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Tag: UFC

Cro Cop…OUT!

MCC
(“I got your pay cut right here…”)

And so ends the sad tale of Mirko Filipovic joining the UFC; alack, t’wasn’t meant to be.

After the UFC tried to downwardly re-negotiate terms on the the struggling heavyweight legend’s contract, Mirko Cro Cop said “Ne slažem se,” then flew to Japan where he announced his signing to a new fight club called DREAM. The Japanese promotion was recently founded by Fight Entertainment Group (owners of K-1) along with former executives of Dream Stage Entertainment (PRIDE).

We’re not so much feelin’ the name, but these dudes are coming out swinging: In addition to a heavyweight bout between Filipovic and a yet-unnamed opponent, DREAM’s inaugural show at the Saitama Super Arena on March 15th will also include the first round of a lightweight Grand Prix tournament which will feature that fight between Shinya Aoki and Gesias “JZ” Calvancante. Nightmare of Battle reports that such international stars as Gilbert Melendez, Andre Dida, Mitsuhiro Ishida, Caol Uno, Joachim Hansen, and Luiz Azeredo will also be participating in the tournament, and MMA Junkie says that Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto and Kazushi Sakuraba have been booked for bouts at the first DREAM show as well.

Though no formal statement from the UFC has been released yet, we’re looking forward to Dana White calling Cro Cop a “farce” who “isn’t a top-ten heavyweight anyway.”

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New ‘Edith Labelle’ Shoot on UFC.com; New ‘MMA Girl’ Joins Joanne

Edith
(Her best angle.)

The UFC’s relationship with upstart Octagon Girl “Edith Labelle” — a.k.a. Edith Larente, a.k.a. Anabelle — has been made official with a new photo-shoot on UFC.com. Check it out, if you’re into that sort of thing.

In other chick-news, MMA Girl Joanne has found a new companion to roll with. A series of videos posted to YouTube yesterday shows her and “Jenny” demonstrating some half-guard techniques. The first part is below, parts two and three are after the jump.

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Cro Cop Makes Another Non-Announcement


(My shorts rock the party!)

Rumors have been swirling about Mirko Cro Cop Filipovic’s retirement/leaving the UFC/switching organizations for the past week or so. He currently makes $350k per fight, plus bonuses and was signed to the contract when many thought he would dominate his division. After losing 2 of 3 fights and having no appeal for the UFC, Dana White has asked Cro Cop to sign a somewhat less-lucrative contract – the option being to re-sign or to sit out the remainder of the contract.

Has Cro Cop made a decision? Here’s yesterday’s non-announcement from his personal blog:

“I promised to share some news with you today and I feel bad by not doing so. There are some reasons for this that I can’t speak of at the moment. However, I promise to make the statement as soon as possible. Thank you for supporting me and I hope that little more patience is not too much to ask.”

And then today, he followed that up with a prelude to an announcement:

“I’m off to Tokyo! A big announcement will come straight from Japan tomorrow (February 13). When the official part is done I’ll be able to provide more information about everything, and believe me, I have many things to say. What you could easily guess by now is that I won’t be retiring. I’ll keep on fighting, it’s my life, it’s what I do.”

So he promised an announcement tomorrow (the 13th). And you’ve got to love the classic Dana in this one. He’s more than willing to let – actually make – Cro Cop sit out the remainder of his contract, and is equally as willing to dump millions on a lawsuit against Randy Couture for wanting to do the same thing.

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Chris Leben Inks New UFC Deal; African Assassin Wants Machida Rematch

Chris Leben, who was on the first TUF, has announced via his myspace fan club that he has inked a two-year extension with the UFC. This new deal pushes aside Leben’s old one which is used for TUF cast members. The new contract will pay Leben $25k to show and the same as a win bonus for each fight. That’s a $15k increase for both categories from his previous contract.

