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BREAKING: UFC 151 *Canceled* After Dan Henderson Pulls Out With Knee Injury; Jones Turns Down Sonnen, Dana White Incredibly Pissed Off

(Jon Jones is now the UFC’s public enemy #1. Does that mean we can come out of hiding now? / Photo via MMAJunkie)

The rumors were true — and even worse than we thought. Due to a knee injury suffered in training, Dan Henderson has been forced to withdraw from his scheduled light-heavyweight title fight against Jon Jones at UFC 151, and because the UFC couldn’t find a suitable main event replacement, the UFC is canceling an event for the first time in the Zuffa era. Dana White confirmed the news in a press conference held earlier today — describing the cancellation as “probably one of my all-time lows as being president of the UFC” — and he made no attempt to hide his heated emotions during the call. Here are the brass tacks…

- Henderson suffered a partial tear in his MCL during training, which was serious enough to keep him from competing.

- According to Dana White, Chael Sonnen immediately jumped up to take the fight (“I’ll fly to Vegas tonight and fight him,” White quoted Sonnen as saying), and the UFC immediately began preparing behind-the-scenes to promote Jones vs. Sonnen on eight days’ notice. But Jon Jones turned down the matchup, refusing to fight Sonnen on short notice.

- White is extremely upset that Jones, a UFC champion and pound-for-pound candidate, would turn down a fight that would save an event. Even Tito Ortiz never pulled this shit, he pointed out. White lambasted the idea that Jones would turn this fight down for business reasons. “If he was a businessman, we wouldn’t be having this conversation right now,” he said. White agreed that his relationship with Jones would change “a lot” after this: “Me and Lorenzo are both disgusted.” Later in the call, White pointed out how Jones turning down the fight now screws all the supporting-card fighters out of paychecks.

- White saved additional venom for trainer Greg Jackson, who reportedly told Jones, “There’s no way you take this fight on eight days notice, it would be the biggest mistake of your entire career.” Said White: “How much faith do you have in your champion and your guy? [Jackson] is a fucking sport killer. This guy’s from another planet….Greg Jackson should never be interviewed by anybody ever again, except by a psychiatrist.”

- Though Lyoto Machida was considered for a replacement opponent for Jones, Machida was flying back to Brazil when all this went down, and it simply wasn’t possible from a timing perspective. “I can accept why Machida didn’t take the fight,” White said.

- Now, Jon Jones vs. Lyoto Machida is scheduled for UFC 152 (September 22nd, Toronto). Or actually, UFC 151, since UFC 151 never happened. (Thanks to Ariel Helwani for that important clarification.) “I can tell you right now, [Jones] ain’t turning down the Machida fight. If he does, we’re gonna have another conference call this afternoon.” [*cue spooky music*] Update: Actually, Machida turned down the Jones fight. How delightfully ironic! Now, Jones will face Vitor Belfort, of all people, at UFC 152, which is still being called UFC 152.

- There wasn’t enough time to consider other options like putting the PPV on free TV. Dana White disagreed with the suggestion that the event would still go on if it had a stronger co-main event.

- Our suggestion of having Ronda Rousey vs. Cris Cyborg step in to headline the card with a 140-pound superfight was politely ignored.

Jesus, what a fiasco. We’ll update you when we get Jones’s reaction to this mess.

Cagepotato Comments

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davros- August 28, 2012 at 3:53 am
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Nippletwist- August 25, 2012 at 10:57 am
@ jay jitsu lol u little chael nuthuggers need to face reality. you missed my entire point, you don't seem to have great reading comprehension skills, or much ability to think in general. chael sells tickets for the shit he talks not what he does when he fights. if you evaluate him just on his fights hes nothing special. all his hype and reputation comes from his big stupid mouth. but like he knows hes joking when hes talking shit but then really really simple dumb people like you actually believe it.

sonnens most impressive win is an arm triangle over brian stann. i rest my case, hes not even elite. last time he fought at 205 he was submitted by sobral. he has weak submission defense and hes not a good striker, his only weapon is his wrestling. recipe for boring decisions, which are his only wins, he never finishes fights.. hes lucky he hasnt had to fight belfort yet, hes going to and hes gonna get ktfo. and he looked like complete shit against bisping and was lucky he got that decision. thats reality you diluded chael tard.

champions do not fight lower level guys from other weight divisions on a weeks notice when the contender is injured, thats not how shit works, never will be, that doesnt make any sense, you are dumb for thinking that and should get over it because youre always going to be wrong. oof.
JayJitsu310- August 24, 2012 at 11:22 am
I think a lot of people blaming Dana for this fiasco are misguided. the event had to be cancelled. You really think he didn't try to stack the card? How many "Showcase" fighters have matchups already planned for future events or are injured? Exactly who would he have pulled from other events and messed up other cards to save this event? You really believe they didn't do all they could to save this card and their MONEY? I see logic, logistics, and common sense are not a prerequisite for posting here
mmaftr- August 24, 2012 at 8:01 am
As a fighter myself, I can see an up and comer or newbie not take a fight on 8 days notice, they are attempting to get established. But for a champion, I.e. JJ to not take a , what would seem easy fight with 8 days notice...well at that level its just pussified. There is obviously no budo code or fire in his heart that a true martial artist normally has. I would fight with a blindfold and hands tied just to have the honor to b in the UFC. I also agree they, zuffa inc., could've still made a fight to replace that one to appease the .02 cents worth....OSS
JayJitsu310- August 24, 2012 at 11:15 am
JayJitsu310- August 24, 2012 at 12:18 pm
...I mean, I guess they could've matched Jones up against James Te Huna or Tom De Blass or something, Jones would've jumped at the opportunity right ;)
ArmFarmer- August 24, 2012 at 7:45 am
@karma I don't doubt that Chael is in pretty good shape, but there's no way he could be as prepared for Jones as Jones would be for him. Just making a counter point, no matter how unprepared Jones is, Chael is not in any better of a position. At least Jones is ready to defend his title against a top contender.
Nintendong- August 24, 2012 at 4:50 am

Ever the apologist as always.

As a fighter and a champion Jones pulled and absolute chump move. Not only did he cost his employer a whole grip of money, he always wanked all the undercard fighters out of their payday as well. Most of those people aren't making "Nike Money" and need these fights for their livelihood. How hell can ANYONE be ignorant enough to say Jones made the right call.

(Also Jones is fighting Vitor next? What a joke! Things like this are throwing MMA, along with my interest in it, down the tubes.)
Nippletwist- August 25, 2012 at 10:37 am
vitor better than chael though so....
holeeball- August 24, 2012 at 4:49 am
Getting in there and destroying Sonnen would've been the biggest career move Jones could've made.

You know, like, getting in there and "getting some fans".

Jon "pussyfoot" Jones. A true warrior.
KarmaAteMyCat- August 23, 2012 at 11:51 pm
@ArmFarmer Chael likely helped Hendo with his camp. So I wouldn't go as far as saying no camp or out of shape like Dana is saying. Chael regardless of past transgressions is a Professional Athlete and trains regularly and I would wager he helped Dan prepare for Bones.
KarmaAteMyCat- August 23, 2012 at 11:48 pm
I understand as a fan how infuriating this situation can be, As a fighter, competitor, and champion though he made the right choice. It was Daddy Dana's choice to cancel the event not Jones.
JayJitsu310- August 23, 2012 at 11:34 pm
Um, BTW Jones is fighting Belfort guys
holeeball- August 23, 2012 at 8:31 pm
Jon "champ my ass getting some fans" Jones. A true warrior.

