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UFC's Marc Ratner wants 'international federation' to regulate events



Source: MMAjunkie

by Steven Marrocco on Mar 17, 2012 at 7:00 pm ET

Thus far, regulators haven't been able to keep up with the UFC's aggressive international expansion.

Events in Canada, Australia and –next month – Sweden, are regulated by an independent regulatory body. But in places where no athletic commission exists, the promotion has taken that role for events in the U.K., Brazil and Japan.

UFC vice president of regulatory affairs Mark Ratner would like to see a single agency take the lead in regulating international events, overseeing officials, conducting drug tests and enforcing the unified rules of MMA. He said the promotion is pushing for an "international federation" to do the job.

"We'd like to get it over to France, and someday to Brazil and to Italy, so we have one set of rules, one set of medical standards," "That's our long-term goal. We do need a worldwide federation."

France, Italy and Spain are among the international destinations the promotion is actively targeting for future shows. A return to Abu Dhabi is also on the radar, Ratner said, though an exact date is unknown.

There were seven international events on the UFC's calendar in 2010 and six in 2011. The promotion is on track to top those numbers this year with six events already in the books or scheduled. In addition to live events, international editions of the UFC's flagship reality show "The Ultimate Fighter" are now underway with filming underway in Brazil and an "Australia vs. U.K." season in the works. Executives hope eventually to create a grand-prix tournament of international "TUF" contestants.

So demand is there for officials beyond U.S. borders.

"We want to keep growing the sport," Ratner said. "The reason we self-regulate is that there's no commissions in certain countries, so in order to grow the sport, we have to put them on.

"But I would just as soon have an independent body regulating these fights."

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Bellator 61 Moment - Brian Rogers KOs Vitor Vianna

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Dana White: We'll probably end up with Hector Lombard

It appears a fight may be brewing over Middleweight Hector Lombard, who has not lost a fight in nearly six years, and is currently under contract with Bellator.

UFC President Dana White .

"I guess he's pretty popular down here. I've been hearing all about him since I've been here. I hear he's under contract though with someone else, so we''ll see. I'll probably end up with him. If he wants to fight in the UFC, then we'll probably end up with him."

Bellator Chairman/CEO Bjorn Rebney

"Hector remains our champion right now. We are in the midst of a pretty substantial negotiation relative to his future with the organization. I've said many times I think he's the best middleweight in mixed martial arts so it's not an easy negotiation by any stretch of the imagination.

"We've got the right to match on any deal. We're either gonna sign him before he goes out the to marketplace or he's going to go out to the marketplace and we're gonna have a determination as to whether we're gonna match or not match and we're gonna see where it ends up. I

"love the guy and he's an awesome talent. He's been nothing but a pure pleasure for me to work with. He's been a great guy for me to work with and he's done everything we've asked him to do and every time I've put him in a cage, he's knocked people silly. You can't really ask for more than that from a guy."

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UFC Title Contender Nate Diaz Thinks Nick Diaz Will Remain Retired

Triathalon season is starting so he's getting ready, getting in shape for that and concentrating on being in shape, being healthy and helping me out and coaching me for this fight [against Jim Miller].

Right now, I don't think [we will see him back inside the Octagon]. He's big on, like I said, staying in shape and just being healthy right now.

He's not worried about it. I think he's retired. He hasn't been into this whole fighting thing for some time ... since everything that goes on with the funny wins and losses.

And not just for him, but for people on our team. So, I just think he's relaxed right now, you know? I think he's pretty set on his retirement, though. I kind of agree with him [about his decision].

It's hard to say -- he's my brother. I'm not going to tell him to go fight somebody. I think he's doing the right thing. He made enough money to just chill back, sit back and relax.

People don't understand: Nick never had nothing. He came from not much, so when he complained a lot about not making a lot of money it's because there were so many people making more money than him and he works 10 times hard than them. So, they definitely paid him enough money to not have to anything. He doesn't need to fight.

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Bulked up Fedor Emelianenko about UFC, Josh Bernett and next fight

- Your promoter Vadim Finkelstein, has recently said that his next fight you will spend the summer or fall. Can you say anything more specific about this?

- The time when the battle will take place, I can name right now - it's June or July. But at the place where the fight will take place, we have not decided yet.

- Where would you most like to fight: Russia, Japan, where you will enjoy almost as much as at home, or maybe in the U.S.?

- Of course, I would like to come home for his countrymen. But by far the most powerful and influential organization of MMA is located in America. This UFC. Therefore, to meet with the best fighters I have to travel to the United States.

- One of the most intriguing fights in your career could be a fight with Josh Barnett. But in 2009 he never took place. Would you still meet with the American? And what are the chances that soon you will rival a similar level?

- Vadim is currently in talks about it. Much depends on it. I think in the near future, the situation becomes clearer. As for Burnett, it was the third time, when we broke off the fight with him. But to be honest with him I would not want to fight. I really sympathize with Josh, and we had been friends for a long time. Perhaps he is the only fighter with whom I had not wanted to meet in the ring.

- In Las Vegas, May 26 will fight for the title of champion of the UFC heavyweight division between the Brazilian Junior dos Santos and the Dutchman Alistair Overeem. Do you think they are the strongest at the moment the men in the world?

- Yes, I think they are one of the strongest heavyweights at the moment.

- Recently in the U.S. press reported that you can meet with former UFC champion in the heavyweight Cain Velasquez. What can you say about this?

- We do not have agreements. To date, no certainty in the relationship with the UFC does not. Maybe in the near future, something clear.

- Velasquez calls you his idol, and says that he considers you the best heavyweight of all time. You can select the fighters, even completing a career that made the greatest contribution to the development of mixed martial arts?

- I am interested to watch the performances of the top five rankings UFC. Contribution to the development of MMA? If we go by personalities, it's all the same Barnett, Mirko Filipovich, brothers Nogueira, Randy Couture.

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Nogueira injured, replaced by Thiago Silva

The UFC has just informed us that Rogerio “Lil’ Nog” Nogueira has scratched from his heavyweight fight with Swedish phenom Alexander Gustafsson due to injury.

Believe it or not, Thiago Silva is replacing Nogueira in the light heavyweight main event! This comes as a bit of a surprise, as this will be Silva's first fight back from a lengthy suspension due to a failed drug test and an admitted use of a banned substance. Moreover, the winner of the bout may surge ahead in the line for title contention.

Silva was schedule for a rematch with Brandon Vera at UFC on Fuel 3 in Fairfax, VA. It was after their previous bout, in which Silva dominated Vera and smashed Vera's nose, that Silva failed his drug test.

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This is the worse injury I have ever seen live


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Georges St. Pierre Talks Nick Diaz: Marijuana not PED

Isn´t that weird that GSP said in the past he gave Nick Diaz rounds 1,2 and 5 and now he gives another story?!

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UFC welterweight Siyar Bahadurzada has revealed that he will be training with Lucien Carbien for his UFC Sweden fight with Paulo Thiago.

Bahadurzada recently split from long-time camp Golden Glory claiming he was owed money from past fights. 

Based in Amsterdam, two hours from Golden Glory base in Breda, he has moved his training camp to Carbin’s gym, which is also in Amsterdam.

Carbin is a renowned Thai boxing trainer but it is not known what Bahadurzada will do for his jiu jitsu and MMA training ahead of the April 14th meeting with Thiago.

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