Madison McElhaney ‘Very Prepared’ for Her Invicta FC 22 Debut

While her debut professional fight didn’t happen quite under the circumstances that she would have liked, featherweight prospect Madison McElhaney is thankful to have picked up a win.

Heading into her bout against Bryanna Fissori at CFX 5 this past December, McElhaney was extremely ill, but still managed to pull out a unanimous decision victory.

“I was actually was really sick during that fight,” McElhaney told MMAWeekly.com. “I had the flu. I ended up having walking pneumonia.

“The fact that I won that was amazing, but looking back on my performance, I’m a little disappointed. I didn’t perform to the best of my abilities. I got the W, but I definitely know I can perform a lot better than I did.”

Having had a history of multiple fight cancellations due to opponents dropping out, McElhaney was not going to do the same thing to Fissori for their bout.

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“I didn’t even consider that at any point,” said McElhaney. “In three years I’ve only been able to get three fights. I’ve had 11 scheduled, but nine of them have dropped out.

“I know how it feels to have a fight fall out last minute, and I wouldn’t do that to my opponent unless it was 100% necessary.”

McElhaney (1-0) now heads into her first bout of 2017 when she takes on Felicia Spencer (1-0) in a main card 145-pound bout at Invicta FC 22 this Saturday in Kansas City, Missouri.

“When I fight, I don’t try to focus too much on my opponent,” McElhaney said. “I know she’s going to be a tough opponent, but I mainly want to focus on my skills.

“I felt like since my last fight I’m a whole new fighter. I feel very prepared. I know it’s going to be a very tough fight, but I’m excited because I’m prepared.”

Stepping into such a large promotion like Invicta this early in her career doesn’t have McElhaney nervous at all, if anything, it adds to the excitement.

“People make fun of me because when I’m walking out for my fights, I’m smiling and am so excited to get in the cage,” said McElhaney. “Most of the time people look so angry and look so serious – I’m completely opposite. It’s extra motivation for sure.”

Having had limited activity over the past couple of years due to cancellations, McElhaney is looking to make up for lost time, and believes she’s in a company that can help her do that.

“I’ll be so happy if I can fight three times and win them all,” McElhaney said. “If I can be more active than I have been, that will be amazing. Now that I’m with Invicta, that will be more possible.”

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Source: MMA Weekly

Roberto Sanchez Hoping to Continue UFC Push with LFA 7 Main Event Win

In picking up wins in all of his first five fights as a pro, flyweight prospect Roberto Sanchez has shown that though he might have gotten a late start in MMA, he used his time prior to turning pro wisely.

“The first time I was offered a fight was when I was 19, but the first time I had a fight I was 26,” Sanchez told MMAWeekly.com. “I think waiting did help me a lot.

“I was training with people who were fighting, and was learning from them and using it to my advantage. That’s what kind of helped jump start my career turning pro, because I saw what other fighters did and it helped me a lot.”

With four finishes in his five wins, Sanchez has quickly made himself one to watch at flyweight. But rather than let pressure get to him, Sanchez sees his notoriety as an opportunity to fight the best opposition.

“I think for me it’s more of a motivator,” said Sanchez. “I thought it was be cool to just be challenging other undefeated fighters and keep climbing that way. But I’ll take whatever fight I can get and whatever opponent they throw my way and keep winning.”

Sanchez (5-0) steps into his first pro headlining bout when he takes on Klayton Mai (8-2) in a 125-pound main event at Legacy Fighting Alliance 7 on Friday in Houston, Texas.

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“All of his wins and losses are by submission, so I think he’s more of a grappler,” Sanchez said of Mai. “I see the fight ending up on the ground and we’re going to see who can end up on top. I’m hoping to submit him in the first round like a lot of my other matches.”

Though Mai has twice as many pro bouts as Sanchez, Roberto is not allowing the difference in experience do anything other than motivate him further.

“It really comes down to what opponents they’ve faced,” said Sanchez. “They can have 20 wins, and if they’ve fought a bunch of scrubs, it doesn’t amount to much.

“That’s usually how I judge an opponent, is seeing who they’ve fought. Klayton has fought some tough guys, so I’m looking forward to that pumping me up more.”

Having already found himself on the UFC’s radar, Sanchez is looking to have his bout against Mai further make the case for him taking a step up to the next level in 2017.

“I’m just taking it fight by fight and pushing it for the UFC,” Sanchez said. “Dana (White) has already told me to get a few more wins and they’ll be interested in me. So I’ll keep winning until they give me the call.”

