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Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz Booked for UFC 183, January 31st in Las...

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ICYMI: Vitor Belfort Just Lobbed Two “Quote of the Year”-Worthy Insults at Luke Rockhold


(Knockout via TRT. Photo via Getty.)

In addition to laying a physical beatdown on Luke Rockhold back at UFC on FX 8 (and earning himself the “Knockout of the Year” Potato Award in the process), Vitor Belfort has now doled out a verbal ass-whooping to the former Strikeforce middleweight champion in a recent interview with MMAFighting.

As you might’ve heard, Rockhold has been doing his damndest to discredit his loss to Belfort, and really, the entire revitalization of Belfort’s career, in recent weeks. That Belfort failed a random drug test back in February didn’t exactly hurt Rockhold’s case, but it hasn’t endeared the latter to a ton of fans, either. Now that Belfort has been relicensed to fight, Rockhold has decided to kick his trash-talking game into overdrive, rallying to replace Belfort against Chris Weidman at UFC 181 on Twitter and saying some really nasty (if not warranted) things about Belfort to the media.

But nobody puts an old lion in a corner, as the saying goes, so when Belfort chose to respond to Rockhold, he did so with concise, unforgiving brutality:

That playboy is still in shock from the kick. He’s in shock. People are in shock. That’s the word. Lions don’t apologize for being lions.

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Calcio Storico (aka Italian Prison Riot Rugby) Is Probably Not the Next Big Thing in Combat Sports


(Props: dbettazzi)

I don’t exactly know what I’m looking at here. Elias sent me this video today, and the best I can describe it is “Riot breaks out during a shirts vs. skins game of either rugby or capture the flag at a Renaissance Fair held at an Italian prison.”

Watch this video for five minutes and try to figure out the rules of the game. There are at least 50 players on the field at any given time, with players drifting in and out seemingly at random. The referees are the guys in the colorful shirts, I think. The object of the game is to take the ball into the end zone, like a normal sport, but — in a hilariously ghetto twist — there are no end zone markings or goal posts to speak of. You just throw the ball against the fence when you’ve made it all the way without being knocked out.

After some googling, I’ve learned that the video shows a game of calcio storico (“historic football”) or calcio fiorentino, a game that dates back to 16th century Italy. Here are some amazing facts from the wikipedia page:

- “In 1574 Henry III of France attended a game of “bridge fighting” put on in his honor during a visit to Venice; the king is recorded as saying: “Too small to be a real war and too cruel to be a game.” Man, that is just classic Henry III of France.

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Gamblers Beware: The Early Odds for Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz Are…Not That Crazy, Actually


(Wait…Nick Diaz IS WHITE?!!! via r/MMA user joenottoast)

The MMAsphere suffered a collective Scanners.gif headsplosion when it was announced that Nick Diaz would be returning from a brief hiatus/retirement to face Anderson Silva at UFC 183 in January. While most of us were undeniably stoked at the idea of seeing Diaz Stockton Slap the G.O.A.T and/or seeing Silva unleash a Hadouken on Diaz’s jabroni ass, there were a few naysayers out there who were quick to dub this fight a “freak show” or “squash match.”

“Are you kidding me? Silva’s going to murder this chump!” said one Twitter expert whose name I cannot recall.

Pssh, Silva is done. The only thing left to do is have Diaz beat him into retirement,” said another, angrier group of tweeters in response.

And indeed, with Silva’s leg and Diaz’s mind remaining in constant question, the superfight has fiercely divided MMA fans who mistakenly fancy themselves psychics. But the important question, as is always the important question in these cases, is: What do the bookies think?

The answer might surprise you…

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Polish Standout Jan Blachowicz Will Be Next Victim of ‘Latifi Era’ at UFC Fight Night 53 in Stockholm


(Whoa, he finally got a wikipedia page? WHEN DID THIS HAPPEN?? / Photo via MMAnytt.se)

Highly regarded light-heavyweight Jan Blachowicz has become one of Poland’s greatest home-grown talents, with a 17-3 record competing almost exclusively for the KSW promotion. Blachowicz hasn’t competed since March 2013, but he’s currently riding a five-fight win streak, including decision wins over UFC veterans Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou, Mario Miranda, Houston Alexander, and Goran Reljic.

Unfortunately, he’s about to get swallowed by the goddamned juggernaut that is Ilir “The Sledgehammer” Latifi. (Or Iliir Latifa, as it’s spelled traditionally.)

