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Tag: Roy Nelson

Quick Hits: IFL Fighters to Affliction, Great MMA Book Reviews, and Dana White’s Net Worth


(‘Who has the nachos? Don’t act like I don’t know nachos when I smell ‘em!’)

After reports that Zuffa was buying the video library and at least some of the IFL’s fighter contracts, we kept expecting the flood of stories about all the ex-IFL’ers making the jump to either the UFC or WEC. So far news has been relatively light on that front, but it looks like Affliction has swooped in to pick off a couple of top prospects for themselves.

MMANews.com reports that Roy Nelson will face Xtreme Couture’s Jay White at Affliction: DoR (the abbreviations have already begun, deal with it) in October. Nelson was the IFL’s only official heavyweight champ, and White is…2-5. Wonder which of these guys is being groomed for a big future in the stacked Affliction heavyweight division?

Meanwhile, Sherdog is passing along info that a rematch with Antonio Rogerio Nogueira has been offered to IFL light heavyweight champ Vladimir Matyushenko. Vladdy beat Little Nog via decision in 2002, and he never faced much of a test during his unbeaten run in the IFL. Matyushenko would make an excellent addition to the growing 205-pound ranks in Affliction, which should soon include Tito Ortiz, who Matyushenko lost a decision to in 2001.

In other news…

- Fightlinker has enlisted the services of Matthew Polly — author of this hilarious and highly recommended book — to review several of the MMA “memoirs” that have hit the shelves in recent months. Polly does to their sense of narrative and craft (and their ghostwriters’ sense of exactly how much work they’d have to do to get paid) what these same fighters would likely do to the face of anyone who uses words like narrative and craft. Fun times. Check out his review of “Iceman: My Fighting Life” and you’ll see what we mean.

- Ever wondered how rich Dana White really is? Well, rich. But Wall Street Fighter tries to nail down a solid figure. It’s actually harder than it sounds, although their photoshop of the UFC Prez is just adorable.

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UFC Could Be Close to Acquiring the IFL

Dana White
(It ain’t personal, baby. It’s strictly business.)

Despite Dana White’s love of criticizing every aspect of the IFL and citing them as a cautionary tale for MMA startups, it seems fighter contracts and an extensive video library are just too attractive for him to pass up. According to a report on MMA Payout, Zuffa is very close to buying the IFL.

The deal isn’t finalized, says Sam Caplan, but this is the most credible report thus far regarding the potential purchase of the IFL. The company was said to be on the market for around $1 million, but the UFC is believed to be getting it for less than that. Sources within the IFL could only confirm for us that the talks have been under way for some time now and the UFC is the leading suitor.

In case you’re wondering why the UFC would buy the company they spent so much time badmouthing, a clue could lie within Saturday’s “Silva vs. Irvin” fight card. The event features three former IFL fighters — Reese Andy, Rory Markham, and Brad Blackburn — whose entry into the Octagon was hastened by the UFC’s decision to put together an event to rival Affliction’s.

The UFC may be hoping to pick up some of the IFL’s better known stars, along with the video library to help promote them, in order to shore up their fighter roster before the likes of Jay Hieron, Chris Horodecki, Ryan Schultz, Jim Miller, and Roy Nelson (to name just a few) get snapped up by competitors like Affliction and Elite XC.

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IFL Shoulder-Tattoo Roundup

Matt Horwich IFL tattoos

As many of you are probably unaware, there’s an IFL event going down tonight in Uncasville, CT, which will feature Roy Nelson defending his heavyweight title against Brad Imes, and Ryan Schultz defending his lightweight belt against Deividas Taurosevicius. (You can watch the action live on HDNet beginning at 8:30 p.m. ET.) And here’s something you might not know about the IFL: They require all their fighters to get shitty tattoos on their shoulders. Honestly — the photos from the weigh-ins prove it. My favorite is Matt Horwich‘s (above left), which is a screaming pencil with musical notes coming out of its eraser. More insane ink after the jump.

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Nelson, Schultz & McGivern Defending in May


(Ryan McGivern, on his back, will defend his title for the first time in May.)

The IFL‘s next event is this weekend, but the organization is already rolling out the card for its May event. The show is to go down on May 16th and mark a return to the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. The fights will, of course, be live on HDNet, as always. Staying true to their word of multiple title fights at every event, the IFL has scheduled three title defenses — heavyweight champion Roy Nelson, newly-crowned middleweight champ Ryan McGivern, and lightweight title holder Ryan Schultz. This will be the second defense for Nelson and Schultz.

Two new camps are also joining the action — The Bomb Squad and Team Prodigy. The Bomb Squad is a Northeast-based camp that will do battle with Mario Sperry’s World Class Fight Center (Vegas). Team Prodigy is based in Ohio and will take on Matt Lindland’s Team Quest (Portland).

For the title fights, here’s a snip from the press release:

In the title bouts, Nelson will defend his heavyweight belt against UFC veteran Branden Lee Hinkle (Weirton, W. Va.). Nelson won the title in December at Mohegan Sun with a knockout of Antoine Jaoude, then defended with a decisive first-round TKO over Fabiano Scherner in Las Vegas in February. Schultz will battle Deividas Taurosevicius (Lithuania) for the lightweight crown. Schultz also won his title in his last visit to Mohegan Sun in December, bouncing Chris Horodecki from the ranks of the unbeaten, then earned a decision win over John Gunderson in Las Vegas in February to defend. McGivern, one of the most improved fighters in the IFL, took the middleweight belt from Matt Horwich in February and has won three of his past four bouts.

Team Quest’s three fighters will find out their Team Prodigy opponents soon, but we do know that Zac George, Matt Horwich, and Aaron Stark will be representing Lindland’s group. The Bomb Squad’s John Howard — a Boston fighter — will fight Mario Sperry’s Marcello Salazar, and WCFC’s Danillo Villefort will take on BS’s Mike Massenzio in other camp action.

