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UFC Roundup: Diaz Released, Gomi Opts for K-1, Pulver’s Future Unclear, and More

  • Nick Diaz has reportedly been released from all contracts he had with Zuffa. The move clears the way for Diaz to fight for EliteXC later this year although who knows what repercussions this could have considering his brother, Nate Diaz, just won the fifth season of The Ultimate Fighter.
  • Reports suggest that current PRIDE Lightweight Champion Takanori Gomi has opted to join K-1, not the UFC. The details are not confirmed yet but if true the loss would be a blow to the UFC’s hopes of putting on major matches between all of the UFC and PRIDE champions.
  • The Ultimate Fighter 5 Finale drew a very good 2.0 rating beating HBO Boxing on the same night.
  • Sokoudjou may not be completly out of reach for the UFC. Published reports suggest the young mixed martial artist has not finalized his deal with EliteXC although, barring a drastic change, a contract should be in place soon.
  • Jens Pulver’s future is not exactly clear according to recent reports. While he is rumored to be fighting on September 5th in the WEC, Pulver has stated he could remain a lightweight with his next fight not officially booked.
  • Former UFC heavyweight champion Ricco Rodriguez will be coaching Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic leading up to his UFC 75 fight against Cheick Kongo. The training is expected to focus on cage tactics.
  • Sam Stout appears to be gone from the UFC. Last appearing at UFC Fight Night 10 in a war against Spencer Fisher, Stout is set to appear at TKO 30 to defend his lightweight title.
  • Top MMA heavyweight Josh Barnett is officially a free agent. After making the announcement on MySpace Barnett has stated that Bodog and the UFC are the top promotions looking to add him to their stable of fighters.
  • There are rumors that the UFC may soon be adding featherweight and bantamweight divisions bringing the total to 7. The UFC has stated that they were going to keep lighter weights in the WEC but after the classes appeared temporarily on the official UFC website there is legitimate speculation that the UFC is planning on adding the weight classes later this year.
  • Top contenders Jon Fitch and Diego Sanchez will go toe-to-toe later this year at UFC 76. The welterweight fight will be one of the top fights on the card although the main event the fight will be behind on the card may not be revealed for some time.
  • Lightweight UFC fighter Jeremy Stephens will be temporarily fighting outside of the UFC. Stephens debuted in May with a loss to Din Thomas and will be looking to add to his win column when he fights outside of the UFC later this month. A win will allow him to return to the UFC sometime this fall.
  • Zuffa is one loss away from kicking Joe Riggs out of the organization. Rigg’s will face Dan Chambers next weekend at a Hardcore Championship Fighting event will more than PRIDE on the line. The win would keep Joe in the WEC or UFC while a loss would send Riggs out and likely earn Chambers a shot in the WEC or UFC.

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