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Tag: weight-jumping

Chael Sonnen Announces Return to Light-Heavyweight, Will Face Forrest Griffin on December 29th

(Props: fueltv)

With his middleweight title hopes crushed once again by Anderson Silva, Chael Sonnen has decided to return to his original home at light-heavyweight, where he’ll face off against Forrest Griffin on December 29th. Sonnen broke the news himself on yesterday’s edition of UFC Tonight. Watch the clip above to see Sonnen heap praise on Forrest as a future Hall of Famer and pioneer in the industry, before inevitably trashing 205-pound champion Jon Jones. (“I could take Jon Jones’s belt away the same as I could take his candy on Halloween, alright? He’s a little punk kid, I’d snatch it away all I want.”) The weight-class may be different, but the song remains the same.

This will be Sonnen’s first match at light-heavyweight since his UFC debut against Renato “Babalu” Sobral at UFC 55, which he lost by triangle choke. As for Griffin, he’s coming off a decision win (and post-fight meltdown) against Tito Ortiz at UFC 148, in a performance so unimpressive that Dana White suggested that he retire afterwards. Will FoGriff look any better against the Gangster from West Linn?

As Chael mentioned during the UFC Tonight segment, he and Forrest actually fought once before, in the first round of an eight-man IFC tournament in September 2003 that was eventually won by Babalu. Check out the video of Forrest Griffin vs. Chael Sonnen 1 after the jump. We’re not going to tell you how it ends, but prepare to be not surprised whatsoever.


Anthony Johnson Moving to Light-Heavyweight After Going 0-0 at Middleweight

(When you walk around heavier than King Mo, dwarf Demian Maia, and are about the same size as Brett Rogers, you probably weren’t a middleweight to begin with. / Photo via

It was always a joke that Anthony Johnson competed at welterweight; having to cut over 40 pounds to make your limit isn’t healthy for your body or for fair competition. But in an ironic twist, making middleweight was even harder for Johnson than making 170. He failed miserably in two separate attempts, coming in at 197 pounds (!) for his final UFC fight against Vitor Belfort, and at 194.2 for a “catchweight” match against Dave Branch at Titan FC 22 that was originally scheduled as a middleweight contest.

Rather than risk further humiliation, AJ has decided to go up the ladder again, where he’ll compete even closer to his natural weight, whatever that may be. According to Titan Fighting Championships promoter Joe Kelly, “[Anthony Johnson] has stated that in his next fight, he wants to fight for us at 205 so that’s where the fight will be in July. We’ll see.


Jake Shields Heading Back Up to Middleweight, Plans on Late-Summer Return

(Damn. We had completely repressed this memory.)

As confirmed on last night’s episode of UFC Tonight, Jake Shields will be returning to middleweight for his next fight, and will make his Octagon debut as a 185′er in the late summer. According to the report, Shields feels healthier at the higher weight and plans to add muscle to his frame during the transition. Making 170 has been a struggle for Shields in the past, and the difficulty of the welterweight cut was a factor in the decision.

As a UFC welterweight contender, Shields has somewhat fallen short of expectations. His four appearances have resulted in a 2-2 stretch highlighted by an anemic split-decision win over Martin Kampmann, a failed title-challenge against Georges St. Pierre, and a 53-second knockout loss against Jake Ellenberger. Most recently, Shields won a unanimous decision against Yoshihiro Akiyama, who was making his welterweight debut that night.

During his brief stint as a middleweight in Strikeforce, Shields won the promotion’s vacant middleweight title by out-pointing Jason Miller, then defended his belt in a stunning comeback against Dan Henderson. Will Shields be able to recapture some of that old magic in the UFC’s middleweight ranks? And who would you like to see him fight first? We know one guy who’s still waiting for his rematch, buddy