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  • ONE FC and Evolve MMA share ambitious 2015 plans at Singapore press ... - MMAmania.com
    ONE FC and Evolve MMA share ambitious 2015 plans at Singapore press ...MMAmania.comMajor Asian MMA developments were taking place in Singapore earlier this week at a press conference held to commemorate the official opening of Evolve MMA's brand new academy at Orchard Central, in the heart of Singapore's most luxurious and ...
  • MMAjunkie's 'Knockout of the Month' for November 2014 (one heck of an MMA ... - MMAjunkie.com
    MMAjunkie.comMMAjunkie's 'Knockout of the Month' for November 2014 (one heck of an MMA ...MMAjunkie.comWith another action-packed month of MMA in the books, MMAjunkie takes a look at the best knockouts from November. Here are the five nominees, listed in chronological order, and the winner of MMAjunkie's “Knockout of the Month” award for November ...
  • Ben Rothwell: Increased drug testing in MMA has led to increased injuries - MMA Fighting
    Ben Rothwell: Increased drug testing in MMA has led to increased injuriesMMA Fighting"I didn't know what I was doing, I felt like I needed it (TRT)," Rothwell admitted on Monday's edition of The MMA Hour. "I was getting endocrinologists and doctors who were like: 'If you can do this, then you should. This is about […]
  • For MMA's few committed vegans, dietary challenges are worth the rewards - MMAjunkie.com
    MMAjunkie.comFor MMA's few committed vegans, dietary challenges are worth the rewardsMMAjunkie.comThat group would be MMA's small contingent of committed vegans, like UFC bantamweight Alex Caceres. There was a time shortly after he began drifting toward becoming a full vegan when he'd deviate from the diet with a post-fight cheat meal, he said ...
  • Regardless of Whether He Returns, GSP Is Voice of Reason MMA Needs - Bleacher Report
    Bleacher ReportRegardless of Whether He Returns, GSP Is Voice of Reason MMA NeedsBleacher ReportGeorges St-Pierre may go down as one of the greatest mixed martial artists in the history of the sport. As multiple MMA writers continue to speculate whether or not he is going to return to the sport, he has taken on quite […]
  • RFA contender Mehdi Baghdad held his own on soccer field before MMA career - MMAjunkie.com
    MMAjunkie.comRFA contender Mehdi Baghdad held his own on soccer field before MMA careerMMAjunkie.comMMA is not for the feint of heart. But compared to soccer, it might be a gentlemanly pursuit, according to RFA lightweight Mehdi Baghdad. Baghdad (10-3), who fights J.J. Ambrose (10-2) for the promotion's vacant lightweight belt on Dec. 5 at RFA 21 […]
  • WWE News: Brock Lesnar Is 'Weak' At MMA Striking, Claims Former UFC ... - The Inquisitr
    The InquisitrWWE News: Brock Lesnar Is 'Weak' At MMA Striking, Claims Former UFC ...The InquisitrIn a related report by the Inquisitr, Brock Lesnar's UFC return has become the topic of conversation in recent weeks, ever since UFC President Dana White announced the former MMA fighter may have an interest in returning to MMA fighting. While […]
  • Comedian Russell Peters weighs in on MMA's hottest topics - MMA Fighting
    Bleacher ReportComedian Russell Peters weighs in on MMA's hottest topicsMMA FightingRussell Peters knows his combat sports. He was an amateur boxer for nine years, is a longtime fan of the UFC and a close friend of several fighters, like Cung Le. So the well-known comedian has an informed opinion about the state of MMA. And […]
  • An MMA Thanksgiving: 2014 All-Turkey Team - Sherdog.com
    Sherdog.comAn MMA Thanksgiving: 2014 All-Turkey TeamSherdog.comMixed martial arts is not immune, and it comes as little surprise that everyone's favorite combat sport has given rise to its share of knuckleheads. The last calendar year has been replete with scratch-your-head moments, from Wanderlei Silva ducking a ...
  • Dean battles in MMA fight to earn money for school - 9NEWS.com
    9NEWS.comDean battles in MMA fight to earn money for school9NEWS.comAt age 52, Laurita signed himself up for a mixed-martial arts fight in order to win money for the team. He fought hard but after three rounds he lost by unanimous decision. He was still able to earn $3,000 to his team, and they were able […]

Posts Tagged ‘Welterweight’

Welterweights Matt Brown and Tarec Saffiedine will headline the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s Feb. 14 visit to Broomfield, Colo.

