Hawaii’s Rumble On The Rock: The Tournament That Carlos Condit Could Have Fought Anderson Silva

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The time was late-January of 2006 and a Hawaiian promotion was about to start a tournament that included one of the best in terms of talent in MMA history. Amidst the promotion’s 29-events, Rumble on the Rock 8 9 definitely stand out as monumental and historically significant moments and one of New Mexico’s very own was part of the epic storyline. The Penn family (of the B.J. Penn kin) had their hands tied into the Hawaii-based fight promotion and they had already had notables such as Ricco Rodriguez, Kendall Grove and “Tank” Abbott.

The 175-pound, 8-man tournament to be held over the course of two events would begin in Honolulu on January 20th, 2014. The quarterfinals would feature eight fighters all billed as champions in past promotions. Amongst the crowd, Albuquerque’s Carlos Condit entered into the tournament with a record of 13-2 and arguably the most unknown fighter in comparison to the other seven competitors.

Cage Rage Champion Anderson Silva (16-3), fresh from fighting the young Georges St. Pierre, Frank Trigg (12-4) and former Shooto Champion Jake Shields (12-4-1) were the tournament favorites heading in to the Rumble on the Rock 8 event. Silva was considered one of the best foreign talents, Trigg had just fought several times for the rising in popularity promotion, the UFC, and Shields was already a seven-year veteran of several premier promotions.

The other competitors were Renato Verissimo (5-2), a three-fight UFC veteran; Dave Menne (42-12), who was the former UFC Middleweight Champion; Yushin Okami (13-2), a K-1 and Pancrase veteran; and Ronald Jhun (22-15), a former King of the Cage Champion.

For fight fans that don’t recall the landscape of New Mexico MMA from over 8-years ago, Condit trained with FIT NHB and his Head Coaches, Tom and Arlene Vaughn. Condit entered the tournament winning his last five of six and would arguably be the underdog to Verissimo. The hometown-Hawaiian fighter Verissimo was a knockout specialist who had dropped two of three in the UFC and held a notable win over Carlos Newtown. Condit needed only 17-seconds to brutally dispatch Verissimo; Condit caught his foe with a counter knee to the chin as Verissimo came swinging, finishing the fight with knees and punches to the turtled Hawaiian.

In Condit’s portion of the bracket, Frank Trigg had just won a unanimous decision over Ronald Jhun which would match Condit with the second straight UFC caliber opponent and a chance to get to the Rumble on the Rock Tournament finals.

Fast forward four months to April of 2006 and tournament would continue at Rumble on the Rock 9. The event would host the semifinals and the finals of the 175-pound tournament. Condit would now have the task of taking on Frank Trigg who had just bounced back from two consecutive losses against Georges St. Pierre and Matt Hughes. Trigg was considered one of the UFC’s top Welterweights and a perennial title contender.

Condit would need more than 17-seconds in the semi-finals but not by much; 82-seconds into the opening round, Condit locked in a fight ending triangle-armbar submission that forced Trigg to tap-out. Trigg charged Condit as soon as the bell sounded and blasted through a takedown, Condit would stay busy and eventually find the opening to set-up the triangle. While the choke was tight, Condit really torqued on the trapped arm of Trigg to secure the win. The fight signifies the last time Condit has ever finished a submission off of his back as he would go on to make a habit of finishing opponents standing.

In just a span of 99-seconds, Condit had won two fights and punched his ticket to the tournament finals. The favorite to emerge from the opposite bracket was Anderson Silva. Silva was only a few months from his eventual UFC debut and the PRIDE veteran was already considered one of the most dangerous fighters in the world. As fate would have it, Silva would lose in the opening round by Disqualification when he upkicked opponent Yushin Okami while Okami’s was grounded. The fight has long been controversial as Silva has gone on record stating that the rules weren’t clear to his team. Nevertheless, Okami would go on with the DQ win and Jake Shields would defeat Dave Menne via unanimous decision.

In the other semi-final fight at Rumble on the Rock 9, Yushin Okami and Jake Shields would put each other through the grinder in a methodical fight that lead to a majority decision in favor of Jake Shields. Shields was an established MMA veteran at the time with over seven years of experience and Condit as aforementioned, was a relative unknown outside of New Mexico.

