Cagewriter

  • UFC 152 photo gallery

    Check out pictures from UFC 152 by Tracy Lee. You'll see Jon Jones come back for a win, Evan Dunham's really bloody face, and more.

  • Jon Jones, Cub Swanson and Vinny Magalhaes: UFC 152′s Three Stars

    (Getty)After waiting way too long for fights, UFC 152 delivered with mostly exciting bouts. There's no need to discuss Matt Hamill's bout with Roger Hollett. Instead, let's talk about the fighters who truly stood out on Saturday night in Toronto. Here are Cagewriter's three stars. Tell us yours in the comments, on Facebook or Twitter.

    No. 1 star -- Jon Jones: The light heavyweight champion has barely faced adversity in fights, but Vitor Belfort gave it to him with an early armbar attempt. Jones got out of the submission, and then beat up Belfort for four rounds until an Americana submission ended the fight in the fourth round.

    No. 2 star -- Cub Swanson: His knockout of Charles Oliveira was one of the weirder knockouts in recent memory. Oliveira was hurt by a body shot. Swanson then hit Oliveira with a left in the head, and Oliveira stood there for a second before falling to the ground. Slow motion knockouts are just as effective, and Swanson is now 3-0 in 2012. Every win was by knockout.

    No. 3 star -- Vinny Magalhaes: It's been three years since Magalhaes was in the UFC. He reminded fans of his grappling prowess with a perfectly executed armbar of Igor Pokrajac. It was the exact move you would expect out of a jiu-jitsu world champ.

    Read More »from Jon Jones, Cub Swanson and Vinny Magalhaes: UFC 152′s Three Stars
  • Gilbert Melendez injury causes Strikeforce to cancel Saturday’s card

    (Getty)Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez was hit with an injury just a week before he was scheduled to fight Pat Healy. He had to withdraw from the fight. Without Healy-Melendez, Showtime decided not to air the card. Without Showtime, Strikeforce canceled the event.

    "When Showtime informed us that it would not be airing the event, we made the difficult decision to cancel Saturday's card in Sacramento," Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker said via press release. "Without a television partner, we simply could not move forward with this event. We wish Gilbert a speedy recovery and will work diligently and quickly to reschedule the fighters affected by this news on upcoming cards."

    This is the second major injury to hit Strikeforce recently. UFC heavyweight Frank Mir pulled out of his Nov. 3 bout with Strikeforce heavyweight grand prix champ Daniel Cormier with an injury.

    Healy told Bloody Elbow Radio that he was told he would not be fighting again until Melendez is healthy, and that he wasn't given the option to fight someone else.

    "I'm like in a daze, still. I have to think about, if Gil's going to be out six months and I have to wait the whole time, I have to start making some plans to make money right now so I'm not in a situation where I have to make money right before training for a fight," Healy said.

    Read More »from Gilbert Melendez injury causes Strikeforce to cancel Saturday’s card
  • Armbars, Americanas, title shots and more: UFC 152 notes

    (Tracy Lee)A few observations and notes as you decompress from UFC 152:

    -- Did you gasp when Vitor Belfort hit the armbar early in his loss to Jon Jones? Because I did, and I'm still amazed Jones was not injured. It's one of the few times he's been in danger, and his ability to get out of the submission was impressive.

    -- Jones' fourth-round Americana submission earned him the $65,000 submission of the night bonus. The other bonuses went to Cub Swanson for his knockout of Charles Oliveira, and T.J. Grant and Evan Dunham for their bloody fight of the night.

    -- At the post-fight press conference, UFC president Dana White said a fight between Michael Bisping and UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva could be interesting. Nothing in Bisping's win over Stann would indicate that to be so.

    -- Demetrious Johnson winning the flyweight championship will go down in the record books because he's the first-ever 125-lb champ. But it should also be remembered for the fantastic speed shown by Johnson as he picked apart the very tough Joseph Benavidez.

    What did you think of UFC 152? Speak up in the comments, on Facebook or Twitter.

    Read More »from Armbars, Americanas, title shots and more: UFC 152 notes
  • Injured Matyushenko calls Hamill’s win a ‘weak fight’

    (Tracy Lee)

    Matt Hamill's return to the Octagon was less than thrilling. Hamill may have won his first post-retirement bout with a decision over Roger Hollett, but he didn't win many fans with the slow, plodding bout. The crowd at UFC 152 in Toronto booed the bout, and the fight was panned on social media.

    One of the notable tweets about how boring the fight was came from UFC fight Vladimir Matyushenko:

    At one point, it was supposed to be Matyushenko in the cage with Hamill. The fight that was originally made for UFC 152 was Hamill vs. Hollett. However, Hollett was still under contract with Bellator. Matyushenko stepped in to fight Hamill, but then tore his Achilles' tendon in training. Hollett had his contract situation cleared up, and was brought back into fight Hamill.

