UFC News: TUF IV Finale complete, updates on UFC 66 and UFN 8, plus more

-UFC.com has confirmed seven of the nine fights for November 11th’s TUF IV Finale card, but in doing so, they may have inadvertantly spoiled the result to the Middleweight semi-final on next Thursday’s final episode. The card thus far contains all of the participants from TUF’s fourth season, sans the injured Shonie Carter (and his projected opponent, Mikey Burnett), and Jorge Rivera, who is therefore expected to face the loser of this week’s Patrick Cote/Edwin Dewees semi-final. As Rivera already faced Cote in the taping of the reality show, it wouldn’t make much sense for a rematch at this stage – so it’s quite evident, to me anyway, that Cote will be the second finalist in the Middleweight bracket.

From the information on UFC.com, it would appear that rather than booking a “main event” to take place as well as the two finale bouts, Zuffa have instead decided to headline with one of the finals this time around. The full card stands as follows:

Televised Card:
-Matt Serra vs. Chris Lytle (TUF IV Welterweight Finals)
-Patrick Cote vs. Travis Lutter (TUF IV Middleweight Finals)*
-Michael Bisping vs. Eric Schafer
-Din Thomas vs. Rich Clementi

Preliminary Bouts:
-Jorge Rivera vs. Edwin Dewees*
-Jeremy Jackson vs. Pete Spratt
-Pete Sell vs. Scott Smith
-Charles McCarthy vs. Gideon Ray
-Thales Leites vs. Martin Kampmann

* denotes a fight not yet confirmed

-Despite being well over a month away yet, rumored fights are popping out of the woodwork for December 13th’s UFC Fight Night 8 already. Along with the Diego Sanchez-Joe Riggs fight, which was posted on Diego’s website only to be removed a few weeks back, Josh Koscheck has confirmed via his MySpace that he will be participating on this card – no opponent has been announced yet, but it is expected that he will fight TUF II star Josh Burkman. Canadian fighter Viktor Valimaki confirmed via his promoter on MMA.tv that he will be facing the undefeated David Heath on this card, too.

Other rumored fights include Alan Belcher vs. Jorge Santiago in a Middleweight clash, and Chris Leben vs. Jason MacDonald, although this fight may end up on the UFC 66 card yet.

-Like the 12/13 card, UFC 66, scheduled for 12/30, is already beginning to take shape if you believe some of the rumors around various forums. Along with the huge Ortiz-Liddell main event, as well as strongly rumored fights such as Arlovski-Cruz and Marquardt-Lister, it appears that Karo ‘The Heat’ Parisyan will make his return to the Octagon at this show too, taking on Drew Fickett. Another fight – announced by his promoter on MMA.tv – will likely see Carmelo Marrero, coming off his upset victory over Cheick Kongo at UFC 64, take on fellow rising Heavyweight Gabriel ‘Napao’ Gonzaga. MMA Weekly is also reporting that Forrest Griffin’s next fight will be on this card too, although an opponent has not yet been mentioned.

-It must be stressed that most of these fights, at this stage, are rumors, and as we’ve seen many times in the past, you can’t take anything in stone until it appears on UFC.com. But regardless, the upcoming months look highly interesting for UFC fans.

Sources: UFC.com, MMA.tv, MMA Weekly