Hey peeps, let's get this thing rolling. Big Zuffa double-header weekend of fights with UFC on FX 2 (who'll be lord of the flies?) and Strikeforce. UFC 144 is in the rear-view mirror, but lots happening in the fallout with Rampage having injections of testosterone and the decision process for the UFC and Frankie Edgar. What's on your minds?
which is more likely to happen, title fight for edgar at 155 or 145
I know if the UFC has its way, Edgar would fight for the 145 title. If Edgar has his way, he'll fight for the 155 title in a rematch with Henderson. Not sure what's going to happen, but right now it doesn't look like Edgar is budging from the lightweight ranks.
Does Zuffa's insurance policy cover surgical reattachment of limbs? I really, really, really hope so.
Haha. That's a scary thing to have to walk into, but Tate has been around for a bit.
How do you see next week's fight between Joe Warren and Pat Curran playing out?
That should be a good fight. I definitely think that Warren will look to impose his fight, but Curran is scrappy and fighting in his hometown. I am sort of leaning towards Curran taking a decision here.
I see a lot of people are picking Ian McCall. I don't know much about him, what can you tell me?
He has the best nickname in the sport (Uncle Creepy) and a fancy mustachio. Otherwise, he's a ball of fire from what I've seen in the Jussier da Silva fight and even that Dominick Cruz loss back at WEC 38. He's fun to watch...like most flyweights.
Not really a question but more a statement, as one of the 10 people who get the Fuel channel, I have to say I love their replays of the old Pride fights. I've gotten into MMA post Pride, it's amazing how many great fighters were in the organization.
Yeah, a ton of talent -- Shogun, Henderson, Rampage, Wandy. And they were all in their primes.
Doesn't giving edgar the immediate rematch with henderson make the most sense at this point? Pettis hasn't beaten a top ten lightweight yet and miller/diaz isnt until may. Giving Edgar the rematch granted both are healthy could headline a july card with winner of miller/diaz getting the winner at years end
I think that the fight makes sense on just about every level. It was a close fight, for starters, and Edgar never complained about having to do rematches these last couple of years. The big problem is clogging up the 155-pound division. I think that's why the UFC is hesitant to give it.
What fight are you most looking forward to this weekend?
There are some good ones. Alves/Kampmann can't help but be good...Tate/Rousey could be a masher...and the flyweight fights I think are going be crazy. Looking forward to Demetrious Johnson/Ian McCall.
If Meisha wins this fight, how do you see her doing it?
I think if Tate wins it's because she kept the fight standing and used her wrestling skills. I think it will have to be a slow toil, outpointing for a decision.
How would U love to see EDgar and Bendo II?? I think Edgar out pointed him.
I had the fight for Edgar too...narrowly. I would love to see them play it back. But then again, how fun would Edgar/Aldo be? The more I think about that, the more I think it'd be a classic.
Do you think Uncle Creepy is being overlooked because he hasn't been in the UFC?
Maybe a little bit. He did spend some time in the WEC, but has mostly been in the Tachi Palace fights in recent years. I think he'll get plenty of exposure now that he's in the UFC.
Can McCall win this fight, who are you picking between him and mighty mouse?
I think McCall could definitely win it...but I am picking Mighty Mouse.
Hey Chuck, with Matt Hughes recently opining for one more fight in the octagon to walk away with a win, what are your thoughts on hall of famers who could potentially tarnish their legacy by taking too many fights at the end of their career a la Chuck Liddell?
It's always hard to walk away from these guys who've trained their whole lives and have that identity. If Hughes thinks he can still fight, he should go for it. I am not sure it will tarnish anything he's accomplished in MMA win or lose. It'd be nice if he announced his retirement ahead of his fight just like Jorge Rivera and Chris Lytle. Get the proper send off.
Why did FO redact the most important sentence in their TRT interview from Rampage?
I am not sure, but a lot of people were wondering that. Myself included.
What would think about Mark Hunt V Stephan Struve?
That fight makes sense to me. Mark Hunt has revived his career out of nowhere, and he'd be trouble for Struve. I still remember Roy Nelson closing his drapes in that fight back a couple of years ago, and Hunt could definitely do the same. I'd like to see Stipe Miocic against one of those guys, too.
If its not Edgar vs Aldo next, who do you think gets next 145 title shot - Hioki or Poirier/Zombie winner?
At first I thought it would be Hioki, but he seemed pretty passe on the idea after beating Palaszewski at 144. My guess is that they'd look to the Korean Zombie/Poirier winner, as either of those guys would make for a more marketable fight.