    But even with his torn tendon, Matyushenko thought he could still bring a

    Read More »from Injured Matyushenko calls Hamill’s win a ‘weak fight’
  • T.J. Grant takes a really bloody decision over Evan Dunham (PHOTO)

    (Tracy Lee)UFC 152 featured a bloody, bloody fight during the preliminary bouts. During T.J. Grant's decision win over Evan Dunham, Grant opened a cut right down the middle of Dunham's forehead. Blood poured from Dunham's forehead for much of the fight. Keep reading for another look at the cut.

    Read More »from T.J. Grant takes a really bloody decision over Evan Dunham (PHOTO)
  • Yahoo! Sports and Heavy MMA present ‘Fight Day Live’

    A video or other embedded content has been hidden. Click here to view it.

    Fight Day Live is back this Saturday, Sept. 22, from the Air Canada Centre in Toronto for UFC 152. Two title fights will be on the line as UFC light heavyweight champ Jon Jones battles former UFC champion Vitor Belfort, and Joseph Benavidez will take on Demetrious Johnson to crown the first UFC flyweight champion. Outspoken middleweight Michael Bisping will fight the "All American" Brian Stann.

    Fight Day Live host Dave Farra will guide you through the entire UFC 152 card with expert analysis from ESPN's Brett Okamoto and UFC Magazine's Seth Kelly. Fight Day Live Correspondent Maggie Krol will take you behind the scenes and show you exactly what goes on during fight week. Exclusive training camp interviews with Benavidez and Bisping highlight an already jampacked show. Be sure and tune into Fight Day Live at 6pm/ET, 3pm/PT.

    Read More »from Yahoo! Sports and Heavy MMA present ‘Fight Day Live’
  • UFC 152 fights are official after weigh-ins

    UFC 152 is ready to go after weigh-ins on Friday afternoon in Toronto. Both title fights are official. UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones came in under weight, as did his challenger, former middleweight contender Vitor Belfort. Joseph Benavidez also came in underweight, and Demetrious Johnson, who will fight Benavidez for the inaugural UFC flyweight belt, weighed in at exactly 125 lbs.

    The weigh-ins were not without excitement. Jones was booed by the Toronto crowd as he was interviewed by UFC commentator Joe Rogan. Charles Oliveira did not make weight on his first try. Michael Bisping and Brian Stann's face-off forced UFC president Dana White to step in before their fight started a day early.

    Here are complete results, thanks to MMA Junkie.

    MAIN CARD (Pay-per-view)
    •    Champ Jon Jones (204.6) vs. Vitor Belfort (204.2)
    •    Joseph Benavidez (124.4) vs. Demetrious Johnson (125)
    •    Michael Bisping (185.6) vs. Brian Stann (185.4)
    •    Matt Hamill (205.6) vs. Roger

    Read More »from UFC 152 fights are official after weigh-ins
  • Watch Joe Benavidez’s win over Miguel Torres (VIDEO)

    With Joe Benavidez fighting Demetrious Johnson for the UFC's first flyweight title at UFC 152 on Saturday, spend some time watching Benavidez in the fight that earned him his first title shot. After Benavidez won this fight over Miguel Torres at WEC 47, he fought (and lost to) Dominick Cruz for the WEC bantamweight title.

    If you want to skip past the introductions, go to the 2:10 mark. The second round starts about seven minutes in, and the finish is around the nine-minute mark.

    Something to remember about this fight is that at this point, Torres had just shockingly lost the bantamweight title to Brian Bowles. He was still considered a top pound-for-pound fighter. Stephan Bonnar and Todd Harris, who were calling the fight, were surprised as Benavidez dominated the bout.

    Will Benavidez score another big win on Saturday night? Speak up in the comments, on Facebook or Twitter.

    Read More »from Watch Joe Benavidez’s win over Miguel Torres (VIDEO)
  • Five questions that will be answered by UFC 152

    (Getty)Finally, we have a fight week after way too long of a break. Jon Jones is putting his belt on the line against Vitor Belfort, a middleweight. It's not the fight we want, but it's the fight we get. Here are a few questions that will be answered by Saturday night's fights in Toronto.

    What does changing an opponent on short(ish) notice do to Jon Jones? If there has been one hallmark of Jon Jones' career, it's been good preparation. In every title defense, he has shown a complete knowledge of his opponents strengths and weakness. He then exploited those weakness for a win. This is why he wouldn't take Chael Sonnen on short notice. With Belfort, he had about a month to study up which is a shorter time than usual. If he's not prepared, the champ could end up beating himself.