While Condit would land some vicious strikes on the feet, the fight would take place on the ground where the wrestling of Shields would stifle the striking talents of Condit and then his Jiu Jitsu skills would shutdown any type of offense Condit would unleash off of his back. Shields would win a unanimous decision victory becoming tournament champion and in defeat, Condit would announce himself to the MMA world as an emerging talent to watch out for. The 22-year old Condit went 2-1 against elite caliber talent in a four-month span and would propel himself down the path of success we all know now that he would take.

All of the fighters in the tournament went down different paths; Silva most notably would go on to become the pound-for-pound greatest MMA fighter of all-time and UFC Middleweight Champion. Okami would go on to have a successful MMA career where he would challenge for the title and end his UFC tenure with a legendary resume. Shields would go on to fight for the premier MMA promotions in the world where he would rack up a record win streak defeating such names as Dan Henderson, UFC 171 title challenger Robbie Lawler and the well-known Demian Maia.

Condit’s future would also be bright, he would go on to win eight of nine fights which included capturing and defending the WEC Welterweight title. Of course Condit would also move gyms, joining the famed Jackson-Winkeljohn gym and is still currently enjoying a successful UFC tenure that includes an Interim UFC Title and winning several top contender bouts. Condit fights tomorrow night at UFC 171 where a win over opponent Tyron Woodley will once again propel him into a UFC Title shot against either Johny Hendricks or Robbie Lawler.

http://swfight.com

George Groves targets world championship title before the end of the year

George Groves is aiming to bounce back from his defeat to Carl Froch by becoming a world champion before the end of the year.

Groves tackles European super middleweight champion Christopher Rebrasse on September 20 in a final eliminator for the WBC title.

The Hammersmith boxer makes a swift return to the ring after suffering back-to-back stoppages against IBF and WBA champion Froch at Wembley Stadium in May.

To prepare for his showdown with the Frenchman Groves has travelled to America where he is currently training alongside undefeated IBO and WBA middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin.

“I’m fighting jet-lag and it’s 10:30 at night where I am, up in Big Bear California,” Groves told Sky Sports News.

“We training out here, we’ve started camp. I’m training with Gennady Golovkin and his trainer Eddie Sanchez, and having a great time.”

Fantastic

Big Bear is a small city in San Bernadino Mountains which has previously been used for a training camp by boxers such as Mike Tyson and Oscar De La Hoya.

“It’s a fantastic place,” added Groves. “There are plenty of places to get really good food, some fantastic runs to do, the scenery and the clean air. You are at altitude, so it’s harder to breath up here and you’re fitness improves much more drastically than down at normal level.

“They’ve got great facilities and this moment in time there’s great sparring for me as well, you can definitely see the appeal for lots of American fighters.”

“We’re going to be in the States for around a month, we’re going to move around a bit, we are going to spend some time in LA and Vegas.

Groves is back in training less than six weeks after he was brutally knocked out in eight rounds by Froch.

“I 100% wanted to get back in the gym, especially after a loss,” added Groves. “I’m craving success and I want to be world champion.

“I definitely don’t want to take my time about this; I want to be back in action as soon as possible.”

“In many ways this is the most important fight of my career; it’s a fight that I can’t afford to lose. That’s one of the reasons why I want to prepare to my best abilities and make sure I don’t lose it.

“Rebrasse is ranked number three with the WBC and he is also ranked number three with one of the other governing bodies, the European champion which is obviously a prestigious belt.

“But for me the most important thing is that this fight has been nominated to be a final eliminator for the WBC, so after a painful loss I’m straight back in at world level with an opportunity to be fighting for a world title in the near future, possibly if I get through this fight it could be before Christmas.”

Winnable

Victory over Rebrasse will secure Groves a shot at the WBC title, currently held by Sakio Bika, who defends against Anthony Dirrell on August 16.

