Sorry for the delay. Just got off set. Fire away...
ANIK! Pat Curran : shakes head : but lets talk about the potential Alvarez/Aoki II in Bellator! Seems destined for Mohegan Sun...what do you think?
Really happy for Pat Curran and you can be sure he will be cracking my top 10 in the new featherweight rankings. He's got a lot of quality wins and has made $200,000 under the Bellator banner. As for Alvarez-Aoki II, would love to see the fight...and would love to see it at Mohegan.
JA, you've covered Mayweather a lot, so I was curious if it's normal for him to weigh only 2 lbs over 147 30 days before a fight? Does it mean anything?
I wouldn't read too much into it. Conditioning has never been an issue for Floyd. He is so calculated and diligent when it comes to preparation.
What did you think of Dana's comments about ESPN after UFC got the Fox deal?
Disappointing to hear. MMA Live has worked very hard to push the MMA agenda here at ESPN. I wasn't aware as to whether or not he was scheduled to be in Bristol, but I take him at his word. I am confident and hopeful he'll continue to come on MMA Live.
Chost, were you as unimpressed with Cole Konrad as I was?
Not really. Certainly made some strides in the stand-up department and I liked his willingness to keep the fight up. Nice use of the jab. But I don't see him as a top 15 heavyweight in the world.
How close were UFC and ESPN to a broadcast deal before they ultimately signed with FOX?
No idea, Rob. I'm just the host. I am kept far away from those conversations.
Shogun vs Griffin...what an easy bet.
I actually like Forrest Griffin to spring the upset. All of our ESPN staff picks are up right now on the MMA page.
Where's the money go Saturday night Chost? Besides Forest, I'm locked in on him.
I don't believe it to be a great betting card. I will offer up a pick to click on Twitter the day of the fight. My last two have come in (Alexander Gustafsson and Donald Cerrone) and the price wasn't all that steep on either.
JA, give me some news on the REEM! Please! Rumor central had him facing Lesnar but now that might be Lesnar Mir III
Last I heard, the conversation was still very much open between Alistair Overeem and the UFC. I think there's a great chance he graces the Octagon in 2012, if not sooner.
Wanna come help me draft my fantasy team on labor day? Who am I kidding? OF COURSE you do! What's your beer of choice? Thanks!!
Wish I could, Mike. Twin brother is getting married on 9/4 in Los Angeles. And I'm marrying them. So no can do.
Any opinion on Mayhem's recent arrest?
Not really. A disappointing headline and action for sure, but I haven't read too much about it.
Anik...we cant wait until the day of...dont let the line swing that much!!!!
Ha! Been so busy with other stuff at ESPN that I haven't even had a chance to check the lines. Maybe I'll throw something out there tomorrow.
How is your daughter doing?
Thanks for asking. Riley is doing great. A little cranky, but I'm told most babies cry, so all good.
Any news regarding Miguel Torres? Possible opponent or when he might fight?
He will fight at UFC 139 on November 19th. Unsure of the opponent.
What would you guess is the reason for Sonnen not going to Brazil?
Because he will be in Bristol for MMA Live!
Can you imagine a more high octane fight then Ben Smooth and the Carpenter? Obviously the FOX card will need names to push for the main event but this fight would be an amazing way to kick off the relationship.
I share your enthusiasm for that fight. That's a reasonably quick turnaround for Henderson, but nothing he can't handle.
Ben hendo and M.Guillard is the match to see!!!
That fight is more intriguing to me than Guida-Henderson. But Guillard has a fight scheduled against Joe Lauzon at UFC 136.
Did you see Henderson dominating Miller like that before the fight?
Well, I certainly picked Henderson and proclaimed him a future UFC champion back in April. So, I think he is THAT GOOD. But did I expect it to be that one-sided? Not sure anyone did.
wheres that autograph at lol. Does silva finish okami
It will be sent. As for a finish, I think it could happen late, but I've picked Anderson Silva by decision.
Bonnar happy about Kingsbury fight?
I know he is happy to be fighting on that date in San Jose. Haven't had a chance to touch base with him since the fight announcement. I know he asked for a handful of high-profile opponents, none of which materialized. Kingsbury is a very tough opponent.