Here’s the card so far:

World Class Fight Center vs. Bomb Squad
170 lbs: Marcello Salazar (7-1-2) vs. John Howard (8-3)
185 lbs: Danillo Villefort (6-2) vs. Mike Massenzio (10-1)
155 lbs: TBD vs. TBD

Team Prodigy vs. Team Quest
155 lbs: TBD vs. Zac George (12-2)
185 lbs: TBD vs. Matt Horwich (21-10-1)
205 lbs: TBD vs. Aaron Stark (5-4)

Championship Bouts
265 lbs: Roy Nelson (12-2) vs. Branden Lee Hinkle (13-9)
185 lbs:Ryan McGivern (12-5) vs. Dan Miller (7-1)
155 lbs:Ryan Schultz (19-9-1) vs. Deividas Taurosevicius (9-2)

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IFL Payouts: How the Other Half Lives

JH
(Josh Haynes picked up six grand for “bringing the pain.”)

Since we spent so much time yesterday looking at the generally impressive bonuses and salaries for UFC 82, it seems like a good idea to check out the IFL’s payouts for comparison. MMA Weekly has obtained the salaries for Friday’s IFL season opener, which are below. The IFL event brought 4,280 people to the Orleans Arena, with only 1,606 of those people actually paying for their tickets. The total live gate was $102,120, and the total disclosed fighter payroll was $165,500.

CHAMPIONSHIP BOUTS
Ryan Schultz ($26,000, including $14,000 win bonus) def. John Gunderson ($9,500)
Roy Nelson ($24,000 including $14,000 win bonus) def. Fabiano Scherner ($7,500)
Ryan McGivern ($10,000 including $4,000 win bonus) def. Matt Horwich ($12,000)

MAIN CARD
Alexandre Ferreira ($16,000 including $8,000 win bonus) def. Lew Polley ($4,000)
Jake Ellenberger ($15,000 including $7,500 win bonus) def. Pat Healy ($7,500)
Rafael Dias ($7,000 including $3,500 win bonus) def. Santino De Franco ($5,000)
Josh Haynes ($6,000 including $3,000 win bonus) def. Leopoldo Serao ($4,000)

PRELIMINARY FIGHT
Ian Loveland ($7,000 including $3,500 win bonus) def. Dennis Davis ($5,000)

What’s the sadder number — $12,000 (the guaranteed salary of the event’s highest-paid fighters, Schultz and Horwich) or 2,600 (the number of seat-fillers that the IFL had to bring in to make the joint look crowded)?

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IFL Recap: A Title Switcheroo


(Ryan “The Lion” Schultz G-n-P’s John Gunderson.)

Last night at the Orleans Arena in Vegas, 3,931 fans watched the IFL kick off its 2008 season with three title matches – lightweight, middleweight, and heavyweight – in addition to their camp-on-camp battles. Ryan “The Lion” Schultz, who won the lightweight title back in December when he beat the shit out of previously undefeated Chris Horodecki, retained his title by earning a unanimous decision over John Gunderson. “The Lion” claimed recently that Gunderson had been offered this fight many times, but had neglected to take it until now. The champ held a strong position through much of the fight – which was fought on the ground for the most part. Both Schultz and Gunderson had chances to end the fight with a choke early on, but neither could execute it.

Heavyweight Roy “Big Country” Nelson also successfully defended his belt by getting a TKO over Fabiano Scherner at 3:20 in the first round. “Big Country” has been improving his striking and this fight showed that as he unleashed a barrage of rights to get a stoppage.


(“Big Country” has a celebratory seizure.)

One title did switch hands and it happened the night before the ex-champ’s wedding, too. Matt Horwich put his middleweight title on the line against Ryan McGivern, which made for the best fight of the night. Horwich almost ended it via armbar in the second round, but the bell saved McGivern’s ass. Horwich almost went down himself in the fourth when McGivern drilled him with a flurry of strikes, but “The Fighting Hippy” held on. In the end, a unanimous decision gave the middleweight crown over to McGivern, ending a two month run as champ for Horwich. Hope he ices his face for the sake of the wedding pictures – he didn’t grow the mohawk out for nothing.

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No Rest for the Weary: Three IFL Champs to Defend Belts on 2/29

MH
(Matt Horwich, celebrating or something.)

Some of the IFL’s new champions could have a seriously short reign at the top if they’re upset at the league’s season opener, which will be held just two months after their titles were awarded at the World Grand Prix. As reported on Friday, the first 2008 event will be held in Las Vegas on February 29; the IFL sent out word today that the competition will be headlined by the following championship matches:

[lightweights] Ryan Schultz vs. John Gunderson
[middleweights] Matt Horwich vs. Tim Kennedy
[heavyweights] Roy Nelson vs. Fabiano Scherner

Most eyes will be on Ryan “The Lion” Schultz, who is looking to prove that his violent K.O. of Chris Horodecki was no fluke; Gunderson was scheduled to face Horodecki for the title, but was injured in training and replaced by Schultz at the 11th hour.

The other big news coming from the IFL today is that the team matchups for the season opener have been finalized: Matt Lindland’s Team Quest will take on Ken Shamrock’s Reno-based Lion’s Den, while Team Xtreme Couture will face the fellow newcomers of Mario Sperry’s MMA Top Team, who are also based in Las Vegas. In case you’re unfamiliar with his work, 41-year-old Sperry is one of the founders of Chute Boxe-rivals Brazilian Top Team; in 1998, he became the first fighter in history to make a member of the Gracie family submit in a match, when he defeated Royler Gracie.

More updates to come…

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