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Archive for April 2012

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VIDEO: Jon Jones Has A Message For Hendo: “Let’s Keep It Classy”

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Episode No. 6 recap: 'The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil'

After a brief recap of this past week's edition, it's time to get episode No. 6 of "The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil" underway.

With Vitor Belfort in charge with a commanding 4-0 lead, the team members are confident and talking about sweeping the eight opening-round fights, though last-round pick Anistavio "Gasper" Gasparzinho feels like a forgotten member of the team.

Despite their string of losses, Wanderlei Silva's squad hasn't lost confidence.

We then quickly head to the training center for the latest fight announcement, where Vitor says he and Wanderlei have agreed to back-to-back featherweight fights (rather than following the next one with a middleweight bout). Vitor, in fact, makes special mention of Team Silva's toughness and commends specific fighters for their efforts in earlier fights, including Leonardo "Macarrao" Mafra Teixeira's from the previous week.

Wanderlei, though, is less than impressed.

"I'm sick of his speeches," he says in a confessional. "I've had it up to here."

Vitor ultimately announces the fight, and it puts Team Vitor No. 2 pick Hugo "Wolverine" Viana against Team Wanderlei's No. 5 pick Marcos Vinicius Vina.

Hugo began training when he was 9, has a job as a physiotherapist, and he has a supportive family who watches all his fights. He says his fighting spirit comes from his mom and his intelligence from his father. He says fighting makes him a better person, which in turn which makes him a better person for his family.

Vina, meanwhile, showed off his heavy hands in an elimination-round bout. But prior to fighting, he was hustling and has been working since the age of 12 to help his mom provide for the family while living in the slums. A spiritual guy who tries to give back to the community, he takes pride in his work ethic and providing for his own young family. He believes real superheroes are people who achieve without asking anything of others and giving what they can.

After some painfully uncomfortable product placements, the fighters head to the gym to weigh in. Both fighters are good to go after weighing 145 pounds.

On the morning of their fight, the competitors go through their usual routines. After warm-ups, hand-wraps and some final words of encouragement, it's fight time. We have:

TEAM VITOR'S HUGO "WOLVERINE" VIANA (5-0) VS. TEAM WANDERLEI'S MARCOS VINICIUS VINA (19-3-1)

Round 1 - Mario Yamasaki gets the action started. Wolverine strikes first with a combo, but Vina ties him up and delivers some knees. They jockey for position against the cage, and Vina lands more knees. Wolverine returns fire as they stay clinched. After they break, Wolverine partially connects on a looping overhand right, and Vina falls on his back during a stumble. Vina throws upkicks as Wolverine throws leg kicks at his downed opponent. Vina is back up, and Wolverine lands a combo. Vina throws another leg kick but gets knocked off balance in the process. Wolverine chips away with leg kicks before ref lets him up. Wolverine throws some punches from distance, but Vina avoids any big shots. Vina now stalks but eats some kicks before partially connecting on a leaping knee. Wolverine gets a takedown before the round ends and takes it 10-9.

Round 2 - The fighters circle to start the round with little action. Vina strikes first with a low kick but is countered with punches. Wolverine is finding his range. The lankier Vina is a second too slow as the quick-footed Wolverine darts in and out of range. Vina, though, gets a takedown and then punishes Vina with knees on the way up. They trade in the center of the cage. Wolverine appears to be tiring. Vina slowly stalks, avoids some haymakers, and lands some knees. He stalks again and gets through some punches on Wolverine. Wolverine throws some two-punch combos, but Vina is avoiding anything damaging. Wolverine has the bigger output, but he's still landing little. Vina gets through a punch that sends his opponent's mouthpiece flying. A close round comes to an end, and there will be no third round.

Hugo "Wolverine" Viana def. Marcos Vinicius Vina via unanimous decision (20-18, 20-18, 20-18)

Now with a 5-0 lead, Wanderlei and his coaches are a bit disappointed because they felt it was a winnable fight and their advice during the bout was ignored. Vitor, meanwhile, wants a clean sweep, which he thinks is very possible.

With that fight in the books, only one featherweight-quarterfinal bout remains, and it pits friend vs. friend with Team Vitor's No. 8 pick Anistavio "Gasper" Gasparzinho vs. Team Wanderlei's No. 1 pick Rony Jason. They've lived and trainer together, and they wonder why they were intentionally matched up. But the fighters hug and know their fate has been determined.

Next week, the friends square off and fight for the final semifinal-round slot. However, this week's episode ends with a surprise visit from former champ Lyoto Machida, who stops by the house and reminds the fighters their time in the sport is short and to make the most of it.

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Quick Twitt | Hector Lombard Requests Random Drug Test | UFC NEWS

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VIDEO: The Nate Diaz Story

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Dana White: Hector Lombard vs. Brian Stann, 'Shogun' Rua vs. Thiago Silva

UFC president Dana White decided to break some news on an apparent lazy Sunday afternoon.

In response to a couple of fan questions, White wrote that the recently signed Hector Lombard (31-2-1, 1 NC) will meet Brian Stann (12-4) in his Octagon debut and, in light heavyweight action, Maurico "Shogun" Rua (20-6) will face fellow Brazilian Thiago Silva (14-3, 1 NC). White didn't reveal when the fights will take place.

The UFC officially announced Lombard's signing on Friday night, and the now former Bellator middleweight champion will enter the UFC on a 25-fight unbeaten streak.

Stann recently got back on the winning track when he defeated Alessio Sakara at UFC on FUEL TV 2 via first-round knockout.

Meanwhile, Rua was originally scheduled to meet Quinton Jackson until "Rampage" decided to recently undergo knee surgery. He lost a close split decision to Dan Henderson at UFC 139 in November.

Silva returned to action after a year-long suspension earlier this month but lost a unanimous decision to Alexander Gustafsson at UFC on FUEL TV 2.

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Dana White: No UFC events In California If CSAC Bill Passes

Assemblyman Luis Alejo introduced a bill in California with the intention of "cleaning up" MMA, which passed the assembly last week with a 5-3 vote. The bill introduces a code of conduct which would allow the state athletic commission to take action against fighters who use "hate speech," slurs, engage in sexual assaults and so on. The bigger issue is that there is language in the bill that could directly challenge the contracts of the UFC.

In particular, the bill calls the following a violation of the new code of conduct on the part of a promoter (Fight Opinion has the easiest to find/read versions of the bill):

(1) Assigns any exclusive future merchandising rights to a promoter for an unreasonable period beyond the term of the promotional contract.
(2) Automatically renews a promotional contract or extends the term without good faith negotiation, or extends the term of any promotional contract of a fighter who participates in a championship contest for a period greater than 12 months beyond the existing contract termination period.
(3) Unreasonably restricts a mixed martial arts fighter from obtaining outside sponsorship from a firm, product or individual.
(4) Requires a mixed martial arts fighter to relinquish all legal claims that the fighter has, or may acquire in the future, against the promoter beyond assumption of the risks Inherent in the sport ofmixed martial arts and the Fighter participation in Pre and Post Bout events and activities.
(5) Requires a fighter to grant or waive any additional rights not contained in the promotional contract as a condition precedent to the fighter's participation in any Contest.

Obviously the first point is something that the UFC has done in the past and led to falling out with Jon Fitch and American Kickboxing Academy for a brief period. The second is a minor challenge to the "championship clause." The third is the standard UFC approval of sponsors and eliminating options from fighters. And so on.

 

Basically, the standard UFC contract would violate the code of conduct and thus the state would be able to suspend the UFC's promoter license.

In response to this, Dana White simply said that if the bill fully passes and is implemented, they'll stop running shows in the state of California (via The Orange County Register):

"Do you know what's going on in Sacramento, right now?" White said. "They are trying to pass this bill to raise our taxes and do a bunch of crazy (expletive) to us. They voted 4-2 for the bill. There were a couple of people not present to vote on it. If that thing passes we won't do anymore fights in California. All kinds of crazy (expletive) they're trying to throw in this bill for MMA. You know who's doing it? The Culinary Union from Las Vegas. These guys have been (expletive) with us in New York, too. That's why we're not in New York. These guys got a bunch of lobbyists together to try to pass this bill against MMA. They are putting pressure on my partners, the Fertitta brothers, because they own the fourth-largest gaming company in the country and they are non-union."

It's a story that demands close attention going forward and we'll make sure to bring any updates worth sharing going forward.

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FX and UFC 'going to switch some things up' for future 'TUF' seasons

While officials say they're satisfied with the first season of "The Ultimate Fighter: Live" on FX, changes are on the way.

This season of the UFC's long-running reality series is the first on FX (after seven years and 14 seasons on Spike TV) and the first to feature live fights.

While UFC president Dana White believes many folks have painted a far-too-bleak picture of "TUF: Live," he said some changes are going to be made for future seasons.

"TUF: Live" has recorded the lowest ratings in series history, and episode No. 5 bottomed out with an all-time-low 947,000 viewers earlier this month. But in key demographics, the show continues to be among cable's highest-rated Friday-night programs. But White echoed comments he made to the "Orange County Register" earlier this week that the show isn't doing as well as he personally wants.

"It's not that I'm not happy," , "I said it's a home run for them ... since they're dominating Friday nights with 18- to 34-year-old males. It's not the best position for me, though."

Friday nights are traditionally a barren wasteland for TV ratings, specifically among the UFC's targeted demo of young males. White knows that, and so do executives from the FOX-owned FX. But thanks to their seven-year partnership and current relationship, White said that one's thing that could change for future seasons.

