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UFC 101: Declaration

  • Video

    A Declaration of Dominance

    The UFC made its Philadelphia debut Saturday with UFC 101, which saw two headlining fights live up to their billing thanks to a first-round knockout by Anderson Silva and a fourth-round submission by B.J. Penn.

  • UFC middleweight champ Anderson Silva celebrates his first-round victory over Forrest Griffin at the Wachovia Center on Saturday August 8, 2009.

    What’s next for Silva? Champ has plenty of options

    August 10, 2009

    Anderson Silva had already cleaned out the UFC’s middleweight division. “The Spider’s” first-round destruction of former light heavyweight champ Forrest Griffin during Saturday night’s first-ever UFC event in Pennsylvania likely means Silva is moving up a class and laying claim to another crown. Or is it?

  • BJ Penn puts Kenny Florian in a rear-naked choke during their lightweight championship fight on Aug. 8, 2009. Penn retained the title with a submission victory.

    B.J. Penn delivers an encore at UFC 101

    August 9, 2009

    As if there wasn't enough pressure on Penn already, following a miserable loss in his last fight with George St. Pierre, and facing an opponent as hot as Kenny Florian. Now he had to follow the Silva Show. Thanks Anderson. "I heard the crowd and the next thing I see is Anderson walking in and he goes, 'Now it's your turn,'" Penn said. "That's a tough act to follow, huh?"

  • Photogallery

    UFC 101 Weigh-in

    The Ultimate Fighting Championship weigh in at the Wachovia Center in South Philadelphia fon Friday afternoon August 7, 2009. The fight will take place on Saturday evening August 8, 2009.

  • The Ultimate Fighting Championship weigh in at the Wachovia Center in South Philadelphia fon Friday afternoon August 7, 2009. The fight will take place on Saturday evening August 8, 2009. At left is UFC Lightweight Champion BJ Penn facing off with opponent Kenny Florian after weigh in on Friday afternoon at the Wachovia Center.

    Fighters, Philadelphia fans weigh in

    August 7, 2009

    PHILADELPHIA - Now it's official. The UFC has arrived in Philadelphia. Fans got their first chance to see the organization in full effect at Friday's weigh-in at the Wachovia Center. And they did what Philly fans do best - they booed.

  • The Ultimate Fighting Championship weigh in at the Wachovia Center in South Philadelphia fon Friday afternoon August 7, 2009. The fight will take place on Saturday evening August 8, 2009. At left is UFC Lightweight Champion BJ Penn facing off with opponent Kenny Florian after weigh in on Friday afternoon at the Wachovia Center.

    Philly all set for UFC debut

    August 8, 2009

    The UFC makes its Pennsylvania debut and first show on the East Coast tonight for the first time since UFC 78 took place in Newark, New Jersey in November of 2007. Some 17,000 fans are expected to pack the Wachovia Center for a lightweight title fight between B.J. Penn and Kenny Florian and a co-main event between superstars Anderson Silva and the Las Vegas-based Forrest Griffin.

  • UFC fans from Boston and Cape Cod make the obligatory run up the famous 'Rocky steps' at the Philadelphia Art Museum.

    Day 5: ‘Rocky’ readies fight fans for UFC 101

    August 8, 2009

    The Las Vegas Sun has traveled to Philadelphia for UFC 101 and are inviting anyone that wants to join along. Follow MMA writers Andy Samuelson and Brett Okamoto as they cram some of the sights and sounds from the "City of Brotherly Love" before checking out all the fights of UFC 101 Saturday night from the Wachovia Center.

  • Video

    UFC 101 Workouts

    Las Vegas Sun fighting writer Brett Okamoto goes inside the UFC 101 workouts. UFC 101 is Saturday with the co-main event being Forrest Griffin vs. Anderson Silva. The main event will feature BJ Penn defending his UFC Lightweight Championship against Kenny Florian.

  • UFC competitors BJ Penn (left) and Kenny Florian (right) face off following the press conference in advance of Saturday's card at the Wachovia Center.

    Breaking down UFC 101: Penn vs. Florian

    August 8, 2009

    PHILADELPHIA - Although the way a fighter trains is usually an interesting aspect leading up to a fight, it's definitely taken a spot in the limelight regarding the Saturday night championship fight between B.J. Penn and Kenny Florian. Penn has been one of the most respected fighters throughout his mixed martial arts career and there's no doubt he's a future hall-of-famer.

