March 2012 In Combat Sports (Boxing, MMA, Kickboxing News/Rankings/Streams)

Discussion in 'MMA, Boxing & Other Combat Sports' started by Makabreli, Mar 1, 2012.

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  1. Makabreli

    Makabreli done

    Jul 2, 2003
    You know the deal. Check here for news, rumors, and the daily mill from the world of boxing, kickboxing, and mma, and god knows what else.

    Upcoming Streams

    Bellator 63 3-30-2012
    ONE FC 3 3-31-2012 approx 8am EST

    check hype threads as i post live weigh ins, press conferences, etc. Check this thread and the forum often as you never know what else might pop up.​
  2. Makabreli

    Makabreli done

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    MMA Ticker
    - Silva Vs. Sonnen II Officially Set For June 23rd UFC 147
    - Ramsey Nijem Vs. C.J. Keith Set For UFC On FX 4
    - Bernardo Magalhaes To Meet Henry Martinez At UFC On FX 3
    - Mike Pyle Vs. Josh Neer Scheduled For UFC On FX 3
    - Mike Easton Out Of UFC On Fuel 3, Jeff Hougland In, Renan Barao Now Faces Ivan Menjivar
    - Jimy Hettes To Meet Steven Siler At UFC On FX 4
    - Nik Lentz is dropping to Featherweight
    - Scott Jorgensen Vs. Eddie Wineland Verbally Agreed To For UFC On FX 3
    - UFC Vets Anthony Johnson And Dave Branch To Meet At Titan Fighting 22 In May
    - Brian Ebersole Vs. T.J. Waldburger Set For UFC On FX 4
    - Georges St. Pierre Targets Return At UFC 154; Talks Potential Super-Fight Against Anderson Silva
    - Rich Attonito-Rick Story, Matt Riddle-Luis Ramos, and Dan Miller-Ricardo Funch added to UFC on FX 4
    - Chris Camozzi Vs. Nick Catone Added To UFC On FX 4
    - Dustin Pague Vs. Jared Papazian Verbally Agreed To For UFC On FX 3
    - Demian Maia Vs. Dong-Hyun Kim, Costa Philippou Vs. Riki Fukuda Booked For UFC 148
    - Mike Pierce Vs. Carlos Eduardo Rocha In The Works For UFC On FX 3
    - Jose Aldo To Defend UFC Featherweight Title At UFC 149 On July 21st
    - UFC On FX 3 Set For June 8th, McCall Vs. Johnson Rematch Added
    - Tito Ortiz Vs. Forrest Griffin III Set For July's UFC 148
    - Michael Bisping Vs. Tim Boetsch Reportedly Added To UFC 148
    - Rich Franklin Vs. Cung Le On Tap For UFC 148 On July 7th
    - Dennis Hallman Injured, Thiago Tavares Steps In To Face Tony Ferguson At UFC On Fox 3
    - Fertitta Promises A 'UFC 100-Style' Event If NY State Ban Is Lifted
    - Renan Barao Vs. Jeff Hougland Added To UFC 148
    - Clay Guida Vs. Gray Maynard Announced For UFC On FX Event June 22
    - Mike Brown Returns Against Daniel Pineda At UFC 146
    - Ian McCall vs. Demetrious Johnson Rematch Set For TUF Live Finale
    - Shaq Says He'll Fight Jose Canseco In MMA Bout
    - Rampage Jackson Says Shogun Rua Fight Will Have To Wait, Having Double Knee Surgery
    - Demian Maia Announces Drop to 170 Pounds for Next Bout
    - Stefan Struve vs. Mark Hunt Makes UFC 146 Main Card An All-Heavyweight Affair
    - Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson Vs. Mauricio 'Shogun' Rua Planned For 2012
    - Murilo Bustamante vs Dave Menne Rematch March 31 Brazil
    - Fabio Maldonado vs. Igor Pokrajac slated for UFC on FUEL TV 3
    - Gil Melendez reportedly fighting May 19
    - Anthony Johnson signs with Titan Fighting; first fight May 25
    - Nick Diaz reportedly sparring with James Toney
    - Luke Rockhold Likely To Defend Against Tim Kennedy Next
    - Hector Lombard's Contract Has Expired, Could be a free agent in May
    - Commission screwed up score for Demetrious Johnson vs Ian McCall; Rematch in the works
    - Rampage Jackson asks for UFC release in twitter tirade
    - Tyson Griffin tested positive for Marijuana after UFC 123
    - Fabricio Werdum vs Mike Russow Scheduled for June
    - Junior Dos Santos vs Alistair Overeem, Frank Mir vs Cain Velasquez, and Roy Nelson vs Antonio Bigfoot Silva added to UFC 146 on May 26th
    - Benson Henderson vs Frankie Edgar II in the works for Summer
    - Michael Chandler vs. Akihiro Gono 'superfight' slated for Bellator 67 May 4th
    - Josh Barnett vs Daniel Cormier May 19th to determine Strikeforce HW Grand Prix Winner
    - Lil Nog injures knee; Thiago Silva In against Alexander Gustafsson UFC Fuel 2 April 14
    - Azamat Gashimov Vs. Alex Soto Slated For UFC On Fuel TV 3 May 15
    - Dos Santos-Overeem will be covered on UFC Primetime
    - Ryan Ford vs. Luis 'Sapo' Santos slated for Bellator 67 May 4 in Canada
    - Featherweight Erik Koch Targeted for June Return to UFC
    - UFC Rumored To Be Close To Signing Hacran Dias, #1 Ranked Featherweight Prospect
    - Brandon Saling's Fighter License Revoked For Failure To Disclose Past Sex Crime, Domestic Violence Charges Following Strikeforce Event
    - Marcos Galvao-Ed West Bantamweight Quarterfinal Slated for Bellator 65 April 13
    - Grant-Prater, Shalorus-Dos Anjos, Gashimov-Soto Added to UFC on Fuel TV 3​
  3. Makabreli

