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January 11, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with Brett Okamoto

Brett Okamoto
  (1:00 PM)

UFC heads to Brazil again this Saturday with 142. Probably not a card you're counting down the days to, but still, I'm real interested in the main event. Lighter weight classes are still looking for some faces to carry them into the spotlight ... winner between Aldo and Mendes will be one of those. Both guys are marketable for different reasons. I would agree this is biggest test for Aldo, stylistically, since joining the WEC.

John (NY)

Is it true that Nick Diaz no-showed the UFC Countdown filming?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:00 PM)

I saw that online but personally, I have not confirmed it.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:00 PM)

Would be somewhat of a shock if true ... right?

Tyler Hart (Lake Zurich)

Are there any famous fighters who used to do tae Kwon Do, because i'm really good, but I want to know if there is really somewhere I could test my skillz.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:01 PM)

Yes, I am thinking there are, but off the top of my head it's tough to come up with someone who used that as his/her exclusive background. Anyone on the chat think of an example?

Nick (Sydney (Australia))

Hi Brett, enjoy your writings.. A couple of things. Your thoughts on the depth of the upcoming Sydney card headlined by Alves and Kampman. Ticket prices are comparatively same as UfC 110 and 127 whilst sales are poor. On that, can someone find out why George Sotiropolous was put on the Japan card a week earlier?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:02 PM)

It is a little puzzling Sots wouldn't be in Australia, but I do know he wanted to fight in Japan. He's fought in Japan before and the fans actually do know him over there pretty well. It also just worked out that the opponent, Gomi, made sense, and of course you want him fighting in Japan.

Cameron (Perth )

Hi Brett, Dana get's asked a bit about Fedor being brought into the UFC. To me the UFC is more about the future and not the past but I'd be interested in your thoughts (and Danas) on whether Fedor would belong in the Hall of Fame given Zuffa own Strikeforce and Pride. To me he should stay where he is but I do think he belongs in a Hall of Fame as his record up to recently was phenomenal.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:04 PM)

Things change, but RIGHT NOW if you mentioned Fedor being in the HoF, Dana would laugh at you. Eventually, there needs to be an independent MMA HoF that's not controlled by the UFC. Currently, there isn't a "MMA writers association" formed. If journalists ever get together and do that, I would think they would vote on HoFamers, as in other sports.

david from Maui [via mobile]

not doubting his power, but Do you think the matchmakers gave Rumble too tough an opponent for his first step into a new weight class? Thanks. Never miss a chat.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:05 PM)

Thanks for the question, and yeah, it's a tough matchup, but it does a few things. It gives Vitor a true test to get back into title contention. Wins over Akiyama and (later this year) possibly Wanderlei isn't enough to build a title case out of. AJ is a good name, even though it is his debut. It's also just a good matchup stylistically. Plus, they needed a co-main in Brazil, what other middleweights were left to fight Belfort?

Jason Westminster CA [via mobile]

Is the Sonnen vs Munos fight a 5 rounder? If not, shouldn't all title eliminator be 5 rounds?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:07 PM)

It is not and I agree. If we're going to make non-contender fights five rounds just because they are main events, that makes no sense if a fight like Sonnen/Munoz isn't five rounds. It's a business decision, not a sports decision.

Will Swain Perth Australia [via mobile]

Ive put 500 bucks on a Bisping winning via Ko in the second round vs Maia. Was this wise?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:08 PM)

Depends how much you'll miss that 5 spot if you lose. And, what kind of odds did you get? I do think Bisping's standup is way better than Maia's, so I like that part of it. But Bisping looked fairly awful in his last fight.

Jeffry (Los Angeles) [via mobile]

When's Cain Velaquez coming back and against who? I'd would like to see him fight Mir since Overeem is going against Dos Santos next.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:09 PM)

I talked to Javier Mendez last week while he was in Vegas for the Strikeforce show. Mendez is Velasquez's trainer. He told me Cain is in the gym and would be ready to take a fight. They kind of expect Mir, as does most people.

Bobby (Boise, ID) [via mobile]

what do you think phil davis' chances are against evans? how do you see him winning?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:10 PM)

If Phil wins it will be either because he clips Rashad (even though Rashad has only one loss, his chin is suspect) or because he straps on a singlet and outwrestles him for 15 minutes. His athleticism has given lots of people problems, but I think Rashad will be able to handle it. I'm definitely leaning to Rashad in the fight.

