Justin Gaethje Shares One Regret From Charles Oliveira Loss

UFC lightweight contender Justin Gaethje feels he could’ve done more to keep himself in check during his UFC 274 fight against Charles Oliveira. Gaethje had another championship opportunity against Oliveira in the UFC 274 headliner earlier this y…

UFC lightweight contender Justin Gaethje feels he could’ve done more to keep himself in check during his UFC 274 fight against Charles Oliveira. Gaethje had another championship opportunity against Oliveira in the UFC 274 headliner earlier this year. Unfortunately, he was unable to capitalize and fell victim to Oliveira’s elite submission game, getting caught in…

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Daniel Cormier Finally Admits to UFC 210 Weigh-In Shenanagins; “I Think I May Have Grabbed The Towel”

Daniel CormierFormer UFC two-division champion Daniel Cormier has finally admitted to an incident in 2017 that came to be known as ‘towelgate’.  At UFC 210, ‘DC’ was scheduled to face Anthony ‘Rumble’ Johnson in a rematch of their UFC 187 bout where Cormier scored a third-round submission to capture the light heavyweight championship.  When Cormier initially […]

Daniel Cormier

Former UFC two-division champion Daniel Cormier has finally admitted to an incident in 2017 that came to be known as ‘towelgate’. 

At UFC 210, ‘DC’ was scheduled to face Anthony ‘Rumble’ Johnson in a rematch of their UFC 187 bout where Cormier scored a third-round submission to capture the light heavyweight championship. 

When Cormier initially stepped on the scale for the scheduled bout, he weighed in over the light heavyweight limit. Cormier returned to the scale shortly after and successfully weighed in on his second attempt. During the second attempt, it appeared that Cormier grabbed the towel being held up in front of him, aiding in meeting the weight requirement.

After years of speculation, Daniel Cormier has finally admitted to grabbing the towel. During his UFC Hall of Fame induction speech as part of the promotion’s International Fight Week, ‘DC’ apologized to his opponent and finally set the record straight after years of speculation. 

“I want to tell you something because I feel like right now is the time to be completely transparent. I think I may have grabbed the towel in Buffalo. Rumble, I’m sorry my guy.”

Tony Ferguson Brings Renewed Attention to Daniel Cormier Weigh-In Following Charles Oliveira Debacle

The incident received some renewed attention following Charles Oliveira’s botched weigh-in that resulted in the former lightweight champion being stripped of his title ahead of a showdown with Justin Gaethje at UFC 274.

Lightweight fan-favorite Tony Ferguson called out Cormier following UFC 274, reminding fans of the incident and stating that Cormier should have been stripped of his title, similar to how ‘Do Bronx’ was stripped of his.

“How Not to Make Weight Ladies & Gentlemen. Shoulda Stripped Em’ Like They Did @CharlesDoBronx Shout Out To All Those Doin’ It Right & Keepin’ The Sport Clean – Champ -CSO- CuttingWeight Feeling Great,” Ferguson wrote.

Daniel Cormier responded to Ferguson, telling ‘El Cucuy’ to recover following his knockout loss to ‘Iron’ Mike Chandler at UFC 274.

“Tony please stop. Go and sit back for a little, tuck your head in a hole somewhere. Regroup man, recover spend some time with your family. Like just please stop! I plead with you. It is not a good look. Like you’re making me sad,” Cormier responded.

In his response, Cormier didn’t outright deny the accusations. Now we know why.

Dariush Pinpoints Gaethje’s Mistakes Against Oliveira At UFC 274

UFC lightweight Beneil Dariush has assessed what fellow contender Justin Gaethje did wrong against Charles Oliveira at UFC 274. At the May 7 pay-per-view, Gaethje filled one slot in the main event, targeting undisputed championship glory at the second time of trying. But like at UFC 254 against Khabib Nurmagomedov, “The Highlight” found himself unconscious…

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UFC lightweight Beneil Dariush has assessed what fellow contender Justin Gaethje did wrong against Charles Oliveira at UFC 274.

At the May 7 pay-per-view, Gaethje filled one slot in the main event, targeting undisputed championship glory at the second time of trying. But like at UFC 254 against Khabib Nurmagomedov, “The Highlight” found himself unconscious courtesy of a submission.

With the defeat, Gaethje became the latest addition to the incredible resurgence story of Oliveira. Like against Michael Chandler last May and versus Dustin Poirier seven months later, “Do Bronx” managed to overcome early knockdowns to secure the victory last month.

While he’s no longer the champion having missed weight prior to UFC 274, the Brazilian is still widely regarded as the occupier of the throne at 155 pounds.

