The Fight Nerd

August 27, 2014

Stephan Bonnar signs with Bellator MMA, wants fight with Tito Ortiz ASAP

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 12:32 PM

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The Bellator Light Heavyweight division has seen a new arrival as fan favorite Stephan “The American Psycho” Bonnar (15-8) has agreed to terms on a new Bellator contract.

Fighting in front of millions on Spike TV against the likes of James Irvin, Keith Jardine, Rashad Evans and an iconic showdown with Forrest Griffin, Bonnar has established himself as one of the biggest personalities in the sport during his nearly fifteen year professional career. Last competing in 2012 against Anderson Silva, Bonnar is eager to get back to work, and has a good idea about who his first opponent should be inside the Bellator cage.

“I want everyone to know I’m coming out of retirement because it’s time to free the MMA world of the virus that’s known as Tito Ortiz,” Bonnar said. “We’ve been suffering through his boring fights for too many years, and it’s about time that someone beats it out of him once and for all.”

“Stephan is a guy that has been a huge part of this sport and we are excited have him part of the roster,” Bellator President Scott Coker said. “He was one half of probably the greatest and one of the most important fights in MMA history, and it happened on Spike. When you look at our Light Heavyweight division, with names like Rampage, Tito, King Mo, Emanuel Newton and others, there are a lot of fights Stephan can be involved in. Big fights against big names. After talking to Stephan, I know that’s what he wants, and we want to provide that to our fans.”

Bonnar will also be involved in various components relating to Bellator, including the possibility of on-air commentating and analysis. Bonnar is expected to compete this year live on Spike TV.

August 26, 2014

Judo Gold Medalist Satoshi Ishii heads to first M-1 Global event in China in November

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 11:58 AM

satoshi ishii

2008 Olympic gold medal winner in judo, Satoshi Ishii (12-1-1, 1 KO/TKO, 4 SUB), will fight an opponent to be determined November 11 in the ground-breaking M-1 Challenge in China, launching an annual 10-year event agreement for promoter M-1 Global, at Wukesong Arena in Beijing.

Russian heavyweight star Sergei Kharitonov (21-5-0, 11 KO/TKO, 9 SUB) is scheduled to headline the Nov, 11th extravaganza, held in conjunction with the International Economic Forum, against an opponent to be determined.

The 27-year-old Ishii, fighting out of Osaka, Japan, trains in California at Black House and Reign MMA. The 5′ 11″, 240-heavyweight is riding an eight-fight win streak, including victories against Jeff Monson, Pedro Rizzo and Tim Sylvia, among the more notables.

Ishii will not be competing Nov. 11 in his first M-1 Global. In December 2011, he fought legendary Fedor Emelianenko in Fight for Japan: New Year 2011, in which M-1 Global was involved. Emelianenko defeated the Japanese star by way of a first-round knockout by punches. Satoshi defeated Monson (49-19-1) last October in M-1 Challenge 42 in St. Petersburg, Russia.ju

August 5, 2014

Emanuel Newton to defend LHW belt against Joey Beltran at Bellator 124

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 12:40 PM

Bellator MMA will return to the state of Michigan for Bellator 124 from the Compuware Arena just outside of Detroit on Friday, September 12th live on Spike TV. The event will be headlined by a Light Heavyweight Title fight as reigning Bellator Champion Emanuel Newton will defend his belt against Joey Beltran.

The night will also feature the Bellator Light Heavyweight Tournament Final between Liam McGeary and Kelly Anundson, which will be the co-main event of the evening. Tickets for the event will be on sale on Friday, August 8th and can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com, Bellator.com or by visiting the Compuware Arena Box Office.

After defeating Attila Vegh at Bellator 113 and being named the undisputed Bellator Light Heavyweight Champion, Newton will put his title on the line against Beltran. With a tough opponent in Newton, Beltran doesn’t plan on putting his fate in the judge’s hands and is looking for the finish against Newton. Beltran is coming off of a submission victory against Vladimir Matyushenko and has recorded 13 of his 15 wins by finish with eight coming in the first round.

