David Schwarz sent along the following:
Sports Illustrated Jinx For Roger Huerta?
Lightweight Contender and SI Cover-boy Roger Huerta Battles Doug Evans to Open The Ultimate Finale 5 Finale Telecast on Spike TV
Saturday, June 23 At 9:00pm ET
Thales Leites and Floyd Sword Featured on Undercard
New York, NY — June 18, 2007 — UFC lightweight contender Roger Huerta (19-1), featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated on May 28, looks to avoid the legendary “Sports Illustrated cover jinx” when he steps in the Octagon on Saturday, June 23 at 9:00pm ET/PT on Spike TV against undefeated Alaskan lightweight Doug Evans (6-0). The fight, emanating from The Pearl at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, NV, will kick off Spike TV’s highly anticipated fight card featuring The Ultimate Fighter 5 Finale of Manuel Gamburyan and Nate Diaz and the co-main event of The Ultimate Fighter 5 coaches and former UFC champions BJ Penn and Jens Pulver.
“El Matador” Roger Huerta, fighting out of Minneapolis, MN, is on a three-fight winning streak in the UFC and is poised for a run at the lightweight title. The 24-year old, regarded as one of the division’s most entertaining fighters, received international acclaim when Sports Illustrated made him the UFC’s first-ever fighter to grace the cover of the famous sports magazine. Huerta’s opponent, the 26-year old Evans, is a 7-time Alaska State Freestyle and Greco Roman wrestling champ and will look to showcase his “ground and pound” game.
Coming off a win over Pete Sell at UFC 69 in April, Thales Leites (10-1-0) looks to make it two in a row as he welcomes Floyd Sword (9-2-0) to the UFC. Leites, a 25-year old Brazilian middleweight, will aim to establish the “ground and pound” game that led him to a victory via unanimous decision in his fight over Sell, while Sword will look to counter with a mixture of strikes and submissions. Sword, a newcomer who trains out of New Mexico, carries a three fight winning streak into his UFC debut.
The undercard matches featuring mostly The Ultimate Fighter 5 competitors include:
Brandon Melendez vs. Joe Lauzon
Andy Wang vs. Cole Miller
Robert Emerson vs. Gray Maynard
Allen Berube vs Leonard Garcia (replacing the injured Corey Hill)
Brian Gehraty vs. Matt Wiman
Spike TV, the first network for men, is available in 91.6 million homes and is a division of MTV Networks. MTV Networks, a division of Viacom International Inc.