With the UFC’s 3rd event in the past 5 days tonight, it’s safe to say that there have been plenty of fighters to look out for. What is more rare, however, is a fighter who has people watching him for a reason other than fighting. Nicknamed “Brahma” Alan Jouban is a a welterweight who, from his debut fight, has had a lot of hype around him. As a fighter who both has a brown belt in 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu and trains out of Black House in LA, the atmosphere he has created for himself is one the must foster some incredible growth in regards to his training.
With credentials like that, it’s easy to understand why all eyes are on Jouban when he is in the Octagon. Black House, one of the best and baddest MMA camps around, has seen the likes of the Nogueria brothers, Anderson Silva, Jacare Souza, and Lyoto Machida grace its mats. To share the same training space, and presumably train with a list of MMA’s who’s who like that is something that instantly raises the stock of any fighter. Add a 10th Planet brown belt to the mix and you have a resume that raises lots of eyebrows. Because he is based in LA, the headquarters of 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu, Jouban has at his disposal a wide array of skilled grapplers and 10th Planet practitioners. While having a brown belt in Jiu Jitsu nowadays doesn’t always mean a whole lot, ranking so highly in 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu adds a little more flair to the accolade. Not only is 10th Planet JJ an unorthodox twist on typical Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, but it’s rare to see someone ranked so highly in the system as a fighter in the UFC.
As if being a Black House fighter, 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu practicioner, and a main card slot wasn’t enough to make Jouban an eye-opener, his successful modeling career should do just that. Jouban has been described as one of the most popular male models in Los Angelos. I’d be willing to bet there isn’t one other MMA fighter out there who can say that about himself, and more power to him; all the more incentive to keep his fight’s quick and dominant.
Not only do Jouban’s fight accolades prove impressive, but his UFC record is also notable. Though he is just 2-1 in the UFC, his two wins have come by way of knockout and he already has a Fight of the Night under his belt. His only loss is a unanimous decison to Warlley Alves. Now, this article themed around who I think will be the next world champion, rather, it’s about who I think, out of the entire card, will put on the most impressive, fan pleasing performance. Jouban has all the makings of a potential champion, but at this point in his career he is a young prospect who should have fans excited to see him fight.
Jouban can fight, grapple, pose, and win, all in impressive fashion. He has two highlight reel knockouts to his name as well as the fight camps to foster his continued success. He has the cameras constantly flashing during both his professions, and tonight at UFC Fight Night San Diego, he’s hoping to keep doing just that.
UFC 219’s Jimmie Rivera to TJ Dillashaw “Defend Your Belt or Vacate.”
MMA Latest had the chance to talk to #4 ranked UFC bantamweight Jimmie “El Terror” Rivera ahead of his fight at UFC 219 against John Lineker.
Rivera (21-1) extended his unbeaten run to twenty when he defeated Thomas Almeida at UFC Long Island in July. Originally scheduled to face former bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz, we began by asking Rivera how the opponent change had affected his preparation for UFC 219.
The only thing that’s changed is the game plan, everything else stays the same. Cruz is more of an irritating fight because he just doesn’t stop moving, but with Lineker, he’s going to stay in the pocket and bang, and I love that.
Recently, Rivera posted a video to his Twitter account of him sparring with the recently crowned bantamweight champion, TJ Dillashaw. He told us about the context of this video, and how the sparring went down between them.
It was 3 or 4 years back. I think TJ had just lost to (John) Dodson on TUF. My teammate Louis Gaudinot was actually fighting Tim Elliott at the time, and we were in Milwaukee so I got to train with (Urijah) Faber and Dillashaw.
Oh by the way did you forget this?…. I’m not cody, i don’t show videos then get knock out. pic.twitter.com/EsyvJmGnkz
— Jimmie Rivera (@JimmieRivera135) November 26, 2017
I just sent it to TJ to say, don’t forget what happened. I was getting the best of him, and I don’t really brag about it. But he wants to leave the weight class and fight DJ for the money fight, and I want to fight for the belt, so it’s defend your belt or vacate.
After briefly referencing the potential superfight between Demetrious Johnson and TJ Dillashaw, I asked Rivera about his thoughts on the somewhat flawed UFC rankings system, and title fights being put together purely for entertainment value.
It sucks. When I become champ I won’t be like a TJ or McGregor, I’m going to be like Demetrious Johnson and defend my belt against people coming up, it’s the right thing to do. If you want to win the belt and leave the division straight away, it’s kind of bullshit.
Rivera concluded by telling me that although he isn’t looking past Lineker at 219, “the only fight that makes sense after this one, is fighting TJ for the belt.”
Mark Hunt Returns to Fight Curtis Blaydes at UFC 221
UFC 221 in Perth has officially added a another Australian to the main card. Joining Robert Whittaker is the knockout legend Mark Hunt.
The Daily Telegraph first reported that Hunt will be stepping into the octagon to face #9 Curtis Blaydes. Some weren’t sure if we would ever see Hunt fight again after he was pulled from the main event in UFC Fight Night 21 against Marcin Tybura. The UFC removed him due to “medical concerns” while Hunt was stating he was perfectly fine.
After getting evaluated and cleared to fight by Australian and American doctors, it looks like his time has come to return. Hunt’s last fight was back in June when he derailed the Derrick Lewis hype train with a 4th round TKO win.
Hunt had been adamant about calling out #3 ranked heavyweight Fabricio Werdum and trying to get that rematch booked, labelling Werdum a “chicken shit” and a “coward.”
Curtis “Razor” Blaydes who has an 8-1 record, is coming off a TKO victory due to doctor stoppage at UFC 217 in November. Since losing to now title challenger Francis Ngannou in April of 2016, Blaydes has rattled off three straight wins over Alexey Oleynik, Daniel Omielanczuk, and Cody East.
With all this momentum from the win streak, Blaydes looks to capitalize and win the biggest fight of his career against Hunt.
Valentina Shevchenko vs. Priscila Cachoeira Officially Booked for Belem, Brazil card
The wait is over. Valentina Shevchenko (14-3, 3-2 UFC) will make her highly anticipated flyweight debut when the UFC returns to Brazil. She will face Priscila Cachoeira (8-0) on the February 3rd card scheduled for Belem, Brazil. Luciana Andrade was the first to report the match-up last week. On Tuesday, the UFC posted an article which stated the bout had been set.
Now that the flyweight tournament is over and the inaugural champion has her crown, many women shall migrate from the strawweight and bantamweight ranks in search of a more suitable weight class. The division is so infantile means a lot moving parts in the rankings. Yet, only women who fought at one hundred and twenty-five lbs. are ranked. Such practices muddy the title picture for the time being. Essentially ruling out the idea of Montano vs. Shevchenko for the first defense of the belt, illogical. An idea that floated around the internet until today’s confirmation of the newest female flyweight match-up. The TUF 26 winner, Nicco Montano called it, “kinda silly”, earlier this week while on The MMA Hour. Montano believes her first title defense, as it stands, should pit her against the original finalist of the flyweight tournament, Sijara Eubanks. Although Eubanks withdrew from the title fight, she is still ranked as the #1 contender in the division.
Shevchenko explained her desire for the flyweight belt on The MMA Hour, a week earlier than Montano, “For me it’s number one, to fight for the title… It doesn’t matter for me, if I have to have one fight before it, okay I will do it… my main goal is to be the champion… It doesn’t matter I move from one thirty-five to one twenty-five. My goal is still the same, to be the champion”. The Russian fighter is coming off an unsuccessful title shot in the bantamweight division against the current reigning champ, Amanda Nunes. The bout went to a decision after close five rounds, Nunes ultimately defeated Shevchenko via split decision (47-48, 48-47, 48-47).
Her opponent, Priscila Cachoeira, is not only new to the UFCs female flyweight division but the promotion’s roster as well. Cachoeira originally was scheduled to make her promotional debut against veteran Lauren Murphy at The Ultimate Fighter Finale 26. The Brazilian fighter withdrew from the bout due to visa issues. As a professional, she is undefeated with four knockouts in her eight fights.
UFC Belem is scheduled for February 3rd, 2018. The card will feature Timothy Johnson vs. Marcelo Golm in the heavyweight division. It will also have Thiago Santos taking on Anthony Smith in the middleweight division.
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