The Fight Nerd

October 22, 2014

Boxing Champion Pawel Wolak to make Pro-MMA debut at Matrix Fights 9

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 1:53 PM

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In response to published reports, Matrix Fights officially announced today that former WBC light middleweight champion Pawel “The Raging Bull” Wolak will make his professional Mixed Martial Arts debut at Matrix Fights 9 on Friday, December 5 at the Pennsylvania National Guard Armory in Philadelphia.

“During his time as an active boxer, Pawel was a top ten ranked fighter and held world titles in two separate weight classes,” Matrix Fights promoter Sam Caplan began to state, before continuing. “Pawel wrestled in high school and for the past couple of years he has received world class training from Renzo Gracie’s top MMA and BJJ instructors while also sparring the likes of Eddie Alvarez and Frank Edgar. Simply put, Pawel Wolak has all the tools to be a wrecking machine in MMA. I played a small role in helping launch the championship MMA careers of Cole Konrad and Michael Chandler and it’s exciting to have the opportunity to promote Pawel in his first pro MMA bout.

“A lot of promotions pursued Pawel and his camp in order to try and get him to make his debut on their show. We are very excited that Pawel and his management team chose Matrix Fights as the promotion where he will launch his professional MMA career.”

While the pursuit for Wolak’s pro MMA debut was hot and heavy, Wolak felt that signing with Matrix made all the sense in the world.

“Matrix made a lot of sense to me to debut with because of the similarities it has with me,” he said. “Location is close to where I live and they are upcoming in the sport just like I am about to be. They treat me well and appreciate where I am trying to go and that counts for a lot. I can fight close to home too so this was a no brainer for me.”

Wolak’s professional MMA debut on Dec. 5 will represent the first step in a journey towards high-level success in MMA. But Wolak respects the challenge ahead.

“I plan on being champion,” stated Wolak. “I am not doing this for fun I am doing this because I want to be world champion and the most successful crossover boxer ever into MMA and I believe I will be. It won’t be tomorrow. It’s a process. But I come in respecting every fighter out there regardless of their records and rank. I’m not dumb enough to think that nobody is unbeatable. That’s why we fight.”

An opponent for Wolak on Dec. 5 has yet to be named but Matrix officials are in the process of finalizing his opposition for the event.

Wolak’s fight joins previously announced bouts for Dec. 5 that include active Bellator MMA roster member Will Martinez squaring off with former Bellator MMA and Strikeforce fighter Ian Rammel in a lightweight contest; Bellator MMA veterans Jesus “Chavo” Martinez and LeVon Maynard set to do battle in a 180 lbs. catchweight dream match; and Philly MMA stalwarts Brylan Van Artsdalen and Steve McCabe going head-to-head for the first time in featherweight action.

Mark Hunt replaces injured Cain Velasquez in title fight at UFC 180, AKA PRIDE NEVER DIE!

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 1:35 PM

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The UFC announced today that UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez suffered a right knee injury during training and was forced to withdraw from his championship fight against No.1 contender Fabricio Werdum in Mexico City on November 15.

As a result, No.4 heavyweight Mark Hunt (10-8-1 in professional MMA, fighting out of Auckland, New Zealand), who is coming off a walk-off knockout against the iron-chinned Roy Nelson in Tokyo in September, will face Werdum (18-5-1, fighting out of Los Angeles via Porto Alegre, Brazil) in the five-round main event for the interim UFC heavyweight title.

“I’m so unbelievably disappointed that this happened,” Velasquez said. “To say I was looking forward to fighting in Mexico for the first time is an understatement. I wanted to fight on that card so bad. Looks like it wasn’t meant to be and it’s not going to happen. I’m going to get my [right] knee fixed and get back to training as soon as I can. I’m sorry to the fans in Mexico who were expecting this fight, and I hope to be able to come down and still be a part of this historic event.”

For Werdum, it was never about Cain, it was always about the title. “I’m ready for whatever comes. I have been training in Mexico for nearly two months and accept the challenge that is presented to me. I’ll continue to prepare and will arrive ready to fight on behalf of all my Latin American fans,” said Werdum.

