Silva KO’s Belfort in Highlight Reel Fashion

Saturday, February 5, 2011

By FCF Staff

Anderson Silva added another highlight reel finish to his storied resume tonight in Las Vegas, Nevada, as the UFC Middleweight Champion stopped challenger Vitor Belfort in the first round, to extend his record to 28-4. After an uneventful opening minute, Silva began to pick up the pace and sent Belfort crashing to the mat with a snapping front kick. As a dazed Belfort tried to recover, Silva landed several more punches while standing above his fellow Brazilian, bringing the bout to a close at just the 3:29 mark.

Not only did Jon “Bones” Jones take out fellow prospect Ryan Bader with a second round, guillotine choke, the Greg Jackson trained fighter was informed by commentator Joe Rogan afterwards, that he will face light-heavyweight champ Murilo “Shogun” Rua next.

Jones controlled Bader throughout the bout with timely takedowns and a dominating top game, before sinking in the fight ending choke at 4:20 of round two. Rogan then proceeded to inform Jones that Rashad Evans will be unable to fight Rua as scheduled due to an injury, and that the 23 year-old fighter will compete for the title next.

In the card’s other feature attraction, Forrest Griffin worked his way to a unanimous decision win over accomplished vet Rich Franklin, to give the former light-heavyweight champ his first victory since 2009. While the bout was fairly competitive, Griffin was able to score points with takedowns and ground-and-pound strikes, as well as win more of the striking exhanges.

UFC 126 Broadcast Results

Anderson Silva def. Vitor Belfort via KO (strikes) - R1, 3:25
Forrest Griffin def. Rich Franklin via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Jon Jones def. Ryan Bader via submission (guillotine choke) - R2, 4:20
Jake Ellenberger def. Carlos Eduardo Rocha via split decision (27-30, 29-28, 29-28)
Miguel Torres def. Antonio Banuelos via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Donald Cerrone def. Paul Kelly via submission (rear-naked choke) - R2, 3:48
Chad Mendes def. Michihiro Omigawa via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Demetrious Johnson def. Norifumi Yamamoto via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Paul Taylor def. Gabe Ruediger via knockout (strikes) - R2, 1:42
Kyle Kingsbury def. Ricardo Romero via TKO (punches) - R1, 0:21
READ MORE - Silva KO’s Belfort in Highlight Reel Fashion

Exchange Between Belfort and Silva Highlights UFC 126 Weigh-ins

Friday, February 4, 2011

By FCF Staff

The Ultimate Fighting Championship held the official weigh-ins this afternoon for the promotion’s event tomorrow night in Las Vegas, Nevada, which will feature a middleweight title fight between champion Anderson Silva and challenger Vitor Belfort (pictured).  After each man made weight for the bout, Silva donned a white mask before facing off with Belfort, which prompted a rather intense staredown between the two competitors. UFC President Dana White and several others quickly intervened as Silva and Belfort (pictured) continued to exchange words.

All of the other competitors made weight for the event except Mike Pierce, who was given an extra hour to cut one pound for his bout with welterweight Kenny Robertson.

The event will be hosted by the Mandalay Bay Events Center and will be available for viewing via PPV.

Official UFC 126 Weigh-In Results

Anderson Silva (185) vs. Vitor Belfort (185)
Forrest Griffin (205) vs. Rich Franklin (203)
Jon Jones (206) vs. Ryan Bader (205)
Carlos Eduardo Rocha (170) vs. Jake Ellenberger (171)
Miguel Torres (136) vs. Antonio Banuelos (136)
Paul Kelly (155) vs. Donald Cerrone (155)
Michihiro Omigawa (146) vs. Chad Mendes (146)
Norifumi Yamamoto (135) vs. Demetrious Johnson (136)
Gabe Ruediger (155) vs. Paul Taylor (156)
Kyle Kingsbury (205) vs. Ricardo Romero (205)
Kenny Robertson (170) vs. Mike Pierce (172)
READ MORE - Exchange Between Belfort and Silva Highlights UFC 126 Weigh-ins

Muay Thai Champ Campbell to Fight Bellator Vet Payan

By FCF Staff

Just days removed from the news that Aggression MMA has acquired the assets of The Fight Club promotion, the Edmonton based organization has announced that it has signed decorated Muay Thai champion Shane Campbell to a four fight deal. The former 2009 WMA and 2007 WKA World Muay Thai Champion will make his Aggression debut March 11th, against Bellator FC vet Estevan Payan.

“We are very excited to have acquired Shane ‘Shaolin’ Campbell to fight for us at Aggression MMA,” stated co-owner Harvey Panesar in the official announcement. “His talent is raw and exciting. One has to look no further than his accomplishments in Muay Thai to know what he brings to Aggression.”

