Tag Archive for life’

Chris Leben’s life mirrors his UFC fights: ‘Just move forward and battle it out’


Chris Leben made his return to the Octagon this past weekend (Dec. 29, 2012) at UFC 155 after serving his one-year suspension for failing a UFC 138 post-fight drug test.

It wasn’t a triumphant homecoming by any stretch — “The Crippler” dropped a unanimous decision to Strikeforce import Derek Brunson. The loss marked his second straight and third in last four contests.

Though he didn’t get the “W,” the heavy-handed Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight contender did find comfort in knowing he returned to a loyal fan base that has supported him throughtout the good and the bad of his entire career.

In fact, Leben received an ovation at the UFC 155 weigh-ins similar to that of main event participant — Cain Velasquez, among others.

Truly a fan favorite, his supporters, according to Leben, can relate to him because of both his fighting style and the personal issues he has dealt with over the past years.

His words (via Fight Hub TV):

“From my standpoint, I think a lot of people can relate with some of the battles that I’ve been through both in and out of the cage. And my life has been a lot like my fights, just always move forward, you know, kind of battle it out. I think a lot of people nowadays with the sport, it’s not like boxing, now alot of these fans can relate. From The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) to now, the UFC has done a really good job. My life has kind of been in the public eye, so I think a lot of people can relate to both my story and then also the way I fight.”

Leben has struggled with alcohol and painkiller addiction in the past; however, after being suspended by the UFC for the second time, he is now on the path to recovery after going through a rehab stint following his most recent suspension.

The Hawaiian resident says he hopes to return soon and get a win for himself and for his fans. And perhaps if the matchmakers at Zuffa don’t match him up with another “boring” fighter,” he can get back on the winning track sooner rather than later.

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For surging Costa Philippou, UFC dream isn’t about titles but a life he never envisioned


Chris Weidman and Michael Bisping argue in the media about who gets to fight Anderson Silva next. Luke Rockhold wants in. Alan Belcher thinks he’s the guy to end the streak. They all want the G.O.A.T. And then there’s Constantinos “Costa” Philippou, the rising middleweight with four straight wins, who as a “realist,” acknowledges that he’s nowhere close to challenging for the belt. The way he sees it, he doesn’t even understand the clamor to get to Silva in the first place.

Philippou, who is finalizing preparations to fight Tim Boetsch on the UFC 155 main card, has watched closely as Silva’s decimated one fighter after another, and like many fans, has left marveling at what he’s witnessed.

He’s convinced that Silva makes only a single mistake during a fight, and if his opponent doesn’t capitalize on it, he will lose. Which is why he won’t be another one raising his hand to fight “the Spider,” even if he knocks out Boetsch in lighting speed on Saturday night.

“They’re arguing over who’s going to fight Anderson Silva? I don’t want to fight that guy,” he told MMA Fighting. “Are you kidding me? I don’t want to fight him. I’d actually argue just to stay away from that guy.”

Philippou laughs as he finishes his statement, half-joking about the middleweight champion’s intimidating body of work. Like any fighter, he’d jump at the opportunity to measure himself against the sport’s best, but only if the call came to him. He won’t go out and chase it because of a philosophy that differs from most of his peers. Being the champion? It’s simply never been one of his goals.

“I don’t care,” he said. “If it happens, good. And if not …”

He lets the thought trail away without finishing it, but maybe his unlikely journey to the octagon will explain why it’s of little concern.

Philippou was never supposed to get here, not a kid from far-off Cyprus, a place that was hardly known for exporting combat sports talent. He started his unlikely journey as a teenager, boxing under Polis Potamitis, a local who would become his mentor and best friend. After several years of training and scraping by on jobs in factories and as a restaurant cook, Potamitis thought Philippou, then 25 years old, might be good enough to turn pro.

One day, out of the blue, Potamitis called Philippou and told him he’d purchased two airplane tickets to the United States. When Philippou asked where exactly they were going, Potamitis’ answer — Long Island — didn’t register with him. Potamitis’ clarification — New York — finally brought a smile of recognition.

Days later, he was in the States, set up with a New York boxing coach who was charged with overseeing his rise to professional status. In one of his last amateur bouts, Philippou fought in a Golden Gloves tournament at Madison Square Garden, losing in the finals. Finally, in 2006, he turned pro. But after a 3-0 start including an appearance on ESPN, Philippou’s boxing career stalled due to a dispute with his manager.

