The Fight Nerd

March 5, 2014

Daniel Cormier announced as Honorary Captain of USA World Cup Wrestling Team

Filed under: News — Tags: , , — The Fight Nerd @ 3:44 PM

Daniel Cormier, a two-time Olympian in men’s freestyle wrestling and an undefeated star with the Ultimate Fighting Championship, will serve as the Honorary Captain of the 2014 U.S. Freestyle World Cup Team.

Under the guidance of Team Leader Andy Barth, Cormier will captain the U.S. team at the Freestyle Wrestling World Cup, at the Forum, presented by Chase, March 15-16 in Inglewood, Calif. The World Cup is the annual international dual meet championships, and will feature the top 10 men’s freestyle wrestling teams in the world.

“It will be great to be part of the World Cup team. As an athlete, I wrestled on a few World Cup teams. To be welcomed by USA Wrestling, the coaches and the team means a lot to me,” said Cormier.

National Freestyle Coach Zeke Jones is pleased that Cormier will be in Los Angeles as part of the team.

“In team sports, a captain is a title that is given to an athlete on the team. A captain on the United States Wrestling Team is a person that represents honor and respect and Daniel epitomizes that. We know he’ll be there to help and support his USA Wrestling teammates, especially in the heat of the battle. We know Daniel will take the responsibility of helping the team when they step out on the mat and have them ready,” said Jones.

Cormier had a successful career in international freestyle wrestling. He was a member of the 2004 U.S. Olympic Team, which competed in Athens, Greece, as well as the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team, which competed in Beijing, China. Cormier placed fourth at the 2004 Olympic Games. He was a 2007 World bronze medalist and placed fifth in the 2003 World Championships. He wrestled on six straight U.S. World or Olympic Teams, and won six straight U.S. Open national titles.

A native of Lafayette, La., Cormier was a two-time NJCAA Junior College national champion for Colby CC in Kansas. He went on to Oklahoma State, where he placed second in the 2001 NCAA Div. I Championships, competing for two-time Olympic champion John Smith.

Cormier won a silver medal at the 2005 World Cup which was held in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.

“I remember the World Cup as being a high-level event, where you wrestled back-to-back against top opponents. The dual meet format was fun. It was great to be part of a team, and to be able to help your team win,” said Cormier.

The United States last won a World Cup team title when it was held in Boise, Idaho in 2003. Cormier believes that a U.S. team victory in Los Angeles would show that U.S. freestyle wrestling is moving up at the World level.

“A win would show a progression for USA Wrestling. We had two Olympic champions and a bronze medal at the last Olympic Games. It shows that as a country, U.S. wrestling is going in the right direction. A win in the World Cup would show that we are advancing. I believe we are getting on track as a program and are closing the gap on the best in the world,” said Cormier.

Cormier will have an opportunity to speak with the U.S. team members, many who may be wrestling in their first World Cup.

“I will tell them to enjoy it. Your career just goes so fast. I can think back to every one of my major events as a wrestler. I will say to live in the moment and compete how you know how to compete. Just go out there, represent this great country and do us proud,” said Cormier.

Cormier has excelled in his Mixed Martial Arts career, compiling an impressive 14-0 record while competing at heavyweight and light heavyweight. Most recently, Cormier cemented his place as a light heavyweight title contender with a first-round knockout victory over Patrick Cummins in the co-main event of UFC 170. The 34-year-old trains at American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose alongside fellow UFC standouts such as UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez and former Strikeforce champion Luke Rockhold.

“I got everything from wrestling. I learned how to train hard, and I was hardened to the toughness of competition. I learned how to compete on the big stage by wrestling in two Olympic Games. In my fighting career, I have no worries. Wrestling has prepared me for everything,” said Cormier.

Cormier brings enthusiasm to his role as World Cup Honorary Team Captain.

“The biggest thing for me is to be a part of USA Wrestling and our team again. It means a ton to me. It motivates me that I am welcomed back to the sport which molded me,” said Cormier.

March 2, 2014

Alvarez VS Chandler 3 will headline Bellator’s first Pay-Per-View (again)

Filed under: Lead Story,News — Tags: , , , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 3:45 PM

MMA’s greatest trilogy will occur on Saturday, May 17th as Bellator Lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez will defend his title against Michael Chandler in the most highly anticipated fight of 2014, live on Pay-Per-View. Location and ticket information will be made available shortly.

