MMA Fighter Challenges People to Punch Him in the Face, Everyone Fails

December, 2013

BREAKING: Georges St-Pierre Vacates His UFC Title, Hendricks vs. Lawler Booked for Welterweight Title Fight at UFC 171


(“Physically I am 100%, but mentally I cannot go through another training camp right now, and I don’t know when I’ll be able to.” / Photo via Getty)

Georges St-Pierre‘s impromptu conference call turned out to be incredibly significant after all. The UFC welterweight champion announced today that he is taking an indefinite break from MMA competition, and has vacated his welterweight title. As he explained during his opening statement on the call:

“I’ve been fighting for a long time at a very high level. It’s a lot of pressure, a lot of criticism, and I decided to take time off. The UFC is a business, they can’t wait for my little self. I vacate my title for the respect of the other competitors, and one day when I feel like it, I might come back.

“It’s a lot of pressure. Every fight, I’m carrying weight on my shoulder, and every fight you add weight on your shoulder, you add weight, and add weight, and add weight — it becomes so heavy that I can’t carry it myself. Physically I am 100%, but mentally I cannot go through another training camp right now, and I don’t know when I’ll be able to.”

When Yahoo! reporter Kevin Iole asked St-Pierre if concern about physical damage or head trauma factored into his decision, GSP repeated that his decision had nothing to do with that. “I need to have a normal life for a bit, and that’s it.”

“I believe that one day I will come back,” St-Pierre said later, “but I don’t know [when].”

St-Pierre’s competitive future has been a question mark ever since his controversial UFC 167 victory over Johny Hendricks. Following the win, an emotionally distracted St-Pierre made a vague statement about needing to go away for a while — which drew the immediate wrath of Dana White in the post-fight press-conference. But now that St-Pierre has given more closure to the situation, White is completely supportive.

“This is fighting, and you have to be 100% mentally, physically, and emotionally,” the UFC president explained. “If you’re not, you should wait on the sidelines until you get your stuff cleared up…He was classy enough to say, ‘I’m not going to jam up the 170-pound division while I deal with these things.’ He’s going to deal with his stuff and come back…He’s the greatest welterweight of all time, and he’s the gold standard in everything…I think this is the right move for Georges St-Pierre.”

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Friday Link Dump: Chael Asks Anderson to Be His Assistant Coach on TUF, Velasquez and Pettis Post-Surgery Photos, Male Athletes Wearing Makeup + More


(“In Klong Prem high-security prison in Bangkok, inmates box outsiders for money, shorter sentences, and the greater glory of Thailand.” Crazy stuff, via Fightland/VICE)

Chael Sonnen Officially Invites Anderson Silva to Be an Assistant Coach on TUF: Brazil (MMAFighting)

Video: UFC Champ Jon Jones Sings a Selfie-Song About Getting His Driver’s License Back (MMAJunkie)

Cain Velasquez’s Shoulder Surgery Went Well… (Instagram)

…And So Did Anthony Pettis’s Knee Surgery (Instagram)

Dana White: Fabricio Werdum Will Fight Winner of UFC 168 Bout Josh Barnett vs. Travis Browne (BloodyElbow)

Shane Del Rosario’s Family Will Donate His Organs, Plans to Create a Foundation (BleacherReport)

Muhammad Ali Dodges 21 Punches in 10 Seconds (Break)

The Dumbest Sports Fan Comments on the Internet This Week (Complex)

Yeah Bitch! 15 Awesome Breaking Bad Gifts for Fans (HiConsumption)

If Male Athletes Wore Makeup (20 PHOTOS) (WorldWideInterweb)

25 Ways to Get Yourself Bigger (MensFitness)

The 8 Worst Christmas Sweaters Ever Invented (DoubleViking)

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Dana White Declares Vitor Belfort #1 Middleweight Contender Regardless of UFC 168 Outcome


(And to think, it only took a few hours of physical intimidation ”spiritual encouragement” for Dana to see the light.) 

In his past three fights, Vitor Belfort has looked less like a physically gifted athlete re-entering the prime of his career and more like the Batman & Robin version of Bane on a bath salt-induced rampage across Brazil.

After racking up consecutive “Knockout of the Night” victories over Michael Bisping (yay!), Luke Rockhold (whatever!) and Dan Henderson (NO, GOD! PLEASE NO! NOOOOOOOO!!!), Dana White recently confirmed with Fox Sports that Belfort will be next in line for a middleweight title shot regardless of who emerges victorious from the Anderson Silva-Chris Weidman rematch at UFC 168:

[Ed] Soares was telling me that Anderson absolutely thinks Vitor deserves another shot,” White said. “The next move for him will be Vitor Belfort. If Anderson Silva doesn’t win this fight, Chris Weidman and Vitor.

Perhaps this snippet was taken out of context, but it would appear that Old Dana does not have the utmost faith in his newly-appointed middleweight champion. Luckily, there are guys like Belfort in the UFC who can help “correct” Dana’s lack of faith via a brief motivational beating. If you know what I’m saying.