It was at this point where his life could have gone in any number of directions. He could have given up on pro sports. He could have returned home to Cyprus. He could have gone through a legal battle to regain control of his fight career. Instead, he decided to redirect his energy to a sport he’d just begun watching: MMA.

There were two reasons for that. One was that he loved competition. The other was Polis.

When Philippou and Potamitis had first arrived in the U.S., his friend had stayed with him for five weeks, helping him to acclimate to his new surroundings. And then he hugged Philippou, said good-bye and went home, promising to stay in touch. Weeks later, Potamitis was tragically killed, shot to death at age 37.

That tattoo that Philippou wears over his heart, the one with a word spelled out and a photo of a dog wearing boxing gloves? That’s his friend’s name and the logo of his boxing club. Every time he takes his shirt off, he sees it and remembers what Polis did for him, which goes much deeper than setting him on the right course.

“He saved my life,” he said. “He helped me through a lot of bad situations. He taught me a lot of things. I got the opportunity to live the life I’m living right now because of him. Although it wasn’t the plan, he always used to say that everything happens for a reason. If I was back there, I’d probably have a s—– job and live a life that wouldn’t get me anywhere. I see a future now. I’m fortunate I had a friend like him. So every time I fight, I take him with me.”

In Polis’ memory, and under the tutelage of Matt Serra and Ray Longo, the wins have piled up for Philippou, who is 11-2 with 1 no contest and riding that four-fight win streak. He readily acknowledges his matchup with Boetsch offers the sternest test of his career. Ironically, Boetsch was originally scheduled to fight Philippou’s teammate Chris Weidman before a shoulder injury forced Weidman out of the fight.

When Philippou got the call, he was just coming off the disappointment of not fighting at UFC 154 after his opponent Nick Ring fell ill on the day of the fight. At the time, he was simply asked if he’d be available to fight on Dec. 29. Though he wasn’t enamored with the idea of jumping right back into training camp, the way he saw it, he had no excuse to decline.

“I just made weight, I was in shape, the only way to get out is to say, ‘I don’t want to fight,’” he said. “Your job is to train and fight. If you don’t want to fight somebody, that means you don’t belong here.”

Philippou guessed he’d be replacing someone in the Yushin Okami vs. Alan Belcher or Chris Leben vs. Karlos Vemola matchups, and told the UFC that whoever it was, he’d take the fight. The next day, they called and asked if wanted to fight Boetsch. He was taken aback, unaware of the injury to Weidman, but figured that someone had to take the fight, so he might as well keep it in the same gym.

Coming off back-to-back wins over Yushin Okami and Hector Lombard, Boetsch has cracked the division’s top 10. Given the opponent and setting, it’s a statement fight for Philippou, another unforeseen opportunity in an unexpected life. If he can pull off the upset, his name will be thrust into the midst of those angling for a shot at the king.

“If I beat Tim Boetsch, I’m going to make them know me,” he said. “Then I’ll keep fighting. Eventually, if you beat everybody else and Anderson Silva is the only one left, they’re going to have to give you the fight. I don’t want to argue my way to anything. That’s not me. Give me an opponent and let me fight.”

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Chris Leben returns from drug suspension with a different outlook on life


On Saturday night, when Chris Leben goes into UFC’s Octagon for the 20th time in a career that started with the first season of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) reality show, he’ll move into a tie for seventh place on the all-time list of most fights in company history.

But in many ways, he’s hoping his fight with late replacement Derek Brunson (9-2) will be the first fight of a very different Chris Leben.

“I’m very excited, very nervous, I have a lot of anticipation,” said Leben, whose last year after being suspended for pain killers has been spent battling demons away from the sport and getting ready for a fresh return. “I haven’t had a payday in a year. I’m broke. This fight marks a transition. Dec. 29 is the end of a rough year for me. I’ve got a lot of new things going on. Financially, I can become stable a little bit, so this is a very big transition. I really want to do well. I’d like to get that KO bonus. I’m shooting for it, but I need to get a victory, get the money in the bank, and make the most of my career for the next few years.”

This Chris Leben (22-8) is coming to Las Vegas strictly for business. He’s getting there as late as possible, arriving Wednesday, spending as little time there as he can, and flying back home immediately after one post-fight personal appearance. For most people, they look forward to a trip to Las Vegas. For Leben, he’s looking forward to a fight purely as business, believing Las Vegas is not a good place for him to spend a lot of time in. It’s the same mentality that has changed his social life back home in Hawaii.

It’ll be almost 14 months since he lost to Mark Munoz, and then got suspended for one year by the UFC for testing positive for Oxymorphone and Oxycodone. Unlike many who will come up with excuses when failing drug tests, Leben, for the second time, immediately admitted usage. The first time he tested positive was for the steroid Stanazolol after he lost to Michael Bisping at UFC 89.

In training for the Munoz fight, which he lost when the fight was stopped after the second round, he was rapidly going down.

“A lot of things were going on,” he said. “There was stuff going on in my camp. There was stuff going on in my personal life. Hindsight is always 20/20. It just wasn’t the best camp leading up to the fight. I had major issues and I was dealing with them the wrong way.”

“It’s been a long struggle, not just pain medicine, but drug and alcohol abuse, and I’ve had it through my entire career,” said Leben, whose drinking and issues with depression and aggression dating back to childhood made him the most compelling figure in the first season of the reality show. “Some fights I was doing better than other fights. Things came to a head. My last fight was more of a cry for help.

“I knew I was going to get caught,” he said. “I knew I wasn’t supposed to be doing what I did. Thank God for (UFC matchmaker) Joe Silva and (UFC President) Dana White. They helped me. I broke the rules. They suspended me for one year. It’s not like I was trying to cheat. I had a problem and an issue. They sent me to rehab. I needed a month of inpatient rehab, and went directly to outpatient treatment. I’ve continued to focus on my treatment. That’s a continual battle in that fight. I take it one day at a time. I haven’t taken a pain pill since. I’ve continued to be drug and alcohol free.”

But he admitted he’s now having to prepare for two different kinds of fights.

“You have to fight that war on all fronts, internal work with my thought patterns and my old ways of dealing with issues and problems,” he said. “At the same time, there are situations I’ve had to remove myself from. A lot of good people I know that are still friends of mine, but they know we can’t hang out because they’re living that other life. The best thing for me is to not be around that. There are certain places I don’t choose to go. If my friends are going to a bar instead of a restaurant, or a restaurant that is more of a bar, I don’t go.”

Since that time, he’s gotten treatment for deep seated emotional problems that he would medicate himself away from addressing. He feels younger, lighter and in better shape. The time off has healed his injuries, but left him in rough shape financially.

“You really don’t know what you have until it’s taken away,” he said. “This was truly a blessing in disguise. I had that invaluable time I needed for my personal life. I do miss competing. I miss getting in there. I miss training for a fight and missed the paydays as well. I have a different mindset. I’m much more clearheaded. But with that comes different issues. There’s more anxiety, more nerves, questions on how I’m going to perform. I’m trying to make that a positive thing, to push myself harder, to be more ready.”

But he thinks what he’s been through has been a positive, that it’s both a learning experience for him, and also allows him to have the firsthand experiences to help others dig themselves out of similar pitfalls.

“All I can say is everything I’ve done has a purpose,” he said. “I volunteered to go to jails in Hawaii (Leben lives on he island of Oahu). I go every Tuesday. My and my friend Mark. I’ve been there. They don’t listen to the guards. They don’t listen to their parents. So I kind of believe everything happens for a reason. My hope is with all this stuff I’ve been through, that God has a plan for me. I’ve grown in the last year from it and become a different person, a person who can benefit society and people around him in a positive way.”

He’s also trained smarter, more scientifically and for the first time in his career, is watching closely what he’s eating.

“As a fighter, there’s always the question of slacking or overtraining, and I’ve been guilty of both. I’ve in better condition, with more strength and a higher vertical leap. Being sober helps. You don’t have to fight those toxins. Drinking a half bottle of booze a night doesn’t help you as an athlete.”

“I’m more ready, by far, then I’ve ever been. I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been. My heart rate walking around is in the mid-40s. I’m ready to go. I’ve done everything I can to insure a victory. The fight changing, having a year off, I can’t do anything about those things.”

Leben found out while eating lunch on Dec. 18 that his opponent had changed from Karlos Vemola, who was injured, to Brunson.

