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Tag: Diego Sanchez

Koscheck in for Injured Sanchez at UFC 90

Josh Koscheck
(At first he claimed to have other plans that night, but no one was buying that.)

The fates of Diego Sanchez and Josh Koscheck are indeed intertwined in mysterious ways. The UFC sent out a release today announcing that Diego Sanchez has been forced to withdraw from his UFC 90 bout with Thiago Alves due to torn rib cartilage. Stepping in to face Alves on short notice will be Sanchez’s TUF 1 buddy, Josh Koscheck.

From the official release:

“There is nothing worse than having a great fight and then having one of the fighters drop out at the last second,” said UFC President Dana White. “But the one thing the UFC has proven time and time again is our ability to replace fights with ones as good as or better than the original fight, and we’ve done it again with the highly-ranked Josh Koscheck stepping up to replace Diego Sanchez against welterweight wrecking machine Thiago Alves. Hats off to Josh and Thiago, as not many fighters would agree to a matchup this tough on such short notice.”

[...]

“Josh Koscheck is a great fighter and I think he’s an even better matchup for me,” said Alves. “I’m looking forward to fighting him, and I’m gonna knock him out.”

[...]

“I think he’s a tough opponent,” said Koscheck. “He’s on a tear right now in the UFC and for me to step up and fight him, I think it’s gonna be an exciting fight. I’ve been in training since Chris Lytle, I haven’t taken any time off, and he’s a tough guy, so I’ve got to come in and fight him at my ‘A’ game.”

Alves is a tough opponent to step in against on short notice, but how could Koscheck resist such a golden opportunity to grind salt in Sanchez’s torn rib cartilage? The only thing worse than having to pull out of a big fight is having a rival swoop in and take it.

As late replacements go, Koscheck probably makes the most possible sense. Instead of throwing Alves against someone far lower on the welterweight totem pole, he gets someone at right about the same level. This bout, in terms of both quality of competition and future ramifications on the division, has simply made a lateral move. How many times have we been able to say that?

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In Depth: Bisping/Leben, Jardine/Vera, Alves/Sanchez

From Spike.com: Chris Leben says his loopy, wide-open style knocks people out. He also refuses to lose, check the news and read the interviews. Damn…dude is like the white Shonie Carter. Skip to the -5:14 mark for the ridiculous ending to his fight against Terry Martin; there’s your warning to not get cocky, Count. Later in this video, we look at the matchup between the Dean of the Mean and the Truth, also at UFC 89.

From CBS.com, for some reason: A preview of the UFC 90 welterweight feature between Thiago Alves and Diego Sanchez. “You are going to see the strongest Sanchez you have ever seen before,” Sanchez says. “The result is gonna be a dominating submission victory.”

(Props: “Card” on the UG)

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Videos: Greg Jackson Talks Liddell KO, TUF 1 Carpool + More

In this interview done after Rashad Evans’s knockout of Chuck Liddell at UFC 88, trainer/strategist Greg Jackson discusses what he told Evans between rounds 1 and 2, Mike Winklejohn and Kieth Jardine’s contributions to the gameplan, and Nate Marquardt’s victory over Martin Kampmann. Props to Sherdog via Fans of Team Jackson’s.

Courtesy of MMAMania and MAR Clothing, here’s a video of Josh Koscheck interviewing Diego Sanchez and Chris Leben in a car while in Las Vegas for the taping of the Ultimate Fighter 1 reunion — which will air in segments during Saturday’s TUF 1 marathon on SpikeTV, beginning at 9 a.m. ET. The guys discuss their upcoming fights, a possible rubber match between Diego and Josh, Thiago Alves’s mysterious growth spurt, and how Chris Leben wants a rematch with Anderson Silva more than anything.

After the jump: Must-see interview footage of Evan Tanner explaining why he fights and his humanist worldview, from Potent: The Movie, via Bloody Elbow.

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UFC 90 Already Nearing a Sell-Out in Chicago


(You’d be smiling too if you sold $2 million worth of tickets.)

Just a few hours after tickets for UFC 90 at Chicago’s All-State Arena went on sale, roughly 80% of them were snatched up. This means that by the time the UFC’s press conference for the event on Monday was over they’d already pulled in around $2 million in live gate money. All this for an October 25 event featuring Anderson Silva against Patrick Cote (rest his soul) and Diego Sanchez taking on Thiago Alves. It’s safe to say the UFC will be returning to Chicago frequently from now on.

Even with such early success Dana White went ahead and poured on the hyperbole at Monday’s press conference:

”This is a bold statement in a town with the White Sox and Cubs and the Bears, but I guarantee you this will be the most exciting live sporting event you have ever seen,” White said. ”I can’t explain it to you. You have to experience it.

