UFC Fight Night 119's Marlon Vera wants to fight in Las Vegas, but will detour for John Lineker

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Filed under: News, UFC, Videos

UFC bantamweight Marlon Vera says it all the time – sign him up for a fight in Las Vegas.

That, or Madison Square Garden. Fight at those places, and there’s no mistaking you’ve hit the big time.

For now, Vera (10-3-1 MMA, 4-2 UFC) heads to a decidedly less hospitable locale for his next job: A fight with No. 9 bantamweight John Lineker (29-8 MMA, 10-3 UFC) in Brazil.

Until very recently, Vera wasn’t booked for a fight. Then he wound up stepping in between Lineker and Bryan Caraway (21-7 MMA, 6-2 UFC), who were bickering incessantly about a fight in December, to take on Lineker at UFC Fight Night 119.

It’s a big step up for Vera, who’s won his past three but has yet to face a fighter of Lineker’s caliber, much less in his own country.

“I’m pretty sure not many guys want to go to Brazil to fight him,” Vera told MMAjunkie Radio. “But for me, he’s just another opponent. I respect him as a person, but as a fighter, I will treat him the same way I treat other guys and do my best to beat him.”

The two open the FS1-televised main card of the event on Oct. 28 at Ibirapuera Gymnasium in Sao Paulo.

Vera recently traveled to Las Vegas to give himself a leg up by working with the specialists at the UFC’s Performance Institute and training with his jiu-jitsu coach at 10th planet.

“I’m really excited to see the place, because I hear they have everything there,” he said of the UFC’s facility. “I want to see how much we can take advantage of it, learning how to be better as an athlete.”

A trip to Sin City reminds him of how close he is to fulfilling his dream of headlining a major fight card. He’s already adorning billboards in his native Ecuador. If he can beat Lineker, it might not be long before the same happens in Las Vegas.

“For me, it’s a dream to fight on a big card here, but I’m not in a rush,” he said. “I’m getting big opportunities. I’m fighting tough fights. Definitely I want to fight here after this one.”

At the same time, Vera knows it’s best to be patient. Sometimes, you take detours before your big shot. Lineker is one of those.

“If they want to send me to China, that’s no problem,” he said. “For me, a fight is a fight, whether it’s a big card or small card. It’s still the best show in the world. I just take anything they give me. I don’t complain about that.”

For more on UFC Fight Night 119, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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Filed under: News, UFC, Videos
Source: MMA Junkie

Stream or download MMAjunkie Radio #2534 with guests Sabina Mazo, Marlon Vera, Joshua Medley, Jason Buchamer

Stream or download Thursday’s episode of MMAjunkie Radio with guests Sabina Mazo, Marlon Vera, Joshua Medley, and Jason Buchamer.

Mazo discussed her latest head-kick knockout win at LFA 23 and what’s next for her. Vera takes on John Lineker on Oct. 28 at UFC Fight Night 119. Medlet, the promoter of Knockout Promotions, discussed this Saturday’s KOP 58 event.

You can stream the entire episode on AudioBoom.com or listen below.

Filed under: AXS TV Fights, News, Radio, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Watch MMAjunkie Radio here (1 p.m. ET) with Sabina Mazo, Marlon Vera, Joshua Medley, Jason Buchamer

Filed under: AXS TV Fights, News, Radio, UFC

MMAjunkie Radio kicks off today at 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m. PT) with guests Sabina Mazo, Marlon Vera, Joshua Medley and Jason Buchamer.

Up-and-comer fighter Mazo picked up another dazzling head-kick knockout win at LFA 23. Vera, a UFC bantamweight, is our in-studio guest host. Medley is the promoter of Knockout Promotions. “Jason the Intern” recaps the latest episode of “The Ultimate Fighter 26.”

MMAjunkie Radio airs from 1 to 3 p.m. ET (10 a.m. to noon PT), live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. You can watch and listen live on MMAjunkie’s Facebook and YouTube pages. Additionally, SiriusXM Rush (Ch. 93) carries a replay later in the day (8-10 p.m. ET) and the following morning (7-9 a.m. ET), or catch a replay on demand.

