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June 6, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with Brett Okamoto

Brett Okamoto
  (1:01 PM)

What's up guys? Thanks for being here and very sorry right off the top for my absence the last two weeks. In my defense, I was at UFC interview functions both times but I still felt guilty, rest assured. All yours today though. This week I'm in Vegas helping out with the Pacquiao/Bradley fight so if you want to divert a few questions to that, be my guest. There's also Penn/MacDonald stuff, UFC flyweight fight this week, etc. Or you can yell at me more for missing the last two chats, I'm okay with that. It's your world.

Scott (Salt Lake City)

How do you see Penn V Rory going if that fight happens?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:04 PM)

Not gonna lie, I hate that fight. B.J. Penn is one fight away from hitting that spot in his career where we're kind of like, "We still love watching you fight, but ... what's the storyline now?" Kind of like where Matt Hughes is now. We're down to watch him, but ... he can't keep losing. So, what does Penn do? He accepts a fight against one of the BIGGEST guys at 170, who is also a young guy with a great gas tank? It's a terrible matchup for Penn in a spot he has to win. He should be at 155, instead he's fighting Rory MacDonald? How do I see the fight going? Unless Penn catches him, I see MacDonald throwing him around a la Nate Diaz. It's going to be a happy night in Toronto, I'm thinking.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:04 PM)

Sorry to go long on that, but I like Penn. I'd like to see what he can do at 155. I don't think he'll beat MacDonald and then he'll be in that spot where he's lost so much and it's like, what is this guy fighting for now?

LarrySandersJoe (Robin Hood country, UK)

Afternoon Brett. Do you think it's time the UFC reassesses their gloves? So many fighters down with broken hands at the moment

Brett Okamoto
  (1:06 PM)

Nah. These guys are using 4 oz gloves in fights not training. For the most part, sparring, boxing practice, they're using larger gloves. You change the 4 oz gloves in competition, you change the sport. Hand injuries are just gonna happen.

Guy (Aurora, Il)

Finals week means no class during your chat! Finally! Now, I've always been a HUGE fan of Martin Kampmann. Why are people so surprised that he is winning? If you actually WATCHED his last 2 losses to Sanchez and Shields (unlike the judges), he's on a HUGE win streak over quality competition.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:08 PM)

I don't think THAT many people were shocked by the Alves fight, just the Ellenberger one. And you can't blame anyone for being shocked about that one. Stylistically, that fight favored Jake. Martin is primarily a grappler. You figured if he stood with Jake he was in trouble, which was true up until that one counter punch that put Jake in trouble. Kampmann has always been undervalued though, I agree with you there. I think it's because he doesn't do any ONE thing so brilliantly we all pay attention, but he's one of the most well rounded guys in the division.

Stuart (Englewood, NJ)

please tell me we will one day see a GSP vs Silva fight at catchweight

Brett Okamoto
  (1:08 PM)

I'm sorry Stu. It's not in the cards. Not with Anderson retirement rumors floating and GSP injured. Hope for a Silva/Jones fight at this point. I believe GSP/Silva is dead.

Colin (Philly)

who is the best mma fighter ever

Brett Okamoto
  (1:09 PM)

My opinion, it's Anderson Silva.

JP (London)

What are your thoughts on Chad's recent article? I absolutely agree with him... What is the point of an interim welterweight belt which doesn't get defended?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:11 PM)

For those who didn't see it, ESPN's Chad Dundas wrote about the 170-pound division and argued for Condit to defend the belt. I see what you guys are saying with this, but I guess the reason I'm cool with Condit waiting is that he has earned it. He has. He stepped up when Diaz went down, then he was going to step to the side when Diaz was so impressive against Penn, then he beat Diaz, then he was going to fight Diaz before the marijuana thing ... he's done everything asked of him and he's won fights convincingly along the way. Fighting for a UFC title is a big deal and it's a huge financial impact on your life and your family. If the UFC is okay letting him wait, so am I.

