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Tag: Luiz Cane

And Now He’s Fired: Luiz Cane Axed by the UFC Following Second Straight Loss at UFC 153


(It isn’t often that you can document the exact moment someone’s UFC career went to shit, yet here we are…) 

If you were to ask any knowledgeable fan of the sport circa 2008 what they thought of Luiz Cane, they would likely tell you that he was “one of the most underrated LHW’s in the division.” Following an unsuccessful UFC debut — which was halted when Cane accidentally struck James “Curse Watch” Irvin with an illegal knee — “Banha” absolutely blistered Jason Lambert and Rameau Sokoudjou in back-to-back contests, then scored a solid UD victory over Steve Cantwell to solidify his place as a rising contender. No, not the five fight losing streak Steve Cantwell, we’re talking about the Brian Stann TKOing, Al-Hassan arm-breaking Steve Cantwell. Cane’s chin appeared to be made of iron, platinum, unobtanium, or whatever element you’d prefer to compare it to, and combined with his solid takedown defense and devastating hands, looked to be on the fast track to a title shot.

But then, things fell apart (as they oft do in MMA) and Cane would quickly find himself fighting not just for a win, but to remain employed under the promotion in which he had once thrived.

It all started when Cane squared off against PRIDE veteran Antonio Rogerio Nogueira at UFC 106.

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Eight Fighters We Wish Were Better Than They Actually Are


(Step 1. Absorb EVERY kick, Step 2. ??????, Step 3. Profit. Props to the brilliant cine-files over at Pajiba for the inspiration behind this article.) 

Mixed martial arts fans are perhaps the most ruthless group of people out there; a quick scroll down any one of our comments sections only confirms this. One minute, a certain fighter is praised as a ruthless, badass hombre cut from the same cloth as the greatest champions the sport has ever known, and the next, they’re being told to save themselves the embarrassment of another performance and just retire already. It’s a crazy sport.

But then there are those few and far between fighters that we choose to rally behind regardless of where they currently stand in the MMA ranking system. Sometimes it’s simply because they can make us laugh, and other times it’s their “go for broke” mentality that wins us over. Sure, they’ve dropped seven of their last eight, including one to a drunken bar patron who accidentally stumbled into the ring, but all of those fights were like totally awesome, bro, so who are we to complain when they are kept around while other, more talented fighters are let go?

Here are eight fighters we will continue to root for, no matter how quickly their performances make us silently wish otherwise.

#8 – Aaron Riley

(Even when Riley *doesn’t* lose a fight, he still loses the fight.) 
Current record: 30-13-1
Record in last five fights: 2-3

Aaron Riley’s nickname could very well be “TUF Fodder,” because the man has fought nothing but The Ultimate Fighter alums, and often winners, for the better part of his UFC career. And it’s a shame, because the dude always brings the fight to these whippersnappers, but simply hasn’t been able to put any of them away. Most recently, he had his jaw broken again by TUF 13 winner Tony Ferguson at UFC 135. Back at UFC 105, he was made into mince meat by TUF 9 winner Ross Pearson. Set to square off against, you guessed it, TUF 12 alum Cody McKenzie, at UFC on FUEL 3 in May, Riley may be looking at his final chance to prove he can hang with these young guns before he is demoted to the Strikeforce roster. Speaking of a certain Alaskan native…

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MMA Stock Market — “UFC 134: Silva vs. Okami” Edition

By Jason Moles

After a spectacular night of fights at UFC 134 in Rio, we’re going to try to make sense of it with a little game called ‘Buy, Sell, or Hold’. I’ll take a fighter and either buy, sell, or hold him like a stockbroker would. (It’s kind of like the real stock market, except you won’t want to throw yourself off a building afterwards.) Take my advice and you’ll end up with a nice MMA portfolio. Without further ado…

Anderson Silva: Buy! Buy! Buy!

The Spider‘ has everything you’d want from a blue chip stock: an x-factor that makes people want to see him fight, major corporate sponsors, and hilarious commercials. Oh yeah, and his fighting isn’t that bad either. Silva’s complete and utter domination of Yushin Okami at UFC 134 just reinforces what we already knew — we are witnessing the greatest fighter of all time every time he steps inside the Octagon™.