The 23 year-old Campbell has gone 4-0 to date in MMA action; in December he scored a split decision win over the veteran Tony Hervey, while competing for the Awada Combat Club promotion. Campbell continues to train under the guidance of Kru Alin Halmagean from Iron Tiger Muay Thai.

“I am very elated to have Shane fight for one of the best promotions in Canada, and I promise the MMA fans in Edmonton that he will give them a show every time he will step into the Aggression MMA cage in 2011,” said Halmagean.

Payan (9-3) is coming off a no contest decision against Lee Chapman, after earning unanimous decision wins over Joe Cronin and Omur Cur while competing for Rage in the Cage. Payan’s last lost occurred at Shark Fights 6 in September, 2009, when he was stopped by WEC vet Karen Darabedyan.

The March 11th event will take place in Edmonton and will also feature the promotional debut of noted Canadian welterweight, Ryan Ford.

READ MORE - Muay Thai Champ Campbell to Fight Bellator Vet Payan

Bellator Signs UFC Vet Ben Saunders

By FCF Staff

Bellator FC has added another UFC vet to its roster as the promotion has announced that it has signed welterweight Ben “Killa B” Saunders. Although the American Top Team fighter will not compete in Bellator’s upcoming welterweight tourney, Saunders will make his promotional debut sometime during the organization’s fourth season.

“Ben Saunders is an exciting, powerful welterweight with explosive knockout power.  Ben’s dangerous and always shows up to fight.  I’m excited to see his first fight under the Bellator banner on MTV2 in April.” said Bellator Chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney in the announcement.

The 27 year-old Saunders is coming off a first round, stoppage of Elijah Harshbarger, at a World Extreme Fighting event in November. The win returned Saunders to the winning column after he dropped back-to-back unanimous decision losses to Jon Fitch and Dennis Hallman. The former TUF competitor scored wins over Marcus Davis, Brandon Wolff, Ryan Thomas and Daniel Barrera during his UFC tenure.

“I'm here to test myself against anyone that they throw against me,” said Saunders. “I want to be the best. I want to be a champion, and that's my goal. I'm here to kick some ass, make some money, and take a belt along the way.”

Season 4 will feature welterweight, lightweight, light-heavyweight and featherweight tournaments, with bouts taking place for 12 consecutive Saturdays beginning March 5th.
READ MORE - Bellator Signs UFC Vet Ben Saunders

Cote Hoping Win Over Starnes Will be First Step Back to UFC

Thursday, February 3, 2011

By Kelsey Mowatt

If there ever was a time to describe a fighter’s career with the words ‘roller coaster ride’, look no further then Patrick “The Predator” Cote. After pounding his way to a title shot against UFC middleweight king Anderson Silva in October, 2008, a series of knee injuries sidelined Cote until May, 2010. Upon his long awaited return, Cote incurred back-to-back defeats against Alan Belcher and Tom Lawlor, and now the former contender finds himself on the outside of the UFC looking in. It’s a position the 30 year-old-fighter has been in and rebounded from before. 

“My goal is to be back in the UFC,” Cote (13-7) recently told FCF. “I want to finish 2011 in the UFC. It’s going to start April 9th with Kalib Starnes and we’ll see after that. I’m supposed to fight in June as well, but I don’t want to look past Kalib Starnes, because that would be a big mistake; I respect him. In my mind I’m going to knock him out. I know that and he knows that too.”

Despite his recent setbacks, Cote remains one of Canada’s more accomplished MMA fighters, and it was no surprise when news surfaced that the Quebecois fighter would headline Ringside MMA’s upcoming April 9th event against the aforementioned Starnes.

“It’s good for Canadian and Quebec fighters,” said Cote, while discussing the growing Ringside MMA promotion, which will promote the Cote, Starnes bout at Montreal’s Bell Centre. “I think it’s great for the MMA world in Quebec, in Canada, another big organization like TKO used to be.”

“Me, Georges St. Pierre, David Loiseau, Jonathan Goulet, we’re all from TKO,” Cote added. “So I hope they’re going to be able to develop other young fighters that go into the big show after that.”

While most mainstream MMA fans likely remember Starnes for his widely criticized performance against Nate Quarry at UFC 83, the British Columbia fighter is coming off back-to-back victories against respected Canadian vets Nick Hinchliffe and Matt MacGrath. Both wins, which extended Starnes overall record to 13-5, came via the veteran’s highly developed submission skills.

“He just fought in Gatineau here last Friday,” said Cote about Starne’s recent win over MacGrath, which took place at Wreck MMA’s “Strong and Proud” event. “I went there to see his fight and he didn’t do anything new. I was expecting exactly what he did; I know his game and I’m going to prepare myself for that.”