Tyler (Oklahoma)

Where you been Brett? Ive asked you this twice in the past two weeks. I know how tough you think Thompson is, but Gil finally proved how overrated he is, and your the only one that really dropped him any in your rankings. I completely agree and think he should be ranked lower, but will you explain to the people why you did that?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:14 PM)

Sorry it's taken me awhile to get to this one Tyler. Yes, I was the only ESPN analyst to drop Gil in my rankings after his last win. One major reason was that I thought he lost. I was at the fight and scored it for Josh Thomson. So, there's that. Also, while I don't agree with the people who are screaming, Gil is overrated!, he's looked a little flat in his last two fights and, I don't want to say one-dimensional, but ... one-dimensional. To beat Josh, he needed to turn to some new forms of offense and I just didn't see it. I think Nate Diaz has grown as a fighter and eclipsed Gil in the past 10 months or so, so I have Nate above him now in the lightweight rankings.

Scott (Salt Lake City)

Are you going to be at the boxing match on Saturday to watch TB beat Pac Man?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:14 PM)

Yep, will be there. Running the chat/live blog on ESPN, so you guys should stop by if you're watching the fight or want updates.

Adam (Toronto)

Think the Miami Heat are done? That team lacks heart and missing out on these chances to win, almost looks like their window to win a title is closing. Wade is always banged up and he's not that young anymore and they have literally nothing around the big 3. Thoughts?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:16 PM)

My buddy nearly pulled the trigger before Game 4 on Celtics to win it all at something like +660. He's wishing he did now. I do kinda think the Heat are done, but of course, we're kind of a slave to the moment. If they win Game 6 in Boston, they'll be the favorite at home in Game 7.

Adam (Toronto)

TUF is good tv, good drama, but the crop of fighters naturally seems worse and worse every year. I wouldn't think any of the fighters in this year's group ever crack a top 10. Kind of diminishes it as a whole, no?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:17 PM)

See, I actually disagree with you. I think the TV drama of it has sucked for a long time. The talent is okay. You're probably not going to get a season like the first couple ever again because the best talent is already getting paid and either fighting in another promotion or heading straight to the UFC and passing up TUF. The talent is respectable though. I think to improve ratings, they have to bring part of that drama back. Let them go out in Vegas. It will bring in an audience who's not already a hardcore MMA fan.

Scott (Salt Lake City)

Any truth to the rumors that Brock is coming back this year?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:18 PM)

Don't see it happening.

CT (NY)

I heard Brock vs Carwin later this year, did you hear anything about this?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:18 PM)

Of course when Brock shows up to an event and Dana starts smirking at reporters' questions, rumors will fly. But ... don't see it happening.

Jake (boogie down Bronx)

How does BJ Penn beat MacDonald?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:19 PM)

His boxing is still probably technically better at this point but even so, MacDonald is huuuuge. He's fast. He hits hard. Like I said, HATE this matchup for Penn. Why take this fight at such a crucial moment? Unless it's the mindset of, let's see if I can still be the best and if I can't, then I'll retire for reals.

Ken (ca.)

Why did Ellenberger go to the ground after knocking Martin on his backside like that? He just needed another couple of shots to finish it!

Brett Okamoto
  (1:22 PM)

He jumped on him, thought it was over, threw a flurry of those right hands but failed to connect cleanly on them. Give Martin credit for weathering the storm, letting Jake wear himself out just a bit and then he put him in his guard and if I'm remembering right put him in a guillotine hold that although it was never close to finishing him, tied him up and allowed Kampmann to recover. I don't really blame Jake for anything he did. You knock a guy down like that, you go after him. Especially when you're a good top wrestler who's not scared to death of getting submitted.

Eric (NJ)

Any possible idea of Penn's logic in accepting the MacDonald fight? Why accept this but turn down Koscheck? Scratching my head here.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:23 PM)

Me too. The Koscheck thing though I can understand. What does a win over Koscheck do? Koscheck is really dangerous but he's already getting the perception as a guy who's best years are behind him. If Penn beats Rory, it's a lot more upside. But ... I don't see him beating Rory. He must just be 100 percent against going down to 155 and sees this as a great fight to get him to maybe one win away from a title shot.

Marc T (the PHX)

Please tell me how Bisping deserves the next title shot if Sonnen were to win?? He is so overrated! Never beaten any of the top guys....Vitor, Munoz, Chael (almost doesnt count). Anytime he's fought a top guy he's lost...Dan, Chael, even Wand!

