What's Going On?

What’s Going On? (Mar 4th – 10th)

A whole new week means a whole new set of MMA news and events that needs to be discussed by yours truly. So let’s get right into it with some interesting topics for this week:

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Darren Till vs. Rafael Dos Anjos?

Darren Till has expressed interest in fighting former lightweight champion Rafael Dos Anjos in a recent interview.

Just because of his fan base there, and I’ve obviously lived there. I’ve got a lot of fans there, and I can speak the language. It would be a good sell in Brazil, if he’s willing to do it… I know he’s waiting for [Tyron] Woodley but Woodley doesn’t seem to want to come back.” – Darren Till

As fun as a fight this would be, Dos Anjos has earned the right to fight for the title and should not have to fight the #7 ranked fighter in his division. This would be a repeat of the Jacare Souza situation. Maybe Till can fight Colby Covington in the mean time (I know a lot of people want to see that guy get knocked out badly).

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Mackenzie Dern‘s Debut Draws Viewers

According to Dave Meltzer, Mackenzie Dern’s UFC debut was the most watched portion of the UFC 222: Cyborg vs. Kuntskaya prelims. It was also a bigger draw than the crazy Wilder vs. Ortiz boxing fight. Although Mackenzie Dern herself wasn’t that impressive in her debut (completely lacking in the striking department), she has proven to be a pretty big cash cow for the UFC. I expect them to give her the Sage Northcutt treatment to make he a household name and protect her record. I just hope see fixes her striking or uses her grappling much more effectively, otherwise see will end up like Ronda Rousey when she was exposed in the striking department.

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Conor McGregor, Max Holloway, and Burger King

Conor McGregor and Max Holloway continued to poke jabs at each other after UFC 222: Cyborg vs. Kunitskaya.

So when McGregor announced that he was partnering with Burger King, similar to Anderson Silva, the UFC Featheweight Champion decided to take this opportunity to mock his former advisory.

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Don’t you just love when two fighters get along? In all seriousness, I don’t understand why McGregor is even talking trash to Holloway. I guess he may want to face him when either of those killers, Khabib Nurmagomedov or Tony Ferguson, take his belt. Regardless, in about a month only one of them can call themselves champion.

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Derrick Lewis vs. Francis Ngannou?

Derrick Lewis has been campaigning for a fight with recent title challenger Francis Ngannou. He said recently on a podcast that he would like to get the fight as soon as possible. This would definitely be an entertaining fight and would be easy for the UFC to sell as a must-watch bout. Ngannou may not want to fight Lewis now, especially after coming short against heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic, but this could be the fight that would propel him back into title contention. Plus, the rivalry between these two has been bitter from the start. Let’s just hope that when they do fight, the UFC reinforces the octagon cage walls.

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Fabricio Werdum wants to be in WWE

This is probably the most surprising news of the week. Fabricio Werdum has stated that he will meet with WWE executives to talk about a potential crossover into the world of professional wrestling. Werdum then went on the record to say that the idea was nixed and instead he would be considering lucha libre style wrestling. This is a very off move as Werdum feels that he can balance both worlds which has me skeptical. If he ever does go to WWE, however, then I would love to see him and Brock Lesnar in a cage match. The cage should also be in the shape of an octagon.

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What's Going On?

What’s Going On? (April 21st – 27th, 2017)

A whole new week means a whole new set of MMA news and events that needs to be discussed by yours truly. So let’s get right into it with some interesting topics for this week:

Al Iaquinta bashes his employers

Based on the tweets above, Al Iaquinta is a tad bit upset that his first round knockout of The Ultimate Fighter Season 1 winner Diego Sanchez was not a performance of the night winner. He took to twitter to voice his displeasures (albeit vulgar) and even went on The MMA Hour to further elaborate that the money does not seem right for him to continue fighting. This is a fine choice for Iaquinta if he decides to quit the fight game because, from I’ve heard, he is a very successful real estate. Plus it is always nice to see a fighter act like the UFC does not own them because they do not own a single person. Everyone is free to take their own paths like Iaquinta has done.

John Dodson says other fighters are ducking him

John Dodson recently defeated Eddie Wineland this past Saturday in a very impressive performance. He says that his ability to finish guys and ability to avoid getting hit while still striking his opponent is a primary reason why guys do not want to fight him. He even name dropped Raphael Assuncao and Alijamain Sterling as two of the fighters who refused to fight him on multiple occasions. If I were the other fighters in the bantamweight division then I would not blame them for wanting to avoid Dodson because he has the ability to embarass you in that octagon. It’s a surefire way to lose any momentum you have real fast. Regardless though, Dodson needs an opponent soon and I still think Jimmie Rivera should face him next (read more about that here) but only time will tell.

