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Posts Tagged ‘comeback’


Sandusky Register
Butt-kicking Booth making MMA comeback
Sandusky Register
Within seconds, the powerful noises crescendoed, as one man's strikes against a punching bag got louder, faster and fiercer. As Kyle Booth bombarded the defenseless bag with forceful vigor, the 2008 Norwalk High School graduate envisioned maintaining …

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This isn’t the first time Anthony Pettis has lost. He does have two losses under his belt, so he has proven he has been able to bounce back.

However, there is something different about this loss. Maybe it was because he was coming into the fight as a heavy favorite against an opponent whom most pundits just blew off as a simple stepping stone. And maybe it was because he was thoroughly dominated by an opponent most people underestimated.

It may be hard for those of us outside of the Pettis circle to truly know, but this loss to Rafael dos Anjos has to really sting. But for Pettis fans, the loss hits them in their guts. Dana White told Fox Sports’ Ariel Helwani (h/t MMA Mania’s Alex Schlinsky) even his son was crying after the Anthony Pettis loss.

In Sam Sheridan’s book, The Fighter’s Mind: Inside the Mental Game, American Top Team co-founder Ricardo Liborio stated:

You have to [understand] you can lose. Somebody can beat your ass; but you can overcome…it’s not your time, it’s not your day. Just because you lose doesn’t make you a loser. It’s not the same fight every time.

Sheridan also interviewed legend Pat Miletich in The Fighter’s Mind, who stated:

In this sport, nobody wins a world title undefeated. You have to lose fights to get better, honestly…A loss is sometimes just the thing to bring a guy back to earth. Some guys will be on a roll and turn into complete a——s.

Is Anthony Pettis, to paraphrase Miletich, a jerk? Certainly not. I’ve interviewed him, and he was kind enough to take a picture with me after the UFC 181 post-fight press conference. So my brief personal experiences with the guy don’t lead me to that conclusion.

But to be a fighter, you need a huge ego, or at least a ton of confidence. And after a huge win streak and hitting the stardom that Pettis has reached, it would be easy to feel like you are above it all.

Technically, this loss showcased the holes in Showtime’s fight game. Of course, the way to remedy that is to go back to the gym and fix those holes.

In the end, a devastating loss can actually benefit a fighter, because it forces him to improve and become better. It creates more hunger, and we may even see a better, more entertaining Anthony Pettis because of it.

The final piece that could create a comeback: team.

Despite combat sports being an individual effort, it definitely takes a team to prepare for a fight. Coaches, sparring partners and even family and friends are a necessary part of being a fighter. There’s a lot of emotion that goes into the lead-up to a fight. And cutting weight surely isn’t fun, so it’s nice to have a strong support system there.

In our society, where we value the win, it is the loss where we can examine a fighter’s true character. Pettis is a world-class fighter, and with his support system at Roufusport, we are bound to see a better Anthony Pettis next time around.

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Anthony Pettis is one of the best lightweights in the history of mixed martial arts.

This was hardly in doubt even before Pettis faced Rafael dos Anjos in the main event of UFC 185. His ability to finish the tough and durable top contenders in his division made him one of the UFC’s brightest shining stars, a potential massive pay-per-view draw.

But injuries have derailed Pettis in recent years, preventing him from obtaining the kind of exposure that could increase his own personal brand. A recent change in his training methods, dialing back both the intensity and length of his training sessions and nearly eliminating weight training on days he sparred with a live opponent, helped keep him healthy and prepared to return to the Octagon just four months after his last fight.

Pettis brought a four-fight finishing streak into the Octagon, which is nearly unprecedented in UFC championship bouts. And he went into the fight as a significant favorite over dos Anjos, who was seen by most as mere fodder in Pettis‘ title reign.

But mixed martial arts is a cruel and often fickle beast. Instead of a glorious finish and another title defense, Pettis was instead beaten and battered by dos Anjos for five rounds.

The official decision was a foregone conclusion when it came: Dos Anjos had won all five rounds, and none of them were close.