MMAjunkie Radio listener guide:

  • HOW TO WATCH (ON WEB): Watch a live stream on MMAjunkie’s Facebook or YouTube pages.
  • HOW TO CALL: MMAjunkie Radio takes phone calls from listeners throughout the show. Call into the MMAjunkie Radio hotline at (866) 522-2846.
  • HOW TO DISCUSS: The MMAjunkie MMA Forums has a section devoted solely to MMAjunkie Radio. Stop by the MMAjunkie Radio forum to discuss the show, interact with the hosts, suggest future guests and catch up on the latest MMAjunkie Radio news.
  • HOW TO VISIT THE SHOW: You can watch MMAjunkie Radio live and in person at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino on the world-famous Las Vegas Strip. The booth is located in the resort’s Race & Sports Book next to the Mandalay Bay poker room. To plan a trip to Sin City and MMAjunkie Radio, go to www.mandalaybay.com.

Filed under: AXS TV Fights, News, Radio, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

John Lineker meets Marlon Vera at UFC Fight Night 119 in Sao Paulo

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John Lineker has got himself a bantamweight booking. And, surprisingly enough, it’s not with Bryan Caraway.

Instead, Brazil’s Lineker (29-8 MMA, 10-3 UFC) meets Ecuadorian Marlon Vera (10-3-1 MMA, 4-2 UFC) at UFC Fight Night 119, which takes place on Oct. 28 at Ibirapuera Gymnasium in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

The matchup was first reported by Combate.com and later confirmed by MMAjunkie with Lineker’s camp.

Vera also confirmed it on his Twitter account:

The event airs on FS1 following prelims on UFC Fight Pass, though the full fight card and bout order haven’t been finalized.

The booking comes after weeks of Twitter back-and-forth between Lineker and Caraway. Vera, in turn, has most recently issued callouts to Jimmie Rivera and Brett Johns, but he made his willingness to meet anyone, at any time, abundantly clear.

Lineker hasn’t fought since December 2016, when he dropped a unanimous decision to former champion T.J. Dillashaw. Before that, the heavy-hitter was riding six consecutive wins, including recent ones over Michael McDonald and John Dodson.

While Lineker’s UFC run has been mostly victorious, it’s also been plagued by failures to make weight – multiple times at flyweight and once since he’s moved up to 135. He’s currently ranked No. 9 in the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA bantamweight rankings.

The unranked Vera, in turn, has been on a quite a roll: He’s currently riding a three-fight winning streak capped off by finishes over Brad Pickett and Brian Kelleher. At 24, the California-based Ecuadorian has been known to hop on short-notice opportunities – even overseas ones.

The latest UFC Fight Night 119 card now includes:

  • Lyoto Machida vs. Derek Brunson
  • Colby Covington vs. Demian Maia
  • Jarred Brooks vs. Deiveson Figueiredo
  • Augusto Mendes vs. Boston Salmon
  • Christian Colombo vs. Carlos Felipe
  • Antonio Carlos Junior vs. Jack Marshman
  • Jack Hermansson vs. Thiago “Marreta” Santos
  • Rob Font vs. Pedro Munhoz
  • Hacran Dias vs. Jared Gordon
  • Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos vs. Max Griffin
  • Niko Price vs. Luan Chagas
  • John Lineker vs. Marlon Vera

For more on UFC Fight Night 119, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Fast-rising bantamweight Marlon Vera eyes New York to fight alongside 'idol' Georges St-Pierre

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Filed under: News, UFC

Ecuador’s Marlon Vera is the type of fighter who insists he’ll face anyone willing to sign the dotted line. But if he can offer the UFC a little advice on when and where he’d like to compete, “Chito” says UFC 217 in New York sounds just about right.

“I would love to fight in Vegas in a big show someday,” Vera told MMAjunkie. “That’s like the capital. That’s one of my goals – a big fight in Vegas. But also, I saw (Georges St-Pierre) is fighting Nov. 4 in Madison Square Garden. That’s the guy, that’s the reason I’m fighting today.

“That my biggest idol in life, my role model. He’s a guy that doesn’t talk too much, fights well, always looking good, never letting people talk about him doing dumb things. … He’s just a role model for me. It would be a huge dream for me, fighting on the same card.”

