Steroids in MMA
Which MMA Fighter Will Test Positive For Steroids Next?

Tag: Michael Bisping

Exclusive: Chris Leben Talks Fighting Bisping and the Judges at UFC 89 in England

Chris Leben’s first shot at Michael Bisping didn’t exactly go as planned. Soon after signing to fight “The Count” at UFC 85 in London, Leben was forced to return to Oregon to deal with an outstanding warrant resulting from a DUI arrest before he could leave the country. Though Leben and the UFC were hoping to resolve the matter quickly, the judge had other plans. Leben was sentenced to thirty-five days in jail, prompting the UFC to scratch him from the card.

With his legal troubles now behind him, Leben is getting a second chance at Bisping, this time at UFC 89 in Birmingham, England. In this exclusive CagePotato interview Leben discusses his maturation process as a fighter, his gameplan against Bisping, dealing with hometown judges, and more.

CagePotato.com: Hey Chris. Thanks for talking with me. We’re a few weeks out from the fight. How is your preparation coming?

Really good, really well. It’s been long and intense and I’m kind of just getting to the point now where I’m ready to go fight and get this thing over with.

It seems like things really changed for you when you moved to Hawaii. What has that move done for you?

You know, it’s great. Moving to Hawaii is definitely the best thing I’ve ever done in my life. I had the opportunity to be the head coach at Icon and there are a whole bunch of guys out here training with me who are just great. But besides the gym and the wonderful people out here you have the weather and everything that is Hawaii. It’s been really conducive to my training.

I hear a lot of people say you’re much more mature these days, no longer such a wild guy in and out of the cage. What do you think prompted that transformation?

Losing (laughs). You know, I got away with being a brawler for a long time. And it’s hard to change things when they’re working. But when I fought Anderson I realized, I might be able to beat 95% of the guys out there, but I’ll never be a world champion fighting this way. So I had to go back and change a lot of things. That was one part of it.

And the other part was, you know, coaching. Now that I have a team of amateur guys fighting, it’s hard to tell them to do something if you’re not doing it yourself.

Read More DIGG THIS

UFC Quick Hits: Bisping, Mir, Rampage/Wandy, & More

- Michael Bisping has some kind words for Chris Leben in the above ESPN interview, calling the UFC 89 bout his toughest challenge to date.

- Frank Mir astutely summed up what it was like to fight Brock Lesnar, telling Sherdog the experience was “like getting hit by a car that’s moving very slowly and you can’t get out of the way. It bumps and knocks you over and is just overwhelmingly powerful. …I didn’t know where he was half the time. It really felt like I was underwater and somebody was beating the s—-t out of me. I was just drowning under him.” Check out MMA’s undisputed champ of metaphors.

- Sounds like we can forget about seeing Wanderlei Silva-Rampage Jackson tacked on to the UFC 91 card. Yahoo!’s Kevin Iole says it’s more likely that fight will appear on a Super Bowl weekend card, but almost certainly won’t happen in 2008. At least it will give Rampage more time to sort out his legal problems and get comfortable with his new team.

- TUF 6′s Ben Saunders will take on Brandon Wolff at the UFC’s Dec. 10 event for the troops at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. This is the fight that War Machine turned down, right around the same time he made idiotic comments about Evan Tanner. Saunders kept his mouth shut and agreed to fight whoever the UFC asked him to. Guess who still has a job.

Read More DIGG THIS

Bisping and Henderson Rumored as ‘TUF 9′ Coaches

Michael Bisping Forrest Griffin UFC MMA ring girls
(Will Michael Bisping follow in Forrest Griffin’s footsteps? Photo courtesy of daylife.com)

From TheSun.co.uk:

Michael Bisping is hot favourite to be named as one of the coaches on the new series of The Ultimate Fighter

The UFC have not yet offered Bisping the coach’s role on TUF 9 because he is scheduled to fight Chris Leben at UFC 89 at the Birmingham National Indoor Arena on October 18.

But SunSport understands Dana White will immediately hand the British star a contract to appear on the show if he overcomes Leben next month.

It is believed Dan Henderson will coach the US team, with the TUF 9 finale featuring him in a clash for the #1 middleweight contender’s spot against Bisping, which could take place in December next year.

