UFC Rotterdam’s Michel Prazeres: Why MMA is tougher than fighting crime as police officer

Michel Prazeres is looking to win his fifth straight in the UFC lightweight division, but sometimes he misses the old days in Belem, Brazil.

“Trator” finished Josh Burkman in less than two minutes in his last appearance inside the Octagon in March, and decided to try something different ahead of his UFC Rotterdam clash with Mads Burnell on Saturday. Prazeres trained for two months in the United States, but had no option but come back home after eight weeks.

“I’m a military police officer, so I had to come back to my state or I’d be considered a deserter,” Prazeres told MMA Fighting. “I trained at Kings MMA, Black House and Team Alpha Male, but I can’t stay away for more than three months. But I have a strong team here as well with several UFC and Bellator fighters, so my camp was great.”


Courtesy of Michel Prazeres

Prazeres works as a police officer for years, but everything changed after he signed with the UFC to take on fellow police officer Paulo Thiago on short notice in 2015.

“The military police helps me a lot,” said Prazeres, who lost that fight via decision. “They have a training center, where I work teaching classes to other officers and also training for my fights, so it’s the best of both worlds. Before I signed with the UFC it was different. I worked on the streets, shooting at bandits. I already had to end prison riots and stuff like that. But it’s cool now.”

The UFC lightweight doesn’t actually fight against crime anymore, but admits he misses the adrenaline.

“I can guarantee you I do miss it. Sometimes I miss it, but my world is different now, I can’t go back to that life,” Prazeres said. “Man, I’ll tell you that I think fighting is tougher than being a police officer [laughs]. A police officer has his gun so he’s already in advantage [laughs]. In a fight, it’s two guys well-trained against each other, and it’s just the two of you.”

After years of defending the law in the capital of Belem, “Trator” says he went through some unique situations thanks to his credentials in mixed martial arts and being a UFC fighter.

“A kid that I once arrested for drug trafficking is a fighter now, he trains and competes in jiu-jitsu, and that changed his life,” Prazeres said. “He realized that that life wasn’t for him. I was an example for him because I came for a humble family and made it through fighting.”

With a 6-1 record since dropping to 155 pounds in the UFC, “Trator” was originally booked to meet Islam Makhachev at the Ahoy Rotterdam arena, but UFC newcomer Burnell ended up replacing him Saturday.

It won’t make any different in the end, Prazeres says, “because I don’t train focused on an opponent or on a specific game plan. I train for the worst. I train everything, and I never fight the same way. I’m ready in all areas.”

“I googled his name and looked at his record, saw some of his boxing fights on YouTube, so it’s all good,” he continued. “He has a boxing background but also has eight submissions in MMA, so we’re going to fight in there and I will defend what’s mine. It’s going to be a war. I expect him to try to stand and trade with me because of my grappling skills, but I’m ready. I don’t underestimate anyone. I’ll go for the knockout, but if we go to the ground I’ll catch him. I have a high-level jiu-jitsu.”

With wins over the likes of Mairbek Taisumov, Gilbert Burns and Burkman in the UFC, “Trator” welcomes any challenges in the cage, but hopes the promotion would have given him someone ranked instead of a newcomer.

“I think I deserved to fight a top 10,” said Prazeres, who missed weight on Friday morning, “but the UFC booked this fight and I won’t complain. I face every opponent as if they were world champions.”

The last man to have his hands raised against Prazeres was Kevin Lee, who is currently slated to face Tony Ferguson for the interim lightweight title at UFC 216. “Motown Phenom” won that bout in 2015 via unanimous decision, but the Brazilian still thinks the judges got it wrong.

“Watch that fight again, I only lost the third round,” he says. “That kid was in his day. He didn’t beat me, but he grabbed me a lot. I won the first two rounds by a large margin, but we’ll still meet again one day. I think it would be a completely different fight today, he wouldn’t get past the second round. I let the emotions dominate me. I let him get inside my head, but our paths will cross again.”

“I root for him, I ask God to help him in his path,” he added. “That night wasn’t my night, it was his night. But who knows next time.”

One thing Prazeres wants next is to be ranked among the 15 best lightweights after UFC Fight Night 115, and hopes the promotion sees him with different eyes.

“I think the UFC should look more at us here in the North of Brazil. We deserve to be at the top,” Prazeres said. “I can fight anyone and I have what it takes to beat anyone, even the champion. I can fight anyone. The athletes at the North of Brazil are tough.

“I spent two months training in the United States and it wasn’t as tough as it is here. I think UFC Brazil should look at us more because we deserve more. It’s not easy. It’s a war, but I have a dream and I will be at the top.”

Source: mmafighting

UFC Rotterdam betting odds: Struve closing in on favored Volkov

The betting odds are in for UFC Fight Night: Rotterdam as Alexander Volkov is barely holding on as the favorite to a surging Stefan Struve. The UFC is back this Saturday, and exclusively on Fight Pass, as UFC Fight Night: Struve vs. Volkov is set to go down from Rotterdam, Netherlands. The marquee matchup will witness 18-UFC-fight veteran Stefan Struve (-105/+110) square off with the rising Alexander Volkov (-120), in a battle of Top-10 heavyweights. The co-main event of the evening, now that Germaine de Randamie has withdrawn from her bout with Marion Reneau, will involve a finish happy Siyar Bahadurzada (-140) taking on undefeated UFC newcomer Rob Wilkinson (+120).
The sizable betting favorites will be on deck for Saturday’s event, as 8 of the 12 scheduled bouts contain a minus line of -200 or wider, with the card’s longest odds belonging to Abdul-Kerim Edilov at -700 and Bojan Mihajlovic at +500. The main event for UFC Fight Night 115 will also be the pick’em fight of the night, as Struve can been seen on both sides of the fence, from -105 up to +110, with his opposition in Volkov sitting at a favorite line of around -120.
Saturday’s UFC Rotterdam prelims will begin at 11:45 A.M. ET, and will spill over into the main card at 3:00 P.M. ET, as each bout will air exclusively on UFC Fight Pass. It will be crunch time during lunch time!
Check out the UFC Rotterdam betting odds, courtesy of OddsShark.com:

Movement:
Abdul-Kerim Edilov vs. Bojan Mihajlovic: Light Heavyweight

Abdul-Kerim Edilov began his UFC Rotterdam betting life at -505, but that did not scare off any gamblers, as the light heavyweight’s line has shifted even further down the minus line, to a staggering -700. On the flip side, Bojan Mihajlovic started his betting existence as a sizable underdog around +335, before skyrocketing to a whopping +500 where he now resides.

Stefan Struve vs. Alexander Volkov: Heavyweight

Despite facing a much more experienced opponent, at least in terms of level of competition, Alexander Volkov began his UFC Fight Night 115 betting journey as a sound favorite around -175, before the betting public caught wind and laid down loot on his opposition, sending the Russian to a slight favorite line of -120. Stefan Struve, spent a few days at around +135, but once the gamblers noticed, his line was quickly shifted from dog to pick’em odds, from -105 up to +110.

Suggestions:

Mairbek Taisumov vs. Felipe Silva: Lightweight

Felipe SIlva (+230) can throw down with his solid Muay Thai skills, but he is there to be hit. Mairbek Taisumov (-270) can also throw down with his sensational kickboxing skills, but he is also there to be hit. The difference here could be Taisumov’s willingness to eat a punch in order to return fire with something much harder, cleaner, and more devastating. With that beings said, Mairbek Taisumov around -250 is still a solid bet, and don’t be surprised to see a Taisumov tsunami cash out the Taisumov inside the distance @ +138 ticket.
Live dogs:

