Chael Sonnen: Fighter, Realtor, Politician...Amnesiac?
Remember that interview he did this Monday on Pro MMA Radio that included the inflammatory comments about Lance Armstrong & cancer? Now Sonnen claims it never happened. "I never did an interview with Larry Pepe. I've never spoke of Lance Armstrong -- ever." He then claimed to Ariel Helwani that he's never spoken to Pepe despite having appeared on Pro MMA Radio with him before. 5 times.
UFC Targeting March 2011 Return to Ireland
The UFC is making tentative plans to return to Ireland.
The promotion, which previously held events in Ireland and Northern Ireland, is likely to return to the Emerald Isle, perhaps sometime around St. Patrick's Day, according to UFC UK President Marshall Zelaznik.
"We are targeting Dublin for 2011 and working toward March, but St. Patty's Day may not fit perfectly for us," Zelaznik wrote in an email to MMA Fighting. "But hope is we will be there in '11."
Jon Fitch Or Thiago Alves? Carlos Condit Wants To Fight The Lesser Of Two Evils
Translation: Fitch-who Condit thinks will also win at UFC 117 this weekend. "They're both very tough match-ups, they're dangerous fighters and they have a lot of tools. But the better match-up for me would be Jon Fitch. That's not taking anything away from Fitch, it's just the lesser of two evils. They're both killers. Fitch isn't as much of a finisher as Thiago Alves, he's more about grinding his opponent into the ground - literally. With my jiu-jitsu, I could withstand that and do better than a lot of guys have done. Thiago's coming off a long lay-off so we'll see if that has any effect on him. I see Fitch winning it because I think he'll be busier and I see Thiago being a little rusty."
Dustin Hazelett Not McLovin' Pre-Fight Trash Talk
And he thinks all the "smack talk" leading up to UFC fights should stay in pro wrestling and prefers to let his previous fights do the talking when it comes to pre-fight hype. "I'm not in this to become famous or anything. I don't like all the hype and I hate talking smack. I just do this because I enjoy competing in martial arts. A lot of guys trash talk just to hype the fight and stuff like that, but I got into this because of martial arts and that's not what martial arts are about, talking smack and stuff like that. That's more pro wrestling than martial arts. When they're talking smack, I think it looks bad for the sport and sets a bad example. I don't want this sport to become pro wrestling where we have to do monologues where we talk about how we're going to beat somebody up. My previous fights should be enough to hype my next fight. If they're not, then I should remain on the undercard."
Paul Daley Disciplinary Hearing Possibly Set For August 10
Paul Daley will soon face the music for his suckerpunch of Josh Koscheck at UFC 113. His manager says the Quebec Athletic Commission has a hearing set for August 10 to address the incident, in which Daley slugged Josh Koscheck after the final bell of their co-main event-fight. Daley is set to appear at Shark Fights 11 on Sept. 13 but his manager is confident any punishment won't interfere with that date. No confirmation of the date yet from QAC officials.
UFC Quick Quote: Chael Sonnen says Lance Armstrong gave himself cancer
"When you screw up, you have to own it. That stuff really gets under my skin. Take Lance Armstrong. Lance Armstrong did a number of things and he gave himself cancer. He cheated, he did drugs, and he gave himself cancer. Well, instead of saying ‘Hey listen, I cheated and gave myself cancer, don't be like me.' He actually made himself the victim and then went out and profited something like $15 million dollars from this ‘Hey, poor me, let's find a cure for cancer' campaign instead of just coming clean and saying, ‘Look, here's what I did, I screwed myself up, and I hope people learn from my mistakes.' You just watch these guys and can't help but think, God, what a fraud. You got the whole Michael Phelps being a pothead thing too. I'm just glad I'm in the business I'm in so I can get them in the cage and kick the crap out of them."
Well, I guess this qualifies as an unexpected twist. Chael Sonnen has turned his focus away from Anderson Silva and onto Lance Armstrong. Yes, the guy who rides bicycles.
UFC 122 Slated For Germany
There is often resistance, but no one has been able to slow the UFC juggernaut from bull rushing into new markets. MMA’s preeminent promotion, despite not being allowed to have minors at its first live event in Germany and recently being booted off German television, is set for a return trip. UFC 122 will take place Nov. 13 at Konig Pilsener Arena in Oberhausen, Germany. The event may not be available on German television if the UFC can’t work things out with broadcasting officials there, but it will be available to the U.S. market on a six-hour, same-day delay on Spike TV.
Paul Sass vs. Mark Holst Slotted For UFC 120
It looks like the final piece of UFC 120's puzzle is in place. Lightweights Paul Sass and Mark Holst have been slotted into the preliminary card of the U.K. event, which takes place Oct. 16 at the O2 Arena in London. Verbal agreements are in place, paperwork pending. Sass, who hails from Liverpool, England, is one of four British fighters who make their octagon debuts at the card, though his resume stands alone. Undefeated in 10 appearances, he holds a record for seven consecutive victories by way of triangle choke. Only two of his opponents have made it out of the first round with him.
