- Ryan McKinnell at Cagewriter11 hrs ago
After his wildly exciting first-round knockout of Travis Browne at UFC 187, former heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski didn’t seem too concerned about a title shot.
One thing “The Pitbull” is apparently interested in, though: revenge.
With news emerging last week that the once-great Fedor Emelianenko is mulling a career comeback, Arlovski – a man who has tasted defeat at the hands of the Russian once before – is making it clear that he wants first dibs should the opportunity present itself.
“When I’m gonna see Dana White next time I'm going to ask him, 'Please, please… If you're going to sign Fedor Emelianenko, just give me a rematch,' ” Arlovski said during a recent fan Q & A. “Please, please, please.'"
- Andreas Hale at Cagewriter12 hrs ago
Although many eyes will be on Ronda Rousey’s grudge match with Bethe Correia at UFC 190, the general consensus is that it will be a squash match of epic proportions when the two meet in Rio de Janiero – a match that will leave a lot to be desired from a competitive standpoint. But if you are looking for a spirited matchup that blends high-level grappling and a fair share of vitriol, then look no further than World Series of Fighting 22’s main event between current welterweight champion Rousimar Palhares (17-6) and former Strikeforce, Shooto and Elite XC champion Jake Shields (31-7-1).
It’s a main event that pits two former UFC fighters against each other for a world title in an intriguing battle of expert grapplers who have bad blood between them stemming from how they carry themselves in the cage. And for a company like WSOF that looks to continue carving out a space in the world of MMA, having two former top contenders from the UFC headlining your card with a real feud will certainly enhance visibility.
- Kevin Iole at Cagewriter1 day ago
Heavyweight Justin Wren has ended a five-year absence from mixed martial arts and will return to competition on Aug. 28 when he takes on Josh Burns at Bellator 141 in Temecula, Calif.
Wren, a cast member on Season 10 of the UFC's "The Ultimate Fighter," is perhaps best known for his work with the Mbuti Pygmies in the Congo. Many of them were enslaved and lived in squalor, with few benefits of the modern world.
Wren has written a book on his experience with the Pygmies, "Fight for the Forgotten: How a Mixed Martial Artist Stopped Fighting for Himself and Started Fighting for Others." The book, co-authored by veteran MMA journalist Loretta Hunt, will be released on Sept. 15.
He will be fighting for the first time since July 17, 2010, when he submitted Josh Robertson in Biloxi, Miss.
- Ryan McKinnell at Cagewriter2 days ago
Ronda Rousey is quite the imposing figure. Just ask her opponents; the majority of whom were finished inside the first round.
At 28, Rousey is one of the most feared and respected champions in all of combat sports. One fighter who recognizes Rousey’s skill – and is impressed by her physique – is UFC interim featherweight champion Conor McGregor.
“Notorious” is not one for throwing praise at his contemporaries; in fact, it’s usually the opposite. But the flamboyant champion makes an exception for Rousey.
- Ryan McKinnell at Cagewriter3 days ago
When UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey called out Floyd Mayweather in her ESPY acceptance speech, “Rowdy” unquestionably added a few more fans to her corner.
Four-time NBA league MVP LeBron James was not one of them – that’s because he was already an admirer of the 28-year-old fighting phenom long before she took home the night’s award for “Best Fighter.”
An admirer from a distance, apparently.
@DatDudeDHoov As long as she wanted me to last. I wanted to introduce myself to her at the ESPYs but didn't want her to kick my butt.
- Kevin Iole at Cagewriter3 days ago
The World Series of Fighting on Wednesday will name 50-year-old digital media executive Carlos Silva as its new chief executive officer.
Silva has an extensive background in digital media and sports television and said he hopes to use all available platforms to make the World Series a bigger player in the MMA space.
It already has a television deal with NBC and NBC Sports Network, but is generally regarded as the No. 3 promotion in the U.S. behind the UFC and Bellator.
Silva isn't necessarily looking to take down either of the two MMA giants, though matchmaker Ali Abdel-Aziz insists he's going to seek out the best talent on the market. Abdel-Aziz told Yahoo Sports he plans to make a competitive offer to free agent heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko, who recently announced his intention to come out of retirement.
Silva's goal is to overhaul the World Series' website that will not only have comprehensive information about it, its fighters and events, but also about all of MMA.