“I’m glad to be fighting,” he said, noting he’s grateful to Brunson for taking the fight on short notice. “It’s a bummer for Vemola. Too bad for him. I’m still pretty excited I get a chance to fight. There’s not a huge difference between the two of them. They’re both wrestlers who have fairly heavy hands. After training for one style, I’m glad I’m not getting a K-1 kickboxer. There are definitely some adjustments that have to be made. He’s a southpaw. The good thing is, I’m not one of those guys who trains for one fight at a time. I’m always trying to better my skills.”

One advantage in fighting Brunson, is that Leben’s friend, Kendall Grove, fought him, winning a split decision on June 16.

“I gave my buddy Kendall Grove a call,” Leben noted. “Kendall had some very nice things to say about him. They went back-and-forth on the Internet. He gave me his input on what he saw, and how he planned for Brunson. He knows me and knows my style and what would work best for me. We chatted for a while. My coaches both pulled up videos and watched DVDs and gave me their input.”

While a lot of UFC fans still think of Leben as the guy who got out control in the early episodes of The Ultimate Fighter, Leben noted that was eight years ago and he’s moved past that era.

“I certainly am tired of hearing about p***ing on (Jason) Thacker’s bed, or when people ask me, `When are you going to fight Josh Koscheck,’” he said. “That was seven, eight years ago. It’s over.”

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CagePotato PSA: Help Dennis Hallman Rebuild his Life After House Fire

Via Hallman’s Twitter Account.

It’s safe to say that we should all be thankful that 2012 is almost over. This has been a rough year to be an MMA fan, and with a damn-near legendary injury curse spanning the last eleven months, it’s been just as hard on the fighters. But this has been an especially hard year for UFC veteran Dennis Hallman, whose house burned down in the early hours of Thanksgiving morning. 

As Hallman told MMAFighting.com, the cause of the fire is unknown, but authorities believe it was an electrical fire. No one was hurt, but Dennis Hallman has lost everything to the fire. 

After battling injuries throughout the first half of the year, Hallman was expected to fight Thiago Tavares on at UFC 151. When that event got axed, Hallman/Tavares was rescheduled for UFC on FX 5. Hallman would show up seven pounds overweight, canceling the bout entirely. Dennis Hallman would walk away from competition in order to deal with an ugly custody dispute with his wife, who is reportedly battling a drug addiction.

I realize that money is tight for everyone -especially with the holidays approaching - but anything you can afford to give will help Dennis out. You can donate to him by visiting this page. Hopefully, Dennis can get a fresh start in a new house in time for his family to enjoy the holiday season.



War Machine reflects on nearly two years of life in jail, returning to MMA


It often seems like the days where Jon Koppenhaver wasn’t a controversial figure in mixed martial arts never happened. Sure, they existed. Many remember them. ‘War Machine‘ was a noteworthy cast member on season 6 of ‘The Ultimate Fighter’. But since then? It’s been TMZ headlines, run-ins with the law and missed opportunity after missed opportunity.

And yet, there appeared to be a brief moment when Koppenhaver was righting the ship. After earning a year-long jail sentence in a San Diego jail on felony assault charges as well as three years of probation in 2010, the former UFC welterweight used the experience and a 2011 release to begin forging a new, more responsible path in life.

But no matter the newfound attitude or lessons learned, he couldn’t outrun all of the many mistakes of his past.

In an attempt to settle a two-year litigation battle over another previous physical altercation in Las Vegas, Nev. gone wrong, Koppenhaver accepted a plea deal with the local district attorney: in exchange for no jail time and a restitution fine of $ 60,000, he’d plead guilty to the charges of assault. Finally, he’d be done. Everything was finally going right and he was putting the ugliness behind him. That’s precisely where it all went wrong.

After seven months free, Koppenhaver was unexpectedly sent back to jail by an angry judge, sentenced to another year in jail.

Released just last week early for good behavior, the Bellator welterweight is now telling his story as a cautionary tale of how bad decisions and bad luck can make for a toxic cocktail.

Here’s what went wrong: as he later found out, plea deals between a guilty party and a district attorney are not legally binding for sentencing judges to honor. As a practice they almost always do, but also have the legal discretion to ignore them. For reasons that Koppenhaver says are still unclear, the new sentencing judge threw the book at him. She threw out the terms of the plea agreement and put him in jail.

