Thursday, January 31, 2008


Many UK retailers now list Def Leppard's new album 'Songs From The Sparkle Lounge'. And the first site to do so, Amazon UK, has changed the release date to Monday 5th May

Also ...people of INDIA GET READY TO ROCK !

Well you’d have to have been on Mars for the last decade or so if you haven’t heard of the band whose rock sound has been as hard as the steel that comes from their hometown of Sheffield in merrie England! We’re talking Def Leppard, and they’re hitting India in May.

Says Farhad Wadia, CEO of Network18, “We’ve fixed two dates, May 16 in Bangalore and 18th in Mumbai. There’s a huge fan following of the band across various age groups and we’re sure that they’ll rock!”


The World Alliance of Mixed Martial Arts (WAMMA) has announced the addition of Pat "The Croatian Sensation" Miletich to the position of WAMMA Vice President for Fighter & Promoter Relations.

"We are extremely pleased to name Pat Miletich WAMMA's Vice President for Fighter & Promoter Relations," said WAMMA Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President Michael Lynch. "Pat is a legend in the MMA community and has the respect of the fighters, the promoters and the fans. He is an invaluable addition to the WAMMA team."

Pat Miletich is a five-time UFC champion and one of the most respected names in mixed martial arts. He is the founder of Miletich Fighting Systems, which trains some of the most talented and popular fighters in MMA and includes numerous UFC, EliteXC and ICON Sport former and current champions. Pat is also an active coach in the International Fight League (IFL), leading the Quad City Silverbacks to two IFL championships. Pat Miletich has been instrumental in the training ofsuch MMA superstars as former UFC Welterweight champion Matt Hughes, former UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia, former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver as well as current ICON Sport and Elite XC champion Robbie Lawler.

"WAMMA is the key to MMA reaching that final position of legitimate recognition and respect in the sporting world without question," said Miletich.

WAMMA is brings legitimacy, unified integrity and longevity to the sport of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) and is the gold standard in MMA Rankings worldwide. For more information on the World Alliance of Mixed Martial Arts and to view current MMA rankings, please visit


Tito, Randy Bas, and Dean fight science video you just cant miss!!!!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


Yamma Pit Fighting New MMA Company Announces First PPV
Wednesday, January 30, 2008 - Julian Radbourne


New League to Revolutionize Mixed Martial Arts

First Pay-Per-View Event Set for April 11, 2008

Los Angeles, January 29, 2008 – Ultimate Fighting Championship founder Bob Meyrowitz and his company Rope Partners today announced the formation of a brand new mixed martial arts (MMA) league, YAMMA Pit Fighting (YPF). Continuing in his role as a trailblazer in MMA, Meyrowitz and YPF will take a unique approach to the sport by reviving the Tournament fighting format and unveiling a new fighting surface that promises to revolutionize the traditional MMA approach.

YAMMA Pit Fighting will host a series of pay-per-view television events, the first of which will air live from the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City on April 11, 2008.

YAMMA Pit Fighting will return to the popular origins of MMA by reviving the Tournament format, in which fighters will participate in multiple fights on their way to claiming the ultimate YAMMA victory, the title of YAMMA Heavyweight Champion. In addition to the exciting Tournament, YPF will also host two “Masters Superfights,” one-on-one matches between some of MMA’s most illustrious and legendary fighters.

Bob Meyrowitz is a veteran in the MMA industry, and it was through his guidance and vision that the Ultimate Fighting Championship was created. Now Meyrowitz is at it again with his company Rope Partners – creating a new league to once again keep Martial Arts and the sport of MMA moving forward.

“It’s with great excitement that we launch YAMMA Pit Fighting,” said Bob Meyrowitz. “Our deep and proven knowledge of the entertainment and MMA spheres put us in a great position to add a new dimension to the presentation of MMA as it moves into the future.”

The YPF surface, known as “The YAMMA” is an evolution of the traditional fighting ring that will greatly alter the current basis of MMA by changing how the fight is fought and the strategy the fighters must use to win. This new surface has been specifically designed to keep the fighting more explosive and continuous. The YAMMA will change the face of the sport and will challenge the relevance of the fighters’ trademark tactics, as methods that were previously successful may be rendered useless with the new ring. This twist on an already successful sport will prove hugely popular with fighters and MMA audiences alike.

The fighting line up, commentators, rules and regulations, ticketing information and more event details will be announced on an ongoing basis beginning in February.


Saturday, January 26, 2008


By Doug Miller Special to 9:40 a.m. CT, Wed., Jan. 23, 2008

Def Leppard frontman Joe Elliott talks about his favorite destinations

Joe Elliott is the charismatic frontman of the ubiquitous British radio rock band known as Def Leppard, who scored huge hits in the 1980s with mega-albums "Pyromania" and "Hysteria." The band will be back with their latest album, "Songs From the Sparkle Lounge", on March 18. They're scheduled begin a tour with Styx and REO Speedwagon starting March 27 in Greensboro, N.C., and their first single off the new album, "Nine Lives," features country star Tim McGraw. We caught up with Elliott by phone recently and talked about his favorite places to travel.

Q: Def Leppard is constantly touring. Have you managed to spend enough time in cities to actually figure out which ones you like the best?

A: Well, I don't think we ever actually played a gig in Rome, but the Vatican takes your breath away. We were there doing TV stuff for a couple of days and got a chance to wander around Vatican City. It really blew our minds. Manhattan's always fascinating, too, just a big, stinky, smelly conglomeration of numbered avenues and streets, but it's just got a vibe that's hard to beat. I shouldn't like it, but I do. I can't put my finger on it. Especially in T-shirt weather. We wander around thinking, "It's really scrubbed up well, this place." It wasn't the nicest place in the world 10 or 15 years ago, but I love hanging out there now. With Los Angeles, it's kind of a love-hate thing. Sometimes I think it's marvelous, and sometimes I think it's a dump. It's so fake and I can't deal with how fake it is.

Q: Any other hidden gems of cities that come to mind?

A: Honestly, with most cities, we're not there long enough to judge, so you can jump to conclusions about places that are unfair. You can be overly impressed with one place if your hotel happens to be in a great neighborhood or you can think another city is a complete dump just because you happen to be in the wrong part of town. It's tough to judge sometimes when all you're doing is walking around the block for three minutes looking for a Starbucks.

Q: Those aren't too hard to find these days.

A: No. That's a good thing. But you know what I mean. We're not really going to get the time to spend in Omaha, Neb., to really get to know the place. But there are other places we really like. Canada has three great cities in Montreal, Vancouver and Toronto. Spain is great with Madrid and Barcelona. I've always liked traveling around Europe and seeing the architecture. The buildings in capital cities have been there for hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of years. Some look better than the new ones. And we went to Russia for the first time in 2003. We did the whole museum trek and St. Petersburg and Moscow and it was absolutely phenomenal. If you're going to go to one of these places, you might as well check out what there is instead of sitting inside checking out room service. And if your wife happens to be along on tour and drags you by the hair and says, "We're going to check something out," it's a good idea to go along with it.

