Weekly Mixed Martial Arts and Kickboxing News – 02/22/2013
By PDG Staff
Bantamweight GP Semifinals Set for ONE FC: Kings & Champions
Singapore: ONE Fighting Championship announced that the ONE FC Bantamweight Grand Prix semi-final fights will be featured at ONE FC: Kings & Champions. The event will take place live from the Singapore Indoor Stadium on 5 April 2013. Former Lightweight World Champion from the United States, Jens Pulver, will take on Japan’s Masakatsu Ueda and Kevin Belingon of the Philippines will face Vietnamese-Australian Thanh Vu.
CEO of ONE Fighting Championship Victor Cui stated, ” ONE FC: Kings & Champions is the biggest event in ONE FC history and will feature four of the world’s best Bantamweights fighting for a shot at the Bantamweight World Championship title. It is a must-see for MMA fans because when these four champions enter the ONE FC cage, nothing will matter more to them than making it into the finals of the Grand Prix. Get ready for explosive MMA action that will leave you on the edge of your seats!”
Jens Pulver is a former Lightweight World Champion whose career has seen him compete for the top promotions in the history of MMA, the UFC, PRIDE and ONE FC. Pulver loves to represent the USA and he has every intention of capping his incredible career by winning the ONE FC Bantamweight Grand Prix. A true pioneer in the sport of MMA, Pulver brings a wealth of cage fighting experience as he faces Japanese veteran Masakatsu Ueda.
Masakatsu Ueda is the former undisputed Shooto Featherweight Champion, a title he successfully defended three times. He has an outstanding 16-2-2 record and is a widely regarded as one of the best Bantamweight fighters in the world. Ueda has studied BJJ extensively under legendary Japanese coach Yuki Nakai, who has also trained DREAM superstar Shinya Aoki. After making his debut in 2005, he has defeated the current Bellator Bantamweight Champion Eduardo Dantas while defending the Shooto Championship Belt. With his impressive track record, Ueda will definitely be one of the favorites to win the ONE FC Bantamweight Grand Prix.
What Kevin Belingon may lack in size, he makes up for with his lightning speed and well-honed striking skills. The current URCC Flyweight Champion is considered one of the most dangerous strikers in the Asian Bantamweight division. He sets a fearsome pace and can either shoot for takedowns to rough opponents up with ground-and-pound or keep it standing and pick them apart with his pinpoint precision striking. Belingon was incredibly enthusiastic about representing Pinoy warriors in the inaugural ONE FC Bantamweight Grand Prix because, as he puts it, there is no better feeling than fighting for Filipino pride.
Thanh Vu is a Vietnamese-Australian Bantamweight who is already rated as one of the best prospects in his weight class in Australia, where he currently competes. Vu is a decorated grappler who has placed in the Grappler’s Realm Australia and Events BJJ tournaments. Vietnam has a strong culture of martial arts but has produced few famous fighters and Vu is looking forward to representing the country in competitive action on the largest stage in Asian MMA. He made quick work of his opponent in the Final Elimination Bout in February and will look to do the same again in April.
ONE FC: Kings & Champions is headlined by the ONE FC Lightweight World Championship bout between reigning champion Kotetsu “No Face” Boku and number one contender Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki.
UFC 160: Velasquez vs. Silva II – Fight Card Update
UFC 160 was announced just over one week ago, but the fight card is filling up fast. The latest addition is a light heavyweight contest between two 205-pounders that are trying to bust into the Top 5, Glover Teixeira and Ryan Bader. UFC officials announced the bout on Tuesday evening.
UFC 160: Velasquez vs. Silva II
May 25, 2013
MGM Grand Garden Arena
Las Vegas, Nevada
Cain Velasquez (11-1) vs. Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva (18-4) – UFC heavyweight championship bout
Alistair Overeem (36-12) vs. Junior dos Santos (15-2)
Glover Teixeira (20-2) vs. Ryan Bader (15-3)
Gray Maynard (11-1-1) vs. T.J. Grant (20-5)
Abel Trujillo (10-4) vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov (19-0)
Donald Cerrone (19-5) vs. K.J. Noons (11-6)
Stephen Thompson (6-1) vs. Amir Sadollah (6-4)
Bellator Featherweight and Middleweight Tournament Semifinals on March 7th
After an incredibly successful Southern California debut on January 17th, Bellator MMA will bring a stacked night of fights to Temecula’s Pechanga Resort and Casino on March 7th live on Spike TV. The night will showcase the Featherweight and Middleweight Tournament Semifinals as The Toughest Tournament in Sports continues, as well as a collection of Southern California’s best talent.