“I’ve been wanting to get back in the cage as soon as possible so I went to Scott Coker and he made this fight happen for me,” Newton said. “Beltran is a guy that always pushes the pace and looks for the finish, which plays into my style perfectly. I know he is coming off a nice win against Matyushenko, and has been in this game for a while, so I’m excited for the fight and another chance to defend my belt.”

“I’m jacked to get this shot against Newton,” Beltran said. “He’s a tough guy, but I’ve been in this sport for a while now and have fought some of the best. I’ve got some good momentum after my last fight, and were going to put on a show September 12th.”

Both looking to earn their first Bellator title shot, Liam McGeary will face Kelly Anundson in the Bellator Light Heavyweight Tournament Final. Ranked first for the most TKO/KO in the light heavyweight division, McGeary has recorded all five of his Bellator victories by first round finish and has only spent five minutes and eight seconds in the Bellator cage. Looking to maintain his perfect 8-0 professional record, McGeary will have to hold off Anundson, who is coming off of a strong TKO victory against Philipe Lins in the semifinal round. Anundson has won his previous six fights, five coming by knockout or submission.

More fights will be announced in the coming weeks.

MAIN CARD:
Light Heavyweight World Title Fight: Emanuel Newton (23-7) vs. Joey Beltran (15-10)
Light Heavyweight Tournament Final: Liam McGeary (8-0) vs. Kelly Anundson (9-2)

July 16, 2014

Fighters Source “Kings of New York” Amateur MMA Returns for National Championship

Filed under: News — The Fight Nerd @ 10:59 AM

Fighters Source, an International Amateur MMA League, announced today that their US National Competition will be the main event of the 5th Annual MMA World Expo at the Javits Center on Saturday, July 26th at 6:00 p.m.

Amateur fighters from New York City and across the country are currently competing for a chance to fight at the Fighters Source Nationals in which the victors will advance to represent Team USA at the Amateur MMA World Challenge in London, England.

“This is an exciting time for all these athletes,” said Anthony Medina, CEO of Fighters Source. “New York City will be the city to determine their fate and whether or not they will have the opportunity to represent the US in the World Challenge.”

These 8 bouts will determine the six men and two women who will earn their chance to represent the USA in the World Challenge. This tournament has brought the best male fighters at 135lbs, 145lbs, 155lbs, 170lbs, 185lbs, 205lbs and females fighters at 125lbs, 135lbs from across the county to lay it all out on the line and show why they are the best in their weight class.

This tournament will be commentated by former UFC fighter Seth “Silverback” Petruzelli, and MC’d by combat sports announcer Chris Geraghty.

Tickets are available at http://mmaworldexpo.com/fighterssource/. Ticket prices start at $45. Additional facility fees and taxes may apply.

These athletes’ journeys as Amateur MMA fighters have been documented for the United Fight Alliance (UFA) Network which airs in 100+ million homes nationally alone, and a combined 130 million homes, nationally and internationally. This is the first time an amateur sports league will be broadcast into homes worldwide.

Fighters Source plans to produce and broadcast amateur Mixed Martial Arts events from around the country, giving fans an opportunity to watch this major step for amateur fighters as they prepare themselves for the pros.

June 24, 2014

Hendricks wants Weidman in UFC Super fight, Dana says no!

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 12:43 PM

Fans were hoping to get Anderson Silva and GSP into the octagon down the line for an epic superfight, but with GSP taking an indefinite leave of absence and Silva still recovering from his horrific leg injury, it looks like we might have a new multi-division super fight on our hands.

UFC welterweight champion Johny Hendricks appeared on AXS TV’s “Inside MMA” last week, alongside UFC President Dana White, who was there to discuss the recent signing of Scott Coker to take helm over at Bellator MMA, as well as other recent UFC news stories and upcoming events (including UFC Fight Night 43, for which you can view odds here ).

