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Tag: Leonard Garcia

And Now He’s Retired: Leonard Garcia Retires After Legacy FC 37 Loss

Remember Leonard Garcia? Turns out he got submitted this weekend in under two minutes by Daniel Pineda at Legacy FC 37 and subsequently retired.

This is likely a good decision for the 35-year-old, who was 3-7 in his last three years of competition. More fighting would’ve only led to increased risk of permanent injuries while the fame, notoriety (and money) continued to decrease.

Garcia is perhaps most notable for being a staple in the WEC’s featherweight division in the promotion’s heyday.  That’s where he was most successful, establishing a 4-3-1 record in that promotion.

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Video: Leonard Garcia Drops Legacy FC Title in Submission Loss to Damon Jackson; ‘Bad Boy Era’ Comes to an Abrupt End


(Highlights via AXS TV. Full fight video is after the jump.)

Earlier this year, we marveled at the improbable career comeback of Leonard Garcia, who had gone from UFC washout with five-straight losses to a Legacy FC featherweight champion with three-straight victories. I mean, sure, he was beating Legacy FC-caliber competition, but he was finishing those guys; he didn’t have to rely on loud grunting and impressionable judges to make it happen.

Well, we must have cursed him, because the Bad Boy Era has ended as quickly as it began. Garcia was defeated in his first attempted title defense at Legacy FC 33 on Friday night, tapping out to an arm-triangle choke against 25-year-old Texas native Damon “The Leech” Jackson at the 1:32 mark of round 1. Jackson increases his undefeated record to 9-0, with all wins via stoppage within the first two rounds. So maybe we should keep an eye on this guy.

Garcia was originally supposed to defend his title at Legacy FC 29 in March against Shane Howell, but Howell dropped out of the fight on short notice due to illness. (“Garcia then proposed to his girlfriend in the cage to apparently salvage the trip.”)

2014 is now The Leech Era. Please spread awareness.

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By the Way, Leonard Garcia is *Defending* a (Legacy FC) Title Soon


(Garcia upsets Kevin Aguilar to win the LFC featherweight title last December. Highlights via AXS TV.)

2013 may have been a toss up between “The Year of the Rhino,” “The Year of the California Kid,” and “The Year of the Ruthless“(?), but there was one former UFC star who perhaps had the greatest career turnaround of them all: Leonard Garcia. Sure, the back-to-back-to-back stoppage victories Garcia picked up under the Legacy FC banner pale in comparison to the high-level wins of the other candidates, but none of those guys were coming off five straight losses either.

Yes, after kicking off last year by getting kicked out of the UFC following a loss to Cody “Tags” McKenzie at UFC 159, Garcia signed with Legacy Fighting Championships and proceeded to go on a three fight tear capped off by a first round TKO over the previously undefeated Kevin Aguilar at LFC 27 that earned him the promotion’s featherweight title. While it might not be the crowning achievement of his career, at least Garcia had to earn the damn thing (*cough* Rousimar Palhares *cough*).

Any which way you look at it, Garcia had a hell of a 2013. And on March 21st, “Bad Boy” will look to keep his win streak going when he faces Bellator and KOTC veteran Shane Howell at Legacy FC 27 in what will hopefully be his first title defense. Not that we have a dog in this fight or anything.

Don’t let Howell’s mediocre 13-7 record fool you, the Oklahoman has been on an absolute tear as of late. Currently riding a six-fight win streak with five finishes and nine victories in his past ten bouts, Howell should easily make for Garcia’s toughest test since exiting the UFC. So yeah, it’s 2014 and Leonard Garcia is *defending* the title of a semi-reputable organization. Who saw that coming?

Legacy FC 27 will also feature a light heavyweight title fight between Paul Buentello — who is enjoying something of a career revival at 205 lbs. to his credit — and Myron Dennis, as well as the return of TUF 12 winner Jonathan Brookins at flyweight.

-J. Jones

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Nick Newell Chokes Out Sabah Fadai, and Other Weekend MMA Updates [VIDEO]

Nick Newell scored a guillotine choke victory over Sabah Fadai at WSOF 7 last night. It looked like Newell, who’s now 11-0, hardly broke a sweat during the 81 seconds the match lasted.

Nick Newell kicked ass and tore up the regional lightweight scene en route the WSOF. He even left the XFC because he felt he was fighting beneath his level of competition; he wanted UFC veterans and promising prospects. Newell deserves a fight against such an opponent at this point in his career; his abilities surely can’t be denied at this point.

Also of note on WSOF 7: Georgi Karakhanyan defeated the highly accomplished wrestler Lance Palmer to become the first-ever WSOF featherweight champion. Jesse Taylor, the guy who got kicked off TUF for trashing a casino with a drunken possy (except without the possy), won a No.1 contender fight against Elvis Mutapcic. Taylor will now face David Branch for the inaugural WSOF middleweight title.

See other highlights from the weekend after the jump.

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CagePotato Roundtable #28: What Is the Most Underrated Fight of All Time?


(McCullough vs. Cerrone: a great fight overshadowed by the shitstorm that was Filho vs. Sonnen II. / Photo via Getty)

In today’s CagePotato Roundtable we’re talking underrated fights — fights that deserve to be remembered as some of the best our sport has to offer, yet are rarely even brought up during the discussion. Obviously, Fight of the Year winners are disqualified from this list, and UFC Fight of the Night winners have been strongly discouraged from inclusion. Read on for our picks, and please continue to send your ideas for future CagePotato Roundtable topics to tips@cagepotato.com.

Jared Jones

Until their recent rematch truly helped bring to light how incredible their first encounter was, I would argue that Eddie Alvarez vs. Michael Chandler at Bellator 58 was the most criminally underrated fight in MMA History. It wasn’t difficult to see why; the fight just happened to transpire on the same night that Dan Henderson defeated Mauricio Rua in a “Because PRIDE” classic at UFC 139, and being that Bellator plays Wes Mantooth to the UFC’s Ron Burgundy, Alvarez vs. Chandler was sadly overshadowed by its manlier, more mustachioed counterpart.

Contrary to popular opinion, however, I would additionally argue that Alvarez vs. Chandler surpasses Hendo vs. Rua in terms of pure excitement, and I say that as a guy who dug PRIDE more than Seth digs TNA Impact. For one, there was more than pride on the line for Chandler and Alvarez, there was a lightweight title. Sure, it was a Bellator lightweight title, but that’s worth like three MFC titles, dudes. And while Hendo vs. Rua was a goddamn barnburner in its own right, it never quite reached the fever pitch of the first round of Chandler vs. Alvarez.

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[VIDEO/GIF Party] Holly Holm, Leonard Garcia Win Big at LFC 23


(Video of and commentary on Holly Holm kicking ass via cakeboy38)

Former professional boxer Holly Holm and UFC veteran Leonard Garcia both won with impressive KO’s last night in Houston, TX at LFC 23. Holm remained unbeaten with a first round head kick knockout of Allana Jones.

Garcia took Rey Trujillo out in the third round with a head kick and flurry of punches. The win is the first for Garcia in six bouts and Holm improved her MMA record to 4-0.

But enough of all that – their knockouts were plain mean and nasty. So, check out the video above and gifs (courtesy of Zombie Prophet) below to make your Saturday even better.

Garcia enjoys a win:

Two more angles of Holm getting it done:

- Elias Cepeda

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Classic Fight Videos: Korean Zombie vs. Leonard Garcia 2, Jose Aldo vs. Mike Brown

To help promote the featherweight title fight between Jose Aldo and “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung at UFC 163 (August 3rd, HSBC Arena, Rio de Janeiro), the UFC has released a key fight from each of the fighters’ careers on its YouTube page. Above, you’ll see Jung’s March 2011 rematch against Leonard Garcia, in which TKZ enacts a brutal revenge for the judging screwjob he suffered a year earlier.

After trading leather with Garcia for the majority of the first two rounds, Jung begins to step on the gas, landing a flying knee to Garcia’s grill and pouncing when Bad Boy slips to the mat. From there, it’s nasty elbows from the top, a scramble for back control, and the first “twister” submission in UFC history — with just one second remaining in the round.

After the jump: Jose Aldo wins the WEC featherweight title in November 2009 thanks to a second-round TKO of Mike Brown. Aldo would go on to defend the WEC belt twice against Urijah Faber and Manny Gamburyan, before kicking off his current reign in the UFC. So answer me this — will Jung be Aldo’s toughest challenge in the UFC thus far, or will the champ be celebrating another victory in the cheap seats?

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‘WTF?!’ of the Day: Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney Claims an Imposter Is Reaching Out to Fighters, Including Leonard Garcia


(“Alright, let’s see who you REALLY are! *tugs ears* Damn it, Scooby Doo made this look so easy…”)

If you follow college football at all, you probably remember the story of Kevin Hart, the high school lineman who held a press conference on national signing day in 2008 to declare that he was going to play college football for the Cal Bears. When the team announced that they never even had interest in recruiting him – let alone offering him a football scholarship – Hart claimed that he had been duped by a fake agent. It was one of the most bizarre sports stories in years; one that surely couldn’t happen again.

Yet here we are only five years later with an extremely similar story, only instead of involving a mediocre high school athlete from a small town in Nevada, it involves former UFC featherweight Leonard Garcia.

As we have covered, the recently released Leonard Garcia expressed no interest in signing with Bellator, even though they supposedly offered him a deal. In a way, this is a good thing, because according to Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney, the promotion never actually planned on signing him in the first place. Via MMAJunkie.com:

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Following UFC Release, Leonard Garcia Leaves Team Jackson for Alpha Male, In Talks With WSOF


(Don’t worry, Leonard, the worst is over!) 

It’s been a rough couple of years for Leonard Garcia to say the least. Sure, he was able to remain employed with the UFC despite five straight losses, but Garcia isn’t the type of guy to take his job, let alone a losing streak, lightly. At least, he wasn’t. But somewhere along the line, Garcia became stagnant, he became complacent. He knew all the ins and outs of Team Jackson — one of the highest-acclaimed martial arts gyms in the world — yet he didn’t seem to be progressing as a fighter in the slightest.

But all of that changed when he was finally released from his Zuffa contract following a lackluster decision loss to Cody McKenzie at UFC 159 last month. Realizing that a change was not only necessary, but critical if he were to ever attempt a third run in the UFC, the 33-year old recently told MMAFighting that phase two (phase 3?) of his career will start with a new training camp and a new organization:

I’m going to go out to Team Alpha Male for a little while. My cousin (Ed note: Like, actual cousin or like how Donald Cerrone is “your brother?”) Duane Ludwig is out there, and I talked it over with Greg (Jackson). Greg said, ‘Yeah, the problem is guys that can take you down and hold you down.’ And now I’m going to go to a whole team of guys who are really, really good at that.

Just being the new guy in the room is going to help me a lot, because it’s something different. It’s a style I’ve never seen. Their style is unfamiliar to me. I don’t know all their tricks like I do at Jackson’s. Like, we know each other so well at Jackson’s, and I think that’s caused me to become flat.

I talked it over with both camps and they’re both okay with it. I feel like this is a move that should’ve been a long time ago, but it takes situations like this to make it happen.

Team Alpha Male consists of several of Garcia’s former WEC cohorts; Urijah Faber, Joseph Benavidez, Chad Mendes — who have all either held titles or fought for them in their WEC or UFC careers, often both. The move is undoubtedly a sound idea for Garcia, and the ultra-aggressive yet cardio-heavy style Team Alpha Male has become known for should meld with him nicely.

As for the organization Garcia will likely call home next? The answer might surprise you.

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And Now They’re Fired: Ding Dong, Ding Dong, Leonard Garcia’s UFC Career Might Finally Be Dead [UPDATED]


(If there was ever an image that summed up Garcia’s UFC experience, this is it.) 

You know, we may have had our fun at Leonard Garcia‘s expense over the years, but when it was passed along that his fighter profile had finally, mercifully been removed from UFC.com’s master list this morning, we were filled with an unexpected sense of dread — the ending of Old Yeller comes to mind.

While it’s true that you could easily fault Garcia for being entertaining to his own detriment (not unlike Chris Lytle, although “Lights Out” did manage to break the .500 mark by the end of his UFC career), it would hard to blame the man himself for being gifted a few decisions or overstaying his welcome in the UFC; Garcia simply showed up when told, always made weight, and put on as entertaining a fight as humanly possible. That’s more than most past or present UFC employees can say, and the fact that Leonard managed to do all this without once testing positive for a banned substance or steroids* should only improve his much grumbled about reputation in the organization.

Unfortunately, Garcia’s 2-7 record in the promotion did little to raise said reputation, hence the removal of his profile — along with the profiles of a few other fighters that we’ll get to in a second — from UFC.com. Dana White had mentioned that Garcia’s UFC future was “not looking good” following his fifth straight loss to Cody McKenzie at UFC 159 last month, so it was only a matter of time before this news broke. With the loss, Garcia joins such company as Steve Cantwell, Elvis Sinosic, and John Alessio as the only UFC fighters to suffer five straight losses in the UFC.

Best of luck, Leonard. Hopefully you can get a couple confidence-boosting wins on the local circuit and work your way back up to the top, because the UFC could always use another fighter who puts the fans before him/herself.

As we mentioned, Garcia’s profile was only one of many to be removed from UFC.com earlier today, so join us after the jump to check out the full list of vitims.

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