Chael Sonnen at the 13th Annual Fighters Only MMA Awards | Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images
Chael Sonnen will face no criminal ramifications from an incident that occurred in December. Back in December former UFC titl…
Chael Sonnen will face no criminal ramifications from an incident that occurred in December.
Back in December former UFC title challenger Chael Sonnen was accused of battery against ‘five separate victims’. That alleged incident took place at the Luxor hotel in Las Vegas and purportedly included Sonnen banging on the door of a room before being involved in an altercation with its inhabitants.
Sonnen had been charged with misdemeanor battery in relation to that case. However, per a report from ESPN, those charges have now been dropped. As a result Sonnen will not face any criminal prosecution in relation to the case.
With this case now closed Sonnen is free to focus on his duties for tonight, serving as analyst for Khabib Nurmagomedov’s Eagle FC. That promotion is having it’s US debut tonight with a card headlined by Tyrone Spong and Sergei Kharitonov.
The 44-year-old pundit recently announced his retirement from MMA competition. His last bout was in 2019, a loss to Lyoto Machida at Bellator 222.
In Bellator Sonnen had a 2-3 record while fighting icons of the sport that included Fedor Emlianenko and Wanderlei Silva. He joined Bellator in 2017, four years after his release from the UFC.
Sonnen challenged for a UFC title on three occasions. In his first title shot, back in 2010, he came within two minutes of defeating Anderson Silva for the middleweight title, which would have been one of the largest upsets in UFC history.
After rebounding with wins over Brian Stann and Michael Bisping, Sonnen got a rematch with Silva in 2012. That fight ended in a resounding win for ‘The Spider’.
A year later Sonnen unsuccessfully challenged Jon Jones for the light heavyweight title. That came after the pair coached opposite one another on The Ultimate Fighter. Sonnen finished off his UFC tenure with a win over Mauricio Rua and a loss to Rashad Evans.
Francis Ngannou’s new UFC contract could involve a boxing match against Tyson Fury after all according to Ali Abdelaziz. Francis Ngannou is fresh off his first UFC title defense against Ciryl Gane at UFC 270. He is in a place where he is comfortable at the top of the UFC heavyweight division and has proved […]
The strained relationship between White and Ngannou could be a breaking point for the heavyweight champion. Ngannou has mentioned a desire to break out of his contract, and “freedom” is a big concern for him. One of the most successful fight managers in MMA, Ali Abdelaziz, spoke out about his understanding of the feud between Ngannou and the UFC.
“Dana White’s been waiting 20 years for someone like Francis to arrive, to be on the scene, to become the baddest heavyweight on the planet,” Abdelaziz said to MMA Junkie. “I think it’s a lot of ego involved, a lot of people involved that are not supposed to be involved… I think this thing could be solved. All they need to do, Dana take Francis out to dinner, and they sit down and talk. And I’m very confident, very confident, they will get a deal done.”
Abdelaziz is not Ngannou’s manager but has represented some of the best in the sport. He has a very good relationship with Dana White and the UFC and is usually able to get his fighters what they want. Ngannou wants a chance to try out his boxing skills against Tyson Fury, a plan that Abdelaziz thinks the UFC should jump on.
“Francis said it’s not about the money, it’s about freedom,” he said. “Maybe, Francis wants to box, right? That’s his dream. I think Dana White can make his dream become true because he’s the baddest promoter on this planet. If you want to promote a fight against Tyson Fury, he’s an ESPN guy, Dana’s an ESPN guy, you bring both of them and make this fight happen. But I think they need to kill all the noise, stop talking to the media, stop tweeting stuff, stop putting stuff on Instagram; both sides.
There have been a few fighters under UFC contract that have expressed interest in a crossover to boxing. The UFC has only ever allowed one fighter to do so, that was Conor McGregor against Floyd Mayweather in 2017.
“Can you imagine Dana White promoting Francis to fight Tyson Fury next? Forget about Jon Jones. That’s what I’d do. I’d be like, ‘Let’s make this fight.’ That’d be the first fight on a new deal, right. And I think it could happen… His main thing is he wanted to box. I think Dana White will let him box. But he has to be, ‘I’m gonna be a team player here and we’re gonna work together,’” Abdelaziz said.