    Makabreli done

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    Boxing & Kickboxing Ticker
    - Legendary Boxing Writer/Historian/Personality Bert Sugar Passes away
    - Sergio Martinez Knocks Out Matthew Macklin, Willing To Fight Floyd Mayweather For Only 20% Of Purse
    - Juan Manuel Marquez vs Brandon Rios Possible For July 14
    - Brandon Rios vs Yuriorkis Gamboa Off, Richard Abril In To Face Rios As Top Rank Sues Gamboa
    - Sergio Martinez vs Julio Cesar Chavez Jr: WBC Says Negotiations Begin Monday
    - Jermain Taylor vs Caleb Truax Set For April 20 on ShoBox
    - Peter Quillin vs Winky Wright Set For May 26, Tarver vs Kayode Undercard
    - Manny Pacquiao Accused of Housing Fugitive
    - Lucian Bute vs Carl Froch in May
    - Manny Pacquiao Facing Criminal Tax Charges in Philippines
    - Kimbo Slice Returns To Boxing Ring Against Yet Another Undersized Opponent On March 24
    - K-1 Grand Prix To Return In 2012 According To It's Showtime
    - Grigorian vs. Chahid Headlines It's Showtime May 12 Fight Card
  4. Makabreli

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    Boxing Rankings
    last update: 3-20-2012

    Pound for Pound (theRing)
    1. Manny Pacquiao
    2. Floyd Mayweather Jr.
    3. Sergio Martinez
    4. Nonito Donaire
    5. Andre Ward
    6. Juan Manuel Marquez
    7. Wladmir Klitschko
    8. Timothy Bradley
    9. Vitaly Klitschko
    10. Yuriorkis Gamboa

    all other rankings from badlefthook

    1. Wladimir Klitschko
    2. Vitali Klitschko
    3. Tomasz Adamek
    4. Chris Arreola
    5. Alexander Povetkin
    6. Tony Thompson
    7. Tyson Fury
    8. Dereck Chisora
    9. Alexander Dimitrenko
    10. Kubrat Pulev

    1. Marco Huck
    2. Yoan Pablo Hernandez
    3. Denis Lebedev
    4. Steve Cunningham
    5. Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
    6. Alexander Alekseev
    7. Ola Afolabi
    8. Antonio Tarver
    9. Guillermo Jones
    10. Lateef Kayode

    Light Heavyweight
    1. Bernard Hopkins
    2. Chad Dawson
    3. Gabriel Campillo
    4. Jean Pascal
    5. Tavoris Cloud
    6. Nathan Cleverly
    7. Beibut Shumenov
    8. Karo Murat
    9. Adrian Diaconu
    10. Zsolt Erdei

    Super Middleweight
    1. Andre Ward
    2. Lucian Bute
    3. Mikkel Kessler
    4. Carl Froch
    5. Andre Dirrell
    6. Sakio Bika
    7. Robert Stieglitz
    8. Arthur Abraham
    9. Adonis Stevenson
    10. Brian Magee

    1. Sergio Martinez
    2. Felix Sturm
    3. Daniel Geale +1
    4. Matthew Macklin -1
    5. Dmitry Pirog
    6. Gennady Golovkin
    7. Hassan N'Dam N'Jikam
    8. Martin Murray +1
    9. Julio Caesar Chavez Jr. +1
    10. Andy Lee (added to list)

    Junior Middleweight
    1. Miguel Cotto
    2. Canelo Alvarez
    3. Austin Trout
    4. Carlos Molina
    5. Erislandy Lara
    6. James Kirkland
    7. Delvin Rodriguez
    8. Cornelius Bundrage
    9. Paul Williams
    10. Lukas Konecny

    1. Floyd Mayweather Jr
    2. Manny Pacquiao
    3. Victor Ortiz
    4. Andre Berto
    5. Jan Zaveck
    6. Kell Brook
    7. Mike Jones
    8. Devon Alexander
    9. Vyacheslav Senchenko
    10. Carson Jones

    Junior Welterweight
    1. Timothy Bradley
    2. Lamont Peterson
    3. Amir Khan
    4. Lucas Matthysse
    5. Marcos Maidana
    6. Ajose Olusegun
    7. Danny Garcia
    8. Erik Morales
    9. Mike Alvarado
    10. Ashley Theophane
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    Boxing Ranks

    1. Juan Manuel Marquez
    2. Brandon Rios
    3. Miguel Vazquez
    4. Antonio DeMarco
    5. Ricky Burns
    6. Jorge Linares
    7. Kevin Mitchell
    8. Urbano Antillon
    9. Michael Katsidis
    10. Gavin Rees

