Tag Archive for Weidman

Chris Weidman: I Think I Should Fight Robert Whittaker

Unsurprisingly, Weidman thinks his stoppage win over Kelvin Gastelum should grant him the next title shot at 185 pounds.

Chris Weidman has been out of action for several months now as he nurses a bunged up thumb injury he suffered in his July victory over Kelvin Gastelum. But that didn’t stop him from flying all the way to Australia for UFC 221 where the future of his division was being decided.

Even with all signs pointing towards the winner of the Luke Rockhold vs. Yoel Romero semi-interim fight getting the next shot at Robert Whittaker, he made his case to reporters in Perth that he was the most deserving.

”I think it’s good that the division will be less chaotic, less weird, so you’ll have just a straight up champion, no interims,” he told Submission Radio. “As for who should fight Whittaker? I don’t know, I think I should. I just beat – what is Gastelum ranked, top five? He’s ranked fifth? I just finished him, he’s never gotten finished in his career.”

As for Romero?

”He just had a loss to Whittaker,” Weidman argued.

Unfortunately for Weidman, that loss from UFC 213 and Romero missing weight didn’t stop UFC president Dana White from confirming Romero as next up for Whittaker. A small glimmer of hope opened up for “The All American” when Yoel declared he’d broken his leg en route to his third round victory over Rockhold. But doctors soon cleared that up and declared Romero ‘good to go’ with a few weeks rest.

That’s longer than it will take for Weidman to get back to training.

”There’s still pain, I’m able to punch decent,” he said regarding his ongoing thumb problems. “But still if I clip the thumb it still hurts. But it’s more the grappling right now, when I go to grab or do any movement I get little sharp pains so I’m not able to squeeze like I’d like. And so I’m at about the six month mark, Khabib says it takes about eight months, so maybe another two months or maybe less.”

”I’m going to go see a doctor in Las Vegas coming up here and get some injections and hopefully speed up the process.”

We assume he’s talking about stem cells. Why fighters aren’t soaking in the stuff like Neo in the Matrix is beyond me. Regardless of his thumb, it sounds like Weidman will be stuck on the sidelines with no title shot unless something crazy happens … which given the past two years at 185 pounds, is not that unlikely.

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Chris Weidman: I Think I Should Fight Robert Whittaker

Unsurprisingly, Weidman thinks his stoppage win over Kelvin Gastelum should grant him the next title shot at 185 pounds.

Chris Weidman has been out of action for several months now as he nurses a bunged up thumb injury he suffered in his July victory over Kelvin Gastelum. But that didn’t stop him from flying all the way to Australia for UFC 221 where the future of his division was being decided.

Even with all signs pointing towards the winner of the Luke Rockhold vs. Yoel Romero semi-interim fight getting the next shot at Robert Whittaker, he made his case to reporters in Perth that he was the most deserving.

”I think it’s good that the division will be less chaotic, less weird, so you’ll have just a straight up champion, no interims,” he told Submission Radio. “As for who should fight Whittaker? I don’t know, I think I should. I just beat – what is Gastelum ranked, top five? He’s ranked fifth? I just finished him, he’s never gotten finished in his career.”

As for Romero?

”He just had a loss to Whittaker,” Weidman argued.

Unfortunately for Weidman, that loss from UFC 213 and Romero missing weight didn’t stop UFC president Dana White from confirming Romero as next up for Whittaker. A small glimmer of hope opened up for “The All American” when Yoel declared he’d broken his leg en route to his third round victory over Rockhold. But doctors soon cleared that up and declared Romero ‘good to go’ with a few weeks rest.

That’s longer than it will take for Weidman to get back to training.

”There’s still pain, I’m able to punch decent,” he said regarding his ongoing thumb problems. “But still if I clip the thumb it still hurts. But it’s more the grappling right now, when I go to grab or do any movement I get little sharp pains so I’m not able to squeeze like I’d like. And so I’m at about the six month mark, Khabib says it takes about eight months, so maybe another two months or maybe less.”

”I’m going to go see a doctor in Las Vegas coming up here and get some injections and hopefully speed up the process.”

