Esther Lin, MMA Fighting
Every Wednesday the UFC's official website runs a live chat with a notable fighter, and this week it was Junior dos Santos' turn up to bat. The former heavyweight champion riffed on everything from his infamous Katy Perry audition to his strategy for the next time he meets Cain Velasquez -- "Don't block the punches with my face!!" -- as well as his favorite fighters and his willingness to meet his friend, Antonio ‘Bigfoot' Silva, if a title is on the line.
But perhaps the most noteworthy nugget came courtesy of this simple exchange:
Q: Who has better striking, Overeem or Hunt?
Dos Santos: Hunt. He has more skills and he hits harder.
In case you weren't keeping track, over the past few weeks dos Santos has called Overeem "a joke," said he "is nothing," dos Santos' trainer publicly questioned the validity of Overeem's injury, and now this. I think it's safe to assume Overeem isn't getting a Christmas card from the Brazilian anytime in the next decade.
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Dos Santos: Hunt more skilled than Overeem. When asked on a UFC.com fan chat who was the better striker, Mark Hunt or Alistair Overeem, former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos responded: "Hunt. He has more skills and he hits harder."
St-Pierre fought hurt. According to trainer Firas Zahabi, UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre suffered an achilles injury prior to his bout with Nick Diaz. "I was worried it would tear during the fight," said Zahabi. "We had to cut his last sparring [session] short due to his injury. He had a week to rest it and then the fight." Zahabi added that he hopes St-Pierre takes at least six months off to heal.
MMA roundtable. Yours truly joins Dave Doyle to discuss the state of Nick Diaz, April's whirlwind fight schedule, the stunning rise of Johny Hendricks, and whether a co-ed TUF is destined to become Real World: MMA Edition.
Bellator 93 weigh-in results. All 20 fighters met their required weight at Wednesday's official Bellator 93 weigh-ins, including lightweight tournament finalists Marcin Held and Dave Jansen.
Fukoda cut, Caraces popped. UFC on FUEL 8 fighters Riki Fukuda and Alex Caceres failed post-fight drug tests, promotion officials announced on Wednesday. Fukuda tested positive for phenylpropanolamine, norpseudoephedrine and ephedrine, and was subsequently released from the UFC, while Caceres earned a six-month suspension for marijuana metabolites. Additionally, Caceres will be required to attend drug rehabilitation classes.
UFC 158 buyrate. Preliminary figures indicate UFC 158 may wind up being the biggest pay-per-view draw of Georges St-Pierre's career, topping 800,000 buys.
Oh yes. Chael Sonnen is a poet, and you didn't even know it.
Ryron and Rener Gracie return to break down the positional perfection of Georges St-Pierre, while offering clues about why the Canadian can neither finish nor be finished.
Remember Michael Page? Of course you do. He's the guy who did this. Well, Page makes his Bellator debut tonight.
Gold medalists Rulon Gardner and Henry Cejudo stopped by the late night desk to campaign to save Olympic wrestling.
Trying to slip that Donnie Darko namedrop past me, Tommy? I'm wise to your tricks.
BANNED SUBSTANCES FOR EVERYONE!
What's worse winning a fight and getting it overturn to NC for pissing hot on weed or losing a fight while on steroids?— Ulysses Gomez (@uselessgomez) March 20, 2013
Like you were good enough to win the fight but dumb enough to piss hot. Or you suck so bad that steroids couldn't help you.— Ulysses Gomez (@uselessgomez) March 20, 2013
People still failing drug tests , you can't teach intelligence !— Derek Brunson (@DerekBrunsonMMA) March 20, 2013
@mmaroasted man I should've smoked a blunt on the way to the Octagon? Maybe I would have got to stick around?— Gerald Harris (@GHurricane) March 20, 2013
BEAT THE PREZ
I filled out my bracket now hurry up and fill out urs! on-msn.com/WF3Y08— Dana White (@danawhite) March 21, 2013
I can't wait to have the date to fight gsp and where lol. Once that happens ill be a happy man— Johny Hendricks (@JohnyHendricks) March 20, 2013
Lol yes I through my left way to much but when he moved out if u look at my stance it goes to right handed so I used it like a hook— Johny Hendricks (@JohnyHendricks) March 20, 2013
FITCH THE RECRUITER
Jon Fitch (@jonfitchdotnet) March 19, 2013
Fans don't see what goes on behind the scene, I was admitted to the hospital and was diagnosed with acute renal failure. Care to look it up.— King Kevin Casey (@kevinkocasey) March 20, 2013
Cameras don't show my doctor visit nor the issues the other fighters had with weight cuts. My life comes b4 the fans blood thirst lol.— King Kevin Casey (@kevinkocasey) March 20, 2013
