BIRTHPLACE Eindhoven, Holland FIGHTING OUT OF Los Angeles, CA
MANAGER Darin Harvey
UFC HISTORY At UFC 18 Road To The heavyweight Title, Bas managed to stop Japan's Tsuyoshi Kosaka at 2:15 of the overtime. Kosaka dominated most of the fight, taking Bas down and pounding him on the ground. Bas showed his experience and weathered the storm. In the overtime Bas went all out and a flurry of strikes dropped Kosaka and referee John McCarthy stopped the fight. It was an incredible comeback. Bas is 1 and 0 in the UFC.
MARITAL STATUS Wife's name is Karin. Has two daughters Rachel (pronounced like Rah-shell) who is 9 years old and Sabine (pronounced like Sa-been-ah) who is 2 and a half years old.
TRAINING Bas was not able to do as much ground training as he would have liked for his last fight due to an injury. Not that he has healed he is working a lot on grappling, especially takedown defense. Bas is training with wrestlers, submission specialists, and Thai Boxers in preparation for this fight.
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT "I think he is a very tough athlete. Powerful. Explosive. A good wrestler. He's going to take me down and ground and pound. I'm not going to believe he can submit me but you never know of course. He is a Mark Coleman with a lot of conditioning."
OTHER Though Bas won in his UFC debut against Tsuyoshi Kosaka he was not 100% for that match. He suffered a neck injury in training when he was thrown by wrestler Darrell Gholar. He says the neck is fine now. Bas recently played the part of a bad guy in a featured role on "Martial Law". He got to act with his student Kevin James in the episode. Kevin is the star of the series "King Of Queens." Bas played a Dutch MMA champion turned bank robber. At the end of the show they showed outtakes and Bas was shown dancing to the Village People song "Macho Man." He even moonwalked! When asked about showbiz Bas says, "It is really fun. I think you cannot combine it with fighting. Absolutely not. It is working like 14 hours a day. There's no time for training. It took a lot of energy. I respect actors a lot now. Everybody on the set was very nice." Bas has always been athletic. He can perform legitimate one handed pull ups, which is rare. He was a track and field star in high school and excelled at events like the javelin, high jump, long jump, and discus. He wanted to become a decathlete but knee injuries ended his track career. Bas loved Bruce Lee movies but had strict parents who did not believe in the martial arts, "My family was VERY conservative." After much begging ("Like for two years") they signed him up for karate at age 14 but after two weeks of classes he broke a guy's nose in a street fight and his parent's ended his lessons. Even without the lessons Bas continued to train on his own, imitating what he saw Bruce Lee do in the movies. He even made his own nunchakus from scratch. At the age of 21 Bas started taking martial arts lessons again. He started studying Tae Kwon Do and Kyokushinkai Karate simultaneously at different schools. Bas is an incredibly fast learner and has what some people refer to as "photographic reflexes", meaning that he can see a movement performed once or twice and then perform it himself almost flawlessly. Because of this he feels that even though he didn't start formally training in the martial arts until he was 21, he had plenty of experience from picking up and practicing moves from the movies and from books when he was younger. He actually learned all of his kata for his second degree black belt test from a book without rehearsal and received the highest score possible on his test. While Bas prefers fighting he actually believes in kata (prearranged martial arts movements) which is unusual among most UFC fighters. "I believe that it is very good for controlling your breathing. To go through 45 movements and have your last kick be as powerful is very difficult." Bas earned his black belt in karate in 11 months which was unheard of in Europe. By the time he was a brown belt in karate Bas realized that he also needed to study an art which allowed punching to the head so he also started training in Muay Thai. "Martial Arts was the only thing I did." In his first class, Bas got punched a lot due to his karate habits of keeping the hands low so that night he stood in front of his mirror for hours holding his hands high and punching. "The next day I went back and punched everybody. Then they said I was scamming them. That I was already a good Thai Boxer". After only six months of Muay Thai training, Bas had his first fight. Bas was an exciting and popular fighter. Bas had 16 fights and won 14 of them, all by knockout. He was the MTBN Muay Thai European champion and was ranked #5 in the world. A week before he was scheduled to fight, Bas got into a little trouble with the law and had to spend four days in jail. He decided to fight anyway but he also was dealing with an infection he was taking medication for. He knocked his opponent down repeatedly in the first round but he could not come out for the second round. "My muscles were totally tight. Something strange happened." After all the adoration he had enjoyed, the fans turned their backs on him. Bas was shocked. "I found out the bad side about losing. People turn on you real fast. It's amazing. So I said forget this. I'll never fight anymore in Holland." Bas then started doing humorous martial arts demonstrations on European TV. He