We assume he’s talking about stem cells. Why fighters aren’t soaking in the stuff like Neo in the Matrix is beyond me. Regardless of his thumb, it sounds like Weidman will be stuck on the sidelines with no title shot unless something crazy happens … which given the past two years at 185 pounds, is not that unlikely.

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UFC on Fox 25 ‘Weidman vs. Gastelum’ Play-by-Play & Results

Sherdog.com’s UFC on Fox 25 coverage kicks off Saturday at 4 p.m. ET.
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UFC on Fox 25 Weigh-ins: Chris Weidman, Kelvin Gastelum Set for Middleweight Clash

The newly-renovated Nassau Coliseum in Long Island, New York, is set to host its first-ever Ultimate Fighting Championship event on Saturday as former middleweight champion Chris Weidman will look to turn his career around against Kelvin Gastelum.
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UFC on FOX 25 odds: Latest Vegas lines and betting guide for ‘Weidman vs Gastelum’

Get a detailed breakdown of the betting lines for UFC on FOX 25, which is set to hit NYCB Live in Uniondale, New York, this weekend (Sat., July 22, 2017), including best bets, underdogs, favorites, and much more!

One captured The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) middleweight crown. The other was the UFC middleweight champion.

Following brutal beatings of Tim Kennedy and Vitor Belfort, Kelvin Gastelum (the former) will face his stiffest test yet this Saturday night (Jul7 22, 2017) when he takes on Chris Weidman in the latter’s native Long Island.

The UFC on FOX 25 fight card will also feature a duo of wrestler battles in Dennis Bermudez vs. Darren Elkins and Gian Villante vs. Patrick Cummins, plus a bantamweight brawl between Jimmie Rivera and Thomas Almeida.

Everything but the Fight Pass portion is free, but that’s no excuse not to make some money on the side.

Here’s how.

What Went Wrong at UFC Fight Night 113?

Radda radda eye pokes radda radda.

Underdogs:

Lyman Good (-220) vs. Elizeu Zaleski Dos Santos (+180)

Ryan LaFlare (-170) vs. Alex Oliveira (+150)

Chase Sherman (-220) vs. Damian Grabowski (+180)

Jeremy Kennedy (-220) vs. Kyle Bochniak (+180)

Brian Kelleher (-220) vs. Marlon Vera (+175)

Timothy Johnson (-220) vs. Junior Albini (+180)

Shane Burgos (-320) vs. Godofredo Pepey (+260)

Chris Wade (-270) vs. Frankie Perez (+230)

Thoughts: Ryan LaFlare, come on up. You’re the undercard pick for the week.

Alex Oliveira is entertaining as all get out, but he’s a fundamentally flawed fighter who’s relied on overpowering physicality to cover his weaknesses. At welterweight, that advantage no longer exists. While he packs heavy hands, he relies on his wrestling when the going gets tough, a nonviable strategy against a grappler of LaFlare’s caliber. I fully expect LaFlare to grind Oliveira into the dirt, so bank on it.

Main Card:

Kelvin Gastelum (-180) vs. Chris Weidman (+168)

Dennis Bermudez (-250) vs. Darren Elkins (+210)

Gian Villante (-115) vs. Patrick Cummins (-105)

Jimmie Rivera (-175) vs. Thomas Almeida (+155)

Thoughts: Dennis Bermudez and Thomas Almeida bring the violence in very different ways, but they’re both quality investments.

Bermudez has what I used to call “Eddie Alvarez Syndrome,” wherein he’ll get dropped hard early and then, if he survives, cruise along without issue. Jorge Masvidal used to have this bad. Luckily, Elkins is not a hard puncher and his key attribute, his endless cardio, won’t make much of a difference considering that Bermudez starts in fifth gear and doesn’t slow down until he’s unconscious. Bermudez is the physically stronger man, the better grappler, and the better striker; that wasn’t enough to save Mirsad Bektic, of course, but Bermudez should take this.

