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Today, the Utah native is without a job.
The 30-year old Johnson announced via Twitter on Tuesday that he had been cut from the UFC roster, tweeting “And the hits keep on coming … no longer a UFC fighter.”
Johnson (16-12) has been fighting since 2005 and was with the UFC since “The Ultimate Fighter 9,” where he lost the welterweight finale to James Wilks.
After the loss to Wilks, he won three out of his next four fights, but then the trend turned downward, as he dropped four out of his past five.
Johnson suffered a bad knockout at Swick’s hands at UFC on Fox 4 on Aug. 4 in Los Angeles, but agreed to fight Gunnar Nelson at a catchweight of 175 on short notice (replacing Pascal Krauss) at UFC on Fuel 5. Johnson missed the catchweight by eight pounds, then lost to Nelson via first-round submission.
It’s looking grim for UFC’s sister organization Strikeforce. Not long after the promotion was forced to cancel their event due to headliner Gilbert Melendez suffering injury, they find that not only did they lose the Nov. 3 headline, but they’ve also lost the co-main between champ Luke Rockhold and Lorenz Larkin. Rockhold is reported to …
The post Co-main Rockhold withdraws from Larkin fight with injury appeared first on Caged Insider.
Injuries in training – a necessary and to an extent, unavoidable evil – have plagued the company the past two years in particular. But injuries from activities not even related to the competing and training in UFC just compounds that problem. While Kingsbury was scraped up, he didn’t pull out of the Sept. 29 UFC on Fuel show, where he lost to Jimi Manuwa.
Aldo also didn’t pull out at first, but after an infection in his leg stemming from the accident made it impossible to train, he pulled out of UFC 153, the show scheduled for this coming Saturday night in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Aldo’s fight with Frankie Edgar was scheduled to headline and would have been the division’s biggest fight in more than two years.
This past week, word got out that UFC is at least trying to rid itself as much as possible of non-sport related injuries. Like the NFL and a lot of other professional sports, new contracts are going to contain clauses that restrict fighters from participating in what is deemed dangerous activities.
The exact contract wording and full restrictions are unknown. These would be in all new contracts. Fighters with existing contracts would not have the clause put in place until it’s time to negotiate a new deal.
All fighters, however, are going to be soon aware the company is frowning on activities such as motorcycle riding, which is also banned in standard NFL and NBA contracts.
“They say you can’t snowboard, wakeboard, bungee jump, all kinds of ridiculous things,” said Cerrone in the interview, where he talked about a new goal of becoming a professional wakeboarder. “Horseback riding, yeah, which, I own horses and I will not not ride them. So I guess I just have to sit down with Dana and figure this out. But that’s who I am, you know. I’m just wild and crazy and I need these things. I can’t get painted into a corner is what I’m saying. So I gotta figure it out.”
Geronimo dos Santos will have to wait a little longer to make his UFC debut.
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(Jeremy Stephens, shown here attempting to perform long division without a calculator.)
Which is interesting, given that he is apparently is being “held on a two assault charges based on a 2011 incident in Des Moines, Iowa. One commanded $ 1,000 bail and the other $ 20,000.” Huh.
Anyway, this lack of coherence has infuriated the Baldfather, who had repeatedly tried to get Stephens out of jail in time for his fight and and claimed he was willing spend the amount of money it would take to free Charles Manson to do so. Like many things Dana White says, he may have been embellishing slightly.
While his support for his fighters is heartening and arguably the ethical course to take in these situations, Jeremy Stephens probably doesn’t deserve the benefit of the doubt in this case.
White goes on to say that he supports Jeremy Stephens in the latter’s upcoming legal battles, as he would any UFC fighter when they encounter legal trouble:
“Jeremy Stephens is a young kid, a young, dumb kid who made a mistake and made a bigger mistake by not taking care of it, but, he’s got a side to this story, everybody’s got their side of the story. I look at the problem and see what it is. I’m always going to believe my guy until I’m proven wrong. I’m always going to support the guys or girls who work for us. … There’s two sides to the story. I’m going to support my guy. You don’t have to be Rampage, or Jon Jones, or some of the big stars in the UFC, if you’re in the UFC and you’ve helped us and you’re a fighter here, I’m going to support you and I’m going to have your back, depending on how serious the situation is.”
On one hand, it’s admirable White is so willing to support his fighters no matter what. (Unless they’re accused of beating their wife. Or they make a rape joke on Twitter. Well, unless Dana likes you.) Technically, all of them are innocent until proven guilty to begin with.
Many of them, especially perennial undercard fighters like Stephens, need to fight in order to simply pay their bills. If the UFC didn’t back them and forced them to undergo legal proceedings on their own, they suffer serious financial repercussions, even though they may be innocent. And, like White claims, it appears the UFC does not discriminate in this regard between its superstars and the rest of its roster.
All in all, it’s the ethical approach to this situation from the major company.
