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Rampage Jackson Settles Lawsuit With Bellator…By Heading Back to Bellator


Together again at last. (FLAWLESS Photoshop work by yours truly.)

If you’re like us, you’ve not only forgotten that Quinton Jackson has been locked in a bitter contract dispute with Bellator for over a year, but that he in fact violated that contract in order to re-sign with the UFC and take a fight against Fabio Maldonado at UFC 186 last year — a fight which, again, you may have also forgotten ever happened.

Well, he has been, and the falling out has been vicious — like, “Rampage vs. the UFC” vicious – with both parties claiming breach of contract against the other and preliminary injunctions being upheld and overturned seemingly at random. Today however, it looks like Rampage has squashed yet another of his many beefs, and will be heading back to one of his many former promotions as a result.

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Gallery: Ronda Rousey’s Sports Illustrated Body Paint Photoshoot


(via Sports Illustrated)

Sure, it’s nothing we haven’t seen before, but here it is: Ronda Rousey‘s full photoshoot for this year’s Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition in all its body-painted glory.  

Gallery after the jump.

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Friday Link Dump: Former UFC Champ Kevin Randleman Passes Away, Bisping Goes on the Attack, Worst Valentine’s Gifts Ever + More


(Even against a non-English speaker, Michael Bisping still can’t win a war of the words. via MMAFighting)

Former UFC Heavyweight Champion Kevin Randleman Passes Away at 44 (BloodyElbow)

Michael Bisping: Anderson Silva Cheated His Entire Career (MMAFighting)

Tito Ortiz Cited for Misdemeanor Battery After Allegedly Grabbing Woman’s Phone at Club (MMAJunkie)

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The Worst Fight of 2015, Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Konstantin Erokhin, Somehow Just Got Worse


(via Getty)

In our recap of the best, worst, and most insane moments that MMA had to offer in 2015, we bestowed the Potato Award for “Worst Fight of the Year” to Gabriel Gonzaga and Konstantin Erokhin’s scrap (if you could call it that) at The Ultimate Fighter 22 Finale, writing:

For three endless, slogging rounds, Gonzaga and Erokhin circled, stared, circled, and stared at each other, seemingly too scared to engage while the 1,800 people in attendance showered (or perhaps sprinkled, considering how few of them there were) them with boos.

By the time the abysmal contest had wrapped up, the pair of heavyweights had combined for just 35 significant strikes in total, with Gonzaga’s 20 strikes (and 2 takedowns!) earning him the victory.

Truthfully, we cannot even begin to imagine how a fight could possibly be worse than the Gonzaga vs. Erokhin already was, but somehow, someway, recent developments have allowed us to downgrade it from “piss-poor” to “the absolute nadir of professional mixed martial arts.”

Details after the jump. 

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Tim Means Hit With USADA Violation, “Cowboy” vs. “Cowboy” Now Headlines Fight Night 83


(Means puts the stamp on John Howard. via Getty)

Welterweight Tim Means might be best known for once getting KO’d by a sauna, but it turns out that he’s actually a pretty talented fighter in his own right (and boasts one of the best nicknames in the game to boot). Since returning to the UFC in 2014, “The Dirty Bird” has put together a respectable 5-2 record, with wins over TUF 19 finalist Dhiego Lima and George Sullivan among others.

Fresh off a second round starching of John Howard at Fight Night 80 in December, Means was set to welcome Donald Cerrone to the welterweight division at Fight Night 83 later this month in a fight that had “fireworks” written all over it. Unfortunately for us, Means’ recent out-of-competition test happened to have FAILURE written all over it as well, resulting in “The Dirty Bird” being pulled from the card and yet another main event being placed in jeopardy.

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Just What the Hell is Going On With Ronda Rousey’s Trainer, Edmond Tarverdyan?


(“If anyone from the bank shows up looking for a guy named Edward Targaryen, you never heard of him, okay?” via Getty.)

