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‘Prime Time’ Confident About Weight Issues Heading Into UFC 226

Uriah Hall continues to regroup after missing weight for his bout with Vitor Belfort at UFC Fight Night 124 back in January and being hospitalized for acute kidney failure and a mini seizure.

It was truly a scary moment for Hall.

As Hall gears up for his return to the Octagon opposite undefeated middleweight contender Paulo Costa at UFC 226 on July 7 from Las Vegas, Nevada, he believes that his weight troubles are a thing of the past. After coming to grips with his physical needs, “Prime Time” is ready to turn over a new leaf.

“I’m a lot better now because I understand what was the issue and I’m attacking it,” Hall told MMAjunkie earlier this week in Las Vegas.

“As I get older, I’m forgetting that I’m not young,” Hall continued. “So my body is like, ‘Hey bro, we can’t do the same stuff we do.’ So, sleeping is one of them that I’m starting to do more, because I don’t sleep. Just small, basic things that my body is catching up to. It’s just mainly being disciplined.”

UFC president Dana White blasted Hall for going out and partying the week before his botched weight cut earlier this year. While White caught some heat for his remarks, he may have been right. If Hall can limit his extracurricular habits and give his body what it needs then he could finally cash in on the elite potential he possesses.

It all starts with UFC 226. Hall will have to be at his best, both physically and mentally, to overthrow one of the biggest wrecking balls in the division.

“He’s somewhat talented, but he’s hungry, so that makes me want to train even harder,” Hall said. “First fight didn’t happen for whatever reason, but I’m working on the diet part of it. And the training I switched up to focus on things that I haven’t, really.

“My body is one of the main things I neglected, because youth will leave you. My mindset and my pride was like, I’m fine, but as an athlete, you’ve got to work around that. You can’t just have one dimension to say I’m going to tough through it. You’ve got to have the responsibility to say, all right, there’s certain things that are not working in my favor. What can I do to adjust and move forward?”

Hall is coming off a Performance of the Night knockout finish over middleweight staple Krzysztof Jotko, while Costa stopped former UFC welterweight champion Johny Hendricks via second-round TKO back on November.

UFC 226 will be headlined by a heavyweight superfight between current divisional champion Stipe Miocic and UFC light heavyweight titleholder Daniel Cormier. The main card will also feature a featherweight clash between current champion Max Holloway and undefeated contender Brian Ortega.

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Uriah Hall vs. Vitor Belfort removed from UFC St. Louis after ‘Prime Time’ failed to weigh in

With just more than 24 hours to go, UFC Fight Night 124 has lost its co-main event, as middleweight Uriah Hall failed to step on the scales earlier today (Sat., Jan. 13, 2018) for official weigh ins (full results here).

UFC broadcaster Brendan Fitzgerald announced that Hall could not step on the scale at the end of the weigh-in window, but offered no reason for the disappearance. As a result of Hall’s inability to make weight, his anticipated showdown with former UFC champion Vitor Belfort has been scrapped from the card.

According to a recent report by MMAjunkie’s John Morgan, Hall was apparently one pound away from the 186-pound threshold before medical issues forced him to stop cutting weight.

This is an unfortunate turn of events not only for Hall, who was on the cusp of his most high-profile Octagon appearance to date, but also Belfort, who was planning on walking away from mixed martial arts (MMA) after this weekend in St. Louis.

Hall revealed earlier this week in an interview with MMAjunkie that his “body shut down” last month, so maybe that had something to do with his weight-cut struggles. For what it’s worth, “Prime Time” has never failed to successfully make weight in his UFC career.

As a result of the co-main event fallout, Michael Johnson’s featherweight debut opposite Darren Elkins will now be moved to the main card.

Stick with Mania for further updates on Hall’s condition.

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UFC 217: Best night of Georges St-Pierre’s career came with congratulatory tweet from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre returned to mixed martial arts (MMA) last Saturday night (Nov. 4, 2017) to choke out Michael Bisping in the UFC 217 pay-per-view (PPV) main event inside Madison Square Garden (MSG) in New York City.