was a big hit. "We did shows all over Europe." They spoofed martial arts demos by having wafer thin boards break before they were kicked or act like they were going to kick a cigarette out of somebody's mouth but then kick them between the legs so they would spit it out. Because of the athleticism in the show, Bas attracted the attention of Chris Dolman, a Sambo champion who had a gym in Amsterdam. Dolman asked him if he would be interested in fighting in Japan. "I said, "Sure, why not?". He started training with Dolman but injuries and wanting to continue his Muay Thai training were making things difficult. Dolman called him back up and told him he had to come because there was a new organization called Pancrase looking for fighters. Bas went to the gym and was scouted by Funaki and Suzuki from Pancrase. Bas had to spar one of the top RINGS guys. "This guy really tried to do something with me so I got angry and kicked him in the face, he got six or eight stitches in his brow and BOOM, I was in Pancrase." Bas made his Pancrase debut on 9/21/93 Bas had learned basic grappling moves from Dolman but he was not used to how proficient the Japanese were on the ground. "I started thinking, "Oh, maybe it's better to learn something!" Bas learned quickly. He focused on grappling with his friend Leon Dijk. "Once I figured out my balance, everything went very fast." Bas won the King Of Pancrase title 9/95 over Minoru Suzuki. He was the 3rd KOP. He suffered a hand injury that kept him out of action and Frank Shamrock beat Suzuki to be named the Provisional KOP. Bas came back and defeated Frank to unite the titles and also avenged a loss to Pancrase founder Masa Funaki. Bas' Pancrase Record is 25-4-1. Bas lost to Ken Shamrock twice and Masa Funaki once. He got revenge against Funaki and would like another shot at Ken. He beat former UFC Heavyweight Champion Maurice Smith twice (by kneebar and by choke) He has two wins and one loss to current UFC Middleweight Champion Frank Shamrock. The loss was a decision and the wins were by decision and ref stoppage due to cut. During the draw to Osami Shibuya, Bas suffered a broken bone in his chest but he refused to quit. Bas beat him quickly in a rematch. Bas resigned the King Of Pancrase title to be with family. His wife was pregnant and there were serious complications but Pancrase insisted he defend his title. Bas chose to be by his wife's side and he was stripped of his title. Bas said it wasn't a hard decision. "I didn't care about anything but my family." Bas has not lost a match in three years. He still feels like the KOP because he never lost the title. He last fought in Pancrase on September 14th 1998 defeating Kengo Watanabe in 2:50 by TKO. He had not fought in nine months. Bas is an excellent striker but is also very adept at submissions. Chokes, armlocks, and leglocks are all in his arsenal. He likes to show off his trademark jumping split kicks after a victory. Bas is looking forward to being able to strike with a closed fist in the UFC. "You are more accurate with closed fists and you can punch much harder. The impact is bigger." Bas is known as an action fighter. "I have this thing that when I get hit three or four times I don't care anymore. Then it's payback time. Sometimes maybe it is wrong but it has always worked for me. Do something. Don't wait."
KEVIN RANDLEMAN HEAVYWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 27, 8/10/71 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 5'10", 212lbs.
BIRTHPLACE Sandusky, Ohio FIGHTING OUT OF Columbus, Ohio
STYLE Wrestling TRAINER/MANAGER Mark Coleman
MARITAL STATUS Single. Has a 10 year old son named Calvin and a 3 year old daughter named Jasmine Capri.
STRENGTHS Wrestling ability. Says #1 attribute is heart.
UFC HISTORY Debuted at UFC 19 Ultimate Young Guns against former UFC Heavyweight Champ Maurice Smith. Not much happened for the first couple of minutes on the feet, with both men circling. A couple of punches, a few kicks, and it went to the ground at around 4:30. Randleman was in the guard of Smith and landed a couple of punches, but the action was slow, so the ref stood the two back to the feet at around 7:35. After the restart, Mo jabbed and Randleman took him back to the ground. A few seconds passed and Randleman stood back up, with a stunned Smith still lying on the ground. Both men were on their feet for a short time until Randleman took Smith down for a third time. At 9:40, Smith was trying for an armlock from his back, but Randleman muscled out. A few seconds later Smith tried another attempt at the arm, but again Randleman was having no part of it. With the fight still on the ground, regulation time ran out. OVERTIME: Smith attempted a kick and Randleman took him down again. At just under two minutes in, Randleman got back up to his feet to the dismay of his cornerman Mark Coleman, who couldn't believe what Randleman had just done. Randleman threw a little flurry of punches, with Smith against the fence. Randleman had a headlock going on Smith, who elected to drop to the ground. A few punches by Randleman, and the time ran out with Randleman getting the clear judges decision. "The fight with Maurice went just as I planned it. It went smooth. Maybe a little smoother than I expected it to. I expected to get kicked more but my training over the course of three weeks was extensive. It got me into shape to move around and not give him the chance to get those kicks off."
