Ryan Bader was a victim of Junie Allen Browning's drunken foolishness on TUF.
• He didn't fight in the cage, but the outburst-prone Kentuckian Junie Allen Browning was at the center of this week's episode of "The Ultimate Fighter 8" on Spike TV. Browning got in more alcohol-fueled face-offs this week, shoving and trash-talking several housemates, throwing a glass and scrapping with Ryan Bader in the pool. Browning, interestingly, seemed to want to provoke fighters to hit him rather than all-out attacking anyone. Dana White, talking in a raspy cadence reminiscent of a Hollywood mob boss, gave Browning, who admitted he had a drinking problem, and his drinking buddy, Shane Nelson, a second chance despite calling both "drunken retards."
Both fighters, it would appear, squandered the opportunity. Nelson, a Hawaiian who trains with B.J. Penn, dropped this week's elimination fight to wrestler Efrain Escudero. Escudero, representing Team Nogueira, worked a strong takedown and ground control game before catching Nelson with a triangle in round two for the tap.
Browning, who had gotten in Escudero's face earlier, catcalled him from cageside and eventually hopped the fence and initiated a pull-apart scene that plays out next week. The proceedings garnered some sorely needed buzz for a TUF season that had the lowest-rated debut episode in the eight-season history of the series and drew an all-time low rating for last week's episode.
• In one of the bigger deals struck to date by a mixed martial artist, welterweight king Georges St. Pierre signed with CAA Sports, a high-profile sports marketing agency that lands clients endorsement deals and film and television appearances. The firm, a division of the venerable Creative Artists Agency, represents a cadre of multimillionaire athletes including David Beckham, Oscar De La Hoya and Derek Jeter. St. Pierre's manager told Sherdog.com that the French Canadian, who appears to have renegotiated his new UFC contract, will experiment with some acting.
• Weeks after it announced a partnership with Golden Boy Promotions to promote combined boxing and MMA shows, Affliction Entertainment revealed this week that its next pay-per-view, set for January, will not feature any boxing matches.
Vice President Tom Atencio told Sherdog.com that the concept of holding four hybrid cards in 2009 is still alive. The promotion's next event was rumored to take place on Jan. 17 until the UFC announced it will stage UFC 93 on that date from Dublin, Ireland. The new rumored Affliction date is Jan. 24 in Anaheim, Calif., with a heavyweight title bout between Fedor Emelianenko and Andrei Arlovski likely headlining.
• MMA veteran Duane "Bang" Ludwig had his moment in the spotlight Oct. 3, avenging a loss to Sam Morgan in his home state to cap off Strikeforce's first event in Colorado "Payback” aired on HD-Net from the Broomfield Events Center. The prolific striker used a heavy hook to the body to drop Morgan, and then forced him to tap to strikes after two minutes of fighting. Frank Trigg showed flashes of intensity early against Falaniko Vitale, but ended up simply outwrestling him to take a decision win. Trigg, who is keeping extremely busy fighting in Japan, doing professional wrestling and raising a newborn, competed under the Strikeforce banner for the first time.
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Also picking up wins were Donnie Liles, Billy Evangelista and "Fight Girls" alumnus Michelle "The Karate Hottie" Waterson. Longtime Colorado promoter and Ring of Fire head Sven Bean, who has worked with Strikeforce head Scott Coker promoting K-1 shows in Las Vegas, helped produce the event.
Strikeforce returns on Nov. 21 with a card at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif. The show will be headlined by Bobby Southworth vs. Renato "Babalu" Sobral, Joe Riggs vs. Luke Stewart and a lightweight title defense by Josh Thomson.
• Eddie Alvarez will face Nick Diaz for the vacant EliteXC lightweight title on a Nov.8 card in Reno, Nev., which will be broadcast on Showtime and headlined by Robbie Lawler vs. Joey Villasenor for the middleweight title. EliteXC announced it had stripped champion K.J. Noons of the lightweight title after failing to come to terms on a fight against Diaz, though Noons told Sherdog.com this week that he gave the belt up several days before he'd been stripped. Noons claimed he is now a free agent, though EliteXC said he still has two fights on his current deal. Noons was given the go-ahead to do a pro boxing fight on Nov. 13 in Los Angeles.
• In other big matchmaking this week, the UFC confirmed that Josh Koscheck vs. Yoshiyuki Yoshida, Mike Swick vs. Jonathan Goulet and Matt Wiman vs. Frankie Edgar will headline the Dec. 10 military-themed Spike TV broadcast from North Carolina. Former WEC light heavyweight champion Brian Stann, a former Marine, had to pull out of a scheduled rubber match with Steve Cantwell on the show due to a foot injury. In addition, undefeated former IFL featherweight champion Wagnney Fabiano will make his WEC debut Dec. 3 card in Las Vegas, facing one of Japan's finest featherweights, former top-10 ranked Shooto fighter Akitoshi Tamura, as reported by wrestlingobserver.com.
• A few notes this week in the legal column: EliteXC heavyweight champion Antonio Silva, who failed a steroid test after his July 26th fight, has hired sought-after sports attorney Howard Jacobs, who defended Sean Sherk, to help him appeal his one-year suspension by the California State Athletic Commission. The CSAC this week revoked a fighter's license for steroid abuse for the first time, as light heavyweight John George, who was knocked out in 19 seconds in his last fight in June, failed two tests for anabolic steroids.
• Also, UFC 4 veteran Joe Son faces life in prison after his DNA was matched to evidence in a 1990 gang rape in California. Son is well known in MMA for his 1994 submission loss to Keith Hackney after he was repeatedly, and legally, punched in the groin. In Hollywood, Son is known as the burly bodyguard in the first Austin Powers movie.