“Our sold out premiere event in Southern California last month showed that this market is a great one for Bellator LIVE on Spike,” said Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney. “To bring our second California event to the crown jewel of Southern California casinos, Pechanga is absolutely icing on the cake and to have such a loaded card just makes this that much better.”
The night will kick off with a Middleweight Tournament Semifinal as Southern California’s own Doug “The Rhino” Marshall returns to his roots as he looks to keep his knockout streak alive when he battles Sultan Aliev live on Spike. Known for pushing a frenetic pace and keeping his opponents on their heels, Marshall has his sights set on punching his ticket to the finals.
“Winning the tournament will validate me – again – and put me where I need to be, back at the top of the food chain, with a target on my back,” Marshall said. “Ain’t no more hunting – the game’s going to come to me. It’s going to be huge.”
After collecting a hard fought win over tournament and fan favorite Brian Rogers in the Bellator Middleweight Quarterfinals, Dan Cramer is set to face the heavy handed Brett “Fudoshin” Cooper, who has collected 11 knockouts in his 18 professional wins. Finally getting his chance to shine inside a Bellator Tournament, Cramer will look to keep the momentum going with a win on March 7th.
Featherweights collide as Mike “The Marine” Richman and Alexandre “PoPo” Bezerra are set to meet in a clash of two of the most explosive featherweights in the division. With a combined 29-2 record between the two, both veterans are looking to use their wealth of experience for a chance at the $100,000 Tournament prize.
Widely considered one of the best featherweights in the world, Marlon Sandro is ready to continue his quest towards a title shot as he takes on Russian submission artist Magomedrasul “Frodo” Khasbulaev live on Spike TV.
“I am so fortunate to have the chance to fight in the toughest tournament in the world,” Sandro said. “This is my opportunity to show the world what I can do and I am ready to finish at the top.”
Badr Hari to Fight in the K-1 World Grand Prix Final 8
One of the best and most attractive kickboxing fighters in the world and by far the biggest global kickboxing star, Badr Hari, will fight at the K-1 WGP Final to be held in Zagreb on March 15. This sensational news that will give a whole new dimension to the Zagreb combat spectacle was exclusively revealed to Fight Site by the main producer of the event and head of Fight Channel, Orsat Zovko.
The Moroccan will enter the Grand Prix quarterfinal as the substitute for Ben Edwards. This also means that we will see Hari in the first fight against Azerbaijani Zabit Samedov and that he will face the winner of the Londt-Gerges bout if he goes through to the semis. Hari and Samedov have already battled each other before. At the K-1 WGP Final 16 in 2009, Hari knocked out Samedov after only 2 minutes and 15 seconds of the first round.
There is no need to emphasize what the arrival of a star of this caliber means for the whole tournament. In his professional career, Hari had 111 fights with an incredible score of 100 wins and only 11 losses. Even more impressive is his knockout statistics: 88% of his wins came by “putting the other guy to sleep.” It was this attractive and uncompromising style that won him millions of fans and an army of followers all over the world.
