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WHO YA GOT?: UFC 181

John Michael Edwards

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It’s been awhile, but Saturday night the UFC is giving fight fans a double main event of sorts. Getting the official top spot is the rematch between welterweight champion Johny Hendricks and “Ruthless” Robbie Lawler. Hendricks last fought in their back and forth battle that took place back at UFC 171, back in March of this year, that saw his hand raised in victory. Meanwhile Lawler most recently took out Matt Brown at UFC on Fox 12 and is now looking to turn the tables on Hendricks to be the man with the belt around his waist at the end of the night.

In the co-main event, long time lightweight stalwart Gilbert Melendez, will take another crack at becoming the 155lbs champion. This time squaring off against Anthony “Showtime” Pettis. Fresh off of his coaching job from The Ultimate Fighter 20, Melendez last fought against the always game Diego Sanchez. Pettis has been on the shelf with a torn posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) since usurping the crown from Ben Henderson.

Here’s how some of the writers feel these fights and the rest of the main card play out.

Robbie Lawler vs. Johny Hendricks

  • John Michael Edwards: This fight is too close to call based on how the last fight went down. I want to with Lawler just for the upheaval it would cause to the division.
  • Ethan Mudford: Even though I’m a huge fan of Lawler, I think that Hendricks’ bicep injury played a major factor in the first fight and if he is as healed as he says he is, I think he’ll win via TKO.
  • Matthew Wells: I expect another war between two very well-liked fighters. I feel a healed up Hendricks be able to do enough to keep the title. Hendricks by decision.
  • Sam LaPoint: I think Hendricks will come out stronger this time and get the win.
  • Stephen Howson:  Hendricks
  • AJ Camacho:  Hendricks still poses a two pronged threat of wrestling and devastating fists. Anytime he makes a level change Lawlor has a 50/50 chance of guessing if it’s a shot or an KO overhand. I give it to Hendricks, especially since he won’t have an injured bicep this time.

 

Gilbert Melendez vs. Anthony Pettis

  • John Michael Edwards: Both men are ultra talented, but I’ll go with Pettis due to his “recent” track record of beating Donald Cerrone and Ben Henderson.
  • Ethan Mudford: Fan of both guys and am hoping for Melendez to win ever since he was robbed against Henderson but I think Pettis’ creative and more diverse striking will be the key to his victory.
  • Matthew Wells: I expect this one to be incredibly entertaining. I wouldn’t be surprised if either fighter comes out victorious, but I believe that Pettis will find way to finish this one in the later rounds. I’m going with Pettis by sub.
  • Sam LaPoint: I could see it going either way, but I think Pettis will be the more technical fighter and ultimately get the win.
  • Stephen Howson:  Pettis
  • AJ Camacho: Melendez’ wrestling will always be a threat but I have to give it to Pettis due to his sublime ability to control range via feints and his unpredictable striking angles.

 

Travis Browne vs. Brendan Schaub

  • John Michael Edwards:  Browne TKO
  • Ethan Mudford: Browne TKO
  • Matthew Wells: Schuab Sub
  • Sam LaPoint: Browne via TKO
  • Stephen Howson:  Schuab
  • AJ Camacho:  Browne via TKO

 

Todd Duffee vs.  Anthony Hamilton

  • John Michael Edwards:  Duffee SD
  • Ethan Mudford: Duffee TKO
  • Matthew Wells: Duffee TKO
  • Sam LaPoint: Duffee via TKO
  • Stephen Howson:  Duffee
  • AJ Camacho:  Hamilton via TKO

 

Tony Ferguson vs.  Abel Trujillo

  • John Michael Edwards:  Trujillo UD
  • Ethan Mudford: Ferguson UD
  • Matthew Wells: Trujillo SD
  • Sam LaPoint: Trujillo UD
  • Stephen Howson:  Ferguson
  • AJ Camacho:  Trujillo UD

 

NAMEWINLOSS%
Stephen Howson410.800%
Dorian Bell850.615%
John Michael Edwards760.538%
Matthew Wells670.462%
Ethan Mudford670.462%
Sam LaPoint670.462%
AJ Camacho230.400%
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Bellator

Bellator 185- How to Watch, Times and Fight Card

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Bellator is once again heading to Mohegan Sun in Uncasville Connecticut, and this time they are bringing with them one of the most anticipated former UFC fighter turned Bellator stars’ debut. Gegard Mousasi will be making his first appearance in the Bellator cage against a former Bellator champion in Alexander Shlemenko. Although this event has lost some of its star power over the last several weeks, it is still stacked and you can bet that the main event will bring some fireworks.

