TJ Grant to Debut against Chonan at UFC 97
When most fighters learn they have finally received a coveted UFC invitation, their emotions can run the gamut, from incredulousness to joy. However, when Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia, native T.J. Grant learned he had an offer to fight at UFC 97 on April 18 in Montreal, he tried to go back to sleep.
Grant (13-2) is currently half a world away, training his muay Thai with teammate Ryan Jimmo at the famed Kaewsamrit Gym in Thailand, and when his manager/trainer, Scott MacLean, gave him the big news, he did not really believe it.
Swick Injured, out at least 3 1/2 months
In recent weeks reports have circulated linking UFC welterweight competitor Mike Swick to potential fights vs. Anthony Johnson or Georges St. Pierre. While those fights still could happen at a later date, FiveOuncesOfPain.com has learned that an aggravation of a foot injury will prevent the season one veteran of The Ultimate Fighter from accepting a bout for at least the next three and a half months.
Nate Loughran Injured, Will Not Fight At UFN 18
Although recent reports had him listed as a possible opponent for WEC import Nissen Osterneck at UFN 18, Nate Loughran's manager says Loughran will not be ready to fight and may be out until May or June. Loughran is recovering from a broken rib and cartillage damage.
Hazelett Off UFC 96
There won't be any real "McLovin" at UFC 96 now-Dustin Hazelett, who was scheduled to face Ben Saunders at the event, is now off due to an injury sustained in training. Ryan Madigan, who will make his UFC debut at 96, is the replacement.
Keith Jardine perhaps expected to lose at UFC 96 …
… at least that’s what he thinks, anyway, in a recent SI.com article:
“I think [the UFC] is probably expecting me to lose. I think they’ve put me in other fights where they expected me to lose, but that didn’t happen. I guess I’m the guy they get to step in whenever they need somebody.”
“The Dean of Mean” attempts to get his head wrapped around the thought process behind matching him up against Quinton “Rampage” Jackson in the main event at UFC 96 on March 1. It doesn’t make much sense on the surface, considering Jardine will not fight training partner, good friend and reigning division champion, Rashad Evans. And that’s a problem because the winner of the 205-pound bout between Jardine and Jackson would more than likely earn number one contender status. In fact, Jackson was already pegged to challenge Evans; however, the seven-week turnaround for “Sugar” between fights proved to be not enough time. Jardine has played spoiler twice before against big-name players in the division, including Forrest Griffin and Chuck Liddell. Can he pull off the hat trick at the Nationwide Arena?
Despite Comments, Swick Likely Not Facing Alves At 94, Future TBD
Although comments recently made by Marcus Davis suggest otherwise, sources have confirmed that his comments about Mike Swick vs. Thiago Alves happening at UFC 94 are false. In fact, Swick's next fight likely will be determined by the outcome of the BJ Penn-Georges St. Pierre fight at 94. Should GSP win, Swick likely will have to take a fight against someone other than Alves.
Luis Cane vs Steve Cantwell UFC 97 fight likely
Surging light heavyweight contender Luis Cane (9-1) will likely get to sink his chops into the last man to hold the World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) 205-pound title, Steve Cantwell (7-1), at UFC 97 from The Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on April 18.
“Banha” was supposed to collide with Keith Jardine; however, “The Dean of Mean” now has bigger and better things to take care of, namely Quinton “Rampage” Jackson,” after division champion Rashad Evans revealed he would not be ready in time for UFC 96 in March.
Ronys Torres Off UFN 18
Ronys Torres' UFC debut that was scheduled for UFN 18 on April 1 is now off. Torres has suffered a knee injury and will need surgery, which will keep him out up to 6 months. No word yet on the fate of Torres' planned opponent, Melvin Guillard.
Nissen Osterneck vs. Nate Loughran targeted for UFC Fight Night 18 bout
One-time World Extreme Cagefighting fighter Nissen Osterneck (5-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) will likely make his UFC debut against Nate Loughran (9-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) in April at UFC Fight Night 18.
The fight is in the works and has been pitched to at least one of the fighters, a source close to one of the competitors told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
Thales training with Ryan Bader for Silva
“The training here are great. Everybody here is good. I’m training everyday, emphasizing the Boxing and Wrestling part, where they are very good", said Thales, who is counting with the TUF 8 champion, Ryan Bader’s help and also the UFC fighter CB Dollaway. “Jaime Warner, Steve, Simpson and Carlos Condit, all WEC fighters, are helping me too. Steve is a wrestling coach and is very good teaching at a school here in Arizona”, completed Leites.
Overeem: ''I'll Sign For The UFC When The Money Is Right''
Alistair Overeem is keen on a move to the UFC and will sign with the organisation if offered the appropriate financial incentive.
The Dutch heavyweight had a good year in 2008, manhandling Mirko 'CroCop' Filopovic and stopping K-1 champion Badr Hari under kickboxing rules.
Overeem was ringside at UFC 93 and, when asked by Fighters Only if he would be signing with the organisation, said: "It's possible."