Relive the madness here.

The win puts St-Pierre in elite company, becoming one of very few combatants to ever capture championship titles in multiple weight classes. In fact, “Rush” called the “Big Apple” bonanza the best night of his career (and rightly so).

“The atmosphere last night at MSG was unreal,” St-Pierre wrote the day after his epic win in the UFC 217 headliner. “Feeling great today. Thanks everyone for making this the best night of my career!!!”

And by “everyone” I’m sure he didn’t realize he was including Justin Trudeau, the 23rd Prime Minister of Canada, who congratulated “Rush” on his victory over Bisping, the Brash Brit who talked a ton of trash leading up to their fight.

I guess that’s better than getting a tweet (like this one) from U.S. President Donald Trump.

Now that UFC 217 is in the books, St-Pierre will have to decide how to move forward. While he’s contractually obligated to defend his 185-pound title against interim champion Robert Whittaker, he can also vacate the strap to move back down to welterweight for a Tyron Woodley title fight.

Or make a gazillion dollars fighting this guy.

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Georges St-Pierre Gets Kudos From Canadian Prime Minister

You know you’re a national treasure when the leader of your country publicly gives you props for your UFC win. Such is the case with Georges St-Pierre, who ended a four-year retirement last night with a win over middleweight champ Michael Bisping. GSP is now the king, and today Prime Minister Justin Trudeau gave the […]

The post Georges St-Pierre Gets Kudos From Canadian Prime Minister appeared first on Caged Insider.

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Georges St-Pierre Gets Kudos From Canadian Prime Minister

You know you’re a national treasure when the leader of your country publicly gives you props for your UFC win. Such is the case with Georges St-Pierre, who ended a four-year retirement last night with a win over middleweight champ Michael Bisping. GSP is now the king, and today Prime Minister Justin Trudeau gave the […]

The post Georges St-Pierre Gets Kudos From Canadian Prime Minister appeared first on Caged Insider.

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Jon Jones has sober message to Daniel Cormier: ‘I beat him in my prime of partying’

When it’s all said and done, we may look back at the Jon Jones-Daniel Cormier feud and miss those glorious exchanges. After having to deal with each other off and on for much of the last two years, the talking has grown increasingly personal heading into UFC 200. Now the sniping has gotten familiar and subtle. Everything has become a little more matter-of-fact. There are even pleasantries in the mix.

One might say that their rivalry has matured into something more blunt, with all the dirty laundry aired, and both men having grown into themselves. Cormier, who holds the UFC light heavyweight title, has matured as an analyst, as thrived as a champion. Jones, who holds the UFC’s interim title (though many still view him as the actual champion, because he never lost the belt), has been forced to recognize his mistakes in life.

And everything was fair game again on Wednesday, when the two came together at the UFC 200 press conference in Las Vegas. Just three nights before they trade punches — perhaps for the last time — both got in a few jabs beforehand.
When asked how difficult it was to listen to Jones taunt him and rub the victory he holds over him at UFC 182 in his face, Cormier said the time for talk was over. 

“No, not really. This is a game, you know — to him this is a game,” Cormier said. “This is not a game to me. I’m not here to talk and to jibber-jabber and argue like we’ve done before. I’m here to kick his ass on Saturday. So I’d rather than show him than tell him again. I’m done. I’m done with all the talking and jibber-and-jabbering. I’m ready to fight. I can show him the things that we’ve done in training better than I can actually say it to you here.”

The two will square off in the main event of the UFC’s big pay-per-view at the T-Mobile Arena on Saturday night. It feels like forever in the making, with the fighters having fought once and been book on a couple of other occasions just to see the fight fall through.

The talk in the media has been ongoing, with each man responding to the other’s latest volley on insults. Recently Cormier had referred to Jones as 28-year old middle-aged man, which was brought up to Jones at the press conference. 

“Well, yeah, DC said that because I used to be such a party animal that I burned my candle at both ends, that I’m 28 but really I’m 40 or whatever,” Jones said. “I think misery loves company. I think it’s apparent right now, when you look at me and you look at him, you can tell he’s had a hard weight cut. Look at his face, he’s all drawn out. I mean, he just got over a knee injury. I feel fine. I’m not even sure if he’s knee’s 100 percent. I doubt it, I’ll test it out on Saturday.

“But, yeah, I feel great. How can you convince someone that getting sober and living more healthy will make you older. I beat him in the prime of my partying. So, we’ll see. We’ll see who’s the 40-year old on Saturday.”

When Cormier was asked if Jones thinks he’s in his head, Cormier said there was some legitimacy in that.

“You know obviously, I think about him daily, about the fighter, so he is in my head in that aspect,” Cormier said. “But man, if you spend a day in my life, with all the joking and manipulating and all this other stuff, you would know that this guy doesn’t have the ability to actually get in my head as he thinks. But, it’s good. He’s in my head because we’re fighting, but the ability to manipulate me, that’s not real at all.”

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Report: Roan Carneiro robbed following BattleGrounds tournament win, shady commission prime suspect

Mission statement of the Oklahoma Athletic Commission: “To protect, maintain, and improve the safety and welfare of the participants of professional boxing, wrestling, and kickboxing, as well as the general public.” Maybe by “welfare” they meant food stamps?

Longtime mixed martial arts (MMA) veteran Roan Carneiro accomplished one of the most difficult feats in all of combat sports, and that’s beat three men in one night en route to capturing the BattleGrounds MMA welterweight tournament last Friday night (Oct. 3, 2014) in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

The prize? A whopping $ 50,000.

That may sound like chicken feed for Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White, who probably spends that much on one hand of blackjack, but for a regional promotion with no bankable stars, that’s about as good as you’re going to get.

Which makes the fact that Carneiro was “robbed” (via MMA Torch) all the more painful.

And from the man himself:

The Oklahoma Athletic Commission could not be reached for comment (its carrier pigeon doesn’t work weekends).

Carneiro captured the eight-man tournament by defeating Randall Wallace (submission), Trey Houston (technical knockout), and Brock Larson (unanimous decision). The Brazilian at one time was competing under the ZUFFA banner, but left the promotion in late 2008 after a dismal 2-3 run.

But as this fighter proved just last night, you can always go home again.

For complete results from the BattleGrounds MMA O.N.E. tournament — including the pay-per-view (PPV) “super fights” click here. For our post-fight recap and final thoughts click here.

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Chuck Liddell responds to Jon Jones’ super fight challenge, insists he would have knocked out ‘Bones’ in his prime

Hey, if Tito Ortiz would have dominated Jones, and Chuck always beat Tito, then MMA math teaches us that Liddell > Jones!

Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) light heavyweight champion Chuck Liddell has been made aware that reigning 205-pound kingpin, Jon Jones, has put an offer on the table for a “Liddell vs. Jones” super fight, should “The Iceman” really believe he’s still got what it takes to compete at the highest level.

Chuck’s response?

“I’m retired, I’ll let Glover take care of that tomorrow night.”

Liddell was on hand for the UFC 172 fan Q&A earlier today at the “Jones vs. Teixeira” weigh in event (watch the video here), and fielded questions about the current state of the light heavyweight division, while providing an expert analysis on what Jones has been able to accomplish during his time atop the 205-pound throne.

“[Jones] is great. He’s beaten all the guys they have right now. He’s doing a great job, I’m not saying anything about that and he’s still gonna get better. In my prime, yeah, I think I knock him out. Is he in his prime yet? I don’t think so, but I’m a fighter and I always think I’m gonna beat everyone in the world.”

Liddell — who called it quits in 2010 after three straight knockout losses — previously said he would come out of retirement for a “Bones” brawl.

That’s not to suggest “The Iceman” has it out for the young phenom. He is, however, supporting Glover Texieira, who tries to beat Jones for the 205-pound strap in the UFC 172 main event tomorrow night (Sat., April 26, 2014) in Baltimore, Maryland (results here).

