Summer 2008 carries a packed MMA calendar
Of the things that might work up a sweat this summer, simply flipping channels between mixed martial arts events may be one of them.
But, if nothing else, the season will certainly be notable for its packed calendar: two blockbuster Ultimate Fighting Championship cards,
Joining an announced rematch between EliteXC middleweight champion
Lawler and Smith met for the first time on CBS' initial foray into MMA on May 31 in Newark, N.J. But as the two seemed to be well on their way toward earning "Fight of the Night" honors, Lawler accidentally poked Smith in the eye, resulting in a no contest call by the ref. And after the card drew an average 4.85 million viewers, CBS seem to jump on the idea of a Lawler-Smith rematch.
According to EliteXC Vice President
Shields was in line to fight
EliteXC has already started working on lining up an October card with
In addition to the announced CBS fights, Showtime will broadcast several live fights as lead-ins to the events, including a bout pitting impressive featherweight
Already, the UFC has indicated it would make a rematch between current lightweight champ
And don't dismiss a contest between
Compelling events are always made better by high stakes, especially as fighters advance to the semis and finals. (March Madness anyone?) For eight competitors, the prospect of winning a Dream grand prix championship this summer still brings hopeful thoughts.
It shouldn't be a surprise to anyone that lightweights captured the headlines thus far in the tournament. After
I picked Kawajiri to win the lightweights from the start, and I'm sticking with my choice.