John Grispi vs Eirk Koch at WEC 52
Young featherweight prospects Josh Grispi (14-1 MMA, 4-0 WEC) and Erik Koch (10-1 MMA, 2-1 WEC) are on tap for WEC 52.
Sources close to the event today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that both fighters have verbally agreed to the matchup and are soon expected to make things official.
WEC official condemns Donald Cerrone's recent slurs, threats of violence
A World Extreme Cagefighting official today condemned comments Donald Cerrone made about WEC 51 opponent Jamie Varner in a recent radio interview.
WEC Vice President Peter Dropick stated that Cerrone's comments "are not consistent with our company values" and the organization will not "tolerate the use of slurs that may offend any segment of the public."
The WEC.tv statement made no mention of a punishment, and officials declined to comment when contacted by MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
Palaszewski vs. Shalrous Off WEC 52, Pushed Back To WEC 53
Bart Palaszewski is hoping to earn a shot at the WEC lightweight title when he faces Kamal Shalorus in his next fight, but he's going to have to wait a little bit longer for it to happen. The fight, originally scheduled for WEC 52, is off that event due to a Shalrous injury. He re-aggravated a hand injury suffered against Jamie Varner. The fight has now been pushed back to WEC 53 on December 16.
Clint Godfrey Off WEC 51, Nick Pace In (Updated)
For the second time today a WEC 51 fighter has been removed from the card, and in a bit of irony for the second straight time in his case it's Clint Godfrey. WEC announced today Godfrey is now off the card but the reason wasn't disclosed. He was to have faced Demetrious Johnson. Nick Pace, a Bellator veteran who is 5-0, is the replacement.
UPDATE: Staph infection. Godfrey hopes to return this year.
Alex Karalexis Off WEC 51, Jason Reinhardt In
Although the reasons for his pulling out are not yet known, officials confirmed today that Alex Karalexis is now off WEC 51. He was to have faced debuting fighter Zhang Tie Quan. Jason Reinhardt, who has been inactive since January 2008, is the replacement. He has fought just twice since a one-fight stint in UFC.
WEC version of TUF coming
With the season 12 debut of the "Ultimate Fighter" just a couple of weeks away, the UFC is mapping out the future of the reality show that will include an international flavor and a WEC version of the show coming soon. White also confirmed the flyweight division in the WEC, in a move that could be completed before the end of the 2010 calendar year.
WEC 50 Drug Tests Come Back Clean
WEC 50 was officially a drug free zone. The NSAC today announced that the 11 fighters who underwent drug testing following their performances at WEC 50 tested clean for drugs of abuse and performance-enhancing drugs. The fighters tested at the event included main-event competitors Dominick Cruz and Joseph Benavidez, as well as winners Anthony Pettis, Chad Mendes, Scott Jorgensen, Bart Palaszewski, Maciej Jewtuszko, Javier Vazquez, Fredson Paixao, Danny Castillo and Ricardo Lamas.
WEC 50 Medical Suspensions
The NSAC has announced the medical suspensions from Wednesday's WEC 50 event. 11 fighters in all were suspended at least 30 days while 5 fighters-including WEC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz and likely next challenger Scott Jorgenson-are suspended 180 days unless cleared to return early.
WEC Boss Says Faber Healed, Likely Meets Mizugaki In November
When his doctor told Urijah Faber he was medically cleared to fight, the former World Extreme Cagefighting champion instantly hopped to his feet, cheered, and began shadowboxing right there in the examination room. WEC General Manager Reed Harris, who accompanied Faber to the checkup, knew right then that a November WEC fight with Takeya Mizugaki was good to go. And though Faber technically would be able to fight as early as next month's WEC 51 event, Harris said the upcoming Colorado card was already full and prompted the tentative November booking. "He was good for September probably," Harris said. "But we had our card set already in Denver, so he's going to fight in November. And I think he's going to fight Takeya Mizugaki." Mizugaki could have taken another fight while Faber healed, but Harris said the Japanese fighter had his heart set on the matchup. "Mizugaki's been funny," Harris said. "He's like, 'I'll wait for the guy. I'll wait for him. I don't care.' He wants that fight." Harris said the organization hasn't chosen a location or venue for the November event, but as with other Faber fights, his hometown of Sacramento, Calif., appears a leading candidate.