Besides, Liddell (21-8) is no stranger to championship call outs, having already insisted he would have beaten Anderson Silva, if both he and the former middleweight titleholder were competing in the prime of their respective mixed martial arts (MMA) careers.

Anyone agree?

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Diego Sanchez UFC 171 video scrum: Reassured yoga isn’t tool of the devil, ‘Dream’ now entering career prime

According to Diego Sanchez, 32, he’s just now entering the prime of his mixed martial arts (MMA) career thanks to hot yoga and a dressing down from a local karate instructor. Seriously … we think.

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Chael Sonnen’s Mouth in Prime Form as UFC 148 Approaches

(Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

BURBANK, Calif. — It’s barely noon on Monday of the biggest week of his professional life, but Chael Sonnen is already clicking on all cylinders.

The man who will challenge Anderson Silva for the middleweight title in the main event of UFC 148 on Saturday night won’t even arrive in Las Vegas to commence fight-week activities until evening.

But as holds court with a group of reporters in a private dining room at Morton’s the Steakhouse, Sonnen finds himself getting all wound up while discussing the recent rash of UFC fighter injuries.

“I don’t get it,” said the quotable native of West Linn, Ore. “I’ve been wrestling since I was nine years old. Not once have a missed a competition due to illness or injury. You say you’ll do something and the competition is set. That’s it. You show up.”

“My dad was a plumber. That’s hard work. He never missed a day of work. I will never disrespect him by not showing up for an athletic competition that has a maximum duration of 25 minutes. There should be forfeiture if you have to pull out of a fight. If you don’t show up, it should be a loss on your record.”

As an example, Sonnen singles out Vitor Belfort, who pulled out of last month’s UFC 147 bout in Brazil with Wanderlei Silva, a card which Silva-Sonnen was slated to headline before that bout was moved to Nevada.

“Vitor Belfort pulls out of more fights than he agrees to,” Sonnen said. “He’s fantastic, but he’s such a chicken and he’s such a liar. To say you’re going to fight, to sell tickets, to sign your name, to film the TV show, and then to pull out? Against an invalid? That’s insane. It’s shocking they’re able to say that with a straight face. My opinion of Wanderlei is constantly evolving, because as atrocious as he is skills-wise, he shows up and fights. He goes hard in spite of the lack of talent and gives the fans his best.”

Does Sonnen really believe Belfort is a liar, or that Silva has no talent? It’s often hard to tell where reality ends and illusion begins with the No. 1 contender to the 185-pound title. For example, Sonnen mentions that he had dinner over the weekend with Portland sports radio host John Canzano, with whom he supposedly had a testy on-air dustup last week, then shifts the subject matter when reporters inquire further on the matter. No matter how hard he’s pressed, he’ll tell you none of this is a put-on, and that he’s the most honest man in the game.

“I’m the only respectful guy in the organization,” he said. “So many guys think that respect is to look at your face and tell you a lie. To pay you a compliment and then stick a knife in your back when you turn around. I will tell you to your face that when you turn around, I’ll put a knife in your back. And then I will. And people find that refreshing. I’m not a trash talker, I’m a truth talker, and if you ask me a question, I’m going to give you an answer. I don’t manufacture conflict.”

Sonnen, who has 20 pounds left to cut before Friday afternoon’s weigh-in, eats a single scallop off his plate before turning to a pre-packed lunch of cashews and a tangerine. His rant on fighter injuries was just the warm-up act. Pick a subject, he has an opinion.

Martial arts: “There’s no such thing as martial arts. That’s a concept they come up with for Hollywood. They made up the concept of mixed martial arts so they could get a bill passed to legalize the sport. When you say ‘I am a martial artist,” what does that even mean? We fight in a cage. I’m a cage fighter, I come to fight.”

Pound-for-pound rankings: “Total popularity contest. It’s a made-up thing. Look at Dan Henderson. He beat two former heavyweight champions. He was light heavyweight champion. He was middleweight champion. He beat former welterweight champion Carlos Newton. No other fighter has done that across four weight classes. So shouldn’t he be pound-for-pound number one?”

