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Tag: Abel Trujillo

Interview: UFC on FOX 13’s Jamie Varner Gets Real About Sponsorship Money, Rankings, And Coming Back From a Difficult Year


(Photo via Getty)

By Ben Goldstein

“I’m the best fighter with the worst luck.”

That’s how UFC lightweight Jamie Varner describes his trials and tribulations during the past year, in which he got knocked out by Abel Trujillo in a fight that he was winning, then suffered a TKO loss by ankle-injury against James Krause — in another fight that he was winning.

Varner’s back is against the wall as he returns to the Octagon at UFC on FOX 13, which takes place this Saturday, December 13th, in Varner’s hometown of Phoenix. In this candid interview with CagePotato.com, Jamie Varner opens up about the UFC’s controversial new partnership with Reebok, how he’s trying to rebound from a tough 2014, and his upcoming opponent, Drew Dober. (“I didn’t know anything about him. I still don’t.”) Enjoy, and follow Jamie on twitter and sqor.

CAGEPOTATO.COM: Since it’s such a hot topic these days, I was wondering if you had any thoughts on the UFC’s uniform deal with Reebok. Overall, do you think it’s a good thing, a bad thing, or is it still too early to tell?

JAMIE VARNER: It’s a little too early to tell. The organization is becoming more mainstream, the overall operations are becoming more corporate, and I think it’s time to implement some sort of fighters’ union, just to make sure that everything is fair and evenly distributed among the fighters. Because for me personally, about 30-40% of my income comes from sponsorships, and with the way their tier system has been announced, it’s like, champions get the most, #1-5 [ranked UFC contenders] get the second-most, 6-10 the third-most, 11-15 the fourth-most, and then all non-ranked fighters are going to be on the same level.

For a guy like me, I’m not in the top 15, but I’ve beaten a couple guys who are — Edson Barboza is ranked like #11 [Ed. Note: He’s actually #6 now] Donald Cerrone is top 5. So I’ve beaten guys in the top 12. And I have a pretty good audience and presence when I fight, people like to tune in to watch me throw down, so I don’t think that I should be making the same amount as a guy who has never fought on a main card, never got a Fight of the Night bonus. I just don’t really understand how this is all going to work out. I can’t really comment on whether I’m upset or happy with the way everything is. I do like the fact that we are all going to look nice. I like the fact that there is going be a little more structure, and we’re going to be more mainstream by having the uniforms, but the fighters need to be appropriately compensated.

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UFC 181 Video Highlights: Josh Samman’s Devastating KO of Eddie Gordon, Urijah Faber’s Eye-Poke Submission of Francisco Rivera…Oh, And the Title Fights Too

FOX Sports released some highlight videos from Saturday’s UFC 181: Hendricks vs. Lawler 2 event, and as usual, the clips from the main card fights are woefully incomplete, showing everything but the actual finishes. So eff ‘em — we’ve buried those after the jump. Luckily, the highlight clips from the FOX Sports 1 prelim fights actually showed the money shots.

The video above shows Josh Samman‘s devastating second-round head-kick knockout of TUF 19 winner Eddie Gordon. It was an incredibly cathartic moment for Samman — coming after an extended injury layoff and the car accident death of his girlfriend — and also earned him a $50,000 Performance of the Night check.

Below, Urijah Faber picks up yet another submission victory in a non-title fight, though this one came with some controversy. In the slow-motion replay at the 0:30 mark, you can see Faber basically fish-hook Francisco Rivera’s eye-socket. (Two fouls in one!) Rivera goes down in agony, and Faber bulldog chokes him. But referee Mario Yamasaki didn’t see the foul, and it goes down as a legitimate win for Faber. Rivera plans to appeal the result.

After the jump: Highlights from four UFC 181 main card fights. They left out Todd Duffee‘s KO of Anthony Hamilton because the fight was so short they’d pretty much have to show the finish, and God knows we can’t have that.

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UFC 181: Hendricks vs. Lawler II — Main Card Results & Commentary


(Props: Gian Galang. Click for full-size images.)

Kwanzaa — which is traditionally observed from December 26th to January 1st — has come early, my friends. Tonight’s UFC 181 pay-per-view card is headlined by Johny Hendricks vs. Robbie Lawler, in a rematch of one of the greatest fights of 2014. Plus: Anthony Pettis‘s first lightweight title defense after winning the belt over 15 months ago, a heavyweight scrap between Travis Browne vs. Brendan Schaub, and the first appearance of the Duffman in two years. Should be pretty okay.

Our old friend Aaron Mandel will be sticking live “Hendricks vs. Lawler” results after the jump beginning at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest updates, and let us know how you feel in the comments section or on twitter @cagepotatomma. Let’s do this…

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The UFC Is Making the Same Mistakes The NFL Has Made Regarding Domestic Violence

By Seth Falvo

Watching Dana White’s recent appearance on “Fox Sports Live” paints a very clear picture: Dana White does not want you to compare him to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.

