Cagewriter
  •  It's pretty clear that UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones doesn't want to fight Alexander Gustafsson for a second time after walking away with a razor-thin and controversial decision win over the Swede last year. First, Jones didn't grant the automatic rematch to Gustafsson that was warranted and then he had the gall to suggest that Gustafsson should have to win two consecutive fights to earn the right to challenge him once more.

    A lot of fighters in Gustafsson's position might pick up the trash talk at this point but the soft-spoken contender doesn't seem interested in doing that. He'll readily admit that Jones does not seem to want to fight him but the Nordic fighter won't attribute that to simple fear in "Bones."

    "The thing is he knows - he knows I'm a really bad matchup for him. He knows that," Gustafsson said in a recent FoxSports interview.

    "I don't think Jones is scared or he's trying to run or anything like that. He just knows that I'm a really bad matchup and he knows

    Read More »from Alexander Gustafsson - I'm a bad matchup for Jon Jones
  • No outside observer could have known something was wrong. Josh Burkman was set to fight the tough Tyler Stinson March 29 in Las Vegas, Nevada on the World Series of Fighting (WSOF) 9 card and hoped to get back on the winning track after losing to Steve Carl last Octobepromotion. The WSOF matchmaker got involved, mean things were said and, for some reason, Vinny Magalhaes even got into the scrap.

    It was ugly, and then it was over. Burkman announced soon after the twitter spat that he was staying with WSOF and that things were now all good.

    Fans were left wondering what in the heck had just happened. Josh Burkman sat down with Cagewriter this week to explain his side of what, exactly, the fuss was all about between he and WSOF.

    It’s Monday morning in Utah and “The People’s Warrior” is more thoughtful and measured than the terse,

    Read More »from [EXCLUSIVE] Josh Burkman talks WSOF controversy
  •  

    UFC heavyweight Stefan Struve was forced to take a leave of absence from competition in 2013 after a scary heart condition diagnosis. Yet, through it all, the big man never gave up hope that he would return.

    Slowly, with treatment, his condition and health began to improve until, by the start of 2014, Struve reached the point where he fully expected to eventually make a return to fighting. Today, the seven foot slugger says he's medically cleared to fight once more.

    “I’m just working on the last details with the UFC right now for my clearance,” Struve told USA TODAY.

    “They’ve got everything — my doctor’s letter, medical files and everything. Everything is there, and we’re just waiting on the UFC to do their thing."

    Once the UFC does their thing, Struve said that he is ready to head into a training camp immediately.

    “I want to fight,” Struve insisted.

    “I’m ready to go into a training camp. I can be ready in two or three months.”

    Struve expects to need surgery one day but hopes that

    Read More »from Stefan Struve medically cleared to fight again
  • Tatsuya Kawajiri may be a fourteen year vet and cult MMA legend, but he still thinks of himself as a grinder. Heading into his April 12 showdown in Abu Dhabi with Clay Guida, Kawajiri says that what he likes in style, he makes up for in doggedness.

    "I don’t think I have the sense of making a very exciting, cool fight, like what Anderson [Silva] and [Georges St-Pierre] do, but I do have the ability to win a fight," he told MMA Junkie in a recent interview.

    “My fights might not look so cool and clean, but I will just go for it. I am willing to do for a takedown 100 times, even if I get sprawled on 100 times.”

    If fans think that this sounds an awful like the Japanese fighter's opponent, Guida, as well, Kawajiri agrees.

    “I totally think we’re familiar. We’re the same type of fighter in that sense. It’s going to be a war, for sure," he said.

    Who are you picking to win this battle between wrestling scrappers? Let us know in the comments section.

    Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda &

    Read More »from Tatsuya Kawajiri: I'm not cool but I go for it
  • Former champion Junior dos Santos will face Stipe Miocic on May 31 in the main event of "The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil" in Sao Paolo (Getty)

    UFC president Dana White confirmed to Yahoo Sports Monday that the heavyweight fight between former champion Junior dos Santos and Stipe Miocic will be the main event of "The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil" finale on May 31 in Sao Paolo.

    The bout had been the co-main event of UFC 173. The fight between TUF Brazil coaches Wanderlei Silva and Chael Sonnen has been moved from the May 31 card in Brazil and will now be the co-main event of UFC 175 on July 5 at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, White said. The main event of UFC 175 is a middleweight title bout between Chris Weidman and Lyoto Machida.

    The top two fights on the UFC 173 card on May 24 in Las Vegas are a bantamweight title fight between Renan Barao and challenger T.J. Dillashaw and a welterweight bout between Robbie Lawler and Jake Ellenberger.

    However, White said, "I'm not done working on that card," referring to UFC 173, so it is assumed that there could be another bout added to it before long.