Jimmie Rivera is a beast, no doubt, but there are very few bantamweight strikers I’d pick to defeat “Thominhas.” Unless you can plug him early the way Cody Garbrandt did, he’s more or less unstoppable once he gets past that initial slow start. While Rivera’s learned to sit down on his punches and do real damage lately, I don’t think he has enough firepower to put Almeida away before the Muay Thai combinations start flowing.

Best bets for UFC on FOX 25:

Parlay-Ryan LaFlare and Dennis Bermudez: $ 40 to make $ 48.80

Single bet-Thomas Almeida: $ 40 to make $ 62

There are a couple fights here you really, really don’t want to miss.

MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC on FOX 25 fight card on fight night (click here), starting with the Fight Pass “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard balance on FOX at 6 p.m. ET, before the FOX main card start time at 8 p.m. ET.

Initial Investment For 2017: $ 200 (+$ 100 infusion)

Current Total: $ 119.16

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UFC on FOX 25 predictions: ‘Weidman vs Gastelum’ FOX ‘Prelims’ undercard preview

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is bringing a bevy of “Prelims” fights to both UFC Fight Pass and FOX this weekend (Sat., June 22, 2017) when UFC on FOX 25: “Weidman vs. Gastelum” storms NYCB Live in Uniondale, New York. MMAmania.com’s Patrick Stumberg continues the UFC on FOX 25 “Prelims” party with the second (and final) installment of a two-part undercard preview series below.

Two very different trajectories intersect this Saturday when former middleweight Champion Chris Weidman faces surging former welterweight Kelvin Gastelum in Long Island.

The four-fight FOX main card will also feature a clash between featherweight grinders Darren Elkins and Dennis Bermudez, plus Patrick Cummins vs. Gian Villante at light heavyweight and an incredible bantamweight showdown between Thomas Almeida and Jimmie Rivera.

The other two hours slated for FOX will be occupied by a handful of “Prelims” bouts (see part one of our preview here). Here are the remaining four, arranged for your dissection (and maximum appreciation).

170 lbs.: Lyman Good (19-3) vs. Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos (16-5)

Good, Bellator’s inaugural welterweight champion, came up short in his first bid for UFC glory on The Ultimate Fighter 19, falling to Ian Stephens in the elimination round. He went on to earn the CFFC welterweight title and, when Edgar Garcia pulled out with an injury, stepped up on short notice to knock out Andrew Craig at UFC Fight Night 71. This will be his first fight in two years thanks to an injury and a subsequent failed drug test.

Former Jungle Fight champion Zaleski has been pure excitement thus far in his 2-1 UFC career. After a close loss to Nicolas Dalby in his promotional debut, he scored a comeback knockout of Omari Akhmedov and edged out veteran Keita Nakamura in a pair of entertaining showdowns. Twelve of his sixteen professional victories have come by form of knockout.

“Capoeira” Zaleski doesn’t know how to be in a bad fight, but he faces an uphill battle here. The Brazilian’s hands don’t have anywhere near the polish of his kicks and, though crafty on the mat, any transition between the feet and the mat is going to be done on Good’s terms. “Cyborg,” in addition to being a physical specimen, has an iron chin and the sort of tight boxing that Zaleski’s angry swings will struggle badly with.

The big question mark is Good’s layoff, especially since Zaleski gets stronger as the fight goes. Still, cardio hasn’t been an issue for Good in the past and I have faith in his hands. He turns aside a late surge to win a decision.

Prediction: Good by unanimous decision

185 lbs.: Rafael Natal (21-8-1) vs. Eryk Anders (9-0)

Four consecutive wins, including an upset split decision over Uriah Hall in which he was around a +300 underdog, earned “Sapo” the #13 spot in the middleweight rankings. He was not long for the top 15, however, and lost a decision to Robert Whittaker before suffering a one-punch knockout loss to Tim Boetsch. He owns eight wins by submission, though just one since 2010.

A former linebacker for the Alabama Crimson Tide, Anders had his first amateur bout in 2012 and racked up a 5-1-1 record before moving to the pros in 2015. Four consecutive first-round stoppage wins earned him a fight against Brendan Allen for the vacant LFA middleweight title last month, which he won via unanimous decision. He replaces the injured Alessio Di Chirico on nine days’ notice.