“It’s a tough one, they’ve already fought and it was a draw. Bika has been around for a long time now, we’ve seen him in the UK fighting Joe Calzaghe many years ago, he gives everyone a tough night’s work, he’s unorthodox, scrappy and has a good chin, so he’s hard to break down.

“On the other side you’ve got Dirrell, who is a very good fighter, a very talented fighter, a very talented family in fact. I sparred with him and his brother out in Miami a couple of years ago and he hits hard and he’s very strong.

“It’s a tough one to call, you go with Bika because of his experience but Dirrell might be that more hungry. I think they both tough fights but both winnable for me, I look forward to getting past Rebrasse and taking on whoever comes through their bout.

“I’m confident of beating both men and for me it’s all about becoming world champion and fortunately I’m in a position where that dream can come true.”

www1.skysports.com

Kevin Croom to Meet Anthony Birchak May 9th at MFC 40

Early Monday morning, Maximum Fighting Championship announced the signing of New Mexico based fighter Kevin Croom (13-4; Sherdog record) to a multi-fight deal. In his first fight with the promotion he is expected to face MFC Bantamweight Champion, Anthony Birchak (11-1), of Arizona. The fight is scheduled to co-headline MFC 40 on May 9th and will air live on AXS TV Fights when it is broadcasted from the Shaw Conference Centre in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

“I got a tough-ass opponent,” Birchak told SWFight. “It’s hard to gauge what kind of striker he is. I know he hits hard.”

Birchak, became the inaugural MFC Bantamweight champion in his last outing by defeating Tito Jones at MFC 38 last October. Many New Mexicans may remember Birchak from his impressive outing against Matt Leyva at Jackson’s MMA Series X which took place in Albuquerque December of 2012.

In Croom, Birchak faces SWFight.com’s MMA Fighter of the Year, who is riding a career high eight-fight win streak; officially, unofficially it might be more as some of his fights still need to be verified.

An MMA nomad, Croom’s 2013 campaign saw him fight in four different countries including Columbia, Mexico and Kazakhstan.

“I feel unbreakable. The biggest thing is I know is that I won’t beat myself,” Croom is quoted as saying in yesterday’s press release. “At this level in this sport, everyone is a gifted athlete so it really becomes more of a mental game. Right now, I have my mental game plan at 100%.”

The title fight as far as we have collected, is set to go down barring any setback occurring to Croom in his February 28th TFC 27 contest against Bryan Goldsby, under the Titan Fighting Championship banner.  This will mark the third time Croom fights with the promotion.

While Croom signs a multi-fight deal with MFC, Birchak is nearing the end of his. Both fighters are on the brink of a major break and a victory over the other on May 9th could be the biggest turning points of their career.

http://swfight.com

Ex-Bantamweight Champ Dominick Cruz to Return Against Takeya Mizugaki at UFC 178

Former  UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz is set to return to the cage after nearly three years on the shelf.

ESPN.com’s Brett Okamoto on Tuesday reported that Cruz will square off against surging Japanese contender Takeya Mizugaki as part of UFC 178, likely on the pay-per-view portion of the card. Headlined by a light heavyweight title rematch between Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson, the Sept. 27 event will take place in Las Vegas, though a venue has yet to be announced.

Cruz, 28, has not competed since his October 2011 title defense against Demetrious Johnson. “The Dominator” has seen multiple returns scheduled and then scratched due to a series of injuries, including an ACL tear which required a pair of surgeries. In January,  Cruz vacated his title when he was forced to withdraw from a unification bout with then-interim champ Renan Barao slated for UFC 169. The Alliance MMA product has tasted defeat just once in 20 professional bouts, a 2007 loss to Urijah Faber which Cruz avenged in 2011.

Mizugaki will enter the bout on five-fight winning streak which most recently saw him outpoint Francisco Rivera at UFC 173. Since transferring to the UFC from World Extreme Cagefighting in 2011, the 30-year-old Kanagawa native has compiled a 7-2 record, including victories over Bryan Caraway and Nam Phan.

http://www.sherdog.com

Danny Garcia and Lamont Peterson to defend world titles in Brooklyn

Danny Garcia and Lamont Peterson will warm-up for a potential unification fight by appearing on the same bill on August 9.

