Event: New Blood New Battles, Orleans Arena, Las Vegas, NV
Date: February 29th, 2008
Weigh-in: Feb 28th, 2008 / Time: 4-6pm.
Location: Bourbon St Cabaret, Orleans Hotel & Casino
If you are a fan of MMA, but have not followed the International Fight League (The IFL), there may be no better time than 2008 to start supporting the league.
Launched in 2006, the International Fight League has two years of solid history as they go into their 3rd season in 2008. In 2006, their corporate plan of teams and cartoon like animal logos received mixed reviews, and many sport insiders gave them little chance of survival beyond one year. The 3rd season has seen several changes to the format, as the IFL intelligently avoided the knee jerk reactions that many upstart MMA companies make. One observer states ‘They avoided making changes in the middle of their seasons, and stuck to their format and game plan. Now entering their third season, they show they are listening, and incorporating change in an intelligent fashion. And low and behold, they have champions in every weight class, and teams revolving around MMA stars and not cities. They adapted in a smart, corporate way and changed appropriately, and that deserves support’.
‘They have produced several fighters of interest in their short history’ continues our insider. ‘It appears that Ben Rothwell is going to be with M-1 Global, but they really caught that young heavyweight on the upswing, and he benefited from their consistent schedule and ran the table at 9-0. With Roy Nelson as the champion at heavyweight now, they have a rugged, high skill fighter who is still not that experienced, so he has a lot of upside when it comes to winning for a long time’.
‘At lightweight, the champion is veteran Ryan Schultz out of Team Quest, who has been on a streak as well, and he capped it by avenging his loss to Chris Hordecki. Hordecki also is still a youngster and has a lot of future, and still may be the best prospect in the division. And at 205 lbs, they have Vlad Matyushenko as champion, and he is at the world class level at that weight, so the roster heading into 2008 is intriguing and bears watching. They are consistent and don’t jettison fighters on a whim, so people have a chance at getting to know the IFL teams and fighters’ he concludes.
The upcoming February 29th event will feature 3 title fights, as 185 lb titleholder Matt Horwich, 155 lb title holder Ryan Schultz and Heavyweight champion Roy Nelson all enter the ring for title defenses.
Card Subject To Change:
(Heavyweights) Fabiano Scherner v Roy Nelson (Champion)
(155 lbs) John Gunderson v Ryan ‘The Lion’ Schultz (Champion)
(185 lbs) Tim Kennedy v Matt ‘Suave’ Horwich (Champion)
Sperry’s World Class versus Extreme Couture:
(155 lbs) Rafael Dias v Santino Difranco
(185 lbs) Leopoldo Serao v Benji Radach
(205 lbs) Alexandre Ferreira v Lew Polley
(145 lbs) Ian Loveland v Dennis Davis
Looking further down the schedule, the IFL has announced a return to East Rutherford, NJ in April, with title fights scheduled between featherweight champion Wagnney Fabiano and Shad Lierley, welterweight title-holder Jay Hieron and Mark Miller, as well as light heavyweight champ Vladimir Matyushenko and Jamal Patterson.
For More info visit the IFL website at http://www.ifl.tv/, and tickets are available for the live event at the Orleans Arena website, http://www.orleansarena.com/ifl and at all Coast Casino box offices as well as at the Galleria at Sunset, by calling 702-284-7777.
Ticket prices are:
Reserved Seating: $20.00, $52.50, $77.50, $127.50, $200.00