The main event is the third installment in this epic MMA trilogy (which Bellator is calling “MMA’s Greatest Trilogy”) that has featured a spectacular submission victory for Chandler at Bellator 58 and a dramatic 5-round split decision victory for Alvarez at Bellator 106 this past November. Both of their previous fights were considered for “Fight of The Year” by the MMA media and fans.

“These two warriors have produced the two best fights I have ever seen, and on May 17th, two of the greatest lightweights on the planet will close out the best trilogy in MMA,” Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney said.

“I’m excited to be headlining the first Bellator Pay-Per-View, and just excited to get back in there,” Chandler said. “I’m going to bring the fight like always, and I’m not going to leave any doubt that I’m one of the best lightweights in the world. Whenever you suffer your first loss, you want that chance to avenge that defeat, and I have that opportunity on May 17th.”

“Like every fight, you are only as good as your last performance,” Alvarez said. “I always go out and try to put out the best performance possible, and that’s what I’m going to do May 17th. Mike and I have a long history together, and everyone knows what type of battles we’ve had, but I’m training in a manner that should end the fight quickly. I want a fast, quick fight that is going to keep me as Bellator Champion.”

More fights will be announced leading up to the event.

February 28, 2014

Belfort out of title fight due to TRT ban, Weidman VS Machida at UFC 173

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 1:38 AM

The Ultimate Fighting Championship announced tonight that former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida will face off against UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman in the main event of UFC 173 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, May 24.

In light of today’s unexpected ruling issued by the Nevada State Athletic Commission regarding the ban of therapeutic use exemptions for testosterone replacement therapy, Vitor Belfort, Weidman’s previously announced opponent, will no longer compete at UFC 173. Belfort, who has previously been granted therapeutic use exemptions, recognizes that he needs an extended period of time to become licensed in the state of Nevada.

With the event scheduled to go on sale shortly, Belfort agreed to withdraw from the fight in order to allow the UFC’s promotional efforts to move forward on time.

“With today’s ruling by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida, who’s undefeated since dropping to 185 pounds, will fight champion Chris Weidman in the main event of UFC 173 in May,” UFC President Dana White said. “Machida was dominant in his last two fights, beating Gegard Mousasi and knocking out Mark Munoz.

He’s earned this shot at Weidman, who’s coming off two straight wins over the greatest fighter of all time, Anderson Silva. Machida wants nothing more than to avenge the losses of his friend and training partner, and become just the third fighter in UFC history to win titles in two separate weight classes.”

February 27, 2014

NSAC bans use of TRT, UFC is okay with that

Filed under: Lead Story,News — Tags: , , — The Fight Nerd @ 7:24 PM

Earlier today, the Nevada State Athletic Commission banned testosterone-replacement therapy, AKA TRT, from all combat sports in their state. NSAC chairman Francisco Aguilar was quick to note that he hoped the Association of Boxing Commissions would take notice of this and make this a universal change.

“I would encourage the ABC to look at this issue for all commissions in all states across the country,” Aguilar said. “I think it’s important that there be a standard and I think [the NSAC] is not afraid to set that standard.”

UFC President Dana White issued a statement regarding the decision:

“The Ultimate Fighting Championship fully supports the decision made today by the Nevada State Athletic Commission regarding the immediate termination of therapeutic use exemptions (TUE) for testosterone replacement therapy (TRT). We believe our athletes should compete based on their natural abilities and on an even playing field. We also intend to honor this ruling in international markets where, due to a lack of governing bodies, the UFC oversees regulatory efforts for our live events. We encourage all athletic commissions to adopt this ruling.”

This announcement comes two months before Vitor Belfort is scheduled to face Chris Weidman for the middleweight title at UFC 173 on May 24 in Las Vegas. Belfort previously has been approved to use TRT in his past three fights, all of which took place conveniently in Brazil.

Currently, the UFC has six fighters that are approved for TRT use in Nevada: Dan Henderson, Shane Roller, Todd Duffee, Chael Sonnen, Frank Mir and Forrest Griffin.

EVERLAST & BELLATOR TO DEBUT NEXT GENERATION POWERLOCK MMA FIGHT GLOVE

Filed under: News — Tags: , , — The Fight Nerd @ 7:14 PM

Everlast Worldwide Inc. and Bellator MMA, have collaborated to produce the next-generation of MMA fight glove. The new glove will debut when Bellator’s 10th season kicks-off this Friday, February 28th, 2014.

