Two months ago, when Alistair Overeem received a minimized punishment for possessing heavily elevated testosterone-to-epitestosterone levels in the random drug test that nearly crippled UFC 146, those who could do the quick math surmised that the massive Dutchmen would be eligible to reapply for a fighting license by December 27, 2012.
Speculation and whispers came soon afterward, with many individuals (yours truly included) wondering if the diminished ruling allowed for Overeem to participate in a UFC event before the end of the year, presumably in a New Year's cash-cow blowout.
However, the logic didn't really hold up to common sense. Would the UFC really embark on such a large endeavor, banking solely on Overeem getting licensed a day or two out from fight night? So many things could potentially go wrong. It just seems like too big of a gamble with a thus far unreliable product, right?
Well, apparently "The Reem" believes otherwise.
"I'll be fighting again in December," Overeem declared on Monday afternoon, via Twitter. "Mark my words, I'll be back to get the belt, sooner rather [than] later."
How about that for taking matters into your own hands? The logistics still make zero sense, but the potential dollar signs from an early, year-end Overeem revival can't really be underestimated.
Regardless, now the offer is out there. The ball is in Dana White, Joe Silva, and the Fertitta brothers' lavish court. So, how do you think this plays out? Will we see "The Reem" back before the end of 2012?
5 MUST-READ STORIES
Overeem targeting December return. Sidelined former multi-promotion heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem announced his intentions to return to fighting for the UFC sometime in late December. Overeem is currently in the midst of a nine-month denial of his fighting license -- starting from March 27 and ending on December 27, 2012 --stemming from a positive test for elevated levels of testosterone in a random pre-UFC 146 drug screening. Overeem tested out to a 14:1 testosterone-to-epitestosterone ratio, far exceeding the legal 6:1 limit.
The MMA Hour. Ariel Helwani and The MMA Hour celebrate their three-year anniversary show with a stacked lineup featuring Ed Soares, Brett Rogers, Brian Ebersole, Jon Fitch, Herb Dean and Josh Rosenthal, Steven Seagal, and reporter Guilherme Cruz.
Palhares replaces Cane. Brazilian leglock specialist Rousimar Palhares replaced an injured Luiz Cane in a middleweight bout against Yushin Okami at UFC 150.
Rampage talks rehab. Quinton "Rampage" Jackson discussed the status of his knee rehabilitation, how he would feel if his last UFC fight was buried on the undercard, and the possibility of him continuing testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) in the future.
Feijao positive test update. The banned substance stanozolol metabolites was revealed to be the root of former Strikeforce light heavyweight champ Rafael "Feijao" Cavalcante's recent positive drug test. Cavalcante was subsequently suspended for one year, fined $2,500, and will have his win over Mike Kyle overturned to a no contest.
First of all, if you've never seen the documentary Tyson, you should do yourself a favor and get on it. Anyway, one of the more notable segments of the film features Iron Mike breaking down all the pre-fight theatrics that can be found in both boxing and MMA, and it remains a powerful look at the mentality needed to be a world-class fighter. (HT: Reddit)
After watching him destroy another man outside the UFC this past weekend, Jorge Santiago is starting to seem like the classic guy who shined in AAA ball but could never quite stick in the big leagues.
Luke Rockhold and Tim Kennedy aren't really the type of guys to manufacture fake drama to hype a fight. We know this. So, Showtime is taking a different approach to marketing their upcoming title brawl.
THE REEM PRIORITIES: 1) HORSES, 2) DECEMBER
On my way to Miamiiiiiiii, almost there— Alistair Overeem (@Alistairovereem) June 18, 2012
I live in Miami now, so I ain't going nowhere..Hide the horses— Alistair Overeem (@Alistairovereem) June 18, 2012
I'll be fighting again in December and mark my words, I'll be back.. to get the belt, sooner rather later.— Alistair Overeem (@Alistairovereem) June 18, 2012
HE DOES HAVE A POINT
@joerogan could not agree with u more!!!!— Dana White (@danawhite) June 19, 2012
LET'S GET THIS FLYWEIGHT FINAL GOING
@JoeJitsu nope no surgery :-)— Demetrious Johnson (@MightyMouseUFC) June 18, 2012
Announced yesterday (Monday, June 18, 2012):
UFC 150: Luiz Cane (12-4) out with injury, Rousimar Palhares (14-3) in against Yushin Okami (26-7)
FANPOST OF THE DAY
Today's Fanpost of the Day sees James Goyder bring an eastern perspective to the question: Which Asian Camp is the Most Likely to Produce a UFC Champion?
One of the main reasons that mixed martial artists in the Americas have overtaken their Asian rivals is that the standard of training there had eclipsed anything available in the East. However there has been a shift in power in the last couple of years and there are signs that the situation might be changing.
If a UFC champion is to emerge from Asia, these are the camps which are most likely to produce him:
Evolve MMA is home to some of the best fighters in Asia, including the likes of Shinya Aoki, Eddie Ng, Zorobabel Moreira, Leandro Issa, Rafael dos Anjos, and several others. While Evolve MMA is still a young academy from a global standpoint, I think that it is the most likely place in Asia to produce a UFC champion in the long run because it has a decorated team of trainers in every discipline and is at least on a par with the top camps in the US and is head and shoulders above anywhere else in Asia.
The camp combines the best of East and West with a dozen BJJ black belts from Brazil, around 20 Muay Thai champions from Thailand, a couple of boxing champions from Thailand and a couple of elite level wrestling coaches from the US. Its Wrestling and MMA Programs are run by US Olympian Heath Sims, a long time coach and training partner of UFC title contender Dan Henderson.
Found something perfect for the Morning Report? Just hit me on Twitter @shaunalshatti and we'll include it in tomorrow's post.