The UFC women’s bantamweight title will be on the line for the first time at UFC 157, as Ronda Rousey faces Liz Carmouche. Plus, Lyoto Machida and Dan Henderson face off with a chance to move closer to the UFC light heavyweight crown.
Forrest Griffin gives Stephan Bonnar some advice for his upcoming fight versus UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva.
The above studies combined with media coverage and pharmaceutical advertising has led to a misconception by many that increased testosterone is a ticket to improved athletic performance. More recent studies show that there is not necessarily a direct correlation between increased testosterone in the body and increased performance. A 2012 study of elite rugby players showed that testosterone levels measured from saliva did not correlate with results of peak force testing (Crewther et al, J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2012). The authors further hypothesized that any results that are seen may be influenced by pre-existing strength levels. Thus, high levels of testosterone may not turn a weak man into a strong man, and even in an elite athlete, it may have no certainty of effects. Another recent study by the same authors in the same journal suggested that free testosterone levels are a strong individual predictor of squat and sprinting performance in individuals with relatively high strength levels but a poor predictor in less strong individuals.
Although this is not an exhaustive summary of the literature, it is illustrative of the concept that testosterone levels MAY improve strength performance, and any effects are probably influenced by how strong a person is to begin with. It is unlikely, given the intricacies of the endocrine (hormone) system of the body that any definitive link of increased testosterone will be found to increase athletic performance with certainty. The same arguments about anabolic steroids possibly increasing an elite athlete’s performance but not being able to turn a benchwarmer into a hall of famer will likely be used with TRT.
Testosterone and the Endocrine System
So why is the link between testosterone and athletic performance so hard to make? It’s likely because the endocrine system is a very complex system interweaving several different parts of the body secreting several different types of hormones, or chemical signals.
Testosterone Production Signalling Pathway
When the testosterone level in the blood is low, the hypothalamus in the brain releases Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone (GnRH) which triggers cells in the front of the pituitary gland just below the brain. The pituitary gland then releases Lutenizing Hormone (LH) and Follicle-Stimulating Hormone (FSH). These two hormones then act on the testes. The LH triggers the testes to produce testosterone. Then, when the levels of testosterone reach an acceptable level, the hypothalamus senses this and stops releasing GnRH. This intricate balance of production and inhibition can be disrupted anywhere along the way, either by decreasing production of a specific hormone by one of the organs, or preventing the necessary feedback sensors of how much hormone is circulating in the blood.
Causes of Low Testosterone
While Testosterone Replacement Therapy is not generally approved for athletic competition, some athletes are given therapeutic exemptions because they have documented low levels of testosterone. The causes of the low testosterone levels, however, are varied and up to debate. There is a long laundry list of causes of low testosterone, but several of them are potentially applicable to MMA fighters or other athletes. They include anabolic steroid abuse, painkiller abuse, head trauma, and weight cutting. Of these, head trauma and weight cutting are the most controversial because they do not imply that the fighter has done anything wrong other than prepare for his match and absorb physical punishment.
Hypogonadism (low testsosterone and related diseases) caused by pituitary dysfunction after head trauma seems to be the most plausible and researched cause, as studies have been published in fairly reputable journals. Whether MMA athletes receive head trauma large enough to cause this remains a question.
Low testosterone from weight cutting or weight loss is less studied, and even those studies that have looked at it, don’t show a direct causation between weight loss and low levels of testosterone. For example, one often cited study of wrestlers competing in several bouts during a single-day tournament showed that while testosterone levels do decline below normal from the beginning of the tournament to the end, shortly after the matches the testosterone levels actually spike above normal. (Barbas et al, Eur J Appl Physiol. 2011). In addition, there is a lot more going on during a tournament than simply weight loss. Thus, it’s hard to draw a straight line from weight loss to low levels of testosterone.
Furthermore, it has been shown that a 5% – 6% weight loss for weigh-in of elite wrestlers and judo players does not affect performance (Yankanich et al, J Strength Cond Res 1998; Artioli et al, J Sports Sci 2010). On the other hand, repetitive weight loss over a complete wrestling season is associated with a reduction of strength and anaerobic performance (Kraemer et al, Med Sci Sports Exerc 2001). Thus, it is unclear if weight cutting itself directly affects performance levels, which makes it even harder to advocate for supplementing low testosterone based on weight loss.
