Report: Chris Leben vs. Alessio Sakara at UFC 82
Chris Leben (17-4 MMA, 7-3 UFC), fresh off a stunning knockout of Terry Martin at UFC Fight Night 11 in September, will return to the octagon to face Alessio Sakara (12-6 MMA, 3-3 UFC) at UFC 82.
Sam Caplan of fiveouncesofpain.com was the first to confirm the rumored match.
Prince Mclean a Cast Member on “The Ultimate Fighter 7?
Prince Mclean (4-5 MMA, 0-0 UFC), an Ohio-based middleweight who’s suffered his fair share of bad luck lately, has finally received some good fortune: he’s been chosen as a cast member for “The Ultimate Fighter 7.“
*SEE TUF7 THREAD ON UFC FORUM FOR DETAILS ON ALL RUMORED FIGHTERS SO FAR*
All-American Wrestler C.B. Dollaway Chosen for “The Ultimate Fighter 7?
Amateur wrestling standout C.B. Dollaway (6-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC) will be a cast member on the “The Ultimate Fighter 7,” the latest installment of the UFC and Spike TV’s reality series.
Sources close to the fighter tell MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that the former Arizona State Sun Devil learned he had been selected for the show last month.
“The Ultimate Fighter 7,” which debuts April 2 on Spike TV, features UFC light heavyweight champion Quinton Jackson and season-one winner Forrest Griffin as coaches. Sixteen middleweight fighters vie for a UFC contract in a tournament-style competition.
Dollaway is a former high school state champion, a junior college national champion, and a 2005 collegiate All-American while at ASU. His transition into MMA has been a smooth one. Despite his wrestling background, he’s posted five stoppages — four by way of knockout.
Randy Couture Picks Tim Sylvia Over Antonio Noguiera
Randy Couture is, legally speaking, the UFC heavyweight champion. He recently declined an invitation to fight Antonio Noguiera however, stating that he has resigned from the UFC and wished to pursue a fight with consensus number one heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko. He has since battled UFC management in an intense, and very public war of words; and now faces a potential legal battle as well.
The latest spat between Couture and the UFC has to do with Couture's work as a cornerman at events held by organizations such as the IFL and HCF.
Couture has appearently recieved word from UFC officials that making appearences at such organizations is a breach of contract. Couture sat down with The Calgary Sun to discuss the situation in more detail and also weighted in on the upcoming battle between Noguiera and his replacement at UFC 81, Tim Sylvia.
Interview With Tyson Griffin
When Tyson Griffin enters the Octagon on Super Bowl weekend, he will be doing so with one goal and one goal in mind:
Climbing higher up the ladder of the exciting, fast-paced lightweight division.
And for Griffin to come out on top at UFC 81: “Breaking Point,” he will need to go through rising lightweight star Gleison Tibau.
Waiting For Fedor
Still recognized as the UFC heavyweight champion, Randy “The Natural” Couture recently appeared on the ESPN morning show “First Take” where he addressed the issue of the recent lawsuit against him filed by Zuffa, the parent company of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, and his future in the sport of mixed martial arts.
Bisping Addresses Move To Middleweight
U.K. fan favorite Michael Bisping addressed the UFC Fight Club recently in England and gave some insights into his fight with Matt Hamill and his move from light heavyweight down to the middleweight division.
“I feel like I should have pushed the pace a lot more, but I am not going to sit here and whine about it like some other people” said Bisping of his fight with Hamill.
Talking of losses to highly regarded American wrestlers in the 205-pound division, he was considerably more vocal about the prospect of a rematch with Hamill.
“I have moved to middleweight, so for the time being, that fight is out of the window, it was my 15th pro fight and I realized then that you can’t always go out and have the best performance,” he stated. “However, he knows I can K.O. him and as long as he continues to whine and bitch about it, it may be sooner rather than later.”
411 MMA Fact or Fiction 01.26.06
Should BJ Penn be the favorite over Sean Sherk? Will Tito Ortiz's next UFC fight be his last in the organization? Does Fabricio Werdum really deserve the next HW title shot? Should Mike Swick and Josh Burkman have been a draw? All of this and more in the latest edition of 411 MMA Fact or Fiction.
Second-Fiddle Tim Sylvia Aims for History
Tim Sylvia may be the world’s largest Rodney Dangerfield. The 6-foot-8, two-time former UFC heavyweight champion simply can’t get respect.
On Feb. 2 in Las Vegas, Sylvia will attempt to become only the second man in MMA history to win three major league world championships. Sylvia is attempting to go into the record book behind only Randy Couture, who won his fifth championship when beating Sylvia via decision last year. His opponent in an interim title match, Brazil’s Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, can make a legitimate claim for being the second best heavyweight in the sport’s history.
But for all the hype UFC 81 is getting, you’d likely never know either of those things.
It certainly never came up at Thursday’s UFC press conference for UFC 81.
Sherk: Now It's Personal
Sean Sherk has fired the latest salvo in his war of words with new UFC Lightweight Champion BJ Penn, who he is to face in May for the title. Sherk said "Now it's personal" after hearing comments made by Penn after his win at UFC 80.
Tanner vs. Okami Official; Koscheck vs. Hazelett Un-Televised at UFC 82
After weeks of speculation, a UFC 82 middleweight bout between Evan Tanner and Yushin Okami is now official. Additionally, the UFC today revealed that a welterweight bout between “The Ultimate Fighter 1” standout Josh Koscheck (9-2 MMA, 7-2 UFC) and Cincinnati-based fighter Dustin Hazelett (10-3 MMA, 3-1 UFC) will appear on the event’s un-televised preliminary card.
News of the Tanner vs. Okami has been reported — and re-reported — for the past month. However, Tanner’s camp couldn’t confirm the bout to MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com), and a source close to the UFC told us that UFC executives were “extremely pissed” that news of the fight got out in the first place.
In the interview, Tanner also revealed that the UFC had an extremely difficult time finding him an opponent. The bout was offered to four fighters — all of whom turned it down. The UFC eventually booked Okami, a middleweight contender who’s 5-1 in the UFC. He signed a new contract with the UFC after his most recent fight: a UFC 77 unanimous-decision victory over Jason MacDonald.
UFC Set To Ban Affliction Gear?
Apparently the UFC is no longer going to allow Affliction to sponsor it's fighters. Affliction affiliated fighters include; Randy Couture, Georges St. Pierre, Rampage Jackson and Chuck Liddell among many others.
According to numerous sources within in the industry, Affliction will be starting it's own promotion and the UFC is unhappy about promoting a potential rival.
The Champion's Carthasis
Since UFC Heavyweight Champion Randy Couture left the promotion, he's gained some attention for taking up poker as a means to raise money and attention for his Xtreme Couture GI Foundation. But he's clearly worn out from the UFC contract situation and again reiterated his future plans: Fedor Or Bust. Bust being likely retiring.
Top South Korean Fighter Headed To UFC
Top South Korean Prospect Dong Hyun Kim is reportedly set to make his UFC debut in either March or April. The Welterweight is unbeaten in MMA at 8-0-1, last fighting Hedehiko Hasegawa to a controversial draw in a rematch of a fight Kim won.