We are now less than 3 weeks away from seeing Anderson Silva face off against Nick Diaz in the main event of UFC 183. All over the internet, the hype is really starting to build steam. Although many are confident that “The Spider” will return to full form and handily defeat Diaz, one of the big questions going into this bout is.. Will he throw kicks? And if he does, is he going to throw them just as hard as he used to? Anderson’s camp says yes.
“I just returned from an injury, and I’m getting beat up in training” former Strikeforce Light Heavyweight Champion Rafael Cavalcante said of Silva. “He’s training hard, I’m really impressed. He’s dedicated, and he will bring this win for the team.”
When asked if Silva has at all of a mental block when throwing kicks, Cavalcante said “I wish he had this mental block because he’s kicking me a lot, and he’s kicking f—ing hard. He’s bigger than me, so he usually kicks me a lot in training because I like to close the distance when I’m fighting. He’s kicking hard, thank God.”
Richardson Moreira, who also fights at UFC 183, is also one of Silva’s training partners and has said he’s very impressed with what Anderson has been doing.
“It’s unbelievable to see how he’s training today, his shape. It’s going to be an amazing fight. I have no doubt he’s going to win, and it’s going to be an amazing performance. It’s a special card, and I’m honored to be fighting at the same card of an idol and a friend. We’re doing our training camps together, and it has been great for me.”
When asked on how he thinks Diaz will choose to fight Anderson, Cavalcante says he doesn’t think Diaz will want to box the former 185 lb. champ. “Diaz is a tough guy, I’m a big fan, but I don’t think he will stand and trade with Anderson,” he said. “He will change his style, try to grapple more. Close the distance and go for the takedown. Anderson has more skills than him in the striking game.”
They even think Anderson will have the advantage if the fight goes to the ground.
“Nick Diaz is a brave fighter, but if he tries to avoid the stand-up fight and goes for a takedown, Anderson has a fantastic ground game. He can grapple with anyone, but it’s not easy to take him down.”
One of Anderson’s long-time boxing coaches, Erivan Conceicao said of the matchup “They are both strikers, so it’s a good fight for Anderson. If Diaz tries to stand and trade punches with Anderson, he will get beat up. Silva has better knees, elbows, and a good boxing, so it’s a good fight for him. Anderson is more skilled in the boxing area. Nick Diaz is more like a brawler, Anderson has more skills.”
“I imagine a long fight,” he said. “Nick Diaz has a good cardio, but I think Anderson knocks him out in the fourth round.”
UFC Announces Liverpool Event, Darren Till Main Event
Scousers are drowning in celebration this evening. Earlier today, UFC officials announced the addition of a Liverpool show to their 2018 event calendar. Liverpool’s, Echo Arena, plays host for the event, which takes place on May 27th.
Liverpool’s own, Darren Till made the announcement this afternoon with Dan Hardy at the UFC Fight Night: Werdum vs. Volkov, ceremonial weigh-in. When asked by Hardy what it means to have the UFC in Liverpool, he had this to day, “Words can’t describe it. It doesn’t do it justice, words. So, it’s coming and I’m going to be the first Scousers to ever have done it. In 200 years they’re going to remember my name in combat sports in Liverpool. I’m gonna take someones chin off in Liverpool, that’s what’s happening”.
He was also quoted in an release from the promotion saying, “I can’t believe UFC is finally coming to Liverpool and I’m going to be headlining Echo Arena. My name is going to be remembered in 200 years time for being part of this historical event and I can’t even describe how much that means to me”. Till will headline the card, his opponent is yet to be announced.
In the official release, it quotes David Shaw, Senior Vice President International and Content, claiming, “The stars really aligned for the Octagon to touch down in Liverpool. We have seen such phenomenal demand from fans in the region for a live event. Pair that with having such a rising, local star in Darren Till it made absolute sense to bring our first live event to this historical combat sports city in 2018”.
