Archive | December, 2007

Stage Set for ‘Yarennoka!’

30 Dec

by Taro Kotani for sherdog.com (2007-12-30)

TOKYO, December 30 — The final pre-fight press conference was held Sunday for New Year’s Eve’s Yarennoka! show, which is supported by M-1 Global. The press conference was open to the public and an estimated 7,000 fans gathered to watch the 16 fighters who will be competing.
Said Fedor Emelianenko (Pictures), who drew the biggest cheer from the fans: “This is my fifth time spending New Year’s Eve in Japan. I have the toughest opponent from K-1 tomorrow and it will be an exciting fight.”
The PRIDE heavyweight champion’s opponent, Hong Man Choi (Pictures), responded by saying he would “fight as hard as I can tomorrow.”
Another fan favorite, Shinya Aoki (Pictures), sounded very delighted and sent a simple message to the crowd: “I am coming out to fight.”
While Emelianenko drew cheers, Yoshihiro Akiyama (Pictures) was booed as he appeared in front of fans. He did not seem affected and made brief comments appreciating the opportunity. His counterpart, Kazuo Misaki (Pictures), asserted that he also is appreciating the chance to fight.
“I will be going to war tomorrow,” continued Misaki. “I want to thank the opportunity to fight in front of the fans and God. I hope that the fighters and fan would cooperate and make it a wonderful day tomorrow.”
One fighter who was clearly ecstatic about the opportunity was Mitsuhiro Ishida (Pictures). “I almost cried when I came out here and heard the cheers from the fans,” said Ishida. “I want to bring it all out tomorrow and have an awesome fight that only Gilbert Melendez (Pictures) and I can create.”
All fighters made weight prior to the press conference, according to the promoter. The order of fights, from first to last, will be as follows:
Roman Zentsov vs. Mike Russow

Tatsuya Kawajiri vs. Luiz Azeredo

Murilo Bustamante vs. Makoto Takimoto

Mitsuhiro Ishida vs. Gilbert Melendez

Yoshihiro Akiyama vs. Kazuo Misaki

Hayato Sakuraivs. Hidehiko Hasegawa

Shinya Aoki vs. Jung Bu Kyung

Fedor Emelianenko vs. Hong Man Choi
The rules for the fights will be a version of those used in PRIDE Bushido. Fights will consist of two rounds (10 minutes for the first round and five minutes for the second). “Soccer” kicks and stomping will not be allowed, but knees to the head on the ground will be permitted, with one exception.
The executive committee has announced that knees to the head on the ground will not be allowed in the fight between Fedor and Choi due to the fighters’ large size disparity.
Billed as “Fedor Returns” in the U.S., Yarennoka! will air live on Dec. 31 on HDNet at 3 a.m. PST/6 a.m. EST.

The Sandman Featured On UFC.com

27 Dec

by FTX (2007-12-27)

James “The Sandman” Irvin is one of the current interviews featured on UFC.com.James, a longtime student of Ganyao Fairtex, will meet Luis Cane this Saturday night at UFC 79 in Las Vegas.Everyone at Fairtex wishes James the best of luck, and we will be there ringside to cheer on our guy.Follow this link to the UFC.com video library for the James Irvin interview.

http://www.ufc.com/index.cfm?fa=MultiMedia.video

Art Of War 10 Results

26 Dec

by mmachina.com (2007-12-26)

Art of War 10 took place on December 23rd in Beijing, China. Chinese standout Zhang Tie Quan defeated Malik Mawlayi, remaining undefeated.
Zhong Jie def. Filippo Cinti by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 1:31, R1

Wang Guan def. Kim Nam by TKO (Strikes) at 3:44, R1

Liu Jing Wen def. Darren Daniel by Submission (Armbar) at 6:43, R1

Vaughn Anderson def. Zhou Xiao Tong by Submission (Kimura) at 4:08, R1

Dai Shuang Hai def. Alan Harvey by Submission (Armbar) at 1:39, R2

Li Ji Xiang def. Yakub Ahrorkhodja by Submission (Armbar) at 3:27, R1

Yang Jian Ping def. Egon Racz by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 1:06, R1

