Steroids in MMA
Which MMA Fighter Will Test Positive For Steroids Next?

May, 2013

Quote of the Day: Bellator Welterweight Champ Ben Askren Says It’s “Hard to Fail a Drug Test When You Don’t Take It”


(See? We told you he said it.)

It’s kind of shocking how quickly the reputation of Bellator Fighting Championships has gone from the humble yet respected #2 promotion in MMA to the center of all things shady and soon to be #3 promotion in MMA. We’ve heard stories from two of the promotion’s former champions — Eddie Alvarez and Zach Makovsky — about how dirty the promotion plays ball with its own fighters, and recently, we’ve seen the promotion claim that an imposter agent was reaching out to ex-UFC fighters like Leonard Garcia and offering them fake contracts, a claim that was almost instantly debunked by Garcia’s management. In short, it appears that Dana White was right about the promotion pulling “dirty, scumbag moves.” Dana White was right…

And now, Bellator’s own welterweight champion, Ben Askren, has all but blown the lid off the promotion’s drug-testing process. Or lack thereof.

Askren posted the above Tweet yesterday, which quickly raised a lot of red flags from the MMA community for obvious reasons. How was it that the #2 promotion in the sport had only tested one of their champions once in eight fights? Was this just their way of dealing with sweeping their fighters sudden need for TRT under the rug? Is Viacom a front for the Legalize It movement? Or are Bellator’s fighters just that clean? BJPenn.com’s Giovanni Burns attempted to bring some light to the issue, and was probably responsible for Askren’s tweet in the first place:

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CagePotato Exclusive Interview: ‘Mini Megaton’ Mackenzie Dern Looks to Make Her Mark at Metamoris II


(Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Black Belt Competitor Mackenzie Dern | Photo GracieMag)

By Elias Cepeda

[Ed. note: This is the second in a series of interviews with the fighters and promoters behind Metamoris II: Gracie vs. Aoki, which goes down June 9th in Los Angeles. Stay tuned for more, and follow Metamoris on Facebook and Twitter for important event updates. You can purchase tickets right here.]

I’ve got two stories about Rickson and Royler Gracie black belt Wellington “Megaton” Dias. One is a first-hand story and the other was passed on to me through others in the gym when I was growing up. Both are short and teach a simple lesson – “Megaton” is a skilled, mean, junkyard dog.

During the summer of 2000, I went to Los Angeles to watch the second Rickson Gracie International Jiu Jitsu Invitational. There were tournaments for all belt levels as well as “super fights” between black belt stars of the day. Dias took part in one of those featured bouts against another black belt. It is just as well that I don’t remember his opponent’s name because I’m sure he doesn’t enjoy this story being told. In short, Dias made that other elite black belt look like an amateur - putting him on his back, keeping him there, and basically toying with the guy from mount for the majority of the scrap. In short, it kinda looked like this. It was almost a worse way of losing than getting submitted in ten seconds. Dias dominated his nameless opponent for an entire match. Dias’ display is still the best single argument for a slaughter rule in Jiu Jitsu matches that I’ve ever seen.

The second-hand story I know of “Megaton” goes roughly like this; the Brazilian was brought to a Midwest town to conduct a Jiu Jitsu seminar — the timeframe escapes me. The people who paid the seminar fee more than likely did so because of Dias’ renowned skills, in hopes that the Professor would teach them some tricks. How wrong they were.

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Correction: Gegard Mousasi Will Probably Not Be Taking the UFC Light-Heavyweight Division by Storm


(Do not read this article while operating heavy machinery. /Photo via Getty Images)

After being inactive for all of 2012 due to a torn ACL, Gegard Mousasi began creeping back to relevance this year, choking out Mike Kyle for Strikeforce in January, then winning a lopsided 15-minute sparring session against Ilir Latifi for his UFC debut in April. For a moment, it seemed like Sweet Sassy was poised to make an impact in the UFC light-heavyweight division. Well, not so much. A new knee injury will sideline Mousasi until the end of the year, and his days at 205 might be behind him for good.

Mousasi confirmed with MMAJunkie.com Radio last week that he’s currently recovering from a surgery to correct a second tear of the same ACL, an injury which he blamed on training too hard. He doesn’t expect to return to competition until November or December — not because the rehab will take that long, but because he plans to do “a lot of partying” this year.

“I’m planning on the recovery, but I’m planning to enjoy life a little bit,” Mousasi said. “In the past, I’ve always been training, always about the sport. Once you have this injury, you discover other stuff. I plan on having a good time.”

