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

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Friday Link Dump: Visa Issues Knock “Tiger” Off UFC 182, Secrets of the Pettis Kick, Actresses Who Got Nude for an Oscar + More


(UFC 181 Embedded, Episode 4. Swing by CP for the official weigh-ins at 7 p.m. ET)

- Visa Issues Force Rustam Khabilov Out of UFC 182, Danny Castillo in Need of New Opponent (MMAJunkie)

- Luke Thomas Is Pissed: Ray Rice, RG3, Mickey Rourke, and More (BloodyElbow)

- UFC 181 Bold Predictions: It’s Time for Johny Hendricks, Anthony Pettis to Roar (Bleacher Report)

- Jack Slack: Secrets of the Pettis Kick (Fightland)

- Urijah Faber Discusses Fighting on Prelims Again, Pros and Cons of New Reebok Deal (MMAFighting)

- Don’t Ask Johny Hendricks If You Can Hold His Belt (The UG)

- Get Naked, Win Oscar: Reese Witherspoon and 5 Other Actresses Who Bared It All for an Academy Award (Screen Junkies)

- Ten 2014 Albums to Play Over the Holidays (MadeMan)

- All 32 NFL Team Logos As Dicks. Don’t Ask Why, Just Pick Your Friends Favorite Teams And Send It To Them (Radass)

- 5 Unique Winter Vacation Destinations (EveryJoe)

- How Video Games Can Reprogram Your Brain to Think, See, and Hear Better (TheEscapist)

- Watch Nick Offerman Sing About His True Love — Whiskey (PopHangover)

- The Best Movie Trailers of 2014 (WorldWideInterweb)

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Not This Again: Matt Hamill Wants Out of Retirement and a Rematch With Rampage Jackson in Bellator


(“F*ck yeah I’ll watch this again!” — Nobody, ever. Photo via Getty.)

We have lamented at length about Matt Hamill‘s decision to unretire the *first* time and the uninspiring results it garnered, but alas, it appears the TUF 3 alum simply refuses to listen.

That sounded wrong. What I meant to say was that our words have fallen on…goddammit, this was a terrible analogy to use.

Matt Hamill is un-retiring, again, despite recently retiring from MMA (again) due to “a nagging injury” that forced him out of his expected WSOF debut in May. And not only that, but now he’s calling for a rematch with Rampage Jackson in Bellator over Twitter.

“@scottcoker I want a fight with @rampage4real. The Hammer is coming back and want to come to @bellator,” tweeted Hamill last night.

Eesh. Where do we begin…

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Cris Cyborg’s Bantamweight Debut Delayed, Will Instead Defend Invicta FC Featherweight Title Early Next Year


(via Invicta FC.)

You may recall that Cris Cyborg (aka Cristiane Justino) was expected to make her highly-anticipated bantamweight debut at Invicta 10 this Friday, in a move that was being heralded as “the beginning of the end of the Rousey Era” by hyperbolic MMA writers across the board (you don’t know). That was until about a month ago, however, when an ankle injury forced Cyborg out of her matchup against an opponent who we’re pretty sure was never even named.

In any case, it has now been a year and a half since we last saw Cyborg compete — save a Muay Thai match here and there — and her Invicta featherweight title has presumably been collecting dust in the same dark corner where her stripped Strikeforce featherweight title sits. So with time working against her, Cyborg has decided to postpone her bantamweight debut in order to simply compete again. She spoke with MMAFighting earlier this morning:

I haven’t fought in a long time. With this injury, I believe the best option now will be fight in my division. I can’t wait anymore, I need to fight. I’m the featherweight champion and Invicta FC needs me to defend my belt.

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UFC Fan Art of the Day: Johny Hendricks and Robbie Lawler, Brawlin’ Buddies


(Click image for full-size version.)

Gian Galang is a New York-based illustrator who caught our attention this year with his amazing tributes to Mark Hunt. (See here and here. Step your game up, Hassy.) Galang recently created this beautiful rendition of Johny Hendricks vs. Robbie Lawler, in honor of their UFC 181 rematch this Saturday. I love how it captures the sheer joy these two get out of smashing each other. Their grins are contagious. And honestly, how much better is this than UFC 181′s official comic-book poster?

For further viewing, check out Galang’s kick-ass tribute to Michelle “The Karate Hottie” Waterson, in advance of her atomweight title defense against Herica Tiburcio at Invicta FC 10 this Friday. You can see that one after the jump. And if you want to buy some of Galang’s work, click here.

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Prospect Watch: UFC Signs Undefeated Alpha Male Product Cody Garbrandt, Will Face Marcus Brimage at UFC 182


(via Met Con Photos.)

“The Next Jon Jones” he may not be, but undefeated bantamweight Cody “No Love” Garbrandt is one of the more promising prospects to be scooped up by the UFC in recent years. On Saturday, it was announced that the Team Alpha Male standout had signed with promotion and would face Marcus Brimage at UFC 182 in January, which is not exactly a cakewalk for any up-an-comer (not named Conor McGregor).

Despite holding a professional record of just 5-0, Garbrandt will bring a ton of experience into his UFC debut. A boxer since the age of 14 with a 32-1 record, Garbrandt also made waves on the mat while in high school, eventually earning an invite to wrestle at the University of Michigan. After transitioning to MMA in 2009, “No Love” racked up a 4-2 amateur record before turning pro just two years ago and has stopped all five of his opponents with strikes in the time since (four of those in the first round).

BloodyElbow’s Zane Simon has done a great little writeup on Garbrandt that we’d highly recommend you check out, but in the meantime, join us after the jump to see his most recent fight against Charles Stanford.

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Friday Link Dump: Vinny Magalhaes Gets a Bounty on His Head, Bobby Green Uncut, The Best Holiday Movies of All Time + More


(NO GAM-GAM I CANNOT DOWNLOAD YOU A HOAGIE OFF THE INTERNET, GOD. via Cut Video)

Vinny Magalhaes Discusses $10K ‘bounty’ Metamoris Put Out on Him & The Resurgence of Extreme Couture (BloodyElbow)

Portrait: Kailin Curran (MMAFighting)

UFC Fight Night 57′s Bobby Green, Uncut, on Walking Away from MMA (MMAJunkie)

UFC Standout Michael McDonald Shoots for Spring 2015 Return (Bleacher Report)

Could Prodigy Aaron Pico’s Contract Revolutionize MMA Recruitment as we Know It? (AidanOConnor)

Uriah Hall Goes For a Ride Along With the LAPD Through the Streets of South Los Angeles (MiddleEasy)

The 10 Best Holiday Movies of All Time (Screen Junkies)

Buffalo Has Had Enough (32 Pics) (Radass)

14 People Who Are Going To Suck Way Harder At Thanksgiving Than You (PopHangover)

The Most Difficult Sports Around: Are You Man Enough? (DoubleViking)

8 Live-Action Disney Films That Are Better Than Their Animated Fare (TheEscapist)

The Ultimate Deep-Fried Turkey Fails Compilation (WorldWideInterweb)

Here’s The Story Of Kamala Pulling A Gun On Andre The Giant After A Match (WithSpandex)

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Quote of the Day: Bobby Green Thinks This Weekend “Might Be My Last Fight” [NOOOOOOO]


(Photo via Getty.)

It would be hard to name a fighter who has had a more difficult path to the UFC than Bobby Green. A foster kid who traveled between some 50 homes until the age of 20 in California’s notoriously rough Inland Empire, Green has beared witness to the absolute worst that humanity can offer. Even worse is the fact tha despite all his efforts and his recent success in the UFC, he still can’t seem to escape his troubled past.

Last May, Green lost his younger brother, Mitchell Davis Jr. (23), in a gang-related shooting. In the aftermath, a hit was allegedly put out on Green himself. Then in September, Green’s older brother was shot in a non gang-related incident. Thankfully, he survived. That Green was able to not only fight 4 times over the span of these tragedies, but win all 4 contests, speaks a lot to his character, as well as how far he could really go in this sport.

But it’s hard to account for the mental toll the past year in particular has taken on Green, and unfortunately, it looks like we could possibly be seeing the end of “King” in the octagon come this weekend. In a Facebook post last night, Green lamented that he was “tired” and considering retirement following his Fight Night 57 co-main event scrap with Edson Barboza this weekend.

“Think this might be my last fight thinking about retirement,” Green wrote.

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Bellator 131 Draws a Reported 2 Million Viewers (!!), Setting a Promotional Viewership Record


(“Hey, is this one of those kiss cams? Because if it is, I invite Dana White to come KISS MY ASS.” Photo via Getty.)

