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Tag: TUF 18

Bethe Correia to Face Shayna Baszler at UFC 176, Because Grudge Match


(We now to go to our post-fight celebration expert, Michael Kelso, for analysis.)

Not since Nick Diaz invented the Stockton Heybuddy have we seen a fighter gain so much notoriety for a hand gesture, but that seems to be the case with one Bethe Correia. Whether us MMA fans will admit it or not, we all get a semi at the thought of an honest grudge match between MMA fighters, and when Correia silently dissed the “Four Horsewoman” following her victory over Jessamyn Duke at UFC 172, it was pretty much a done-deal that she would face one of the three remaining members in her next UFC contest.

But being that Marina Shafir just turned pro and that Ronda Rousey is Ronda Rousey, all roads lead to Shayna Baszler, the ten year veteran and final member of the ill-named MMA supergroup. As such, UFC officials announced last night that Correia and Baszler will in fact throw down at UFC 176: Aldo vs. Mendes 2 on August 2nd in what is sure to be billed as “an intense rivalry between a rising contender and a savvy veteran.”

More on this matchup, including Rousey’s thoughts on Correia as a potential opponent, are after the jump.

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After Unfavorable Portrayal in Season 18, Ronda Rousey Claims She “No Longer Supports” The Ultimate Fighter


(A vote against wholesome, quality entertainment like this is a vote against America, IMHO.)

It would be hard to deny that the MMA commentsphere’s seething hatred of all things Ronda Rousey was ever more intense than during her coaching gig on The Ultimate Fighter 18. Whether it was her brash personality, her wild mood swings, or her inability to be humble in victory or classy in defeat, it’s safe to say that “Rowdy” rubbed a lot of fans the wrong way by the time TUF had finished taping. Not that affected her ability to kick ass in the slightest, because well, Rousey is the kind of crazy that cannot be phased by unfavorable media coverage. Or trash-talk. Or the skillset of 99% of her opponents.

In any case, Rousey recently spoke with Sportsnet about her time on the show, and when the discussion shifted to the “infamous” brawl between Wanderlei Silva and Chael Sonnen on this season’s TUF Brazil, the women’s champ revealed that not even she supports the reality show that many feel has long overstayed its welcome:

I don’t watch ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ now that I know how much bull is in it. I don’t support it.

They don’t know the first thing about fighting. They only know about reality TV and they treated us like we were ‘Real Housewives of Atlanta’ and not elite athletes that should be respected. 

You hear that? Ronda Rousey just sort-of referred to Miesha Tate as an “elite athlete.” Can we all forgive her for that whole handshake diss now?

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The TUF 18 Salaries, Or, What the Hell Has Happened to Nate Diaz’s Salary? [UPDATED]


(Oh, *now* we understand why he’s pissed off all the time.)

If the brothers Diaz are known for three things, it’s whooping ass, puffing herb, and saying ridiculously hilarious stuff when a microphone is placed in front of them. Whether they’re discussing the “bitch ass lady sounds” their opponents make in the cage or the merits of throwing in the towel, you’ll never hear a Diaz making some wishy-washy, politically correct statement on behalf of themselves or the UFC, and therein lies their appeal.

Of course, upon glancing over the TUF 18 salaries, one begins to understand why the Diaz brothers are constantly griping over fighter pay. While big bro Nick banked a cool 200k for his post-retirement, pre-re-retirement headlining title fight with Georges St. Pierre at UFC 158, it seems that Nate — who is also a former title challenger, BTW — is barely making more to show than he did in his early post-TUF days (via MMAJunkie):

Nate Diaz: $30,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Gray Maynard: $45,000

Despite hailing from the same season of TUF as Maynard (and actually submitting him in the semifinals), recently fighting for a title, and collecting 4 “Of the Night” bonuses in each of his past 4 wins, Diaz is somehow making 1/3rd as much as Maynard to show. What. the. fucking. fuck.

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TUF 18 Finale Curtain-Jerker Ryan Benoit Makes $100,000 in Bonuses for Losing to Josh Sampo


(First order of business? Getting “RYAN” tattooed on his chest. / Photo via Getty)

Despite getting choked out in the second-round by Josh Sampo, UFC first-timer Ryan Benoit was awarded $100,000 in Fight of the Night bonuses following Saturday’s TUF 18 Finale. Though the FOTN award would normally pocket each fighter $50,000 apiece, UFC president Dana White decided to give both bonuses to Benoit, because Sampo came in 2.5 pounds over his flyweight limit on Friday. As White put it at the post-fight press conference, “it pays to make weight.” (Sampo was fined 10% of his purse for missing weight, half of which went to his opponent, so that’s probably another $600-$800 for Benoit right there.)