The UFC announced this morning that Blachowicz will make his Octagon debut against Latifi at UFC Fight Night 53, October 4th at the Ericsson Globe in Stockholm, Sweden. (Only on Fight Pass!) Latifi is coming off a quick TKO of Chris Dempsey earlier this month, which came after his historic manhandling of Cyrille Diabate at UFC Fight Night 37 in March, in which no significant strikes were attempted by either fighter; Latifi won by guillotine choke after three minutes.

The fight marks Latifi’s return to competition in Sweden, following his unsuccessful UFC debut against Gegard Mousasi in April 2013. But true Latifi fans don’t really count that fight; the former non-wiki combatant was coming in to replace his training partner Alexander Gustafsson on short notice, and was unable to show us the real Latifi.

A main event for UFC Fight Night 53 hasn’t been announced yet. The current lineup is as follows…

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The (Reported) Death of TNA Impact, And How Its Cancellation Could Affect Pro Wrestling and MMA


(*single tear* [via @SoDuTw])

By Seth Falvo

The inevitable has finally occurred: TMZ is reporting that Spike TV has cancelled TNA Impact Wrestling after nine less than spectacular years. It is unclear when the final edition of Impact will air, but TMZ says that TNA’s deal with Spike runs through October. Neither Spike TV nor TNA have released official statements at this time.

So why are we covering the death of a minor-league professional wrestling outfit that did everything it possibly could to run itself out of business on CagePotato.com? Because this is the same promotion that partnered with Bellator to bring us King Mo’s (unintentionally hilarious) wrestling career and Tito Ortiz slugging Rampage Jackson with a hammer. It goes without saying that the Bellator/TNA partnership is about to dissolve, but what can we expect Spike TV to replace TNA Impact with? Will this bring more MMA to Spike TV, or will Spike just find another indie wrestling organization to fill in TNA’s shoes? Your guess is as good as anyone’s at this point, so let’s recklessly speculate for a while.

Isn’t it a little premature to write that TNA Impact Wrestling has been cancelled, considering that TNA could still renew with Spike TV/find a different network?

Sure, Spike TV could still renew TNA Impact, just like someone hypothetically could hold the UFC flyweight and heavyweight titles simultaneously. Not that it matters, but rumor has it that Spike TV executives cancelled Impact because they learned that TNA president Dixie Carter hired Vince Russo as a consultant, even though Spike specifically told her not to give him a job. If that’s true, that’s an oddly appropriate note for a company so hellbent on running itself into the ground to go out on.

As for another network picking up TNA Impact? Take it away, Razor…

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Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz Booked for UFC 183, January 31st in Las Vegas


(More arm-gestures than you’ve ever seen in a 25-minute fight…GUARANTEED. / Photos via MMAFighting, Getty)

Hold on to your asses, fight fans. The potential Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz superfight has just become a freakin’ reality.

UFC president Dana White just announced on Sportscenter that Silva vs. Diaz is now official (!) for January 31st in Las Vegas. The five-round fight will serve as the main event of the UFC 183 pay-per-view card, and will be held at middleweight. A venue for the card has yet to be announced.

We have very few other details right now, but here’s a photo of Dana and Anderson smiling together.

No other fights have been confirmed for UFC 183 at this point, not that it matters — they already have our money, damn it.

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My God, Spike TV’s “Gym Rescue” Looks F*cking Atrocious


(Jon Taffer did it so, so much better.)

You could probably guess that Spike TV’s upcoming gym rescue series (I believe it’s called, uh, Gym Rescue) starring Randy Couture and Frank Shamrock would not fall into the category of what we call “compelling television.” It’s a reality show, for starters, and one starring former MMA fighters that is attempting to piggyback off the success of Bar Rescue, another Spike TV reality show that is itself a ripoff of shows like Restaurant Impossible and countless others (all due respect to Jon Taffer, #buttfunnel).

What you might not have guessed, however, was that Gym Rescue would be an absolute dumpster fire of epic proportions and quite possibly the nadir of television programming as we know it. Don’t believe me? Check out the sneak peak of Gym Rescue that awaits you after the jump and tell me I’m wrong. Keep in mind that the footage you are about to witness is what the makers of Gym Rescue thought might entice on-the-fence viewers into watching their show, not B-roll that should have been left on the cutting room floor.