“I can tell you this, I wouldn’t want to be Roger Goodell,” White says, after being asked about his reaction to the video of Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice knocking out then-fiancee Janay Palmer. No surprises there, given that the NFL is in the middle of a domestic violence crisis built on the foundation of years of denial and reframing the issue. What is surprising is that he follows up his statement by resorting to the same strategies that the NFL employed to downplay Ray Rice’s assault in order to justify the UFC’s decision to resign Thiago Silva.

You don’t even have to wait for the parallels between how the UFC is choosing to handle Thiago Silva and how the NFL has attempted to cover up domestic violence to become apparent, they’re observable in the very first sentence White speaks once Silva’s name comes up:

“If you believe in the legal process, they came, they arrested him, and he wasn’t brought up on any charges.”

Let’s take a look at the actual documents detailing why the prosecutors decided to drop the charges against Thiago Silva

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Gray Maynard vs. Ross Pearson Booked for UFC Fight Night 47, With Abel Trujillo Injured


(BREAKING — Ross Pearson and Ovince St. Preux have just withdrawn from their fights due to terror-induced injuries. / Props: Gray’s Instagram)

Due to an undisclosed injury suffered in training, UFC lightweight Abel Trujillo has been forced to withdraw from his scheduled main card bout against Ross Pearson at UFC Fight Night 47: Bader vs. St. Preux (August 16th; Bangor, ME). Stepping up to fight Pearson in Trujillo’s place is Gray Maynard, who was slated to face Fabricio Camoes on the same card. (Maynard and Camoes were originally booked to fight at UFC 176, before that event was canceled.)

Maynard badly needs a win here — or at least a halfway-decent performance. “The Bully” suffered back-to-back first-round TKO losses against TJ Grant and Nate Diaz last year, and has only won a single fight since 2011, an infamously dull split-decision victory over Clay Guida in June 2012.

Pearson is coming off his screwjob decision loss to Diego Sanchez in June of this year, which followed a no-contest against Melvin Guillard last October, when Guillard opened up a huge gash on Pearson’s forehead with an illegal knee. I’m sure Pearson would like nothing more than to defeat Maynard in a controversy-free ass-kicking. Should be a good one.

The bout order for UFC Fight Night 47 hasn’t been made official yet, but the list of matches is as follows…

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CagePotato Presents: The 10 Best UFC Brawls of the Year (So Far)


(This photo and all photos after it via Getty)

By Jared Jones

It’s the halfway-ish point of the year, which means that we are a mere six or so months away from handing out our annual Potato Awards in categories such as “MMA Fail of the Year”, “Media Shill of the Year”, and the always coveted “Krazy Horse Bennett Arrest of the Year.” But because you Taters have been good this year, we’re going to allow you to open one present early: Our definitive ranking of the best UFC brawls of the year, so far.

It’s been a rocky year for the UFC, to say the absolute least. Pay-per-view numbers are tanking, fan interest is waning due to market oversaturation, and even the promotion’s new video game has been plagued by (albeit hilarious) technical issues. But the great thing about the UFC/MMA in general is that all can be forgiven with a few great fights, and these 10 brawls are undoubtedly the kernels of corn hidden amongst the soggy floor-turds that the UFC has been shitting out this year.

To repeat: This list is only dedicated to the best *brawls* of the year, which implies a fight in which both participants take their fare share of licks. TJ Dillashaw vs. Renan Barao was a one-sided beatdown, albeit a brilliant one-sided beatdown, and therefore bears no mention here. Except that I just mentioned it. God damn it.

Let’s just get to the top 10 brawls of the year, nearly all of which contain links to full fight videos for your viewing pleasure…

#10 – Kevin Souza vs Mark Eddiva: TUF Brazil 3 Finale

(Check out Souza vs. Eddiva in its entirety here.)

A classic example of two guys with more heart than brains (or defensive capabilities) leaving it all in the octagon, Kevin Souza vs. Mark Eddiva opened up the FS1 prelims for the TUF Brazil Finale in a huge way.

Watching Souza vs. Eddiva was kind of like watching two women play Tekken for the very first time, in that both fighters only seemed to understand how one button on their controllers worked — for Eddiva it was leg kicks, for Souza it was the overhand right. These two techniques were traded with absolutely zero setup for two highly entertaining rounds, earning both men a $50,000 “Fight of the Night’ bonus in an evening of otherwise unmemorable decisions and memorable-for-all-the-wrong-ways squash matches. It was Souza, however, who walked away from the fight victorious via an always rare standing TKO.

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UFC 169 Salaries: Alistair Overeem Craps His Way to $400K, Aldo, Mir, Faber and Trujillo Also Clear Six Figures


(“What are you doing out there, Alistair? Quit playing around and put a *real* hurting on this guy!” Photo via Getty.)

The official salaries for UFC 169 were released earlier today, and despite being panned by 100% of Dana Whites across the globe, Alistair Overeem and Jose Aldo managed to walk away with the two highest salaries of the evening, banking $407,143 and $240,000, respectively. In a slight departure from what we have come to expect, three other fighters also cleared six figures at UFC 169, although in the case of Abe Trujillo, it was thanks greatly in part to the pair of “end of the night” bonuses he picked up for his second round KO of Jamie Varner to open up the main card.