Yushin Okami: Dump it like your autographed picture of Carrot Top.

He is currently ranked as the #3 best Middleweight and yet it seems all for naught. Okami showed up to a gunfight with a pair of flip-flops and a bag of Skittles against Silva. Despite working with the only man to dominate the champion, he never once came close to showing a spark in Brazil. I have a feeling he’ll face the same fate as Jon Fitch while his stock becomes more cursed than Monster.

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Formerly ‘Sad’ Eliot Marshall Credits Internet Lurking for UFC Return

(The toughest guys are always the most sensitive. Pic: UltimateFighter.com)

Last year in the aftermath of the epic clusterfuck that was that “Nemesis” fight card in the Dominican Republic we remember remarking that the saddest quotes of all came from UFC castaway Eliot Marshall. Unlike the other wronged parties involved, “The Fire” Marshall (see what he did there?) didn’t sound so much worried about getting paid for dispatching some dude named Chris McNally via first-round arm bar as he did making sure the result counted on his official record so he could show it to Joe Silva as evidence he was now a more exciting fighter; all the better to convince the UFC to take him back. Yeah, given that Nemesis went down in December and Marshall hasn’t fought since, we’re not sure that strategy worked.

What did work, according to a new story out from MMA Fighting, was Marshall lurking around the on internet until he noticed that the UFC kind of desperately needed someone to fight Luiz Cane after Karlos Vemola pulled out of their UFC 128 fight due to a GD’ed mouth infection. Gross, right? Anyhoo, Marshall took a page out of the UFC’s own playbook and jumped on the opportunity when it seemed Zuffa might be weakest.

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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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Ben vs. Ben: UFC 89 Edition

With one day to go before UFC 89 (which we’ll be liveblogging, naturally), it’s time for everyone’s favorite self-indulgent exercise: Ben versus Ben. This time around we argue bonuses, the UK-centric undercard, and the mysterious/as-of-yet fictional Millerplata, among other stuff.

How exactly will Bisping/Leben end?

Fowlkes: As much as we’ve heard about Leben’s transformation from immature brawler to well-rounded tactician, a part of me (the part located in the brain region) isn’t totally buying it. Leben may be a more seasoned fighter, but he still knows one way to win a fight when things get hectic and it’s throwing big, looping bombs and hoping one catches his opponent on the chin.

This has worked at times. He hits hard and he can take enough punishment to make that strategy effective. But as strategies go, it’s relatively easy to prepare for, especially for a more cerebral fighter like Bisping. “The Count” is smart enough to avoid a street fight with Leben. He’ll accumulate points and damage but won’t dive in for the illusion of a quick finish, and this will frustrate Leben.

Leben knows he doesn’t want to go to a decision against a Brit in Britain, so the closer to the final horn he gets the more desperate he will become. This is where Bisping will find an opening, drop him with a straight shot, then pour on some ground-and-pound that looks worse than it is, causing the referee to stop it at 4:02 of round three. And Leben is going to be pissed.

Goldstein: I concur. Bisping is a more talented, complete fighter than Leben, and this business about the Crippler maturing is more manufactured narrative than reality. But I don’t think it’ll take Bisping until the third frame to get the stoppage win. As a middleweight, his kickboxing has looked razor-sharp — his last two opponents didn’t make it to the second bell — and his ground capabilities are underrated in general.

The headliners will give the crowd what they paid for in round one, slugging it out like a couple of drunken soccer hooligans, and Bisping will go about finishing the fight in round two, engaging the killer instinct that we’ve seen from him lately. If Leben starts to land more shots in that second round, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Bisping clinch with Leben, bully him to the ground and finish him from the top. Either way, it’ll be a stoppage due to strikes at exactly the 4:15 mark of round two.

Who will win the Vera/Jardine and Sokoudjou/Cane fights?

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Gambling Addiction Enabler: UFC 89

Michael Bisping
(Bisping challenges another poor bloke to high-stakes Rock, Paper, Scissors.)

As our collective faith in the health of the economy deteriorates, the online gambling market is looking better and better. The more I think about it, the more I’m surprised it didn’t come up in last night’s debates. But once again neither candidate speaks to my issues. Looks like this is one more election year where I’ll end up scrawling “Wanderlei” in crayon across my ballot and then handing it to the overweight woman at the desk, who will inevitably respond by insisting that “this is not a polling place.” Goddamn bureaucracy.

Anyway, if you’re like me and are ready to bet your foreclosed home on UFC 89 this Saturday, here are the sweetest lines around, courtesy of BestFightOdds.com. If you don’t understand how betting odds work, read this. If you still don’t get it, stop sniffing glue.

Chris Leben (+191) vs. Michael Bisping (-211)
Luiz Cane (+104) vs. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou (-114)
Dan Hardy (+285) vs. Akihiro Gono (-308)
Neil Wann (+600) vs. Shane Carwin (-675)
Keith Jardine (+155) vs. Brandon Vera (-165)
Jess Liaudin (+141) vs. David Bielkheden (-135)
Marcus Davis (+230) vs. Paul Kelly (+285)
Paul Taylor (+300) vs. Chris Lytle (-328)
Samy Schiavo (+166) vs. Per Eklund (-180)
Terry Etim (+275) vs. Sam Stout (-291)
David Baron (+155) vs. Jim Miller (-172)

Thoughts…

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Video: Countdown to UFC 89

In the official UFC 89 hype video we continue to hear about Chris Leben‘s transformation as a fighter, which has quickly become one of the main storylines heading into this event. Oddly, with all the talk about Leben’s transition from brawler to technically sound MMA fighter, whenever anyone talks about his strengths they inevitably end up talking mostly about the characteristics of a brawler (hard-hitting, looping punches, good chin, etc.) while ascribing to Michael Bisping the characteristics of a technical fighter (straight punches, apparently, which is laughable to Chris Wilson). Not saying Leben isn’t a different fighter these days, just saying the whole thing is interesting.

Anyway, give it a look and you won’t be disappointed. Despite burning through all the stock footage of British landmarks in existence, it’s another solid effort from the Countdown crew.

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UFC 89 Gets Sokoudjou vs. Cane, Carwin vs. Wain

UFC MMA
(Props: JarryPark)

I was worried that UFC 89 (October 18th; Birmingham, England) was going to be one of those off-brand cards that are hastily thrown together for the British market — but it may have potential after all. Besides the requisite matchups of Bisping vs. Leben and (possibly) Davis vs. Kelly, and a reported welterweight feature of Thiago Alves vs. Diego Sanchez, the UFC has just added three more compelling bouts to the lineup.

First up is a light-heavyweight bout between Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou — who’s coming off a first-round TKO of Kazuhiro Nakamura at UFC 84 — and Luiz Cane, who recently knocked out Jason “Flapjacks” Lambert at UFC 85. Sokoudjou was already regarded as one of the top ten 205′ers in the world when he entered the UFC, and is probably still trying to shake off the humiliation of being the only guy that Lyoto Machida has finished in the last two years. Both him and Cane have a lot of hype behind them, and both like to throw bombs; could be a wild one.

Next is a heavyweight bout between Denver-based destroyer Shane Carwin (9-0) and British brawler Neil Wain (4-0). Like Carwin, Wain has won all of his fights by first-round stoppage — though I don’t think that little fun fact will matter much once the bell rings and Carwin starts charging across the cage. Like his 44-second mouthpiece-ejecting knockout of Christian Wellisch at UFC 84, this match might turn into another stunning KO win for the up-and-coming Carwin.

Finally, British welterweight star Dan Hardy (19-6) is set to make his Octagon debut against Akihiro Gono. Hardy is the reigning Cage Warriors welterweight champion, and has only suffered one loss (via disqualification) in his last nine fights. Gono (28-12-7) is a veteran of Shooto, Pancrase, and PRIDE who won his UFC debut last November by tapping Tamdan McCrory with an armbar at UFC 78; injury has prevented him from competing since.

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