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Joe Riggs Shoots Himself While Cleaning Gun, Forced Out of UFC Return Against Paulo Thiago


(Nick Diaz described the incident as “not very gangster.” / Photo via Getty)

We’ll start with the good news: Joe Riggs is alive and safe. The bad news is, his unlikely UFC return has been postponed because he accidentally shot himself last night. From UFC.com:

Scheduled to return to the Octagon in Brasilia, Brazil on September 13 against Paulo Thiago, veteran Joe “Diesel” Riggs’s first UFC bout since 2006 has been put on hold after an accident at Riggs’ home in Arizona Monday night.

The UFC released the following statement on the incident.

“We were made aware that newly-signed UFC competitor Joe Riggs was involved in an unfortunate accident last night. While cleaning his permitted firearm (a pistol), the gun discharged, injuring his hand and upper thigh. Riggs was transported to a nearby hospital in Arizona where he is being treated by physicians. We wish Joe a speedy recovery.”

A replacement opponent for Thiago is being sought and will be announced shortly.

Gun accidents claim the lives of hundreds of people every year in this country. We like to bust balls and crack wise on CagePotato, but this is a topic we would never joke about.

[*snort*]

We’ll keep you posted on Joe’s condition as we get more details.

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MMA’s Best and Worst, Outside of the UFC


(“Scott Coker, who crawled through a river of shit and came out clean on the other side. Scott Coker. Headed for the Bellator.” / Photo via Bellator.com)

By Santino DeFranco

The recent departure of Bjorn Rebney from Bellator got me thinking about the rest of the non-UFC MMA world, and what it has to offer—both good and bad. So, I’ve compiled a list of the best and worst in a few categories. How do they stack up against their counterparts in the UFC? Hell, I don’t know, but none of them have a signature 360-degree turn while doing any of their jobs.

Commentator

BEST: Jason Chambers, One FC

Chambers is refreshing to hear while watching fights. Not only does he sound professional behind the mic, but he was a seasoned pro MMA fighter himself, which gives him an insider’s perspective into what’s going on during fights. The former Human Weapon host regularly pokes fun at himself, and rarely do we get the ever-so-obnoxious “When I trained with so-and-so” type of rubbish we hear from other ex-fighter commentators. Even if Chambers does occasionally botch names of the One FC fighters like “Xainj-Gui- Zambetriuyuiock,” he still maintains great hair, even in the humidity of Southeast Asia.

WORST: Bas Rutten, various promotions

Bas’s golden days are behind him, and he’s forgotten that he isn’t fighting anymore. His once-funny shtick has become stale and we can only hear so many mispronounced moves and slaughtered names of fighters before we want to turn down the volume and enjoy the second-tier MMA in front of us—though I am still a sucker for any liver-shot references.

Matchmaker

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Strategic Call-Out Alert: Dan Hardy Wants to “Retire” Diego Sanchez


(With takedown defense like that, Hardy doesn’t even stand a chance. Photo via Hardy’s Twitter.)

Ever since being forced into a semi-retirement due to a heart condition known as Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, former welterweight title challenger Dan Hardy has been building up a ton of good will with fans while serving as the color commentator for several of the UFC’s overseas shows. His intelligent, insightful, and undeniably British mic skills have left many fans calling for Hardy to replace Jon Anik outright, which is sad because Anik is probably the nicest cliche-spitting android this side of Shotbot.

But before Hardy was ever a smooth as silk commentator, he was a fiercely polarizing fighter known for his ability to trash talk his way into a fight. His last strategic call-out backfired in a big way, as he was battered, then choked out by Chris Lytle at UFC on Versus 5. But now that Hardy has received some positive news in regards to his condition, he is once again back to his old ways, calling out Diego Sanchez for his potential comeback fight. His reasoning: Getting some good old fashioned payback for fellow countrymen Ross Pearson’s controversial loss to Sanchez at Fight Night 42 (via MMAJunkie):

That was one of the worst decisions I’ve ever seen.

Ross Pearson won that fight clearly, and Diego accepted the win like he does…he’s as crazy as he is. I’m a huge Diego fan, but for me, he is what’s wrong with mixed martial arts right now. He is the 20th century bullheaded martial artist that walks forward and fights with their face, and now we’ve got guys like … Conor McGregor, we’ve got Gunnar Nelson; they’ve all got this very Machida-esque style where they’re very mobile; they can switch stances, and they can hit with power from anywhere.

I think Diego represents the old school, where you just walk forward in a boxing stance and see who falls over first.

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UFC International Fight Week - Day 1

CagePotato’s “Irreverent” Caption Contest: Win a Copy of ‘The Raid 2′ on Blu-ray!

In honor of the highbrow mainstream press we got last week, CagePotato has decided to celebrate.

