by Marco Antico, MMAWeekly.com
Welcome to MMAWeekly’s spotlight on Canadian MMA. This is a new column, exclusive for MMAWeekly and written by Marco Antico, MMA journalist and entrepreneur.
HOMINICK LOOKING FORWARD TO WEC DEBUT
“I’m excited to be fighting under the Zuffa brand again and at 145lbs! They’re still bouncing around a few names for the June 3rd show. It won’t be Urijah Faber, yet. But, I’m hoping to get my shot at his title before the end of the year,” explained an energetic sounding, Mark Hominick.
Hominick will soon be heading south to train with Team Quest in sunny California to prepare for his WEC debut.
PATRICK COTE TO FACE TOUGH UFC VETERAN, CRAFTON WALLACE
“I’m going to give the fans what they want; an exciting fight with a spectacular knockout!” said a confident Patrick Cote. His opponent, Crafton Wallace (12-3-1), is a Muay Thai Champion who should give Cote all he can handle on his feet. This spectacular fight is the main event of TKO 29: REPRECUSSION at the beautiful Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec.
STEVE VIGNEAULT MAY BE FACING A CAREER ENDING INJURY
Local fan favorite, Steve “Lion Heart” Vigneault was forced to withdraw from his upcoming title match against Jonathan Goulet due to a nagging (undisclosed) injury. When we last caught up with Vigneault on March 17th he was in the midst of intensive rehab and explained that he was under doctor’s orders not to spar or grapple until late April. This is the same injury that postponed the fight originally scheduled for February 11th and it is uncertain whether Vigneault will be able to return to competition anytime soon.
JONATHAN GOULET WAITING ON TUF 6 HOPEFUL, CHRIS CLEMENTS
Jonathan Goulet may be the longest, deserving title contender in the history of MMA. Despite his .500 UFC record, Goulet is undefeated in the TKO organization in 12 bouts! He’s never been granted a title shot because the former Welterweight Title holder was UFC superstar, Georges St. Pierre, who ceased competing in TKO two years ago. Goulet was originally scheduled to face Vigneault for the title in February, later rescheduled to June. But, Vigneault was forced to withdraw both times.
TKO is trying to match up Goulet with the up-and-comer Chris Clements for the vacant TKO Welterweight Title on June 1st. However, Clements has applied along with fellow Team Tompkins teammate, Aaron Tregear, for The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 6 reality show which is set to showcase 16 of the top Welterweights. They are just two of over 500 applicants, but considering what TUF can do for a fighter’s marketability, it’s understandable that they make this their top priority.
APEX FIGHTING CHAMPIONSHIP STILL IN FOGGY SITUATION
The once, very well respected APEX Fighting Championship has literally fallen off the map since they cancelled their show, last minute back in January 2007. An APEX insider tells MMAWeekly that there continues to be an unofficial legal gag order, but that all will be understood once APEX is able to release an official statement on the matter. Whether they continue to operate, however, appears doubtful. Over time, we’ll likely see the individuals behind APEX pop-up in other MMA related projects.
“It’s a shame if they’re really done. They seemed to be a very reputable group of guys and I always liked dealing with them,” stated Chris Boreland, owner of Boreland’s School of Karate. “They were the one organization that was easy to get a hold of and to talk to. I always knew where we stood when we dealt with them,” said Joshua Rapport, owner of Toronto BJJ.
CANADA’S TOP RADIO SHOW TO BEGIN WEEKLY MMA PROGRAMMING
The FAN 590 is a Toronto sports radio station, which commands a mighty 2.5% of the entire Toronto radio market. They also dominate ratings in their key demographic, high-spending males between 18 and 45 years old.
Beginning on Thursday, April 19th Stormin’ Norm Rumack will be joined by local MMA personality, Showdown Joe Ferraro. The show is currently slotted for a one hour 11pm to 12am time slot. Be sure to set your dials!
CMMAA HOLDS ITS FIRST EVER TECHNICAL COMMITTEE MEETING
The Canadian Mixed Martial Arts Association (CMMAA) is a not-for-profit organization working hand-in-hand with government officials to help support the growth of MMA throughout Canada. They are currently playing a vital role in establishing amateur MMA in both Ontario and New Brunswick.
The primary goal of this initial meeting was to establishing a certification program for MMA coaching, officiating and judging throughout Canada. “This is an absolute necessity to legitimize the sport in the eyes of Sport Canada and provincial government officials. Just the fact that we’ve assembled all these highly credentialed individuals and had a very productive first meeting is a big stride forward!” explained Board of Director, Marco Antico.
“I left the meeting with a smile on my face and I’m really happy the way things are headed,” stated fellow Board Member, Joe Ferraro. “I was very impressed with everyone and I am excited about my role with the organization,” said an exuberant Larry Takeuchi, Ring M.D. for Boxing Ontario and newest member of CMMAA’s Technical Committee. Also in attendance were Joey De Los Reyes (owner of Kombat Arts), Terry Riggs (owner of Warrior Martial Arts) and Ken Benson (Level 4 NCCP coach).
CANADIAN MMA CALENDAR
April 20 – MFC: Unplugged 3 at the Crowne Plaza in Edmonton, Alberta
April 21 – Rumble in the Cage 23 at the Exhibition Pavilion in Lethbridge, Alberta
April 28 – King of the Cage: Meggido at the Multiplex in Vernon, BC
June 1 – TKO 29: Repercussion at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec
June 22 – MFC 12: High Stakes at the Shaw Conference Centre in Edmonton, Alberta
June 23 – UCW 23: Natural Invasion at the Convention Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba