Daniel Cormier expects a third fight with Jon Jones

UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier can beat any light heavyweight on the planet, except Jon Jones.

Both times he tried and both times he lost, with the second fight turned to a no-decision after Jones tested positive for PEDs last summer.

Now, Cormier(19-1) returns for the first time after the Jones fight to battle Volkan Oezdemir(15-1) in the co-main event of UFC 220 in Boston on Saturday night.

While Cormier is focused on Oezdemir, he knows if he wins on Saturday, a fight with Jones could be next:

“I don’t know if Jon Jones feels as though anyone but him can compete with me in this division,” Cormier told TMZ Sports. “So, I think even if he’s going to come back soon. I’m pretty sure he feels like I’ll be the one him over here waiting for him with the belt.”

Cormier told TMZ Sports that he believes that he will fight Jones for the third time when Jones returns.

If Jones can get right, a fight with Cormier will be even bigger! However, Cormier can’t overlook Oezdemir this weekend.

 

 

 

 

 

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Bas Rutten on McGregor: ‘If he’s a smart guy, he should keep on boxing’

UFC star Conor McGregor reportedly made around $100 million against Floyd Mayweather last summer. When you make that type of money in boxing, it would be hard for anybody to go back to the UFC.

UFC Hall of Famer Bas Rutten believes that McGregor should keep chasing that boxing money:

“If he’s a smart guy, he should keep on boxing, that’s what I would do,” Rutten told TMZ Sports. “I think Paulie Malignaggi would have been a great fight. I think the fight against Pac-Man(Manny Pacquiao) that’s a hard fight, but the Mayweather rematch I would love to see. This guys goes ten rounds with the best boxer on the planet.”

According to Rutten, it might be Pacquiao or Mayweather next:

“Pac-Man is going after it, or a rematch with Mayweather, so it’s one of the two, that’s what I heard,” Rutten said.

Rutten would like to see McGregor go back to the UFC, but he knows the boxing money could bee too good to resist.

If McGregor could get Mayweather or Pacquiao in the ring, and make huge money, he should continue to keep on boxing, unless he can make “boxing money” in the UFC, which seems unlikely.

UFC star Conor McGregor: ‘MMA next’

Conor McGregor is still enjoying the reported $100 million he made from the Floyd Mayweather fight this summer.

What’s next for McGregor?

According to Manny Pacquiao, he has been in talks with McGregor about a possible boxing match in the future.

However, based off what McGregor told TMZ Sports, boxing may not be next for the UFC star:

“We’ll see what happens. I think a true fight is what I want to do next,” McGregor told TMZ Sports.

When asked what does he mean by “true fight,”  McGregor said, “MMA next.”

McGregor, 29, can make the most money in boxing, but he is better at MMA!

What would you like McGregor to do next? Boxing? MMA?

Comment below!

 

Bellator 191 weigh-in photos

 NEWCASTLE, England – Only one main event competitor is sure to be smiling after their matchup tomorrow night when Michael McDonald (17-4) makes his Bellator debut against Peter Ligier (8-1-1) in the headlining bout of Bellator 191.

Another high-profile free agent signing in Valerie Letourneau (8-6) is also set to make her long-awaited promotional debut, squaring off against Kate Jackson (9-2-1) in the co-main event at Newcastle, England’s Metro Radio Arena.

Bellator 191: McDonald vs. Ligier will be broadcast free on SPIKE Friday, Dec. 15 at 9 p.m. ET/ 8 p.m. CT. The event marks the last time Bellator will air on SPIKE before the network rebrands itself as Paramount Network in January.

Tickets for the event can be purchased from Ticketmaster.co.uk & event.co.uk

138 Pound Catchweight Main Event: Michael McDonald (137.6 lbs.) vs. Peter Ligier (135.8 lbs

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Women’s Flyweight Co-Main Event: Valerie Letourneau (125.8 lbs.) vs. Kate Jackson (125.5 lbs.)

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Heavyweight Feature Bout: James Thompson (266 lbs.) vs. Phil De Fries (261 lbs.)

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Welterweight Feature Bout: Mohammad Yahya (163 lbs.) vs. Ash Griffiths (170.5 lbs.)

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Featherweight Preliminary Bout: Jeremy Petley (146.4 lbs.) vs. Lewis Monarch (146 lbs.)

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Roy Nelson-Matt Mitrione set for February 16

The second of four fights making up the first round of the 2018 Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix will take place Friday, February 16 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn. and will feature fan-favorite Roy Nelson (23-14) taking on exciting knockout artist Matt Mitrione (12-5).

Tickets for Bellator 194: Nelson vs. Mitrione are available early through a special Bellator Nation pre-sale running Wednesday, December 6 through Thursday, December 7. Tickets will go on sale to the general public Friday, December 8. Tickets can be purchased at the Mohegan Sun Arena Box Office, as well as Ticketmaster and Bellator.com.

The event will be broadcast live and free on Paramount Network at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT, while preliminary action will stream on Bellator.com and globally on the Bellator Mobile App. Additional contests will be announced in coming weeks.

