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December 20, 2014

Titan FC 32: Our view from the couch

View of the cage from Tsongas Center in Lowell, MA Dec.19, 2014


brought their thirty-second MMA event to the masses on a frosty Friday night in the city of Lowell, MA.  If you were the friend of  a fighter on the card you may have endured the painstaking drive up the regularly log jammed Route 495 at the start of the holiday week leading into Christmas.  Most folks however seemed to be taking advantage of the off-site viewing options as was the case with my motley crew here at WesternMassMMA.com.

December 19, 2014

FEATHERWEIGHT STANDOUTS TO OPEN THE SHOW AT NEF XVI

[NEF Press Release]

 Lewiston, Maine (December 18, 2014) –New England Fights (NEF), America's number-one regional fight promotion, presents its sixteenth mixed martial arts (MMA) event, “NEF XVI,” on February 7, 2015 in Lewiston, Maine.  The event is scheduled to originate from the Androscoggin Bank Colisee.  Earlier today, the promotion announced the addition of a featherweight amateur contest to the card.  Josh Harvey (2-1) will take on Caleb Hall (5-1) at a weight of 145-pounds.   NEF executives further announced that the fight would open the event.

"This is the kind of fight we love to open the events and set the pace for the rest of the night," said NEF co-owner and matchmaker Matt Peterson.  "It's a high-energy fight that will, no doubt, be a real crowd pleaser.  Fans will want to make sure they're through the doors and in the arena when this one takes to the cage!"

Josh Harvey debuted last April on a fight card in New Hampshire.  He is a product of Young's MMA in Bangor, Maine.  Harvey first appeared in the NEF MMA cage this past September at "NEF XIV."  He defeated Alex Johnson (1-1) via first-round submission to a rear-naked choke.  The impressive victory earned Harvey a nomination for "Rookie of the Year" in the 2014 NEF MMA Year-End Awards presented by Origin.  On February 7, he will face his toughest challenge to date in the form of Caleb Hall.

MMA WEEKEND-- Titan FC 32 | UFC Fight Night 58: Machida vs. Dollaway


Titan FC 32
December 19, 2014 | Tsongas Center | Lowell, Massachusetts
MAIN CARD
CBS Sports Network, 9 p.m. ET
Desmond Green vs. Steven Siler 
for vacant featherweight title
Rick Hawn vs. Carlo Prater
Ryan Quinn vs. Milan Zerjal
Nick Honstein vs. Iliarde Santos
Andre Harrison vs. Aaron Neveu
PRELIMINARY CARD
CBSSports.com, 7 p.m. ET
Johnny Campbell vs. John Santos
Wayne Ahlquist vs. Nathan Oses


UFC Fight Night 58: Machida vs. Dollaway
December 20, 2014 | Jose Correa Arena | Barueri, Sao Paulo, Brazil
MAIN CARD
FOX Sports 1, 10 p.m. ET
C.B. Dollaway vs. Lyoto Machida
Renan Barao vs. Mitch Gagnon
Antonio Carlos Junior vs. Patrick Cummins
Rashid Magomedov vs. Elias Silverio
Mike Rhodes vs. Erick Silva
Renato Carneiro vs. Tom Niinimaki
PRELIMINARY CARD
FOX Sports 1, 8 p.m. ET
Marcos Rogerio de Lima vs. Igor Pokrajac
Antonio dos Santos Jr. vs. Daniel Sarafian
Hacran Dias vs. Darren Elkins
Leandro Issa vs. Yuta Sasaki
PRELIMINARY CARD
UFC Fight Pass, 7 p.m. ET
Tim Means vs. Marcio Alexandre Jr.
Jake Collier vs. Vitor Miranda

December 18, 2014

A Good Omen--Damien Trite's Story



For those of you who don't know who Damien Trites is, he is a 7-6 professional fighter who has trained with Wai Kru down in Boston and Team Link in Springfield Mass.  Damien first got interest into the sports in martial arts back when he was young and he was being bullied a lot.  Living in New York at the time and his parents not having a lot of money he was forced to drop out of boxing and martial arts.  Suddenly at a young age he lost a close friend to suicide and that was when he really felt the struggle in his life.  He started hanging out on the streets and drinking 40s to try to cope with it all.  It wasn't until he turned 19 and he met Mike Tosti that he started getting more involved in mixed martial arts.  Tosti would build mini motorcycles and introduced Trites into UFC and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and he has been hooked ever since.

