Morning Report: Dana White TUF Video Blog, Rampage Bids Farewell With Shogun

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

So Rampage Jackson complained for a few weeks then got both his wishes granted -- a fight against Shogun and a release from the UFC. Good for him, I guess.

Realistically, it seems like there's only one of a few ways this situation can go. 1) Rampage gets smashed by Shogun, then leaves the UFC to hit the Bellator/DREAM/M-1/ONE FC circuit, which would be weird. Or, 2) A motivated Rampage, aided by TRT, trains harder then he has in years and either -- A) fights an absolute war with Shogun, or, B) evokes the spirit of '07 and knocks Shogun the hell out.

The thing is, if either one of those last two options happen, could you really see the UFC just giving up the golden gift of a revitalized Rampage Jackson to a competitor? There's absolutely no way that happens, right? Rampage is (self-admittedly) an emotional guy, and Zuffa is perhaps the most business savvy promotion in MMA. So is this really the end of Rampage in the UFC? Who knows, but it's probably more up in the air then we'd imagine.

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5 MUST-READ STORIES

Rampage Jackson to fight Shogun Rua in farewell fight. Rampage Jackson is slated to fight Shogun Rua in a rematch of their PRIDE Total Elimination 2005 brawl, before he can be granted his UFC release. A timetable for the match has yet to be announced.

The fighter who stayed too long. Ben Fowlkes recounts the tragic tale of Gary Goodridge, who after a lifetime of battles in the ring, now finds himself struggling with Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy.

UFC taking action against individuals who illegally stream events. If you've illegally streamed a recent UFC event, there's a good chance Zuffa has your information and will be looking to take legal action against you.

Anthony Pettis considering a drop to featherweight. "Showtime" would reportedly be open to a drop to 145-pounds if it meant an instant title shot against UFC champ Jose Aldo.

M-1 champ Vinny Magalhaes declares free agency. Magalhaes, a former TUF'er and M-1's reigning light heavyweight champion, has hit the free market after a fierce, prolonged squabble with the Russian promotion.

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COUNTDOWN TO A SLIMMER ROY NELSON

Started (on March 4th): 32,000 likes.
Yesterday's mark: 101,692 likes.
As of this writing: 101,780 likes.
Goal (by March 18th): 132,000 likes.

Let's face it, we've pretty much failed Roy Nelson.

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MEDIA STEW

It seems like a lifetime since the last Dana White video blog, but now they're back and better than ever. Check out the latest edition to see Rampage's post-loss reaction, one very sharp championship belt, and an incredulous White discovering the Australian commission's inability to do second-grade addition.

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Whether by way of selective editing or just freakish healing abilities, Georges St. Pierre looks pretty recovered in his latest 'Road to Recovery' video blog.

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Nick Diaz may be retired from MMA for now, but he's well on his way to ninjahood. Just check out his marvelous fruit-chopping sword skills. And the day's winning YouTube comment: "Cecil Peoples scored that round 10-8 in favor of the fruit." (HT: Middle Easy)

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Take a look at the new award-winning, MMA documentary Fightville, starring UFC featherweight contender Dustin Poirier and heavyweight brawler Tim Hague. The film hits theaters April, 20, 2012.

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RAMPAGE LOVES HIM SOME TRT

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DON'T ACT LIKE YOU'RE NOT INTERESTED

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FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Announced yesterday (Tuesday, March 13, 2012):

- Quinton "Rampage" Jackson (32-10) vs. Mauricio "Shogun" Rua (20-6) announced, date to TBD

- UFC on FUEL 3: Igor Pokrajac (24-8) vs. Fabio Maldonado (18-4)

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FANPOST OF THE DAY

Today's Fanpost of the Day goes to BE's Dangalvan: 5 Reasons to Check Out Bellator LXI's Prelims

Friday nights tend to be quite the busy time period for pretty much any average American, but not for us hard-core MMA fans. So if you're sitting down to watch some Bellator action this Friday, then I recommend checking out the under-card on Spike.com UFC quality under-card it is not, but there are still plenty of intriguing aspects about it that justify spending an hour or two of your life watching it. Here are five reasons why you should check out the prelims of Bellator LXI this Friday.

1. Jeremiah Riggs

If you're a pro wrestling fan then this name sounds familiar. Riggs competed on WWE's Tough Enough reality show, WWE's version of The Ultimate Fighter. He made it to the top three but was eliminated due to his lack of experience. Tough Enough wasn't his only reality TV stint, he also was eliminated in the elimination rounds of TUF Season 7 and appeared on VH1's Daisy of Love. Riggs has entertaining personality and was a stand-out on Tough Enough.

While Riggs has plenty of natural charisma, he still has serious deficiencies in his MMA game. Don't get me wrong, he's no Bob Sapp. He could very well be a Bellator main-stay, but the chances of him being a top middleweight are slim unless he continues to refine his raw MMA game. Riggs also understands the idea of being entertaining, and I would be shocked if his fight against Trey Houston wasn't a fun one to watch.

Found something perfect for the Morning Report? Just hit us on Twitter @shaunalshatti and we'll include it in tomorrow's post.

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