UPDATE: The November event will be WEC 52.
WEC 50: 316,000 Viewers
Wednesday's Versus-televised WEC 50 event scored an average audience of 316,000 viewers. Ratings remained steady compared to the Las Vegas-based organization's most recent event, WEC 49, which drew an average audience of 324,000 viewers. That event featured a headliner between lightweights Jamie Varner and Kamal Shalorus and – as with WEC 50 – lacked some of the organization's bigger draws, including Urijah Faber, Jose Aldo and Miguel Torres. However, the show does take over WEC 49's slot as the lowest-rated show for the WEC since the promotion's record-breaking WEC 34 event (1.54 million viewers) in June 2008. (Ratings information for broadcasts prior to that event are not available.)
Fans send WEC to Pheonix
The first ever fan voted Amp Energy WEC contest came to a close on Wednesday night with Phoenix coming out victorious as the city that will host a WEC event on Dec. 16.
This will be the first WEC event in Arizona, where fans have long clamored for the promotion to come to their state.
WEC 50 Fighter Payouts-To-Be
NSAC head Keith Kizer today revealed the preliminary fighter payouts for tonight's WEC 50 event. Every fighter will earn at least $3000 for their efforts with the highest possible payday being $35,000, which would be what Joseph Benavidez would earn if he beats WEC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz for the title. Shane Roller would get $32,000 if he wins his fight while both Scott Jorgenson & Cub Swanson can earn over $20,000 with wins.
Backstage With Ed Soares
Ariel Helwani interviews Ed Soares one of the most recognizable and influential managers in mixed martial arts. With a stable of fighters that includes the likes of Anderson Silva, Lyoto Machida, Jose Aldo, Junior dos Santos and the Nogueira brothers, Soares has quickly put together one of the most impressive list of clients in the entire sport.
Is There "A Little Chicken Left On That Bone" For Jens Pulver?
He thinks so, and despite his loss at PWP War On The Mainland over the weekend, his 6th in a row and 8th in his last 9 fights, it seems that despite the many calls for him to retire he's still not ready to hang them up. "It's just a tough career man, you know I lose eight of nine fights, it's like 'What am I doing?' I'm trying to figure it out, maybe it's just that time. I don't know man, I do it because I love it. I enjoy training and I enjoy going out there and fighting. I feel good [but] it's definitely frustrating.You gotta hear the entrance song I came out to: 'A Little Chicken Left On That Bone' by Craig Morgan and that's exactly what it's about. Nobody's gonna tell me when to retire. Again, I got caught in a damn guillotine. I'm not getting knocked dead asleep and I feel physically great. I'm having a great time. I'm 34-years-old and I'm slumping, I'm slumping hard right now but I'm still having a great time. I love this life and I love this job."
Sources: Faber Out Until At Least November
Former WEC featherweight champion Urijah Faber might not grace the cage again until November. In July, Faber, arguably the promotion’s most popular star, withdrew from his bantamweight debut bout against Takeya Mizugaki, which was scheduled for WEC 50 “Cruz vs. Benavidez” on Aug. 18 at the Palms Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. Faber, suffered a knee injury in training that didn’t require surgery, said his MMA Inc. manager Mike Roberts. The 31-year-old California native was tentatively expected back in September to face Mizugaki in the re-scheduled bout. However, sources close to both fighters’ camps indicated that the fight could be pushed to November or even December on account of Faber’s rehabilitation.
WEC 50: Palaszewski vs. Micklewright Promoted To TV Card
WEC has announced that a prelim match of Bart Palaszewski vs. Zack Mickleweight at WEC 50 has been promoted from prelim to main card and will air on TV. Although announced for the preliminary card, the fight got a promotion in the wake of the Urijah Faber vs. Takeya Mizugaki cancellation.