    Super Featherweight
    1. Takashi Uchiyama
    2. Takahiro Ao
    3. Adrien Broner
    4. Juan Carlos Salgado
    5. Argenis Mendez
    6. Roman Martinez
    7. Jorge Solis
    8. Diego Magdaleno
    9. Juan Carlos Burgos
    10. Gary Buckland

    1. Yuriorkis Gamboa
    2. Orlando Salido
    3. Chris John
    4. Celestino Caballero
    5. Daniel Ponce de Leon
    6. Jhonny Gonzalez
    7. Mikey Garcia
    8. Juan Manuel Lopes
    9. Jonathan Victor Barros
    10. Billy Dib

    Super Bantamweight
    1. Toshiaki Nishioka
    2. Nonito Donaire
    3. Guillermo Rigondeaux
    4. Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym
    5. Victor Terrazas
    6. Akifumi Shimoda
    7. Wilfredo Vazquez Jr.
    8. Fernando Montiel
    9. Takalani Ndlovu
    10. Rafael Marquez

    1. Abner Mares
    2. Anselmo Moreno
    3. Joseph Agbeko
    4. Vic Darchinyan
    5. Jorge Arce
    6. Koki Kameda
    7. Yonnhy Perez
    8. Malcolm Tunacao
    9. Shinsuke Yamanaka
    10. Leo Santa Cruz

    Super Flyweight
    1. Suriyan Sor Rungvisai
    2. Tepparith Kokietgym
    3. Tomonobu Shimizu
    4. Hugo Cazares
    5. Omar Narvaez
    6. Tomas Rojas
    7. Yota Sato
    8. Juan Alberto Rosas
    9. Raul Martinez
    10. Cesar Seda

    1. Hernan Marquez
    2. Brian Viloria
    3. Moruti Mthalane
    4. Sonny Boy Jaro
    5. Pongsaklek Wonjongkam
    6. Giovani Segura
    7. Edgar Sosa
    8. Rocky Fuentes
    9. Julio Cesar Miranda
    10. Luis Concepcion

    Junior Flyweight
    1. Roman Gonzalez
    2. Ulises Solis
    3. Kompayak Porpramook
    4. Donnie Nietes
    6. Ramon Garcia
    7. Johnriel Casimero
    8. Masayuki Kuroda
    9. Ryoichi Taguchi
    10. Luis Ceja

    1. Nkosinathi Joyi
    2. Kazuto Ioka
    3. Moises Fuentes
    4. Raul Garcia
    5. Denver Cuello
    6. Katsunari Takayama
    7. Juan Palacios
    8. Juan Hernandez
    9. Hekkie Budler
    10. Akira Yaegashi​
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    MMA Rankings

    Pound for Pound
    1. Anderson Silva
    next fight: Chael Sonnen (June 23)
    2. Georges St. Pierre
    next fight: Carlos Condit (Fall?)
    3. Jon Jones
    next fight: Rashad Evans (April 21)
    4. Jose Aldo
    5. Junior Dos Santos
    next fight: Alistair Overeem (May 26)
    6. Dominick Cruz
    next fight: Urijah Faber (July 7)
    7. Rashad Evans
    next fight: Jon Jones (April 21)
    8. Dan Henderson
    9. Benson Henderson
    next fight: Frankie Edgar (summer)
    10. Alistair Overeem
    next fight: Dos Santos (May 26)

    1. Junior Dos Santos
    next fight: Alistair Overeem (May 26)
    2. Alistair Overeem
    next fight: Dos Santos (May 26)
    3. Cain Velasquez
    next fight: Frank Mir (May 26)
    4. Frank Mir
    next fight: Cain Velasquez (May 26)
    5. Josh Barnett
    next fight: Daniel Cormier (May 19)
    6. Fabricio Werdum
    next fight: Mike Russow (May 26)
    7. Daniel Cormier
    next fight: Josh Barnett (May 19)
    8. Antonio Silva
    next fight: Roy Nelson (May 26)
    9. Mark Hunt
    next fight: Stefan Struve (May 26)
    10. Cheick Kongo

    Light Heavyweight
    1. Jon Jones
    next fight: Rashad Evans (April 21)
    2. Rashad Evans
    next fight: Jon Jones (April 21)
    3. Dan Henderson
    4. Shogun Rua
    5. Phil Davis
    6. Ryan Bader
    7. Alexander Gustafsson
    next fight: Thiago Silva (April 14)
    8. Muhammed Lawal
    9. Gegard Mousasi
    10. Lyoto Machida

    1. Anderson Silva
    next fight: Chael Sonnen (June 23)
    2. Chael Sonnen
    next fight: Anderson Silva (June 23)
    3. Mark Munoz
    4. Vitor Belfort
    next fight: Wanderlei Silva (June 23)
    5. Hector Lombard
    next fight: Alexander Shlemenko
    6. Alan Belcher
    next fight: Rousimar Palhares (MAy 5)
    7. Luke Rockhold
    8. Brian Stann
    9. Ronaldo Souza
    10. Alexander Shlemenko
    next fight: Hector Lombard