Benoit’s hundred-grand windfall is even more surprising because, as the data shows, opening bouts are rarely remembered when it’s time to award bonuses. The Benoit vs. Sampo match had the curtain-jerking spot at the TUF 18 Finale, and was the only fight to be broadcast on Facebook instead of the FOX Sports network. Most likely, you didn’t see it. But in a card marked by underwhelming performances, one-sided beatings, and a brutal disqualification, the Benoit/Sampo fight was at least a competitive scrap.

Ryan Benoit isn’t the first UFC fighter to win two performance bonuses in his Octagon debut; James Krause did it earlier this year when he picked up the Fight of the Night and Submission of the Night awards after coming in as an injury replacement against Sam Stout at UFC 161. But of course, Krause won that fight.

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Ronda Rousey and Miesha Tate Join Forces to Create an Awkward Interview [VIDEO]

If you thought an interview putting hated rivals Ronda Rousey and Miesha Tate shoulder-to-shoulder would have Chael Sonnen levels of excitement, you’d be wrong.

Despite the ferocity and abject hatred between the two fighters, Jon Anik‘s interview of the first-ever female Ultimate Fighter coaches didn’t produce anything memorable save for uncomfortable levels of awkwardness.

First of all, Rousey clearly didn’t want to be that close to Tate. She was also understandably upset about the fact that her two teammates Jessamyn Duke and Peggy Morgan just fought one another.

It only went downhill from there.

Once Anik asked Tate about Julianna Pena, Rousey essentially no-sold everything Tate said and stared vacantly into the distance. When Anik brought the mic back to the Olympian and asked her about Tate’s improvements as a fighter as well as her own improvements, Rousey answered with her usual candor but without her usual passion. She was honest but apathetic.

“The first time we fought it was less than a year since I’ve gone pro, and now I’m three years,” she said with a half-scowl on her face. It wasn’t Heidi Androl-death stare level but it was close. “I’m a more improved fighter since, I don’t think I’ve seen as good a performance from her since I won the title and she’s fought a few times since then.”

Read the conclusion of the interview featuring Jon Anik’s abysmal attempt at selling the UFC 168 PPV after the jump.

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CagePotato PSA: You Can Support Women’s MMA and Still Think a Women’s Fight Was Awful


(Roxanne Modafferi, cruising to another bantamweight title-defense in the Ultimate Friendship Championship. / Photo via Getty)

By Matt Saccaro

In women’s MMA, as in men’s MMA, there are great matches and there are not-so-great matches. Claiming a men’s fight is sub-optimal doesn’t carry a negative stigma. Sure, some “YOU’RE NOT A FIGHTER, BRO” types will get upset, but generally it’s OK to call out the poor aspects of a contest — whether it pertains to the booking or the in-cage action — when two males are fighting.

Making the same comments when women are in the cage changes things. We learned this the hard way on Twitter last night. You’re branded a WMMA hater when you say that every women’s fight on The Ultimate Fighter 18 Finale isn’t Bonnar vs. Griffin I with estrogen.

We don’t hate women’s MMA. CagePotato is a proud sponsor of Invicta strawweight Rose Namajunas, and we’ll be sponsoring Angela “Overkill” Hill for her XFC debut later this month. However, just because we love WMMA doesn’t mean we’re not going to criticize a fight just because it’s between two women.

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TUF 18 Finale Lineup Complete With Pena vs. Rakoczy, Modafferi vs. Pennington + More


(Jessica Rakoczy vs. Raquel Pennington full fight video, via TheUltimateFighterFX)

Assuming you had better things to do on Wednesday night, you probably missed the 13th and final episode of The Ultimate Fighter 18, in which Team Rousey dark horse Jessica Rakoczy fought through an injured shoulder to win a unanimous decision over Team Tate’s Raquel Pennington. (Now everybody pat Jared on the back for calling it.) Rakoczy, who came into this season with a rather stinky professional record of 1-3, now heads into the TUF 18 Finals against Julianna Pena. New prediction: Bruce Buffer will announce Rakoczy’s record as “4-3,” including her exhibition bouts on the show. Call it a hunch.

