UFC superstar and bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey isn't close to being done, but she's already picked out her successor. Twenty two year-old Rose "Thug" Namajunas(2-1) is a contender on this season of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) and, according to the "Rowdy" one, she's also "The Next Ronda Rousey."
The young submission artist is competing onTUF 20to become the UFC's first ever 115 pound champ and Rousey thinks she's got what it takes to do that, and be a mainstream star. "I called it from the very beginning. As soon as I saw her, I saw this girl is special," Rousey recently told media members.
"She’s got an amazing skill set, she’s an exciting fighter. She takes risks, she’s gorgeous, and she’s charismatic."
According to a new interview, UFC 170 pound champion Johny Hendricks says his injured arm is 85% healed and he is back to daily training. However, he still doesn't expect to fight until the second or third month of 2015.
Hendricks' wrestling coach, Kenny Monday, said that Hendricks' camp wanted to fight in January. "I know everyone would have loved January, but it doesn't look like that's going to work out," Monday said.
"I'm thinking he fights in Februaryor March."
Ted Erhardt, Hendricks' manager, said that his client is healthy and able to sign on for a fight, but wants his first title defense to headline a pay per view. And, since the UFC has already announced their ppv headliners through Jan. 31, Hendricks will likely wait it out for another month or two.
UFC bantamweight championRonda Rousey is all healed up from a broken hand and got back to training recently with a Jiu Jitsu sparring session against No. 1 UFC lightweight contender Gilbert Melendez. Check out the video above for a beautiful display of good-natured but speedy grappling between Rousey and Melendez.
Melendez definitely has a size and strength advantage, but Rousey uses her speed and aggressiveness in scrambles to threaten with back control and arm bars. The former Judo Olympian seems able to get into position for an arm bar from anywhere, and it's pretty cool to watch.
Check it out and let us know what other pro-fighter sparring sessions you'd enjoy getting a sneak peek at, if you could.
UFC Hall of Fame members Tito Ortiz and Stephan Bonnar were involved in a bizarre incident inside a Bellator cage recently, to promote their fight against one another in November. Ortiz swung and missed with a shove directed at "RoboCop" after Bonnar insulted him with some very personal attacks and allegations.
It used to be that Ortiz was the one insulting opponents as "The Huntington Beach Bad Boy." Now, the former light heavyweight world champion says Bonnar went too far, and personal with his words.
"[Bonnar] started talking smack saying I need money to pay for my family because my chick took all my money or my ex-chick took all my money," Ortiz said in a recent interview.
Rankings are always contentious to discuss. Everyone's got a different set, and sometimes the most dubious ones (*cough* the UFC's "official" rankings *cough*) actually end up influencing important decisions. Long-time featherweight world champ Jose Aldo is never shy about expressing his opinions and recently said that, regardless of what rankings say, he believes he's the best fighter in the world.
"If you talk about skills, I feel that I'm the best in the world. but it doesn't mean that I think that I'm invincible and I'm still working to keep being a champion," he said.
Alistair Overeem may have just gotten knocked out, but he wants to fight again as soon as possible. Overeem was knocked out by Ben Rothwell Sep. 5 but maintains that he was somehow not badly hurt enough to warrant taking time off.
"[I’d like to fight] as soon as possible, because I was not out," he said in a recent interview.
"I was not sleeping. I was just dazed, and Ben capitalized. So I guess if it’s up to me, not too far away."
Whether or not his eyes closed, the loss was the third TKO or KO in Overeem's last four fights, and the ninth TKO or KO loss of the big man's career. Overeem has taken a great deal of punishment over the course of his long MMA and kickboxing career.
Former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir is one of the most accomplished big men in MMA history, but after four straight losses, he isn't sure when or if he'll return to competition. “I really don’t know. I’m kind of just taking time off and weighing that out,” Mir said in a recent interview.
“That’s a decision that me and my family are still trying to – we haven’t come to a conclusive idea yet.”
Mir has not won a bout since December, 2011, when he submitted fellow all-time great Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira with a shoulder lock. Mir's professional career spans thirteen years, at this point, and all but two of his 25 fights have taken place inside the UFC.
The Las Vegas fighter has, almost exclusively, fought against the best of the best for his entire career. For example, his last four fights and losses came against former champs Josh Barnett, Junior Dos Santos as well as number one contender Daniel Cormier and former K-1 and Strikeforce champ Alistair Overeem.
- Elias Cepeda at Cagewriter2 days ago
Anthony Johnson is one of the hottest light heavyweights in the UFC, but he still wouldn't mind locking up with down-and-out heavyweight Alistair Overeem. The two former teammates have exchanged insults and allegations in recent weeks, with Johnson saying that Overeem was a selfish and dangerous training partner back when he did work with the Blackzilians team in Florida.
"I'll fight him, I don't care. I've already trained with him before. Why not? To me it's just a fight. If the fans want to see it, I'm down to do it. I ain't said 'no' to any fight ever," Johnson claimed in a recent interview.
- Elias Cepeda at Cagewriter2 days ago
On Sep. 5 Patricio "Pitbull" Freire won a unanimous decision over then-featherweight Bellator champion Pat Curran to win his first major title. Just weeks before, however, the Brazilian actually hurt himself and pulled out of the fight.
Freire injured his knee joint during a particularly strenuous Bellator photo shoot (hint to photographers of fighters who are heading into competition - don't have them throw over two dozen flying knees just because it looks cool) and told the promotion he would be unable to rematch Curran. "I actually canceled the fight a couple weeks before the event, I said I couldn’t do it," he revealed in an interview with Guilherme Cruz.
"I had the worst camp of my life. I was so injured I couldn’t throw a kick, and then I injured my shoulder and I couldn’t throw a punch, too. I usually train twice a day, and I was barely training once a day. I had fever every time I stopped training. It was terrible.
- Elias Cepeda at Cagewriter5 days ago
World Series of Fighting (WSOF) bantamweight champ Marlon Moraes is and has always been proud to represent his Renzo Gracie lineage. To prepare for his catchweight (140lbs) bout against Cody Bollinger tomorrow on NBC Sports Network (at 9pm EST), however, the Brazilian added training with a new team into his New York and New Jersey work up North with Gracie, Ricardo Almeida and former UFC lightweight champ Frankie Edgar.
"This is the first camp that I've been going to Florida and ATT (American Top Team) a little bit," Moraes tells Cagewriter.
"It was good there. There are good training partners. I get new training and get to work with different styles and different guys. Then, I get to come back up here North in New Jersey and train with Frankie, and my coaches Mark Henry and Ricardo Almeida. I love working with them. This is the best I've ever been."
Moraes has complete confidence in his preparation and abilities but still thinks highly of his opponent Bollinger. "He's a great fighter," he says.