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Tag: Brandon Vera

UFC on FOX 4: Shogun vs. Vera Aftermath: Breaking Even


Shogun was as brutal and entertaining as Machida, but not as impressive in Dana White’s eyes. Props: @raiseyourhorns

After watching the UFC’s first two lackluster efforts on Fox, as well as the organization’s entertaining third effort fail to draw decent ratings, it was no secret that the UFC needed to deliver with last night’s UFC on Fox 4. With “the most impressive fighter” earning the next title shot at light-heavyweight, fighters returning to the spotlight after time in the indie leagues and fighters returning from extended layoffs – not to mention the usual
mix of fighters attempting to make a name for themselves and guys literally fighting for their jobs- it was obvious that the UFC was hoping for something special from everybody involved. Factor in the fact that the UFC was already struggling with ratings before the abysmal UFC 149 just two weeks ago, and it would seem like a night full of stoppages was in order to keep the fans interested in future fights on Fox.

Simply put, this card delivered all that was expected of it and then some. Last night’s fights were exactly what I was hoping to get when the UFC first announced that they had inked a deal with Fox. It was exactly what I want to show the first time viewer who asks what this “MMA stuff” is that I write about. After a rough start with these free cards on Fox, the UFC now stands at an even 2-2.

It wouldn’t be fair to say that the main event bout between Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Brandon “The Truth” Vera lived up to its expectations because, let’s face it, there weren’t any. Before the fight, no one could make sense of the potential title implications behind a seemingly blatant squash fight, pitting an aging legend of our sport against a fighter who had been coasting on the brink of irrelevance. Whether we were given a quick, brutal knockout or five rounds of stalling and wheezing, few of us would have been surprised either way.

Rather, it’s fair to say that Shogun Rua vs. Brandon Vera ended up being one of the best fights that the UFC has put on Fox, and easily the most entertaining main event on the network. For four rounds, Shogun outpointed a focused, game Vera on his way to a fourth round TKO. While Vera certainly had his moments – don’t act like your jaw didn’t drop when he locked in that guillotine in the first round – in the end Shogun’s aggressive striking and takedowns were just too much for The Truth.

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UFC on FOX 4 Reveals the #1 Contender – THE DRAGON

By Nathan Smith

Earlier in the week Dana White stated that “whoever wins the most impressively” from the contests involving Mauricio “Shogun” Rua VS Brandon Vera and Lyoto Machida VS Ryan Bader would be deemed the #1 contender for the LHW title. After watching the events unfold the UFC’s decision remained even more of a cluster f*ck due to a devestating Machida KO and a hard-fought TKO victory by Shogun. Even before Dana White stepped to the podium for the post-fight press conference, he announced LIVE just prior to the conclusion of the UFC on FOX 4 festivities telecast, that Lyoto Machida held the golden ticket.

By the time DW made his way to the dias for the post-fight press conference, the announcement had already spread across the MMA universe but he did say – during the media frenzy – that Machida “wants it bad.” The Dragon earned a convincing KO victory against a very tough competitor. Ryan Bader’s evening ended when he charged forward and ran directly into a perfectly-timed and placed right hand counter by Machida. Good night Irene.

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UFC on FOX 4: Shogun vs. Vera — Live Results & Commentary


(“Then it’s settled. I’ll crouch behind him, and you push him over.” / Photo via CombatLifestyle. For more photos from this set, click here.)

I’ve got an idea: Instead of obsessing about who really deserves the next shot at the light-heavyweight title, let’s just kick back tonight and enjoy some free fights on FOX, two of which happen to feature former 205-pound champions (both Brazilian) facing off against hungry contenders (both American). Throw in a lightweight feature between Joe Lauzon and comeback kid Jamie Varner, and Mike Swick‘s first Octagon appearance in two-and-a-half years, and you’ve got a lineup that should hopefully take some of the sting off that $55 you blew on UFC 149.

The UFC on FOX: Shogun vs. Vera main card kicks off at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT, and our man Elias Cepeda will be guiding you through the play-by-play after the jump. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and give us the play-by-play for your own lives in the comments section.

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The Unsupportable Opinion: If Lyoto Machida Wins Tonight, he Automatically Gets Next Title Shot


Props: Jason Deebank via MMAFanMade

By Seth Falvo (@SethFalvo)

We’re just hours away from UFC on FOX 4, where four men will attempt to become the least impressive light-heavyweight title challenger since Elvis Sinosic by winning in the most impressive manner possible. To paraphrase Jeff Fox, the winner of the upcoming Jones vs. Henderson bout will defend his belt against the winner of tonight’s semantics game. There’s got to be a catch, right?

Of course there is. Even the dimmest MMA fans among us have already interpreted this as a way for Dana White to back out of giving Brandon Vera a title shot if he were to actually defeat Shogun Rua tonight. Shogun is obviously the preferable contender, but just in case he blows this somehow, we’ll shrug it off and put the winner of Machida/Bader in the cage with Jones/Hendo, right? Quite the contrary: This semantics game was designed to give Lyoto Machida a title shot with a victory.

Right now, some of you are screaming “What kind of idiot hack journalist are you, Seth?!” at your screens. First, allow me to welcome you to Cage Potato; you’re obviously new here. Second, let me lay it out for you with four simple reasons after the jump.

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‘UFC on FOX 4: Shogun vs. Vera’ Preview and Predictions


(“You know the deal, guys. Whoever puts on the most impressive performance tonight gets the title shot.” [*unzips*] / Photo courtesy of CombatLifestyle.com. For more photos from this set, click here.)

By Ryan Sarr

Who is going to win the “Jon Jones Sweepstakes?” That is the big question heading into the UFC’s fourth venture onto network television tonight. Dana White was so pissed about the boring, lackluster abomination that was the UFC 149 main card, that he decided to award a light-heavyweight title shot to the man who wins the “most impressively“ among the four main and co-main event participants. (Yes, even Brandon Vera)  The only problem with this scenario is that all four men — Shogun, Vera, Machida, and Bader — have each been decisively destroyed by Jon Jones in previous fights.

Nonetheless, this fight card is still very intriguing and offers many reasons to tune in.  First of all: It’s free on Fox. Second, all four main card bouts are likely to be exciting, fast-paced battles. It also marks the return of the very talented Mike Swick to the Octagon, who hasn’t fought in over two years. Finally, we have a chance to see a true Cinderella story play out once again as Jamie Varner gets a chance to take another huge step up in his comeback by fighting on a main card on network television. So, join me as I break down the main card for UFC on Fox 4 and offer my predictions as to who will emerge victorious.

Mike Swick (14-4, 9-3 UFC) vs. DaMarques Johnson (15-10, 4-4 UFC)

DaMarques Johnson said in the fight promo, “There’s a 50% chance I’m gonna win this fight, there’s a 100% chance that somebody’s taking a nap,” and Johnson has the track record to back it up: None of his fights in the UFC have gone the distance. The Jeremy Horn protégé has slick submission skills to go along with his heavy hands. We know Johnson will bring a fast-paced, exciting style into the Octagon, and his opponent Mike Swick will almost certainly do the same.

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Watch the ‘UFC on FOX: Shogun vs. Vera’ Press Conference Right Here Starting at 2 p.m. ET / 11 a.m. PT

UFC president Dana White and the four headliners for Saturday’s UFC on FOX 4 event — Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, Brandon Vera, Lyoto Machida, and Ryan Bader — will be in attendance today for the “Shogun vs. Vera” press conference in Los Angeles; you can watch it live in the player after the jump beginning at 2 p.m. ET / 11 a.m. PT. We expect each man to make a perfectly logical and well-reasoned argument why he should be the next light-heavyweight title-contender. Personally, I think Jon Jones should just go down the row elbowing each fighter in the nose at full strength, and the last guy to start crying earns the shot. But what do I know — I’m just an unappreciated promotional visionary.

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9 Olympic Occurences More Likely to Happen Than Brandon Vera Beating Shogun Rua


(If you must ask, Dana, I believe my hype train was headed in that general direction. Then again, it’s been so long since I’ve seen it…) 

If you’re anything like us, you’ve more than likely spent your weekend drinking either Budweiser or Miller High Life cans in front of your television whilst watching various Olympic events and screaming “America!” on loop until your Canadian or Russian neighbors got jealous and called the police, who in turn tried to claim that you are somehow at fault if you like to watch TV in the nude and can’t afford curtains. And indeed, the Olympics have successfully managed to captivate and connect its viewing audience as it always does, uniting entire communities over a common passion. Except, oddly enough, in the case of this year’s host country, wherein failure apparently opens you up to disturbingly hateful critiques from your own countrymen.

Switching gears, it seems that one thing we can all agree on, regardless of our cultural divisions, is the inherent ridiculousness in the possibility that Brandon Vera could somehow receive a title shot if he is able to defeat Mauricio Rua in impressive fashion, or vice versa. We know we’ve been a little hard on him today – it’s not like it was his decision to overhype a fight by implying title implications only to be reamed out by fans for doing so shortly thereafter, that was Dana White — but on the short list of contenders currently in the Light Heavyweight Division, Vera is just a step above Mostapha al-Turk, whom you may recall is a retired heavyweight who was released from the UFC over two years ago. And he’s fighting Shogun f*cking Rua, aka the man who ended The Machida Era. Arguably twice. 

