Former longtime UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva was scheduled to face rising contender Kelvin Gastelum at UFC 212 on June 3 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, but Gastelum was recently forced to withdraw from the bout after being flagged by USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) for a potential anti-doping violation. The UFC has expressed interest
Former longtime UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva was scheduled to face rising contender Kelvin Gastelum at UFC 212 on June 3 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, but Gastelum was recently forced to withdraw from the bout after being flagged by USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) for a potential anti-doping violation.
The UFC has expressed interest in keeping Silva on the card and names like Luke Rockhold and Vitor Belfort were thrown out as potential replacements for Gastelum, but “The Spider” didn’t seem interested in either scenario.
Now, however, an idea has emerged out of the blue. According to a report from the Brazilian outlet Combate, the UFC is considering a 195-pound catchweight bout between Silva and No. 8-ranked light heavyweight contender Ovince Saint Preux.
Saint Preux is coming off of an impressive Von Flue choke victory over Marcos Rogerio de Lima last week at UFC Fight Night 108 in Nashville, Tennessee. Prior to that, he had lost three straight bouts to the likes of Jon Jones, Jimi Manuwa and Volkan Oezdemir.
It’s currently unclear if Silva, who’s coming off of a decision victory over Derek Brunson, is interested in fighting OSP.
Earlier this week video surfaced of former UFC welterweight king Georges St-Pierre training inside of an Octagon, however, it looks as though ‘Rush’ has packed on a little bit of weight in his mid-section. The Canadian will be making his return to mixed martial arts (MMA) action against Michael Bisping, the middleweight champion of the
Earlier this week video surfaced of former UFC welterweight king Georges St-Pierre training inside of an Octagon, however, it looks as though ‘Rush’ has packed on a little bit of weight in his mid-section.
The Canadian will be making his return to mixed martial arts (MMA) action against Michael Bisping, the middleweight champion of the world, in attempt to become a champion in two different weight classes in the UFC throughout his run with the promotion.
Bisping, one of the UFC’s best smack talkers on the mic, took to his podcast, Believe You Me, to comment on St-Pierre’s physical appearance, and said that the former 170-pound champ looks like he’s been ‘impregnated by an alien’ (quotes via MMA Fighting):
“I don’t know what’s going on, to be quite frank,” Bisping said. “But he looks like he’s been impregnated by an alien.”
“He’s in his typical GSP little spandex tiny shorts, but they’re black, not white,” Bisping said of the video. “He’s got his shin pads and his MMA gloves on. And a gigantic belly sticking. I know he said he’s getting bigger. His belly is sticking out and he looks a little weird, so I think he’s having a little fun, I think he’s pushing his belly out.”
Its been quite some time since the bout between Bisping and ‘GSP’ was announced, leaving many to question as to whether or not the fight will actually happen. Bisping believes that St-Pierre will accept the fight at some point, perhaps sometime later this year:
“GSP is gonna do it,” Bisping said. “It’ll be a little bit later in the year. Listen, we had a press conference. The fans want it, he wants, I want it. It’ll be a big payday. Make a lot of money. I don’t think it’ll be July. I’m 99 percent certain on that. A couple more months later — maybe October.
“But it’s now looking like October is probably more likely.”
After two straight submission wins over Sage Northcutt and CM Punk, rising UFC welterweight Mickey Gall looks to have a bright future ahead of him as one of MMA’s best potential self-promoters. But all of that almost didn’t happen, as Gall revealed his bout with the debuting Punk (real name Phillip Brooks) almost didn’t happen
After two straight submission wins over Sage Northcutt and CM Punk, rising UFC welterweight Mickey Gall looks to have a bright future ahead of him as one of MMA’s best potential self-promoters.
But all of that almost didn’t happen, as Gall revealed his bout with the debuting Punk (real name Phillip Brooks) almost didn’t happen at last September’s UFC 203 from Cleveland, Ohio, due to this absolutely gruesome cut he suffered from an accidental headbutt in training. It was so bad that it required 21 stitches and his doctor warned him not to fight for six months, orders he clearly didn’t follow. Check it out from his official Instagram account:
Yikes. We see large cuts in MMA all the time, but that’s one of those where it looks like you can almost see into the fighter’s brain.
As he detailed, Gall not only fought three weeks after the cut was stitched up, but he also made a quick turnaround to fight twice in only two thirds of his doctor’s recommended return time when he called out fellow touted prospect Sage Northcutt for a December bout at UFC on FOX 22.
He won the fight by submitting the highly hyped but under-delivering ‘Super’ Sage, and as he said, two superstars were whooped while one was (perhaps) born.
She may be considered by far the best pound-for-pound fighter in women’s MMA, but former Invicta FC featherweight champ Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino hasn’t felt that success translate over into the Octagon just yet. The dominant knockout artist has made as many headlines for her controversial weight cuts, drug test issues, and ongoing battles with the
She may be considered by far the best pound-for-pound fighter in women’s MMA, but former Invicta FC featherweight champ Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino hasn’t felt that success translate over into the Octagon just yet.
The dominant knockout artist has made as many headlines for her controversial weight cuts, drug test issues, and ongoing battles with the UFC as she has for her seemingly never-ending knockouts, and many believe she should be towards the top of MMA’s stars. According to Justino, who spoke up on Twitter recently, she’ll soon be on the sixth fight of her UFC deal, but more of those fights should have came in the world’s biggest MMA outfit rather in Invicta.
If they had, according to Cyborg, her brand would already be much bigger than it currently stands:
My next fight will be my 6th fight on UFC contract Imagine how much bigger the cyborg brand would be if they had all been in the UFC
Cyborg then detailed the UFC’s lack of – or just outright negative – promotion of her, and it’s impossible to deny she has a decent argument there. Citing YouTube videos where UFC President Dana White likened her to ‘Wanderlei Silva in a dress’ and Joe Rogan’s infamous post-UFC 193 screwup, Justino noted those two instances were damaging to her image and marketing:
I no lose 10 years. Go to YouTube and type Dana White Cris Cyborg, then type Rogan Cyborg. Tell me if those videos are good marketing 4me https://t.co/Qk5lSW3BJK
A prominent MMA expert soon spoke up in half-defense of Justino when retired combatant and current Octagon announcer Brian Stann appeared on SiriusXM show ‘Toe-2-Toe’ (via MMA Junkie) to state while the UFC probably should have promoted her on a bigger stage than Invicta, she and her manager are notoriously difficult to work with:
“I agree with ‘Cyborg’ in terms of her Invicta (FC) fights. If we (could’ve found) a way to have put her on the undercard or other portions instead of Invicta, maybe that would have been great to build her brand, no doubt. But there are things that she and her manager, who her manager is primarily the one who controls her Twitter account, have to realize here: They are not easy to work with, and I can attest to this.”
“The All-American” described his experience when he tried to set up an interview with Cyborg’s team before her first UFC fight at UFC 198 in 2016. He was reportedly given a sort of runaround by George Lockhart that allowed scant facilitation of Stann’s ability to promote her in a pivotal debuting situation:
“When I set up a time to speak to her, her manager gave me a time that was my appointment to speak to her. I call. (He) doesn’t answer. I go back to him to get a meeting and set up a time, and he gives me another time. I call. No answer. I call. No answer. So then I call George Lockhart, who I knew was sitting with her or was with her handling her weight cut. George answers the phone, and I say, ‘Hey George, is Cris busy right now, I had a time set to speak to her before this fight at UFC 198.’
“(He said), ‘Bro, she’s sitting right next to me.’ I said, ‘OK, is her phone in her hand?’ He says yes. I go, ‘OK. Does she just no longer want to do this appointment?’ (He said), ‘I guess not, bro. I don’t know what to tell you.’ OK, no problem. But that doesn’t help me promote you. I actually told her manager, look, I understand what’s been said about this woman before – I am only looking to focus on the positive things and promote her as a fighter. I’ve never said anything negative about her, so she didn’t give me that opportunity to do so. OK. Fine.”
Stann then launched into some details about this reported difficulty, remind listeners that while even though she had a nutritionist the UFC paid for, she lied about her weight and also turned down big fights like a featherweight title bout with Germaine de Randamie at UFC 208, making her valid points contrast with the fact that she rarely made matters run smooth:
“The other thing about her. She gets George Lockhart to live with her and be there for her entire camp – cook all of her food. She didn’t pay for that. UFC paid for that. That’s a pretty massive advantage. That’s special treatment. That’s pretty awesome – an entire weight class made for her. She did turn down fights; I know that that did happen. She was hard to work with with them and did turn down fights. More importantly, there was a time where she decided to lie about her weight and talk about her weight cut. For some reason, she started tweeting out her weight at a current time during her cut; the UFC was able to verify and they didn’t really go too public with this, but there were some issues there too where she was lying about her weight at the time.
“I’m not saying she’s 100 percent wrong in some of the things she’s putting out there, but she’s not doing herself any favors on the flip side by being so difficult to work with.”
Cyborg then had a tattle-tale sort of response on social media, noting she hoped longtime matchmaker Sean Shelby would bring up the negative things he said about her during a meeting with UFC owner Ari Emanuel:
I missed the negative things @BrianStann had to say about me but hope @seanshelby brings them up when we meet with Ari
But Stann’s perspective wasn’t all negative, as he ended by voicing his hope that her team and the UFC could work the situation out so she could be promoted in a better fashion that truly utilized all of her unique skills and talents as one of the best competitors in the sport:
“I am hoping they can fix this. I’m hoping they can find a way to move this forward and … there’s still time to patch this up and do a better job on both sides of promoting this. But man, in my experience, she is one of the more difficult fighters to work with from my perspective, and it’s a shame because I’ve done nothing but say positive things about her and her training.
