On Monday, Harry Goularte – the alleged target of former UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez’s rage-induced shooting on a San Jose highway – pleaded not guilty to a single felony charge of a lewd or lascivious act upon a child under age 14, when he appeared in court via video link.
The Santa Clara County’s office issued an order of no contact for Goularte that requires him to stay 300 feet from his alleged victim, Velasquez’s four-year-old son.
Goularte will attend in person for his preliminary hearing – set for the 20th of September, according to MMAFighting.com.
Velasquez is still currently being held on charges including attempted murder, and other gun-related offences, with bail being denied twice – however, he’ll appear in court on Friday for a plea hearing that’s previously been delayed twice.
The AllStar MMA roundup
- Road to UFC: Keep up to date on the UFC’s new tournament-style feeder program with The AllStar’s live coverage of the Road to UFC
- UFC 275: Jack Della Maddalena eyes finish against Ramazan Emeev – “He’s too flat-footed for my sort of style”
- Road to UFC: Xie Bin thrilled at chance for redemption at Road to UFC
- UFC Paris: Tai Tuivasa excited to fight Ciryl Gane, doesn’t mind being the underdog “it makes me push harder”
Best of the rest
- Deiveson Figueiredo unhappy with interim ‘plastic belt,’ says UFC must increase pay to keep him at flyweight – MMAFighting.com
- Brandon Moreno responds to Deiveson Figueiredo’s ultimatum to leave flyweight division: ‘Like anybody cares’ – MMAFighting.com
- Ilia Topuria rips Movsar Evloev after UFC Fight Night 207: ‘You don’t have the balls to call me out’ – MMAJunkie.com
- Paulo Costa demands public apology from the nurse he allegedly elbowed: “Or else legal actions may be necessary” – BJPenn.com
- Dominick Cruz vs. Chito Vera in works for August UFC Fight Night main event – Bloodyelbow.com
Pro’s pick of the day
Do you believe it? Market odds have certainly moved in his favor over the last two days, according to crypto sportsbook Cloudbet:
Della Maddalena to win
Over/Under 2.5 rounds
The morning view
Leonardo Elias discusses the trials and tribulations of running a gym in Thailand through the covid era in an episode of The Original Fight Island.
UFC 275 Embedded kicks off with episode one.
MMA On Point details some little known facts on Glover Teixeira.
Social media standouts
Bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling has begun ‘pre-camp’ training for his next title defence:
- Kennedy Nzechukwu vs Karl Roberson booked for UFC event on July 9th (per Paradigm Sports)
- Mario Bautista vs Brian Kelleher booked for UFC event on June 25th (per Iridium Sports Agency)
The topic of UFC interim title belts, specifically how often they’re being thrown around in the last few years, is back on the agenda.
Now, the flyweight strap is getting the interim treatment. It’s on offer to the winner of the upcoming Moreno vs Kara France bout.
The value of the interim title “prize” to the winner is questionable. Over the years we’ve seen countless fighters fall victim to online abuse and backlash after fighting for, and winning, provisional gold. The moniker of “paper champ” is a title that’s often thrown around. They haven’t really won a title, have they?
That just ain’t right. It’s just downright disrespectful. Do people realise how hard it is to become an interim champion?
These fighters are generally just as eager to fight for the undisputed title as the fans are to see them try. The interim status of these title fights isn’t something the fighter often has a say in; it’s regularly thrust onto competitors by the promotion due to extenuating circumstances. (though lately, ‘extenuating’ seems to mean the current champion is at odds with the UFC).
It’s time to big up all the past interim champs that copped unjustified abuse following hard-earned wins in interim title bouts. I urge fans to consider re-directing their frustration at those in charge of decision making, rather than the athletes that are risking their bodies for a shot at glory.
There are some valid concerns and conversations to be had regarding the legitimacy and necessity of an interim title. However, the constant back and forth discourse between fans and even fighters generally fails to grace one particular topic: Fighters have to work hard to become a champion, paper or otherwise.
Hit the comment section and let me know if you agree or disagree. Let me know who’s the greatest interim champ that never fully unified their title belt.
On this day in MMA…
On June 7th, 2008, future UFC champion Michael Bisping finished Jason Day with strikes in the co-main event at 3:42 in the first round at UFC 85: Bedlam, in London’s O2 arena.