What's up guys? Good to be back in the saddle for the Friday Chat. The big UFC 148 card went down last week, and Silva done did it again. Now Sonnen contemplating a move to 205, which I wrote about today on ESPN.com. Like the idea? Also Weidman left Munoz in a bad state out there in San Jose, and Strikeforce hits Portland this weekend. What's on your minds? Let's get this thing rolling...
After Chris Weidman's impressive win on Wednesday, do you think he is ready for a title shot?
That was a pretty polite call out of Silva, wasn't it? "I think I could do well." Almost as polite as Munoz's call out when he beat Chris Leben. I do think he's ready (and equipped to give Silva fight), but I suspect the UFC will make him do one more fight beforehand. Still think Lombard gets the nod if he crushes Boetsch.
Do you think Josh Rosenthal should have stopped the fight earlier on Wednesday?
I do think the fight was late. Really late. And from Rosenthal's vantage point, it was puzzling. He was right there on top of the action.
Who would you like Demian Maia to fight next? I say have him fight Story, Ellenberger, or Koscheck.
Strange debut at welter, but he was having his way with the Stun Gun when the injury happened. I wouldn't mind seeing Maia against any of those guys, particularly Story. Good thing there is Story feels bad about his last performance, and Maia still wants to prove a rediscovery of jitz. Might make for fun fight.
Although I head Story is calling out Matt Brown currently...
Do you consider Anderson Silva the best pound for pound fighter in UFC history?
I do. I mean, when you look at 10 title defenses in a row, a couple of cameos at 205, and 15-0 lifetime in the UFC....that's insane. And a lot of people doubted him in this rematch with Silva. He responded. Not sure why so many people are sleeping on Silva's chances against Jones. He gives up some size...but he's Andy Silva.
Do you think that there should be a suspension for a terrible stoppage like Rosenthals
I am not sure. I do think the commissions should reinforce the idea of what hangs in the balance of a moment's bad judgement. What is that? An entire industry. One serious injury or death and everything that's been built for the last decade crumbles. Best to err on the side of caution.
What are your picks for this weekend? I got Marquardt, Rockhold, Larkin, and Gracie.
I like all of those...except I am leaning (very tower of Pisa like) towards Woodley. Just a lot of question marks on Marquardt, and stylistically....I just remember Marquardt having no answers for Sonnen.
Weidman has the strength, skills, and MENTAL toughness to take Silva down. Very impressive , and balanced guy and fighter.......
Given what you wrote (which is all very accurate), you think that would be music to Silva's ears? I am sure he'd rather fight somebody intent on standing with him, instead of somebody with that wrestling pedigree. Will be interesting to see how it shakes out.
Do you think Chris Cariaso can compete for a flyweight title soon?
Given that he's won three in a row and there's only realistically like a dozen flyweights, I think he'll be right there to challenge very soon. I like the move to flyweight. I am a fan.
Glad to see the Friday chat back, Chuck. If you were fighting, what would be your walkout music?
I get this question a lot. I think the obvious answer is Kenny Loggins "I'm Alright," when me in cowboy hat, galloping, and slapping at an imaginary pony.
weirdest thing about that stoppage, it looked like Munoz turned his right hand up as to say "what gives?" was tough to watch ...
It was tough. I think Rosenthal has acknowledged the late stoppage. He is a really good ref, and he's been at it a long time.
Indeed. How about that? Made me go back and read that David Foster Wallace article on him. Still brilliant.
Do you think TJ Dillashaw from TUF will make some noise at 135?
He's got the right cast around him in training everyday, and those guys at Alpha are pretty vocal about him. I could see him making some noise. You?
What chances are you giving Henderson to beat Jones? For me, I can see Hendo giving Jones some serious problems...
I am with you on that. I do see Henderson giving Jones a good fight. The chances? I would say 20%, but that H-bomb (if it lands) turns the dial to 80%. I think Henderson will try and wrestle him, and in close, Hendo knows what to do in the clinch.
Thoughts on Carwin/Nelson as the next tuf coaches?
