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Tag: Wanderlei Silva

Damn the Courts! Rampage Jackson Still Looking at November Return


(Coming atcha, Portland)

So, okay, former UFC light heavyweight champ Quinton “Rampage” Jackson may have some legal troubles. He may have been charged with two felonies and a couple few misdemeanors resulting from his little driving mishap, and he may even be looking at potential jail time. Big deal. Does that mean he shouldn’t take a fight in November? Maybe. Probably. But so what. He’s doing it anyway.

According to Yahoo! Sports, Dana White is actively trying to set Jackson up with a fight for UFC 91 on November 15 in Portland, Ore.:

“Of course he’ll fight,” White said. “If he was doing drugs, if he had been drunk, if he had gone out there and done what he did because he was pissed off at someone, that would be a completely different story. But he was ill. And in this company, we support our friends and anyone who works for us when they’re ill and have problems. He was ill, the incident occurred, and now he’s fine.

“Rampage feels awful about the woman’s baby, but he had nothing to do with it. And the (traffic incident) occurred because he was very ill and not with him in control of his faculties.”

All right, I understand the argument that because he was “ill” it shouldn’t be looked at in the same way as someone with a drug or alcohol problem. That makes a certain degree of sense. Until you consider that this “illness” was entirely self-imposed. Rampage decided not to eat, sleep, or drink anything other than energy drinks after his last fight. That’s not like coming down with the chicken pox. It’s more like coming down with the crazy-energy-drink pox, which is almost as bad as the cocaine pox, except not as expensive.

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Penn/St. Pierre II Official for Jan. 31st

Georges St. Pierre GSP BJ Penn UFC MMA
(“I see you can ‘andle my riddum.”)

In an interview with Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports, Dana White confirmed that BJ Penn and George St. Pierre would have their rematch at the UFC’s Super Bowl weekend event on January 31st, 2009, in Las Vegas. GSP’s welterweight belt will be on the line.

White also confirmed that UFC 91 will be held November 15th in Portland, Oregon, and will indeed feature a lightweight bout between Kenny Florian and Joe Stevenson. (We can safely infer now that BJ Penn won’t be fighting again at the end of the year.) When asked about Wanderlei Silva’s next Octagon appearance, White would only say that the Axe Murderer probably wouldn’t be part of their December 27th event in Las Vegas — which could mean they’re still pushing for him to headline the Portland card against Quinton Jackson, or that they’re extending his hiatus until early ’09.

“We have nothing but big fights left for the rest of the year, but this is so crazy because there are so many of them,” White said. “We’re going to have a retreat on Monday to figure this all out.” Here’s what’s on the dry-erase board at this point…

UFC 88 (September 6th, Atlanta): Liddell/Evans, Franklin/Hamill, Parisyan/Yoshida, Henderson/Palhares

UFC Fight Night 15 (September 17th, Omaha): Diaz/Neer, Danzig/Guida, Alexander/Schafer, Lauzon/Bradley

UFC 89 (October 18th; Birmingham, England): Bisping/Leben, Machida/T. Silva, Jardine/Vera, Sokoudjou/Cane, Carwin/Wain

UFC 90 (October 25th, Chicago): A. Silva/Cote, Sanchez/Alves, Sherk/Griffin, Franca/Tibau

UFC 91 (November 15th, Portland): Florian/Stevenson

The Ultimate Fighter 8 Finale (December 13th, Las Vegas): no fights announced yet

UFC 92 (December 27th, Las Vegas): Nogueira/Mir

UFC 93 (January 31st, Las Vegas): Penn/St. Pierre

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Penn Prepping for Year-End Fight — With or Without GSP

BJ Penn UFC MMA

Just as Kenny Florian won’t be sitting on the bench until BJ Penn decides to give him a title shot, Penn also wants to get another fight in by the year’s end, even though Georges St. Pierre has said he doesn’t plan on returning to the Octagon until 2009. According to a report by MMA News, BJ’s brother JD has confirmed that the UFC’s lightweight champ is back in the gym and training for a fight in December, and his fight against GSP will likely be pushed back until February 2009 when the UFC holds it’s Superbowl Weekend card.

So maybe a Penn/Florian title fight at the end of the year is still a possibility? Then again, JD’s claim that BJ will fight in both late December (against TBA) and early February (against GSP) is so unlikely it’s barely worth discussing.

