ULTIMATE FIGHTING CHAMPIONSHIP® ANNOUNCES FIRST EVENT IN MINNESOTA
UFC® 87: SEEK AND DESTROY
BROCK LESNAR vs. MARK COLEMAN
KENNY FLORIAN vs. ROGER HUERTA
SATURDAY, AUGUST 9
LIVE FROM TARGET CENTER
Tickets On Sale Sunday, May 25 at Noon CT
Las Vegas, NV (USA) – In yet another historic moment in the quest to conquer new territory and bring the best of mixed martial arts to fans around the globe, the Ultimate Fighting Championship® (UFC®) organization today announced the first-ever UFC event to take place in Minnesota. In a featured event, Brock Lesnar, fighting out of his hometown of Minneapolis, will return to the Octagon™ to face UFC Hall of Famer and former PRIDE® superstar Mark "The Hammer" Coleman, and in what many are calling the best lightweight fight of 2008, Kenny "KenFlo" Florian will square off against Roger "El Matador" Huerta in a battle that will move the winner one step closer to a 155-pound title shot.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship will present UFC 87: SEEK AND DESTROY, featuring Lesnar vs. Coleman and Florian vs. Huerta, live from Target Center in Minneapolis Saturday, August 9, 2008.
"I am excited to be heading to Minnesota and Target Center with the first ever UFC in the state," said Dana White, UFC President. "UFC fans there are going to be blown away by this event - this fight between Brock Lesnar and Mark Coleman is going to be explosive, a battle between the original monster wrestler and the new breed of monster wrestler. Kenny Florian versus Roger Huerta has the potential to be one of the most action packed fights of the year, both have won Fight of the Night awards and they are known for delivering nonstop action. UFC 87 is going to be stacked with incredible matchups and all the fights fans want to see, from the first bout to the last."
“Target Center is very excited to host the Ultimate Fighting Championship right here in Minneapolis, Minnesota! UFC 87 will no doubt be one of the biggest events in the arena’s 18 year history,” stated Andy Warg, Director of Booking, Target Center.
Tickets for UFC 87: SEEK AND DESTROY will go on sale Sunday, May 25 at 12 Noon CT and will be priced at $600, $400, $250, $125, $75 and $50. Tickets for UFC 87 will be available at Target Center's Box Office, all Ticketmaster outlets, online at ticketmaster.com or by calling 651.989.5151.
UFC® Fight Club™ members will have the opportunity to purchase tickets to this event Thursday, May 22 at 10am CT via the website www.ufc.com. A special Internet ticket pre-sale will be available to UFC newsletter subscribers Saturday, May 24 starting at 10am CT. To access this presale, users must register for the UFC newsletter through www.ufc.com.
UFC 87: SEEK AND DESTROY is available live on pay-per-view at 10 p.m. EST/7 p.m. PST on iN DEMAND, DIRECTV, DISH Network, TVN, Bell ExpressVu, Shaw Communications and Viewer’s Choice Canada for a suggested retail price of $44.95 for standard definition or high-definition broadcasts (where available).
Fighting out of Minneapolis, Brock Lesnar, 6'3 ½", 265 lbs., made his mixed martial arts debut in 2007 and annihilated Min Soo Kim in just 69 seconds. He made an impressive UFC debut earlier this year at UFC 81, just falling short of victory against former UFC champion Frank Mir. The NCAA wrestling champion and former professional wrestler now returns to the Octagon to take on one of the fight game’s true legends, Mark "The Hammer" Coleman, in an attempt to score his first win in the UFC.
"This fight can't come soon enough; I'm ready to go and I'm excited! I'm still looking to make a name in the UFC and I get a chance to do that in my hometown, which is great for the fans," said Lesnar. "It's an honor to get a chance to fight Coleman, he's a legend and he's made history fighting all over the world. I know he is going to come into this fight in great condition, looking to re-establish himself as a top contender in the UFC. It's going to be a challenge, and I'm looking forward to it."
Columbus, Ohio’s Mark Coleman, 6'1"/255 lbs, is a former Olympic wrestler, NCAA wrestling champion and a pioneer in the sport of mixed martial arts. He won the UFC 10 and UFC 11 tournaments and became the first-ever UFC heavyweight champion in 1997. In the PRIDE® organization, Coleman scored impressive wins over some of the biggest names in the sport, including Kazuyuki Fujita, Don Frye, Igor Vovchanchyn, and "Shogun" Rua. Inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in March of this year, Coleman now returns to the Octagon where he first made his name in MMA, and he plans on showing Brock Lesnar a few tricks while giving him a rude introduction to the ground and pound style he trademarked.
