Heather Hardy Expects to Face a ‘Killer’ at Bellator 185

When assessing her MMA debut at Bellator NYC in June, flyweight Heather Hardy admits that her first time in a cage for a bout threw her off a bit at first, but ultimately she was able to gain her bearings en route to a third round TKO of Alice Yauger.

“Obviously with the way that it ended, I couldn’t have scripted a better fight,” Hardy told MMAWeekly.com. “I’d say my overall performance; I’d give myself a C+. I really wasn’t happy with everything. There’s definitely a lot of room for improvement. I’m thrilled with the way it ended up, but we’ve definitely been working on those kinks.

“Anyone who watched the fight can tell you it took me a while to adjust to timing, to distance, the gloves being smaller, being hit, not having shoes on. I felt the familiarity came around after I went to my corner, talked to my coaches and came out for Round Two. It just took me a little longer than I hoped.”

Hardy (1-0) will seek to keep her momentum going when she takes on Kristina Williams (0-0) in a Bellator 185 main card 125-pound bout on Friday in Uncasville, Conn.

“She was undefeated as an amateur, and when you look at amateur MMA, there’s no head gear, it’s almost like the same thing as being a pro, so the way I’m looking at this girl is that she has more experience as I do,” said Hardy of Williams.

“While I may have more big stage experience, she’s got more MMA experience, so I’m not taking this one lightly. She’s a good striker, she’s currently undefeated, so I’m training to fight a killer.”

With a champion’s pedigree coming from professional boxing, Hardy is someone that people have pegged a possible face for women’s MMA. While Hardy feels it’s nice for people to see such potential in her, it’s not something she really occupies herself with.

“I don’t think like that,” Hardy said. “A lot of people say I’m the face for women’s boxing, and I’m surprised when I hear it. I’m so focused on training and winning and getting fights, and being vocal about things in the sport, and doing my job, that I hardly get the chance to sit back and see what other people think of me.

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“I just want to do the best I can, and if all the other stuff fallows, that’s awesome, because it’s nice to be recognized for the work that I’m doing.”

Though circumstances have limited Hardy to just two bouts in 2017, she’s always ready for action and will fight as often as she can moving forward.

“I’m always ready,” said Hardy. “I signed a contract with Bellator, and that means I always have to be ready, I always have to be in fight shape. I’ve pretty much told them, ‘put me in coach, I’m ready to play’. I’ll be ready to fight whenever they want me to.”

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Source: MMA Weekly

USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie rankings, Oct. 17: Will UFC-Gdansk cause a welterweight shake-up?

The UFC heads to Poland this week, kicking off a run of nine straight weekends with fight cards, and much could change in divisional landscapes over that time.

It starts in the welterweight class this week, with an unexpected headliner between perennial contender Donald Cerrone (32-9 MMA, 19-6 UFC) and undefeated English upstart Darren Till (15-0-1 MMA, 3-0-1 UFC).

Cerrone has been a fixture for years in the rankings, first in the lightweight division and, more recently, at 170 pounds. Meanwhile, Till considers himself the future of the welterweight division but has yet to break into the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA rankings.

The two meet on Saturday in the main event of UFC Fight Night 118, which takes place at Ergo Arena in Gdansk and streams on UFC Fight Pass.

Could the division have an entirely new look after this weekend? Check out that weight class and more in the latest update to our lists.

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Filed under: Bellator, MMA Rankings, News, PFL, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

UFC Fight Night 118: Cerrone vs. Till Live Results and Fight Stats

(Click on the fight below and then scroll down to see in-fight live analytics and the latest results, courtesy of Fight Analytics. The first UFC Fight Night 118 bout is scheduled to begin on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. ET / 8:30 a.m. PT.)

UFC Fight Night 118: Cerrone vs. Till Full Results

Click here to make your fight picks in the comments section below!

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Source: MMA Weekly

UFC 217: Bisping vs. St-Pierre Live Results and Fight Stats

(Click on the fight below and then scroll down to see in-fight live analytics and the latest results, courtesy of Fight Analytics. The first UFC 217 bout is scheduled to begin on Saturday at 6:30 p.m. ET / 3:30 p.m. PT.)

UFC 217: Bisping vs. St-Pierre Full Results

Click here to make your fight picks in the comments section below!

——- LIVE STATS WILL LOAD HERE ON FIGHT DAY ——-

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Source: MMA Weekly

Cris Cyborg clarifies stance on Holly Holm and USADA testing

UFC women’s featherweight champion Cris Cyborg would like to clarify her stance on Holly Holm and performance-enhancing drugs.

Cyborg on Tuesday issued a string of tweets expressing concern over Holly Holm and PEDs, calling for more testing by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency ahead of a potential title fight at UFC 219.

In response, Holm, who’s never failed a USADA test, posted a video on her social media accounts to point out Cyborg’s less-than-perfect drug-testing past and the fact that she’s been tested more times this year than Cyborg has.

That brings us to today, with Cyborg issuing her own video message, explaining that she isn’t worried about the past – just the future – when it comes to USADA testing both fighters.