Q: When the band isn't touring, do you ever get away for vacation or do you just stay home and relax?

A: The thing we tend to do is hang in one spot. We live in Ireland in the mountains outside of Dublin. When we finish touring, I generally go lovingly to my house, because I might go seven months without seeing it more than like eight or nine times. Once I get home and we settle in, we might stay weekends somewhere. We tend to go stay in a castle for a weekend. They have these resort castles in Ireland. These things have been around since the 1400s. You go there and you wonder, "How did they build these things?" You know, "How did they get the top stone on?"

Q: Do you travel so much that you forget your hotel room number or wake up not remembering which city you're in?

A: Absolutely. That's a no-brainer. You develop a brilliant short-term memory for room numbers, depending on how much alcohol you have. Toward the end of the tour, your brain starts completely shutting down. The key is to keep your room key in your back pocket, and to go out in groups, because somebody always remembers what hotel you're in.

Q: Are you active on days off or do you keep typical rock-star hours?

A: Pretty active. I'll sometimes play golf on days off. And with the band, we're a collective, but we're individuals. We'll go to movies, we occasionally go bowling with the crew. We don't go mountaineering or nothing when we go on tour. I mean, if you can't give 100 percent then you're cheating people. And peoples' jobs are on the line when there's a touring situation.

Q: Do you seek out musical attractions in cities?

A: You tend to gravitate to the history of stuff. In Memphis in 1993, for example, we were invited to some studios by the owner to record a song. If you're in Nashville long enough, you should try to find something relative to country music or whatever you think is cool. In New Orleans, you have to do the whole Bourbon Street trip. Sometimes it's real awful and not even authentic music, but sometimes it is. Generally speaking, it's really hard for English chaps running around the States. When we were in Tupelo, Miss., we visited the house Elvis was born in. It's great to say you've seen it, but essentially it's just a (freaking) wooden hut and a tourist trap. We got more satisfaction at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (in Cleveland) because collectively it's more impressive. You see Jimi Hendrix's guitars, Elvis stuff, stuff from Eric Clapton, and you're like, "Wow," every three seconds, as opposed to, "Wow, he was born here. Big deal." We did do Graceland in 1983. As for the Leopard Room, well, let's just say that people make fun of 1980s hair metal bands, but that was tacky.

Q: You guys are from Sheffield, England. Do they have a Def Leppard museum there yet?

A: You know, it's funny. Those who are in the know, the complete crazy Lep fans, they all have brochures of where we were all born, the first gig we played, the regular haunts we played when we were getting established, etc. Some are still there and some are gone. The house I was born in, it's just a regular terraced house. Until you're dead 40 years, I don't think there's anything important.

© 2008 MSNBC Interactive

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


In the spring of 2000, Brock Lesnar was a University of Minnesota senior, just two weeks and a handful of workouts away from the NCAA Division I wrestling tournament.

Today, the 30-year-old Lesnar finds himself in a similar situation as he trains for his match against Ultimate Fighting Championship heavyweight champion Frank Mir in the most publicized debut in UFC history.

The former “Next Big Thing” of pro wrestling has become ultimate fighting’s next gigantic question mark, a 1-0 fighter with 69 seconds of ring experience thrown into the deep end of a shark-infested pool.

Whether he’s in over his head remains to be seen, but the reason he’s being billed as the semi-main event of UFC 81 on Feb. 2 in Las Vegas is because of his fame as a former World Wrestling Entertainment champion.

The success of this card hinges on people buying the novelty of a former WWE champion fighting a former UFC champion. The idea, if it clicks, is to rally the UFC fan base to want to see the fake wrestler get smashed, and for the pro wrestling audience, to whom the show is being heavily marketed, to tune in out of curiosity to see how one of its all-time tough guys can do.

Lesnar knows his role is to antagonize UFC fans, as he did in dismissing Mir’s submission ability in a commercial. Lesnar noted upon signing with UFC a few months ago that when it comes to promoting a fight, he “learned from the best.“

“I’ve got eight workouts left (as of late last week) and I’m very excited for February 2,” Lesnar said. “I’ve got it all to lose and I’ve got everything to gain. Frank Mir doesn’t have the same kind of pressure.“

Lesnar knows the knee-jerk reaction is to say a WWE champion would get destroyed in an MMA match. He’s heard all the wise cracks: No scripts. No dance partners allowing you to do your moves. With his big muscles, he’ll gas out in a minute of real fighting. But what makes this match different from a Kimbo Slice-type of freak show is that those on the inside are even more intrigued than those on the outside.

Oddsmakers are heavily favoring Lesnar, likely because they think people will bet on him because of name recognition as opposed to handicapping the match based on who they think has the best chance of winning.

It would be a mistake to dismiss Lesnar as an over-muscled fake; he’s arguably the best all-around athlete of any heavyweight in UFC history. Certainly nobody can match his combination of strength, explosive power, and speed to go along with his 265-pound fighting weight.

After one week of training with Lesnar in late 2006, MMA coach Pat Miletich, a former UFC champion, came away impressed. “In a year, there won’t be a man alive who can beat him,” Miletich said. Lesnar has spent the last 18 months training at Greg Nelson’s Minnesota Martial Arts Academy in Minneapolis, concentrating on striking and jiu- jitsu. He often works out with the national champion University of Minnesota wrestling team — in particular, Cole Konrad, the 2008 Olympic hopeful who was NCAA heavyweight champion the past two years. Suffice to say, Lesnar gets a regular reality check of where his wrestling stands.

“I’m going to stay in his face and control him,” Lesnar said. “I can guarantee I’ll be in better condition than Mir.“

But will tremendous athletic gifts and 18 months of training help Lesnar overcome seven a lack of MMA experience and an opponent with enough submission skills to finish even ground experts? People will be watching to see.

Lesnar’s pro wrestling fame has allowed him to start as one of MMA’s highest-paid fighters. The downside to that fame is it forces him into the spotlight. While most people with his potential would be brought along slowly and shielded from such a dangerous opponents so early in his career, because of what he’s getting paid, he has to be in a match like this one with a theme that will grab attention.

Lesnar’s strengths as a wrestler were conditioning, physical power, takedown ability, and his ability to turn his opponents over. But outside of his workout partners, the only evidence anyone has seen of him as a fighter was his June 2 win over Min Soo Kim at the Los Angeles Coliseum.

Min Soo was a 1996 Olympic silver medalist in judo, so he was no slouch. But he has also had struggles adapting to MMA, with a 4-6 record. Lesnar did a quick takedown and showed unusually powerful short punches in quickly knocking out the Korean on the ground.

But the spot Lesnar put Min Soo — on his back — is the exact place Mir wants to be, working for an armbar or a triangle. Mir’s most famous moment in UFC was an armbar from the bottom that broke Tim Sylvia’s arm and won him the heavyweight title on June 19, 2004.

