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Tag: Renan Barao

Late Replacement Main Events: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

By Jared Jones

In a year that has seen nine pay-per-view headliners slip through the UFC’s fingers, Cain Velasquez’s injury and subsequent removal from UFC 180 might the biggest blow of them all (I hear a nasty tumble down a flight of stairs is to blame for all this). The TUF curse has now gone international, folks, and while I’m not prepared to start nailing the UFC’s coffin shut, I will say that the champ’s most recent injury has cast an ominous shadow over the UFC’s first trip to Mexico.

Then again, the UFC was able to book a hell of a replacement opponent for Fabricio Werdum in Mark Hunt, and an interim title fight between the two is probably the best thing us fans could ask for, all things considered. Late replacement main events are always a mixed bag, but before we start rioting, let’s all take a deep breath and try to remember a few last-minute headliners that actually worked out…

The Good

UFC 128: Shogun vs. Jones


(This and all photos hereafter via Getty.)

That’s right, the event that marked the beginning of the end for light heavyweights with title aspirations was never meant to happen.

Having just ended the Machida Era™ at UFC 113 in stunning fashion, Mauricio Rua was actually scheduled to face Rashad Evans at UFC 128 until a knee injury forced the latter out of the contest. Rua, who had just had his own knee repaired following the Machida fight, was then matched up against a resurgent and likeable at the time contender named Jon Jones, who had unleashed an And-1 mixtape of asskicking on Ryan Bader just two events prior.

Although it was Rua who held the tremendous experience edge, it was Jones who would dominate the fight from start to finish. Flying knees, oblique kicks, and likely an eye poke or five from the challenger had Rua in defense mode until a particularly vicious knee put him away in the third round. Despite being called up to the biggest fight of his life on a month’s notice, Jones emerged a champion and sent a chilling message to the rest of the light heavyweight division.

That message: “Hey pussy, are you still there? None of you will ever defeat me.”

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Urijah Faber vs. Francisco Rivera, Renan Barao vs. Mitch Gagnon Booked for December UFC Cards


(Barao prepares to unleash another super uncomfortable victory celebration on poor, poor humanity. / Photo via Getty)

Two of the biggest names in the UFC’s bantamweight division will be back in action this December. First up, Urijah Faber — who still hasn’t lost a non-title fight, ever — will compete at UFC 181: Hendricks vs. Lawler II (December 6th, Las Vegas) against Francisco Rivera. UFC officials confirmed the matchup last night.

Faber is coming off his submission victory over Alex Caceres at UFC 175 in July, while Rivera most recently lost a decision to Takeya Mizugaki at UFC 173, snapping a two-fight win streak. I’m not exactly sure how this booking makes sense, but the opportunity to watch Faber strangle somebody just outside the top ten is the kind of gift that you don’t question.

In other booking news, former 135-pound champ Renan Barao goes back to being a regular-joe contender, when he fights Mitch Gagnon at UFC Fight Night 58: Machida vs. Dollaway (December 20th; Barueri, Brazil); the booking was also confirmed last night.

Barao was supposed to rematch TJ Dillashaw at UFC 177, but then passed out during his weight cut, and was pulled from the event and publicly shamed. Barao will have a chance to redeem himself against Gagnon, a Canadian up-and-comer who has won his last four (although against a relatively low level of competition).

So: Easy wins for the big names, or do you smell an upset cookin’?

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The Top Ten Times Dana White Buried His Own Fighters


(Warning: The Danascowl has appeared. Brace for impact. / Photo via Getty)

By Mike Fagan

They say pimping ain’t easy, and that’s probably true for promoting too. (There’s a whole host of other uncomfortable comparisons to be made between the two professions as well.) Pimping is probably a lot harder when you constantly denigrate your talent. “Yeah, Mary? She makes a weird squealing noise when you bang her. But hey, it’s your money.” Yet, that’s exactly what UFC president Dana White does. Here are the top ten instances of Dana White burying his own fighters.

Honorable Mention: Antonio Silva

The UFC buried him. Literally.

10. (Tie) Kenny Florian and Nate Marquardt

Kenny Florian and Nate Marquardt are two very different people. Where Florian is a suave, dark-haired Massachusetts lifer, Marquardt is a ginger mountain man who made sure to list himself first and foremost as a Christian on his Twitter bio. They have one thing in common though: Dana White called them both chokers.

Nate Marquardt lost a close fight to Yushin Okami at UFC 122. Okami was 9-2 in the UFC heading into the fight, and would go on to fight Anderson Silva for the title in his next appearance. That didn’t stop Dana White from calling Marquardt a choker and blasting the Greg Jackson-led corner (more on him in a bit!) for telling Marquardt he was leading on points.

