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Midnight Mania! Tony Ferguson confirmed off UFC 254, accused of not wanting to fight

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Welcome to Midnight Mania!

Tony Ferguson is incredible. While crafting his own style and finishing a majority of his opponents, Ferguson went undefeated for six years, setting a UFC Lightweight record with 12 consecutive victories. He picked up an interim title in that span, but ultimately, it’s growing more and more likely that “El Cucuy” will never actually get an opportunity at undisputed gold.

Ferguson did finally lose to Justin Gaethje for the interim title back in May, but he was scheduled to potentially rebound back into the title mix by squaring off with Dustin Poirier as the co-main event to Khabib’s title fight vs. Justin Gaethje at UFC 254. When negotiations stalled between Poirier and UFC, Poirier was accused of ducking, but at least it seemed like Ferguson would still get to fight Michael Chandler and keep his position on the card.

Nope! It’s now confirmed that Ferguson is off the event entirely, whereas Chandler is heading to Fight Island as a back up for the title fight.

“They went quiet on us,” White told TSN’s Aaron Bronsteter on Thursday (transcription via MMAJunkie). “We couldn’t get a fight done. When I call you and you want to fight (then) fight. If you don’t, no problem. I’m not pushing anybody to fight. … You don’t want to fight? We move on, and we make other fights.”

In the last week alone, UFC President Dana White has insinuated that both Dustin Poirier and Tony Ferguson are avoiding fights. Given their well-established histories as action fighters who regularly fight elite opponents, it’s a hard one to believe. Instead, Chandler has effectively leapfrogged them both, and while it’s easy to be excited about his UFC entrance, his recent work cannot compare.

Somehow, it seems likely that Poirier and Ferguson will still collide, just in the main event of a Fight Night card somewhere down the line. Hopefully, both men are paid well and given their hard-earned respect when that time comes.

Shameless Self-Promotion

I accepted a short-notice fight for the Global Legion FC Flyweight title on September 26th in Tampa, Florida! For each of my previous professional fights, I’ve raised funds to cover camp costs via my banner, in which members of the Mania community can get their name/nickname/username on the banner via a $5 or more donation. The promotion has rules against advertising during their shows, so the banner is unlikely to make it into the actual cage, but it will still be signed and raffled to a random supporter.

For anyone reading who enjoys my writing and would like to support/enter the raffle, I have Venmo (AndyLRichardson), PayPal (, and a GoFundMe. There will be a PPV stream link that I’ll include here as well once I have it ... Let’s bring home a belt, y’all!


Patricio Freira is feeling a bit disrespected amidst all the Chandler hubbub.

Michael Bisping with a positive update following his pair of knee replacements:

Israel Adesanya made an appearance on popular YouTube show Hot Ones alongside boxing champion Anthony Joshua.

A guide to using MMA opposite a kangaroo! Aussie readers, please advise?

Donald Cerrone may never have scored a title, but his career is still pretty legendary.

Some very impressive choreography here:

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功夫 gongfu

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Slips, rips, and KO clips

Tyron Woodley’s right hand really is one of the fastest, most powerful weapons in the sport. Or, perhaps, it was ...


Alistair Overeem is cool and all, but the Ubereem days were different.

Random Land

NASA providing the cool space photos and information:

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Observing our universe in different kinds of light ⁣ ⁣ Each of these images combines data from our @NASAChandraXray observatory with data from other missions. This "multiwavelength" approach to astronomy helps us get a more complete understanding of objects in space. ⁣ ⁣ 1. This Helix Nebula image contains infrared data from our Spitzer Space Telescope (green and red), optical light from our @NASAHubble Space Telescope (orange and blue), ultraviolet from ours Galaxy Evolution Explorer (cyan), and Chandra's X-rays (appearing as white) showing the white dwarf star that formed in the center of the nebula. The image is about four light years across.⁣ ⁣ Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC; Ultraviolet: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSC; Optical: NASA/STScI(M. Meixner)/ESA/NRAO(T.A. Rector); Infrared: NASA/JPL-Caltech/K. Su)⁣ ⁣ 2. The Cartwheel Galaxy resembles a bull's eye, which is appropriate because its appearance is partly due to a smaller galaxy that passed through the middle of this object. X-rays from Chandra (purple) show disturbed hot gas initially hosted by the Cartwheel galaxy being dragged over more than 150,000 light years by the collision. Optical data from Hubble (red, green, and blue) show where this collision may have triggered the star formation.⁣ ⁣ Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC; Optical: NASA/STScI)⁣ ⁣ 3. Eta Carinae is a volatile system containing two massive stars that closely orbit each other. This image has three types of light: optical data from Hubble (appearing as white), ultraviolet (cyan) from Hubble, and X-rays from Chandra (appearing as purple emission).⁣ ⁣ Credit: NASA/CXC; Ultraviolet/Optical: NASA/STScI; Combined Image: NASA/ESA/N. Smith (University of Arizona), J. Morese (BoldlyGo Instituts) and A. Pagan)⁣ ⁣ 4. Supernova 1987A (SN 1987A) in the Large Magellanic Cloud was one of the brightest supernova explosions in centuries. The Chandra data (blue) show the location of the supernova's shock wave interacting with the surrounding material about four light years from the original explosion point. Optical data from Hubble (orange and red) also shows evidence for this interaction in the ring.⁣ ⁣ Credit: Radio: ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO), P. Cigan and R. Indebetouw; NRAO/

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Midnight Music: I found this instrumental track quite pleasant.

Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.

Remember that will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 254 fight card right here, starting with the early ESPN+ “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m. ET, then the remaining undercard balance on ESPN 2/ESPN+ at 12 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 2 p.m. ET on ESPN+.

To check out the latest and greatest UFC 254: “Khabib vs. Gaethje” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.

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