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

January, 2015

Carla Esparza vs. Joanna Jedrzejczyk Strawweight Title Fight Set for UFC 185 Co-Main Event; Pearson vs. Stout Also Added


(“After I won The Ultimate Fighter, they told me I could pick any three toys from the middle shelf.” / Photo via Getty)

TUF 20 winner Carla Esparza will make her first UFC strawweight title defense against undefeated Polish striker Joanna Jedrzejczyk, in the co-main event of UFC 185: Pettis vs. Dos Anjos (March 14th, Dallas). The booking was announced yesterday on UFC Tonight.

Esparza won the UFC’s inaugural strawweight title with her third-round rear-naked choke submission of Rose Namajunas at the TUF 20 Finale in December. “Cookie Monster” was the #1 seed in the TUF 20 bracket due to her previous stint in Invicta FC, where she nabbed that promotion’s strawweight title as well.

Jedrzejczyk is 8-0 professionally and 2-0 in the UFC, with decision wins over Juliana Lima and Claudia Gadelha. A four-time IFMA Muay Thai European champion, J-Jed is perhaps best known for getting up in her opponents’ faces during weigh-ins and eating a late punch during her last fight against Gadelha.

Even though Johny Hendricks vs. Matt Brown is arguably a more high-profile fight, Esparza vs. Jedrzejczyk will fill UFC 185′s co-main event spot due to a title being on the line; that’s just how it works. In other UFC 185 booking news…

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The End of Dana White


(Photo via Getty)

By Mike Fagan

Dana White is the face of the UFC.

This isn’t a surprise, nor should it be. MMA is a sport whose elite athletes rarely compete more than three times a year. The UFC is a promotion that prefers to put the brand ahead of its athletes. Dana White is the president of that promotion, and his duties include everything from running press conferences and doing media requests to emceeing reality shows and constant tweeting. It’s no surprise that his once-balding-now-bald head, which has been ubiquitous since Zuffa’s purchase of the UFC at the turn of the millennium, is synonymous with the company.

But recently, there have been signs that White’s ubiquity is fading.

White’s video blogs were once a staple of the UFC promotional machine. These vlogs would give us a “behind the scenes” look at fight week, though this (too) often involved watching Dana White parade his wealth. The UFC hasn’t released a Dana White vlog since UFC 177.

The UFC began producing the Embedded series for UFC 173. Instead of following White around on fight week, Embedded is structured more like a series of mini-documentaries. There’s no narrator, very little of White, and a whole lot more focus on the card’s featured fighters. Unsurprisingly, it’s a more inspired, interesting, and entertaining product.

White’s also not the lock he once was on fight night. Tom Wright, who runs manages UFC operations in Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, hosted the post-fight press conference for November’s Fight Night Down Under. Vice President of Public Relations Dave Sholler hosted the post-fight press conference following UFC 181. Chief Content Officer Marshall Zelaznik got the nod for the Fight Night event in Brazil on December 20. Zelaznik also hosted a press event prior to UFC 182 announcing the UFC’s purchase of various fight libraries intended for Fight Pass.

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Pat Barry Books Two Kickboxing Matches in Three Months, Faces Mourad Bouzidi at Glory 20 in April


(Sadly, Barry’s face has yet to return to normal since the stroke. Photo via Getty)

Although his return to the kickboxing ring hasn’t gone quite as well as expected, Pat Barry is forging ahead nonetheless, booking back-to-back matches over the next three months.

First up, Barry will face relative unknown Domoreo Dennis at Legacy Kickboxing’s event in Texas on Friday night. The fight will mark Barry’s first since getting KTFO by Zack Mwekassa at Glory 16 last May.

If all goes well there (and even if it doesn’t), Barry will then take on current Dutch Heavyweight W.F.C.A. champion Mourad “The Silent Power” Bouzidi at Glory 20 on April 3rd in Dubai. Bouzidi, a 90-fight veteran, is moving back up to heavyweight after a 4-fight run in the light heavyweight and is coming off a unanimous decision win over Randy Blake at Glory 15.

