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Friday, July 10, 2020

MMA

Conor McGregor again says he is retiring

Conor McGregor

Conor McGregor said in a tweet sent on Saturday night that he was retiring. Again.

Here is the tweet from McGregor, who says he has decided to retire from fighting.

It’s awfully hard to take this seriously.

McGregor appeared to announce his retirement in 2016. Then in March 2019, he also said he was retired. His 2019 “retirement” announcement was viewed as a leverage ploy for negotiations with the UFC.

McGregor signed an 8-fight deal with the UFC in 2018 and has fought twice since then. He lost to Khabib Nurmagomedov and beat Donald Cerrone. It’s hard not to view this tweet as some sort of ulterior motive for McGregor.

Cody Garbrandt had crazy knockout at bell against Raphael Assuncão

Cody Garbrandt

Cody Garbrandt won his fight against Raphael Assuncão at UFC 250 on Saturday night at the UFC APEX in Las Vegas with a crazy knockout.

Right at the end of the second round, Garbrandt knocked out Assuncão just when the horn sounded to signify the round’s end. He landed a massive right hand straight to Assuncão’s face that ended the fight.

The knockout showed the strength and power Garbrandt possesses.

Garbrandt began his pro MMA career by going 11-0. He lost the UFC Bantamweight Championship in consecutive defeats to TJ Dillashaw, and then lost to Pedro Munhoz.

This was Garbrandt’s first victory since 2016, and it was done in spectacular fashion.

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Video: Jon Jones takes spray cans away from vandals during protest

Jon Jones

Like many other prominent athletes, Jon Jones has expressed outrage over the way George Floyd was killed by a police officer last week. However, Jones does not agree with destroying communities in order to send a message about racial inequality.

Jones shared a video on his Instagram account Sunday night that featured the UFC champion confronting two individuals who were walking around with spray paint cans. Jones demanded that they hand the cans over, and they obliged. The person filming could be heard saying “that’s not the way, man.”

“Is this sh– even about George Floyd anymore?!? Why the f— are you punk a– teenagers destroying our cities!?? As a young black man trust me I’m frustrated as well but this is not the way, we are starting to make a bad situation worse. If you really got love for your city (505), protect your s—. All you old heads need to speak up, call your young family members and tell them to come home tonight,” Jones wrote on Instagram.

Jones tweeted about the Floyd incident last week, saying he wouldn’t wish that cause of death “on my worst enemy.”

“I wouldn’t wish the way George Floyd was murdered on my worst enemy. That officer applied just enough pressure to keep him alive for almost six minutes in that chokehold,” Jones wrote. “In all my years of fighting I can honestly say I’ve never experienced anything close to that level of torture. There needs to be a nationwide policy change. When a man is in handcuffs and is screaming that he cannot breathe. Get the f— off his chest and or neck. If you cant hold a man who is in handcuffs down by his feet you’re a p—y and probably shouldn’t be wearing that badge.”

Kudos to Jones for trying to prevent senseless acts during a time when others want to safely advocate for change. We’ve seen some other positive involvement from the sports community with the protests over the past several days as well.

Daniel Rodriguez seemed to dedicate UFC win to Kobe Bryant

UFC

Daniel Rodriguez won his UFC fight on Saturday night and then appeared to dedicate his win to Kobe Bryant.

The 33-year-old fighter beat Gabriel Green via unanimous decision in their welterweight fight at UFC on ESPN: Woodley vs. Burns at the UFC APEX in Las Vegas. At the end of his fight, Rodriguez seemed to say “for Kobe.”

Rodriguez is from Los Angeles, which could explain his support of the late former Laker.

Rodriguez is now 12-1 in his pro MMA career.

Conor McGregor says he is willing to fight Anderson Silva

Conor McGregor

Anderson Silva took to social media this week to propose the idea of a fight with Conor McGregor, and McGregor is willing to make it happen.

Silva pitched the fight on Instagram late Wednesday night, saying he has great respect for McGregor and that he believes a bout between the two legends would be a historic event for the UFC. Nolan King of MMA Junkie shared a translation of the post from Google Translate.

“I have an immense admiration for the great athlete Conor and I believe that a super fight would be something historic for the sport, neither of us need to prove anything to anyone; I believe UFC and sport fans would like to see this great martial (arts) show, testing my martial skills with him would be fantastic!!” Silva wrote.

McGregor caught wind of the challenge and responded with a tweet on Thursday morning that said “I accept.”

McGregor is coming off a dominant TKO win against Cowboy Cerrone back in January, while Silva has won just one fight since 2013. A fight between McGregor and Silva would certainly generate buzz, but UFC president Dana White almost certainly would prefer that McGregor’s next fight be against someone like Khabib Nurmagomedov or Nate Diaz. It also goes without saying that McGregor would rather fight interim lightweight champion Justin Gaethje if the opportunity arises.

All that said, McGregor recently shared his list of the greatest MMA fighters of all time. He placed Silva first and himself second, though he said he may be tied for No. 1.

Silva hasn’t fought since May 2019, when he couldn’t make it out of the first round with Jared Cannonier. McGregor seems to have set his sights on fighting again in the near future, and we doubt his next fight will be against Silva. If both fighters want it badly enough, perhaps they can convince White to make it work.

CJ Watson says Conor McGregor wearing his jersey was ‘stupid’

Conor McGregor

CJ Watson is offering some thoughts several years later on his unexpected inclusion in the Conor McGregor-Floyd Mayweather beef.

During a Reddit AMA session this weekend, the former Golden State Warriors guard was asked what he thought about McGregor wearing his jersey in an effort to troll Mayweather before their megafight in 2017.

“Stupid because I had nothing to do with the situation,” Watson replied.

If you recall, McGregor was seen wearing Watson’s No. 23 jersey with the Warriors specifically because of Watson’s link to Josie Harris, the mother of Mayweather’s children (which you can read more about here). The episode also triggered a war of words between McGregor and Draymond Green, who currently wears No. 23 for the Warriors and thought that McGregor was wearing his jersey instead.

Watson, now 36 years old, spent ten seasons in the NBA and is now playing overseas in Turkey. Unfortunately, Watson may now be more known for his entanglement in the McGregor-Mayweather feud than for his actual NBA career, and he is clearly not too thrilled about it.

Alistair Overeem shows great sportsmanship after beating Walt Harris

Alistair Overeem

Alistair Overeem showed some great sportsmanship after beating Walt Harris via second-round TKO at UFC Fight Night in Jacksonville, Florida on Saturday.

Overeem dropped Harris to the mat with a huge kick and started to pound on him with little resistance. After Overeem delivered several punches to Harris’ head over the course of a minute, referee Dan Miragliotta decided to stop the fight.

Rather than celebrate, Overeem dropped down and put his arm around his opponent. He even could be heard saying “let’s train together,” while giving Harris a hand.

Overeem is now 46-18 with one no contest, while Harris is 13-8 with one no contest.

There may have been more to the compassion shown by Overeem. Harris’ late stepdaughter was reported missing in October, and her remains were found a month later. Overeem is a father of two girls and may have felt more for Harris than the average person.

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