In terms of fighting output, Pettis barely made a blip on the radar. Dos Anjos controlled the center of the Octagon with 100 precent efficiency. He brutalized Pettis in the striking department, especially against the wall of the cage. And he took the now-former champion down at will and controlled him with authority on the ground. Pettis simply had no answer for anything dos Anjos offered.

And what dos Anjos offered is incredible. The man who lost to the ageless Gleison Tibau at UFC 139 is nowhere to be found. Under the tutelage of Rafael Cordeiro, dos Anjos‘ striking game has improved dramatically. He throws with power. His defense is superb. His ground game has never lacked. And he showed all of it against Pettis, who was left resorting to the kind of post-fight excuses one expects when a champion loses to someone he did not expect to lose it. Pettis said his eye was hurt in the first round and that he could not see anything from that point forward.

And while that may be true, dos Anjos‘ manager Ali Abdel-Aziz said after the fight that the new champion tore his MCL three weeks ago.

Injury or no injury, dos Anjos appeared to be a world-beater. He demolished Pettis with the kind of one-sided authority rarely seen in UFC title fights. In doing so, he became 2015’s version of T.J. Dillashaw, a massive underdog who captured the bantamweight title by beating Renan Barao last year. Dos Anjos did not get the finish, as Dillashaw did, but he was no less effective.

And now, dos Anjos will face a murderer’s row of title challengers. Pettis will be waiting in the wings; the UFC has invested too much in him for him to be kept away from the title picture for long. Khabib Nurmagomedov will face Donald Cerrone in May to determine the first challenger for dos Anjos. He has faced each of them before. He beat Cerrone and lost to Nurmagomedov.

But given the dramatic and visceral improvements he has shown since both of those fights, well, it’s not a given that he’ll be a one-and-done champion.

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It’s a long shot. Anything involving Brock Lesnar and MMA is a long shot. But stranger things have happened, and it sounds like Frank Mir is ready to get strange.

After knocking out fellow heavyweight Antonio Silva in the first round of Sunday night’s UFC Fight Night 61 main event, Mir said at the post-fight news conference that he would “absolutely” be open to a rubber match.

“Absolutely, I think it would be a huge, big fight, and I think it would put my name even higher up. I think a rubber match between the two of us would be a phenomenal fight,” Mir said at the presser (h/t Fox Sports). “To keep that anywhere in the works, I had to get a win tonight.”

Lesnar is now ensconced back in pro wrestling, but as most fans know, money talks, and it has a big megaphone for Lesnar‘s ears. A third match between Lesnar and Mir—one of only three men to beat him in pro MMA and easily the one with whom he formed his bitterest MMA rivalry—would put up excellent numbers at the pay-per-view box office.

 

 

However, in terms of absolute value, it makes sense for the 35-year-old Mir (17-9) to use whatever fighting energy he has left to earn other “fun” fights in the UFC. The company could also use his big name and championship pedigree to help test and promote up-and-comers in the division. 

But it’s clear that doesn’t hold the same appeal for Mir, and probably wouldn’t for the UFC, which could certainly use a pay-per-view bonanza like the ones reaped in by the first two Mir-Lesnar bouts.

Back in 2008, Mir used a surprise kneebar to submit Lesnar and pull off the improbable victory.

Between this and the 2009 rematch—which was for the UFC heavyweight title and was the main event of UFC 100—Mir and Lesnar engaged in a nonstop war of words, with an angry Lesnar growing more and more frothy over Mir’s smirking taunts. Mir clearly viewed Lesnar as an inferior intellect inside the cage, but Lesnar won the rematch and the title by TKO. 

It’s unknown whether a rubber match is actually viable. But Mir’s success over Silva and his subsequent comments certainly kept the spark of hope alive for the many fans who would pay money to see such an event.