Mark Hunt, never one to shy away from a big opportunity, wasted no time accepting a dream opportunity to fight for UFC gold.

“I feel blessed to have this opportunity to fight for another world title. This is something that doesn’t happen often to people. First K1 and now UFC – how can I say no, even though it’s on short notice? I’m dropping everything and flying to Mexico tomorrow so I can best prepare myself for this fight. I have to get into shape and acclimatize to that environment, which is really important.

“There’s nothing to lose when you’re competing against the best at the top level,” Hunt added.

UFC 180: WERDUM vs. HUNT scheduled for November 15 at the Arena Mexico City, sold-out in only eight hours, and will welcome more than 20,000 fans. Along with the explosive main event, fans will also be treated to six other bouts featuring Latin American contenders.

October 15, 2014

Announcement for OSMMA Review Awards, Vol. 1

Filed under: Nerd Stuff,News — Tags: , , — The Fight Nerd @ 1:51 PM

The Fight Nerd and Zane Simon have joined forces once more for the sake of promoting Old School MMA, but this time for something a little bit different.

Starting in the coming weeks, YOU, the fans, will be able to vote for your favorite (and sometimes least favorite) people and moments from our Old School MMA Reviews. There will be a dozen categories in which to vote, as well as a special lifetime achievement award, that will encompass all of the SEG UFC events that we have reviewed so far, starting at the first UFC and ending at the Ultimate Ultimate 1996.

For those OSMMA Review fans wondering what is next, we will be doing our first old school documentary review in the coming weeks when we take a look at “Choke”, and will follow that up with our award show before returning back to the SEG UFC era with UFC 12.

Voting information will be added soon, so make sure to follow myself and Zane Simon on twitter to get the appropriate links to vote. In the meantime, I suggest you go and rewatch all of our old episodes and refresh your memory on the best and worst moments in Old School MMA history!

October 14, 2014

Bellator adds Royce Gracie as brand ambassador

Filed under: News — Tags: , , — The Fight Nerd @ 1:43 PM

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Known simply as the pioneer of mixed martial arts, Royce Gracie is widely considered the most influential and important figure the sport has seen. Engaging in some of the most memorable fights in MMA history during his time with the UFC and PRIDE Fighting Championships, Gracie has now joined Bellator as an official brand ambassador for the Viacom-owned promotion.

“I have known Scott for a long time and have always respected him as not only a promoter but as a martial artist who has always treated fighters with respect and truly understands their value,” Gracie said. “Bellator and Viacom want to give fans exciting fights and enable fighters to continue to grow and most importantly provide for their family, and it’s something I want to be a part of. UFC has done a great job over the past twenty years in building this sport and taking it globally and I’m glad to have been part of that, but Bellator is a growing organization I am honored to be a part of, and with the dedicated and talented people already associated with the company, we can further the growth of mixed marital arts as a sport worldwide.”

Gracie will immediately be involved with Bellator including promotion for Bellator 131, which is headlined by a light heavyweight showdown between Tito Ortiz and Stephan Bonnar, along with a Lightweight Title fight between Michael Chandler and Will Brooks on November 15. Moving forward Gracie will host seminars, be involved in autograph and promotional appearances, as well as aiding in the International expansion of Bellator around the world. Bellator and Gracie will also be involved in a co-branded merchandise line that will debut in 2015.

“To call Royce a legend would be an absolute understatement,” Bellator President Scott Coker said. “Royce and the Gracie family are directly responsible for making this sport what it is today and we are incredibly fortunate to have him be a part of the Bellator family. Royce will serve in many different capacities for Bellator and I look forward to our fighters, staff and most importantly, our fans, in having the chance to interact with one of the most iconic figures in sports.”

September 16, 2014

Randy Couture makes victorious debut on “Dancing with the Stars”

Filed under: News — Tags: , — The Fight Nerd @ 11:32 AM

Former UFC champion and star of “The Expendables” movie series, Randy Couture, made his first steps into the world of dancing Monday night, as he joined the cast of ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” with a surprising performance.

