February 1, 2012
MMA notes: Jones won't move divisions
By NEIL SPRINGER, Special to QMI Agency
Jon Jones is already starting to think about testing the waters at heavyweight.
During a recent appearance on The MMA Hour, the UFC light-heavyweight champion admitted he’d like to move up a weight class should he win his next two fights – presumably against Rashad Evans and Dan Henderson.
But UFC president Dana White, and UFC chairman and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta, both shot down the idea.
“I actually asked Dana and Lorenzo, ‘Could I take a fight for the fans at the end of 2012?’” Jones said. “I figured beating Henderson and Rashad, there would be a period where we’d figure out who I’m going to fight next, and during that period, at the end of 2012, I asked to fight a heavyweight — a top-10 heavyweight.
“Dana and Lorenzo didn’t think that was the best for me to do right now. They wanted me to continue at the light-heavyweight division.”
OVEREEM IN HOT WATER
UFC heavyweight Alistair Overeem has been charged with one count of misdemeanour battery stemming from an incident at the casino Wynn Las Vegas mere days following his TKO victory over Brock Lesnar at UFC 141 in December.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports Overeem is scheduled to appear in court Feb. 21. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of six months in the Clark County Detention Center and a maximum $1,000 fine.
According to a police citation issued at 3 a.m. on Jan. 2, Overeem pushed or shoved a woman in the face, “causing her to stagger back.”
“I have advised Alistair not to comment on this matter, and that we will do our talking in the court,” Overeem’s attorney, David Chesnoff, wrote in a statement. “It should be noted that Alistair was not arrested; he was summoned to court. There are two sides to this story, and we intend on vigorously defending this as Alistair maintains his innocence.”
ZUFFA INVESTIGATION ENDED
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has ended its investigation into UFC parent company Zuffa, LLC and previous Strikeforce owner, Explosion Entertainment.
“Upon further review of this matter, it now appears that no further action is warranted by the Commission at this time,” FTC secretary Donald S. Clark wrote in a letter. “Accordingly, the investigation has been closed.”
The case stemmed from Zuffa’s purchase of rival MMA promotion Strikeforce from Explosion Entertainment last March. It was launched to determine whether or not Zuffa violated “Section 7 of the Clayton Act or Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act.” The first deals with monopolies and the second addresses unfair or deceptive business practices.
“This action is not to be construed as a determination that a violation may not have occurred, just as the pendency of an investigation should not be construed as a determination that a violation has occurred,” Clark continued in the letter. “The Commission reserves the right to take such further action as the public interest may require.”
UFC ON FOX GETS BIG RATING
The UFC’s second FOX broadcast peaked at more than 6 million viewers.
UFC on FOX 2 was headlined by a light-heavyweight bout between No. 1 contender Rashad Evans and undefeated prospect Phil Davis. The five-round fight drew a 3.4 rating (6.1 million viewers). The co-main event featuring middleweights Chael Sonnen and Michael Bisping pulled a 2.7 (4.9 million), while Chris Weidman’s decision victory over Demian Maia earned a 2.2 (four million).
The two-hour broadcast scored an overall scored 2.6 household rating, averaging at 4.7 million viewers.
The event is now the third most-watched MMA card in U.S. television history behind UFC on FOX 1 and EliteXC: Primetime.
The UFC’s next FOX show is scheduled for May 5 in East Rutherford, N.J.
Though a main event has yet to be announced, two fights have been confirmed for the card. Nate Diaz will take on Jim Miller in a battle of top lightweights. Also, TUF 14 winner John Dodson meets Darren Uyenoyama in the newly-introduced flyweight division.