It’s hard to count all the great names Hari defeated in his rich career, but his biggest wins certainly came against quadruple K-1 WGP winner Semmy Schilt, triple K-1 WGP winner Peter Aerts, K-1, Dream and Strikeforce champion Alistair Overeem, as well as the likes of Sefo, Feitosa, Karaev, Ignashov, Saki, Leko, Zimmerman, Akhramenko, Slowinski and Graham
Tournament Quarterfinals Schedule:
1. Catalin Morosanu vs. Pavel Zhuravlev
2. Mirko Filipovic vs. Jarrell Miller
3. Badr Hari vs. Zabit Samedov
4. Ismael Londt vs. Hesdy Gerges
Tournament Semifinals Schedule:
1. C. Morosanu / P. Zhuravlev vs. M. Filipovic / J. Miller
2. B. Hari / Z. Samedov vs. I. Londt / H. Gerges
Fight Channel Presents: K-1 WGP Final 8
M’Pumbu Battles Attila Vegh for Light Heavyweight World Title, Plus Spectacular Lightweight Semifinals
As reigning Bellator MMA Light Heavyweight Champion Christian M’Pumbu prepares to defend his title against dominating Slovakian finisher Attila Vegh on February 28th, nine additional fights have been set as Bellator MMA travels to Albuquerque, New Mexico’s Santa Ana Star Center live on Spike TV.
The night will feature the Semifinals of Bellator MMA’s Lightweight Tournament as “The Caveman” David Rickels looks to keep the momentum going with a win over tournament newcomer Jason Fischer, who replaces an injured Tiger Sarnavskiy. With a combined 18-2 record between the two, both veterans are looking to punch their ticket to the Finals and capture their $100,000 Tournament prize.
The other side of the bracket will feature Chicago’s Will Brooks, who brings his spotless 9-0 record to the Bellator cage as he meets Saad Awad, who collected a huge quarterfinal victory with a vicious first round knockout earlier this season. For Brooks, the chance to continue through The Toughest Tournament in Sports and lock up his title shot is the only thing on the 26 year olds mind.
“This is what I’ve been working so hard for my entire career, and I just have to continue on this path and make my mark on the division and Bellator,” Brooks said. “Saad is a tough guy, but with my wrestling base and skills, I know what I have to do to get the win and just continue onto the Finals.”
Longtime Bellator veteran and Arizona native Ed “Wild” West is back and gunning for victory as he takes on Santa Fe’s own Josh Montoya in a bantamweight affair. A fan favorite wherever he fights, West is counting down the days until his Bellator return on February 28th.
“I just want to get back in that cage and remind everyone again what “Wild” West is all about,” West said. “I always like to put on a show, and nothing is going to change on February 28th.”
The night will also feature a collection of preliminary card action full of New Mexcio’s best talent, held in conjunction with Orthrus Promotions. 18-time world boxing champion Holly Holm will make her long awaited Bellator debut as the Albuquerque native will battle Katie Merrill at 135 pounds. Known across combat sports as one of the greatest female boxers of all time, Holm is looking to make a statement in her Bellator debut.
M-1 Challenge 37 – Fight Card Update
Unfortunately, some of the participants of M-1 Challenge tournament in Orenburg were injured, so the organized were forced to find the replacements for them, but the new match-ups with the fighters, who were brave enough to take the tough fights on a short notice, might be even more intriguing than the original matches.
The biggest news came a few days ago, when it came out that lightweight contender Mairbek Taisumov injured his ribs on the training and pulled out of tournament. His place was taken by M-1 veteran and eight-man KSW tournament winner Nikko Puhakka from Finland, who already has the victories over well-known MMA veterans like Ivica Truscek, John Gunderson and Yanko Yanev. Finnish athlete has very good ground game, that will be tested by wrestling specialist and current M-1 champion Musa Khamanaev.
Another last-minute replacement happened yesterday, when Gasanali Gasanaliev injured his shoulder on the training and was replaced by another young welterweight talent Dzhambulat Kurbanov.
Also, two more fights with Polish athletes were added to M-1 Challenge 37 fightcard. Karate black belt and BJJ brown belt Damian Stasiak will take on national and European amateur MMA champion Magomed Magomedov in a lightweight battle. In M-1 heavyweight GP reserve fight promising Polish grappler Marcin Tybura will try to get his chance to become Grand Prix participant by winning against experienced striker Denis Komkin.
