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Morning Report: Luke Rockhold doesn't hold much hope for 'old' Vitor Belfort and his 'chicken neck' against Chris Weidman

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Zuffa LLC via Getty

For someone who's spent some time on the business end of a Vitor Belfort spinning head kick, UFC middleweight contender Luke Rockhold can't wait to get back in the Octagon with 'The Phenom.' Belfort is booked to challenge middleweight champion Chris Weidman Dec. 6 at UFC 181 and Rockhold would like nothing more than to take the strap off him.

"That's a perfect world right there," Rockhold told Submission Radio. "It would be awesome and we would really sell the fight, 'cause there's a couple of people I can shit about. I don't really like to talk shit about a lot of people, but there's a few people. There's Bisping and Vitor are definitely my targets, and I would sell the shit out of that fight, and then I would beat the shit out of them too.

"There's nothing I want more than to fight Vitor Belfort. You know Vitor can talk all he wants, I mean he's not even on this planet. The guy just, nothing makes sense that comes out of his mouth, and his whole life is a lie. I have fun, yeah. People wanna call me a 'Playboy', I like to enjoy myself. I'm young, I'm single, travelling the world and having a good time, but you know I handle business when it's time. Yeah, I wanna fight Vitor, more than anything."

No longer sanctioned to undergo testosterone replacement therapy, Belfort's apparently smaller appearance has been ridiculed by both Weidman and Rockhold.

"There's no doubt," said Rockhold. "He's gonna be a lot different fighter, you know. Who knows what he's gonna be like, but I just don't think he's gonna have much for Weidman. He looks old and he looks like he's got a chicken neck now, so I don't know.

"He looks tiny! I don't know how he's gonna keep the weight on, 'cause he was on UFC on Fox, man the guy looked tiny. He literally looked like a small welterweight."

[Transcription via Submission Radio]

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5 MUST-READ STORIES

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'90%.' Mark Bocek believes an overwhelming majority of fighters are using PEDs. 'We can only speculate, we can't put a number on it, but maybe someone like me can go further into this area than your average Joe.'

'I believed I was going to die.' Christy Mack releases statement on alleged War Machine attack.

Rumors. Bellator will reportedly make a 'major fight announcement' Tuesday which could include the rumored signing of Gina Carano.

Exploring flaws. Vitor Belfort says Chris Weidman would be 'crazy' to strike with him. 'I see a lot of openings from him and I'm studying this game since last year.'

Check out The MMA Hour with TJ Grant, Urijah Faber, Cub Swanson, Patrick Holohan, Mark Bocek and Dave Meltzer.

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MEDIA STEW

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Jenna Jameson telling Dr. Drew she 'can relate on every level' regarding the incident involving Christy Mack and War Machine.

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About that Jon Jones as Bruce Buffer promo...

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Chael Sonnen breaks down Jose Aldo vs. Chad Mendes.

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Full fight video of Marina Shafir getting KO'd by Amanda Bell.

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Skitchin' with Jeremy Stephens.

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Paul "The Irish Dragon" Felder earned a UFC contract after scoring this KO at CFFC 38.

(HT r/MMA)

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Long watches.

Knuckle Up #405: Jones-D.C: the smartest stupidest moves ever, Sonnen vs NSAC + much, much more

...

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TWEETS

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On the hunt.

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Get well soon.

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The Horsewomen respond.

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Ice bucket challenge.

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Sad.

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Welcome aboard.

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Possible for a champ?

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For those interested.

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FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Announced yesterday (Aug. 11 2014)

Sergio Moraes out, Wendell Oliveira Marques vs. Santiago Ponzinibbio at UFC Fight Night: Bigfoot vs. Arlovski 2

Tom DeBlass out, Muhammed Lawal vs. Marcus Sursa at Bellator 123

Jingliang Li vs. Nordine Taleb at UFC Fight Night: MacDonald vs. Saffiedine

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FANPOST OF THE DAY

Today's Fanpost of the Day comes via DROCK10.

The case for Cormier: & why Gus will fail miserably in the rematch...

(Okay, that second part might have been click bait, but I do think the rematch will be markedly anticlimactic.)

When Gustafson pulled out of the rematch I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little excited to hear it. While I believe Gus/Jones 2 will be exciting, it simply lacks the potential for upset that Cormier brings. Now before you go all keyboard warrior on me, laying out all the reasons Gus is the man to dethrone Jones, let's take a minute to look at what made Gus so successful in the first fight, then compare those things to Cormier.

Reach & Size
You simply cannot deny the fact that Gus' size was a huge factor in that fight. While being tall and having reach is not a guarantee for success (stefan struve anyone?), it certainly cannot be discounted, particularly against an opponent who's historically enjoyed a massive advantage in this department. Not taking anything away from Gus, he showed up for that fight, he was tough as nails (count the head kicks the guy took), he outboxed Jones and he used his size well. That said, his primary advantage in this fight was the element of surprise. Is he a better technical boxer than Jones? Unquestionably. Would that have mattered if he was 3 inches shorter with 3 inches less reach? No, and neither would his takedown defense. No matter how you slice it, every major advantage Gus enjoyed in this fight (except toughness) was predicated on his being nearly Jones equal in height and reach, and Jones being poorly prepared for or simply underestimating the importance of that reality.

Boxing
Gus was clearly the better boxer in the first Jones fight. He managed distance better, he was cleaner in the pocket and he did an excellent job of circling out of Jones advances. Yet, even with better boxing Jones still frequently controlled the pace with his kicks. Granted there is plenty of room to debate whether Jones kicks or Gus' boxing was more significant, but it is undeniable that the balance of power was never completely in any mans corner.

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Check out the rest of the post here.

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