The question is, if Lesnar can connect from the top with his heavy artillery, how long does Mir have to get that submission before he’s knocked silly? While Lesnar will have a significant size advantage over most UFC heavyweights, Mir, at 6-foot-4 and 250 pounds, will be slightly taller and nearly as heavy as Lesnar, and he does have a wrestling background, including a Nevada high school state championship. If he can keep his distance and avoid a takedown, he’ll have a reach advantage, and while not a great striker, Mir has a huge experience edge in that aspect of the game.

“Frank Mir is a black belt in jiu jitsu,” Lesnar said. “I’ve been training a lot in jiu jitsu, and a lot of jiu jitsu defense and a lot of striking and defense. My wrestling workouts have taken a back seat because I did that for 18 years.” Lesnar says he has visualized this fight a thousand times and the only consistent thing is his hand being raised at the end.

“Anybody can get knocked out in this sport if you get hit with the right punch with the size of the gloves,” he said. “I don’t have a weak jaw, but if you get hit in the right spot, anybody can lose. You just try to lower the odds of being in that situation. If I can avoid that, I can win a lot of fights.“


The official weigh-in results for tomorrow night’s UFC Fight Night 12 are below. All fighters successfully made weight.

MMA on Tap will start live coverage of the event starting at 7:00 PM EST tomorrow.

Mike Swick (170 lbs) vs Josh Burkman (170 lbs)
Drew McFedries (185 lbs) vs Patrick Cote (184 lbs)
Michihiro Omigawa (154 lbs) vs Thiago Tavares (155 lbs)
Alvin Robinson (155 lbs) vs Nate Diaz (155 lbs)
Alberto Crane (155 lbs) vs Kurt Pellegrino (155 lbs)
Dennis Siver (154 lbs) vs Gray Maynard (155 lbs)
Jeremy Stephens (155 lbs) vs Cole Miller (155 lbs)
Joe Veres (155 lbs) vs Corey Hill (154 lbs)
Justin Buchholz (155 lbs) vs Matt Wiman (155 lbs)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Former UFC light heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz was a guest on Sirius’ Fight Network Radio on Monday and confirmed he will face undefeated Lyoto Machida at a UFC event on Saturday, May 24 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The bout is the last on his current contract with the Ultimate Fighting Championship. At this time, the UFC and Ortiz have not come to terms on a new contract; this could leave Ortiz as one of the highest profile free agents in a vibrantly blossoming mixed martial arts market.

Ortiz expressed some displeasure in fighting the undefeated Lyoto Machida:

“I was expecting a bigger fight. I think the fans were expecting a bigger fight,” said Ortiz. “I got pressed into it, and all of a sudden, it’s all over the Internet that Tito Ortiz won’t fight Machida. I’m just looking to get my final fight over with the UFC.”

Ortiz also commented on his displeasure with the way he has been treated by the UFC:

“They said I wasn’t worth the money,” said Ortiz. “I was worth no more than what I’m getting paid now, and I’m not a commodity to them anymore. I’m not as viable to them anymore. That was a sign of disrespect.”

“With Dana in charge, I don’t think that fight will ever happen for me,” said Ortiz. “Dana has bad blood for me and nothing but bad blood. They’re going to try and ruin me.”

“UFC is caring so much about the brand itself,” said Ortiz. “They could care less about the fighters. Fighters are a dime a dozen. They’ll keep coming. Dana is really out for himself and the company. He doesn’t give a s—t about the fighters.”

Ortiz has every right to be dissatisfied with the UFC’s lack of desire to resign him. Ortiz has been a headliner in 17 of his 20 UFC appearances and his rematch with Chuck Liddell, which took place at UFC 66 in December 2006, remains the largest UFC pay-per-view to date, which saw a reported 1,000,050 buys. The event also holds the North American record for paid attendance with 12,191 fans dishing out $5,397,300 of their hard earned cash.

With the M-1 global and EliteXC working to promote their brands of mixed martial arts to the public, Ortiz should come across little trouble finding a new home.
M-1 Global is the current home of former Pride heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko and EliteXC scooped up Nick Diaz when his UFC contract was up. These organizations need more high profile names to be considered legitimate contenders with the UFC. Tito Ortiz is the perfect name to bolster any roster of light heavyweights.
"INSIDE THE OCTOGON" posted by Larry Vollmer
UFC 81 is scheduled to take place on February 2 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.

The rumored fight card is as follows:

Main Card Bouts (subject to change):
-Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira vs. Tim Sylvia (For the interim heavyweight title )
-Nathan Marquardt vs. Jeremy Horn
-Brock Lesnar vs. Frank Mir
-Alan Belcher vs. Ricardo Almeida

Preliminary Bouts (subject to change):
-Tyson Griffin vs. Gleison Tibau
-Terry Martin vs. Marvin Eastman
-Keita Nakamura vs. Rob Emerson
-David Heath vs. Tomasz Drwal

Monday, January 21, 2008



New UFC lightweight champion B.J. Penn, who scored a second-round submission over Joe Stevenson in the main event, won a $35,000 bonus for submission of the night, White said.

Wilson Gouveia earned the same bonus for knockout of the night for his one-punch KO of Jason Lambert, while Paul Kelly and Paul Taylor earned $35,000 apiece for fight of the night.

Kelly won a unanimous decision in a fierce battle.

"Right now, I'm happier than a pig in (garbage)," Kelly said.


White said that popular heavyweight Andrei Arlovski would fight at UFC 82 on March 1 in Columbus, Ohio. He said the opponent isn't certain but is likely to be Jake O'Brien. Arlovski hasn't fought since a lackluster win over Fabricio Werdum in April in Manchester, England.


White said the UFC would return to England for a fight card at the O2 Arena in London in June. He said there would be a fight in Germany this year and said he was also looking at holding cards in Croatia, Dublin, Ireland, and Scotland.


Antoni Hardonk knocked out Colin Robinson with a jab just 17 seconds into the first round of their heavyweight fight. As the jab landed, Robinson collapsed in a heap.

Hardonk, attempting to be sportsmanlike, didn't jump on Robinson because it seemed like he was hurt. Referee Mario Yamasaki didn't immediately stop the fight, though, so after a brief hesitation, Hardonk moved in.

But before he could get in to land additional blows, Robinson tried to get up and fell face first back down.

That's when Yamasaki stopped it. As he did, Robinson protested he was fine and didn't seem to realize he'd fallen down twice from the same jab.

Yamasaki said he didn't stop it immediately because sometimes fighters are awakened by the force of hitting the mat after they're knocked down.


The UFC is suing its heavyweight champion, Randy Couture, in a Nevada court, but White refuses to strip him of the belt. He is calling the match between Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Tim Sylvia on Feb. 2 in Las Vegas for the interim belt.