I sort of stared real blankly at the email when it came through. And I haven't evolved from that initial nothing feeling. Guess it's a cool set up for those guys. Though Carwin would want to fight earlier than that, given his time away...but great exposure.
Chances that Munoz was just overrated? Weidman looked terrible against Maia.
There's always the chance that Munoz was being a little overrated. Beating Leben shouldn't have catapulted him as the next guy to take down Silva. I tend to think Weidman looked that good, rather than Munoz looked that bad.
Have you heard any PPV #'s from UFC 148?
Just whisperings, but did hear it fell well short of eclipsing UFC 100.
Does Rashad Evans seem like the next best option for Silva and what are the odds of that actually happening?
It's funny. With Evans talking of middleweight, there's yet one more name in the sombrero for Joe Silva to contemplate. So we have Weidman, Lombard if he beats Boetsch, Evans and (far off in our imaginations) a superfight with Jones. I'd still take Jones ahead of all of those if he beats Henderson. But Anderson will surely have his say in this.
Weidman v Bisping - With Bisping's excellent take down defense and more evolved striking, I think I actually favor Bisping. It would be the kind of fight that finally earned him a title shot too.
There are a lot of these guys hovering in the same area of contention. If Bisping and Stann doesn't go down, and nor Bisping versus Belcher, I could get behind that fight. Would be a legitimate No. 1 contender bout in my mind (especially if Silva is busy with Lombard or somebody else beforehand).
You think Silva retires as champion? I cannot see or imagine anybody else really giving him a challenge.
He just might retire as the champion. You'd have to think that Weidman would give him similar trouble that Sonnen did. Vitor? Nah. Lombard? Tailor-made for a pounding with that flatfooted stand-up. Boetch, Bisping...can't see them beating Silva. Evans? Intriguing...
How bad did Patrick Cote looked? Dude busted my parlays. Thought he'd look a lot better than he did.
I have to admit -- I expected more out of him. I predicted Le to win on our fight picks, but the more I thought about it, the more I was convinced I made a mistake. Le looked pretty good in that fight, but Cote just looked sluggish.
I kept hearing about this fighter's "summit" going on this past week. What do they talk about in those things? How not to spend your money?
I was just in Vegas while it was going on, and spoke to a couple of fighters. They talk about responsibility with social media, money, gambling, doing the right things, all kinds of stuff. For a lot of fighters, sitting still that long is more hellish than fighting for 25 minutes.
Who would you like to see Cung Le fight next? Call me crazy, but I'd really like to see them stick Franklin in there against Le the way it was supposed to go down. Am I alone here?
That fight has more intrigue now than it did before, doesn't it? Strange. I guess I could roll with that. Franklin might be looking higher though...somebody who might get him into contention. Somebody Bispingesque.
CHUCK! In the spirit of your amazing quote earlier this week, how soon does GSP and his camp need to part ways with Rory MacDonald if he thrashes BJ Penn?
It's a problem lurking out there, isn't it? This one is materializing faster than Jones/Evans. GSP isn't active right now, so it's not an issue. If GSP comes back and beats Condit, and MacDonald beats Penn, thus begins the soap opera.
How sorry must Dana and Joe feel about the matchup they put Mendes in?
I saw the line on that McKenzie fight at Mendes -600 and thought: "They respect McKenzie that much?" That pairing always looked like a huge mismatch, and played out exactly as it looked.
Alan Belcher should be fighting who next?
Man, your guess is as good as mine. He looked fantastic against Palhares, so it should be one of the top guys. There's Stann, Bisping, the winner of Lombard/Boetsch, Weidman, Evans (possibly moving up), Vitor. How about Vitor?
Is there anyone you see beating Benson for his belt. Don't say Gilbert either, way overrated. I see him matching up with everyone in the division and being the favorite. You gonna be at 150?
Not giving any love to Frankie Edgar's chances? (Frankie's got you right where he wants you, Tyler). But seriously, Edgar has a good chance. I also think Gray Maynard could give him trouble. I am in the small group of people who thinks that he destroys Pettis if they play that fight back (which they will at some point). Nate Diaz might make it fun.
And yes, I'll be at UFC 150 in the 303.
From your personal experience, do you think there's a correlation between tattooes and MMA wins? Note:correlation does not mean causation
Interesting question. Not sure...haven't thought of it. I know some guys (like A. Sakara) haven't done all that well, and he is tatt'd to the point of distraction. Plenty of others (Jorgensen comes to mind, Kendall Grove) haven't been able to ride body art to the title. What am I saying here? What are we talking about?
BELCHER should fight WEIDMAN for a title shot!!
Again, hard to argue. Both have some merit. And honestly, that would be a fantastic fight.
would it be feasible to ever see GSP drop to 155? Imagine the sick matchups there would be if it ever happened
No, I don't think it's feasible. He's an enormous welterweight, and he manages his body very carefully. If anything, he'll eventually move up to 185. Maybe after he beats Condit and Nick Diaz, right when the Rory MacDonald chorus gets loud enough.
What are your thoughts on a motivated BJ Penn defeating Rory Mac?!
I don't know, Chad. I know we always talk about BJ when he's motivated. He was plenty motivated when he fought GSP at UFC 94, and he got handled for four rounds. I just think he's catching MacDonald at the exact wrong time. Motivated or not, I think MacDonald beats him.
So here's your opportunity for an ESPN body magazine plug.
You see the jockey getting licked on the head by that horse? That was an ornery little picture.
You think we'll see a bonner/griffin 3?
Why not. Griffin is just in it to....well, I'm not sure why Griffin's in it. Bonnar just wants to put on good fights. Let them at one another.
Do you think Faber will finish Barao?or do you see it going baraos way?
This is a tough fight to call, but I sort of lean towards Barao. Why? I think he wants it more. And there's been such tumult surrounding it (Faber's opponent switch, then the card switch). Faber has a lot going on, and just don't see him being like he was a few years ago. I think Barao has been waiting for the platform, and will know what to do with it.
With a win, what do you see Rampage doing next?
If he beats Glover Teixeira? That would be really something. People don't know just how good Teixeira is, but he's good just about everywhere. If Rampage beats him, I'd suspect that (together possibly with the youthful surges of TRT and new relevancy) that he'd end up signing on with the UFC again.
If a No. 1 contender's bout between Hector Lombard against Chris Weidman went down, who you got?
I'd have to go with Weidman. Lombard is no slouch on the ground, but Weidman could use his wrestling to get it there, and his jitz is above the bar enough to stay out of submissions. Tough fight. I am just looking forward to seeing Lombard in the UFC...
Sonnen moving 205 pounds; should Jon Jones be looking over his shoulder?
I wrote about that today. If Sonnen does go to 205 pounds (and I suspect he will), there are a lot of guys who have similar strengths that he does. It's a tougher row to Jones than it was to Silva, I think.
Thoughts on Forrest Griffins ridiculous actions after the Tito fight. I'm not really a Tito fan but that was disrespectful
It was one of those things where you just wonder what's going on in his head. First of all, I thought he won the fight (like a lot of other people), so to see him casually leave the cage and head for the dressing room was odd. Then to grab the microphone and steal Ortiz's special Rogan moment? Odd. (Same as it was odd that Ortiz wanted to have a special Rogan moment).
Faber is +140. Thoughts?
Is that where the line's at? Faber's the dog? Wow. Guess Vegas thinks like I do.
In your mind will Sonnen ever fight for a belt again? I can't see it happening, and I think that's why it felt a little sad watching him go down to Andy this last time.
I don't think he'll get a title shot again, but you never know. If Silva retired soon, then I could see Sonnen getting back up the ladder quick. But at 205, can't see him getting a shot. Too many hazards en-route.
I liked your piece about Jones fighting Silva in the a COLOSSAL fight. But do you think they would actually agree to it? Seems like they are both very against the idea, and are banking on the "too much to lose" philosophy. Agree?