Brett Okamoto
  (1:25 PM)

I'm not a Bisping hater. I do think he talented and yes, he lost to Chael but that fight was eye-opening as far as we now know Bisping is not completely out of his league against a top notch wrestler. Mark Munoz is the only guy right now I would say deserves it more. So, while I'm with you that Bisping isn't the right guy, there's only one other guy (Munoz) I would put ahead of him so it's hard to be incredibly outraged about it. You know? Maybe Belfort would be in the discussion, but he already lost to Anderson and now he's hurt.

Nate (Woburn, MA)

Any word on the submission that wasn't during TUF Finale?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:27 PM)

Just Kim Winslow being Kim Winslow ... although I heard in the press room after that John Albert admitted to "yelling" during the sub attempt from Erik Perez and typically they do tell you in the locker room to be careful with that because the referee can interpret it as a verbal submission.

Jeff (Columbus, OH)

How funny is it that Wandy is calling Vitor a chicken - I thought Belfort getting hurt was the best thing that could've happened for Wanderlei. Belfort would/will destroy him unmercifully. Now Silva's actually in a winnable fight.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:28 PM)

Ironic, yes and I agree. That's just how the game is played.

Jeff (Salt Lake City)

How much of a shot do you give Bradley this weekend? I think he pulls of the upset and sets himself up with a MEGA fight with Money.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:29 PM)

I give him a shot. He's got the speed to hang. I do think Manny will win but I'm expecting a good fight. You should read my blog I wrote on Bradly though that got posted today. He said even if he beats Manny, Floyd won't fight him.

Guy (Aurora, Il)

How long before we start seeing truly top-flight athletes coming to MMA? I don't mean a practice squad guy like Brendan Schaub. I mean when can we start seeing physical freaks like Julius Peppers, Calvin Johnson, and (dare I say it?) LeBron James lacing up the gloves?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:30 PM)

I look at Jon Jones as that caliber of athlete. Look at the family he comes from. Jones is an A+ athlete. In terms of CONSISTENTLY drawing top athletes away from football, basketball and into MMA? I think it's still a long ways away.

Phillip (Los Angeles)

Brett, usually love your work, a little disappointed that you skipped the last 2 chats with no heads up or nothing, twitter is pretty effective for that, anyways hope you are here more often for us!

Brett Okamoto
  (1:30 PM)

Fair enough. Appreciate it Phillip. Will try to give you guys a heads up via Twitter if I'm on the road and missing a chat.

Terry (Pittsburgh)

How is Chael doing with his training with all of his media obligations? Do you feel he is in top shape physically and mentally for the fight?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:32 PM)

The man does have a lot on his plate. He told me at a dinner meeting in Las Vegas next month he does have a book tour planned in the midst of his training camp. I don't know Terry, I'm leaning towards giving you the answer of, 'He's a pro. I wouldn't worry about it.' But the fact is, distractions can have an effect on combat athletes. Haven't heard much out of his camp lately but at the end of the day, I wouldn't worry too much about it.

Trevor (Minneapolis)

Yo Moto! Is Condit fighting anytime soon? I hate interim belts, but sort of get why they are there...but what's the point of having an interim belt if they then just wait around for the real champ???

Brett Okamoto
  (1:34 PM)

The point is ... so that the UFC could market UFC 143 as THE INTERIM TITLE OF THE WORLD!!!! That's it. It's a marketing thing. Allows you to have a title fight when you don't have a title fight. From the standpoint of dedicated fans, you nailed it. There is no point if they don't defend it. Even if they DO defend it ... what's the point, really? It's all about marketing.

Chris (Boston)

Cormier looked awesome against Barnett... How do you think he'd hold up against JDS and the other top heavies?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:37 PM)

Chris, I have been underestimating Cormier for a long time. I thought Bigfoot would beat him. And I thought Barnett would beat him. So, there is a good chance I might be overcompensating now and being too high on Cormier, but so be it. I think he can hold his own against anyone. Stylistically, JDS still seems like a nightmare, but Cormier is so confident, he's always improving and he's got a legitimate shot at getting the fight to the ground. So, I believe in him.

Matty-Ice (Detroit)

What's next for Jake? Fitch or Kos maybe?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:39 PM)

Yeah, probably. Obviously still high on Jake but he's got to prove he can win close fights against top competition. He always starts fast. He started fast against Condit way back when as well. Has to prove now he can win a close win. He kind of did against Diego but not really, because ask anyone and they'd likely say had that fight gone another round, Jake would have lost.

gil (indio ca)

when can we see gina in the octagon?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:40 PM)

When we see Fedor in the Octagon. (Never).

Matt (NYC)

Are you excited for the signing of Bibiano Fernandes? I really like him but htought he'd have stiffer competition for his first fight.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:42 PM)

For sure, Fernandes is a great pickup. For those who haven't seen him, been fighting overseas long time. Had some big fights, pretty well rounded guy with dangerous submissions. Not surprised who he's fighting. Not too many people know him, so no need to throw him into a really difficult fight. The grappling between he and Roland Delorme should be entertaining.

Billy (West Michigan)

We know who the winner of McCall vs Johnson will face, but what about the loser? Makes sense that whoever loses will probably still be just 1-2 away from a title shot, who does the loser fight next?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:44 PM)

Good question. This is actually why in a weird way, it's good that fight ended in a draw and we had to wait for a title fight because the division is still being built. The obvious names that come to mind are Louis Gaudinot and John Dodson. I'd like to see more 125 fights being placed more prominently on the card so we get to know these guys and remember them.

Jr (Arizona)

You called it on Edson Barboza. Were you surprised he lost to Jamie Varner?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:46 PM)

No. I'm not going to lie and say I thought he was going to lose that fight. But I was 100 percent convinced Barboza was heading towards a loss in a fight everyone expected him to win. He's flashy, fun to watch, athletic, but he's got holes. Don't get me wrong, great fighter, but everyone was sooooo high on this guy. He'll bounce back but I think expectations have been righted a bit after that fight.

Chuck (IL)

Brett - Nice job on the interviews the past 2 weeks... How much height does Ellenberger cut getting ready for his matches?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:48 PM)

Thanks Chuck, and as far as Ellenberger, he's naturally at 6-foot I think he likes to resize himself to 5-foot-5 or so come fight time ... oh, you meant weight didn't you. Honestly, don't know off the top of my head what Jake cuts. I believe it's a decent amount for the division. That might play into his gas tank, not sure.

Ed (Work)

Ever think about having a guest on Red Ink?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:49 PM)

I guess behind the scenes that thing is a monster to encode so logistically it might be difficult. I'll challenge you on Twitter though, Ed! Send me your picks next card and I'll RT them with mine.

Ultimate Warrior (Parts Unknown)

Diaz was a boxer, Rory is a grappler. Don't see the comparison other than the fact that Diaz and Rory are bigger than BJ. I like the fact that he took the invite.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:50 PM)

What do you mean? I was saying Rory will throw BJ around like Rory threw around Nate Diaz. I wasn't comparing it to BJ fighting Nick.

Mike (MD)

Notwithstanding the deep breaths he was taking in the center of the ring, as soon as I saw Ellenberger stretch his arms, I knew the tide was turning in Kampmann's favor because Ellenberger wouldn't be able to put anything behind his punches anymore.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:51 PM)

After the first round I thought to myself Jake had this look in his eye like, I can't believe that dude is still around. And he was shaking his arms like you mentioned and the way he leaned on the cage, I've seen that stuff before and it's all bad signs. But then he came out and rocked Martin again in the second so ... I don't know. Maybe it's not a problem with Ellenberger maybe Martin should be getting all the credit here and he just outplayed him.

nate (south carolina)

so they have booked the penn-macdonald fight???

Brett Okamoto
  (1:52 PM)

Nothing official yet. BJ just said on his website, "I accept your challenge." Gotta believe the UFC won't have ANYTHING against BJ coming back and taking on a young Canadian prospect in Canada though.

David (Spartanburg)

Will Johnson / McCall outdo the first one.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:53 PM)

I'm guessing probably not. But it will be good. Evenly matched, action-type flyweights. Sounds like a good fight.

Tommy (Denver)

With Jones being a guy that always says he is so mentally prepared for fights, do you think his DUI will effect his preparation for the Hendo fight?

Brett Okamoto
  (1:56 PM)

Here's the thing, does anyone here think this was the first time Jones ever did something like this? Or was this the first time he got caught and it became public? He's young, rich and famous. He's probably going out here and there. So, he's become arguably the best fighter in the world with this stuff going on occasionally. Now, his image has taken a hit. He's going to lay off this type of behavior I would think for awhile. I expect him to be every bit if not better against Dan Henderson. He's got a reputation to restore. He was probably winning this fight against DH regardless but right now, man I expect him to be motivated.

Kenneth (Marietta, GA)

To everyone asking about Brock, it's a work with WWE; the run angles all the time to keep people guessing and get interest.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:57 PM)

That is what this looks like to me. And UFC plays along. Why not? All of a sudden there are stories out there, Is Brock coming back? It's good publicity for them too. Win, win.

hector (chicago)

update on the beast that is cain velasquez hand???

Brett Okamoto
  (1:57 PM)

Haven't heard anything official yet.

David (Spartanburg)

I think Penn honestly appreciated and respected Rory McDonalds request to fight him before he is gone from the sport. Call me crazy, but I think BJ is just that type of guy.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:58 PM)

Maybe.

Tom (Philadelphia)

Who do you have winning the McCall/Johnson match? I'm hoping for Johnson, wanted to see him and Benevedez square off for a while.

Brett Okamoto
  (1:58 PM)

I'm with you, I think Johnson/Benavidez would be a great fight. I know they both think it would be a great fight, too. They've talked back and forth about it. I'm leaning Johnson but it's a real close fight between he and McCall.

Guy (Aurora, Il)

Kind of been a while since it happened, but is there any chance that Dan Hardy gets back into the top ten before the end of his career? Gotta like that left hook he planted in his last fight.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:00 PM)

Yeah, why not? It's not just smoke and mirrors, these stories you guys see on the work he's doing in Las Vegas. He's got a dedicated wrestling coach, boxing coach, jiu-jitsu coach. He's going to classes two, three times a day. It's much more professional training than he's ever done. He's an athlete and he's got a great chin. There is plenty of raw talent to work with. He still needs the right matchups to shine right now, but he's improving so maybe that won't be the case forever.

Jerry (Texas)

Whos next for Dos Santos, a rematch with Velasquez?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:00 PM)

That's what it looks like, depending on Velasquez's health right now.

Trevor (Minneapolis)

Diaz gets suspended a year for smoking some weed, Reem for 9 months for running away & ducking multiple roid tests and then finally (inevitably?) failing. You're the commission, explain this one to me....

Brett Okamoto
  (2:02 PM)

Eh. I don't know man. I can't explain it. The only thing I can say is there are precedents that have been set, so you kind of like to follow the same punishments you've given in the past. Also, Diaz's attitude was the same in the commission meeting as it is in the cage and in interviews. I'm not knocking him for it, but I think it hurt him. He was basically like, yeah I smoke weed. Let's get this over with. Reem played the game. Is what it is, I'm not high on the NSAC either right now.

Dave Y (Chicago)

What did you think about UFC 146??

Brett Okamoto
  (2:03 PM)

Gotta be more specific Dave, what part? In general ... I thought JDS was awesome and Cain was equally as awesome. Can't wait for the rematch. I also thought an all heavyweight card was a good look, but only once in awhile.

Alex (Sweden)

Is Bellator becoming an outlaw league? They signed (and rolled out the red carpet for) King Mo during a steroid suspension, signed War Machine despite him still going on regular slur filled antisocial tirades (and being in violation of his parole), and have now signed Brett Rogers after viciously beating his wife. It would be one thing if Rogers was a top fighter but his last win was a split decision against sub-.500 journeyman Warpath in 2010. Seems like a PR disaster waiting to happen for Viacom.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:05 PM)

Clearly, not an image Bellator is going for. Maybe they're banking on its audience not knowing or not caring about what's happened in the past with these guys. At the end of the day they're a business just like the UFC, and this sport is driven by the names of the fighters ... sometimes more than action itself.

