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UFC Fight Night 126 Primer: Donald Cerrone, The UFC’s MVP

Sure, the UFC wishes it had a roster full of Conor McGregors and Ronda Rouseys, because those kinds of fighters rake in the pay-per-view dough.

But the sad truth is, a Conor McGregor or Ronda Rousey is a rare thing.

More numerous are the fighters just struggling to find a win and get their paycheck.

Most valuable though are the ones who bring an unending supply of violence every time.

Donald Cerrone has been one of those MVPs for a while now, always ready and always willing, and that willingness has earned him a ton of fans.

It’s come with a downside, of course. “Cowboy” didn’t have to give relative unknown Darren Till the time of day, but he did, agreeing to face the Brit slugger in the main event of UFC Fight Night 118. Cerrone got clobbered.

And Cerrone got clobbered against Jorge Masvidal. And Rafael dos Anjos – twice. And Anthony Pettis.

But Cerrone has made it clear he cares more about throwing down than he does about his win/loss record

This Sunday, Cerrone will headline another UFC – UFC Fight Night 126 – and he’ll be doing it opposite another scrapper, Yancy Medeiros. Like Cerrone, Medeiros favors banging it out above all else, so the expectation is that these two are going to throw leather until one of them is unconscious.

That’s fine. In fact, that’s what the UFC wants. The FOX deal demands a certain amount of events per year on the FOX networks, and the UFC certainly can’t spare McGregor or anyone other pay-per-view stars for them. Nor can the UFC make those cards all about nigh-worthless unknowns battling it out for a tiny bit of recognition.

Therein lies Cowboy’s value.

He’ll never be a champ, not with his limitations and closing window of opportunity. But he be a superstar of violence and attitude, and that makes him the perfect kind of fighter for the organization.

Here’s a sample of the MVP in action.

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The Never-Ending Dance Between Floyd Mayweather, Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz

We’ve been here before.

Last year, before the ground-breaking pay-per-view boxing match between superstar pugilist Floyd Mayweather and UFC superstar Conor McGregor materialized, it was all talk.

Insults and barbs, mostly, traded via social media. And at that stage, it seemed as if the talk would forever remain talk, because why the heck would a UFC champ ever want to step into a boxing ring – against the best – knowing full well they’d get slaughtered?

(Ah, how young and innocent we were then.)

But the bout happened, and Mayweather is a richer man for it, and McGregor has more money than he knows what to do with, and everyone that had a hand in putting the match-up together saw some love go directly into their bank accounts.

So now Mayweather and McGregor are back at it on social media. They’ve fought in a boxing ring, so why not in a cage, under MMA rules, next? Mayweather has no hesitation in teasing that idea. For the right price, Mayweather will get into the cage. If he can make a few hundred million getting humiliated in a sport he’s never trained in, why not do it?

And of course McGregor is on board. Another hundred million will ensure he never again has to sully himself with the company of lowly UFC fighters. Heck, he can just pal around with a mountain of cocaine and have an army of midgets do his bidding.

A real elbow in a real fight.

A post shared by Conor McGregor Official (@thenotoriousmma) on

But you know who else wants a seat at the table?

The last person to ever defeat McGregor in the cage: Nate Diaz. Because if another bout between Mayweather and McGregor doesn’t happen for whatever reason, a trilogy fight with Diaz is the next best thing in terms of raking in the dough.

Yoel Romero Misses Weight, Screws Us Yet Again

Yoel Romero, the Cuban Olympic wrestler who earned a slot in the main event of UFC 221 tonight by being a badass, has screwed us all yet again.

Yoel Romero missed weight.

That means that the bout, which was against former champ Luke Rockhold for the interim belt, is no longer a championship bout on Romero’s end. If he wins, he gets a “W”; if Rockhold wins, Rockhold gets the interim belt.

For a while there, after Romero capped off his weight cut with an official weight of 188 pounds (185 is the limit), there wasn’t even a main event fight anymore. But Rockhold agreed to face Romero anyway.

