Every Wednesday, The MMA Corner’s Duncan Price will bring a view of the MMA world from across the pond in England, covering well-known British fighters within the UFC and Strikeforce, and also looking at significant events put on by British promotions within the borders of the United Kingdom.

Hathaway Out Of UFC 138

An unfortunate illness has forced notable British welterweight John Hathaway out of his UFC 138 encounter with Matt Brown.

More information is likely to follow, but it has already been announced that Brown will shift to UFC 139 where he will face Seth Baczynski. Brown was actually a replacement himself for the injured Pascal Krauss.

This is a real shame for Hathaway. He has not fought since March of this year and only recently made it known that he would like to compete more often in 2012.

At this point, it seems unlikely that the match-up will be replaced on the card, which now features a total of 11 fights.

The removal of the Hathaway bout is not the only change to the UFC 138 card though, as Oli Thompson has withdrawn from the event due to a torn bicep. Rob Broughton has agreed to replace him however, and he will now take on fellow Brit Phil De Fries on the preliminary card.

Bisping Thinks He Should Get Silva Next

Michael Bisping (Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

Whilst Michael Bisping will never tell the UFC how to do its job, he is convinced Chael Sonnen should be behind him in the line for a crack at Anderson Silva’s middleweight title.

Sonnen appeared to seize the advantage at UFC 136 when he defeated Brian Stann in dominant fashion and then openly called out current champion Silva. Dana White later admitted that he’d be “pretty stupid” not to sanction a rematch between the two.

However, the Brit has a solid claim for a title shot himself. If Bisping is able to defeat Jason “Mayhem” Miller in December, he would have won four straight bouts in the promotion. Almost every other challenger has a recent loss on their resume.

Bisping spoke to Fighters Only on this very subject:

“Far be it from me to question the UFC, that’s not what I am doing, but I just have my opinion.”

“Chael Sonnen had his chance, put on a great performance but lost. Got tapped out, got finished, and then after that he failed a steroids test. As far as I can see he had his chance and he blew it.”

“I feel I deserve a shot. I have got to beat Miller, he is tough, I am not looking past him. [But] It’s me, I’m the contender. Vitor Belfort has just been beat, Yushin Okami has just been beat, Sonnen got beat. What are they going to do, all they all going to keep beating each other up and then having another shot at him?”

“No, I’m the contender.”

I absolutely see Bisping’s point, but he needs to be careful not to end up in a similar position to Dan Hardy, who earned a title shot without defeating any of the top-five ranked welterweights at the time.

If Bisping can defeat Miller and then possibly Belfort or Okami in the new year, I can certainly see him getting his opportunity to become a world champion at that point.

Cage Warriors Ready For The Next Level

The Cage Warriors cage will do a lot of traveling in 2012. (Cage Warriors)

Cage Warriors director Graham Boylan has promised to take the promotion to “the next level” in 2012.

Boylan announced a hectic international schedule for 2012 last week, which includes nine shows in seven different countries. The journey will begin at a yet to be announced venue in the Middle East on Feb. 2.

“Fighters and coaches are going to be very busy and they’ll see parts of the world they probably would never even have thought of going to,” said Boylan. “I said when we took over in August of last year that it would be baby steps to start with for 2011. But now that 2012 is almost upon us, Cage Warriors is about to raise the bar to the next level again.”

Cage Warriors has staged two hugely successful shows in Amman this year and will return to the Jordanian capital twice more in 2012, on top of two further shows in other countries in the region.

“There’s a big fan-base in the Middle East,” Boylan explained. “The people there really appreciate good MMA. Why wouldn’t we want to go back there?

“The destinations will be Jeddah, Dubai and Kuwait. I’m not scared to leave my own back yard. There’s a big world out there and this Cage Warriors team are going to have a wonder about.”

There are also other new destinations on the agenda for Cage Warriors, with scheduled events in Turkey and Hungary.

“The talks with Turkey have gone well, above and beyond what we were initially planning,” Boylan said. “We’re in the final stages of finishing that one off and it’ll be insane.

“Budapest will also be a big-time show. The Cage Warriors team are working on these events right now, nearly eight to ten months out. We’ll blow you away with next year’s shows.”

Cage Warriors will return to Boylan’s native Ireland on May 5 for a first-ever Dublin show. Having already staged two events in Cork, fans can expect something special when Cage Warriors arrives in the Irish capital.

“The Dublin show will be a big surprise to a lot of people,” said Boylan. “I’m holding nothing back on this show. We have a lot of big guns in Irish MMA signed exclusively to Cage Warriors.

“They signed to Cage Warriors because they know it’s the place to be for their careers. No other promotion in Ireland can give them the spotlight they need, so we will.

“This show will be a full professional card and it’ll be the most anticipated event in the history of MMA in Ireland. I want to give the boys in Ireland the platform they deserve in international MMA.”

Asked if fans can expect more shows in addition to the nine already announced, Boylan said, “We have some other announcements to make over the next couple of months in relation to Cage Warriors in 2012.

“Judging from the talks we’re in at the moment, I’d imagine there will be more shows in 2012 – possibly Australia, maybe South Africa.

“We don’t just sit about on Facebook and Twitter, waiting for things to happen. We make them happen.”


February 2 – Middle East (venue TBA)
February 18 – London, UK
March 8 – Middle East (venue TBA)
April 15 – Amman, Jordan
May 5 – Dublin, Ireland
July 7 – London, UK
September 1 – Istanbul, Turkey
October 11 – Amman, Jordan
November 17 – Hungary

Top Photo: John Hathaway (r) battles Mike Pyle (Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)

This piece was authored by Duncan Price. Follow him on Twitter, @DuncMMA