That said, let’s be real here. Jeremy Stephens is not a “young, dumb kid.” He’s 26. He has a job.
Jeremy Stephens is not a dumb kid - he’s just dumb. In fact, he’s exceptionally dumb.
His nickname is “Lil’ Heathen” and he has a giant fucking cross on his back. Stephens probably saw an Affliction shirt at his local strip mall in Iowa with “Heathen” in some terrible font clearly intended to overcompensate for something, thought it looked really cool, asked one of his buddies to read it for him, and liked the way it sounded so much he made it his nickname. Come to think of it, his tattoo was probably inspired in a similar manner. (The words around his cross? “Only God Can Judge Me.” I’m sure the Des Moines district attorney is willing to put that to the test.)
Also, in addition to being stupid, Jeremy Stephens is an asshole.
Now, does this mean Jeremy Stephens is guilty? No.
But let’s stop pretending that he’s a victim of a justice system run wild. Jeremy Stephens’ assault case is stemming from last year.
He had time to deal with this beforehand and didn’t. Moreover, “A Des Moines police department spokesperson… said if [Stephens] had been arrested in Minnesota, it was because he missed his court date.” He brought this on himself – and, frankly, he brought Dana White, Yves Edwards and the UFC along with him by putting them through this mess. Because – I can’t stress this enough – he’s an idiot.
As for the charge itself, Stephens probably didn’t do himself any favors by – essentially – running from them for months. Even White, who has only heard Stephens’ side of the story, admits “there’s no doubt he’s responsible for the situation.” White adds a caveat that “he’s got a completely different story” from his accuser’s – shocking – but frankly, when you concede that a professional fighter is responsible for assaulting someone, it doesn’t look good.
As for the charges themelves, there’s virtually no information available on them. There’s a user on Reddit who claims Stephens beat another man badly and let a relative to take the fall instead, but the only evidence provided is a Facebook conversation. Not exactly a smoking gun.
So for now, Jeremy Stephens will remain in jail, Dana White will remain pissed, and we MMA fans will wonder just what the hell happened here. We’ll update you with more news when it becomes available, Potato Nation.
For the second weekend in a row, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) brought its fans a “free” event of mixed martial arts (MMA) fights, as UFC on FX 5 took place LIVE from the Target Center in Minneapolis, Minn., on Oct. 5, 2012.
We saw two heavyweights collide in a match up that had the potential to propel the winner into the 265-pound title mix. We witnessed a grudge match from “way back when,” between two welterweights who revisited history in the co-main event. We even got to see a couple of Flyweights do battle for the right to take on Demetrious Johnson and get a crack at his belt.
All in all, it was a very entertaining fight card, and with the price tag equalling “free” on basic cable, it’s hard to argue with the idea that we got our money’s worth … and then some.
As always, MMAmania.com recaps the list of winners and losers, and we’ll refine the list down to the very biggest winner and lowliest loser of them all.
Let’s start off with the “biggest winner:”
There are several deserving candidates. You could nominate John Dodson for his knockout victory over Jussier da Silva, earning himself a title shot versus “Mighty Mouse” in the near future. But, Dodson gets on your nerves. He gets on everybody’s nerves. Plus, let’s be honest, the first round and a half of that fight was nearly unwatchable. Good on Dodson, but he’s not the biggest winner of the event.
It would also be plausible to elect Jake Ellenberger for finally righting the wrong and cleansing himself of his first-ever MMA loss. But, again, that wasn’t a fight that you’re going to see cued up on any classic highlight reels. Plus, he was fighting a guy who hasn’t been in the Octagon since 2005. No disrespect to Jay Hieron, but it is what it is.
Ultimately, my biggest main card winner is Antonio Silva.
He was the underdog. He was coming off two consecutive losses. He was fighting one of the most heavily hyped fighters in the UFC. He wasn’t supposed to win.
But he did.
Albeit, he needed the help of a somewhat freak knee injury to Travis Browne to accomplish that feat, but that’s just how it goes sometimes. To be a champion, you have to overcome obstacles and injuries.
Browne was unable to do that. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not bashing the guy. I have no idea how bad his knee hurt. I’m sure he did his best. For me, I thought this fight was more of a nod to “Bigfoot” than a display of weakness for “Hapa.”
Browne will be back. He’s proven he’s a tough fighter and a legitimate contender. But, it just wasn’t his night.
Now, Silva can earnestly claim that he’s back. Maybe he never went anywhere. His last two losses were to Cain Velasquez and Daniel Cormier, respectively. Those guys are “Top 5″ heavyweights and some of the baddest dudes on the planet. It could have happened to anyone.
Does this win automatically make Silva is a title contender? I don’t think so. But, it puts him one win closer. He shut up a lot of people … myself included.
Like the more glamorous award, this one also had some stuff competition.
You could give the nod to Browne for his coming up short in the biggest moment of his career, but like I said earlier, it’s hard to hate on a guy who suffers an out-of-nowhere injury like that. The jury still has to be out on him, and there were certainly bigger losers, all in all.
