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I don’t have the data to back it up, but MMA fans seem to be tuning into the idea that boxing matches featuring MMA fighters vs. actual boxers do not usually go so well for the cage fighters. Maybe it started with the Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather robbery, but Jake Paul beating up champions and legends of the Octagon with relative ease has woken up many fans.
That didn’t stop Francis Ngannou from leaving UFC in pursuit of ringed glory.
On paper, Ngannou vs. Tyson Fury sounds like an intriguing match up regardless of the venue. An active UFC Heavyweight champion against the best big man boxer of the last decade? That’s a fight that should draw a lot of eyes! Still, in what feels like an attempt to appeal to jaded fight fans, Fury has proposed a special ruleset — “in a cage, four-ounce gloves, under Queensbury” — that surely offers Ngannou better odds than a classic boxing battle.
Surprisingly, former UFC title challenger Chael Sonnen doesn’t agree. The ESPN analyst has a major problem with the proposed mixed rules, and he just doesn’t understand why Fury didn’t accept a straight boxing match.
“I see Tyson Fury come out over the weekend and finally clear up first what we’re going to do first with Francis,” Sonnen said on his YouTube channel (via MMAJunkie). “They’ve always said they’re going to make up a sport. These two were going to do a game, but they were going to do something combat related. For reasons unknown, they weren’t going to box. Francis offered to box, and for reasons unknown, Tyson did not accept that invitation, and they were going to make up rules.
“Tyson finally laid out for us what they are. They were going to fight in a cage. I have no idea why. They’re going to fight in a cage. OK, fine. They’re going to wear four-once gloves. I have no idea why, but OK, fine. They are then going to follow boxing rules, the rules of Queensbury. …
“I put this out there because of how disappointing it is to see these boxers as beggers. Guys that are hot to fight to go out there and get it on your own, that have physical capabilities that other men can only dream of. But they don’t know how to go out there and get it on their own. They just don’t know how. I bring it to you because to watch Tyson Fury beg, it was surprising. I don’t want to call it disappointing. It was really close to calling it that, but I don’t want to call it that. So Tyson comes to us with perhaps the dumbest idea in sports history. He knows it is.”
It takes a lot of gall to label something the “dumbest idea in sports history” during the same month that Power Slap debuted.
Things will get real interesting if Alexander Volkov can survive the first round, but that’s a big IF!
HEAVYWEIGHT ALERT— Marcel Dorff (@BigMarcel24) January 24, 2023
Ranked heavyweights will meet on March 11th at #UFCVegas71 as #8 Alexander Volkov takes on #13 Alexandr Romanov at The Theater at the Virgin Hotels in Las Vegas.
Article soon on @Eurosport_NL website. pic.twitter.com/paobNqWPL9
Good luck finding Umar Nurmagomedov a fight after his knockout win over Raoni Barcelos.
Social media skillzzz like these must by why Dana White is so untouchable.
Dana White deserves credit for handling the criticism of his power slap league so well pic.twitter.com/J3PwW9lHQ3— Out Of Context MMA (@oocmma) January 24, 2023
Jack Shore will make his Featherweight debut opposite Makwan Amirkhani. Can Shore handle the size at 145 lbs? Can Amirkhani handle more than seven minutes of fighting without getting tired? Only one way to find out!
Jamahal Hill has pissed plenty of fight fans off with his opinions on Dana White’s wife and Andrew Tate, but “Sweet Dreams” has also shown his class on several occasions. Could it be that people are complicated?
Darren Till was banned on Instagram ... again.
Another Instagram gone.— D (@darrentill2) January 21, 2023
Click through for a full thread on Kamaru Usman’s excellent takedown defense habits and technique:
Rather than attacking with a choke, or immediately spinning around, you can see Usman sprawling out completely and punching their faces. At the end of this clip, you can see Maia trying to get deeper, but Usman's strength and weight is 2 much for himpic.twitter.com/jHOWklsWvX— (@DiamondElbows) January 21, 2023
Slips, rips, and KO clips
Just in case anyone had any silly ideas about Alex Pereira not hitting as hard at 205 pounds ...
Alex Pereira’s finish over UFC Light Heavyweight Dustin Jacoby in his Glory debut pic.twitter.com/7GAmveaEkX— Liam⚔️ (@LiamHealy16) January 24, 2023
Reminder that slamming one’s way out of a submission is legal in MMA.
Stephen Gillespie pone a dormir a Hiroshi Fujita con un buggy choke en Gladiator 020! pic.twitter.com/u2UuMyrOy2— Barrele la pierna (@Barrelelapierna) January 22, 2023
Someone put this in the Team Alpha Male group chat and said it’s Urijah Faber vs. Darren Elkins, and well ... it’s hard to argue.
Mind your fingers.
Midnight Music: Krautrock, 1973
Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.