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Tag: Brandon Vera

Matt Hamill and Brandon Vera Will See Who Gets to Celebrate Like a Jerk at UFC 101


(‘Okay, quit messing around now.  Where’s the rest of my paycheck?’)

Give the UFC credit, they can spot a nascent, kind-of-but-not-really grudge match in the making a mile away.  MMA Madness reports that Matt Hamill will meet Brandon Vera at UFC 101 in Philadelphia to see who has the chops to make it in the light heavyweight division and who will end up on the receiving end of an assholish celebration.

As you probably recall, Hamill head-kicked Vera’s friend and training partner, Mark Munoz, into a briefly frightening unconscious state, then paraded around the Octagon like he’d just hit a walk-off homerun in the last World Series game ever.  Hamill would later explain the celebration by pointing out that a) he’s deaf, so vibrations from an excited crowd get him really pumped, and b) he doesn’t head kick that many people, and this one was pretty sweet.

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Brandon Vera Puts Celebration Gripes in Perspective

Watch Steve Cofield’s video interview with Brandon Vera and see if you aren’t suddenly glad that “The Truth’s” formerly-overpaid ass is sticking around in the UFC.  The best part is when he addresses Matt Hamill’s post-fight celebration after knocking out Vera’s friend and training partner, Mark Munoz, at UFC 96.  Hamill caught some flack for acting like he just made a half-court shot worth a million bucks during halftime at a Laker game, when all the while his opponent was still crumpled in a motionless heap against the cage.

As Vera explains at the 3:30 mark, winning a fight in the UFC (particularly by bonus-worthy KO) is actually a lot like winning the lottery:

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UFC 96′s Best Photos

Pete Sell Matt Brown UFC 96 MMA

Props to UFC.com, MMAWeekly, Sherdog, and CombatLifestyle.

Joe Rogan Columbus MMA UFC 96 Patt Brandon Vera UFC 96 MMA Patt Brandon Vera UFC 96 MMA Kendall Grove Jason Day UFC 96 MMA Gray Maynard Jim Miller UFC 96 MMA Matt Hamill Mark Munoz UFC 96 MMA Matt Hamill Mark Munoz MMA UFC 96 Matt Hamill UFC 96 MMA Matt Brown Pete Sell UFC 96 MMA Matt Brown Pete Sell UFC 96 Pete Sell UFC 96 MMA Keih Jardine Quinton Rampage Jackson UFC 96 MMA Keith Jardine Quinton Rampage Jackson MMA UFC 96 Quinton Rampage Jackson Rashad Evans UFC 96 MMA face-off Shane Carwin UFC 96 MMA Miguel Torres Mike Goldberg MMA UFC

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UFC 96 Lineup Finalized; Vera and Grove on Undercard

UFC 96 poster Columbus Quinton Rampage Jackson Keith Jardine
(Props: MMA Mania

The UFC has released the official fight order for UFC 96 (March 7th; Columbus, OH). Here’s what we’re looking at:

MAIN CARD
Quinton Jackson vs. Keith Jardine (LHW)
Matt Hamill vs. Mark Munoz (LHW)
Pete Sell vs. Matt Brown (WW)
Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Shane Carwin (HW)
Gray Maynard vs. Jim Miller (LW)

UNDERCARD 
Tamdan McCrory vs. Ryan Madigan (WW)
Kendall Grove vs. Jason Day (MW)
Tim Boetsch vs. Jason Brilz (LHW)
Brandon Vera vs. Mike Patt (LHW)
Aaron Riley vs. Shane Nelson (LW)

Your eyes do not deceive you: Brandon Vera is deeeeep on the dark card, fighting a dude who got wrecked by Tim Boetsch in his UFC debut last September. If this isn’t a your-last-chance kind of situation, I don’t know what is. But while I understand that match’s placement — losing three of your last four fights will generally earn you some sort of punishment from the UFC — I don’t see how Sell vs. Brown is a PPV-main-card-caliber fight, especially when a promising bout like Grove vs. Day is on the undercard. Ah well. Weak lineups have surprised us before, and as long as the main event and Gonzaga vs. Carwin deliver, how bad can it be? 

