November 15, 2006
New episode of FCF Radio
In our latest broadcast,
From the event’s promoter:
INTERNATIONAL FIGHT LEAGUE SILVERBACKS-DRAGONS SEMIFINAL TO AIR ON FOX SPORTS NET THIS WEEKEND
Action From Portland On Deck As FSN Coverage Of IFL World Team Championship Continues Through December 31
NEW YORK, November 15, 2006 – The International Fight League World Team Championship semifinal between the Silverbacks, based in Quad Cities, Ill./Iowa, and Dragons, based in Toronto, will air on Fox Sports Net this Sunday, November 19, with rebroadcasts on many of FSN’s regional networks throughout next week. The mixed martial arts matchup took place in Portland on November 2, and determined one of the two spots in the finals, set for December 29 at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn.
The coverage is part of FSN’s 10 hours of IFL World Team Championship coverage this fall, which continues on November 26 with the Wolfpack-Anacondas battle and concludes with the final on New Year’s Eve.
Rogers Sportsnet will also be airing coverage of the quarterfinal matchup between the Silverbacks and Pitbulls beginning on Saturday, November 18. The Canadian sports network will also broadcast quarterfinal action next weekend.
Total hours on FSN and Rogers Sportsnet vary by region, and viewers should check local listings for the correct time and channel in their area.
Spellman Victorious in MMA Debut, Curran Wins Close Decision at XFO-13
By Dustin Lee DePue
Hoffman Estates, IL — An estimated five thousand fight fans in Chicagoland filled the newly minted Sears Center Arena as it played host to the X-treme Fighting Organization on Saturday night. Featuring an eighteen-bout card, including title fights at 205 and 145 pounds, the return of Chicago area "Master" Bob Schirmer, and the MMA debut of former NFL defensive lineman and Chicago Bear Alonzo Spellman, XFO 13 had expectations running high.
In the main event, undefeated Rafael Assuncao took on UFC-veteran and local favorite Jeff Curran in what proved to be a grueling back and forth battle. Both fighters were relentless in their aggression, trading bombs on the feet and slick transitions on the ground. Curran suffered two illegal blows by Assuncao in the first round: a solid groin kick early followed by a kick to his leg when he was down (kicks to a downed opponent are illegal in Illinois) that clearly hurt him and seemed to affect him for the remainder of the round. Regarding the kick to his leg, Curran said, "I definitely think I have a cracked bone or something and that kind of took it out of me a little."
Assuncao didn’t let the referee warnings affect his aggression as he continued to land snapping leg kicks whose loud smacks echoed throughout the arena. Curran countered with punches, landing stiff jabs and several big hooks that had Assuncao’s mouth bleeding. Going into the third and final round, Assuncao turned it up, scoring several takedowns and landing solid knees from the clinch. He appeared to be winning the round, however, a third foul for fence grabbing cost him a point and as the round finished the question was whether he had shot himself in the foot with the fight seemingly in the bag. Mixed reactions came forth from the crowd as Jeff Curran was declared the victor by majority decision. Addressing the crowd on the microphone, Curran apologized, saying, "I don’t think I won that fight."
Speaking in the locker room, Assuncao felt that he won the fight but didn’t appear to hold any ill will toward Curran or the XFO, saying, "No bad feelings, good fight, maybe a rematch in the long run." He added, "I’m pretty disappointed, it was my first loss but he was a tough guy."
After the fight, Curran reinforced his statements in the ring. "If I was a judge it was definitely going to be Raphael’s fight. I’m not looking to stretch by and take these close wins or anything like that. I think what gave me the stretch was he was warned twice on some illegal things he was doing in the fight. On the third thing he was holding onto the cage while he was landing shots and ref felt it was time to take off a point." Curran added, "In my eyes and my heart, I give him the victory."
Antoine "Herc" Hayes had strong words regarding opponent Alonzo Spellman. "He’s not a fighter, he’s a football player trying to fight. I respect him as an athlete but not as a fighter. He hasn’t earned a fight against me." When pressed to say how he’d like to finish the fight, Hayes said with a smile, "Kick to the head."
It was not to be, however, as Spellman, all 6’4" and 300-plus pounds of him, was able to stifle much of Herc’s offense early on. After eating a smacking leg kick, Spellman charged, using his enormous body and his superior strength to pin Herc against the fence, where Spellman was able to repeatedly dig his gigantic knees into Herc’s midsection. Spellman followed with a trip takedown where he took Herc’s back and worked for a rear naked choke. Herc got his chance to finish in the second and third rounds, each of which saw him securing a tight arm bar. Spellman survived both attempts and his control of the first round plus his strong finish in the final minutes of the third earned him a unanimous decision.
Chicago stalwart Bob Schirmer returned to action after a seven-year hiatus from MMA competition. Known in the Windy City for his draw with Carlson Gracie Jr, the fifty-year old took on opponent Chris McDaniels, who had to be half Schirmer’s age. After struggling for the takedown, Schirmer was able to get McDaniels down, and with the crowd chanting his name, he went for an arm bar. McDaniels slipped out at the last moment and ended up in Schirmer’s guard, where he hammered Schirmer with several concussive blows that knocked him unconscious. Slow in getting up, the crowd cheered as he was helped to his feet.
UFC-veteran Terry Martin overcame two point-deductions for fouls in his battle with opponent Jason Guida, dropping him with a big right hand just eight seconds into the third round. Guida was game but overmatched as Martin imposed his will both standing and on the ground. In the bizarre scene that followed Martin’s KO victory, Jason Guida’s brother Clay was attacked by Martin as he jumped over the fence to aid his fallen brother. Hanging from the top of the fence, Clay yelled to Martin, who thought Clay was jumping in to start a fight, that he was just trying to help his brother, after which Martin backed off.
Justin McElfresh captured the XFO 205-pound title, quickly taking down opponent Ron Fields and securing an armbar from the mount midway through the first round.
Matt Fiordirosa put his 145-pound belt on the line against challenger Justin Robbins, successfully defending it within the first round. Both fighters scored knees from the clinch before Fiordirosa landed a wicked right hand that put Robbins on the mat. Fiordirosa followed him down where he was able to finish Robbins with a rear-naked choke. Fiordirosa continues to impress at 145 pounds.
Brian Gassaway returned to the XFO to face Donnie Liles. Victorious at XFO 12, Gassaway defended Liles’s takedown attempts early. A few brief exchanges later and Liles was able to get the fight to the ground, where he caught Gassaway in a rear-naked choke to end the fight.
Professional Fights (3×5-minute rounds)
Jeff Curran def. Raphael Assuncao by majority decision (29-27, 29-27,29-29)
145 lb Title Fight
205 lb Title Fight
Mike Marrello def. Josh Taibl by rear-naked choke 2:31 R1
Amateur Fights (3×3-minute rounds)
Mike Stumpf def Tony Rook by rear-naked choke 1:04 Rd 1
From the event’s promoter:
BodogFight Fans Ready to Cast Votes For Their Favorite Fighter Tonight
Most popular MMA warrior receives $50,000
November 15, 2006 – With the final battle between Trevor Prangley and Kyacey Uscola now complete, BodogFight, the hit mixed martial arts (MMA) reality TV series created by Bodog.com Entertainment Group Founder Calvin Ayre, makes fan opinion matter as the polls to crown the BodogFight Favorite Fighter are now open. Fans can visit www.bodogfight.com/contests to cast their votes for the gladiator they deem worthy of an additional $50,000 paycheck.
Each fan who votes is also eligible to win an ultimate mixed martial arts prize package, complete with a five-day trip to Los Angeles, fight lessons and up to $10,000 in cash.
As part of the PPV event, one of the three Superfights will showcase Roger Gracie in his professional MMA fight debut. With an incredible tournament showdown and the introduction of a new Gracie family member to MMA fans worldwide, the BodogFight main event is shaping up to be the largest and most exciting event of its kind.
"We have utilized every technical aspect possible in this contest to ensure fan participation directly impacts one athlete’s financial award," says Calvin Ayre, whose vast digital empire includes Bodog Music, the international record label responsible for the incredible soundtrack heard each week on BodogFight. "The ability to vote either through text messaging, online or using DISH networks i-Ad campaign ensures no fan’s voice will go unheard."
BodogFight is the first sports league to reach beyond traditional programming and offer fans more enjoyment from their TV viewing without ever having to leave their seats. Developed by DISH Network and TMG, the comprehensive iTV campaign consists of a "trigger," or on-screen prompt, that takes the BodogFight viewers to an i-Ad, or web-like environment, on their TV. From this space, viewers can watch a 1/4 screen of the episode in progress while also instantly voting for their favorite fighter and entering for the trip to L.A.
With advertisers developing powerful new methods to connect with viewers beyond the traditional broadcast, BodogFight is committed to bringing these advances to MMA fans worldwide, giving them access to a deeper level of enjoyment beyond what TV regularly offers.
On December 2, the first season of BodogFight culminates with a groundbreaking global clash as Team USA takes on Russia in a pay-per-view extravaganza being broadcast live from Vancouver, Canada. A few days later, the second season of the TV series, which has already reached more than 43 million homes in America, begins filming in gorgeous St. Petersburg, Russia. For all the news on BodogFight, including fighter bios, behind-the-scenes footage and full-length episodes, visit BodogFight.com.