In the general population, the rate of hypogonadism tends to be a low 2%. To TRT critics, however, it seems that the percentage of MMA fighters asking for or using TRT is much higher than the expected 2% of the population. Some people point to steroid abuse or head trauma as specific causes that may be more prevalent in the MMA population and therefore it would not be unexpected to see high levels of athletes requiring TRT. Others see an attempt to cheat the system. Certainly if a fighter has low testosterone due to steroid abuse, giving him TRT after that may seem to be compounding the athlete’s abuse of PEDs. On the other hand, if a fighter does have a medical need for TRT, denying him the right to use it or compete without it may be denying him the right to treat a medical problem, which is a basic right.
Since testosterone therapy requires a doctor’s prescription, low levels of testosterone not only have to be identified by blood tests, but the cause of the low levels needs to be pinpointed. In order to apply for a therapeutic use exemption (TUE), fighters often need to submit samples for testing of LH and FSH (to see if they are being produced at appropriate levels or are high because they are going unrecognized in the body) as well as undergo an MRI to look at the brain for sources of hypogonadism.
Many athletic commissions require fighters to be tested for overall testosterone levels, as well as something called the Testosterone to Epitestosterone ratio, or T/E ratio. When the body produces its natural testosterone, a similar compound called epitestosterone is produced in parallel, so a normal T/E ratio is considered 1:1. However, there is some documented variation in the population, such that 95% of the population falls into 4:1 and 99% falls into 6:1 (based on standard deviations). This is where many people come up with objections that fighters are allowed four or six times the normal amount of testosterone. Note that these levels are not absolute or toal testosterone levels, but ratios of testosterone to epitestosterone. This measurement becomes important because testosterone administered into the body is not usually converted to epitestosterone, so high T/E ratio may suggest that outside testosterone is circulating in the blood. It then becomes tricky to figure out if someone has a 6:1 T/E ratio due to abuse of TRT or is part of the 5% at the end of the normal bell-curve.
One test to help figure this gray area out is called Carbon Isotope Ratio Testing which can often detect if the testosterone in the body is naturally-produced or synthetic. Unfortunately, this test is very expensive and often is unaffordable for state athletic commissions to use on a regular basis.
With all of this information, it places a big burden on the athletic commissions, testing agencies, and consulting doctors to adequately work-up an athlete’s therapeutic exemption application and to ensure that fighters do not go into competition with an unfair advantage. Hopefully, by spreading information through sites like fightmedicine.net, we can make people better informed about these issues and make the sport of MMA safe for fighters with medical issues and fair for those competing in it.
*As a side note, anyone who reads scientific articles should take into consideration what journal (New England Journal of Medicine, etc) the article comes from. Not all articles and not all journals hold as much weight as others. If you are unfamiliar with the specialty area of the research, you can always look at the Impact Factor of a journal.
Jonathan Gelber, M.D. is licensed to practice medicine in the State of California.
By Mike Chiappetta – Senior Writer
Yoshihiro Akiyama still has a job in the UFC, and now has his next opponent set, as well.
Despite losing four straight in the octagon, Akiyama’s spirited performances have ensured him at least one more go, and it will come against Thiago Alves at a July event — most likely UFC 149 — according to sources with knowledge of the situation.
The two have both agreed to the matchup, sources told MMA Fighting.
The Japanese fighter recently dropped to welterweight, where he fought Jake Shields at UFC 144. The two went all three rounds, with Shields taking a unanimous decision on all three judges’ scorecards. Prior to that, Akiyama(13-5, 2 no decisions) had lost consecutive bouts to Vitor Belfort, Michael Bisping and Chris Leben.
After dropping his fourth straight, there was speculation about whether or not he would be cut, and he’ll face the same kind of stakes the next time around.
In Alves, Akiyama will be facing an opponent hungry for a win.
Alves appeared to be on the way to a victory over Martin Kampmann during March’s UFC on FX event in Sydney, Australia when he went for a takedown and fell into a fight-ending guillotine choke with just 48 seconds left in the fight. With the loss, Alves fell to 19-9 overall after dropping four of his last six.
