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Rafael Dos Anjos

UFC lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos believes he has improved enough over the last few years to finish Donald Cerrone this time.

The two meet in December for dos Anjos’ title at UFC on FOX 17.

In 2013, dos Anjos (24-7) picked up a decision over Cerrone. He lost the next year to Khabib Nurmagomedov, but has reeled off four consecutive wins since, including a March victory vs. Anthony Pettis.

“The way that I’ve been training, I’ve been evolving a lot, improving a lot of my skills, and I don’t see this fight going five rounds,” he said, during a recent interview on Submission Radio. “Like I said, I always go to try to finish, but sometimes you finish, sometimes not. But my intention is always to finish. I’m gonna make a prediction, maybe in the second or third round by knockout.”

As for his future, dos Anjos feels he will eventually make the move up to welterweight just because of his trouble cutting weight.

“I just turned 31 and I have 31 fights as well. And I have plans to fight until maybe 37, 38, and I think what is really hard on the body is the weight cutting. And maybe like some years from now, maybe in a couple of years I want to do some fights at welterweight, just to have the extra 15 pounds,” he said. “But that’s my plans. I still got a lot of things to do in this division, but I have plans in the future to do some fights at welterweight.”

ufc 193

The UFC heads to Melbourne, Australia for the first time this Saturday night for UFC 193.

Set from the Eithad Stadium, the event features Ronda Rousey defending her bantamweight title against Holly Holm in the main event.

Rousey (12-0) will be testing herself against another unbeaten foe in Holm (9-0), who is a former world boxing champion.

Also, the strawweight title is on the line when Joanna Jedrzejczyk (10-0) defends against Valerie Letourneau (8-3).

Other main card pay-per-view fights include Mark Hunt vs. Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva, Uriah Hall vs. Robert Whittaker and Stefan Struve vs. Jared Rosholt.

FOX Sports 1 will have four prelims beginning at 8 p.m. ET and leading into the PPV, as Jake Matthews faces Akbarh Arreola in the featured bout.

All of the action kicks off on UFC Fight Pass at 6:15 p.m. ET.

Below is the current card and an extended video preview:

MAIN CARD (PPV/10 p.m. ET)

UFC Female Bantamweight Championship
Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Holly Holm

UFC Strawweight Championship
Joanna Jedrzejczyk (c) vs. Valerie Letourneau

Heavyweight: Mark Hunt vs. Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva

Middleweight: Uriah Hall vs. Robert Whittaker

Heavyweight: Stefan Struve vs. Jared Rosholt

PRELIMINARY CARD (FOX Sports 1/8 p.m. ET)

Lightweight: Jake Matthews vs. Akbarh Arreola

Welterweight: Kyle Noke vs. Peter Sobotta

Light Heavyweight: Gian Villante vs. Anthony Perosh

Flyweight: Richie Vaculik vs. Danny Martinez

PRELIMINARY CARD (UFC Fight Pass/6:15 p.m. ET)

Welterweight: Brendan O’Reilly vs. James Moontasri

Welterweight: Richard Walsh vs. Steve Kennedy

Middleweight: Daniel Kelly vs. Ricardo Abreu

Flyweight: Ryan Benoit vs. Ben Nguyen

vitor belfort

Vitor Belfort proved he is a different fighter in Brazil, earning his second knockout of Dan Henderson Saturday night at UFC Fight Night 77.

After falling to Chris Weidman for the middleweight title earlier this year, Belfort returned home to his native country and finished Henderson quickly. With the win, “The Phenom” improved to 25-11 in his career and 14-7 inside the Octagon.

Belfort was also one of four bonus winners, as Thomas Almeida, Alex Oliveira and Thiago Tavares joined him in the “Performance of the Night” category. All four fighters scored $50,000.

Almeida earned a first round knockout vs. Anthony Birchak on the FOX Sports 1 main card, while Oliveira finished Piotr Hallmann via knockout in the third round. Four of the six main card fights ended early, as Glover Teixeira claimed a second round TKO over Patrick Cummins.

Tavares’ win was on the prelims, as he submitted Clay Guida in just 39 seconds.

Other winners on the night included Rashid Magomedov, Corey Anderson, Gleison Tibau, Johnny Case, Chas Skelly, Viscardi Andrade, Jimmie Rivera and Matheus Nicolau.

Tibau’s win, though, was met with criticism, as referee Keith Peterson appeared to call a stop to the bout vs. Abel Trujillo despite Trujillo not tapping. Peterson saw Trujillo go out, but he quickly recovered.

