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June 8, 4:00 PM ET
Chat with Chuck Mindenhall

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:00 PM)

Got some Friday night fights happening in Fort Lauderdale, big resolution to the smallest weight division -- Ian McCall vs. Mighty Mouse. If it's anything like the first time through, it'll be the fight game's version of "Flight of the Bumble Bee." Looking forward to the stalwart battle between Josh Neer and Mike Pyle, too. Let's get this puppy rolling. What's on your minds?

Nick (Ohio)

Chuck, I usually make the right call for the main event with your help, and I'm stuck again on this one. Does McCall have the power to grab a ko/tko or will this be a decision? (I'm taking uncle creepy regardless.)

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:01 PM)

I think McCall does have some power, Nick, but I foresee this thing going the distance. I do like McCall to use his wrestling and grappling to advantage and make it a convincing 30-27 decision.

Marc (Chicago, IL)

I am a big fan of the UFC, but I think Strikeforce delivers a better product right now.... With a limited number of shows and a women's division, they are able to present name-brand fighters every time...

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:02 PM)

Yeah, the Strikeforce cards have delivered of late. I remember a time when Strikeforce was a "parlay" card. You could predict all five fights pretty easily, because they were lopsided match-ups. Lately they've had some great competitive fights. UFC has had some good ones, too. UFC 146 I thought was great.

Fadi(Tustin) [via mobile]

Hey Chuck would Cain Velasquez fight Daniel Cormier?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:03 PM)

I know if they had their druthers they wouldn't, but if there's a healthy six figures (or more) on the line and they are the inevitable match-up, I think they'd suck it up and do it.

Kris (Los Angeles)

Why didn't they put Anthony Pettis against Nate Diaz on the FOX card instead of Vera and Shogun?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:04 PM)

That crossed my mind, too. I had a hunch they might try and do that fight or perhaps have Carlos Condit defend his idle interim belt. Instead, they brushed off Vera. It might not be the sexiest match-up in terms of where these guys are in the title pecking order, but it should be a good fight.

Jason (Corona)

Did the Celtics just blow their chances to be annihilated by the Thunder in the NBA Finals?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:06 PM)

I think they still have a chance to get ripped by the Thunder in the Finals. If anybody could go into Miami and win a Game 7, it's a wily bunch of coldbloods like the C's.

Jr (Arizona)

Condit calling for Kampmann if GSP isn't ready. What about Hendricks?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:07 PM)

And Hendricks is calling out Condit, too. If GSP isn't ready by November, one of those two guys should be dealt Condit. If it looks like that fight is happening, it should be Hendricks/Kampmann. The welterweight picture always looks like the ones in "The Ring."

Doc (AZ)

Let's just assume Vera beats Rua in August. Where does that stack him in the 205-pound title picture?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:08 PM)

He's way down right now, having only one once in the last couple of years. I think it would be a big step towards relevancy, but he'd have a long way to go before he'd be looked at as a legit contender. A long way.

Tony (New York)

What's going on with Matt Serra? Is he retired?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:09 PM)

He's not retired, but he's inclined to take his time in coming back. In fact, last night on MMA Uncensored he said he just wants to fight one time in his home state of New York. In other words, he could still be fighting as of 2023.

@PappaFeez (Dallas)

Brandon Vera? In the Main Event? Ummm...what?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:09 PM)

A lot of people are having this reaction. I admit...surprising.

Kenneth (Marietta, GA)

Marc, no offense, but you're crazy

Aaron (fl)

Last night Franklin said on MMA live that he would not be surprised if GSP next fight was at 185. How about you Chuck?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:11 PM)

I would be surprised. I know that he has considered the weight class, but given that there are so many challenges for him at 170, I think he'll stick around. Once it's down to him and Rory MacDonald as the No. 1 and No. 2? Then he might flee. Or Rory will.

Jr (Arizona)

If GSP isn't ready by Nov. who shoud fight Condit, Hendricks or Kampmann?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:12 PM)

I think it should be Hendricks. He beat Fitch and Koscheck, and Mike Pierce before that. Four in a row. Kampmann beat Ellenberger and Alves, which is still good. I just think the nudge goes to Hendricks.