Chuck! Does a win for Shogun Rua over Rampage at this stage in their careers mean absolutely anything for him?
It means he'd get paid, which is fun. It's a rematch that Jackson wants, and Rua is pretty obliging.
Which UFC referee would fare the best in a UFC bout? I know a lot of them are/were MMA fighters in different promotions. Joe Rogan vs. Herb Dean, who wins and how?
I wouldn't count out Dan Miragliotta. I seen that guy for five rounds with the media buffet and didn't show any damage for his efforts. Also, Yves Lavigne...cat like reflexes.
Chuck! How does Ian McCall's 'stache measure up to MMA greats of yore?
Right up there. I like the Rollie curls. Very 1920s circus tent.
How much longer can I get away w/ keeping my hands low and my chin straight out in the open?
Not much longer I'm afraid. Whether or not you're adding new wrinkles to your game (and you're not), time will add them to your features.
Do you foresee Martin Kampmann making a run at the title if he beats Alves tonight?
I don't think Kampmann would be quite there yet, but he'd at least be back in the discussion. Bottom line is, the winner of this fight gets back up the rungs, and the loser will have a hard, hard paddle back to contention.
What did you think about Tim Boetch this past weekend. That comeback was awesome.
That was very impressive. I almost was lulled into daydreaming through the second round...and for him to pin his ears back and bring it to Okami in the third was crazy surprise. Other fighters should take note on how to fight when you're down on the scorecards.
Is the Alexis Davis/Sarah Kaufman winner next for a title shot?
I would think so. Take a look at the entire Strikeforce women's roster. Only the four on this card have winning records. I would have to think that Kaufman/Davis will get the next shot at the bantamweight belt.
How much pressure is there on Rousey and Tate for this fight? Seems like they are not only carrying women's MMA but Strikeforce on their backs.
There's pressure there for sure. The thing I want to see is a great fight at some point for the women's side (a la Bonnar/Griffin) to help shed light on things. Something to inspire other girls/women to get into MMA.
Is Ronda Rousey: The Perfect Storm?
Is Dana going to be taking his private jet from AUS to make it back for the Strikeforce show?
No, I don't think so. That's a long ways to go. I am not sure he'd make it in time. That's at least 18 hours by air, plus the traditional fill up in Hawaii.
Chuck! What's next for my boy Machida? Rampage 2, Franklin 2, or Phil Davis?
I originally thought they'd go with Phil Davis, but the idea of Machida is compelling. That first fight was very close.
I see Urushitani as the darkhorse in the flyweight bracket. That makes me absurd, doesn't it?
Well, you're the first person I've heard mention that possibility. He's a war-horse for sure, and the biggest hurdle he faces is the first one. Joe Benavidez is a bad man.
What's up with Rampage and the TRT thing? I can't believe so many fighters have "low testosterone."
I don't know what's going on with it. Add Rampage to the list of fighters who have taken testosterone (Henderson, Marquardt, Sonnen). It was bizarre that he was so casual about it, like it was a nice discovery he made that could keep him fighting for years to come. All the reasons he shouldn't be doing it. It's dangerous to up testosterone for combat sports.
Thoughts on Alves gaining almost 30 lbs. only hours after the way in? I know it's within the rules, yet it seems somewhat unfair/ridiculous...right?
I heard that he was up to 197 just a couple of hours after weigh-ins, which is unfathomable. I doubt Kobayashi puts on that much weight after his eating competitions. He's a supersized welter, and that size should play a role. At least he made weight.
So what's up with Dan Henderson? At this point is he waiting on Jones?
When Rampage Jackson lost that listless decision to Bader, I texted Henderson and asked him that very thing. He answered "It doesn't look like I have any choice but to wait." He wanted to stay busy, but there wasn't a fight that would make sense for him.
Seems like there won't be a lot of fights after this big weekend. Why isn't March getting any MMA love?
Yeah, it's a little strange not to have a calendar of events happening. But then again, there is. Bellator season 6 is happening, and Joe Warren is fighting Pat Curran on March 9 in Hammond, Indiana. Should be a good fight. There's also the TUF Live happening in mid-March, which should be interesting. At least the show's contestants don't have to live with so many secrets.
so, they have the extra 'sudden victory' round with the flyweights? think we'll see it come into play?
It's there in the rare event that the judge's have either of the flyweight fights a draw after three rounds. I like the idea...there has to be a definitive winner in a tournament.