Hendricks asked, “Realistically, if I won three or four fights, and so does Chris Weidman, three or four fights, do you think we could have that [super fight] happen? 185?” White responded in typical fashion, “Well I don’t know about three or four fights. First of all, champ, you are in a very nasty division that is packed with talent from one through thirteen. You got a lot of housework to do before you start talking about Chris Weidman. So hypothetically, if five through thirteen quit in the next two years, yeah, maybe we can do you and Chris Weidman.”

Hendricks seemed to be put on the spot by host Kenny Rice or a producer in the studio, as his response to Dana was just to reiterate it was hypothetical and that he is focused on his division. In the end, all the talk of a super fight will probably not happen, although if it did, it would be a tremendous match to see.

Weidman will be fighting Lyoto Machida at UFC 175, with the champ postponing his last fight due to surgery on his knees. Hendricks is currently recovering from an injury still that he suffered in his last fight, and has just recently begun training again, with no new challenger to his belt named at this time.

June 18, 2014

Scott Coker announced as new President of Bellator MMA

Filed under: Lead Story,News — Tags: , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 3:28 PM

Veteran combat sports promoter Scott Coker has been named President, Bellator MMA, effective immediately, thus replacing former CEO Bjorn Rebney. The announcement was made today by Kevin Kay, Spike TV President, to whom he will report. In his new position, Coker, will oversee the day-to-day management of the emerging mixed martial arts franchise. Coker was Founder and former CEO of Strikeforce, which began in 1985 as a kickboxing league and developed into an MMA league in 2006.

“We are excited to have Scott Coker lead us in a new direction as we evolve the league format from a tournament-based organization to a more traditional model with big fights,” said Kay

Coker will be introduced on a conference call on Wednesday, June 18 at 6pm ET/3pm PT. Expect more coverage later today with updates.

Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney parts ways with Bellator MMA

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 3:14 PM

Spike TV and Bjorn Rebney, Founder, Chairman & CEO, and Tim Danaher, President & COO, announced today that Rebney and Danaher are leaving their positions at Bellator MMA effective immediately.

“It is with bittersweet emotions that I announce that I am leaving the company I founded. I have great pride in having turned my vision into reality, a thriving business with television distribution to over 140 countries around the world, a partnership with one of the world’s largest entertainment giants and wide array of sponsors, partners and strategic allies all over the globe. This has been a wonderful eight plus years of creation, development and success. I will miss the courageous, strong and dedicated fighters I have had the pleasure of promoting, and equally, I will miss the incredibly hard working, remarkable team that has become a family for me over the years. Viacom and Tim and I differed in our views of the right strategic direction for Bellator, but Tim and I both wish them well,” said Bjorn Rebney.

“I feel very privileged and honored to have been one of the guiding forces for developing Bellator into the largest MMA tournament based organization in the World. I’ve made tremendous life-long friends and feel blessed to have worked with such talented and dedicated people”, said Tim Danaher.

“I would like to thank Bjorn and Tim on behalf of Spike and Viacom for their dedication and hard work building Bellator from the ground up. They worked tirelessly in getting Bellator to where it is today. They were great partners to work with and we wish them all the best,” said Kevin Kay, Spike TV President.

June 12, 2014

All Bellator Tournament Winners Now In World Title Shot Pool … FOREVER!

Filed under: News — Tags: — The Fight Nerd @ 1:22 PM

With Bellator’s 2014 Summer Series having just begun last Friday, Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney announced today that the promotion has made an addition to its real sport, tournament based format that allows former Bellator Tournament winners the potential to be granted a World Title fight without going back into The Toughest Tournament in Sports.

“Just like we’ve done since day one, any fighter who wins The Toughest Tournament in Sports will still be guaranteed a World Title fight,” Rebney said. “The addition I’m making here, that I’m really excited about, is if you’ve won a tournament, you’ll join an elite group of athletes who we can grant a world title fight to at any time.”