Over the last year Everlast product designers have worked closely with Bellator’s team and its athletes to create the PowerLock MMA Fight glove. The new glove promotes proper hand form and technique, which can help to reduce the risk of face, hand and wrist injuries. The PowerLock displays a number of improvements over earlier generations of MMA gloves; these changes include a curved striking surface that aides proper hand form, redesigned foam to maximize hand protection on the impact zone and additional padding that shields the first and fifth metacarpals, two commonly injured bones of the hand.

“Fighter safety is absolutely paramount in every decision we make, and when our team sat down with Everlast, both of our company’s shared one goal: take the next step in advancing the protection for every athlete that steps into our cage,” said Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney. “We’ve already had countless fighters test this new glove in full sparring and the reviews have been off the charts. Working in partnership with Everlast we have created a glove that not only improves fighter comfort, but also lowers the risk of injury from both an offensive and defensive perspective. We’ve really hit a home run here, and I can’t wait for all of our athletes to strap on this new glove beginning February 28th.”

“As the industry leader in fight sports equipment, fighter safety is our number one concern,” said Matt Cowan, EVP Marketing, Sales and Product for Everlast. “We’ve seen an increasing number of injuries across the sport of MMA and as the official fight glove and equipment sponsor of Bellator we wanted to address those concerns. This next-generation fight glove provides superior comfort, support and protection to athletes without drastically changing the equipment they’ve grown accustomed to competing in. As the sport of MMA continues to evolve, our equipment will evolve with it.”

Bellator 110 takes place on February 28thth and will air live on Spike TV and spike.com from the Mohegan Sun Arena at 9 p.m. EST/8 p.m. CST.

Everlast equipment and apparel is available at everlast.com and sporting goods retailers nationwide.

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February 25, 2014

Gina Carano returns to the silver screen in “In The Blood”

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 1:10 PM

Anchor Bay Films, in a joint distribution with Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, will unleash IN THE BLOOD simultaneously in theaters, On Demand and on iTunes on April 4th, 2014. IN THE BLOOD stars former MMA Fighter/Action Star Gina Carano (Fast and the Furious 6, Haywire) along with an ensemble cast, Cam Gigandet (Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2), Luis Guzmán (We’re the Millers, The Taking of Pelham 1, 2, 3), Amaury Nolasco (Rum Diaries, TV’s “Prison Break”), Ismael Cruz Cordoba (TV’s “The Good Wife”), Treat Williams (TV’s “Chicago Fire”), Stephen Lang (Avatar) and Danny Trejo (Machete). The film was directed by John Stockwell (Blue Crush, Into the Blue) and was written by Bennett Yellin and James Robert Johnston.

Gina Carano stars as Ava, a trained fighter with a dark past. When her new husband (Cam Gigandet) vanishes during their Caribbean honeymoon, Ava uncovers a violent underworld of conspiracy in the middle of an island paradise. Armed with a deadly set of skills, Ava sets out to discover the truth – and to take down the men she thinks are responsible for his abduction, one by one.

IN THE BLOOD was produced by Raymond Mansfield and Shaun Redick, of Movie Package Co., and Cash Warren, and executive produced by Lee Portnoi, David R. Arnold, Nicola Horlick, Andrew Mann, Glenn M Stewart, Stefan Sonnenfeld, Luillo Ruiz, James Gibb and Belly Torres. The film was financed by The Way We Roll Productions and MICA Entertainment.

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February 24, 2014

Glory Kickboxing heads to Denver for the first time

Filed under: News — Tags: , , — The Fight Nerd @ 7:16 PM

GLORY, the world’s premier kickboxing league, today announced the date for GLORY 16 DENVER, to be broadcast on SPIKE TV from 1STBANK Center in Denver, Colorado on Saturday, May 3rd.

GLORY 16 DENVER marks the promotion’s first visit to Colorado, having previously hosted U.S. events in Oklahoma, California, New York, Wisconsin, and Illinois.

Tickets for GLORY 16 DENVER go on sale Monday, February 24th and will be available at www.altitudetickets.com, by calling 303.893.TIXS and at Altitude Tickets’ kiosks located inside all Colorado Dick’s Sporting Goods stores. Tickets will also be available for purchase at the Pepsi Center box office and at the 1STBANK Center box office (open event days only) starting Tuesday, February 25th.