Desmond Green vs. Rustam Khabilov: Lightweight
Des Green (+245) is a moderate underdog to Rustam Khabilov (-290), but Green has Div I wrestling credentials that may neutralize Khabilov’s take downs. Green has also trained his striking under Henri Hooft for the past few years, and will have a definitive speed advantage if it turns into a kickboxing match. Khabilov is no slouch though, and can crack on the feet himself, but Green @ +245 is worth a second look.
**Shout out to Bloody Elbow’s own Ryan Davies for collaborating on this hot take

Bryan Barberena vs. Leon Edwards: Welterweight

Bryan Barberena (+225) is no stranger to upsetting a favorite, as we saw when he bested the likes of Warlley Alves and Sage Northcutt. If Barberena can bring pressure, pressure, and more pressure, then there might be a path to victory there to best Leon Edwards (-265), who happens to be on a hot streak with 3 consecutive wins.
For an in-depth breakdown of each UFC Fight Night 115 bout, check out The MMA Vivisection with Bloody Elbow’s own Zane Simon and Connor Ruebusch. Stay glued to Bloody Elbow for all of your event coverage including play-by-play, results, highlights, and more! Happy hunting!
*Do you or someone you know have a gambling addiction? Get help by contacting The National Council on Problem Gambling at 1-800-522-4700.

Source: bloody

Darren Till sensed fear from Rotterdam opponent Bojan Velickovic in Sweden

After nearly two years on the sidelines, Darren Till returned to action earlier this year and put on a striking clinic against Jessin Ayari in Sweden.

Bojan Velickovic also competed that weekend, claiming a knockout win over hometown hero Nico Musoke.

Now pitted against each other in Rotterdam this Saturday night, Till recalled sensing fear from the Serbian when he congratulated him after his third-round stoppage victory.

“The only thing I pick up from all of these welterweights is that they’re scared of me,” Till told MMAFighting.com.

“They look at me, they see my size and they see my confidence…I always see fear in them when I see them moving around the hotel. They respect me and they fear me. They look at me like they know I’m a threat in this division.

“Obviously, I’m not trying to disrespect anyone. I see these guys and I shake their hands. When I met Bojan in Sweden, I shook his hand and I congratulated him on his win…but I could see fear from all of them.

“It’s another show for me to steal, I’m just better than him and I’m better than everyone else.”

Outside of the Octagon, the bilingual Brit is known to be quite approachable. He believes his outgoing personality coupled with his striking displays leave his opposition befuddled when they meet him.

“I think it throws a lot of people off because I feel like I’m a good person to be around. When it’s time to fight, I’m a completely different person.

“I’m not going to go into the Octagon and hug my opponent for three rounds. I’m coming in and I want to put my elbow through their skull. That’s just the way I am, that’s my mentality.”

Having begun his MMA career in Brazil, Till is focusing on building his stock in Europe at the moment. Training in Muay Thai since he’s 12 years old, the unbeaten 24-year-old is hoping to steal the show in the Netherlands, which he described as “one of the striking capitals of the world.”

“I like fighting when people are expecting a show. I like the attention. I feel like the eyes are on me this time too,” he said.

“I wanted this fight because I’ve never fought in Holland and I know it’s one of the striking capitals of the world. I think the fans are going to appreciate my skills.

“Whether it’s a first-round knockout or a three-round clinic, I’m going to steal the show.”

Till weighed in six pounds over the welterweight limit in his last outing back in May, but maintains he is completely focused on hitting the scales on target this weekend.

“This time my weight is good. I’m really focused and concentrated on making weight on Friday. At the moment I’m not too worried about the fight – I’m never worried about my fights – but now I’m focused on making weight, and on Friday I’ll make it.”

Source: mmafighting

4 obscure fighters every hardcore MMA fan should know

These fighters are all deserving of their place in mma’s hall of WTF. The hardcore mma fan is among the most smug lifeforms on planet earth. If you attempt to engage this snobby sophisticate in conversation about the sport he has dedicated his life to viewing, be prepared for a condescending, sing-song-y rebuttal, peppered with unnecessary details about obscure fighters from Azerbaijan.
This article will arm you for verbal warfare with the savviest of fight aficionados. Drop mention of one of these 4 ‘legends’ and you will immediately shed the ‘TUF noob’ label that you are automatically assigned until proven otherwise.
Although their time in the limelight was brief, all of these men left an indelible mark on the fight game and will no doubt be included in the future Ken Burns documentary about our beloved sport.

