Thought I might be late today, but got here just before the gun! Let's vent...
Hey are the rumors true that MMA live is moving to espn 2
Yes, Aj. MMA Live will debut on ESPN2 on Thursday night May 6th (1 AM ET/10 PM PT). We will also be doing live shows for ESPN2 from UFC 113 in Montreal and UFC 114 in Las Vegas. Very exciting times for all of us and it wouldn't have been possible without the great support from the MMA community.
When do you think Paulo Thiago will get his chance against GSP?
I think he is 1-2 wins away from a title shot. But I think he might be the current UFC welterweight best-equipped to give GPS a real challenge.
What are your predictions on the Kimbo's next fight at UFC 113?
I think Matt Mitrione will win and finish the fight with some ground-and-pound. A lot of MMA fans will be rooting for Kimbo Slice to get his second UFC win. I just don't believe it will happen.
What is next fight for Fedor Emelianeko?
He will face Fabricio Werdum, likely in late June.
Whether he wins or loses at UFC 114 what do you think will be next for Forrest Griffin after he faces Lil Nog?
Hard to say, b/c his next opponent will absolutely be determined by that result. If he beats Lil Nog, he could face the Rampage-Rashad winner or loser. I would think a Rampage-Griffin rematch would have some value to the UFC. But it's just too early to say.
Your boy Florian showed why he WILL be a great champ. Constantly evolving, constantly taking risks to be great. Maybe it'll rub off on GSP haha. Happy 100 Jonny!!!
Thanks, Steve! Tomorrow is our 100th episode of MMA Live, for those curious what that meant. As for Florian, it was a great performance against Gomi. I'd like to see him fight Tyson Griffin, or perhaps even Edgar if he loses to Penn.
Will UFC 112 air live this weekend? And with it being in UAE what time will it be?
I believe there are two PPV windows. One of them will be live at 1PM ET. And then, the PPV was also be available in the regular window at 10 ET. I will probably order the 'live' show and then watch it later in the day. Gonna be difficult to avoid spoilers...
Alright! Time for the second-best weekly chat on ESPN.com!!!!
Hahahahaha. I am posting this for the rare chance that this is actually you! Miss talking boxing with you, man. I will be at Mayweather-Mosley and look forward to catching up. And we're honored that our chat is right behind yours!
I've seen al 99 so far.... can't wait for the big day tomorrow.
Thanks, Jason. That is awesome to hear that you watch the show more than my own family! Appreciate the loyalty, sincerely.
What fight are you most intrigued by this weekend? Picks please!
I think there are a lot of prelims that are interesting, most notably Mark Munoz against Kendall Grove. I am curious to see if Demian Maia will even be able to get Anderson Silva to the ground. If he does, that fight could get very interesting. As for my UFC 112 picks, I'll take Anderson Silva (second-round TKO), B.J. Penn by submission (third round), Renzo Gracie to upset Matt Hughes (why not?), and Terry Etim.
Thoughts on Roy Nelson as an elite HW? Does he have the wrestling and cardio to hang with Lesnar, Carwin, Velasquez?, he definitely has some power in those hands
I like Roy Nelson a lot, and you really shouldn't let that frame fool ya. He is definitely legit, has a TON of experience against high-level competition, and deserves a shot at a top name. I think he should fight Frank Mir.
Do you have any upsets picked for this weekend #UFC112?
I don't even know who is favored in some of the prelims. I like Blackburn and Story both to win. Only upset I forecast is Renzo Gracie over Matt Hughes, but I'm not all that confident in that one. I think I even picked Hughes on a radio interview earlier this week!
What's the latest on an opponent for Toney?
Nothing concrete. It could very well be one and done for Toney in the UFC.
IF I mail my Fight Night Ticket can Florian sign it and send it back. I am sure I am bias, but six finishes including the last three fights, plus fight of night Pearson vs. Siver. I think it could have been the most entertaining card of the year. Disappointed Charlotte did not sell out, but in defense UFC did zero local marketing and was 85% full.
I heard the crowd in Charlotte was good, but the arena definitely did not look full on TV. I thought the card was electric and really delivered top to bottom in a way that UFC 111 did not.