As for his postponed fight against Alexander Gustafsson? Mousasi’s not too concerned about it. He already hinted last month that he might be dropping back down to 185 pounds — the weight-class in which he first rose to prominence — and further explained his motivations like this:

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Nick Diaz Is Reportedly Starting His Own MMA Promotion, God Help Us


(We’ll see if Dana’s still laughing when STOCKTON FC swallows up the entire industry. / Photo via CombatLifestyle.com)

According to a commonly misused F. Scott Fitzgerald quote, there are no second-acts in American lives. But for years, MMA fighters have proven that adage wrong. Tito Ortiz transitioned from a Hall of Fame-worthy career in the Octagon to his current standing as the most effective and eloquent fighter-manager in MMA. Rampage Jackson went into the rap game after leaving the UFC, and now his latest album — Hump Musik — has gone quintuple-platinum. And legendary two-division UFC champ Randy Couture devoted himself to acting following his MMA career, making history as the first man to win Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor (for his cauliflower ear) in the same film.

I kid, because I love. The truth is, finding a new path after a successful career as a fighter can be very difficult. Not everybody can put their name on a goddamned grill and sit on Easy Street for the rest of their life. So when we tell you that Nick Diaz might be launching his own MMA promotion in the wake of his latest “retirement“…well, just keep your expectations realistic, okay?

We first heard about this in yesterday’s installment of MiddleEasy.com’s “Rumor Mill column, which was followed by longtime Diaz-documentarian LayzieTheSavage posting a link to RedditMMA: nickdiazpromotions.com, which contains a logo for something called WAR Mixed Martial Arts, and a “Coming Soon” message. No other details are available at this time, but my God, imagine the possibilities.

It makes sense that Diaz would want to start his own fight club, considering how dissatisfied he’s always been with the Unified Rules, and the ways that the current rule-set can be exploited by weak-ass point-fighters and wrestlers. So what would Diaz’s brand-new MMA promotion actually look like? (Warning: Here come the jokes…)

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The UFC Heads Back to Indiana, August 28th


(Whaddya say, Chris? One last blood bath for old time’s sake? | Photo by AP)

August is turning out to be a big month for Midwest MMA fans. UFC 164 has already been announced for August 31st in Milwaukee, WI and today MMA Junkie reports that just a few days prior, the UFC will hold the first UFC on Fox Sports event at the Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis on Wednesday, August 28th.

“UFC and Bankers Life Fieldhouse officials on Saturday night announced the promotions plans to return to the venue, with tickets scheduled to go on sale June 14. Ticket prices and on-sale details will be announced in the coming weeks,” Junkie reports.

No one seems to have a line on official or rumored match ups for the card but we’re betting the UFC isn’t setting up a rematch between Frank Mir and Mirko “Cro Cop”. The last time the UFC visited Indy, back in 2010, they made good money – selling nearly 16,000 tickets for a gate of over $1.5 million – but few were happy with the action.

Dana White was so upset with headliner Frank Mir’s effort that, even though Mir beat “Cro Cop” with the only KO of the night, he didn’t get a knock out of the night, bonus. So, it wasn’t that awesome of a card.

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‘WTF?!’ of the Day: Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney Claims an Imposter Is Reaching Out to Fighters, Including Leonard Garcia


(“Alright, let’s see who you REALLY are! *tugs ears* Damn it, Scooby Doo made this look so easy…”)

If you follow college football at all, you probably remember the story of Kevin Hart, the high school lineman who held a press conference on national signing day in 2008 to declare that he was going to play college football for the Cal Bears. When the team announced that they never even had interest in recruiting him – let alone offering him a football scholarship – Hart claimed that he had been duped by a fake agent. It was one of the most bizarre sports stories in years; one that surely couldn’t happen again.

Yet here we are only five years later with an extremely similar story, only instead of involving a mediocre high school athlete from a small town in Nevada, it involves former UFC featherweight Leonard Garcia.

As we have covered, the recently released Leonard Garcia expressed no interest in signing with Bellator, even though they supposedly offered him a deal. In a way, this is a good thing, because according to Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney, the promotion never actually planned on signing him in the first place. Via MMAJunkie.com:

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Interview: Nick Newell Gives His Side of the Story Regarding XFC Fallout, Explains Why He Never Accepted Fight Against Scott Holtzman


(“I can’t sit around my whole life trying to make other people’s careers better. I gotta do what’s best for me, and what’s best for me is moving on.” / Photo via ProMMANow.com)

Yesterday, XFC president John Prisco announced publicly that lightweight champion Nick Newell (9-0) had been “stripped of [his] title” after refusing to fight XFC’s top lightweight contender Nate Holtzman (4-0). Following the news, Newell released the following statement on his Facebook fan page:

EVERYBODY CALM DOWN! First of I AM NOT UNDER CONTRACT WITH THE XFC. XFC promoted a fight that didn’t exist yet.