Kenneth (Marietta, GA)

Chuck, I think Pettis is still nursing that shoulder (for why he and Diaz weren't put on the card)

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:13 PM)

Yeah, I've heard he's not quite ready to come back. I am sure that played a hand in things. Diaz also said he wanted to wait out Edgar/Bendo II.

Scott (Salt Lake City)

Who do you have in tonight's fights?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:14 PM)

Going McCall in the main event. As for the other fights, taking Erick Silva, Mike Pyle, Eddie Wineland and Mike Pierce.

Scott (Salt Lake City)

How about uncle creepy weighing 150 last night? That is a pretty big jump.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:15 PM)

That's incredible. It borders on a Thiago Alves type of gain. Dude must have been thirsty.

Jenn (Columbus)

What's up with the rash of UFC injuries? At this point it almost feels wrong when fights go down as they're supposed to

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:16 PM)

Right about that Jenn. Guys are dropping out right and left. Was bummed about Brian Stann having to drop out of the Lombard fight.

CT (NY)

Whats next for the Cowboy?, I still think he will be champion eventually....

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:17 PM)

If he has his way, Cowboy would fight Nate Diaz again. It's wait and see, but at 155 pounds there are a lot of options for Cerrone. My guess is he gets his wish of fighting on the UFC 150 card in Denver.

Scott (Salt Lake City)

Who do you have in the TB V Pac Man fight tomorrow?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:17 PM)

I am tempted to go the other way, but sticking with Pac.

@PappaFeez (Dallas)

How about Ronda Rousey being listed at nearly a 5-1 favorite over Sarah Kaufman

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:18 PM)

That sounds about right. Kaufman is going to have a hard time keeping that thing on the feet. I know she wants to strafe Rousey with punches and get into a brawl, but Rousey is so good at throwing people and then snatching limbs. Can't see Kaufman thwarting her.

Dennis (MI)

Could the UFC or Strikeforce feature a one month long tournament with 16 fighters where its no weight limit and no holds barred, winner takes a million cash? I'd pay 200 for the whole event.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:20 PM)

You were the original demographic then, back in 1993. I think the days of seeing 500-pound guys taking on skinny Giacometti types in Gi are over (at least in the UFC).

Jay (Newport News, VA)

How disappointing is it that we just lost another chance to celebrate a Triple Crown winner, since I'll Have Another said "No thanks, I've had enough" and bowed out of the Belmont? Add another year to the dry spell.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:21 PM)

This truly broke my heart, Jay. (Bet I'll Have Another's bar tab is extraordinary).

Ken (ca.)

But don't you like the Lombard vs Boetsch fight?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:22 PM)

I like Lombard, but it's hard to discount Boetsch at this point. Dude has proven his worth in the weight class, and his comeback win over Okami is still right up there for Comeback of the Year. I just don't think Lombard will leave him enough wits to come back this time.

Aaron (fl)

Which is the worst idea, Abe Lincoln as a vampire hunter or BJ Penn vs Rory MacDonald?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:23 PM)

These are parallelsies for bad ideas. Rory MacDonald is the one guy nobody wants any part of, and that's who Penn decides to come back for? The rivalry with the Tri Star gym runs deep.

Ronnek (The Big Apple)

What do you think of Machida and Shogun coaching?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:24 PM)

Two very soft-spoken guys, but the trilogy fight at the end would be something. A lot of people seem to want to see a third fight between the two. Though, there are plenty who'd contend that Shogun is 2-0 in the rivalry.

Nathan (Fort FRances)

Hey chuck, you are probaly the second coolest person with the name chuck, next to chuck palahniuk of course,and I think nate diaz will shock the world and submit henderson with a two fingered triangle choke.(I think hendo beats edgar again)

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:26 PM)

I'll take that, Nathan. Love Palahniuk. As for Diaz beating Bendo, hey, you never know. That volume slapjab is menacing stuff, and on the ground Diaz is more than capable of pulling something off.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:27 PM)

I also coined the term "Stalkton" for the Diaz brothers...yes I did. Or at least I think I did.

