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Affliction moving forward with plans to counter-program UFC 100

New reports have surfaced in recent days re-affirming what was first reported earlier this week by FiveOuncesOfPain.com regarding Affliction’s intent to counter-program UFC 100 on July 11.

MMAWeekly.com is now also reporting that plans for a third Affliction event are moving full steam ahead, with the intent for the event to air on a non-premium cable network. Affliction has utilized both the Fox SportsNet and HDNet in the past to air undercard fights for their two previous pay-per-view events.

Sources have also informed FiveOuncesOfPain.com that Affliction’s third event could be held in Dallas, Texas, home of HDNet founder Mark Cuban. It’s possible that Cuban could provide the venue for the event at little to no cost in exchange for rights to televise the undercard.

Previous reports claimed WAMMA heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko would take on number one contender Josh Barnett in the main event of Affliction’s third-ever fight card. However, MMAWeekly’s reporting indicates that the two will fight separate opponents so that their matchup can be preserved for a pay-per-view event.

Other fighters mentioned as possibilities for the card is a possible matchup between former UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia and former UFC heavyweight title challenger Paul Buentello.

Sylvia was destroyed in 36 seconds by Emelianenko during Affliction’s first-ever event last July. Meanwhile, Buentello is coming off a third round TKO of Kirill “Baby Fedor” Sidelnikov during Affliction’s “Day of Reckoning” event this past January.

If Affliction follows through in going head-to-head with the UFC, it will be going up against one of the most historic events in the history of MMA. The UFC is already planning a fan expo to commenorate the event and the lineup for UFC 100 appears to be stacked.

The expected headliner for UFC 100 is a heavyweight title unification match between UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar and interim UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir, however, the bout has yet to be officially announced. However, it is believed that a UFC welterweight title defense by Georges St. Pierre vs. Thiago Alves is already locked in along with a showdown between the rival coaches for the upcoming ninth season of The Ultimate Fighter, Dan Henderson and Michael Bisping.

Additionally, UFC 100 is also expected to include both the U.S. and Octagon debut of former K-1 star Yoshihiro Akiyama, who will be taking on Alan Belcher in a middleweight tilt.

FiveOuncesOfPain.com reported that the third Affliction event is expected to be its last, although Affliction COO Michael Cohen denied the report during an interview with VERSUS.com’s Ariel Helwani. It should be noted that Five Ounces of Pain stands by its original reporting and has been informed that unless new investors can be secured, a fourth event promoted by Affliction is not expected to take place.

Industry insiders expressed to Five Ounces of Pain that Affliction wants to go through with the third event even in spite of its uncertain future due to the fact that many of the contracts that its fighters have signed are guaranteed. If Affliction elected to not make good on those contracts, it could have an adverse effect on its clothing line if fighters decided to stop supporting the brand.

Sam Caplan and Bryan Levick both contributed to this report.

7 COMMENTS
  • Angry Mike says:

    You’ve got to be kidding. They’re looking for investors for a fourth fight, so they run opposite UFC. Why? To prove to the investors they can’t compete with UFC? To make matters worse, they won’t give us the showdown between Fedor and Barnett, the only heavyweight they have under contract with a chance against Fedor. Why? So the fight draws even fewer viewers as the org. hangs by a thread? And they’re talking about showing it on HDNet, which isn’t available to many potential viewers, including Comcast customers. Why? To further impede their ability to draw viewers and attract investors?

    I don’t know who’s making the decisions for Affliction, but he’s an IDIOT.

  • mmaking says:

    There a number of media outlets reporting this! I would really like to know what other fights they have in mind?

    From another website, I read Vitor Belfort wanted to take on Fedor or Barnett. Bad idea for Belfort!!!

    The last affliction card was a lot better than the first show from a production aspect, but I dont think its a great idea to go up against the biggest MMA event in history…

    Getting Cuban to provide the venue for practically free of charge is a good thing, but who is going to fight?

    I would love to see the following fights:

    Fedor v. Barnett
    Sylvia v. Rothwell
    Lil Nog v. Soko
    Babalu v. Belfort
    A. Emelianko v. Buentelo
    Jay Hieron v. Lindland
    Horodeki v. Louzan

  • madiq says:

    The reason that saving Fedor vs. Barnett is smart is that any potential investor would want to know that all the big fights haven’t been used up. An investor would want to feel good about the show’s potential PPV buyrate, and big ratings on whatever channel chooses to broadcast it — even in the face of stiff competition from the UFC — would look good in terms of foretelling the promotion’s potential success on PPV.

  • MMASwami says:

    I have zero interest in watching this show unless Fedor is fighting Barnett. I can’t foresee any compelling match-up besides that one.

  • s00nertp says:

    mmaking, that is a great list, I agree.

    I am a big fan of the Affliction cards & think this an interesting move.

  • Jak says:

    Affliction going July 18th would make more sense. but what can you do.

    If this does take place hopefully Fedor’s opponent will be Overeem. That’s about the only other fighter i would get excited about seeing Fedor fight at this time.

    Belfort as well, but that would be kind of dumb to jump from 185 to HW.

    Will be fun to see what unfolds in the next couple weeks.

    Also, the UFC card is not filled for 100, Bonnar/Coleman is not signed, and they only have 9 fights announced, they still have room to add another big fight, if they needed to.

  • Jstew3785 says:

    I agree with everyone and that this would be a huge mistake for Affliction. However, I live near Dallas and personally I would DVR UFC 100 for the chance to see Fedor fight live. But if it was not held near my home town, I probably wouldn’t care. But, how do you pass up a chance to see Fedor, in my opinion the best fighter of our time, fighting live!?!?!?

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