It’s been a rough go as of late for one of the most likeable guys in combat sports, to say the very least. After eating three (T)KO losses in his final 4 UFC appearances and suffering the aforementioned loss at Glory 16, fans and fighters alike were calling for Barry’s retirement, because we are nothing if not a nuanced, concerned group of individuals. In any case, “HD” wasn’t hearing any of it:

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UFC 183: Silva vs. Diaz Extended Preview — “A Fighter With No Fear Meets a Legend With No Limits”


(Props: UFC on YouTube)

For a UFC non-title fight, Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz is as big as it gets. This UFC 183 extended trailer doesn’t contain much in the way of trash-talk or snappy soundbites, but it’s a nice reminder that, holy crap, this fight is actually happening at the end of the month. The video also does a good job of giving importance to the UFC 183 co-main event of Kelvin Gastelum vs. Tyron Woodley — the young rookie with a heart of iron vs. the dynamic veteran who’s truly scary when he’s firing on all cylinders.

Speaking of Gastelum and Woodley, the UFC has released videos of their most recent dominant wins, which you can watch after the jump. Enjoy…

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Johny Hendricks vs. Matt Brown Booked for UFC 185; Thatch vs. Thomson to Headline UFC Fight Night 60


(via UFCNews)

Johny Hendricks will look to bounce back from his title fight loss to Robbie Lawler when he faces off against tough bastard Matt Brown at UFC 185: Pettis vs. Dos Anjos (March 14th, Dallas). The UFC announced the booking today, which comes as a bit of a surprise, considering that the original plan was to book Hendricks vs. Lawler III.

However, Brown recently found himself without an opponent when Tarec Saffiedine withdrew from their UFC Fight Night 60 bout due to a groin injury. Plus, some dudes on twitter told Dana White that they weren’t interested in seeing a Hendricks/Lawler rubber match so soon, and the idea was scrapped.

The UFC’s change of plans presents some good news and some bad news. The good news is, UFC 185 is getting stacked. Right now, it looks like this:

- Anthony Pettis vs. Rafael Dos Anjos (for UFC lightweight title)
- Johny Hendricks vs. Matt Brown (for intercontinental welterweight dip-spit king)
- Alistair Overeem vs. Roy Nelson (for PRIDE Neva Die freak-show heavyweight belt)
- Henry Cejudo vs. Chris Cariaso (for flyweight…ah screw it, you know Cejudo’s going to pull out of this one for “personal reasons“)
- Sergio Pettis’s return to flyweight against Ryan Benoit (possible FOX Sports 1 featured prelim??)

So yeah, pretty good so far. The bad news is…

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Hot Potato: Meet Summer Daniels, Bellator’s New Ring Girl ‘Direction’ [15 Photos]

Last month, we shed a tear at the news that Bellator had cut ties with beloved ring girl Jade Bryce, who explained that the promotion has “chosen to go in a different direction for the new year.” Well, today we learned what that “direction” was. Bellator has announced that model/singer Summer Daniels has been hired as the new ring girl for Bellator, and she’ll be making her debut this Friday at Bellator 132: Pitbull vs. Straus in Temecula, CA.

Summer’s biggest claim to fame is that she’s the only woman to appear on the cover of Hustler without getting nude inside the magazine, which is a pretty impressive achievement, I guess. The Malibu-based model also has a lot of experience doing live promo and ring girl work, including gigs as a Monster Girl (with longtime Bellator babe Mercedes Terrell) and as a Corona Girl.

Check out 15 of our favorite Summer Daniels photos in the gallery after the jump, and follow her on Instagram and Twitter for lots more.

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NSAC Recap: Jake Shields’ UFC 150 Drug Test Revealed, Ashlee Evans-Smith Receives Temporary Suspension + More


(Oddly enough, Shields was much more compliant during yesterday’s hearing. via Combat Lifestyle)

Remember how the Nevada *State* Athletic Commission (enough with this NAC nonsense, MMA media) was supposed to hold a meeting yesterday regarding Jon Jones’ drug test/their complete mismanagement of Jon Jones’ drug test? Well, they did, and without mentioning him by name, the commission came to the conclusion that they “might” form a committee to address out-of-competition drug testing. Huzzah!!

The meeting was not without it’s fair share of actual, noteworthy highlights, however, so let’s get to them…

- If you recall, Jake Shields fought Ed Herman in a middleweight contest at UFC 150 back in 2012, emerging victorious via unanimous decision. Shortly thereafter, it was announced that Shields had tested positive for a banned substance, resulting in a $5,675 fine and his win being overturned. What Shields tested positive for exactly remained a mystery until yesterday’s meeting, when in the process of applying for a fight license for his upcoming WSOF 17 main event fight with Brian Foster, Shields admitted to using diuretics, not Mary Jane as we had suspected, prior to UFC 150. (via MMAFighting):

Shields said he was given the diuretics in 2012 by someone he knew from fighting, but not a fellow fighter. He said it was someone he didn’t know very well and called it a “mistake.”