The fight is likely as part of the UFC’s inaugural foray into Calgary on July 21 at the Scotiabank Saddledome. In the main event of that show, Jose Aldo will attempt to defend his featherweight championship, though his opponent has yet to be named.
One of the biggest MMA news this past week was the positive results of the testosterone test of Overeem. What happens next?
Alistair Overeem has filed an application for a new fighter’s license with the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
Keith Kizer, executive director of the commission, confirmed the news with Bleacher Report on Sunday. Kizer also said that he “assumes” Overeem will be in attendance for an April 24 hearing regarding his test failure for elevated testosterone to epitestosterone.
Kizer also told Bleacher Report that Overeem has also not requested that his B-sample be tested.
When a fighter gives a urine sample during the drug screening process, his urine is divided into two samples. If the A-sample fails, the fighter has the option to request that the B-sample be tested. If the B-sample is clean, the fighter likely would not be punished.
Filing a license application is a risk for Overeem. If his application is denied due to the test failure, he likely would not be able to apply for a new license until April 2013.
It’s the same situation Josh Barnett found himself in with the California State Athletic Commission during the Affliction: Trilogy ordeal. Barnett wasn’t technically suspended by the commission, but only because his license was expired. Barnett never applied for the license for fear that he would be denied, which would effectively suspend him from fighting for one year.
Things are getting interesting. It would seem—at least from the outside looking in—that Overeem is confident the commission will accept his explanation for his elevated testosterone levels. If he weren’t absolutely confident in his defense, he wouldn’t apply for a fighter’s license for the reasons I stated above.
Overeem’s job, reputation and at least one year’s worth of earnings are on the line. If he is refused a license in Nevada, the UFC will not use him for shows in other parts of the world until he’s served the one-year “suspension.” They used Chael Sonnen – despite him not reapplying for a California license – because he served the full one year suspension. Overeem would not be extended the same grace.
If Overeem is released from the UFC due to this situation, he could fight in Japan. But most major American commissions – and Nevada falls squarely in this space – frown on fighters accepting fights in non-regulated countries when they are suspended in America. But if Overeem is denied a license and cannot re-apply for one year, he technically would not be suspended because he isn’t a licensed fighter.
April 24 is going to be one interesting day.
The UFC and FX have produced the first episode of a three part “Primetime” series to provide the viewer a behind-the-scenes look at the UFC 145 main event world lightheavyweight championship – Jon Jones vs. Rashad Evans.
Episode 1 covers the ‘divorce’ between Evans and Jackson’s MMA. It also provides an all access view into the competing camps – Jackson’s in New Mexico and Rashad’s new home at the Jaco MMA facility with the Blackzilians in Boca Raton, Florida.
Episodes 2 of UFC 145 “Primetime” will air on FX on April 13, and episode 3 on April 20. You will be able to catch the replay right here on the Underground.
I’m from a family of fighters. I found my niche fighting, starting off in wrestling in high school. Fighting to be noticed by the coaches, same with my brothers. Arthur, he plays for the Baltimore Ravens, and he definitely went through a lot.
When you look at my face, you’ll see lots of scars. I mean the biggest one in the middle of my forehead, that’s from my brothers.
Life’s just one big fight when you think about it. You know we’re all fighting for different things, but in one way or another, we’re all fighters.
I’m Jon Jones and I’m a UFC fighter.
A year ago Bruce Buffer predicted that Jon Jones would be the Muhammad Ali of MMA.
“I believe it and receive it” twittered Jones in response.
Now UFC magazine pays homage to an iconic image of Ali, taken when Ali was just one year from winning an Olympic gold medal, and no one had seen anything like him.
Expect to hear the comparisons for many years to come.
By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief
The UFC announced on Sunday that Gray Maynard and Clay Guida will square off at UFC on FX 3 this June, the second FX headliner featuring the lightweight division.
Maynard will look to bounce back from the first loss of his MMA career, a fourth round knockout against Frankie Edgar in their epic third meeting last October.
Guida will hope to rebound himself, having suffered a decision loss to now-Champ Ben Henderson at UFC on Fox 1 last November. That loss was a setback after a win over final WEC Champ Anthony Pettis last September, but now both fighters will have five rounds to get back into the title picture.
The event will come on June 22, though no venue or location has yet been revealed for the card.
