UFC 127: Penn vs. Fitch goes down under to the Acer Arena in Sydney, Australia to follow their astounding reception at UFC 110 one year ago. Jon Fitch (22-3) takes on “The Prodigy” BJ Penn (16-7-1) in the hopes of further supporting his position as the next definite welterweight contender. The face of MMA in England, “The Count” Michael Bisping (20-3) will clash with “El Conquistador” Jorge Rivera (18-7) who returns to the cage after two consecutive TKO victories. George Sotiropoulos (14-2) enjoys a home-field advantage when he meets one of the lightweight division’s most lethal kickboxers Dennis Siver (17-7). The opening bout features two The Ultimate Fighter standouts American Chris Camozzi (14-3) and Australian-born “KO” Kyle Noke (18-4-1) seek to raise their stock in the middleweight division. In one of the more highly decorated battles, “Bad Boy” Brian Ebersole (39-13-1) steps in to replace “The Natural Born Killer” Carlos Condit (26-5) when his baptism by fire into the UFC is hosted by fan-favorite “Lights Out” Chris Lytle (30-17-5).
Dan Griffin, MMA Gospel CEO
George Sotiropoulos vs. Dennis Siver: Sotiropoulos via Submission (Kneebar), Round 2
Chris Lytle vs. Brian Ebersole: Lytle via TKO (Strikes), Round 1
Mallory Mejia, MMA Gospel Editor-in-Chief
George Sotiropoulos vs. Dennis Siver: Siver via TKO (Kicks and Punches), Round 2
Chris Lytle vs. Brian Ebersole: Lytle via TKO (Ground-and-Pound), Round 2
Gary Friedman, MMA Gospel Radio Host
George Sotiropoulos vs. Dennis Siver: Sotiropoulos via Unanimous Decision
Chris Lytle vs. Brian Ebersole: Lytle via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Round 2
This Saturday night the UFC treks across the globe to Sydney, Australia for a second time as “The Prodigy” BJ Penn (16-7-1) takes on Jon Fitch (22-3) to headline UFC 127. The card presents an outstanding smack talk-driven bout between “The Count” Michael Bisping (20-3) and Jorge Rivera (18-7) as well as bouts featuring the crowd pleasing warriors Dennis Siver (17-7), George Sotiropoulos (14-2), and “Lights Out” Chris Lytle (30-17-5) in addition to the UFC debut of IFL veteran Brian Ebersole (39-13-1). As usual, the UFC has decided to showcase some local talent for the Aussie fans and joining Sotiropoulos and Mark Hunt (5-7) on the list of Australian fighters is The Ultimate Fighter 11 semi-finalist “KO” Kyle Noke (18-4-1). Opposite the former Xtreme Fighting Championship (XFC) champion will stand American prospect and Noke’s one time TUF cast mate Chris Camozzi (14-3). The pairing should prove a real crowd favorite as both men like to trade leather and keep things moving on the mat.
Last week, Ed Perdomo and Johnny Rodriguez demonstrated how to reverse a bad situation by using an opponent’s punch from the guard to sweep them to the mount. This week, Ed will move to finish Johnny with an Armbar submission from the quarter mount that feeds off of last week’s sweep, continuing MMA Gospel’s tradition of providing not just single submissions, but chains of submissions that flow off one another and end fights quickly.
Bellator Middleweight Champion and aggressive knockout artist “Shango” Hector Lombard (25-2) returns to his court after his Unanimous Decision victory over Bellator Season 2 Tournament Winner “The Storm” Alexander Shlemenko (29-4) at Bellator 34 last October. Lombard is expected to meet UFC, Strikeforce, and Superbrawl veteran “Niko” Falaniko Vitale (27-8) in a non-title fight that likely will take place at Bellator 44 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The champ rides an impressive 14-fight win streak into the bout and has not lost a match since 2006. “Shango” is expected to come out as a clear favorite against the larger Hawaiian, who makes his debut on a three-fight streak of his own.
This Friday night, Maximum Fighting Championship (MFC) returns to the River Cree Resort and Casino in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada with MFC 28: Supremacy. The promotion’s first card of the new year is marked with the much anticipated main event battle between fellow Canadians “The Big Deal” Ryan Jimmo (10-1) and “D-Bomb” Dwayne Lewis (12-5) for the currently vacant MFC Light Heavyweight Championship, arguably the most coveted – and most elusive – title in MFC. Jimmo and Lewis are considered the two top-ranked 205lbs. fighters in Canada.
Originally slated as the co-main event was reigning MFC 155lbs. champ “Mandingo” Antonio McKee (24-4-2) putting his title on the the line for the second time since capturing it in 2009, but he was forced to drop out of the fight due to a knee injury sustained during training sometime last week. McKee’s intended challenger, decorated Rage in the Cage and UFC veteran Drew Fickett (37-12), will still take his place in the co-main event but instead will face a late replacement in fellow UFC veteran Matt Veach (11-2) at a 160lbs. catchweight. In a press release from MFC, Fickett said, “I’m disappointed not to be facing [Antonio] McKee for the title, but it’s only a matter of time until I get my hands on the MFC lightweight belt.”
The British Association of Mixed Martial Arts (BAMMA) steps away from its usual stomping grounds of London and Birmingham in the United Kingdom to bring MMA fans in the City of Manchester a blistering card with BAMMA 5: Daley vs. Shirai this Saturday night.