“For example, if you win a tournament, fight for the World Title and lose, you forever remain in that elite group of fighters who can be awarded another shot at the title. We will place some fighters back into tournaments, while others may lose a world title fight, win some non-tournament fights and be awarded another shot at the title. We won’t be implementing any hard and fast rule as to when a fighter will go back into a tournament and when he’ll fight non-tournament fights and potentially be granted another title shot. What’s great about this addition is that it allows us to stay true to our core format, where title shots can only be earned through a tournament win, while also providing us tremendous flexibility to make the great fights fans want to see. And, we can do all this while keeping our fighters busy and battling in meaningful fights on a re-occurring basis. This is another step in our constant evolution and most importantly it’s a win for the fighters and the fans.”

“When I heard about this change, I instantly fell in love with it,” Bellator Interim Lightweight Champion Will Brooks said. “This is a way to keep guys active after they have proven themselves in a tournament. You always want to stay in the mix as a fighter, and it’s really exciting to me that Bellator is taking the fighters and fans opinions to heart and making decisions to put on the best fights possible. It’s refreshing to see and be a part of, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds.”

“At the end of the day, everyone wants to see guys they know stay busy and active,” Bellator Welterweight Champion Douglas Lima said. “As fighters we want to stay busy and keep fighting, and this new change helps keep the talent pool fresh and creates new challengers for us. I know the tournament isn’t going anywhere, it’s how we all came up and got our titles, but now we have a chance to keep staying busy and keep defending our titles.”

The current pool of fighters eligible to be chosen to fight for the world title includes:

Bantamweight: Eduardo Dantas*, Joe Warren*, Marcos Galvao, Rafael Silva

Featherweight: Pat Curran*, Patricio Pitbull, Daniel Straus, Shahbulat Shamhalaev, “Frodo” Khasbulaev, Daniel Weichel, Joe Warren.

Lightweight: Eddie Alvarez*, Will Brooks*, Michael Chandler, Pat Curran, Rick Hawn, Dave Jansen, David Rickels

Welterweight: Douglas Lima*, Karl Amoussou, Andrey Koreshkov, Rick Hawn

Middleweight: Alexander Shlemenko*, Brennan Ward, Doug Marshall

Light Heavyweight: Emanuel Newton*, Rampage Jackson, King Mo, Christian M’Pumbu, Atilla Vegh,

Heavyweight: Vitaly Minakov*, Alexander Volkov, Cheick Kongo

* Denotes Current Bellator Champion or Interim Champion

June 10, 2014

WSOF 11 to be NBC’s first televised MMA event, with Gaethje VS Newell for lightweight title

Just last week, World Series of Fighting made headlines when promotion officials announced a major partnership renewal with NBC that will see the organization air live events on the major network twice this year – and many more times in years to follow. The promotion’s inaugural NBC-broadcast event, “World Series of Fighting 11: Gaethje vs. Newell” now takes place July 5 at Ocean Center in Daytona Beach, Fla.

World Series of Fighting 11 is headlined by a lightweight championship bout with the exciting Justin Gaethje (11-0) putting his belt on the line against the extremely tough and talented “Notorious” Nick Newell (11-0). Also on the card, a highly anticipated welterweight rubber match takes place as we see Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt Jon Fitch (25-6-1, 1 NC) take on Josh “The People’s Warrior” Burkman (27-10). Both Fitch and Burkman boast a win over each other, so this bout is for bragging rights.

Additionally, newly signed lightweight Melvin “The Young Assassin” Guillard (31-13-2) debuts against Gesias “JZ” Cavalcante (18-7-1) and Cody “Bam Bam” Bollinger (15-2, 1 NC) faces a dangerous 14-year veteran in Pablo Alfonso (9-5) in an intriguing bantamweight contest.