Look, fights are all about violence, but that violence means nothing when the stakes aren’t high. You know what makes a bout have high stakes? A championship belt up for grabs. You know what makes a bout lose those high stakes? When it’s no longer a championship bout for all parties involved.

Our boy Luke sums it all up perfectly in a tweet:

Thankfully, Rockhold agreed to still face Romero, so UFC 221 still has a main event.

So where does this leave us with Romero?

In a bad place. Homeboy is an explosive finisher, as evidenced by him taking out former champ Chris Weidman at UFC 205. We love those kinds of fighters. But here are all the ways that Romero has been shady as hell:

  • When he fought Tim Kennedy at UFC 178, he was very nearly finished, but somehow weaseled his way to get extra time to recover via his cornerman not leaving the cage quick enough.
  • He loves to fail drug tests.
  • Did I mention his problem with drug tests?

Romero failed in his bid to win the interim middleweight title once already, courtesy of Rob Whittaker’s unerring striking and unwavering game plan. But with Whittaker sidelined by injuries, this UFC 221 main event bout was supposed to be important.

Now whatever happens is overshadowed by Yoel Romero letting us down.

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UFC 221 Primer: Hardy and Gooden Break Down Rockhold vs. Romero

The best thing about Saturday night’s UFC 221 pay-per-view is that both competitors – Luke Rockhold and Yoel Romero – are capable of anything.

Well, almost anything, because we have yet to see Romero win by submission…

But former champ Rockhold, he can do it all! Want to see a TKO via a kick to the body? Rockhold’s got you covered.

Want to see someone tap out from a choke? Rockhold’s your man.

Want to see a grinding decision victory that makes you question why you’re a fan of this sport? That’s Rockhold, too.

Romero, for his part, is great at explosive TKO’s where his knee splits open a dude’s head. That’s something, right?

Anyway, anything can happen when these two meet for the interim middleweight title on Saturday. And to help break down what you’ll be looking at once the action is underway in the cage, here’s UFC UK commentating team Dan Hardy and John Gooden.

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Conor McGregor Throws Some Shade at Max Holloway

It’s hard to imagine a scenario where Conor McGregor comes back to the Octagon and fights anyone that won’t make him millions of dollars.

So it’s a bit puzzling that, after featherweight king Max Holloway bowed out of his fight against Frankie Edgar due to injury, McGregor took to social media to throw some shade at the Hawaiian slugger.

I mean, it’s not like McGregor didn’t beat him or something. And there is no way in hell McGregor – the lightweight champ – is cutting down to featherweight again.

Well, regardless of McGregor’s motivation, here’s the Irishman’s latest jab.

When there is no referee to save you.

A post shared by Conor McGregor Official (@thenotoriousmma) on

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UFC Fight Night 125 Results: Lyoto Machida Not Only Survives, But Earns Decision

If you loved Lyoto Machida when he was at his peak, the last few years have been hard on you.

First, the former champ somehow lost his ability to take a punch, so whenever he gets into the cage there’s a good chance he’ll wind up in a coma.

Then there’s the fact that he was on the wrong end of a USADA suspension, which kept him away from the UFC for so long.

Yes, folks, we’re seeing the last days of “The Dragon”, and it’s heartbreaking to see him go out like this. But Machida still has fans, especially in Brazil, so why not squeeze a little more juice out of him? Why not put him in the main event of UFC Fight Night 125, against Eryk Anders, an up-and-coming slugger?

The trick for Machida, as it always is, is to do that karate stuff he does so well, but do it without making any mistakes. And he barely makes any through much of the first and second rounds, staying elusive and mobile while dodging takedown attempt and flicking out his karate kicks and reverse punches. Anders is stuck pursuing, and largely hitting air.

Only in the third does the American start to make his mark, nailing a takedown and, later on, planting a knee in Machida’s chops that opens up a nice cut. Anders gets a knockdown in the fourth, and for the briefest of moments, it seems like the Brazilian is en route to getting murdered. But! Machida survives, resumes his constant movement, and the bout ends with him somehow still awake.

Though the decision is a split in favor of the former champ, it’s more of a moral victory than anything, as he gets to keep getting paid to fight.