"I have – let me tell you – the best [expletive] relationship with FUEL, FX and big FOX," he said. "I couldn't be happier. I wish I was here for 17 years instead of seven. Everything that's ever come up – every problem – they're just as passionate and crazy about my business as I am. They give a crap. They care.

"This is a team effort. We're doing what we're doing this season, and then we're going to switch some things up. We're going to make this thing work and make it great – if it's Friday night or it's whatever. Believe me."

White, in fact, so believes in the show's continued potential and FX's vision that he now skips press conferences and weigh-ins for major UFC events. He remains in Las Vegas to host the show and then jettisons off to locales near and far for event nights.

Besides, he said, he has complete faith in FX. If there's anything they know, he said, it's captivating TV content.

"As far as I'm concerned, FX is better than [expletive] HBO," he said. "You're paying extra money to have HBO when the programming on FX smokes HBO right now. HBO's known for all its great shows. I've heard 'Game of Thrones' is awesome, but if you look at the overall network and what FX is doing and HBO is doing, FX blows them away. And that's on regular cable that you can watch everyday."

Right now, "TUF" is good, according to White. But give them time, and it'll be great.

So for all the naysayers out there, White has a simple message.

"We're going to fix it," he said. "I read all the [expletive] from people who have no [expletive] clue what they're talking about. We're with guys who are the best in the business. We will get this thing dialed in and make it great."

And to those who think the show has run its course? To those who think the problem isn't the format or the night of the week – but rather, the show itself?

"I've been hearing 'TUF' ran its course since season four," White said. "And here we are on season 15."

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Invicta FC Full Results

The full Invicta FC results:

  • Marloes Coenen def. Romy Ruyssen via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-26)
  • Jessica Penne def. Lisa Ellis via TKO (punches) - Round 3, 2:48
  • Liz Carmouche def. Ashleigh Curry via TKO - Round 1, 1:58
  • Kaitlin Young vs. Leslie Smith ruled a split draw (29-28, 28-29, 29-29)
  • Sarah D’Alelio def. Vanessa Mariscal via submission (punches) - Round 2, 3:19
  • Sarah Schneider def. Sally Krumdiack via submission (armbar) - Round 1, 3:01
  • Amy Davis def. Nicdali Rivera-Calanoc via submission (kimura) - Round 2, 3:47
  • Sarah Maloy def. Michele Gutierrez via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
  • Randi Miller def. Mollie Estes via TKO (punches) - Round 3, 3:27
  • Ashley Cummings def. Sofia Bagherdai via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
  • Cassie Rodish def. Meghan Wright via submission (guillotine choke) - Round 1, 0:36

 


After the event, Invicta officials announced their next event takes place July 28 with a Shayna Baszler (14-6) vs Sara McMann (5-0) headliner.

The event also takes place at Memorial Hall.

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Dana White: Sam Sicilia deserved a third round on 'TUF: Live'

LAS VEGAS – Sam Sicilia lost the fight, but he got a vote of confidence from his potential future employer.

During Friday's new episode of "The Ultimate Fighter: Live" on FX, Chris Saunders upset Sicilia via split decision after the opening-round fight surprisingly didn't go to a tiebreaker third round.

"They both deserved to go to that third round," UFC president Dana White said after the fight, which took place at the UFC Training Center in Las Vegas. "They both deserved a third round."

Saunders, who was Urijah Faber's eighth and final pick (and the 16th pick out of 16 cast members), took out Dominick Cruz's second pick with the victory. But the judges' verdict – 20-18, 20-18 and 18-20 scores for Saunders – didn't go over well with many viewers.

Saunders landed a flush head kick and floored his opponent in the first round, but Sicilia quickly recovered and put together a competitive second-round rally. Many viewers felt he won the round to force a tie.

Instead, the judges declared Saunders the winner (Adelaide Byrd and Tony Weeks had it for Saunders, and Patricia Morse Jarman scored it for Sicilia), and White was left wondering what if.

"The third round would have decided that fight," he said. "They were both exhausted, and it's always that third round that breaks somebody.

"The thing that drives me crazy is when guys who come into this house – and not even "TUF," but the UFC too – and they give it 100 percent and give it [expletive] everything they have, and [the judges] pull something that shouldn't happen."

Saunders now advances to the quarterfinal round. While not an exact science, that means he's very likely to get an official UFC booking and fight on the undercard of the show's live finale even if he advances no further.

But don't count out the possibility of Sicilia – who entered "TUF" with a perfect 10-0 pro record – getting a second chance, too. When it comes to future possibilities, he impressed the most important person.

"I'm thrilled with both those guys," White said. "I think Sicilia got robbed of the opportunity of going to a third round, though. But great fight."

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VIDEO: Fedor "the last emperor" Emelianenko talks Rizzo, UFC and M1-Global

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