Garcia will put his WBC and WBA light-welterweight titles on the line when he takes on Rod Salka at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center.

And at the same venue, IBF champion Peterson will face Edgar Santana knowing victory will put him in line to face the undefeated Garcia.

I’m really excited about this fight and about making a statement to the boxing world that I’m the true junior welterweight world champion, Peterson said.

I know Danny will be watching me and I’ll be watching him. After August 9, there will be only one fight to make at 140 pounds.

Garcia, who stopped Amir Khan in the fourth round to win the WBA title in July 2012, is focusing solely on his next opponent – with fellow American Rod Salka coming into the contest with a 19-3 record.

Comeback

I’ll be ready, Garcia said. I’ll give my fans another great show.

There will be a third world title up for grabs on the night, with Jarrod Fletcher and Daniel Jacobs clashing for the vacant WBA middleweight belt.

Fletcher, part of the Australian Olympic squad in 1008, has won 18 of his 19 bouts, while Jacobs (27-1) makes his returning after a 19-month lay-off fighting cancer.

This whole comeback has been a dream so far, and what better way to keep it going than with a world title fight? said Jacobs.

This is the fight I’ve been waiting for and no one will keep me from that belt.

www1.skysports.com

Will Mayweather fight Pacquiao in 2015?

Although Freddie Roach and his new trainee Miguel Cotto are interested for a rematch, they prefer that Mayweather-Pacquiao saga would come to an end since the world is impatiently waiting for them. That is the fight that everyone loves to watch; therefore, expect for the boycott in the rematch between Mayweather and Maidana.

However, the biggest fight is not going to happen this year since Mayweather and Pacquiao have different opponents to face in their boxing careers. It is clear tha Mayweather’s camp wants to negotiate now to Pacquiao’s Top Rank promoter Bob Arum since there are no credible boxers would make 2 million buys. Indeed, it seems odd because the world had asked this super-fight a few years ago. I think it is less appealing now to the boxing fans around the world. I don’t know if they will still believe in this hype.

According to some reports, Mayweather now realizes that Pacquiao is going to leave boxing and is going to different direction, as he plans to run for senator or vice-president in his country. I guess the American boxer ponders how many millions of US dollars he’s going to lose if the mega-fight will not come to fruition. He now softens his stance about the possibility of the fight. Perhaps, he now feels that his legacy is not complete if he doesn’t fight Pacquiao.

There is one fight for Mayweather Junior in order for him to secure his legacy and retire in the sweet science. He will not be called as the greatest fighter in this era if he will continue to hide. A fight against pacquiao is a win-win situation, but he is not sure whether he will prevail or go home with a loss.

I have been following Mayweather’s career over the years and I would say he was genius to defeat his former opponents. I know he fought tough rivals in the past and schooled them like amateur boxers. I would agree for that. However, I don’t think he had faced someone like Pacquiao. I don’t think it is easy to beat the toughness of the Filipino congressman.

It is true that he easily defeated Marquez in their last meeting. But even Marquez had admitted before that Pacquiao was like a beast who delivered many lethal punches in different angles. Just imagine how Pacquiao would perform against Mayweather if ever they meet in the ring. I believe this is one of the reasons why Marquez is now avoiding Pacquiao because he is not sure whether he can still beat Pacquiao by knockout.

Top Rank Promoter Bob Arum had already offered Marquez several times a great deal of money, but the Mexican fighter did not want to fight Pacquiao. For him, his business for Pacquiao is over. Marquez wants his fans to remember him as the second fighter who defeated Pacquiao by knockout. I don’t think it is the best move for the Mexican warrior. Where is the word of COURAGE there if he avoids Pacquiao for a fifth bout?