Penick’s Analysis: I’m a little surprised they’re going with this fight as a five-round headliner with both coming off losses, but it’s a great fight regardless. Both need a big win to get back after losses in the division, and they’ll need a big performance here to make their case for doing so. It’s a very tough stylistic matchup for each of them, and I’m very much intrigued to see how the fight plays out this June.
In a recent interview with the Brazilian language SporTV, UFC Middleweight champion Anderson Silva covered a wide variety of topics.
SportTV: The opening of his film shows a scene where Bruce Lee explains that the fighter has to behave like water, shaping up to the fence. He had great influence on his professional and personal life?
Anderson Silva: I am a big fan of his … I trained Wing Chun … he was very important in both my professional and personal life. I sisn’t know him personally, but he conducted his life in martial arts with great dedication, and passed it to several generations.
STV: At the end of the (Like Water documentary) you come to train with his son, Kalyl. Have you ever wondered coach him, if he is a fighter?
AS: I get very nervous, I do not know if I could be a coach my son. If they play soccer I get nervous, imagine fighting.
STV: Have your children shown some willingness to fight?
AS: Kalyl like soccer, Gabriel likes to fight and wants to be a fighter, and John also trains. In fact, they all train, minus the girls. It’s a family tradition, and I always tell them that regardless of what you want to do in life: to be a football player, basketball, dancer, they have to learn and understand the philosophy of martial arts, and will have to train tp black belt. This is important in their lives.
STV: So no chance of seeing a dynasty in the world of MMA?
AS: A great possibility … I hope that does not happen (laughs). But, yes.
STV: We have a movie that shows the fight against Chael Sonnen, and it stays alive because of the rematch, which is one of the largest in the history.
AS: The truth is this. He is an athlete who got caught doping, I fought against him bruised, had problems with American justice, respects nothing, did not respect our country. What’s it mean? Nothing.
I respect the views and position of the promoters of the fight, the owners of the event, but I think he should not have a chance to fight me again. But this is not me who has to decide. I will prepare to fight like against any other opponent. But he disrespected our idols, who made history in the sport, like Lance Armstrong.
This guy is tricky, he has some personal problem with himself. The emphasis that the Brazilian media give this guy is bad. If any Brazilian said what he said about the USA, and American Idols, we would not even have the same opportunity to enter the country or to speak in American media. I think that Brazilians need to be more patriotic as Americans are. When I come out of Brazil, and I’ve fought in England, Japan, Korea, I always represent my country and the Brazilian people, apart from my personal side, as my family and my team.
STV: In the film we see Ed Smith, his manager, agreeing with a statement of Sonnen’s that the bows you do before and after the fights are not natural, and that if he made a bow like that in Brazil, he’d get hit in head and have his wallet stolen.
AS: This is a problem. Ed Smith and Chael Sonnen are Americans. I have practiced martial arts since age eight and was taught early on to respect any person, whether or not an they are an opponent. They do not think the same way.
STV: You’re already 36 years old. Have you ever stopped to think at the time of retirement?
AS: Everyone thinks that. I’ve imagined myself in a lake, fishing with my grandchildren and my wife calling me into the house … joke. Not thought of yet. I think I still have another ten-year career, but have not discussed my contract with the UFC. After this fight I think there are still two or three, I’m not sure. They just call me and say they need the Spider. And then I go.
STV: Speaking of Spider, you’re a fan of Spiderman. In his life, he has a character that inspired him to become a great hero, who is Uncle Ben. And you? It has some “Uncle Ben” in your life?
AS: Of course I do! My uncle and my aunt, who are the people who raised me. If it were not for them I would not be the man and father I am today. I went to Curitiba at four years of age, and all my education was given by them. So they are my “uncles” Ben … Although I have my biological parents, even today I miss (my Aunt who is deceased). Whenever I go to see my uncle in Curitiba it renews my energy. He is a very wise person, like my biological father. I miss my aunt, I was very attached to her.
STV: Of all the struggles that you did today, what is your big fight, that you review and feel that is special?