Harold Howard
Before GSP became the face of Canadian mixed martial arts, one man came to mind when you thought of Canadian fighters. That man’s name? Harold Clarence Howard.
The pride of Ontario first entered our hearts and minds when he debuted at UFC 3. Howard’s first victory (vs. bag of cement) would be highlighted in his pre-fight video (see below).
He drew local fan favorite – and Muay Thai specialist – Roland Payne in the first round of the groundbreaking one-night tournament. Payne would suffer the same fate as that uppity bag of cement. It only took Howard 0:46 to dispatch Payne with his unique brand of violence and silence the Charlotte crowd.
Next up, Howard would meet the only man to ever win a UFC tournament at the time, future hall of famer Royce Gracie. Howard gave credit where credit was due, calling Gracie “A good Jiu-Jitsu person” before their fight.
Gracie followed his patented Gracie train out to the Octagon where Howard eagerly awaited. Royce entered the cage, took one look across from him, and saw the 6’2” Howard bouncing back and forth like a Canadian mountain lion ready to pounce on his prey. Fearing for his health Gracie and his corner decided they wanted no part of Howard and threw in the towel before the fight began.
Now in the finals, Howard was scheduled to meet another future hall of famer Ken Shamrock. But like Gracie before him, Shamrock decided stepping in the cage with Howard was not in his best interests and declined to fight.
Then, in a move that can only be described as bull crap, the UFC matched Howard up with alternate Steve Jenum, who would get a direct ticket to the finals without ever having to fight earlier in the night. After stepping in the octagon twice already that night, Howard would be at a clear disadvantage to the untested Jenum.
Howard had a promising start to the bout, opening the action with a front flip scissors kick, but would ultimately suffer his first loss, unable to overcome the bright-eyed and bushy-tailed Jenum.
Harold Howard would go on to fight 3 more times, but nothing would come close to comparing to that fateful night in 1994 when he drew a line in the sand and warned his foes “If you’re coming on, then come on!”

Greg Stott
In 1997 there were few men scarier than a 28-year-old Mark Kerr. Fresh off a UFC 14 heavyweight tournament victory, Kerr was the most physically impressive athlete to compete in the octagon.
The UFC was having a difficult time finding a worthy opponent for the ‘Smashing Machine’’s return bout at UFC 15. They had no other choice, they had to call in The Ranger. Ranger Greg Stott that is.
Though he had no professional fighting experience, Stott was the creator of his own fighting system cleverly named R.I.P (Ranger International Performance). When asked about his upcoming fight with Kerr, Stott declared, “I’m looking forward to showing why R.I.P rules and all others rest in piece.”
On fight night, Stott’s potentially fatal fight system did not look like what he described. Stott approached Kerr in a stance best described as an intoxicated panda bear. When it came time for hands to fly, Stott would stomp on the canvas after throwing a jab – a technique never seen previously or ever used again (because it was useless).
In short (which the fight was) the match did not go as planed for Ranger Stott, as highlighted in a 2016 tweet from Dana White, where White reminisced about this infamous ‘fight.’
The tweet from Dana is only the finale of this debacle, do yourself a favor and go find this entire fight. Easter egg: keep an eye out during the intros for a cameo from the most famous UFC fan of all time.

