MMA Fighter Challenges People to Punch Him in the Face, Everyone Fails

Tag: armchair matchmaker

Armchair Matchmaker: UFC 128 Edition

Urijah Faber Eddie Wineland UFC 128 MMA photos
(“Us Californians have a pretty chill attitude about the law of gravity, brah.” Photo courtesy of MMAFighting)

Jon Jones will be defending his new belt against former teammate Rashad Evans, Urijah Faber will be rematching Dominick Cruz in another title fight (this time at bantamweight), and we probably won’t be seeing Mirko Cro Cop around these parts again. But what’s in store for the other winners and losers from UFC 128‘s main card? Allow us to offer a few suggestions…

Mauricio “Shogun” Rua: The obvious matchup is Quinton “Rampage” Jackson. Rampage is fighting Matt Hamill at UFC 130 in May, but I think Shogun vs. Rampage 2 is worth booking for this fall no matter what happens in the Hamill fight. Rua and Jackson’s history in PRIDE creates an easy-to-promote storyline, and to be honest, Shogun could probably use a few more months to get in shape. Not to take anything away from Jon Jones’s brilliant performance on Saturday night, but Shogun looked like he usually does when coming back from knee surgery — a little soft, and with questionable conditioning.

Eddie Wineland: With Miguel Torres also booked at UFC 130, the only other option that makes sense is former bantamweight title contender Joseph Benavidez, who deserves a higher-profile fight after being buried in a dark match against Ian Loveland this weekend. I’ll even go one step further and suggest the event where this match should take place: UFC on Versus 4, main card.

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Armchair Matchmaker: Ultimate Fighter 12 Finale Edition

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(Dude. Yikes. Photos courtesy of UFC.com)

Ladies and gentlemen, we’ve just received word that Cody "The French Revolution" McKenzie has agreed to take on Yves Edwards at UFC Fight for the Troops 2 on January 22nd, after Edwards’s original opponent was drafted for the main event. (It should be noted that Edwards has never lost by guillotine choke in 56 career fights.) McKenzie’s big return made us wonder — what does the future hold for the other winners of last Saturday’s UFC event? Well gather around, kids, and we’ll tell you what should happen…

Jonathan Brookins: You know how this works. In his first post-TUF outing, Brookins needs to be built up against a relatively established vet who happens to be vulnerable against his skill-set. So, who’s a chokable, lateral-droppable lightweight who you’ve heard of, but who doesn’t have the kind of striking skills that will make Brookins look foolish? Huh. That actually doesn’t leave a lot of options among the UFC’s current roster.

This is going to sound random as hell, but I think the UFC needs to bring back Matt Veach. Though the H.I.T. Squad fighter was released by the UFC earlier this year after consecutive losses to Frankie Edgar and Paul Kelly (both by submission), he’s gone on to win three straight in smaller promotions; he was also undefeated before he came to the UFC, scoring stoppages in nine out of ten fights. I think we all want to see Brookins developed slowly in winnable matchups; still, Veach is far from a pushover.

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Armchair Matchmaker: UFC 123 Edition

Bruce Buffer UFC 123 jump
(Seriously, who let that mouse into the Octagon? Props: UFC.com)

Here’s what we know: BJ Penn and George Sotiropoulos already have dates at UFC 127 in Australia. Karo Parisyan has been fired (again), and Matt Brown will surely be let go as well after suffering his third-consecutive submission loss. (Tyson Griffin also lost his third-straight on Saturday, but will remain in the promotion, as the judges’ decision in his fight against Nik Lentz was utter horseshit.) So where do UFC 123‘s other winners and losers go from here? As usual, we have a few suggestions…

Quinton Jackson: This one’s fairly obvious, assuming that nobody really wants to see an immediate rematch between Jackson and Machida. Rampage should get the winner of Jon Jones vs. Ryan Bader at UFC 126. The winner of that fight gets a title shot. Bada-bing, bada-boom.

Lyoto Machida: Once an unstoppable force in the light-heavyweight division, it’s now been a year and a half since the Dragon has put on a dominant performance against anybody. At this point, the UFC needs to re-build Machida against a mid-level contender. Give him Matt Hamill, who deserves a step up after handling Keith Jardine and Tito Ortiz. Alternately, you could throw Machida in against Randy Couture, and see if the Natural’s gift for game-planning can carry him through against the Dragon. Of course, that matchup might not be pointless enough for Randy, so don’t get your hopes up.

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Armchair Matchmaker: UFC 121 Edition

Jake Shields Martin Kampmann UFC 121
(Worst ‘America’s Got Talent’ audition ever. Photo courtesy of UFC.com)

Cain Velasquez has a date with Junior Dos Santos, and Jake Shields — God help us — is still likely to face the winner of GSP vs. Koscheck. But the fates of UFC 121‘s other winners and losers are yet to be determined. As usual, we have some brilliant suggestions…

Brock Lesnar: Assuming that nobody really wants to see a Lesnar vs. Mir rubber match, there are a surprising lack of options for the new ex-champ. If Roy Nelson beats Shane Carwin at UFC 125, Lesnar vs. Big Country would make perfect sense. (Lesnar vs. Carwin II is also an option for down the road, considering Carwin never felt like Brock beat him fair and square.) But at the moment, the best available opponent for Lesnar is Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, who’s coming off his own nasty loss to Velasquez. The fading Big Nog would likely take a beating, but the UFC needs to re-build their most bankable star against a credible name, and letting Lesnar whale on a legend is an effective way to do it.

Martin Kampmann: The first name that comes to mind is Dan Hardy, though the UFC probably wants to avoid the possibility of one of their British stars dropping three straight. So how ’bout this: Nate Diaz. The TUF 5 winner and moneyweight contender is facing Dong Hyun Kim at UFC 125. If Diaz wins, Diaz vs. Kampmann is a great matchup between two guys who are on the same upper-middle region of the welterweight ladder. If Diaz gets outgrappled by DHK, then Kampmann gets a rebound against an "easier" opponent. Either way, it’s a scrap.

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Armchair Matchmaker: UFC 118 Edition

Frank Edgar BJ Penn UFC 118 photos MMA
(There he goes again, trying to steal the victory. Photo courtesy of CageWriter)

Here’s what we know: Frank Edgar will make his next title defense against Gray Maynard, who routed Kenny Florian on Saturday night. Dana White is done with James Toney, even though James Toney might not be done with MMA. Nick Osipczak, John Salter, and Gabe Ruediger could very well be receiving "Dear John" letters from the UFC as we speak. As for UFC 118‘s other winners and losers, their fates are yet to be decided. But as usual, we have a few opinions on the subject…

BJ Penn: The Prodigy spent 2007-2009 destroying all the top talent in the UFC’s lightweight division, then looked completely uninspired in two consecutive fights against Frankie Edgar. Either Penn has fallen off his game dramatically or Edgar is just a terrible style matchup for him — and we won’t really know the answer until Penn’s next fight. What’s obvious is that lightweight has been Penn’s most effective weight class in general, and going back up to 170 would be a terrible idea, especially while Georges St. Pierre still rules the roost. The UFC should give Penn a rebound fight against a name opponent who’s a little further down the ladder, but will test BJ’s desire to fight. That’s right, folks, it’s time for BJ Penn vs. Takanori Gomi II. Gomi is born-again after starching Tyson Griffin; add in Gomi’s history with Penn, and you have a co-headliner that any pay-per-view card would be lucky to have.

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