Natal, for reasons that continue to elude me, is one of my great predictive banes. I just can’t pick the guy’s fights to save my life. This, compounded with Anders’ propensity for quick finishes that both build hype and leave me little footage to work with, made this a fight I wasn’t looking forward to dealing with.

I’ve gone back and forth a few times, but I think I’ll settle on Anders.

Anders is definitely the athlete his résumé suggests, packing some swift and powerful hands alongside physicality and the ability to go five rounds. The level of competition is worrying outside of Allen, of course, but Natal’s just too inconsistent for me to pick against a powerhouse like this. Anders tags him early.

Prediction: Anders by first-round TKO

170 lbs.: Ryan LaFlare (13-1) vs. Alex Oliveira (17-4-1)

It’s been four years since LaFlare, then 7-0 with seven finishes, debuted in the Octagon with a wide win over Benny Alloway. The finishes haven’t been there since, but the wins certainly have, as he’s gone 6-1 in the promotion and recently returned from over a year away to dispatch Roan Carneiro at UFC 208. He stands two inches taller than Oliveira at 6’1”, but will give up two inches of reach.

“Cowboy’s” jumps between lightweight and welterweight ended when he blew up the scales against Will Brooks, forcing a full-time move to 170 despite the victory. The change in scenery doesn’t appear to be bothering him, however, as he recently submitted Tim Means in front of a Brazilian crowd at UFC Fight Night 106. He has knocked out ten professional opponents and submitted another four.

Without a hefty layoff to slow LaFlare down as it did against Carneiro, he should get the win much more comfortably here. Oliveira has power and grit for days, but his striking technique remains iffy and he tends to fall back on takedowns when the going gets tough. LaFlare’s wrestling is stouter than any “Cowboy” has yet faced, an issue compounded by the fact that Oliveira won’t have the massive size advantage that he did against Brooks.

Well-rounded skills backed up by strength and punching power are enough for Oliveira to make a place for himself at 170, but not enough to take out the top-tier specialists among the welterweight ranks. Steady takedowns carry LaFlare to a decision win.

Prediction: LaFlare by unanimous decision

265 lbs.: Damian Grabowski (20-4) vs. Chase Sherman (10-3)

“The Polish Pitbull” reached the semifinals of Bellator’s first heavyweight tournament before running afoul of Cole Konrad, then proceeded to win seven of his next eight to earn a spot in the UFC. The former M-1 champ has yet to taste that sort of success in the Octagon, suffering consecutive knockout losses to Derrick Lewis and Anthony Hamilton. Twelve of his professional wins have come by submission.

“The Vanilla Gorilla” got off to a rough UFC start of his own, losing a one-sided decision to Justin Ledet and suffering a brutal knockout loss to Walt Harris in his first two Octagon appearances. His next time out, however, he rewarded the UFC for giving him another chance with a Fight of the Night-winning war against Rashad Coulter just two months ago. He steps in for the injured Christian Colombo on around a month’s notice.

I would summarize this fight as “not as good as I thought” vs. “exactly as good as I thought, which is not very.” Grabowski’s been more or less manhandled in the Octagon, while Sherman somehow found a way to get tagged repeatedly by a far shorter fighter on one leg.

I’m not expecting a title challenger to emerge from this, is what I’m saying.

I’ve been wrong about him before, but I’m still leaning towards Grabowski. Sherman’s got an iffy gas tank, no defense, and an unproven ground game. Grabowski, for all his faults, can go all fifteen minutes at a solid pace and is the better-rounded of the two. Grabowski submits a fading Sherman late.

Prediction: Grabowski by third-round submission

A great main event and a Fight of the Year-level bantamweight showdown make this a must-see card.

See you this Saturday!

Current UFC “Prelims” Prediction Record for 2017: 86-45 (1 NC)

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UFC on FOX 25 predictions: ‘Weidman vs Gastelum’ Fight Pass ‘Prelims’ undercard preview

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is bringing a bevy of “Prelims” fights to both UFC Fight Pass and FOX this weekend (Sat., June 22, 2017) when UFC on FOX 25: “Weidman vs. Gastelum” storms NYCB Live in Uniondale, New York. MMAmania.com’s Patrick Stumberg kicks off the UFC on FOX 25 “Prelims” party with the first installment of a two-part undercard preview series below.

