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Shane Campbell Aiming for Flawless Victory in Unified MMA 33 Title Fight

Heading into 2017, lightweight Shane Campbell was in need of a rebound, coming off of four losses in five UFC fights. Luckily, Campbell was able to bounce back in the United MMA promotion in Canada.

In three fights for United, Campbell has managed to finish all three bouts, and claim the promotion’s lightweight title in the process.

“These three wins were not the caliber of what I was fighting in 2016, but they were still all game opponents,” Campbell told MMAWeekly.com. “I didn’t take any one of them lightly.

“I really worked on gathering myself and made sure when I stepped into the cage that I was the most game fighter I could be. I really worked at dialing in my ability of getting into the zone the game day of competition.”

Perhaps most importantly for Campbell has been an ability to show that he can finish fights on the ground, having come into MMA from a striking background seven years ago.

“Almost every MMA fight I’ve done, the majority of everyone has tried to take me down or push me against the fence and take away my ability to strike,” said Campbell. “Knowing that, I haven’t had my opportunity to express my striking a lot, but my ground game has definitely shown quite a bit of improvement.

“Of my three wins this year, one was by a soccer kick to the body, one was by kneebar and one was by a choke, so as a whole I’ve definitely grown as a (complete) martial artist and am on the rise.”

On Friday in Edmonton, Canada, Campbell (13-6) will look to defend his lightweight title in the main event of Unified MMA 33 in a rematch of a bout he had five years ago against Steven Beaumont (9-2).

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“Beaumont poses a little bit of a threat with his crazy explosiveness at the beginning of a fight, but if he doesn’t knock me out in the first minute or so, I don’t see him doing any real damage to me after that,” Campbell said.

“I don’t want to get injured or hurt or even punched in the face, so every fight going in I want to make sure I’m the dominator and win ideally by flawless victory. (Flawless victories) aren’t ever the case, so I train very hard to anticipate some serious resistance.”

Having put his career back on the right track this year, Campbell is looking to accomplish some things in his private life, and possibly get back to his fighting roots in 2018.

“I have some more personal goals on my plate other than my martial arts career and fighting,” said Campbell. “Obviously, after 2016, I had to take a step back and reevaluate my life and where I’m heading.

“I’ve had a great year with Unified in Edmonton, having climbed their ranks, won a title and defended a few times, but as a martial artist who grew up in kickboxing and Muay Thai, I do miss that striking caliber. Maybe in this coming year I would like to get in some kickboxing and Muay Thai fights.”

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Article source: http://www.mmaweekly.com/shane-campbell-aiming-for-flawless-victory-in-unified-mma-33-title-fight

   

Tony Ferguson Reveals Targeted Return Date Following ‘Minor’ Elbow Surgery


UFC interim lightweight champion Tony Ferguson underwent elbow surgery last week but it turns out the procedure won’t keep him sidelined for very long.

Ferguson just fought in October when he captured interim title with a submission win against Kevin Lee and he now awaits the return of lightweight champion Conor McGregor so they can hopefully unify the belts next year.

According to Ferguson, the surgery he had on his elbow wasn’t serious and he should be able to return no later than March or April next year.

“Twas a very minor surgery and now getting ready to unify my belt with McNuggets [Conor McGregor] in the first fourth of the year (March-April) as recovery is going great.”

“Keep Em’ Sharp” So I Asked Doc If He Could Make My Elbows Any More Sharper ?? Well… w/ A Wink A Nod It Was Done!!! T’Was A Very Minor Surgery Now Getting Ready To Unify My Belt W/ McNuggets @thenotoriousmma In The 1st 1/4 Of The Year (March – April) As Recovery Is Going Great!!! #DefendorVacate MF’er??? The First Day Of Therapy Was Huge, “I Never Liked Sitting On The Sidelines” ?✌️@repair_sports_institute_hb Almost To Full Flexibility Next Is Strength ?️Thanks Doctor Mora, @danawhite @ufc For The OrthoScope It Was A Success #TSKYH Great Job ? , I Look Forward To Kicking McNuggets Ass Defending My Strap For A Decade Or Two ????? #AndTheNew #TonyFergusonMMA SnapJitsu™ #SnapDownCity My Mat MF’ers ???

A post shared by @TonyFergusonxt (@tonyfergusonxt) on Dec 8, 2017 at 6:51pm PST

There has been a lot of speculation about when McGregor might finally return to the Octagon after not fighting at all in the UFC during 2017. Instead, McGregor focused on his boxing match against Floyd Mayweather in August before taking off the rest of the year.