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Efrain Escudero 'inspired' by Robbie Lawler's comeback story
MMA Fighting
The UFC released him and The MMA Lab product bounced around for the next year-plus before getting a second opportunity after beating Cesar Avila in Bellator. In his second run with the UFC, Escudero lost two in a row and was cut once again. The Mexico …

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FightLine.com
GSP on Silva, drug testing … comeback?
ESPN (blog)
St-Pierre, 33, says he is not close to announcing a return to professional fighting, however, due largely to what he believes to be the rampant use of performance-enhancing drugs in mixed martial arts — and a broken system in place to fix it. "That's
UFC: Report of pay withheld from Anderson Silva after drug test failure 'not true'MMAjunkie.com
Firas Zahabi compares Anderson Silva to Lance Armstrong, says someone will MMA Fighting
Georges St-Pierre Speaks Out On Drug Use In MMA: "Going To Get Worse"FightLine.com
The Roar -Canada.com
all 90 news articles »

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UFC 183 results: Emotional Anderson Silva defeats Nick Diaz in comeback fight
MMA Fighting
When Anderson Silva was announced as the winner of his UFC 183 main event against Nick Diaz on Saturday night, one of the most fearsome killers the sport of mixed martial arts has even seen dropped to the mat and began sobbing uncontrollably.

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No one can ever question Miesha Tate’s heart.

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MMAjunkie.com
'TUF 6' vet Tom Speer plans MMA comeback after 20-month layoff
MMAjunkie.com
Tom Speer, who won MMA fame as a finalist on “The Ultimate Fighter 6,” just turned 30 and wants to give the sport another push. “The journey I took through meeting Matt Hughes, I think a part of it kind of hurt me,” he told MMAjunkie Radio. “The style

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After an ugly breakup, the UFC seems to have mended fences with former light heavyweight champion Quinton “Rampage” Jackson. It’s surprising, it’s confusing, and it’s almost certainly going to be entertaining.

It remains unclear whether or not Jackson will be able to go back to the UFC freely. According to Jeff Sherwood and C.J. Tuttle of Sherdog.com, Bellator, a rival MMA promotion, claims it still has Jackson under contract. But assuming Jackson eventually is able to return to the UFC, who could he fight?

With plenty of name brand value, a championship pedigree and what will be a great deal of hype entering the promotion, he will have his pick of the litter. There are plenty of options for him. Here are a few.

 

Mauricio “Shogun” Rua

Mauricio “Shogun” Rua has won a lot of fights in his career22 to be exact. Few of them, however, were as impressive, as emphatic or as scary as his 2005 win over Rampage. A fight between two of the last men standing from the legendary Japanese promotion makes a fair bit of sense.

Given Rua‘s recent struggles and Jackson’s “I don’t care about the belt” approach to the game these days, they are largely in line for fun fights that are ultimately irrelevant to the title picture (but still fun). That makes this a strong, nostalgia-filled fight that would work nicely as a Fight Night main event or a UFC on Fox. It could also be a potential pay-per-view co-main event.

Granted, things could get a bit odd with the timing. Between Bellator‘s likelihood to get litigious over Rampage and Shogun’s commitment to coaching on the fourth The Ultimate Fighter Brazil, their schedules might just be on diverging paths. Either way, this would be a fun one.

 

Fabio Maldonado

While Fabio Maldonado does not qualify as an aging legend in the same vein as Rampage and Shogun, Maldonado is a fighter who has gained a bit of prominence in the division. While he is by no means a star and is not championship material, he is a safe bet to put on an exciting fight. That makes him a strong candidate to face Jackson.

Maldonado is actually on a four-fight winning streak at 205 pounds (with a heavyweight loss to Stipe Miocic thrown in, just to keep things honest) and currently owns a spot in the rankings. He is most certainly deserving of a name-brand opponent, and his fan-friendly style would mix well with Rampage.

These two would combine for a serious slugfest, and that is always welcome. While the fight itself lacks the drawing power of a matchup between Jackson and Rua, it would still be deserving of a spot near the top of any given card.

 

Roy Nelson

Ol‘ Rampage has never liked cutting weight. You can’t blame him, of course, but what that ultimately means is an occasional foray to heavyweight is a serious possibility. It is worth noting, too, that he has a pre-made grudge match waiting for him opposite Roy Nelson.

