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Tag: New Jersey

Jon Jones vs. Glover Teixeira Targeted for February 2014 in New Jersey

(Don’t feel bad, Jon. There are insane, misguided women who would pay a lot of money for lips like those. / Photo via Getty)

No, there won’t be an immediate rematch of 2013′s Fight of the Year. UFC president Dana White confirmed to ESPN yesterday that Jon Jones‘s next light-heavyweight title defense will come against Brazilian contender Glover Teixeira. “That’s what the champ wants,” White said. “We’ll probably have that fight on the Super Bowl card in New Jersey.”

With Super Bowl XLVIII scheduled for February 2nd in East Rutherford, the Jones vs. Teixeira bout would go down the night before on February 1st, as per UFC tradition. Though White didn’t name a venue, it seems likely that the fight would take place at the Prudential Center in Newark, where Jones originally won his title from Mauricio “Shogun” Rua back in March 2011, and made his fifth title defense against Chael Sonnen earlier this year. (Hey, remember when we thought this event might happen at Madison Square Garden? That was pretty sweet. Let’s cross our fingers for 2015, guys.)

Undefeated for eight years and carrying a perfect 5-0 record in the UFC, Teixeira is clearly next in line on the light-heavyweight title ladder. The 33-year-old most recently TKO’d Ryan Bader in just under three minutes at UFC Fight Night 28, overwhelming Bader with strikes after being briefly staggered by the TUF 8 winner.

So where does this leave Alexander Gustafsson? Funny you should ask…


Following WSOF 5 Debacle, Elvis Mutapcic Plans to Sue NJ Athletic Commission ‘For Everything They’ve Got’

(A photo of the mini-pharmacy in question, via MMAMania)

On Saturday evening, World Series of Fighting 5 main card fighter Elvis Mutapcic was pulled from his scheduled bout against Jesse Taylor at the last minute, allegedly for taking a medication before the fight that wasn’t approved in advance. Though a pill-bottle containing several different unapproved medications was retrieved from the middleweight’s warm-up area by New Jersey State Athletic Control Board inspectors, Mutapcic denied taking any of the meds, claiming that the commission inspector who originally reported it might have mistaken him for his manager — who is on medication for a heart condition.

According to MMAJunkie, Mutapcic immediately asked the NJSACB to give him a drug test to prove that he didn’t have any unapproved PEDs, painkillers, or other drugs of abuse in his system, but the commission refused his request. And so, Mutapcic went straight to a local hospital to get a drug test taken on his own. The results came back negative. According to Mutapcic:

I was told it wouldn’t be a bad idea going to get a drug test after we left here, and even before the co-main event started we were on our way to the emergency room to get another drug test and prove I didn’t take anything. I plan on suing the New Jersey athletic commission for everything they’ve got.

Right after they told us we couldn’t fight, I said I’d take another drug test from (the commission). And they said, ‘Oh, we don’t have any drug tests, but we won’t suspend you.’ So I wanted to go out of my way to clear my name and prove I never took anything. I’m a hard-working fighter who works his ass off, and I don’t want to be discredited.”

The New Jersey athletic commission stands by their decision to pull the fight; whether or not Mutapcic took the illegal meds, their presence backstage was a violation of the rules. Mutapcic understands this, but he’s still pissed:


World Series of Fighting 5 Report: Arlovski Beats Kyle, Branch Tops Villefort

(Former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski [right] connects with a right on Mike Kyle Saturday night at WSOF 5 | Photo by Lucas Noonan/WSOF)

By Elias Cepeda

Andrei Arlovski showed resiliency for the second fight in a row Saturday night in the World Series of Fighting (WSOF) 5 event in New Jersey, this time coming away with a win. Last March, Arlovski had his jaw broken after taking extra punches from Anthony Johnson when the referee allowed the first round to go on past the bell but fought on for the duration of the bout, ultimately losing a decision.

Saturday night, the recently un-retired Mike Kyle dropped Arlovski twice, once in the first and once in the third round, but “The Pitbull” came back each time and scored enough himself to be awarded winning scores of 29-28 by all three ringside judges. Arlovski took the fight on a month’s notice after Johnson himself was injured and had to pull out of the fight with Kyle.

“It was a great fight,” Arlovski said after the bout. “[Kyle is] a top fighter, and I really appreciate him for this fight.

