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Tag: UFC 155

Cody McKenzie, Karlos Vemola Out of UFC 155 With Injuries; Leonard Garcia and Chris Leben Get New Opponents [UPDATED]


(“Aw thanks bro, these chips are so clutch. Say, you’re not an undercover cop, are you?”/ Props: CombatLifestyle)

Already smacked down by injuries to Forrest Griffin, Chris Weidman, and Gray Maynard, December 29th’s once-epic UFC 155: Dos Santos vs. Velasquez 2 card just got hit with another pair of withdrawals, less than two weeks before showtime.

First up: Cody McKenzie, the affable guillotine-choker who got gut-shot KO’d by Chad Mendes in his last appearance in July, has pulled out of his preliminary card bout with Leonard Garcia due to an undisclosed training injury. The UFC is currently searching for a replacement opponent for Garcia, who is looking to rescue his career after losing his last three matches. We’ll update you if/when Bad Boy gets a new booking. Update: Garcia will be fighting Max Holloway, who has won his last two fights against Pat Schilling and Justin Lawrence.

Speaking of undisclosed injuries, Czech wrestler Karlos Vemola is out of his main card match against Chris Leben, and will be replaced by Strikeforce vet Derek Brunson. After winning his first nine pro fights, Brunson has dropped his last two, a knockout loss to Ronaldo Souza and a decision loss to Kendall Grove. Leben vs. Brunson will remain on the UFC 155 main card, and will mark Leben’s first UFC appearance since his TKO loss to Mark Munoz in November 2011, and subsequent one-year suspension for oxycodone and oxymorphone. The Crippler is currently taking it one day at a time.

UFC 155′s bruised lineup is after the jump. Check it out, and ponder what could have been…

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[VIDEO] Full Preview of UFC 155: Dos Santos vs. Velasquez II

Although it has suffered its fair share of injuries, the UFC’s year-end event is still stacked enough to ensure that the sport’s highest promotion goes out with a bang rather than a whimper (*cough* Strikeforce *cough*). Featuring Joe Lauzon vs. Jim Miller in a FOTN front-runner, a rematch of top middleweights in Alan Belcher vs. Yushin Okami, and the return of The Duffman, UFC 155 will hopefully continue with the trend established by last weekend’s TUF 16 Finale, which is to say “Vicious knockout, vicious knockout, suplex knockout, knockout, rinse, repeat.”

And no matchup on the card has a higher likelihood of ending with a fantastic finish than the main event rematch between former heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez and the man that took his belt away, current heavyweight kingpin Junior dos Santos. There were a lot of extraneous factors leading into their original clash at UFC on FOX 1 — Velasquez had come off back-to-back surgeries and dos Santos went into the bout with a torn meniscus. However, Velasquez looked like a man possessed in his first round destruction of Antonio Silva at UFC 146 and promises to bring the same one sided ass-kicking to dos Santos in the above preview, so check it out and give us your predictions for the fight in the comments section.

After the jump: A video claiming to have captured Velasquez tearing his ACL just two weeks before his loss to dos Santos at UFC on FOX 1. If that’s truly the case, Velasquez deserves major bro hugs for even making into the ring, because damn.

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Forrest Griffin Suffers Knee Injury, Out of UFC 155 Fight With Phil Davis [CURSEPOCALYPSE 2012]


(I mean, seriously. Y’know?)

The UFC Injury Curse of 2012 has another big-name trophy to hang on its wall — Forrest Griffin, who will miss his UFC 155 main card match against Phil Davis on December 29th due to a wrecked knee. UFC president Dana White passes along the sad (but at this point completely unsurprising) news:

Forrest Has MCL tear and ACL strain. 20 cc’s of blood removed from his knee and the saga continues at the UFC!!

No word yet on whether Davis will be getting a replacement opponent at the “Dos Santos vs. Velasquez II” event, or if he’ll be pulled from the lineup. Keep in mind that Davis was himself a replacement for Chael Sonnen, who ditched his matchup against Forrest when his TUF 17 coaching opportunity came up.

We’ll update you when we hear more.

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Another One Bites the Dust: Weidman Injured, Replaced by Costa Philippou Against Tim Boetsch at UFC 155

Well, we should have seen this coming.

Not that it matters to Anderson Silva, but UFC 155 was supposed to set the stage for a fight that would more or less* determine the next top contender of the middleweight division when Chris Weidman and Tim Boetsch squared off. But as things are wont to do in 2012, it has just been announced that Weidman has suffered an undisclosed injury and has been forced to pull out from his scheduled fight at UFC 155. Newsday was the first to break the news:

Chris Weidman, one of the top UFC middleweight fighters, is out of UFC 155 next month with a shoulder injury, Newsday has learned.

Weidman said the injury occured Tuesday while training in Arizona with UFC light heavyweight Ryan Bader and Levittown-based Strikeforce light heavyweight Gian Villante. The injury occured during a grappling session, the 28-year-old Weidman said.

“I hit a double-leg and that’s it,” Weidman said Wednesday. “My shoulder landed weird and I felt a pop. I can’t even move my arm.”

Weidman said that he hasn’t received an official diagnosis from doctors, but he believes it is a torn labrum.

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Shane Carwin, Gray Maynard Both Pull Out of December Fights Due to Knee Injuries


(In a related story, Roy Nelson was recently diagnosed with advanced dickdo disease.)

Well, we saw this one coming a mile away. After suffering a “minor knee injury” back in September, Shane Carwin has now pulled out of his scheduled fight against Roy Nelson at the TUF 16 Finale on December 15th, due to a knee injury that may or may not be related to the last one. UFC president Dana White confirmed the bad news last night, and said that the promotion is looking for a new opponent for Nelson.

It’s a terrible setback for Carwin, who hasn’t competed snce June 2011 due to a series of neck and back surgeries, and was already forced to drop out of a fight with Nelson at UFC 125. Carwin hasn’t won a fight since his knockout of Frank Mir in March 2010, and at age 37, his competitive days are running out. There’s no word yet on the severity of Shane’s injury, or when he might return to action.

And by the way, this means that five of the last seven U.S. seasons of TUF10, 11, 13, 15, and now 16 — as well as one of the two international seasons (TUF Brazil), have ended with the coaches’ fight being canceled or delayed. Spooky. We’ll let you know when Roy Nelson picks up his replacement opponent. Our suggestion: How about Pat Barry, who’s already booked on the card against Shane Del Rosario?

And hey, speaking of UFC stars who have to pull out of fights next month due to knee injuries…

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Loser Leaves Town Alert: Leonard Garcia vs. Cody McKenzie Booked for UFC 155


Clearly, there are zero inappropriate jokes to be made here.

In the territorial days of professional wrestling, the loser leaves town match was a way for wrestling promoters to wrap up a storyline when one of the wrestlers left his company for a rival promotion. Even though MMA is much different from professional wrestling, our sport still books these fights every so often. It isn’t exactly uncommon for the UFC to book fights between two not-quite-contenders, where the losers receive a pink slip and a call from Ray or Bjorn.

Case in point: The UFC announced yesterday that featherweights Leonard Garcia and Cody McKenzie will meet up at UFC 155. With both men being a combined 3-7 in their last ten fights (2-8 if you aren’t blind, deaf and dumb), and both coming off of less-than-impressive losses, the loser of this fight will almost certainly be spending time outside of the UFC.

On paper, Leonard Garcia is heading into this bout in worse condition than his opponent. Garcia has only won once in his last five fights, and that victory was a total bullshit decision over Nam Phan. The only thing that may save Garcia is the fact that he’s usually entertaining in defeat – his Zuffa career includes a total of five Fight of the Night awards, one Knockout of the Night and 2010′s Fight of the Year, a total bullshit victory over The Korean Zombie at WEC 48. Oh, and if you haven’t noticed, judges have an inexplicable love for the guy.

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Forrest Griffin vs. Phil Davis Set for UFC 155


(It’s good to see that someone finally gave Starvin Marvin something to eat.) 

According to a tweet sent out by UFC Brazil, light heavyweight grappling whiz Phil Davis will be the man to replace Chael Sonnen against Forrest Griffin at UFC 155. When Sonnen passed over Griffin for a TUF coaching gig and light heavyweight title shot against Jon Jones, everyone from Stephan Bonnar to Antonio Rogerio Nogueira were being rumored as potential opponents for Griffin, who is coming off a unanimous decision victory over longtime rival Tito Ortiz in their trilogy match at UFC 148.

