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Tag: Paige VanZant

[VIDEO] Paige VanZant Cracks ‘DWTS’ Final Five With Game of Thrones-Inspired Dance


(Oh come on, Mark! Always establish your hooks first when taking the back!)

In case you’re not a 40-something year old man who’s been thoroughly neutered by his wife, you might not know that UFC strawweight Paige VanZant has been absolutely CRUSHING IT during her run on this season’s Dancing With the Stars. Alongside partner Mark Ballas, she’s been one of the only competitors to receive a perfect score this year, and has done so thanks largely in part to her consistently risky yet inspired routines. (Look at me, breaking down dance numbers like I’m Vaslav Nijinsky. What a world.)

Anyways, VanZant was back at it again last night, unleashing a Game of Thrones-inspired Waltz that earned her a near-perfect score of 29 out of 30. Vanzant’s performance was good enough to secure her a place in the season 22 semifinals, where she will compete against a bunch of former athletes and 80′s television actors that we couldn’t identify with a gun to our head for a trophy that probably looks nicer than the TUF glass plaque. With a win, I have no doubts that VanZant will propel MMA to the mainstream, legitimate, universally-beloved sport it was always destined to be.

After the jump: Vanzant’s partner dance with Antonio Brown from earlier in the night. SPOILER: It involves twirling, convulsions, and a rain-soaked finale.

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Friday Link Dump: UFC on FOX 20 Gets Its Main & Co-Main, The Rousey-Van Zant-Tate Drama Continues, Cocktails For Your Kentucky Derby Party + More


(Angela Lee vs. Mei Yamaguchi atomweight title fight from this morning’s ONE Championship 42: possibly the greatest women’s MMA fight in history.)

Holm vs. Shevchenko main event, Rumble vs. Teixeira targeted for UFC on FOX 20 (BloodyElbow)

Miesha Tate Explains ‘Shocking’ Incident between Ronda Rousey and Paige VanZant (MMAFighting)

No, Conor McGregor is Not Going to Box Floyd Mayweather (MMAJunkie)

Brendan Schaub and Bryan Callen, Riding the Whirlwind (Bleacher Report)

Top 10 Hottest Miesha Tate Photos (Lowkick)

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So Paige VanZant is Pretty Much Crushing It on Dancing With the Stars [VIDEO]

The history of UFC fighters appearing on Dancing With the Stars has been a brief but painful one. Chuck Liddell was the first to break the mold in Season 9, getting axed after the 4th week and finishing in 11th place (out of 16) overall. His old rival Randy Couture was next to appear some ten seasons later, but met a similarly swift end. Big Nog and Denis Kang also appeared in the Brazilian and Korean versions of the show, respectively, but failed to make it past the first few rounds. Who would think that professional fighters would have such notoriously terrible footwork?

Enter UFC strawweight Paige VanZant, who announced earlier this month that she had signed on to join the 22nd season (!) of the hit ABC competition show following her hard-fought loss to Rose Namajunas last year. Given VanZant’s athleticism and background as a former dancer, it seemed as if she would be the first MMA fighter to actually excel on the show, and she’s done nothing short of that thus far.

Last night, VanZant overcame a last-minute injury (of her dancing partner, Mark Ballas) to claim the highest score of the season, a 24, by dancing the tango alongside replacement partner Alan Bersten. Check out the video of her performance above.

After the jump: VanZant’s debut performance from the first episode of the season.

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Fight Night 80 Highlights/Results: Namajunas Dominates VanZant, Chiesa & Northcutt Notch Submission Wins + More

While looking through the lense of hindsight, it’s almost impossible to imagine how Paige VanZant was ever listed as a 2-to-1 favorite over Rose Namajunas heading into their Fight Night 80 main event. Yet she was, and we can only imagine that a lot of people made some money off a rare miss by the Vegas bookies.