While Oliveira looks ahead to the vacant title fight that is likely to go down later this year, Gaethje has been left wondering what went wrong and where he goes from here. During an interview with ESPN MMA, Beneil Dariush went someway to answering one of those questions.

Dariush, who predicted that Gaethje would leave Arizona with the gold, said that the Safford native wasn’t a smart as he needed to be, and instead became overzealous after a pair of early knockdowns.

“I picked Gaethje to win, but I said if Gaethje’s smart. I said, ‘If Gaethje hits him and then moves, he’ll be fine.’ And he did that a little bit, and he got two knockdowns. But he got overzealous,” suggested Dariush.

“And man, you gotta understand, Justin really is a dog. When he sees blood, he sees blood. But the thing with Charles is, he’ll go to his back, not because he’s super hurt, but it’s a comfort zone for him,” added Dariush. “Justin couldn’t differentiate between Charles being hurt and Charles just being cautious.”

Dariush: Gaethje’s Hesitance To Follow Oliveira Down Was A Mistake

Oliveira is thought by many to be the UFC’s most talented Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioner, and holds the promotional record for the most submissions (16). With that in mind, Gaethje chose to remain on the feet following the knockdowns, a strategy that many have questioned in the weeks since.

Dariush, the current #6-ranked lightweight contender, shared that sentiment during his conversation with Brett Okamoto, suggesting that “The Highlight” should have looked to finish the job, rather than allowing “Do Bronx” to recover.

“I think it’s a mistake. I mean, if you’re an MMA fighter and you just knock somebody down, go! I remember rewatching my fight with Diego Ferreira, and I remember Daniel Cormier saying it was a mistake for me to chase him down because he was able to recover after I dropped him… Bro, this is MMA? I’m not trying to tell you I’m the best at striking, I’m trying to let you know that I’m the best at hurting you. That’s my job, on the ground or standing.”

Justin Gaethje & Charles Oliveira
Image Credit: Louis Grasse/PxImages/Icon Sportswire

Do you agree with Beneil Dariush’s assessment of Justin Gaethje’s mistakes at UFC 274?

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Zhang Weili Criticizes Rose Namajunas’ UFC 274 Display: ‘She Just Wanted To Take Care Of The Belt’

Zhang WeiliFormer undisputed UFC strawweight champion, Zhang Weili has criticized the performance of two-time opponent, Rose Namajunas during her UFC 274 title loss against Carla Esparza last month in Pheonix, Arizona – claiming the former only intended to “take care” of her title rather than putting in a performance which would retain it. Weili, a two-time […]

Zhang Weili

Former undisputed UFC strawweight champion, Zhang Weili has criticized the performance of two-time opponent, Rose Namajunas during her UFC 274 title loss against Carla Esparza last month in Pheonix, Arizona – claiming the former only intended to “take care” of her title rather than putting in a performance which would retain it.

Weili, a two-time opponent of Namajunas, suffered her lone UFC losses against the ONX Labs trainee, the first of which came in a shocking first round title loss against Namajunas – courtesy of a brutal high-kick knockout in April of last year.

Returning in an immediate undisputed championship rematch at UFC 268 in November, Weili suffered a more comprehensive unanimous decision loss to the two-time titleholder.

Set to return this weekend in an attempt to snap a two-fight skid, Hebei native, Weili welcomes former champion, Joanna Jedrzejczyk back to the Octagon for the first time since their momentous UFC 248 battle – as the pair engage in a clear-cut title-eliminator at 115lbs.

Sharing her thoughts on Namajunas’ criticized performance at UFC 274 in the ‘Copper State’, Weili claimed that the now-former champion only intended on taking care of her undisputed title – to her detriment.

“I feel like, definitely Rose (Namajunas) was feeling a lot of pressure when she stepped into the Octagon, Zhang Weili said through an interpreter during her media availability ahead of UFC 275 in Singapore. “Definitely, she wanted to take care of her belt and didn’t want to fight hard, wanted to fight more strategically and easily against Carla (Esparza).

“But, as a champion, as an MMA fighter, you should not think about that,” Zhang Weili said. “Tou should always, in the fight, (give) your everything into the Octagon, and fight your heart out. I don’t think Rose should fight with an attitude like (that).” 

Zhang Weili and Joanna Jedrzejczyk were both heralded for their UFC 248 performance

Weili’s most recent professional victory came in the form of her first and ultimately sole successful title defense against the aforenoted, Jedrzejczyk back in March 2020, defeating her upcoming opponent with a close, split decision victory in the consensus 2020 Fight of the Year.