    1. Georges St. Pierre
    next fight: Carlos Condit
    2. Jake Ellenberger
    next fight: Martin Kampmann (June 1)
    3. Carlos Condit
    next fight: Georges St. Pierre
    4. Nick Diaz
    5. Johnny Hendricks
    6. Jon Fitch
    7. Brian Ebersole
    next fight: TJ Waldburger (June 22)
    8. Jake Shields
    9. Ben Askren
    next fight: Douglas Lima (April 6)
    10. Martin Kampmann
    next fight: Jake Ellenberger (June 1)

    1. Benson Henderson
    next fight: Frankie Edgar
    2. Frankie Edgar
    next fight: Benson Henderson
    3. Gray Maynard
    next fight: Clay Guida (June 22)
    4. Gilbert Melendez
    5. Jim Miller
    next fight: Nate Diaz (May 5)
    6. Shinya Aoki
    next fight: Eddie Alvarez
    7. Anthony Pettis
    8. Michael Chandler
    next fight: Akihiro Gono
    9. Nate Diaz
    next fight: Jim Miller (May 5)
    10. Donald Cerrone
    next fight: Jeremy Stephens (May 15)

    1. Jose Aldo
    2. Chad Mendes
    3. Diego Nunes
    next fight: Dennis Siver (April 14)
    4. Hatsu Hioki
    5. Dustin Poirier
    next fight: Chan Sung Jung (MAy 15)
    6. Pat Curran
    next fight: Patricio Freire
    7. Patricio Freire
    next fight: Pat Curran
    8. Erik Koch
    9. Yuri Alcantara
    10. Chan Sung Jung
    next fight: Dustin Poirier (May 15)

    1. Dominick Cruz
    next fight: Urijah Faber (July 7)
    2. Urijah Faber
    next fight: Dominick Cruz (July 7)
    3. Renan Barao
    next fight: Ivan Menjivar (July 7)
    4. Eduardo Dantas
    next fight: Zach Makovsky (April 13)
    5. Brian Bowles
    6. Miguel Torres
    next fight: Michael McDonald (April 21))
    7. Scott Jorgenson
    next fight: Eddie Wineland (June 8)
    8. Michael McDonald
    next fight: Miguel Torres (April 21)
    9. Zach Makovsky
    next fight: Eduardo Dantas (April 13)
    10. Mike Easton

    1. Joseph Benavidez
    2. Ian McCall
    next fight: Demetrious Johnson (June 8)
    3. Demetrious Johnson
    next fight: Ian McCall (June 8)
    4. Jussier da Silva
    5. John Lineker
    next fight: Louis Gaudinot (May 5)
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    Five Under the Radar Bouts Worth Watching in March

    5. Roxanne Modafferi vs. Takayo Hashi
    Jewels – 18th Ring
    Tokyo, Japan
    March 3, 2012

    At one time, these two women were on the radar of all female mixed martial arts enthusiasts and primed to become champions wherever they traveled, but the last two years haven’t been friendly to these two warriors.

    Heading into a November 2009 bout against Marloes Coenen, Modafferi had won six straight and was a single win away from a shot at the coveted Strikeforce Women’s Bantamweight Championship.

    It took a mere 1:05 for Coenen to snatch up Modafferi’s arm for her collection and send the Massachusetts fighter into a downward spiral. Two wins outside the promotion earned Modafferi the title shot at Sarah Kaufman she wanted, but things did not go her way. A vicious and memorable slam knockout put Modafferi on dream street and sent her into a string of four straight losses.

    Hashi has suffered a similar fate to her upcoming foe, suffering three straight losses with the first one being against Kaufman.

    Hashi went five rounds with Kaufman, losing every round and getting thoroughly dominated in the process. Losses to Tara LaRosa and rising flyweight star Cat Zingano followed and now Hashi is scrambling to stay relevant.

    On March 3rd, desperation will be in the air when these two meet.

    Modafferi and Hashi are two phenomenal grapplers and if this fight goes to the mat, I fully expect a chess match that should be fun to watch.

    4. Rick Hawn vs. Ricardo Tirloni
    Bellator 62
    Laredo, Texas, USA
    March 23, 2012

    In May of 2011, Rick Hawn was one judges scorecard away from taking on Ben Askren for the Bellator Welterweight Championship of the World. Instead, the former Judo Olympian suffered a loss and injury and has kept him on the sidelines since. Now, moving to lightweight the Judo practitioner turned knockout artist will be looking to reinvent himself and earn a shot at lightweight champ Michael Chandler.

    That being said, there’s no reason to sleep on 14-1 well rounded Brazilian Ricardo Tirloni, with the only loss being to current UFC Lightweight Champion Benson Henderson. With an impressive finishing percentage and knockout power in both hands, the bout against Hawn should be an absolute war.

    3. Shinichi Kojima vs. Nam Jin Jo
    Shooto – 3rd Round
    Tokyo, Japan
    March 10, 2012

    If Takanori Gomi is the lightweight Japanese legend, and Norifumi Yamamoto is the featherweight Japanese legend, then Shinichi Kojima fills a similar role for flyweight.

    Obviously Kojima has never been to the big stage thanks to his small stature, but make no mistake about it, Kojima is THE flyweight legend. His incredible battles with Mamoru Yamaguchi and the other flyweights in Japan have garnered him the accolade. After a retirement that lasted less than two years, Kojima has put together back-to-back victories and is looking to re-establish himself in the Shooto flyweight division.

