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Author Topic: "Babalu" vs. Sokoudjou likely for "Affliction: Day of Reckoning"  (Read 412 times)
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« on: December 12, 2008, 02:09:33 PM »

by John Morgan on Dec 11, 2008 at 9:55 pm ET
Affliction Entertainment's second card, "Day of Reckoning," is nearly complete with the likely addition of a familiar face.

UFC and PRIDE veteran light-heavyweight Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou (5-3) is currently in negotiations to face previously announced participant Renato "Babalu" Sobral (31-7) at the Jan. 24 event in Anaheim, Calif.

Afflicition announced the matchup very inconspicuously with an updated fight card on the official website for the event, but Affliction vice president Tom Atencio told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that the deal is not yet finalized.

"We're working on it right now," Atencio said. It hasn't been finalized, but we're definitely working on it."

Atencio said the administrators of the website posted the information before the contracts were finalized, but that he does feel positive about the likelihood of the bout.

"They jumped the gun like always," Atencio said. "We're finalizing an agreement now. It's just a matter of how many fights and making sure that we all come to mutual agreements."

If signed, Sokoudjou will be looking to bounce back from an October TKO loss to Luis Cane at UFC 89.

Sokoudjou came to the UFC after back-to-back knockout victories over Ricardo Arona and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira in 2007 under the PRIDE banner. "The African Assassin" was a highly touted 205-pounder when he entered the organization, but a 1-2 record in the UFC -- including a win over Kazuhiro Nakamura and losses to Cane and Lyoto Machida -- led to Sokoudjou's recent release.

Having previously been announced as a participant for the January event, Sobral will be looking for his fifth-straight win. Sobral also competed in Affliction's debut card, earning a unanimous-decision victory over Mike Whitehead.

A UFC, Cage Rage, Rings and IVC veteran, Sobral earned the Strikeforce light-heavyweight title with a TKO victory over Bobby Southworth in November.

Atencio also said that a previously rumored bout between Brett Cooper and Patrick Speight is not yet finalized. While Atencio said Cooper has been booked, a different opponent may yet be named for the HDNet-broadcast bout.

"It's kind of subject to change at this point," Atencio said. "I've got some other interests that I'm working on. Maybe a Korean fighter, maybe something else. It's out there, and it is what it is, but it definitely could change."

The full card as it now stands includes:

MAIN CARD (PPV)

WAMMA heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko vs. Andrei Arlovski
Josh Barnett vs. Gilbert Yvel
Vitor Belfort vs. Matt Lindland
Renato "Babalu" Sobral vs. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou
Chris Horodecki vs. Dan Lauzon
PRELIMINARY CARD (HDNet)

Vladamir Matyushenko vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
Jay Hieron vs. Jason High
L.C. Davis vs. Mark Hominick
Antonio Duarte vs. Albert Rios
Brett Cooper vs. Patrick Speight
Paul Buentello vs. Kiril Sidelnikov
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« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2008, 06:24:45 PM »

Sokoudjou is a one trick pony. If Babalu can outlast the first round onslaught of stand up, including some of the hardest leg kicks in the game, then he's got a decent shot. After that, Sokoudjou is spent. And his ground game blows.

Barnett and Yvel should be in interesting fight. Yvel is nuts, completely unstable, and he always loses by submission, and Josh is one of the best HW sub artists out there.  And Josh's standup is underrated (see the KO of Pedro Rizzo).

I would actually like to see Barnett and Mir fight.  Mir's standup is decent at best, but jits is way better than Josh's, even though Barnett wins most of his wins by sub. He takes cues from the HW sub king, Fedor, who likes to punch you til you go down, then sub you.
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