Glad Henderson is waiting, if he took a fight and ended up on the losing end, who would there be to fight Jones?
I think it's the right thing in the end, too. If Henderson loses a stay busy fight he might be done with title contention for good. I would love to see him against Jon Jones.
Right, I didn't think it was humanly possible to put on as much weight as Alves did...I wonder if it will have any effects on him during the fight.
We'll have to wait and see. You'd think he'd be used to it by now, but I don't think you can get used to losing/gaining that weight in small periods of time.
I'm still wrapping my mind around Tim Boetsch's win. Do you think he a legit contender? I can't imagine him beating some of the top guys in he division.
I have a hard time believing that Boetsch is a legit contender, but I had a hard time believing he had a chance against Okami. Bottom line is, if he gets those bear paws up and lands his shots, he's dangerous. But Silva would chew him up.
Hi chuck. I just read (on another website...sorry) that Alves has already packed on close to 30 pound and may be 215 when he fights. This is lame. Any chance that UFC will move the weigh-ins to the day of the fight card. I know outweighing a fighter doesn't guarantee a win, but, man, it's gotta help.
People have talked about that before. I don't foresee them doing it that way. They want the guys to put on their best performances that they can, and having them on the scale shortly before a fight wouldn't be a good idea.
Any chance at all benavidez loses? That line is HUGE
There's always a chance, but it's not a very good one. Might be worth throwing a small parlay on it with your lock, just in the off chance that it does.
You think Kongo could drop to 205lbs? He weighed in the other night at 229lbs. Doesn't Bones Jones walk around at 224lbs, something similar?
He's a big slab of man, and he's pretty lean for his frame as is. I don't foresee him being able to make that weight, but that's an interesting question. A lot of light heavyweights walk around in the 225-230 range.
Who is lined up for the next title shot at 135 after Faber? That division is severely la li.g now w/ the loss of 2 former title challengers in Benavidez & Johnson.
I've got my eye on Renan Barao. That's a dynamo right there.
Outside of the 4 flyweights tonight, how deep is that division?? Doesn't seem to be something the UFC would do if there wasn't the talent but it seems pretty slim.
Right now it is exactly nine deep. That's how many guys are signed to the UFC's roster to compete in the division. Of course, they'll fortify those numbers as time goes on. It's definitely not the deepest, and nor will it ever be.
Is the Flyweight the last division to EVER be added to the UFC? Do you ever see a Super Heavyweight or a Straweight/Smaller than Flyweight??
From what I've been told, yes. Dana White says he's not interested in breaking the heavyweight division into two.
What are your thoughts on Dakota Cochrane and his history?
Kind of a crazy ordeal, but I guess it shows that they UFC is still searching for the "Ultimate Fighter" and not the "Ultimate Clean Living Person." Besides, Cochrane was up front about it, so he wasn't hiding anything from them. As long as he can fight...
Are you and your "expert" colleagues making your picks for the fights? My buddy and I have been testing ourselves against you guys.
We didn't pick this week, but here's what I am taking: Kampmann, Benavidez, Johnson. And in Strikeforce, will take Thomson and Rousey. (How are you holding up against the ESPNers?)
Chucky...good job on MMA Live last night. What's it like at ESPN headquarters? I always assume it's like in the commercials with mascots walking around.
I didn't see any mascots walking around, but I did see Skip Bayless yesterday, which is in the neighborhood.
Do you think the UFC need to change its scoring system? It seems like there is controversial decision after controverisal decision. I think it is really turning some fans away.
It's a big, long-winded answer, but I think they should at least explore with the half-point system and see if it actually simplifies the process. There are a lot of rounds that are semi-dominant, but not enough to be a 10-8, and yet a 10-9 seems like a disservice. That's when a 10-8.5 might be the call.
Hey Chuck, big fan. I see UFC 148 on the schedule. Any idea when and where UFC 150 will be? Thanks
I haven't heard anything on it yet. But the indication was that they wouldn't be blowing it out like they did with UFC 100. I am sure they will look to have a big headliner, but it won't be multiple title fights or anything like that.
we started doing it at the Fox 2 card and since, Gross is leading the pack at 16-4, Im tied with you at 13-7 for second. I got Alves Benavidez and McCall.
Gross is bringing his A game in 2012. In 2011, he was dreadful. Just dreadful. Unlike me, who is consistently dreadful no matter the year.
Aoki v. Alvarez seems locked up. Alvarez seems to be slowly making the transition over to the UFC, but what about Aoki if he pulls off the win? From what you've heard and your opinion, will they both eventually be in the UFC?