Earlier in the month, it was announced that King Mo had suffered an injury that had forced him out of his co-main event fight with former middleweight champion Liam McGeary. Bellator worked quickly to secure a replacement opponent for McGeary in Bubba McDaniels. Unfortunately for McDaniels and the fans alike, McGeary had later suffered an injury of his own and the fight was removed from the card.

This left a spot open in the co-main event slot, which would be filled by a welterweight matchup between Brennan Ward and David Rickels. Just four days out from the fight, Bellator announced that Ward had also become injured and the fight has been removed from the card as well. The main card has been shuffled around and the welterweight bout between Neiman Gracie and Zak Bucia will now serve as the co-main event.

Main Card- Spike TV (US/Canada) Spike UK (UK)- 9 pm EDT, 6 pm PDT, 2 pm UK

  • Middleweight Main Event: Gegard Mousasi (42-6-2) vs. Alexander Shlemenko (56-9, 1 NC)
  • Welterweight Feature Bout: Neiman Gracie (6-0) vs. Zak Bucia (18-8)
  • Women’s Flyweight Feature Bout: Heather Hardy (1-0) vs. Kristina Williams (Debut)
  • Lightweight Feature Bout: Ryan Quinn (13-7) vs. Marcus Surin (4-0)
  • Women’s Flyweight Feature Bout: Ana Julaton (2-2) vs. Lisa Blaine (1-0)

Preliminary Card- Live Stream (MMA Latest New)- 7 pm EDT, 4 pm PDT, 12 pm UK

  • 195 lb. Catchweight Preliminary Bout: Jordan Young (6-0) vs. Alec Hooben (5-3)
  • Middleweight Preliminary Bout: Costello van Steenis (8-1) vs. Steve Skrzat (8-9)
  • Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Vinicius de Jesus (5-1) vs. Joaquin Buckley (7-1)
  • Lightweight Preliminary Bout: John Beneduce (2-1) vs. Dean Hancock (2-1)
  • Featherweight Preliminary Bout: Timothy Wheeler (1-4) vs. Pete Rogers (2-4)
  • 150 lb. Catchweight Preliminary Bout: Don Shainis (3-1) vs. Matthew Denning (5-6)
  • 150 lb. Catchweight Preliminary Bout: Frank Sforza (6-0) vs. Vovka Clay (3-2)
  • Lightweight Preliminary Bout: Kevin Carrier (Pro Debut) vs. Jose Antonio Perez (Pro Debut)
  • Flyweight Preliminary Bout: John Lopez (6-4) vs. Billy Giovanella (9-5)
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EXCLUSIVE: Jack Shore talks Cage Warriors 87 Opponent Change, Pressure and Being Ready for A Big Opportunity

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Jack Shore, a promising up and coming Welsh Featherweight who will be fighting on his fourth main Cage Warriors card in only his sixth professional fight. Despite his opponent, Federico Mini, dropping out days prior to the event, Shore isn’t concerned ahead of the opponent change. “Just another fight, I’m ready for anything come fight night and I’m looking forward to the challenge”. Cage Warriors have confirmed that Shore will now be fighting Italian, Mattia Galbiati.

Shore last fought at the Newport Centre, Wales at Cage Warriors 83, defeating his opponent Konmon Deh convincingly with a first-round submission. The crowd was electric for both his entrance and when his opponent tapped due to armbar, “I have a massive following and they like to make themselves heard on fight night, it’s getting bigger and bigger every time!”