The full list of salaries for UFC 169 is below, so follow us after the jump and take a gander, then entertain us as we yell at a wall.

Alistair Overeem: $407,143 ($285,714 to show, $121,429 win bonus)
Jose Aldo: $240,000 ($120,000 to show, $120,000 win bonus)

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UFC 169 Results: Barao TKOs Faber, Aldo Decisions Lamas


(I’ll eat my own foot if the word “bro” wasn’t uttered at least once. / Photo via Esther Lin/MMAFighting)

Legacies will be defined, belts may or may not change hands, and “Bagautinov” will be pronounced at least three different ways — welcome, ladies and gents, to CagePotato’s liveblog of UFC 169: Barao vs. Faber. On tap for this evening: Renan Barao attempts to defend his unified bantamweight title for the first time against Urijah Faber, and Jose Aldo goes for his sixth UFC featherweight title defense against hard-charging contender Ricardo Lamas. Plus: a heavyweight battle between Alistair Overeem and Frank Mir that’s totally awesome if you don’t think about it too hard.

Handling play-by-play for the UFC 169 pay-per-view broadcast is Aaron Mandel, who will be putting live results from the main card after the jump, starting at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest updates, and shoot your own thoughts into the comments section. Thanks for coming.

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Dana White Gave Abel Trujillo His Win Bonus and Here’s Why He Was Right for Doing So


(The Fight Night 27 post-fight press conference via the UFC’s Youtube channel.)

We’ll admit to skipping over the very first fight on yesterday’s Fight Night 27: Condit vs. Kampmann card — a lightweight scrap between Abel “Killa” Trujillo and Roger “Fuck it, Dude, Let’s Go” Bowling — in our aftermath piece this morning, but not because we missed the fight and not because we planned on using it as a prime example for another article about potential rule changes in MMA. In my eyes (and therefore all of CP’s because BG is out of town. MWAHAHAHAHA!!!), there was simply no controversy to be had.

Trujillo threw two knees. The first was legal; to the chest. The second was not; it hit Bowling square in the jaw. In fact, the second was about as blatantly illegal a strike as you could ask for. When Bowling was deemed unable to continue, we assumed he would be awarded the victory via DQ, as was the case when Luiz Cane illegally kneed James Irvin’s eyeball through the back of his skull at UFC 79. When the ref informed Trujillo that the fight would be declared a NC because the knee wasn’t “blatant,” we scratched our heads a little, but knew that intention behind a foul is determined by the referee alone.

So what should have been a DQ win for Roger Bowling was now a NC. Fine. But to say that Trujillo should have not only won the fight but will be receiving a win bonus as well? Surely you’d have to be f*cking insane to utter such insanity.

Those shots were not illegal. The first one hit him in the chest, and the second hit him in the shoulder. That kid should’ve won that fight, and I’m going to pay him his win bonus.

Yup, that’s Dana White at the Fight Night 27 post-fight press conference (approximately 20 minutes into the above video), clearly high as f*ck. But here’s the thing: Dana is right.

Join us after the jump to see why.

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The Potato Index: Fight Night 27

That’s some hit, man.   (I’m so sorry.)  PicProps:  Esther Lin / MMAFighting

So BG is gone this week, I assume to yet another wedding, because once he bought the tuxedo he was determined to get the mileage out of it. Seriously, he’s got the whole bit: natty little straight cane with the white tips, monocle, top hat, the whole nine. It’s dashing, but apparently it’s expensive as hell. That or he’s running some kind of scheme where he collects disposable cameras and plastic champagne flutes? What the fuck are you building in there, Goldstein?

So anyway, I’m poking around his office here at CP headquarters, kick over a box of CagePotato Hall of Fame t-shirts, and damn if i didn’t stumble over the ol’ arbitrariest of MMA supercomputers: the Potato Index.

Turns out it’s been hooked up this whole time, so I decided to pull up the numbers on UFC’s Fight Night 27, just for old times’ sake.

The Octagon Girls +16
The new Octagon Girls are lovely. Chrissy Blair is the archetypal California Girl; think Christie Brinkley in a Ferrari, but blonder. And the new brunette one getting tattoos exactly like Brittney Palmer’s was a nice touch.

Kansas City fighters + 42
Zak Cummings [+19] and Jason High [+23] both picked up their first UFC wins with good-looking performances. Jason High had previously lost to Erick Silva in June and Charlie Brennamen back in 2010, mostly because Joe Silva likes to call High on short notice for not-easy fights. The Kansas City Bandit gets a big bump with a quick win.

Abel Trujillo +11
Trujillo picks up the best kind of No Contest: the kind that comes from a foul that is both uber-agressive and debatable. Attacking grounded fighters with knees will always stir the passions; if Trujillo were a savvy marketer, he would start coming to the cage in a Hannibal mask and a straight jacket. A straight jacket covered in sponsor patches. Dana White would get a visible boner.

Roger Bowling -5
Unfortunately, according to (arbitrary) opinion, it’s better to take the loss in the cage and get the NC declared later. But enjoy your short-term memory and normal brain function. (Pussy.)

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