New Heath Herring Interview
Heath Herring has made a living fighting in other fighters' backyards. This Saturday he does it again, facing Brock Lesnar in Lesnar's native Minnesota at UFC 87-which is "nothing new" to Herring, a subject he touched on among others in a new interview.
Wanderlei Silva told to prepare for December return
After a brutal destruction of Keith Jardine in May, UFC light-heavyweight Wanderlei Silva (32-8-1 MMA, 2-3 UFC) has been told by UFC officials to prepare for a December return.
The win was Silva's first victory in almost two years, and the famed light heavyweight shared his thoughts on his next bout while a guest co-host on a recent edition TAGG Radio (www.taggradio.com), the official radio partner of MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
"I'm talking with (UFC co-owner) Lorenzo (Fertitta)," said Silva, who's English continues to improve since a move to Las Vegas. "They're talking about December because it is the best event of the year. (Antonio Rodrigo) Nogueira is going to fight (Frank) Mir for the belt for the heavyweights.
"This is the best event. It's much more promotion. They told me to be ready to fight in December."
Silva said he doesn't yet know who he will face on the card.
"They gave me 10 (possible) names," Silva said. "My division is the best division in the world. They have so many names. I think they're going to give a good opponent to me."
While several names have been rumored, a possible third bout between Silva and ex-champion Quinton "Rampage" Jackson has been brought up repeatedly as of late. Perhaps unsurprisingly, in light of his two previous knockout victories over Jackson, Silva said he would be open to the match-up.
"I wanted to fight [Jackson] again," Silva said. "I think it's a very good match."
Despite recent troubles, including three straight losses to Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic, Dan Henderson and Chuck Liddell before the victory over Jardine, Silva still has his eyes focused on the UFC's light heavyweight title.
"For me, I have time to fight for the belt in the future, no problem," Silva said. "I'm going to wait for my opportunity. I'm going to give my best on every fight. After I win my fights, I'm going to have an opportunity to fight for the belt."
And regardless of whom the UFC brings forth in December, Silva knows he'll be ready.
"For me, no problem," Silva said. "I'll fight with everybody."
Silva also discussed the advantages of his relocation to the U.S., his relationship with his old Chute Boxe teammates and the opening of his own gym in Las Vegas. To hear the full episode, which Silva co-hosted, download Wednesday's edition of TAGG Radio, available for free in the TAGG Radio archives.
Michael Bisping planning on going "straight through" Chris Leben
UFC middleweight Michael Bisping (16-1 MMA, 6-1 UFC) will get his second shot at headlining a card at October's UFC 89 event in his native England. And while Bisping's first headlining gig netted him his only career loss to date against Rashad Evans, "The Count" thinks this time will be different.
Bisping discussed his upcoming bout with Chris Leben while a guest on a special weekend edition of TAGG Radio (www.taggradio.com), the official radio partner of MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
"I've got respect for [Leben]," Bisping said. "But I'm going to go straight through him. That's what I'm made to do."
The fight will be Bisping's third in the middleweight division. The Liverpool native started his career at 205 pounds, but he made the decision to move down a weight class after suffering the lone loss of his career.
Rolling with the Flo: Ever-talented Kenny Florian readies for UFC 87
He already may be the best television analyst in mixed martial arts. As a studio analyst, he has no peer.
As a prognosticator, he's tops in his field and his newsletter almost reads like a post-fight recap and not a prefight prediction.
He speaks six languages, is the son of a heart surgeon and grew up in a well-to-do area of suburban Boston. At first glance, Kenny Florian might seem better suited for a job behind the cameras or on the production.
But this erudite, engaging man is as ferocious inside the octagon as any man in the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
And while he's one of the sport's finest ambassadors, it's the punishment he's able to deliver, as well as take, that has endeared him to UFC president Dana White. They're both from the Boston area, but the local ties play no role in White's admiration for Florian.
UFC 87 week of events
The UFC returns to pay per view next weekend for UFC 87, which takes place Aug. 9 at the Target Center in Minneapolis, Minn. UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre takes on Jon Fitch in the night's main event.
The UFC recently announced details for UFC 87's weigh-ins and pre-event autograph sessions.
In a rare move, the UFC will also make the pre-event press conference open to the public.
The week of events begins on Thursday at the Mall of American Rotunda for the press conference. It begins at 1 p.m. local time and is followed by an autograph signing with Matt Serra, Nate Quarry, Clay Guida, Amir Sadollah, Keith Jardine and Sean Sherk.
On Friday, the UFC's fan club has autograph sessions with Matt Hughes, Guida, Sherk and Quarry (1-3 p.m.) and a pre-weigh-in Q&A with UFC President Dana White and Sadollah (2 p.m.).
Doors to the weigh-ins then open to the general public at 3 p.m., and the first fighter is expected to hit the scale at 4 p.m.
UFC Takes Next Round in Couture Saga
The UFC’s parent company, Zuffa LLC, emerged with another victory Friday, as a Dallas appeals court granted the promotion a stay against a motion for summary judgment submitted by Mark Cuban’s HDNet Fights.