Madness [via mobile]

Hey Brett, what do you think, one more win for Nate Diaz then a title shot? There is potential to have a set of brothers as champs by late this year.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:11 PM)

Yes there is. I argued that in a Hot Button last week. Nate Diaz meets winner of Pettis/Lauzon (both winnable fights for him) then takes on the champ. It could happen.

decammy (Los Angeles, Ca)

Sup Brett love your work but man Cris Cyborg testing positive for steriods is bigger news than UFC 142. Some may argue its good for WMMA that level playing field is more even. But only bad to me is for Cris Cyborg. People have already speculated she's on something and this just verify it for them. I think her career is tarnished now and now it's like was she ever clean in all her fights. And if she really thinks its because of dietary supplement then send it to the CSAC to get it tested to prove that.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:14 PM)

She tested positive for an anabolic steroid. It was overseen by the World Anti-Doping Agency. Having the sample retested wouldn't do much. It is definitely a setback for women's MMA, in a time where they needed stars.

Devin (L.A.)

What's really going on with the Jon Jones situation? Does Dana White need a headliner for UFC 145? If Rashad Evans wins in Chicago, who's Bones' next fight? Evans or Henderson?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:15 PM)

It's a good question. He mentioned that Jones wants a fight and maybe they'll move Hendo into a title fight on a Vegas radio station. It might have just been a quick comment that got blown up. I mean, all he said was that maybe they would use Hendo since Jones wants to fight, but then he added, maybe we'll wait until after the Fox card. So, who knows? To me, it's an added incentive to say, This Fox show is a No. 1 contenders fight. And they want Fox cards to do well, so if I had to guess right now, I think it will be the winner of that fight.

Tyler (Oklahoma)

Think we'll see some WEC Jose Also? Like some knees to the face on a takedown attempt. I hope so, but I say Mendez steals it with his wrestling and top control. Thoughts?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:16 PM)

I like Aldo in the fight. Mendes has looked better on his feet but he's still got holes there, which is no surprise since he's still relatively new. Aldo will expose those big time and I think Aldo will be fired up and look a little more like WEC Aldo.

matt ohio [via mobile]

do u wanna see sonnen silva 2 or would u rather see silva get a hand me out like bigsbing?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:17 PM)

I want to see Silva/Sonnen II. Badly. Regardless of your feelings on either fighter, don't see how anyone wouldn't want to see that rematch.

cale fort pierce, florida [via mobile]

Do you think jose aldo should move to 155 if he beats mendes?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:18 PM)

Maybe. There aren't a lot of contenders for him at 145, but if you're the UFC, you probably want a top guy holding the belt at that new weight class than adding yet another 155 contender ... I think Aldo could afford a few more fights at 145, depending on how hard these cuts are for him.

Jon (Florida) [via mobile]

Opinion on Mayweather-Pacquio?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:18 PM)

Do it already.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:19 PM)

Right now, Bob Arum seems to be the hold up. But I also think Mayweather calling him out yesterday was just a smart ploy. He knows Arum isn't likely to make the fight, so now he makes Pacquiao look bad. It's a mess.

Scott Black Scotland Fife [via mobile]

Assuming bisping gets past meia , who's up next for him and is he any nearer a title shot ??

Brett Okamoto
  (1:20 PM)

He could be. Rockhold isn't coming over. Vitor has the TUF show with Wanderlei. After winner of Sonnen/Munoz, Bisping/Maia are next in line I would say.

Marc (Chicago, IL)

What fighter is the least intimidating in person?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:21 PM)

Honestly, not that many of these guys are intimidating once you get to know them. On first impression, Mark Hominick comes to mind because he's such a nice dude.

Eric husten [via mobile]

HOw fUr away is mIcdodold from UFC gold

Brett Okamoto
  (1:23 PM)

Haha, struggling to type on that iPhone? Rory MacDonald is still probably a good three fights away I would say. He's got the skills, but they've actually got some contenders at 170 right now, the belt is on hold with GSP out, give RM more experience in 2012, and a title shot in 2013.

A.J. (Tampa)

Kim Winslow should be arrested for allowing Mo to assault that man that way.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:24 PM)

I agree, that was horrible. For those that don't know, Kim Winslow is a referee in Nevada. She continues to put fighters' safety in danger.