Live sports events are the lifeblood of TV networks, Silva said, and the WSOF wants to support that with a rich website that will become a destination for fans.
- Ryan McKinnell at Cagewriter6 days ago
Chicago -- When Renan Barao lost his title to T.J. Dillashaw at UFC 173 in the summer of 2014, many thought that it was a fluke.
After all, Dillashaw was a relative unknown coming out of the Ultimate Fighter feeder system and Barao hadn’t lost in 33 fights over the span of a decade.
On Saturday, Dillashaw shut out any talk of ‘luck’ and picked the Brazilian apart once again, to further cement his place atop the UFC’s 135-pound division.
“I came out more aggressive this time,” Dillashaw said post-fight. “I train harder than him, in my mind.”
Dillashaw admitted being “really pumped” by his performance and that’s for good reason.
After having the rematch with Barao cancelled on two different occasions (Aug. 2014, April 2015) Dillashaw finally got to show everyone in the world what he already knew: he could beat Renan Barao again. And this time was perhaps even more impressive than the first.
Dillashaw came out with a stiff jab and established an authoritative pace from the outset. He battled some early leg kicks from the Brazilian – a signature of Barao’s – and never lost focus.
- Ryan McKinnell at Cagewriter6 days ago
CHICAGO - Miesha Tate has already fought and lost to UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey on two occasions.
And after a gritty performance against Jessica Eye at Saturday’s UFC on FOX, “Cupcake” is once again eyeing down a fight against the world’s most dominant female fighter.
This goes without saying that Rousey must get past Brazilian Bethe Correia at UFC 190 in a week, but when you’re a fighter like Rousey – who evokes visions of a dominant prime 80's Mike Tyson -- it can be quite easy looking for the ‘next’ challenge.
And Tate is seemingly very ready for the challenge to conquer Rousey once again.
The fight with Eye was a battle from the opening frame. Before the first 60 seconds had concluded, Tate was already bloodied from the sneaky jabs of Eye.
Tate weathered the early storm from the Cleveland native and showed improved -- and patient – striking.
Tate's finest moment came midway into the second round when she clipped Eye with a looping over-hand right that sent her opponent reeling to the canvas. It wasn’t a textbook display of overwhelming technique, but it got the job done and Tate quickly followed up with punches on the ground.
- Ryan McKinnell at Cagewriter7 days ago
Life is good when you’re an undefeated fighter coming off a highlight-reel knockout -– just ask UFC lightweight Paul Felder.
Felder, 31, is six months removed from a stunning spinning back-fist knockout of Danny Castillo at UFC 182. The knockout, which was only Felder’s second fight in the company, earned the Philadelphia native a nice $50,000 performance bonus at the end of the night, and had the MMA world buzzing about his future potential.
Felder was all smiles as he fielded questions during a UFC on Fox 16 interview.
“It’s surreal, but I really think it helps,” admitted Felder when discussing all the extra attention. “I don’t think it makes it any better for you to sit in your hotel room and think about the fight. I’ve done all the work I need to do, now it’s time to enjoy this.”
Felder comes from Team Jackson-Winklejohn in Albuquerque, New Mexico. A main training partner and part-time mentor just happens to be another fighter who isn’t much for lollygagging during fight week: Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone.
- Ryan McKinnell at Cagewriter7 days ago
It's been more than two years since UFC fans last saw Tom Lawlor.
It was April 6, 2013 when Lawlor tore his MCL, ACL, and meniscus in a winning effort against Michael Kuiper. On Saturday, "Filthy Tom" makes his return, squaring off against Gian Villante at UFC on FOX 16.
A lot has changed in those two years. For one, Lawlor is a bit heavier these days; he'll be facing off against Villante at light heavyweight, after a career spent fighting at middleweight.
But those aren't the changes Lawlor is concerned with.
"It's just almost like [a] completely different regime from 2013 until now," Lawlor said to Yahoo Sports. "[Former UFC coordinator Burt Watson is] gone – different front office people. The way things are handled in the office is different. I've had some issues getting stuff with medicals done that I didn't have before."
And of course there is the issue of the Reebok sponsorship.
"With the whole Reebok thing, honestly, it's just a different UFC than it was before," he said. "I feel like even a lot of the fighters are on edge. It's just not as friendly of an environment."