UFCjunkie.com has a new name, has moved

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Well folks, UFCjunkie.com is packing up and heading out.

We’re now available exclusively at MMAjunkie.com

In any manner, what does that mean for you? Not much, really. You will notice a new look but all of the stories, photos, comments and lame jokes are coming with us. For the most part, everything will work exactly like it did before.

This domain is being shut down completely.  So please update your bookmarks, your links, your email addresses, to point to MMAjunkie.com.


UFC 70: Four European Fighters Added to Rumored Card

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Cheick KongoWhile I was looking for videos of Tito Ortiz and Jenna Jameson — and while UFCjunkie.com broke news that the Mike Swick vs. Yushin Okami bout had been bumped from the UFC 68 card (and likely moved to UFC 69) — some additions to the April UFC 70 card flew right under my nose yesterday.

As I had reported in recent weeks, MMAWeekly.com had posted a rumored UFC 70 card that featured Tito Ortiz, Forrest Griffin and Michael Bispring. Then David Lee was added. And now, MMAWeekly.com has reported four additional rumored fighters, all with European ties, including:

  • Cheick Kongo vs. TBA
    Kongo (9-3-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC), from France, made his UFC debut at UFC 61 with a first-round TKO over Gilbert Aldana. He picked up another win (first-round KO via knee) over Christian Wellisch at UFC 62, but he most recently lost to Carmelo Marrero via split decision at UFC 64.
  • Dennis Siver vs. TBA
    Siver (10-3 MMA, 0-0 UFC), from Germany, has won seven of his past eight fights in a variety of organizations. The 28-year-old welterweight, a member of the OC Fight Team, recently confirmed he signed a three-fight contract with the UFC.
  • Abdul Mohamed vs. TBA
    Mohamed (12-4-2 MMA, 0-0 UFC), from England, has won six of his past seven bouts fighting for a variety of English organizations. The welterweight has taken five of his past six fights into the third round.
  • Jess Liaudin vs. TBA
    Liaudin (10-8 MMA, 0-0 UFC), from France, had lost six of seven fights before winning his past three. The up-and-down welterweight began fighting professionally in 2000 and won his first five fights.

MMAWeekly.com‘s full rumored UFC 70 card now looks like this:

UFC 70: APRIL 21, 2007 IN MANCHESTER, ENGLAND AT M.E.N. ARENA

Tito Ortiz vs. TBA
Forrest Griffin vs. TBA
Michael Bisping vs. TBA
Cheick Kongo vs. TBA
Dennis Siver vs. TBA
David Lee vs. TBA
Abdul Mohamed vs. TBA
Jess Liaudin vs. TBA

Note: This event will be available in the United States on a tape-delayed basis, either on TV or pay-per-view. The exact date of this event is subject to change.


Marvin Eastman Doesn’t Sleep Much

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Marvin EastmanWith Saturday’s UFC 67 pay-per-view event just two days away, interest in two fighters making their UFC debuts — Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic (21-4-2 MMA, 0-0 UFC) and Quinton “Rampage” Jackson (25-6 MMA, 0-0 UFC) — is at an all-time high. Our search-engine traffic here at UFCjunkie.com proves it.

But what far fewer people are looking for is information on those two fighters’ opponents, especially Marvin Eastman (13-6-1 MMA, 0-2 UFC), who will face Jackson in one of the the night’s main-card events.

Reader “Scott” was browsing UFC.com and noticed this interesting tidbit from Eastman’s questionnaire:

TRAINING: I work the graveyard shift in a detention center from 9pm-7am. I sleep from 8am till 11am, train boxing / jiu-jitsu / wrestling from 12 to 3pm, run sprints, hills, and do plyometrics drills on alternate days. I then go train Muay Thai with Master Chan, my trainer of 11 years, for one and a half hours, do plyos and jumps, then shower, rest 1-2 hours and then go back to work as a officer.

So Eastman gets three hours of sleep on average? Jeesh. I feel sorry for the poor prisoner who pisses off that over-worked skull crusher.

At least we know why he’s not a kindergarten teacher.

Anyway, Eastman will return to the UFC this weekend for the first time since UFC 50. The UFC probably would have passed him by after that October 2004 loss to Travis Lutter (and an earlier loss to Vitor Belfort at UFC 43), but he possesses something very important: a previous win over Jackson. And that earned him a ticket back into the organization.

Jackson and Eastman first met at a King of the Cage event in June 2000, where Eastman picked up a decision win. It was Eastman’s first fight, and just Jackson’s third. I’d imagine that “avenging” this loss is hardly a priority for Jackson — but let’s not let that simple fact ruin a perfectly good rematch.

Although this fight is designed essentially as a showcase for Jackson, I wouldn’t count out Eastman completely. Especially if the poor guy gets some sleep.


Betting Lines released for UFC 67

Thursday, February 1, 2007

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Performify here.

Lines just recently hit the major sites for UFC 67. Here are the latest lines as of the time of this post from BetCRIS.

TRAVIS LUTTER +370
ANDERSON SILVA -450

JOHN HALVERSON +525
ROGER HUERTA -650

EDDIE SANCHEZ +800
MIRKO (CRO COP) FILIPOVIC -1200

MARVIN EASTMAN +550
QUINTON JACKSON -700

SCOTT SMITH +145
PATRICK COTE -165

SAM HOGER +475
LYOTO MACHIDA -600

TERRY MARTIN +210
JORGE RIVERA -250

FRANKIE EDGAR +560
TYSON GRIFFIN -685

DIEGO SARAIVA +190
DUSTIN HAZELETT -220

If you’re new to MMA lines, here’s a quick primer:

The fighter listed with the negative number is the “favorite.” The number listed is how much you would have to wager to win $100 on him. For example, betting Silva at -450 means you must risk $450 to win $100 (your original $450 is returned as well, for a total of $550). Of course, you can bet less: $45 to win $10 or $22.50 to win $5 or any such amount.

The fighter listed with a positive number is the “underdog” — the number listed is how much you would win if you bet $100 on him. So for example, Terry Martin at +210 means $100 wagered would pay out $210 (again your original stake is returned, for a total of $310).

If you’re interested in more details on MMA Wagering, or are interested in checking out your options for placing a wager, check out our guide Where and How to Bet MMA Now.

I’ll be back in the next 24 hours with my usual writeup and full-card predictions for the event.

But before then, there’s one line that really sticks out to me, enough to suggest taking an early position before you get to read my writeup: Terry Martin is mispriced here. Martin opened at +250 and has quickly been bet down. I secured him at +240. I think he’s still a solid bet at +200 or higher, worth a single unit play.

Rivera is being overrated here, in my opinion, primarily due to him being overvalued from coming off a couple wins against sub-par opponents, namely his last public win was over the clearly overmatched Edwin “Babyface” Dewees at the The Ultimate Fighter 4 Finale. Martin, on the other hand, is being undervalued due to two consecutive UFC losses, but again you have to look deeper on both of those: he fought a tough fight with the skilled Jason Lambert (22-6 MMA, 3-1 UFC) at UFC 59 in April 2006 before getting KO’d in the second round, and prior was KO’d by the infamous flying knee opening the second round courtesy of James Irvin at UFC 58 in August 2005; however, Martin won that first round on the cards prior to getting caught with the flying knee.


B.J. Penn Book Set for May 2007 Release

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

B.J. Penn BookB.J. Penn, a former UFC welterweight champion and an upcoming coach on the fifth season of The Ultimate Fighter, has penned a new book, which is set for a May 2007 release. And it sounds a whole lot more instructional than biographical.

Penn, dubbed “The Prodigy” because of his legendary emergence on the MMA scene in 2001, is winless since his return to the UFC in 2006. Regardless, his natural Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, striking and submission skills have made him one of MMA’s and the UFC’s most popular fighters.

His new 272-page paperback book, a product of Victory Belt Publishing, will cover Penn’s personal fighting system.

From Amazon.com:

Mixed Martial Arts outlines the revolutionary system of fighting used by world-renowned fighter BJ Penn. Penn, one of the most technical and decorated fighters in the world today, illustrates fighting techniques that teach you how to mix strikes with takedowns, ground and pound an opponent into submission, fight against the cage and formulate strategies based upon your personal attributes and strengths.

The book is co-written by Erich Krauss (a professional Muay Thai kickboxer and author) and Glen Cordoza (an MMA fighter and author). The expected release date is May 15, 2007.

As the author of two books (yes, I’m totally trying to impress you), I realize that this title is produced by a specialty publisher. Although the book won’t have a national tour and be available worldwide, Victory Belt Publishing knows its target audience and will mark to them effectively. That means I should get a review copy — and if not, I’m gonna throw a first-class hissy fit.

In any manner, Penn’s book retails for $34.95 but is available for pre-order through Amazon.com for $23.07.

(Thanks to Jason at FightStalker.com for being the first to report this story.)


UFC 68: Mike Swick vs. Yushin Okami Bout Scratched from Lineup

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Mike SwickThe Ultimate Fighter season one cast member and major middleweight contender Mike Swick (10-1 MMA, 5-0 UFC) is no longer expected on the March 3 UFC 68 card. The American Kickboxing Academy team member was slated to face Yushin Okami (19-3 MMA, 3-0) on the main card of the Columbus, Ohio event.

Rumors have been heating up lately that the UFC 68 bout might be moved to Houston’s UFC 69 card in April. According to a UFCjunkie.com source close to the event, Swick will definitely no longer be part of the UFC 68 event, but it’s not immediately known if UFC 69 is a definite.