MMA however wasn't his only addiction.  Trites found himself getting addicted to drugs and alcohol. It wasn't until later he realized it was the alcohol that was leading him to drugs and fueling his addiction.  Then he met John Doomsday Howard in the Job Corps is Maine.  They were just two guys with a background in the martial arts.  Next they got out of Job Corps and Damien moved to Springfield and Howard went to Boston.  Howard was training in Wai Kru and Damien would frequently go there to train.  He eventually moved to Boston to train full time and it wasnt long after that he stepped into the cage for the first time.  His first battle in the cage was for WCF against Justin Dwork and he won by submission in 2008 and he has been fighting off and on ever since.  The drinking and drugs however always stayed with him.  A few years back Trites was in Miami Florida and he reached rock bottom.  He did so much cocaine on his vacation he thought he was going to die.  Sitting there and thinking about his life he knew he needed to change.  He realized all the people he hurt throughout his life and knew if he didn't he would be dead or in jail in the near future.  Change is never easy but Trites did just that.

December 17, 2014

NFL VETERAN TO DEFEND MMA HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE ON LEWISTON FIGHT CARD

[NEF Press Release]

Lewiston, Maine (December 17, 2014) –New England Fights (NEF), America's number-one regional fight promotion, presents its sixteenth mixed martial arts (MMA) event, “NEF XVI,” on February 7, 2015 in Lewiston, Maine.  The event is scheduled to originate from the Androscoggin Bank Colisee.  Earlier today, NEF announced the addition of a professional heavyweight championship bout to the fight card.  Tyler King (7-2) will defend the NEF Heavyweight Title against Terry "The Polar Bear" Blackburn (5-2).

"Everyone loves a big-time heavyweight title fight and this certainly is one," said NEF co-owner and matchmaker Matt Peterson.  "You have two guys with knockout power, but also two guys who know their way around a mat. Tyler King is looking to make a statement in his return against a combatant in ‘The Polar Bear’ that has a jaw that you could crack an anvil on. This fight is massive and fans won’t want to miss it.”

Prior to his MMA career, King built quite the resume in the sport of football.  The son of New England Patriots linebacker (1973-1981) Steve King, Tyler played defensive end for the University of Connecticut where he recorded 19 sacks, sixth all-time for the Huskies.  He would follow his father's footsteps to the National Football League (NFL) where he played for the San Diego Chargers and St. Louis Rams.  King arrived in the NEF MMA cage in May 2013.  He submitted Travis Bartlett (8-4) that night in the first round to become the first-ever NEF MMA Heavyweight Champion.  King's first defense of the title will come against Blackburn at "NEF XVI."

December 16, 2014

UFC, BELLATOR AND STRIKEFORCE VETERAN ANSWERS RYAN HODGE'S CHALLENGE

[NEF Press Release]

Lewiston, Maine (December 16, 2014) –New England Fights (NEF), America's number-one regional fight promotion, presents its sixteenth mixed martial arts (MMA) event, “NEF XVI,” on February 7, 2015 in Lewiston, Maine.  The event is scheduled to originate from the Androscoggin Bank Colisee.  Earlier today, NEF announced the addition of a professional middleweight bout to the fight card.  Ryan Hodge (6-9) returns to the promotion to take on Nah-Shon Burrell (10-5) at a weight of 185-pounds.

"This fight is an example of NEF staying at the forefront of the scene," said NEF co-owner and promoter Nick DiSalvo when reached for comment.  "This is a high-level fight featuring a guy like Nah-Shon Burrell who's a veteran of Bellator, Strikeforce and the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) against a guy in Ryan Hodge who fans are always begging us to bring back."