AS: My first world title in Japan at Shooto, against Hayato Sakurai in 2001. It was important to me because at any given time, everything was against me and my team, and I found myself in a situation where I was against the whole Japan. At the time the fighters had to enter a runway and we take our things to leave them there before entering. At that time an organizer came and told me to get all my stuff away, because the champion had just passed, and only they could pass that way and leave their stuff there. I had already started to take my things away, and it was a bad sign. My coach at the time, Sergio Cunha, gave me an earful. He said: “Are you crazy? Leave your stuff there, you’ll come back here. If this is where the champions are, it is here that you will return. You go there and in five minutes you will come back. It was what happened.”
STV: Who in history do you most want to fight?
AS: My clone. I train to fight the best fighters in the world, and the worst possible situations. But I want to fight even with my clone, would be a fantastic fight. I can not say that I would like to fight so and sicano. If you ask me with whom you would like to fight in a boxing match, I would say Roy Jones Jr. is a dream that I have as a professional fight.
STV: What’s the worst moment of his career?
AS: When I was in Pride, and I didn’t know if I would stop fighting or not after leaving my team at the time. It was politics and I did not return to fight in Pride. I was a little frustrated.
STV: You’re more reserved than the average top fighters in MMA, but some interviews controversial in some people’s opinion. Are you egotistical?
AS: You’re a reporter, you know how things work. I can tell you put A, and they say A, B, C and D. Depends on the integrity of those who interview. But I do not think egotistically. I am as I am. I try to be better every day, but I’m not perfect. I have my flaws, not pleased with everything, but I like what I’m seeing.
STV: You see yourself as one of the great sports heroes of Brazil, like Pele, Ayrton Senna or Guga Kuerten?
AS: No. I think I can … make a difference to the children of our country. My big goal is this, change the heroes of Brazil. We are managing to do this, but much remains. I want children to see MMA athletes as their heroes, especially those who have no access to culture as wealthier kids do. The UFC does an excellent job of marketing the image of athletes and our work around the world.
STV: Royce Gracie once said that every fighter needs to have a base in MMA. Junior Dos Santos’s is boxing. Royce’s is jiu-jitsu. And yours? Is it muay thai? Or do you considered yourself a mixed martial arts fighter?
AS: I have to disagree with the master Royce. I train all aspect, so as not to lose ground to other athletes. I have many specialties in tkicking, because I trained boxing, capoeira, tae kwon do, wing chun, hapkido, and I feel safer in these forms of struggle. But I train wrestling, wrestling, I had the opportunity to go to a Xingu tribe in their struggle to learn, and loved it. It makes you adapt to the system, and if you’re not well prepared, and have no knowledge of certain techniques, you end up putting yourself at risk.
When you know and dominate a sport, you become an expert at it. But when you study and devote time of your life to learn about other areas and specialize in MMA, you learn its limits within each separate mode, and can handle what happens inside the Octagon, learning to avoid risk and not get hurt seriously. I do not fight to win. I train to exit the same way I entered the Octagon. Martial arts is not intended for attack, but for defense.
In the dream world of millions of mixed martial arts (MMA) fans across the globe, no other fight is fantasized about as much as a clash between Ultimate Fighting Championship Middleweight (UFC) Champion Anderson Silva and UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones.
Both are at the top of the MMA world and have wreaked havoc in their respective divisions. “The Spider” has won an unheard of 14 consecutive fights inside the Octagon, including nine title defenses and two appearances at 205-pounds.
Jones is 9-1 in his relatively young UFC career, with his only loss coming via disqualification to Matt Hamill, a fight he was thoroughly dominating. He’s also defeated a murderers row of elite fighters in the light heavyweight field en route to capturing and defending his first world title in 2011.
But will two of the best to ever don the four ounce gloves ever meet face-to-face inside the eight-walled cage? Highly unlikely, or at least that’s what “Bones” would prefer.
Speaking to Sensei SporTV, Jones says that even though the world would like nothing more than to see he and Silva go toe-to-toe, he would rather have him as a mentor than an opponent.
“My job is to be prepared to face the best in the world. I’d rather not deal with Anderson, but if I have to fight him, I will focus on my confidence and on my technique. I respect and look up to him (Silva) so much. For me, the ideal scenario would be having him as my mentor and learn with him after he retires. It would be great for me. That would be ideal, but the world wants to see us fighting.”