The good news is, the UFC’s year-end card could wind up being so stacked that it doesn’t even need a high-profile BJ Penn fight in the lineup. Besides the heavyweight title match between Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Frank Mir, NBCSports has suggested that a superfight between Anderson Silva and Chuck Liddell as well as a light-heavyweight title match between Forrest Griffin and Wanderlei Silva are both outside possibilities. (It’s also been reported that the UFC is trying to set up a fight between Quinton Jackson and Wanderlei Silva for a November event, despite Silva’s preference to fight on the December card.)

Potentially related: If Tyson Griffin beats Sean Sherk, he wants Kenny Florian next.

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Rampage/Shogun Rematch in the Works?

Quinton Rampage Jackson Mauricio Shogun Rua PRIDE MMA

During this recent Q&A session (shot by the MMA Analyst), Mauricio “Shogun” Rua claimed that his next fight will likely be against Quinton Jackson in December. Rua and Jackson previously met at PRIDE Total Elimination 2005 (4/23/2005), where Rua won by first-round knockout after some rib-crushing knee strikes and a trio of fight-ending soccer kicks.

If this is true, then the previous rumors about a third meeting between Rampage and Wanderlei Silva are false. In a new video interview on Sherdog, the Axe Murderer says that the UFC hasn’t spoken to him about a fight with Jackson, though he’d enjoy the matchup. (“A fight with him is a pleasure, because I don’t like him,” Silva says. He also pronounces “Rashad” as “Hasha.”) Unfortunately, this puts us back to square one on predicting who Wandy’s next opponent will be. He says he wants to rematch Chuck Liddell, but that fight may not happen until next year; if Liddell beats Rashad Evans next month, the Iceman’s next fight would very likely be Forrest Griffin for the light-heavyweight title. Wild guess: Wanderlei gets the winner of UFC 89′s Lyoto Machida/Thiago Silva match, but not until January or February.

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UFC 90 Gets Fisher/Guillard, Franca/Tibau; Sherk vs. Griffin Rumored

Melvin Guillard Dennis Siver UFC MMA
(Melvin Guillard shuts down Dennis Siver. Photo courtesy of UFC.com.)

MMA Weekly has confirmed that UFC 90 (October 25th, Chicago) will feature a lightweight bout between Spencer Fisher and Melvin Guillard. Fisher (21-4, 6-3 UFC) is coming off a decision win against Jeremy Stephens at the TUF 7 finale in June, while Guillard (21-7-2, 4-3 UFC) is coming off a 36-second KO of Dennis Siver, which won him the “Knockout of the Night” bonus at last month’s UFC 86. Seems like a decent matchup, though Fisher’s coach Pat Miletich isn’t so pleased: “Spencer has no reason to fight that guy,” Miletich told MMA Weekly. “I don’t think Melvin’s earned the right to fight him yet. I think Spencer should be fighting somebody where he’s got something to gain.”

Also in the lightweight division at UFC 90, Sherdog reports that Hermes Franca (who has dropped his last two fights to Sean Sherk and Frank Edgar) will be facing Gleison Tibau (who has dropped his last two fights to Tyson Griffin and Joe Stevenson). It goes without saying that the loser of this match could find himself bounced out of the UFC. Tibau currently trains at American Top Team, and Hermes Franca — a former ATT member — considers him a friend.

MMA Weekly also lists a third high-profile lightweight bout — between Sean Sherk and Tyson Griffin — on its UFC 90 Rumors page. The event will feature the middleweight title fight between Anderson Silva and Patrick Cote, as well as a potential #1 welterweight contender match between Thiago Alves and Diego Sanchez.

In other UFC news…

Wanderlei Silva will return to the Octagon in December against Unknown Fighter.

— Ever wonder why Luke Cummo looks so damn healthy and energetic? Partly the pee-drinking, mostly the pre-fight fasting.

— Brock Lesnar isn’t ruling out a return to pro wrestling.

Dana White allows you into his world.

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Juanito Ibarra Cast Out of Rampage Jackson’s Garden of Crazy

Quinton Rampage Jackson Juanito Ibarra UFC
(Photo courtesy of CageToday.)

Josh Gross has a lengthy update on Quinton “Rampage” Jackson in his SI column, and while it’s good to hear any news on the troubled former UFC champ, nothing that Gross passes along could be classified as “reassuring.” First and foremost, Rampage and his trainer/manager Juanito Ibarra have indeed parted ways:

With defeat as the impetus, Jackson responded to rough terrain by relieving the trainer of his duties, though “bottom line, somehow, someway it all involves money,” said the fighter’s friend.

Jackson is now out of psychiatric observation and is attending outpatient treatment on a daily basis, but he didn’t seem completely cured after his initial release.

“He would still make comments that were slightly weird,” said Jackson’s longtime associate. “You could tell that he wasn’t all the way there, but each day you could tell he was better…He knows what he went through,” said the source. “He knew he had an emotional breakdown that led to a mental breakdown.”

There’s a few other things worth pulling from the article. First off, Jackson came to the Lord under duress. (“In 2004, Jackson…claimed he was touched by Jesus in a dream, scaring him enough to bolt from his apartment with his son D’Angelo in tow. That night he was born again.”) Second, at the time of his PRIDE 28 rematch with Wanderlei Silva, he hadn’t eaten for three days, because he had read on the Internet that fasting would keep the devil away.

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Rich Franklin Kicks Wanderlei Silva’s Ass

You may have seen the raw footage of this floating around a week or so ago, but here’s the edited, minute-and-change version of Rich Franklin battling Wanderlei Silva in Rock/Paper/Scissors. The contest was a special exhibition bout that opened the 2008 Bud Light/USA Rock Paper Scissors League Championships — think “click-clack” for white hipsters — which went down June 21-22 at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. How ’bout Franklin’s bitch-scream at 0:41? In a way, I think this video is very similar to how an actual fight between Franklin and Silva would go: Silva would come out strong in the first round, then Franklin would rally in the second before smashing Wandy’s scissors with a rock.

Also worth watching:
Countdown to Affliction: Banned (full 30-minute version)
Checking in with Anthony Johnson and Jake O’Brien
Canseco vs. Sikahema (ringside view)
The World’s Worst Stripper (Not safe for retinas, eardrums)

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Must-See: Highlight-Reel Knockouts

CagePotato reader “Facey” put together this highlight video featuring MMA’s biggest stars showing little regard for the health of their opponents. From Wanderlei Silva knocking Sakuraba and Jardine dead, to Yves Edwards’s ninja-kick KO of Josh Thomson, to Chuck Liddell beating down Tito Ortiz, to “the Randleplex” — it’s pretty much the only knockout compilation you’ll ever need. If you dig it, let him know in the comments section below or at its original home on Break.com

Break got a cease and desist letter for this one! So here’s another just as good knockout comp from Facey, that for now is living comfortably on YouTube. Enjoy.

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Brandon Vera Insists He’s “Not Dodging Nobody”

In an attempt to dispel the rumors that he may be a punk for avoiding Lyoto Machida, Brandon Vera claims he had good reasons for turning that fight down (he needs time to train with awkward kung fu enthusiasts) and insists that Wanderlei Silva and Dan Henderson both turned down fights against him. So now who’s the punk? Answer: everyone but Machida.

It’s all here in this MMA Rated video, where Vera goes on to say that he moved down to light heavyweight to take the fight against Reese Andy as “a favor”.

Seems like a lot of UFC fighters are doing favors in order to get this July 19 Anti-Affliction card off the ground. And you know what they say, fighters are like the mob when it comes to favors. One day — and that day may never come — they’ll call upon you and ask for a favor in return. That is what they say, right? If not, they should.

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Rumor of the Day: Wanderlei vs. Thiago?

Wanderlei Thiago Silva Lyoto Machida MMA UFC
(Silva, Machida, & Silva: Attorneys at Brawl)

Via FiveOunces:

According to the June 23 print edition of the Wrestling Observer, [Wanderlei] Silva’s likely next opponent is undefeated light heavyweight prospect Thiago Silva. The bout could take place in October despite the fact that Wanderlei Silva has reportedly asked not to be scheduled to fight again until December.

The Observer indicated that Wanderlei Silva was given a choice of facing either Thiago Silva or Lyoto Machida. A specific reason for why Thiago Silva is considered the more likely option than Machida was not given, although Dave Meltzer indicated that the UFC is having trouble finding willing opponents for Machida.

Damn son, this Machida got everyone shook! But I ain’t mad: With their similarly aggressive styles, Wandy vs. Thiago has the potential to be a fantastic fight. Still, the UFC will eventually have to throw one of the Silvas at Machida, because it seems that only a hyper-aggro fighter who’d be willing to literally chase Machida around the cage (and absorb some damage in the process) would stand a chance of beating him. In the meantime, the UFC needs to go to their hungry/struggling 205-pounders and demand that they fight Machida; preferably, their LHWs who are sloppy enough for Machida to submit or knock out (lookin’ at you, Lambert). The Dragon will almost surely be fighting for UFC’s light-heavyweight title one day — it’s time to start getting him over with fans, and he’ll need to finish some fights before that happens.

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