Over the course of five rounds, our girl Rose utterly dismantled VanZant in every department. Her striking was impeccably crisp, her takedowns came at will, and her submissions were what ultimately won her the day. Vanzant looked completely outmatched from start to finish, repeatedly latching onto to hapless headlock throws THAT NO FIGHTER SHOULD EVER ATTEMPT AGAIN. But what she lacked in polish, VanZant more than made up in grit. On multiple occasions throughout the fight, a bloodied and battered Vanzant appeared to be caught in what any logical person would consider a fight-ending submission — first it was a rear-naked choke, then an armbar so brutal that it may have rearranged her DNA — but not once did she stop pressing forward and throwing nything she could think of at her clearly superior opponent. So on this day, we raise a glass to both competitors and say, congratulations on one epic goddamn war.

But the main event wasn’t the only fight that delivered, so head after the jump for a full list of Fight Night 80 results.

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UFC 191 Highlights/Results: Mighty Mouse Dominates, Arlovski and Mir Underwhelm + More


(Johnson vs. Dodson highlights, via UFC on FOX.)

At this point, it seems that flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson is forever destined to be one of the most dominant, yet simultaneously unbankable fighters in the history of the sport. Last Saturday was no exception, as the man they call “Mighty Mouse” turned in one of his best performances to date against rival John Dodson while headlining the lowest live gate for a UFC pay-per-view in 11 years. No respect, no respect, I tells ya.

Either the UFC has absolutely no idea how to market him, or casual fans are simply refusing to warm up to “little flyweights” (Ed note: My God, maybe Michael Bisping was right). Regardless, the UFC might want to start relegating Johnson to the FOX/FS1 cards, or at the very minimum, placing him in the co-main spot on a pay-per-views, because something just isn’t clicking with the UFC’s “f*cking idiot” fanbase.

Of course, Johnson wasn’t given much support in the form of a noteworthy undercard, which, save for a few noteworthy moments, didn’t really do much to entice those seated at the MGM Grand.

Highlights after the jump. 

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Here Comes A New Challenger: Matches to Make – UFC on FOX 15


(Quick Felice, the spinach! Go for the spinach!!” via Getty.)

By Sam Stilson

UFC on FOX: Machida vs. Rockhold always looked incredible on paper, but few would have expected its impact on three separate divisions. Yes, three out of the four favourites on the main card won, but the manner in which they dominated their opponents was completely unexpected. There’s a new pecking order laid out and more entries in Dana White’s proverbial mix than a Girl Talk setlist (Is he still cool? No? OK, that’s what I thought).

With so much fresh blood in the water, let’s take a look at the most logical next fights for our main card competitors.

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Update: Paige VanZant Recovering From Spine Injury, October UFC Debut in Jeopardy


(Paige models the new UFC women’s walkout uniform, presented by Under Armour. / Photo via Instagram.com/paige_vanzant)

Last week, we passed along word that UFC strawweight prospect Paige VanZant had disappeared from Team Alpha Male under somewhat hazy circumstances. “12 Gauge” has finally broken her silence about her whereabouts, and it’s not good news. As she wrote on her Facebook page last night:

WHERE IS PAIGE VANZANT?
Dear fans I know quite a few of you are wondering why I am not in my training camp. I left Sacramento to come back to my home state and have been in intense physical therapy from a spine injury. I do not have insurance coverage in California and I have not been giving the okay to train at this time. I am working hard to get better. Prayers up for a good recovery. Thank you so much for all your kind words it is such a blessing to have such an amazing team behind me.

Though VanZant didn’t say that her UFC Fight Night 54 bout against Kailin Curran was officially off, it seems unlikely that she’ll be able to make the October 4th date, considering that she isn’t currently cleared to train. We’ll keep you posted.

