While I’ve done no scientific research, it’s become quite obvious that February of 2008 is shaping up to be the busiest month in the history of MMA with no less than six shows planned by major promotions.
The month will kick off with UFC 81 on Saturday, February 2, in Las Vegas. A heavyweight match between Brock Lesnar and Frank Mir has been announced with heavy speculation that Antonio Rodrigo Nogeuira and Tim Sylvia will fight for the vacant UFC heavyweight title.
Then, after a ten day break, the WEC will hold its first card of 2008 on Wednesday, February 13. The show will be broadcast on Versus at 9 p.m. ET and is expected to feature Carlos Condit defending the WEC welterweight title against Carlo Prater and “Razor” Rob McCullough defending the WEC lightweight title. An official host city has not been announced but FiveOuncesOfPain.com (www.FiveOuncesOfPain.com) has heard through multiple sources that Albuquerque, New Mexico has been discussed as a likely destination.
On Friday, February 15, HDNet Fights will be holding another card in Dallas, Texas. Jake Rosholt is slated to fight Chad Jay while Johny Hendricks is set to square off against Blake McDaniel. A main event for the show has not been announced, but a bout between Jason “Mayhem” Miller vs. Frank Trigg is a possibility, with the schedules of the fighters permitting.
There will be no rest for the weary as EliteXC is scheduled to hold a card the very next day on Saturday, February 16. The show will air live on Showtime starting at 10 p.m. ET and is expected to feature Kimbo Slice’s latest bout. An opponent for Slice has not been finalized but talks are ongoing with a specific opponent in mind. Also, according to the rumors section of MMAWeekly.com, a middleweight bout between Scott Smith vs. Kyle Noke is rumored. There were also rumors that the card could be taking place in Las Vegas but FiveOuncesOfPain.com (www.FiveOuncesOfPain.com) has confirmed through a source that the card will be emanating from a different city.
From there, it will be on to Seattle on Saturday, February 23 with Strikeforce set to hold a major show at the Tacoma Dome. Bob Sapp is scheduled to make his U.S. MMA debut against an opponent yet to be name. Also, K-1 legends Maurice Smith and Rick “The Jet” Roufus will face each other in an MMA bout.
The month will then close on Saturday, February 29 during the IFL’s season opener at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas. The teams involved with the card have not been announced nor has a television partner. Those details could become public shortly after the new year.
And believe it or not, FiveOuncesOfPain.com (www.FiveOuncesOfPain.com) learned last week from several fighters that BodogFIGHT has been exploring the possibility of holding a show in Las Vegas in February. However, with the UFC and IFL scheduled to run shows in Vegas that month, it remains to be seen if Bodog will go through with plans to hold a card in February.
There will be no break once February concludes as the UFC will come right back with UFC 82 on March 1 in Columbus, Ohio with a potential main event involving Anderson Silva defending the UFC middleweight title against Dan Henderson.