Discussion topic for your MMA study groups: Who will remain conscious longer, Jardine or Gonzaga?

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Brandon Vera Gets Downgraded

Brandon Vera UFC MMA
("My career went that-a-way.")

It looks like all those weak performances are finally catching up with Brandon Vera. The Truth — who has gone 1-3 in his last four fights, most recently dropping a split decision to Keith Jardine at UFC 89 — is reportedly finalizing a new contract extension with the UFC. I’d be willing to bet that he was forced to take a pay cut, as his $100,000 to show/$100,000 to win salary made him unquestionably the most overpaid fighter on the UFC’s roster. But even more painful than the possible money issue is who he’s fighting next. According to 5oz., Vera will be taking on Michael Patt at UFC 96 (March 6th; Columbus, Ohio).

So basically, the former top heavyweight contender is now at the bottom of the light-heavyweight ladder, taking on a guy who was trounced by Tim Boetsch in his UFC debut. Vera has gone from prospect, to star, back to prospect again. He’s one train stop away from Palookaville. As long as the UFC continues to pursue expansion into the Philippines, they’ll want to keep Vera around, even if it’s just to beat up unknown caucasians. But it’s not like he’ll be headlining a card anytime soon.

Of course if Vera loses to Patt, he’s done. We’ll have witnessed one of the most dramatic rises-and-falls in recent MMA history. It’s not a very likely scenario, but this is MMA — and this is Brandon Vera — so anything can happen.

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Quick Hits: On Being Smarter Than a Twelve-Year-Old, Cote’s Contract & More


(Luis Cane’s pimp-slap, straight left combo. No one ever expects it. Props, UG.)

- Apparently the hip new trend for youngsters on the internet is to film themselves making UFC predictions and then throw it up on YouTube. Fightlinker spotted the very enthusiastic WishKid12 doing her thing, and decided to see how her picks matched up against those made by professionals like us. We’re proud to report that both Bens (weirdly, we made the exact same picks) soundly defeated this precocious prognosticator. While she went 2-3 on the night, we went 4-1 (curse you Cane, and your bitch-slapping awesomeness). The only one in this impromptu contest to beat us was Fightlinker, with a perfect 5-0. So basically we’re smarter than a twelve-year-old girl but dumber than drunk Canadians. That’s still better than either of our families ever expected.

- Patrick Cote tells MMA Mania that the UFC did not have him sign a contract extension prior to his title fight against Anderson Silva at UFC 90 this Saturday night. That’s notable since he’s at or near the end of his current contract, and typically the UFC makes sure they have a guy locked up before they take a chance on him becoming a belt-holder. At least, that’s what they do when they think the challenger has a chance in hell of winning.

- In case you were wondering, Dana White says he will reward Josh Koscheck with a shot at the welterweight title if he beats Thiago Alves this weekend. We all know how much White loves guys who are willing to step in on short notice, and Koscheck has a chance to turn Diego Sanchez’s misfortune into a big break for himself. Not that anyone’s really clamoring for GSP-Koscheck II at this point.

- MMA Payout takes issue with the UFC’s insinuation that Brandon Vera voluntarily sat out a year and then returned a different fighter. They point out that Vera was an early victim of the “Zuffa Freeze Out” and that by running around comparing the old Vera to the new one, Dana White may be unwittingly calling the wrong kind of attention to his own negotiation practices. Damn revisionist history.

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Dana White Bashes Brandon Vera Again, Praises Nearly Everybody Else


(Mo’ money, mo’ unfulfilled expectations.)

You can’t say Dana White didn’t warn Brandon Vera. His comments before UFC 89 suggested that it was time for “The Truth” to justify his high price tag. He didn’t, and so White is turning up the heat on him with remarks like these:

“I’m not seeing what I expected from Brandon Vera. It’s like he’s lost something. He doesn’t have that killer instinct since he took that year off. He doesn’t go after people. He used to be so cocky. He wanted to fight everybody.

“We tried to get him on one of the seasons of The Ultimate Fighter and he turned that down and said he wanted to fight Chuck Liddell and that he would knock him out. I hear that seven days a week so I told him to go on TUF and we’d find out how good he was.

“He was good. He used to walk through heavyweights earlier in his career. But he took a year off and we had all the issues with his contract and he hasn’t been the same since. I don’t know what’s wrong with him.”

It’s not exactly shocking to hear Dana White go after a guy who held him over the coals in contract negotiations and has since failed to live up to expectations. In a way, it seems justified. The UFC agreed to his six-figure demands based on his past performances and what they saw as his future potential. Lately he’s looked like a bad investment.

But being badmouthed in public by your boss, both before and after the fight, that’s got to sting. Especially when he goes on to compare you unfavorably to other guys who lost on the same night:

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The Potato Index: UFC 89 Aftermath

Shane Carwin gnp
(Carwin looked impressive, but how about a tough opponent next?)

You’re wondering who’s up and who’s down after UFC 89. The Potato Index’s system of arbitrary numbers devoid of any unit of measurement will tell you. It’s kind of like the stock market, only less depressing. We spent all weekend doing the math and here’s what we came up with. You’re welcome.

Michael Bisping +16

“The Count” won a fight he was supposed to win. Via decision. He never took any chances, didn’t show anything extra special, but he fought smart and he got the win. As a reward, he gets the TUF coaching job and the fight with the Hendo/Ace winner that was already his anyway. At least he didn’t screw it up.

Brandon Vera -132

Once upon a time Vera was the heir apparent in the heavyweight division. Now he’s a mediocre light heavyweight who doesn’t even put on much of a show anymore. What happened? He’s no longer exciting or effective, and he’s far too conservative. He’s making too much money to be doing so little.

Chris Leben -8 1/2

Leben chased Michael Bisping for three rounds and only got a little frustrated and reckless toward the end. A sign of his maturity? Sure, but also a sign that middleweight gatekeeper is about as high as he can hope to climb. He’s still exciting, so he’s not going anywhere. He also won’t be back in the main event any time soon.

Joe Rogan’s tribute beard +18

Sounded a little hokey at first, but it turns out that facial hair can be an effective homage to a fallen champion.

Luis Cane +284

The biggest win of Cane’s career, by far, and one that should get him noticed by the UFC brass. We called his record padded before, but he added some meat to it on Saturday night.

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UFC 89′s Best Photos

Michael Bisping Chris Leben UFC 89

Props to TheSun, Sherdog, MMAWeekly, and UFC.com. If you missed Saturday’s liveblog, click here.

Bisping Leben UFC 89Chris Leben UFC 89Keith Jardine UFC 89Keith Jardine Brandon Vera UFC 89 1Keith Jardine Brandon Vera UFC 89Luis Cane Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou UFC 89Luis Cane Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou UFC 89 2Chris Lytle Paul Taylor UFC 89 1Chris Lytle Paul Taylor UFC 89 2Chris Lytle Paul Taylor UFC 89 3Dan Hardy Joe Rogan UFC 89Neil Wain UFC 89David Bielkheden Jess Liaudin UFC 89Jim Miller David Baron UFC 89Per Eklund Samy Schiavo UFC 89

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At the UFC 89 Weigh-Ins: Bisping Says Leben Underestimating Him


(Leben fits Bisping for a right hook. Photo courtesy of MMA Weekly.)

The weigh-ins for UFC 89 went off without a hitch today. Everyone hit their target weight, or at least fell within the one-pound allowance of it, and nobody had to strip naked while their dad held a towel in front of them. There was a terse exchange between the main eventers, with Chris Leben offering an apology in advance to the British fans, and Michael Bisping getting all Rodney Dangerfield about Leben showing him no respect:

Said Leben:

“I’m sorry for coming over and ruining your guys’ big hope and dream. I know you love him, but I didn’t come all this way to lose. One of us will take a step back and the other a step forward; there isn’t too many ahead of us now.”

Replied Bisping:

“You’re right, one forward and one down. I am moving forward. You underestimate me and I think that is a mistake. May the best man win and I will see you tomorrow night.”

As weigh-in disagreements go, that’s downright gentlemanly. Guess that’s what you get in jolly old England. Full scale-tipping results are after the jump:

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