Jiang Ji Ming def. Hur Sun Jin by KO (Knee to Head) at 2:12, R1

Aotegen Ba Te Er def. Gulamov Bohodir by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 1:26, R1

Bao Li Gao def. Vishal Balkawde by TKO at 4:52, R1

Kelvin Fitial def. Li Zhi Feng by TKO at 2:49, R1

Zhang Tie Quan def. Malik Mawlayi by TKO (Strikes), at 8:48, R1

Sandman Back To UFC

20 Dec

by Armando Alvarez for UFC.com (2007-12-20)

For the first minute of his fight against Thiago Silva on May 26th of this year, James Irvin was fighting the way he had trained to fight. Everything was going according to plan, and then “pop”. The “pop” wasn’t a punch landed on his chin, or a kick to the head, or his arm breaking as a result of an arm bar. The “pop” was his knee, which gave out when Silva was attempting a takedown.
The result of the injury was not only a loss, but a torn ACL and MCL. Irvin had reconstructive surgery on his knee, but just seven months after the devastating injury he returns to the Octagon to take on unbeaten Brazilian Luiz Cane December 29th at UFC 79: Nemesis.
The 29 year-old Irvin, who fights in the 205 pound light heavyweight division, was coming off an impressive win against Hector Ramirez when he took on Silva at UFC 71. It’s the same undefeated Silva that just destroyed Houston Alexander in November. Irvin was confident and doing good work when the injury occurred.
“I was fighting a guy who had won all his fights by knockout, and I was happy with the way it was going until my knee popped,” Irvin said. “I had never had a knee injury before. It felt like I had been shot. As a fighter I depend on my arms and legs, so when one is taken away from you there’s not much you can do.”
Irvin, who fights out of Sacramento, California, did his rehab at U.C. Davis, in the same facility Mike Bibby and other members of the Sacramento Kings NBA basketball team go to rehab when they suffer injuries. Although the surgery was a complete success and the rehabilitation went smoothly (he started rehabbing one hour after the surgery), one thing Irvin had to overcome was mental anxiety about his career.
“I was depressed,” Irvin said. “I was guessing and wondering if my knee would ever be good again. The first month after the surgery was the hardest. I kept thinking that if I can’t move my legs like I used to, or kick like I used to, that would wrap up my UFC career. It would’ve been over. That mental part of the injury, the not knowing whether I’d be back or not was tough. I never realized how hard it was mentally to get through an injury like that. It was very devastating.”
Once he got past that anxiety, one question mark remained, and that was whether the UFC would want to bring him back, even if fully healed.
“I was holding my breath because a loss is a loss. Whether it’s by knockout, tap out, or injury, it’s still a loss,” Irvin said.
“After a loss you question if the UFC will even bring you back, but they called me and fortunately they’re having me fight on what I think is the biggest UFC event of the year. It doesn’t get any bigger than Matt Hughes versus Georges St-Pierre and Chuck Liddell against Wanderlei Silva. For them to bring me back on that card, especially coming back from an injury, shows they have a lot of faith in my work. Dana White and Joe Silva are putting a lot of faith in me.”
Irvin says he’s training harder than ever for his fight on December 29th. He knows the UFC world is waiting for him to break out. Irvin won his first seven fights as a Mixed Martial Arts fighter, six of them by knockout, and one by submission. He’s trying to get back in the win column, so to help better prepare him for this bout he traveled two weeks to Thailand where he trained with Jaket Fairtex and Ganyao Fairtex and the rest of the Fairtex team.
“Those two weeks helped me regain my confidence,” Irvin said. “They pushed me hard. I would do double days, there were no doctors there, and my knee held up perfectly.
There were no cricks, no cracks, so hopefully this knee injury is behind me. It was a really big confidence booster.”
Even though he’s only 29 years old, he says preparing for a fight isn’t the same as it was when he was younger.
“I just turned 29 and I feel like I’m getting older with each fight,” Irvin said. “Every single fight is harder and harder to get prepared to fight and go through these five minute rounds. Imagine now with the knee injury, but I promised myself never to be in bad shape. I always have to get fully prepared.”
Now he takes on Cane, a Brazilian fighter who’s never lost in his MMA career. His last fight was a first round knockout win over James Stelly in September. He’s never fought in the UFC and is fairly unknown in the sport, but Irvin knows he can’t take him lightly.
“I have a lot of respect for Cane,” Irvin said. “I expect him to be in the best shape of his career. He comes from a very good team, and has never lost. I know he’s a southpaw, which works a lot to my advantage, and I’m very excited about that.”
Irvin hopes to get into light heavyweight championship contention. He says a win over Cane still won’t be enough, since he fights in what is the sport’s premier division.
“I’m still a couple of fights away before I even get mentioned with the Chuck Liddells, the Quinton Jacksons, Dan Hendersons, or Wanderlei Silvas of the world,” Irvin said. “They’re above us right now. Everyone else is scattered in the division. It’s wide open for someone to break through. Houston Alexander just got exposed by Thiago Silva, but I don’t think he’s even up there yet. I don’t talk, or lie to myself. I’m only 29 and I know I’m a couple of fights away before I’m up there with those guys.”

