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Thursday, Dec 14, 2000

News Flash…

News Flash…
UFC XXIX Weigh-in
& Fighter Meeting

By "The Mouth of NHB" Joel Gold

Miyako Hotel Tokyo
Friday 15 December 2000

A packed room filled with reporters and fighters sat through the rules meeting. Referee Mario Yamasaki spoke of the rules for UFC 29; an interpreter translated each word into Japanese. Noticeably absent from the meeting was Pat Miletich and Matt Hughes. Both fighters were on the way to Japan a day late as mechanical difficulties delayed their arrival.

ON TO THE WEIGH-IN…After the fighter rules meeting, it was time for the weigh-in. Each fighter stepping on the scale made weight and then began to replenish their depleted bodies, when an objection to the scale was made by Yuki Kondo’s camp complaining the scale weighed very light.

Tito Ortiz weighing in
Yuki Kondo weighing in

Kondo [pictured above right], many pounds under the middleweight limit wanted a new scale and another weigh-in for his opponent, Tito Ortiz[pictured above left]. No dice, as Ortiz had already begun to drink and eat. Matchmaker, John Perretti voiced that all fighters weighed in on the same scale and if it were a problem, it should have been addressed before the weigh-in, not after. The scale was said to be from the gym of Yuki Kondo, and all parties knew which scale was to be used 2 days prior to weigh-in.

The scale

As all settled, it was now time for the fighter press conference and each fighter was given a chance to say a few words. Tito Ortiz stated he was willing to put his life on the line to defend his middleweight belt, so Kondo better be ready for a war! World War III! While Kondo replied, "Tito better be ready to defend that belt." Evan Tanner thanked the crowd and stated he was happy to be back fighting in the Octagon and Japan. His opponent Lance Gibson wished Tanner well and went on to state it was nice to be back in the land of the samurai. It would be a battle of the Canadian warrior against the American warrior. The meeting ended with a photo op of all the fighters for the Japanese press.
Tito Ortiz weighing in
Yuki Kondo weighing in
The scale

From the DSE/Pride:

PRIDE 12 Finalized Matchups

Bad news…Allan Goes, who was supposed to face to Akira Shoji, will be unable to participate in PRIDE.12 due to injury to his neck, Ricardo Almeida will take his place. In addition to the news another match was announced.

Ricardo Almeida vs. Akira Shoji
Ricco Rodriguez vs. John Marsh

Ricardo Almeida
ENTRY First in PRIDE Ricardo Almeida
DOB: 11/29/1976
WEIGHT: 196 lbs.
HEIGHT: 6’0"
’99 ADCC 3rd Place
Ricco Rodriguez
ENTRY PRIDE 9 & 10 Ricco Rodriguez
DOB: 8/19/1977
WEIGHT: 220 lbs.
HEIGHT: 6’4"
’00 PRIDE10 def. Giant Ochiai
’00 PRIDE 9 def. Gary Goodridge
John Marsh
ENTRY First in PRIDE John Marsh
DOB: 9/15/1970
WEIGHT: 223 lbs.
HEIGHT: 6’1"
’99 SUPER BRAWL 13 def. Travis Fulton
’98 Extreme Challenge 17 def. Paul Pumphrey
’98 Extreme Challenge 17 def. Griffin Reynaud

PRIDE FC "Cold Fury" a.k.a. PRIDE12 finalized matches
Main Card
Kazushi Sakuraba vs. Ryan Gracie
Igor Vovchanchyn vs. Mark Kerr
Kazuyuki Fujita vs. Gilbert Yvel

Under Card
Enson Inoue vs. Heath Herring
Akira Shoji vs. Ricardo Almeida
Vanderlei Silva vs. Dan Henderson
Johil de Oliveira vs. Carlos Newton
Ricco Rodriguez vs. John Marsh
Alexander Otsuka vs. Guy Mezger

"Big Dog" Ricardo Almeida
To Fight Shoji

Ricardo Almeida, a Renzo Gracie black belt, in Japan for Ryan Gracie’s Pride 12 fight against Kazushi Sakuraba, has been asked to step in for an injured Allan Goes. Goes, who was scheduled to fight Akira Shoji in the Pride 12 show on December 23rd, is out reportedly due to a neck injury incurred during training.

Be sure to check back tomorrow, and learn about the "Big Dog", Ricardo Almeida. We will have an interview with Ricardo from the current issue of Full Contact Fighter.

Tito Ortiz Goes Live…
By "The Mouth of NHB" Joel Gold

Tito Ortiz on TV
UFC Middleweight Champ Tito Ortiz made an apperance on Japan’s Kakutogi Jungle, a TV show that covers the world of fighting on Samurai TV [Sky Perfect TV]. Ortiz was asked questions about his upcoming bout this Saturday in UFC 29 against Yuki Kondo. Other questions included what foods he likes and what blood type he is–go figure. Overall it was a good, upbeat interview with lots of energy from the hosts–well, as far as I could tell since it was done in Japanese with an interpreter.


With Josh Gross

Tito Ortiz on TV
Almost since its inception, Mixed Martial Arts has been a haven for world-class amateur wrestlers hoping to compete. Randy Couture, Mark Coleman, Kevin Jackson, Mark Schultz and Mark Kerr have all graced the Octagon, now it’s Matt Lindland’s turn. A father of two, the 30 year-old Lindland was the Greco-Roman 167.5 lb. silver medalist at the 2000 summer Olympic games in Sydney, Australia. Training with UFC Heavyweight Champion Randy Couture and RINGS King of Kings Champion Dan Henderson, Lindland feels there is a natural transition between wrestling and MMA. Fighting for the first time in three years, he faces savvy veteran Yoji Anjoh in what promises to be a good match. I had the opportunity to speak with Matt before he headed off to Japan for his UFC debut on Dec. 16th.

FCF:   Matt, as soon as the Olympics were over did you have plans to start training in Mixed Martial Arts?
Matt Lindland:   Yeah, I was definitely looking into getting into fighting. I didn’t know if I was going to move out permanently to train with Randy (Couture) but I knew I was going to be out here. It worked out so that I moved out here permanently and opened up a business just a couple miles from Randy’s gym. I live about ten minutes from his gym, it works out pretty well.

FCF:   What has your training been like?
ML:     I’ve really been working on my striking and submissions, the two areas I feel like I really needed the most work on. I feel my ground game is pretty good already as far as being on top. I didn’t have any finishing holds coming off the Olympics. That’s the area I think I really improved the quickest. The area that probably still needs the most work is my striking but that’s an area I can improve upon quickly. Every day I’m improving so much with my striking but I still have a long ways to go.

FCF:   You wrestled at 167.5 lbs. yet you’re fighting in the 170-199 lb. weight class, is there any particular reason?
ML:     I cut weight to make 167 lbs. and my natural weight is about 185 lbs. The weight class is 170 lbs. and I’d have to lose 15-16 lbs. to get down there. I don’t want to do that right now. I want to train, improve and not worry about cutting weight because it takes away a lot from your training.

FCF:   What do you know about your opponent Yoji Anjoh?
ML:     I watched his fights and I expect him to be very tough. From what I’ve seen of him I know he won’t quit. I expect him to be pretty savvy and very tough. I know he has some experience and there’s no doubt that if you’ve seen him fight before he won’t stop. To beat him it’s going to have to be a decision or submission. I don’t think I’ll be able to do the old (Mark) Coleman style and ground him and pound him.

FCF:   Good luck in your return to MMA and congratulations on your silver medal.
ML:     Thanks. Take care.

posted by Full Contact Fighter @ 8:00 pm
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