Complete results can be found below:

Vitor Belfort def. Dan Henderson via KO (head-kick, strikes) at 2:07 of Round 1

Glover Teixeira def. Patrick Cummins via TKO (strikes) at 1:12 of Round 2

Thomas Almeida def. Anthony Birchak via KO (strike) at 4:22 of Round 1

Alex Oliveira def. Piotr Hallmann via KO (strike) at 4:06 of Round 3

Rashid Magomedov def. Gilbert Burns via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Corey Anderson def. Fabio Maldonado via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Gleison Tibau def. Abel Trujillo via technical submission (rear-naked choke) at 1:45 of Round 1

Johnny Case def. Yan Cabral via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Thiago Tavares def. Clay Guida via submission (guillotine choke) at :39 of Round 1

Chas Skelly def. Kevin Souza via submission (rear-naked choke) at 1:56 of Round 2

Viscardi Andrade def. Gasan Umalatov via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)

Jimmie Rivera def. Pedro Munhoz via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

Matheus Nicolau def. Bruno Korea via submission (Japanese necktie) at 3:27 of Round 3

fedor emelianenko

Spike TV announced Friday night that the return of Fedor Emelianenko will air on December 31 at 10 a.m. ET as part of three hours of coverage from Rizin’s New Year’s Eve event.

Emelianenko’s opponent has yet to be announced.

“Fedor’s return is receiving global attention, and we want to give our fans the chance to see it New Year’s Eve morning with minimal delay,” said Jon Slusser, Senior Vice President, Sports and Specials, Spike. “What better way to end the year than waking up with Fedor.”

Along with Emelianenko, Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal will take part in an eight-man tournament.

Spike TV’s broadcast will be on a short delay and air from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. ET with coverage from bouts on both New Year’s Eve and December 29.

Below is the complete press release sent out:

Spike TV is helping MMA fans ring out 2015 with a special late morning broadcast of the highly anticipated return of “The Last Emperor,” Fedor Emeliananko, to mixed martial arts on New Year’s Eve from Tokyo, Japan. Spike will begin its three-hour coverage of the Rizin World Fighting Grand-Prix at Thursday, December 31 at a special time of 10:00am ET/PT with the main event featuring the worldwide legend, Emelianenko. His opponent will be announced shortly.

“Fedor’s return is receiving global attention, and we want to give our fans the chance to see it New Year’s Eve morning with minimal delay,” said Jon Slusser, Senior Vice President, Sports and Specials, Spike. “What better way to end the year than waking up with Fedor.”

Emanating from the Saitama Super Arena in Tokyo, Japan, the MMA mega-event marks the debut of a Rizin World Fighting, a new global MMA promotion run by former Pride Founder Nobuyuki Sakakibara. The Grand-Prix includes a tournament and fights on December 29 and December 31.

Spike will broadcast the December 31 card on a short delay in the morning (10:00am-1:00pm ET/PT) along with coverage of marquee fights and highlights from bouts fought on December 29.

Bellator MMA will be among the worldwide combat sports organizations partnering with Rizin World Fighting for the Grand-Prix.

Bellator superstar King Mo will be part of the eight-man tournament that will begin on December 29. Details on the other participating fighters will be announced at a later date.

The MMA extravaganza also includes a catch-weight fight between Shinya Aoki and Kazushi Sakuraba along with Brazilian superstar Gabrielle Garcia, a jiu jitsu world champion, making her long-awaited MMA debut against pro wrestler “Queen of Rings” Lei’d Tapa.

The other organizations participating include BAMMA, KSW, Bushido, Jungle Fight, and Desert Force. Spike will be the U.S. broadcast home of the Rizin World Fighting Grand Prix and the event will be produced by Fuji Television Network. The announce team of Jimmy Smith and Sean Grande will call the action for the Spike broadcast.

Fedor Emelianenko last fought in June, 2012 and scored a first round KO over Pedro Rizzo. The Russian MMA superstar will look to repeat history on Dec 31 in Tokyo. In 2011, on New Year’s Eve, Fedor thrilled the Tokyo crowd with a punishing first round KO over Satoshi Ishii.

ufc on fox 18

Light heavyweights Anthony Johnson and Ryan Bader will collide in a title-eliminator this January at UFC on FOX 18, officials announced.

Set for January 30 from the Prudential Center in New Jersey, the main card airs live on FOX.

Johnson (20-5) and Bader (20-4) have gone back-and-forth through interviews and social media regarding a potential meeting. While Bader was hoping to be the next contender to the belt, he’ll instead face off against a former title challenger in “Rumble.”

After losing to Daniel Cormier in a bout to crown the new champion, Johnson rebounded in September to score his 11th UFC victory when he finished Jimi Manuwa. Bader, who topped Rashad Evans recently, sports a 13-4 Octagon mark and is a former Ultimate Fighter winner.

Along with the main event announcement, welterweights Tarec Saffiedine and Jake Ellenberger will also square off that night.

Below is the current lineup:

Light Heavyweight: Anthony Johnson vs. Ryan Bader

Welterweight: Tarec Saffiedine vs. Jake Ellenberger

Lightweight: Joaquim Silva vs. Olivier Aubin-Mercier

Welterweight: Alexander Yakovlev vs. George Sullivan

Lightweight: Felipe Olivieri vs. Tony Martin

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