It has been a whirlwind handful of months for the Ronda Rousey camp, to put it lightly. Her loss to Holly Holm aside, it would appear as if Rousey’s support system is crumbling to the ground around her, or at the very least, setting all the charges for an eventual explosion.

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Friday Link Dump: GSP’s Quells Comeback Rumors, Reasons to Watch UFC on FOX 18 + More


(An early contender for KO of the Year, compliments of heavyweight Jeff Hughes at Caged Madness 40)

Paul Daley: Josh Koscheck Pulling Out of Bellator 148 Shows He Had “No Balls to Begin With” (MMAFighting)

Georges St-Pierre and Manager Quell Comeback Reports (BloodyElbow)

10 Reasons to Watch UFC on FOX 18 (MMAJunkie)

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Following Main Event Falling Out, UFC 196 Downgraded to ‘Fight Night 82′


(Ba-dow bum, bum, bum, another one bites the dust…)

The injury-forced withdrawals of both Cain Velasquez and Fabricio Werdum from UFC 196 presented the UFC with a peculiar, if not unfamiliar scenario, and left many fans wondering what magic the promotion still had up its sleeve after all these years. Would Dana & Co. book a freakish but totally watchable fight to serve in its place, ala UFC 153? Would they bring Ben Rothwell in to save the day, ala what they should have done with Fight Night 76? Or would they throw their hands in the air and outright cancel the event, ala UFC 176? The options were literally limitless.

As it turns out, however, the UFC went and pulled a rabbit out of its hat that not many of us saw coming, bumping up the co-main event between Johny Hendricks and Stephen Thompson to main event status and shifting the card from its previous pay-per-view spot to the totally free (depending on your cable package) Fox Sports 1 network instead.

“A non-Fight Night, numbered UFC event on free TV? What madness is this?!” we cried with a mix of astonishment and jubilation. It was an unprecedented move, to be sure, and one that unfortunately was too good to be true…

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And Now He’s Retired: Anthony “The Hippo” Perosh Hangs ‘Em Up at 43 Years Old


(via Getty)

I’ve always been a bit of an oddball MMA fan when it comes to picking my “favorite” fighters. While respecting the otherworldly athleticism of a Jon Jones, the otherworldly physique of a Alistair Overeem, or the otherworldly riddum of a Georges St. Pierre, I would never list any of those guys in even my top 10 favorites. What can I say? Being a fan of Jon Jones (the fighter, at least) is just too easy for an anti-establishment renegade like myself — like being a Lakers fan in the early aughts or a Patriots fan ever.

This is all a way of saying that I always found myself drawn to fighters who were more, well, human. I’m talking about the “everymen” of the sport — the guys who started off on the coveted bar fighting circuit or doing a little training on the side before finding out that they had some translatable skills to bring to the game. I’m talking about your old school, cornfed, perpetually 40-year-old-looking dudes who may have never been a champion, but always made sure to 1) show up and 2) turn in a memorable, fan-pleasing performances. I’m talking about your Jeremy Horns, your Chris Lytles, and your Anthony Peroshes.

Which is why I’m both saddened and relieved to learn that, following a pair of tough first round losses to Sean O’Connell and Gian Villante, “The Hippo” will be hanging up his gloves for good.

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Cain Velasquez Injured Yet Again, Fabricio Werdum Now Faces Stipe Miocic at UFC 196 [UPDATE]


(Hello ER my old friend, I’ve come to lie with you again…)

You might not know this about Cain Velasquez, but the former heavyweight champion is what some would call “prone to injury.” In fact, Velasquez has spent far more time on the shelf during his tenure with the UFC than he has been fighting, competing just 6 times (and against a grand total of 3 different opponents) dating back to the night he first lost his belt to Junior Dos Santos in 2010.

So when it was first announced that Velasquez would inexplicably be receiving an immediate rematch against Fabricio Werdum following his one-sided defeat at UFC 188, the booking was met with a certain amount of trepidation. Rightfully so, it would seem, as today brings the news that Velasquez has has been forced to withdraw from UFC 196 just two weeks out with a back injury.

Details after the jump. 

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