by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
Mixed Martial Arts continues to grow all over the United States. In New Mexico, Greg Jackson’s camp continues to flourish and produce some of the best fighters today.
Jackson’s camp has also become the place many champions and contenders go to better themselves as fighters and prepare for upcoming bouts. Recently, MMAWeekly caught up with the guru behind it all, Greg Jackson to talk about his camp of fighters.
DIEGO SANCHEZ IS GONE
As reported on MMAWeekly previously, Greg Jackson did confirm that former Ultimate Fighter winner, Diego Sanchez, has left the camp and moved to California. The move, according to Jackson, was a chance for Diego to be closer to his son.
While he will always be considered a part of the team, Sanchez will not be training at Jackson’s camp anymore.
RASHAD EVANS TAKING SOME TIME OFF…TITO PART 2 NEXT?
After a three-round fight that ended in a draw with former light heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz at UFC 73, Rashad Evans is taking some time to himself right now in his home in Michigan.
When Tito Ortiz recently spoke to MMAWeekly Radio, he said the UFC is hoping for an October or November date for a rematch between the two, but nothing is concrete at this point.
GEORGES ST. PIERRE IN FINAL PREPARATIONS FOR JOSH KOSCHECK
St. Pierre continues to work with Jackson’s camp in New Mexico while also training in Montreal, with Nate Marquardt and Keith Jardine in tow, and New York for his upcoming bout with Josh Koscheck.
St. Pierre has been working with the camp for some time now and Greg Jackson will once again be in his corner for his bout on August 25th.
KEITH JARDINE SET FOR SHOWDOWN WITH LIDDELL
“Keith is always in it to win it,” said Greg Jackson.
Jardine, coming off a tough loss to Houston Alexander in one of the biggest upsets so far in 2007, will now step up for the biggest opportunity in his career when he steps in to face former UFC light heavyweight champion Chuck Liddell at UFC 76.
Jackson said that Jardine was back in the gym literally one day removed from the fight with Alexander and he will be ready for Liddell come September.
NATHAN MARQUARDT BACK IN THE GYM
According to Jackson, Nathan Marquardt was nothing but upset after his performance against Anderson Silva at UFC 73 and is more determined than ever to return to top form, although he doesn’t have anything currently scheduled.
JOEY VILLASENOR LOOKS TOWARDS ELITEXC IN SEPTEMBER
Coming off a tough loss to Murilo “Ninja” Rua in the middleweight title fight for EliteXC, Joey Villasenor took some time off and is now preparing for a return to action on September 15th at the EliteXC show in Hawaii.
Jackson told MMAWeekly that the management at EliteXC is very high on Villasenor and he’s excited to get back in the ring and work his way back to a rematch with Ninja in the future.
Villasenor faces Riki Fukuda in Hawaii on about five weeks’ notice. “He’s gonna be tough. We’re just gonna prepare and go at it,” commented Villasenor. “I’ve got five weeks to get ready for the fight. But I’ve been working out [since the Ninja fight in June]. I’ve been training, so the timing isn’t too bad.”
LEONARD GARCIA READY FOR COLE MILLER
A candidate for Fight of the Year, Leonard Garcia made a huge impression in his first UFC bout against Roger Huerta, taking the bout on short notice. He then returned to submit Ultimate Fighter competitor Alan Berubie at the finale show in June.
Now, Garcia will face another alum from The Ultimate Fighter show when he takes on Cole Miller at UFC Fight Night in September.
OTHER NEWS & NOTES FROM TEAM JACKSON:
Julie Kedzie moved to Team Jackson after her bout with Gina Carano in EliteXC and is likely to fight in Bodog again in the near future.
Donald Cerrone and Damacio Page, both featured in the Tapout reality show, are expected to show up in the WEC in the near future according to Jackson.
Elliot Marshall has started to train with Team Jackson in New Mexico, while still working out in Colorado as well. Marshall is a top up and comer currently fighting in the Ring of Fire organization in Colorado and should make his way to an organization like the UFC or EliteXC fairly soon.