Chost, the snapple facts are gone - what do you think about a weekly Anikdote?
That's a swell idea.
This week's Anik Dote: If you are a Boston sports fan and haven't heard Esoteric's 'Boston Garden Rap', what are you doing? Johnny Most radio calls dropped in. It's killer.
What makes you think Silva by decision? Okami is not the wrestler Chael is.
Just believe Okami is difficult to put away.
Bonnar's gonna teach Kingsbury a lesson... and that lesson is, don't mess with The American Psycho!
Short fuse Herman, do you see him as a contender?
Not just yet. But if you're only as good as your last performance, he's good.
JA, my boy turns 6 months old today! I'm having the best time of my life! Best wishes to you and your family!
Right back at ya, JP. Nothing prepares you for parenthood, but there is nothing quite like it. I think it might be tougher to be a mother than it is to be an MMA fighter.
Jon, are you not fired up for the BOWLES/ FABER matchup???!!!!!
Not as fired up as you are, evidently. I wanted to see Faber-Torres. Bowles-Faber has its merits, don't get me wrong.
how do you think your buddy Florian will do as the color man?
He's a natural and has done it before. Excited for him to have the opportunity on such a high-profile card.
Whats up Chost! I think we are now stuck in a great time with some ufc champions that will be all time legends. Who is safest bet to lose his title next from gsp, silva, or jones?
The future is undoubtedly bright. I don't think any of those fighters is a safe bet to lose their title anytime soon. Forced to choose, I guess I would say GSP. I think Carlos Condit (were he to beat B.J. Penn) could conceivably be the guy to do it. But I wouldn't bet on any of those 3 chaps losing the gold anytime soon.
Jones has the toughest division - he goes down first.
I just see him as the most unbeatable of the bunch right now. He's barely been touched and the versatility of striking/size advantage is just so daunting. He tore Shogun apart and yet everyone (but me) is picking Rua to steamroll Forrest Griffin.
I am impressed you know of Esoteric! Now can you tell me what his name was BEFORE it was Esoteric?
I can't. Actually, it's Kenny Florian who is the source for most of the rap on my iPod. He comes through with mixes for me every few months.
Who do you believe will be the UFC lightweight champ this time next year? Assuming Melendez makes it over.
Good question. Ben Henderson has a great chance, provided he is afforded the opportunity. I still tend to think the Edgar-Maynard winner will be on top.
Jon-boy, can you explain a little more on the UFC/FOX deal? Fox is gonna want some big fights, right? But UFC uses those to sell PPV's. What's the compromise?
4 fight cards per year will be on FOX. And I believe you will see UFC superstars and even title fights on FOX. PPV will remain the juggernaut baseline for the UFC. But they will want to feature their stars and champions on network TV.
Buy or sell: MMA will be legal in NY in 2012
Sell. Maybe by 2013.
Hi Anik, Glad to hear the new addition is going well. I understand that you think GSP may be the "most likely" to lose his belt, and that Bones has been mowing people down, but we have not seen him tested at all? Does that make you nervous?
Not really. I am curious to see how he'll respond if and when he gets into deep water. But the reason that hasn't happened is b/c he's an exceptional athlete and fighter. And he hasn't even peaked yet.
Who can test Jon Jones?!!!!!
I think Rashad Evans could be the light heavyweight best-equipped to dethrone Jon Jones. Rashad looked phenomenal in his last fight. Understanding fully that a past-his-prime Tito Ortiz was the oppponent, Evans has never looked better physically. Looked like a completely different guy than the man who fought Rampage.
Do you believe Jose Aldo will eventually become the UFC lightweight champ?
No, I don't. I think he'll stay at 145 for the time being. There are so many talented guys at 155 and many of them are bigger. Not sure what the driving force would be for him to move up at this stage of his career.
Do you pick the questions on here, or does someone else?
I select the questions, but oftentimes I won't even see the majority of the questions that come in. Every time I answer one, another 15-20 new ones come in. That's why I try to get to as many of you as possible on Twitter. You can follow me @Jon_Anik.
