Super Bowl weekend. For America’s degenerate gamblers it’s like Christmas, St. Patrick’s Day and the Day of Eternal Judgment all rolled into one. The so-called experts estimate that over $100 million wordwide could change hands in bets on the Super Bowl this year. Slightly less than that will probably be wagered on Saturday night’s UFC 126, but as long as some of it winds up in your pocket, who’s complaining? To help you in that quest for the rich stuff, the Gambling Addiction Enabler is back.
See below for fight odds as of this writing (they appear to be changing pretty fast, more evidence that there are lot of bored gamblers playing out the string until Sunday’s kickoff). An explanation of what it all means is right here, though if you need that right now might not be the best time to jump into this thing with both feet. For the rest of you, let’s start earning, shall we?
("Has anyone ever told you that you look like a skinny Brock Lesnar?")
Either his Viking beard made him seem a bit bigger than he was or former UFC heavyweight champ Brock Lesnar has lost a few pounds since losing his belt to Cain Velasquez at UFC 121 in October. Keep in mind that Brock weighed in at 264 pounds for that fight and Belfort has to make 185 by Saturday for his middleweight championship bout with Anderson Silva. There doesn’t seem to be a 79-pound difference between them.
Let’s hope it’s because Brock is skinny and not because Vitor is still well above his normal pre-cut weight. The photo was taken on Friday, meaning "The Phenom" *should* have been somewhere between 205-215 pounds.
Having had weight issues on more than one occasion in the past, forcing promotions to allow his fights to be contested at catch weights, it would be a shame to see Belfort pull a Paulo Filho and make the bout a non-title affair, especially if he were to beat Silva.
The big question mark whenever Vitor Belfort’s doubters talk about how successful the Brazilian powerhouse will be in upcoming bouts like his middleweight championship tilt with Anderson Silva on Saturday night at UFC 126 is where his head’s at.
When his sister Priscilla was kidnapped in 2004 in the week prior to his UFC 46 championship bout with Randy Couture, "The Phenom" admitted that the situation was weighing heavily on his mind. Because he spoke openly about the emotional effect loing her had on him, many assume that he never really got over the ordeal even after her kidnappers substantiated fears that Priscilla was dead, confessing in 2007 to her killing.
Subsequently, most of Belfort’s detractors chalk his eight MMA losses up to him being mentally fragile, even though they all came against present and future champions and only two were via stoppage. If being beaten by Chuck Liddell, Alistair Overeem, Randy Couture and Dan Henderson in their prime makes you a mental midget then guys like Rich Franklin and Wanderlei Silva must be psychologically retarded as well.
("On our way in here, we totally walked under a ladder. Anybody got an umbrella? Pop that shit open." PicProps: Us.)
In other sports, they have rules about this kind of thing. In baseball, dude has a perfect game going, you’re not allowed to go anywhere near him in the dugout, let alone fuck around and say some dumb shit like, “Hey, Nolan! I sure hope you can close out this perfect game!” In football, whenever you hear a play-by-play announcer say something about how a kicker hasn’t missed a field goal all year, well, you pretty much know what’s coming next, right? In MMA these rules seemingly don’t apply, as manager Ed Soares made a recent appearance on MMA Weekly radio and spoke with an apparent disregard for Anderson Silva’s current 12-fight win-streak in the Octagon, and 13 consecutive victories overall.
“In a perfect world, I’d like to see Anderson retire going undefeated in the UFC,” Soares said. “If I could have my perfect world, that’s what I would love to see.”
("Tell me again what it was like hanging out on the set with Hocky Balboa.")
When a story emerged last week that less than a month prior to the bout Vitor Belfort had jumped ship from training with Shawn Tompkins at TapouT Training Centre in Las Vegas in favor of holding his camp for his February 5 UFC 126 showdown with UFC middleweight champ Anderson Silva at Xtreme Couture, the Internet exploded with theories about the obvious fragile mental state of "The Phenom" and fans and pundits quickly began writing off the former UFC heavyweight champ’s chances in the fight.
According to Belfort, the truth is, although he returned to working under the tutelage of Tompkins for this camp, he never really actually stopped training at the Randy Couture-helmed gym.
In a recent Twitter post Vitor (who incidentally trained almost exclusively with the Xtreme Couture coaches he’s working with now like Gil Martinez and Ray Sefo for his planned UFC 122 fight with Yushin Okami that was scrapped in favor of the Belfort-Silva bout next month) wrote that Tompkins was way off in his assessment of the situation.
"I dont think I have anything nice to say other than just ignoring it all. I have the right to choose who to train with. I have loyalty and respect and that is why I didn’t hide[the fact that I was also training at Xtreme Couture] from him," Belfort tweeted. "He tooks this more personally. I made my choice and this is just his opinion of it and nothing more."
If you’re anything like us, you got your first good look at the official trailer for UFC 126 on Saturday night during the Fight for the Troops show on SpikeTV and thought, “Wow, almost everything said during that 31 seconds is extremely debatable.” Granted, the UFC is known for its revisionist history and these promotional spots are typically designed to bend the truth however much is necessary to get dudes who don’t really know that much about MMA interested in dropping 50 bones on the per-per-view. Even considering that, this particular commercial seems pretty, uh, erroneous. Anyway, watch it, then follow the jump for our picks of the five most questionable assertions made here …
Although a few of the 15 Brazilian experts Tatame recently asked about their predictions for the fight added the disclaimers that, "anything could happen" and that "Vitor is a tough opponent," not one of them chose "The Phenom" to win the bout, even with his recent revelation that Jesus will be his cornerman for the fight.
Check out the 15 ways the 15 experts think Silva is going to beat Belfort after the jump.