“When they knock at my house at 5 a.m.,” Cyborg said, “I think it’s right to go to your house at 5 a.m., too.”

Cyborg (18-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC), who recently won the belt with a TKO victory over Tonya Evinger in July, could next face former women’s bantamweight champion and longtime pro boxer Holm (11-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) as part of the year-end UFC 219 pay-per-view on Dec. 30 in Las Vegas.

Cyborg’s longtime manager, George Prajin, recently told MMAjunkie he’s in daily discussions with UFC officials while looking for the right deal to lock up the champ and the fight (Holm’s camp is also looking for the right deal).

In her video, Cyborg essentially is calling for an equal amount of testing between now and Dec. 30, should that be when she and Holm agree to fight. Cyborg’s reason?

“When I beat your ass in the cage, your team won’t have an excuse for anything,” Cyborg said.

If they finally meet, Cyborg would be looking for her first UFC title defense and 19th consecutive victory going back to 2005. Holm, meanwhile, recently halted a three-fight skid with a dazzling head-kick knockout of bantamweight Bethe Correia in June.

For more on UFC 219, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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

Cris Cyborg Blasts Holly Holm, Wants to ‘Beat Her Ass’ at UFC 219

(Courtesy of Cris Cyborg)

Kettle? This is the pot calling. You’re black!

That appears to be the approach that Cris “Cyborg” Justino is taking in order to needle Holly Holm into fighting her at UFC 219 on Dec. 30 in Las Vegas.

Cyborg wants the fight with Holm. Holm has said she wants the fight as well. So what’s the hold up? As is frequently the case, it appears to be money. 

Cyborg has complained about the UFC low-balling her for the fight. Holm’s team has echoed that with similar statements, claiming they just want Holm to get paid what the fight is worth. 

Issues with money aside, Cyborg is playing a rather questionable card when taking jabs at Holm to get her to sign for the fight. She’s blasting Holm about anti-doping tests, despite her own fallibility on the issue.

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Members of Holm’s team – most notably three-time stripped light heavyweight champion Jon Jones – have run afoul of the UFC’s anti-doping policy, but Holm has never had any issues passing a drug test herself. Cyborg, on the other hand, was suspended for steroids while fighting under the Strikeforce banner and more recently had a UFC anti-doping violation overturned when she received a retroactive therapeutic-use exemption.

Seems an odd tack to take considering the facts of the matter. But that’s exactly the aim Cyborg took in a video she released on Youtube on Tuesday following an overnight Twitter storm between Cyborg and Holm.

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Source: MMA Weekly

Ronda Rousey’s Emotionally Charged New Series Launches Wednesday

Complex Networks’ new original docuseries “Why We Fight,” executive produced by Ronda Rousey, the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s (UFC) first female bantamweight champion and Olympic medalist in Judo, premieres Wednesday, Oct. 18. Across the eight, 45-minute episodes, “Why We Fight” follows a talented and troubled young fighter, Zac “Kid Yamaka” Wohlman, on his pilgrimage across the globe. Struggling with his own demons, he encounters fellow warriors who have their own issues and reasons for stepping into the ring. Inspired by the short film “Kid Yamaka” directed by Matt Ogens, “Why We Fight” is produced by Dirty Robber and Religion of Sports, and is distributed on Complex’s digital channel, available via go90.

Why We Fight is a powerful, visceral and multi-layered journey that goes beyond the ring and explores the motivations that compel these athletes to compete in their sport,” said Justin Killion, general manager of premium content for Complex Networks. “We’re honored that Zac shared his personal story with us. ”  

“We expect the series will hook viewers far beyond the traditional fight audience,” said Chris Uettwiller, CEO of Dirty Robber, co-producers of the series. “Through Zac, we were able to capture an authenticity rarely seen in the fight world. Why We Fight allows the viewer to see the fears and vulnerabilities of men and women who might otherwise appear invincible.” 

Why We Fight - Ronda Rousey seriesWohlman, originally from San Fernando Valley, California, battled with a drug problem throughout his childhood and currently faces a painkiller addition that threatens to destroy his career. The docuseries follows Zac on his odyssey to heal his wounds so he can return to the ring a better fighter and better person. Viewers experience this emotional and physical roller coaster as the conflicted boxer establishes deep and meaningful bonds with these fighters he meets on his travels. It’s raw and uncensored emotion – as visceral and moving as the fights themselves.

“Fighting is the most primordial instinct we have,” added executive producer Gotham Chopra. “Zac’s willingness to take us with him into his own quest to uncover why we fight has been a raw and awesome odyssey and one I’ve been proud to be a part of.”

“We’re incredibly excited about partnering with Complex, Dirty Robber and Religion of Sports to bring Zac’s personal journey to fighting fans everywhere,” said Ivana Kirkbride, Chief Content Officer of go90. “Why We Fight epitomizes go90’s vision of providing fans with content from exceptional producers, that they can connect with on an emotional level, all while bringing them deeper inside the world of their favorite sports.”

