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#pounditThursday, May 13, 2021

MMA

Ramiz Brahimaj nearly loses ear during loss to Max Griffin

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Ramiz Brahimaj lost to Max Griffin via third-round TKO in their fight at UFC Vegas 13 on Saturday at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nev., and he nearly lost an ear in the process.

The fight was stopped after Brahimaj took an elbow to his left ear. Brahimaj’s ear was literally dangling off the side of his head following the elbow. Brahimaj was grabbing his ear to hold it in place but simultaneously seemed to wonder why the fight was being stopped.

Brahimaj’s effort was valiant, but the referee didn’t change his decision.

Griffin is now 16-8 following the win.

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MMA star Tito Ortiz wins city council seat in Huntington Beach

Tito Ortiz

MMA star Tito Ortiz has scored another big victory in his career.

Ortiz on Tuesday won a seat on the city council in his hometown of Huntington Beach, Calif.

Huntington Beach, aka “Surf City,” had three seats available with 15 candidates on the ballot.

Ortiz received 22,791 votes (11.8 percent), which was good enough to finish third. He, Natalie Moser and Dan Kalmick all won the election according to results from The Los Angeles Times.

The focus of Ortiz’s platform was to “Make Huntington Beach Safe Again.” Ortiz has used his hometown as part of his branding throughout his professional career. He goes by the “Huntington Beach Bad Boy.” He also owns a gym in Huntington Beach called Punishment Training Center.

Ortiz (21-12-1) is a former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, UFC Hall of Famer, and regarded as one of the company’s pioneers. He most recently fought last year for Combate Americas.

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Paige VanZant has funny reason for being angry with suspected car thief

Paige VanZant

Paige VanZant appears to have been the victim of an attempted robbery on Tuesday night, but the biggest issue she had with the incident may surprise you.

VanZant shared some videos on her Instagram story Tuesday night that showed a brutal rainstorm ripping through where she lives in Florida. On Wednesday morning, she uploaded another video saying it looked as though someone tried to break into her car. While she had nothing to steal, the thief or thieves left VanZant’s driver’s side door open. That resulted in the interior of her car getting wet.

“I’m not even mad that I think someone tried to steal stuff from me because there’s absolutely nothing in here worth stealing,” VanZant said with a laugh. “It was pouring rain and now the whole thing is soaking wet. Listen, if you’re gonna break into my car, at least shut the door.”

The nerve.

We’re happy to hear that VanZant didn’t have any items to steal, but hopefully the interior of her car dries out.

VanZant gained popularity in the UFC and has a record of 8-5 in her professional mixed martial arts career. She went 5-4 in the UFC but was disappointed with the pay, which is why she announced back in August that she is making a significant career move. The 26-year-old hopes the change will result in people looking at her as more than “just a pretty face.”

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Joaquin Buckley delivers UFC knockout of the year

Joaquin Buckley knockout

Joaquin Buckley delivered the UFC knockout of the year with an absolutely incredible KO at UFC Fight Island 5 on Sunday in the United Arab Emirates.

Buckley attempted to kick Impa Kasanganay during the second round of their fight. Kasanganay caught Buckley’s leg, so Buckley responded with a crazy move. He delivered a spinning back kick to Kasanganay’s head for the knockout.

That was incredible. A video game knockout.

According to ESPN Stats & Information, that’s only the fourth spinning back kick to the head knockout in UFC history.

Buckley felt he was in line for all sorts of bonuses for the incredible performance.

“We drill to kill, but I never landed it in a fight before. He was coming hard, he had heavy pressure, so I said, ‘why not throw it?'” Buckley said after the game.

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Floyd Mayweather would demand this much money for Conor McGregor rematch

Floyd Mayweather

Floyd Mayweather Jr. has not fought since he improved his record to 50-0 with a win over Conor McGregor back in 2017. He has hinted at coming out of retirement (again) numerous times in the past, and apparently he is open to a rematch against McGregor.

For the right price.

Mayweather made a recent appearance on Shannon Sharpe’s “Club Shay Shay” podcast and discussed whether or not he will fight again. He basically said he values his long-term health and will only take easy fights that come with a big payday. If he were to fight McGregor again, Mayweather says he would need a guaranteed $300 million.

As for whether or not a fight against McGregor would be safe and easy, Mayweather clearly thinks it would. He told Sharpe that the UFC star has no punching power.

“Conor McGregor can’t punch. He can’t punch,” Mayweather said, via TMZ.

Mayweather added that he remembers taking a punch from McGregor when the two fought and thinking, “Man, this dude punch so soft.”

Mayweather made around $300 million total for his August 2017 fight against McGregor and McGregor made $100 million. Floyd was guaranteed $100 million going in, while McGregor’s guaranteed number was $30 million.

This isn’t the first time Mayweather has indicated he is open to a rematch against McGregor, but the fight seems unlikely to happen. McGregor, who is supposedly retired as well, recently revealed that he has his sights set on a different high-profile boxing match.