Mark Kerr vs Greg Stott at UFC 15 in Bay St. Louis, MS on October 17, 1997. #DWCOTD pic.twitter.com/Uc8g3PnCXR— Dana White (@danawhite) February 4, 2016

Aliev Mukhmud
I realize it is blasphemous to speak ill of the glory that was PRIDE FC. But, for all of it’s greatness, PRIDE’s vetting process had room for improvement.
Nothing exemplifies this promotional shortcoming like the signing of Azerbaijan’s Aliev Makhmud. In defense of the PRDIE execs, Makhmud was a two time freestyle wrestling champion in his native country. However a quick session with the focus mitts would have made it painfully evident that Makhmud had no business competing in one of the world’s premier fighting organizations.
Makhmud was to fight Japanese veteran Kiyoshi Tamura, and he made his intentions abundantly clear from the sound of the bell. The hyperactive wrestler ran into the clinch and attempted multiple takedowns. Tamura was able to stuff all of the early attempts, which led to the most bizarre ‘striking’ match ever recorded to video.
I don’t want to give away too much but this fight includes, but is not limited to, the worst punches ever thrown in a fight (professional or street), simultaneous jump kicks to the groin and multiple failed attempts to quit the fight.
It was not the Japanese promotions finest moment, but it adds to the mystique and assures that ‘PRIDE Never Die!’

Joe Son
No man evokes the phrase WTF? More than former MMA fighter and actor Joe Son. A bible thumping hype man, evil henchmen in Austin Powers and ultimately murderer, Joe Son’s story is a John-Wayne-Gacy-like tale of a clown that turned out to be a monster.
A 24-year-old Son made his first public appearance as a corner man for Kimo Leopoldo at UFC 3. Son recited bible verses and thoroughly creeped everyone out before leading Kimo out to fight Royce Gracie.
He returned to the Octagon at UFC 4, this time as a combatant, practicing the self created martial art of “Joe Son Do.” Son was to face Keith Hackney, a man most notably known for defeating sumo Emanuel Yarbourgh despite being outweighed by 400 pounds. Hackney would defeat Son with a barrage of well deserved groin strikes. Keep reading and you will find out why Son’s sack deserved the pummeling.
Other highlights of his 0-4 mma career included fighting a bout in PRIDE wearing a leopard print thong, and being the only man to ever lose a bout via ‘terror.’
Son’s acting career included a lead villain role opposite Lorenzo Lamas in 1994’s Viper and a cameo in the easily forgettable Bloodfist V: Human Target. But the apex of Joe Son’s acting endeavors came in 1998, when he landed the role of “Random Task,” a shoe throwing evil henchmen of Dr. Evil in the mega hit Austin Powers: International man of mystery.
In 2008 Son’s story took a turn for the horrific. Son was arrested for felony vandalism and sentenced to 60 days in prison. While in prison Son’s DNA was matched to a 1990 gang rape and torture of a 19-year-old girl. He would be convicted of the charges and sentenced to 7 years to life. Less than one month into his incarceration Son beat his child molester cellmate to death and received an additional 27 years added on to his sentence.
Joe Son’s wacky in ring antics will undoubtedly be overshadowed by his heinous acts outside of the ring and leave a black eye on the sport that he attempted so poorly.

Source: bloody

Jon Jones passed USADA blood test day after failed urine test at UFC 214

UFC light heavyweight champ Jon Jones passed the post-fight blood test that doesn’t test for the steroid Turinabol. On the night of UFC 214, Jon Jones passed a blood test administered by USADA, according to MMAFighting’s Ariel Helwani. The post-fight blood test was taken after Jones defeated Daniel Cormier to win the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship.
MMAJunkie reached out to USADA, who have confirmed that Turinabol is screened by WADA using a urine test. This is likely why the drug would not turn up in Jones’ blood test the next day.
This was a day after Jones took a pre-fight urine test that flagged positive for the steroid Turinabol. It was announced on August 22nd that Jones had failed the scheduled pre-fight drug test.
Jones has yet to be stripped of his Light Heavyweight Championship, as the California State Athletic Commission is waiting on the results on Jones “B” sample. If Jones’ “B” sample tests positive, he would likely receive a 4 year suspension and be stripped of his championship.
The California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) has already questioned the oddity of Jones testing positive for a steroid the day before a fight, even though Jones passed previous random drug tests.
“This entire situation doesn’t make any sense to me,” CSAC Executive Director Andy Foster told MMAJunkie, “It just doesn’t. We’ve got to figure this out because this is just crazy.
I know he’s already been extremely careless once in his career … but none of this makes any sense. That’s why I think it’s very important that we vet this and look at all the available evidence before we jump to conclusions and hang this guy out to dry.”
According to MMAFighting, it will likely take a couple more weeks for Jones’ “B” sample to be processed.
Source: bloody

Michael Johnson considering move to featherweight, bout with Jose Aldo

If Michael Johnson decides to change divisions, it will be to face a fresh crop of elite opponents.

