UFC 94 dedicated to the patriarch of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

In a very classy show of appreciation and remembrance, the UFC will be dedicating tonight’s event, UFC 94 St. Pierre vs Penn 2, to the memory of the late Grand Master Helio Gracie.

The Grandfather of MMA, and founder of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Helio Gracie passed away at age 95 on Thursday. Before the beginning of the show, UFC officials will announce the tribute to the public at MGM Grand Garden Arena, in Las Vegas, USA.

A statement given on the UFC’s official website on Thursday, reads, “The legendary patriarch of jiu-jitsu’s first family, Helio Gracie, has passed away at the age of 95. The father of nine children, including UFC Hall of Famer Royce, the master of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu was revered throughout the world for his gentle manner off the mat and his amazing skill and technique on it. He will be sorely missed. The UFC sends its sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Helio Gracie”

Here is a video of the Master at 91 years of age still going strong…

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UFC 94 last minute prediction from Frank Trigg

It’s almost that time, B.J. Penn vs. Georges St. Pierre. It’s always interesting to hear the pro’s picks on big fights. Trigg has been inside the Octagon with St. Pierre and he’s been in the game long enough to offer a credible and unique perspective. Who does he pick? Watch and see and then check … Read more

Wanderlei Silva moving to middleweight

“The Axe Murderer” has decided to make the transition to middleweight. The former PRIDE FC Middleweight Champion returned to the UFC in 2007 at light heavyweight, but after going 1-2 in what is arguably the UFC’s toughest division, Wanderlei Silva will move down a class with 185 lbs. as the limit.

This move for Silva could open up numerous possibilities for the UFC middleweight division and here are plenty of interesting match ups for the Brazilian. It is quite possible this could revive Silva’s career. He was a rather small light heavyweight in comparison to his competitors but at middleweight he could gain some much needed weight advantage.

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Mann Talk – Give Shogun a Break

‘Mann Talk’ is a new weekly column from PRO MMA (http://promma.info) staff writer, Richard Mann.

I’ll admit it. Since I don’t really like shelling out the almost 50 bucks it takes to buy a UFC pay per view, I usually head over to the local Hooters to check out the fights. Naturally everyone suspects that I have ulterior motives, especially my girlfriend who isn’t too fond of the girls in the orange shorts and push up bras.

Even though it is free it is always pretty hectic, so I miss out on most of Joe Rogan’s shockingly one-sided commentary. However, there are perks to watching the show along side the meat of the UFC’s fan base. During the Mauricio Shogun Rua versus Mark Coleman fight, the fans were continually voicing their displeasure with the Brazilian’s performance.

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Randy Couture comments on Satoshi Ishii

Back in December the UFC brought in 2008 Olympic Gold Medalist, Satoshi Ishii, to watch UFC 92 in Las Vegas. The promotion had previously announced they had entered into exclusive negotiations with the fighter. Ishii was seen at Sengoku’s year-end show sporting UFC garb.

While in Sin City Ishii also participated in a training session with UFC hall of famer, Randy Couture. Recently in an interview with Sherdog’s Jordan Breen, Couture commented on his opinion of Ishii fighting in the UFC.

I wouldn’t throw him into the UFC for a year at least. I would have him training and fighting in that year, just not at that level. I think it would be silly to take him and throw him out there in that environment with those athletes and that kind of seasoned competition. I think the smarter thing would be to get him some smaller fights and see how he makes the transition. Get his striking up to speed, see how he competes and bring him along; he’s just starting out, gold medal or not.

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Dana White UFC 94 video blog (bonus)

In this UFC 94 blog entitled “bonus footage” (even though it’s not) Dana White has a chat with Kid Yamamoto. It looks like they are in negotiations with the Japanese featherweight superstar. In addition to that we get to see some behind the scenes footage of TUF 9 with Coach Bisping and Coach Henderson.

Lyoto Machida gets the shaft again

According to Franklin McNeil on MMA Live’s UFC 94 live weigh-in coverage today, if Quinton “Rampage” Jackson gets past Keith Jardine at UFC 96 he will be next in line for a shot at Rashad Evans’ UFC Light Heavyweight Title.

Many MMA experts have suggested for some time now that Lyoto Machida who is 13-0, 5-0 in the UFC, is past due a shot at the light heavyweight crown. Machida will face Thiago Silva who is also 13-0, 4-0 in the UFC, tomorrow night at UFC 94. It was heavily speculated that if Machida defeats Silva over the weekend then surely he would get his shot, but apparently not.

So why is the 29-7, 4-1 in the UFC, Rampage Jackson considered the number one contender above Machida in they eyes of the UFC brass? One reason could be the way in which Machida wins. Yes he is 5-1 in the UFC but four of those wins came by decision (unanimous). On the other hand, three of Rampage’s four UFC wins have come by (T)KO.

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Watch the UFC 94 weigh-ins LIVE

MMA Live is broadcasting LIVE from today’s weigh-in and tomorrow’s fight. We begin tonight with a one-hour weigh-in special at 6:30 pm ET. We have a 60-minute prefight show Saturday at 9 pm ET and will have the most extensive postfight show anywhere, including fighter interviews and analysis from Frank Mir and Kenny Florian, at … Read more

UFC 91 replay on Spike TV pulls big numbers

 As many MMA fans know, the UFC aired the replay of UFC 91 (originally broadcast live on PPV Nov. 15th) on Spike TV, in which Brock Lesnar defeated Randy Couture for the UFC Heavyweight Title, as a counter-program to Affliction’s Day of Reckoning on Jan. 24th. According to Spike TV’s press release on Tuesday, the number of viewers was impressive.

The “free” cable premiere was the highest rated show among Men 18-34 in all of television (broadcast or cable) in its time slot on Saturday, January 24 (9:00-11:30pm ET/PT). UFC 91 peaked at 3.3 million viewers at 11:15, easily making UFC 91 the most-watched taped UFC event in network history.

The entire card, which included Kenny Florian defeating Joe Stevenson, Demien Maia choking out Nate Quarry, and Jeremy Stephens KO’ing Rafael dos Anjos via a monstrous uppercut, drew a 1.7 household rating and a 1.8 among M18-49 (991,000), a 1.8 among M18-34 (508,000) and had an average audience of 2.3 million viewers.

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