Though the chances of Silva moving back up to the 205-pound division in attempts of capturing gold there by facing Jones would probably be slim to none at this point, Jones, on the other hand, is still not ruling out a move to heavyweight:
“I spoke with Dana White about making a heavyweight fight in 2012 but he said he didn’t consider it a good idea right now. But after beating Dan Henderson, Rashad Evans and maybe Alexander Gustafsson in 2012, I don’t see what to do in this division, not wanting to disrespect anybody.”
If Jones’ 2012 fight campaign is as successful as last year’s, he would no longer have anything to prove at 205-pounds. A move to heavyweight won’t be too far-fetched, as Jones towers over his opposition in his current class. Pack on some extra mass and you have yourselves a very real heavyweight contender.
First things first, there is still the matter of a much anticipated fight that Jones has to tend to, as he takes on former training partner turned bitter rival, Rashad Evans, at UFC 145 in Atlanta, Georgia, on April 21, 2012.
The Jon Jones vs. Anderson Silva dream match may never come to fruition; however, should Silva ever consider taking Jones up on his offer to be his mentor, can you imagine a Jon Jones trained by possibly the best fighter to ever compete in MMA?
I’m not an MMA journalist
From: Sean McCorkle
but since I’m a better writer and more knowledgeable than almost all of them, allow me to drop some mma science on y’all, straight old school style. And by that I mean I’m just going to tell you guys my opinions on random topics in MMA.
First off, I was very impressed with Bellator as a promotion as a whole fighting for them last Friday night. Their entire staff is very professional, they treat all of the fighters with the utmost respect almost going overboard catering to the fighters, and look to really be trying to build their promotion the right way. We stayed in an expensive hotel, the perdiem money was way more than I expected or needed, and the production crew to the PR people, to the cut guys were awesome.
I love the tournament format they have, and the philosophy that fighters can and should fight more than just a few times a year. Obviously nobody will be able to compete with the UFC for many years, but Bellator really did impress me. It will be very interesting to see where the deal with Spike and Viacom has them after the next 18 months.
Next up, I thought it was pretty cool that Pavia’s new promotion made their fights available for free on youtube. A lot of people have asked me if I would fight for them, and my answer is always the same. I’d fight for the Taliban if the money was right. People complain that Thompson vrs Sapp was a freak show, and my response always is “What the hell is wrong with a freak show?” I love them. I loved when Pride would put together insane mismatches size wise, or would put Fedor in with a gigantic bum. Everybody loves to watch a train wreck. MMA is just entertainment. If you want purity of a sport go watch the olympics or some shit.
I can’t wait for UFC 146. Obviously I’m a little biased toward wanting to watch heavyweights, but Dos Santos/Overeem, Velasquez/Mir and Nelson/Silva all on the same card? Are you kidding me? FYI, Overeem beats Dos Santos probably by decision, Velasquez beats Mir probably very quickly, and Roy Nelson out strikes and KO’s Silva. Then Cain fights Overeem in what should be, although it probably won’t be, the biggest heavyweight fight of all time.
Jon Jones and Anderson Silva, although neither appear to be interested in it, really need to face each other if they both win their next fights. I don’t think it will ever happen but that is the fight I’d most like to see of any fight in the world. Silva seems all too eager to fight a considerably smaller GSP, but has no interest in the Jon Jones fight? Really? Jones has said in the past he would take the fight, and although he’s bigger than Silva, Jones is also willing to move up to heavyweight and fight anyone there as well. By the time Jon Jones is done, he will be considered the greatest fighter of all time in any weight class.
I did not get a chance to see the Curran/Warren fight the other night because they were on right before me, but Warren did not look in good shape at all backstage after the fight. I’m not one to have my stomach easily turned either, but I was genuinely afraid for him when he passed by as they were practically carrying him. I keep hearing it was a late stoppage, and then that it wasn’t, back and forth. Either way, I genuinely hope that he is OK. That’s a scary thing to see.
I got to hang out with Miguel Torres quite a bit in Chicago this weekend and although I knew him a little before, I didn’t know how hilarious and cool a dude he actually is. He and I together are comedy gold. He showed me a few new sweeps from 1/2 guard, and I taught him a thing or two about how to be really big, strong, and athletic when you’re in someone’s guard.
