(Coming Soon: The Pooricio “No Guns” Rua Chicken Sliders.)
Well, well, well. Guess who’s lobbying to replace an injured fighter on short notice again?
Yesterday, we informed you that Antonio Rogerio Nogueira had to pull out of his UFC 161 bout with Mauricio “Shogun” Rua less than two weeks before they were scheduled for their much-anticipated rematch. The UFC insists that “Shogun” is staying on the card, but the former champ needs an opponent and who in their right mind wants to fight someone as good as Rua on such short notice?
(To be fair, “smelling the opening” is still an incredibly popular phrase on the set of blind pornos.)
We would like to preface this article by stating that we in no way have anything against Mike Goldberg the broadcaster. Sure, he falls back on some cliche phrases every now and again and fumbles through the occasional fighter nickname, but how many of us can claim to be batting a thousand at our respective occupations? Rarely a day goes by where I don’t fumble a fact or treat the English language like an experimental concept, and I usually have the benefit of giving my work a once-over (well, a half-over) before publishing it. In short, Goldberg may not be the best in the business, but the fact that he still seems generally enthused to be at any UFC event after all these years — he first started working with the promotion in 1997 — more than compensates for his sporadic (and often hilarious) cluelessness.
I’m not looking for it anymore, I don’t like to bully guys. I tried to fight him, he doesn’t want to fight. I’m not gonna stick a finger in a guy’s chest. If a guy says ‘no,’I’m not gonna be a jerk about it.
Either Jon Jones succeeded where Anderson Silva failed and managed to actually beat some humility into “The American Gangster” or Wandy’s threat to “suck his blood” was just a little too far outside the comfort zone of his Christian, conservative-Republican background to tolerate. Or Wandy has been offered the fight, turned it down, and is pulling another prank on us. Or Joe Silva dropped his cell phone in the toilet and hasn’t had access to the Internet since April.
Whatever the case may be, we suddenly, like, really need to see this fight. So touche, Chael. Tou-fuckin’-che.
In typical Chael Sonnen fashion, the outspoken whateverweight recently issued a challenge to Wanderlei Silva with a 24-hour expiration date. Apparently Sonnen’s ability to lose fights yet subsequently talk himself into main events has confused him to the point that he believes he is a UFC matchmaker. Sure, Silva is coming off of an impressive knockout win and yes, Sonnen has lost two in a row. But when has being on a career downturn ever stopped the “American Gangster” from getting fights with more famous fighters who are actually winning before?
“I gave him the timeline…if he doesn’t answer, I’m done and I’ll move on,” Sonnen said from his Fuel TV analyst’s seat this week.
Wanderlei finally responded to Sonnen’s challenge yesterday, and thankfully not on Twitter. Silva told Ariel Helwani that he’s never been offered the Sonnen fight by, you know, the people who offer fights in the UFC. Sonnen also apparently didn’t realize that the communication medium of choice for twelve year old girls would mean little to Wanderlei.
When Fuel TV called up Silva for comment on Sonnen’s challenge, Wanderlei took things from the world of Twitter to a much weirder and more frightening place. First off, Helwani said that Silva “laughed uncontrollably” — which, if you’ve ever heard him laugh, is scary enough – before adding that, “Jon Jones and Anderson Silva have been too nice to Chael. I want to suck his blood. I want to smell it. Not just fight. Not just fight. I want to hurt him…”
Tonight, at 9:30pm EST on Fuel TV, a taped sit-down interview with UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva will premiere. As often as we get to see the champ knock heads around inside the cage, we don’t often get longer, in-depth interviews with him, and certainly not in English.
Karyn Bryant‘s interview with Silva tonight looks to be in English and promises to be in-depth — hopefully much more so than the fun stuff shown in the teaser video above. We’re certainly not complaining any time we get to hear Anderson’s high-pitched jokes in English, however.
Silva says, without much explanation, that he’s the “black Dana White,” for one. Silva manages to get his back-handed barbs in, per usual, and it’s a good time.