“I’ve said it before – people want to associate her with the steroids and things of that nature. I’m telling you, this woman is a phenomenal athlete. It’s a shame she ever got caught up with that early in her career, because she never needed it. I’ve watched her train. I’ve watched her cut the weight. I’ve watched her work out. Wow. It’s impressive. Very impressive, and it’s a shame that conversation can’t be had because of other things, and I think it needs to be had, and I think people will recognize over time, and I’d love to be an analyst that helps usher in that conversation about this athlete. So we’ll see what happens. I wish her and her camp the best in the future, and I hope that this can get healed and she can get promoted better.”
No. 3-ranked UFC middleweight contender Robert “The Reaper” Whittaker has established himself as a legitimate threat in the 185-pound division after winning seven consecutive bouts, with his last two victories coming by way of T/KO. His most recent win marked the biggest of his career, as he knocked out No. 5-ranked Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza at
No. 3-ranked UFC middleweight contender Robert “The Reaper” Whittaker has established himself as a legitimate threat in the 185-pound division after winning seven consecutive bouts, with his last two victories coming by way of T/KO. His most recent win marked the biggest of his career, as he knocked out No. 5-ranked Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza at UFC on FOX 24.
With his recent streak, “The Reaper” feels as if he’s deserving of a title shot. In fact, he’s willing to wait for the winner of the upcoming title fight between champion Michael Bisping and Georges St. Pierre, which is expected to take place later this year:
“I don’t see why I should,” Whittaker said when asked whether he would take another fight while Bisping takes on GSP, per Matt Bungard of The Sydney Morning Herald. “Bisping has said I’m the No.1 contender, so I don’t see a reason for me to fight until he’s done with Georges.
“I did something on the weekend that nobody in the top ten has ever done. I took [Souza] and I stopped him in devastating fashion.”
Continuing on, Whittaker said that he’s now ‘unstoppable’ and he attributes this feeling to losing back-to-back fights in 2014, which forced him to re-evaluate his career:
“That set a change in motion, it really did,” Whittaker said. “It made me sit back on my heels and go ‘what do I need to change, what do I need to do?’ I corrected everything. I stopped going away from home, I surrounded myself with smart people and people who care for me, and now I have the best team in the world. I’m unstoppable.”
Whittaker’s confidence appears to be at an all-time high, as he even went as far as to say that ’no one’ can stop him:
“No one, that’s my honest belief. Everyone doubted me with Jacare and I put him away. I’m in top form and I think people don’t realise that we down here are legit, we’ve got skill sets and we’re good fighters.”
Do you feel as if the 26-year-old Whittaker has what it takes to be a UFC champion?
Despite her recent losing skid, former UFC bantamweight champ Holly Holm believes she’s still in the title mix. ‘The Preacher’s Daughter’ gained a ton of notoriety after becoming the first woman to defeat Ronda Rousey in mixed martial arts (MMA) competition, when she knocked out ‘Rowdy’ in the second round of their bout in 2015.
Despite her recent losing skid, former UFC bantamweight champ Holly Holm believes she’s still in the title mix.
‘The Preacher’s Daughter’ gained a ton of notoriety after becoming the first woman to defeat Ronda Rousey in mixed martial arts (MMA) competition, when she knocked out ‘Rowdy’ in the second round of their bout in 2015. Since then, however, Holm has been on a three-fight losing skid, which included the inaugural women’s featherweight title match against Germain de Randamie in February.
During a recent episode of The MMA Hour, Holm discussed the current position she’s at in her fighting career, and believes she’s still in the title hunt (quotes via MMA Mania):
“I still feel like I’m in the mix and I still feel like I am competitive and up in the top. So, you never know when that next opportunity can come,” she said.
Holm believes that she got a little too antsy with the limelight of her newfound success after defeating Rousey, being a key factor as to why she’s currently on a three-fight losing streak:
“I think after having the belt, it was more like, ‘Wow, I’ve only had two fights in UFC before they gave me my title fight.’ I always feel my career is on a fast track, but I was on a faster track and I felt everybody coming and felt I needed to get even better.
“Maybe I got just a little too antsy with some of that instead of taking it day by day and each day at a time,” she continued. “Maybe I was kind of worried about everything rather than what was going on at the moment. Hopefully, I learned from those mistakes and make it all worth something now.”
The former 135-pound champ is already set to make her next Octagon appearance, as she will take on former bantamweight title challenger Bethe Correria in the main event of UFC Fight Night 111 from the Singapore Indoor Stadium on Sat., June 17, 2017.