Mayweather and Marquez need to fight Pacquiao. It is plain and simple. The Filipino boxing icon is ready anytime, anywhere. Let’s forget about the money. Let’s talk about a true legacy. I think they need Pacquiao as much as Pacquiao needs them. I don’t think Mayweather’s legacy is safe if he continues to avoid the Filipino boxing champ. This is the same with Marquez. He needs to fight Pacquiao for a fifth time since most fight fans believe that it was a ‘lucky punch’ that beat Pacquiao. I guess these two veteran boxers would make a very interesting competition for Pacquiao. Let’s make this happen!

http://www.boxingnews24.com

Fab Five: Cerrone’s Defining UFC Moments

With nine UFC and five WEC post-fight bonuses to his name, Donald Cerrone is one of those fighters who makes it tough to find just five highlights from his thrill-a-minute career. But after whittling this list down to his UFC career alone and chopping down ever further, we think we’ve found the perfect five fights to check out if you want to get up to speed on the “Cowboy” before his UFC Fight Night main event against Jim Miller on July 16.

Paul Kelly – UFC 126

Result – Cerrone Wsub2 – Fight of the Night

Cerrone more than made his bones during his 10-fight run in the WEC, fighting the likes of Benson Henderson (twice), Jamie Varner (twice), James Krause, and Danny Castillo, but many wondered whether he could repeat that success in the UFC. Well, England’s Paul Kelly tried to test him, taking the fight to the Coloradan from the opening bell, but by the second round, Cerrone took over, getting into the mount and then finishing Kelly with a rear naked choke when the Brit gave up his back.

Charles Oliveira – UFC Live

Result – Cerrone TKO1 – Knockout of the Night

Known for his back-and-forth wars, Cerrone showed how dominating he could be against a top-level foe in his third Octagon bout, as he simply tore through Brazilian phenom Charles Oliveira. A body shot followed by a knee spelled the beginning of the end for “Do Bronx,” with Cerrone ending matters with ground strikes at 3:01 of the first round.

Melvin Guillard – UFC 150

Result – Cerrone KO1 – Knockout and Fight of the Night

Former training partners Cerrone and Melvin Guillard fought like bitter enemies in one of the most explosive 76-second fights you will ever witness. Guillard struck first, wobbling the steel-chinned Cerrone early on, but the “Cowboy” fired back with his own bombs, and after a head kick and some punches, it was lights out for “The Young Assassin.”

Evan Dunham – UFC 167

Result – Cerrone Wsub2 – Submission of the Night

By the time Cerrone’s UFC 167 bout with Evan Dunham rolled around, the former WEC standout was 1-2 in his previous three bouts, losing to Anthony Pettis and Rafael Dos Anjos and scoring a clear-cut but less than thrilling decision win over KJ Noons. But on this night in November of 2013, the old “Cowboy” was back, putting together one of his most complete and dominant efforts en route to a second-round submission victory via triangle choke.

Edson Barboza – UFC on FOX

Result – Cerrone Wsub 1 – Performance of the Night

Expected to be a war for the ages between two lanky and devastating strikers, the Cerrone vs. Edson Barboza bout in April of this year started out in the Brazilian’s favor, as he tagged his foe with several flush shots. But when Cerrone came back and dropped Barboza with a jab, it was just a matter of seconds before he locked in a rear naked choke and finished matters at 3:15 of the opening stanza.

www.ufc.com

Invicta FC Boosts Their Roster With The Signing Of FIT NHB’s Amber Brown

It was announced several days ago that FIT NHB’s Amber Brown would make the biggest move of her career and jump to the stacked roster of the all-women promotion, the Invicta Fighting Championship. The Shannon Knapp run organization houses the very best women mixed martial artists in the world and the promotion is a stomping grounds for women to show their talents in front of a large audience. The Invicta FC promotion has become well-known within the world of WMMA as being the best avenue to get into the UFC.

On February 9th, Amber Brown’s Facebook Fanpage let the world know officially that she was headed to the world’s premier organization for WMMA:

OK my awesome friends and family I have been waiting very very patiently and FINALLY allowed to announce that I have just signed with Invicta!!!!!!!!!!!!! Woohoo!!!! All of my hard work is definitely paying off!!!!!