As for Florian, White said he didn’t want to “take anything away from Gray Maynard” and wasn’t “bad-mouthing” or “trying to disrespect” Florian after UFC 118. But that’s exactly what he did when he said Florian “chokes in big fights” before reducing his performance to standing and staring at Maynard. Florian’s five UFC losses came to Diego Sanchez, Sean Sherk, B.J. Penn, Maynard, and Jose Aldo — all champions or title challengers. Maybe, just maybe, the overachieving Florian just wasn’t on their level?

9. Jose Aldo

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Renan Barao Puts Life at Risk, Makes $0.00


(Photo via Getty.)

Dana White lobbed a financial insult at Renan Barao in the wake of UFC 177.

In case you’ve been away from the Internet for the last few days: The main event of UFC 177 was supposed to be bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw vs. Renan Barao–an unnecessary rematch of their bout from May. Barao botched his weight cut, which caused him to fall and hit his head in the shower. He was rushed to the hospital and couldn’t fight. Weight cutting is a serious health issue, but Dana White and the UFC apparently don’t care.

Insults to the ego are one thing, insults to the wallet are another. The former is naught but the buzzing of flies, but the latter stings like Head and Shoulders in the eye. Renan Barao will probably get over Joe Rogan essentially calling him an embarrassment to himself and the UFC. But will Barao get over Dana White refusing to pay him his show money? Because that’s what Dana White is doing. He’s not paying Barao.

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OMFG: Renan Barao Withdraws From UFC 177 After Botched Weight Cut, Joe Soto Replaces Him Against TJ Dillashaw


(Please, Renan, you’re scaring the children. / Photo via MMAWeekly)

As karmic retribution for the UFC trying to sell us a garbage-ass pay-per-view, Renan Barao withdrew from his UFC 177 headlining fight against TJ Dillashaw earlier today, following complications during his weight cut.

According to a statement provided to MMAFighting.com by Nova Uniao, “Barao felt dizzy when leaving the tub in his hotel room and hit his head against the wall. The bantamweight passed out and was rushed to the hospital.” A catchweight bout between Barao and Dillashaw was not considered due to safety concerns. Barao is currently recovering in a Sacramento hospital.

As a result of the withdrawal, the UFC has drafted — get this — former Bellator featherweight champion Joe Soto to step in on a day’s notice against Dillashaw. Soto is riding a six-fight win streak, and was set to make his UFC debut tomorrow night against Anthony Birchak (never heard of him) on the prelims. So now, tomorrow’s pay-per-view event is UFC 177: Dillashaw vs. Soto. Card subject to change. Refunds now available.

UFC 177 was so star-deprived that Renan Barao himself was the biggest name on the card. And now he’s gone. God help us all. UFC 177 will proceed with just eight fights on the card. When we woke up this morning, there were ten, but then Henry Cejudo did his thing, and now this. Unreal.

“(Barao) is scared,” Dillashaw said after the bad news broke. “He doesn’t want it. His coaches wanted the rematch more than he did. He’s never missed weight before. It’s kinda funny he does it now.”

Also:

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Friday Links: Matt Brown Drops an R-Bomb (?), Vitor Belfort Goes Hard on Instagram, The Rock Smacks Down Bullies + More


(Our friend Georgie wrote a “Hot Mess Guide” to surviving the summer, and it’s awesome, and you should all read it here.)

Video: Despite Best Effort, UFC on FOX 12′s Matt Brown Puts Foot in Mouth Again (MMAJunkie)

That’s Not How You Cut a Promo, Vitor… (CP Twitter)

…Okay, That’s a Little Better (MMAFighting)

Report: MMA Fighter Cleared of Jan. 1 Homicide Charge in New Mexico (Sherdog)

Corissa Furr to Guest Ring Card for Bellator Tonight; #SPIKEFORCE Transformation Continues (BabesofMMA)

Renan Barao Says He Woke Up in the Locker Room at UFC 173 (BleacherReport)

30 Femme Fatales That You’d Totally Love To Get Your Ass Kicked By (AskMen)

Screen Junkies Show: The Rock Smacks Down High School Bully (ScreenJunkies)

10 Cutest Kids in Cosplay (Mommyish)

Video: Joe Moravsky Breaks ‘American Ninja Warrior’ Course, Sets Record Time (Radass)

The 50 Funniest Caucasian Gangster Photos Of All Time (WorldwideInterweb)

Interview: Cali Carter Discusses the Highs and Lows of Porn Life (EveryJoe)

The 20 Dumbest Criminals of All Time (PopHangover)

3 People You Always Meet in MMORPGs (DoubleViking)

Amusing Catfight Goes Next Level With Greatest Moment in GIF History (Guyism)

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UFC 173 vs. Bellator 120: Which Did More Web Traffic?

By Matt Saccaro

Despite the UFC’s legal team being among CagePotato’s most avid readers, we can’t convince them to give us any insights into the UFC’s PPV business. We can only judge a card’s interest by the PPV estimates that circulate a few weeks after an event has passed.