After Wednesday’s episode aired, the UFC released the full fight lineup for this Saturday’s TUF 18 Finale. Headlined by the lightweight grudge match between Nate Diaz and Gray Maynard, the main card will kick off with two bouts between female TUF 18 castmembers, including the Happy friggin’ Warrior herself. None of TUF 18‘s male castmembers made the cut, besides Chris Holdsworth and David Grant in the men’s final. Harsh, but fair, considering how badly some of these dudes embarrassed themselves.

Check out the full TUF 18 Finale lineup after the jump, and come back to CagePotato.com tomorrow night at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT for our liveblog of the main card.

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Does The Newest TUF 18 Promo Unintentionally Give Away the Winner of Rakoczy vs. Pennington?

Call me crazy, you guys, but I think the answer to the question I just posed in the title is a resounding “yes.”

Having briefly worked for a post-production company behind several of today’s more popular reality shows, I can tell you that the average episode of reality TV is often as hastily thrown together as the concept behind the show itself. The same goes double for 30-second promo spots. But while viewing the most recent promo for this weekend’s TUF 18 Finale, I happened to notice something a little…curious.

Skip ahead to the 21 second mark of the above video. You will see a montage that shows Raquel Pennington, Jessica Rakoczy and Julianna Pena individually squaring off. But if you pause the video just right at the 22 second mark, you can see the profile of the Pena’s opponent during the in-ring staredown that is typically saved for the finalists. Join us after the jump to see what I mean…

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‘TUF 18′ Episode 12 Quick Recap: Anthony Gutierrez Blows Weight, David Grant Earns Bye to Finals


(Wow, Miller Lite *and* NOS Energy drinks? Am I in heaven?? / Video via TheUltimateFighterFX)

When was the last time we’ve seen an episode of The Ultimate Fighter that didn’t feature a fight? Has this not happened since Season 3 episode 6, when Noah Inhofer left the house over a letter from his jealous girlfriend? (TUF armchair-historians, please feel free to correct me in the comments section.)

The mood was light in the beginning of last night’s episode of TUF 18, with Team Rousey enjoying a backyard BBQ and male strippers. And then, the moment that maybe a few of you have been waiting for: The Coaches’ Challenge. The game is rock climbing, with a $10,000 cash-stack awarded to the winning coach and an additional $1,500 for every member of her team. Ronda out-hustles Miesha at the top of the wall and yells “FUCK YOU BITCH!” (“I just like Miesha being in the habit of always getting beaten by me,” she says later.)

But the good times could only last so long. Team Rousey teammates Anthony Gutierrez and David Grant start cutting weight for their semi-final showdown, and Gutierrez’s casual approach to his diet is coming back to haunt him. On fight day, he wakes up at 145 pounds, a full weight class over where he’s supposed to be. Four hours later, he hits the scales at 140.

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‘TUF 18′ Semifinal Fight Video: Sarah Moras vs. Julianna Pena


(Props: TheUltimateFighterFX)

Last night’s TUF 18 semifinal fight between Team Tate members Julianna Pena and Sarah Moras was actually a rematch. In April 2012, the two fighters met at a Conquest of the Cage event in Washington, and Moras won by doctor’s stoppage TKO at the end of two rounds, after popping Julianna’s elbow with an armbar. (As Moras explained during last night’s episode, Pena refused to tap.)

The majority of the TUF 18 cast was rooting for Moras to repeat history, as Pena had become the most despised female fighter in the house. The Venezuelan Vixen had other plans, however. Check out the video above to watch the complete two-round scrap, which Pena dominated in the standup and on the mat. Though Sarah searched for another armbar in round 2, she found herself bloodied by Pena’s elbows, and tapped to a guillotine choke when she turtled to escape the abuse.

Pena’s victory earned what might have been the saddest, least enthusiastic round of applause in TUF history. But screw the haters — she’s punched a ticket to the Finals against the winner of Raquel Pennington vs. Jessica Rakoczy.

Sarah Moras actually lost twice in this episode, if you count her living-room wrestling match fiasco against Anthony Gutierrez. You can watch that clip after the jump.

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