World Extreme Cagefighting proudly confirms the remaining bouts of its pay-per-view card headed to ARCO Arena in Sacramento, Calif. on Saturday, April 24. If two world title fights featuring Jose Aldo vs. Urijah Faber and Ben Henderson vs. Donald Cerrone, as well as a clash between former featherweight champion Mike Brown and Manny Gamburyan weren’t enough, WEC General Manager Reed Harris has announced eight more explosive fights slated for this historic weekend.
The fights are Shane Roller vs. Anthony Njokuani, Scott Jorgensen vs. Antonio Banuelos, Chan Sung Jung vs. Leonard Garcia, Anthony Pettis vs. Alex Karalexis, Demetrious Johnson vs. Brad Pickett, Anthony Morrison vs. Mackens Semerzier, Rani Yahya vs. Takeya Mizugaki, and Tyler Toner vs. Brandon Visher.
“This is one of the deepest cards we’ve ever put together,” Harris said. “From top to bottom, this event has the potential to produce some of the best fights of the year. And I’ve said all along that I think Aldo vs. Faber could be one of the best bouts of the decade. On April 24, fans are in for a real treat.”
Tickets for Aldo vs. Faber are on sale now and priced at $185, $135, $75, and $40. Tickets may be purchased by calling Ticketmaster Charge-By-Phone at 1-800-745-3000 or by visiting the ARCO Arena Box Office. Tickets also are available online through www.wec.tv or www.ticketmaster.com.
Aldo vs. Faber will be available live on pay-per-view on iN DEMAND, DIRECTV, DISH Network, TVN, BellTV, Shaw Communications and Viewer’s Choice Canada for a suggested retail price of $44.99 ($49.99/Canada) for standard definition or high-definition broadcasts (where available).
Having earned three consecutive “Knockout of the Night” honors, perhaps no lightweight striker is more feared than Anthony Njokuani (fighting out of Las Vegas, Nev.). With wins over Bart Palaszewski, Muhsin Corbbrey, and Chris Horodecki, “The Assassin” believes a fourth straight victory on April 24 will lead him to a world title shot. Standing in his way is three-time Division I All-American wrestler Shane Roller (fighting out of Las Vegas, Nev.). Riding back-to-back wins over Marcus Hicks and Danny Castillo, the 30-year-old Roller (7-2) will look to use his solid takedowns and vicious ground and pound to derail Njokuani (13-2). In a crowded lightweight division, both Njokuani and Roller plan to leave it all in the cage at ARCO Arena, with the winner taking a giant leap toward championship glory.
In a highly-anticipated rematch of their hotly-contested 2009 clash, bantamweights Scott Jorgensen (fighting out of Boise, Idaho) and Antonio Banuelos (fighting out of Arroyo Grande, Calif.) collide at WEC’s first pay-per-view event. A 12-fight WEC veteran, the 30-year-old Banuelos looks to prove that his split decision victory over Jorgensen last June was no fluke. Having soundly defeated Kenji Osawa in his last fight in November, Banuelos (18-5) hopes to earn a shot at 135-pound champion Dominick Cruz with a second victory over “Young Guns.” After racking up three consecutive victories since dropping a decision to Banuelos, former Boise State University wrestler Jorgensen (9-3) has skyrocketed up the bantamweight rankings. Hungry to avenge his loss to Banuelos, expect the fiery 27-year-old to come out swinging on April 24.
Korea’s finest featherweight prospect makes his WEC debut this month and is set to take on one of the organization’s most battle-tested veterans. Boasting an impressive record of 10-1, 22-year-old Chan Sung Jung (fighting out of Seoul, Korea) meets Leonard Garcia (fighting out of Lubbock, Texas) in an explosive 145-pound contest. With six submissions and two knockouts, Jung has a knack for finishing fights. He’ll need to be on point in his first WEC fight when he meets heavy-handed Garcia (17-5-1) in Sacramento. Training under the tutelage of Greg Jackson in Albuquerque, N.M., the 30-year-old is as motivated as ever to climb the featherweight rankings. Fresh off a slugfest with George Roop last month, Garcia thinks his well-rounded game will guide him past Jung in their pivotal fight at ARCO.
Lightweight Anthony Pettis (fighting out of Milwaukee, Wis.) has made quite the impression in his brief WEC career. Owning a slick submission victory over Mike Campbell and a devastating knockout win over Danny Castillo, many believe the 23-year-old is poised for superstardom. Enter Alex Karalexis (fighting out of Boston, Mass.) The 32-year-old, who competed on the first season of The Ultimate Fighter™, is ready and able to play spoiler and thwart Pettis’ rise to the top. A heavy-handed striker, Karalexis (10-4) returns to the cage for the first time since knocking out Greg McIntyre last year. Knowing that a second consecutive victory could push him toward a shot at a world title, Karalexis has vowed to make a big statement when he faces Pettis (8-1) later this month.
Bantamweight Brad Pickett (fighting out of Coconut, Creek, Fla.) made waves in his WEC debut in December by defeating Kyle Dietz with the rarely-seen Peruvian neck tie. Now the submission ace returns on April 24 with his sights set on another flashy stoppage victory, this time over WEC newcomer Demetrious Johnson (fighting out of Parkland, Wash.). The task will be easier said than done though. The 23-year-old Johnson (5-0) has never been to a decision in his career, submitting three of his opponents and knocking out two. Known for his speed and grit, the Northwest-based fighter hopes to overpower Pickett (19-4) in a dark horse candidate for “Fight of the Night.”
An intriguing featherweight fight pits Anthony Morrison (fighting out of Philadelphia, Pa.) against Mackens Semerzier (fighting out of Virginia Beach, Va.). Nicknamed “Cheesesteak” in homage to his Philadelphia roots, Morrison is a witty, charismatic competitor with strong punching power. After making his WEC debut against former featherweight champ Mike Brown in January, Morrison (15-7) returns to the cage with the goal of knocking out Semerzier. A training partner of former WEC bantamweight champion Miguel Angel Torres, Semerzier (7-1) burst onto the scene last year with an upset win over Wagnney Fabiano. He looks to use his efficient grappling and superior athleticism to best Morrison when the two collide in California’s capitol city.
In a classic striker vs. grappler matchup, standup wizard Takeya Mizugaki (fighting out of Tokyo, Japan) takes on Brazilian Jiu Jitsu ace Rani Yahya (fighting out of Brasilia, Brazil) in bantamweight action. Known for his epic clash with then-bantamweight champion Miguel Angel Torres in 2009, Mizugaki (12-4-2) is a proficient striker who is dangerous in the clinch. He’ll look to keep the fight on the feet and avoid the dangerous ground work of his opponent. A winner of three out of his last four fights, Yahya (15-5) is perhaps the most seasoned grappler in the 135-pound division. With that said, the former Abu Dhabi world champion will look for submissions early and often when he collides with Mizugaki on April 24.
WEC’s pay-per-view event opens up with featherweight fireworks, as Brandon Visher (fighting out of Maui, Hawaii) takes on Tyler Toner (fighting out of Denver, Colo.). No stranger to throwing leather, Visher (13-0) scored a knockout win over Courtney Buck in his WEC debut in December. The 25-year-old, nicknamed “The Viper,” looks to join the 145-pound elite with a win over Toner. Training out of the same gym as UFC stars Shane Carwin and Nate Marquardt, Toner (9-1) is a seasoned veteran with five wins by way of knockout. The Denver native plans to kick of the pay-per-view card with a bang and end Visher’s climb up the featherweight ladder when the two lock horns in Sacramento.