The UFC is recognizing Couture as its champion and not stripping him. White said he did not see removing the interim tag anytime soon.

"It's out of my hands," White said. "He's got a half million of my money. He can fight. He can fight if he wants to. We'll keep it (an interim title) forever. Believe me, we'll hold on forever."


When Penn won his first UFC title by defeating Matt Hughes in 2004, he wept in the cage. He said Saturday after winning the lightweight bout that he'd promised himself he wouldn't do that.

After Stevenson tapped his submission to give Penn his second title, Penn dropped to his knees and kissed the mat. Seconds later, he laid on his back in exultation.

"I just told myself not to cry," Penn said.


Davis has fought on three consecutive cards in the U.K. and said he has no objections to continuing to do so.

The man who is nicknamed the "Irish Hand Grenade," said he would like to build a home in the U.K. if he can earn enough money fighting in the UFC.

"I love fighting for these people here and this is where I want to build my house," he said.

Kevin Iole covers boxing and mixed martial arts for Yahoo! Sports. Send Kevin a question or comment for potential use in a future column or webcast.

Sunday, January 20, 2008


Randy Couture, step aside. An even bigger worldwide mixed martial arts star wants a shot at Fedor Emelianenko.

Bob "The Beast" Sapp told that he would like to face Emelianenko, who is regarded as MMA's top pound-for-pound performer. Sapp said he was slated to fight Emelianenko in 2002 but the Russian heavyweight declined the fight while both were working for the now-defunct PRIDE promotion.

Sapp said his desire to fight Emelianenko was whetted after watching him struggle early during last month's submission victory over the much-bigger Hong-Man Choi in Japan. At 6-0 and 235 pounds, Emelianenko also would have a considerable size disadvantage against the monstrous Sapp (6-6, 360 pounds).

"When I see what Emelianenko did against Choi, it shows how good he is but it also showed his weakness against larger opponents," Sapp said. "I'd love to fight Fedor."

Couture feels the same way. But he is currently embroiled in contractual litigation with the Ultimate Fighting Championship that may prevent the match-up from ever taking place. Couture's UFC departure was partially spurred by promoter Dana White's inability to sign Emelianenko, who instead joined the upstart M-1 MMA group.

Sapp said he is set to sign a new contract with K-1 and that the Japan-based kickboxing promotion has plans to work with M-1. Such an arrangement could ultimately lead to a Sapp vs. Emelianenko dream bout either in Japan or the U.S.

But first things first. Sapp is set to make his U.S. MMA debut in the main event of a Feb. 23 StrikeForce show in Tacoma, Wash. Sapp said his opponent will likely be Jan "The Giantt" Nortje. Both have competed in K-1 since 2002 but never fought each other.

Sapp has far more experience under MMA rules than Nortje, who has a 1-4 career record in that genre. But at 6-foot-11 and 327 pounds, Nortje is considerably taller and has knockout power.


Roy Jones Jr., at 39 years old, was just too fast for Felix "Tito" Trinidad during Saturday's (January 19) bout at New York's Madison Square Garden, taking a unanimous decision over Trinidad in a fight that may be one of the boxing legends' last fights.

Jones won very easily over the former Puerto Rican boxer, dancing around the ring, winning nearly every round, bringing his record to 52-4 -- and earning his first real win in four years.Thanks Miles Bennet for he fast report.

Saturday, January 19, 2008


UFC 80 "Rapid Fire" from Newcastle, England


-Sam Stout def. Per Eklund via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-27) after 3 Rounds.
-Alessio Sakara def. James Lee via TKO (strikes)
-Paul Kelly def. Paul Taylor via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) after 3 Rounds.
-Antoni Hardonk def. Colin Robinson via TKO (ref stoppage)
-Jorge Rivera def. Kendall Grove via KO (punch)
-Wilson Gouveia def. Jason Lambert via KO (punch)
-Marcus Davis def. Jess Liaudin via KO (punch)
-Fabricio Werdum def. Gabriel Gonzaga (ref Stop)

-B.J. Penn def. Joe Stevenson (UFC LW Title) B.J. Penn New Champion

Results By Matt Boone

Friday, January 18, 2008


March 27 being the start date of the band's World Tour to support their upcoming album "SONGS FROM THE SPARKLE,
LOUNGE", many of you have been wondering if the album will actually be released before the kickoff show. We can
hereby tell you that as of today, the album is scheduled for release on MARCH 17 in the UK and MARCH 18 in the rest of
the world. That's right -- in about two months the band's new album might be in the shops! Please note this is a
TENTATIVE date and therefore may change.

More from .....USA TODAY BRIAN

Tim McGraw joins Def Leppard on “Nine Lives,” the first single from the band’s Songs From the Sparkle Lounge album, out March 18.

McGraw met the members of Def Leppard during a 2006 show at the Hollywood Bowl, when he sang “Pour Some Sugar on Me” with them.

“You know what these situations are like," Def Leppard singer Joe Elliott told me in an interview for USA Today. “They normally lead to a lot of what we like to call ‘rock and roll promises.’ I don’t know how many times I’ve heard the phrase ‘we should work together one day’ and it leads to nothing. Fair play to Tim, he came through, and when the opportunity arose, he was there.”

Elliott says “Nine Lives” is “kind of like a cross between ‘Armageddon It’ and ‘Honky Tonk Woman. It’s got a tinge of Stones-y country, as opposed to country country. I wouldn’t say it’s typical Leppard, by any means.”

“There are two or three songs that are what I would call ‘classic Leppard stuff,’” Elliott says. “They would’ve sat nicely on Hysteria or Pyromania.”

Other songs on Songs From the Sparkle Lounge include:

“Bad Actress” – “a humorous, mini-romp at the whole X Factor lifestyle,” Elliott says.

“Come Undone” – “a mid-tempo thing that’s sort of Zeppelin-esque.”

“Cruise Control” – “Very kind of anti-war, very much about the Iraq situation. We never like too push too hard on the political front, because it doesn’t really suit bands like us, but we have managed to express that we do have a bit of a brain with songs like ‘Gods of War.’” … where we can touch on stuff other than ‘Do you want to get rocked.’”

“Come On Come On” – “It’s just straight out of the glam-rock British hit singles in 1973. [Bassist Rick Savage] just went out there and wrote a Chinn & Chapman song. It’s Bowie, Sweet, T. Rex. It’s all that rolled into one.”

Thanks to the guy who broke this news ,a real newsperson ,whom I give credit to for the breaking news above,

Brian Mansfield

Music talk

Brian Mansfield has covered country music and more for USA TODAY for seven years. He has also authored and edited several books, including the Country Music Hall of Fame's Country Music Trivia. Currently, he's writing America's Grand Ole Opry Weekend, a weekly radio show syndicated to more than 200 stations.