The WEC Experience

19 Dec

by FTX (2007-12-19)

This past Wednesday we were on the road, taking in some truly exceptional championship fights at the WEC.Amongst the many great fighters on the card that night were good friends of Fairtex, Urijah Faber, Jeff Curran, Jens Pulver, and Charlie Valencia.Everyone fought well, and as always, we were proud of all the fighters we sponsor.
Since being acquired by Zuffa, the WEC has been growing at a rapid pace, and has truly become one of the top MMA shows in the world.The event itself is a fantastic production, and the excitement around the hotel, and all of the Vegas strip is second to none.
In addition to the great fights, (which we were unfortunately unable to photograph), we spent a good amount of time with friends and fighters both before and after the show.We hung at with Urijah while Zuffa filmed part of adocumentary, and celebrated with our friends and industry partners at an exclusive after party hosted at one of the suites in the Hard Rock Hotel.
The photos included here offer a peak into the life that surrounds the WEC.We’ve included photos of Urijah with the film crew, friends and fighters, Clay Guida, Charlie Valencia, and Jeremy Freitag.We also photographed top referee Josh Rosenthal, and the view from the party.Thank you to everyone we spent time with, and we’ll do it again soon.For those who weren’t able to attend, we hope you like our photo summary.

Art of War™ 10 – Fight Card

18 Dec

by mmachina.com (2007-12-18)

The Art of War Fighting Championship 10 “ Final Conflict “ will be held at Beijing Olympic Sports Center, Training Gymnasium on December 23rd , 2007. Art of War 10 will feature 12 action-packed fights and will include 2 Olympians, Li Zhi Feng and Kim Nam. AOW 10 will be an excellent show which you should not miss.
The Art of War Fighting Championship 10 “ Final Conflict “ Press Conference will be held on December 22nd, 2007. We warmly welcome all media friends to attend. For more information, please contact us: 010- 5129 5028
The Art of War Fighting Championship 10“Final Conflict”Fight Card
1.Filippo Cinti (Italy)VS Fan Zhong Jie60 kg

2.Kim Nam(South Korea)VS Wang Guan72 kg

3.Darren Daniel(South Africa) VS Liu Jing Wen84 kg

4.Vaughn Anderson (Canada)VS Zhou Xiao Tong78 kg

5.Alan Harvey(Canada) VS Dai Shuang Hai72 kg
6.Yakubkhodjaev Ahrorkhodja(Uzbekistan) VS Li Ji Xiang96 kg