Where the rising welterweight meets the falling champion.

Three consecutive losses have left former middleweight ruler Chris Weidman with his back against the wall and getting off won’t be easy. This Saturday night, “All American” takes on The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) winner Kelvin Gastelum in the main event of UFC on FOX 25.

In the co-main event, Darren Elkins attempts to build on his stunning upset of Mirsad Bektic against Dennis Bermudez, while Patrick Cummins faces Gian Villante and Jimmie Rivera dukes it out with Thomas Almeida in a must-see bantamweight eliminator.

We’ve got nine “Prelims” bouts to complement the four-fight main card. Here’s a closer look at this weekend’s Fight Pass lineup.

145 lbs.: Kyle Bochniak (7-1) vs. Jeremy Kennedy (10-0)

Bochniak stepped up on short notice to face Charles Rosa in Boston and, despite a strong start, ultimately lost a competitive unanimous decision to the local favorite. Seven months later, he returned to the cage to win a narrow split decision over Ultimate Fighter: Latin America 2 winner Enrique Barzola in Vancouver. This will be his first fight in almost eleven months.

24-year-old Kennedy first entered the Octagon in August of 2016, where he took a clinch-heavy decision over late replacement Alex Ricci. Returning to featherweight, he took on Ultimate Fighter: Brazil winner Rony “Jason” and used a quality takedown game to win a unanimous decision. He stands four inches taller than Bochniak at 5’11”.

Bochniak should be winless in the UFC. He’s aggressive and has decent power, but appears to have issues with the sort of grappling Kennedy brings to the table. He’s not a big enough hitter to end things on the feet, either, nor the footwork to keep his back off the cage.

In short, he just doesn’t have the tools to make “JBC” uncomfortable. Kennedy utilizes regular takedowns to earn his third UFC victory.

Prediction: Kennedy by unanimous decision

135 lbs.: Brian Kelleher (17-7) vs. Marlon Vera (11-3-1)

Despite a six-fight winning streak and a submission over the previously unbeaten Julio Arce on his résumé, Kelleher stepped into the Octagon last month as a +300 underdog against Iuri Alcântara. He defied the odds with a stunning first-round guillotine, earning Performance of the Night and becoming the first man to stop “Marajó” since 2009. He will give up two inches of height and four inches of reach to the 5’8” “Chito.”

Vera, an early favorite on the inaugural Ultimate Fighter: Latin America, was forced out due to a skin infection and lost a decision to Marco Antonio Beltran at UFC 180. He’s since won three of four, including bonus-winning victories over Roman Salazar (triangle choke) and Brad Pickett (head kick). He owns five pro wins by submission and another two by (T)KO.

Vera is still a collection of solid facets struggling to coalesce. The key to his ongoing issues is the wrestling defense; he’s good off his back, but nowhere near enough to threaten quality wrestlers. His height and length haven’t translated to an overpowering striking attack, either.

Kelleher has never been stopped by strikes and hasn’t been submitted in three years. Strong takedowns and stout submission defense carry him past Vera.

Prediction: Kelleher by unanimous decision

265 lbs.: Timothy Johnson (11-3) vs. Júnior Albini (13-2)

Johnson, who opened his UFC career with an impressive ground-and-pound stoppage of Shamil Abdurakhimov, has alternated wins and losses during his two-year Octagon tenure. His sole fight of 2017 saw him take on Polish striker Daniel Omielanczuk, whose stout takedown defense Johnson struggled to overcome on his way to a split decision victory. All nine of his stoppage wins have come inside of two rounds.

Albini put consecutive submission losses behind him to rattle off nine straight wins, seven of them by stoppage and five in the first round. Though he missed all of 2015, he earned and defended the Aspera FC heavyweight title during his three-fight 2016 campaign. This will be his first fight since last August.

I honestly don’t see the logic here. The UFC has in Albini a young, reasonably entertaining heavyweight prospect, which are worth their weight in gold these days. The first thing they decided to do with this untested acquisition is put him in a fight he’ll likely lose against a man notorious for unwatchable fights.

Beating Johnson requires either using good footwork to stay off the fence or a superior wrestling game to put him on his back. Albini, as far as I can tell, has neither. Unless he can somehow crack that mighty moustache with a right hand or one of the knees he’s fond of, expect Albini to spend most of the fight with his back on either the fence or the mat en route to his first decision loss.

Prediction: Johnson by unanimous decision

145 lbs.: Shane Burgos (9-0) vs. Godofredo Pepey (13-4)

“Hurricane” Shane stepped into his UFC debut with five first-round finishes under his belt, but had to settle for a decision against Tiago dos Santos in his debut slugfest. Undaunted, he returned to his finishing ways in a Fight of the Night-winning brawl against Charles Rosa at UFC 210, the fourth knockout and eighth overall stoppage of his professional career. He will have four inches of height and two inches of reach on Pepey.

Despite a loss to Rony “Jason” in the finals of the inaugural Ultimate Fighter: Brazil, Pepey has carved out a place for himself as one of the featherweight division’s most entertaining submission artists. He currently finds himself on a 4-1 run that includes three “Performance of the Night” awards, one of them a flying knee knockout of Noad Lahat in 2014. He has submitted nine opponents, one via strikes, and knocked out another three.

Generally speaking, Pepey either wins big or loses big. There have been maybe two exceptions since his debut loss to “Jason.” This won’t be the third, but Pepey might wish it was.

Burgos’ power, physical strength, and takedown defense make him a nightmare matchup for Pepey, whose takedowns have always been iffy and whose freeform striking leaves him open to the bone-crunching counters Burgos is so fond of.

The Brazilian is always good for an out-of-nowhere submission, but Burgos won’t give him time to find one. “Hurricane” storms through him in under a round.

Prediction: Burgos by first-round knockout

155 lbs.: Frankie Perez (10-3) vs. Chris Wade (11-3)

Perez, a protégé of grappling great Ricardo Almeida, scored a bonus-winning knockout of Sam Stout before announcing his retirement from the sport. He just couldn’t stay away, however, and returned fifteen months later to lose a decision to Marc Diakiese in Albany. This will be his second fight with Wade, who defeated Perez by split decision in 2014.

Wade joined the world’s largest fighting organization with the Ring of Combat lightweight title around his waist and promptly rattled off four consecutive victories. He currently finds himself on a two-fight losing streak, having fallen to Dagestani wrestling masters Rustam Khabilov and Islam Makhachev in 2016. He will give up an inch of height and three inches of reach to Perez.

Even considering Wade’s recent struggles, I’m leaning his way. Khabilov and Makhachev were always going to be tough style matchups and Perez, though adept on the ground, is nowhere near that caliber of takedown artist. Even if Perez does manage to get the better of him on the feet, it won’t matter much when Wade can drag him down as needed.

Wade may never get past the bruising wrestlers lurking in the lightweight division’s Top 15, but Perez is the sort of fighter against whom he can keep the gate. Wade controls the striking and grappling on his way to a decision win.

Prediction: Wade by unanimous decision

Five fights previewed tomorrow, including the return of a former Bellator MMA titleholder and the debut of a Legacy Fighting Alliance (LFA) champ.

See you then!

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Watch UFC on FOX 25 ‘Road to the Octagon’ full video replay for ‘Weidman vs Gastelum’

Former UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman (13-3) will return home to challenge rising title contender Kelvin Gastelum (13-2, 1 NC) at the upcoming UFC on FOX 25 mixed martial arts (MMA) event this Saturday night (July 22, 2017) from inside NYCB Live in Uniondale, New York.

Weidman, 32, has struggled to capture a victory inside the Octagon since losing his title to Luke Rockhold at UFC 194. The New Yorker recently dropped back-to-back knockout losses to Yoel Romero and Gegard Mousasi, extending his current losing streak to three. This headlining act will be the third-straight fight in which Weidman is competing in “The Empire State.”

Gastelum, 25, is coming off a brief squabble with USADA, in which he had his knockout victory over Vitor Belfort at UFC Fight Night 106 overturned to a no contest and his UFC 212 bout opposite Anderson Silva cancelled. Still, the former welterweight is red hot at 185 pounds and could easily leap into immediate title contention with a finish over his “All American” rival.

Check out their “Road to the Octagon” video preview above and to see who else is fighting at UFC on FOX 25 click here.

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UFC on FOX 25 promo video preview for ‘Weidman vs. Gastelum’ event on July 22 in New York

Now that UFC Fight Night 113 is in the books — full results here — Ultimate Fighting Championship is all set to stage it’s next event, as UFC on FOX 25 is set to go down next Saturday (July 22, 2017) inside NYCB LIVE in Uniondale, New York.

The event will feature a Middleweight scrap between former division champion Chris Weidman and former Ultimate Fighter (TUF) winner, Kelvin Gastelum. “All American” is in desperate need of a win after losing three in a row to the likes of Yoel Romero, Gegard Mousasi and Luke Rockhold.

And New York has not been good to him, as he has dropped his last two in his home state.

And it won’t get easier, as Kelvin has proven time and again to be a tough out. In fact, Gastelum’s last three victories have come against Tim Kennedy, johny Hendricks and Vitor Belfort. A win over Weidman could get Kelvin his much-desired shot at the strap now that the promotion has one less contender in Gegard.

Also on the card, Dennis Bermudez returns to face Darren Elkins, while Patrick Cummins faces Gian Villante in main card action.

To see the most up-to-date UFC on FOX 25 card click here.

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Midnight Mania! Weidman narrates Cyborg punking him then punching Magana

Bringing you the weird and wild from the world of MMA each and every weeknight

Welcome to Midnight Mania!

Remember when Cris Cyborg punched Angela Magana in the mouth, and it was this big deal (but not big enough to keep Cyborg from fighting for a UFC title at UFC 214). In fact, the misdemeanor battery Cyborg was charged with is still pending.

Well, Chris Weidman was there, and he tried to break it up, but Cyborg made him back off real fast. (related: Weidman also turned down a last-minute fight with Anderson Silva at UFC 212)

Weidman told the tale with Ariel Helwani on the MMA Hour (starting at the 2 hour 45 minute mark). According to him, the problem began when Weidman’s team and Magana got onto the wrong bus, one reserved for Brazilians. Transcript via MMAFighting.com:

When we got off the bus, that girl, Magana, was right in front of me,” Weidman said on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “As I come off the bus, all I see is Cyborg run up to Magana’s face and they’re having words. I had no idea what was going on. I didn’t know if there was any beef. … I don’t follow (Magana) on Twitter so I didn’t realize what she was saying.

“Basically, Cyborg was going nuts on her, like all the words you can think of. She was screaming ‘Who the f**k do you think you are?’ and talking like this and blah, blah, blah.

Magana was kind of quiet and shocked. She was kind of smiling, like a nervous smile. I was thinking, ‘Oh my God’ because she’s way smaller than Cyborg.”

Then, however, Magana realized she had an audience. That’s when the self-styled “Queen” began to talk back to Cris. Weidman tried to de-escalate the situation, but this was one Brazilian he didn’t want to tangle with.

All of sudden (Magana) realizes what’s going on around her,” Weidman said. “She sees that there are a lot of people around and she sees cameras coming out. She grew some balls and all of sudden she starts cursing back at Cyborg. I was thinking, ‘That’s not smart.’

As soon as I saw (Magana) cursing back at Cyborg, I realize there is no one in between them and that something is going to go down,” Weidman said. “I started trying to break it up.

“I came in like, ‘C’mon, guys, let’s calm it down,’ and as soon (as I did that) ‘Cyborg’ just stops screaming at Magana, looks at me and says, ‘Don’t touch me.’

“I was like, ‘Alright, I’m good!’”

Moments later, Cyborg landed the infamous punch- after which, Magana immediately threatened to call the police.

So I backed up and then within a second (Cyborg) takes her hand and cracks Magana,” Weidman said. “Magana did a little shaky leg thing and right away she got teary-eyed. At least from what I heard, right away she started to say, ‘I’m calling the cops’

That was the first thing and then Cyborg just jetted out.

Weidman’s segment begins at 2:45

Does Weidman think Cyborg was justified in her anger? From what he could tell afterwards, she had reason to be upset- but punching people to resolve problems is not the smartest way to do things.

I had no idea what was going on,” Weidman said. “I was just thinking, ‘I can’t believe she just beat the s**t out of this little girl.’

“That’s what was going through my head then, but when I saw some of the stuff she was saying to Cyborg I could understand. I don’t know why she would be saying stuff like that to Cyborg, especially if you know you could be seeing her.

“If someone was talking s**t like that about me, I’d probably have something to say to them the next time I see them and we could probably be fighting. I do see where Cyborg went with that.

“Unfortunately, in the world we live in today there are cops and lawsuits, so you can’t just punch people. You have to find other ways to resolve your issues.”

The best part, according to Weidman? Dana White has the video of Cyborg punking him.

“The best part of it is, Dana White has the video,” Weidman said. “He showed me at this thing (we did), but I don’t know if he’s ever going to release it. It is hysterical the way I backtracked.

“They were busting my balls but I have no shame. What am I going to do, step in there to Cyborg and say, ‘No, I will touch you’ and she kicks my ass? What am I gonna do kick her ass? Either way, I’m screwed.

“What if she knocked me out? I may as well just retire then.”


Insomnia

You have to appreciate Yoel Romero as one of MMA’s most distinctive characters.

I love most of this quote from Justin Gaethje about the state of play in MMA ahead of his UFC debut against a very tough stylistic matchup in Michael Johnson this weekend

Gaethje has had it with the stupidity of some fans

This is a troubling rumor- the UFC is apparently thinking of selling off their flyweight division wholesale.

Max Holloway, UFC featherweight champion, is going head to head with flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson- for the title of “Ultimate” video game champion. The smart money is on Johnson.

If you haven’t seen it, this low-budget action movie tries (and fails) to make Georges St. Pierre landing ground-and-pound from the guard seem like entertainment.

Speaking of welterweights who are supposedly not retired yet…

Random fact of the day

Strength and explosiveness training at American Top Team with Will Brooks and Kyoji Horiguchi.

This weekend in combat sports is going to be a lot of fun:


Slips, Rips, KO Clips

Justin Gaethje may or may not win this weekend, but he will go all out

Conor McGregor’s friend did good work on the prelims of the controversial Pacquiao-Horn bout:

That eye looks like a doctor’s stoppage to me…

The sweet science of pugilism does have a rich history

Boxing is still pretty incredible sometimes

Take this knockout for instance

There was some good MMA this weekend, even without the UFC

Adventures of the human swiffer broom

I remember this drill

Nice win

Oh, that’s a well-disguised knee. Threw the left hand, then the left knee to time the duck.

This is such a pure overhand


Quick Hits


Podcasts and Video

I’m really, really looking forward to this fight. Whittaker should win it, but Romero is nothing if not unpredictable.

The Monday Morning Analyst

The Fight Society Podcast with Damon Martin.

The MMA Ratings podcast

I don’t usually listen to Rogan’s podcasts, but I enjoyed this conversation with Josh Barnett:

UFC 213 Beer Pairing with Flyin Brian J:

Andre Ward thinks Mayweather-McGregor will last more than a round, but then again, he didn’t give Horn much chance against Pacquiao.

Watching the first fight between Valentina Shevchenko and Amanda Nunes is really interesting. Nunes showed better cardio than ever before in her career, but she still gassed after beating up on Shevchenko for two rounds. That’s why a five-round rematch is so interesting- does the best defensive striker at 135 (Shevchenko) avoid the finish early again, and at what point does Nunes gas if she does?


Random Land

That Naruto run is the strongest I’ve ever seen

This is from a nightmare, surely

Stay woke, Maniacs!

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