Marc T (the PHX)

I know its old news but since you've been out....what was Mir's gameplan? Make one pathetic take down attempt and then hit JDS fists with his head? I like Mir but he looked awful

Brett Okamoto
  (2:06 PM)

Basically, take the fight to JDS. Get inside. Feint, get him to react, move forward, clinch, takedown if you can. What I think happened? Mir got high on the one single leg, couldn't get it down, JDS did the Mutombo finger wave and Mir's confidence in his ability to get it to the ground was shot. He was surprised by JDS's speed and he didn't quit, but he kind of froze and JDS picked him apart.

Guy (Aurora, Il)

Who would win in a fight, GSP or Shaquille O'Neil?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:07 PM)

GSP, 50-45.

Frank (Chi)

When is TUF going to have a heavyweight class again? ... that was by far the most entertaining season and has made all the seasons after it pretty boring.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:08 PM)

The ratings on that season were good. They had Kimbo, Rashad and Rampage of course, but I would think the heavies will be back soon. Right now, you are showing the sport to a new audience on FX though, so you maybe don't want to put out an overweight group that gasses in the first round. It would depend on how much confidence they have in finding talent.

John (CA)

I see that PacMan is chatting at 2:00. Are you turning over your computer to him?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:09 PM)

Yes, he's right next to me :)

John (Denver)

Any word on who else may be added to the Denver card (150)? Need somthing to look forward to because the Rox S-T-I-N-K.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:10 PM)

Nothing to report at the moment. They didn't win you back with this recent 9-of-14 stretch?

Jeff (Columbus, OH)

I"ll tell you when more A+ athletes will start opting for MMA - when the financial risk/reward approaches that of playing in the NBA, MLB, or NFL. Not too many guys in UFC making 8 figures annually, last I checked. Lots of them in the major team sports.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:10 PM)

Just a good comment there.

Steve (Jersey)

Brett, do you think when Ellenberger stretched his arms in Round 2 it told Kampmann that Ellenberger was done? I think it gave Kampmann confidence to know that Ellenberger wouldn't be able to put any power in his punches.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:11 PM)

I wouldn't read too much into that one single motion by Ellenberger. I think there was evidence there though that gave Kampmann confidence, like I mentioned earlier. You can read it in some guys eyes when they're kind of fading.

@PappaFeez (Dallas)

How do you see Rockhold vs Kennedy playing out? And who would you like to see them face if/when the get to the UFC

Brett Okamoto
  (2:14 PM)

I like Rockhold, I think he's one of the best pure athletes in the division. I think Kennedy will have a real hard time getting into the positions he wants. My guess is Rockhold keeps it primarily on the feet and scores points on the outside. Lot of fights I'd like to see Rockhold in. Brian Stann, Alan Belcher, Chris Leben and Chris Weidman all come to mind.

Jonathan (mass)

Does Franklin taking the Silva fight prolong Le's career and shorten Silva's?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:15 PM)

I think if anything it probably prolongs both, right?

Duff (Minny)

With the thin HWT div., do you think Carwin could get a shot at a title with 2 wins?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:15 PM)

Yes. Especially since that guy records so many early knockouts.

Matt (NYC)

Is do Bronx a title contender at 145?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:16 PM)

Was surprised Charles Oliveira handled Jonathan Brookins so easily. Brookins isn't the best athlete but he's smart, durable, can grind. Oliveira ran through him. I wouldn't rank him up there in the elite quite yet but I'll definitely keep an eye on him after watching that last performance.

shawn (Baltimore)

Hey brett where does Urijah Faber go if Renan Barao beats him at 148

Brett Okamoto
  (2:18 PM)

That would be a tough pill for Urijah. I don't think that happens, I like Urijah in the fight, but if it did, he'd keep chugging along at 135 knowing that the promotion at one point backed him in the first live format of TUF alongside the champion, Dominick Cruz. So, there's still all that promotional work behind a fight between the two, it could still happen if he lost.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:18 PM)

Not immediately, though. Obviously.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:18 PM)

By the way, Spurs +5 tonight? Or does OKC slam the door?