As the UFC’s only British star, it makes sense that the TUF 3 winner would be chosen as a coach for the “U.S. vs. U.K.” season of The Ultimate Fighter. But it also makes you wonder who will be picked to lead the British team if Bisping loses to Leben. We’re assuming it would still be Bisping — but then would a fight between him and Hendo really be a #1 contender match? When contacted by MMA Weekly, The Count confirmed that he hadn’t been made an offer yet, but he’d certainly be open to one:

Read More DIGG THIS

UFC Quick Hits: Sadollah, Gonzaga, Rampage + More

Amir Sadollah UFC MMA CB Dollaway
(Amir Sadollah could be part of Couture/Lesnar’s supporting cast.)

— UFC lightweight Gleison Tibau has been forced to pull out of his UFC 90 match against Hermes Franca due to a shoulder injury; replacing him will be Franca’s longtime friend Marcus Aurelio. Franca and Aurelio trained together at American Top Team before Franca left the camp, which led to a feud between Franca and ATT.

— During an appearance at Combat Sports Challenge 26 in Colonial Heights, Virginia, TUF 7 winner Amir Sadollah revealed that he expects his next fight to be at UFC 91 in November. His opponent should be announced in the near future.

— UFC 91 will also reportedly feature a heavyweight bout between Gabriel Gonzaga and UFC newcomer Josh Hendricks. Gonzaga is coming off a first-round submission win over Justin McCully at UFC 86 in July, which snapped a two-fight losing streak. Hendricks is a vet of various regional promotions who’s 9-0 with one no-contest in his last ten fights.

Michael Bisping thinks that Quinton Jackson’s next fight will be in December, against either Wanderlei Silva or Mauricio Rua: “[E]ither way, revenge is the dish that’ll be served up on the night! I’m sure whoever he gets in December, everyone at the Wolfslair will be behind him 100 per cent and fingers crossed he’ll get his revenge.”

— The UFC recently reunited eight castmembers from The Ultimate Fighter‘s first season to film an upcoming TV special. MMA Junkie provides some advance highlights, like when Joe Rogan asked the cast how much better they did with the women after being part of the show:

“If you’re in a relationship you want out of, now is the time to speak up,” Stephan Bonnar shouted, laughing.

When no one was willing to talk, Rogan called them “a bunch of (expletives).”

Forrest Griffin, now the UFC’s light heavyweight champion, broke the tension by shouting, “Hey, I don’t know about you guys, but I was doing pretty good with the women before.”

Read More DIGG THIS

Rampage to Make New Home at Wolfslair

Quinton Rampage Jackson Michael Bisping MMA UFC
(Big mistake.)

With Juanito Ibarra out of his life, Quinton Jackson was down a trainer and a business manager. But according to Fighters Only Magazine, he’s found both at Wolfslair Academy, the Liverpool, England-based MMA team that’s home to UFC fighters Michael Bisping and Paul Kelly. Jackson has signed a three-year deal that will make Wolfslair responsible for managing all aspects of his career, from training camps to securing sponsorships. According to gym co-owner Anthony McGann:

“After the Forrest fight, he felt that his training hadn’t been quite right. He was deeply disappointed in his performance and he felt like he needed to change some things in his life. He came to us as we’ve all been friends for a long time. He feels that training in England can help him focus, which can be difficult in California because of his star status. He’s relatively unknown in England…He will be training when he can in England and the Wolfslair will be running his camps up in Big Bear when he is preparing for his fights.”

Oddly, McGann mentioned that Jackson’s split with Juanito Ibarra was amicable, and they parted on good terms — which runs contrary to every other report on the subject. As for Jackson, he seems very enthusiastic about his new camp, since their vibe seems to mesh with his own:

Read More DIGG THIS

Evolution of an Icon, Chapter 5: In Which Leben Gets A Huge Buddha Tattoo


Chris Leben: Evolution of an Icon (Episode 5) – Watch more free videos

When Chris Leben first showed up to a fight with a tattoo of a samurai holding a severed head sprawling across his back, it seemed like he had finally found something to believe in. In this edition of “Chris Leben: Evolution of an Icon” he adds a different belief system to a different part of his body. Now, you’re probably thinking, ‘What could possibly make Chris Leben want a tattoo of the Buddha when nothing about his life or personal ethos seems to be in keeping with Buddhism?’