It would be fair to bestow the title upon UFC newcomer Jussier da Silva, who, quite frankly, looked totally shell-shocked in his first fight for the promotion, and he had absolutely no answer after not being able to take Dodson down, early on.
For this award, I’m not nominate a specific fighter, per se. Instead I’m going to give the honor to the whole Jeremy Stephens situation.
Most of the blame certainly goes to Stephens. Hell, he’s the one who caused it by getting arrested. But the real drama didn’t even come at the hands of Stephens’ arrest, in my opinion.
There was no clear dissemination of information. No one knew what was happening. The entire card kept getting shifted around. Maybe Stephens would be there in time, maybe he wouldn’t.
Then, to top it all off, UFC President Dana White gets on the air, during the “Prelims” on FUEL TV, and calls out the “guys in the media” who reported that Stephens wouldn’t be fighting, like it was a gigantic stretch that “Lil’ Heathen” would not be fighting — when he was in jail, reportedly without bond — and there being only an hour to go in the preliminary broadcast.
To make matters worse, White delivered one of his trademarked promises that he had no idea if he could keep, when he absolutely guaranteed that Stephens would be there and that he would fight Yves Edwards — which he, of course, did not.
Look, I love Dana White. I think he’s great. I love what he’s done with the UFC, and most of the time, I’m right behind him in his corner, backing his business moves. But, this thing just wasn’t handled professionally at all.
I feel bad for the fans in Minneapolis who paid to see Stephens fight. I feel bad for the fans at home who planned on catching it, too. I feel bad for Edwards, who trained for months, only to have to be spectator at UFC on FX 5.
But, ultimately, I feel bad because there are going to be people who will look back on last night and forget about a fairly great fight card, because it was overshadowed by a public relations train wreck.
That’s our list, but now it’s your turn. Who would you like to nominate as the biggest winner and lowliest loser from UFC on FX 5?
One Fighting Championship has canceled a planned featherweight title bout at One FC 6 “Rise of Kings.”
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Nick Diaz Continues Quixotic Legal Battle Against Nevada Athletic Commission: Requests Judicial Review From Court
Since he tested positive for marijuana metabolites after his UFC 143 loss to Carlos Condit and was suspended for a year and fined nearly $ 80,000 by the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC), Nick Diaz has fought the punishment in just about every place he could, and continued Wednesday by filing a Memorandum of Points and Authorities to support his petition for judicial review. So far, Diaz and his high-profile legal defense team have struck out in appealing to the Nevada State Attorney General and the NSAC itself in a hearing.
The NSAC has thirty days to respond and after that a judge will hear Diaz’ petition. Luke Thomas and MMA Fighting spoke with a member of Diaz’ legal team:
The Commission needs to understand that it cannot act with impunity in the exercise of its authority…In Diaz’s opinion, while fighters must respect the lawful authority of state athletic commissions, they should not accept unjust and unlawful disciplinary action. Further, Diaz finds it bizarre that the Commission is vigorously policing legal marijuana use outside competition while at the same time endorsing and sanctioning the use of steroids and testosterone — which has a direct effect on fighters and their opponents in competition. The Commission needs to refocus itself on protecting fighters and the fairness of the combat sports they regulate. Diaz believes this legal proceeding may provide the Commission a helpful push in the right direction, for the benefit of all fighters and the reputation of the sport itself.
Diaz’s petition has some interesting and seemingly compelling parts to it, including his lawyers’ contention that marijuana metabolites are not, in fact, banned substances. But they also continue to stretch out some arguments.
In what way does the NSAC “endorse and sanction,” the use of steroids? It is true that the commission has recently begun to issue therapeutic use exemptions (TUE) for testosterone replacement therapy to
every single some fighters who have applied for them. They could theoretically issue some for marijuana use to those, like Diaz, who are legally allowed to use it in their home state of California to help with various ailments.
The thing is, NSAC Executive Director Keith Kizer has said that Diaz has never applied for a TUE for Marijuana. If part of Diaz’s argument is that he has a legal right to use marijuana out of competition and that he should have the same right to use as those who have been granted TUE’s, he probably should have applied for one at some point. Then again, we are talking about a man who once stated that he couldn’t move out of his shitty neighborhood because he didn’t major in buying a house during his time at Stockton U, which I can only imagine is run like Harvard post Method Man and Redman’s arrival.
Not that Diaz would have a clear path if he actually did apply. There’s no reason to believe that the NSAC would grant him their first exemption ever for marijuana, and there are not really guidelines for permissible amounts of THC or metabolites the way there are for testosterone.
In any case, at least Diaz is clearly not retired and obviously wants to get back to fighting as soon as possible (Ed note: Yeah, until he loses again). We’ll keep you posted on developments with this story as they are made available. To check out Diaz’ full petition to the court, click here.