The headlines are misleading and imply that I was stripped of my title because I refused to fight when in fact I just chose not to renew my contract with the XFC. I am not scared to fight anybody. I have been through too much in my life to be scared of any man. All you have to do is look at one of my fights to see my heart & my fearless style. This has nothing to do with me being scared. It is more so just an attempt to bully me into a contract.

XFC trash talking me and trying to slander my name upsets me more then anything but they are promoters. XFC is promoting, thats what they do. They have to try and make their guys look as good as possible and I’m not one of their guys so it is at my expense.

Even though Scott is bad mouthing me as well, I have no ill will towards him. I consider myself to be a professional and as a professional I choose to stay away from negative talk towards other fighters, but I understand that he is an unfortunate victim of circumstance.

Definitely not scared just have my eyes on bigger pastures.

Love you all,
Nicholas G. Newell

CagePotato contacted Nick yesterday evening to further clarify the situation, and he spent a few minutes with us to discuss his version of the events that led to his split with the XFC, as well as his plans for the immediate future. Short version: Newell’s decision to leave was based on his desire to continue moving upward in his career — and had nothing to do with Scott Holtzman specifically — and he’s very close to announcing his next fight contract. Check it out…

CAGEPOTATO.COM: John Prisco blasted you pretty hard for not accepting a fight against Scott Holtzman; he said you were scared, and that Holtzman would have stopped you in the first round. Did that feel like a betrayal to you?

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Knockout Of The Day: Some Damned Fool Picks Fight With Former Boxing Champ

Some months ago we saw a short but wonderful video of some loud-mouthed whipper snapper getting slept by a silent, stone-cold killer older gentleman. The video starts off with the loud dude shouting threats to the dapper and calm man standing some twenty feet away.

Then, the obnoxious, threatening guy walks over and gets in the face of the old guy only to promptly be hit and knocked out cold by a one-two combination. Before the idiot did walk over to get his come-uppance, voices from others near by warned him not to “go over there,” and also referred to the old man as “champ.” We wondered if the KO artist was who we thought it was but, being the responsible publication that we are, waited to get some type of confirmation that it was before publishing.

The Daily Mail over in the UK reports that the old-man bad ass int he video is none other than Rocky Lockridge, a former boxing champion who battled the best of the best during the 1980′s and early 90′s, including Julio Cesar Chavez, Roger Mayweather and Rafael Ruelas.

Ok, so Rocky isn’t really that old, but a long career in boxing and battling drug addiction don’t make you young by the time you’re in your 50′s. Besides, he appeared to be much younger than his assailant.

Oh yeah, we forgot to mention that Rocky knocked out that fool (and the drink out of his hand) all while wearing red pants and without his snap brim hat falling from his head. That’s some OG, super hero shiznit if we’ve ever seen it.

Today’s street fighting lesson, taters – If the guy you’re harassing stands at stares at you, without uttering a word and with total calm, and is wearing a fedora and gosh darned solid red pants, don’t down there. Leave that man alone.

- Elias Cepeda

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Joe Rogan Explains Those Infamous ‘UFC Debut Jitters’ [VIDEO]


(Props: fueltv)

“Some fighters rise to the occasion, and some fighters are dwarfed by the moment.”

That’s how longtime UFC commentator Joe Rogan puts it in this recent video from FUEL TV, which examines the overwhelming nature of competing in the UFC for the first time, and how those “Octagon jitters” may have negatively affected such hyped-up talents as Daniel Cormier, Hector Lombard, Cung Le, Carlos Condit, and Anthony Pettis. Even if the fight goes well for you, the emotions can be almost too much too bear (see especially: Cat Zingano). It’s an interesting look at the mental challenges that new UFC fighters face, which tend to multiply the more-obvious physical ones. So check it out.

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XFC Lightweight Champion Nick Newell Stripped of Title Over Alleged Refusal to Defend it at XFC 24

Ever since he was dubbed the winner of our “Proving Grounds” competition a couple years back, we have repeatedly sung the praises of undefeated, congenial amputee fighter “Notorious” Nick Newell. We’ll spare you the obvious cliches, but to say that Newell’s dramatic (also, absolutely devastating) run under the XFC banner — which culminated in a first round submission victory over Eric Reynolds to claim the promotion’s lightweight title – was anything less than inspiring would be a disservice.

Unfortunately, Newell’s influential story has turned into that of controversy recently.

Newell was scheduled to defend his newly-earned title against fellow undefeated prospect Scott “Hot Sauce” Holtzman at the upcoming XFC 24, but according to XFC President, John Prisco, Newell has refused to defend his title against anyone but a UFC veteran and has thusly been stripped of his title. Prisco spoke directly through XFC’s official website and he was rather candid:

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