Welcome to Midnight Mania!
This one is going to be insane.
The featherweight division got an important fight announcement today, as 8th-ranked Jeremy Stephens will face off with 12th-ranked Doo Ho Choi at UFC: St. Louis on January 14th. Also known as Fight Night 124, the event will broadcast live on Fox Sports 1.
The Korean Superboy, Doo Ho Choi, won his first three UFC fights via first-round knockout; he then had a barnburner of a scrap, a contender (and my personal pick) for 2016’s Fight of the Year with Cub Swanson. The incongruity between his baby-faced smile and ferocious punching power makes Choi a fan favorite. While injury has kept him out of the Octagon in 2017 (he was originally booked to face Andre Fili in July), victory over Stephens would vault him instantly into the top ten, one or two wins away from title contention.
Jeremy “Lil Heathen” Stephens, meanwhile, has been fighting the best of two divisions for years, with mixed results. He rebounded from a two-fight skid with a Fight of the Night win over Gilbert Melendez, damaging Melendez’ leg with powerful low kicks. He is known for his heavy hands and aggressive, fighting style; a win over Choi would keep him relevant at the top of the featherweight division.
The stylistic matchup offers nothing but fireworks. Choi is exceptionally accurate and likes to stand close to his opponent in order to land his straight right, but the fight with Cub Swanson showed he is vulnerable to opponents able to stand in the pocket and wing hooks at him. Winging hooks is Jeremy Stephens’ longtime specialty. Both men have excellent chins; Stephens hasn’t been knocked out since Yves Edwards slept him in 2012, while the 26-year-old Choi has never been KOed.
Don’t miss this one.
Insomnia is exactly what Forrest Griffin has right now.
I’ll sleep when I’m dead or I’ll die cus I don’t sleep, it’s semantics really pic.twitter.com/sSj4sENEO5— Forrest Griffin (@ForrestGriffin) December 1, 2017
Sometimes are use Twitter as a spellcheck because if you miss spell something people while let you know— Forrest Griffin (@ForrestGriffin) December 1, 2017
May the wind always be at your back especially if you’re peeing— Forrest Griffin (@ForrestGriffin) December 1, 2017
Ah yes, Friday’s UFC title fight.
I’m excited for the opportunity. I also hope Sijara gets better quickly. A weight cut to the point of hospitalization can be serious. https://t.co/l0pjDgV4mw— Roxanne Modafferi (@Roxyfighter) November 30, 2017
Justin Gaethje on his team member Sijara Eubanks missing weight: he says he’s not surprised by this at all, and he should have exposed her at the beginning of the season to teach her this lesson sooner.
Justin Gaethje tells me this entire situation could have been avoided if he picked Sijara Eubanks for the first fight on TUF when she was 155 pounds. https://t.co/Uu8M3V1qsL pic.twitter.com/s1x3wRWE7I— Mike Bohn (@MikeBohnMMA) November 30, 2017
Kicking off a UFC division with a late-notice title fight due to a fighter being hospitalized from a weight cut. That's just good MMA.— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) November 30, 2017
Somehow this infographic makes Justin Gaethje look like a skinny nerd next to a jacked Eddie Alvarez- and his reach and leg reach are 0, which makes his fighting style even more impressive.
The Highlight brings an almost comical amount of violence in his fights. pic.twitter.com/yJqVOcSsgj— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) July 4, 2017
I’m very excited to watch Rigondeaux-Lomachenko.
I moved up on weight (I asked for it), I took less $ than what I wanted and deserved and I have put my self out there promoting this fight. All I ask in return is that @VasylLomachenko give me his best shot. He is not known from his running. Bring it to me if you dare! #LomaRigo— Guillermo Rigondeaux (@RigoElChacal305) November 30, 2017
Rampage recalls happier days
At this point in my career i had almost no injuries,and i was on a strict diet made from a pro body builder for the 1st time in my life,and i had great wrestling partners.. a lot of people thought i was gonna get grounded a pounded. A lot of people forget that I’m a wrestler ♀️ I miss those days. (a monster vs a beast) #RIP big brother Kevin Randleman
McGregor’s father recently dismissed the danger to him, as did McGregor himself, for punching the father of someone in a drug cartel.
Someone shouted “It’s only a 1.5”, presumably in relation to the piston size on McGregor’s sports car.
Cub Swanson and TJ Dillashaw must have insane sparring sessions.
Andre Fili DID get paid after smashing that scale.
I wanna thank all of you MMA Fans who had my back, you blood-thirsty savages are the most loyal fans on earth. I appreciate @vitagoods for honoring their word and being a respectable company, their CEO was amicable and explained the miscommunication. And I wanna give a big “Fuck You” to all the phonies and dorks who make a career leeching off the real.
Derrick Lewis’ half-joking crush on Ronda Rousey is well-documented, so saying Ronda should have had him play at her wedding is great. I just ruined the joke by explaining it, didn’t I?
Aljamain Sterling getting right.
Angela Hill with her teammate Paulina
When @PaulinaGrana2 asked me to dress as one of her Dino’s I said “Anything for Paulinas!” She made weight like a pro. #MainEvent #Combate19 #WMMA #SelenaYLosDinos #SelenaPerez pic.twitter.com/EffS4p1dy4— Angela Hill (@AngieOverkill) November 30, 2017
People all over NYC are learning some useless and dangerous “self-defense”
Demetrious Johnson’s legacy is even more impressive considering he worked full time as an up-and-coming UFC fighter.
Demetrious Johnson was a construction worker all the way up until he fought Dominick Cruz. Let that sink in for a second. https://t.co/wiuzuHXlxn— Justin Golightly (@SecretMovesMMA) November 30, 2017
This makes no sense.
Slips, Rips, and KO Clips
- Karim Zidan on the McGregor-mobster story is required reading as far as I’m concerned
- Tyron Woodley joined Nate Diaz in calling Dana on his BS
Podcasts and Video
Jose Aldo’s takedown defense probably won’t be used in this fight- but it’s still one of the most incredible skillsets of anyone in MMA. Follow MMA Mania on Youtube for more!
The MMA Ratings podcast, discussing UFC 218, Bellator 189 and the TUF 26 Finale
The Severe MMA podcast included this gem from Darren Till: