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Tag: Anthony Pettis

UFC on FOX 9 is Officially Cursed: Injured Matt Brown Out of Fight With Carlos Condit


(If only the discs in Brown’s back could’ve been “immortal” too. / Photo via Getty)

We don’t want to freak you out, but curses are real. Our last five posts about UFC on FOX 9 have all been injury related. Our sixth post about the event is worst of all: Matt Brown is out of his fight with Carlos Condit due to a back injury.

The best fight left on the card after a series of injuries ravaged it is gone now. If you’re not keeping score, here’s a rundown of how injury-plagued this fight card has been:

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Anthony Pettis Wants to Fight Nate Diaz After Recovering From Knee Surgery


(Before he was champion, Anthony’s entire life was devoted to training. Now he’s out every night, partying with cool badger statues. I’m just saying, the belt changes you. / Photo via Getty)

Though he was hoping to avoid surgery to repair a torn posterior cruciate ligament (aka “knee thingy”), UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis will indeed go under the knife next Thursday. Pettis explained yesterday on UFC Tonight that he is looking at a 6-8 month recovery period, and when he returns to action, he wants his first title defense to be against Nate Diaz — not TJ Grant (thank God), not the winner of Ben Henderson vs. Josh Thomson*, not Khabib Nurmagomedov, or Gilbert Melendez, or anybody else who might deserve it more than a guy who just snapped a two-fight losing streak.

Oddly enough, it wasn’t Nate’s one-round blitzkrieg of Gray Maynard at the TUF 18 Finale that convinced Pettis that Diaz is worthy of a title shot — it was what Diaz said in his post-fight interview.

“Nate Diaz has been talking so much and in his last fight, he actually looked pretty decent, but it’s harder to judge against Gray Maynard,” Pettis said on UFC Tonight. “I hope Nate works his way up so we can fight…Nate’s been talking for a while. Even after his last fight, saying ‘this is the No. 1 and No. 2 lightweights in the world.’ That’s taking a shot directly at me. That belt’s in my front room. It’s there for a reason.”**

In classic Diaz fashion, Nate responded on twitter by saying that Pettis needs to work his way up for a fight against Nate Diaz. (#stocktonlogic) Though Pettis seems to think that Diaz should keep fighting and winning before an eventual title-fight showdown, Diaz would rather skip that part entirely. In case you missed it, he made a startlingly wise statement about the subject during the TUF 18 Finale’s post-fight press conference last Saturday:

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ICYMI: Benson Henderson vs. Josh Thomson Booked for UFC on FOX 10 Headliner


(Hastily thrown-together poster via FansofUFConFOX)

In the midst of all the panic and fury surrounding UFC 167‘s aftermath, a rather notable fight-booking completely slipped past us. Apparently, Josh Thomson and Benson Henderson are fighting in the main event of UFC on FOX 10 (January 25th, Chicago). I had no idea. I found this out randomly today while reading one of Crooklyn’s interviews on BloodyElbow, in which Thomson describes his match-up with Henderson as “like looking in a mirror” and suggests that Anthony Pettis doesn’t really need surgery for his PCL tear.

This will be Henderson’s first fight since losing his UFC lightweight title to Pettis in August — and marks his return to FOX, the channel that didn’t quite make him a star. As for Thomson, he’s been on ice since his TKO of Nate Diaz in April, and was supposed to fight Pettis for the belt next month at UFC on FOX 9 before Showtime pulled out.

With TJ Grant’s return still in question, the winner of this fight would seem poised for a title shot. Your predictions, please.

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Anthony Pettis Hoping to Avoid Knee Surgery That Could Sideline Him Up to Six Months


(Unfortunately, the human body’s ligaments simply weren’t designed to handle this much #SWAG. / Photo via showtimepettis)

After tearing his PCL during his UFC 164 title win against Benson Henderson, UFC lightweight champ Anthony Pettis spent two months rehabbing the injury. As you’ve probably heard by now, that hasn’t really solved the problem.

“The first time I came back (to train in the gym) I got a light kick in the shin and it swelled up real bad,” Pettis told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Pettis was forced to scrap his UFC on FOX 9 title defense against Josh Thomson to have his knee issues resolved, but it’s been rough going so far. He’s already had three different doctors give him three different recommendations, and he’s getting a fourth opinion next week in Los Angeles. If that fourth doctor recommends surgery, that will likely be his course of action.

“Most doctors don’t operate on PCLs, so no one has a clear answer at this point,” Pettis said. “I’m going to L.A. after my brother’s fight to get another opinion. If I do need surgery, the time frame is four to six months off. If we decide to rehab, it’s another four to six weeks. I’m hoping for no surgery, but I don’t want this to be something that keeps happening…I’m trying to figure out the right steps now. My biggest fear is that I give it four to six weeks (of rehab) and then the same thing happens.”