“We’ve been talking about it for some time now, and we’re thrilled to see all of the pieces falling perfectly into place for our first show on NBC,” said World Series of Fighting President Ray Sefo. “With World Series of Fighting 11 taking place over the holiday weekend in Daytona, the world’s most famous beach, we are anticipating fireworks from the Fourth to continue in the cage. I know that it will be another great night of fights for all of our fans.”

Lightweight champion Justin Gaethje is a member of Colorado’s Grudge Training Center and has already earned World Series of Fighting wins over Rich Patishnock, Dan Lauzon, Brian Cobb and Gesias Cavalcante. Fighting professionally since 2011, the 25-year-old is undefeated in his first 11 career fights, and 10 of those have ended via stoppage, including nine by knockout.

“Notorious” Nick Newell will be challenging Gaethje for his lightweight championship when the cage doors close. The inspirational Newell, who shares an identical record (11-0) with his opponent, last defeated Sabah Fadai at World Series of Fighting 7. It was his second submission victory in as many fights under the World Series of Fighting banner, having previously dispatched of Keon Caldwell at World Series of Fighting 4 with a modified guillotine choke that earned him a top play on ESPN’s SportsCenter.

When Jon Fitch (25-6-1, 1 NC) and Josh Burkman (27-10) met for the second time in their careers at World Series of Fighting 3 event Las Vegas, Burkman was determined to return the favor from when Fitch submitted him with a rear-naked choke seven years earlier. Despite being the underdog going into the fight, Burkman succeeded in a victory that earned him a “Submission of the Year” nomination at the World MMA Awards. Both fighters have earned victories since World Series of Fighting 3, with Burkman scoring an impressive first-round knockout over Tyler Stinson on March 9 and Fitch beating Marcelo Alfaya at World Series of Fighting 6.

Melvin Guillard is well-known as one of the most explosive and dangerous knockout artists in all of combat sports. Fighting professionally since he was just a teenager, Guillard is one of the most athletically gifted strikers in the sport today and is capable of ending any fight in a single punch. Meanwhile, Gesias Cavalcante is a well-respected veteran of the sport who has fought previously for Strikeforce and DREAM and now competes for the fourth time under the World Series of Fighting banner. The 31-year-old Brazilian is 2-1 with the promotion with stoppage victories over T.J. O’Brien and Tyson Griffin, and his only loss in that span came due to a cut against current champ Gaethje.

Bollinger made his promotional debut at World Series of Fighting 8 in January and took a unanimous decision against Tyson Nam, giving him back-to-back wins. Alfonso brings a three-fight winning streak to the bout, including a first-round submission of former WEC champ Miguel Torres at World Series of Fighting 6 this past October.

June 3, 2014

FIRST 8-MAN TOURNAMENT MATCH-UP ANNOUNCED FOR “GLORY: LAST MAN STANDING”

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 10:34 AM

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GLORY, the world’s premier kickboxing league, today announced the first match-up in the one-night, 8-man tournament for its inaugural Pay-Per-View (PPV) event, GLORY: LAST MAN STANDING, to air live from The Forum, Presented by Chase, in Inglewood, California on Saturday, June 21st.

Power puncher Melvin ‘No Mercy’ Manhoef (47-11-0, 37 KO) makes his GLORY debut when he takes on technician Filip ‘The Belgian Bull’ Verlinden (42-11-1, 16 KO) in the tournament’s opening round. The winner will advance to the semi-final round and remain in contention to be crowned GLORY Middleweight World Champion.

The following video is a pre-fight interview with Melvin Manhoef, previewing the event.

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Melvin “No Mercy” Manhoef is one of the most exciting names in combat sports, from kickboxing to MMA and back. Melvin trains with the legendary Mike Passenier, and he’s promised his friends and family that he will be the Last Man Standing in Los Angeles.

His opponent, Filip Verlinden’s pre-fight interview can be found below.

Filip “The Belgian Bull” Verlinden is the only fighter in GLORY to have competed in Heavyweight, Light Heavyweight, and now Middleweight. Filip is a very technical, intelligent fighter, and he’s hung with some of the most powerful men in the fight game.

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