BAMMA 5 is highlighted with bouts between some of the UK’s well known top prospects and local fan favorites, while its main event and co-main event feature names the American audience may find more familiar. Recent UFC castaway and The Ultimate Fighter 10 alum “The Hammer” James McSweeney (4-6) takes on a seasoned veteran and former UFC Heavyweight Champion in “Suave” Ricco Rodriguez (44-11) in the evening’s co-main event heavyweight tilt. The main event pits UFC veteran and heavy-handed British slugger “Semtex” Paul Daley (23-10-2) against Pancrase and M-1 veteran and DEEP Welterweight Champion Yuya Shirai (13-8), where the winner will earn the title of BAMMA’s very first welterweight king. The stakes of Saturday night’s championship bout are particularly high for Daley, who was recently dubbed the top contender to challenge Strikeforce Welterweight Champion “Diablo” Nick Diaz (23-8) for the UFC-rival promotion’s 170lbs. belt. Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker has stated that should Daley come out on the winning end of his BAMMA 5 bout, he gets the title shot – if not, “the deck gets reshuffled”, according to MMA Junkie.
“The Axe Murderer” Wanderlei Silva (34-10-1) wants to show the world what the life of a professional fighter is really like. In his new reality show “Fighter Life”, the former PRIDE Middleweight Champion and current UFC superstar does just that by bringing 14 aspiring fighters from across the globe to Las Vegas, Nevada to train for two weeks at Wand Fight Team under the tutelage of “The Axe Murderer” himself, and documenting the entire journey on film. Here is Episode 1:
“The Pitbull” Andrei Arlovski (14-9) is undoubtedly and by large considered one of the most skilled and dangerous heavyweight MMA fighters of all time. The 1st Razryad International Master in Sambo has seen a lot of glory in his 11-year mixed martial arts career, having been the Interim UFC Heavyweight Champion and later promoted to the undisputed UFC Heavyweight Champion, taking out some of the most formidable opponents in his weight class along the way. Some of those who have succumbed to Arlovski’s fighting prowess are “The Janitor” Vladimir Matyushenko (25-5), “Cabbage” Wesley Correira (19-15), “The Maine-Iac” Tim Sylvia (28-7), “The Executioner” Paul Buentello (28-13), “Vai Cavalo” Fabricio Werdum (14-4-1), “Irish” Jake O’Brien (13-3), “Big” Ben Rothwell (27-7), and “Big Country” Roy Nelson (15-5). “The Pitbull” has built an impressive legacy and all the while has maintained his status as a fan favorite.
After a shoulder injury left Bellator Season 2 Lightweight Tournament Winner Pat Curran (12-3) unable to challenge current 155lbs. champion Eddie Alvarez’s (19-2) lightweight crown, fan favorite and UFC veteran “El Matador” Roger Huerta (21-5-1) took his place in a non-title fight against Alvarez at Bellator 33 in Philadelphia last October. The fight was all Alvarez as he picked apart Huerta with powerful leg kicks and crisp boxing, causing the ringside doctors to stop the fight after the second round due to Huerta’s swollen eye and battered knee.
Kyle Griffin vs. Alan Jouban: Jouban via KO (Knee), Round 1, 0:15
Tyler Freeland vs. Diego Melendez: Freeland via Unanimous Decision, Round 3, 3:00
Collin Hart vs. Mike Arellano: Hart via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Round 1, 1:32
Ryan Burton vs. Andy Miranda: Miranda via Technical Submission (Triangle Choke), Round 1, 1:06
Doug Hunt vs. Andrew Martinez: Hunt via TKO (Punches), Round 1, 4:27
Fabricio Camoes vs. Steve Lopez: Camoes via TKO (Head Kick and Punches), Round 1, 0:23
John Gunderson vs. Dominique Robinson: Robinson via TKO (Punches and Elbows), Round 3, 0:41
Edgar Garcia vs. Mike Moreno: Garcia via Submission (Guillotine Choke), Round 1, 1:47
Jussier da Silva vs. Ian McCall: McCall via Unanimous Decision, Round 3, 5:00
Flyweight Champion Ulysses Gomez vs. Darrell Montague: Montague via Unanimous Decision, Round 5, 5:00*
Middleweight Champion Leopoldo Serao vs. David Loiseau: Loiseau via TKO (Doctor Stoppage), Round 5, 1:12**
* With his win Darrell Montague is the new Tachi Palace Fight Flyweight Champion
** David Loiseau is now the new Tachi Palace Fight Middleweight Champion
Lyle Beerbohm vs. Ryan Healy: Healy via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Carlo Prater vs. Bryan Travers: Prater via Submission (Anaconda Choke), Round 1, 0:38
Ryan Couture vs. Lee Higgins: Couture via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Round 3, 4:41
Erik Apple vs. Ryan Larson: Larson via Submission (Triangle Choke), Round 2, 3:14
David Douglas vs. Nick Gonzalez: Douglas via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Round 1, 1:05
Aaron Franco vs. Ousmane Thomas Diagne: Diagne via TKO (Strikes), Round 1, 4:22
Drew Pendleton vs. Dennis Dombrow: Pendleton via Submission (Guillotine Choke), Round 2, 2:38