“I learn from my mistakes,” Shields said. “I’d like to think that, at least. I’m not one to go through what I went through before.”

“I didn’t know it was banned, but it was my fault,” he said. “It was my responsibility.”

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[VIDEO] Anderson Silva KO’s Training Partner, Then Continues to Pummel Him After the Fact

As anyone who appeared on the eighth season of The Ultimate Fighter could surely tell you, Anderson Silva can be a bit of an arrogant prick while training. It’s not that he means to be, but when you’re one of the baddest dudes on this or any other planet, you almost have to show off every now and again, right? Lord knows that if I possessed the fighting skills of Anderson, I’d be walking into every Buffalo Wild Wings on the eastern seaboard with a “Come at Me, Bro” t-shirt on, just waiting for some roided-up Jersey trash to challenge my authority.

Less than a month out from his hotly-anticipated return to the octagon against Nick Diaz at UFC 183, it appears that Silva felt it necessary to remind one of his training partners of this exact factn. It’s the only explanation I can think of as to why Silva would not only KO the poor bastard (who was wearing full headgear, BTW) during a sparring session, but continue pummeling him for a good ten seconds after doing so. Seriously, what the hell, Anderson?

The footage was filmed by Globo and posted by Guilherme Cruz earlier today. My theory: The guy he was sparring with made an off-the-cuff remark about the Silva family barbecue just moments before this video started rolling.

-J. Jones

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Jon Jones Leaves Drug Rehab Program After One Night. ONE NIGHT.


(Jon Jones’s mother Camille explains why she’s glad that her son tested positive for cocaine. Ugh. / Props: WBNG)

Look, I don’t think anybody expected Jon Jones to spend 30 days locked down with Dr. Drew in Pasadena after he announced his plan to enter a drug treatment program. But at the very least, we expected him to go through the motions, at least to keep up appearances, right?

Nah. According to this WBNG report (via MMAJunkie), Jones’s “stint in the rehab program lasted just one night,” but the UFC light-heavyweight champion is “continuing to get more educated on the subject.” Jones plans to attend Sunday’s AFC Championship game between the New England Patriots and Indianapolis Colts, to support his brothers Chandler and Arthur.

It’s a bad look from from a PR perspective, especially in light of the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s brave decision yesterday to do absolutely nothing about its out-of-competition drug policy. Essentially, Jon Jones tests positive for cocaine, everybody in his life publicly applauds him, he suffers zero professional consequences, and his drug treatment turns into a home-study program after one night.

According to Jon Jones’s mother, Jon’s failed drug test was really a “blessing from God”:

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Henry Cejudo (Tentatively) Returns to Flyweight, Meets Chris Cariaso at UFC 185


(Henry Cejudo [right] roughs up Dustin Kimura during their fight at UFC on FOX 13. / Photo via Getty)

After winning his UFC debut at bantamweight last month, Henry Cejudo has decided to throw caution to the wind and return to flyweight for his next bout. The 2008 Olympic freestyle wrestling gold medalist will meet former flyweight title challenger Chris Cariaso at UFC 185: Pettis vs. Dos Anjos (March 14th, Dallas), according to UFC officials.

The 125-pound limit has not been Cejudo’s friend during his budding MMA career. A series of blown weigh-ins and sudden fight withdrawals culminated in him pulling out of his originally scheduled UFC flyweight debut at UFC 177 due to a bad weight cut. The UFC agreed to give Cejudo another chance at bantamweight, and he won a decision over Dustin Kimura at UFC on FOX 13 in December.

Which begs the question: Why mess with a good thing? Why not see how far you can get at bantamweight before putting your career and health at risk once again chasing 125? From what we can gather, Cejudo’s TKO win over flyweight super-jobber Miguelito Marti at Gladiator Challenge: American Dream in May 2013 was the only time that Cejudo has ever successfully made 125 pounds in an MMA fight. And now he’s going to try again, God help him, while taking a gigantic step up in competition against one of the top ten flyweights in the world. What?

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