TRAINING "Running, lifting, wrestling, boxing, Jiu-Jitsu. We do it all everyday. I've had more time to train for this fight. I did a lot of lifting earlier but now I am all cardio and working on submissions and stuff." Kevin feels that endurance is the key to being successful in the UFC. He practices throwing punches with 20 pound weights in his hands so that it is easy for him to keep them up in a fight.
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT "I just fight whoever is front of me and it's Bas Rutten right now. He's a great fighter and the consensus is that I am supposed to lose by a submission or get knocked out. I like that. All the people out there who are so sure that Bas is going to win just drive me to train that much harder."
OTHER Kevin started wrestling at ten years old. He won the State championship in high school, he wrestled for Ohio State, he won the Big Ten Championship 3 times, and won the Nationals twice.Was on the Olympic Developmental program. Kevin's college coach and roommate was Mark Coleman.Kevin now fights for Mark Coleman's Hammer House team. "I fight guys in practice who are the baddest asses on the planet! Coleman, Brandon Hinkle, Nick Nutter, and Eric Smith.I have a lot of guys I can fight with here in Columbus. It's a good team." "Mark Coleman was an integral part of my success as a wrestler in college. He was my coach. He was the one who was there. We lived together for 2 to 3 years when he was training for the Olympics and I was training for the Nationals and it was good because we always pushed each other. He gave me that hard nosed attitude of the weight training and pushing through the pain." When asked how he became involved with MMA Kevin says, "I was sitting at home with my son in Sandusky and Mark calls. I had not been training but I had been lifting weights. It was 8 o'clock at night and he asked me if I would be interested in fighting. He asked me if I was in shape. I asked him why and he said because there was a fight and I knew that he had been fighting in the UFC and we had talked about it before. He told me the price and I said "Yep" and he said, "there is a ticket for you at the airport. We need you here in the morning. The fight is in 24 days." I went up to Phoenix to train and then I fought in Brazil." MMA record is 7 and 2. In Brazil he defeated UFC veterans Ebenezer Braga, Geza Kahlman Jr, and Dan Bobish and his two losses are to Carlos Barreto and Tom Erickson. He feels there were shady circumstances in his fight with Barreto (he fought 2 other Brazilians that night who dragged the matches out by escaping the ring and hitting him from outside the ring) and said it was hard fighting Tom because they knew each other but he would fight him again to avenge the loss. "If the money is right I'll fight anyone." When asked about his improvement since that time Kevin says, "The Kevin Randleman of today would beat the Kevin Randleman who fought in Brazil. In a one fight deal, against any one guy, I don't think anybody is going to beat me. When somebody gets in the ring with me they better realize that they are getting in there with one of the most incredibly conditioned athletes you can fight. Not just a wrestler, but someone who can box, and if you let me get my leg off the ground, believe me I have been working on kicks and my kicks are very hard and very fast." They should be. Kevin sports 28 to 29 inch thighs and has an incredible vertical leap. Even though Randleman is a wrestler, he loves to strike. "I like to strike. Period. I grew up fighting and the guy with the best hands won. You have to be versatile. I'm comfortable standing up. Being in great shape allows me to stay mentally sharp for 20 minutes. I can punch, wrestle, use submission. Whatever I need to do. I am very adaptable".
PETE WILLIAMS HEAVYWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 23, 7/10/75 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 6'3", 235lbs.
BIRTHPLACE San Lorenzo, CA FIGHTING OUT OF Dallas, Texas
STYLE Submission Fighting TRAINER Lion's Den
MANAGER Phree Betancourt NICKNAME El Duro (The Hard One)
MARITAL STATUS Single
STRENGTHS Versatility and size
UFC HISTORY Pete made his debut at UFC 17 "Redemption" where he knocked out former UFC Heavyweight Champion Mark Coleman with a kick to the face at :38 seconds into overtime. At Ultimate Brazil Pete lost a very close split decision to former training partner and friend Tsuyoshi Kosaka. At UFC 19 "Ultimate Young Guns" Pete took on Jason Godsey . This fight was not to last long, with both men coming out with a quick tie-up to start the action off. Godsey threw a leg kick with Williams answering with a punch to the face. Godsey, in what can be best described as an attempted flurry of punches, chased Williams, who in turn took Godsey down. Williams was able to secure a knee bar for the victory in under two minutes. Pete is 2 and 1 in the UFC.