Stephen (Ireland)

Has the time finally come for the UFC to start its own in house random drug test policy?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:25 PM)

No, I actually do still think that's what the commissions are for. Josh Gross wrote a piece saying fighters should receive a lifetime ban from the UFC for testing positive and that would eliminate it entirely. I see his point, but I don't agree. People make mistakes ... a year-suspension seems like enough to me.

Jeff (Salt Lake City)

Is BJ Penn really trying to start something with Diaz or was that a hack job? Huge BJ fan here but I REALLY don't want to see BJ get destroyed by Diaz again. There's no point in that rematch for anyone. He needs to drop back to 155 or sail into the sunset of Hilo.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:26 PM)

I know some people close to him feel the same way you do. I believe BJ is coming back, not sailing into the sunset, and I do think it will be at 155. But we'll see.

Mark (MN)

How good do you think Rockhold woud be in the UFC? I know he's not coming over since he has the belt, but he hasn't fought the caliber of the middleweight division the UFC could offer.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:27 PM)

I really like his chances. The guy is huge for the weight class. He's a difficult matchup against anyone because he doesn't have any glaring holes. I like him to get some more cage experience in Strikeforce, come into UFC with a chip on his shoulder, and do very well.

A.J. (Tampa)

Rockhold would destroy Bisping.

Sean (VT)

I've read Cain is fighting Big Foot in April, not Mir. Any truth? Thoughts? I'd rather see Mir.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:28 PM)

I hadn't heard that one. When I talked to Mendez, we mentioned Big Foot, but both of us thought Mir was more likely. Honestly, I'd take either. I think they both make sense for different reasons.

MJ_Hammer (Toronto)

I always find it weird that nobody every talks about Diego winning TUF 1. I know Griffin-Bonnar was amazing, but the promotion acts like Griffin was the sole winner of TUF 1. Thoughts?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:29 PM)

Yeah, I suppose. But really, nobody really talks about anybody winning TUF, do they? You hear it on Mike Goldberg's voiceovers, like, "The season 4 winner blah blah blah" but no one makes that big a deal of any other winners. They make a big deal about Griffin/Bonnar because of the fight, obviously.

Crystal chilling in VA [via mobile]

Where is Rich Franklin?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:29 PM)

Trying out for a commentating gig alongside Jon Anik the last time I saw him.

Michael saluda north carolina [via mobile]

Who would u pick john jones or chuck liddel in his prime

Brett Okamoto
  (1:30 PM)

Jon Jones.

Ken (ca.)

Do you think Hominic would fair any better in a rematch with Aldo?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:31 PM)

No. Aldo was just too quick for him. I rewatched that fight two days ago, Aldo was countering him left and right, and actually took him down easily in the first four rounds. That fight wasn't close, regardless of how it finished.

Marc (Malden, MA)

Remember in the 80s, when WWE cards were "superstars" vs "jobbers?" That's what Saturday's Strikeforce card reminded me of.

Joe Silva (Zuffa)

Winners fight Winners, Losers fight Losers.

Andy (Chicago)

Going to my first UFC event in Chicago. What can I expect?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:32 PM)

Loud music. That's honestly the first thing that comes to mind. But besides that, good times. Seeing a UFC live is really something fans gotta do. It's a sport that is designed to watch live, more so I think than a lot of others.

JP (Columbus, OH)

I thought I read Cain was going to fight Bigfoot Silva. Did you hear that, or am I crazy?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:33 PM)

You're the second to say that, so maybe I missed it. I hadn't heard it until you guys brought it up this morning.

Chance kansas city [via mobile]

What's next for Mir? Do u think he is next in line for a title shot after Overeem? There is really no other top contender coming off a win for him to face.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:34 PM)

I'm not sure who he'll fight next, there are no clear options because as Joe Silva said himself, winners fight winners and losers fight losers. Mir is getting close to a title shot though. I know they considered matching him against Overeem when they first signed him. That shows they've got confidence in him. I would think he needs one more win though, before they give it to him.