Leben is 17-4 and has gone 7-3 since starting up for the UFC. The Crippler has proven a great TV personality and draw for the UFC and he is next slated to bring his brand of controversy to UFC 82 on March 1st. Leben’s opponent will be Alessio Sakara, someone that Leben has said he respects, but:

“Honestly, as much respect as possible to him, but I really don’t think he deserves to be in the UFC. I haven’t seen him win the fights or do what he has to do to prove himself at this level. You know, we’re going to pressure him and test him and I’ll tell you what , he has a pretty good opportunity to prove himself if that’s what he wants to do.”

Leben made the above statement during the myspace fan club interview and his comments aren’t completely unfounded. Sakara is 3-3 with one NC since arriving on the UFC scene. Beating guys like Elvis Sinosic, Victor Valimaki and James Lee won’t even get you to the front of the line at The Sizzler. Sakara does have a lot to prove against Leben who, love or hate him, is a dynamic fighter who looks to be back on track after a stretch that saw him drop 3 of 4 fights, including one to Anderson Silva – which is hard to fault him for.

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Morning Bummer: ‘American Psycho’ Out for Six Months

FGSB
(Griffin and Bonnar: Enemies 4-eva.)

According to Yahoo! Sports, Stephan Bonnar tore ligaments in his knee during training last week and will be out for six months. As a result, he’ll be unable to fight Matt Hamill at Ultimate Fight Night 13 on 4/2. Said Bonnar: “I was doing nothing out of the ordinary, just working on my (jiu-jitsu) getting ready for my fight. I heard a pop and I thought, ‘Damn, what is this?’ I walked around on it a little, but when I got home, it was really stiff and swollen.” The American Psycho will have surgery soon in Los Angeles, where a ligament from a fucking cadaver will be placed into his knee. By the time his recovery period is over, Bonnar will have been inactive for 10 months (his last fight was a TKO victory over Eric Schafer at UFC 77 in October).

This blows, completely. Out of all the big fights at UFN 13, the Bonnar/Hammil match is the one we were most looking forward to. We hope the UFC can find a solid opponent for Matt Hammil so he’s not dropped from the card. In case Joe Silva is reading this, two possibilities come to mind:

Tim Boetsch: UFC fans want to see more of this guy after he kicked/slammed/punched the shit out of David Heath at UFC 81. With another fight or two at that same level of intensity, he’ll earn a place in the light-heavyweight division’s mid-range mix.

Wilson Gouveia: He’s been 4-0 in the UFC since losing to Keith Jardine at the Ultimate Fighter 3 finale, including his highlight-reel knockout of Jason Lambert at UFC 80. One more credible win and he’ll be ready for top-ten-caliber competition.

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“Bad Boy” ready for WEC 32; Moreng Dropped From Card


(A ladies man, also named Leonard Garcia.)

With WEC 32 just a couple days away, some sites are picking up on last week’s MMA Weekly interview with Leonard “Bad Boy” Garcia. The Bad Boy was 9-1 and set to fight for the UFC starting in April of 2007. After a battle with Roger Huerta at UFC 69 for his debut loss, he fought twice more in the organization, taking his record to 10-3 overall.

“I was excited about being able to fight a guy as tough as Roger (Huerta), but this year I hope to do more. Last year I got my name out there, and I feel l should accomplish more than I did.

“Now that I’m going to be at 145, I think it is going to allow me to get to where and do the things I was supposed to do at 155. Last year it was good to get my name out there, but this year is the year I’m going to work towards achieving my goals and get a title somewhere. I’m a little bit faster and I look leaner. Strength-wise everybody thinks I feel stronger now than what I did. I’m doing more push-ups, pull-ups, and cleans, so I’m getting a lot stronger now at 145 than I was at 155.”

Garcia is now down to 145 and has moved over to the WEC and its already competitive featherweight club. Garcia will surely be in another exciting battle during WEC 32 when he faces Hiroyuki Takaya. Takaya is lightning quick and can strike with the best. Garcia is confident that he can beat Takaya and that it will be a great move for his career. And he also cautioned fans not to blink, because they might miss something.

On the WEC 32 injury front…

Jesse Moreng has injured his leg in training and has dropped out of his Wednesday night fight with Scott Jorgenson. The WEC has announced that local Team Jackson fighter Damacio Page will fill in for Moreng. Page is 9-3, to Jorgenson’s 4-1 record. The fight falls to the un-televised prelim card – not that being on the undercard these days means you suck – and it’s unclear if it will be a featherweight or bantamweight fight.

