Quinton Rampage Jackson vs Wanderlei Silva could happen at UFC 93
The blockbuster light heavyweight match up between Quinton Jackson (28-7) and Wanderlei Silva (32-8-1) will more than likely not happen at UFC 91: “Couture vs. Lesnar” at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, on November 15.
The explosive (and long-rumored) third showdown between “The Axe Murderer” and “Rampage” was expected to co-headline the major pay-per-view (PPV) alongside the showdown between UFC Heavyweight Champion Randy Couture and Brock Lesnar.
We first passed along news of the booking earlier this month right here.
However, it appears that even though bout agreements were distributed to both fighters several factors prevented the fight from taking place, including the legal obligations that “Rampage” must fulfill in November.
MICHAEL BISPING WELCOMES RAMPAGE & KONGO
The Wolfslair gym in England was known to many fans as the home of “Ultimate Fighter” season 3 winner Michael “The Count” Bisping, but in recent weeks the addition of Quinton “Rampage” Jackson and Cheick Kongo have now made the team a major entity in the MMA world.
Jackson and Kongo both recently made the decision to leave former trainer Juanito Ibarra and make the move to Team Wolfslair. Bisping, who is currently training for a fight with Chris Leben, talked about the growth of his home camp in a recent interview with MMAWeekly.com
“I think it’s just a sign of the team getting bigger and bigger,” he commented. “Rampage and Kongo are signed now. On the domestic side in the U.K. we’ve got some of the other fighters in the forefront. Some of the top level fighters in the U.K., they’re joining up to the team now as well.”
Chris ‘The Crippler’ Leben: I’m going to make 20,000 people shut-up at UFC 89
UFC middleweight contender Chris Leben was our guest on this weeks broadcast of Pro MMA Radio. Presented by MMAmania.com, Pro MMA Radio airs live every Monday night at 9pm and features many of the top fighters from the UFC and beyond.
‘The Crippler’ didn’t waste any time getting into his fight with Michael Bisping at UFC 89. Leben gives credit to Bisping’s technical approach but isn’t impressed with his power. He also believes people underestimate his (Leben’s) ground game.
Leben predicts he will win by knockout.
Larry asks him about the short stint he did in prison that kept him out of UFC 85 and the story behind choking out one of his fellow inmates.
Chris also talks about his fight with Anderson Silva and how he had it in his head that he was going to knock him out in the first round - and how that mental mistake cost him the fight.
Great Expectations: Can UFC 91 Top 1 Million Buys?
During the conference call announcing Randy Couture v. Brock Lesnar as the main event of UFC 91, Dana White predicted that the event would do in excess of one million buys on pay-per-view. White’s prediction is rumored to be based on internal marketing research that found the fight was the most anticipated the company could deliver, even more anticipated than a potential showdown between Forest Griffin and Chuck Liddell (that eventually went down in flames courtesy of Rashad Evans) or a dream fight between BJ Penn and Georges St. Pierre scheduled for January.
Mark Bocek vs. Alvin Robinson on tap for UFC 91
A lightweight clash between Mark Bocek and Alvin Robinson is expected to be added to the Nov. 15 undercard for UFC 91: Couture vs. Lesnar at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
The news comes courtesy of a report on Sherdog.
Bocek, a jiu-jitsu standout from Canada, is 5-2 overall in his professional MMA career and 1-2 in three career UFC bouts. He debuted for the promotion at UFC 73 in July of 2007, where he suffered a first round TKO loss against Frankie Edgar.
Bocek then returned to the Octagon at UFC 79 last December during the undercard for Georges St. Pierre vs. Matt Hughes and Chuck Liddell vs. Wanderlei Silva. Showing improved overall MMA skills, Bocek recorded a unanimous decision victory over Alaskan Doug Evans.
Frank Edgar vs Matt Wiman UFC Fight for the Troops
There’s a an exciting lightweight clash between Frank Edgar (9-1) and Matt Wiman brewing for UFC Fight Night 16: “Fight for the Troops” at Fort Bragg in Fayetteville, N.C., on December 10.