Is Michael Bisping "2 Wins Away" From A Title Shot?
He thinks so. He made that comment while also briefly talking Chael Sonnen-Anderson Silva and hsi next fight against Yoshihiro Akiyama. "If Chael Sonnen comes into the octagon in the right frame of mind, he will give Silva problems. But I can see Silva winning this by submission, because when Sonnen fought Nate Marquardt he was dominant on top, but left himself open at times. I’ll be watching the fight closely, because I believe I am two wins away from fighting for that belt. I think I have seen chinks in [Akiyama's] armor. I’m going to come in very strong, very fit, and I’m going to exploit him by setting a fast pace."
Ustream Coughs Up UFC Pirate IPs, Adds New Copyright Protection System
Looks like some of the UFC pay-per-view pirates may be walking the plank sooner rather than later. Ustream.tv recently complied with a subpoena issued on behalf of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) requesting the IP addresses of users illegally broadcasting pay-per-view events through the live streaming site, NewTeeVee confirms. Not coincidentally, the Ustream gang has also added a new copyright protection system to help deter future content crooks from trying to cheat the world's largest fight promotion. Justin.tv, also named in the Zuffa copyright subpoena, has yet to respond.
UFC on Versus 2 ratings result in average audience of 1 million viewers
Sunday's UFC on Versus 2 event scored a 0.86 household rating and an average audience of 991,000 viewers, MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com today confirmed.
The event took place Aug. 2 at the San Diego Sports Arena in California and aired on Versus.
The ratings took a dip compared to the first UFC on Versus event, which averaged 1.24 million viewers back in March.
Fitch Looking For Title Shot Or 185
Jon Fitch has been itching to get another shot at the UFC welterweight title, and he hopes to achieve that goal when he faces Thiago Alves at UFC 117 in Oakland. The American Kickboxing Academy welterweight has long lobbied for a rematch with champion Georges St-Pierre, who defeated Fitch at UFC 87 in August 2008. Fitch believes as he matches up with another top five welterweight that a win would secure another shot at the belt, but he knows there are no sure things in MMA. The UFC welterweight title will be up for grabs later this year when Fitch's teammate Josh Koscheck gets his rematch with St-Pierre in December. The American Kickboxing Academy teammates have long been taxed by UFC president Dana White about fighting each other, both stating several times that it would never happen. For Fitch, he believes that timing will play a big role in what he does after December if his teammate and close friend is victorious in his bid to win the UFC welterweight strap. Looking down the road, Fitch has now stated that if Koscheck is victorious (including a likely immediate rematch after December), he will eat some food, hit the weight room, and go up to 185 pounds in hopes of adding another title to the San Jose, Calif., gym.
Insurance-Less Joe Stevenson Heads To Mexico, Still Wants Gomi Fight
This past Friday, UFC lightweight Joe Stevenson postponed an interview with MMAjunkie.com about his career plans. Why? He was headed across the border to Tijuana, Mexico. No, he didn't get a good deal on prescriptions, hit the club scene, or pick up some kitsch. He went because he didn't have health insurance, and X-rays on his knee proved cheaper across the border. Stevenson was supposed to face Takanori Gomi this past Sunday in San Diego at UFC on Versus 2. However, he was forced to withdraw when he tweaked his knee in training five weeks prior to the bout. Gomi instead took on Tyson Griffin and knocked him out with a wicked right hand in the first round of the Versus-televised bout. Despite the cancellation, Stevenson still badly wants the Gomi fight and hopes both the UFC and fans want to see him take on the Japanese star. He plans to call matchmaker Joe Silva to throw his name in the hat of possible future opponents. However, Stevenson's X-ray technician in Tijuana said he may have a partial tear of his LCL (lateral collateral ligament) or PCL (posterior cruciate ligament). Regardless, he believes he doesn't need surgery. And if he doesn't need surgery, he wants to fight. Stevenson is just one of many fighters who doesn't have health insurance and meets his health needs by hook or by crook while often relying on a network of friends and sympathetic professionals to receive medical care.
No John McCarthy At UFC 117
Although he worked last night's UFC On Versus 2 in his return to the promotion, the CSAC has told "Big" John McCarthy "Let's Not Get It On" for this coming weekend. McCarthy has not been assigned to work UFC 117 but remains in the mix for future California events. Last night's event was McCarthy's first UFC event since late 2007. He's still not licensed in Nevada but NSAC executive director Keith Kizer said his application remains on file should an opening come up, which isn't too often.
UFC on Versus 2 draws reported attendance of 8,132 for $490K gate
SAN DIEGO – The UFC's second-ever event on Versus, "UFC on Versus 2: Jones vs. Matyushenko" drew an enthusiastic crowd of 8,132 attendees for a live gate of $489,685 according to UFC officials.
The Aug. 1 event, which featured a light heavyweight main event between blossoming contender Jon Jones and veteran stalwart Vladimir Matyushenko, took place at the San Diego Sports Arena in California.
The event was the UFC's second trip to San Diego, though the first visit in 2006 was a private function for the armed forces at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.