“Sometimes Dana [is] cranky. ‘Come on man, smile!’” Silva says.
“No go,” said a disappointed Silva when asked if Chael ever came by to grub up with his clan. “No go. I wait for Chael for long, long time. My wife talk to me, ‘hey, Chael no come?’ [I told her] ‘No baby. Baby, no.’”
See more of Anderson Silva’s sensitive side revealed tonight on Fuel TV.
(Jon…erg…just hear me out…*duff*…if we make it to round 2 *duff**duff*…I promise you no less than 20 thousand more buys. Jon?)
At first glance, the pay-per-view numbers that just came in for UFC 159 don’t seem all that terrible. Truth be told, it would be near impossible to declare the event’s 550,000 estimated buys anything less than a success. However, when you realize that the sole reason the fight was booked in the first place was to cash in on the Chael Sonnen circus act, that 500k kind of pales in comparison to the 925,000 UFC 148 pulled in. In fact, it’s pretty much in line with the average Jon Jones-headlined pay-per-view, save his 700k-earning fight with Rashad Evans at UFC 145. MMAFighting’s Dave Meltzer reports:
Preliminary estimates for UFC 159, headlined by Jon Jones’ successful light heavyweight title defense against Chael Sonnen, indicate pay-per-view buys coming in between 520,000 and 550,000.
There was hope for bigger numbers in the days after the fight, due to the strong ratings of UFC 159 shoulder programming. The weigh-ins were the second-highest rated since Fuel began airing. The event also drew the highest ratings for post-fight coverage of a pay-per-view on Fuel. Prelim match ratings on FX were 32 percent above average.
The number would be the company’s second largest of 2013, trailing UFC 158, with Georges St-Pierre vs. Nick Diaz, but ahead of the now No. 3 event of the year, UFC 157, headlined by Ronda Rousey vs. Liz Carmouche.
Bruised but in high spirits, Sonnen returned to the UFC Tonight studios yesterday where he discussed the experience of fighting Jones (“like getting into a bear cage”), the slightly-controversial stoppage (Sonnen says he was still defending himself when the referee stepped in), and the prospect of winning the light-heavyweight championship on a toe-related technicality (“I’d have walked out of there to the boos…and I’d never look back!”).
Later in the segment, Kenny Florian asked Sonnen the question on everyone’s mind — is this the end for our hero? Sonnen had this to say…
But after taking a gander over the UFC 159 salaries, which were released by The New Jersey State Athletic Commission (via MMA-Manifesto) over the weekend, one begins to wonder just what the hell Bisping is so angry at these days. Either the “grudge match” angle is the only one he knows how to play or the $275,000 to show/$150,000 to win rate he is currently receiving is being stolen out from under him, because with that payday, you think he’d be all smiles.
Bisping’s $425k is just one of many head-scratchers that the UFC 159 salary list has to offer, so join us after the jump for a full rundown of the payout and a few totally unbiased observations.
It’s almost unfair to write about the light-heavyweight title fight between Jon Jones and Chael Sonnen from last night’s UFC 159 right now, since we won’t know whether or not this fight delivered what it was supposed to for a long time. I’m not writing about the way that Jon Jones effortlessly defeated Chael Sonnen; we knew Sonnen was absolutely no threat to the light-heavyweight kingpin. I’m not writing about how Jones completely ignored his vastly superior striking and ridiculous reach advantage in order defeat “the gangster from West Linn” by impersonating him; we sort-of predicted that Jones would clown his way through this fight. We knew that the main event was going to deliver a lopsided beat-down. It’s yet to be seen how – or even if – the marketability of Jon Jones will benefit as a result.
That being said, it’s hard to expect the superfight we never asked for to have much of an effect on the way that fans perceive Jones. I didn’t think it was possible to feel as apathetic about a first round knockout as I felt after last night’s main event. Judging by the comments I’ve read on our liveblog, I’m hardly alone here. When it was over, the match felt more like a bad professional wrestling storyline than a UFC pay-per-view main event, and the outcome felt just as forced.