I had the sweetest dream... Terrorists, zombies, home invasion robbers... I hated waking up. :-(— Tim Kennedy (@TimKennedyMMA) March 20, 2013
You're using your TV platform to clown me, it's all good because Im going to use my TV platform to clown you— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) March 20, 2013
Please keep it going, feed me— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) March 20, 2013
CAN'T STOP, WON'T STOP
GSP couldn't take me down if I gave him a double leg.— Ben Askren (@Benaskren) March 18, 2013
Announced yesterday (Wednesday, March 20, 2013):
- UFC on 159: Jimy Hettes (10-1) out with torn MCL/sprained ACL, Kurt Holobaugh (9-1) in against Steven Siler (21-10)
- UFC on FUEL 10: Felipe Arantes (14-4-1) vs. Godofredo "Pepey" Castro (9-1), according to Tatame
- Bellator 93: Eric Prindle (7-3) out with injury opposite Brett Rogers (12-5)
- XFC 24: Nick Newell (9-0) vs. Scott Holtzman (4-0)
FANPOST OF THE DAY
Today's Fanpost of the Day is a story from JuryInLife: What Nick Diaz did for me
A couple summers ago I saw Nick, Nate and one of their cornermen walking in a prominent mall in Toronto. We crossed paths and I mentioned their names. They were quite surprised that anyone in Toronto recognized them and soon enough I was chatting with them. They ended up asking me where to find different stores and events and went so far as to invite me to their hotel for the parties happening there. Nick himself gave me his number and sure enough I got together with them.
As time went on and either of the Diaz brothers had any fights, I would send a good luck type text to Nick's number. There were a couple occassions where Nick texted back and asked if I was in town where the event was because he would get me in. I never was.
Fast forward to the week before UFC 158 and it finally dawns on me that I should have already asked Nick if seeing the show in Montreal was possible. I thought about it and while I didn't want to bother him during fight week, I knew this was an exception I had to make. I sent him a txt and didn't hear anything back that day and thought 'oh well' at least I tried. The next day Nick responds to me "I will try to get you in I still haven't got my tickets yet bro". So obviously Im happy as shit and respond immediately asking if I should come down to Montreal for sure. He responded "I don't wanna promos but Im pretty sure I fan get it dun". That was good enough for me and I began to make plans.
My friend lives in Montreal and I called her to see if she was available that weekend. Sure enough she met me at the train station on Saturday noon time and we toured Montreal, eating, drinking and came back to camp out around the bell center at 6-7pm. We sat in a bar attached to the bell center called Cage du Sports and were watching the prelims by which point I had all but given up.
At 9:48pm I get a text from Diaz. "I have a ticket but I don't know how to get it to you" Immediately I starting thinking how is this gonna work. My friend says she'll wait in the bar until I come back. I said screw that. We settled up with the waitress and she said she would hold our seats for 15 mins in case we could sort things out with security. We went over to 3 different security people before the last one calls the back, takes my name, and then we waited. After a few minutes he came back with 2 tickets that he hands to me. "Section 6, Row A, Seat 1 & 2". I didn't know exactly what this meant yet but soon found out it meant that we were seated in the very front row and the only people in front of us would be the fight teams, judges, photographers, and ring girls!
They walked us to our seat and had to tell Paul Davis that people are here now so we could sit. We were seated in Diaz' team section with Cesar Gracie and his other family and friends. Paul Davis, Luke Rockhold, TUF alum were all around me. Sitting to my right was Dan Hardy and TJ Grant. Basically it was an AWESOME AWESOME time that provided to me for free and without expectations from Nick Diaz. Those tickets were worth thousands.
Everyone likes to hate Nick but don't want to understand the method to his madness. Yeah I know the thug tantrums get tired for most of you but the man is geniunely misunderstood and he is a good human being. He's just too real and has no time for diplomacy. All his points about how how MMA rules currently favour wrestling is correct in my opinion. I like MMA not because I like to see people bleed or get hurt, I like it because life really is fighting. Diaz understands the warrior spirit and lives it. I felt I needed to share this small story for people to hear something good Nick has done when all they do is talk about the bad.
Found something you'd like to see in the Morning Report? Just hit me on Twitter @shaunalshatti and we'll include it in tomorrow's column.
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