The Mavericks NBA team owner had filed the motion on Feb. 13, requesting that a Texas court decide when five-time UFC champion Randy Couture (Pictures) would be eligible to sign into a contract with his own rival organization.
Drew McFedries vs. Mike Massenzio at UFC Fight Night 15
Hard-hitting Drew McFedries (7-3 MMA, 3-2 UFC) will meet UFC newcomer and former IFL fighter Mike Massenzio (10-2 MMA, 0-0 UFC) at UFC Fight Night 15 in September.
The fight, first reported by fiveouncesofpain.com, has since been confirmed by MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
The bout is likely to end up on the night's un-televised preliminary card.
UFC Fight Night 15, which takes place at the Omaha Civic Auditorium in Omaha, Neb., features co-main events of Nate Diaz vs. Josh Neer and Mac Danzig vs. Clay Guida.
McFedries, a Team Miletich fighter, most recently defeated Marvin Eastman at The Ultimate Fighter 7 Finale. Like his other UFC victories -- over Jordan Radev and Alessio Sakara -- the win came via first-round knockout. His only losses in the UFC are to middleweight contenders Martin Kampmann and Patrick Cote.
Massenzio fought just once in the IFL and suffered a first-round submission loss to Danillo Villefort. The defeat snapped his nine-fight win streak, which included four-consecutive submission victories prior to his IFL debut. He fought primarily in the Reality Fighting and Ring of Combat organizations. According to fiveouncesofpain.com, the former collegiate wrestler signed a four-fight deal with the UFC.
The Florian Report – Week Four
We’re in cruise control now. The hard work is done, so it’s about keeping the weapons sharp, continuing to do what we’ve been doing, and staying mentally focused for this fight.
‘El Matador’s March to UFC 87 – Week Four
We’re getting close to fight week, and my mom and some other friends have been a little bit more nervous than I have for this fight. So I kinda sat back and told everyone ‘It’s all right, we’ve done this rodeo before. We’ve been here and done this. This fight is like any other fight. The only difference is the hype behind it.’ That’s the way I feel. To me, it’s just like any of my other fights, but at the same time it’s the most important fight of my life because it’s happening right now. All my other fights were just as important as this one because if I didn’t win them, I wouldn’t be where I’m at. My job’s on the line every time I step in there.
Couture's Legal Battles Continue
The legal chess match between UFC parent company Zuffa LLC and three-time heavyweight champion Randy Couture (Pictures) shows no sign of imminent resolution, as neither side appears willing to budge.
Dellagrotte: Florian Could Run Through Huerta
The following quote is from an interview with Kenny Florian's trainer, Mark Dellagrotte on Sherdog.com
Sherdog.com: What’s your breakdown of Florian’s upcoming fight against Roger Huerta?
DellaGrotte: In my opinion, I think Kenny’s going to determine what type of fight he makes it. Kenny could run over Roger if he really wants to, or he could allow Roger to give Kenny a fight. I think Kenny’s ability to harness his energy and ability to control his aggression and not become emotionally attached to the fight -- like Roger likes to fight -- is going to give Kenny the technical advantage that he needs. If Roger is able to get in Kenny’s head and make him fight a sloppy, wild, Roger Huerta -style of fight, then obviously that type of fight fits Roger Huerta. Kenny knows he not only needs to use his technical abilities, but he also needs to play a very mental game with Roger … make sure Roger doesn’t take him out of the element of his technical ability and turn him into a brawler. I know Roger’s going to try to do that, and that’s what we’re going to try to avoid in this fight.
Nobody Wants To Fight Lyoto Machida
I was watching the fantastic Margarito vs. Cotto fight on Saturday, and all of the talk surrounding Margarito was that nobody wants to fight him. He has an aura around him as a legit tough contender that can damage a money-making reputation. This brought up one name in my head, one fighter in MMA that fits that profile: Lyoto Machida. Lyoto is a fighter that has, in just a short amount of time, made quite a name for himself. Right now, the name is one that high level competition are flat out looking to avoid right now. Lyoto has always had an aura around him, always been met with a certain degree of hype, only to then confuse both fighters and fans.
I remember New Japan Pro Wrestling and Inoki hyping up the debut of the mysterious LYOTO. For those that (luckily) aren’t in the know when it comes to the sordid history of New Japan Pro Wrestling, Antonio Inoki was able to take a company that was incredibly influential to the world of MMA in Japan to a company obsessed with trying to compete with modern MMA, as pro wrestling had been exposed as inferior to MMA. In Inoki’s mind, pro wrestling was just as strong — or stronger — than Mixed Martial Arts. I could write for days on this subject, but instead, I will focus on where LYOTO fits into the picture. Lyoto was Inoki’s hand picked successor to his throne of Japanese fighting star. He was under Inoki’s control, trained where Inoki wanted him to train and only fought on Inoki-approved events.