Ask Brian Mansfield about his picks and pans, and chat about the latest country music news.You can reach him here.....USA TODAY BRIAN

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


I met this guy several times and he got what it takes to make the best of what hes got ...have you ever been 5'11 and stood next to a 6'4 155 pounders , man I wanted to buy him lunch, zero fat on this guy , all muscle, good luck Corey.

“The Ultimate Fighter 5” cast member Corey Hill (1-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC), the 6-foot-4 155-pounder who captured the imaginations of fight fans despite having just one professional fight, makes his long-awaited UFC debut next week.

The 29-year-old fighter will be a guest on today’s edition of TAGG Radio ( to talk about his UFC Fight Night 12 bout.

Back in November,MMAjunkie broke the news that Hill (1-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC) would finally make his octagon debut at next week’s event against Joe Veres (4-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC). The fight is slated for the (un-televised) preliminary portion of the night’s event, which features a headline bout between Josh Burkman and Mike Swick (who’s making his debut at 170 lbs.).

During a recent interview with‘s Thomas Gerbasi, Hill confirmed that he’s now a part of Pat Miletich’s MFS Elite Gym camp in Iowa. ( reported this past September that Hill was expected to be a part of Matt Hughes’ upstart fight team in Illinois but eventually opted out of the affiliation for unknown reasons.)

On today’s edition of TAGG Radio, Hill is expected to discuss what has now become his legendary fib. After impressing UFC and Spike TV executives at an open tryout for “The Ultimate Fighter,” Hill told them he owned an 8-0 record. Once on the show, Hill, somehow got it down to 4-0. But he eventually fessed up to coach Jens Pulver and his teammates that he actually had just one fight: a 34-second technical knockout of MMA newcomer Stryder Fann in November 2006.

He’ll look to make it two straight wins next Wednesday.


The strained relationship between the Ultimate Fighting Championship and its heavyweight champion Randy Couture has taken another bad turn -- directly into a Las Vegas courtroom.

Lawyers for Zuffa, LLC, the UFC's parent company, on Monday filed suit in Clark County District Court, alleging chiefly that Couture's comments about the UFC and its senior management caused the business irreparable damage and that he is in breach of the contract he signed with the company in December 2006.

"We are alleging numerous intentional torts, which have caused Zuffa and the UFC significant harm," attorney Donald J. Campbell said. "Based upon that harm we are seeking to address these matters before a court of law."

The lawsuit seeks damages in excess of $10,000 and states that the amount of both compensatory and punitive damages would be proven at trial. It also seeks an injunction restraining Couture from participating in any way in any promotion competing against the UFC.

The lawsuit is the latest episode of discord between Couture and UFC President Dana White, who said he has considered Couture a friend for eight years.

"What's really tough for me, to be honest, is we have been friends for a very long time," White said. "The hard part is that he is not living up to his obligations. Captain America is not keeping his word."

Couture is listed as the UFC heavyweight champion, even though the fighter and organization have been engaged in a public dispute that included his resignation from the company. An interim title match has been scheduled.

The tense relationship between Couture and the UFC, namely White and co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta, became public on Oct. 11 when Couture held a news conference at his Las Vegas gym. Couture detailed his frustrations with the company and announced he was resigning from the UFC.

Couture claimed Fertitta and White had lied to him; that the company paid "off-the-books" bonuses to fighters; that he never was paid a signing bonus that had been negotiated in his December 2006 contract; and that the company treated many of its athletes poorly.

Fertitta and White held their own news conference the following week, during which they addressed Couture's allegations and produced copies of checks cashed by Couture, including the signing bonus. The checks showed the heavyweight to be making much more money than he had claimed.

In the months since, the battle of words has continued and the sides have been unable to work things out.

"I expect Randy to honor the obligations in his contract that he signed (a year ago). I tried to resolve it by talking to this guy that I've had a relationship with for eight years and was unsuccessful," White said. "Now this thing's in the hands of the justice system."

Monday's lawsuit claims Couture's negative statements about the company constituted "injurious falsehood and trade disparagement," that has led to significant financial losses for the UFC.

The lawsuit also alleges conspiracy, stating that several unnamed parties to be identified at a later date worked with Couture to intentionally inflict harm on the UFC.

According to the lawsuit, Couture is also in breach of a stipulation that prohibits him from engaging in "direct or indirect competition" with the UFC for a period of 12 months following the termination of his contract.

Thus, Couture's sponsorship and promotion of a team in the International Fight League would be in direct violation of the stipulation. Currently, the IFL's Web site lists Couture's Xtreme Couture team taking on Mario Sperry's World Class Fight Center at the IFL's Feb. 29 card at the Orleans Arena.

A message left on Couture's cell phone on Monday was not returned.
Adam Hill at


Posted: 15 Jan 2008 08:10 AM CST
Elite XC has announced the signing of both Ken Shamrock and his son Ryan. Leading to speculation that after his brother beats him to a pulp his son will have a go at him too. Seriously though after the bloodbrothersppv website was launched with a fight day countdown ending on Tues April 1 everyone started to realize they were being taken for a ride on this, then the fight date was changed to sometime in December and Ken was signed and suddenly this is being talked about seriously again. It's all hype folks.
You can catch father and son on Elite XC's March 8 card in England against as yet unnamed opponents. Ryan is 19 years old and 1-0 so far in MMA competition. He fights in the 135 pound division.
Uncle Frank will fight Cung Le in a five-round fight for the Strikeforce middleweight title, on March 29 in San Jose, Calif. in a joint Strikeforce Elite XC event.


Pat Miletich coaches at a past IFL event. Photo courtesy of IFL.
The trend where athletes call it a career once they get close to the age of 40 is slowly but surely coming to an end.

Now 38, Pat Miletich tells Steve Sievert of The Houston Chronicle that he might not be done just yet.

“I’ve had some offers to fight,” he said. “I’m considering it. I think a rematch with Renzo Gracie would be great, or a fight with Frank Shamrock. Frank’s somebody I’d thoroughly enjoy fighting.”

While I don’t think Miletich would fare very well in a fight against Shamrock, a rematch with Gracie would definitely be interesting, especially since he was doing well until he got caught in a guillotine choke only three and a half minutes into their fight in 2006.

Monday, January 14, 2008


Former PRIDE heavyweight champion and current M-1 Global fighter Fedor Emelianenko will meet with estranged UFC heavyweight champion Randy Couture on Thursday — likely to discuss the bout that the two fighters have long desired.

The news comes from the website, which is run by Emelianenko’s management team, which is headed by Vadim Finkelstein.

Although it’s being held under the guise of a business meeting between Emelianenko and representatives of Couture’s Affliction clothing line (Emelianenko may sign a sponsorship deal with the company), Emelianenko “plans to meet Randy Couture there to discuss things in person,” according to the website. Those “things” could include a future fight.

The meeting will take place in Los Angeles.