    Read More »from Chael Sonnen, Wanderlei Silva targeted for co-main at UFC 175 in Vegas; JDS headlines May 31 show
  • Well, at least he's got that going for him. UFC president Dana White has said that Georges St. Pierre's latest surgery will be covered by the UFC's fighter insurance, even though "Rush" is not actively fighting at this time. The longtime UFC welterweight champion stepped away from MMA competition last year because he needed to recharge.

    He continued to work out in the gym and managed to tear the ACL in his right knee. Back in 2011, St. Pierre tore the ACL in his left knee, forcing him out of competition for over a year.

    If St. Pierre is to ever return to fighting, he'd have to clear this latest arduous hurdle first. For all the stress and pain this serious knee injury must be causing GSP, at least he won't have to pay for the surgery and rehab out of pocket.

    “We have health insurance for the guys,” White told MMAjunkie in a recent interview.

    “[St. Pierre's surgery] should be covered even if the contract is frozen. He’s still under contract; he’s still a UFC fighter.”

    Representatives

    Read More »from GSP surgery to be covered by UFC medical insurance
  • Former Olympic wrestler and undefeated MMA fighter Ben Askren had been sure for some time that he was the best welterweight in the world. He'd dominated the Bellator ranks and looked to be getting better each fight out.

    The only thing was, without fighting in the world's best and most popular MMA organization, the UFC, Askren was sure to not get recognition he felt he rightfully deserved.

    His success appeared to be an obstacle to getting a timely shot at the UFC, however, since it seemed unlikely that Bellator would let their best fighter go. And then, they did.

    With that, Askren and his management began conversations with the UFC and it was pretty much taken for granted that "Funky" Ben would be offered a contract by the UFC and get his chance to prove himself against the likes of Georges St. Pierre and Johny Hendricks at the top of the promotion's welterweight division.

    But then, inexplicably, the UFC passed on Askren and let one of the best fighters in the world walk away. The UFC's

    Read More »from Ben Askren gets opponent for May 30 ONE FC debut
  • It’s been years and years since UFC co-founder Campbell McLaren has worked with the top MMA promotion but he insists that he still loves the product and respects its current owners and executives. That said, McLaren drew from the boxing world for inspiration and strategy with his latest project, Combate Americas – an MMA fighting reality show on new bilingual cable network Mun2.

    “I love the UFC and they do it better than anyone else,” McLaren says.

    “But I think one of the audiences that they don’t necessarily cater to are Latinos. [Boxing promoter] Bob Arum said in an interview that he believed Hispanic fight fans are what saved boxing and kept it alive. I think that’s true. It can be argued that, broadly speaking, Hispanics are the most enthusiastic and loyal fight fans. But no one had a product geared specifically for them in MMA.”

    So, McLaren began crafting Combate Americas, with the intention of creating the most Latino-friendly MMA product in the world. After years of research,

    Read More »from Combate Americas looks to bring MMA to Latin audience
  • Cheick Kongo made his UFC debut in 2006 and the heavyweight built a solid record against the world’s best for seven years. Then, in 2013, he turned down a new contract offer from the UFC and walked away, eventually signing with Bellator.

    Kongo’s friend and training partner Quinton “Rampage” Jackson did something similar and now the two both fight for the UFC’s main rival promotion. “Rampage” was very vocal about his unhappiness with the UFC, for some time, leading up to his last UFC fight in January, 2013 against Glover Teixeira.

    Kongo, on the other hand, did not make a big, public stink, so many fans have been left wondering why the Parisian walked away from the big leagues on his own volition. Cagewriter visited with Kongo this past Wednesday as he looked towards a Bellator heavyweight title fight tonight against champion Vitaly Minakov.

    The big man was calm, measured and clear but did not mince words in explaining why he decided to leave the UFC. “I want to be treated right,” he

    Read More »from Cheick Kongo - Respect over everything
  • (Twitter.com/MuhammadAli)

    As far as fight-game celebrities go, UFC president Dana White is pretty high up on the list. White makes the day of many mixed martial arts fans when he responds to one of their tweets on Twitter, even if he insults them, as he often tends to do.

    White has become so popular in part for his willingness to engage his fan base.

    But on Thursday, White received a tweet from a very unique fan. Muhammad Ali, the man forever known as "The Greatest" and one of the most significant sports figures in history, sent a tweet to the UFC president.

    Ali was a three-time heavyweight boxing champion, but he sent a picture of him in his fight with pro wrestler Antonio Inoki and wrote, "What do you think @DanaWhite? Muhammad Ali -- the original #MMA fighter."

    In texts to Yahoo Sports about Ali's tweet, White wrote, "AMAZING!" and "I'm losin it!"

    It's not every day one gets noticed by a legend, and this time White had his day made by someone tweeting to him.

    White responded with a tweet of his own: "U sir

    Read More »from Muhammad Ali refers to himself as ‘the original MMA fighter’ in tweet to Dana White

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