Cote has demonstrated repeatedly throughout his career that he possesses KO power, and as a result, the middleweight often looks to stand-and-trade with his opponents. From the sounds of it, Cote doesn’t plan on implementing any new game plan come April 9th.

“I think he’s going to try to take me down,” Cote noted while discussing strategy for his bout with Starnes. “I think he has less skills than Tom Lawlor as a wrestler, but I’m going to prepare for everything like I always do; I’ll be prepared for this fight.”

While Cote is coming off back-to-back losses in 2010, the fighter is quick to dismiss any notion that the defeats came as a result of the lengthy layoff he incurred on account of his injured knees. Cote threatened the highly regarded Belcher during their UFC 113 bout, before he was slammed, dazed and submitted in the second round. In his disappointing, unanimous decision loss to Lawlor last October, Cote reports that he was far from 100% when he faced the experienced wrestler.

“When I was hitting the pads a few days before I had a big injury in my back,” said Cote while discussing the slipped disc in his back . “I thought I would be okay to fight, but the day of my fight, I wasn’t able to get out of my bed on my own...Everyone saw what happened, I wasn’t really there, I wasn’t able to move at all. I don’t want to take anything away from his performance, he did what he had to do, but I made a judgement mistake by still fighting.”

“Now I’m injury free and I’m able to start my road back to the UFC.”

READ MORE - Cote Hoping Win Over Starnes Will be First Step Back to UFC

New FCF Radio: Strikeforce Review, UFC 126 Preview & Mike Pierce

On this episode of Full Contact Fighter Radio, host Jeff "Wombat" Meszaros and co-host James Kellaris run down "Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Cyborg", where Nick Diaz beat Evangelista "Cyborg" Santos to retain his welterweight belt.  Why did "Cyborg" go for a takedown at the end of the round?  Who did Diaz swear at when the fight was over?  Tune in and hear our unfounded assumptions, then stick around as we attempt to answer more irrelevant questions.  What about the fight with "Jacare" vs. Robbie Lawler?  Did the jiu-jitsu ace break the will of the knockout brawler?  Did that exact thing happen in the fight between Roger Gracie and Trevor Prangley as well?

Is there even any point talking about the fight with Hershel Walker? Probably not, so we move on to preview the card for "UFC 126: Silva vs. Belfort" where Anderson Silva is facing fellow super-striker Vitor "The Phenom" Belfort; but is Belfort really on the same level as Silva?  Or will he get badly out-classed by the champion?  What about Forrest Griffin vs. Rich Franklin?  Jon Jones vs. Ryan Bader?  Listen to our unbiased selections, then hang around as UFC fighter Mike Pierce stops in to talk about his upcoming fight on the same card and share his thoughts on the rest of the fights. If you're in the mood to be mildly entertained, we've got the show for you!
READ MORE - New FCF Radio: Strikeforce Review, UFC 126 Preview & Mike Pierce

Rob McCullough Confirmed for Bellator Season 4

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

By FCF Staff

Former WEC lightweight champ Rob “Razor” McCullough has found a new home, as Bellator Fighting Championships has announced today that the veteran fighter will compete in its upcoming, Season Four, lightweight tourney.

“We’re excited to add a championship quality fighter like Rob McCullough to this tournament,” said Bellator Chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney in the announcement. “Rob’s fights are always entertaining, and I expect nothing less this season.”

McCullough (19-6) has won two straight bouts since exiting from the WEC in 2009. In 2010, the 33 year-old competitor stopped Isaac DeJesus at Tachi Palace Fights 5 in July, before working his way to a unanimous decision win over Corey Hill at TPF 6 in September.

“You're definitely going to see a new and improved version of "Razor" Rob in Bellator,” said McCullough, who is 3-2 in his last five fights. “I have a family now so I'm not out running around like I was before. I'm more conditioned and focused than ever. I've completely rededicated myself to this sport. This is my career. I'm supporting a little boy and a wife now. It's become bigger than just me.”

“I've been training for the last six months straight, twice a day, every day,” McCullough said. “I've been adding new elements to my game, tweaking things and working on old techniques. I've got nothing but positive people surrounding me and I'm ready to get back to the top.”

Bellator has also confirmed that its upcoming season will begin March 5th, at the Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino in Lemoore, California. The event will be broadcast on MTV 2.

The season will feature welterweight, lightweight, light-heavyweight and featherweight tournaments, with bouts taking place for 12 consecutive Saturdays beginning March 5th.
READ MORE - Rob McCullough Confirmed for Bellator Season 4