White also continued to tease the possibility of a Silva-Jones Jr. boxing match, but let’s just take baby steps here. Vitor Belfort is next in line, and he will either rampage through whoever emerges victorious from the Silva-Weidman rubble or end up sucking the wrong set of toes again.

-J. Jones

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Like a Contract, But Not Exactly: Why Long Term Deals Are Terrible For UFC Fighters


(Sanchez’s contract is officially for eight more fights, but the UFC reserves the right to take him out behind the shed at any time and put him out of his misery. / Photo via Getty)

By Jon Mariani

With Daniel Cormier and Diego Sanchez both inking new eight-fight deals with the UFC recently, following an eyebrow-raising 10-fight contract extension for Anderson Silva earlier this year, long-term contracts have become a disturbing trend in the UFC. And it begs the question: “Why everybody’s doing that? Why?

MMA contracts are unique among professional sports, in the sense that long-term agreements aren’t necessarily beneficial to the athletes. The deals that Cormier and Sanchez signed with the UFC bear absolutely no resemblance to the 15-year, $67.5 million dollar “lottery ticket” that NHL goalie Rick DiPietro signed in 2006. After failing to live up to expectations, DiPietro’s contract was bought out in 2013, at $1.5 million a year for the next 16 years.

That’s what a contract is, after all — an employer’s obligation to pay a certain amount of money for services rendered. What the UFC offers its fighters is something different. It’s like a contract, but not exactly, and it results from the uniquely lopsided power structure in this sport, where there’s essentially one major-league team and no player’s union.

In MMA if you fail to live up to expectations and lose fights, your contract can simply be terminated at any time, and for a variety of reasons. When Eddie Alvarez‘s contract was made public, outsiders got a chance to see the long list of scenarios in which the UFC can cut an athlete loose. As the article’s author Jonathan Snowden notes “So, all those UFC contracts that claim to be for eight or 10 fights? That’s only true if you keep winning. Otherwise, the contract is only as long as the UFC wants it to be.”

A quote from that article, from Northwestern University labor law professor Zev Eigen, shows how imbalanced contracts are for UFC fighters:

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So Maybe Georges St-Pierre Is Announcing Something Important Today [UPDATED]


(New theory: GSP will announce that he’s stepping away from MMA to take over the role of Sportacus on LazyTown. / Photo via MMAWeekly)

In case you forgot, today is the day that UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre will head to a mall in Quebec City and either announce his retirement from the sport or cut the ribbon on a Canadian Orange Julius. Though we were quick to speculate about the major news that could potentially result from this appearance, UFC president Dana White immediately doused the rumors, saying that St-Pierre’s “press conference” was nothing more than a promotional appearance at a mall.

White’s denial was based in solid, boring logic. It’s hard to imagine St-Pierre making a career-changing announcement without the UFC’s advance knowledge, and the champ could just be showing up to shake hands, kiss babies, and plug his new movie. But then, Dana actually spoke to GSP yesterday, and shit — as they say — got real. It was suddenly announced last night that the UFC would be holding a “special media conference call” with White and St-Pierre today, beginning at 2:20 p.m. ET. No other details were released, although White told Ariel Helwani that the call will be about “stuff that people want to hear.”

So that’s that, for now. Stay tuned to CagePotato this afternoon, and we’ll let you know what happens, as soon as it happens.

Update: “According to a report from the French-language arm of Canadian sports station TSN, UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre will announce later today that he is taking an indefinite leave from MMA and will relinquish his title.” Holy crud.

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Diego Sanchez to Absorb the Lifeforce of Poor, Poor Myles Jury at UFC 171


(Hey guys, you forgot to write “In Memoriam” at the top. Photo via Jury’s official website.)

Myles Jury might be one of the most talented up-and-coming prospects in the UFC that I couldn’t pick out of a lineup if a police officer was holding a gun to my mother’s head. I don’t how or why that situation could arise, I’m just saying. The TUF 15 alum is currently 4-0 in the UFC with wins over fellow TUFers Michael Johnson, Mike Ricci, and Ramsey Nijem, but since he’s been stuck in FX/FS1 prelim hell for those fights, his accomplishments have gone largely unnoticed by the general public.

Well that’s all about to change, because it appears that Jury has been selected to be cleansed by the holy flame of Diego Sanchez’s vengeful God, as tribute, at UFC 171.

It’s a classic matchup of undefeated vs. mentally unstable undefeatable.

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The UFC’s New Strawweights Are Getting a Surprisingly Large Paycheck to Compete on TUF


(With Felice Herrig in the cast, TUF 20 promises to be riveting entertainment. Jesus Christ. Is this really the life I’ve chosen for myself? / Photo via Esther Lin, Invicta FC)

Though the arrival of female strawweights on The Ultimate Fighter is exciting news in itself, we figured that the new 115-pounders would be working for the kind of money that all TUF castmembers tend to receive — i.e., peanuts, basically, until they work their way up to title contention. But as part of the new deal bringing them over from Invicta, the UFC is actually giving the ladies some decent walking-around money in advance:

Financial information has emerged in the wake of promotion president Dana White’s announcement and quite frankly, the women are coming out of the deal on top. During Wednesday’s late edition of Fox Sports Live, it was revealed that fighters will be paid at least $32,000 each prior to stepping foot inside the Octagon. Invicta’s current champ Carla Esparza is the exception, as she will nab a cool $40k herself before ever throwing a punch.