Koppenhaver was gobsmacked and devasted.

“I signed [the plea deal]. I went in front of the judge,” Koppenhaver told Ariel Helwani Wednesday on The MMA Hour. “She just looked at me. She was like, ‘Look at you! You look like you’re going to pop! I think you’re on steroids! She started going after me. She goes, ‘You know what? I’m not going to honor this plea agreement. You need to go to jail!’ I was shocked. I didn’t even think it was possible. I thought there was no chance of that happening. It hurt a lot. I think it was irresponsible on her part because I just did a year. I changed my ways. I don’t know what she was doing. She’s crazy.”

In Koppenhaver’s mind, the punishment wasn’t only gratuitous. He also had no idea how to even begin processing the idea that all the lessons learned would have to be painfully taught to him again. For what reason? He believed he’d already turned a corner in his adult life. He was trying right old wrongs, in this case proactively settling the previous litigation battle so nothing would be hanging over his head. Despite his best intentions, it all blew up in his face.

“It was devastating. I just did the year. Got out; I was out for seven months, I was doing very well. I beat [Roger] Huerta. I had the Bellator tournament coming up. My probation officer, I had no problems with him. I was just living my life.”

The first stint in jail had a silver lining. It served as a painful but valuable lesson on how poor decisions in life can impact a person. As Koppenhaver soon found out, the second term just inflicted extra pain. He wasn’t only missing out on career opportunities; he also lost people who were the closest to him without ever having the opportunity to put closure on those key relationships.

“I had a lot of bad things happen while I was in jail,” he told Helwani. “My wife got deported to Hungary while I was in there; I couldn’t say bye. My grandma died. My grandma lived 10 minutes away, I couldn’t say bye. So I had a lot of crappy things going on. It was depressing. I never came to terms with the fact that I was back in jail. That’s hard to believe maybe, but it doesn’t feel real in there. You don’t even realize how much time really passed until you get out and realize, ‘Man, I was really in there for a year. All these things really did happen. My grandma’s really dead. I’m really alone again.’ I don’t know. It’s a trip man. It’s really like a time warp.”

He did whatever he could to pass the time in administrative segregation. He didn’t have much, but if he had anything it was time. Koppenhaver spent 23 hours a day in his cell on the weekdays, the entire day locked up on the weekends. The first go-round in jail taught him reading could be an engrossing escape, though, so he again sought that out. Koppenhaver claims he read 117 books in nine months in the Las Vegas jail. His favorite book from the last nine months is “Forbidden Science” by Douglas Kenyon, a conspiracy theorist’s take on scientific discoveries and theories.

There was occasionally time for other things. Even luxuries like television. But where reading shielded him from the truths of the outside world, television reinforced it. It brought heartache and a reminder of all that had happened to him. A chance showing of UFC on FOX 3 caused a moment of reflection about where he was and what it all meant.

“It’s depressing because I should be fighting,” he lamented. “I knew I was missing the Bellator tournament; missing an opportunity to make money and further my career. You’re locked in there and you feel worthless. You see these guys out there fighting and you think ‘That should be me out there, man.’ It made me depressed to see it, actually.”

Depressed or not, Koppenhaver kept his head down and stayed out of trouble. His obsessive reading of books kept him on good terms and nine months into a year-long sentence, he was released early.

Through all the tumult, Bellator held onto him. Koppenhaver says they were sympathetic to his plight, that they agreed with him he’d been abused by an overzealous judge while trying to do the right thing in settling a longstanding dispute. As a consequence, he’s still on track to fight for them in January as part of their season 8 ‘Vote for the Fight’ effort. He – along with fellow welterweights Paul Daley, Ben Saunders, and Douglas Lima – will serve as a group fans can pick from as they play matchmaker by voting for the match-up they want to see.

That doesn’t mean he’s completely over the hump. How could he be? Yes, he spared for the first time Monday and says he did better than expected, but believes the hardest part about jail is confronting and picking up the pieces of everything you left when you went in. As Koppenhaver notes, they’re all still waiting for you when you get out.

“The first couple of days [free] was tough,” he said. “Super anxiety. Super depressed and just sensory overload. It was pretty much hard, but now it’s been a week and I feel a lot better. My head’s straightened out and I’m back on my medication. I’m back in the swing of things. Right now I’m training. It feels good.”