What's going on with the MMA live pick em? I don't see anything for 112.
The MMA Live Pick 'Em game will return at some point, but unfortunately not for UFC 112. It could even be back as early as next weekend for the Strikeforce show. I will keep you posted on Twitter (Jon_Anik) when something is finalized.
I see Kenflo fight. I need skinny leg for trophy case.
Hahahahahahahahahaha. First things first, Aoki.
Whats next for frank mir? Roy nelson would make an interesting fight.
That's the fight I'm pining for, and I think there's a good chance the UFC will make it happen.
So how come you are not doing the announcing for Bellator this year?
Bellator gave me every opportunity to come back, and Bjorn Rebney remains a good friend. Ultimately, there was just no way for me to commit the right amount of time and attention to both MMA Live and Bellator. They both air on Thursdays, which wasn't the case during Season 1. I will be at the Bellator show at Mohegan Sun on April 22nd and hope to run into some of you there.
Is there going to be a MMA Live Pick'em game on ESPN for UFC 112? The show is in 3 days and there is nothing on the site.
No, not for UFC 112. But the game will return, and we are thankful for the participation.
What're your odds mosley takes money down?
I don't think Mosley will beat Mayweather, but I do expect him to win a few early rounds and try to make it a dirty fight. Mayweather is just too slick.
JA, prediction for Melendez/Aoki? I see Melendez avoiding the ground like the plague and taking a 5 round decision.
Aoki by submission. Shinya is extremely lanky and tall for a 155er, and I think his size and athleticism will pose problems for Melendez. There is no questioning Gilbert's heart and fire, but I don't like the matchup for him.
Jon, off the top of your head really quick....Who's better? Mousasi, Machida, or Bones Jones?
Right now, I think Mousasi may be the best of the bunch. But Jon Jones can beat anyone right now. I firmly believe that.
Get your boy McNeil on the Bones scoop. We need to know who they are looking at next. I suggest Thiago Silva.
Will do, Jeff. That is certainly the hot name out there right now. And you know Silva won't back down from the challenge. Beating Jon Jones would do wonders for Thiago Silva if he could do it.
how many ppv buys do you the up coming wec event will get?
Good question. I think it'll do between 150-225,000. Not sure internally what their expectations are, but I think anything north of 150,000 would be considered a success.
Jon, What are the chances we ever get to see Randy Couture as an analyst on MMA Live?
Randy has been an analyst several times on MMA Live. We've had him in Bristol twice, and he also served as our lead analyst for our live coverage at UFC 101 in Philadelphia. Couture is a busy man, not to mention still an active fighter. But the door is ajar, and he does a great job.
What do you see for the winner of Gracie/Hughes? Or loser?
I think it's really just a legacy fight for both guys and won't have any impact on the title picture. If Renzo loses, I'm not sure he'll have another UFC fight. And I also think Hughes is nearing the end.
Mousasi has been that impressive? He doesn't have near the caliber of wins that Machida has. I go with Machida, Jones, Mousasi until he beats someone with pedigree.
Fair enough. Mousasi is still young but has accomplished a ton over the past 18 months or so. The manner in which he beat Babalu and Sokoudjou really impressed me. I'd love to see Mousasi-Machida.
Efforting to have Mousasi's next opponent, King Mo Lawal (4/17, CBS), on MMA Live tomorrow.
I'm not sure how the relationship is between Renzo and Royce but I think it'd be great to see Royce at the fights, if not in the corner of Renzo.
He won't be in the corner, but anytime Royce is in the building it's a good thing. Not sure if he will be in Abu Dhabi to support his cousin or not...
Great news on the move to ESPN 2 from May, UFC 113 is an exciting event how do you see the Main Event turning out? and do you see UFC getting more coverage on SportsCenter in the coming months?
Thanks, Ebriam! I think Machida is gonna own Shogun in the rematch. I thought Rua fought Machida about as well as he could at UFC 104, and I expect Machida to make all of the requisite adjustments. In terms of UFC coverage on SportsCenter, we'll have to wait and see. But getting MMA Live on ESPN2 is certainly a major step in the right direction.
i suspect kenflo likes his new corner contingent, gsp's guys have him striking a lot tighter, more straight ahead yet conservative (read: damage sucks for those that've never stepped into a ring)
Absolutely, Tim. There is much less wasted movement; just much tighter, as you say. Also, the corner dynamic with Firas Zahabi, Keith, Peter Welch, and Jon Chaimberg is very strong. I still don't think we've seen the best of Florian.
Also, it's great to see Keith Florian getting some overdue praise. No one works harder, and he might be the best teacher in all of MMA.
Rain predicted for Saturday in Abi Dhabi...
Really? That would be an interesting variable. Doesn't figure to help Demian Maia much...
Jon whats your thoughts on this years tuf? Looked so far for only one episode and with chuck and ortiz gonna be fun to watch.
Talent pool looks to be much deeper than in year's past. I can think of 4-5 guys that could feasibly run the table. And Liddell looks like he's ready to have some fun at Tito's expense. Just not sure how long Ortiz will be around for...
Is Brock/Carwin the biggest UFC fight for 2010, from a fan interest point of view? I have Carwin, by KTFO.
Some have called it the single biggest fight in UFC history. It certainly vaults to the top of my list for 2010.
Oh and King Mo's chances of beating Mousasi are about 1 in 50....Shouldn't be much of a contest.
I don't agree, Matt. It'll be tough for sure, but King Mo is one of the few 'true to the definition' world-class wrestlers in all of MMA. Not an easy opponent for Mousasi.
With MMALIVE being on ESPN2 now, how is the show going to change from how it is now?
Remains to be seen. I still think we will do a longer version for ESPNUK, ESPN Pac Rim and ESPN.com. But the weekly show on ESPN2 will have to be shorter.
jon #1...dan the man 1a!!! thoughts on spider silva contemplating moving down to 170? hope gsp isnt waiting till silva is in his late 30's to finally challenge him
I hadn't heard that about Silva, and don't buy it. Dude walks around at 215.
TUF has become a scripted show. UFC trying different gimmicks like leaking pics of Franklin and Chuck posters, Tito leaving... just to get ratings is a joke. It is time to stop TUF as it has become sad.
I tend to agree, Jim. I didn't like Season 10 b/c I thought they could've done better from a talent standpoint. Dana White told us in 2008 there would be five more seasons, with Season 12 as the final one. But it doesn't seem like they're gonna pull the plug anytime soon. Ratings are strong, and this season looks promising early, at least in terms of the fighters.
Is it fair to say that people who think Lawal has NO shot - doesn't really know who he is?
Yeah, Rob. I think that's probably right, or they are just so impressed with Mousasi.
Jonny! I watched a grappling tournament from 2003 on youtube last week. Mir and Nelson met in the finals, Mir got the first takedown, and then Nelson scored 15 straight points. I would love to see them in the cage this summer.
That's great stuff, Ken. I'll have to ask Mir about that next time I see him. Hopefully Big Country makes his way to Bristol soon as well.
What's next for Hendo after the 17th?
There just aren't a ton of obvious matchups for Hendo under the Strikeforce banner, especially at 185. If he beats Shields, perhaps he fights Jacare in his first title defense. I'd like to see him against Mousasi, but I doubt they would have two champions fight each other.
King Mo may very well get him to the ground....Just can't see his GnP being able to finish Gegard.
I definitely agree with that. Mousasi hasn't faced many top wrestlers, but I have confidence he will handle it.
Do you expect the UFC to add a legit main event to the Vancouver card? Alves-Fitch 2, although a great fight on paper, is not going to sell PPVs.
Yes, Omar. Don't worry. There is time. Still think the most likely main event is Randy Couture-Rich Franklin.
Say Shields beats Hendo. Automatic title shot against GSP his first fight in UFC?
It's possible. But I still think the UFC would have some reluctance to give Shields an immediate title shot.
Jon any word on when ufc is coming to Boston? Also, whats your thoughts of teammates not fighting each other?