TRAINING Like all of the Lion's den fighters, Pete trains in grappling and striking. He is known for having particularly hard kicks. He trains with Jerry Bohlander, Mike Burnette, Guy Mezger, and other members of the Den. He alternates kickboxing workouts with grappling workouts and does a lot of cardiovascular work.
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT "I have not seen much of him. One thing I do know is that he has got a lot of experience. I've heard he's a tough guy. He'll come to fight. He's got a good right hand. I guess he can wrestle a little bit but he is more of a fighter."
OTHER Pete and Jerry were on the same high school wrestling team and Pete started training at the Lion's Den about a month after Jerry did. There is a strong bond between the two. Pete's overall record in MMA competition is 4 and 1. He has also competed in the RINGS organization in Japan and was the runner up in the 1996 Pancrase Neo Blood Tournament. Pete's favorite submission hold is the kneebar.
TRAVIS FULTON HEAVYWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 21, 05/29/77 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 6' 0", 220lbs.
BIRTHPLACE/FIGHTING OUT OF Cedar Falls, Iowa
STYLE Jiu-Jitsu and Wrestling TRAINER Pat Miletich
MANAGER Phyllis Lee NICKNAME The Iron Man
MARITAL STATUS Single
STRENGTHS Striking and fight experience
UFC HISTORY Debut
TRAINING "I'm training a lot harder. A lot of grappling. A lot of running. I work with my boxing trainer three or four times a week."
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT "He's a great submission guy and a pretty good striker with his legs. He's been in against the best so he's got experience as well. I need to avoid any type of leglock, stuff like that. I'd like to strike with him."
OTHER MMA record is 54-13-4 which are all documented. This type of record is unprecedented in the U.S. When asked why he fights so much Travis replies, "Competition. I love the sport. I'm not a violent guy at all. I loved wrestling but in wrestling if a guy beats you they'll likely beat you 100 out of 100 times where in this sport there are so many ways to win you've got a chance against anybody." Travis started Karate at age 6 and started wrestling at age 8. One of Travis' friends showed him a tape of UFC 3 and since then Travis looked for a way to get into the sport. Travis has fought in the U.S., Canada, Japan, Hawaii, Abu Dhabi, and Brazil. Travis competed for most of his career as a middleweight but after competing in an open weight tournament recently where most of the competitors weighed around 250, Travis decided to bulk up and found that he was much stronger and hit harder so he decided to stay as a heavyweight. Travis just made his professional boxing debut with a 25 second first round knockout of his opponent. UFC veterans Travis has fought include Dan Severn (loss), Jeremy Horn (2 draws), Sam Adkins (win), Harry Moskowitz (win), Brad Kohler (loss in a 52 minute match!), Matt Anderson (win), and Felix Lee Mitchell (win). Says that Dan Severn was his toughest opponent. Is scheduled to fight top Brazilian fighter Carlos Barreto ONE WEEK before fighting Pete Williams. He feels that Pete will be the tougher fight. Unlike many fighters, Travis likes to socialize with his opponents, even before a fight. Travis is just a friendly guy.
TRA TELLIGMAN HEAVYWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 34, 2/07/65 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 6'2", 230lbs.
BIRTHPLACE Fort Worth, Texas FIGHTING OUT OF Dallas, Texas
STYLE Submission Fighting TRAINER Lion's Den
MANAGER Phree Betancourt NICKNAME Trauma
MARITAL STATUS Single
UFC HISTORY Made his debut at UFC 12 Judgement Day. He took on Vitor Belfort in the first round of a four man tournament. Belfort Wins by verbal tapout from strikes at :50 seconds. Tra said he was caught off guard because Vitor was listed as Jiu-Jitsu but was so good with his fists. Tra returned at Ultimate Japan where he defeated Brad Kohler by armlock in 10:05. Tra is 1 and 1 in the UFC.
TRAINING "Monday, Wednesday, Friday I lift in the morning. I eat. I wrestle at three o'clock. I eat again. I relax. I come back in the gym and do some cardio. Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday I do all stand-up. Kickboxing, sparring, bag work, mitt work, you name it."