In the WSOF 5 co-main event, middleweight David Branch won a decision over Danillo Villefort on the strength of dominating take downs and ground grappling. With the win, Branch has earned a shot at the WSOF middleweight belt. His opponent for the inaugural middleweight title bout has not yet been announced.

In heavyweight action, Derrick Mehmen knocked out Rolles Gracie in the second round. Throughout the first round, Gracie was able to stay safe and use his grappling effectively against Mehmen but in the second stanza, his opponent connected with a clean right hand on the feet that put Rolles out in unintentionally hilarious fashion.

In a strange turn of events, the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board officials called off a middleweight tournament bout between Elvis “The King” Mutapcic and Jesse “JT Money” Taylor just moments before the two were scheduled to hit the cage.

According the commission, Mutapcic took a prescription pill that had not been cleared for use.


Jon Jones to Beat Sh*t Out of Chael Sonnen April 27th in Newark, NJ

(Hey, that reminds me…please remember to vote today!)

The hilariously nonsensical light-heavyweight title match between Jon Jones and Chael Sonnen just got a venue. UFC officials confirmed yesterday that Sonnen’s public execution will take place at UFC 159, April 27th at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.

It’ll be the UFC’s fourth appearance at the Prudential Center, where Jones first became light-heavyweight champion by tearing apart Mauricio Rua in March 2011. If Jones defeats Sonnen in April — which he absolutely, positively will, and I’m willing to bet my whole blogger purse on it — he will tie Tito Ortiz’s UFC record for consecutive light-heavyweight title defenses (5).

Jones vs. Sonnen will follow the fighters’ coaching stints on TUF 17, which will surely put the sport in a good light and won’t at all be an embarrassment to all humanity. So start saving that cash, Tri-State Area residents. You don’t want to miss history.


What the Inspector Saw: Riding Shotgun at CFFC With the New Jersey Athletic Control Board

(Frankie Edgar and Chris Liguori, backstage at CFFC 16.)

By Jim Genia

I arrive at the venue at 5:00 p.m., waiting with the fighters to pick up the credentials that will allow me access to all areas. For the sixteenth installment of the New Jersey-based regional promotion Cage Fury Fighting Championships, there are UFC veterans taking on up-and-comers, rising stars facing local tough guys, and a pair of female competitors ready to throw down. But I’m not there to watch them all fight — not this time, at least. No, this time, I’m wandering around the bowels of the Borgata Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City with the singular purpose of shadowing an inspector with the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board. There are countless articles on the fight night perspective as seen by the fighters themselves, and last year I sat beside venerable cageside judge Jeff Blatnick to get his take on things. But on this Friday night in August, I wanted something different. I wanted to know what the inspector saw.

Of all the moving parts of a sanctioned fight show — whether it be MMA or kickboxing or boxing — none are more prevalent than the inspector. They are there backstage, watching over the fighters as medicals are done, hands are wrapped, and warm-ups are undertaken. When it’s time to head to the cage, they’re there too, walking the fighter out, and standing beside them before and after the bout and in between rounds. The inspector is the ubiquitous lubricant that greases the gears. Without them, the engine wouldn’t run.

Aaron Davis may be the commissioner of the NJSACB, but Nick Lembo is grand poobah when it comes to MMA, and he wastes no time in introducing me to Vincent Dudley, the man I’ll be shadowing. Dudley is burly and solid and built like a lifelong martial artist, and when he folds his arms across his chest (a common stance adopted throughout the night), he’s a figure of authority and appears every bit the retired New York City Department of Corrections officer he professes to be. He’s friendly, yet there’s no mistaking feeling that if you screw up, he’ll let you know. Dudley has been working for the commission in New Jersey for years now, as an inspector but sometimes as a judge and referee, too. He knows the job.

And apparently, the job begins with getting all the fighters squared away in terms of paperwork, a doctor examination, and a urine sample for the pre-fight drug screening.


Ricardo Almeida Nervous but Ready to Judge his First UFC Bouts

(No, Frankie, I will not judge your next title fight, so quit asking.)

After retiring, former UFC fighter Ricardo Almeida announced that he would begin judging MMA events. He’s been doing that for awhile now in his home state of New Jersey, and this Saturday’s UFC on Fox 3 will be the Renzo Gracie black belt’s first time judging fights on the big stage.

Almeida will not be judging fights where he has a conflict of interest (see fighters he coaches or that are affiliated to him or his Renzo Gracie lineage like Jim Miller, for example) but we do already know that he will be one of the judges scoring Josh Koscheck vs. Johny Hendricks and several more from the card. Almeida tells ESPN’s Franklin McNeil that he is both nervous and prepared to judge UFC fights.