WEC 32 kicks off live on Versus at 9 pm (EST) this Wednesday.

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Akihiro Gono Needs a Wife, Bad

Gono

PRIDE-vet turned UFC-welterweight Akihiro Gono recently had surgery to repair the hand injury that forced him to pull out of a bout with Jon Fitch at UFC 82. He wrote about the experience on his blog yesterday, and Suki MMA was kind enough to translate:

My operation went well and I left the hospital yesterday. I hope I recover soon. It was a 5 hours operation, cutting a part of bone in radius and transplanting it in my right hand. I have never been so tired and feeling destroyed like this time. It was extremely tough operation and I am having the worst pain ever after the operation. I almost gave up and ran away from everything. Although, I have nothing to do but fighting , so I continue to being MMA fighter.

I couldn’t sleep well because my right hand is in pain even if I take pain killer pills. I realized how hard to do everything by my left hand. I want to get married so bad now. I’m 33 years old and this is my first time to dream about getting a wife. I want someone who is attractive and respectful. I should be competitive to be chosen by my dream girl though.

Anyway, thank you for supporting me and my operation went well. After dinner, I will study English which is a part of my project to be an attractive guy.

Oh man. This is going to get him so much tail. “My project to be an attractive guy” — can we cast McConaughey and Hudson in this shit already?!

P.S.: I love how losing the use of his right hand is what compelled Gono to start thinking about getting a wife. Trust me dude, as long as old lefty is functional, single life isn’t that bad.

P.P.S.: “Pain Killer Pills” is an awesome band name.

P.P.P.S.: If anyone can translate Suki’s translation of “I should be competitive to be chosen by my dream girl though,” it would be a huge help. Broken English on blogs seems to be the theme of the day

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Cote Out/Day In at UFC 83 & Other News

According to The Fight Network, Patrick Cote is out at UFC 83. It was just days ago that Cote’s involvement in the event was being reported in a match-up against Alan Belcher. Now Cote is being forced not to take the fight due to injury. MMA Mania is quoting Cote’s manager, Stephane Patry, on the matter:

“We were still talking [to the UFC] about an opponent when Patrick fell on the ice. He went for the MRI, and the doctor told him it’s sprained and he can’t train for four to six weeks – so he won’t be available to fight [in April]… We were not going to take that fight [with Belcher] anyway. It wouldn’t make sense.”

Snap! Patry say no-makey-sense. Whatever, we move on. On to Jason “Dooms” Day that is. Day has signed a multi-fight deal with the UFC and his virgin fight with them will now be against Belcher at UFC 83 on April 19th. Middleweight Day is 15-5 and 14-2 in his last 16. His split decision win at HCF: Destiny on February 1st over former UFC 185-pounder David Loiseau probably boosted him to his own UFC signing.

Belcher is 12-4 and will be going for his third win in a row. Not many of his fights go to decision, so he’ll look to wrap the win up early.

And in other news:

-Remember THQ? No, it’s not the miracle tablet that makes you go all smiles for the better part of a cab ride, but the video game maker that’s been working on the UFC’s new video game. The game will be revealed in a ‘to date’ format at UFC 84, which is slated for Saturday, May 24th. MMA Junkie is saying the company made the teasing comments during a financial/stockholder conference call.

THQ’s five-year contract gives them the rights to UFC games until the end of 2011 for all console and portable platforms, and wireless formats. A street date should also be revealed at UFC 84, and maybe even the official name of the game. It’s been referenced as “UFC 2009″ and “Ultimate Fighting Championship 2009″ so far. So get your thumbs loosened up and tell your mom to slide your TV dinners under the basement door. There’s games to be had.

-The Dayton Daily News is reporting that tickets for UFC 82 are going fast and about 10,000 have already been snatched up. The UFC expects a sell-out, of course. Last year, the Nationwide Arena in Colombus, Ohio hosted UFC 68 where it set a UFC attendance record with 19,049. It’s own venue record could go down on March 1st.