David, Austin [via mobile]

So this next fight for Stann, isn't this a serious step down? He was fighting for a #1 contender spot and now he's fighting a nobody on a free card. Shouldn't he be fighting someone of a higher caliber?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:35 PM)

Maybe, but it's become crystal clear now that he has big problems with top-notch wrestlers. You can't compete for a title and have that obvious of a hole in your game. He needs to fix that or he'll have a hard time reaching a No. 1 contender fight.

jonny new jersey [via mobile]

what's next for fitch after his 12sec loss? Also is it true that he is one loss from being cut? I think a fight between him shields would be a good match up

Brett Okamoto
  (1:36 PM)

No, he's not one loss away from being cut. There's no way. I'm not sure who's next. My guess is someone not all too exciting. It was a huge step down for him in the division, but he's not on the verge of losing his job.

Jeff (Salt Lake City)

Your thoughts on giving Gustafsson lil Nog? I wanted to see him fight someone higher in the ranks. A little puzzled why Lil Nog seems to be 1-2 fights away from a shot. He hasn't been impressive. I wanted to see Gustafsson really tested.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:37 PM)

There was a rumor it was going to be Thiago Silva. Not sure what happened there. Who fights Silva now? I think Lil Nog is a proper test for Gustaffson. There's no reason to rush these guys, especially a light heavyweight. He should have three more fights of experience before he gets a shot at Jones anyway.

Larry (Vancouver)

Is it time for Jardine to hang his gloves??

Brett Okamoto
  (1:38 PM)

I don't think he's one of those guys who has taken so many beatings he gets his lights turned off easily ... it's just, he's never evolved. Jardine still comes in with his unorthodox style, throwing looping punches and trying to be the tougher guy. That kind of worked six years ago. It doesn't anymore.

Ryan (Dallas)

What up Ninja?! As excited as I am for the fight, I would hate to see Belfort lose against Johnson. How could they make Belfort/Silva if he loses. I want to see the rematch so bad, feel cheated with how the first on ended. Your thoughts?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:39 PM)

I'm not against Belfort/Silva rematch, but you can't just hand it to him. He's got to fight a top guy and we're not even sure that's what AJ is at this weight. I think it's the right call.

Mark (MN)

Does Chad Mendes stand a chance against Aldo, or will Aldo just run through him saturday night?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:41 PM)

You can't underestimate Mendes' takedowns. He'll get Aldo to this back, and that's the one area Aldo really hasn't completely proven himself yet. But I think Aldo will make it difficult for Mendes to bring him down and on the feet, Aldo is simply way better. I'm guessing a TKO for Aldo.

Andy (Chicago)

Glad to hear Torres got his job back. What is up next for him? Also is he still in the dog house with Dana or is that water under the bridge?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:42 PM)

Looks like it's water under the bridge.

Scott (Salt Lake City)

Are you going to be putting out Red Ink this week?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:42 PM)

Yeah, should post tomorrow. Only two fights.

Fadi(Tustin) [via mobile]

brett, if cain were to fight overeem do you like his chances on winning the fight?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:44 PM)

That would be a good fight. I'm sold on Overeem though. Even though I thought Lesnar fought at about 50 percent, Overeem's upper body is so strong and he's actually not as stiff as I thought he would be weighing 263 at the weigh-in. Overeem's stamina problems against Velasquez's endurance, though? Tough call.

fraser (scotland)

Do u think GSP will return to the octagon this year? Personally i caanot see it happening in 2012.....

Brett Okamoto
  (1:45 PM)

The procedure went well. I'm sure GSP's work ethic makes it possible, but he's also a guy who absolutely will not rush back. Late this year, early next year ... pretty much the same thing, right?

@PappaFeez (Dallas)

Thoughts on Hendo being offered Lil Nog? Seems like a slap in the face to me

Brett Okamoto
  (1:45 PM)

Agree

Marc (Chicago, IL)

Who are the UFC champions in 2014? I am thinking Jon Jones at HW.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:46 PM)

2014??? Geez man, 2012 just started. I have no idea. But I'd guess JJ is to heavyweight by then if he's still the champ.

Nathan (Montreal)

Brett, how much $$ are we talking about here to get Silva in the cage with Bones Jones? And do you know if White is pushing Silva to give the fans the superfight they want?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:48 PM)

Dana doesn't want that fight yet because he actually thinks Jones isn't ready for it. And that's smart as a promoter. You don't feed your new star to a dude who's never lost in all his years in the UFC. That said, I'm with you guys, I think Jones COULD beat Anderson ... but from Dana's point of view and Jones camp's point of view, I see why they're hesitant on it.