Phil Davis replaces King Mo against Ryan Bader at Bellator 180

King Mo has informed Bellator MMA of an undisclosed injury that will force him out of his Bellator 180 showdown with Ryan Bader. Instead, Phil Davis will defend his light heavyweight belt against Bader in the “Big Apple” at Bellator 180. This is going to be a great matchup (even though many see their first bout as a snore fest). I think another title fight is always a plus for me especially since Bellator’s rival had three title fights on their first New York card. This just got me more excited for Bellator 180 and I’m sure to spend any amount of money this PPV.

Frank Mir is unhappy with his suspension

This is just sad. Frank Mir recently stated how he does not like the UFC as much anymore because of the two year suspension he was given for his failed drug test he took back in March.

I don’t think Mir has anyone to blame but himself and at this point he should just retire because two years is a long time when you are already considered old in the division. Heavyweights don’t age well anyways. That’s one reason why none of them can hold the belt for more than two title defenses. Either way, the tests do not lie. Mir is a cheater and should just live with the consequences.

Ronda Rousey and Travis Browne get engaged

The couple of Ronda Rousey and Travis Browne are getting married. This is sure to keep Rousey out of the cage even longer. Browne on the other hand has suffered defeat in his last three fights. I don’t think anybody is going to miss them for the time being. Good luck with the marriage and have a nice honeymoon. I could use this time to bash on their careers each but that would be in poor sport. so I’ll just leave this here instead:

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Stipe Miocic vs. Junior Dos Santos 2 is official for UFC 211 in Dallas

The UFC Heavyweight Champion, Stipe Miocic, will face off against a familiar foe in Junior Dos Santos at UFC 211 in the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas. The decision to place Dos Santos in a title match when there are three other contenders that are ranked higher has sparked up a bit of controversy. Let’s discuss why “Cigano” was picked for the matchup over his competition. Alistair Overeem is ranked right above JDS and had recently failed in his opprtunity (although he was close) to capture the illustrious title. Overeem is set to face Mark Hunt at UFC 209 which would undoubtedly keep him from challenging for the title a second time for the time being. In additon to that, a fighter getting a rematch just after failing to secure the title does not make a whole lot of sense for a main event fight.

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Stipe Mioci disposed of Alistair Overeem in the second round to retain his UFC Heavyweight Championship.

Not even Chael Sonnen got an immediate rematch against Anderson Silva after almost handing “The Spider” his first loss in the UFC. Ranked number two on the heavyweight contenders list is Cain Velasquez who was set to face the number one ranked contender but had to withdraw due to injury. Velasquez’s leg injury may be too much for the former heavyweight champion to compete right now which is why he was not considered for the fight. Plus, the guy ranked above him is much more deserving of a title shot. Fabricio Werdum is the number one contender for the UFC Heavyweight Championship. He lost the belt to Miocic back at UFC 198 in Brazil. After the loss Werdum would go on to win his next bout against Travis Browne at UFC 203 in Cleveland, Ohio. A lot of times the UFC would give an immediate rematch to champions that lost their belts (such as Ronda Rousey). But more often than not, the UFC would have the former champion work his way to a rematch. This is evident by the fact that fighters like Jon Jones and Rafael Dos Anjos, who were dominant in their divisions, did not get immediate rematches. Werdum did go on to claim the number one contender spot and seemed like the most likely canidate to face Miocic in Dallas. However, the UFC loves to find the best matchup they can and would ignor the rankings for the biggest draw and most interesting fights. Most recently this happened when Cody Garbrandt skipped several ranked bantamweights to dethrone Dominick Cruz and claim the UFC Bantamweight Championship.

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Cody Garbrant skipped several top bantamweight contenders to fight for and capture the UFC Bantamweight Championship.

Although it was ridiculous to see that occur, the fight was amazing and Cruz got the toughest fight of his life. The UFC probably thinks that this is the more exciting fight and would give a fresh matchup and challenge for the champion. The heavyweights usually put on a huge show and they say that everything is bigger in Texas. Dallas should get a treat when these two meet. Hopefully Dos Santos vs Miocic can bring us that same magic that Cruz vs Garbrandt brought. If it does then there will be no complaints from the MMA community (maybe).