7.Egon Racz(Slovak) VS Yang Jian Ping66 kg

8.Hur Sun Jin(South Korea)VS Jiang Ji Ming90 kg

9.Gulamov Bohodir(Uzbekistan) VS Bateer78 kg

10.Vishal Balkawde(India) VS Bao Li Gao84 kg

11.Kelvin Fitial(Saipan)VS Li Zhi Feng96+ kg

12.Malik Arash Mawlayi(Sweden) VS Zhang Tie Quan72 kg

Interim Lightweight Title Staged In France

17 Dec

by wbcmuaythai.com (2007-12-17)

Bangkok Lumpinee Stadium superstar Kongpipob Petchyindee has won the WBC MUAYTHAI Interim Lightweight World Championship from top French contender Kamel Jamel.
The WBC MUAYTHAI championship was the first to be staged in France and held at Paris stade Courbetin on 29 November.
Promoter Sammy Khebchi said the event attracted a packed crowd that was keen to see full rules WBC Muaythai.
Jemel lost the contest suffering a first round TKO when Kongpipob landed a lightning elbow. Jamel, the French Muaythai champion 11 times and European champion five times, had beaten top Thai fighters Rambo and Pornsak but lost to Somlak Kamsing.
On the same card the WBC Super Welterweight Champion Yodsaengklai Fairtex won a non-title contest outclassing the French champion Farid. The event ended in the third round when Farid went down to a series of hard punches.

Faber, Pulver Triumph, Aim at Each Other

14 Dec

by Mike Sloan for sherdog.com (2007-12-14)