Whilst using his extensive grappling to win the fight, the Tillery Combat MMA Academy fighter was very aggressive with his strikes on the ground, “I believe my grappling style is very different to what people are used to seeing and that’s why it’s entertaining to watch. I’m always looking to advance and put the pressure on, but I also try to use punches and elbows to set up my transitions.”

Being undefeated throughout his amateur career (including winning the IMMAF European Championships), to then continue being undefeated throughout his early professional career, Shore has a mature mindset for such a young fighter to how the sport works, “Obviously no one wants to lose but you have to be aware that it’s a possibility because anything can happen in this sport. But by being aware it allows me to train and prepare correctly to do everything I can (do) to prevent that from happening.”

Whilst growing up, Shore states that he wasn’t the most confident of people, “As a kid growing up I was never the world’s most confident person.” Cage Warriors being on BT Sport within the UK, being the biggest European MMA promotion, and having the following Shore has, he feels no pressure of fighting, “But as far as MMA is concerned I don’t feel any pressure at all. There’s obviously the fight day nerves but anyone will tell you I deal with them very well and am more than comfortable in that environment.”

With the current revolution of MMA in Wales occurring, former Cage Warriors fighters Brett Johns, Jack Marshman and John Philips all in the UFC, Josh Reed who has just come off a title shot with Cage Warriors Bantamweight champion Nathaniel Wood, Lewis Long being the best Welterweight in the UK. It brings a realistic opportunity of making the UFC, “Definitely. Since the first bunch of Welsh guys have been signed to the UFC it’s shown for guys like me, Lewis Long and Josh Reed that what we are pushing for is no doubt achievable. I believe that if we keep doing what we are doing then that dream won’t be too far away.”

Whilst having such a successful start to his professional career, and with the attention, this young Welshman is bringing, Shore is in no rush for the Cage Warriors belt, but is prepared if the opportunity arises. “I’m just taking one fight at a time. I’m aware that I’m still young in terms of my pro career so I will continue to fight whoever Cage Warriors put in front of me. Should a big opportunity like that present itself I’ll make sure I’m ready.”

Shore seems to be mature for someone of the age of just 22, the future seems bright for the young Welshman. Jack Shore fights on the up and coming Cage Warriors 87 card Saturday, 14th October at the Newport Centre, Newport, Wales. The event will be free-to-air on UK sports channels FreeSports, as well as be on UFC FightPass and via the red button on BT Sport.

Check the main card out for Cage Warriors 87 below:

Lewis Long vs Roberto Soldic (Welterweight)
Craig White vs Matt Inman (Welterweight)
Jack Shore vs Mattia Galbiati (Featherweight)
Aiden Lee vs Ludovit Klein (Featherweight)
Aaron Khalid vs Ross Houston (Welterweight)

By Ieuan Thomas.

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Announcement

Gokhan Saki vs Khalil Rountree JR Added to UFC 219

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Kickboxing superstar Gokhan Saki will make his return to the octagon just three months after his UFC debut, as he faces Khalil Rountree at UFC 219.

Saki (1-1 ) made a big statement at UFC Japan in September, knocking out Henrique de Silva with a devastating, statement making left hook.

Rountree (6-2) is a TUF-23 alumni. His UFC run started unsuccessfully losing two in a row including his TUF 23 contract fight. However, Rountree is now on a two-fight winning streak after picking up consecutive first round knockout victories against Paul Craig and Daniel Jolly.

After making his MMA debut in 2004, Saki signed a multi-fight deal with the UFC in May and was succesful in his return to the cage. Saki’s first round KO of de Silva earned him a Performance of the Night bonus.

Neither Saki or Rountree are currently ranked in the UFC’s light heavyweight division, so a win at UFC 219 could most certainly push either of the two in the top fifteen at 205-pounds.

With the addition of Saki vs. Rountree, your current line-up for the UFC 219 card on December 30th is as follows:

Dominick Cruz vs. Jimmie Rivera – Bantamweight bout
Cynthia Calvillo vs. Carla Esparza – Women’s strawweight bout
Carlos Condit vs. Neil Magny – Welterweight bout
Louis Smolka vs. Matheus Nicolau – Flyweight bout
* Gokhan Saki vs. Khalil Rountree – Light heavyweight bout

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