Jackson and Nelson have a history that dates back to The Ultimate Fighter 10, and there were actually gears turning to make this fight happen in Bellator in 2013. While it never came to fruition, a Jackson vs. Nelson fight remains an interesting possibility if the UFC is willing to afford Jackson that freedom.

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  • Wanderlei Silva Comments On Rumors Of Talking With WWE
    MMA legend Wanderlei Silva addressed the rumors of possibly working an angle with Chael Sonnen in WWE during a recent radio appearance. "The Axe Murderer" appeared on "Submission Radio" recently and spoke about the rumors, saying he is no longer talking to WWE. "No. The talking don't continue, you know? 'Cause I'm a real fighter," […]
  • Ronda Rousey On WrestleMania 31 Appearance: “We’re Just Getting Started”
    UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey addressed her appearance at WrestleMania 31 on Sunday night on social media, noting that "we're just gettin' started." As we reported earlier today, there are already rumors of Rousey returning at next year's WrestleMania in Texas, possibly even taking part in a mixed tag-team match with The Rock against […]
  • Ben Askren On CM Punk: “He’s Got A Long Way To Go”
    Ben Askren, who works regularly with CM Punk at the Roufusport gym in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, recently spoke about Punk's skills as a MMA fighter, noting that "he's got a long way to go." Askren, who works as the wrestling coach at the gym, spoke about Punk's transition from WWE performer to combat sports athlete during […]
  • Ronda Rousey To Work Match At Next Year’s WrestleMania?
    Following her show-stealing performance at WrestleMania 31 on Sunday night, early speculation is that we haven't seen the last of Ronda Rousey in WWE. According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, it's considered likely that last night was the beginning of WWE setting up a significant future program. While nothing is confirmed at […]
  • Photo: Dana White Reacts To Ronda Rousey At WrestleMania 31
    Dana White enjoyed his biggest star stealing the show at WWE's biggest event of the year on Sunday night. The UFC President posted a photo of himself watching as Ronda Rousey joined The Rock in creating a "WrestleMania Moment" at Sunday's WrestleMania 31 event at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California, before an announced attendance […]
  • Video: UFC 189 “World Championship Tour” Embedded — Episode Eight
    UFC is giving their ongoing UFC 189 "World Championship Tour" the "Embedded" treatment, and episode eight is now available. The official description for episode eight of UFC 189 World Championship Tour Embedded, which you can watch above, reads as follows: "On Episode 8 of UFC 189 World Championship Tour Embedded, featherweight champion Jose Aldo and […]
  • Video: Complete Ronda Rousey Segment From WrestleMania 31
    As noted, UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey and Hollywood A-lister Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson stole the show at WWE's WrestleMania 31 event on Sunday night, and we've got the full segment for you right here. Check out the video above to watch as Rousey and The Rock lay the smack down on Triple H […]
  • Ronda Rousey Helps Steal The Show With The Rock At WrestleMania 31
    UPDATE: You can watch the complete Ronda Rousey segment with The Rock from WrestleMania 31 by clicking here. Ronda Rousey not only showed up at WrestleMania 31 on Sunday night, she helped steal the show. "Rowdy" Ronda, who as we noted earlier this evening, was in town for WrestleMania 31 at Levi's Stadium in Santa […]
  • Photo: Ronda Rousey, Four Horsewomen In Attendance For WrestleMania 31
    UPDATE #2: You can watch the complete Ronda Rousey segment with The Rock from WrestleMania 31 by clicking here. UPDATE: Ronda Rousey did indeed show up at WrestleMania 31. Not only was she at the show, she took part in a segment with The Rock, Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, which virtually all WWE fans […]
  • Video: UFC 189 “World Championship Tour” Embedded — Episode Seven
    UFC is giving their ongoing UFC 189 "World Championship Tour" the "Embedded" treatment, and episode seven is now available. The official description for episode seven of UFC 189 World Championship Tour Embedded, which you can watch above, reads as follows: "On Episode 7 of UFC 189 World Championship Tour Embedded, featherweight champion Jose Aldo channels […]
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