Jon, come on, Rashad is very good, but he will get battered by Jones!! 84" reach and creative striking wins every time!
Please don't put words in my mouth. I might only give Evans a 20% chance to beat Jon Jones. The point is that I'd give him a better chance right now than any other light heavyweight in the world.
It was God Awful, in case you wanna show Kenny that you're WAY more Boston hip hop than him.
I have the #2 pick in my fantasy draft. Should I take Vick with that pick?
Depends on your league and its scoring. I tend to think you'll be just fine with any of the top 6-8 quarterbacks. So I'd take Arian Foster or Jamaal Charles.
Is Justin Cruse your cousin or what? Good grief...
Hahahahaha. I really look at the question moreso than who is posing it. Duly noted, Mike.
ken in ca submitting 20 questions per minute
Why doesn't the UFC ever go to Florida? I hope we get another card here in Georgia before long. Louisiana is too far away!!
That's a good question. We get a lot of inquiries from fight fans in Florida. Don't have a great answer for you as to why the UFC hasn't been there in awhile. I believe there was a WEC show down there recently.
Finally made a chat again!!! How do you see mayweather vs ortiz ending?
Mayweather wins on points.
Hey Jon. Have you heard any rumblings about the rumors of Silva v. Hendo as a fight on Fox? I thought Hendo was done cutting down to 185.
I think for the right price, Hendo could be persuaded to cut down to middleweight again. I'm just not certain a quick 3-month turnaround to face Anderson Silva is what he had in mind for his UFC return. But money talks...
How many extra seconds does Palhares hold onto his sub on Saturday?
Hahaha. I was the only ESPN MMA staffer to pick Dan Miller. So this space says he won't get the opportunity to do so.
More excited for UFC 136 or 137?
Hendo v. Machida on Fox with Guida v. Bendo opening. Would be a pretty sick card.
I like that line-up.
If not Hendo v Silva would the UFC pull Sonnen out of his fight to have him fight Silva?
I've heard those rumblings as well, but it's not my expectation. I think Sonnen needs to win a fight to earn a rematch with Anderson Silva. Excited to have Chael back in Bristol Friday.
Will Kenny finally win his belt and if not does he call it quits?
He won't retire if he loses to Jose Aldo. I'd expect him to maybe move back up to 155 for another fight or two. He's still able to compete on an elite level and that's why he's still fighting. But I don't think he'll fight more than 4-5 more times.
What's the process to get verified by Twitter? I want in on that.
Not sure, James. I wasn't responsible for the verification of my account. Was done through ESPN.
Kenny will win that belt
Jon, I'm still undefeated, 12-0 now. Do you think you could get the UFC to give me a look? All of my wins are by either KO or submissions, most in the first round. Or do I have to follow you on twitter for some help?
Try me on Twitter. I think perhaps Bellator might be a better option for you to get some more experience and exposure. I would also advice posting in the chat with your real name to get it out there. :)
If for some reason Silva loses Saturday, does Sonnen really have any motivation to beat Stann?
Well, he doesn't want to fight Yushin Okami. I understand the question, but of course there is motivation. Sonnen wants to win, regardless of what lies ahead.
What is your dream Super-Fight?
Forever it was GSP v. Anderson Silva. Now, I've started leaning towards Silva v. Jon Jones. But given the legacies of GSP and Silva and given that their primes have occured simultaneously, I'd really like to see them in a mega-fight.
Am I the only one who thinks Stann KOs Sonnen? Early.
You are not the only one. That will be a tough fight for me to pick, b/c I've gotten to know them both on a personal level. I do believe Stann's recent activity will be a factor. And if you saw our interview with Sonnen last week on MMA Live, he certainly recognizes the challenge that lies ahead.
Agree or disagree: Overeem is too much for Lesnar's first fight back
Disagree. Lesnar has never really been given a tune-up or easy fight. I don't expect that to change now. And there aren't really too many easy fights in the UFC. Would you rather see him face the Cro Cop-Roy Nelson winner? Not me...
What does Anderson do differently if he fights Chael again?