California politics: “You guys are getting what you deserved. You had Jerry Brown, a governor with failed policies back in the ‘70s, and you elected him back in again and his policies are failing again. Are you surprised?”

You get the feeling the challenger would have stayed all day answering questions on random topics if he wasn’t being whisked around the Los Angeles area. But eventually, it’s time to get down to business and talk about Saturday night’s much-anticipated rematch.

If Sonnen was nothing but talk, he wouldn’t have reached this position. That’s why he’s here watching a bunch of sportswriters stuff their faces and the rest of the fighters on the card aren’t: Sonnen offers plenty of substance to go with the considerable hype.

Few fighters have been able to deal with the type of adversity that Sonnen has seen over the past couple years — even if much of it was self-inflicted — and then worked themselves back into position for another title shot with Sonnen’s aplomb.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity,” Sonnen said. “Looking back, there were so many things that had to happen. But, Anderson, he had two hard fights. Vitor’s a dork, but he’s a tough fighter, man. I really think he’s an excellent fighter. [Yushin] Okami’s awesome. Okami beats on me every day. So Anderson got through these guys, and we both had to get back to this spot, it wasn’t handed to us. Every night when I closed my eyes, I saw this fight coming, but I don’t know why. Now that we’re talking about it, I don’t know why, when I should have thought it was ever going to happen. Coming back, I’m thinking, OK, I have to fight Anderson, but it becomes Brian Stann and it’s OK, that’s weird, alright will Chael will fight Anderson next. Now it’s Munoz, now it’s Bisping. I always thought it would be Anderson and it wasn’t. So many things have to line up for [there to be] a big fight.”

Part of the two-year journey to the rematch, of course, was the fight’s shift from Brazil in June to Las Vegas this weekend. At this point of the discussion, Sonnen slides from introspection back into salesman mode.

“Brazil would have been a good neutral territory,” Sonnen said. “Most of those fighters live here. Anderson lives in Beverly Hills, in a two-million-dollar mansion. He left those Brazilians just as soon as Wanderlei and Vitor did. T4hey go back anytime they can reach into those guys’ pockets, but the reality is they’re Americans, they got rich in America, they pay taxes in America, they got famous in America, they’re employed by an American company, those guys are Americans. His plane fight from Beverly Hills to Las Vegas is shorter than my ride from West Linn, Ore. So good for Anderson for getting it moved to his home turf.”

Sonnen, a former All-American wrestler at the University of Oregon, has been at this game since before the Unified Rules were laid out. Not only was there no talk of multi-million dollar gates back when Sonnen was breaking in, there were nights when you were simply lucky to get paid.

“I’m not in it for the money, I’m in it for the accomplishment,” said Sonnen. “I date back to 1997. The only other fighter who dates back to 1997 is Dan Henderson. My first fight was against Trevor Prangley, who is a bad, bad, dude, and we fought for free in Portland, Ore. My first professional fight was against [Jason] ‘Mayhem’ Miller. We fought for $ 500 and the cage was broke, so you couldn’t go into a certain part of it. That’s just the way it was back then. There was no commissions, there was no regulatory bodies, it was a different deal. When I say I’m not in it for the money, I was in it when there was no money for it.”

And that ties back into what makes Sonnen such a compelling figure. He was there back in the day. He paid his dues. Even when you’re wondering if he believes half the stuff that comes out of his mouth, there’s no denying Sonnen travelled a long road in MMA to get to where he is, about to headline what many expect to the biggest-selling fight of 2012.

And as he gets ready to wrap up lunch and brave LA’s infamous afternoon traffic to get to the airport and fly out to Vegas, he let those assembled knows that he knows it, too.

“In all candidness, my ego is on the line too,” he said. I’d like to be the biggest draw. I’d like to be the highest-paid guy. I don’t mean to be brash, but there’s no other way to do it when you’re talking about money. The only way to be recognized from the guys in the industry who make the decisions, are a paycheck, and getting the pay-per-view buys. I’m proud that people take the night off and get together and want to see when I fight. I intend to hang on to that.”

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