Morning Report: Shogun Rua Ends Dana White Feud, Sonnen Talks Beating Silva in BJJ

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Let's talk for a second. You're all smart people, I respect your intelligence and I'd like to think at least a smidge of that is reciprocated back my way. So you and I both know it's true when I say, not a whole lot happened yesterday. Sure, Cain Velasquez got a clean bill of health. In the middle of the Summer of Injuries, hearing the No. 1 heavyweight contender is still an able-bodied individual is always a good thing. And sure, Chael Sonnen popped off again, though who really knows if that's news at this point.

But really, it seemed like the most interesting story of the day was the story that came to a merciful end. After two weeks of back-and-forth sniping between UFC President Dana White and Shogun Rua's management team, the fighter's manager Julio Heller put a kybosh on the beef, saying they would no longer comment on the situation. It's probably a good thing too, because nobody was emerging from that mess smelling like roses.

While it was odd for White to so publicly call out one of his biggest, most battle-tested stars, it was even odder for fans to take what White was saying and run with the ‘Shogun is scared' angle. That just screams knee-jerk reaction. It's been said before, but there was just no reason for Shogun to accept a fight with Glover Teixeira besides a paycheck. If he wins, then Teixeira was overrated to begin with. If he loses, the floodgates holding back the ‘over-the-hill' cries would bust open. It's a lose-lose in every sense.

But again, that story seems to have met it's end. So let's just take a deep breath, exhale, and come watch Rener Gracie try to vertical jump out of 3-foot-deep pool.

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5 MUST-READ STORIES

Shogun Rua taking high road. Mauricio "Shogun" Rua's manager, Julio Heller, said the fighter's team will have no further comment on their recent rift with UFC President Dana White. Last weekend White told reporters Rua would rather be cut from the UFC than fight Teixeira at UFC 149.

UFC heading to China. A live UFC event and international version of The Ultimate Fighter is in the works to hit mainland China before the end of the year, according to a report from MMA Weekly.

Cain Velasquez healthy. Despite conflicting reports, Cain Velasquez's head coach, Javier Mendez, confirmed that Velasquez's hand is completely healthy and he is already training for a rematch against Junior dos Santos, which is tentatively targeted for September 22, 2012.

The Ultimate Fighter no longer live. In spite of Dana White's self-professed love for The Ultimate Fighter's new live feel, a return to the taped format of old is in store for the next season of the long-running reality series.

Chael Sonnen says he could beat Silva in BJJ match. UFC middleweight contender Chael Sonnen confidently declared he could defeat Anderson Silva in a boxing match, a kickboxing match, a jiu-jitsu match, and a wrestling match, among others.

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MEDIA STEW

Tryouts for the UFC's next international venture, TUF: The Smashes, hit the shores of Australia recently, and Joe Silva and Co. were on hand to try and spot the next first Aussie star. (Click to watch.)

Smashes_medium

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Apparently someone told Rener Gracie he couldn't do this. And y'all know know he wouldn't let an injustice like that stand.

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Galore Bosando's sole purpose in life is to entertain you with his dizzyingly delightful array of kicks. Well, we'd say mission accomplished. (HT: Reddit)

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Fedor's secret to keeping such a trim physique? The best playground exercise routine money can buy. (HT: MiddleEasy)

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MEDICAL ADVENTURES, PART 1

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MEDICAL ADVENTURES, PART 2

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FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Announced yesterday (Wednesday, June 13, 2012):

ShoFIGHT 20: Terry Martin (22-9) out, Derek Brunson (9-0) in against Kendall Grove (14-10)

Bellator 71: Brett Rogers (11-4) vs. Kevin Asplund (15-1)

Bellator 71: Travis Wiuff (66-14) vs. Chris Davis (10-3)

Bellator 71: Zelg Galesic (11-6) vs. Attila Vegh (25-4-2)

Bellator 71: Roy Boughton (8-2) vs. Emanuel Newton (17-6)

Bellator 71: Beau Tribolet (7-1) vs. Richard Hale (19-4-1)

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FANPOST OF THE DAY

Today's Fanpost of the Day comes courtesy of the Notorious G.I.B., who poses the question: Where Have All the Stars Gone? How Does the UFC Create New Ones?

Years have passed, and the UFC's biggest names are now in the twilight of their career, and are not the draws that they once were. More and more we are seeing the UFC scrambling to have a decent main event that will draw out the buyers, little alone a decent PPV card with names that fans can clamor over. With Brock Lesnar playing in the WWE and the wait for GSP to return continues, where are the stars?

Some state that the UFC has plenty of stars still with names like Jon Jones, Anderson Silva, Nick Diaz, and....um, and...hmmm. The UFC is in a weird spot right now, where they have incredibly talented fighters, but those fighters lack the personality to get the attention of the fans. On the opposite spectrum, we have guys like Jason Miller and Chael Sonnen who talk a good game and get people chattering, yet (win or lose) disappoint with their performances. Frankie Edgar vs Gray Maynard II was an unbelievable fight, but aside from the hard core fans, no one was talking about it, nor really cared to watch it. I myself was excited for part III, but once again due to those fighters having the personality of a wet towel, not much hype was created around it. Carlos Condit gives me goose bumps whenever he steps into the cage, but I remember watching UFC Prime Time and other interviews and kind of just shrugging my shoulders. The UFC's golden boy Jon Jones is getting better ratings on PPV buys, but a majority of fans do not accept him despite his reign of dominance. Even Anderson Silva still is not that big of a draw, and that is mainly due to his refusal to speak English and, as Greg Jackson would say, go get him some fans.

When Chuck was on top of the game, he could do no wrong. While Randy was around, everyone was happy to see Captain America fighting or giving his insight about the sport. Even Tito Ortiz, despite a lot of people disliking him, had star power that we do not see in the UFC anymore. So, what happened to the magic? What happened to just a brief interview or highlight of a fighter causing a stir amongst us and the casual fans? Where are the superstars that we so badly need right now? How do we create the Chuck's and Tito's of yesterday? I understand that being a Mixed Martial Artist comes first, and they should train to be the best in their trade and want to win fights. I'm not going to lie though; I miss being entertained by my favorite fighters. I miss not having to worry about if either fighter is going to lay and pray, or wall and stall their way to a victory. I miss hearing other people get as excited as I am about upcoming fights. I hate hearing, "Who?" when I talk about who is fighting on any given weekend.

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

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