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Injuries

RDA tells “Inside MMA” Recovery Going Well; Will Be Ready for UFC 200

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UFC Lightweight Champion Rafael Dos Anjos’ injury that forced him out of his highly anticipated showdown with UFC Featherweight Champion Conor McGregor at UFC 196 is finally on the mend and it looks like we won’t have to wait too much longer until we see him back in action. Just last night the Champ sat down with Bas Rutten and Mauro Ranallo on the set of “Inside MMA” to talk about the details of his recovery from a broken foot and who he has his sights set on for a future showdown:

“[This was] my first week without the boot. My doctor cleared me to walk barefoot,” Dos Anjos revealed. “I started working a little bit, hit some bags, doing some techniques…I will be ready by July. I want to fight in July. I’m here. Whatever UFC decides, I’ll be ready,” Dos Anjos confidently stated. “In three more weeks I’ll be ready to jump, to kick. In July, I’m ready.”

The hope is that he is ready for UFC 200 in July. While the card has already announced a women’s title will be on the line with Meisha Tate defending her bantamweight title against Amanda Nunes, as well as an interim title fight between Frankie Edgar and Jose Aldo, UFC 200 is still missing a marquee men’s title fight that is not for an interim belt. The addition of RDA on the card would certain help to silence some fans and members of the media who have been critical of the fact that there is not a major men’s title fight and the headliner of an event that is being billed as the greatest UFC PPV of all time is a rematch between Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz, a fight that we just saw less in March of this year. At this point, it is hard to blame, but there is a lot of time between now and July 9th. The two fights that Dos Anjos really wanted for the event where a title defense against Diaz or super fight against welterweight champion Robbie Lawler, but he told “Inside MMA” that both of those requests were not granted by the matchmakers of the UFC.

RDA, who trains at Kings MMA in Huntington Beach, California, with the world-renowned head coach Rafael Cordeiro and UFC Heavyweight Champion Fabricio Werdum thinks that the promotion a different idea for his next fight:

“Maybe they have different plans for me. I need to defend my title against Eddie Alvarez. I think he is maybe the No. 1 contender. He is coming off a victory over Anthony Pettis, a former champion. But I told them, I fight anybody, any weight.”

Dos Anjos took the title in a one-sided unanimous decision win over Anthony Pettis at UFC 185. In his first defense, he stopped fan favorite Donald Cerrone via TKO in a mere 66 seconds at UFC on FOX 17 this past December. His overall UFC record stands at 14-5, however, he has won 10 of his last 11 fights with the promotion.

While many fans have not gravitated towards him the way they have Conor McGregor, RDA is a true warrior who fights for his family rather than fame. His humble approach may not be the best as far as generating interest for his fights but no one should ever question his heart or love of fighting:

“[This injury] was hard on me. I just want to fight,” he said whole heartily. “I kept in shape. Even with the injury, I was able to keep my diet. I want to fight anybody.”

Hang in there Champ. I think I speak for all fans when I say that we can’t wait to see you get back into the cage.

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Injuries

Paige VanZant Breaks arm in 1st Round of UFC St. Louis bout and continues to fight (Picture)

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UFC St. Louis already began the weekend on an odd note. Two fights canceled, and three fighters missed weight. What was already an exciting, yet puzzling main card, fell into a paper shredder and promptly glued back together. As opposed to Uriah Hall vs. Vitor Belfort, in the co-main event, fans who tuned in received Paige VanZant vs. Jessica-Rose Clark. This shifting of walk-out times also awarded St. Louis-native Michael Johnson, the main card booking he desired.

The UFC’s preliminary journey to St. Louis, only took the promotion 25 years. The event’s success, in the opined of the local crowd, rode waves of disengagement to maddening decibel levels. Yet, the stories followed a fever pitch of a mimicked yearly Apple stock charts. Most impressive was the 23-year-old superstar, Paige VanZant.

Oregonian, VanZant, made her highly anticipated flyweight debut Sunday night, against Australian Jessica-Rose Clark. Unfortunately, the former Dancing with the Stars contestant suffered a broken arm less than five minutes into her divisional debut. The broadcast learned about the possibility of her injury when the fighter herself told her corner just before the start of the final round. She confirmed the injury, later that night via Instagram. A post from her hospital bed spoke about the injury while showing the brutal displacement of her bone via x-ray.

The injury became clear after the final bell rang. VanZant bent at her waist and held her arm in agony, no longer able to conceal the pain. Even as the results came in, she positioned her arm into a non-existent sling. Incredibly, the new flyweight managed her way through two rounds, a lot of which, was spent on the ground. Jessica-Rose Clark at one point, had her opponent in a triangle/arm-bar, trapping and hyper-extending VanZant’s broken arm. Although the former UFC strawweight, ultimately lost via unanimous decision, her performance was not easily forgettable. Courage, determination, and perseverance prevailed for Paige VanZant, while the body failed her.

 

 

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Fight Announcements

Darren Stewart Among Changes made to UFC Winnipeg

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December 16th, the UFC will touch down in the cold Canadian city of Winnipeg, Manitoba. The third Canadian event for the promotion this year, lost its main event in the second week of November, Jose Aldo vs. Ricardo Lamas, when Aldo, replaced Frankie Edgar at last weekends pay-per-view event, UFC 218. Fortunately, Josh Emmett was booked last week, to replace Aldo. The former featherweight champion is not the only one whom won’t make the walk in Canada.

Several fighters on the card have been forced to withdraw. The UFC announced changes to card yesterday releasing an article, indicating the replacements. Justin Scoggins withdrew due to a spinal injury, otherwise known as, spinal process fracture.

According to the Winchester Hospital website, most of these injuries heal without long-term damage.

Replacing the injured Scoggins, the undefeated British prospect, Pietro Menga. “Pitbull” compiled a 13-0 record before signing with the UFC. Seven, by way of submission. The British newcomer will face Tim Elliot at flyweight. Elliot, winner of TUF 24: Tournament of Champions, has had a bitter-sweet return to the UFC. With a record of 1-2 since his return, he looks to put on a dominating performance in order to find his way back into title contention.

The other Brit to posthumously join the Winnipeg card, Darren Stewart. Stewart replaces Vitor Miranda, to fight Julian Marquez in the middleweight division, the news was originally announced by MMA Today’s Nolan King.

After entering the UFC with an undefeated record, Stewart has gone winless in his three bouts with the promotion. Twice he fought Francimar Barroso, winning their first match-up, only to have the decision overturned by the Brazilian MMA Athletic Commission (CABMMA) for an inadvertent headbutt.

His opponent, Julian Marquez, found his way to the UFC roster through, Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series. Marquez, knocked out his opponent, Phil Hawes, in the second round. Nicknamed, “the Cuban Missile Crisis”,  he dominated his opponent, taking him down twice in the round before cleanly landing a head kick as Hawes, stood up against the fence.

The final change to the card comes in the welterweight division. Oddly enough, the opponents of both, Danny Roberts and Nordine Taleb, withdrew. Roberts and Taleb instead, will fight each other, as reported by Nolan King as well.

Hopefully, Canada’s final UFC event of the year proceeds with its twelve scheduled bouts. UFC Winnipeg takes place at the Bell MTS Place, in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada on December 16th. The card features, Robbie Lawler vs. Rafael Dos Anjos, in the main event, elsewhere on the main card, Santiago Ponzinibbio takes on fan favorite Mike Perry.

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Announcement

Sijara Eubanks out of TUF 26 Finale, Roxanne Modafferi steps in on short notice

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Sijara Eubanks (2-2 MMA, 0-0 UFC)  is out of The Ultimate Fighter: A New World Champion finale. In her absence the UFC has announced that #1 ranked TUF 26 semifinalist, Roxanne Modafferi (21-13 MMA, 0-0 UFC) will be stepping up to fight Nicco Montano for the inaugural women’s flyweight championship.

Modafferi lost to Eubanks in the very last episode of TUF, she was then set to fight fellow castmember Barb Honchak in the finale that takes place on December 1. Early Thursday afternoon, Sijara has forced to pull out of the fight giving Roxanne the opportunity to fight for the championship against Nicco Montano

UFC released an official statement about the change courtesy of MMA Junkie “Due to medical issues, Sijara Eubanks, was hospitalized Thursday morning and has been pulled from her bout against Nicco Montano at Friday’s The Ultimate Fighter Finale. Stepping in for Eubanks to fight in the inaugural UFC women’s flyweight championship bout will be Ultimate Fighter 26 semifinalist Roxanne Modafferi.”

Honchak will now likely be facing TUF 26 alternate Lauren Murphy on December 2. Murphy lost her opponent Priscila Cachoeira after Cachoeira failed to get a visa for the fight.

Eubanks has taken to her personal Instagram to put out a statement to her fans. In the post, she writes, “First of all, I’m a champion. Point blank. I will be UFC champion, but it’s God’s will that it won’t be Friday night. I’m a gangster and I’ve cut more weight than most male fighters, and unfortunately, there were some miscalculations this cut, no excuses, I worked my ass off and went out on my shield. I was hospitalized early this morning for kidney failure but best believe I’ma be right back training and right back after that belt. This game is full of ups and downs, true champs know that and bounce back. Nicco and Roxanne I’m sure will have a great fight and best wishes to both those ladies. True class, those two. Nothing changes, I’m still the queen and I will claim my throne.
Thank you to all my coaches, friends and family and the wonderful staff at UFC.
God is good and I am truly blessed.”

The entire fight card to date is as follows:

  • Roxanne Modaferri vs Nicco Montano
  • Emily Whitmire vs Gillian Robertson
  • Barb Honchak vs Lauren Murphy
  • Ariel Beck vs Shana Dobson
  • DeAnna Bennett vs Melinda Fabian
  • Rachael Ostovich vs Karine Gevorgyan
  • Montana De La Rosa vs Christina Marks
  • Sean O’Malley vs Terrion Ware
  • Eric Spicely vs Gerald Meerschaert
  •  Joe Soto vs Brett Johns

The Ultimate Fighter 26 Finale “A Champion Will Be Crowned” is still set to take place Dec.1st at The Park Theater, Paradise Nevada.

 

 

 

 

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