M-1 Challenge 37
February 27, 2013
Musa Khamanaev vs. Niko Puhakka – M-1 lightweight title fight
Marcin Tybura vs. Denis Komkin – M-1 heavyweight Grand Prix reserve fight
Daniel Weichel vs. Artiom Damkovsky
Mariusz Radziszewski vs. Dzhambulat Kurbanov
Albert Duraev vs. Julio Cesar Alves
Damian Stasiak vs. Magomed Magomedov
UFC 158: St-Pierre vs. Diaz – Fight Card Update
Former Strikeforce welterweight champion Nate “The Great” Marquardt will return to the Octagon to face #6-ranked UFC welterweight contender Jake Ellenberger at UFC 158 March 16 in Montreal. Marquardt replaces Johny Hendricks, who was tapped to fight Carlos Condit when Rory MacDonald was forced out of that bout at the same event. In other Montreal fight news, Mitch Gagnon is out due to injury and TJ Dillashaw is now stepping in take on Issei Tamura in that bantamweight bout.
UFC 158: St-Pierre vs. Diaz
March 16, 2013
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Main Card (Pay-Per-View):
Georges St-Pierre (23-2) vs. Nick Diaz (26-8)
Carlos Condit (28-6) vs. Johny Hendricks (14-1)
Jake Ellenberger (28-6) vs. Nate Marquardt (32-11)
Nick Ring (13-1) vs. Chris Camozzi (18-5)
Mike Ricci (7-3) vs. Colin Fletcher (8-2)
Preliminary Card (FX):
Patrick Cote (18-8) vs. Bobby Voelker (24-8)
Antonio Carvalho (15-5) vs. Darren Elkins (15-2)
Dan Miller (14-6) vs. Jordan Mein (26-8)
John Makdessi (10-2) vs. Daron Cruickshank (12-2)
Preliminary Card (Facebook):
Rick Story (14-6) vs. Quinn Mulhern (18-2)
T.J. Dillashaw (7-1) vs. Issei Tamura (7-3)
Yves Jabouin (18-8) vs. Johnny Eduardo (26-9)
K-1 Releases Their 2013 Schedule
On March 15th, 2013, K-1 World Grand Prix Final will be held in the city of Zagreb, Croatia. This is the home country of kick boxing and MMA legend, Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipović.
The Arena Zagreb has a seating capacity of over 22.000. This will be the first time in history that Croatia has hosted a sporting event of this magnitude. The event will be broadcast worldwide and standing room only crowds are anticipated.
The K-1 WGP will feature world’s premier kickboxers, Badr Hari, Cro Cop, Hesdy Gerges, and many more.
More K-1 Events for 2013:
K-1 World Qualifying Tour (WQT) begins on March 30th, 2013 at Chisinau Moldova. After that, K-1 will visit at Lisbon Portugal on April 13th for another WQT.
The city of Vilnius Lithuania will get a visit from K-1 on April 27th for a World Qualifying Tour, and immediately after that, Wroclaw Poland on May 18th.
Tenerife Spain on June 15th, and Baku Azerbaijan TBD.
K-1 Semi-Final Tour is scheduled in September and October, and K-1 Max Final 8 in November, and the World Grand Prix Final 8 will be held in December, but the details of venues for the final tours will be announced when more information is available.
K-1 is also to host special shows in various locations; New York, NY; London, UK; Moscow, Russia; and Abu Dhabi.
$100,000 Lightweight Tournament Final Headlines as Marcin Held Battles Dave Jansen March 21st From Maine’s Androscoggin Colisee
All eyes will be on Bellator March 21st as the Lightweight and Welterweight Tournaments are decided as submission ace and Polish phenom Marcin Held takes on Dave Jansen in the long awaited $100,000 Lightweight Tournament Final, while the final two Season 8 Welterweight participants square off for their guaranteed title shot, live on Spike TV.
Only 20 and holding an impressive 15-2 record, polish phenom Marcin Held stormed through the opening rounds of the lightweight tournament, collecting explosive victories over Murad Machaev and longtime MMA veteran Rich Clementi. Known across the MMA landscape as one of the top submission artists in the sport, Held is a victory away from capturing his first Bellator Tournament crown and a guaranteed title shot.
For Jansen, the charismatic lightweight enters the Bellator Finals riding a five fight win streak and is fully prepared for the test that awaits him on March 21st, in what undoubtedly be the biggest fight of his career.
