Welcome to Midnight Mania!
Francis Ngannou is a man stuck in a weird situation as the recently crowned phenom who, for some reason, has to worry about an interim title just a couple months into his rule. There’s also rumors swirling about his past training sessions with Ciryl Gane, as well as his relationship with ex-head coach Fernand Lopez.
Speaking with GQ, Ngannou attempted to shed some light on the situation. “The Predator” revealed that he only trained with Gane for about a month prior to leaving Paris’ MMA Factory, which certainly undercuts some of the promotional hype. As for why he split from Lopez, Ngannou had an interesting answer.
“Fernand’s problem is that he wants to be famous,” Ngannou explained. “I can count how many times we had to argue about how he thought I was taking all the spotlight... Bro, what do you want? If you want the spotlight, you know where the spotlight is. It’s inside the octagon, not on the side. And you chose to be on the side. I don’t know how to [make him famous] [laughs]. If you want to be a coach, you have to stand where the coach stands and get what the coach gets. You can’t be a coach and get what the fighter gets. It has always been like that.
“He mentions how many followers I have on Instagram compared to him. I’m not worried about followers on Instagram—I wish I could throw some to you, but I can’t do that. This has always been a problem, basically.”
Now a member of the Xtreme Couture fight team in Las Vegas, Ngannou will eventually face off with Gane to reunite the titles, possibly before the end of the year. In all likelihood, Lopez will be in the corner opposite him.
RIP to longtime MMA coach Saul Soliz. Yves Edwards wrote up a nice post about his influence:
Slight correction: this stat applies to Giga Chikadze’s pre-UFC wins, not overall fights. Still, a fun reminder that there are very few good reasons for regional fighters to challenge themselves until they make it to the big leagues. Giga Chikadze crushed some cans, but he’s actually a great fighter, so it doesn’t really matter!
Giga Chikadze's pre UFC opponents had a combined MMA record of 3-56— Hayden Doumergumedov (@HDoumergue) August 18, 2021
I’d like to see Tony Ferguson fight once more against a non-Top Five, but if it goes poorly, “El Cucuy” should move on for his own sake.
Khabib Nurmagomedov urges Tony Fergusons to retire.— Pablo_Escobar (@JM97_79) August 18, 2021
Do you agree with Khabib? pic.twitter.com/sPncyCZ7mb
Tecia Torres broke her hand midway through the second and still won the third. Dope!
In the 2nd rd of my fight I thought I broke my hand, I kept fighting because that’s what you do. I need surgery to repair a torn ligament that won’t heal on its own. Basically my thumb ligament tore and coiled back on itself. I go in Friday to get fixed :) #TeamTiny pic.twitter.com/TLccuv2Xgq— Tecia Torres (@TeciaTorres) August 17, 2021
Two slick ways to score the sweep or gain top position:
A classically vague Nate Diaz social media post:
The fight games lacking fighters— Nathan Diaz (@NateDiaz209) August 18, 2021
After years of hatred between himself and Jon Jones that then culminated in a brutal head kick and stoppage — yeah, Daniel Cormier’s tears were justified.
Through all the memes and everything I never once questioned showing that emotion. Those tears were earned in the walls of the @AKA_HQ . Pro athletes are different regardless of sport. Respect them #dcrc @espnmma pic.twitter.com/oCo0eG4Dy3— Daniel Cormier (@dc_mma) August 18, 2021
Slips, rips, and KO clips
Another three-on-three MMA fight, women’s edition!
The Bad Girls vs. The Devils pic.twitter.com/Qyor9toCPq— Streetfight Banned-cho (@streetfitebncho) August 14, 2021
Some background history on “GOODNIGHT IRENE!,” naturally accompanied by a bevy of knockout clips.
.@therock @VinceMcMahon @JRsBBQ @_SgtSlaughter @the_ironsheik @HulkHogan @OfficialHTM You'll appreciate this. Where does my catch cry GOOD NIGHT IRENE come from? Here's the answer. Read more about it in my new book The Commentators avail through all good booksellers. pic.twitter.com/p93iCWlkQx— MichaelSchiavello PM (@SchiavelloVOICE) August 15, 2021
Just Alaska Fighting Championship things:
Satisfying or disgusting?
Midnight Music: New Wave playlist!
Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.