John (Denver)

If Cowboy gets on the 150 card, who do you think he fights? Also, Jim Tracy as your manager and Bob Apodaca as a pitching coach are a much worse idea than Honest Abe busting up Vampires.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:30 PM)

Yeah, Bob Apodaca is lucky there is blind patience at the top. Not sure on Cowboy. Most of the top ten guys are either fighting already or won't be ready in time. My initial thought was perhaps the winner of Guida/Maynard, but that would be a quick turnaround from June 22 to August 11.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:30 PM)

...also not sure if Cowboy and Guida still have a "no fight" pact for a non-championship tilt.

SlayKatz (LA)

What's the thinking behind the Shogun/Vera main event? I understand injuries derailed the main event, but given it's a FOX card, I expected they would showcase a better alternative than what they landed on.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:32 PM)

I don't really know the whole thinking behind it, but my guess is it was two parts desperation and one part optimism that the fight would play out memorably.

Ken (ca.)

The Cowboy vs Nate rematch would work for the 150 card...

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:33 PM)

So long as Nate is down for it. That would mesh up the 155-pound schedules, too, with Bendo/Edgar happening in the main.

CT (NY)

Do you see Rory M moving up or GSP moving down to avoid fighting each other?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:34 PM)

I think it would be Rory, if he ascends up in the next year to that situation. Although, GSP has flirted with the idea of moving up. Then again, even though they say they're off limits to each other right now, it'll be interesting to see if they really are when/if the time comes.

Ron (Chicago)

Who are you taking tonight between Creepy and Mouse?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:35 PM)

Going Uncle Creepy. Just think he'll take his cues from the third round of the last fight and make it more definitive over three rounds.

johnnyboy (los ángeles, ca)

Has anyone from the Blackazillians actually won a match? Rashad, Melvin G, Overeem, Anthony Johnson?????

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:36 PM)

Overeem beat Lesnar. They've had some problems recently, but a couple of their guys are winning. Evans beat Tito Ortiz and Phil Davis while training with the Blackzilians. Michael Johnson has won. There've been some moments.

Rusty D (Denver, CO)

Do you think this nasty string of injuries has anything to do with fighters having health insurance now? Guys who may have fought through injuries before are now dropping out because they can actually pay to get them fixed?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:38 PM)

I do think the health insurance thing plays a hand in this. Guys certainly will opt to heal on the company dime rather than go out and exacerbate an injury. There's also a prevailing sentiment these days to fight as close to 100% as possible as this sport becomes more of a "sport." Pro athletes make better decisions, and the brawler mentality goes away.

Jeff (Salt Lake City)

Do you have anything to add about the "rumor" that Anderson Silva might be hurt and could be forced out of his fight with Sonnen?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:39 PM)

I've heard that the fight's still happening. If he had to back out, how disappointing would UFC 146 become? Cruz/Faber III already compromised, and Boetch/Bisping taken off. Le/Franklin no longer happening. The whole card would have changed.

Carter (Chicago - Berwyn)

So how badly does BJ get beat down by Rory...if BJ doesn't win in first 3 minutes w/lucky strike (he can still box) its going to be ugly (think Diaz fight....face looking like Rocky)

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:41 PM)

I tend to agree. Rory MacDonald is the one guy at 170 pounds who, to me, looks like a threat to beat GSP. And that's the guy that Penn takes as his return bout? Maybe Penn sees something we don't, but that kid doesn't seem to have many weaknesses.

Trent (Muncie)

If it was a tournament between Darth Maul, Riddick from Pitch Black, Roy Batty from Blade Runner and one MMA fighter.... which fighter would round out that group and who would win in the end? No lightsabers allowed.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:42 PM)

I'd go with Dennis Hallman, but not as Hallman...as Robin Phoenix.

Jr (Arizona)

If Sonnen beats Silva do you think we'll see a 3rd fight?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:43 PM)

Heaven forfend. The truth is, yes. That's a good possibility if Sonnen beats Silva at UFC 148.

Dan Hardy's Mohawk (Barber Shop Floor, Las Vegas)

The answer ought to be Nick Diaz for the trask talk alone. "You're from a galaxy far, far away Darth Maul? STOCKTON [profanity], 209 [Profanity]"

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:43 PM)

This is true. Well said, DHM.

Rich (jersey)

Chucky! Was watching MMA Uncensored last night and they had a great piece on MMA getting legalized in NY. Who would be your dream matchup to have headling the garden in the first ufc fight in NY?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:44 PM)

Frankie Edgar against Jose Aldo. That would be a great fight, and would showcase the sport and all that goes into it.

Phil (Indy)

Did you see Like Water, the documentary about Anderson Silva? I thought it was amazing. Great insight into the Spider.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:46 PM)

I did see the documentary, and it's very good. Shows a side of Silva you don't see. And for those who haven't seen it, it basically follows Silva around after his fiasco fight with Maia in Abu Dhabi, all the criticism he endured, as well as the heat coming down from Chael Sonnen ahead of their UFC 117 fight. Really good stuff.

Ken (ca.)

JDS vs Jon Jones would be a good one for the garden!!!

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:47 PM)

I wouldn't complain about that, either. Although, they might be able to take that fight to a huge venue like the Dallas Cowboys Stadium...

josh (TN)

IF MACHIDA BEATS BADER WHO IS NEXT FOR HIM

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:47 PM)

Maybe Gustafsson? Gusty won't be back until the fall with his injury, so the schedules might make sense.

Dolph (NYC)

Rousey and Kaufman set for August. How big will Rousey be if she wins that one via arm bar AGAIN?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:48 PM)

I think she'll be about as big as she was heading into her fight with Tate. She's a big star. I think Zuffa will get behind that fight and blow it up big.

Carter (Chicago - Berwyn)

Totally dig you Chuck, but I think you slide to #3 on the coolest Chuck list behind "The Ice Man" Chuck Liddell and Charlie (Chuck - per Peppermint Patty) Brown...that zig-zag shirt is wicked!

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:49 PM)

So long as I'm ahead of Chuck Norris and Chuck Woolery, I'm cool.

Steve (Colbert)

If Hendo beats Bones, would Bones get an immediate rematch? If not, who would be next in line for?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:50 PM)

Wow, a speculative question on a Hendo victory over Jones. Didn't think imagination could be stretched that far. If Henderson won a very close decision, they might play it back immediately. If it was a KO, then maybe you'd see somebody like Rashad Evans or Alex Gustafsson get Hendo.

Greg (Michigan)

Totally excited for Maynard/Guida... coming up soon! Please say there hasn't been an injury there?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:51 PM)

Knock on wood. I just don't think Joe Silva's ticker can take too many more scratches. I'm with you on this, too...I love Maynard/Guida. Should be a fun scrap.

Chuck (IL)

Chuck - did yous see on MMA Uncensored last night where the bald guy said to BJ that Rory MacDonald called him old and past his prime. what a Pr...... sorry for being late...

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:52 PM)

Yeah, I saw that Carton was having some fun stirring the pot.

Jeff (Salt Lake City)

How many fights did Dan Hardy buy himself with the victory over Ludwig? Is this really a new Hardy or was that just the perfect hand selected opponent for him to get a W?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:53 PM)

I think Hardy showed some poise in there, and was shooting for takedowns (!), but that was a tailor-made opponent for Hardy. Once he beats a good wrestler or a hellbent grinder, then we'll talk about evolution.

Ken (ca.)

BJ is old and past his PRIME, but he still puts butts in the seats....

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:53 PM)

He does. And he can still fight.

Aaron (fl)

Nate should not have to fight Cowboy twice. That would be like LSU having to play Bama for the national championship....... Oh wait that happened. Nevermind.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:54 PM)

Ha!

Matt (NYC)

What up Chuck?!?!?!? You daffy SOB. Who do you like on tonight's undercard?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:55 PM)

Matt, I like Lance Benoist. I think he'll make a showcase statement against Seth Baczynski. I also think Matt Grice gets it done against Garcia.

Adam (NYC)

Hey Chuck - Big fan! Injuries are really killing the UFC right now. maybe they should consider putting the cards together maybe only 3-5 events in advance so they have better options when big names go down due to injury. They still have time to promote and sell tix but give better quality fights to the fans. Bisping, Silva, Alves, Belfort...it's getting bad.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:57 PM)

It has been getting bad of late. Seems like every card is fairly drastically altered from the original forms. Not sure what the solution is, honestly. Can't tell guys to train less hard. Just one of those things that the UFC will have to deal with.