Speaking at a UFC Q&A in Rotterdam, The Netherlands on Friday (h/t to MMAUNO.com), “The Menace” suggested that the next stage of his career could see him go from lightweight (where he has fought all of his pro fights thus far) to featherweight following a rough patch of four losses in his past five outings.

Johnson’s recent setbacks have all come against highly ranked contenders, including Khabib Nurmagomedov, Nate Diaz, and Beneil Dariush. This past July, he was finished by former World Series of Fighting champion Justin Gaethje after almost 10 minutes of non-stop action. Johnson is 9-8 as a UFC lightweight.

At 145, he’s aiming for a clash with featherweight great Jose Aldo.

“I was thinking about making a move down to 145, because I’ve fought everybody in the top-10 at 155, I think it’s time for me to see some new faces in the cage,” Johnson said.

“Jose Aldo, he’s looking to get out of his contract, he’s a great champion, so I would love to go down to 145 and fight him. Anytime, anywhere. I’m hoping in December I’ll go down to Brazil and fight him. I just love good, exciting fights and he’s a guy that I would love to get in there with.”

Aldo last fought at UFC 212 in June, losing the UFC championship to Max Holloway via third-round TKO. His coach Andre Pederneiras recently told MMA Fighting that Aldo has four fights left on his current contract and he is planning to go into professional boxing after he wraps up this run with the UFC.

A rematch between Aldo and Cub Swanson has been discussed, so Johnson may have to wait in line for his shot.

Source: mmafighting

Holly Holm says referee stopped May-Mac fight too early: He wasn’t ‘out on his feet’

Holly Holm believes the referee should have allowed Conor McGregor to continue in the 10th round against Mayweather. There’s been some debate as to whether veteran referee Robert Byrd stopped the Floyd Mayweather-Conor McGregor fight too early.
Many fans believe it was a just stoppage, as McGregor, who made his pro boxing debut, was taking unanswered punches and looked to have lost his legs from underneath him. The Irishman didn’t go down, but he took some serious punishment against the ropes.
Byrd stopped the fight at 1:05 of the 10th round, but former women’s boxing and UFC champion Holly Holm believes McGregor should have been allowed to continue.
“You don’t see McGregor arguing it was stopped, but I thought though the ref jumped in a little early, yeah,” Holm said on a recent edition of The MMA Hour, per MMA Fighting’s Dave Doyle. “It’s not like he was out on his feet or about to get knocked out, or something like that. He wasn’t going in there to counter or anything. It was definitely an early stoppage for sure.”
McGregor seemed surprisingly lucid in the post-fight interview and told reporters that he was overcome by fatigue in the later rounds, but ‘The Notorious’ didn’t hesitate to give Mayweather credit for a phenomenal performance, acknowledging ‘Money’s’ unerring composure in the boxing ring.
Holm, the former UFC women’s bantamweight champ, loved the fight overall and credited both men for putting everything on the line.
“How can you not respect it?” Holm said. They both put everything on the line. McGregor walked in and said ‘I believe I can do this going against a boxer, a fighter that’s never been beat.’ He’s got the record now. That’s a big thing to take on…. For Mayweather, anything can happen in a fight, one punch can end it, he’s putting a lot on the line. 50-0 or to lose to an MMA fighter who never boxed before. That’s a lot to put on the line.”
Mayweather vs. McGregor was a historic night for combat sports and the blockbuster fight is rumored to have secured a whopping 6.5 million PPV buys, according to UFC president Dana White.
McGregor is expected to return to the Octagon to defend his lightweight title.