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The UFC made its first trek to the high altitude of Mexico City on Saturday night for UFC 180, where Fabricio Werdum became the interim heavyweight champion in the night’s main event. In the co-main event, Kelvin Gastelum put in a star-making performance when he submitted Jake Ellenberger in the final minute of the first round.

Gastelum came into the fight with an undefeated record of 9-0 and was going up against his toughest opponent to date. What did we learn from this welterweight clash?

 

Gastelum Is a Top 10 Welterweight

The biggest thing we learned is that Gastelum is legit. Ellenberger has had 12 prior UFC fights against some of the best welterweights in the world. None of them finished The Juggernaut as emphatically as Gastelum did. None put Ellenberger away in the first round.

Gastelum did it with ease.

Heading into this fight, we knew Gastelum was a very talented prospect, and at 23 years old, he has plenty of time to grow into a top-level mixed martial artist. At UFC 180 we learned that the speed of that growth continues to accelerate.

 

Ellenberger Won’t Be Fighting for the Title Anytime Soon

This was a must-win fight for Ellenberger. His lackluster decision loss to Rory MacDonald and third-round TKO loss to Robbie Lawler left him with his back against the wall. Now he’s on the dreaded three-fight losing streak. Though I don’t foresee him getting cut from the UFC altogether, he has a steep climb to get back to where he once was near the top of the welterweight division.  

 

Gastelum Deserves Someone in the Top Five

Sometimes when young fighters get pushed too fast into fights against savvy veterans, even in victory, they show holes in their game, and their weaknesses become more glaring. Not the case with Gastelum. This was the stiffest test he’s faced in his career, and he passed it with flying colors. He was just as quick and light on his feet as Ellenberger, and he wasted no time going for the finish when he saw the opening.

He deserves an opponent in the Top Five, and a fight with the returning Carlos Condit or perhaps Tyron Woodley would be great for Gastelum to quickly get in position for a title shot.

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When no one knew who he was, Jake Ellenberger was 6-1 in seven UFC bouts. The only loss was a contentious split decision to Carlos Condit, and Ellenberger was seen by most as a dream prospect.

Savage slugging and a wrestling game that was as good as any divisional veteran left people seeing Ellenberger as a guy who could maybe get to the top of the heap. Nasty stoppages of Mike Pyle, Sean Pierson and Jake Shields only fueled that fire.

Then things went south.

Martin Kampmann scorched him, and a few fights later, he lost two in a row to Rory MacDonald and Robbie Lawler despite a violent win over Nate Marquardt and a decent showing against Jay Hieron having split up the three losses.

The three losses in five fights were as many as he’d had in his first 20, and though they came against some of the very best 170-pounders in the world, they still served to stagnate him in one of the toughest divisions in the game.

The pack is a nasty collection of customers, but Ellenberger‘s inability to get over the hump as he enters his prime has caused him to fall firmly back among them.

Now he heads into a bout with Kelvin Gastelum at UFC 180, and he’s looking at a fight where his spot on the fringes of contendership could be up for grabs. A boy from Nebraska should know all about making hay while the sun shines, and since he hasn’t, he may lose his place in his weight class.

It’s crazy to think that a guy still only 29 years old and with so much obvious talent and experience might flame out on the fists of a prospect like Gastelum, one who was 14 when Ellenberger won his first pro bout.