"My goal since I left the UFC was to eventually get back into the cage; I'm much more comfortable in the cage, and when I finally got the offer from Dana it didn't take any time to give him my answer - especially when he told me who my opponent would be," said Coleman. "A lot of people are interested in this matchup, I'll be up against a bigger, stronger wrestler for the first time, and they know this fight will be extremely intense from the start. But I didn't take this fight to lose, I expect to win and win by knockout."
Also on UFC 87 main card is a lightweight showdown between Boston's Kenny Florian and Minneapolis’ Roger "El Matador" Huerta.
Kenny Florian (10-3) made his UFC debut on Season 1 of The Ultimate Fighter®, advancing to the finals before losing to Diego Sanchez. Since then, Florian has dropped just one fight in the UFC, a classic five-round battle against Sean Sherk for the vacant UFC lightweight title in October 2006. Vying for a second title shot, Florian has proved himself worthy by racking up victories over the best fighters in the division, including Dokonjonosuke Mishima, Alvin Robinson, Din Thomas and most recently Joe Lauzon. Florian's plan is to move Huerta out of his way at UFC 87 and put himself right in line for another shot at the crown.
"I'm really excited to be fighting Roger Huerta; this is the fight I wanted because he's the other big lightweight in the UFC, and he is definitely at the top of the division," said Florian. "I've never fought a guy in his hometown, so this is going to be different for me, but no matter where we fight it's going to be a back and forth non-stop war. We are both aggressive and Huerta is always in great shape; he's one of those guys who just hangs in there, so when you have the chance, you have to finish him, and that's what I'm gonna do."
Hailing from Minneapolis, MN, Huerta (21-1-1) made his UFC debut in September 2006 at UFC 63, where he scored a unanimous decision victory against Jason Dent. The 25 year-old has since tallied five straight wins in the Octagon™ against lightweight contenders John Halverson, Leonard Garcia, Doug Evans, Alberto Crane and Clay Guida, running his perfect record in the UFC to 6-0. The first fighter ever to fight five times in one year, Huerta is on a vision quest to become the UFC lightweight champion, and he will let no one, including Florian, stand in his way.
"This is going to be a really great fight, it will distinguish who will be the number one contender," said Huerta. "I'm looking forward to fighting Florian, he is a technical fighter and comes in with a great game plan, but I have a game plan too, so I think this is going to be a chess match, one where we both use all our MMA skills to stay in there. I'm really excited to fight in Minneapolis, the support I get here is amazing, this city has adopted me, this is where I train for all of my fights, and I can't wait to bring it a win in August."
The remaining bouts for UFC 87 will be announced in the near future. All bouts are live and subject to change. For further information on the UFC visit ufc.com or uk.ufc.com or ufcespanol.com.
About The Ultimate Fighting Championship
The Ultimate Fighting Championship is the world’s leading professional mixed martial arts organization and offers the premier series of MMA sports events. Owned and operated by Zuffa, LLC, and headquartered in Las Vegas, Nev., UFC produces over twelve live pay-per-view events annually that are distributed residentially through North American cable and satellite providers including iNDEMAND Networks, DIRECTV, DISH Network, TVN Entertainment, Shaw Pay-Per-View, Bell ExpressVU, Viewers Choice, SaskTel Max™ and via the Internet worldwide on Yahoo! Sports, and commercially through Joe Hand Promotions in the U.S. and Canadastar in Canada. In addition to its North American distribution, UFC programming is distributed in over 100 countries and territories throughout the world. For more information, or current UFC fight news, visit ufc.com or uk.ufc.com or ufcespanol.com.
Ultimate Fighting Championship, Ultimate Fighting, UFC, The Ultimate Fighter®, Submission®, As Real As It Gets®, Zuffa™, The Octagon™ and the eight-sided competition mat and cage design are registered trademarks, trademarks, trade dress or service marks owned exclusively by Zuffa, LLC in the United States and other jurisdictions. All other marks referenced herein may be the property of Zuffa, LLC or other respective owners.