    Standing across the ring from him will be Nam Jim Jo. After an impressive start to his career, Jim Jo has gone 2-3 in his last five. If he’s going to establish himself as the future of the division, there is no better fighter to do it against than Kojima.

    With Urushitami venturing to the greener pastures of the UFC, the Shooto flyweight championship could very soon be up for grabs, making this fight very important in the chase for Kojima to regain his championship.

    2. Joe Warren vs. Pat Curran
    Bellator 60
    Hammond, Indiana, USA
    March 9

    It took only 1:04 for Cuban wrestling standout and apparent boxer extraordinaire to debunk the myth of Joe Warren last September when he knocked Warren out with a vicious punch, ending his hopes of becoming a dual champion in Bellator.

    Thankfully for Warren, his coveted Bellator Featherweight Championship was not on the line.

    The one time Olympic wrestling hopeful has been on the winning end of some extremely controversial decisions his entire career in his bouts with Norifumi “KID” Yamamoto, Patricio Freire, and Marcos Galvao. Now, it’s on Warren to prove he deserves to be a top 10 ranked featherweight.

    Standing in his way will be one time lightweight title contender and rising star Pat Curran. The 16-4 Warren has won three straight since going five rounds with then lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez and has won seven of his last eight.

    Most recently, Curran shocked observers when he knocked out top 5 featherweight Marlon Sandro in vicious fashion.

    Wins over Roger Huerta and Sandro are impressive, but Curran is looking to add some hardware to his mantle in the form of the Bellator Featherweight Championship.

    Both of these men come to entertain and there’s no reason to think this fight will be anything but explosive. Warren’s boxing has improved, but he’ll need to put this fight on the mat to walk away with the victory and his world title in hand.

    1. Mirko “Cro-Cop” Filipovic vs. Ray Sefo
    K-1 Final Fight
    Zagreb, Croatia
    March 10, 2012

    In what will be a bitter sweet moment for fans of Mirko Filipovic, the one and only “Cro-Cop” will enter the ring one final time to put an end to one of the most storied and dramatic careers in history of the sport.

    Without getting sentimental, Filipovic started his career in K-1 where he was the 1999 K-1 Grand-Prix runner up. The greener pastures of a then flourishing PRIDE FC called and “Cro-Cop” made the move to MMA where he had immense success in this organization. His fight against Emelianenko was at the time the most anticipated bout in the history of mixed martial arts, and few bouts have rivaled the excitement that surrounded that one since.

    Hard time fell upon Filipovic in the UFC as he never was able to get things going following a devastating head kick loss to Gabriel Gonzaga. With millions of fans around the world, Filipovic has found it hard to let go but after proving he can no longer compete at the highest level has decided to hang them up.

    Ray Sefo (a 2000 K-1 Grand-Prix Runner up) will have the honours of Filipovic’s final bout.

    The always entertaining New Zealand native has also falled on hand times recently. A valiant late replacement effort against Tyrone Spong in 2010 was thought to possibly be Sefo’s last bout, but it appears as though he has decided to stick around a little longer.

    This bout is the number one bout to check out this month not because it’s relevant, or a particularly entertaining bout, although I’m sure Filipovic will be motivated in front of his home town crowd.

    It was chosen because this will be the last time ever see one of the greatest heavyweights in the sport’s history do his thing. The legend of “Cro-Cop” will live on, but this is your last chance to see him fight live. The pay-per-view is available in North America, and we owe it to “Cro-Cop” to give him a fond farewell.

    Honorable mentions: There’s two bouts not on the list this month worth checking out. The first is another lightweight quarter final in the Bellator tournament between Patricky Freire and Lloyd Woodward, taking place March 23 at Bellator 62. Both men always put on exciting bouts and this won’t be an exception.

    The other bout you should look out for will be judged by our very own beloved Ben Cartlidge. In the heavyweight main event of CWFC Fight Night 4 in Dubai, German goliath Andreas Kraniotakes will take on Bellator veteran Mike “300″ Hayes for the CWFC Heavyweight Championship.
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    Sherdog's 10 March Tussles Worth Watching

    While the first two months of the year usually run a bit slow on the independent circuit, the mixed martial arts calendar will find another gear in March, with a least five non-Zuffa LLC events poised to draw 5,000 fans or more.

    Sengoku has disappeared from the scene and Dream has fallen into a deep sleep, so the power balance in the Far East shifts towards the three islands of Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia -- home of the fledgling One Fighting Championship promotion. It settles into a prominent position in our monthly “10 Tussles” series, as we take you around the globe in an effort to broaden your MMA horizons, showcasing the best fights and fighters that might not get much attention otherwise.

    As always, the list does not focus on the well-promoted main event bouts from major organizations you already know to watch but rather on fights from all over the planet that are worth seeing. The UFC, Strikeforce and Bellator Fighting Championships shows are excluded by design.