“I’ve had a lot of time to work on my game plan and really focus on this fight on March 21st,” Jansen said. “Marcin has the total package when it comes to submissions, so I know what I need to focus on to win this fight, and get a shot at the Bellator title.”
The night will also feature a collection of heavyweights, as Brett “Da Grim” Rogers returns to the Bellator cage to take on Eric Prindle. After suffering a broken arm in his fight with eventual Bellator Heavyweight Champion Alexander Volkov, Rogers is ready for a shot at redemption on March 21st.
“I am looking forward to getting back in the Bellator cage and a chance to fight on Spike TV,” Rogers said. “In my last fight I broke my forearm but I am fully recovered, training at American Top Team and this time the only thing breaking will be my opponent. Now that I am at ATT I am a new and smarter fighter.”
Longtime veteran Travis Wiuff also returns, this time at heavyweight to battle Colorado native Ryan Martinez. Previously fighting at heavyweight, Wiuff is now at his more natural weight, and looking to continue his illustrious career that has seen him compile an astonishing 68-16 record.
The preliminaries will be headlined by Maine native and fan favorite Marcus “The Irish Hand Grenade” Davis taking on Waachiim Spiritwolf in a welterweight affair. Davis has found a home in Bellator, and looking to put on a show against Spiritwolf in his promotional debut.
“Having the chance to fight for a promotion like Bellator in front of my friends, family and fans is a dream come true,” Davis said. “It’s great to find a new home and fight for one of the biggest promotions in the world.”
ROAD TO GLORY USA Hits NYC With Welterweight Tournament On March 22
Glory Sports International, the parent company of the world’s new premiere kickboxing league, announced that it will bring it’s ROAD TO GLORY USA development fight series designed to identify America’s next great kickboxing superstars, to Capitale in New York, N.Y., on Friday, March 22.
The winner of the eight-man,! single-elimination welterweight (170 pounds/77 kilograms) tournament featuring a host of prolific, up-and-coming competitors, will be awarded a $20,000 grand prize and a multi-year contract with GLORY, home of the world’s elite kickboxing champions and superstars.
“We are thrilled to bring our all-new ROAD TO GLORY development tournament series to fight fans in New York City, one of the world’s greatest sports and entertainment epicenters,” said GLORY CEO Andrew Whitaker.
“With the two ROAD TO GLORY tournaments we’ve held in the U.S. thus far,” continued Whitaker, “we’ve been able to discover treme! ndously bright and promising young kickboxers who could be developed to one day compete on GLORY’s championship stage, which is exactly what ROAD TO GLORY was created for. We are confident that we will continue to unearth all kinds of new talent across the country, beginning with the upcoming event in New York.”
Undefeated rising stars Ryan Parker (14-0, 3 KOs) of Rochester, N.Y. and Brett Hlavacek (6-0, 2 KOs) of New York will be joined in the tournament draw by KO artists Anthony Nieves (10-4, 8 KOs) of Atlanta, Ga. and Jeremy Carper (5-1, 5 KOs) of Martinsburg, W. Va., battle-tested star Tarek Rached (24-3, 11 KOs) of New York, road warrior Marcus Fisher (16-9, 3 KOs) of Pittsburg, Pa. and promising upstarts Eric Utsch (5-1, 1 KO) of Breinigsville, Pa. and Francois Ambang (6-2, 2 KOs) of Mechanicsville, Va.
Tae Kwon Do black belt and Muay Thai champion! Cyrus Washington (52-21-1, 48 KOs) of Macallen, Texas will square off with Chris Clodfelter (7-3-1, 3 KOs) of King, N.C. in a tournament “reserve” bout on the card. Should any of the tournament’s quarterfinal round fight winners be unable to return to the ring for semifinal round action due to injury sustained en route to victory, the winner of the matchup between Washington and Clodfelter will take the injured fighter’s place in the tournament.
A draw to determine the ROAD TO GLORY USA welterweight tournament’s quarterfinal round matchups will take place on a date and at a location to be announced soon.
Bellator MMA 90 Highlights from the Maverik Center
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