Rosters and lineups for 2009 M-1 Challenge opener on Feb. 21 in Seattle released

'Day of Reckoning' standout, Bobby Green, will appear at the M-1 opener on Feb. 21

M-1 Global officials have finalized rosters and matchups for the 2009 “M-1 Challenge Presented by Affliction” season opener set to take place on February 21 in Seattle, Washington at the Emerald Queen Casino.

Matchups for the stacked 15-bout opener include the return of the Imperial Team (formerly known as “Russia Red Devil”), the 2008 M-1 Challenge champions, who will begin the defense of their crown in a best-of-five matchup against Team South Korea.

The opener will also feature the debut of Team USA West, managed by M-1 Vice President of Legal Affairs Steve Bash and renowned California-based promoter Roy Engelbrecht. Bash and Engelbrecht have secured an impressive roster for their debut effort with Affliction veteran Bobby Green, The Ultimate Fighter season seven qualifier Reggie Orr, IFL veteran Raphael Davis, and EliteXC veteran Carl Seumanutafa all committed for the season opener.

Read moreRosters and lineups for 2009 M-1 Challenge opener on Feb. 21 in Seattle released

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UFC Fight Night 18 to be held at The Sommet Center in Nashville, TN

The UFC will hold UFC Fight Night 18 at the Sommet Center in Nashville, TN on April 1st. The UFC had made it known that they would head to Tennessee in 2009; however, a venue had not been decided upon.

Earlier this morning Sommet Center representatives spoke to PRO MMA (http://promma.info) and confirmed the news.

UFN 18 has been rumored to be headlined by WEC Welterweight champion Carlos Condit taking on Martin Kampmann. Condit’s debut in the Octagon would also be Kampmann’s entry into the 170 pound division.

Read moreUFC Fight Night 18 to be held at The Sommet Center in Nashville, TN

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Kimo Leopoldo applies for Executive Office Position of California State Athletic Commission

UFC veteran and face of New Era Fighting, Kimo Leopoldo has applied for the Executive Office Position of the California State Athletic Commission. Most older MMA fans will remember Kimo from UFC 3 where he fought and lost to Royce Gracie, while at the same time becoming the first person to keep Royce from winning a UFC tournament. 

Kimo believes it is time for a change. In a press release received Monday by PRO MMA (http://promma.info), Kimo states, “There are so many areas of the CSAC that needs more organization including simple things that most people do in their everyday lives…I want to make things fairer and more reasonable for all members of the MMA and boxing industry.”

The position Kimo has applied for was last held by Armando Garcia who resigned this past year under allegations of sexual harassment. As for Kimo’s qualifications he had this to say, “MMA is in a fragile state in California and it needs guidance. I have had my ups and downs in this industry but, overall, I have 14 valuable years of real life experience in MMA and Kickboxing that nobody can take away from me.”

Read moreKimo Leopoldo applies for Executive Office Position of California State Athletic Commission

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PRO MMA exclusive interview: Rex Richards (part 2)

Last week we brought you PART 1 of our two-part PRO MMA (http://promma.info) exclusive interview with former Indianapolis Colts NFL linebacker turned pro MMA fighter, Rex Richards.

Rex has fought in Strikefore, King of the Cage, and the Art of War organizations. In part two, we learn where Rex will have his next bout as well as what he needs to do to achieve his goal of fighting in the UFC.  He discusses how he matches up with the current UFC heavyweights, including the only man to ever best him, Shane Carwin.

Rex also  talks about his school in Abilene, Texas and the very competitive sales industry he works in. It has been said, “it’s the age of the super heavyweights” and Rex Richards is helping lead the charge in the evolution of MMA. 

Read morePRO MMA exclusive interview: Rex Richards (part 2)

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UFC 97 Main Event official

The UFC officially announced on Sunday that UFC 97, which will be held on April 18 at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada, will feature a championship main event. Anderson Silva (23-4 MMA, 8-0 UFC) will take on recently announced number one contender Thales Leites (14-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) for the Middleweight Title.

This will be Silva’s first title defense since last October when he beat contender Patrick Cote (14-5 MMA, 4-5 UFC) in a very controversial match that ended with Cote blowing out his knee in the third round. Many people criticized the talented Silva for not fighting his hardest throughout the fight.