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February 5, 2014

Welterweight & Bantamweight titles on the line at WSOF 9

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 5:40 PM

The World Series of Fighting returns home to the fight capital of the world for “World Series of Fighting 9: Carl vs. Palhares.”

World Series of Fighting, the Las Vegas-based mixed martial arts promotion, returns to The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas on March 29 with a pair of championship titles on the line, as welterweight title holder Steve Carl (21-3) defends his belt against Brazilian jiu-jitsu master Rousimar “Toquinho” Palhares (15-5) and bantamweight Marlon Moraes (12-4-1), a world-ranked top-10 contender, meets Josh “The Finisher” Rettinghouse (10-2) for the promotion’s inaugural 135-pound championship.

“We are very excited to be returning home for this incredible fight card,” World Series of Fighting President Ray Sefo said. “Steve Carl will have a real serious challenge ahead for the first defense of his welterweight title as he faces Rousimar Palhares, and Marlon Moraes vs. Josh Rettinghouse will be an incredible fight and a great way to crown our first bantamweight champion.

“We’re working on a few more fights that we should be able to announce shortly, but fans are really going to love the lineup for this event, and great fights are guaranteed.”

The 29-year-old Carl earned World Series of Fighting’s welterweight belt in October with a dramatic, fourth-round submission win over Josh Burkman. The Iowa native has already earned three victories under the World Series of Fighting banner and currently boasts a seven-fight winning streak.

For his first title defense, Carl now meets submission expert and one of the most feared men in MMA, Rousimar Palhares. A Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt and former Abu Dhabi Combat Club Submission Wrestling World Championship silver medalist, the 33-year-old Palhares is a grappling master who has earned 11 of his 15 career wins by way of submission.

Meanwhile, Moraes has quickly established himself as one of world’s best fighters at 135 pounds and has already earned four wins for the promotion after downing Carson Beebe, Brandon Hempleman, Tyson Nam and Miguel Torres. A former Muay Thai Brazilian national champion, Moraes currently trains under respected MMA legend Ricardo Almeida. The 25-year-old Moraes is currently ranked as the No. 8 bantamweight in the world by Fightmatrix.com.

Moraes now meets Washington’s Rettinghouse. The 23-year-old made his World Series of Fighting debut in October, earning a hard-fought decision win over Olympic wrestling bronze medalist Alexis Vila. Rettinghouse has won his past eight fights, and eight of his 10 career victories have come by stoppage.

Additional fights will be announced shortly.

Jon Jones to defend belt against Glover Teixeira at UFC 172

The Ultimate Fighting Championship announced today that pound-for-pound king Jon “Bones” Jones will return to the Octagon on Saturday, April 26 at Baltimore Arena to make an unprecedented seventh UFC light heavyweight title defense against No. 2 contender Glover Teixeira, who is undefeated in the UFC. The event marks the organization’s first ever trip to Baltimore.

Jones, the brother of Baltimore Ravens star defensive lineman Arthur Jones, holds the UFC record for most light heavyweight title defenses with six. The dynamic striker and powerful wrestler will now meet the heavy-handed Teixeira, who has reeled off five straight wins in the UFC.

In addition to the Jones-Teixeira showdown, two more light heavyweights will meet in Baltimore when the division’s fourth-ranked competitor and 2008 national champion wrestler at Penn State Phil Davis (12-1, 1NC, fighting out of San Diego, Calif.) meets the explosive Anthony Johnson (16-4, fighting out of Boca Raton, Fla. by way of Dublin, Ga.), who returns to the UFC riding a six-fight win streak.

The card also features top middleweights in action as former STRIKEFORCE middleweight champ and sixth-ranked Luke Rockhold (11-2, fighting out of San Jose, Calif.) takes on No. 11 Tim Boetsch (17-6, fighting out of Sunbury, Pa.). No. 5 ranked Jake Ellenberger (29-7, fighting out of Lake Forest, Calif.) returns to action against former STRIKEFORCE welterweight champion and ninth-ranked Tarec Saffiedine (15-3, fighting out of Temecula, Calif.). Also, No. 2 ranked flyweight Joseph Benavidez (19-4, fighting out of Sacramento, Calif.) hopes to rebound when he takes on eighth-ranked Tim Elliott (10-4-1, fighting out of Lee’s Summit, Mo.).