Brown (3-1) was our pick in our year-end awards for the “Upset of the Year” in what is still her last bout to date. In July of 2013, Brown took her talents to Japan where she would fight for the Pancrase promotion for the second time of her career. Coming off of a loss to Emi Fujino in her first Pancrase bout, Brown took on the JEWELS Grand Prix Champion and world-ranked Kikuyo Ishikawa. After Brown assaulted Ishikawa with her brutal clinch work, she was able to secure a fight ending arm-bar submission in the third and final round. Coming off of that first Pancrase loss, Brown had the odds against her when she took on Ishikawa in the JEWELS Champion’s home-country.

Brown’s nickname “The Bully” has been showcased in full throughout her career defeating Abby Higginbotham by strikes and Ashley Aguirre via unanimous decision. She very well could have scored the TKO stoppage over Ishikawa as well, as Brown battered her foe with close range striking and the vicious Muay Thai clinch.

Training under the tutelage of Tom and Arlene Vaughn, the 25-year old Brown will definitely be well prepared for the elite ranks of the Invicta FC Atomweight division. Brown’s well-polished striking and underrated ground game will definitely make some interesting match-ups between the other 105-pound fighters. Interestingly, the division Champion for the promotion trains right down the street at the Jackson-Winkeljohn gym. Michelle Waterson captured the company’s first ever Atomweight Title in 2013 and it looks like there is another collision course between Albuquerque fighters at the highest level.

Join us in congratulating Amber Brown on the huge, career changing news and stay tuned for bout announcements and coverage!

http://swfight.com

UFC 170 And What It Meant For New Mexico Trained Fighters

This past Saturday, the highly discussed UFC 170 event was held inside the Mandalay Bay Event Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. The fight card for UFC 170 was stacked with talent, notable names and exciting match-ups and when the dust cleared and settled, it has become apparent that several of the evening’s bout conclusions hold some short and long-term ramifications for some of the state’s premier MMA talents.Let’s take a look now at some of those points:

Zach Makovsky vs. Josh Sampo

This one is a no-brainer as Makovsky has spent time training at the Jackson-Winkeljohn gym alongside highly touted Flyweight prospect Nick Urso. Makovsky is a former Bellator MMA Champion and joined the ranks of the UFC as short-notice replacement when Jackson-Winklejohn perennial championship contender John Dodson was forced out of his bout with Scott Jorgensen. Makovsky played spoiler in that bout and defeated Jorgensen and quickly emerged as a future contender at 125-pounds.

This past Saturday, “Fun Size” Makovsky competed for the second time in about nine weeks and defeated another solid opponent in Texas’ Josh Sampo. Makovsky is now on a four-fight winning streak since his two-fight skid for Bellator MMA and went from being 2-0 on the regional circuit to now being 2-0 as a UFC fighter. Talk about a comeback story!

Makovsky has turned his career around in the division change from Bantamweight to Flyweight and with his impeccably crafty wrestling talents is now in line for a fight against a more well-known foe which may lead to a main card fight in the near future.

Demian Maia vs. Rory McDonald

This highly anticipated Welterweight clash had implications for top contender Carlos Condit as the winner of the bout would be knocking on the door to contendership debatably one step behind “The Natural Born Killer”. Now with the conclusion engraved in stone, Condit’s bout with Tyron Woodley next month at UFC 171 will tell us a lot about the pecking order in the 170-pound division.

Condit has already defeated McDonald once, back in a 2010 bout that saw Condit survive early adversity to get a TKO stoppage over the younger Canadian fighter. Condit would hand McDonald his first career loss and propel himself into title contention. McDonald has spoken out about wanting to avenge that loss and that very well may happen depending on the outcome of the Condit/Woodley bout.

Currently, #1 and #3 ranked fighters Johny Hendricks and Robbie Lawler are tentatively scheduled to fight for the vacant division title. That match-up leaves #2 Carlos Condit and #4 Rory McDonald on a collision course in the future.

Stephen Thompson vs. Robert Whittaker

This one is a little far-fetched but I will give you my reasoning behind the thought process. The “Wonderboy” Stephen Thompson is definitely being groomed by the UFC to take on strikers after his hype train was derailed by the grappling of Matt Brown. Thompson’s exciting striking talents have earned him impressive and highlight-reel stoppages in three of his last four victories. I believe the UFC will stray away from matching Thompson with someone who has the ability to take him down.