MMAmania.com recently learned about the potential 155-pound bout; however, bout agreements have not been signed (though have been distributed to both fighters).
Edgar recently rebounded from the first professional loss of his career to Gray Maynard (unanimous decision) at UFC Fight Night 13 to outpoint former number one contender Hermes Franca on all three judges scorecards at UFC Fight Night 14: “Silva vs. Irvin” in July.
The latter bout was dubbed the “Fight of the Night,” earning Edgar and Franca each an additional $25,000 for their performances. It came as no surprise — Edgar is often involved in action-packed battles.
And the match up with “Handsome” should be no different.
NEWCOMER AL-TURK TO FIGHT KONGO AT UFC 92
Having just signed a multi-fight agreement with the Ultimate Fighting Championship, Cage Rage champion Mustapha Al-Turk was all set for a baptism of fire in the UFC against highly touted heavyweight prospect Cain Velazquez. It was scheduled to be a tough debut for the London Shootfighters standout, but one that suited him stylistically as both are heavy handed grapplers.
According to his coach and manager Alexis Demetriades, it appears that the fight is off due to injury. "We got word from Joe Silva that Velazquez has pulled out due to injury and will be undergoing knee surgery to fix it. It’s a shame as we had a strategy in place and we were all set to go."
The announcement of Velazquez withdrawing from the fight will leave many disappointed as the fight guaranteed fireworks. All is not lost, as a replacement has been found in tough Frenchman Cheick Kongo, who is coming off a TKO win over Dan Evensen at UFC 87 in Minneapolis.
Travis Lutter Back In UFC (Again)?
Apparently being cut from UFC for various reasons isn't the end of your career there-TUF 4 MW winner Travis Lutter, despite being let go by UFC earlier this year, could be coming back again. He appears set to face Joe Doerksen at UFC 91.
Anderson Silva NOT Retirng Next Year, says his Manager
Anderson Silva’s manager says that the middleweight champion will definitely not be retiring within the next 12 months.
He made the statement after UFC middleweight champion Silva told a Brazilian television station he was thinking of quitting MMA in the coming year.
Some have speculated that the decision was prompted by Dana White’s refusal to allow Silva leave to enter into a boxing match with Roy Jones Jr.
However, his manager Ed Soares says that this is not the case and that White has a good relationship with Silva.
“Dana hasn't done anything to **** over Silva. It's the complete opposite. Dana has been very good to Anderson,” he wrote on popular message board MMA.tv earlier.
“I can guarantee you Anderson will not be retiring within the next year. He still has 6 fights on his contract.”
Matt Hamill: I’m glad I have a trainer that won’t accept that performance
“I don’t know why I didn’t take him down more. That’s the one thing I have been thinking about over and over. I should have taken him down more like in the first round. That was the game plan. My weapon is ground and pound…I don’t follow what people say in the media, all I can say is I didn’t follow the game plan that we put together. Duff wants me to perform at the level he knows I’m capable of. I’m glad I have a trainer that won’t accept that performance and I respect him for speaking the truth. Duff didn’t do anything wrong.”
UFC ZEROING IN ON SUMMER 2009 FOR PHILIPPINES
The Ultimate Fighting Championship has not hidden its desire to expand its brand across the world. The UFC has yet to return to Japan and Brazil, countries that they haven’t been to in many years, but they have recently expanded into Canada, following a strong building process in Northern Ireland and England.
Anderson Silva to Retire Next Year
"I'll retire next year, I already gave my all. I don't need to prove anything for anyone and within one year I'll put my gloves aside."
-- Anderson Silva talking to Brazilian cable channel SporTV.
It's hard to argue against Silva's accomplishments and boredom with the landscape, but how many mega fights at 205lbs might we be missing if Silva retires? And is this too soon given his age? Shocking developments to say the least.
Joe Vedepo issued only UFC Fight Night 15 medical suspension
Only one competitor was issued a medical suspension following the Sept. 17 UFC Fight Night 15 event at the Omaha Civic Auditorium in Omaha, Neb.