    Will Michael Bisping or Brian Stann be the (maybe possibly could be) next middleweight contender? UFC middleweight champ Anderson Silva's next fight will be against Stephan Bonnar, but beyond UFC 153, he needs a new

    Read More »from Five questions that will be answered by UFC 152
  • Michael Bisping kicks ‘disrespectful’ fan out of UFC 152 workouts

    Michael Bisping has a fight with Brian Stann at UFC 152 on Saturday night, but before that, he found a fight with a fan who disrupted his workout on Wednesday. He explained why he threw the fan out of the open workouts to MMA Fighting. (The explanation is at the beginning of the video.)

    "I was just trying to do my pads and stuff, and the guy's got no respect. He annoyed my boxing coach more than anything. My boxing coach got a little upset. I could see it in his eyes," Bisping said.

    "I was trying to get a workout in, and he's just disrupting the whole thing. He's upsetting my boxing coach, and so I'm like, you gotta go. You gotta go. If you can't have respect ... we're here. We're putting on a display for you guys. If you can't respect it, you have to go outside with the naughty children."

    During big fight weeks like this one, the UFC will often offer three free events to fans: open workouts, the press conference and weigh-ins. Open workouts are undoubtedly the best option, because it

    Read More »from Michael Bisping kicks ‘disrespectful’ fan out of UFC 152 workouts
  • MMA Marketplace: Battle of the UFC 152 walkout shirts

    It's time to break down UFC 152's main event via the most important factor: walkout shirts. Sure, Vitor Belfort is a historic underdog and is not expected to last long in the fight against UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones, but what do the shirts say? Let's see.

    On the left, Vitor Belfort's shirt by RVCA. It's available in green and white and you can buy it straight from RVCA for $29.95.

    On the right, we have Jones' shirt ... maybe? Here's the deal. Jones is now sponsored by Nike, and he tweeted out this "Bones Knows" Nike shirt before UFC 151 was canceled. According to the tweet:

    #Nike only made 80 signature T-shirts for UFC 151, I absolutely cannot wait to bless my fans, talk about #exclusive

    So, there were only 80 shirts made, but it's not 100 percent clear on how to get them. Nike's online store doesn't have them or any mention of Jones. If you want to buy gear from Jones now, take a look at his UFC store online which has items from his last fight.

    By virtue of pretty green color and the ease in buying the shirt, Belfort wins. Tune in Saturday to see if that pans out.

    Read More »from MMA Marketplace: Battle of the UFC 152 walkout shirts
  • (Getty)

    Stephan Bonnar stepped up when the UFC needed an opponent. Two UFC 153 fights had fallen apart: Jose Aldo's bout with Frankie Edgar and Glover Teixeria's fight with Quinton Jackson. Bonnar jumped into the main event spot at UFC 153 against Anderson Silva. Though that fight seems a bit crazy for Bonnar, there's a reason why he took Silva instead of Teixeira.

    Twitter followers.

    The mostly-retired Bonnar said the UFC originally offered Teixeira, but he reminded them of his rule.

    "I said, 'You know my rule. If I'm going to do this again, he's got to have more Twitter followers than me.' I know it sounds cheesy, but it's true. That's how I feel. That's a measure of someone's popularity, and I just want a bigger name. The last three opponents, I've had more Twitter followers than them, and I've beat them, and I feel like I deserve a bigger name now. I really don't have an interest in fighting an up-and-comer type, guys who are climbing their way up and people don't really know how good they

    Read More »from Stephan Bonnar took the Anderson Silva fight because of Silva’s many Twitter followers
  • Jon Jones as a ring model, for some reason (VIDEO)

    Michelle Waterson is fighting Lacey Schuckman at the upcoming Invicta FC card, and wanted to win the "Invicta's Got Talent" contest. As directed by the all-female promotion, "The Karate Hottie" made a video promoting her fight, complete with her ace in the hole: UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones in a slinky swimsuit.

    Jones appears at 1:06, but it's worth watching the whole thing for cameos from coach Greg Jackson and a few other UFC fighters.

    Though the UFC banned tiny shorts like those for fights, we'll see if Jones breaks them out for the weigh-ins of UFC 152 on Friday. If you liked Waterson's video, vote for it here.

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    Read More »from Jon Jones as a ring model, for some reason (VIDEO)
  • (Getty)Canadian promotion Maximum Fighting Championship is making some changes in the way they are handling title fights. MFC's titleholders will vacate their belt if they don't make weight for title fights.

    At MFC 34  in August, Adam Lynn was set to meet Mukai Maromo for the vacant lightweight title. Lynn weighed in at 156.6 lbs., a pound and a half over the limit of 155 lbs. Maromo went on to to win the fight by knockout. Because of Lynn's blown weight, the fight was changed to non-title status, so Maromo didn't win the belt.

    Under the new system, MFC champions will lose their title if they blow weight. If they win their fight, they will be considered the No. 1 contender to win back their belt. If they lose the fight, the contender wins the belt. If the contender blows weight, the champion will keep the belt, regardless of the fight's outcome.

    The change in policy was put in place so that fighters won't be penalized because their opponents don't make weight. Fighters not making weight doesn't happen all that often at the top levels of the sport. However, it makes sense to have a policy in place in case there is a problem. The people at US Track and Field found out the hard way that policies for rare occasions, like a tie for third place at an Olympic Trials, are still needed.

    In the UFC, when fighters don't make weight in a title fight, the title is no longer on the line. Travis Lutter didn't make weight against Anderson Silva for their fight in 2007, so the fight was not a title defense for Silva. Would you like to see UFC go to this system? Speak up in the comments, on Facebook or on Twitter.

    Read More »from Canadian promotion MFC tells title holders: Blow weight? You’re losing your belt
  • ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ pulls lowest ratings ever for premiere

    (Getty)

    Did you tune in to watch "The Ultimate Fighter" on Friday night? Probably not, according to ratings from cable shows on Friday night. 947,000 people tuned in to the show's two-hour debut that featured preliminary fights.

    Those numbers are not good. It's the lowest-rated premiere in TUF history. In the last few seasons, ratings drop after the premiere that draws in viewers because there are so many fights.

    [More UFC: Dana White's breakneck lifestyle not going to stop anytime soon, health be damned]

    A few caveats to remember with this data:

    Read More »from ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ pulls lowest ratings ever for premiere
  • What happens when spinning backfists go wrong (VIDEO)

    A spinning backfist is a stunning and thrilling way to knock out an opponent. It takes speed, balance and strength. To do it correctly, a fighter must have the ability to land the backfist perfectly while simultaneously preparing for his opponent's counterpunching. The most effective spinning backfists are done so quickly that an opponent has no time to prepare a defense.

    None of that is on display in this video of Dillon Cleckler beating Matt Lawrence at Island Fights on Aug. 31.

  • What does a fighter look like? (PHOTOS)

    I've often heard the phrase, "He/she doesn't look like a fighter!" This comes up especially before women's fights, when Ronda Rousey's cover girl looks are cited as a reason to be shocked that she can rip your arm off. I hear it about Georges St-Pierre, who could easily find another career on a runway. UFC president Dana White brought it up recently when he criticized Roy Nelson's mullet, beard and belly.

    But the thing about MMA is that outside making weight the day before a fight and passing a ton of medical tests, there are no physical requirements to step in a cage. While fighters look like this:

    (Getty)

    They also look like this:

    Read More »from What does a fighter look like? (PHOTOS)
  • Chael Sonnen still training for Jon Jones, just in case

    (Getty)Chael Sonnen wants a fight with Jon Jones. He talked smack to the light heavyweight champ before Dan Henderson's pre-UFC 151 injury, he stepped up for a fight to try to save UFC 151, and he continued to needle Jones in the wake of UFC 151's cancellation.

    Even now, with the fight less than a week away, he continues to train just in case Vitor Belfort pulls out of Saturday's UFC 152 bout. UFC president Dana White told USA Today that Sonnen is in fight camp.

    "Chael Sonnen is in full training camp right now," White said. "He's been training since he got offered the Jones fight. He said, 'I'm in full camp right now because Vitor will get hurt and pull out, and it will be Jones vs. Sonnen, anyway."

    Bravo, Chael. It's one thing to talk trash about how he will be ready in case Belfort pulls out of the fight with Jones. It's quite another to still train and prepare for a fight that isn't booked. That's not idle trash-talking.

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    Read More »from Chael Sonnen still training for Jon Jones, just in case
  • George St-Pierre wants to finish fights, study dinosaurs and eat McDonalds

    (Getty)UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre has recently been given the green light to start training for his Nov. 17 fight with interim champ Carlos Condit. In an interview with the Toronto Sun, GSP said he wants to finish fights because of the criticism he takes for going to decision, as he did in his last four fights.

    Saying he wants to be more "opportunistic," GSP said he is fighting the world's best.

    "I can make up a bunch of excuses but the truth is I'm fighting the best guys all the time and it's tough competition. You cannot always win by beautiful fashion. The guy that is in front of me is a very good guy. He's the No. 1 contender all the time and now I'm fighting the (interim) world champ in Carlos Condit. I'm working a lot more on being more opportunistic and it's going to pay off I'm sure."

    With a record of 22-2 and six title defenses, GSP has proven himself one of the best fighters to ever grace the Octagon, but the lack of recent finishes nags at the idea he is the very best. A finish over Condit could silence those worries.

    GSP also talked about a few other, non-fight-related items. He said if he wasn't a fighter, he would be a paleontologist or archaeologist. And his favorite splurge food?

    I like McDonald's. Three cheeseburgers, French fries, poutine with chicken McNuggets and a big Coca-Cola.

    Whoa. The man with washboard abs loves a meal with enough calories to last him two days.

    Read More »from George St-Pierre wants to finish fights, study dinosaurs and eat McDonalds