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Anthony Pettis Out of UFC on FOX 9 Main Event With Knee Injury; Johnson vs. Benavidez 2 Named as New Headliner


(Pettis perfectly executes an off-the-cage “Showtime Gloat.” / Photo via Getty)

Over the weekend, UFC president Dana White revealed that lightweight champion Anthony Pettis had suffered a knee injury in training, but was still expected to defend his belt against Josh Thomson in the main event of UFC on FOX 9 (December 14th, Sacramento). “He’s going to fight,” White said. “For sure.”

Well, not really. UFC officials announced last night that Pettis has pulled out of the match. We have no details on the nature or severity of Showtime’s injury at this time, or if it’s related to the knee injury that pushed Pettis out of UFC 163 back in June. We’ll keep you posted.

The UFC plans to re-book Pettis vs. Thomson when the champ is recovered, but you never know with these things. Thomson was already the second choice for Pettis’s UFC on FOX 9 opponent after TJ Grant had to stay sidelined due to concussion. If Grant is healthy by the time Pettis is, the UFC might just do Pettis vs. Grant like they had originally planned. Meanwhile, Josh Thomson’s immediate future is in limbo, and the famously cursed fighter just saw the biggest opportunity of his career go up in smoke. [Ed. note: We'll start working on his illustrated timeline.]

Pettis’s injury has led to new main events for two upcoming cards…

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UFC 164 Danavlog: Anthony Pettis Gets Pep Talk From the Boss, Josh Barnett Gives Props to Frank Mir and Much More


(Props: YouTube.com/UFC)

Because there’s another fight to promote this week (tonight’s UFC Fight Night 29 in Brazil), Dana White has released another of his behind-the-scenes video blogs. This one looks back on UFC 164: Henderson vs. Pettis and lets fans in on some fascinating moments. Other than the first part of the vlog, where Dana chats with the Harley Davidson guys about customizing a motorcycle — skip past that stuff, trust us — this episode is low on fluff and big on intimate moments with the fighters who bled for us in Milwaukee. Some highlights…

0:00: If you can’t read backwards-English, the painting behind Dana says “Pay Attention Mother Fuckers.” Truly a man of pristine taste, this Mr. White.

1:40: “This is Fred Durst’s bike.” Wow. morganfreeman.gif

2:03: The camera locks on Ryan Couture backstage after his loss to Al Iaquinta, trying very hard to keep it together. This is the first of many glimpses at the often devastatingly quiet moments losing fighters on the card endured immediately after their fights. Always a bummer.

2:25: Matt Serra shows up to provide some much-needed comic relief, calling Dana White fat and saying Dana should stay dressed in slimming black until he “looks like Lorenzo Fertitta.” It should be noted that Serra, a former welterweight champion, probably weighs like 275 pounds at this point.

4:02: Ben Rothwell celebrates his win over Brandon Vera, unaware that he’s about to get suspended for nine months.

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Sergio Pettis Signs With the UFC, Bantamweight Debut Tentatively Set for UFC 167


(Pettis vs. Porter via Combat Corner Professional.)

Over the weekend, a bantamweight phenom known simply as (*strums Flamenco guitar*) Sergio improved his MMA record to a perfect 9-0 with a first round submission via kimura over James Porter. Being that this “Sergio” character is the younger brother of UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis, he has been gaining quite a bit of notoriety on the local circuit, leading many MMA fans and pundits alike to ponder how he would fare in the UFC.

This notion was not lost on Sergio, who proceeded to drop to his knees and beg for a shot in the big leagues during his post-fight interview LIKE A *REAL* CHAMPION DOES. Of course, being that Pettis had already turned down a shot in the UFC some four fights ago to gain more experience, it wasn’t a stretch of the imagination to predict that Dana White & Co. would answer the call.

According to a report sent out by Globo last night and confirmed by Pettis’ Jiu Jitsu coach, Daniel “Big Dog” Wanderley, the UFC has done just that. Although no opponent has been named, Pettis will make his promotional debut at UFC 167: St. Pierre vs. Hendricks. Despite recently capturing the RFA flyweight title with a first round KO over Dillard Pegg, Pettis will allegedly make his debut in the bantamweight division (that’s still a thing, right?).

Who do you think would make for a good litmus test against the 20 year old phenom, Potato Nation?

-J. Jones

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Nova Uniao Head Trainer Confirms Renan Barao Is Totally Being Screwed by That Whole “Interim” Title


(And to think, if the guy on the left had won, we’d have a new outright champion by now. Photo via MMAFighting.)