Back in October, Couture announced his resignation from the UFC citing a lack of respect from UFC officials, issues of his pay, and the UFC’s inability to sign then-top free agent Emelianenko to a UFC contract (Couture had stated on numerous occasions that a victory over Emelianenko is about the only thing the 44-year-old think that he has left to accomplish in his career). Couture plans to sit out of competition until October, when he feels his UFC fight and employment contracts expire. However, UFC President Dana White had continually stated that the contracts won’t expire until Couture fulfills the terms of the deal.

The matter’s likely to end up in the courts.

Emelianenko, a 31-year-old Russian, signed a non-exclusive deal with the restructured M-1 Global organization in October. He was permitted to compete in a New Year’s Eve show in Japan against 7-foot-2 kickboxer Hong-Man Choi, whom he submitted in just under two minutes. The victory pushed Emelianenko’s record to 27-1.

As for the potential Couture-Emelianenko fight — if it ever happens — it has the potential to be one of the biggest fights in MMA history. A number of organizations are already thought to be vying for hosting duties.


Last week, a new Web site popped up — — with the distinct images of two MMA legends: Frank Shamrock and Ken Shamrock. The longtime MMA fighters and adoptive brothers were shown chin-to-chin, complete with menacing looks. Any fan of combat sports has seen the trademark pose used in event posters for as long as fighters have been punching either for sport.
Besides the two photos, the title "Blood Brothers: Frank Shamrock vs. Ken Shamrock," and a clock that ticks down to a December date, we're told little else.

So, what does it all mean? Is a brother vs. brother mega-fight really in the works?

As it stands, neither fighter is saying much. Frank couldn't be reached for comment, and a representative from Ken's camp is "checking into it." Both appear tight-lipped about the matter, and no information seems forthcoming.

Could this all be a calculated move — meant to further hype the pending bout?

Honestly, with these two fighters — both of whom are savvy showmen and self-promoters who have mastered the art of marketing feuds — anything is possible.

Ken, 43, is really Kenneth Wayne Kilpatrick; Frank, 35, was born Frank Alisio Juarez III. Both men turned around tough childhoods when they were taken in by Bob Shamrock, who provided a home for troubled boys at his California-based Shamrock Ranch. Bob adopted the two loners and created a family.

Ken and Frank both legally took Bob's last name in honor of their adoptive dad.

However, the two brothers would eventually have a falling out just as their illustrious careers bloomed.

During past interviews, both fighters have said they're open to the idea of fighting each other.

But is the public ready for it?

MMA's journey into mainstream acceptance has been a slow and steady climb. It took the implementation of new rules designed around fighter safety, working with state commissions who would sanction MMA, and an overhaul of the way the sport was marketed to the masses.

With the Ultimate Fighting Championship leading the charge, the sport was, in fact, cleaned up. Millions of fans soon followed.

But will they stick around for a fight featuring brother vs. brother?

Perhaps we'll find out in December.

Dann Stupp is editor-in-chief of, a content-partner site of Yahoo! Sports

Sunday, January 13, 2008


Record : 30-1 ( 20-1 Pro, 10-0 Amateur)

Age : 23 • Height : 5'10" • Weight : 145

Fighting Out Of : Chandler, Arizona • Home State : Iowa

Fighting Styles : Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Wrestling, Kickboxing

Background : 3x Iowa wrestling champion, Miletich Fighting Systems, Rage In The Cage Bantamweight Champion, Midwest Kings Of The Ring Bantamweight Champion, currently competing in King Of The Cage & Gladiator Challenge

Website: The Hitman On MySpace and FightZoo

Sponsors : Booyah, Take A Nap fight gear, DTO (Dangerous To Others), Vinyl Werks

Q : Josh, I know that you were with Miletich Fighting Systems for a year and a half. How did your background and early training get you to the point that you were able to become a member of one of the world's most well known and elite fighting teams?

I grew up in Iowa and was a big fan of Pat, he's a nice guy and easy to talk to, and has a good system. That is what I was looking for in a camp. I was a 3 time state champion wrestler, and when that was all over I was interested in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and figured it was a good way to keep me out of trouble. Plus, there's not a whole lot to do back in Iowa.

Q : What prompted you to make the move from Iowa to Arizona?

I have family out here in Arizona and you can't beat the weather. I am back and forth between Iowa and Arizona.

Q : Looking at your career thus far, the first stat that really stands out is your undefeated career record (26-0). Does keeping the streak alive add any extra pressure when you step in the cage?

There are times when it does add a little bit of pressure but thats what comes with fighting. I started fighting in the cage just for fun. Then I kept winning all of my fights and started to train more and more. Now it has brought me to where I am today. I train full time, 6 days a week, 6 hours a day. I hope to keep my streak alive and become one of the top fighters in MMA and help the sport grow as much as possible. I would like to thank all my sponsors and the fans out there who help make MMA as big as it is today.

Q : What's the story behind the nickname 'Hitman' ...does it have anything to do with the fact that only 4 of your 26 fights have made it to the second round? And didn't you recently have a 10 second TKO victory?

I was making my cage entrance at a show, they used the nickname, and it stuck with me. The 10 second TKO was fun... a good 'ol superman punch got the job done.

Q : You have an upcoming match with Urijah Faber, generally regarded as the top Bantamweight fighter in the world. Any thoughts on this?

I believe it will be a hell of a fight . He's a great fighter. I have alot of respect for the guy and we both want the same thing... to be on top. But I am ready for whoever they put me against.

Q : Outside of the cage, what do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

I like to be outdoors riding my streetbikes, hanging out with my friends and my girlfriend.

Saturday, January 12, 2008


Fight Card for MAinstreamMMA on Jan. 26th!!

Welterweight Championship
12. Ryan Thomas vs. Jesse Lennox

11. Demi Deeds vs. Tom Grubb

10. Eric Poling From Bettendorf, IA vs. Ken McClleland

9. Sam Jackson vs. Rod Montoya

8. Jeremy Norwood vs. Andre Kase

7. Travis Nath From Clinton, IA vs. Marshall Blevins

6. Eric Wisley From Clinton,IA vs. Micah Washington

5. Josh Rabedeaux From DAvenport, IA vs. Bill Kamery

4. Brandon Swank vs. Danny Joe Sykora

3. TBA vs. Jason Chambers

2. Scott Suhr vs. Brandon Rogers

1. Lonnie Scriven vs. Thad Clabaugh

Thursday, January 10, 2008


Def Leppard has finished work on its latest disc of original material since 2002's X and announced the first sets of dates for a 2008 world tour in support of the new album.
The band will kick off the journey March 27 at Greensboro Coliseum in North Carolina and make stops at 19 arenas across the U.S. and Canada before heading back to Europe for the summer.
Other North American stops include Germain Arena in Estero, Fla. (March 30), Sovereign Center in Reading, Pa. (April 3), Duncan Donuts Center in Providence, R.I. (April 9), ScotiaBank Place in Ottawa (April 12), Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, Mich. (April 18), Spokane Arena in Washington (April 23) and Coors Amphitheatre in Chula Vista, Calif. (April 26).
Joining Def Leppard for all North American dates are Styx and REO Speedwagon.
Presale tickets for some shows are available to members of the band's fan club at and General ticket sales begin January 11. VIP packages are available at
European stops announced for the tour so far include Norway, Finland, Sweden, Russia, Denmark, Holland, Belgium and Greece.
Tickets for some shows are available through links in the tour section at
Def Leppard's upcoming album, which is currently going by the working title of Songs from the Sparkle Lounge, is due for release some time in the early part of the year.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008


Several fights have officially been added to UFC 81, here's the fight card.