LAS VEGAS, Dec. 12 — World Extreme Cagefighting featherweight champion Urijah Faber (Pictures) had his hands full for almost two rounds before he won via choke, and former UFC lightweight kingpin Jens Pulver (Pictures) quickly dispatched his opponent also via choke. Now they can focus their energy and efforts toward one another.
Faber had to figure out opponent Jeff Curran (Pictures)’s attacks before he could close the show with a textbook guillotine choke; even though his submission came in the second round, it wasn’t easy.
Curran, 30, was able to take Faber off his feet rather easily and from there the crafty veteran almost had his way with “The California Kid.” The Chicago-based featherweight, ranked fourth in the world as he stepped into the cage against the WEC champion, was on the offensive as soon as the fight hit the canvas.
For several moments, Curran had Faber in a precarious situation. Seizing Faber’s back, Curran actually had the defending champion stretched out flat, but the challenger was unable to sink in the attempted rear-naked choke.
Faber, remaining as calm as a frozen pond, eventually escaped near catastrophe. By the time the opening round had ended, the 145-pound champ reversed positions and was firing away from within Curran’s guard.
“I get my back taken on purpose all day long,” Faber, 28, said immediately following the contest. “I don’t care, man. … There’s no way I’m getting choked out.”
Faber was correct in that assumption as it seemed as though some of Curran’s wind was snatched from his sails from that point forward. He remained competitive in the fight, but Faber (20-1) was just a little too polished and too determined to lose his title.
After an initial takedown attempt was stuffed, Faber delivered two thudding standing elbows that opened a gash on the bridge of Curran’s nose. Later in the round, Faber crashed his right knee onto Curran’s jaw, a crushing blow that wobbled the challenger. Shortly thereafter, Faber was sinking in a deep guillotine, forcing Curran (28-9-1) to tap out.
The official time of the submission came at 4:34 of the second round, but Faber didn’t have a walk in the park; the No. 2-ranked featherweight, according to Sherdog.com, had to earn it against a world-class fighter.
“He’s an amazing fighter,” Faber said of Curran. “He’s been all around the world. I hope this brings some recognition to him as well. He definitely deserves it.”
But Faber quickly changed his focus on a man who had cinched up a quick victory earlier in the evening.
“Looks like Jens Pulver (Pictures), man,” Faber stated with glee. “It’s going to be an honor to fight that guy. Another person I have a lot of respect for. Let’s do it, man. It’s history.”
Pulver had just scored a vastly important win less than an hour before Faber’s conquest of Curran. He surprisingly made quick work of promising contender Cub Swanson (Pictures) as he latched on a perfect anaconda choke that forced the young Cub to tap in just 35 seconds.
Known mainly for his powerful punching prowess and strong wrestling background, most didn’t expect Pulver (22-8-1) to pull Nogueira-esque submissions out of his bag of tricks. But Pulver isn’t a former UFC champion for nothing and maybe the days leading up to the contest fueled some fire for “Little Evil.”
“He brought it out of me,” Pulver said of the pre-fight trash talking. “We had some heated conversations. I was like you know what? Enough of the left hand. Everybody expects the left hand. Let’s go out there and let’s start grappling. I’ve been grappling a lot.”
Pulver had dropped two consecutive battles and four of his previous seven; he absolutely needed to defeat the 24-year-old Swanson (11-2) to remain a viable contender for the WEC. There is no official word as to when the proposed showdown between Pulver, 33, and Faber will occur.
In one of four featured attractions, former PRIDE standout and undefeated middleweight Paulo Filho (Pictures) struggled early against Chael Sonnen (Pictures), but the Brazilian grappler was able to pull off an armbar that originated from an omoplata late in the second.
Sonnen controlled the pace and action for the vast majority of the fight while Filho (16-0) seemed content to sit back and wait for an opening. Sonnen, a grappler out of Oregon’s Team Quest, scored a few takedowns and attempted several submissions, but Filho defended and deflected whatever Sonnen threw at him.
At the 4:55 mark of the second, the referee broke up the fighters after Sonnen yelled because of the lock, allowing Filho to retain his WEC middleweight title.
Sonnen (19-9-1) immediately protested the stoppage and claimed that he never submitted — verbally or otherwise. Nevertheless, it goes down in the record books as a win for Filho, 29, regardless of how Sonnen feels.
“He did a good job of securing it, but I didn’t tap,” Sonnen argued. “The referee looked at me as though to ask me if I wanted to stop, but I proclaimed ‘No!’ And I proclaimed it over and over. ‘No! No, No,’ and they stopped the fight. I’m very disappointed.”
WEC light heavyweight champion Doug Marshall (Pictures) easily dispatched foe Ariel Gandulla (Pictures), securing a perfect armbar in just 55 seconds.
Marshall (7-2) landed a few stinging punches on Gandulla’s face that forced the Cuban refugee to take matters to the canvas. However, once on the mat, Marshall quickly latched on a triangle choke that would lead into the armbar. Gandulla (4-1, 1 NC) had no choice but to tap out.
John Alessio (Pictures) won a hard-fought and well-deserved unanimous decision over Todd Moore, winning via tallies of 30-27 on all three ringside judges’ scorecards. The welterweight fight was entertaining enough, but Alessio (21-10) was just too savvy and experienced for Moore, whose record dropped to 9-1.
Bryan Barker squeaked past the tough Eric Schambari (Pictures), taking a split decision by the margins of 30-27, 28-29 and 29-28. The middleweight tussle was competitive from start to finish, but Barker (6-0) was a bit busier and landed the cleaner strikes. Schambari fell short for the first time in his career, dropping to 7-1.
Ed Ratcliff (Pictures) put a beating on UFC veteran Alex Karalexis (Pictures) as he stopped the TUF alum in the second round of their welterweight fight. Ratcliff (6-0) badly wobbled Karalexis (9-3) in the first with an overhand right and sealed the deal in the following round.
A similar punch found its mark on Karalexis’ chin early, and once he felt the fight was about to be over, Ratcliff swarmed. A series of strikes ensued, and referee Steve Mazzagatti had no choice but to stop it. The official time of the TKO came at 1:26 of the second stanza.
Brain Bowles stopped the durable Marcos Galvao (Pictures) at 2:09 of the second round after hurting the Brazilian bantamweight with several punches in the first.
Galvao (6-2) was tougher than some may have expected, but Bowles’ all around better arsenal was the difference and Galvao couldn’t survive. Bowles (4-0) hurt “Louro” with another right early in the second and then closed the show with a flurry.
Charlie Valencia (Pictures) bombarded Ian McCall with a dizzying array of punches and wound up stopping his 135-pound opponent in just 3:19.
McCall (6-1) was rocked and then dropped by two successive right hands and suplexed onto his head, but he quickly recovered. However, his bravery led him to eating two vicious right uppercuts and a beautiful one-two combo from Valencia (9-3). Once McCall crumbled onto the canvas, Valencia sunk in a deep guillotine and McCall tapped.