August 28th at TD Garden. I have strong opinions on teammates fighting each other. In certain instances, I understand why fighters are reluctant to do so. If you've been training with a guy for years, it is difficult to turn that switch on. But, for example, I see no reason why Rashad Evans couldn't fight Jon Jones. Jones only recently hooked up with Greg Jackson, and I'm not sure they've trained together more than 10-15 times total. So, I think it's case-dependent.
i read the chat every week and i thinks its great. i was watching the previews of the new bellator season and it looks great. how do you think hector lombard will do?
Thanks, Edward. I appreciate the support. Hector Lombard truly is the Mike Tyson of MMA. He's had a few unspectacular performances outside of Bellator while waiting for Season 2. But he is a mack truck, as strong a middleweight as there is, and he will get a chance to prove it.
Tyron Woodley is scheduled for the next challengers card. Do you think this is a mistake by Strikeforce? Woodley deserves a step up in competition and could be a real star, shouldn't he get more exposure
I hadn't seen that he was added to the card. I would like to see him fight Joe Riggs, or someone on that level. He deserves the opportunity and the exposure that would come along with it. Not sure why Strikeforce is proceeding so cautiously with a guy Pat Miletich says is 10x the athlete Georges St. Pierre is.
Jon - 100th MMALive is tomorrow right? Care to wax poetic?
Whenever we hit a milestone, I always think back to our first episode. No ties, plenty of nerves. We were all stiff and didn't have much chemistry. It's gratifying that we've made it this far, but still plenty of work to be done to get where we want to be.
Speaking of Boston...big Papi sucks
Hahaha. Yeah, Ortiz = not good.
Renzo hits like a girl! His interview was great... MMA needs more self-depricating humor.
He's also 43 and hasn't fought since 2007. But I'm not sure Hughes has the necessary motivation right now. We'll see. He could overwhelm Gracie physically right out of the shoot, but Renzo's a gamer.
If Machida wins does he fight the Rampage/Rashad winner?
That is my expectation, yes. But a matchmaker I am not. You guys are more accurate than I am.
speaking of calgary, hockey sucks
Hahahahahahaha. Someone once told me MMA's fan base is roughly the same size as the NHL's. And the NHL had quite the head start.
More excited for UFC 112 or Strikeforce Nashville?
Strikeforce: Nashville is a ridiculous line-up, and the fact that it's on CBS is a huge plus. I also think the fights, on paper, appear to be more competitive. UFC 112 offers up two of the best fighters in MMA history, but isn't quite as compelling overall.
MMA Live has become my fav show on the web, I cant wait for thursdays now.
Thanks, Chris. And soon you'll be able to set the DVR and watch on ESPN2. Franklin McNeil in high definition!
Woodley better athlete than GSP is the same as saying Nover is the next Spider Silva.
Hahahaha. I like the attempt at an analogy, but have you seen Woodley? He may not be a better athlete than GSP, but he's definitely among the best athletes in MMA.
How done is Nate Quarry? The man can't fire anymore and has no chin left. That fight was sad.
No argument here. Quarry looks cashed.
What would shock you more, Maia submitting Silver or Edgar getting the UD over Penn?
Edgar getting the UD over Penn. B.J. is highly motivated, and that's a bad recipe for any other UFC lightweight right now. Maia is actually the bigger underdog, but not in my book.
Jon, what's with the don't text and drive comments at the end of each show?
Glad you asked. I just said it one day off the cuff. One of our executive producers liked it, and I decided to stick with it. I actually had a scary situation last year. I was texting and driving and nearly clipped two pedestrians. I've worked hard to stop doing it. So damn dangerous. I really think it's an important public service announcement, so I hope you aren't too annoyed by it...b/c I don't plan on letting it go anytime soon.
Jon, Did you see that awesome baseball match last night? Thank God for MMA..... Baseball makes me want to give myself a flying superman, rearnaked, heel hook, americana, sleeperhold!
Hahahahahaha. Right there with ya. I was born and raised a Red Sox fan. But they must use a clock in Red Sox-Yankees games going forward. Whichever team is ahead after four hours wins. They play 162 of these things? Man.
What will BJ Penn do after Edgar? I mean, hes beat everybody.
I think he will move up to 170. Only UFC lightweight I want to see him fight is Tyson Griffin. I think it's time to become a welterweight and vacate the belt.
Jon I love the show you are great! Why are you not on vacation with Ken Flo right now?
Haha. Thanks, Travis. Kenny needs a vacation from me, not with me.
Who's in studio for MMA Live tomorrow? Kenflo still on vacation?
It'll be Stephan Bonnar. Florian will be back the following Thursday. So Kenny will miss our 100th episode. Too bad.
How can I go back and watch that first MMA Live episode you talked about?
I really hope it's no longer accessible on the web!
Text and drive responsibly... that's the key.
Nah, c'mon Adam. We all gotta be in this together!
UFC needs to get Eddie Alverez as the guy is a stud at 155. He is super talented and marketable. He could give BJ fits.
If there is one lightweight out there that the UFC should go after hard, it's Eddie Alvarez. But Bellator has their champion locked up long-term, and he seems content. The fact that Roger Huerta is now under Bellator's control should serve as major motivation for Alvarez.
Can I text at red lights?
Yes. Just be careful, bro.
Will KenFlo main event in BOS? I don't think Kenny v Griffin or Maynard would sell.
I don't think Florian will be in the main event. But you'd have to think there will be a co-main event slot for the Boston guy.
Anyone else feel like throwing up anytime they see Couture, Ortiz, or Franklin as headlining main event fighters on a PPV? Never again will I be shelling out $45-$55 to see midlings like that fighting again!
It's a good point, Matt. It's frustating when the main event fight doesn't mean much in terms of the division. At least with Couture, he is a light heavyweight contender on the heels of two straight wins. But overall, I agree with you. Headliners should only be title fights or fights with major title implications, regardless of name recognition.
Featherweight division is really exploding lately. Any chance that we'll see Joe Warren, Hansen, or Fernandes in the WEC?
It's definitely a possibility, and the best featherweights in the world certainly reside in WEC. But Warren has his sights set on Joe Soto's Bellator belt right now and Fernandes is content doing his thing in Japan.
cmon broseph! wheres my 5 bucks!
In the mail!
Couture vs. Bones?
...will never happen. Couture has done so much for the UFC. They wouldn't put him through that.
I could careless about a fight between Couture-Franklin or Tito-Chuck III. UFC needs to stop making these fights main events.
Sell me on why I should buy UFC 112.
Because in 2030, we will still be talking about Anderson Silva and B.J. Penn as two of the greatest of all-time. And, it's an outdoor show in Abu Dhabi. That variable really piques my interest.
Where does Kimbo go next after he loses on Staurday??
Kimbo isn't fighting until May 8th in Montreal.
and I still want my autograph at the UFC EXPO!
MMA Live will have a booth at the UFC Expo in May. And we'll all be there.
Will Belfort get a title shot once healthy? Spider Silva v Belfort for UFC 115 in Vancouver makes sense. Silva will destroy Maia and still have 2 months to get ready for the fight. When will GSP fight next?
It appears that Chael Sonnen has passed Vitor Belfort on the depth chart. But the UFC always reserves the right to change course.
How is cool to say it's time for BJ Penn to step up a division again, while not expecting the same courage from GSP or Spider Silva?What up man?
Good point, RJ. I think the difference is that both Penn and Silva have moved up in the past. GSP never has, and doesn't seem inclined to do so right now. I would like to see St. Pierre move up to 185 now, and said as much last week.
Btw, Cowherd was called Chost on Sports Nation the other night...he is stealing your name
You gotta be kidding me! That can't happen.
why would featherweights head to WEC when they can make more by winning bellator? Until the WEC restructures its payroll, there will always be parity at featherweight. I think PPV is a good step in this direction.
Important point there from Ben in Durham, NC. And, now that Bellator has a TV deal, guys like Joe Warren will get the much-needed exposure, in addition to the paycheck.
Here's a question: Will GSP fight again in 2010? He likes to take his time off.
He'll fight once more. But I still don't like it. I really think each belt should be up for grabs three times/year, barring injury. But if St. Pierre is healthy, he should fight.
Are you going to be watching ufc112 live or on the replay?
I will be at ESPN all day for highlights and then watch around 8ET. I will tape the PPV earlier in the day.
Who are you leaning towards for the Overeem vs Rogers fight?
