Photos by Burt Davis or Dianne Davis unless otherwise noted
There’s a new kid on the block. The mixed martial arts (MMA) organization The World Series of Fighting (WSOF) has entered the fastest growing sport in the world. Details of the entry were presented at a press conference at Planet Hollywood on September 6.
MMA is a combination of boxing, judo and wrestling. Most of the fights are promoted by the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) groups and are extremely popular in Las Vegas. The UFC has held its events at the MGM and Palms in Vegas and has a contract with Fox TV network.
The WSOF has partnered with Planet Hollywood and NBC sports network and plans to produce eight to ten fights a year at the Planet Hollywood’s PH Live Theater.
The press conference was presided over by Ron Futrell, former KTNV-TV channel 13 anchor. He introduced Sig Rogich, the WSOF CEO. Rogich has been involved in the fight game for over 30 years and is well known in Vegas due to his political advertising and community service activities.
Rogich will work closely with Ray Sefo, president and co-founder of the WSOF. Sefo is the public face and chief spokesperson for the WSOF. He has been active in the fight business for over 20 years and is a member of Martial Arts Hall of Fame.
Sefo addresses conference while fighters look on
Sefo said that WSOF rules will be similar to those of the UFC except that the well known UFC octagon will be reconfigured to 10 sides. He hopes to attract fighters from the UFC by running an organization that will be more fighter friendly.
The WSOF’s first fight card takes place on November 3 at 7:30 p.m. in the specially configured PH Live Theater. It will be televised live on NBC sports The main event will feature former bantamweight world champ Angel Torres as well as Gregor Gracie, Tyson Steel, Ronys Torres,and Josh Burkman among others. Followers of MMA will recognize these fighters and their accomplishments.
Torres, Gracie and Burkman were present for the news conference.
Sefo,Torres,Gracie,and Burkman Ticket prices for inaugural event start a $19.95 and are available through Planet Hollywood or Ticketmaster. It should be fun to watch whether or not you are a fight fan.