”The closest thing that comes to it is when Mike Tyson was in his heyday. There was so much excitement about someone getting knocked out.”

After that last remark we imagine that White looked over at Cote, shrugged, and silently mouthed “Sorry!” before continuing on.

White also vowed that UFC 90 would be the highest-grossing event in the arena’s history, edging out Wrestlemania for that honor. Then they moved on to discuss Thiago Alves’ problems making weight, which we’ve all been assured won’t be a problem this time around, even though he’s currently about thirty pounds over.

In a final bit of UFC 90 news, Mike Swick is expected to be added to the card, though an opponent has not yet been named.

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TapouT at Least Partially Responsible for Diego Sanchez’s UFC Career?


(This picture is just another part of TapouT’s attempt to make you constantly feel like you are on mushrooms. That, and the paint and wigs and stuff.)

As much as we like to give the guys from TapouT a hard time about their TV show and their plans to make children’s furniture, we have to admit that they know what they’re doing with their off-the-wall personas and recognizable brand. And in an interview with USA Today’s MMA blogger, Sergio Non, they open up about their business (they expect to do “upwards of $100 million this year”), their history, and most interestingly, their role in Diego Sanchez’s victory on the first season of “The Ultimate Fighter”:

There could be a fighter, like in (TUF season-one winner) Diego Sanchez’s case — he was already primed and ready, but there was just that nobody that knew about him. Whereas we knew about him because we’re scouring all those up-and-coming, lower shows.

So when Dana White came to me and was like, “Hey, this is who we’ve got going on there, is there anybody we missed…” I was like, “There’s this kid, Diego Sanchez out of New Mexico, he’s crazy and he’s insane.” And actually, this story is a true story, he ended up bumping one guy off The Ultimate Fighter that was slated to go on there, plugged Diego Sanchez in, Diego ends up winning it at the 185-pound mark, further cementing us as talent scouts.

Wow. I guess that guy who was bumped knows who to be pissed off at now. Also in this interview we learn (two of) their real names — Charles Lewis Jr. (Mask) and Dan Caldwell (Punkass), while Skyskrape is apparently a mystery man who hails from parts unknown, much like The Ultimate Warrior — and they also comment on the nature of their relationship with the UFC.

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Sanchez/Alves Moved to UFC 90; Pulver/Garcia at WEC 36?

Diego Sanchez UFC MMA
(The Nightmare returns; photo courtesy of MMA Junkie.)

A couple of important fight bookings to pass along this morning…

First, MMA Weekly reports that a welterweight bout between Diego Sanchez and Thiago Alves will take place at UFC 90 (October 25th, Chicago); the UFC hasn’t officially announced any of the fights on the card yet. Originally, Sanchez/Alves was rumored to take place at UFC 89 in Birmingham, England, but with that lineup filling out it looks like the Nightmare vs. the Pitbull will be used to anchor the UFC’s first show in Chi-town.

Meanwhile, Leonard Garcia has reportedly agreed to face Jens Pulver in a featherweight match at WEC 36 (September 10th; Hollywood, Florida). WEC 36 is also slated to feature title fights between Urijah Faber and Mike Brown, and Paulo Filho vs. Chael Sonnen. Garcia hasn’t fought since a TKO victory over Hiroyuki Takaya at WEC 32 in February, after which he was caught up in a minor misunderstanding over drug smuggling. Pulver had to undergo elbow surgery after his unanimous decision loss to Urijah Faber last month, but according to Lil’ Evil, “everything is good.”

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Exclusive Interview: Josh Koscheck

Josh Koscheck Mar Clothing UFC MMA
(Kos, rockin’ the “Skullburst Burnout.”)

Josh Koscheck has been one of the UFC’s most prominent figures since the first season of The Ultimate Fighter, where he beat Chris Leben but was defeated by the show’s eventual middleweight winner, Diego Sanchez. After leaving the show, he became a mainstay in the UFC’s welterweight division, using his background as a Division I college wrestling champion to knock off guys like Dave Menne, Jonathan Goulet, and Sanchez in a hotly anticipated rematch. Though he seemed like an imminent contender for the 170-pound belt, a frustrating decision loss against Georges St. Pierre at UFC 74 sent him to the back of the line. On Saturday he continues his quest for re-ascension, taking on TUF 4 finalist Chris Lytle. We caught up to Josh after one of his final training sessions in preparation for UFC 86, and shot the shit about fighter pay, “The Nightmare,” and his secret life as a t-shirt mogul.

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CagePotato.com: Not to take anything away from Chris Lytle, but he has a losing record in the UFC. Do you feel like you should be fighting a higher-ranked welterweight at this point?
Josh Koscheck: No. After my loss to Georges St. Pierre I have to work my way back up through the ranks. In order to be the #1 contender you have to beat whoever they put in front of you, and that’s my plan.