I think that if Jones beats Henderson, the timing is perfect for that fight. Jones will have beaten all the most viable guys that aren't up-and-comers, and Silva would be available. If the UFC wanted to really house a shot at Dallas Cowboys Stadium in January, with Jones and Silva out there, that's the fight to make. Wouldn't have to convince me. But convincing them? That's the hard part.
Chuck, I know you write for the magazine too. Did you get to sit in on the Ronda Rousey shoot for the Bod Issue?
No, I received no invitation to the photo shoot. But it was a big talking point in Bristol. Guess Rousey stole the show. I liked the Xanadu vibe in those pictures. She was a couple of roller skates from rocking that thunder completely.
How does Luke Rockhold do against UFC competition?
I think he'd hold up pretty well. But Kennedy is realistically his second big challenge. I thought he showcased great against Souza, who is a beast. At some point, we'll surely find out just how good Rockhold is when he's thrown into UFC traffic.
Do you like Nelson & Carwin as the new TUF coaches? I think Forrest & Stephen would've been better. Kinda of a full circle thing, possible retirement fight for them both. Started/ended together.
I was sort of thinking they might go the Bonnar/Griffin direction, and try and breathe some life back into the franchise. Nelson/Carwin just doesn't do much for me.
I think Alan Belcher against Chris Weidman would be a sick fight, and I think they are even right now as to where the stand.
Ninja Okamoto loves Rockhold this weekend, I'm thinking of laying some wood on him.
Okamoto obsesses over these things. But in the interest of full disclosure, Brett (whom you refer to as the "Ninja") picked the Colorado Rockies to go 101-65 this year.
Wow almost a whole hour and no talk of Overeem. Does he get an immediate shot whenever his suspension is up or does he need to earn his keep?
I would have said no, he wouldn't get an immediate title shot upon return. But, just as always, reading Dana White's mind is near impossible. White was very mad at him (disgusted might be the better word), but now he's back to talking in semi-glowing terms about Reem. So....by the time his suspensions up, the old "forgive and forget" might be the play.
If Gina had ever been in the Body Issue my heart may have stopped.
Sounds like some wise editor saved your life, James, but booking Rousey in front of Carano.
Couldn't have been more impressed with Weidman. Can they really give this kid Silva, with Jon Jones' rise as reasoning, or does he need to prove himself one more time. I think he destroys Bisping, curious about Belfort or Lombard for him
Just given the setting of the 185-pound division, with all the similarly seeded contenders, I'd like to see Weidman fight another time before given a shot. I think he has the tools to challenge Silva now, but would like to see them build him up a little more.
I am excited to watch Tim Kennedy against Luke Rockold, but I feel like nobody else is. ESPN has Luke in its top ten middleweights -- why is nobody paying attention to this?
For one reason, UFC 148 clouded over everything. And then you had the UFC midweek card to boot. Plus, it's Strikeforce, which is marketed like a New York underground smokers show at this point.
Hey chuck! Huge fan, I'm starting to wonder if Bones and Silva avoiding each other is for fear of losing one's right to call himself the greatest fighter on the planet. I mean there is so much to gain as well holding a victory over the other but could the latter be thought of as the greatest of all time having lost to the other?
I am sure there's truth in that, Joey. Right now they can each be the greatest in their weight class. And each could make claims to being the greatest in general. Fighting each other could possibly shard one legacy, but I still want to see it. I don't like the idea of parallels when in most P4P rankings Silva and Jones are 1 & 2. Silva has fought at 205 before, and walks around big. It's not so far-fetched to come meet Jones for a tussle.
Can we officially start a petition to get Roy Nelson on next year's Body Issue?
I like what we're saying right now.
Gina was in the 2009 ESPN Body Issue
Gina was in the first body issue in 2009. Google it.
Good thing James in CT didn't know. He wouldn't be with us in today's chat.
I don't imagine they'll do Le Vs. Franklin. Le is going to fight in Macau, on Fuel, and every Franklin fight has been on PPV (sans Shamrock). They won't punish a loyal soldier by making him fight on Fuel.
