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Tag: UFC

Your Champion, Potato Nation: Nick Newell Wins XFC Lightweight Title


(Video via AXSTV)

Former CagePotato Proving Grounds winner Nick Newell kicked, suplex-slammed and choked his way to victory in Nashville, TN last night, earning the XFC 155 pound title in the process. As you can see in the fight video above, Newell took out Bellator veteran Eric Reynolds quickly and improved his unblemished record to 9-0.

Reynolds himself has before gone the distance with both Jorge Masvidal and maybe UFC-bound Eddie Alvarez. Newell beating Reynolds in such dominating fashion, then, has to put him one step closer to consideration for the big leagues.

The southpaw Newell began his attack against Reynolds with rear and and lead kicks, both low and high, before closing the distance and getting behind Reynolds with a body lock. From there, Newell maintained control and bided his time before lifting his opponent high up into the air and slamming him face down onto the mat. Newell quickly spun around to get his legs around Reynolds and took his back.

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UFC Bantamweight Nick Denis Retires From MMA to Protect Brain Health


(Photo via UFC.com)

For a number of reasons having to do with the sport’s culture, rule set and diversity of techniques, MMA simply is not as dangerous a sport as, say, boxing or American football in terms of brain trauma. That said, it is still quite dangeous and fighteres face a myriad of potential dangers in training and in competition.

Featherweight Eddie Yagin was just ordered to take six months off from MMA to let his brain heal. Many other active fighters conceal or ignore brain trauma and don’t retire or take the rest they need in order to hopefully have some quality of life as they age.

So when UFC bantamweight Nick Denis announced on his tumblr blog this week that he had decided to retire from MMA, it was bittersweet. Bitter because the international community had only begun to see how skilled and talented the twenty nine year-old was after two fights in the globe’s top organization. Sweet because, as he detailed on his blog, he made a thoughtful and proactive decision to protect what is left of his health.

One of hardest things for athletes to do is walk away, no matter their physical condition or age, because it means a forced change of identities. They have to find a new way to define themselves, a new set of activitites to spend their lives doing.

Denis seems at peace with his decision and confident that he will find new things to “obsess” over. We are glad and we hope so.

His written statement announcing his retirement is insightful, moving and inspirational. Read it and then go out and get started pursuing dreams and accomplishments that will make you worthy of a nickname as awesome as the one Nick “The Ninja of Love” Denis has.

“I would like to think that I don’t have an ego. Sometimes though, I think it might just be so big that it can’t be hurt.

I really believe in living life. I always tell people, quite casually, ‘follow your heart.’ I don’t just say it for the sake of having words come out of my mouth, it is something that I truly believe in and do. I couldn’t imagine living my life and ignoring my true feelings and desires, just for the sake of living a ‘rational’ and safe lifestyle. That is why I quit my Ph.D. in biochemistry to move to Montreal, train full-time and make my way to the UFC.

To me, it was the only available option. What other choice did I have?

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Weird Charges Against ‘Mayhem’ Miller Dropped

MMA Fighting reports that charges against retired former UFC fighter Jason “Mayhem” Miller from an August arrest have been dropped in the Orange County Superior Court. You may remember the allegations as perhaps the most bizzare ones of Miller’s life, which is saying something.

“Miller was arrested Aug. 13 in Mission Viejo, Calif., on burglary charges after he allegedly broken into a church, sprayed a fire extinguisher and broke many items. According to a spokesperson for the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, Miller was found by police naked on a couch in the church. He was not intoxicated and was arrested without incident,” MMA Fighting recounts.

According to the news site, Miller said that the case against him was dropped and that the arrest has been removed from his criminal record. “God is good,” he was reported as saying.

Just as his long and accomplished fighting career is often ignored by newer fans in light of his recent UFC performances, the fact that Miller is a friendly and good guy can often be lost amidst all of his public antics and schtick.

He has a lot to offer, even as a retired fighter. Let’s hope that his days of allegdly breaking into churches and women’s houses are behind him.

Not too long ago Miller took a stroll through New York City’s Central Park with MMA Fighting and discussed the arrest and other issues. Check out the full video interview after the jump.

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Gil Melendez Injured/Realizes It Would be Pointless to Fight Again in Strikeforce, Will Not Fight on January Card

Strikeforce lightweight champion Gil Melendez‘ coach Cesar Gracie recently told Tatame that his fighter is still injured, not “training hard,” and will not fight on what many assume will be Strikeforce’s final event in January. “I think he never recovered from the shoulder injury and will not be able to fight in January,” Google Translator tells us that Gracie told the Portuguese outlet.

Melendez already pulled out of a no-win title defense against Pat Healy and, though we have no doubt he is still battling injury, has to also realize that other than the purse he’d get for fighting, he would be risking far more than he might gain by fighting one last time in the doomed organization. If Strikeforce is dissolved while Melendez is the champion he will almost certainly, at long last, be brought into the UFC fold.

Should he lose, he might still be brought over but if he is, he would be worth far less and would probably have a longer route to a UFC title shot. As Strikeforce champion, Gilbert could always make a claim for an immediate or close-to-immediate title shot under the “let’s unify this thing” type of argument made most recently and successfully by his teammate Nick Diaz.

We’ve loved Strikeforce for a long time but if it is going to continue to hobble along like this, we can only hope that the UFC figures out a way to shut them down and absorb the fighters asap.

- Elias Cepeda

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[VIDEOS] Behind The Scenes of UFC Minneapolis, UFC Rio & World Series of Fighting

We’ve got a special treat for you today, Taters – not one but two dope short video documentaries that take us behind the scenes of some of the biggest recent MMA events. UFC President Dana White has released his latest vlog (above) to promote this Saturday’s event in Macao.

The vlog has footage from last month’s UFC in Minneapolis as well as the UFC in Rio and has some compelling stuff, showing Yves Edwards waiting painstakingly backstage to hear if he would get to fight the incarcerated Jeremy Stephens or not. It also shows him getting the bad news broken to him by White personally.

The footage from the Rio event shows Anderson Silva warming up by doing crazy spinning kicks back stage as well as Stephan Bonnar during intense moments of contemplation as he warmed up for perhaps the last time of his roided storied career.

Behind the scenes footage of the World Series of Fighting‘s inaugural event is after the jump.

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Anderson Silva Asks For Over a Billion Dollars to Fight Jon Jones

Basics of negotiation dictate that one starts with a high asking price. UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva doesn’t need to be told that twice.

Fans want Silva to fight light heavyweight king Jon Jones, but neither he nor Jones really seem all that interested in tainting their legacies testing themselves against one another. Well, sorta, but not really. Nonetheless, UFC Prez Dana White has confidently declared on several occasions that he has the cashflow to change their minds completely.

“I think the Jon Jones fight is a big fight. I know my man says ‘No, no, no,’” White told reporters at the UFC 153 post-fight press conference, “but the amount of money that would be offered for that fight, I guarantee you I will make Anderson Silva say, ‘Yes, yes, yes.’”

O RLY?”, Silva recently replied in an interview with Brazil’s Tatame Magazine, stating that his price tag to fight Jon Jones is a completely reasonable 50% of the UFC’s net worth. “Let’s ask him to see if [White] will give me 50% of the UFC,” Silva told Tatame.

White has publicly estimated that the UFC is worth $2.5 billion. Half of that is…well, we’re writers not mathematicians but we’re betting its a lot of money.

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Randy Couture Talks Jones vs. Sonnen, Overeem, Strikeforce, His Son’s Future & More

UFC Hall of famer and rock hipster Randy Couture stopped by Spike’s MMA Uncensored television program recently and discussed a wide range of topics. Our favorites were when he talked about his former teammate Chael Sonnen fighting Jon Jones for the light heavyweight title, Alistair Overeem getting a title shot when he returns from his failed drug test suspension and the future of Strikeforce and, specifically, one of their lightweight prospects Ryan Couture.

Randy said that he was “not terribly surprised,” that Chael got the TUF coaching gig opposite Jones and a promised title shot. “This is a business and Chael Sonnen is going to bring it and hype up any single fight that he’s in.”

Couture also believes that Chael has a fighting chance against Jones, if he can employ the right game plan.

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UFC Lightweight Anthony Pettis Hospitalized With Staph Infection


(Who caught staph from who?)

MMA Weekly reports that UFC lightweight contender Anthony Pettis was admitted to a Milwaukee-area hospital after it was discovered that he had a staph infection in his elbow. Pettis’s manager Mike Roberts stated that the infection isn’t expected to be serious, but “Showtime” was hospitalized as a precaution.

Pettis, who had to undergo shoulder surgery earlier this year on the same arm, is still expected to fight Donald Cerrone in potential #1 lightweight contender’s bout in January. Hopefully Pettis’s infection was caught early enough to not cause further complication. Untreated, staph infections can be life threatening. The infections are common among wrestlers and fighters, who spend lots of time on mats which can be petri dishes for bacteria and viruses.

We’ll keep you posted on Pettis’s health as developments are made public. After the jump, check out a healthy Pettis kick ass in a career highlight video.

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Lack of Perspective Alert: Michael Bisping is Asking For a Title Shot Again, For Some Reason


(Rampage and Bisping might want to start running the things they are about to say out loud by more people than one another)

Let’s just dive right in, nation. UFC middleweight and all around centered and nice guy Michael Bisping recently spoke with MMA Junkie and had some pretty silly things to say. “I’m tired. I know I’ve got to wait my turn, but it’s pissing me off. I want to get my title shot, and if I keep beating guys, they’ll have no choice but to give it to me,” he told Junkie.

“I’m here, and I’m fighting the best guys. I want my shot.”

Bisping has undoubtedly fought some of the best fighters in the world, but he still doesn’t seem to realize that he needs to beat some of them in order to deserve a title shot. At present, ‘The Count’ has a brand new streak of exactly one, count em, one wins.

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And It Is All Over: Matt Hughes Now Says He Is ‘Fully Retired’


(See that there on the right? That’s Matt Hughes’s autograph. So this photo is relevant)

In a recent feature profile on him written by Iowa’s The Daily Gate, former UFC welterweight champion Matt Hughes says that he is “fully retired.” Hughes last fought in September of 2011, when he was knocked out by Josh Koscheck at UFC 135.

Up to this point, the farmer-fighter has resisted describing himself as retired even as Dana White suggested that he should call it a career. Currently working on his family farm and only occasionally training, Hughes says that he’s content in retirement because the UFC still “treats him well,” as they tend to do with their former champions in good standing.

“I’ve not announced my retirement, but right now it looks like I’m fully retired,” Hughes told the Gate’s Brad Cameron. “The UFC still treats me well so I can be retired. It’s just funny, when God puts you on a road, you don’t know where you are going. I have all the faith that he put me there, and I have to thank him from that.”

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