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Source: MMA Weekly

Cat Zingano Opens Up About Husband’s Suicide

Cat ZinganoUFC bantamweight contender Cat Zingano is known as one of toughest women in the world. But even though her job regularly puts her strength on display, she, like all of us, is not immune to the struggles that life – and sometimes death – put in front of us. 

In January of 2014, just as she was rocketing up the bantamweight rankings, having defeated Miesha Tate in her UFC debut, Zingano’s world was turned upside down. As difficult as any challenge in the cage has ever been, nothing could compare to her husband, popular Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu trainer Mauricio Zingano, committing suicide.

Zingano somehow found the strength to fight again later that year, stopping current UFC champion Amanda Nunes in September. She has fought twice since, losing to Ronda Rousey and Julianna Peña. 

Although she’s moved on with her career, Zingano is continuing to work through the loss of Mauricio, finding ways not only for her to cope, but also to help her son, Brayden.

In an effort to help others that may be struggling with suicide, mental illness, or depression, Zingano recently participated in a series of videos with Providence Health Services, opening up about her husband’s suicide, discussing the warning signs, and talking about raising her son.

Don’t ignore the chance to get help for you or someone you know who might be in crisis. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline now at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

Cat Zingano on Coping with Her Husband’s Suicide

(Courtesy of Providence Health Services)

Continue to > Cat Zingano on the Warning Signs of Suicide

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Source: MMA Weekly

UFC Fighter Viscardi Andrade Suspended for Steroids

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency announced on Tuesday that UFC fighter Viscardi Andrade has received a two-year sanction, pursuant to the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, after testing positive for a prohibited substance.

Andrade, 33, tested positive for stanozolol and its metabolites, 16β‐hydroxy‐stanozolol and 3’‐hydroxy‐stanozolol, following an out-of-competition urine test conducted on March 7, 2016. Stanozolol is a non-Specified Substance in the category of Anabolic Agents and is prohibited at all times under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, which has adopted the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited List. 

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Viscardi AndradeAndrade’s two-year period of ineligibility began on March 20, 2016, the day after his most recent bout, a victory, at the UFC Fight Night event in Brisbane, Australia, on March 19, 2016. Per the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, an Anti-Doping Policy Violation occurring during, or in connection with, a bout may, upon the decision of UFC, lead to disqualification of all the athlete’s results obtained in that bout. Here, because Andrade’s violation resulted from a sample collection that occurred prior to his bout, all information surrounding Andrade’s positive test and sanction has been provided to UFC to make the determination concerning his competition results.

UFC officials had not responded to a request for a decision on the outcome of Andrade’s unanimous-decision victory over Richard Walsh in Brisbane at the time of publication.

Pursuant to the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, all UFC athletes serving a period of ineligibility for an anti-doping policy violation are required to remain in the USADA registered testing pool and make themselves available for testing in order to receive credit for time served under his or her sanction. Furthermore, if an athlete retires during his or her period of ineligibility, the athlete’s sanction will be tolled until such time the athlete notifies USADA of his or her return from retirement and once again makes him or herself available for no-advance-notice, out-of-competition testing.

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Source: MMA Weekly

WSOF Dual Division Champ David Branch Returns to the Octagon at UFC 211

World Series of Fighting middleweight and light heavyweight champion David Branch relinquished his belts to return to the Octagon at UFC 211 on May 13.

Dave Branch Rich AttonitoBranch (20-3) fought under the UFC banner in 2010 and 2011. He was released by the organization after losing to Rousimar Palhares in March 2011. In the six years competing outside of the promotion, Branch has won 11 of 12 fights and is currently riding a 10-fight winning streak.

Branch will face tenth-ranked middleweight Krzysztof Jotko (19-1) at the American Airlines Center in Dallas. The Polish Jotko is on a five-fight winning streak.

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UFC 211 takes place on May 13 and is headlined by a heavyweight title fight between champion Stipe Miocic and former title holder Junior dos Santos. Miocic will try to defend his title for the second time and avenge a decision loss to dos Santos from 2014.

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Source: MMA Weekly

Dana White: Give President Trump a Chance (video)

(Courtesy of X17onlineVideo)

UFC president Dana White, in an impromptu interview in the Los Angeles International Airport of all places, once again addressed the prospects for a Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather boxing match, standing behind his belief that the fight will eventually happen. 