Some believed that if Ngannou had lost at UFC 270, he would have left the promotion and could have made the transition on his own. However, since his first title defense was successful, he will remain under contract with the UFC until at least the end of the year.
Jake Paul is once again making headlines regarding the UFC and Dana White, this time taking it a step further by releasing a music video targeting the UFC President as well as Conor McGregor, Jorge Masvidal, and Nate Diaz. The music video features a cameo from Bellator champion and former UFC champion Cris Cyborg, who […]
Jake Paul is once again making headlines regarding the UFC and Dana White, this time taking it a step further by releasing a music video targeting the UFC President as well as Conor McGregor, Jorge Masvidal, and Nate Diaz.
The music video features a cameo from Bellator champion and former UFC champion Cris Cyborg, who interacts with a Dana White actor before Paul goes into the rap. Paul mentions other names in the video including Khabib Nurmagomedov and White’s former business partners Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta.
The beginning of the song has the lyrics “Now everybody from the UFC, put your motha f*ckin hands up and follow me” followed by the refrain “F*ck Dana. F*ck Dana White.”
The closing of the diss track has some fighting words for the UFC President, “Dana, pay your fighters more. Give them healthcare, you scumbag. I haven’t met a single person who says anything good about you. I passed my drug test and you went silent. I’m keeping my foot on your neck until you tap, b*tch. Stop raising your pay-per-view prices on the fans and not paying fighters more. Greedy, old, lonely, bald, b*tch.” (Transcribed by MMA Fighting)
Paul has become a figure against fighter pay that cannot be ignored. The Youtube superstar has KO’s of former UFC fighters Ben Askren and most recently Tyron Woodley last month. The 5-0 boxer will continue to make noise in the combat sports world as long as he seemingly keeps winning.
How do you think Dana White will react to Jake Paul’s diss track?
Eagle FC 44: Spong vs. Kharitonov takes place tonight from the FLXcast Arena in Miami, Florida. In the main event, undefeated boxer Tyrone Spong will try to go 3-0 in his MMA career when he faces Sergei Kharitonov, who will come in with a total of 42 MMA fights and a record of 33-9. Spong is […]
Eagle FC 44: Spong vs. Kharitonov takes place tonight from the FLXcast Arena in Miami, Florida.
In the main event, undefeated boxer Tyrone Spong will try to go 3-0 in his MMA career when he faces Sergei Kharitonov, who will come in with a total of 42 MMA fights and a record of 33-9. Spong is 14-0 as a pro boxer and also has kickboxing experience. His last MMA fight took place in 2013 with a unanimous decision victory over Angel DeAnda. Kharitonov most recently competed last November in a first-round TKO of former UFC fighter Fábio Maldonado.
In the co-main event, “Suga” Rashad Evans will compete for the first time since his “retirement” in 2018 after losing to Anthony Smith. Evans is currently on a three-fight losing streak after falling to Sam Alvey and Daniel Kelly prior to his loss to Smith. Evans’ opponent will be Gabriel Checco, who comes in with a record of 12-5. Most recently, Checco defeated Simon Marini via unanimous decision last October.
You can check out Eagle FC’s fight-card graphic of tonight’s full card below.
As noted in the poster, the event will be available to watch on EagleFC.com. The card kicks off at 6:00 PM ET.
You can view the full card below and check back later for the highlights from tonight’s event!
Julianna Peña prepares to fight Amanda Nunes at UFC 269. | Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC
UFC bantamweight champion Julianna Peña wants a big money fight, next. One of the side stories that kind of went under the radar …
UFC bantamweight champion Julianna Peña wants a big money fight, next.
One of the side stories that kind of went under the radar at UFC 269 was the intended matchup between Kayla Harrison and Amanda Nunes. But Julianna Peña’s victory that night spoiled these plans, much to the disappointment of Harrison.
“The Venezuelan Vixen” recently went on the JRE MMA Show to talk about that momentous night of her life. First, she addressed the Nunes-Harrison situation.
“How dare they, right? Because Kayla is, like, talking about how she’s training partners and how she learns so much from Amanda and how amazing Amanda is as a training partner and how she has just learned so much from the champ,” Peña told Rogan.
“I’m so confused because you want Amanda to win so you can fight your friend? (Kayla’s) getting paid more than I am, making the millions over there at the PFL.”
Speaking of making big money, Peña wants to get what she feels is due her. And she’s willing to do whatever it takes, even if it means jumping up a weight class.