There’s another way to judge fans’ interest in a particular fight card though: Web traffic.

In between discussions about which IFL team was the best (I’m a huge Quad City Silverbacks fan), we at CagePotato headquarters started opining about how Bellator 120: Rampage vs. King Mo would compare to a low-level UFC PPV. Some of us said it’d bury an event like UFC 173: Barao vs. Dillashaw in terms of traffic, some of us said it would get buried.

Now that fight week(end) is over, we can jump into AnalyticsPotato mode and see which fight card wowed the web more. And to be clear, I’m using unique page views as the primary metric to judge interest. And by “coverage” we mean articles before/during/after the card that are about the card. Seems obvious but it’s important to be clear.

Earlier in the week, we reported on the CagePotato twitter that Bellator 120 received about 34% more traffic, but that calculation was made in error. There were a couple of articles in our UFC 173 coverage that I forgot to include in the tally. However, even with these pieces added, Bellator 120 still wins out. Bellator 120′s coverage, on the whole, received 11% more traffic than UFC 173′s.

Other random insights:

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Will UFC 173 Force the UFC to Learn Its Lesson About Promoting Fighters?


(Photo via Getty)

By Matt Saccaro

Regarding Renan Barao and the bantamweight division, the UFC had a promotion problem. Barao was one of the sport’s greatest fighters, yet he couldn’t fill a bar showing the PPV if they gave away free food and free beer.

Fans didn’t care about Barao, and there was nothing the UFC could do to change that. While Barao’s inability to speak English, rugged good looks, and total apathy regarding the salesman part of being a prize fighter certainly didn’t make promoting him easy, building Barao was still the UFC’s job. And they continuously failed.

MMA Junkie’s Ben Fowlkes analyzed this issue in the days before UFC 173 [Editor's note: Hilariously, Dana White grilled Fowlkes for the article but admitted to not reading it...]:

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UFC 173 Results: TJ Dillashaw Knocks Out Renan Barao in Masterful Performance, Daniel Cormier Puts Dan Henderson to Sleep


(Not bad, but it doesn’t quite stack up to the original. / Props: MMAFighting)

I’ll start with the good news: Tonight’s UFC 173: Barao vs. Dillashaw pay-per-view features two of the UFC’s greatest talents — bantamweight champion Renan Barao and undefeated light-heavyweight contender Daniel Cormier — and seeing those guys in action might be worth the PPV cost in itself. True, Barao and Cormier are both competing in lopsided odds-mismatches that are bordering on indefensible, but why focus on the negative?

In addition to “The Baron” defending his 135-pound title against Team Alpha Male standout TJ Dillashaw, and Cormier looking to earn a title shot with a win over legendary slugger Dan Henderson, tonight’s card will feature a high-level welterweight bout between Robbie Lawler and Jake Ellenberger (who are both coming off losses). Plus, Takeya “Teriyaki” Mizugaki and Francisco Rivera will attempt to build on their win streaks in the bantamweight division, and Jamie Varner kicks off the broadcast against fellow fan-friendly lightweight James Krause.

BG will be sticking round-by-round updates from the UFC 173 main card after the jump beginning at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for the latest updates, and follow us on twitter for extra analysis and yuk-yuks. Thanks for coming.

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Gambling Addiction Enabler Head-to-Head: UFC 173 Edition


(Damn it, TJ. You’re supposed to hold the imaginary title belt above your head.)

UFC 173 may not be heavy on star power, but it presents some interesting opportunities for the MMA fan with a crippling gambling addiction looking to make a few bucks this weekend. Join staff writers Jared Jones and Seth Falvo as they break down their favorite fights, underdogs and the most creative ways to flush your hard earned cash down the crapper in a “versus” style edition of the gambling addiction enabler. Will Renan Barao extend his winning streak? Is Daniel Cormier a lock against the aging Dan Henderson? Read on for our picks – with odds courtesy of 5Dimes.eu- and may the winnings be yours.

The Good Dogs

Jared: I’d like to start by preemptively shaming you, Seth, as well as the Potato Nation, and truly, every last so-called “MMA fan” who isn’t giving Dan Henderson a smidgen of hope against Daniel Cormier tomorrow night. Seriously, you guys are the worst.

I don’t care if he’s fighting Fedor on Zeus’ shoulders and both can punch but only Zeus can kick, Dan Henderson should *never* be listed at anything worse than even odds. He’s defeated heavyweights, light heavyweights, middleweights, supposed Emperors, and more legends of the sport than pugilistic dementia. That he’s currently hovering around the +600 mark is not only an insult to the man, the myth, the psuedo-Native American that is “Hollywood,” but a disgrace to this sport on par with YAMMA Pit Fighting. TRT, SchmeeRT, Dan Henderson will walk through Cormier’s punches before delivering his greatest H-Bomb to date, at 2:03 of the second round, amen. Say it with me, folks: Dan. F*cking. Henderson.

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