Well how about match him with someone who has zero interest with taking him down instead?FIT NHB’s Tim Means is one of the most offensive strikers in that weight class (if not in all of MMA) and easily one of the most violent finishers in the game today. Currently on his comeback trail to the UFC, Means has finished two opponents under the Legacy FC banner and looks poised as ever to return to MMA’s premier promotion.

If the UFC wants to see Thompson strike, don’t give him a squash match against an outgunned grappler. Let’s see how he does against a striker who won’t stray away from wanting to exchange leather. I think those two would guarantee fireworks and the smart money would be on an emphatic finishing sequence.

Daniel Cormier vs. Patrick Cummins

This bout was as close to a squash match as you’ll ever see in a UFC bout, and essentially we learned absolutely nothing new about Cormier in victory. He did exactly what he should have done in that bout and while he earned the stoppage, the fight had little substance to write home about.

Except….. Daniel Cormier made 205-pounds.

With the win and the successful cut to 205-pounds, Cormier has now become a viable contender for the Light-Heavyweight Title that currently wraps itself around Jon Jones. While Cormier may not be the next in line (Alexander Gustaffson is the #1 contender unless he loses his upcoming squash match), Cormier can easily fill in a slot or contender spot should there be an injury atop the pecking order.

Cormier also has documented “beef” with Champion Jon Jones and placing him in a title fight will be an easy call due to the match-ups high marketability. Jones has his next title fight lined up for April against Glover Texiera and the future after that is absolutely “up-in-the-air” at this point. Cormier may very well be the next fight for Jones whether he wins or loses in April.

Ronda Rousey vs. Sara McMann, Alexis Davis vs. Jessica Eye – WMMA Bouts

Each time there is a WMMA bout being held on a UFC event, New Mexico buzzes in their talks of support for the state’s most celebrated and beloved fighter, Holly Holm. While it is evident that the fans within New Mexico are celebrating her current regional run towards a UFC-signing, they might be slightly premature in assuming she is anywhere close to a title shot against Ronda Rousey.

While Rousey showed her empathic dominance once again, winning in just a little over 60-seconds, it was the evenings first WMMA bout that should speak significantly to the career of Holm in the near future. It would be extremely unlikely that Holm walks into the UFC and gets a title shot and much more likely that she would have to fight 1-2 times in the UFC prior to getting that shot. Women like Eye and Davis are exactly the type of competition she would expectedly face which is of much higher competitive level then she currently takes on.

Both Eye and Davis exchanged in a tactical battle for three rounds and they both displayed the type of adversity that Holm may face. Jessica Eye for example, has crisp boxing talents; maybe not to the level of Holm Championship caliber boxing but Eye’s striking is much more fluid for MMA then most of their WMMA counterparts. Alexis Davis works the leg kicks and is very sound on the ground where she can get you there with very methodical takedowns. Either of those women would offer Holm challenges she’s yet to see in her MMA career and wins over them would definitely align herself for a bout with Champion Ronda Rousey.

http://swfight.com

Algieri signs contract to fight Pacquiao

By Flattop

WBO jr welterweight world champion Chris Algieri today signed the contract for his showdown with WBO welterweight champion and boxing superstar Manny Pacquiao to take place November 22 in Macao, China. Algieri will have a payday upwards of $1 million and his 140lb title will not be on the line.

“I am pleased that I have been able to provide this opportunity for Chris,” Algieri’s longtime promoter Joe DeGuardia told Fightnews.com. “It’s rewarding when you see the fruits of your labor come to fruition. I want to thank the Paramount which has been home to his fights and fans over the years. The ‘Rockin Fights’ series at the Paramount has showed that you can develop a fighter from the club shows into a world champion!”

http://www.fightnews.com/

Floyd Mayweather-Marcos Maidana Rematch Set For Sept. 13 in Las Vegas

Floyd Mayweather officially announced via social media that his highly-anticipated rematch with Marcos Maidana is a done deal on Thursday.

The bout will take place on Sept. 13 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and will be televised on Showtime pay-per-view.