Conor McGregor says he will fight Manny Pacquiao in boxing match

Conor McGregor

It has been only three months since Conor McGregor made his latest “retirement” announcement, but the former UFC champion is already looking for another big pay day.

McGregor revealed in a series of tweets on Friday that he is planning for his next fight to be a boxing match with Manny Pacquiao. He didn’t provide any details but claimed the fight will take place in the Middle East.

The big news from McGregor came after he shared some direct messages between him and UFC president Dana White that show McGregor was trying to push for a fight earlier this year. He said the reports about him turning down a fight against Tony Ferguson were inaccurate and that he wanted to headline his own event rather than being an alternate. White seemed willing to work something out, but it never came to fruition. Beware that some of the messages contain inappropriate language.

“I was pushing hard for the season,” McGregor wrote. “Multiple opponents, multiple dates offered throughout. All to take place back to back. Then when covid hit and the talk was that I would have to wait for crowds again, I walked away from the situation. I was waiting long enough at that stage. … anyway all water under the bridge who gives a (expletive). I’m boxing Manny Pacquiao next in the Middle East.”

McGregor announced his retirement roughly three months after the exchange he referenced with White. It’s possible he was frustrated that the two couldn’t work something out. McGregor, of course, has announced his retirement numerous times in the past several years and gone back on it.

McGregor had a professional boxing match against Floyd Mayweather Jr. in August 2017. It’s unclear if he’s planning something similar with Pacquiao, but there have been hints throughout the year that the two could eventually do something together.

Colby Covington calls LeBron James a ‘spineless coward’

Colby Covington Donald Trump

Colby Covington beat up on Tyron Woodley in their UFC fight on Saturday night, and then he kept the shots coming.

Covington defeated Woodley via 5th-round TKO at UFC Fight Night in Las Vegas to improve to 16-2 in his pro MMA career.

Covington, who proudly supports Donald Trump and regularly wears a “Make America Great Again” hat, spoke with the president after his fight. He dedicated his fight to the military and first responders. He also said he was sick of all the “woke athletes,” such as LeBron James, whom he called a “spineless coward.”

This isn’t the first time Covington has gone after James. He challenged the Los Angeles Laker when the NBA canceled its games after the Bucks decided not to play on Aug. 26.

Covington is billing himself as “The People’s Champ” and proud that he was the first UFC champion invited to the White House.

Covington against James in the octagon would make for quite a fight.

Covington isn’t the only person who has called out James lately.

Conor McGregor gets drug tested on his yacht, is not officially retired

Conor McGregor

Conor McGregor announced back in June that he is (once again) retiring from fighting, but he has (once again) yet to make it official.

McGregor is currently on a yacht in the Mediterranean, but the United States Anti-Doping Agency managed to track him down. The former UFC champion revealed on Twitter Thursday that the USADA showed up to his yacht to drug test him. McGregor insists he is still retired but said he submitted to the test because he has nothing to hide.

If the USADA is still testing McGregor, that means he has not officially filed his retirement paperwork. McGregor followed up the original tweet by taking a shot at Nate Diaz.

McGregor and Diaz have fought twice, with one win each. Many believe a third fight against Diaz is one that would entice McGregor.

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. There is some belief that his latest retirement announcement is the same.

H/T Big Daddy

Gina Carano sounds off on coronavirus restrictions in Twitter comments

Gina Carano

Former MMA fighter Gina Carano is tired of the coronavirus restrictions that remain in place around the United States.

Carano, who has worked as an actress since retiring from fighting in 2009, took to Twitter early Sunday morning to share some of her thoughts on the COVID-19 pandemic. She ripped the elected officials who still have not allowed churches and businesses to open. Like many others, Carano believes some of the solutions to the pandemic have become worse than the problem.

Carano’s opinion is not all that surprising. The 38-year-old takes personal freedoms quite seriously, as we saw when she mocked Instagram recently for censoring one of her photos.

Carano helped popularize women’s MMA when she fought from 2006-2009, paving the way for Ronda Rousey and others. She has since starred in 11 movies and four TV shows.

Dana White open to Brock Lesnar-Jon Jones fight

Brock Lesnar’s contract with the WWE has expired, which has led to speculation that he may think about reviving his UFC career. If Lesnar is interested in returning to the Octagon for a mega-fight, Dana White is all ears.

Jon Jones recently vacated his UFC light heavyweight title. He wants to fight in the heavyweight division, but he said he will not do that until he gets more money. A fight between Lesnar and Jones would obviously be a mammoth draw, and White told TMZ on Tuesday that he would be happy to put it together.

White said he has heard the rumors and will gladly pursue the fight if Lesnar and Jones are “seriously interested.”

Lesnar last fought in the UFC against Mark Hunt in 2016. The 43-year-old hinted at a return to MMA following his loss at Wrestlemania 35 last year.

Jones is playing hardball with the UFC, but it would be hard to imagine him turning down a fight against Lesnar. After he knocked out Daniel Cormier a few years back, Jones called out Lesnar. The two traded shots in the media after that. If they renew the trash talk now that Lesnar is no longer under contract with the WWE, we know they are angling toward a fight.