Fair question, but what you probably don’t know is that traditional Buddhism actually puts a lot of emphasis on coming in smelling like booze and dirty strippers and still putting the stamp on kids. Plus it looks cool, and nothing’s more American than co-opting the religious symbols of other cultures as ornamentation.

Bisping better be worried now. If he gets hit with Leben’s Buddha arm, it’s lights out.

Read More DIGG THIS

Chris Leben Mini-Series, Volume Three


Chris Leben: Evolution of an Icon – Watch more free videos

Here’s the third installment of the Icon Sport series “Chris Leben: Evolution of an Icon.” When this started, we were among those impressed by the production value (for the internet, anyway) and pleased by the general concept of this web series. But now that we’ve hit episode three, it’s starting to feel a little too much like a Chris Leben infomercial. Maybe it’s the strength coach going starry-eyed over him or his girlfriend talking up his dedication, but when everyone is so unrelentingly positive it becomes hard to digest.

I guess I just thought/hoped this would be more of an inside look and less of an extended hypefest. Now that I’ve typed that sentence, I realize how stupid it sounds.

As an added bonus, check out the trailer for the straight-to-DVD Randy Couture joint, “Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior” after the jump. Is there really a point in the film where some weirdo magic blood is dripped onto Couture’s head, presumably granting him special powers? Really? Then consider it Netflix’d.

Read More DIGG THIS

Dana White’s Announcement: UFC 89 Free on Spike

Never one to miss an opportunity, Dana White announced during last night’s re-broadcast of UFC 84 that UFC 89 will be broadcast for free on Spike TV. The announcement coincided with Elite XC’s Saturday Night Fights presentation on CBS, but we assume that was just a coincidence.

UFC 89 features Michael Bisping and Chris Leben from Birmingham, England on October 18. It also features Thiago Silva and Lyoto Machida. And not a whole lot else at this point. A pay-per-view from England is already a dicey prospect because of the time difference, and the lack of overall star power on the card makes free TV a much better choice.

Keep an eye out during UFC 87 in August, as we expect Elite XC’s Doug DeLuca to get on TV and announce that he is going out for ice cream, and you’re welcome to come along.

Read More DIGG THIS

Chris Leben: Evolution of an Icon


(Props: Bloody Elbow)

Not long ago we wrote about the surprisingly well-done Chris Leben video from Icon Sport. Now the first episode is out, and while Leben himself is no Aristotle he does seem to be more mature than the Leben who KO’d doors on “The Ultimate Fighter”. Around the 4:00 mark talk turns to Michael Bisping, and then Leben describes it as “the fight that needs to happen”. That might be overstating it a bit, but at the very least it’s a fight that would be cool if it really happened this time.

Read More DIGG THIS

Marcus Davis Fought Swick With One Arm

Marcus Davis UFC MMA

I was incredibly disappointed by Marcus Davis’s loss-by-smothering against Mike “Not Quick” Swick at UFC 85 — partly because I’d been shamelessly hugging his nuts leading up to the event, and partly because his loss contributed to me having to film myself vomiting. But in a recent profile on MMA Junkie, Davis reveals that his insane weightlifting regimen led to an injury that almost sunk the fight altogether. As Davis explains:

“Three weeks before the Swick fight, I had torn the connective tissue between my triceps and my rear [deltoid]. I had Cortisone shots for that. Two days before the Swick fight, I couldn’t move my arm. So, the UFC was cool enough to send me to an orthopedic doctor in the U.K., and they did an ultrasound on my arm. I had an impingement in the front bursa sac that was like 100 times the size it was supposed to be, and then still that tear in the rear connective tissue. [The doctor] did a guided needle with the ultrasound into the bursa, and drained the bursa. And that lasted for about three-and-a-half hours, and then I couldn’t move my arm again.

“The day of the weigh-ins, [the UFC] excused me early. After I weighed in, they let me leave and brought me back [to the doctor] and checked me out. It had swollen right back up again because the needle had aggravated it.”

Read More DIGG THIS
CagePotatoMMA