Crystal chilling in VA [via mobile]

How much longer does Silva have in the cage ?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:49 PM)

I asked Dana that last time I saw him, just because Dana is always reminding us at press conferences the guy is in his late 30s. Dana said he's never had any indication that Silva is losing his passion for the sport and he made a good point that he's done predicting the end of guys' careers because he did that like 12 times with Randy Couture.

Jackson (IA)

No doubt Dana would laugh at Fedor being in the HOF. And that, more than anything, shows what a childish fool Dana is capable of being. If Fedor isn't HOF worthy, it should be empty.

hector (chicago)

was i naive to think c.velasquez would never lose?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:49 PM)

To NEVER lose? Yes, Hector. You were naive.

CT (NY)

Who are you picking? Jones or Evans (when it does finally happen)

Brett Okamoto
  (1:49 PM)

Jones

JD (VA)

You said that with Aldo will probably be sticking around 145. If that's the case, who do you see after Mendes?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:51 PM)

Not sure ... but I will say I don't think we've seen the last of 155ers moving to 145. It's going to slow down now, as far as a group of guys doing it, but I think we'll see one or two more big name guys try to cut 10 pounds. Aldo's next challenge could come from that.

jonathan (Charlston, SC)

Dan Henderson vs. Jon Jones would be a fun fight! I think Henderson could test Jones chin. Would do you think Brett?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:51 PM)

I agree and I think Dan has earned it with his body of work, but man, don't you guys feel bad for Rashad if he gets jumped AGAIN? I do.

Dustin (Nebraska)

Do you think Johnson can stand with Belfort, he's powerful but I noticed he doesn't have a lot of head movement

Brett Okamoto
  (1:52 PM)

If he chooses to, it's not a good idea. He doesn't have the head movement, he doesn't have the footwork of Belfort either. He'd have to keep it a fight on the outside ... and Belfort would find his way in close eventually.

AJ (Tampa)

Do people really want to see Jones fight Silva? That to me ends really sad for Andy.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:53 PM)

If the fight happened tomorrow, I'd take Andy.

Tommy (DENVER)

When are Diego Brandao and Dodson getting their first fights?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:54 PM)

Looks like the UFC was working on filling up those international cards, with a bunch of fights being announced for Sweden a day ago. I'm expecting a few more cards get announced in the next 30 days, for April-May. Would think those guys will fight on those, probably an FX or Fuel show.

CT (NY)

Where is Kenflo? And what do you think is next for him?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:55 PM)

Kenny's been doing some commentating and I think that slowly starts to take over his fight career. He's not retired though. He'll move back to 155, take a fight of interest to him.

Ken (ca.)

Do you see Condit as the hungry fighter in the upcoming title fight with Diaz?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:57 PM)

I don't really see one being more motivated than the other. Are you saying that because Condit lost his title shot when GSP got hurt?

Andy (Chicago)

Thoughts from last Sat.? Jardine done, anywho else for King Mo?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:58 PM)

Don't think Jardine is done. Strikeforce needs guys right now that fans recognize and people know Jardine's name. If he loses again as a middleweight though? Hard to make a case they should keep him.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:58 PM)

Sounds like Mo will be fighting Mousasi for the vacant title, which I don't think really excites either of them all that much.

@PappaFeez (Dallas)

What % do you give the Mayweather/Pac-Man fight of actually happening May 5th? Smart ploy by Mayweather to call him out and put the pressure on Arum

Brett Okamoto
  (1:59 PM)

My personal percentage sits at maybe ... 20%? And that's probably high if you talk to the boxing reporters. Percentage of it EVER happening, though, I'll still put at 55%.

robert nc [via mobile]

When does Alan belcher get a top 5 middleweight. Would like to see him fight rumble

Brett Okamoto
  (2:00 PM)

Yeah, he ran through Jason MacDonald in New Orleans, that was an impressive win. He's an option for AJ, for sure.

Matty-Ice (Detroit)

Who would you take in a King Mo/Rampage fight? The trash talking would be amazing.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:02 PM)

Yeah ... and ridiculous. They wouldn't even be making any sense by the time the fight came around. I'd take Rampage, but the fight would have to happen soon. In a year or two, I'm probably taking Mo.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:03 PM)

Alright guys lets end it with that. We'll see if Aldo can handle the wrestler Saturday and maybe Arum will let Pacquiao fight Floyd, although I doubt it. See ya next week.