He's a company man, Rich. And they've sent him to Brazil, Ireland, even Germany and Quebec. Macau might sing to his adventurous side. But it's a good point you make.
Gotta respect your counterpart J. Rivera's respect for Bisping on MMA live. They really didn't seem to like one another before that fight.
Yeah, it's funny. I would have thought Rivera would have bad blood with Bisping, but he doesn't. Jorge is a forgiving dude, and he understands the hype side of it.
Let's say JDS retains the title against Cain in an unspectacular fight and Reem isn't available (for whatever reason)...who would be your next choice for HW contender?
Would love to see Cormier in that spot, but not sure if the partition will be down by then for it to be feasible. In a pinch, Werdum, I guess.
Champions vs Champions Card. Bellator vs. UFC. Thoughts?
It's strictly fantasy, but interesting. Imagining GSP/Askren might require No Doz for some. Michael Chandler against Benson Henderson has some possibility, as does Pat Curran against Aldo. In fact, Curran is slowly making his way up to No. 2 in the featherweight world I think.
Ummm Chuck, you can't go 101-65 in a baseball season...or wait, was that your point?? haha!
Now you've also identified Brett's passion for microbrews....
Denver draws closer, son. You better have your fight song picked, cause it's gonna get real. Real real.
I do. It's Kenny Loggins' "I'm Alright." So there's no need to worry about me.
Since today's friday the 13th, whats the weirdest fighter superstition you have heard or seen? Also are you superstitous?
I'm not superstitious. In fact, I didn't realize it was Friday the 13th. But since it is, I'll answer a question from Jason next.
Does Urijah Faber choke in his big spot next weekend? I want to see Cruz/Faber III, but have a bad feeling that Renan prevent it from happening.
I don't know. This is a really tough fight to pick, but as mentioned earlier, I lean towards Barao. That knee he put on Brad Pickett still plays in my mind. I think he's so explosive, and I have questions about Faber's head going in...so I lean towards Barao.
Odds on Jones vs Silva? I like Silva honestly. I don't really see Jones' striking as spectacular, as I feel he benefits GREATLY from his reach covering up his holes. I think Andy will have an easy time exploiting those holes and finishes it within 3 rounds.
There is something about Silva's precision, against Jones ranch/artistry, that makes it compelling. I'd half expect Jones (as a product of Albuquerque) to try and take it to the mat and play the top game. Why tempt Silva on the feet?
If hendo wins the belt any chance of a super fight again with Silva
See that? We're all talking superfight between Jones/Silva, and here comes Ramon wondering about Hendo/Silva once Hendo shock the world. I can tell you this, Ramon -- of all Henderson's fights, that's the one he talks about wanting back the most. He had a bad cut at UFC 82, and he still wants that second crack. He'd even make his way down to 185 to get it.
Doesn't the "too much too lose" excuse sound too much like boxing and the problems they have of big names fighting each other?
It's such an honest answer that it has no business in fighting. Too much to lose isn't something people want to hear. Most of the people who oppose it have this feeling of protection for Silva's legacy. My thing is: Silva has done a great job protecting his own legacy. And why are we sleeping on a guy who is 15-0 in the UFC? If anybody could dial Jones down it would be Silva.
Any one answer, or just the whole lot?
Silva would accept a match at 205 against Hendo for the belt because he believes he can beat Hendo and if he won belts in 2 weight classes his GOAT status would never be in doubt
Bet Hendo would welcome that as well.
Stylistically, what fights on the 149 card intrigue you the most and why?
Wow. A rare visit from the demon from the Exorcist. It really must be Friday the 13. But, being non-discriminate, I will answer. I think the main (Faber/Barao) and co-main (Lombard/Boetsch)...the rest has only mild intrigues.
OK, guys, I'd better close the mother down. Thanks for stopping in. Hope you get a chance to check out the Strikeforce fights tomorrow. If I didn't answer your question, sorry...a lot of questions in here today. You can hit me on Twitter, @ChuckMindenhall.