UFC Liverpool lands on a date speculated for a different venue, in a different country. Reports swirled last month, specifically one from MMAFighting.com, which claimed the May 27th date belonged to the UFCs return to Dublin. A return to Dublin doesn’t seem to fall completely out of the realm of possibility. For now, it remains to be seen.
The UFC also announced two bouts, both in the Middleweight division, booked for the event. Elias Therodorou takes on Trevor Smith, and Daniel Kelly goes up against England’s Tom Breese.
Marco Reyes Flagged for Potential Anti-Doping Policy Violation
Earlier today, UFC officials announced that Lightweight, Marco Reyes was flagged for a potential UFC Anti-Doping Policy violation. The potential violation hails from a sample collected on March 8th, 2018, in an out-of-competition test.
Reyes made his way into the UFC through The Ultimate Fighter Latin America, season 2. Competing in the lightweight bracket, Reyes defeated Christhian Soto by 2nd rd. TKO of a preliminary round bout. He then went onto to face Horacio Gutiérrez, in the semifinals of the tournament. Gutiérrez defeated Reyes in the opening round by TKO.
Following his elimination from the tournament, the Mexican fighter met Cezar Arzamendia on the series finale, The Ultimate Fighter Latin America 2 Finale. Reyes impressively defeated Arzamendia, whom was the first overall pick for Team Gastelum, by 1st round KO.
From there, Reyes defeated Dong Hung Kim (rd. 1, KO), and Jason Novelli (Split Decision) respectively, before falling to rising contender James Vick. Most recently, the Lightweight fighter dispatched Matt Frevola in the opening round, ruining the Long Islanders promotional debut. His bout against Frevola took place at UFC Fight Night: Stephens vs. Choi, on January 14th of this year.
The UFC statement on the matter reads as follows:
The UFC organization was notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Marco Reyes of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collected on March 8, 2018.
USADA, the independent administrator of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, will handle the results management and appropriate adjudication of this case involving Reyes. Under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, there is a full and fair legal process that is afforded to all athletes before any sanctions are imposed. Additional information will be provided at the appropriate time as the process moves forward.
Dillon Danis to make Pro debut against Kyle Walker at Bellator 198
Mixed Martial Arts officially adopted another incredibly talented jiu-jitsu practioner today. Bellator officials announced today the long-awaited debut of Dillon Danis, whom the promotion had signed in the year previous. After zero amateur and countless jiu-jitsu matches, Danis makes his debut at Bellator 198: Mir vs. Emelianenko, against Kyle Walker.
Kyle Walker enters the match up also making his Bellator debut. Walker recently made a resurgence in 2016 after taking off, almost exactly, 3 years. Since returning to the professional scene his record is 0-3, losing each fight by stoppage (2 Sub, 1 KO).
Walker looks to snap his streak yet, his opponent could provide a major challenge. In terms of advantages for Walker, he has a massive and obvious one. His experience. Walkers opponent fights for the first time in the sport of MMA. While Danis competed in many top-level jiu-jitsu tournaments and matches, comparing the competition would stop and end upon examining the rule sets. It is quite obvious, the difference. Danis will have a bit of adversity to overcome, in that respect.
In spite of this, Danis’ team, he trains out of the highly regarded SBG Ireland. Even before his MMA training, he trained under Marcelo Garcia. He earned his black belt in April of 2015, following an incredible 2014. In that year, Danis became UAEJJF World Champion, winning gold in the 82 kg (181 lb.) Brown belt category.
The prospect of what that could look like inside the cage is exciting. He may have developed some striking techniques but, the lack of time dedicated to that training in undeniable. Experience and time is required to develop skills of any kind.
Bellator 198: Mir vs. Emelianenko, takes place on Saturday, April 28th from the Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Illinois. Bellator 198 features the third of four preliminary bouts in the promotions Heavyweight Grand Prix, Fedor Emelianenko takes on Frank Mir. It serves as the nights main event. Other bouts on the card feature; Emmanuel Sanchez against Sam Sicilia, Neiman Gracie faces Javier Torres, Rafael Lavato Jr. vs. John Salter, and more.
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