Ryan Hodge is the owner and operator of F2 Arena and Darkside Athletics in Gainesville, Florida.  His last appearance for NEF took place in November 2013.  That night, Hodge scored a highlight-reel knockout victory over Josh Watson (7-4).  The win moved Hodge into position for a title shot in the NEF MMA cage.  With the ability to transition quickly from 230-pounds to 170-pounds, Hodge issued an in-cage open challenge at "NEF XV" last month to all current NEF MMA champions from the welterweight to the light-heavyweight divisions. Soon after, NEF executives were approached by Nah-Shon Burrell's management team and jumped at the opportunity to put together such a high-level fight.

RISING STARS TO HEADLINE AMATEUR PORTION OF NEF XVI FIGHT CARD



[NEF Press Release]

Lewiston, Maine (December 15, 2014) –New England Fights (NEF), America's number-one regional fight promotion, presents its sixteenth mixed martial arts (MMA) event, “NEF XVI,” on February 7, 2015 in Lewiston, Maine.  The event is scheduled to originate from the Androscoggin Bank Colisee.  Earlier today, NEF announced the addition of an amateur catchweight bout to the fight card.  Mike Vangelist (3-0) will meet Caleb Farrington (1-0) at a weight of 181-pounds.  The bout is scheduled to headline the amateur portion of the February 7 fight card.

Vangelist, a nominee for the "2014 Fighter of the Year" award in the NEF Year-End Awards presented by Origin, turned heads immediately upon his arrival in the NEF MMA cage in late 2013.  Holding victories over tough veterans Crowsneck Boutin (6-6) and Dan Connaughton (2-2), Vangelist scored the biggest victory of his young career last September when he submitted number-one ranked amateur middleweight Buck Pineau (7-4) in the third-round.  Vangelist is a product of Jay Jack and Amanda Buckner's Academy of Mixed Martial Arts ("the Academy") in Portland, Maine.

"As always, I’m looking to fight talented guys and Caleb certainly looks the part," said Vangelist of the upcoming fight.  "I can’t wait until February 7th to hop back in there and put on a show for everyone."

December 13, 2014

TOE 2 TOE FIGHTS 12/13/2014 EVENT REVIEW



We arrived at the Portland Expo and quickly found our spots.  The press table was right next up to the cage which was awesome.  Mark Oliveri is handling the sounds for the evening.  This is Toe 2 Toe's inaugural event so we are anxious to see how they do.  The fight card features 11 fights in which 5 of them are professional ones.  There are 4 screens around the venue which helps the fans see the show at all times.  This is the first mma show up in Maine that will be live streamed on http://www.wcsh6.com/ which is really awesome for fight fans who are stuck at home with their little ones and can't make it out to the show.  Let's get on with the fights!

December 12, 2014

MMA Weekend-- Ultimate Fighter 20 Finale | WSOF 16 | UFC on FOX 13


The Ultimate Fighter 20 Finale
December 12, 2014 | The Pearl at Palms Casino Resort | Las Vegas, Nevada
MAIN CARD
FOX Sports 1
Carla Esparza vs. Rose Namajunas 
for inaugural strawweight title
Charles Oliveira vs. Jeremy Stephens
Daron Cruickshank vs. K.J. Noons
Yancy Medeiros vs. Joe Proctor
Randa Markos vs. Jessica Penne
PRELIMINARY CARD
FOX Sports 1
Lisa Ellis vs. Felice Herrig
Heather Jo Clark vs. Bec Rawlings
Joanne Calderwood vs. Seo Hee Ham
Angela Magana vs. Tecia Torres
PRELIMINARY CARD
UFC Fight Pass
Alex Chambers vs. Aisling Daly
Angela Hill vs. Emily Kagan

December 11, 2014

TOE 2 TOE: RISE 2 THE TOP 12/13/2014 TEASER


Toe 2 Toe Fights is invading the Portland Expo in Portland Maine this Saturday December 13.  This will be their first show and they are starting their promotion with a solid card.  There are a total of 11 fights in which 5 of them are professional fights.  Their show will be streamed live on the link here and Marcus Davis and Lee Goldberg will be commentating.  Tickets are available online here until 12/12 and of course also at the door.  The doors will be opening at 5pm and the first fight is scheduled to start around 6pm.  Warchild and I will be making the trip north to cover the show for you all and we hope to see you all there.  Let me break down the card in its entirety.  Keep in mind this will not be the final fight order.