McGregor has stated that he plans to fight in 2018 but he’s still in negotiations with the UFC on a more lucrative deal before he actually signs on to face anybody on any specific date.

The good news is McGregor will have some time with Ferguson on the shelf for a little while as he mends his surgically repaired elbow.

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Article source: http://www.mmaweekly.com/tony-ferguson-reveals-targeted-return-date-following-minor-elbow-surgery

 

Frankie Edgar Targeting Spring to Challenge Max Holloway in UFC Title Fight

Frankie Edgar had his recent shot at the UFC featherweight title delayed because of a training injury, but it hasn’t evaporated altogether.

Edgar had been slated to challenge champion Max Holloway at UFC 218 earlier this month, but broke an orbital bone while training for the fight. Jose Aldo stepped in for Edgar, but was easily handled by Holloway, who finished Aldo in the third round.

Undefeated rising 145-pound star Brian Ortega scored the biggest victory of his career this past weekend, submitting Cub Swanson in the main event of UFC Fight Night 123 in Fresno, Calif. Despite his impressive performance, Ortega will not leapfrog Edgar in the race to a title shot, according to UFC president Dana White.

Frankie Edgar UFC 194 post-fight“Without a doubt, this kid’s obviously the future,” White said in a media scrum on Saturday night, referring to Ortega. “(But) there’s no way that Ortega jumps over Frankie. Definitely not.”

Edgar confirmed that he is on the mend and should be ready by the next time Holloway steps into the Octagon, which would likely come early in the spring of 2018.

“We’re just waiting to see what’s next. I think March or April sounds good, so one of those dates I imagine we’ll set it up,” Edgar said on The MMA Hour on Monday.

Though the UFC’s schedule doesn’t yet list a Pay-Per-View date for April, UFC 222 is slated for March 3 in Las Vegas, which could be a target date for the bout.

Regardless of the final date, Edgar knows he’s in for a tough fight with the current champion, who is on a 12-fight winning streak and only getting better with each bout. But with history on the line, Edgar is up for the challenge. A victory over Holloway would make Edgar only the fifth fighter in UFC history to hold titles in two different weight classes.

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“I think he’s all that he’s cracked up to be and the fact that he’s so young and keeps getting better every fight is scary almost,” Edgar said. “But that also motivates me. I still feel like I’m at the top of my game. Max is the future, but I’m still here, I’m the present and I want to get this title shot and get what’s mine and become a two-weight champion. That’s been my goal since I came down to 145 (pounds).”

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Article source: http://www.mmaweekly.com/frankie-edgar-targeting-spring-to-challenge-max-holloway-in-ufc-title-fight

 

Dana White Continues to Rebuke Claims of Nate Diaz Title Shot

While Nate Diaz continues to add fuel to the rumors about him being offered a shot at UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley, amongst others, UFC president Dana White continues to deny that there was any official offer on the table. 

As the likelihood of Conor McGregor returning to defend his lightweight title at UFC 219 on Dec. 30 continued to fade, the promotion began casting its net for a blockbuster main event. Before eventually settling on a women’s UFC featherweight title tilt between champion Cris “Cyborg” Justino and Holly Holm, there was a lot of chatter about a possible Woodley vs. Diaz bout.

Though Diaz didn’t specifically say Woodley’s name, he tweeted that he shot down his choice of UFC title fights, teasing a move to boxing.

Nate Diaz and Tyron Woodley“UFC offered me title fight in any weight class,” Diaz wrote. “I’m cool though. I’ll give [them] a shot when they do something good.

“Onto the next sport for now.”

White had already defused the rumors once before, noting that a UFC attorney that has a relations with the Diaz Brothers  had conversations with Woodley and Diaz, but that those conversations were exploratory and did not reflect any sort of official offer from the promotion.

Following Saturday night’s UFC Fight Night 123: Swanson vs. Ortega in Fresno, Calif., White doubled down, again rebuking the idea that a fight was ever offered.

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“I already talked about that. That’s not true,” White stated.

“One of our lawyers went a little rogue. It’s fun to be a matchmaker. He went a little rogue on us because he has a relationship with the Diaz Brothers. That’s not true and none of that was ever approved by me.”

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Article source: http://www.mmaweekly.com/dana-white-continues-to-rebuke-claims-of-nate-diaz-title-shot