Zhang Feels Namajunas Did Not Fight Like A True Champion At UFC 274

UFC women’s strawweight contender Zhang Weili has given her take on fellow former champion Rose Namajunas’ performance at UFC 274 last month. This weekend at UFC 275, Zhang will enter the Octagon for the first time since back-to-back losses to Namajunas in 2021. While the first, a head-kick knockout, saw the title ripped from her…

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UFC women’s strawweight contender Zhang Weili has given her take on fellow former champion Rose Namajunas’ performance at UFC 274 last month.

This weekend at UFC 275, Zhang will enter the Octagon for the first time since back-to-back losses to Namajunas in 2021. While the first, a head-kick knockout, saw the title ripped from her grasp, the rematch saw “Magnum” fall on the wrong side of a narrow split-decision verdict.

But as she prepares for an attempt to rebound in another rematch on Saturday, this time against Joanna J?drzejczyk, Zhang is in a position to secure another chance at regaining her place on the throne after just one win.

That opportunity has been granted to her after Namajunas was unseated by Carla Esparza at UFC 274 in what many have branded the worst title fight in modern UFC history.

Across five rounds, neither woman engaged on the feet. While the way that the bout played out was confusing, the encouragement from Namajunas’ corner to continue with the same tactics was perhaps most baffling.

Now, as she looks to capitalize on the opening granted to her by “Thug Rose,” Zhang has discussed what went wrong for her former opponent in Arizona. According to the Chinese star, Namajunas had the completely wrong attitude when the cage door closed.

“I feel like, definitely Rose was feeling a lot of pressure when she stepped into the Octagon,” said Zhang during her appearance at UFC 275 media day. “Definitely she wanted to take care of her belt and didn’t want to fight hard, wanted to fight more strategically and easily against Carla.

“But, as a champion, as an MMA fighter, you should not think about that. You should always, in the fight, (put) your everything into the Octagon, and fight your heart out. I don’t think Rose should fight with an attitude like (she did),” concluded Zhang.

While the Chinese contender has shared the cage with the likes of Namajunas, Tecia Torres, and Jéssica Andrade during her time in the UFC, she is yet to go toe-to-toe with newly-crowned strawweight queen Esparza. Should she leave Singapore with a second victory over J?drzejczyk this weekend, it stands to reason that will change.

From there, “Magnum” will target a second reign with the gold, which would likely lead to a third date with Namajunas down the line should the American rebound from her disappointing defeat at UFC 274.

Do you agree with Zhang Weili? Did Rose Namajunas fight with the wrong attitude at UFC 275?

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Poirier: It Looked Like Oliveira Could Have Lost The Last Half-A-Pound

Former UFC interim lightweight champion Dustin Poirier was surprised by Charles Oliveira missing weight ahead of UFC 274. Poirier lost to Oliveira at UFC 269 last December. Just a few months later, Oliveira was slated to face Justin Gaethje in the UFC 274 main event but was stripped of his belt just hours before the…

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Former UFC interim lightweight champion Dustin Poirier was surprised by Charles Oliveira missing weight ahead of UFC 274.

Poirier lost to Oliveira at UFC 269 last December. Just a few months later, Oliveira was slated to face Justin Gaethje in the UFC 274 main event but was stripped of his belt just hours before the fight due to missing championship weight.

Oliveira went on to earn the win over Gaethje via first-round submission, but the lightweight title is now vacant. Oliveira is expected to fight for the now-vacant title against a top contender like Islam Makhachev.

During a recent interview on THE FIGHT with Teddy Atlas, Poirier reacted to Oliveira’s weight-cutting debacle ahead of UFC 274.

“I was shocked on the second (miss),” Poirier said of Oliveira’s weight cut. “I was kinda surprised when he came in a little over, but maybe they misjudged some things or the scale was different back in the locker room, whatever, I don’t know. But I thought in that hour time, he would come back and be on weight, especially in a championship fight. I was surprised.”

Poirier was then asked whether or not Oliveira was physically able to make the full cut to 155lbs.

“I’ve never completely stopped losing weight, but I’ve been in a position where I was in a sauna for a very long time and my body was just burned out… (But) I’ve always pushed the extra bit and made weight… they weren’t carrying him (Oliveira) out, he wasn’t stumbling around,” Poirier said. “He’s always really lean, and he’s long and tall, but he’s a big guy. He didn’t look like he needed to be helped. He still had life in his body. He could’ve, it looked like, tried to lose more weight. (I was shocked), it was a championship fight!”

Poirier has recently alluded to a desire for a rematch with Oliveira next, although it’s unclear if he’ll wait it out for another fight with him. Poirier has also teased a potential move to welterweight to face Colby Covington or Nate Diaz.

Oliveira has had his fair share of weight-cutting issues over his UFC career, dating back to his time in the featherweight division. He’ll look to right the ship leading up to his next fight.

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