In a world where Matt Brown, Hector Lombard and even Condit are still active, exciting and serving as immediate hurdles to Ellenberger‘s climb up the ladder, he simply can’t afford to lose to Gastelum. People can forgive losses to Lawler and MacDonald, even if they knock you down a few pegs. They can’t forgive a loss to a young prospect, though, at least not if you’re trying to assert that you’re elite.

And so it goes for Ellenberger, ranked No. 7 in the UFC’s official rankings and fixing to throw leather in a dangerous bout against a true upstart at a time when most would say he’s middling. He needs to prove otherwise, but going in, he’s firmly entrenched as a face among many in a crowded second tier of welterweight contenders.

When he was quietly rolling through guys left and right, no one would have seen it this way. Now that the spotlight’s been on him for a while, though, that’s how it’s playing out for The Juggernaut.

Leaving Mexico this weekend, he’ll be looking at a different situation. Win and he’s moving up in the pack; lose and he’s moving down.

If that’s not motivation, it’s hard to imagine what is.

 

Follow me on Twitter @matthewjryder!

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Tachi Palace Fights 21 is official following all 24 fighters tipping the scales Wednesday at Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino in Lemoore, Calif.

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Former World Series of Fighting welterweight champion Steve Carl is officially a free agent.

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Cage Fury Fighting Championships 43 featured four title fights, as well as the mixed martial arts debut of instant replay, but the controversial main event between Lyman Good (16-3) and Jonavin Webb (7-0) overshadowed all on Saturday night.

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Bloody Elbow
2015 Bloody Elbow MMA Scouting Report #1 Welterweight: Kamarudeen Usman
Bloody Elbow
He attended and wrestled for the University of Nebraska at Kearney and then spent two years training at the U.S. Olympic Center in Colorado before transitioning to MMA. Our own Coach Mike was kind enough to give us a bit of inside detail on Usman's

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Bellator signs undefeated welterweight Neiman Gracie
MMA Fighting
"I just signed a multi-fight deal with Bellator MMA," Gracie announced on his Instagram page. "I'm very happy to be part of this great company! I'm happy to represent jiu-jitsu in this great event." Neiman Gracie told MMAFighting.com his contract with

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2015 Bloody Elbow MMA Scouting Report #2 Welterweight: Magomed Mustafaev
Bloody Elbow
This is the result of a few factors, first that the state sponsored Sambo gyms are adding MMA programs in a deliberate effort to produce more MMA talent. Also as Russia starts turning out more quality fighters it has become a regional scene that is not

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A UFC welterweight the past five years, Paulo Thiago has been cut by the world’s top MMA promotion.

Since Thiago had lost three in a row, the release was widely expected. MMAFighting.com confirmed the UFC’s decision on Wednesday.

In his first trip to the Octagon during February 2009, Thiago shocked the 170-pound class with a knockout win over Josh Koscheck. That looked to be the beginning of a great UFC career, but Thiago was never able to top that victory.

While a submission win over Mike Swick gave the Brazilian some momentum in February 2010, Thiago has struggled since then. In the four years and eight months since that submission, Thiago has only beaten David Mitchell and Michel Prazeres while losing seven times.

Following his win over Prazeres, Thiago was stopped by Brandon Thatch. Thiago then dropped very winnable bouts against Gasan Umalatov and Sean Spencer, which made it tough for the UFC brass to keep him around despite his popularity among Brazilian fans.

At 33 years old, Thiago might not have much time left in MMA. Unless he gets on a roll against some big-name veterans outside the Octagon, it’s possible Thiago never earns his way back onto the UFC roster.

With a 5-8 UFC record, Thiago had his moments. However, with the buzz he generated by stopping Koscheck in his initial UFC outing, Thiago‘s career will likely go down as a disappointment.

Given his career with Batalhao de Operacoes Policiais Especiais in Brazil, there’s a chance Thiago steps away from fighting now. If not, World Series of Fighting has a pretty solid welterweight division he might be interested in competing in.