Absolutely can't afford to get in an early hole. He was in survival mode in the 2nd round. Must avoid getting taken down so often while also remaining aggresive and creative with his strikes. If he can stun Sonnen early and keep him honest, he can play to his strengths the rest of the way.
Have you heard anything about Lyman Good? Haven't heard a peep since he pulled out vs Hornbuckle
Nor have I. Injuries have certainly been an issue.
I think I'm in the minority here, but this card doesn't get me excited. Okami isn't exciting, Nog is not a contender, i'm not interested in the griffin rematch since i don't see either guy fighting for the title and ross pearson and luiz cane don't move the needle. Throw in the fact it's in Rio and it seems even less exciting to me. Just one mans opinion.
The card certainly has more appeal for me than it does you, but I've heard similar sentiments on Twitter. I tend to see the merit in all UFC PPVs. I'm excited for the Brazil component and for the Griffin-Shogun rematch.
I see that there aren't any ESPN experts picking Big Nog: Has he regressed that much?
He just hasn't fought since February of 2010 and has been involved in a ton of wars. Just unsure exactly how much is left. Sort of thought Josh Gross might take Nogueira, because he's not high on Brendan Schaub.
Jon, I've been talking up Okami since you started doing these chats, this is the week that makes or breaks my prediction of Okami with the belt strapped around his waist. Would him winning help or hurt the UFC in your opinion?
Not really sure how it would help the UFC, other than the fact that he could defend the belt next year in Japan. But in my opinion, Anderson Silva is the greatest of all-time. And I'm sure it would be nice for the UFC to keep that legacy on the rise before it makes its network TV debut.
Where does the winner of the Strikeforce GP fit into all of this heavyweight talk? Do you think he should get an immediate title shot?
Really depends upon the timeline for merging Strikeforce fighters into the UFC. But the winner of the Grand Prix would certainly have a strong case for a title shot, or at least a No. 1 contender's bout in their UFC debut.
Whats next for Phil Davis?
Perhaps Lyoto Machida.
Thoughts on Alvares Aoki rematch? Who wins and how?
Alvarez by TKO. That's my guy right there.
What Phil from Cincinnati SHOULD be talking up is how powerful that weed he's clearly smoking is...
Pass it over here now.
do you think there will be riots if silva loses?
Really, sincerely hope not.
How good is Barboza and how good can he be? Aldo good?
I wouldn't put the ceiling quite as high as Jose Aldo, who is a consensus top 5 P4P guy in the world. But you'd be hard-pressed to find an MMA media type who isn't bullish on Barboza. Tremendous talent. Like the killer instinct.
Hey JA...just letting you know, your boy Floyd will get the KO. Victor Ortiz dives in from too far out too often...and Floyd knows it. Sneaky right hand or check hook...think Ricky Hatton...
Hope you're right, Jason. I also hope Mayweather pursues the finish. He's been known to be content to just dominant the first 8-10 rounds and then just coast.
You ever think the day will come where you are strictly covering MMA? Would you even want that or do you like the diversity?
I hope so. Would like that very much. It's a challenge doing all sports, even though I love the fantasy football stuff, too. Wish I could devote more time to MMA. Just not in the cards right now.
most intimidating fighter to be in the same room with
Probably Brock Lesnar, depending on his mood. Brock has always been kind and gracious with me, but there is a definite intimidation factor there.
Thoughts on Kos jumping up to 185?
I think it's a temporary move for 1-2 fights. I do believe a fight with Bonnar could materialize, provided both guys win on 11/19.
Any thoughts on Koscheck fighting at 185 in San Jose? Love Kos but I think he might be too small for that weight class
Koscheck has a B.J. Penn quality to him, in that he never ducks opposition and doesn't fear bigger men. I don't worry about Koscheck's size at 185. His heart makes up for the inches.
Do you think Gsp will get a fight on fox?
Who would be the best fighter in a bar fight?
Frank Mir. He's got weapons.
Good question for Chael Sonnen: you can only achieve one, which is it--beat Anderson Silva or become UFC middleweight champion? What's his answer, Anik?
Love the question. Maybe we'll ask it. I do believe his answer would be to become UFC middleweight champion. He promised as much to his late father and he'll stop at nothing to fulfill that promise. He just hopes that Anderson Silva is the man standing in his way when the next title shot materializes.