“If Kayla wants to come to the UFC and make weight, pack your lunch, chick,” she said. “’35, ’45, whatever you guys wanna do. Like we already established: If it don’t make money, it don’t make sense. And what’s the job of a fighter, especially with the window (of opportunity) being this small? I gotta jump through a window this little. My job is to make as much money as possible.
“Pay me. I’ll fight whoever you want… I’ll fight Fedor! Pay me! Just pay me!”
As the newly-minted champion, Peña feels she’s within reason to ask for more money.
“I feel like I’m not asking for too much, especially now that I’m a champion. I’ve been saving my silver bullets this entire time. And now that I got it, it’s like, ‘I wanna get paid!’ Is that too much to ask?
“I’m a professional. I’m at the height of my game, I’m the champion, I’m at the top of my league. Pay me.”
Peña and Nunes are reportedly the front-runners to coach the next season of the Ultimate Fighter. The details of the upcoming season (TUF 30) have yet to be made public.
UFC welterweight contender Stephen Thompson has explained why Henry Cejudo’s size has impacted his global draw and ability to demand certain fights. Not many individuals boast combat sports accolades as impressive as Cejudo. As well as being an Olympic gold medalist in freestyle wrestling, a feat he achieved in Beijing in 2008, “Triple C” is […]
UFC welterweight contender Stephen Thompson has explained why Henry Cejudo’s size has impacted his global draw and ability to demand certain fights.
Not many individuals boast combat sports accolades as impressive as Cejudo. As well as being an Olympic gold medalist in freestyle wrestling, a feat he achieved in Beijing in 2008, “Triple C” is a former two-division UFC champion, having held gold at both flyweight and bantamweight. No other fighter has won an Olympic gold medal and a UFC title.
But despite becoming only the second fighter to defend titles in two weight classes and defeating the likes of TJ Dillashaw, Dominick Cruz, and Demetrious Johnson, Cejudo is rarely talked about in the conversation for the greatest of all time and certainly isn’t looked at the same as many other former champs by a portion of the fanbase.
That sentiment was on display recently when the Californian’s intention to return from retirement to challenge Alexander Volkanovski for the featherweight title was laughed off by many, including UFC President Dana White.
Thompson Believes ‘Size Matters’
Having initially called out the 145-pound king last year in the hope of becoming the first three-division champ in UFC history, Cejudo had another crack at booking the matchup in recent days when Max Holloway withdrew from his scheduled trilogy clash with Volkanovski.
“The Messenger” was met with a claim that it wouldn’t make sense and “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung was granted the shot instead.
In response, Cejudo pointed out that the great Georges St-Pierre was granted the luxury of returning from a long layoff to move up to a new division and challenge for another title. ‘What’s the difference?’ Cejudo exclaimed. According to two-time welterweight title challenger Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson, it’s size.
During a recent episode of his YouTube podcast, the #7-ranked 170lber suggested size matters when it comes to being a global draw and attraction, and being a fighter who’s in a position to make demands.
“It’s the size. It’s the size that matters,” Thompson said. “Like, guys look at these 125ers, 135ers, and, no beef, probably a lot of these guys can beat me, but what I’m saying is, they (fans) don’t look at these guys… everybody knows the heavyweights, everyone looks at Francis Ngannou, but when they look at the smaller guys they’re just not appealing.
“It’s like in Japan. The bigger, the more dramatic, the better,” added Thompson. “And when you look at the 135ers, they’re just not big and dramatic. You can try to be dramatic, but people aren’t gonna take you serious, like Cejudo, it comes off super cringe when you got somebody doing that. But you get somebody around 170 and up, especially at heavyweight, (it’s different)… That’s why in Japan there was only one weight class, that was it, heavyweight. When you fought K1, it was all heavyweight. It’s big, dramatic, flares, you know; people wanna see that.”
While it’s seemingly unlikely we’ll see Cejudo challenging for featherweight gold in his first fight back, all signs point towards the 34-year-old targeting a return to the Octagon in 2022.
If he can make a successful comeback and perhaps regain the bantamweight title he vacated in 2020, perhaps a super fight against whoever sits on the 145-pound throne at that time will be possible.
Do you agree with Stephen Thompson? Is Henry Cejudo not a bigger draw because of his size?