“Yeah, I’m going to be nervous. It’ll be like I’m walking into a fight myself. But the spotlight only makes me want to be sharper and do a better job,” Almeida tells McNeil.


Hettes vs. Siler Added to UFC on FX 4 June 22

(“I ain’t Leonard Garcia, pal.”)

Another New Jersey native has been added to the UFC’s upcoming FX 4 card set for this summer in Atlantic City.

Jimy Hettes (10-0), the undefeated 24-year-old featherweight phenom who impressed us all in his first two UFC bouts, trouncing TUF veterans Alex Caceres and Nam Phan, will join fellow New Jerseyans Dan Miller, Nick Catone and Rich Attonito on the June 22 card.


Sadly, Strikeforce’s Nazi Pedophile Fighter Will Have to Find a New Career

(“Damn, I did Nazi this one coming. Yeah, I know, go fuck myself…”)

Sure, it would have been nice if Strikeforce did a simple Google search to see if Brandon Saling had any skeletons in his closet; even if they looked at one photo of him before last Saturday, they might have noticed that his tattoos were of the “history buff” variety. But now that the truth is out regarding Saling’s past — which includes a 2004 conviction for having sex with a 12-year-old — at least we can be sure that we’ll probably never see this walking-turd compete in sanctioned MMA competition again*.

According to an MMA Weekly report, the Ohio Athletic Commission has revoked Saling’s fight license after last weekend’s event in Columbus for failing to disclose his past criminal background on the licensing application he filled out in February for a previous fight under the NAAFS banner. In addition to being listed as a registered sex offender in the state of Ohio, Saling was also convicted on domestic violence charges stemming from an incident in 2008.


Ricardo Almeida to Judge in NJ: Is Fighters Judging Fighters Really Such a Good Idea?

(Is that a thumbs-up, a hang loose or a 2-out-of-10? We already have a problem here, Ricardo. Pic: MMA Convert)

Suck on this, F. Scott Fitzgerald: Recently retired MMA veteran Ricardo Almeida has apparently wasted little time starting the second act of his fighting life, as Pro MMA Radio’s Larry Pepe reports via tweet that “The Big Dog” will become a licensed judge in New Jersey. Obviously, the immediate reaction to this story is, “Hey, that’s great.” It’s good to see Almeida appearing to make a seamless transition to the next phase (one that baffles so many professional athletes) and it’s nice that he’s looking for ways to stay involved in the sport after hanging up his gloves. Since MMA is still, ahem, technically illegal in the state where Almeida resides, it’s also super cool and neighborly of Jersey to give him a chance. The Dirty Jerz has always fancied itself a forward-thinking athletic commission, so this is a good fit for it as well.

Let us say right off that we have no problem with Almeida the specific man/fighter becoming a judge. He’s always seemed like an agreeable sort and we have no doubt he’ll do a great job. But after the initial warm and fuzzies of this particular story wore off, we were left with some questions. Lots of questions, actually. For starters: Is having newly retired fighters become ringside officials really such a hot idea? Doesn’t it sort of set the stage for some clear cut conflicts of interest?


‘Karmaatemycat Takes New Jersey’: Part 1

(LargeMidget, Karmaatemycat, and Joe.)

Better late than never, right? Here’s the first installment of Jeff Watts‘s UFC 128/TUF 14 tryout saga. Thanks to everyone who helped make it possible, and stay tuned for more…

After waiting several weeks and training hard I left my humble abode with intentions to make the most out of an amazing experience. I remember driving to Milwaukee, WI, just thinking that no matter what happened, haters were going to hate and my real supporters were going to be there when the dust settled, and I was right. So I got a last minute flight to Newark, NJ, and arrived at my destination at 12am on Saturday, March 19th. I spent the remaining part of the night in the airport with other members of the gym. We checked into the hotel at 7am and spent the majority of Saturday morning sleeping.

Saturday March 19th
I woke up early afternoon and did what I had to do to get ready for the day. The Marriot in Newark had some really cool people working there; they gave the guys and I a quiet place to do some sparring and pad work. After working out I got a text message; I can’t remember who it came from but they essentially told me that LargeMidget had an extra ticket to UFC 128. I wasted no time getting his contact information and contacting him. He told me that he and his friend Joe were three hours out and had an extra ticket I could have, so I got some food in me and headed downtown.