“It’s a hard thing to explain,” he continued. “Jail is easy, man. You just sit there and rot. It’s not hard. The hardest part is getting out. You get out and everything is uncertain. You don’t really have anything. Jail kind of insulates you like a bubble and nothing’s real. When you get out, you realize what really happened. It’s just overwhelming.”

Overwhelming as it may be, Koppenhaver has help and friends close to him. He has the support of Bellator and the opportunity to make up for lost time. He’s also got the experience of nearly two years behind bars to remind him what the right path looks like. Perhaps most importantly, he also has the clean slate: all of his previous legal disputes are settled.

“Now there’s nothing that can come back and haunt me. These two things that happened, they’re gone. They’re done. There’s no way they can screw me now. I got my probation. I abide by the terms, whatever they tell me to do. They can’t screw me,” he said.

“I’m not going to go back. There’s no way I’m going to do nothing new. I’m cool. I’m just going to train, get back in shape, lay low and just do my thing.”

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Anthony Johnson on move to light heavyweight: It was the best decision I ever made in my life


It’s amazing that it took this long but Anthony Johnson has finally had the revelation Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White wishes he would have when he was still fighting inside the Octagon.

He’s a light heavyweight, not a welterweight.

This is something the rest of the mixed martial arts (MMA) world has known for years but it took forever for “Rumble” to come around, trying and failing — time and again — to fight at 170-pounds when his body is built for 205.

After his crushing one-punch knockout victory over D.J. Linderman at WSOF 1: “Arlovski vs. Cole” last night (Sat., Nov. 3, 2012) at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas, Nevada, Johnson admitted to Sherdog.com it was the best decision he’s ever made.

“I was always upset. I hated everybody if I was dropping to 170 [pounds], especially on weigh-in day. Everything happens for a reason. I don’t take back anything that happened in my past, because if it hadn’t happened back then, I wouldn’t be who I am right now. Moving to [light heavyweight] was definitely the best decision that I’ve ever made in my life.”

After getting cut from the UFC following a loss to Vitor Belfort in January of this year, one in which he missed weight again, he decided to move up in weight. But even then, he couldn’t make a 195-pound catchweight in his next bout and finally he made the decision to go to 205-pounds right after.

He’s 3-0 since, all wins coming by way of knockout.

So here’s the obvious question, Maniacs: Would you like to see Johnson back in the UFC but in light heavyweight division?

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Jeremy Stephens Talks About The Positive Changes In His Life & Moving Forward After His Arrest

Click here to view the embedded video.

UFC lightweight Jeremy ‘Lil Heathen’ Stephens sat down with WHO-HD Channel 13 news in Des Moines, Iowa to discuss his arrest in Minnesota two weeks ago over his alleged involvement in an incident from October 2011.

In this interview Stephens, who wasn’t able to discuss the details of his arrest too deeply, did talk about his preparations for his scheduled fight with Yves Edwards at UFC on FX 5, that he is available to step back inside the Octagon, along with the positive changes he’s made in his life from joining the UFC to teaching his daughter about working hard in order to achieve the things you want from life.


Rousey on Cyborg: “She’s a cheater and has been doping her whole life.”

Yet another victim has been claimed in one Ronda Rousey’s tirade of words. This time it’s former Strikeforce Women’s featherweight champ Cris “Cyborg” Santos, who recently stated that she would fight Rousey, but it would have to be on her own terms. This means, Cyborg would NOT (and could not) drop down to fight Rousey, …

The post Rousey on Cyborg: “She’s a cheater and has been doping her whole life.” appeared first on Caged Insider.

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Lyoto Machida Changed Many Things in His Life After Jon Jones Loss

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

LOS ANGELES — Watch below as Lyoto Machida talks about his upcoming fight against Ryan Bader at UFC on FOX 4 this Saturday night, his recent loss to Jon Jones, the changes he made in his life after the loss, whether he really thinks he can get a title shot with a big win on Saturday night, whether Sensei Seagal will be in his corner, and much more.

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“This Is The Happiest Moment In My Life,” Renan Barao On Winning Interim UFC Title

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“This is the happiest moment in my life.” Renan Barao becomes the interim UFC® bantamweight champion with a dominating performance over Urijah Faber. the new champ talks about the feelings associated with the win.