Frank Mir vs Brock Lesnar
Tim Sylvia vs Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira
Ricardo Almeida vs Alan Belcher
Thales Leites vs Nate Marquardt
Gleison Tibau vs Tyson Griffin
Tomasz Drwal vs David Heath
Marvin Eastman vs Terry Martin
Keita Nakamura vs Rob Emerson



The Ultimate Fighting Championship on Wednesday announced that Jeremy Horn will make his return to the Octagon to face Nathan Marquardt on Feb. 2 at UFC 81.
Marquardt had been slated to face rising talent Thales Leites. The American Top Team fighter had to withdraw from the fight on Tuesday when it was announced that he had suffered a broken hand. According to, Leites will have to undergo surgery to repair the injury.

UFC 81 will mark the first time that Horn has competed for the promotion since back-to-back wins over Trevor Prangley at UFC 56 and Chael Sonnen at UFC 60. Following his exit from the promotion in early 2006, Horn has gone 1-2 in his past three fights, defeating Falaniko Vitale and losing to Matt Lindland and, most recently, Jorge Santiago.

An excellent replacement for Marquardt, all things being equal. I've heard from folks who train with Jeremy that his skill is superb but his diet is atrocious. On top of that, he hasn't performed up to par in recent outings particularly given his loss to the talented, but very beatable Jorge Santiago. It was uncharacteristic Horn, if such a thing can be said.

He'll have his work cut out for him against Marquardt to put it mildly, but an in-shape motivated Horn is capable of pulling off the win here. Horn's stand-up is serviceable and his defense is excellent standing and on the ground. It's not as Marquardt is a caged bull stylistically, so I don't expect Horn to absorb a ton of damage here. And even if Marquardt wants to lead the charge with his wrestling, Horn is generally very comfortable off of his back.

Well done, Joe Silva. I am excited for this fight.


Former Ultimate Fighting Championship light heavyweight titleholder Chuck "The Iceman" Liddell's book, “ICEMAN: My Fighting Life” hits bookstores Jan. 29.

"I've been working on it for a while, since back in May (2007)," said Liddell. "It comes out at the end of the month."

"They came to me and talked about it and I got someone to help me write it," he told MMAWeekly. "It talks a lot about different stuff. It's the story of my life. It covers my whole life."

The 320-page book, co-authored by Liddell and Chad Millman, chronicles the life of the 38-year-old fighter from childhood through mixed martial arts super stardom with "never before seen" photos.

Liddell's not the only former champion to author his life's story. Former UFC welterweight champion Matt Hughes recently published “Made in America: The Most Dominant Champion in UFC History.” Former UFC light heavyweight champion, Tito Ortiz' book, “This Is Gonna Hurt: The Life of a UFC Champion” is expected to be released in the coming months.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

TITO vs MACHIDA???? MAYBE .......

That’s the scoop according Ed Soares, the manager for Lyoto Machida, has confirmed to that Ultimate Fighting Championship officials have offered the Brazilian a fight against former UFC light heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz.

According to Soares, Machida has accepted the fight and at this point, they are waiting to find out if Ortiz will accept the bout.

“It would be an honor to fight such a legend as Tito Ortiz,” said Machida. “I would like to see how my technique matches up against his.”

This is a fight that is fitting for both men at this point in their careers. A win against Ortiz would legitimize Machida as a true contender for the 205 lb. crown in the UFC. A win against Machida for Ortiz solidifies his status as one of the world’s best 205 lb. fighters in a crowded division of contenders.

Machida sounds like he definitely wants the fight but the big question mark is the unreliable Ortiz. One would have to think that Ortiz would be more than happy to fight Machida, a guy who is quickly making his way up the ranks. A win over a guy like that could quickstart a comeback for Ortiz. Either way, this match is very quality matchmaking by Joe Silva and a perfect matchup considering where the light heavyweight division stands as of right now.

Saturday, January 05, 2008


I get the biggest laughs from some of the stuff on MMA, this pic above was hilarious


Main Card Bouts (subject to change):

Joe Stevenson (#8 Lightweight in the World)* vs. BJ Penn
Gabriel Gonzaga (#5 Heavyweight in the World)* vs. Fabricio Werdum (#8 Heavyweight in the World)*
Marcus Davis (#10 Welterweight in the World)* vs. Jess Liaudin
Jason Lambert vs. Wilson Gouveia
Kendall Grove vs. Jorge Rivera

Preliminary Bouts (subject to change):

Alessio Sakara vs. James Lee
Sam Stout vs. Per Eklund
Paul Kelly vs. Paul Taylor
Colin Robinson vs. Antoni Hardonk

Main card airs live in the United States on pay-per-view on Saturday, January 19 at 3:00 PM Eastern Time (12:00 PM Pacific Time)

You ever hear Crazy MF Joe Rogan talk about DMT? Woah!

KIMBO vs. TANK FINALLY GONNA HAPPEN ! ( has learned that the long-awaited heavyweight clash between Internet street fighting legend Kevin "Kimbo Slice" Ferguson and former UFC staple Tank Abbott is scheduled to be the main event of EliteXC's next show on Saturday, February 16.

The show, scheduled to air on Showtime at 10:00 p.m. ET, is slated to emanate from Miami, Florida. A venue has not been officially announced but the University of Miami has been rumored as a location.

In addition to Slice vs. Abbott, a middleweight matchup between Australian Kyle Noke and former UFC fighter Scott Smith is also scheduled. Antonio Silva and James "Colossus" Thompson are slated to compete on the card as well, in separate bouts.

Abbott and Slice had been scheduled to fight each other on October 12 in Atlantic City, NJ for the Cage Fury Fighting Championships promotion. However, the promotion ran into financial difficulties and was forced to cancel the card. The cancellation allowed Slice to become a free agent, and he signed a lucrative contract with EliteXC soon after.


Billed as the world’s most advanced racing and entertainment simulator, the VRX Mach 4 gaming system allows racing fans and automotive enthusiasts to experience the thrill of virtual racing like they never have before. In order to achieve this, VRX Industries has equipped the Virtual Racer X Mach 4 with four Xbox 360 gaming consoles that takes HD graphics to one of the three Sharp Aquos 37-inch 1080p LCD screens while one console is dedicated to power a 7-inch LCD that functions as rear view monitor. The turn-key set-up includes 1500-watt tactile vibration feedback system, 1900 watt tactile power amplifier, Bose Acoustimass 10 series surround sound system with subwoofer, Italian Sparco Monza racing seat, twin virtual wind fans, LED lighting effects and a beverage containment system. The spec sheet certainly makes for a genuine gaming system. The whole package sets you back US $25,000, which looks to be quite levelheaded for the thrill VRX Mach 4 promises to deliver.


If you’re a fan of the Ultimate Fighting Championship this is the ultimate coffee table book for you, assuming your table can handle it (it’s rumored to weigh in at over 70 pounds). This 20.5 x 26-inch book is packed with over 800 pages of rare color and black & white photos of combatants moments before, and immediately after, they battle inside the Octagon. All your favorite fighters are here, including Matt Hughes, Randy Couture, Chuck Liddell, Rich Franklin, Ken Shamrock, Tito Ortiz and more.

Octagon comes in a handmade leather bound clamshell box and is limited to an edition of 450 at a cost of $2,500. Also available, is a Deluxe Collector’s Edition, limited to only 150 copies, that includes a signed and numbered 16×20 inch chromogenic print of the clamshell cover. The Deluxe Edition will set you back $7500.

You can purchase your copy at

Thursday, January 03, 2008



Georges St. Pierre ($160,000 + $50,000 “Submission of the Night” bonus) def. Matt Hughes ($100,000)

Chuck Liddell ($500,000) def. Wanderlei Silva ($150,000) — both fighters received an additional $50,000 “Fight of the Night” bonus

Eddie Sanchez ($46,000 + $50,000 “Knockout of the Night” bonus) def. Soa Palelei ($5,000)

Lyoto Machida ($60,000) def. Rameau Sokoudjou ($40,000)

Rich Clementi ($28,000) def. Melvin Guillard ($10,000)


James Irvin ($16,000) def. Luis Cane ($5,000)
Manny Gamburyan ($20,000) def. Nate Mohr ($6,000)
Dean Lister ($22,000) def. Jordan Radev ($5,000)
Roan Carneiro ($10,000) def. Tony DeSouza ($7,000)
Mark Bocek ($6,000) def. Doug Evans ($3,000)


A number of thoughts ran through John Buhl's,InsideFighting mind as Fedor Emelianenko (27-1) made quick work of 350-pound Korean kickboxing giant Hong Man Choi (1-1) at the New Year's Eve Yarennoka event in Saitama, Japan.
Even with the painfully obvious skill disparity that favored the Russian, securing an armbar on a genetic marvel with arms the size of tree trunks is an impressive feat. But even at my most optimistic, I can't keep looking at Fedor as the undisputed top heavyweight in the world anymore.

Emelianenko could retire right now and go down as arguably the best fighter in mixed martial arts history, and I'd still peg him as the favorite against any other fighter in the division, including Randy Couture. However Fedor arguably hasn't locked horns with a legit, top-10 heavyweight since 2005, when he defeated Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic, depending on how highly you regard Mark Hunt and his 5-3 MMA record.

Since beating "Cro Cop" Fedor has beaten Hunt (primarily known for his kickboxing), a past-his-prime version of Mark Coleman, Matt Lindland (a true 185-punder who moved up two weight classes) and 400-pound Brazilian "Zuluzinho" (who looks better suited for the International Federation of Competitive Eating).

And unless M-1 Global secures the services of current free agent Josh Barnett, that streak could continue, with many of the top heavyweights under contract with the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

So if Fedor isn't the No. 1 ranked heavyweight, who is? Let's take a look at the candidates:

Randy Couture (16-8)

Positives: Against all odds, Couture — who had lost two of his last three fights as a light heavyweight in 2005 and 2006 — came out of retirement last March and defeated Tim Sylvia to win the UFC heavyweight championship, a title he had previously held about five years earlier. He followed that up with an impressive TKO victory over young contender Gabriel Gonzaga (8-2) just five months later.

Negatives: Although they were both top-10 wins, Couture only has two fights as a heavyweight since 2002, and his "resignation" from the UFC means he'll be out of commission until at least October of this year. At that point, the best case scenario would be a showdown with Fedor, which would certainly settle the argument over who rules the heavyweight landscape. But a court battle over Couture's contract status could be more likely.

Antonio Rodrigo Nogueria (30-4-1)

Positives: Nogueria avenged a September 2006 split-decision loss to Barnett with a unanimous decision win three months later, and also picked up a solid win over Fabricio Werdum. Other than Fedor, Nogueria also has the longest and most decorated tenure among the current heavyweight contenders. With the uncertainty surrounding Couture and the lack of competition for Fedor, Nogueria's upcoming bout with Sylvia in February has added importance.

Negatives: Nogueria's had three chances to defeat Fedor and came away with two decision losses and a no contest (accidental head butt). And judging by his lackluster win against Heath Herring — his only fight in 2007 — Nogueria hasn't picked up any new tricks that would help him get by Emelianenko or Couture.

Tim Sylvia (26-3)

Positives: Rather than sulk over losing the belt to Couture, Sylvia recovered from back surgery and picked up a solid win over the young, but very talented, Brandon Vera (8-1) on Oct. 20. A year earlier the "Maine-iac" beat former champion Andrei Arlovski in back-to-back fights and showed a decent ground game in a decision win over world-class grappler Jeff Monson.

Negatives: Injured or not, Couture dominated him for five rounds.

And the winner is... nobody. The winner of Sylvia-Nogueria might be able to make a claim, and hopefully in 2008 we'll see Couture's contract dispute settled and some live competition for the mighty Fedor. Until then, my first-place vote is for "vacant."

Wednesday, January 02, 2008


LAS VEGAS – Ultimate Fighting Championship president Dana White on Saturday night confirmed that Tim Sylvia will meet Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira at UFC 81 on Feb. 2 for the interim heavyweight championship.

“(Sylvia) will fight Nogueira for the interim title … Super Bowl (weekend),” said White.

Although it is likely that the offer is now part of the legal maneuvering between the UFC and current heavyweight champion Randy Couture, White also indicated that the winner between Sylvia and Nogueira would challenge Couture for his belt.

Whether Couture accepts or not, of course, is another matter entirely. The embattled champion has publicly stated that he is waiting out his current contract.

“I am not retired,” he said at the HDNet Fights show in Dallas, Texas. “I am waiting for my UFC contract to expire. I will fight Fedor Emelianenko.”

White is well aware that it isn’t as simple as crowning an interim champion and putting him in the Octagon with a reluctant couture.

“This is in the hands of the lawyers now. We gave him a half-million dollar signing bonus to fight four fights for us,” he stated. “I think the honorable thing for him to do is to honor his contract and fight the winner of Nogueira/Silvia.”

How this all plays out between Couture and the UFC remains to be seen, but one thing is for certain, the fight between Sylvia and Nogueira will take place at the Mandalay Bay Event Center on Super Bowl weekend.