I'm very curious... what happened with kos and bonnar to make them hate each other so badly?
Had to do with Bonnar's company, NGAUGE, and their 'Trash Talkin' Kids' t-shirt line. Kos was featured and filed a suit. Google will help clarify details for ya.
Whats your pick for FOTN this weekend?
I think it will be the main event.
do you know if its 100% no that you guys wont be in houston?
Still not sure, Angelo.
long time reader first time poster who would u pick ben henderson or guillard
Appreciate you posting and it's a strong first post. That's a tough fight to predict. Melvin Guillard looks unbeatable right now, but I'd lean towards Bendo.
Can we nickname Guillard, Guida and Cerrone collectively as the Jackson Three?
You can do whatever you like. I just hope they'll fight each other, if need be.
who do you got tonight? Rangers or Red sox its been pretty toasty over here lately
Good price on Beckett, but the Red Sox don't win much in Arlington.
You've heard our opinions, but who would you like to see headline the first UFC on Fox event?
I would just like to see a fighter whom you would quantify as a UFC superstar. You feel me?
ESPN didn't have enough in the budget to send you to Brazil??
Not sure what exactly goes into the decision. August is a busy month, especially for ESPN Digital Media. I have a ton of Fantasy Football responsibilities, and it would've been awfully tough to break away right now.
How about a Cowboy, Carpenter and a Killer
What NFL player do you think would best transition to MMA?
Frank Mir has been my favorite MMAer since I started following, with BJ Penn a close second. My question for you is, do you think if Frank Mir hadn't wrecked his cycle he'd be the most dominant heavyweight we've ever seen by now?
Hard to quantify. That was surely a huge setback for Frank Mir, but you can argue that it had its benefits. It was a real eye-opener for him. Your point is a good one and the leg still isn't 100% right.
Will lesnar ever fight for the title again
Only if his first fight back is for the belt. I don't believe he will win a No. 1 contender's bout to get back there. But we'll see. I just hope he fights again. The rest is gravy.
Shaquille O'Neal vs Hong Man Choi - who wins?
Diesel. He can't take that fight unless he knows he'll win.
Will forrest get a top 3 guy after he beats shogun
Depends on other results. I think a top 5 guy is likely. He doesn't want anything to do with Jon Jones. For me, a rematch with Rampage is the most appealing.
Where does Denis Siver fit in at 155?
The guy is just in the wrong division right now. On the fringe of the top 10.
How about Mir/Overeem for November 12?
Works for me.
lesnar is the biggest ppv draw, do you think they would put him on fox?
It's conceivable. Not my expectation, but it wouldn't totally floor me.
So piecing together your earlier statements (re which champion will lose and Evans chances), you'd give Condit a better than 20% chance to beat GSP?
Yes. Think he's only now hitting his stride. The Penn fight is a huge and timely test.
Siver is the new Jim Miller, he's gonna have to put together a monster streak
do you think the new TUF format will help the show?
I think TUF needed a face lift and I love what they've chosen to do. Kinda curious if the fights will also be broadcasted, or if they'll continue to employ the natural sound.
Jon, why hasn't Mark Hominick been scheduled for a follow up fight since the war with Aldo. Still nursing the injury?
I'd imagine so. Hominick will be back and with a vengeance. I wouldn't want to fight that guy next.
over/under; how many chats in a row does Chost answer a question with the following: Just not in the cards right now.
This time TWO years from now, who do you see as the top 3 P4P fighters?
Tough question. I certainly see Jon Jones still in that mix. Also like Cain Velasquez to be there, even though he could easily lose to Junior Dos Santos. Such a fine line. Gilbert Melendez is a darkhorse to be in that conversation.
Did Rampage really spend $1 mill to prep for his Jon Jones fight?
Alright, heads. Must run. Thank y'all for being here. If I missed your submissions, not to worry. You can find me on Twitter- @Jon_Anik- and I'll definitely get back to you over there. And...MMA Live is back on ESPN2 late night on Friday with Chael Sonnen in studio. Hope you'll tune in. Take it slow. -JA