Spoiler: There is no way in hell that Vera is beating Shogun this Saturday, and we’d be willing to wager a bottle of ipecac on it, if you know what we mean. So in honor of what has been a highly competitive Olympic games thus far, and what will surely be a one sided ass whooping at UFC on FOX 4, here are 10 things, ranked in no particular order, we will more than likely see happen at this year’s Olympics than “The Truth” beating “Shogun” on Saturday.

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Brandon Vera Actually Cares About “Shogun” Rua Fight, Says Jon Jones Isn’t “Some Young Punk” Anymore…wait, WHAT?!


And yet he STILL hasn’t learned that only tools wear Affliction…

We’re just a few days away from UFC on FOX 4, which will be headlined by arguably the most confusing contender fight in modern UFC history. While most fans can kind of justify Shogun earning a title shot with a victory given his track record (especially if Hendo manages to put away Jones at UFC 151), Brandon Vera remains a gigantic question mark. With his most notable victory being a TKO over heavyweight Frank Mir back in 2006, it’s hardly a surprise that most fans and pundits are completely unable to make sense of this bout even headlining the card, yet alone being for a title shot.

If Brandon Vera attempted to justify all of this through his appearance on “Inside MMA,” he ended up just raising even more questions. Case in point: Vera talked about his training camp leading up to his bout with “Shogun” Rua. Aside from bringing back his Muay Thai coaches and sparring with Alexander Gustafsson, Vera commented that he was ”doing the things he should have been doing since day one.” Specifically, he’s actually caring now about his career. As he told the “Inside MMA” crew:

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Even Jon Jones Can’t Make Sense of the Current Title Picture at 205

It’s good to know that we weren’t alone in our confusion when it was announced that the winner of either the Mauricio Rua/Brandon Vera or Lyoto Machida/Ryan Bader bouts, specifically the former, would be in line for the next title shot at 205 lbs. Given that current champion Jon Jones has walked through all four of those gentlemen before, we struggled to find the reasoning behind the alleged title shot that supposedly awaited the most impressive winner from this weekend’s UFC on FOX 4 event. Then again, Rich Franklin has decided to chase after middleweight gold and revenge for a third time (which totally wont end in his untimely death), so maybe we were too quick to write off these former champions, TUF winners, and hype machines. In either case, Bones took to his Twitter account to voice his frustration, sending out the above tweet yesterday which simply states “Scratching my head.”

But perhaps even more confounding than the UFC’s apparent apathy in regards to JBJ was the realization that the light heavyweight division, one of the most stacked and competitive divisions in the UFC for some time, has nearly been cleared out in a little over a year. If Jones gets past Dan Henderson at UFC 151, something he obviously feels he is going to do as evidenced by the above tweet, there will arguably be only two viable candidates left for him to face: Alexander Gustafsson and Glover Teixeira.

Dana White has teased that the man known by the Potato Nation as “Bjones” is “ready for a big fight now”, leading us to believe that a meeting with Rashad Evans could be on the horizon. A victory over the former champ would all but cement the Swede’s position atop the division. As for Teixeira, it’s simply too early to tell. He looked great in his debut victory over Kyle Kingsbury, but needs to face at least one of the upper echelon fighters before we are convinced he is ready for a title shot. But for the moment, it appears that the LHW division needs an H-bomb like Nick Diaz needs a clue.

In other, alcohol-related Jon Jones news…

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‘Shogun vs. Vera: Road to the Octagon’ — Full UFC on FOX 4 Preview Video


(Props: SUPAFIGHTLEAGUE)

They brought me into this fight as a fish for Shogun to eat.”

So said Brandon Vera during yesterday’s hour-long “UFC’s Road to the Octagon” special on FOX, which previewed next weekend’s UFC on FOX: Shogun vs. Vera card in Los Angeles. Vera is well aware that few people are giving him a chance in the night’s headliner — especially considering that he hasn’t had an impressive victory in over three years — but the opportunity to fight Shogun and return to elite-fighter status has given him new motivation for training.

As you can imagine, Shogun has no interest in becoming the co-star in Vera’s Cinderella story. “I’m not going to be the one to bring Brandon Vera back,” he says. And if Rua wins, he’ll likely get another shot at the light-heavyweight belt, where he’d either fight a guy who already crushed him, or a guy who beat him up for the majority of a five-round war. I know, don’t get us started.

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