  • Fighters with the Ultimate Fight Championship hold workouts at the Loews Hotel in Center City Philadelphia on Wednesday afternoon August 5, 2009. Pictured is Kenny Florian running in place on the practice mats at Loews Hotel.

    The new and improved Kenny Florian

    August 7, 2009

    Every fan of the Kenny Florian that lost to Sean Sherk in 2006 doesn't have a favorite fighter anymore. Even fans of the Kenny Florian that dominated Joe Stevenson just a short nine months ago are out of luck. Sorry guys. Those Florians no longer exist.

  • Fighters with the Ultimate Fight Championship hold workouts at the Loews Hotel in Center City Philadelphia on Wednesday afternoon August 5, 2009. Pictured is BJ Penn, the UFC Lightweight Champion. BJ Penn did not workout with the other fighters on Wednesday afternoon.

    Even champions need comebacks sometimes

    August 6, 2009

    B.J. Penn is hoping he still recognizes his daughter the next time he sees her. As all parents know, children grow up quick. Which is why above every challenge he faces this week - traveling to Philadelphia, putting an ugly loss to Georges St. Pierre behind him, fighting to defend his UFC lightweight championship - not seeing his 10-month-old daughter, Aeva, has been the hardest.

  • Photogallery

    UFC 101 Press Conference

    The Ultimate Fighting Championship held a press conference at the Independence Visitor Center in Center City, Philadelphia to present its main attraction fighters to the media on Thursday afternoon August 6, 2009. The fight will take place at the Wachovia Center in South Philadelphia on Saturday, August 8, 2009.

  • UFC competitors Anderson Silva (left) and Forrest Griffin (right) pose together following the press conference in advance of Saturday's card at the Wachovia Center.

    Breaking down UFC 101: Silva vs. Griffin

    August 7, 2009

    Anderson Silva apologized to the crowd for boring them during his last fight at UFC 97 against Thales Leites. The ugly truth is, he was probably bored too.

  • Facing off are Anderson Silva of Brazil, UFC middleweight champion (left) and opponent Forrest Griffin of Columbus, Ohio.

    Griffin returns to comfortable role as underdog

    August 7, 2009

    Forrest Griffin found his self-deprecating humor as a way to avoid being picked on as a youngster. While the six-foot-three, 205-pounder would have few problems taking care of bullies nowadays, his quirky personality stuck with him — making the former light heavyweight champ a UFC fan favorite. But for media members often trying to tell the former Georgia sheriff deputy’s tale can be a struggle as Griffin’s true individuality is often intertwined with his punchy press conference persona. “Yeah it takes a little while to get a read on him,” says Ron Frazier, Griffin’s boxing coach at the Las Vegas-based Xtreme Couture gym.

  • Fighters with the Ultimate Fight Championship hold workouts at the Loews Hotel in Center City Philadelphia on Wednesday afternoon August 5, 2009. Anderson Silva peeks out from behind a UFC backdrop before his workout session.

    Silva already putting on a show

    August 6, 2009

    PHILADELPHIA — For any UFC fans still upset about Anderson Silva’s “boring” performances in his last two fights, don’t be surprised to see the “The Spider” back to his old highlight-reel tricks Saturday night. At least that’s the theme Silva projected at an intense, playful, and highly entertaining workout Wednesday at Loews hotel. If the 45-minute session serves as any indication on how his bout against Forrest Griffin at UFC 101 might play out, than the middleweight champ could be leaving everyone inside the Wachovia Center on the edge of their seats.

  • Photogallery

    UFC 101 Workouts

    B.J. Penn, Kenny Florian, Anderson Silva and Forrest Griffin prepare for their fights in Philadelphia this weekend.

  • Las Vegas resident Shane Victorino is looking forward to the UFC bringing its brand to Philadelphia for the first time with UFC 101 on Aug. 8. Victorino is close friends with UFC president Dana White and owner Lorenzo Fertitta as well as a handful of fighters within the organization.

    All-Star Victorino welcomes UFC to Philadelphia

    August 4, 2009

    For those who don’t know, Shane Victorino does have an amateur career in mixed martial arts. He’s 1-0 too. One win by technical knockout over his fiancé, Melissa Smith. Victorino isn’t the first professional athlete to admit being a fan of the UFC, but he is probably the most dedicated.

  • Burt Watson, a longtime boxing promoter/manager, is the UFC's site coordinator, basically making sure the fighters are where they need to be and are taken care of during fight week.