These days, Paige is paying the bills as a model and dancer for Karen Burns Productions, a Reno-based outfit that provides costumed entertainers for special events. A brief sampling of some of her recent work is below…

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Paige VanZant Leaves Team Alpha Male Under Sketchy Circumstances, Will Not Represent the Camp at UFC Fight Night 54


(Photo via @PAIGEVANZANT)

In a less-than-encouraging sign, Paige VanZant has left Team Alpha Male, and is currently training independently for her UFC debut against Kailin Curran at UFC Fight Night 54 on October 4th. Urijah Faber revealed yesterday on The MMA Hour that the 20-year-old strawweight prospect peaced-out earlier this summer under mysterious circumstances:

You know what, Paige has left. She hasn’t been around at all. I guess she, I don’t know, I asked what was going on. She was renting a room in Sacramento, and the person who she was renting from got evicted and took all her money, and I don’t know, she hasn’t been around. I told her, let me know if there’s any way I can help. I think she’s out in Reno training with her jiu-jitsu people or something. I don’t know where she is, man, for like the last month and a half or so, so I haven’t seen her…”

I just texted her yesterday to ask her how training is going. I haven’t heard back from her, so I don’t know, man. She’s 20 years old, she’s young. She’s a very good athlete, she’s still developing as a fighter, she believes in herself, she’s a great looking girl. I think she’s got a lot of potential. I mean, I would feel most comfortable if she was on the team. If she’s going to represent the team, she needs to be in the gym. And so as of right now, she’s not going to be able to represent the team when she fights.”

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Report: Paige VanZant vs. Kailin Curran Slated for UFC Fight Night Halifax


(Winner gets a six-figure modeling contract?)

MMAFighting is reporting that teen model turned UFC strawweight prospect Paige VanZant will likely make her Octagon debut at UFC Fight Night Halifax: MacDonald vs. Saffiedine on October 4th, against Hawaiian prospect Kailin Curran.

To borrow a phrase from the CME, these two certainly look good getting off the bus. On the other hand, VanZant and Curran land on the low end of the UFC experience spectrum, to put it gently. VanZant is 3-1 professionally with all three of those wins coming against women who were making their pro debuts. Curran’s pro record is a similar 3-0, with all three victories by unanimous decision under the Pacific Xtreme Combat banner — and none of those wins coming against an opponent with a winning record.

VanZant and Curran have something else in common: They both tried out for TUF 20. While VanZant was blocked from the show due to age requirements, Curran simply didn’t make the cut. Or maybe the UFC hand-picked her as VanZant’s first opponent, for aesthetic reasons.

Speaking of which, 12 more photos of Kailin Curran are in the gallery after the jump. Enjoy, and check out her Instagram page for more.

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Paige VanZant Too Young for TUF 20, Signs Directly With the UFC Instead


(You mean we don’t get to see THIS WOMAN get into drunken pillow fights with Thug Rose? *throws TV out window*)

You guys remember Paige VanZant, right? Unbelievably, just impossibly adorable model who also happens to be a legitimate MMA fighter at only 20 years of age? Yeah, her. Well it turns out that, contrary to earlier reports, the lovely Ms. VanZant will *not* be among the dozen or so Invicta strawweights competing on the upcoming, all-women season of The Ultimate Fighter, TUF 20. The reason: She’s too young to drink, and the TUF house is nothing if not a place for drunken dude-bros — and now, dude-broads — to get into shouting matches over whom should allow whom to bang.

News of VanZant’s ineligibility came directly from her Alpha Male training partner, Urijah Faber, who told Bloody Elbow that “12 Gauge” has ”now signed straight with the UFC” in light of the TUF development.

While this means that VanZant won’t be given a shot at the inaugural strawweight title, it also means that she won’t be subjected to twoish months of reality show hell and the downright laughable UFC contract that follows. Toss in the fact that she’ll have the benefit of not only watching all her future competitors in action, but continue training with Team Alpha Male while doing so, and it seems like a win to me.

Then again, it would have been nice to see VanZant get schooled in the art of the Showtime Kick, or get into a prank war with one of her fellow castmates at the very least. But as it stands, one can only dream…

-J. Jones

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