Jerome Le Banner News

14 Dec

by Alan Kermorvan (2007-12-14)

Dear friends and partners,
Jerome Le Banner fought last Saturday at K1 GP Final 2007. He won a clear decision against the Korean giant Choi (2m18 /7’2 , 167 kg/370 lbs) and battled a very good first round versus the now 3 times K1 champion Semmy Schilt (2m11 /6’9, 135 kg/298 lbs). Unfortunately, he got a right knee’s injury and the corner had to throw the towel during round 2, Jerome was willing to continue fighting but his health come first.
For your information Jerome had an ACL+meniscus surgery on his right knee just 8 months ago, so its a miracle he fought and won in September to qualify for the GP final. Also fighting at this GP final was a big challenge… Usually for this kind of surgery professonnal athletes have to wait 6 months before starting training and 9 months for competition!!! This time the injury is a smaller one and Jerome will be able to re-start training very soon.
All K1 fighters and trainers were impressed by Jerome’s come back and performances. The fans voted on K1 official site and Jerome won the 2 awards available! His quarter final versus Choi was awarded as the best fight of the tournament and Jerome as the MVP! Here are the results:
Best Bout
1. Jerome Le Banner vs Choi 26.7%

2. Hari vs Remy 22.7%

3. Semmy vs Glaube 13.3%

4. Aerts vs Remy 9.6%

5. Aerts vs Junichi 9%

MVP
1. Jerome Le Banner 31%

2. Aerts 29.7%

3. Semmy 12.8%

4. Glaube 8.8%

5. Remy 3.6% equal with Hari 3.6%

We are glad to show you the fan’s love for Jerome, our sponsors will always have the best exposition in K1, simply because Jerome is always the fan’s favorite. As you probably know K1 is broadcasted in 150 countries so the audience is very big.
More news about movies, video game, documentary, DVD, autobiography, fan club and off course FIGHTS will coming soon. 2008 will be Le Banner’s year!
Jerome Le Banner, Olivier Muller and I would like to thank you for your support. Also we wish you all the best for Christmas and new year!
Kind Regards,
Kermorvan Alan

Commercial Agent

Team Le Banner

http://www.lebannerofficial.com

Muaythai Included in TAFISA Sport for All Games, Under the Patronage of the IOC

13 Dec

by IFMA (2007-12-13)

After inclusion in GAISF and 102 countries participating in this year’s IFMA World Championships, Muaythai has taken another important step within the Olympic and sporting family.

The sport of Muaythai has been included in the TAFISA Sport for All Games from 26th September to 2nd October 2008 in Busan, Korea and IFMA has been given permission to stage the 2008 Muaythai World Championships as part of these Games, which are under the patronage of the IOC. This is a truly historic moment for IFMA and Muaythai.

Invitations to the 2008 World Championships will be sent out via the Organizing Committee direct to all Olympic Committees around the world. IFMA will continue to work exclusively with National Federations which are either recognized by their National Olympic Committee of highest sport authority or are in the correct process of obtaining recognition, ensuring the highest standards are maintained.

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