Jonathan (mass)

I saw people complaining about Varner holding the fence against Barboza. Please let them know it didn't impact the fight and not really what that rule is intended to do.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:19 PM)

I didn't notice it.

DFA (Edmonton)

Rich Franklin seems like a great guy but he's a long way from his glory days and being a legit PPV draw. At what point do we stop labelling him as a great "company guy" and recognize that he is now just like many other mid-tier fighters who will happily do what the UFC asks of them in order to keep the bosses happy and the paychecks coming in?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:21 PM)

I think at this point it's just fun to call him the "company guy." It has seemed to work out that his number has been called when the promotion is in a jam and his name is still just slightly big enough to be on PPV if a main event falls through. I see what you're saying though. Anybody who got that call, hey we need you to headline a PPV against a fairly chinless Wanderlei Silva probably would have been like, "Sigh...Okaaaay."

John (NYC)

In YOUR opinion, did Jones cost himself a Nike type sponsorship deal with his DUI and the fact that he was with two women who were not his wife? Especially considering he cited not getting a DUI as a reason why he sought such high level sponsorship.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:23 PM)

I don't know exactly how close Jones was to a Nike deal. He might have cost it for himself in the very near future, but I'm thinking if he blasts Henderson then moves up and claims the heavyweight belt in a huge fight against JDS ... OR ... beats Anderson Silva in a megafight in 2013, Nike won't look back on this DUI as a deal breaker.

Duff (Minny)

Is Bones Jones going to move up within the next 2 years? After Hendo and maybe Gustaffson, there isn't much left.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:23 PM)

Yes. Not sure what happens if he takes a loss but if he keeps winning, I think we'll see him at heavyweight by the end of next year.

Andy (Chicago)

any chance i can get the original line i bet on for McCall? kidding but i will take him again at +125. What do you think of the Spaniard this week? he has been pretty good as of late.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:25 PM)

Hard to get real excited about Spaniard, even if you are betting on him. He's facing a heavy handed Erick Silva and I can't get this picture out of my head in which Charlie looked downright terrified of Anthony Johnson's standup in their matchup. I'd hold off.

Sgt. Slaughter (AWA)

How excited are you for the UFC 147zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Almost made it through that question before nodding off. $60 for that card??? A joke.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:25 PM)

It doesn't scream summer blockbuster, no.

tdiddy (winnipeg) [via mobile]

It's most definitely time for a 'comeback' season of TUF. Make it for 185's and have the winner get a title shot. Was great last time and Lutter actually had Silva in a touch of trouble untill he ran out of gas. They also need to move it off Friday. Just brutal on that night. I'm usually out and just forget to PVR it. After I missed 2-3 episodes I just did'nt care.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:26 PM)

Yes, Friday was a bad look. I know the UFC would definitely be interested in moving it off that date.

Matty-Ice (Detroit)

Did you have any problem with the stoppage? I thought Jake COULD have recoved but probably wasn't going to.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:27 PM)

At the moment Mazzagatti stepped in it was like, wow, that was fast. But then I watched Jake after the cameras went to Kampmann and he wasn't moving too well. I think he was done. Good stoppage.

Paul B (NY, NY)

Hey Brett- kindly help me settle an argument with a coleague. He is 38 yrs old 6'3 220 lbs and is an athletic guy (played LAX in college). He says he could make it a full round against a UFC bantamwight or flywight without getting KOd or Sub'd. I say he is out of his freakin' mind. Your thoughts?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:28 PM)

He is way out of his mind. What would his strategy be? Just cover up? You can't just cover up. Best strategy in terms of simply making it five minutes ... I would guess to be literally to run around. He's probably getting subbed though and I'm guessing it happens in less than 3 minutes.

Trevor (Minneapolis)

Do fighters get thrown a bit off their game, even for a second, when covered in other people's blood? Ish. That might make me tap right there. Clearly I won't be fighting for a title anytime soon....

Brett Okamoto
  (2:29 PM)

I've never seen a fighter with a reaction anywhere close to, "Ew, blood? Nasty." That Cain/Bigfoot fight was some graphic stuff though. Bleh.

tdiddy (winnipeg) [via mobile]

This is a stupid question but I'm curious...Do any UfC fighters smoke cigarettes?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:30 PM)

I would guess absolutely some do.