Highly-touted lightweight prospect Joe Ellenberger (14-1, fighting out of Omaha, Neb.) makes his UFC debut against Honolulu’s Yancy Medeiros (10-1), while, battling to break into the featherweight rankings, Max Holloway (8-3, fighting out of Waianae, Hawaii) will meet recent UFC recruit Andre Fili (13-1, fighting out of Sacramento, Calif.), who is coming off an impressive second-round knockout victory in his promotional debut.

February 4, 2014

Bellator 112 Fight Card Finalized, headlined by Straus VS Curran 3

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — The Fight Nerd @ 5:35 PM

The Bellator Featherweight Title is on the line in one of the biggest rematches of 2014 as reigning Bellator Featherweight Champion Daniel Straus defends his crown against former Bellator Champion and Crystal Lake, Illinois native Pat Curran on Friday, March 14th from Chicago’s Horseshoe Casino live on Spike TV at Bellator 112. The night will also showcase the Bellator Welterweight Tournament opening rounds and a full card of local talent.

The event will broadcast live at 9 p.m. EST/ 8 p.m. CST on Spike TV. The preliminary card will be streamed live and free on Spike.com beginning at 7 p.m. EST/ 6 p.m. CST. Tickets for the event are on sale now and can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com or by visiting the Horseshoe Hammond Gift Shop.

Two of Chicago’s top-talents will kick off the Spike.com show as Daniel James will make his professional debut against Erick Correa. Holding a 2-0 professional record, Correa is coming off a first round knockout victory and plans on maintaining his undefeated career in his fight against James.

After defeating Karl Amoussou at his Bellator debut in October, Paul Bradley will face Nathan Coy who is riding a five-fight win streak. Previously meeting in 2009, Bradley walked away with a split decision victory over Coy and doesn’t see this fight ending any differently.

Both looking to maintain their undefeated records, Darrion Caldwell will meet Lance Surma as they both step under the bright lights of Bellator for the first time. As one of the biggest prospects in MMA, Caldwell is a former NCAA Division I Champion and a two-time All American wrestling champion. With strong striking skills, Caldwell is looking for the knockout against Surma to boost his career to the next level.

With 46 professional fights under his belt Jason Guida will fight Chicago native Anthony Gomez. Grabbing his previous two victories by first round rear-naked choke, Gomez will look to his ground game to take down Guida in front of the Hammond crowd.

After being featured as a participant on Bellator MMA’s reality TV show Fight Master, A.J. Matthews will return to the Bellator cage and face Belal Muhammad. Known for his precise striking, Matthews has recorded four victories by knockout and is looking to collect another finish against Muhammad.

Heading into this fight on a four-fight win streak, Diego Marlon will fight Rob Menigoz. With 24 professional wins, Marlon will rely on his previous experiences in the cage, but will have to hold off Menigoz who only has one professional loss.

Known for finishing fights as quickly as possible, Derek Loffer will fight Bobby Reardanz in a lightweight battle. Loffer enters his fight winning all six of his professional victories by first round finish, five coming by knockout

The full fight card is listed below.

MAIN CARD:
Featherweight Title Fight: Pat Curran (19-5) vs. Daniel Straus (22-4)

Welterweight Tournament Opening Round: Sam Oropeza (10-2) vs. Joe Riggs (40-14)
Welterweight Tournament Opening Round: Jesse Juarez (21-8) vs. Andrey Koreshkov (14-1)
Welterweight Tournament Opening Round: Nah’Shon Burrell (11-3) vs. War Machine (14-5)

PRELIMARY CARD:
Welterweight Tournament Opening Round: Adam McDonough (9-0) vs. Mark Scanlon (9-2)
Welterweight Feature Fight: Paul Bradley (21-) vs. Nathan Coy (13-5)
Welterweight Feature Fight: A.J. Matthews (6-2) vs. Belal Muhammad (4-0)
Bantamweight Feature Fight: Diego Marlon (24-8) vs. Rob Menigoz (6-1)
Featherweight Feature Fight: Darrion Caldwell (3-0) vs. Lance Surma (2-0)
Lightweight Feature Fight: Derek Loffer (6-2) vs. Bobby Reardanz (8-12)
Light-Heavyweight Feature Fight: Jason Guida (19-27) vs. Anthony Gomez (7-2)
Heavyweight Feature Fight: Daniel James (debut) vs. Erick Correa (2-0)

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