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Urijah Faber Draws Some Guy Who Threw His Last Opponent Out of the Ring for “Fight Night 52″

And it's not Tank Abbott.

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If You Need a Laugh, Here’s Ralek Gracie Arguing That Steroids Don’t Enhance Performance in Jiu-Jitsu

None of Ralek's statements have been evaluated by a physician.

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UFC Fight Night Weigh-in

And Now They’re Fired: Pat Healy, TUF 16 Winner Colton Smith, + More

Here's hoping Healy can rebound in a big way when the WSOF inevitably scoops him up.

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Feel-Good Video of the Day: MMA Fighter/Gas Station Clerk Destroys Robbers With Soccer Kicks

Of all the "mma fighter foils robbery" videos in the "gas station" sub-category, this new one from Houston might be our favorite, and it's for one simple reason: PRIDE rules.

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Jose Aldo vs. Chad Mendes 2 Re-Booked for UFC 179, October 25th in Rio

Nearly three years after their first meeting, UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo and top contender Chad Mendes will get another chance to settle the age-old debate: "Who's the real pussy?"

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FOX's "Almost Human" Season One

Dana White on Gina Carano: “It’s Complicated”

It turns out signing the fighter-turned-actress is harder than Uncle Dana anticipated.

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UFC Fight Night: Lawler v Brown

Robbie Lawler Earns $210,000 for Beating Matt Brown as UFC on FOX 12 Payroll Nears $1 Million

In total, the payroll for the card neared $1 million, coming in at $986,000. So, still you think these guys don't work hard enough for their money?

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UFC on FOX 12 Results: Lawler Decisions Brown, Johnson Blasts Lil Nog (Hopefully Into Retirement)

The UFC is in San Jose tonight with a free event that can only be described as "legit man [expletive]." Main card results will be right here starting at 8 p.m. ET.

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Bellator 122 Results: Koreshkov Batters McDonough, Halsey Submits Cooper, Parisyan Obliterates Baroni

Bellator 122 was energetic, fun, and left us with that "let's shadow box with our shirts off" feeling.

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UFC on FOX 12 Weigh-In Results: Matt Brown Misses Weight, Avoids Punishment Because of ‘Miscommunication’

UFC on FOX 12 weigh-ins went down earlier today in San Jose, and no, they did not proceed without incident.

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TEAM USA Britain Bound: Henry Cejudo visits York Minster

Henry Cejudo Signs With the UFC, Will Meet Scott Jorgensen at UFC 177

Well, Potato Nation, it appears we may have been...wrong.

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Before You Leave the Office Today, Watch Matt Brown Knock Out Mike Pyle in 29 Seconds [VIDEO]

The fights are tomorrow, dudes. Come back to CagePotato.com at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT for our liveblog of the UFC on FOX 12 main card. Have a great weekend!

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Friday Links: Matt Brown Drops an R-Bomb (?), Vitor Belfort Goes Hard on Instagram, The Rock Smacks Down Bullies + More

Some must-see highlights from our bros around the blogosphere.

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Jeff ‘Karmaatemycat’ Watts Scored a First-Round Submission at Cage Titans 19, And We Finally Have a Video to Show You

The fight itself starts at the 5:57 mark, and Jeff comes out in three-point troll stance, daring Barrett to enter his world. Barrett gets so flustered that he slips to the mat trying to uppercut Jeff in the face.

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Video: This One-Punch Walk-Off Slow-Motion Falling-Tree Street-Fight Easy-Listening Knockout Is FAAAAABULOUS!!

Yeah, that's a lot of adjectives for a fight that lasts two seconds. But hey, watch the video yourself and see if we're lying to you.

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Nick Diaz Re-Signs With UFC (!), Anderson Silva Fight Possible for February 2015 (!!!)

"I've been doing a whole lot of not getting punched around-type stuff," Diaz said Thursday afternoon. "It's been a good experience having this much time off."

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Paulo Thiago vs. Joe Riggs Booked for UFC Fight Night 51 — Yes, *That* Joe Riggs. Seriously.

Maybe they signed Joe Riggs to bring Nick Diaz out of retirement?

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#ThrowbackThursday: 25 Rare and Classic UFC Photos From the ’90s

When men were men, knuckles were bare, and wearing a singlet in the cage was totally acceptable.

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Watch This ‘Black Fedor’ Daniel Cormier Highlight Video and Get Excited

With Jon Jones vs. Daniel Cormier now booked as the UFC 178 main event, one question remains: Are you ready to come to daddy?

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