    Renato “Babalu” Sobral vs. Melvin Manhoef
    One FC “War of the Lions” | March 31 -- Kallang, Singapore

    With Sobral’s wins over Kiyoshi Tamura, Tsuyoshi Kosaka and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Manhoef’s victories against Kazushi Sakuraba, Kazuo Misaki and Mark Hunt, it is safe to say both men have built successful names in Japan. It will be interesting to see how that translates to the “New Japan,” Singapore, which appears to be the latest hotbed for MMA in Asia. On the sporting front, neither man has fought in MMA in more than a year. As is the case with every Manhoef fight, if he can keep it standing, he becomes a heavy favorite.

    Georgi Karakhanyan vs. Micah Miller
    TPF 12 “Second Coming” | March 9 -- Lemoore, Calif.

    With its stacked cards, Tachi Palace Fights has become a favorite stop for the lower-weight aficionados. TPF matchmaker Richard Goodman has put together about as legitimate a featherweight scrap as can be made outside of the UFC, pairing “The Ultimate Fighter 14” alum Miller with Bellator veteran Karakhanyan. The Armenian made short work of Isaac DeJesus in December. Miller was upset by Steven Siler on “The Ultimate Fighter” and wants a victory to redeem himself.

    Tom Watson vs. Jack Marshman
    BAMMA 9 | March 24 -- Birmingham, England

    Arguably the best United Kingdom-based fighter not currently in the UFC, Southampton’s Watson has alternated between battling injury woes and dispatching hand-picked opponents inside the British Association of Mixed Martial Arts cage. “Kong” was last seen head kicking former EliteXC middleweight champion Murilo “Ninja” Rua into retirement in May. Ten months later, he will face BAMMA’s undefeated British champion Marshman. The 22-year-old Welshman may not possess Watson’s experience, but he has been quite active lately, fighting eight times within the last 24 months.

    Alexander Yakovlev vs. Shamil Zavurov
    M-1 Challenge 31 “Oleinik vs. Monson” | March 16 -- St. Petersburg, Russia

    Although he dropped the M-1 Global welterweight title in spectacular fashion with a last-minute submission loss to Yasubey Enomoto, stocky sambo specialist Zavurov remains one of the top 170-pound fighters in Europe. Another intriguing Russian prospect, “Bad Boy” Yakovlev, will challenge the former champion. Yakovlev possesses one of the most entertaining entrances in M-1 -- he is often accompanied by his own rapper -- and also wields well-rounded skills with striking and submissions. Zavorov’s heavy top game seems certain to test the guard of the St. Petersburg fighter.
    Gilbert Yvel File Photo

    Yvel looked strong in his debut at 205.

    Gilbert Yvel vs. Houston Alexander
    RFA 2 “Yvel vs. Alexander” | March 30 -- Kearney, Neb.

    “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” That saying certainly does not apply to Dutch kickboxer Yvel, who made the move from heavyweight to 205 pounds 14 years into his professional career. After punching overmatched Damian Dantibo into submission in his light heavyweight debut, the “Hurricane” ups the ante by signing to fight former UFC knockout artist Alexander. The 39-year-old Nebraskan successfully revived his career with knockouts of Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou and Razak Al-Hassan and remains a dangerous one-punch striker.

    Rogent Lloret vs. Goran Reljic
    Strength & Honor Championship 5 | March 24 -- Geneva, Switzerland

    Former UFC middleweight Reljic moves up two weight classes to take on Spain’s Lloret. Reljic quietly bounced back from a trio of defeats inside the Octagon with a must-win over Serbian debutant Goran Scepanovic in October. Lloret was not as lucky, as he was submitted by American Bobby Brents in his last outing for the Cage Warriors Fighting Championship. It will be interesting to see if Reljic, a versatile striker with a solid ground game, can overcome a possible 20-pound weight deficit.

    Daniel Acacio vs. Josh Burkman
    Amazon Forest Combat 2 | March 31 -- Manaus, Brazil

    One of the cradles of MMA, Brazil features great domestic promotions. Many of today’s champions have passed through those shows, from Jungle Fight and Bitetti Combat to Fury Fighting Championship and Mecca. The current top dog where big-name fighters are concerned appears to be Amazon Forest Combat. Following up its eyebrow-raising debut in September, AFC has put together another stellar card, including a welterweight scrap between Pride Fighting Championships veteran Acacio and “The Ultimate Fighter” alum Burkman.

    Carla Esparza vs. Angela Magana
    MEZ Sports “Pandemonium 6” | March 3 -- Riverside, Calif.

    In the shadow of Strikeforce’s blockbuster women’s bout between Miesha Tate and Ronda Rousey, MEZ Sports has compiled a formidable female battle of its own between top 115-pounders Esparza and Magana. Team Oyama’s Esparza enjoys home-field advantage, as she trains just a 40-minute drive from the event location. The 24-year-old submission specialist is coming off a strong win over Felice Herrig in December. Magana will bring with here a considerable size and reach advantage, along with the fact that she has faced much tougher competition.

    Andreas Kraniotakes vs. Mike Hayes
    CWFC “Fight Night 4” | March 16 -- Dubai, United Arab Emirates

    In this month’s most notable heavyweight battle, Germany’s Kraniotakes faces off against Strikeforce and Bellator veteran Hayes just three weeks after his win over Ukraine’s Dmitry Poberezhets. Hayes has managed to free himself from his Bellator obligations after staying on the shelf for more than five months; here, he is rewarded with a crack at the vacant Cage Warriors heavyweight strap. Both of them like to stand and trade, as well as fight on the ground, so it figures to boil down to which man is better prepared physically for this five-round title bout.