 

Results: Lyoto Machida def. Eryk Anders via Split Decision

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UFC Fight Night 125 Results: Lyoto Machida Not Only Survives, But Earns Decision

If you loved Lyoto Machida when he was at his peak, the last few years have been hard on you.

First, the former champ somehow lost his ability to take a punch, so whenever he gets into the cage there’s a good chance he’ll wind up in a coma.

Then there’s the fact that he was on the wrong end of a USADA suspension, which kept him away from the UFC for so long.

Yes, folks, we’re seeing the last days of “The Dragon”, and it’s heartbreaking to see him go out like this. But Machida still has fans, especially in Brazil, so why not squeeze a little more juice out of him? Why not put him in the main event of UFC Fight Night 125, against Eryk Anders, an up-and-coming slugger?

The trick for Machida, as it always is, is to do that karate stuff he does so well, but do it without making any mistakes. And he barely makes any through much of the first and second rounds, staying elusive and mobile while dodging takedown attempt and flicking out his karate kicks and reverse punches. Anders is stuck pursuing, and largely hitting air.

Only in the third does the American start to make his mark, nailing a takedown and, later on, planting a knee in Machida’s chops that opens up a nice cut. Anders gets a knockdown in the fourth, and for the briefest of moments, it seems like the Brazilian is en route to getting murdered. But! Machida survives, resumes his constant movement, and the bout ends with him somehow still awake.

Though the decision is a split in favor of the former champ, it’s more of a moral victory than anything, as he gets to keep getting paid to fight.

 

Results: Lyoto Machida def. Eryk Anders via Split Decision

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UFC Fight Night 125 Results: Tim Means and Sergio Moraes Slug It Out

Sergio Moraes earned a modicum of fan recognition by winning a few fights on a season of TUF Brasil, which makes him somewhat valuable to the UFC whenever they do a show in Brazil.

Tim Means is just a dude who’s always willing to throw down. That makes him valuable, too.

Neither man will ever challenge for a belt, but putting them together on a card in Brazil is a “can’t miss” match-up that promises violence. And hey, that’s what we got!

Whatever ground game Moraes hoped to impose on the American, it went out the window once Means started stuffing takedown attempts. Which was fine, because Moraes has wild hooks full of power to rely on when it comes to the stand-up game, and Means loves eating hooks for some reason.

That was the story of Round 1 – other than pulling guard once, Moraes was unable to get the fight to the ground, and Means ate hooks like they were food. Round 2 saw Means make adjustments and nail the Brazilian with more kicks and punches than he ate.

Moraes was very much running out of steam in the third, and even flopped to guard, hoping that Means would join him for some odd reason. Time expired with the duo slugging it out, and since this fight took place in Brazil…

 

Results: Sergio Moraes def. Tim Means via Split Decision

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Conor McGregor Gushes About Ronda Rousey in the WWE

Ronda Rousey has signed with the WWE and will doing some professional wrestling. You know who’s really happy for her?

UFC lightweight champ and international superstar Conor McGregor.

In the video below, McGregor talks a bit about boxing rival Floyd Mayweather entering the cage. He also mentions that he’s begun negotiating with the Powers That Be over his next fight. But the real talk comes when McGregor is asked his thoughts about Rousey joining the WWE.

McGregor is absolutely stoked for her.

Say what you will about McGregor, but his respect for Rousey and all her accomplishments is genuine. It’s an amazing thing to see.

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Conor McGregor Gushes About Ronda Rousey in the WWE

Ronda Rousey has signed with the WWE and will doing some professional wrestling. You know who’s really happy for her?

UFC lightweight champ and international superstar Conor McGregor.

In the video below, McGregor talks a bit about boxing rival Floyd Mayweather entering the cage. He also mentions that he’s begun negotiating with the Powers That Be over his next fight. But the real talk comes when McGregor is asked his thoughts about Rousey joining the WWE.

McGregor is absolutely stoked for her.

Say what you will about McGregor, but his respect for Rousey and all her accomplishments is genuine. It’s an amazing thing to see.

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