Can't find the first episode of MMA Live (I'm still looking), but I found a compilation of bad picks from F-Mac and KenFlo from the first year. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4lIONkeNwGs
GSP vs. Shields in Vancouver?
There's just no way GSP will turn around and fight in June. He takes his time.
Will St Pierre fight anytime soon or will we have to wait another year? Champions should fight every 3-4 months, no excuses.
Agreed. Unfortunately, Georges calls the shots. And, when you have money coming in from Gatorade and Under Armour, that fight check isn't quite as crucial.
I can see the silva-maia fight happening a lot like the silva-Leites fight. Can you see that?
Absolutely. But I think Silva has had that in the back of his mind during training, and will make every effort to put on a show.
How much longer do you envision Lesnar fighting for? I always thought a year, maybe two tops.
Let's first see how he comes back from diverticulitis. But when I've interviewed Brock, he's always talked about wanting to fight often. Perhaps he wants to bank a bunch of fights in order to retire.
Do you think GSP headlines the Boston card in August? vs. Daley/Koscheck?
It's a possibility, but if GSP ends up coaching on Season 12 of The Ultimate Fighter, we'll be waiting until December for his next title defense.
How sad was the RJJ/Bhop fight? I think you could KO RJJ right now.
First time I can ever remember not ordering a Bernard Hopkins fight when he's been on PPV. I'll take your word for it.
Jon, what are the suits expecting from MMA Live on ESPN 2?
Just to do what we've been doing. Provide a strong news and information show on all of the major promotions. The challenge for me personally is balancing the hardcore and casual fans. We have to broaden the scope of the show, b/c a lot of our new viewers won't be diehard MMA fans. And we have to ensure the show has value to them as well. It's all very exciting though.
I'd love to see Cain Velazques fight Big Country Nelson instead of sitting on the sidelines for 1 year waiting on a title fight. Jon, your thoughts? thanks
That makes some sense. But it's still a risky fight. I would expect Velasquez to beat Nelson. But what if Roy knocks him out? Velasquez won't fight for the heavyweight title anytime soon, and you've eliminated your No. 1 contender. It's a tough call, but ultimately I agree with how the UFC is proceeding.
What do you expect from the Phil Davis fight this weekend? Both guys are undefeated in the UFC!
I expect Davis to dominate. Gustaffson's time may come, but not this weekend.
Jon, does Cain V. get the winner of Lesnar vs Carwin?
All but guaranteed, yes.
Whose better now, Frankie Edgar or Gray Maynard? I'm still under the impression that Maynard should have got a shot at BJ before Edgar.
I think Edgar's stand-up is better. He's also a more exciting fighter and much better at selling a fight.
Back to Bones, who you would you LIKE to see him get a shot at next?
Thiago Silva. Not Ryan Bader. If Bader takes that fight, he should write a will first.
Hey Jon, as far as MMA Live going to ESPN2, are they allowing you the same freedom as you have it on espn.com or they creating some restrictions that us as the viewers may not notice happening?
I'm probably the wrong guy to ask, but I don't think there will be major changes. I think we're pretty buttoned up overall.
Do you agree with Sherdog's Rossen when he said that in order for GSP to ensure his legacy, he needs to start finishing his opponents? (not in the exact words)
Not enough time to give you a complete answer. But his title defenses have been largely forgettable. And this one was particularly bothersome because GSP's pre-fight rhetoric was that he would go for the finish aggressively. Definitely didn't do that. Didn't even give Hardy a black eye.
You vs. Joe Rogan in a host/analyst fight...Who wins??
Rogan would destroy me. And probably every other MMA journalist.
Lesnar, I believe, made enough money in pro wrestling to retire. He works with some clothing sponsors, but, given his extreme fame, it would stand to reason that he doesn't need his fighting money. If he needed the money, I would think that he would do more advertising.
I'm sure he is set for life and he's no longer a big spender.
...I'm still upset lol. Hockey is unbelievable live
Well, go Bruins.
Alright heads, gotta bounce. I'll see you tomorrow on MMA Live, our 100th episode! Still hoping to track down King Mo for the show. If you still have questions, hit me up on Twitter (Jon_Anik) or send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Until next week, be safe. And only text at red lights. -JA