    Kiyotaka Shimizu vs. Haruo Ochi
    Shooto “3rd Round” | March 10 -- Tokyo

    Bouncing back and forth between Shooto and Pancrase -- where he holds the flyweight crown -- the world-ranked Shimizu remains one of Japan’s Top 5 “little men.” Always looking to stay active, the sambo artist will face Ochi at Shooto’s March 10 event. Oachi is a violent flyweight with power in both of his hands, vicious ground-and-pound and extreme upper-body strength. Shimizu has not been in top form in his last two fights, so the possibility of an upset definitely exists here.
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    Titan Fighting Championship 21 results

    Former Sengoku champ and recently released UFC middleweight Jorge Santiago made quick work of Leonardo Pecanha, earning a first-round knockout.

    Of course, Pecanha made it easy for him by going toe-to-toe.

    The Brazilian vs. Brazilian fight capped off a night of action at Titan Fighting Championship 21, which took place Saturday night at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan., and aired live on HDNet.

    Pecanha, a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt, was no match for Santiago, and showed it when Santiago escaped his drive to the cage.

    Standing in open range, Pecanha swung for the fences and Santiago responded in kind. But Santiago's left hook found his chin, and a straight right put him out.

    Pecanha (14-8) fell to the mat, unconscious, and the fight was over at the 1:48 mark of the first round.

    "I'm brining back the old 'Sandman,'" Santiago (24-10) said afterward. "That's what I'm going to keep doing."

    Interrupted from his nap by the inconvenience of a professional MMA fight, Joe Wilk got to work.

    After his faux-sleep routine at the top of the entrance ramp, Wilks proceeded to close the distance against featherweight Andrew Carrillo and caught a right hand that immediately caught his attention.

    Driving for a takedown, Wilk walked right into a guillotine choke, but against the cage, he was able to create space and free himself. When Carrillo drove to escape the bottom, he took his revenge.

    Using sneaky knees against the cage, Wilk (13-7) used his right leg to keep Carrillo (5-3) from escaping the position. But when Carrillo did, he cinched his own guillotine choke and coaxed a tapout at 2:01 of the first round.

    Joe Ellenberger victorious, gets back on winning track

    Joe Ellenberger righted his ship.

    Following the first loss of his professional career this past October, the lightweight fighter and brother of UFC contender Jake Ellenberger sliced through Jesse Zeugin with an elbow in the third frame of their meeting to open the door to a submission win.

    Ellenberger coaxed a tap from a rear naked choke at the 1:16 mark of the round with blood pouring from Zeugin's forehead courtesy of the strike.

    Zeugin proved to be little match for Ellenberger when the fight hit the mat. And that's where the bulk of the bout took place.

    Ellenberger nearly cinched an anaconda choke in the first round, but contented himself with pounding away from Zeugin's back when the submission didn't work.

    Zeugin's ray of light came in the second when Ellenberger lifted him up for a slam and invited a guillotine choke. Although he cranked away, Ellenberger escaped and continued to pepper him with punches at his back.

    After a takedown from Ellenberger (13-1) in the third, it seemed a matter of time before he would finish the fight on a turtled Zeugin (7-3), and that he did at the 1:16 mark of the third frame.

    Lightweight Kevin Croom wasn't the better man for much of his fight with Ramiro Hernandez, but his intensity more than made up for it.

    Hernandez had his way with Croom in the standup portion of the fight. But Croom just kept coming and dominated the fight when it went to the mat.

    Ultimately, Hernandez (11-4) was awarded a split decision over Croom (4-3), but the fight was so exciting that neither really came out on the losing end.

    Despite nearly a half-foot reach advantage, Brazilian Fabio Mello had an advantage on the mat against Josh Huber, who had missed weight by eight pounds the day prior on the scale.

    But few might anticipate Mello would set his sixth consecutive victory in motion with his hands. After trading a few leg kicks with Huber, he landed a thunderous left hook that found its mark and sent Huber to the mat.

    There, Mello poured on the ground and pound as Huber hung in there. Unfortunately, the heavier fighter was in his opponent's comfort zone, and he didn't do nearly enough to keep Mello from setting a textbook arm-triangle choke.

    After a short struggle, Huber tapped to the submission at the 3:26 mark of the first round.

    Undefeated featherweight prospect Mirsad Bektic (3-0) proved to be too much for Cody Carillo (2-4) on the mat.

    Bektic opened a cut above Carillo's eye and poured on an onslaught of ground and pound against the cage. Carillo couldn't escape, and with each punch, his face swelled more.

    But that wasn't Bektic's only bright moment. He dropped Carillo with a big punch to start the third frame and resumed his attack from top position on the mat, pounding away before taking mount. Turning to avoid punishment, Carillo was easy fodder for a rear naked choke, tapping at the 3:12 mark of the frame.