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT "In my opinion of UFC fighters, he's the best all around fighter fighting today. I think people have underestimated him. Stand-up wise I don't necessarily think he's all that fast but he's got a lot of experience. He's got really good kicks, good hands. He hits hard. He kicks hard and he's smart. On the ground, he's got very good defense on the ground. The only thing I question is his submissions. I don't think he's real strong at submissions. I think he's more like a Maurice style of fighter on the ground. More of a defender."
OTHER 9-1-1 MMA record. While some of the Lion's Den fighters say they draw strength from being part of the team, Tra reveals that there is a flip side. "The team almost has more to do with pressure because you are part of the team because you go out there not wanting to let your guys down. When I first started fighting I just loved to fight. I had a great time. It was fun. Then you keep winning and keep winning and every time you go everybody is like, "You're a Lion's Den fighter. You're supposed to win." You start getting that behind you and you start getting that pressure of going out there to win instead of going out there to fight. I got kind of caught up that for a while. You're going to see a totally different fighter this time. I'm going out there to fight this time. If I run out of gas five minutes into the fight, so be it. If I run out in 15 minutes into the fight, so be it. I'm going to fight." On his future in this sport Tra says, "I'm not fighting anybody anymore except for top fighters. That's all I want to fight. That's how I want to prove myself. That's why I got in this game. I had a stumbling block with Vitor. It blew me away more than it did anybody else. I fought everywhere else and then I come to America to get beat and get beat badly. It was humiliating for me. I want the American public to see the real me. He (Pedro) is the best fight for me to show everything I got. That I can box, I can kickbox. To show people that I can wrestle, that I can do submissions because in this fight I think there will be a lot of things going on. Anybody at this level who says, "Oh, I'll kill this guy" is an idiot because you get to this level and you make one mistake and the fight is over. If he makes a mistake, I'm gonna capitalize on it. If I make a mistake he'll capitalize on it. It's going to be a great fight. I think I'm the stronger fighter. I think I've got the wider range of skills but I'm not underestimating him at all. I don't want it to go to a decision. I want to win conclusively." Tra was in a car wreck at 1 and a half years old that crushed his upper chest cavity, bent his sternum, and crushed his ribs. "It doesn't effect me at all. There are different weaknesses you have but everyone has certain weaknesses. When I bench and do weights I do less weight on that one side than I do on the other side and things like that but as far as "Am I weak on that side?" No." Tra started martial arts young to deal with bullies. "I learned that fighting was part of life. I learned that no matter what people say there are going to be times when you either step up to the plate or you get pushed around." He started Karate in fourth grade and started boxing in the sixth grade. He experimented with a lot of fighting styles. When he was older a friend of his showed him a tape of Vale Tudo fights from Brazil and thought, "I could beat those guys." A year after that he started hearing about the UFC. He met Oleg Taktarov and Guy Mezger and then hooked up with the Lion's Den.
PEDRO RIZZO HEAVYWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 24, 5/03/74 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 6'1", 228lbs.
STYLE Ruas Vale Tudo TRAINER Marco Ruas
BIRTHPLACE Rio de Janeiro, Brazil FIGHTING OUT OF Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
MANAGER Marco Ruas and Mark Hines
UFC HISTORY Pedro made his UFC debut at Ultimate Brazil and made his mark by knocking out Tank Abbott in 8:07. They traded shots early but while Tank was a heavy puncher, Pedro was much faster and more accurate. When the fight went to the ground, Rizzo showed a good defensive guard. Back on the feet Pedro started landing more punches and leg kicks. Rizzo knocked Tank down a total of three times on the way to his K.O victory. At UFC 18 Road To The Heavyweight Title, Pedro won a split decision over former UFC World Heavyweight Champion Mark "The Hammer" Coleman. Coleman started strong but seemed to run out of gas toward the end of the fight. Neither fighter was able to finish strong but Coleman's obvious exhaustion and the welts his legs were sporting due to Rizzo's leg kicks may have sealed his fate with the judges. Pedro is 2 and 0 in the UFC.
TRAINING Ruas Vale Tudo is Marco Ruas' version of Luta Livre. It combines Jiu-Jitsu without the gi and Muay Thai kickboxing. Pedro says that his training mostly consists of lots of sparring. "Runners should run. Swimmers should swim. Fighters should fight." Pedro went to Holland for three weeks to train with K1 kickboxing champion Peter Aerts to work on his kickboxing skills because he was expecting to fight Pete Williams. He feels that Tre Telligman is more of a grappler so he returned to Brazil to concentrate on his grappling. He will come to America two weeks before the fight to train with Marco.
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT "He is from Lion's Den. Everybody from Lion's Den are good fighters. They are complete fighters. All around fighters. They can fight standing and on the ground. They are always in good condition. He is big and strong. I think it will be a hard fight."
OTHER Pedro is undefeated in Vale Tudo matches with a record of 8 and 0. In kickboxing he has 31 wins and 1 no-contest. All together he has 30 knockouts. He is a four-time Brazilian Muay Thai champion. He has been ranked #1 in by both the WMT and MTS kickboxing federations. He won the WVC 2 tournament, defeating Lion's Den fighter Vernon White in the finals. He won the WVC 3 SuperFight against Richard Heard and won the "Battle Of Styles" in Holland in 1996. He started training with his hero Marco Ruas at fourteen years old. "Marco is the best." He felt that the Abbott fight would be the most important fight of his life and he came through it with flying colors. His home country crowd cheered him wildly. Most important to Rizzo was how proud Marco Ruas was of him after the victory. "Marco was very happy." Pedro says that due to the UFC's popularity he now has sponsors and can train even better for this fight. Pedro says he is comfortable standing or on the ground. "It is no problem for me. I train for everything." Some people questioned Pedro's conditioning after the Coleman match but he says that he didn't try to finish Coleman off because he did not want to get taken down, not because he was tired. "He was just waiting to take me down again. If he took me down again I would lose the fight. I think that I was winning because I hit his leg very hard."
LAVERNE CLARK LIGHTWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 25, 12/2/73 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 5'11", 169lbs.
BORN IN AND FIGHTING OUT OF Davenport, Iowa
STYLE Boxing MANAGER Monte Cox
TRAINER Alvino Pena (Boxing) Pat Miletich (MMA)
NICKNAME Fists Of Fury
MARITAL STATUS Single. Has 4 kids. Kerria,5.Shamara,7.Symone,7. Laverne Jr. 9
STRENGTHS Good boxer with KO power. Wrestling background helps him avoid takedowns.
UFC HISTORY Made his UFC debut at UFC 16 "Battle In The Bayou" against Jiu-Jitsu stylist Josh Stuart in an alternate match. Clark won by ref stop at 1:15. At UFC 18 "Road To The Heavyweight Title" Laverne forced Jiu-Jitsu stylist Frank Caracci to tap out from punches on the ground at 6:59. Laverne is 2 and 0 in the Octagon.
TRAINING Laverne is an active boxer and trains with Alvino Pena who has trained top boxers like Michael Nunn. In addition to his boxing training Laverne works on the other aspects of the MMA game with UFC World Lightweight Champion Pat Miletich. "It's great. I love training with Pat. I push him and he pushes me."
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT "He's a tough person. I've seen him fight once. I think I'll beat him. I don't think he'll be able to control me like he did the other fighter. I think I can keep him from taking me down. I'm not going to focus on that though. I know Jiu-Jitsu too. I'd like to submit him but I'll knock him out if I have to."
OTHER Wrestled from 9 years old through high school. Won state championship two years in a row in middle school. Placed second in the state (Illinois) two years in a row in high school. Started boxing at 17 years old. Had an amateur boxing record of 62 and 6. Won the Golden Gloves, The ABF Regionals, the ABF Championship, lost in the semi-finals of the USA Box-Off. Pro record is 13-4-1. Recently knocked out Anibal Acevedo, a 1992 Olympic Bronze Medalist from Puerto Rico. Laverne always thought that boxing and wrestling were made to go together. "When I was wrestling I wanted to punch the guy and when I box I want to wrestle the guy so they go well together for me." Even before he had heard of the UFC he was looking for a sport where he could combine his boxing and wrestling skills. "It's natural to have them together and I'm a natural fighter." Laverne's overall MMA record is 5 and 2. The two losses were due to lack of submission knowledge. He was choked out both times. Clark is now training in submissions with UFC World Lightweight Champion Pat Miletich. Laverne lived in the projects as a kid but wrestling programs helped keep him out of trouble. "I come from a negative environment but I have taken all of the negative and turned it into a positive and doing the best that I can with it. The UFC is a positive for me. It might look negative to somebody else but it is making my life better. I fight for my kids" When he is asked about heroes, Laverne replies, "The only hero I know about is God."