October 1st will mark the two year anniversary (?) of the last time we saw bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz defend his title in the octagon. Multiple ACL tears and a rejected cadaver ligament transplant have seen the once dominant champion sidelined ever since his 2011 battle with now flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson. As such, the bantamweight division has been stuck in a perpetual state of limbo, frustrating fans, fighters and most importantly, Dominick Cruz.

But perhaps the only person more frustrated by Cruz’s arduous road to recovery than the champ himself is interim title holder Renan Barao, who recently became the first fighter in UFC history to defend said title twice (via a second round KO of Eddie Wineland at UFC 165). Actually, Barao is the first fighter in UFC history to ever defend an interim belt. Unfortunately, the Brazilian isn’t seeing many benefits of being the closest thing to a champion his division has seen in a dog’s age.

That’s at least, according to Nova Uniao head trainer Andre Pederneiras, who recently appeared on MMAJunkie radio to discuss Barao’s current predicament:

He’s very frustrated because he needs to make money. So many sponsors here in Brazil are not sponsoring him because he’s not the real champion from the UFC. He’s the interim champion. He’s losing money every day.

The sponsors here want a real champion. A linear champion. 

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CagePotato Roundtable #26: What Is the Greatest Comeuppance in MMA History?


(Bro, you need a male nurse.)

After spending last week’s roundtable discussion paying tribute to the most foul people associated with our sport, this week we’ll be focusing on great comeuppances — cases when a fighter got too cocky and karma caught up with him mid-match. Some of our picks are knockouts, some are submissions, and all are extremely satisfying to relive. Read on for our picks, and please continue to send your ideas for future CagePotato Roundtable topics to tips@cagepotato.com.

Ben Goldstein


(Props: Esther Lin/MMAFighting.com)

It’s one of the most well-known (and feared) unwritten rules in baseball: You never jinx a no-no. When a pitcher has gone a few innings without giving up a hit, you shut the fuck up about it. Teammates aren’t supposed to acknowledge it in the dugout, broadcasters aren’t supposed to mention it on air. These days, you’re not even supposed to tweet about it. If you even so much as whisper the words “no hitter” into your sleeve from the bleachers, the baseball gods will smite you for your hubris and it’ll all come crashing down.

MMA offers all kinds of painful penalties for celebrating early, and you’d think that everyone would have learned the lesson by now. But every once in a while, some asshole comes along and claims that he’ll achieve some lofty feat way before he has any right to. Call it a jinx, call it karmic retribution, but those fighters tend to fall on their face, while the rest of us revel in their defeat. You shouldn’t have tempted fate, buddy. You should have stayed humble. You shouldn’t have jinxed the no-no.

If you’ve been following the UFC for a long time, you might remember a former lightweight champion by the name of Benson Henderson. (He was the guy who held the belt between Frankie Edgar and Anthony Pettis? Long, curly hair? He could do all things through Christ who strengthened him? Does any of that ring a bell?) Anyway, this Benson Henderson guy was known for edging out very close decision wins in title fights — the kind of fights that could have gone either way, but kept falling in his favor. He got a reputation as a point-fighter who never went in for the kill, who only took risks involving toothpicks.

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Anthony Pettis vs. Josh Thomson Booked for UFC on FOX 9 Title Fight, With TJ Grant Still Sidelined Due to Concussion


(Strikeforce neva die. WEC neva die. UFC doing best it can, under circumstances. Images via Getty/FOX Sports)

In July, a concussion suffered in training robbed UFC lightweight contender TJ Grant of his title shot against Benson Henderson. Grant was expected to return to action at UFC on FOX 9 (December 14th, Sacramento) against new champion Anthony Pettis, but news broke last night that the Canadian fighter has still not been medically cleared to compete. As Grant wrote on twitter:

Hey people. Quick update. Unfortunately I won’t be fighting Pettis on dec 14. I am still not yet 100% n can’t commit to fight. UFC is going with someone else instead. It sucks but it is the best for both myself and the UFC. Please don’t worry. Ill be back and if I gotta fight someone else to get back to where I wanna be then that’s what I’m gonna do. I’m not bitter. Thanks

The promotion confirmed shortly afterward that Pettis will remain on the UFC on FOX 9 card, defending his belt against Josh Thomson. It’s a somewhat unexpected choice, as Thomson’s TKO of Nate Diaz at UFC on FOX 7 represented his first victory in 13 months. Still, his performance against Diaz was extraordinary (“bitch-ass lady sounds” notwithstanding), and The Punk’s epic battles against Gilbert Melendez in Strikeforce always suggested that he might be a better fighter than rankings and records indicate.

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