    Titan Fighting Championships 21 main-card results:

    Jorge Santiago def. Leonardo Pecanha via knockout (punches) - Round 1, 1:48
    Joe Wilk def. Andrew Carrillo via submission (guillotine choke) - Round 1, 2:01
    Joe Ellenberger def. Jesse Zeugin via submission (rear-naked choke) - Round 3, 1:16
    Ramiro Hernandez def. Kevin Croom via split decision
    Fabio Mello def. Josh Huber via submission (arm-triangle choke) - Round 1, 3:26
    Mirsad Bektic def. Cody Carillo via submission (rear naked choke) - Round 3, 3:12
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    10 Kickboxing Fights to Watch in March

    A new month has started, and that means there's some great upcoming action in the kickfighting world. February didn't see any huge names but still produced some great action, including SuperKombat's return. This month, some bigger names have come out to play, particularly with the "Cro Cop Final Fight" on March 10 in Croatia and United Glory's first event of the year on March 23. Both cards house some big names and we'll profile ten fights this month that you should definitely not miss. Click "Read More" to see ten fights that you should watch this month.

    Sahak Parparyan vs. Toni Milanovic - Cro Cop Final Fight - Zagreb, Croatia - March 10

    Right now, Sahak Parparyan seems like the best in the world at 85kg, where he is the It's Showtime World Champion. He recently fought at 95kg on short notice against Mourad Bouzidi, who came down from heavyweight and still won. For this fight, he'll take on Croation fighter Toni Milanovic, a tough fighter who fights around 86-95kg. This fight will be contested at 91kg and Milanovic should provide a sturdy test for Sahak.

    Daniel Ghita vs. Sergei Lascenko - Cro Cop Final Fight - Zagreb, Croatia - March 10

    Daniel Ghita has fully cemented himself as an elite heavyweight while Sergei Lascenko is getting there after having a breakout year in 2011. Ghita didn't take much damage at all from his last fight so he should be firing on all cylinders and in top form. Sergei Lascenko is tough as nails and can dish out his own high octane offense so even if Ghita obliterates him with low kicks, he'll stick around for a long time. The two have met before, back in the final of the K-1 WGP in Tokyo Final 16 Qualifier in 2009.

    Marc de Bonte vs. Michael Buxant - A1 World Combat Cup - Genk, Netherlands - March 10

    Marc de Bonte is a good light heavyweight fighter flying under the radar after an impressive showing against Jiri Zak at the MPL's October show. This fight is under full Muay Thai rules and it's five rounds. This fight is on a card that also houses the first round of the A1 World Combat Cup of 63.5kg, a 32 man tournament. There's eight 63.5kg tournament fights on the card so there should be a ton of great fights.

    Rico Verhoeven vs. Ben Edwards - Capital Punishment 5 - Canberra, Australia - March 17

    Ben Edwards looked like a different fighter in his win over Ricardo van den Bos, but here he takes a big step up in competition from his last fight. Although he got knocked out in the first round by Errol Zimmerman in his last outing, Rico Verhoeven is still only 22 years old and a tough fight for a lot of heavyweight kickboxers. Ben Edwards will need to have his gas tank in top form here in order to keep the fight competitive.

    Buakaw Por. Pramuk vs. Fabio Pinca - La Nuit Des Titans - Tours, France - March 17

    What's so interesting about this fight is that Buakaw is dropping below 70kg for the first time in a long time to meet up with Fabio Pinca, who usually fights around 67kg. The fight is at 68kg and it's under full Muay Thai rules. Pinca is coming off two straight fights against Thais, losing to Kem Sitsongpeenong and beating Saenchai in controversial fashion.

    Dzhabar Askerov vs. Robin van Roosmalen - United Glory 15 - Moscow, Russia - March 23

    What can I say, this has all the makings of a slugfest.

    Igor Jurkovic vs. Zabit Samedov - United Glory 15 - Moscow, Russia - March 23

    This is a battle of two heavyweights trying to break into the upper echelon of the division. Jurkovic is on a roll while Samedov, despite being very quiet since his loss to Badr Hari at the K-1 Final 16 in 2009 has racked up four wins in five fights since. Jurkovic will have the size advantage and Samedov will have the speed advantage so it should be a great clash of styles. I could just list the whole fight card for this event here, but I'm going for some diversity.

    Giorgio Petrosyan vs. Artur Kyshenko - Oktagon - Milan, Italy - March 24

    Of course we have to include this fight, it pits the number one pound for pound fighter in all of kickboxing against one of the best kickboxers in the world. This is Giorgio's toughest fight in a long time and besides Buakaw, the man who has the best chance to beat Giorgio at 70kg is probably Artur Kyshenko.

    Chingiz Allazov vs. Bovy Sor Udomson - Oktagon - Milan, Italy - March 24

    Bovy is nearing the end of his career and Chingiz's is set for greatness. Allazov is one of the best up and comers in all of kickfighting and at a very young age he's already destroyed the competition put in front of him. Erkan Varol is a tough, tough veteran and Allazov put a beatdown on him. Bovy is still tough as nails and he'll answer back to Allazov's onslaught with power punches of his own so this should be a cracker.

    Vladimir Idranyi vs. David Keclik - Gala Night Thaiboxing - Zilina, Slovakia - March 31

    This is a battle between two of the better fighters at 85kg. Slovakia and the surrounding area is a hotbed for kickboxing around 85kg. Idranyi is from Slovakia and Keclik from Austria. We could potentially see these two in Golden Glory's 85kg tournament.
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