Paired up with Karina Smirnoff, Couture impressed not only the judges, but the majority of the shows home viewers who were set up to not expect much from the cage fighter. A pre-taped video package of the rehearsals showed Couture and Smirnoff looking pretty grim on the dance floor, with Couture having a difficult time smoothing out the bumps of his routine. However, once the show began, Couture and Smirnoff shocked the audience enough to earn a standing ovation from the studio audience, and was awarded three 8s and a 7, (for a total score of 31 out of a possible 40) from the judges.

The judges were incredibly impressed, and a few were a bit turned on by Randy and his dancing as you will see in the video above. It definitely worked in his favor as it put him and Karina in fifth place out of the 13 pairs currently on the show. The leaders after the first show were Alfonso Ribeiro and pro Witney Carson with 36 points.

Karina has been paired with pro fighters before, as season five saw her dance with Floyd Mayweather Jr. Randy is also not the first MMA fighter to shake his groove thing, as Chuck Liddell danced on season nine of the show with Anna Trebunskaya. So, MMA fans, start watching the show and vote for Randy each week to make sure he stays on and wins it all!

September 5, 2014

Jim Ross & Chael Sonnen are commentators for upcoming “Battlegrounds MMA” PPV

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 11:12 AM

Two consummate performers in WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross and recently retired UFC superstar Chael Sonnen have teamed up to form what is bound to be one of the most memorable commentary teams in sports entertainment history, and will call the world-class Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) action on the LIVE pay-per-view telecast of BattleGrounds MMA: ‘O.N.E.’ from BOK Center in Tulsa, Oka. on Friday, October 3.

Headlined by the first one-night, eight-man tournament in Tulsa since UFC 4 in 1994, BattleGrounds MMA: ‘O.N.E.’ will award its welterweight (170 pounds) winner a grand prize of $50,000.

BattleGrounds MMA ‘O.N.E.’ will be distributed at a price point of $19.95 in the United States and Canada by Integrated Sports Media for live viewing, beginning at 10 p.m. EST/7 p.m. PST on October 3 on both cable and satellite pay-per-view carriers iN DEMAND, DirecTV, DISH and Avail-TVN in the United States and Bell TV in Canada. A pre-show will begin at 9 p.m. EST/6 p.m. PST.

“As a longtime fan of MMA, to be asked to call the fights for the BattleGrounds MMA event is amazingly exciting for me,” said Ross, a 2007 WWE Hall of Fame inductee. From commentator to referee to executive and even occasional wrestler, Ross has played a multitude of roles for the world’s leading professional wrestling league.

“I’ve broadcast NFL and XFL games,” continued Ross, “FOX Sports boxing and WWE action, but MMA is a new adventure and one that I’m enormously excited about contributing to. To launch this phase of my broadcasting career in my home state, and with Chael Sonnen at cageside makes it an ideal opportunity and a bucket list experience.

“This is going to be a TV event that any MMA fan won’t want to miss,” said Sonnen, who recently retired from the sport that he competed in as a professional since 1997. A three-time UFC championship challenger, Sonnen fought his last 11 career bouts inside The Octagon and enjoyed a stint as an analyst for FOX Sports Network. “I am thrilled to be working with a legend like Jim Ross and, together, we are going to make the BattleGrounds MMA event one of the most exciting extravaganzas in combat sports history.”

Slated for action in the single-elimination tournament is submission ace Cody “AK Kid” McKenzie (15-4) of Spokane, Wash.; two-time, one-night tournament winner Brock Larson (37-8) of Brainerd, Minn.; hard-hitting brawler Luigi “The Italian Tank” Fioravanti (24-11) of St. Louis, Mo.; Urijah Faber protégé David “Bulletproof” Mitchell (14-4) of Lower Lake, Calif.; Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu expert Roan “Jucao” Carneiro (16-9) of Atlanta, Ga.; and Trey “That Just Happened?” Houston (11-2) of Bixby, Okla.

Dennis “Superman” Hallman and Chris Honeycutt, originally slated for action in the tournament, will be replaced by two competitors to be announced soon. Additional bouts for the telecast as well as a preliminary bout card will also be announced soon.

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.

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