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

Tag: Bellator

Weekend Round-up: Aldo Accuses Mendes of Steroid Use, A Fighter is Out of UFC on FOX 12, and More


(Angry Jose Aldo looks identical to Happy Jose Aldo)

It’s been a rare, event-less weekend. Despite the lack of fisticuffs, Saturday and Sunday have been packed with quite a bit of mid-level news and fight booking house-keeping matters.

The biggest recent news has been a spat between Jose Aldo and Chad Mendes. As you’ve likely heard, an Aldo injury forced “postponement” [Ed's note: LOL] of UFC 176.

Mendes took Aldo to task over this on the MMA Hour, saying:

If Aldo can’t stay healthy and is too fragile to go through a training camp, then I think it is time to step aside and let guys who are able to do that and able to push through all that stuff, to be a champ.

To put it bluntly, Aldo was fucking pissed. He told Combate (translation via MMA Fighting):

Maybe I have so many injuries because I’m not taking the same ‘supplements’ you take. I have injuries because I train a lot to beat you like I did last time, and I think you remember that and still have nightmares about it. I did all the medical exams I had to do, but if you’re a doctor now, I can send them so you can take a look. Maybe you can prescript one of your supplements so I can heal faster.

The one who gets beat up usually runs away from another beating, but you can’t run forever because I’m going after you. Before the cage is closed you can say whatever you want, because once they close it you won’t be able to open your mouth, so keep talking while you have a mouth. And who are you to say where we are going to fight? I don’t think Dana White would be happy to see someone making his decisions.

You’re the one who seems to only fight at your home, who desperately doesn’t want to fight in Brazil. I got injured before and my fight with Frankie Edgar was moved from Brazil to Las Vegas. I fought your coach in your home, fought at Mark Hominick’s home in front of 55,000 fans, I fought in Japan and Europe. And now you tell me you want to be the champion? A champion doesn’t choose opponents or where the fight is going to be. And now I ask you, who’s the real pussy?

Harsh words from a harsh man.

In other UFC news…

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UFC 175 Proves the UFC Can Still Be the “Super Bowl of MMA” When It Wants To Be


(Two of the best fighters on earth about to enter unarmed combat. / Photo via Getty)

By Matt Saccaro

Oversaturation. Lack of stars. Declining interest. Record-low numbers. An ephemeral casual fanbase. A hardcore fanbase that doesn’t care anymore. A resurgent competitor with a new, well-liked, adept president backed by a financial titan.

Those topics have all been under substantial discussion in the past few months–as they should be. Those are the very real, very pressing problems the UFC faces as we enter the second half of 2014.

But last night at UFC 175, the MMA world was able to forget all that–specifically because of the PPV’s main and co-main events.

The co-main event featured UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey taking on challenger Alexis Davis. As Rousey headed to the cage, I took to CagePotato’s Twitter and presciently stated Rousey-Davis would be the most one-sided fight we see all year. That’s exactly what it turned out to be. Rousey vs. Davis made Chad Mendes vs. Cody McKenzie seem well-booked and competitive.

I know what you’re saying, “Why is the UFC-sponsored cash cow Ronda Rousey winning a squash match something to get pumped up about?”

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Shots Fired, Sort Of: Scott Coker Releases First Public Statement on Bellator’s Future


(She might move on to rappers and ballplayers, but we all know I [promoted] it first.” Photo via Esther Lin/Strikeforce)

A week after being named the new president of Bellator MMA, Scott Coker released an open letter to fans yesterday, laying out his vision for the promotion’s future in broad strokes. Check it out below, followed by some brief analysis…

Dear Bellator Nation*,

I wanted to take a moment and tell you all how excited I am to be a part of the Bellator family. I’ve been working closely with the incredible team here along with our partners at Spike to see how we are going to bring this great company to new heights.

My first order of business is to take a look at the Bellator roster and determine all the exciting possibilities that are in store for the future. Our goal is to make every Bellator event feel BIG and special** which is a huge win for fighters, advertisers, and of course — and most importantly — you, the fans. I’ve been on the phone with dozens of fighters and to hear the excitement in their voices has been incredibly encouraging.***

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BELLATOR BLOODBATH 2014: Promotion Cuts 19 Fighters to Make Room for Tito vs. Kimbo (Allegedly)


(The referee isn’t mad at Eric Prindle. He’s just disappointed. / Photo via Sherdog.)

Hey everybody, thanks for joining me on such short notice. The reason I called you all to the conference room today is because, well, you know with every change in leadership there’s going to be some growing pains. I don’t want to use the word “redundancies,” because I don’t see a single person in this room who I’d call “redundant.” You’re all unique, valuable — we hired you for a reason. And we appreciate what you’ve done to help Bellator grow. By the way, the bagels and cream cheese are for everybody, feel free to dig in. I think there are some plastic knives in that bag over there.

The reality of the situation, however, is this: The current budgetary climate has forced us to get lean and mean. Maybe it’s just temporary, maybe it’s the new normal. But the fact is that we’re trying to stay competitive in the post-Bjorn era, and that means trimming some fat. Well, again, “fat” is a word I don’t like to use because it implies something unwanted that has grown on the body due to excess consumption, or a general lack of movement. So yes, maybe “trimming some fat” is actually the perfect metaphor to use here.

At any rate, the partners have gotten together and pored over every contract, and — look, I’m just going to say it — 19 of you have been fired. The following people will no longer be working here, effective immediately…

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Bellator Parts Ways With Bjorn Rebney, Scott Coker to Replace Him [UPDATED]


(Kimbo, it’s Bjorn. Listen…do you think Reality Kings needs any more security guards?” / Photo via MMAFighting)

Bellator founder and CEO Bjorn Rebney — the man who built the MMA promotion from a scrappy underdog on ESPN Deportes to a major player on Spike TV and pay-per-view — has left the building. Viacom officially announced today that Rebney as well as Bellator president and Chief Operating Officer Tim Danaher have left the organization, effective immediately.

As MMAFighting reported last night, it wasn’t exactly an amicable split; Rebney was forced out due to his ongoing conflicts with Viacom regarding the direction of the promotion. [Ed. note: Whoever wanted to turn Bellator into a home of freak-show/throwback MMA and surreal promos, CagePotato is on your side.] Considering that Viacom bought a majority stake in Bellator back in October 2011, the media monolith certainly had the power to kick Bellator’s founder out of his own operation.

But it gets crazier: Rebney’s replacement is expected to be none other than Scott Coker, the former Strikeforce founder and CEO who has kept a very low profile since Zuffa bought his promotion in 2011. From MMAFighting: “Once Coker’s contract and non-compete clause with Zuffa…expired in March, the wheels were in motion to bring him on board.”

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Wild Rumor of the Day: Kimbo Slice Is Signing With Bellator


(I only chose this photo to enrage you further. / Props: hiphopnews24-7)

Twitter erupted today with spontaneous, unsubstantiated rumors that Kimbo Slice — yes, the former King of the Web Brawlers and occasional boxer — is in the process of signing with Bellator. Until we hear anything from a reputable source, you should only treat this as wishful thinking from a bored fanbase, like those “CM Punk to UFC” rumors that also made our tongues wag for a week.

All I can say right now is that I hope it happens. Between Bellator’s madcap pay-per-view card and that incredibawful Thompson vs. Prindle promo, Bellator has been establishing itself as North America’s premier destination for high-profile freak show MMA. Why not Kimbo? A Bellator card headlined by Kimbo Slice vs. Rampage Jackson or Kimbo Slice vs. Tito Ortiz (or Slice/Thomson 2 for that matter) would have a damn good shot at out-selling UFC 174, and it would be worth doing it just for that reason. Let’s not get precious with ourselves, okay? Bellator needs stars, and Kimbo is one of the biggest stars in MMA history. YES HE IS YES HE IS SHUT UP. Also:

Damn Saccaro, that is diabolical. And this:

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If You Think Dana White Cares About Bellator, You Are a F*cking Idiot (His Words, Not Ours)


(“I sip the Pink Drink to keep from killin’ y’all.” / Illustration via Financial Times)

Hey guys: Have you ever cared about something so little that it makes you super upset, to the point where you have to go on a three-minute profanity-fueled tirade about how much you don’t care? I mean, that’s something we all struggle with, right?

During a UFC 174 press conference scrum yesterday, UFC president Dana White was asked about the September 5th UFC show that will be taking place just miles away from a Bellator event in Connecticut. At first glance, it seems like the kind of counter-programming mischief that the UFC used to pull on rival promotions like Affliction. (Hey, if you have the resources to put on an MMA event just out of spite, go for it.) But as White explains, Bellator has nothing to do with the UFC’s 9/5 date, and you’re stupid for thinking that, and Bellator lied about drawing 100,000 PPV buys for “Rampage vs. King Mo.” Yeah, that too. You can watch the entire rant on MMAJunkie.com; a mostly-complete transcript is below:

“If you guys really think that we look at Bellator and give a shit what night they’re going on and what they’re doing, we don’t. That’s the date that we landed on. We get the dates from FOX. We don’t pick our own dates, we get the dates. They give us the dates they need us to go on. It’s determined by what other programming they have and what’s going on that night.

