September 28, 2006

by Matt Hill for MMAWeekly.com (Photo courtesy of IFL/April Pishna)
In a breaking news interview exclusive to frankshamrock.com, Frank Shamrock announced that he would be fighting Phil Baroni on December 8, at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California.

“I just signed to fight Phil Baroni on December 8, which is my birthday. I’ll be 34 years old, and I figure the greatest birthday present in the world I can give myself is knocking that idiot out and silencing him up,” said Shamrock. “It seems like Baroni is out there doing what he does best, he’s irritating people, and he has irritated me,” said Shamrock.

With those types of statements still 2 ½ months from fight night, this fight may prove to be Shamrock’s biggest grudge match since he fought Tito Ortiz for the middleweight belt seven years ago.

Shamrock has only fought a handful of times since defeating Tito Ortiz for the championship at UFC 22, but he has managed to remain a topic of conversation among MMA enthusiasts, even in his absence from active competition.

Shamrock’s most recent fight was against famed Jiu-Jitsu coach Cesar Gracie. The fight was only getting underway when Shamrock caught the Brazilian with a big overhand right that put Gracie on the canvas just 21 seconds into the 1st round.

Shamrock appears to be as focused and excited about fighting as he has been in years. “I am so excited to train, I have never been happier in all things in my life, and this is what I love to do,” said Shamrock.

Any time either of these fighters steps into a ring or a cage they are going to bring it. On December 8, in an event that may air live on pay-per-view, expect to see a fight that lives up to the hype that it is bound to receive in the coming months.