clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Morning Report: Dana White concedes Fedor Emelianenko among top heavyweights ever, still scoffs at all-time ranking

New, comments
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

In case you were wondering, hell froze over on Tuesday night. But only for a second.

It's common knowledge Dana White and Fedor Emelianenko aren't the best of friends. Throughout the years, the UFC President has referred to the legendary Russian as everything from simply overrated to a flat-out fraud. His willingness to diminish Emelianenko's résumé to anyone that would listen, even while engaging in a glorified game of duck-duck-goose with M-1's sleazy management to secure Emelianenko's services, has led to more than a few raging 600-post threads on MMA forums.

But now Emelianenko is lounging away in Russia, retired and safely out of the picture. So has White changed his tune?

"Do I think that Fedor is one of the greatest heavyweights ever?" he mused during yesterday's MetroPCS live chat. "Yeah, he's one of the greatest heavyweights ever. I'll give you that. Is he one of the greatest mixed martial artists of all-time? You're out of your minds."

Well, it was kind of a compliment. Though I think I heard a few more 600-post threads pop-up after that last part.

And, for those last few clinging to the idea that Emelianenko could make a final run in the UFC if given the chance, White has some bad news.

"We did [give him the chance]. We [recently] tried to get Fedor, and Fedor has absolutely, positively retired. He does not want to fight anymore."

So, that's the end of that. Please join me in waving goodbye to one of the most played-out storylines this sport had to offer. Now let's jump into some headlines.



Bonnar retires. Following a devastating loss to Anderson Silva at UFC 153, Stephan Bonnar has elected to retire from the sport of mixed martial arts. Bonnar ends his mixed martial career with a 15-8 record, having lost only to champions or former champions Forrest Griffin, Lyoto Machida, Rashad Evans, Jon Jones, Mark Coleman, and Silva, (along with a controversial TKO loss to Krzysztof Soszynski due to cuts).

Jones promises heavyweight move. UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones said he was "definitely" planning a move up to the heavyweight division, targeting late-2013 as the most likely date.

Silva-Jones guaranteed. "I guarantee you Anderson Silva vs. Jon Jones will absolutely happen," Dana White vowed, with Jones sitting right next to him during yesterday's live chat. "It's happening. It will happen."

UFC bookings update. Though a rumored match-up pitting Michael Bisping against Vitor Belfort at UFC 156 is "not a done deal" yet, the event's headlining bout has already been decided. UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo will defend his belt against former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar.

Big Nog, Werdum to coach TUF Brazil 2. Verbal agreements are in place for top-ranked heavyweights Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Fabricio Werdum to coach the second season of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil.

Dos Santos close to Nike deal. UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos could potentially be the next mixed martial arts fighter to ink a high-profile deal with Nike.



If you missed it, here's a replay of yesterday's MetroPCS fanchat with Dana White, Jon Jones and Chael Sonnen. (Anybody else find it weird to see Jon and Chael so buddy-buddy?)


The wrong way to impress your Muay Thai students:

(HT: Reddit)


Let's take a ride in the wayback machine to 2007, as a pre-trash talk Chael Sonnen battles Amar Suloev at Bodog Fight.


I may or may not have worked for a tool store in a past life, so I can't help but find this kind of thing fascinating.

(HT: MiddleEasy)


Remember when a crusty Dan Henderson semi-seriously cracked that he should probably start going to s--t talking school? Well, it seems ol' Dan may have started something here.















Announced yesterday (Tuesday, October 30, 2012):



Today's Fanpost of the Day comes courtesy of Josh Hall, who declares: Fighter Safety is the Most Important Thing in MMA, but Someone Needs to Tell the Athletic Commissions

I don't need to tell anyone reading this that MMA is a violent sport. In violent sports, people will get hurt (hell, it even happens in nonviolent ones too). In any contact sport, keeping athletes safe is paramount. Injuries will happen, but it is extremely necessary to take precautions to keep the competitors healthy and in the cage, on the field, or wherever their particular sport is contested.

Those of you that fall the National Football League know that they are in the midst of a number of lawsuits due to major problems in regards to concussions. Ex NFL players have shown a shockingly high suicide rate, and new data available shows that many of these guys had suffered head trauma that eventually destroyed their ability to function.

I know there are quite a few crossover MMA fans that follow pro wrestling, and they have had a lot of the same problems. I'm sure a lot of you remember the tragic events surrounding the end of Chris Benoit's life, where he killed his wife and son, before taking his own life. Immediately the media jumped on the story of roid rage, though the scan of Benoit's brain showed that their assumption was far from the whole story, and might be completely wrong. I am NOT trying to defend what Chris Benoit did here, at all. But to say that there were not other extenuating circumstances would also be inaccurate.

From Wikipedia's page on the murder-suicide:

"Tests were conducted on Benoit's brain by Julian Bailes, the head of neurosurgery at West Virginia University, and results showed that 'Benoit's brain was so severely damaged it resembled the brain of an 85-year-old Alzheimer's patient.'[21] Tests conducted on Benoit's brain tissue revealed he did in fact suffer from severe chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE),[22] and had brain damage in all four lobes of the brain and brain stem.[23] Bailes and his colleagues concluded that repeated concussions can lead to dementia, which can contribute to severe behavioral problems."

Now, you might be asking, what does any of this have to do with MMA? If you watched Bellator 78, you already know the answer.

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.