Source: bloody

Jon Jones passed USADA blood test the night of UFC 214

The roller-coaster road of Jon Jones since UFC 214 has taken another turn.

Jones, the reigning UFC light heavyweight champion, passed a post-fight blood screening administered by USADA on July 29 in the aftermath of his victory over Daniel Cormier at UFC 214, MMA Fighting’s Ariel Helwani has learned. The negative test was administered just one day after Jones’ infamous July 28 urine screening, which popped positive for the anabolic steroid Turinabol.

In addition, Jones passed a pair of out-of-competition USADA drug screenings on July 6 and July 7, the former a blood and urine test, and the latter a urine test.

Jones, 30, defeated Cormier via third-round knockout at UFC 214 to reclaim the UFC light heavyweight title that was stripped from him in 2015 due to his role in a controversial hit-and-run accident. In 2016, Jones was also stripped of the UFC interim light heavyweight title after testing positive for two banned substances, clomiphene and letrozol, prior to a planned rematch against Cormier at UFC 200. Jones served a maximum one-year suspension for the failed test, which USADA found to be the result of a tainted sexual performance enhancement pill.

Jones’ potential failed test on July 28 ahead of UFC 214 could sound the death knell for Jones’ career if it is proven to be legitimate, as “Bones” would face upwards of a four-year suspension as a multiple-time offender. Jones’ agent, Malki Kawa, adamantly defended Jones’ innocence last week on The MMA Hour, citing the discrepancies between testing results throughout the month of July.

“I’m encouraging everyone to go out there and take a look at the tests he passed and the test he failed,” Kawa said. “It’s a three-week window the month of the fight. Jon has passed seven unannounced tests, and the one he’s going to fail is the one that’s announced? It’s weird to me, there’s a lot of things here that don’t add up, and to the UFC, it doesn’t add up.

“The UFC knows. They look at his tests on the 6th and the 7th, and he passed both of those, there’s nothing in his system. So for him to start doing steroids, especially the steroid they’re saying he took, he would’ve had to have been doing that steroid for awhile for it to actually do anything. He just took it to take it? I mean, to me, there’s a lot of issues with this.”

Jones is currently awaiting the results of his B sample, a process which is expected to take several weeks.

Source: mmafighting

A victim of circumstance, Ben Askren looking to increase ONE Championship workload

These days, it feels like Ben Askren’s in-cage appearances are as rare as an eclipse.

Saturday’s defense of his welterweight title against Zebaztian Kadestam (9-3) at ONE Championship 60 at the Shanghai Oriental Sports Center in Shanghai, China will mark Askren’s second fight this year, which already matches his combined output from 2015 and 2016. The 33-year-old has only logged one official title defense in the past three years, though it wasn’t for lack of trying.

A 2015 fight vs. Luis “Sapo” Santos ended in a no-contest when Santos was rendered unable to continue by an Askren eye poke. ONE officials booked a rematch for later that year, but Santos missed weight and the bout was changed to a non-title affair and then scrapped altogether when Santos refused to weigh in again on fight day to ensure that he was still within a reasonable size limit.

Askren’s only 2016 appearance was against Nikolay Aleksakhin, another fight that was removed of title implications after Askren’s opponent missed weight. Askren (16-0, 1 NC) defeated Aleksakhin by unanimous decision and was expecting to fight again later that year, only to see a booking in Thailand fall through when the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej in October led to all sporting events in the following months to be canceled.

He finally managed to pick up his first official defense of the welterweight championship when he defeated Agilan Thangalapani by first-round submission this past May. After Saturday, Askren is hoping he can get a third fight soon, making this his busiest year since 2010.

“They booked me in May, they booked me again in September, and I’m going to push to get on another one as soon as possible,” Askren told MMA Fighting. “In November, they have three different cards and maybe I can get on either Manila or Singapore again.”

