MM-Eh! Doerksen's new deal gives him a shot for the title

Joe Doerksen's new contract gives him a shot for the middleweight title, while Scott Junk pounded Jimmy Ambriz to be crowned the new heavyweight champion, writes Andy Cotterill in his MM-Eh! report.

Updated: June 26, 2007, 12:03 PM ET
By Andy Cotterill | Sherdog.com

Joe Doerksen confirmed last week that his Aug. 5 meeting with former PRIDE powerhouse Paulo Filho will be for the vacant World Extreme Cagefighting middleweight title.

"I don't get excited about much, but yeah, I'm looking forward to it," Doerksen told Sherdog.com from his home in Winnipeg. "I think it's a good fight for me," he continued. "I don't think it's an easy fight, but I think it's a winnable fight."

Doerksen was one fight into a three-fight deal with PRIDE, but with all the tumult caused after that organization's acquisition by Zuffa, Doerksen said his manager, Monte Cox, told him there was a chance that there might be no more PRIDE shows, and that they should see if there were any other options for him.

Cox approached UFC matchmaker Joe Silva, and they came up with a deal that Doerksen could be happy with; a new four-fight contract with the WEC, with the first fight being for the title.

"Am I excited about it? I'd say yes. It's a big deal I guess, to be on TV fighting for Zuffa again," he said. "I get to fight a top 10 guy and I've been wanting to do that for a while now."

Filho is undoubtedly a top 10 guy, as Doerksen put it, so how does he think the two of them will match up?

"His strength is on the ground obviously -- from what everybody has told me," Doerksen said. "I honestly haven't seen him fight all that often. I'm going from what I've heard, but just a real aggressive, in- your-face kind of guy."

Filho does indeed have impressive ground skills, with six of his wins coming by way of submission. Doerksen compares their skills this way:

"I've always been a ground guy, so I don't think that's going to be a huge issue. I've been getting more and more comfortable on my feet the past year or two, so I think I might have a slight advantage on the feet. The trick is to keep it there. I've got my work cut out for me, but it's a winnable fight."

There is one thing Doerksen knows he'll try to definitely not do however, and that's to go to a decision. "I don't tend to do well when I let it go that way," he said, chuckling.

"I'm not going in there to not lose or to just look good, it's not going to be enough anymore," continued the veteran of nearly every major mixed martial arts organization. "I want more. I want to win and I want to beat some top 10 guys and I want to see how far I can go in this sport."

Doerksen will be in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, this weekend to give a two-day seminar at FitPlus, and we'll be there to get an update on his training.

MFC 12 "High Stakes" Recap

Edmonton's Maximum Fighting Championship brought a little bit of everything to the fans in the Shaw Conference Centre on Friday night. Submissions-a-plenty, some ground-and-pound, a brutal knockout, a little bit of controversy, and a new heavyweight champion.

The main event saw Scott Junk defeat Jimmy Ambriz for the newly created MFC heavyweight title. The fight started with the two behemoths trading blows, going briefly to the mat, and then into the clinch, where unfortunately Junk dealt "The Titan" an errant low blow.

Ambriz was given five minutes to recover and then was able to finish the round. But before the second stanza could commence, Ambriz decided he could not continue, much to the dismay of the booing fans.

The MFC has offered Ambriz a rematch, but that's small consolation now as Scott "Punk Haole" Junk becomes the first ever MFC heavyweight champion.

The co-main event did not disappoint, as Halifax's Roger Hollett delivered his first strike of his match against Shane Biever in the form of an absolutely devastating left hook that caught a right-circling Biever square on the jaw. The official time of the knockout was 15 seconds into Round 1.

Next up for Roger "The Hulk" Hollett is an Aug. 24 attempt to take the MFC light heavyweight title from current champ Victor Valimaki. Hollett told MM-Eh! that after the event he and Valimaki, who have always been friendly, shared a few drinks together at the after party and discussed their upcoming fight.

Speaking of Valimaki, his scheduled bout for Friday never materialized as his opponent, Marcus Hicks, broke his hand during the warm-up. Members of the MFC insinuate that Hicks purposely injured himself so as to avoid fighting "The Matrix," and he was subsequently escorted from the venue.

Hicks' claim that the self-inflicted injury was accidental seems the more plausible side of the story, as he had openly voiced his disdain for Valimaki and his desire to fight him for quite some time.

In a fight between two lightweights with excellent Brazilian jiu-jitsu credentials, it was Fabio Holanda who was finally able to get the better of Shaun Krysa midway through the second round. The pair did a little bit of everything in the first, and even though Holanda ended on top, neither was in serious trouble.

The second stanza was different, as Holanda, who is the BJJ coach to Georges St. Pierre, was able to get into mount and rain down strikes until Krysa tapped. After the win, Holanda requested that his next appearance be for the MFC lightweight championship, a title that does not yet exist.

The National Hockey League's "Battle of Alberta" temporarily left the rink and entered the ring, as both Edmonton's Ryan McGillivray and Calgary's Graydon Tannas walked onto the mat wearing their respective city's hockey jerseys.

In the only fight that went the distance, one that many are calling the fight of the night, McGillivray eked out Tannas in a razor-thin split decision.

With this win, "The Kid" increases his tally to 5-0, and the Pro Camp teammate of Jason MacDonald and Victor Valimaki looks to have a bright future ahead of him.

UCW 8 "Natural Invasion" In Brief

International Fight League star Krzysztof Soszynski had another successful outing as co-promoter of Winnipeg's Ultimate Cage Wars, as nearly 3,000 fans jammed the Winnipeg Convention Centre to watch the evening's eight mixed martial arts bouts.

On top of the great fights, fans were fortunate enough to have UFC heavyweight champion Randy Couture in the house, as well as Canadian UFC veterans David Loiseau and Jeff Joslin.

In the main event, Jason Day won what could have been his biggest fight to date, as he was able to acquire an armbar submission over UFC and TKO veteran Jonathan Goulet. This was a highly needed win for "Dooms" Day, as his June 1 loss to Patrick Cote put a speed bump into his road to the UFC. Hopefully this victory will smooth that bump out.

The Canadian Martial Arts Centre in Lethbridge had a great outing, as Day's teammates Dan Chambers and Neil Berry also both won their fights. Berry defeated a game Steve Taylor, and Chambers bested Jacob MacDonald.

Andy Cotterill covers mixed martial arts for MM-Eh! News and Notes from Canada.