In the first episode, Zac travels to Tijuana, Mexico to study the art of boxing. It’s in this first episode that Zac reveals he’s been addicted to opioids following an injury, and is now doing his best to rebuild his confidence and regain his skills.

(Courtesy of go90 Zone)

“Why We Fight” is executive produced by UFC Champion Ronda Rousey. Executive Producers for Dirty Robber and Religion of Sports, LLC are Gotham Chopra, Matt Ogens, Martin Desmond Roe, Chris Uettwiller and Adam Feinstein. For Complex Networks, Justin Killion and Melanie Moreau.

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Source: MMA Weekly

Tecia Torres vs. Michelle Waterson official for UFC 218 in Detroit

Tecia Torres has wanted to fight Michelle Waterson for some time now, and that’s what she’s getting.

It was announced today that Torres (9-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) and Waterson (14-5 MMA, 2-1 UFC) will meet in a strawweight bout at UFC 218, which takes place Dec. 2 from Little Caesars Arena in Detroit with a pay-per-view main card that follows prelims on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass.

Torres, No. 7 in the current USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA strawweight rankings, made it known back in August she wanted Waterson for her next fight. The “Karate Hottie” is pleased to finally oblige that request.

“Tecia has been calling me out since her last fight,” Waterson told ESPN.com. “I’m just trying to give her what she wants. It’ll be a great fight.”

For Waterson, she will be looking to rebound from a second-round submission loss to Rose Namajunas at UFC on FOX 24 in April. As a result of that win, Namajunas is set to face champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk at next month’s UFC 217.

Torres also has lost to Namajunas in April 2016 for her lone defeat in a rematch of an Invicta bout won by Torres. Since that loss, Torres has compiled back-to-back wins, including her first finish in July, when she beat Juliana Lima with a rear-naked choke.

With the addition to the card, UFC 218 now includes:

  • Champ Max Holloway vs. Frankie Edgar – for featherweight title
  • Francis Ngannou vs. Alistair Overeem
  • Eddie Alvarez vs. Justin Gaethje
  • Henry Cejudo vs. Sergio Pettis
  • Paul Felder vs. Al Iaquinta
  • Drakkar Klose vs. David Teymur
  • Cortney Casey vs. Felice Herrig
  • Yancy Medeiros vs. Alex Oliveira
  • Razak Al-Hassan vs. Sabah Homasi
  • Amanda Cooper vs. Angela Magana
  • Jeremy Kimball vs. Dominick Reyes
  • Tecia Torres vs. Michelle Waterson

For more on UFC 218, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Tecia Torres vs. Michelle Waterson Joins Stacked UFC 218 Lineup

The rich get richer in Detroit with another huge fight just added to the upcoming UFC 218 card on Dec. 2.

No. 5 ranked contender Tecia Torres will get back in action against No. 6 ranked “The Karate Hottie” Michelle Waterson in a strawweight bout on the card.

UFC officials announced the new matchup on Tuesday.

Torres is currently riding a two fight win streak as she looks to take another step closer towards title contender in the UFC’s 115-pound women’s division.

Most recently, Torres got the first finish of her professional career with a second round rear naked choke submission to put away Juliana Lima in July.

Now Torres will look to keep her streak alive as she takes on another highly touted strawweight competitor in Waterson, who will attempt to bounce back from her first loss in the UFC.

As a former Invicta FC champion, Waterson has all the credentials to make waves in the UFC and that’s exactly what she did by dispatching Paige VanZant last December in her first main event inside the Octagon.

Unfortunately, Waterson stumbled in her next fight as she fell to Rose Namajunas, who is now scheduled to fight for the title at UFC 217 in November.

Waterson will attempt to get back on track as she faces Torres as part of a stacked card in Detroit on Nov. 2.

In addition to Torres vs. Waterson, featherweight champion Max Holloway faces off with Frankie Edgar in the main event, heavyweights Alistair Overeem and Francis Ngannou square off and “Ultimate Fighter” coaches Eddie Alvarez and Justin Gaethje meet in a highly anticipated lightweight slugfest.

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Source: MMA Weekly

Dan Hardy Teaches ‘Game of Thrones’ Star How to Pull Off a Submission

Daniel Portman may be learning how to swing a sword as he’s preparing for the final season of ‘Game of Thrones’ but now he might be able to throw in a rear naked choke as well.

Portman, who portrays loyal squire Podrick Payne on the hit HBO series, also happens to be an avid mixed martial arts fan.

He attended the recent UFC card in Scotland and now Portman spent some time with former title contender and current UFC color commentator Dan Hardy, who showed him a few moves in the gym.

Hardy left his armor at home and decided to show Portman the art of hand to hand combat with a takedown to rear naked choke submission.

So if you’re watching the final season of ‘Game of Thrones’ and you witness Podrick Payne look for the single leg followed by a transition to choke out a White Walker, you know where he learned it from.

The final season of ‘Game of Thrones’ is starting production soon with a debut date most likely in 2019 on HBO.

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Source: MMA Weekly