ArmFarmer- August 23, 2012 at 8:18 pm
@skk Chael didn't mine coming in with no training camp at all.. and Jones is at the disadvantage?
SKK BB- August 24, 2012 at 6:14 am
who said jones is at a disadvantage? it's not about who has a longer camp. jones can and will / would decimate chael. he would destroy him. but jones' opponent pulled out, so the fight gets put on hold until another one gets cooked up. with adequate time to prepare. jones has everything to lose and chael has nothing. it doesn't make any sense to compare camps or prep time. and again on that other point: dana cancelled the event and ruined everyone else's payday. not jones. dana is a pussy for not taking responsibility for this and for laying it on jones.
Nippletwist- August 25, 2012 at 10:39 am
this exactly
ArmFarmer- August 23, 2012 at 8:15 pm
lol there is some weird shit going on with your comments system.. shit is jacked up.
thegorilla- August 23, 2012 at 7:16 pm
Sonnen's on Rhoids... That's the only reason I can imagine why J.J. wouldn't take this fight. Fuck Josh "three time loser" Barnet.
SKK BB- August 23, 2012 at 7:00 pm
i'd turn it down too. fights require strategy and practice and repetition. you seriously want the champ to risk everything, and i mean everything, on this chump? it takes months to prepare for a fight, not 8 days. preparing for a fight is not about getting into shape. it's about training and building a strategy. dana and anyone else dissing jones for passing on chael, or anyone for that matter (on 8 days notice), should get a clue. he'd be risking everything. and it's a pussy move for dana to lay it on jones that other fighters are losing out on a payday. that's complete bullshit. complete bullshit. grow up dana. you cancelled the event. not jones. he didn't even cancel his fight. the fight disappeared, when his opponent pulled out due to injury. i admire dana in a lot of ways but he needs to CTFO and come up with a better way to handle this. on the chael thing: it's asinine to think he should get the title shot. there's a long line of bad ass 205ers that should be before that dude. chael is a bad ass but it's freaking hilarious that anyone would consider giving him the title shot. if you were making millions of dollars (like dana) on that fight, i'd understand why you'd think it'd make sense. but you're not, so wake up. get in line chael. dana chill out. everyone chill out.
JayJitsu310- August 24, 2012 at 11:44 am
Which "available" Bad Ass 205'er not already on a future card would draw more PPV buys than Sonnen right now? Seriously, I'm wondering. Shogun is fighting Gustaffson, so pulling either of them would ruin that card, so maybe Bader or Vera? Both on medical suspensions, so Bonnar? Beltran? exactly who are you guys talking about? none of you has even mentioned anyone, showing your complete inability to post a well thought out reply regarding this situation. If some of you were Pro wrestlers your special move would be the "Knee Jerk" Quit arguing to make yourself look knowledgeable and actually think before you make yourselves look as uninformed and ignorant as you have already.
Nippletwist- August 25, 2012 at 10:46 am
he could fight machida, you know the top contender, you know, the guys who actually won his last fight, you know the guy whose actually in the weight division. or vitor belfort, the guy hes actually fighting now.

if theres no fight that makes sense he can wait for one that does, the champion does not fight nobodys on 8 days notice, it doesnt happen, it never will, its a nonsense idea, you should just get over it.
ArmFarmer- August 23, 2012 at 8:14 pm
Chael didn't mine coming in with no training camp at all.. and Jones is at the disadvantage?
Nippletwist- August 25, 2012 at 10:47 am
obviously jones has the advantage thats not the point. the point is champions of division dont fight random nobodys on a weeks notice. its never gonna happen, it doenst make sense, i dont understand where people got this idea that that is how shit works.
Goog- August 23, 2012 at 6:45 pm
There's a difference between being good *at* the sport and being good *for* the sport. See also Terrell Owens, Pacman Jones, Dennis Rodman, Michael Irvin...

Ive disliked this two-faced prick since he arrived. You gonna quote the Bible, Jon, or are you going to quote ruthless warlords this week? And are you fighting for money or because you're a warrior spirit?