I know that Alvarez will get this fight with Aoki, and possibly one more fight before his time is up. I think he said his contract is up in October. He is open to the idea of the UFC, and they'd be smart to pursue him and Aoki.
Chuck, you told me last week that if Benson won that I would be the expert, and he won. No doubt about it. So as an expert here is a thought, beating unranked jeremy stephens and joe lauzon doesnt give you a title shot (Pettis). And beating 8 unranked guys in a row doesnt make you the best 155er in the world (Gilbert). Tell pat miletich that next time. Benson is the best 155er in the world hands down. Thats just this experts opinion.
I will drop this knowledge at Miletich's feet and run. Nice call on Bendo, Tyler.
Hey Chuck- As I've been saying for the last few weeks on here, Edgar time was up. He's a tough kid, but not a lightweight. Bendo was too big too strong, too talented, too much will to win. I think Jim Miller and Melendez would be Edgar as well. Please tell me we won't see that rematch and let Smooth get revenge on Pettis this summer. I love Henderson to win that fight!
You are in the UFC's camp then, because that's what they are screaming. Edgar has proven that he can hang with the big boys, and it's where he likes to be. He is right to ask for a rematch. If the UFC refuses, I think he should fight Aldo for the title at 145. But it's up to Frankie, and he says he'll stay at 155 even if he doesn't get an immediate rematch with Henderson.
do you think benavidez loses?
No...just can't see that happening, Chris. Not tonight, anyway. I could see him losing in the finals, though. McCall is the darkhorse, and Mighty Mouse is doling out dynamite.
Updates on Shane Carwin or Daniel Cormier?
Haven't heard much on Carwin, but I saw Josh Barnett last night and he says he's still waiting to get his date with Cormier. Cormier still could be hurting with the hand issue. Strikeforce has a tentative date in May for a fight card in San Jose, which would seem like the logical place for the GP to play out (with Cormier being from the area), but nothing is set in stone.
More excited for ufc on fox or Strikeforce card? What fight(s) are you most excited for?
Those flyweight bouts....going to be fun. I am equally excited for the cards. I dish emotion equally.
Sup, Chuck! Wondering what's next for Ryan Bader. Seems like he should be back into contention with his win over Rampage.
Bader isn't in title contention yet, not by beating Jackson. He's been on this sort of icon/oldies circuit, and that's where he should keep chugging along. One fight that makes some sense to me would be to stick Bader against Stephan Bonnar, who's won three in a row and looked great against Kingsbury.
Benavidez is like -1200 in Vegas.
Hardly worth betting a line like that unless it's part of a parlay.
Chuck!!! You daffy man. Give us your main card picks for the two nights of fights? You're the man!!!
Fight of the night candidates all over on tonight's card. I will go with the headliner though. Kampmann is incapable of a boring fight. And Alves brings it too. Taking Kampmann as the victor, though.
Could Miguel Torres drop to 125 to help that division out with some real star power? He would be like 4 feet taller than those other guys.
That would be very heard. The dude's a stick figure as it is. If he gets down to 125 pounds, they might want to make sure the windows are closed. A strong gust could end his night.
Here's an idea. No rematch for Edgar, no title shot yet for Pettis, and give Gilbert Melendez his deserved shot to prove he's the best. Plus NOONE wants to see Gil vs either Thomson or Noons.
You'd get no complaints here. Melendez/Bendo would be a crazy little barn-burner.
Are you in Australia for the fights tonight? Should be a fun card.
Not in Australia. I'm in Columbus for the Strikeforce fights. Looking forward to Rousey/Tate and Thomson/Noons.
What do you think is next for Boetsch after his big win over Okami? I think he vs Weidman makes sense at this point.
A Boetsch/Weidman fight would make some sense. After beating a guy who is commonly ranked in the top five in the division, it's a guarantee (or at least an educated guess) that he'll get another big name next.
hey chuck wat do u think is next for rampage??? he said he wants to keep fighting. I think ufc should make him fight shogun next that would be a good headliner for maybe a fox card or ppv.
That's who I think he'll end up fighting, too. Rua/Jackson. Both guys are into the idea. Jackson has wanted that fight since beating Mark Hamill. Jackson could also do a rematch with Griffin.
OK, peeps. Need to shut the thing down. Thanks a lot for chiming in. Should be a fun weekend of fights. Will be back here doing it again next Friday at 4pm EST. Tell your friends. And hit me on Twitter, too, @ChuckMindenhall.