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Tim Sylvia to World: Stop Blowing Up My Spot

TS

Although it’s happened to countless office-drones in recent years, Tim Sylvia may be the first mixed martial artist to be fired from his job for talking shit about his boss on his blog. On Friday, he posted the following on the tim-sylvia.com forums:

i have one fight left on my contract i want to stay with the ufc but i am going to go were the money is right now Brock is making more m0ney then me that has to change i have a better name then him and i am a better fighter then him, in case u didn’t know my manager runs m1 so i have a pretty good in so we will see what happens in the next few months.

Why doesn’t it surprise me that Tim Sylvia writes like a 14-year-old mall-girl? Dude, would it kill you to throw in some punctuation? Various websites picked up on the “Tim Sylvia to leave UFC for M-1″ angle of the forum entry and quickly re-posted it. Realizing that things on the Internet tend to get around, Timbo posted the following bit of damage-control on his site yesterday:

well let me just start off by saying people r fucked up by saying that i want to leave the ufc. I dont its my home and i would love to be there for the rest of my carear. Second I didnt say i wanted or even was thinking about m1 u guys (forum users) asked about it and I told u my manager runs it thats it, so please dont take shit out of context. Some of u people are going to get me in trouble with the ufc.

See what you’ve done, you bloodsuckers? You’ve gotten Tim so hot and bothered that he’s abandoned apostrophes altogether. And spell-check? Fucking forget about it. We think that once Monte Cox patiently explained to Sylvia that M-1 is not a legitimate fight organization, but rather an elaborate front set up to promote/protect Fedor Emelianenko — and leaving the UFC for M-1 would actually be a terrible career move — the Maine-iac had an “oh shit” moment and made that follow-up post.

The fact that Brock Lesnar has a $250,000 guarantee per fight clearly bothers Sylvia. What bothers us is the fact that Sylvia seems to think his recent performances should entitle him to a raise. He isn’t popular with fans, and he’s at least a couple fights away from another title shot. Meanwhile, Brock Lesnar probably generated 20 times his salary in UFC 81 pay-per-view buys. Supply and demand — it’s a bitch, buddy.

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Fedor’s New Pen Pal: Dana White


(Fedor feeding the geese, or catching them for his supper? You be the judge.)

We’ve heard from Randy Couture about all the shit surrounding the attempt to make the Fedor/Randy fight happen and the subsequent lawsuit spin-offs. And we’ve heard from Dana White almost daily defending his ridiculous position. Now we’re hearing from Fedor Emelianenko himself about the fight and Lex Luthor’s repeated public bashings of him. In an open letter to Dana White that was posted on m1mixfight.com, the site of Fedor’s management team, the Russian superstar let it all out.

As posted on MMA Junkie:

As Emelianenko wrote (keep in mind it’s been translated by a third party):

Numerous times have I read mister White’s statements on Internet concerning myself. In my opinion, allowing yourself to say those things is not a sign of a gentleman or a grown man at all! If he candidly wants to prove himself right then let my fight with Randy happen or let me face the reigning UFC champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. In the future I wouldn’t want to hear those statements in my address ever again and I won’t tolerate that.

My last fight in Japan proved that I’m ready to fight anybody with any height advantage, skillset or experience. I have fought and still wish to fight the best athletes. The Randy fight is my goal number one right now, he’s a great fighter and this is a very unfortunate situation when too strict and one-sided UFC contracts don’t let this fight happen.

The whole world is eager to see me fight your champions, people don’t want to listen to your press-conferences. I’m signed with M-1 Global and this promotion is ready to organize such fights under our banner or in co-promoted events.

Fedor wants to fight the best. For those out there who thinks he only takes mediocre fights, he wants to shut them up. But he didn’t sign with the UFC because of the restrictive contracts and Dana White’s business tactics. We all know Dana’s style. If you don’t want to play by his sometimes-absurd rules, he’ll make it his life’s work to kick shit on your name. And he’s tried to do that with Fedor and now Randy.

Yet again, M-1 is ready to make this happen. Fedor has penned a letter begging for it. Randy is willing to be sued in order to hold out for it. Dana, you blow.

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