After coming up short in a tedious affair against Rashad Evans in the headlining match of UFC on FOX 2, Davis was looking to rebound against Wagner Prado at UFC on FOX 4, but an unfortunate eye poke resulted in an unsatisfying no-contest being declared. Davis and Prado met again at UFC 153, where Davis was able to secure a brilliant second round submission via anaconda choke victory. It was the same submission Davis used to defeat top light heavyweight prospect Alexander Gustafsson back at UFC 112 in April of 2010. If you’re keeping track, the current record for fighters who were the victims of a fight-ending eye poke in immediate rematches is now 1-3 (Scott SmithWaachiim Spiritwolf, and Prado all came up short, with only Anthony Johnson managing to earn some revenge).

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Antonio Rogerio Nogueira Will Fight FoGriff in Sonnen’s Absence, If That’s Cool

Believe it or not, Potato Nation, but there was a brief moment in time when Chael Sonnen was supposed to rematch Forrest Griffin in his return to the light heavyweight division at UFC 155. You might not remember it due to the fact that upon announcing his change in weight class, Sonnen almost immediately skipped over Griffin to set his sights on Jon Jones, a decision that proved ultimately fruitful. Surprisingly, FoGriff seemed at least partially relieved not to be fighting that “boring” Sonnen fellow, but when he is made aware that he’s now been called out by Antonio “Lil’ Nog” Nogueira because of it, we imagine he’s going to wish he could still fight the middleweight wrestler with no KO power and poor submission defense who he has already beaten.

One thing you might recall is that Griffin and Nog were set to meet way back at UFC 114 before a shoulder injury forced the TUF 1 winner out of the contest. Griffin was replaced by Jason Brilz, who turned in one of the most respectable losses in UFC, nay, MMA history that night, coming up just short by way of split decision. Since then, Lil’ Nog has gone 1-2, dropping a pair of UD’s to wrestlers Ryan Bader and Phil Davis before beating the poop out of Tito Ortiz at UFC 140. Griffin is also coming off a win over “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” (I refuse to acknowledge this “People’s Champ” nonsense), albeit by another close decision in their trilogy-completing/Ortiz-retiring match at UFC 148.

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Alan Belcher vs. Yushin Okami II Slated for UFC 155 on December 29th


(“What?! Vitor’s fighting who now? God damn you, JC, you are really bending me over a barrel here!”) 

How the tides have shifted.

When Alan Belcher and Yushin Okami first met at UFC 62 all the way back in August of 2006, both men were actually making their promotional debut. In a hard fought contest, Okami used his superior grappling prowess to reel in a unanimous decision victory over “The Talent,” and would follow the victory with three more before dropping a unanimous decision to Rich Franklin at UFC 72. Belcher, on the other hand, would rebound from the defeat by scoring a head kick KO over woeful UFC washout Jorge Santiago, then dropping a third round submission via Brabo choke to TUF 3 winner Kendall Grove.

Since then, Okami has compiled a 10-4 record in the UFC, including wins over a certain Strikeforce welterweight champion and a certain injury-plagued middleweight contender, a title losing bid to Anderson Silva at UFC 134, and a shocking third round upset at the hands of Tim Boetsch that was responsible for the greatest Joe Rogan meltdown in UFC history. Belcher has gone 8-3, with an upset loss of his own to Jason Day and notable wins over Patrick Cote, Ed Herman, and most recently Rousimar Palhares. It should be noted, and has been on several occasions, that his victory over Palhares made one CagePotato writer look like a complete a-hole.

But although Belcher was a considerable underdog heading into their first contest, one has to imagine that he may find himself the favorite heading into their rematch at UFC 155 in light of their recent momentum swings.

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Chris Leben to Return From Painkiller Suspension at UFC 155 Against Karlos Vemola


(“Yeah, training’s going well, I feel like I’m in killer shape right now and…whoa. Is your cameraman masturbating?”)

With his one-year suspension for prescription painkillers coming to an end in November, Chris Leben already has his return fight booked. The UFC has confirmed that Leben will face Czech wrestler Karlos Vemola at UFC 155, the stacked end-of-year card scheduled for December 29th in Las Vegas.

Vemola has compiled a less-than-stellar 2-3 record in the UFC over three weight classes, and was most recently choked out by Francis Carmont in July. Leben, who was suspended following his TKO loss to Mark Munoz at UFC 138, hasn’t won a match since his 27-second bar fight with Wanderlei Silva at UFC 132.

That fact that Leben is immediately returning to action after his suspension — and against a beatable rebound opponent — suggests that the UFC still has a fondness for him. But considering that this wasn’t Leben’s first time-out for unapproved substances, it might be his last chance to straighten up and fly right. Good luck, Cat Smasher.

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