Fuck this guy. Shame the event was canceled, but if it generates more dislike for Mr. Three Dollar Bill, all the better.
amsterdamheavy- August 23, 2012 at 6:19 pm
Jones is a bitch...and sometimes these things happen in MMA.
yosuplee- August 23, 2012 at 6:07 pm
jj behavior is bad for mma.
RwilsonR- August 23, 2012 at 5:44 pm
Chael's undersized, malformed, shrunken testicles are looking like a giant swinging pair of brass ones compared to that innie Jones is trying to pass off as a scrotum.
johnhayte- August 23, 2012 at 5:01 pm

Don't be an ivy-league snob and talk shit about Dumbfuck university . . . But seriously, I agreed with you that having the bout now would have been better than not in light of the cancellation of UFC 151.
Grandmas Nutmeg- August 23, 2012 at 4:49 pm
Dear Jon "Worthless Champ" Jones,

Fuck you, fuck your work ethic, fuck your freakishly long arms, fuck your manager, fuck your trainer, fuck your best friend, and fuck the illegitimate downs syndrome child you fathered that night you got your DUI. Strip the title from this loser, no self respecting champ worth anything would turn away from a fight, let a lone a fight against someone similiar to the challenger that just got hurt. You think only about your "legacy", enjoy the fact it's tainted with a fear for a skinny white man with backne from the mean streets of Linn. I used to like you, now I can honestly say I respect Jake Shields as a human being more than I do you. Hell I respect Kalib Starnes more than you because at least he made it into the ring.

Fuck You,
99% of UFC fans

P.S. Bring back comment of the week, I love seeing other people's terrible minds and mean senses of humor!
BADMTHFCKR- August 23, 2012 at 4:17 pm
If Sonnen was down to fight, couldn't they give him another challenger instead of Jones? I know it was a title fight, but the thought of Mr. Team Player Rich "Ace" Franklin stepping in and duking it out with Chael at a catch weight would have been awesome. Chael's talked so much trash about how he was just a teacher with no skills for years. It would be nice for Rich to get a chance to shut his mouth. I'd pay for that fight even if the rest of the card wasn't worthwile. Just sayin...
Pen Fifteen- August 23, 2012 at 4:02 pm
So, instead of selling the event as best they can in the next week, you think its wiser for the UFC to eat the sunk costs they'll owe mandalay bay, give refunds to everyone who bought a ticket, screw the undercard fighters out of a payday, and forego all advertising and ppv revenue just because after 'people would realize that its a waste of a matchup' after they already paid for the fucking card? Where did you get your MBA, Dumbfuck University?
johnhayte- August 23, 2012 at 3:23 pm

Your right, I cannot even imagine how much money the UFC is losing by cancelling this card, and right on their home turf too (which traditionally yields some of their biggest live gates). I would have preferred to have seen this matchup happen instead of cancelling the whole card, as compromised as it might have been by the short notice, lack of promotion, etc. Im just saying, entertainment-wise (and possibly business-wise) their MAY be a silver lining to this whole debacle if this matchup winds up taking place in the future. In fact, fuck it, if Sonnen decisively beats Forrest, then he should get the title shot as reward for his willingness to step up in this situation.
macreadysshack- August 23, 2012 at 3:17 pm
How was Sonnen's fight with Okami 'lay and pray'? I guess if you consider giant throws and outstriking 'lay and pray'. Watch that fight again. I've heard that used to describe that fight time and again . . . pull your heads out of your asses and watch it again.

Jon Jones just had a full camp for Dan Henderson who is basically a much better and more well rounded Chael Sonnen. Him not taking this fight is a glaring example of Greg Jackson's 'play it safe to death' strategy and Jones' own lack of real self-confidence.
johnhayte- August 23, 2012 at 3:31 pm
I have to disagree. Sonnen is by far the more savvy grappler, not to mention faster, while Dan is stronger, and a much more dangerous striker. They don't really fight the same way at all, despite their shared roots in wrestling. Despite the stylistic differences, Jones should have taken the fight.