Ex-WWE superstar CM Punk certainly had an MMA debut to forget on Saturday night at UFC 203.
The seven-time world wrestling champion was dominated by Mickey Gall and lost via submission (rear-naked choke) at 2:14 of the first round.
— Fanly (@fanly) September 11, 2016
It was an anticlimactic ending to a highly-anticipated debut that had been nearly two years in the making after Punk signed with UFC in December 2014. So despite Dana White’s best vote of confidence, it doesn’t look like the 37-year-old (whose real name is Phillip Jack Brooks) will be replicating Brock Lesnar’s career arc any time soon.
Still, Punk deserves respect for going after a dream, and maybe he’ll fare better next time around now that he actually understands the level of competition he’s going up against in the UFC.
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Fabricio Werdum defeated Travis Browne at UFC 203 on Saturday night, but perhaps the bigger story was what went down in the Octagon after the fight.
Shortly after Werdum was announced as the winner by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-27, 30-27), he appeared to taunt Browne’s corner with a crybaby gesture. That prompted Edmond Tarverdyan, Browne’s trainer, to start yelling at him before a brief altercation ensued, culminating with Werdum kicking Tarverdyan in the chest.
— #Dizz © (@TalkMMA) September 11, 2016
Apparently some name-calling inspired the boot:
Werdum says Tarverdyan said, "Shut your mouth you motherf'er."
"My mom says never say bad things. He started."
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) September 11, 2016
Werdum isn’t exactly known for his graciousness in victory, but this was still a strange incident all around. Credit though to Tarverdyan, who is also known for training Browne’s more famous girlfriend, Ronda Rousey, for brushing off Werdum’s kick like it was a mere insect bite.
Brock Lesnar failed two drug tests prior to his win over Mark Hunt at UFC 200 and is facing a possible one-year suspension, but the heavyweight said recently he will not rule out fighting in the UFC again.
Alistair Overeem doesn’t see any way that will happen.
Overeem, who beat Lesnar in Brock’s last fight before his recent comeback, was asked by TMZ this week if he believes he could beat Lesnar again. His message was pretty clear.
“I don’t think he’s coming back, first (of all),” Overeem said. “Second, I mean he … never mind.”
It would be hard for Lesnar to return to the Octagon at this point. How would Dana White explain to this guy that he let Brock come back after all that? Even if Lesnar didn’t test positive, there’s a possibility the WWE was only allowing him to return to the UFC for one fight. Now that he is facing a possible one-year ban from mixed martial arts, a return seems even less likely.
There’s a lot of crossover between the WWE and the UFC these days, so that means Dana White and Vince McMahon are in regular contact to discuss business.
Given that both are hard-headed executives who excel at what they do, there’s undoubtedly a lot of pushing and pulling that goes on. But at least in recent years, the two have made things work relatively seamlessly and they’ve each benefited because of it.
Things have not always been that way, however. And during a recent podcast interview with Ric Flair, White discussed some of his past struggles with McMahon, referring to him as a madman. Only, White used much more colorful wording than that.
(The following quote has been edited due to language, but you’ll get the gist of it.)
“Vince has been very difficult in the past, but the past several years he’s been much better,” White said during his appearance on The Ric Flair Show earlier this week. “He’s a f—— maniac, he’s an animal, he’s a competitor, he wants to win. That’s his nature and I respect it.”
White specifically referenced Brock Lesnar’s recent UFC return and Ronda Rousey’s participation in WrestleMania 31 as two of their recent successes, but also credits Stephanie McMahon and Paul “Triple H” Levesque for helping to get things done.
“I think Vince and definitely Stephanie and Triple H — Stephanie and Triple H are always great, always cool to work with,” White said. “I would say that this last Brock deal and when Ronda went over did the WWE WrestleMania, those were the two out of all the years of dealing with Vince and everybody, those were probably the two best experiences.”
This is all good news for fans who enjoy these crossover events. By all accounts, it would appear there are more to come in the not so distant future.
Brock Lesnar and Jon Jones may have failed drug tests prior to UFC 200, but that does not necessarily mean the two will be suspended from competition for two years.
As MMA Fighting points out, Lesnar and Jones both tested positive for Hydroxy-clomiphene. The U.S Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) considers this substance (as well as the Letrozole Jones also tested positive for) to be “specified substances,” which means the two are facing a punishment of up to a year suspension rather than the standard two years.
World Anti-Doping Agency Code (read the 2015 code here) states that the substances are more susceptible to credible non-doping explanations, such as contaminated or tainted products.
USADA can even let the two off with just a warning. Meanwhile, the fighters can also request arbitration if they are dissatisfied with the penalty they receive.
One thing to note is that the USADA penalties the fighters face are different from the ones handed down by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, which only apply to Lesnar and Jones’ ability to fight in Nevada.
If you’ve been following the news lately, it seems to all be pointing to Jones potentially getting off with a light punishment. The most recent story suggested that Jones’ positive test was triggered by a sex medication. If that’s the case, his argument for a lesser penalty would be well supported.
Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz have produced two great fights this year, but UFC boss Dana White says there will not be a third fight between the men.
“The war was fun and super successful but I’m movin’ on,” White told TMZ Sports.
Back in March, Diaz surprisingly beat McGregor after the two fought in a bout that was cobbled together at the last minute due to an injury to Rafael dos Anjos. Their rematch took place on Saturday with McGregor winning a unanimous decision in what is going down as one of the best fights ever.
The two men splitting the fights and providing so much entertainment led to fans clamoring for a third fight to decide the trilogy, but that apparently will not happen.
Instead, White says he wants to see McGregor rematch Jose Aldo, which would require a weight cut back down to featherweight (145 pounds), or a fight with Eddie Alvarez at 155. McGregor fought Diaz at 170 pounds, which was considerably more than where he had been competing in the UFC.
Jon Jones may be returning to MMA action sooner than expected because he took a supplement that was meant to enhance his performance in the bedroom, not in the Octagon. That’s what one fellow UFC champion has heard, at least.
During a recent episode of “The Countdown” on MMA on SiriusXM, UFC middleweight champ Michael Bisping claimed he has learned Jones tested positive for estrogen blockers because he took a generic version of Cialis. If whatever sexual enhancement pill Jones allegedly took is not on the banned substance list, Bisping says Jones should get nothing more than a “slap on the wrist.”
You can listen to Bisping’s explanation below:
Jones revealed in an Instagram video last week that he got some good news recently and expects to be back fighting “really soon.”
If you remember, Jones broke down crying while speaking to reporters (video here) and said he can’t even pronounce the name of the substance he tested positive for. He also insisted he is not a cheater.
H/T MMA Mania