Put away your checkbooks! Spike TV just announced that they’ll be airing UFC 75. Here’s the release:
New York, NY, July 16, 2007 — Spike TV will telecast “UFC 75: Champion vs. Champion,” its most star-studded fight card ever, including the network’s first-ever UFC® title fight, a unification bout between UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Quinton “Rampage” Jackson and PRIDE’s 205-pound Champion Dan “Hollywood” Henderson, on Saturday, September 8 at 9:00 PM ET/PT (same day tape) from The O2 Arena in London, England. UFC 75 also features a major heavyweight battle with international superstar Mirko “Cro Cop” when he takes on France’s Cheick Kongo. As a special feature, England’s own and “The Ultimate Fighter® 3” Light Heavyweight Champion Michael “The Count” Bisping takes on fellow “The Ultimate Fighter 3” cast member Matt “The Hammer” Hamill.
“We are pleased that Spike TV will bring UFC 75 live from London to millions of UFC fans in the U.S. and Canada,” said Dana White, UFC President. “UFC 75 will be the UFC and PRIDE’s first ever unification match – this fight between Rampage Jackson and Dan Henderson will decide who is the best 205-pound fighter in the two organizations. This is the mega-fight that sports fans have always wanted, and after waiting almost a decade not only do they finally get it, they get to watch it for free on Spike TV.”
“Spike TV is thrilled to present such a monumental bout between these two great champions, said Kevin Kay, General Manager, Spike TV. “Not only will this be the first ever unification bout but it is Spike TV’s first ever UFC title fight.”
UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Quinton “Rampage” Jackson is coming off a thrilling victory over Chuck Liddell. Knocking out “The Iceman” less than two minutes into the first round of their fight at UFC 71 in May to capture the light heavyweight crown, Jackson stopped a streak of four consecutive title defenses by Liddell. The 29-year-old has been a rising star in mixed martial arts since his 2001debut with the PRIDE Fighting organization (recently acquired by UFC ownership) he defeated many of the world’s best fighters, including a previous victory over Liddell in 2003. Jackson will put his new UFC title on the line against Henderson, the pound-for-pound superstar who holds two titles in PRIDE.
Henderson currently holds PRIDE’s 205 pound and 185 pound title. He is the only the only fighter in MMA history to hold two titles in two weight classes concurrently in a major fight organization. He enters his fight with Jackson after a stunning knockout victory over Wanderlei Silva last February, which was compelling since Silva had beaten Jackson twice before. Having represented the United States in the 1992 and 1996 Olympics in Greco-Roman wrestling, Henderson will look to impose his wrestling ability during his bout with Jackson in an attempt to make history again, this time by becoming the first fighter ever to hold both the UFC and PRIDE titles.
Mirko “Cro Cop” returns to the Octagon™ following his first UFC loss to Brazil’s Gabriel Gonzaga at UFC 70 in Manchester, England. The fearsome kickboxer turned mixed martial artist was the 2006 PRIDE Open Weight Grand Prix Champion and was expected by many to defeat Gonzaga en route to a mega-fight with Randy Couture for the heavyweight title at UFC 74 in August. Instead, Gonzaga turned the tables on “Cro Cop” and caught him with a right leg kick to the head, sending him to the canvas in a stunning upset nine seconds before the end of the first round. “Cro Cop” now goes back to England in an attempt to defeat Kongo and start a new reign of terror in the heavyweight division.
Kongo, like Cro Cop, is a kickboxer turned mixed martial artist. Not much was known of the 6’4” 240-pound Parisian when he made his UFC 61 debut in July of 2006 against Gilbert Aldana. He had an impressive record and a stellar reputation as a kickboxer, but many wondered if he could compete in the MMA arena. He answered that question quickly as he halted the rugged Aldana in the first round. Kongo then jumped back and scored another first round stoppage at UFC 62, this one over Christian Wellisch. At UFC 70, Kongo triumphed with a majority decision over popular Brazilian heavyweight Assuerio Silva, scoring his third win in the UFC.
In other undercard action, light heavyweights Michael Bisping and Matt Hamill will each be putting their undefeated records on the line in a match-up that most expected to see on “The Ultimate Fighter 3” before Hamill was forced to withdraw from the competition due to injury. Fighting out of Widnes, England, Bisping, winner of The Ultimate Fighter 3 in the light heavyweight division, comes into the bout off wins over Eric Schafer and Elvis Sinosic at UFC 66 and UFC 70 respectively.
“The Hammer” trains with Tito Ortiz and Team Punishment in Southern California, and most recently defeated Rex Holman at UFC 68. Hamill is a 2004 inductee in the Division III Wrestling Hall of Fame was the first U.S. wrestler to win gold medals in freestyle and Greco Roman competition in the 1997 World Games for the Deaf. The three-time NCAA National Champion attended the National Technical Institute for the Deaf in Rochester.
More details on the event to be announced shortly.