    Philly native pumped for UFC’s first event in hometown

    August 3, 2009

    Burt Watson a long-time boxing promoter and manager is now the UFC's on-site coordinator — the main man behind the scenes on fight week who serves as a liaison to the fighters. But with the organization making its first-ever trip to his hometown of Philadelphia this week for UFC 101. “It’s going to be a complete thrill to be part of an event in my hometown,” Watson said. “Just awesome.”

  • Joe Hand, a longtime boxing aficionado, poses in his office filled with boxing memorabilia in Feasterville, Penn. Hand is now involved with the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

    Longtime Philly fight man helping to sell UFC

    August 5, 2009

    There never was a burning-bush moment, or a celestial voice whispering in their ears. For two very influential older converts to the church of mixed martial arts, the revelation was gradual, like the changing of the seasons. To tell the truth, it sort of sneaked up on them. “Joe Jr. and then Joey Jones [the sales manager of Joe Hand Promotions] got into this before I did,” Joe Hand Sr., the national closed-circuit distributor for boxing and UFC events, said of his introduction to mixed martial arts. “I was the last one to come aboard.”

  • Video

    An Enchanting Forrest

    Forrest Griffin talks about this weekend's light heavyweight fight against Anderson Silva the only way he knows how, honest, straight-forward and with just the slightest bit of sarcasm.

  • Forrest Griffin works out at Xtreme Couture Gym in Las Vegas on Tuesday.  Griffin will face Anderson Silva at UFC 101 on August 8.

    UFC’s ‘Rocky Balboa’ looking to shock Brazilian ‘Ivan Drago’

    July 30, 2009

    If there were a real life Rocky Balboa in the mixed martial arts world, Forrest Griffin would likely be the first choice to fill the role of the fictional boxing champ from Philly. From his self-deprecating personality to his insane workouts, the only things that seem to be separating the former UFC light heavyweight champ from Sylvester Stallone’s famous character are the dark stocking cap, grey sweat suit and stoic jog up the steps to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. “No (I’m not Rocky), but I wish I had Rocky’s chin. You can’t knock that guy out if you hit him with a sledgehammer,” joked Griffin (16-5 MMA, 7-3 UFC), who fights MMA pound-for-pound king Anderson Silva at UFC 101 on Aug. 8 at the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia.

  • Photogallery

    Forrest Griffin Workout

  • Amir Sadollah, right, lands a kick against C.B. Dollaway during "The Ultimate Fighter" season No. 7 finale in June 2008.

    Fighter says struggles only made him stronger

    August 5, 2009

    As Amir Sadollah sat shaking in an ice-cold whirl tub last week at Xtreme Couture gym, it was the first time in a long time he enjoyed the recovery soak for what it was, recovery — and not to nurse an injury. A pair of injuries have kept “The Ultimate Fighter” season No. 7 champ from fighting for more than a year.

  • Matt Riddle (left) throws a punch on Steve Bruno during their fight at UFC Fight Night in February in Sun Dome, Fla. Riddle trains out of Las Vegas and will fight Dan Cramer on the undercard of UFC 101 on Aug. 8 in Philadelphia.

    Las Vegas fighter will battle in home state at UFC 101

    August 4, 2009

    It would be hard to find anyone on the UFC 101 fight card looking forward to fighting in Philadelphia more than Las Vegas resident Matt Riddle. He was born in Pennsylvania and is off to a strong start in the UFC welterweight division, with wins in the first two fights of his career.

  • Georges St. Pierre pounds on B.J. Penn in the fourth round of their welterweight title bout at UFC 94 Saturday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.

    B.J. Penn ready to move past ‘Greasegate’

    July 29, 2009

    B.J. Penn hears what they’ve been saying about him. During a conference call Tuesday for his upcoming fight against Kenny Florian at UFC 101 on Aug. 8 in Philadelphia, Penn didn’t come out and specifically admit he follows himself in headlines. But it was pretty obvious that’s the case.

  • Kenny Florian unleashes on Joe Stevenson during their lightweight bout at UFC 91 on November 15, 2008 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Florian won by submission in the first round. Florian will face UFC lightweight champion B.J. Penn with his belt on the line at UFC 101 in Philadelphia.

    Q&A with Kenny Florian

    July 20, 2009

    Kenny Florian was the guest of honor for the UFC 100 Q&A session for Fight Club members. In case you missed it, here are the highlights.