While it’s not official just yet, St-Pierre is expected to make his long-awaited comeback at UFC 217, which takes place Nov. 4 at Madison Square Garden. There, the former UFC welterweight champ is expected to face current middleweight title holder Michael Bisping for the 185-pound belt.

Vera said he’d be honored to compete at the event, where he would be looking to extend a current three-fight winning streak.

“I just want to keep this momentum going,” Vera said. “I want to keep active. I’m not the type of person that I’m thinking about who I beat before; that’s already gone for me. It’s everything from today to let’s see what happens tomorrow. I want to see who’s next, and I would love to fight one more time this year – even two more times. (Expletive), I’m down.”

Of course, Vera has proven thus far in his UFC career that he’s always willing to step in when asked, so don’t be surprised if you see him before UFC 217.

“You never know – this sport is crazy,” Vera said. “Sometimes, somebody gets injured, and everybody says, ‘Oh, I’m not ready. I’m not ready.’ For me, it’s different. If I’m in the gym, I’m ready.

“At the end of the day, it’s a fist fight. One punch can change everything.”

To hear more from Vera, check out the video above.

And for the latest on UFC 217, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

With help from Marlon Vera, Humberto Bandenay dedicates huge UFC debut to late father

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5533326659001
Filed under: News, UFC, Videos

MEXICO CITY – Humberto Bandenay’s UFC debut was pretty much as good as they get, but it didn’t come without sacrifice.

Bandenay (14-4 MMA, 1-0 UFC) was a huge underdog heading into Saturday’s UFC Fight Night 114 bout against featherweight Martin Bravo (11-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC)  – an understandable status given a short-notice replacement call against an undefeated opponent. Still, it took less than 30 seconds for a knee to have Bravo lying defenseless on the mat (via Twitter):

After dedicating the knockout win to his father, who recently passed away, the 22-year-old Peruvian fighter spoke backstage about the tough decision he had to make before his stellar debut.

“It was one or the other – go back to Peru and see him before he passed away, or live my dream away,(which was) also his dream,” Bandenay said after the FS1-televised main-card bout at Mexico City Arena in Mexico. “Because my dad said, ‘Go live your dream. Don’t come back.’ I have my dad in my heart, and he was today with me in my corner.

“He would be super proud of me. He’s my No. 1 fan, and this victory is for him.”

If Bandenay’s interpreter looks oddly familiar, that could be because you’ve seen him – albeit in much different context – before. He was actually the one being interviewed not that long ago, after scoring his own first-round finish – a UFC on FOX 25 submission of Brian Kelleher.

Ecuador’s Marlon Vera and Bandenay are friends and teammates at California-based Team Oyama, and also exchanged some adorably kind words toward one another during the interview.

To hear more from Bandenay – and the seemingly multi-talented “Chito”– check out the video above.

And for complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 114, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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Filed under: News, UFC, Videos
Source: MMA Junkie

MMAjunkie's 'Submission of the Month' for July: One of the prettiest transitions you'll see in MMA

With another action-packed month of MMA in the books, MMAjunkie looks at the best submissions from July. Here are the five nominees, listed in chronological order, and winner of MMAjunkie’s “Submission of the Month” award for July.

At the bottom of the post, let us know if we got it right by voting for your choice.

* * * *

The nominees

Tecia Torres def. Juliana Lima at TUF 25 Finale

After going to a decision in nine consecutive fights to open her pro career, Tecia Torres (9-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) finally picked up her first stoppage win when she choked out durable Brazilian Juliana Lima (9-4 MMA, 3-3 UFC)

Torres became the first to tap Lima when she found a way to her opponent’s back early in the second round of the women’s strawweight bout. She secured a rear-naked choke moments later, earning a win without the help of the judges for the first time (via Instagram):

Instagram Photo

Jimmy Flick def. Johnny Bedford at LFA 16

UFC veteran Johnny Bedford (23-13-1) was a 5-1 favorite heading into his bantamweight main event, and it made Jimmy Flick’s (10-3) third-round submission win all the sweeter.

Flick, who closed as a +350 underdog to -500 favorite Bedford at the sports books, picked up arguably the biggest win of his career. He threw out a number of submission attempts, and it was finally a D’Arce choke that stuck for the finish (via Twitter):

Marlon Vera def. Brian Kelleher at UFC on FOX 25

After picking up a surprising and quick submission win in his UFC debut earlier this year, Brian Kelleher (17-8 MMA, 1-1 UFC) experienced the other side of the coin when he tapped out early in the first frame of his fight with Marlon Vera (10-3-1 MMA, 4-2 UFC).

In a grappling exchange in the bantamweight bout, Vera transitioned to a slick armbar, which forced Kelleher to tap out, giving Vera his third consecutive victory (via Twitter):

Chris Weidman def. Kelvin Gastelum at UFC on FOX 25

Chris Weidman (14-3 MMA, 10-3 UFC) won’t back down. The former UFC middleweight champion survived a knockdown from Kelvin Gastelum (13-3 MMA, 8-3 UFC) in the opening frame before taking over on the mat, securing an arm triangle at the 3:45 mark of Round 3.

Weidman snapped a three-fight losing skid that had many MMA observers doubting whether he’d be able to keep his UFC job, let alone return to championship form. He did so by becoming the first to stop Gastelum inside the distance (via Instagram):

Instagram Photo

Brian Ortega def. Renato Moicano at UFC 214

Brian Ortega (12-0 MMA, 4-0 UFC) and Renato Moicano (11-1-1 MMA, 3-1 UFC) were nearly two-and-a-half rounds into a striking war that cageside fans could hear as well as they could see. Then Moicano made the questionable decision to take down Ortega in the featherweight fight.

It played right into Ortega’s submission strengths as Moicano inadvertently stuck his neck into a guillotine choke that Ortega squeezed for the finish, forcing the tap at the 2:59 mark of Round 3 (via Twitter):

* * * *

The winner: Marlon Vera

Marlon Vera

It started out looking like a run-of-the-mill submission defense by Vera, who trapped Kelleher’s arm to stop the single-leg takedown early in the opening round.

It turned into much more.

When Kelleher tried to give up on the takedown, Vera stuck with the kimura trap, using it to transition into a slick armbar that forced the submission at the 2:18 mark of Round 1.

The transition to the armbar was about as smooth a submission as you’re likely to see, and it clearly caught Kelleher off-guard. He started off well, moving to an early takedown attempt with Vera pressed against the cage.

But when Vera reached down to snag Kelleher’s arm in a kimura, it halted Kelleher’s hopes for a takedown and forced him to bail on the move. When he went to back out of the single-leg takedown, however, Vera clamped down harder on his arm, using it to spin him around before spinning himself right into position for the armbar.

Kelleher tried to get his arm back, but by that point, it was too late. Vera already had the limb extended and showed no indication that he was willing to give it back.

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Filed under: AXS TV Fights, News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

UFC's Marlon Vera explains awkward exchange that led to (counter?) callout of Brett Johns

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5517732343001
Filed under: News, UFC

After adding a third win to his streak with the submission of Brian Kelleher at UFC on FOX 25, Marlon Vera gave two names he’d like to meet: Jimmie Rivera and Brett Johns.

Following the preliminary card scrap with Kelleher (17-8 MMA, 1-1 UFC), Vera (10-3-1 MMA, 4-2 UFC) pointed to Rivera backing out of an agreed-to UFC Fight Night 103 meeting as motivation behind the callout. Rivera, however, went on to win his main card bout with Thomas Almeida a few hours after that – and, in the process, made a pair of high-profile callouts of his own.

While Vera would like that fight, he can totally understand why Rivera would rather make a title bid. Which leaves us with Johns (14-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC). Why target specifically a man who, though undefeated, has only two fights on his record?

Vera explains the whole story. (In the video above, Vera talked about Rivera and Johns immediately after his UFC on FOX 25 win; he expanded on the story to MMAjunkie Radio.) Spoiler alert: there’s beef.

It began in March after UFC Fight Night 107. Vera had just scored a major TKO win over Brad Pickett. Johns was supposed to have fought that night but was left without an opponent after Ian Entwistle was ruled out at the last minute due to medical reasons.

“We were in the hotel drinking some beers and chilling a little,” Vera told MMAjunkie Radio. “I went to him – I don’t know him at all. I just went to him. I was like, ‘Hey, man, I’m really sorry about what happened in your fight. You don’t get the chance to fight, and I hope you get something in the future. Best of wishes.’

“I was so happy, so I was spreading my good energy to a guy who was down that night because his opponent got sick or whatever. And, literally, after I told him that, he was like, ‘Thank you. But you know what, I would like to fight you.’”

Vera, understandably, was a bit thrown off. After all, as someone who would “cry like a little girl” should he lose an opponent in the high-emotion window so close to a fight, he was just trying to sympathize with his fellow bantamweight’s pain.

“In my head, I was like, ‘(Expletive), I’m giving you some love, and you told me that right now in my face?’” Vera said. “I was just making a little bit of fun. Also I had some beers on my head, so I was like, ‘OK, let’s fight right now.’ And I just left.”

After that, “Chito” says he headed back to his table and shared – between laughs, he adds – what happened with his manager. He imagines either Johns himself or a friend saw that, because the Welsh fighter would go on to talk publicly about how Vera was “talking (expletive)” about him.

“And I was like, ‘OK, you’re not a bad guy for calling me out after that,” Vera said. “You’re a (expletive) for switching all the things in the media.”

While seemingly a little baffled, Vera is not particularly peeved by the situation. If anything, he believes getting called out makes his manager’s job a lot easier. And though Vera and Johns went on to beat different opponents since – Kelleher and Albert Morales, respectively – the Ecuadorian would still welcome the chance of settling their score.

But if that doesn’t happen, you know the drill when it comes to Vera – he is game to fight anyone, anytime, anywhere.

“I just want to fight one more time this year,” Vera said. “If everything goes right, we can put a short-notice at the end of the day. But I really would take whatever the UFC wants to give me. I feel I’m ready to start camp in a week.”

For complete coverage of UFC on FOX 25, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

MMAjunkie Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia and producer Brian “Goze” Garcia. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio.

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Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Stream or download MMAjunkie Radio #2496 with Eryk Anders and Marlon Vera

Stream or download Monday’s episode of MMAjunkie Radio with guests Eryk Anders and Marlon Vera.

Both fighters competed at UFC on FOX 25 this past Saturday. Anders had a first-round knockout of Rafael Natal in his UFC debut and talked about hearing from his former Alabama football teammates after. Vera scored a first-round submission of Brian Kelleher and spoke about wanting Brett Johns next after an exchange in the host hotel post UFC Fight Night 107.

You can listen below or download the episode from SoundCloud.

Filed under: News, Radio, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Watch MMAjunkie Radio here (1 p.m. ET) with UFC on FOX 25's Eryk Anders, Marlon Vera

Filed under: News, UFC, Videos

MMAjunkie Radio kicks off today at 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m. PT) with guests Eryk Anders and Marlon Vera.

Both fighters picked up big wins this past Saturday night at UFC on FOX 25 in Uniondale, N.Y. Anders, in his UFC debut, knocked out Rafael Natal in the first round. Vera submitted Brian Kelleher with a first-round armbar for his third straight win.

MMAjunkie Radio airs from 1 to 3 p.m. ET (10 a.m. to noon PT), live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. You can watch and listen live on MMAjunkie’s Facebook and YouTube pages. Additionally, SiriusXM Rush (Ch. 93) carries a replay later in the day (8-10 p.m. ET) and the following morning (7-9 a.m. ET), or catch a replay on demand.

MMAjunkie Radio listener guide:

  • HOW TO WATCH (ON WEB): Watch a live stream on MMAjunkie’s Facebook or YouTube pages.
  • HOW TO CALL: MMAjunkie Radio takes phone calls from listeners throughout the show. Call into the MMAjunkie Radio hotline at (866) 522-2846.
  • HOW TO DISCUSS: The MMAjunkie MMA Forums has a section devoted solely to MMAjunkie Radio. Stop by the MMAjunkie Radio forum to discuss the show, interact with the hosts, suggest future guests and catch up on the latest MMAjunkie Radio news.
  • HOW TO VISIT THE SHOW: You can watch MMAjunkie Radio live and in person at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino on the world-famous Las Vegas Strip. The booth is located in the resort’s Race & Sports Book next to the Mandalay Bay poker room. To plan a trip to Sin City and MMAjunkie Radio, go to www.mandalaybay.com.

Filed under: News, UFC, Videos
Source: MMA Junkie