yet to make a decision on whether Bisping will be fined and/or suspended for his actions, but confirmed that he will be subject to some punishment.
UFC's Cub Swanson sidelined by tooth infection, hoping for quick return
Former WEC competitor Cub Swanson's UFC debut was put on ice this past week.
The veteran fighter was forced out of a scheduled UFC on Versus 3 bout with Erik Koch, who now meets fellow featherweight Raphael Assuncao next month UFC 128.
Swanson today told MMAjunkie.com Radio about the reason for his scratch from the card, and it was a mouthful.
Tito Ortiz Talks About His Injury, Calls Out Forrest Griffin
"I did it about three and a half months into training, I was at Rafael Cordeiro’s training doing my Muay Thai, I think we went into the 10th round about 10 seconds left in the 10th round and one of my training partners went to go throw a right hand (and) he was southpaw, I was orthodox, I was throwing a right hand at the same time. His head was a little lower than mine and it caught me right above the bridge of my eyebrow and went straight to the bone in my skull and gave me 22 stitches."
Vitor Belfort campaigns for fight with UFC 127 winner Michael Bisping
With a controversial victory over Jorge Rivera at this past weekend's UFC 127 event, co-headliner Michael Bisping owns three consecutive wins and a 4-1 record over his past five fights.
Contenders such as Chael Sonnen, Yushin Okami and Alan Belcher seem logical next opponents for the Brit, but another notable has throw his hat into the ring.
And it's recent title challenger Vitor Belfort.
Thursday's UFC on Versus 3 event airs in 3D, Harris and Florian to commentate
Thursday's UFC on Versus 3 event will be the organization's first to air in 3D, officials today announced.
The event takes place March 3 at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville with a Diego Sanchez vs. Martin Kampmann headliner.
The 3D telecast will be made available live to those with 3D-capable TV sets through dedicated 3D channels on affiliates across the country, including Comcast XFINITY.
The event also airs in its normal 2D format on Versus and Versus HD (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT) with UFC commentators Joe Rogan and Mike Goldberg.
Jorge Rivera Says 'Classless' Bisping Hit Him with Intentional Illegal Knee
There are moments from his UFC 127 bout with Michael Bisping in Sydney, Australia that are still fuzzy to Jorge Rivera, but there is at least one thing he knows for sure.
The illegal knee that Bisping hit him with in the first round? No matter what Bisping said later, that was no accident, Rivera told MMA Fighting on Sunday.
"That knee was deliberate, and I'll tell you exactly how I know this," Rivera said.
Spike TV offers UFC 129 "UFC Prelims" special with Toronto show
Spike TV will air a "UFC Prelims" special as part of April's UFC 129 event in Toronto.
UFC officials confirmed the plans during Saturday's live broadcast of UFC 127.
Although not officially announced, sources told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that welterweight bouts of Nate Diaz (13-6 MMA, 8-4 UFC) vs. Rory MacDonald (10-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) and Brian Foster (15-5 MMA, 3-2 UFC) vs. Sean Pierson (11-4 MMA, 1-0 UFC) are the leading candidates for the cable broadcast.
UFC 129 takes place April 30 at Toronto's Rogers Centre, and the pay-per-view main card features welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre vs. top contender Jake Shields.
Additional UFC 129 fights are likely to stream on Facebook prior to Spike TV's "UFC Prelims" broadcast.
Fight Metric report for BJ Penn vs Jon Fitch draw
The official report from Fight Metric shows that Fitch outlanded Penn a staggering 149-2 in round three and 231-48 overall. After the jump you can see the grappling chart and who they scored the fight in favor of. Here's a hint: his name rhymes with Bon-dage.
UFC on Versus 3 to Be Broadcast in 3D
he growing trend of 3D television is finally ready to marry itself to the growing sport of mixed martial arts.
The UFC's upcoming UFC on Versus 3 event will be broadcast in 3D on select cable outlets, sport trade journal Sports Business Daily reported on Friday. It will mark the first time a UFC event is telecast in the format, though the UFC has privately tried out the technology in the past.
According to the report, the 3D telecast will have a different production crew from Versus' regular HD setup. Versus is also planning to occasionally utilize a split-screen presentation that will air live arena content like locker room views alongside commercials.
The report notes that among cable distributors, Comcast, Cox, Verizon, Massillon Cable, Blue Ridge and Armstrong have signed on.
With Opponents Injured, Koch-Assuncao Tabbed for UFC 128
Erik Koch and Raphael Assuncao were both left without opponents this week when Cub Swanson and Manny Gamburyan pulled out of their respective bouts. Now, it appears Koch and Assuncao will instead square off against one another in their Octagon debuts at UFC 128 “Shogun vs. Jones.”
While not yet finalized, a source close to the matchup tells Sherdog.com that the featherweights have verbally agreed to meet at the event, which takes place March 19 at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. The change in matchmaking was first reported on Saturday by MMAWeekly.com.
Opponent aside, there will be no change for Assuncao, who was to face Gamburyan on the undercard of UFC 128 before Gamburyan sustained a back injury in training. Koch will have his fight pushed back two weeks, as the Roufusport product was slated to meet Swanson, who suffered an undisclosed impairment, at UFC Live 3 on March 3.
UFC On Versus 3 Official With 11 Fights, Koch Now Off
UFC today announced that UFC On Versus 3 is again official, but this time with only 11 fights. With UFC unable to find a short-notice replacement for injured Cub Swanson, original opponent Erik Koch is now off as a result. Koch is expected to be added to an upcoming card.
UFC fighter Te Huna donates to Earthquake Appeal
Sydney based New Zealander James Te Huna will return to the cage this weekend and has generously offered all of his match earnings to go to victims of the New Zealand earthquake.
At UFC 110, Te Huna made his octagon debut in front of a parochial hometown crowd. After breaking his arm in the first round, blocking a head kick by opponent Igor Pokrajac, Te Huna powered on to win via TKO in the third round. That brave performance was followed by 12 months of arduous rehabilitation and this weekend he finally returns to the cage.
Outside of his generous sponsors that include PC Group and Boost Mobile, his fight against dangerous striker Alexander Gustaffson at UFC 127 also presents his first pay cheque for fighting in a year. Te Huna did not need to look to far on where to spend it.
Charlie Sheen Rants Leads Dana White To Invite Him To Fight Chuck Lorre At UFC 127
Seriously. "BJ Penn is fighting Jon Fitch on Saturday ... [Charlie and Chuck] are more than welcome to be the co-main event. I have Charlie Sheen by brutal knockout." For those who haven't heard yet, after Sheen's recent defamatory radio rant production on his top-rated sitcom "Two And A Half Men" was cancelled for the rest of the season. Supposedly there was a threat from one towards the other involving beating the guy up in the Octagon.