Askren had been angling to settle the score with Santos, only to see his rival fall to Kadestam on the same night that Askren topped Thangalapani. He also considered a superfight with former middleweight champion Vitaly Bigdash, but with the Russian having recently lost his belt, that matchup lost its luster.

“Yeah, I was going to call him and Bigdash out, and then obviously (Santos’s) stupid ass lost, he got knocked out,” said Askren. “So I ended up calling Kadestam out, because he was the one who won that bout. And then Bigdash lost his title the following month, so I couldn’t really fight him either.”

When asked whether he thought his career would be different in terms of quantity and quality of opponents if he were competing for a major North American promotion, Askren was dismissive of the suggestion. He made the jump to the Singapore-based ONE promotion in 2014 after being released by Bellator and rebuffed by UFC president Dana White.

Askren has often made light of White passing him over in favor of other fighters with less impressive credentials, and it doesn’t sound like he’s regretted the decision to take his talents to Asia given his feelings on how White handles his business.

“He’s always been a loudmouth liar. Anyone who can’t see through that just hasn’t been paying attention enough,” said Askren. “This guy will throw anyone under the bus when he has to, he’ll do anything to save his own butt and never wants to take responsibility. Never does what’s best for fighters, always what’s best for him at that time. I feel like the more people see him, the more people understand how scummy he really is.”

“I think a lot of the UFC guys really enjoy that I kind of gave the middle finger to Dana and said, ‘I’m going to do this my way’ because a lot of them would like to, but maybe they don’t have the opportunity to,” Askren continued.

In his off-time, Askren has occupied himself with training at the Evolve MMA gym in Singapore and managing the Askren Wrestling Academy locations in Wisconsin. He sees these opportunities as more than enough to keep him sharp even when actual competition time has been limited.

“The whole ring rust and the thing that you have to compete to stay in tip-top shape, that’s bulls**t,” said Askren. “I’ve been competing at a high level since I was 15 years old and as long as you’re professional about it, then you’re going to get ready and as you’ve seen in my performances after a long layoff, I’ve never had any rust, I go out there and get it done. That’s what I’m supposed to do.”

Source: mmafighting

UFC Rotterdam weigh-in results: Struve 264, Volkov 251

Check out the official weigh-in results for UFC Fight Night: Struve vs. Volkov in Rotterdam, Netherlands. The UFC Fight Night: Rotterdam weigh-ins are in the books, and almost everyone made weight. Keyword is “almost.” Brazilian lightweight Michel Prazeres came in at 159 pounds, well over the limit for his fight with Mads Burnell, so 20% of his purse will go to his opponent. This is the second time that Prazeres has missed weight in his last three fights.
Apart from him, everyone else was on point. Alexander Volkov weighed in at 251 pounds, while his main event opponent Stefan Struve tipped the scales at 264. The ceremonial weigh-ins were literally streamed on Periscope, but if you want video of the official weigh-ins, MMA DNA has you covered.
Here are the official weigh-in results for Saturday’s card:
Main Card (3 PM ET/12 PM PT)
Alexander Volkov (251) vs. Stefan Struve (264)Siyar Bahadurzada (186) vs. Rob Wilkinson (185)Marion Reneau (135) vs. Talita de Oliveira (135)Leon Edwards (168) vs. Bryan Barberena (170)
Preliminary Card (11:45 AM ET/8:45 AM PT)
Darren Till (170) vs. Bojan Velickovic (170)Felipe Silva (155) vs. Mairbek Taisumov (155)Mads Burnell (155) vs. Michel Prazeres (159*) – Prazeres has been fined 20% of his purseDesmond Green (155) vs. Rustam Khabilov (156)Francimar Barroso (204) vs. Aleksandar Rakic (205)Mike Santiago (146) vs. Zabit Magomedsharipov (145)Abdul-Kerim Edilov (204) vs. Bojan Mihajlovic (205)Thibault Gouti (155) vs. Andrew Holbrook (156)

Source: bloody