Jeff (Clearwater)

Sometimes fighters look bad because the other fighter is much better. I am sure Mir tried to follow his game plan, but JDS just shut him down.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:30 PM)

Yeah, I don't think Mir mailed it in by any means against JDS.

Ken (ca.)

Do you believe "BIG COUNTRY" when he tells all of us he can do better against JDS the second time?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:31 PM)

No.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Is Mir's window closed? Looks like there are too many high-level HWs in front of him...

Brett Okamoto
  (2:33 PM)

To win a title? Most likely. To get back there he'd have to beat one or a combination of JDS, Cain, Overeem and you can even throw in Travie Browne, Stipe Miocic, Shane Del Rosario ... It's still not a loaded division, but it's tough to see Mir putting together another 3-4 wins and taking off one of the top 3 guys to get back to the title.

Scott (Salt Lake City)

Should the UFC make Big Country against Hunt next?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:33 PM)

Great idea. I think that fight actually makes a lot of sense.

tdiddy (winnipeg) [via mobile]

Wats next for Funky Ben Askren? He did'nt look so hot his last two fights. Reminded me of Kos when he came into MMA. All wrestling, zero hands. Agree?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:34 PM)

Agree. Everyone can have an off night ... but Askren did not impress in that last one. I don't even have him in my top 10 welterweights right now. I don't think he's a BAD fighter, but he's got a lot of evolving to do still.

David (Spartanburg)

When is Rockhold vs. Kennedy?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:34 PM)

July 14 in Portland.

Dell (OKC)

I'm not sure MMA/UFC will ever reach a point where they can outbid the 3 major sports for talent. Heavyweight boxing has been around forever and the Klitschko, despite filling stadiums in Germany, still make less than your average run-of-the-mill NBA Center.

Brett Okamoto
  (2:37 PM)

Yeah, that's hard to argue. You don't need the absolute .00000001 best percent. If the heavyweight division could persuade 7-10 heavily recruited football players to go into MMA, that would be a start.

Scott (Salt Lake City)

What do you think about the UFC's deal with EA sports now for the new game?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:37 PM)

I don't think you can replicate MMA in a video game. No matter how good you are. It just doesn't work.

Ken (ca.)

How does Bradley handle rapid fire shots from all angles while struggling to find a target?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:38 PM)

Use his own angles. Don't stand in front of him. Counter him effectively like Marquez did then move and pressure like Marquez didn't.

Austin (Cheeseburger West Side)

Is the UFC grooming Anik and Florian to take over for Goldberg and Rogan?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:38 PM)

Not to my knowledge, no.

David (Spartanburg)

I heard that the Anderson vs. Sonnen Primetime series is going to be on Fox. Is that true and if so what kind of impact is that going to have on the buys?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:40 PM)

I'm thinking that's probably true and it should have a major impact on buys. I'm thinking the rematch can pull 1.5 million ... but then again I'm usually not awesome when it comes to predicting those things.

Dan (New York)

What's up Brett. What do you think of Frankie's rematch with Bendo, justifiable? How do you see that playing out?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:41 PM)

It is justifiable. If Frankie won't move to 145, which I hoped he would, then he does deserve the rematch at 155. Honestly though, I don't see it playing out that much different. Frankie will have his moments but when Ben lands it will do more damage. If Frankie ever is in trouble he can get it to the ground but he can't keep it there so he has trouble slowing the fight down in bad spots. I think Henderson will win a decision.

Peter (Paris)

Rumors that Lombard pulled of the fight against Stann. Any truth to this?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:42 PM)

Where you hearing this? First I've heard of it ...

Andy (Chicago)

You going 3 hours since you missed the last 2 weeks?

Brett Okamoto
  (2:45 PM)

Actually gonna wrap it up right now but solid 100 minute-chat today. Hope that put me back in your good graces. Come see me at the live chat during Pacquiao/Bradley on Saturday and enjoy the flyweights this week. And as always, hit me on Twitter @bokamotoESPN and congratulate me on the Rockies winning their third straight series tonight ...