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There is a lot of talk floating around about what champions are doing next. UFC 217 is set to resolve the status of three belts ... sort of ... with Michael Bisping getting his money fight with George St. Pierre out of the way so Robert Whittaker knows who he will fight to make his interim belt legitimate. Tony Ferguson is demanding Conor McGregor unify the lightweight title... but Nate Diaz will probably get a third fight instead. Demetrious Johnson just broke Anderson Silva’s title defense record, keeping flyweight under control. The greatest force for divisional stability on the UFC roster, he isn’t all too interested in muddying the waters at 135 unless the UFC coughs up some extra cash. Just today, Tyron Woodley had to shut down talk of yet another interim title.
That only leaves a few divisions unaccounted for. One of them is Daniel Cormier’s, light heavyweight, which has once more become his kingdom to rule, with Jon Jones again banished to the wasteland for an as yet indeterminate amount of time.
Cormier was initially targeting UFC 219 in December, which has yet to receive a headliner. On the advice of his doctor, however, he has decided early 2018 is a better date, and he’s sticking with his informal Twitter poll results (he didn’t even use the built-in poll function) to select Volkan Oezdemir for his opponent. Via MMAJunkie.com:
“I’m going to fight Volkan,” Cormier told MMAjunkie Radio during a recent in-studio appearance. “I went to the doctor, and he advised me to take the rest of the year off because I started to contemplate fighting at the end of the December.
“(I’ll fight him) beginning of next year sometime.”
Cormier is still very interested in fighting a clean Jon Jones, so he’s waiting on the results of the arbitration process. He has mixed emotions about their second fight, which saw Jones knock him out in the third round. In his mind, Jones won, despite the result being turned over officially to a no-contest.
“Obviously, we should let due process play itself out and everything,” he said. “I worry about the human factor, because he is a father, too, and has a family. But there’s a part of me that’s still pissed off. Obviously, how do you not be pissed off when something like that happens and you feel like, ‘Man, did I really get a fair shake?
He won the fight,” Cormier said. “That’s me, the competitor. Fighters come up to me and say, ‘No, you didn’t (lose the belt).’ (UFC lightweight) Beneil Dariush was like, mad. He was like, ‘I’m so mad that you had to accept the belt back. That’s stupid. You never lost it if you didn’t get a fair shake.’ He’s like, ‘Why are you down on yourself?’ But everybody doesn’t look at competition like I do.
“For me, I lost the fight. I was there. July 29, he beat me. They can say whatever they want to say, but I lost. That’s just who I am.”
He also questions why Jones would feel the need to take steroids, if Jones legitimately considers himself better than a 38-year-old Cormier. “DC” deals with the pain of his body getting older on a weekly basis.
“Talking to some of these guys, these things are so fast-acting, some of these drugs,” he said. “If that’s the case, it allows you to train longer and train harder. It sucks.
“Because at 38, I work hard. I do a lot. And it would feel good to wake up and not feel like death. Come Wednesday, I didn’t know you could be this sore. My ass is sore. When do you get sore in the butt cheek? It happens. If you feel like you have to do something like that, it’s unfortunate, because I don’t believe he needed to. I think he’s that good. But how do you say that?”
“I can’t jump off the side of the octagon like Anthony Pettis,” he later added. “I can’t do any of that stuff. I can try to take you down, and I can stand and strike with you, and I can grapple with you. I can’t do spinning back kicks and jump elbows. So to feel that you have to do something extra to beat me with what I bring to the table kind of sucks.”
For the moment, Cormier is willing to once again move forward with his career and focus on the fighter in front of him. Right now, that fighter looks like it will be Volkan “No Time” Oezdemir.
What did I tell you about nonsensical interim title BS? Woodley has a point- there is absolutely no reason for an interim title in this division. Too many interim titles do nothing but take away the legitimacy of the belt, and cheapen what a champion is supposed to represent.
Am'I the only one that thinks that this fight should be for a interim title? Since the champ is out until next year?— Rafael dos Anjos (@RdosAnjosMMA) October 12, 2017
Demetrious Johnson weighs in on his choices; he would rather stay at 125 and extend his win streak than fight much bigger men for the same pay.
Al Iaquinta vs. Paul Felder is a fantastic matchup. UFC 218 is looking deeper and deeper.
Lighter, politer Ivan Drago.
When the matchmaker himself weighs in- does Chiesa have a fight announcement coming soon?
Oooooo exciting— Michael Chiesa (@MikeMav22) October 12, 2017
Latifi calls out Ovince St. Preux, who says he is down for the fight.
Firstly, this looks stupid. Secondly, this looks stupid hard.
Speaking of Ragin’ people, Al and Kajan continue their funny lightweight rivalry:
That's not me you morons ♂️— Al Iaquinta (@ALIAQUINTA) October 12, 2017
Dan Hooker penned a new contract with the UFC
Intercepting Elbow sketches from Ferguson vs Lee was a personal favorite moment from 216. pic.twitter.com/ioEVik4UO4— Chris Rini (@RiniMMA) October 12, 2017
Slips, Rips, and KO Clips
ACB is a staple of this section of Midnight Mania.
Karim Guerfi TKO8 Stephane Jamoye. Corner stoppage. pic.twitter.com/znTJfgQs8N— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) October 12, 2017
Great analysis of an all-time great boxer, Manny Pacquiao.
The clinch is a dangerous place on the street.
Max Holloway is awesome.
A reminder that this is our UFC featherweight champion. pic.twitter.com/h06LwjqLfc— Scott Bond (@_ScottBond_) October 11, 2017
- Angela Hill is featured as a female fighter who is also a gamer, and how the two lives complement each other
- Just like American football, MMA is used as a tool to bolster nationalistic pride, especially in Russia. It can also used to promote white supremacy. Karim Zidan explores the intersection of sports and politics (in this case with the clothing brand White Rex), with his usual incisive aplomb.
- Andrew Richardson won an amateur title! He tells the whole story for us Maniacs.
Podcasts and Video
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Hear what it is like to move to a top gym like American Top Team
The MMA Ratings podcast
Nothing has a right to be this cute
"The Oregon Zoo staff took the elephant around the zoo, she liked sea lions the best!" pic.twitter.com/RPbIaKPuP2— Fluff Society (@FluffSociety) October 11, 2017
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