“At the end of the day, the person who laughs last, laughs loudest and hardest. And that’s me.” — Jacob Christopher Ortiz

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times: Tito Ortiz is an entrepreneurial genius who has been working one over on us since at least 1999. What? You thought he was just making that whole “I Put an Undercover Double Agent in Stephan Bonnar’s Training Camp” stuff just for the sake of making stuff up? You ignorant sluts. Tito Ortiz knows what audiences eat up. He watches Scandal. He knows that the only thing MMA fans love more than a grudge match is a grudge match with a twisty, turny backstory, and he manipulated us like a blob of silly putty in the palm of his hand. And don’t you feel like dum-dums now.

What am I blabbering on about? Oh, just that the ratings figures are in from last weekend trifecta of MMA events and Bellator 131 CRUSHED IT, setting a live gate and attendance record for the promotion and shattering a heap of viewership records as well. From a press release sent out earlier today:

Bellator 131 knocked out the competition on Saturday, November 15 with record ratings for the emerging MMA franchise under new president Scott Coker. The Bellator 131 main event between Tito Ortiz and Stephan Bonnar (11:50pm-12:16am) drew 1.8 million viewers, peaking at 2 million, making it the most-watched and highest­rated MMA fight on cable in 2014.

The Ortiz-Bonnar fight ranks as 2nd highest-rated MMA fight telecast in all of television with Men 18-34 and Men 18-49, including broadcast, in 2014. Also, Ortiz-Bonnar ranked #2 in its timeslot in all of cable with Men 18-34 and Men 18-49.

Overall, the entire fight card delivered (9:00-12:16) delivered 1,241,299 viewers, a record for Bellator MMA on Spike TV.

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UFC “The Time Is Now” Press Conference Highlights NEVERMIND. MOVE ALONG, NOTHING TO SEE HERE.


(That about says it all. via @JeremyBotter)

In a classic example of their Run-Before-You-Can-Walk approach to business, the UFC held a press conference in Las Vegas this afternoon, auspiciously dubbed “The Time is Now.” The promotion had been teasing a quote unquote “huge announcement” for quite awhile in the lead-up to today’s conference, which was held in the legendary Smith Center as if to remind us that, yes, epic shit was about to go down. While the UFC has become nothing if not a river from which hyperbole flows like the mighty Ganges, their decision to name this conference what they did would lead you to believe that a) the event would start on time and b) something big was headed our way.

Of course, to assume either of those things would be to turn a blind eye to everything you’ve learned about MMA this year. So instead, Dana White kicked things off by announcing that Matt Brown vs. Tarec Saffiedine will headline “Fight Night Broomfield” in January, and when asked point blank what the big announcement (aka the reason the press conference was being held) was, said that they “didn’t get it done in time” and that everyone could go home.

Seriously. That’s what happened. No announcement was made, and not one “reporter” in attendance had either the interest or the spine to even press Dana further about what the announcement was supposed to be. Instead, what followed was an hour and half of awkward silences, occasionally punctuated by the MMA media’s usual brand of fluff and fan questions that made the MMA media’s fluff seem thought-out and insightful by contrast. It was the most MMA thing ever, basically, and a bright, blaring warning sign of what’s to come in 2015.

Ah yes, 2015…

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Damn, Scott Coker & Co. Are Really Pulling Out All the Stops to Promote Bellator 131

In the MMA marketing game, the list of tactics used to promote a fight card goes something like this:

1. Bring in a recently disgraced legend from your more popular rival promotion to play skeeball/sign autographs.

2. Everything else.

Unfortunately for Bellator, option 1 is no longer on the table, as Wanderlei Silva has been contractually cock-blocked from appearing at their Dave & Busters party this Friday. So with their backs against the wall, Scott Coker’s crack team of ad execs have been forced to reach deep into their idea banks to promote this weekend’s Bellator 131 card. The results have been nothing short of hilarious — like something Jackie Moon would come up with if he was stuck in a creative slump.

Bellator kicked things off in style last night with (what I can only assume was) their first “Taco Tuesday” event, hosted at Dave & Busters and MC’ed by Bellator colorman Jimmy Smith — who I absolutely refuse to talk trash about because he seems awesome. If you hadn’t guessed, “Taco Tuesday” pitted 10 or so diehard MMA fans against one another in a taco-eating competition, with the winner earning a ticket to Bellator 131. And right now, AS WE SPEAK, the promotion is hosting a scavenger hunt across San Diego for, you guessed it, tickets to Bellator 131.

After the jump: Play-by-play analysis of said scavenger hunt (not really), and a few of our ideas about how Bellator can promote themselves in the future.

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