What part of Lytle’s game are you most concerned about?
I don’t really know too much about him, I just know he’s pretty good on his feet and he’s got pretty good jiu-jitsu. My concerns are myself — coming in prepared, which I definitely am, and taking the opportunity to get the job done.

This is the first fight on your new UFC contract extension. Would you say you’re getting paid what you deserve now?
I don’t know that answer; that’s up to my managers. My job is to train and fight. My managers got me the contract so I guess that’s what I deserve right now. Obviously, it’s human nature to want more money. You probably want more money to interview me today. But it’s just a matter of time. Yeah, UFC fighters deserve a lot more money, and it’s coming. The sport’s growing, and as the UFC brand grows, the fighters will make more money.

Do you have any interest in fighting Diego Sanchez again? Your last fight with him was called into question because he was supposedly suffering from a staph infection at the time. Do you feel the need to prove it was a legitimate win?

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Penn to Face GSP/Fitch Winner; UFC 89 Free on SpikeTV

In this clip from Fighters Club TV, BJ Penn announces his intention to move back to 170 to fight the winner of Georges St. Pierre vs. Jon Fitch, possibly around New Year’s Eve. The Prodigy says he’d love to reclaim the welterweight title, will take future matches at lightweight “if it makes sense,” and moving to middleweight is a future aspiration. Hopefully, a title defense against Roger Huerta or Kenny Florian still makes sense to Penn, but the lure of eating more cheeseburgers building a legacy can be strong sometimes. (Props to Steve Cofield for the find.)

Another notable bit of UFC news emerging this morning is that UFC 89 (October 18th; Birmingham, England) will be televised for free on Spike TV, and another pay-per-view event will likely be held one week later. UFC 89 will be headlined by Michael Bisping vs. Chris Leben, and will reportedly feature a bout between Thiago Alves and Diego Sanchez.

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The Genesis Of Rampage’s Bad Breath Jokes Revealed


(‘Actually Marvin Eastman, your breath is delightful. I am at a loss.’)

Pro MMA conducted an interview with Quinton “Rampage” Jackson’s father recently, and it really helps put some of his personality traits into perspective. Most notably, Jackson’s penchant for making jokes about how bad other people’s breath smells:

You know Quinton is always telling bad breath jokes. Well I was the first to start it with him. We were in McDonald’s one day, Quinton was deciding on what to order. He said, “I don’t know what I want.” I replied “You know what you need to order?” he said, “What?” I said, ” You need to order a great big Tic Tac.” It was funny. Everybody was laughing. From then on, we would always joke on each other’s breath.

Just think, if his dad had told a knock-knock joke at that crucial moment in Jackson’s development, things might have turned out very differently. And by differently I mean, you know, totally lame.

Is it sad that this is what passes for interesting news in the lead up to this title fight? Kind of.

But in other UFC news, Thiago Alves is said to be facing Diego Sanchez at UFC 89 in England, according to MMA Weekly. If it seems a little odd for Alves to go from dismantling Matt Hughes to facing someone who is probably lower on the welterweight totem pole, well, that’s because it is. Still should make for an interesting fight. Who knows, Alves might even make weight this time. Maybe.

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Sanchez, Hazelett Top TUF 7 Finale Payouts

Dustin Hazelett UFC Josh Burkman
(Dustin Hazelett earning his bonus money. Photo courtesy of UFC.com.)

The list of official salaries from the Ultimate Fighter 7 Finale has been released by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. The numbers are below; each winning fighter’s payout represents a doubling of his base salary.

Diego Sanchez: $70,000
Dustin Hazelett: $64,000 (includes $20,000 Submission of the Night bonus and $20,000 Fight of the Night bonus)
Drew McFedries: $46,000 (includes $20,000 Knockout of the Night bonus)
Spencer Fisher: $36,000
Kendall Grove: $32,000
Josh Burkman: $30,000 (includes $20,000 Fight of the Night bonus)
Dean Lister: $28,000
Jeremy Horn: $25,000
Evan Tanner: $25,000
Amir Sadollah: $16,000
Matthew Riddle: $16,000
Jeremy Stephens: $16,000
Matt Brown: $16,000
Luigi Fioravanti: $10,000
Marvin Eastman: $9,000
C.B. Dollaway: $8,000
Dante Rivera: $8,000
Matt Arroyo: $8,000
Tim Credeur: $8,000*
Cale Yarbrough: $8,000*
Rob Kimmons: $6,000
Rob Yundt: $5,000

* Credeur and Yarbrough both reportedly received their to-show salaries, even though their match was canceled the night of the fight due to Credeur testing positive for Adderall.

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