Morning Report: Chris Weidman imitates Anderson Silva; Nick Diaz's War MMA targeting summer debut

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Welcome back, folks. It's good to see you again. The summer schedule may be creeping closer, but at least for now there's still plenty of downtime to be had. So what better way to spend it than with the latest and greatest from the MMA community?

We have a full docket on tap today. So instead of me sitting here blathering on and on like an idiot, let's jump ahead and get to the goods.

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5 MUST-READ STORIES

War MMA eyeing June debut. Nick Diaz's rumored fight promotion, War MMA, is targeting a debut date of June 22 at the Stockton Arena, according to a report from Sherdog. War MMA also plans to live stream the event online.

MMA Roundtable. Luke Thomas joins your ol' pal Shaun to peruse the UFC cut list, analyze the latest in Eddie Alvarez's crusade against Bellator, debate which UFC champion will be the next to lose their title, plus more on the latest edition of the MMA Roundtable.

Caraway lands SOTN bonus. Bantamweight veteran Bryan Caraway retroactively received Pat Healy's $65,000 'Submission of the Night' bonus for his third-round guillotine choke over Johnny Bedford at UFC 159. Healy forfeited the cash after testing positive for marijuana in a post-fight drug test.

Bellator Summer Series. Bellator announced the four-man heavyweight tournament field that will compete in its upcoming Summer Series: former UFC fighter Vinicius Queiroz, former tournament finalist Richard Hale, Ron Sparks and undefeated Vitaly Minakov.

UFC on FX 8 facts. Did you know that Vitor Belfort holds the UFC record for most first-round finishes? Yup, somehow he does with 10. Check out more UFC on FX 8 pre-fight facts here.

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MEDIA STEW

Chris Weidman evoking a little of that Prebek/Tommy Toe Hold style with his Anderson Silva impression here. I dig it.

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I don't want to live in a world where Anderson Silva retired before making his legendary UFC run, but hey, it almost happened, and it'll always be one of MMA's biggest 'what ifs.' Who knows? Maybe Rich Franklin would've have ended up becoming the greatest middleweight in UFC history.

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This clip couldn't be more aptly titled.

(HT: Reddit)

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Let me explain this real quick: Tall Guy was going to fight Guy 2. But then Guy 2 saw Tall Guy, decided 'eff that' and dropped out 24 hours before from the fight. So what happened? If you guessed a spectator at the weigh-ins stepped in to fight on one day's notice, then you'd be absolutely correct. And yes, this ends exactly how you think it will.

(HT: Reddit)

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Wait... Bruce Buffer can do the splits? What???

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Guile's theme song finally makes it into the Morning Report. Welcome, old friend. We've been expecting you.

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FALLOUT

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THE NEWEST MEMBER OF BLACK HOUSE

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I HAVE NO CLUE WHAT THIS IS

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HMMMM...

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FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Announced yesterday (Wednesday, May 14, 2013):

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FANPOST OF THE DAY

Today's Fanpost of the Day joeyperez, who looks back at: 10 Things that had to happen for Chris Weidman to fight Anderson Silva.

1.

Silva v Munoz/Weidman winner...

Mark Munoz (12-2) +115 vs. Chris Weidman (8-0) -145

Chris Weidman wins a close paper match up and title fight eliminator by total destruction. Anderson decides to take the rest of the year off, to look for other challengers and that Weidman isn’t a big enough name. Weidman wasn’t really meant to win this fight. The idea was a nice easy bout between Anderson and his wrestling coach.

2.

Silva v Bisping?

The organization quickly found a dream candidate in the rock solid power punching kickboxer Michael Bisping. They matched him up against Tim Boetsch, but...

He got injured...

3.

Silva v Lombard?

Tim was then matched up against an even better candidate, the much hyped and newly acquired ‘Ector Lombard.

-310 Hector Lombard v +240 Tim Boetsch

Tim wins. Underdog wins. Silva v Lombard fight cant happen.

4.

Silva v Bonnar

Next up came Anderson v. Bonnar. Of course Anderson needed to win this or the fight with Weidman couldn’t happen. A very tough paper match up for Anderson, who didn’t want to fight in 2012, and had stated this as a reason for not fighting Weidman. A slim -1200 favourite, Silva shocked the world with this great legacy affirming victory.

The search for a legit challenger for the great one continued. Cung Le and even Rich Franklin were mentioned, but laughed out of the park. Jacare would have been a good match, but he had lost to Luke Rockhold. Luke was mentioned, but he had taken 5 rounds to beat Tim Kennedy.

5. + 6.

Silva v Boetsch/Beltcher?

Eventually two names seemed to shine. Those names were Tim Boetsch and Alan Beltcher. Tim had come through Okami and Lombard. He would surely be a worthy match against the aging king. Beltcher had defeated the incredible Blanka like warrior from Brazil, and previous contender to be a contender, known to many as Paul Harris.

Tim was matched up with Costa Philippou; a -155 wrestler favourite against a +130 striker and underdog.

Beltcher had a harder task and was +140 underdog against -170 Okami.

They both lost. On the same night.

Another two worthy challengers for Silva went up in smoke.

All of this told Anderson and Dana one thing. They had been avoiding the real man for far too long. The challenger for the throne already existed. In fact he had already won a title eliminator fight and not been given his credit. That man was out there…and his name was Michael Bisping!

7.

Silva v Bisping?

+110 Bisping was set up with a fight against -140 Belfort and got smashed in the second round, by a guy who is only supposed to be good for one.

Another title fight up in smoke.

8.

Silva v GSP?

GSP had just come back from injury and didn’t want the fight. Silva was much taller, with a much greater reach and would have dwarfed the canadian. For some reason Silva preferred this match up over the less proven Jones and Weidman. Wasnt going to happen.

Another title fight up in smoke.

9.

Jones v Silva?

Jones would be happy to fight silva, but if Silva werent fighting Weidman, he sure as s--t werent about to fight Jones.

Another title fight up in smoke.

Well there we go, no fighter in the whole middleweight division was in a position to take on Anderson. Clearly he had cleared the whole division without even fighting, so that left one chance. And that chance was Rashad Evans. Ex LHW champ Evans would be the guy to take on Silva. Provided -345 Rashad could defeat +265 Lil Nog, a guy who was a very good fighter, but who had seen better days…the fight with silva would be his.

10.

Silva v Rashad Evans?

Shad lost.

Another title fight up in smoke.

And that's how Anderson came to be in a fight with Chris Weidman. The guy he had ducked, and gone to the lengths of ufcs credibility as an organization to avoid, when he had won his title fight eliminator, all those months ago.

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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