Finally, I want to remind you all that I am fighting Brian Heden in on 3/31 in the main event for WMMA in El Paso, Texas. Karo Parisyan and Thomas the Wildman Denny are the co main event that night. I can’t begin to explain to you how surreal it is for me to be the main event for a promotion where Denny and Parisyan are fighting on the same card. I still get excited just to meet guys like Karo and Thomas, and can’t believe that I am considered to be as big a name in MMA as either of them. It sounds stupid, but it’s just so weird for me. I was a huge MMA fan (almost like an MMA nerd) before I ever even dreamed about starting to train or fight.
And very lastly, it pains me to admit that I love all you fuckers on the UG. Even my haters. I literally laugh out loud on a daily basis at the stuff you guys write on here, not just about me, but about everybody else. There is no other place on the internet like the UG, and seriously some of the funniest things I’ve ever read, heard, or seen in my life have been on here. I get on here every day (and so does every other famous fighter no matter what they say) even if I don’t post. Alright, enough warmth.
It hasn’t been a good year for Quinton Jackson.
First he got injured while training to fight Ryan Bader at UFC 144 in Japan. That sucked, but a doctor that either works or doesn’t work for the UFC—depending on which version of the story you listen to—told him that if he took testosterone replacement therapy, he would magically heal and be ready to fight Bader. Imagine that.
So he did it, and yes, he magically healed up. The only problem is that he still wasn’t able to do cardio, so he came in overweight for the Bader fight. He looked fat and listless and really, outside of a big slam in the second round that nearly killed Bader, didn’t really offer up much in the way of competition.
Then he came home and gave an ill-advised interview to Fighters Only where he revealed all about the TRT use. He also voiced a few other concerns. Things were building up inside of Jackson, and it was only a matter of time before something bad happened. That’s how it always is with Rampage.
Last night was the moment we’ve all been waiting for. Jackson finally let go on Twitter and said he wants out of the UFC.
@OldNickSuperchi the ufc makes billions off us all over the world,n pay us chump change! Boxers r boring but making buckets of money,THINK!
@skanksideup y u care that its the ufc? I can fight better fights n a diff show!
The UFC makes billions from shows around the world (the most they’ve ever made in a year was probably a quarter of that number, but don’t let that distract you from a great story).
They’ve stolen Rampage’s love of fighting—after he turned down a big fight on FOX television because he wanted to fight in Japan and the UFC gave him what he wanted. Oh, and this was after the UFC stuck by him after his last mental breakdown resulted in him leading California cops on a high-speed chase.
He can fight somewhere else and have more fun (and make 1/25th of his current salary while also getting stiffed on paychecks in the process).
Jackson has always been a headache and a thorn in the side of Dana White. But there was a time Jackson could deliver in the cage, and that’s simply not the case anymore. He’s a slow, plodding version of the killer he once was in the PRIDE rings. He’ll never be a championship contender because he just fancies himself a boxer.
I think Jackson has a solid future in the movie business, and it’s probably time for him to pursue that avenue. Even long-time Rampage fans have to be sick and tired of the complaining at this point.
I know I sure am.
By Luke Thomas – Senior Editor
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting
Mar 9, 2012 – Urijah Faber is aware there’s a lot on the line as he prepares to coach against Dominick Cruz in the upcoming season of ‘The Ultimate Fighter’. As he inches closer to what is arguably his last real opportunity at a UFC title, Faber’s fighting career – and how it will be judged when he’s done competing – feels impossible to consider beyond his strained relationship to his top rival.
Faber, however, rejects the idea his rivalry with Cruz is the defining issue of his career. The questions surrounding his rivalry are necessary conditions of the show and his career right now, but they are not sufficient by themselves. Faber’s got more on his mind. Can the bantamweights carry the most important show in MMA and the subsequent pay-per-view where the coaches will fight? Will they be able to honor the live format with strong coaching? How can they navigate reality television without presenting a cheap facsimile of their true personality?
In this interview with MMA Fighting, Faber makes his case for why performance against Cruz does not define his career, what he views as coaching best practices, how he plans to adapt his camp to the reality show’s needs, why the Dakota Cochrane situation is ‘weird’, and why this reality show is all a part of his plan to live a life of fulfillment and fun.
Full audio and partial transcription below: