Johnson vs. Borg Canceled, Nunes-Shevchenko is New UFC 215 Headliner

Demetrious Johnson vs. Ray Borg will not take place at UFC 215. Borg has fallen ill and will not be able to compete at the event. MMAFighting.com confirmed the news. The illness is said to be unrelated to the weight cut. The women’s bantamweight title bout between champion Amanda Nunes and Valentina Shevchenko will be […]

Cristiane ‘Cyborg’ Justino Receives Boxing License from California State Athletic Commission

Cristiane Justino could be the next UFC star to take her talents to the Sweet Science.

Donald Cerrone vs. Darren Till Targeted for UFC Fight Night 118 Headliner in Poland

UFC Fight Night 118 appears to have its main event, as Octagon staple Donald Cerrone will square off against rising prospect Darren Till in a welterweight duel.

Mayweather-McGregor ‘Money Fight’ Breaks U.K. Record for Pay-Per-View Buys

The “Money Fight” has officially broken one pay-per-view record.

Report: Fertitta Brothers Sell Remaining UFC Equity to WME-IMG

The value of the Ultimate Fighting Championship is even higher than originally imagined after Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta recently sold the remainder of their equity in the company to WME-IMG.

Flyweights Tim Elliott, Justin Scoggins Booked for UFC on Fox 26 in Winnipeg

A flyweight clash pitting Tim Elliott against Justin Scoggins has been added to the UFC on Fox 26 lineup.

Ray Borg Suffers Illness, UFC 215 Headliner vs. Demetrious Johnson Canceled

The UFC 215 headliner between Demetrious Johnson and Ray Borg has been canceled after Borg was deemed medically unfit to compete due to illness.

Urijah Faber, Cody Garbrandt Accuse T.J. Dillashaw of ‘Cheap Shotting’ Teammates in Practice

The feud between T.J. Dillashaw and his former teammates at Team Alpha Male in Sacramento isn’t going away any time soon it seems.

As current bantamweight champion Cody Garbrandt prepares to meet his former teammate at UFC 217, he addressed his history with Dillashaw during an appearance on the Joe Rogan podcast on Tuesday.

Garbrandt was on the show alongside Team Alpha Male founder Urijah Faber, who accused Dillashaw of intentionally hurting his teammates during numerous practices throughout his time spent at the Sacramento based gym.

“T.J. was never the best teammate. He would try to hurt people,” Faber said. “He’s a very competitive guy and he has a temper. Cheap shotting. There’s no secret about T.J., we talked about it when he was still on the team also that he had to be reeled in a little bit. He’s just got a temper.”

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According to his former teammates, Dillashaw was guilty of numerous shots after the bell or even throwing knees while in a boxing sparring session.

Garbrandt then went one step further and revealed that Dillashaw was responsible for the concussion that has effectively stopped Chris Holdsworth from competing since 2014. The former “Ultimate Fighter” winner was a highly touted prospect after leaving the reality show but issues with concussions put him on the sidelines where he’s now taking a more active role in coaching rather than fighting.

Garbrandt claims that the blame for that largely falls on Dillashaw’s shoulders.

“That’s why Chris [Holdsworth] is out,” Garbrandt said. “He kneed him in the back of the head, concussion.

“We’re talking about cheap shotting. Duane [Ludwig] used to came up to Chris like ‘hey grasshopper, T.J.’s fighting can you take it easy on him?’ and Chris is a killer, just f–king him up. Chris is an animal. I guess Chris choked him out and T.J. got up and f–king kneed him in the back of his head when he was down on the mat.”

Faber confirmed the story while sitting next to Garbrandt, but then shut down talking about the situation any further while stating that Holdsworth didn’t want the information made public.

Either way, Faber and Garbrandt both put Dillashaw on blast for his tactics, which they witnessed in training several times over the years.

“Cheap shots at the bell, in boxing he’d knee you,” Garbrandt stated about Dillashaw. “Dirty s–t. Just dumb s–t.”

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Friday’s LFA 22 Has a New Co-Main Event

Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA) CEO Ed Soares announced this week that the promotion will have a new co-main event at LFA 22 when the promotion returns to Colorado on Friday. 

The new co-main event of LFA 22 will feature a rematch between former RFA welterweight champions Gilbert Smith and Benjamin Smith. The change came when Benjamin Smith’s friend and teammate Andrew Kapel was injured during training and withdrew from the bout. Benjamin Smith offered to step up to take the fight on 5 days’s notice to get one last shot at his old rival Gilbert Smith. The change sets up a rematch of one of the most memorable title fights in RFA history.

The main event of LFA 22 will see Colorado’s own Ian “The Hurricane” Heinisch face Brazilian dynamo and fellow undefeated prospect Markus “Maluko” Perez for the vacant LFA middleweight world title. LFA 22 – Heinisch vs. Perez takes place this Friday, September 8th at the 1STBANK Center in Broomfield, Colorado. The entire main card will be televised live and nationwide on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT.

“Gilbert Smith lost his opponent Andrew Kapel due to injury,” stated Soares. “Benjamin Smith offered to step up in his place on 5 days’ notice. This sets up a rematch of one of the most memorable title fights in RFA history. Gilbert defeated Benjamin for the RFA welterweight title two summers ago at the 1STBANK Center. He will look to do it again in his retirement fight this Friday at LFA 22, while Benjamin looks to avenge the loss that made him surrender his title at RFA 26.”

LFA 22 Fight PosterTickets for LFA 22 – Heinisch vs. Perez are available for purchase NOW at AltitudeTickets.com. You can also support your favorite fighter by purchasing your tickets at CombatTickets.com.

The main event of LFA 22 will see the top American middleweight prospect Ian Heinisch (8-0) face the top Brazilian middleweight prospect Markus Perez (8-0) for the vacant LFA middleweight world title. The title was vacated in July when the inaugural LFA middleweight champion Eryk Anders signed with the UFC.

Heinisch received plenty of fanfare when he signed with the LFA earlier this year. This was due to the fact that Heinisch is widely regarded as one of the top middleweight prospects in the world. The two-time Colorado state wrestling champion from Ponderosa High School lived up to media and fans’ lofty expectations, and then some, when he made his highly-anticipated LFA debut in the main event of LFA 10. Heinisch quickly dispatched the well-versed Brazilian powerhouse Lucas Rota in less than a round with a rare Ude-Garami (Keylock) from Kesa-Gatame (Scarf Hold). This positioned him at the front of the line for a title shot. The 29-year-old will now get the opportunity to fight for the vacant LFA middleweight title in front of his home crowd at LFA 22.

Perez is perhaps the only middleweight prospect in the world that can match the intrigue surrounding Heinisch. This is due in large part to the fact that Perez has been just as dominant in his native Brazil as Heinisch has been stateside. The man known as “Maluko” will be making his highly-anticipated international MMA debut on the heels of back-to-back wins over UFC veterans Ildemar Alcântara and Paulo Thiago. Those wins saw Perez’s stock as a top prospect skyrocket as Alcântara and Thiago have a combined 20 fights in the UFC between the two of them. The 27-year-old is now eager to showcase his talents outside of Brazil for the first time. He will get that opportunity on Friday when he fights for the vacant LFA middleweight title.

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The co-main event of LFA 22 will feature the farewell fight of one of Colorado’s most beloved and accomplished fighters when Gilbert Smith (12-6) gets his hands wrapped and throws down one last time in front of his adoring home crowd. The proud Coloradan has enjoyed an MMA career that has seen him reach the highest levels of the sport.

The U.S. Army veteran and Colorado Springs resident competed on two seasons of the UFC’s hit reality television show The Ultimate Fighter. Along with being a memorable cast member on TUF 17 and TUF 25, Smith competed for the UFC and Bellator, as well as both RFA and Legacy FC before the two promotions merged to form LFA at the beginning of the year. During his time with RFA, Smith won the welterweight world title.

The man that will now be standing across the Octagon from Smith at LFA 22 will be a man Gilbert Smith knows all too well. That would be Benjamin Smith (15-4), the man Gilbert submitted in the third round of their title fight at RFA 26. Many consider the fluid and dramatic armbar that Gilbert used to dethrone Benjamin the biggest win of Gilbert’s career. Benjamin lost his title that night and would only compete twice more before retiring from the sport himself. However, Benjamin jumped at the chance to come out of retirement to avenge that loss ,when his friend and training partner Andrew Kapel was injured over the weekend.

LFA 22 Main Card (Televised on AXS TV at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT):

  • Main Event | Middleweight Title Bout (185 lb)
    – Ian Heinisch (8-0) vs. Markus Perez (8-0)
  • Co-Main Event | Catchweight Bout (180 lb)
    – Gilbert Smith (12-6) vs. Benjamin Smith (15-4)
  • Bantamweight Bout (135 lb)
    – Chris Gutierrez (10-3-1) vs. Mario Israel (10-3)
  • Featherweight Bout (145 lb)
    – Derek Brenon (4-0) vs. Boimah Karmo (4-2)
  • Flyweight Bout (125 lb)
    – Brandon Royval (5-3) vs. Demetrius Wilson (5-1)
  • Women’s Strawweight Bout (115 lb)
    – Maycee Barber (1-0) vs. Mallory Martin (1-1)
  • Welterweight Bout (170 lb)
    – Mike Jones (5-3) vs. Adam Vigil (3-0)

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Demetrious Johnson Wants to Set ‘Legendary’ Records Before Changing Divisions

On Saturday night at UFC 215, Demetrious Johnson will attempt to set the all-time record for title defenses in the UFC when he faces Ray Borg while putting his flyweight championship on the line for the 11th consecutive occasion.

Johnson is currently tied with former middleweight champion Anderson Silva with 10 title defenses after he defeated Wilson Reis earlier this year.

The odds are certainly on Johnson’s side that he’ll get to No. 11 considering he’s currently sitting as a 10-to-1 favorite to beat Borg and retain his title. That being said, Johnson doesn’t plan on stoppage at only 11 title defenses because in a perfect world he will set a new all time record that will sit alone in the history books long after he’s retired.

“A friend of mine once said, ten [title defenses] that’s attainable, 11 that’s attainable, he goes 15 is f–king legendary,” Johnson told MMAWeekly.com on a recent UFC media conference call. “He goes, why don’t you just go to 15? I said, you know what? Why not?

“I mean I’m 31 years old and I feel good and you’ve got a lot of new young up and coming guys coming into the division so why not just keep on doing it because I can.”

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Of course part of the argument that always goes against Johnson is the dominance he’s shown at flyweight while the division is still so new.

Johnson cut down to 125 pounds after spending the majority of his career fighting as an undersized bantamweight and while several others joined him in the newly created division a few years ago, the weight class has still struggled to find worthy contenders while he’s run roughshod over everyone put in front of him.

It’s part of the reason why Johnson has been attached to so many requests to see him move back to bantamweight just to test himself against bigger and arguably more skilled opposition.

Johnson has never been opposed to a super fight at 135 pounds, but he’s always stated that if he’s going to challenge himself against bigger opposition, he wants a heftier paycheck to match.

“It’s not like 135 [pounds] is going anywhere. When I get 35 or 36 or 37 years old, when I’m tired of dieting and not having Oreo’s the week before my fight, then you know, I’ll go to 135 but right now I’m focused on setting records as high as I can,” Johnson said. “And then the money is right, go up to 135 and let’s make it happen.

“Let’s be honest, if Conor McGregor would have got, you know, $2 million to fight [Floyd] Mayweather he probably wouldn’t have done it.”

For all the flack Johnson has taken for not opting to bump up a division just for the sake of proving himself, he seems to hear his name being called by a lot of other fighters today.

Former bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw was in the running to land a fight with Johnson not to mention current 135-pound king Cody Garbrandt has said he’d like to drop down to flyweight to put an end to his historic reign.

That all adds up to money in Johnson’s back account as well as a great way to put some established competition on his resume while attempting to rack up even more title defenses.

“I’m just focused on doing what I do best which is just clean house in my division and everybody in the UFC, everybody in the world says, he’s the most boring fighter, he doesn’t sell any pay-per-view but everyone wants to fight me,” Johnson said. “So, I don’t understand why they keep saying that but, yes, that makes me happy that my name keeps coming out of their mouth and obviously if that fight were to happen we’ll all sit down like grown men, businessmen, and negotiate whether it would be [125 pounds] or [135 pounds].”

For now, Johnson will just stay focused on breaking the record against Borg this weekend and if he’s successful then the next most important goal will be getting to No. 12.

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