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Old 07-23-2008, 12:22 PM
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Default Keith Jardine says he's fighting Brandon Vera at UFC 89

Keith Jardine says he's fighting Brandon Vera at UFC 89 |

by Staff on Jul 23, 2008 at 11:52 am ET

Keith Jardine (13-4-1 MMA, 5-3 UFC) will look to rebound from his recent loss to Wanderlei Silva when he meets Brandon Vera (9-2 MMA, 4-2 UFC) at UFC 89, an event that takes place Oct. 18 at The NIA in Birmingham, England.

Jardine today announced the fight on an Albuquerque radio show.

The light heavyweight bout will likely end up on the night's main card, which currently features a headline bout between Michael Bisping and Chris Leben.

However, the UFC has yet to announce the fight.

Jardine most recently suffered a stunning, 36-second knockout to Wanderlei Silva at UFC 84. The loss came right after the biggest win of his career -- a split-decision victory over Chuck Liddell in September 2007.

With a May 2007 loss to Houston Alexander, the Team Jackson fight has now lost two of his past three fights -- the first such stretch of his seven-year career.

Vera, meanwhile, will look to shake a recent three-fight funk. After a unanimous-decision loss to Tim Sylvia at UFC 77, Vera then suffered a first-round TKO to Fabricio Werdum at UFC 85. He then decided to drop to 205 pounds, and though he scored a unanimous-decision victory over UFC newcomer Reese Andy at this past weekend's UFC Fight Night 14, the performance was flat and heavily criticized.

The fight with Jardine is essentially a must-win for Vera, a former top heavyweight contender who had, at one time, been promised a title shot with then-champ Tim Sylvia, but a feud with his manager kept the fight from happening. Since returning from that year-long layoff, Vera -- who began his UFC career with four consecutive stoppage victories -- has posted three lackluster performances.
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Old 07-23-2008, 12:26 PM
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UFC and Spike TV close to deal for UFC 89; title fight could be added |

by Staff on Jul 22, 2008 at 4:15 pm ET

The UFC and Spike TV are close to finalizing a deal that would put October's UFC 89 event on free basic cable -- a week before the recently announced UFC 90 event that will likely air on pay per view.

A source close to the event tells (UFC blog for UFC news, UFC rumors, fighter interviews and event previews/recaps | that the UFC 89 announcement is expected soon.

However, when reached for comment today, Spike TV Vice President of Communications David Schwarz had no comment.

UFC 89 takes place Oct. 18 at The NIA in Birmingham, England. The main event features "The Ultimate Fighter 3" winner and popular British fighter Michael Bisping vs. Chris Leben. Also slated to compete are Lyoto Machida, Thiago Silva, Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou, Shane Carwin and Marcus Davis.

However, a major addition to the card has been discussed.

After this past weekend's UFC Fight Night 14 event in Las Vegas, UFC President Dana White said that UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva, who defeated James Irvin in the event's headline bout, will likely next fight Patrick Cote. (Yushin Okami had been next in line for the title shot, but he recently suffered a broken hand while training.)

White said that if Silva fights in September at UFC 88, that it would likely be against Cote.

However, one source close to the fighter tells that Silva, largely considered the world's top pound-for-pound fighter, could instead be added to the UFC 89 fight card in Birmingham to bolster the nationally televised line-up. (And UFC 88 would instead feature its originally scheduled pay-per-view main event of Chuck Liddell vs. Rashad Evans.)

Before the deal is finalized for UFC 89, Spike TV and the UFC first need to agree to a fee for the broadcast. The addition of a marketable star such as Silva, whose fight with Irvin peaked with a hefty 3.8 million viewers this past Saturday, would surely make the event more attractive to Spike TV and potential advertisers.

If Silva is moved to UFC 89, it's not known if Cote would still be his opponent.

Again, though, the possible UFC 89 title fight is far from finalized and has merely been discussed as a possibility.
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