Sam (Orlando)

Will Chris Leben come back?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:58 PM)

Actually, I visited Ed Herman in Colorado a couple of days ago, and he's in constant contact with Leben. He said Leben is coming out to help him train for Jake Shields, and that Leben has turned things around and will return soon.

Marc (Chicago, IL)

Bigger disadvantage- American fighting a Brazilian in Brazil or a Japanese fighter fighting an American in the US?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (4:59 PM)

Good question, Marc. I was at UFC 134 and the advantage for the Brazilians was pretty intense. That was a passionate crowd, man. But for whatever reason, Japanese fighters don't do well in America. The Aoki rematch with Eddie Alvarez was another example of this. Okami is perhaps the lone (sustained) exception to the rule.

Austin (Seattle)

Im a big machida fan and was happy he has an upcoming match against bader? How do you think this fight goes down? Im thinking a good old machida style accurate flurry to end it round 2

Chuck Mindenhall
  (5:02 PM)

I could foresee that. I know that Machida was giving Jon Jones everything he wanted for the first round at UFC 140, and I'd expect him to be able to keep things standing against Bader and land those backward-leaning strikes like he did with Thiago Silva back in the day. Bader's no slouch, though. He silently goes about beating guys. If he didn't lose to Ortiz, we'd be talking about him in such a different light.

Aaron (fl)

BJ Penn vs Rory MacDonald is a very bad idea for a last fight for BJ.

Chuck Mindenhall
  (5:02 PM)

Couldn't agree more.

Stephen (Brooklyn)

I liked your Brandon Vera article. How does he get such a big fight when he hasn't beat anybody in five years?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (5:04 PM)

He still has a name, even though realistically Vera hasn't beaten anybody of note since he beat Frank Mir in 2006. His wins since? Mike Patt, Reese Andy, K-Sos and Eliot Marshall. Three of those guys are no longer in the UFC, and K-Sos is teetering on retirement. To answer your question....good question.

Jr (Arizona)

Isn't Machida vs Bader a better main event for FOX than Shogun vs Vera?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (5:05 PM)

I think it is. But UFC might be leery of having a wrestler in the showcase, somebody like Bader who likes to sap guys' energy with a suffocation game on the ground.

hector (chicago)

update on cain's hand? beginning to think something is wrong???

Chuck Mindenhall
  (5:06 PM)

I haven't heard. I texted his manager and didn't get a response.

Dan Hardy's Mohawk (Barber Shop Floor, Las Vegas)

Perfect for for Nate: winner of Guida/Maynard. He has split decision losses to both. Make it 5 rounds and BHAM! #1 contender

Chuck Mindenhall
  (5:06 PM)

Could be what happens, particularly if Pettis is on the shelf and Diaz gets antsy waiting for Bendo/Edgar.

Ricky D (Atlanta)

Chucky baby, you talked about MacDonald being a possibility for BJ few weeks ago and I thought there was no way Penn would want any of that. Is he insane to take on the future of the division?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (5:08 PM)

I think he looks at it like this: Come in, beat the buzz guy that everybody is talking about, and in the process catapult right back to the top. It's a tough order, though. MacDonald is about as focused and undeterred as anybody in the grim trade.

Tyler (Mission Viejo)

People were talking about Lombard being in the title picture if he beat Stann. Is he still there if he beats Boetch?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (5:09 PM)

I would think it would still land him near the top of the chain, but not to the pinnacle. Lombard will have to beat Boetsch and then somebody else to get a shot at the title. I'm having a harder time imagining where Boetsch stands if HE beats Lombard. At some point the UFC'd have to be like: This guy's a true contender.

Marc (Chicago, IL)

Who is your favorite fighter to watch?

Chuck Mindenhall
  (5:11 PM)

Dan Henderson. Just like that he's not afraid to go in there and try to close the drapes. He puts his head down and flings that right hand. He controls the fight in the clinch, has ground and pound. Have loved watching him over the years, and look forward to his battle with Jones.

Nick (Ohio)

Also thanks again for the chat!

Chuck Mindenhall
  (5:13 PM)

Appreciate you guys stopping in. Time to get ready for the UFC from Sunrise. Have a good weekend everybody, and enjoy the fights. If I didn't get to your question, you can always hit me on Twitter at @ChuckMindenhall.