Read moreUFC 97 Main Event official

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UFC 94 Bonuses: Two bouts share “Fight of the Night” honors, while Machida walks away with “Knockout of the Night”

The UFC announced the bonuses for “Fight of the Night”, and for “Knockout of the Night” at the post press conference following Saturday night’s “UFC 94: St. Pierre vs. Penn II” event held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

The bonuses for tonight’s fighters were $65,000, and were issued to John Howard, Chris Wilson, Clay Guida, and Nate Diaz for co-Fight of the Night honors, while Lyoto Machida earned every cent of his 65K with his utter destruction and KO of the previously unbeaten Thiago Silva.

“UFC 94: St. Pierre vs. Penn II” started off with all of the undercard fights ending in decision. The Chris Wilson vs. John Howard fight was selected as “Fight of the Night” from the undercard but would share the honors with Clay Guida and Nate Diaz.

Read moreUFC 94 Bonuses: Two bouts share “Fight of the Night” honors, while Machida walks away with “Knockout of the Night”

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Tate victorious at Freestyle Cage Fighting

LaRosa vs. Tate in 2009?

PRO MMA can exclusively report that Miesha Tate defeated Jessica Bednarek at Freestyle Cage Fighting on Saturday. Tate (5-1) stopped Bednarek (4-2) after landing an over hand right that sent Bednarek to the floor.

Tate followed up with a series of elbows and punches before the referee stepped in and stopped the bout in the first round.

The Tacoma, WA native has won three straight fights since losing to Kaitlin Young in late 2007. Bednarek has dropped two of her last three bouts; however, she had won her first three pro bouts by way of TKO stoppage.

Read moreTate victorious at Freestyle Cage Fighting

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King Mo, “I’d love to fight in Affliction”

PRO MMA (http://promma.info) caught up with undefeated Light Heavyweight prospect Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal shortly after the Affliction M-1 Global: Day of Reckoning card. The Team Quest affiliate was in attendance for Affliction’s sophomore effort and gave his thoughts on a few bouts.

“King Mo” (3-0) weighed in on the WAMMA heavyweight title bout between Fedor Emelianenko and Andrei Arlovski and believed Arlovski had been performing well in the fight up until a Emelianenko right hand.

“Andrei Arlovski had a great game plan and was doing a great job boxing. It would have been better if he would have stuck to the outside. Arlovski did a great job moving and he made a mistake when he went for that knee, a terrible mistake, but hindsight is twenty-twenty. He had him backing up and it was the perfect time to throw the knee.”

Read moreKing Mo, “I’d love to fight in Affliction”

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A Pro’s Take: Bastianelli on GSP vs. Penn and Varner vs. Cerrone

PRO MMA (http://promma.info) had the chance to catch up with ‘Relentless’ Ryan Bastianelli after his Wednesday evening practice in Concord, CA at Combat Fitness.

‘Relentless’ had been training for his bout at Fight Quest: Battle Grounds; however, he took a quick break from training last weekend to take in WEC 38 in San Diego, CA.

Bastianelli shared his thoughts on Jamie Varner’s performance against ‘The Cowboy’ and where he thought Varner stood on the score cards prior to the bout being stopped. Bastianelli also touched on the St. Pierre vs. Penn Welterweight title fight. The former ASU wrestler broke down the title fight and made a prediction.

Read moreA Pro’s Take: Bastianelli on GSP vs. Penn and Varner vs. Cerrone

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Joe Lauzon: “He doesn’t want to fight me on the ground”

Joe Lauzon (17-4) held an open work out at Lauzon Mixed Martial Arts yesterday in Bridgewater, MA. “J-Lau” had been preparing to face Hermes Franca at UFC Fight Night 17.

However, Franca tore his ACL while training four days ago forcing the former Lightweight title contender off the card. Jeremy Stephens stepped in as a last minute replacement.

Stephens (14-3) knocked out Rafael dos Anjos back at UFC 91 and has been rumored to face Efrain Escuedero at UFC Fight Night 18 in Nashville, TN on April 1st. Lauzon released an official statement to PRO MMA (http://promma.info) regarding his main event bout next Saturday in Tampa, FL.

Read moreJoe Lauzon: “He doesn’t want to fight me on the ground”

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