Aside from combat sports, White was also asked about his longtime friend and current U.S. President Donald Trump

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Having spoken on Trump’s behalf at the Republican National Convention (watch that speech here), White remained loyal to Trump, saying, “Everybody needs to give him a chance.”

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Source: MMA Weekly

Derrick Lewis Confirms He is Fighting Mark Hunt Next

Derrick Lewis confirmed his next fight on Monday, saying that he will be facing Mark Hunt at UFC Fight Night 110 on Sunday, June 11, in Auckland, New Zealand.

Lewis posted about the fight on Twitter, following an initial report by MMAJunkie.com, saying, “My next opponent is Mark Hunt in New Zealand, June 10th. 

The bout is expected to headline the fight card, which takes place in Hunt’s hometown.

Derrick Lewis vs Mark HuntLewis (18-4, 1NC) has been rocketing up the UFC heavyweight rankings and currently sits at No. 6 on the list. He has won his last six bouts, knocking out five of his six opponents over that span.

UFC Fight Night 110 would mark the third consecutive event that Lewis has headlined.

Hunt (12-11-1, 1NC) recently returned to the Octagon at UFC 209 following an eight-month hiatus. His time out of the Octagon was due to his conflicts with the UFC over its treatment of fighters, including himself, who have faced opponents that were sanctioned for using performance-enhancing drugs.

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Hunt lost to Alistair Overeem at UFC 209, a fighter that has previously been sanctioned by the Nevada Athletic Commission. That followed a loss to Brock Lesnar, which was later changed to a no contest decision when Lesnar was found to have tested positive to prohibited substances on two separate drug tests. 

Hunt will not face an opponent carrying such a stigma at UFC Fight Night 110, as Lewis has never tested positive to prohibited substances or faced sanctioning during his mixed martial arts career.

UFC Fight Night 110 takes place Sunday, June 11, at Vector Arena in Auckland. It will air live on Fox Sports 1 in the United States on Saturday, June 10, due to the time difference.

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Source: MMA Weekly

Invicta FC 22: Evinger vs. Kunitskaya 2 Preview

(Courtesy of UFC)

The Invicta FC commentary team of TJ De Santis and Julie Kedzie sit down to preview the highly anticipated rematch between bantamweight champion Tonya Evinger and newcomer Yana Kunitskaya after their controversial match last November.

TRENDING > Nate Diaz Declares Dana White is ‘Making (Expletive) Up’ About Him

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Fedor Emelianenko vs. Matt Mitrione Joins Sonnen vs. Silva on Bellator PPV

Let’s run this back and try it again. Bellator will make another attempt to get Fedor Emelianenko and Matt Mitrione into the cage when the promotion lands in New York.

Fedor vs. Mitrione will serve as the Bellator 180 co-main event on June 24 at Madison Square Garden. Bellator 180 will be the promotion’s second attempt at a pay-per-view event, and will be headlined by a Chael Sonnen vs. Wanderlei Silva grudge match. Bellator officials announced Fedor vs. Mitrione via an article by the New York Post.

Fedor Emelianenko Bellator 172 Post-Fight“I’m so excited to come back to the East Coast and compete again. I spent two years with the New York Giants, all my family is out there and I’m ecstatic that they will get to be there and watch me punch the greatest heavyweight of all time in the face,” Mitrione told the Post.

Fedor and Mitrione were originally slated to headline Bellator 172 on Feb. 18, but Mitrione was pulled from the fight at the last minute due to medical complications caused by kidney stones.

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“Bellator has been awesome in supporting me throughout this whole ordeal with the kidney stones and knowing that I’m the sexiest opponent for Fedor,” Mitrione said.” I’m glad we were able to keep this fight intact and putting it on this monstrous pay-per-view event.”

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Source: MMA Weekly

Tyron Woodley Gets Lost in Rainforest, Needs a Tour Guide

Someone needs to find the UFC welterweight champion. 

Tyron Woodley today was on Instagram, updating us on his trek through the rainforest. Sounds like an awesome vacation fit for a champion, right? Well, to his surprise, the vacation package he purchased consisted of him being dropped off in the middle of nowhere, forcing him to find his way out … with a baby, no less. Yikes. Maybe read the fine print on the vacation brochure next time, champ. 

Hopefully he’s not lost long enough to where we need to make another interim UFC title. We got enough of those.

To the footage!

WTH!

A post shared by Tyron Woodley (@twooodley) on Mar 20, 2017 at 11:41am PDT

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Source: MMA Weekly