In their first fight on May 3, Mayweather cruised to 117-111 and 116-112 marks on two judges’ scorecards. But the third judge scored the fight a draw, thus fueling the fire for an immediate rematch.

This will only be the second time Mayweather (46-0) has granted an opponent a rematch. The first being in 2002, when Jose Luis Castillo was given an immediate do-over.

The fight will also mark Mayweather’s first fight since leaving Golden Boy Promotions along with former chief executive Richard Schaefer in June.

http://www.sherdog.com

Former Bantam Champ Cruz Returns This Fall

The wait is over for former UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz. Following nearly three years away from the Octagon due to a series of injuries, Cruz will return to active duty on Saturday, September 27, to face number five ranked Takeya Mizugaki on the Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson II undercard in Las Vegas.

Unbeaten in nine fights at bantamweight, Cruz’ last bout was on October 1, 2011, when he successfully defended his crown against current flyweight boss Demetrious Johnson. Multiple injuries sent him to the sidelines and forced him to relinquish his title in early 2014. But after given the green light to fight again, he will look to begin the road back to the title against Japan’s Mizugaki, who has won five straight, most recently a decision win over Francisco Rivera at UFC 173 in May.

www.ufc.com

Ronda Rousey wins 2014 ESPY for Best Female Athlete

Ronda Rousey came home a winner once again on Wednesday night. The UFC’s women’s bantamweight champion claimed the title of Best Female Athlete at the 2014 ESPY Awards.

Rousey is the first UFC fighter to win an ESPY award.

Rousey beat out Maya Moore of WNBA champion Minnesota Lynx, Olympic skier Mikaela Shiffrin, and Breanna Stewart of Connecticut’s NCAA champion basketball squad to claim the honor.

A 27-year-old undefeated Olympic medalist in judo, Rousey (10-0) has defended her bantamweight title four consecutive times since propelling the women’s division into the UFC. She knocked out No. 2 ranked Alexis Davis in a mere 16 seconds in her most recent performance.

UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones and Rousey were nominated for Best Fighter at the 2014 ESPY Awards, however both fell short to undefeated boxing champion Floyd Mayweather.

UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman was up for the biggest upset, but the Mercer hoops team got the nod for its defeat of Duke in the NCAA Tournament.

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Tyson Fury faces misconduct charge over latest outburst against Dereck Chisora

Tyson Fury has been summoned to appear before the British Board of Boxing Control over his latest performance during a press conference to promote his fight with Dereck Chisora.

Fury and Chisora went head-to-head in London earlier this week ahead of their July 26 rematch and had to be separated by security.

The 25-year-old launched a torrent of abuse at heavyweight rival Chisora and his trainer Don Charles before turning on a journalist who asked him to stop swearing.

The BBBofC received numerous complaints from the media and members of the public and general secretary Robert Smith has now ordered Fury to attend a hearing on August 13.

“The British Boxing Board of Control considered the behaviour of boxer Tyson Fury at the press conference for his forthcoming contest against Dereck Chisora,” said a BBBofC statement.

“The stewards have decided to call Mr Fury before them under Regulation 25 (misconduct) to their next meeting on Wednesday, 13th August 2014 when this matter will be dealt with.

“Failure to attend this hearing will result in Mr Fury’s boxing licence being suspended.”

Chisora, who was beaten on points by Fury in their first fight three years ago, will put his European crown on the line against Fury at the Phones 4u Arena in Manchester.

The winner will also pick up the vacant British strap and earn the right to face WBO champion Wladimir Klitschko.

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Fight Night Atlantic City Post Fight Bonus Recap

UFC senior Director of Public Relations Dave Sholler was joined on stage at the Fight Night Atlantic City post-fight press conference by six fighters: Donald Cerrone, Edson Barboza, John Lineker, Rick Story, Joe Proctor, and Lucas Martins.

Sholler announced that Lineker vs. Alpteken Ozkilic earned fight of the night honors, and that Cerrone and Martins earned the performance bonuses for their KO victories. Each of the four fighters will receive a $50k bonus.

The attendance was 4,115 for the event in Atlantic City. No gate figure was available at the time of the press conference.

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