It belongs to Joe Vedepo, who suffered a first-round knockout loss to Alessio Sakara in a preliminary bout.
The UFC newcomer was issued a 45-day suspension due to "heavy head blows," the Nebraska Athletic Commission told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
Vedepo (7-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC), an Iowa-based fighter who won the Midwest Cage Championship middleweight belt just prior to signing with the UFC, had clipped and staggered Sakara early in their bout. However, Sakara quickly recovered, avoided a takedown, and then connected on a head kick that set up the KO victory at 1:27 of the first round.
Cain Velasquez vs Mustafa Al-Turk (**OFF DUE TO INJURY**)
Hot heavyweight blue chip prospect Cain Velasquez (4-0) will likely return to action against Octagon newcomer Mustafa Al-Turk (6-3) at UFC Fight Night 16: “Fights for the Troops” at Fort Bragg in Fayetteville, N.C., on December 10.
MMAmania.com recently learned of the possible match up between the future the division and the current Cage Rage British Heavyweight Champion.
Velasquez is an undefeated American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) standout who has won all of his UFC bouts (two), building a reputation as a dangerous opponent who many in the division would prefer to avoid. Brad Morris and Jake O’Brien weren’t so lucky, and the former Arizona State University wrestler stopped them both in the first round.
He is widely regarded as a future champion, a distinction his possible opponent already has locked down.
Machida wants to face Rashad Evans to determine number one contender
After being scrapped from UFC 89 because of Thiago Silva’s back injury, Lyoto Machda keeps training in Brazil, but less than before. With his back to the octagon still undefined, Machida waits for the UFC to set his next bout. “I continue training, I can’t be caught unprepared for a fight, but I’m training less now, doing only some physical training, Jiu-Jitsu and Karatê… They didn’t say anything, but told me that this fight (with Thiago Silva) still can happen”, said the fighter, who would need to wait for his recovery to come back to the octagon.
But if it depended on his decision, he’d come back tomorrow with another opponent. “I’m waiting for any situation, or face him, if he gets better, or having another opponent. I would like to face Rashad Evans, and the winner gets a title shot, but now it seems like they will put him against Forrest Griffin… I’d like to face him and the winner gets Griffin, it’s a good way”, suggests Machida, who waits for a top opponent for his next fight.
“I don’t know how it’s gonna be, I’m ready to fight, but don’t wanna fight anyone, because I’m building my way in UFC and I wanna fight the top fighters so that they could give me a title shot after”, says. Between the option in the light-heavyweight Top 10 ranking is Maurício Shogun, getting better from a knee injury and waiting to fight in December, still without and opponent. If Machida could choose, another Brazilian fight could happen. “I never chose opponents, I leave it to UFC and my managers, what they want for me is good. If they think fight Shogun is better I’ll do it, I’m prepared to for everything”, guarantees Machida.
UFC Fight For The Troops Card Taking Shape
Not surprisingly, just as the Ultimate Fighting Championship announced its special UFC Fight For The Troops event for Dec. 10 at Fort Bragg in North Carolina, the fight card has started to slowly piece together.
Although the UFC has yet to make any bouts official, many fights have been verbally agreed to, quickly giving form to the UFC’s effort to raise money to build a treatment center for the brave men and women in the United States Armed Forces who have experienced traumatic brain injuries. The facility is being sponsored, built and equipped by the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.
A bout between Mike Swick and Jonathan Goulet was confirmed by MMAWeekly.com earlier in the week, although it is now being moved to the Dec. 10 benefit event instead of The Ultimate Fighter Season 8 Finale, according to Swick.
Other bouts that sources say have been agreed to include Steve Bruno vs. Luke Cummo, Eddie Sanchez vs. Justin McCully, Liugi Fioravanti vs. Brodie Farber, and Nate Loughran against an as yet unknown opponent.
There has been no word regarding who will be featured in the main event.
The goal of UFC Fight For The Troops is to raise the necessary funds for The National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE), an advanced research facility in Bethseda, Md. dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of military personnel and veterans suffering from traumatic brain injury (TBI) and psychological health issues.