It’s safe to say all the fighters are getting raises, as some were said to be making as little as $1,000 to show and $1,000 to win. Not to mention 10 of the women will grab an $8000/$8000 split (twice) before ever stepping foot inside TUF 20 house…32 Gs to stay healthy and prepare for the show.

Since Rose, Felice, Carla, etc. won’t get a chance to officially compete in the Octagon until late 2014, that’s an awfully humane gesture by the UFC, and we have to give them props for it. As long as nobody gets injured from now until May, the strawweights have all found themselves in an enviable situation.

Oh God. I’ve cursed all of them, haven’t I.

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[VIDEO] This is What a Diaz Family Reunion Looks Like

We won’t waste much of your time with another behind-the-scenes look into the life of Nick Diaz, but there is something fascinating — sublime, really — about these videos that we here at CagePotato simply cannot look away from. The latest entry (and by “latest,” we mean uploaded in 2009) in the Diaz saga, entitled “family vids 1,” eclipses even “You can get organic food with welfare“ on our list of all-time favorite Diaz moments captured on film, so we simply had to pass it along in lieu of any news worth writing about. You know, for science.

Despite being less than a minute in length, “family vids 1″ tells us more about the Diaz family than a million hostile interviews ever could. Revelations include:

-The Diaz family is not the real-life cast of The Wire, as previously understood
-Even when surrounded by family, Nick Diaz is paralyzed by social anxiety
-The Diaz’s have a harder time figuring out cameras than they do blenders.
-Nate Diaz *loves* posing for photos.

That last epiphany is easily the most shocking, especially to someone who once asked Nate for a photo at an MMA convention and was told to “take a short walk off a tall building.” Clearly Diaz doesn’t understand physics, because that…would’ve…killed…me…

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Matt Brown Details Back Injury, Plan for Recovery and How Carlos Condit Is Still on his Mind


(Brown smashes up Jordan Mein at UFC on FOX 7 in April. / Photo via Getty)

By Elias Cepeda

Last week, UFC welterweight contender Matt Brown herniated two discs in his back and was forced to pull out of his scheduled fight against Carlos Condit this Saturday at UFC on Fox 9. As he explained to CagePotato, he initially hoped a cortisone shot would help him feel well enough to fight, but that didn’t pan out.

Now, he’s benched from most physical activity for a month other than his therapy exercises. The good news is that if rehab goes well, Brown could be back training full contact in two months.

“The prognosis for me is basically that for one month I’ve got nothing but rehab. There’s no bending over to pick anything up and I can’t have any impact in any shape or form. No running. Nothing like any of those types of things,” Brown says.

“After two months, assuming rehab goes well, I’ll get a second cortisone shot and should be able to go full contact again.”

If Brown does his physical therapy to a ‘T’, he says he’s told that he should be able to avoid surgery on his back. Despite being so badly hurt, Brown says that he couldn’t bring himself to pull out of the fight on his own.

“I knew in my heart I wanted to do it,” he says.

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UFC Pillages Invicta FC’s Strawweight Division, 115-Pound Women to Be Featured on TUF 20


(Well, it was fun while it lasted. / Photo via InvictaFC)

On Wednesday evening, the UFC officially announced the launch of its 115-pound women’s division, after acquiring the contracts of 11 top strawweight fighters from Invicta FC: Carla Esparza, Claudia Gadelha, Felice Herrig, Joanne Calderwood, Tecia Torres, Rose Namajunas, Bec Hyatt, Emily Kagan, Alex Chambers, Juliana Lima, and Paige Van Zant.

Those fighters (along with five more strawweights to be named later) will compete on the 20th season of The Ultimate Fighter, which begins filming in May 2014. The winner of the season will become the UFC’s inaugural strawweight champion. Coaches for the season haven’t been named yet.

As for Invicta FC, company president Shannon Knapp has put on a happy face and explained that Invicta’s strawweight division will carry on without its 11 best fighters, which seems kind of depressing. But her promotion has had a good working relationship with the UFC since the beginning, and that’s not going to change.

At this point, you probably have a lot of burning questions racing through your heads, so we’ve put together a helpful FAQ to answer some of the major ones…

Q: Does this mean that CagePotato’s sponsorship of Rose Namajunas is effectively over?
A: Yeah, pretty much. But we wish Rose the best with the bigger, fancier sponsors that she’ll be snapping up next year. JUST TREAT HER RIGHT, BRO.

Q: I haven’t watched TUF since the Brock Lesnar season. (Chicken shit, chicken salad, good times.) Why can’t the UFC just start putting these women on upcoming fight cards? Like, they could re-book Gadelha vs. Esparza for the inaugural strawweight title on a UFC on FOX 1 show or something. You know what I mean?

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