“There’s nights we’re gonna fall on the same night as World Series of Fighting, too. And I’ve got no beef with those guys. I don’t give a shit what night Bellator goes on, they make no difference to me whatsoever. The day I start worrying about what Bellator…or, ‘I’m gonna go on the same night as Bellator ’cause I want to crush them.’ They’re getting crushed already by themselves. They can go on their own fucking date anywhere. It’s not like me going on the same night is going to do any more damage to Bellator than was already done…

“But if that’s what you really believe, you’re a fucking idiot. You know what I mean? If you really believe that we want to go on the same night as Bellator because…I could give a shit where Bellator goes. What night, what day, or whatever. It’s not like Bellator’s out there killing it and we’re going to go in and take some…I mean, it’s just stupid to even think that. We end up on the same night as many different sporting events, sometimes boxing events we land on the same nights. There’s tons of events and tons of other MMA organizations. I could give a shit about them.

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Bellator’s New Tournament Rules Are Pretty Simple Until You Try to Explain Them


(Bjorn Rebney: The Art Jimmerson of MMA promoters.)

Bellator announced some changes to its title-contender structure today, and I’m going to do my best to summarize them in one sentence: Basically, if you win a Bellator tournament and receive a title shot, you no longer have to win another tournament in order to get another title shot. Which is weird, because didn’t they already kill that rule a long time ago? I mean, how else did Eddie Alvarez vs. Michael Chandler 2 and 3 get booked? I can think of several instances where Bellator’s vow that “title shots are earned, not given” hasn’t meant a whole lot.

So that’s the short version. Now read the press release that they actually sent out and get the Excedrin ready:

All Bellator Tournament Winners Now In World Title Shot Pool

Newport Beach, Calif. (June 12, 2014) – With Bellator’s 2014 Summer Series having just begun last Friday, Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney announced today that the promotion has made an addition to its real sport, tournament based* format that allows former Bellator Tournament winners the potential to be granted a World Title fight without going back into The Toughest Tournament in Sports.**

“Just like we’ve done since day one, any fighter who wins The Toughest Tournament in Sports will still be guaranteed a World Title*** fight,” Rebney said. “The addition I’m making here, that I’m really excited about, is if you’ve won a tournament, you’ll join an elite group of athletes who we can grant a world title fight to at any time.”

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The UFC Can Learn a Lesson From Bellator: How to Promote Bad Fights


(Photo via Getty)

By Matt Saccaro

The UFC said “Hey, did you hear there’s UFC FIGHTS™ on tonight? The finest athletes in the world are facing off and it’ll be action packed. Watch it!”

So we took their word for it, and watched. The athletes faced off, but they weren’t the finest in the world, and it wasn’t action packed. The athletes were green, regional-caliber competitors and there was more labored breathing and bouts of stalling than action.

Then the next event came. “It’s FIGHT WEEEEEEK! UFC FIGHTS™ are on again. The finest athletes in the world are doing battle in the Octagon™. Be sure to watch!”

We were skeptical, but being loyal MMA fans, we watched again. We were let down again. We voiced our concerns, only to be told we weren’t Real Fans if we didn’t appreciate the fights the UFC gave us. Not wanting to lose our MMA streed cred, we watched the next event that promised the top 1% of fighters battling in the Superbowl of MMA only to be disappointed.

This is what being an MMA fan has been like for the past year or two–especially since the UFC went full “World Fucking Domination” on us.

Fight cards are tougher to sit through because the talent levels are lower. Sometimes there’s two of these regional-level, star-sparse cards on the same day! And I’m not ragging on UFC Fight Night 42 specifically; on paper the card was pretty decent for a free Fight Night Card. I’m referring to the general lowering of the bar in terms of card quality that’s become undeniable as of late. The most insulting part is all these events are, for the most part, marketed the same way: Here’s awesome UFC Fights. They’ll be good. Watch them or you’re not an MMA fan.

And judging by the decline in interest (and PPV buys), lots of viewers decided they weren’t fans. And I’m not going to go on for much longer because I’ve written about the issue of over-saturation extensively on CagePotato, but the UFC can learn an important lesson from Bellator regarding how it promotes less-than-stellar fights: Be honest.

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Bellator 121 Results: Sokoudjou and James Thompson Emerge Victorious, Thompson Gives Rambling, Incoherent Promo About Testicles


(Oh yeah, and this happened. / via Zombie Prophet).

Bellator held it’s first extremely lackluster summer series fight card tonight with Bellator 121. We take a lot of heat for being negative, but this card warrants the hate. It was easily the worst card (on-paper) Bellator has put on in ages.

Let’s talk about the two fights you probably care about most: James Thompson vs. Eric Prindle and Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou vs. Professional Jobber Terry Davinney

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