Although the Swick-Okami bout was a major part of the rumored UFC 68 fight card, the event (the first in the state of Ohio) is expected to feature a number of other UFC notables, including a main event of UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia (23-2 MMA, 8-2 UFC) vs. UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture (14-8 MMA, 11-5 UFC). Matt Hughes, Rich Franklin and Renato “Babalu” Sobral are all also expected to fight that night.

Swick, who lost to Stephan Bonnar in an Ultimate Fighter exhibition semi-final bout, has gone undefeated in UFC action since the show. Nicknamed “Quick,” Swick dominated his first four UFC opponents, including Alex Schoenauer (0:20), Gideon Ray (0:22), Steve Vigneault (2:09) and Joe Riggs (2:19). His only UFC bout to go past the first was to top contender David Loiseau, whom Swick beat with a unanimous-decision victory at UFC 63.

Japan’s Okami, a veteran of Pancrase and PRIDE Fighting Championships, has picked up UFC victories over Alan Belcher, Kalib Starnes, and most recently, Rory Singer at UFC 66. He’s won 11 of his past 12 MMA fights overall.

At this point, it’s not known if Swick will still face Okami when he fights next. Obviously, once I know for sure, I’ll post it here on UFCjunkie.com.

With Swick-Okami now apparently bumped from the UFC 68 card, that opens a slot for one of the undercard bouts to appear on the televised portion of the night. Assuming Sobral (27-6 MMA, 5-3 UFC) vs. Jason Lambert (22-6 MMA, 3-1 UFC) was already a given, Jon Fitch (12- 2 MMA, 4-0 UFC) vs. Luigi Fioravanti (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) seems to be a logical choice, though a matchup featuring two Ohio natives — Matt Hamill (2-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) vs. Rex Holman (4-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) — may also get some consideration.

In any manner, here’s the rumored UFC 68 card as it now stands:

UFC 68: March 3, 2007 — Columbus, OH (Nationwide Arena)

Tim Sylvia vs. Randy Couture
Matt Hughes vs. Chris Lytle
Rich Franklin vs. Jason MacDonald
Renato “Babalu” Sobral vs. Jason Lambert
Jon Fitch vs. Luigi Fioravanti
Matt Hamill vs. Rex Holman
Martin Kampmann vs. Drew McFedries
Jamie Varner vs. TBA


UFC 68: Jon Fitch “Disappointed” by Undercard Status

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Jon FitchSurging welterweight contender Jon Fitch (12- 2 MMA, 4-0 UFC) is apparently miffed at the idea he’ll be stuck on the undercard of March’s UFC 68 event, and frankly, I can’t blame him.

Fitch, who made his UFC debut with a unanimous-decision win over Brock Larson at UFC Fight Night 2, has since rattled off three more UFC wins (over Josh Burkman, Thiago Alves and Kuniyoshi Hironaka). But because of a star-studded event that features UFC superstars Randy Couture, Tim Sylvia, Rich Franklin, Matt Hughes and Mike Swick, Fitch has found himself near the bottom of the (un-televised) undercard.

And that hasn’t gone over well with the 28-year-old.

In a recent MySpace bulletin, Fitch wrote:

If you missed my last bulletin I am fighting at UFC 68 on March 3rd in Columbus Ohio. I have a little bad news that I recieved today, I will not be a main event. I will be a PRELIM once again for some reason unknown to me. I am very dissapointed about this as you can imagine. If you dont know what a prelim is, it is one of the fights that is not on the live PPV brodcast. It is pre-taped and only shown after all the live fights, if and only if there is enough time to air it. So unfortunately there is a very good chance that you will NOT see my fight on the PPV. So if you can, I encourage you to try and come to the live event and see me fight in person. You can also all write to the UFC and express how dissapointed you are that you will not get to see me give someone a beatdown live on the PPV.

On just about any other UFC card, Fitch would likely be on the main card, especially considering his solid opponent: Luigi Fioravanti (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC), whose only career loss came to Chris Leben at UFC Fight Night 4.

Honestly, whoever wins this fight will take a major stride toward contender status in the UFC’s welterweight division. It’s just a shame that Fitch, a guy with four quality UFC wins, has gained so little traction with UFC fans up until this point.

The March 3 lineup could undergo some changes, but for now, here’s how the rumored card has shaped up:

UFC 68: March 3, 2007 — Columbus, OH (Nationwide Arena)

MAIN CARD
Tim Sylvia vs. Randy Couture
Matt Hughes vs. Chris Lytle
Rich Franklin vs. Jason MacDonald
Mike Swick vs. Yushin Okami
(One bout from below will be added to the main card.)

PRELIMINARY CARD
Renato “Babalu” Sobral vs. Jason Lambert
Jon Fitch vs. Luigi Fioravanti
Matt Hamill vs. Rex Holman
Martin Kampmann vs. Drew McFedries
Jamie Varner vs. TBA

(Thanks to reader “Cayman” for the reminder to post this.)


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