Fightweets: Silva-GSP chatter, Chris Weidman's injury, and more

Eric Bolte-US PRESSWIRE

I'm writing the bulk of this piece on Wednesday, before Thanksgiving, but it's not going live on the site until Friday, when you're starting to get sick of all the leftover turkey. Fortunately, since this is running after the holiday, this means you get spared the "reasons why I'm thankful" lead writers of all sorts have leaned on since, well, probably the day after the first Thanksgiving in Plymouth Colony.

So, with that, I hope you and your family had a good holiday and I hope you get a chance to rest up over the weekend.

We've got a couple weeks without major events in MMA before the schedule heats up once again. But there's still plenty to talk about, from Anderson Silva vs. Georges St-Pierre super fight talks to Joe Rogan's UFC 154 comments to Chris Weidman's injury.

With that, a holiday edition of Fightweets. If you'd like to be considered in a future edition,leave me a question on my Twitter page.

The Superfight

@Beingbrad: Do you think a Silva/GSP fight would be more spectacle than sport? Like a Bailey/Johnson 150m runoff?

Every champion vs. champion superfight, whether in MMA or boxing, has an element of spectacle to it. It's out of the ordinary. It's a "what if" come to life. The spectacle is a big part of why superfights are such big draws when promoted properly.

The question is whether this particular fight leans too much on the side of spectacle instead of sport. In the case of GSP vs. Silva, I'd say it doesn't. It's not like we're dealing with PRIDE open weight tourney levels of potential size disparities here, and it's not like Silva is angling to set this fight at the light heavyweight limit. If the two camps can settle on a reasonable weight agreement, you end up with a fight in which one fighter's strength, GSP's wrestling, matches well with the other's weakness, Silva's takedown defense. It's true GSP has the size differential B.J. Penn had against him and that Silva would have against Jon Jones, but it's not like we're talking about a freak-show fight here.

@JoeTew: Why would GSP want to leave his weight class with so many great new fighters? Let silva cut weight for legacy fight.

And we're off to the races. Firas Zahabi's comment on this week's MMA Hour that he considers that a 170-pound weight limit would make GSP vs. Silva a "fair fight" is the first in what promises to be a protracted, public negotiation between the two sides. The chances that Silva's camp accepts Zahabi's proposal is virtually nil, just like Silva's reps are likely to counter with a weight too high for GSP to accept the first time out.

And that's just in trying to figure out the weight at which the fight will be contested. That's before we get to the topic of a fight venue. Give this about a month or so, and everyone will claim to be sick of hearing about all the posturing, while also still clicking on every story which mentions the potential fight. Bottom line: Get used to it, this topic isn't going away any time soon.

What Weidman's injury means for middleweight division

@AdamHutcheon: What do you think Weidman dropping out means for Silva-GSP and the MW division?

Unfortunately, it appears Chris Weidman's shoulder injury is going to knock him off track in the middleweight race, a tough break for a guy still trying to recover from losing his home to Hurricane Sandy.

Weidman recently told MMAFighting he can expect to be sidelined from three to six months due to the injury. If closer to the latter, that would put us right up around the time the UFC wants to make Silva vs. St-Pierre happen. If that the superfight doesn't occur, it's reasonable to expect Silva will defend his middleweight title sometime around then, regardless of his posturing to the contrary.

Who would be in line for a title shot with Weidman out of the picture? That's a bit less clear-cut, but if Michael Bisping can defeat Vitor Belfort in Brazil, that would make Silva vs. Bisping a hot fight in the country in the country where the UFC is currently hottest.

Weidman, meanwhile, is going to need a fight or two to get back on track. By the time he returns, he'll be a year removed from his impressive win over Mark Munoz. I'm not in anyway discounting that Weidman could still be a potential future champion, but it's going to take more time than he may have planned on.

Joe Rogan at UFC 154

@RuckerYeah: hey @davedoylemma u think Rogan's comment about "Kampmann coming from behind more often than Lance Bass" was out of turn?

Since Joe Rogan's fans like to blur the line between the Rogan comedian and Rogan the color commentator, let's take a look at his performance at UFC 154 from both angles.

I can't get outraged over Rogan's joke for a simple reason: It was just lame. (And dated. Lance Bass jokes in 2012? Really?) As a comic, Rogan's passive-aggressive swipes at gays have slowly turned into a schtick, one roughly as edgy Gallagher and his watermelon or Jeff Foxworthy's redneck one-liners. I see his Bass joke more as a sign he's starting to jump the shark as a comic than something to get upset about.

Now, as for Rogan the color commentator, to some degree, we know what we're going to get by this point. Sometimes he's astute and incisive. Sometimes he seems distracted and veers way off-topic. Sometimes he's all of the above in a mere matter of moments. His comments on referee Phillippe Chartier belong in the "off-topic" category. You would have thought Emmanuel Yarborough was the third man in for Francis Carmont vs. Tom Lawlor, the way Rogan went on about it. But Chartier did nothing wrong during his fights. Meanwhile, a ref with a physique more likely to earn Rogan's seal of approval, Dan Miragliotta, watched Alessio Sakara rain a series of undefended punches to the back of Patrick Cote's head during the same card. Maybe instead of judging refs based on how their appearance, we should be judging them based on, you know, how they do their jobs.

We've long learned to take the good with the bad in Rogan's commentary. The potential problem is, the bigger the UFC gets, the bigger microscope it falls under. If Rogan says the wrong thing at the wrong time during a UFC on FOX broadcast, it has the potential to become an unwanted headache for the company.

Rogan obviously hears the criticism, since he talked about it in his most recent podcast. Rogan is capable of very good work. It would be nice to see more of insightful Rogan and less of his evil twin.

Where's Ben Askren?

@SeanPeconi: Crazy that Askren isn't in [welterweight] top 10.

I ranked him ninth. I can't tell others on the poll how to vote.

Rasslin' and MMA

@xX_FROST_Xx: #1 Hope you and your family have a wonderful and joyful Thanksgiving. #2 Are the shots that the WWE are taking ..

@xX_FROST_Xx: (cont) at the UFC as a result of the move from Spike to Fox? I think so. (Jilted lover scenario) What do u think?

First off, thanks man, and likewise to you and yours. As for the WWE, look, I was a wrestling fan growing up. I actually first heard of the UFC through Dave Meltzer's Wrestling Observer when he reported on UFC 1. By the time UFC 3 rolled around, Dave's writing about this strange new event intrigued me enough to give a UFC pay-per-view a shot.

The problem with pro wrestling as it relates to MMA is that while, yes, there are undeniable similarities between the UFC's pay-per-view business model and that of the WWE, wrestling's defenders in general try way too hard to draw broad parallels between the two. One is a sport. One isn't. That does matter. The fact that wrestlers work hard and that there is athleticism in their craft is irrelevant to the conversation.

While there is some crossover in the audience, the UFC gains nothing by the conflation the two products. And it's clear they understand this, since they're not even dignifying the WWE's recent on-air taunt. And anyway, "our Friday night show has more social media engagement than yours" is just about the weakest putdown I've ever heard on a wrestling program, anyway.

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