FABIANO IHA LIGHTWEIGHT
DOB 26, 07/28/72 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 5' 8", 168lbs.
BIRTHPLACE Santa Catarina, Brazil FIGHTING OUT OF Huntington Beach, CA
STYLE Jiu-Jitsu/Ruas Vale Tudo TRAINER Marco Ruas
MANAGER Ricardo Miranda
MARITAL STATUS Wife Alexandra, 5 year old daughter Klyzia
STRENGTHS Groundwork. Submissions, especially armbars
UFC HISTORY Debut
TRAINING "Two hours in the morning of stand-up only. I do one hour at night of grappling."
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT "Great fighter. Excellent fighter. Very good stand-up. Wrestler base. He likes to fight like I like to fight: for submission or knock out. I think it will be a very exciting fight, like World War 2."
OTHER MMA record of 8 and 0. Won seven of the 8 matches with armbars. Knocked out Rickson Gracie Black Belt Cleber Luciano in his last fight. "I have been waiting for years to get into the UFC. I am ready." Studied Jiu-Jitsu for 11 years. Received his black belt from Crolin Gracie. Moved to America three years ago. He came to America because he wants to be a stuntman in the movies and because he wanted to be in the UFC. He was in Royce Gracie's entourage for UFCs 3, 4, and 5. "I always wanted to fight in the UFC one day. From the first time I saw Royce fight I wanted to get in."
BIRTHPLACE Curitiba- PR Brazil FIGHTING OUT OF Curitiba-PR Brazil
MANAGER Sergio Batarelli
UFC HISTORY Made his debut at Ultimate Brazil October 16, 1998. After a couple of lackluster performances, Vitor Belfort showed why he is called the "Phenom" by destroying highly regarded Brazilian fighter Vanderlei Silva in :47. Silva was actually picked to win by many observers due to his destruction of UFC veteran Mike Van Arsdale but Vitor Belfort would not be denied this night. After a leg kick by Silva, Vitor unleashed a over a dozen accurate punches that drove Silva back and down against the fence where the match was stopped. After the match Silva admitted that he did not know where he was and that it was a good stoppage.
TRAINING Vanderlei trains 5 hours a day in both Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He says that he trains hard every day and hopes to have a good performance in the UFC.
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT Vanderlei is not familiar with his opponent but that is what he is used to. "It is usual for me not to choose my opponent."
OTHER Vanderlei trains in Jiu-Jitsu but his main weapon is his striking. His first loss came in the finals of an IVC tournament where he appeared to be winning in a long slugfest but at 13:10 the referee halted the bout due to a bad cut. Vanderlei came back to win the IVC 6 SuperFight against UFC veteran Mike Van Arsdale by knockout. Vanderlei also won 2 Brazilian Muay Thai championships. He has suffered cuts in a few fights so that could possibly be a problem for him. Muay Thai Record: 15 fights - 15 victories - two times Brazilian champion -'93 '94 MMA record: 10 fights - 8 victories (losses to Arthur Mariano in IVC 2 and Vitor in UFC Brazil) Vanderlei says he is very happy that he got another chance in the UFC. He is anxious about the opportunity he has , and he says he will do everything he can to make this performance bring satisfaction to the public. (when he says anxious is more like eager, it's in a positive way, not negative). He said that fighting in America was not only an objective for him, it was also a dream. And he is looking forward fighting more times in the US. About Vitor: he told me he committed a technical mistake, and Vitor didn't hesitate in capitalizing it, he took advantage of it - that's part of the game, according to him. And he would like a rematch.
TONY PETARRA MIDDLEWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 32, 11/08/66 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 5'11", 198lbs.
BIRTHPLACE Santa Maria, CA FIGHTING OUT OF Rancho Cucamonga, CA
MARITAL STATUS Wife Cris, 14 year old son Michael, 8 year old daughter, Juliana
STRENGTHS Conditioning/Submission UFC HISTORY Debut
TRAINING "I do anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour of wind-sprints. Then an hour of boxing. Then about an hour and a half of grappling."
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT "I saw him fight Vitor Belfort. He didn't have a good day. He'll be my toughest fight. He has skills he didn't get to show in that fight. I'll have to take a shot, no doubt. I'd rather not play his game."
OTHER 6-0-2 MMA record. Won the Texas SuperBrawl and won the Mexican ShootFighting championship twice. Fights for the Shark Tank competition team. "I've been doing martial arts since I was a kid. I started off with Kung-Fu, like everyone else back in the seventies. That's about all there was, Kung-Fu and Karate. I became interested in this kind of fighting after seeing the UFC. I did some Jiu-Jitsu and kickboxing training before the Shark Tank."
MARCELLO MELLO LIGHTWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 26, 3/30/73 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 5'7", 169lbs.
BIRTHPLACE Rio de Janeiro, Brazil FIGHTING OUT OF Astoria, NY
STYLE Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
TRAINER Self Trained MANAGER Jose Luis Cazemartori
MARITAL STATUS Single
STRENGTHS Ground technique
UFC HISTORY Debut
TRAINING "I start in the morning with aerobics at night with striking and grappling techniques. One day in, one day off."
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT Has not heard of him. "It does not matter who I fight."
OTHER Started his training with Royler Gracie in Brazil at 19 years old. Has competed in 55 matches in Jiu-Jitsu, winning 51. Fought in the 1995 Vale Tudo Open Brazil. He won his match by a knockout from the mount. He says the UFC is, "An opportunity to prove my skills and techniques. I don't want to be like other martial arts teachers who stay on the outside. I want to prove myself. I want to be part of the game."
Admires Vitor Belfort, Mario Sperry, and Royler Gracie.
DAVID ROBERTS LIGHTWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 19, 11/15/79 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 6'1", 169lbs.
BIRTHPLACE Jacksonville, FL FIGHTING OUT OF Memphis, TN
STYLE Wrestling TRAINER/MANAGER Jeff Mullen
MARITAL STATUS Single
STRENGTHS Groundwork/ Mentality
UFC HISTORY Debut
TRAINING "I like to train two or more hours a night. I work on my endurance. Do a lot of sparring."
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT Does not know him.
OTHER Considers himself more of a submissions oriented wrestler as opposed to a "ground and pound" wrestler. Has never competed under UFC rules but has a 4 and 0 record in shoot fighting style matches in Memphis. On the adjustment to the rules he says, "I don't think I will have any problem with it." "I'm excited about going into the UFC. I think it's a great opportunity. I'm hoping to go in there and do my best." David hopes to one day open up his own school and train other fighters. He works as a wholesale distributor. His brother, Joey Roberts, fought at UFC 19, losing to Sione Latu. "His advice to me was just "do your best" and that was basically it."
CHRIS CONDO HEAVYWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 24, 6/14/74 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 6'0", 300lbs.
BIRTHPLACE Memphis, TN FIGHTING OUT OF Memphis, TN
STYLE Submission Fighting TRAINER/MANAGER Jeff Mullen
MARITAL STATUS Single
UFC HISTORY Debut
TRAINING "I swim, I box, I kickbox, I grapple, bike, jog."
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT Does not know him.
OTHER This is the first time he has competed under UFC type rules. He has competed in a lot of Jiu-Jitsu tournaments. He feels that he has grown past Jiu-Jitsu rules and is ready for the UFC. Has studied martial arts for six years. Seeing the first UFC got him interested in ground fighting. "It's a big opportunity for me. It's a little weird (actually competing in the show). It reminds me of the Friends episode."
RON WATERMAN HEAVYWEIGHT
AGE/DOB 33, 11/23/65 HEIGHT/WEIGHT 6'2", 260lbs.
BIRTHPLACE Greeley, CO FIGHTING OUT OF Greeley, CO
TRAINER Sheldon Marr MANAGER Phyllis Lee
NICKNAME H20 Man
MARITAL STATUS Wife Jody, 10 year old son Justin and 4 year old son Austin
STRENGTHS Wrestling ability/Strength
UFC HISTORY Debut
TRAINING "I lift weights for about an hour and a half five days a week. I do about a half-hour of cardio work on a treadmill or a bike. Then I grapple and hit the bag for about another hour and a half a day."
THOUGHTS ON OPPONENT Does not know him.
OTHER Has wrestled for about 25 years. Was a 5 year varsity letterman at the University Of Northern Colorado. After seeing the success of other wrestlers in the UFC, Ron felt he would be perfect for the sport. He started training against friends who were black belts in martial arts and started to compete in some tournaments. He recently won the Bas Rutten Invitational in February. Ron is 2 and 0 in ShootFighting style matches and is 3 and 0 under UFC style rules. Considers himself a "Ground and Pound" style wrestler. Striking has been a big adjustment but he feels he has come a long way quickly. On competing in the UFC he says, "I'm pumped! It's exciting. It's a neat feeling. I'm coming in as an alternate in this one but hopefully this will create other opportunities so that I can get into the main event."