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  • UFC Fight Announcements: Davis vs. Bader, Lauzon vs. Iaquinta, Lentz vs. Tavares, Kid Yamamoto
    UFC has announced a number of intriguing fights for several shows coming up in the early part of 2015. Added to what is already shaping up to be a very busy UFC 2015 fight schedule, are the following matches: - Phil Davis vs. Ryan Bader in a Light Heavyweight bout set for UFC On FOX […]
  • CM Punk Says WWE Banned Him, Other Top WWE Star From Going To UFC
    During an extremely candid, two-hour long "shoot interview" on pro wrestler Colt Cabana's "Art Of Wrestling" podcast, former WWE Superstar CM Punk (Phil Brooks), famed MMA enthusiast let loose on a number of very controversial subjects, where UFC eventually became part of the conversation. After talking for well over an hour where he explained all […]
  • VIDEO: Ronda Rousey Fires Back At Eminem For “Badonkadonk” Reference In “Shady XV” Song
    "Rowdy" Ronda Rousey fired back -- in a friendly manner, of course -- at Eminem's choice to reference her "flat-little badonkadonk" in a new track off of the rapper's double-disc "Shady XV" album. The UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion appeared flattered by the inclusion of her back-side being mentioned by one of the world's most famous […]
  • UFC 181 Results — Fight Card, News & Rumors
    UFC 181 RESULTS On Saturday, December 6, 2014, MMANews.com will set the standards for live coverage of a big MMA event, as we will be providing detailed, round-by-round, UFC 181 Results coverage from the very beginning of the show, to the very end. The event is scheduled to take place live from the Mandalay Bay […]
  • VIDEO: UFC 181: Extended Preview (Hendricks vs. Lawler II, Pettis vs. Melendez)
    Above is the official UFC 181 "Extended Preview" video, which gives fight fans an all-access, behind-the-scenes look at the two UFC Championship bouts that are scheduled to headline the big event in December. Watch "UFC 181: Extended Preview" above to watch UFC Welterweight Champion Johny Hendricks prepare for his title rematch with top-ranked contender Robbie […]
  • Top Ten MMA “Super Fights” That Can Be Made Today (Part Two)
    For those who missed part one in this editorial series, we here at MMANews.com began our look at the top ten "super fights" that can be -- or should be -- made in the sport of MMA. To recap, check out the links below to read our breakdown of the following potential "super fights": - […]
  • Jim Ross Compares Brock Lesnar To Muhammad Ali, Talks Ronda Rousey At WrestleMania 31
    WWE Hall Of Famer Jim Ross, who along with being a legendary television announcer was also once the WWE's Vice President of Talent Relations, recently spoke about Brock Lesnar and Ronda Rousey during an interview with Alternative Nation. When asked about Rousey, Ross said, "She’s my favorite MMA fighter. She has legit star power and […]
  • Vitor Belfort: “I Know It’s Hard To Believe, But I’m Better Without TRT”
    When speaking with SporTV recently, UFC Middleweight title contender Vitor Belfort made the claim that now that he is no longer on TRT, he is a better fighter. "It was better for me (the end of TRT) because I left a boring treatment that was bothering me, and now I'm stronger, lighter and faster," said […]
  • Top Ten MMA “Super Fights” That Can Be Made Today (Part One)
    UPDATE: Part two of our look at the "Top Ten MMA 'Super Fights' That Can Be Made Today" has been added. To check out part two of this multiple-part editorial series, click here The super fight. It's a fight-fans dream to see two warriors that you never, in your wildest dreams, imagined you'd see standing […]
  • Cain Velasquez vs. Jon Jones Super Fight: Rockhold Says Jones Doesn’t Stand A Chance
    When Jon Jones expressed interest in taking part in future MMA "super fights" under the UFC banner, talk immediately spread like wildfire throughout the MMA community. While Fabricio Werdum, current interim UFC Heavyweight Champion, immediately accepted such a challenge, it was talk of a potential Jones vs. Cain Velasquez fight that garnered the biggest reaction […]
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