Fighting out of Las Vegas, Roy Nelson made his Bellator debut earlier this year with a hard-fought victory over Javy Ayala following an eight-year, 19-fight run with UFC that saw him earn wins over Mirko Cro Cop, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, “Bigfoot” Silva and Cheick Kongo. “Big Country” also memorably defeated the late Kimbo Slice and later went on to win season 10 of The Ultimate Fighter. With 19 of his 23 career wins coming by way of knockout or submission, the long-time fan-favorite looks to add a championship to his impressive resume.

Matt Mitrione remains poised to make a run at the Bellator heavyweight title following three knockout wins since signing with Bellator in 2016, including a first-round KO of Fedor Emelianenko at Bellator NYC this past June. The Illinois native and standout defensive end at Purdue University earned All-Big Ten honors in 2000 and subsequently earned his way into the NFL where he played six seasons as a member of the New York Giants and Minnesota Vikings. Mitrione ultimately found his way into MMA where he became a high-level competitor, defeating the likes of the late Kimbo Slice, Derrick Lewis and Gabriel Gonzaga.

Complete Bellator 189 Results and Photos

Complete Bellator 189: Budd vs. Blencowe 2 Main Card Results:

Julia Budd (11-2) defeated Arlene Blencowe (10-7) via split decision (46-49, 48-47, 49-46)

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 Rafael Lovato Jr. (7-0) defeated Chris Honeycutt (10-2, 1 NC) via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

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 Chidi Njokuani (18-5, 1 NC) defeated Hisaki Kato (8-3) via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

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David Rickels (19-4, 2 NC) defeated Adam Piccolotti (9-2) via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

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Preliminary Card Results:

Sam Sicilia (16-8) defeated Marcos Galvao (18-9-1) via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Gaston Bolanos (2-1) defeated Rick Gutierrez (0-2) via knockout at 1:13 of round one

Mandel Nallo (6-0) defeated Alec Williams (6-2) via TKO at 0:18 of round one

Juliana Velasquez (6-0) defeated Na Liang (6-2) via submission (arm bar) at 0:32 of round two

Cris Williams (3-0) defeated Thomas Lopez (1-3) via submission (triangle) at 1:39 of round one

Stephanie Geltmacher (2-0) defeated Ky Bennett (0-1) via unanimous decision (30-25, 30-25, 30-27)

Brian Grinnell (9-7) defeated Kemmyelle Haley (7-6) via submission at 0:39 of round one

Brandon Phillips (7-3) defeated Jordan Howard (10-4) via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27)

Andrew Parker (7-2) defeated Frank Patterson (4-5) via submission (triangle) at 3:03 of round one

Photos: Bellator

Bellator Heavyweight Tournament begins w/ “Rampage” Jackson vs. Chael Sonnen on January 20

LOS ANGELES –The bracket for the Bellator MMA World Grand Prix 2018 Heavyweight Tournament has been set.

At Bellator 192: Lima vs. MacDonald on January 20, 2018 at The Forum in Los Angeles, the tournament will begin with former champ Quinton “Rampage” Jackson (37-12) taking on renowned trash-talker Chael Sonnen (30-15-1) in an exciting first-round matchup. The event will air on the soon-to-launch Paramount Network.

Shortly thereafter, Matt Mitrione (12-5) will meet Roy Nelson (23-14) on February 16 at Bellator 194, an event which will emanate from the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn. In April, the greatest heavyweight of all time Fedor Emelianenko (36-5, 1 NC) battles former UFC champ Frank Mir (18-11) inside Allstate Arena in Chicago in a long-awaited clash. The final first round bout will feature current Bellator light heavyweight champion Ryan Bader (24-5) taking on former STRIKEFORCE champ “King Mo” Lawal (21-6, 1 NC) at San Jose, California’s SAP Center in May.

Dates for both the semi-finals and final will be determined, as will tournament alternates who will be available to fill in due to any unforeseen circumstances. The year-long World Grand Prix Heavyweight Tournament will culminate in the winner becoming the new Bellator world heavyweight champion.

Former WWE star Jake Hager(Jack Swagger) signs with Bellator

Bellator announced today that they have reached a multi-fight, multi-year deal with Jake Hager, who was formerly known as “Jack Swagger” during his nearly nine-year run with WWE. The deal will see Hager make his MMA debut inside a Bellator cage.

 Hager will compete at heavyweight and is expected to debut in 2018.

A native of Perry, Okla., Hager would go on to be a collegiate wrestler at the University of Oklahoma, where he was an All-American and set the school record for most pins at the 285-pound weight class in a single season with 30. Following graduation and a conversation with legendary pro wrestling announcer and fellow Oklahoma Sooner, Jim Ross, Hager made the transition to professional wrestling and signed with WWE.

While in WWE, Hager would go on to claim multiple coveted professional titles during his time with the organization, including the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, ECW Championship and WWE United States Championship.

After ending his run with the WWE earlier this year, Hager turned his sights toward another avenue, fully focusing on his mixed martial arts skillset and testing himself against some of the best athletes in the world.

“This is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. It’s something that’s a part of me, so it makes sense. I’m very happy with the deal. I’ve felt a lot of love from Bellator,” said Hager. “I think there are certain types of guys who need to be punched in the face and taste blood. I’ve always been a fan of MMA, I’ve been wrestling since I was five-years-old. It’s awesome to be with Bellator. They’re really going to put 100 percent towards it!”

“I’m excited to see Jake Hager debut for Bellator in 2018,” Bellator President Scott Coker said. “When I heard he was seriously interested in competing in MMA and when you look at what he did at the collegiate level, I was very interested in having him on our roster. I think Jake will expose new fans to Bellator from his previous run with WWE and he will be given every opportunity to prove that he’s the real deal inside the cage.”

Hager is the latest in a long line of high-profile signings Bellator has made recently and joins a heavyweight division that will crown a champion in 2018 through the recently announced eight-man Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix.

BELLATOR TO HOLD EIGHT-MAN WORLD GRAND PRIX HEAVYWEIGHT TOURNAMENT IN 2018

LOS ANGELES – Bellator has announced plans to host a year-long grand prix heavyweight tournament in 2018 featuring eight of the roster’s biggest stars with the winner becoming the new Bellator world heavyweight champion. The Bellator MMA World Grand Prix 2018 Heavyweight Tournament will air on the soon-to-launch Paramount Network.

The star-studded list of participants includes newly signed Quinton “Rampage” Jackson (37-12), Roy Nelson (23-14), Chael Sonnen (30-15-1),Frank Mir (18-11), “King Mo” (21-6, 1 NC), Fedor Emelianenko (36-5, 1 NC), Matt Mitrione (12-5) and Bellator light heavyweight champion Ryan Bader (24-5).

Spanning multiple events and locations throughout 2018, the three-round tournament allows for matchups never before thought possible and will ultimately crown a new Bellator heavyweight champion. Previously, Bellator President Scott Coker orchestrated the most recent successful heavyweight tournament in mixed martial arts with the STRIKEFORCE Heavyweight Grand Prix that spanned from 2011-12.

Matchups, dates and locations for the single-elimination grand prix will be determined shortly, as will tournament alternates who will be available to fill in due to any unforeseen circumstances.

A five-fight veteran of Bellator MMA, “Rampage’s” legendary career has seen him compete against some of the top names in the sport, generating a loyal army of fans along the way. The former PRIDE and UFC champion is the proud owner of many epic highlight reel slams and knockouts that he has racked up throughout his epic battles with the likes of Chuck Liddell, Dan Henderson, “King Mo,” Kevin Randleman and, perhaps most-notably, his trilogy with fellow Bellator athlete Wanderlei Silva.

Fighting out of Las Vegas, Roy Nelson made his Bellator debut earlier this year with a hard-fought victory over Javy Ayala following an eight-year, 19-fight run with UFC that saw him earn wins over Mirko Cro Cop, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, “Bigfoot” Silva and Cheick Kongo. “Big Country” also memorably defeated the lateKimbo Slice and later went on to win season 10 of The Ultimate Fighter. With 19 of his 22 career wins coming by way of knockout or submission, the long-time fan-favorite looks to add a championship to his impressive resume.

Chael Sonnen spent a majority of his 44-fight career with the UFC and WEC, a run that saw him defeat former middleweight champion Michael Bisping, and compete against the likes of Jon Jones, Anderson Silva (twice), Rashad Evans, “Shogun” Rua, Demian Maia and Brian Stann. In addition to his in-ring action, the West Linn, Ore. native has mastered the art of being in front of the camera, having done broadcast work for both ESPN and Fox Sports. Following a three-year hiatus from active MMA competition, Sonnen returned to the cage against Tito Ortiz at Bellator 170 in January and then went on to defeat Wanderlei Silva in the main event of Bellator: NYC.

Frank Mir joined Bellator earlier this year following 15 years under in the UFC where he became a two-time world champion, collected 16 victories and defeated the who’s who of heavyweight contenders, including Brock Lesnar, “Bigfoot” Silva, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Roy Nelson. Fighting out of Las Vegas, Mir set numerous records while competing with his former promotion, highlighted by the most fights (27), victories (16), and submissions (8) in heavyweight history. With 14 of his 18 career wins coming by way of knockout or submission, the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt will now try his hand in Bellator’s heavyweight division.

“King Mo” will again fight at heavyweight and look to build off his success within the division following recent wins against Satoshi Ishii and Cheick Kongo. A winner in nine out of his last 11 fights, the 36-year-old will look to claim heavyweight gold in 2018 and add to his championship collection that already includes a STRIKEFORCE light heavyweight title. The “Moneyweight” fighter owns additional wins overLinton VassellGegard Mousasi, Roger Gracie and has split a pair of bouts with “Rampage” Jackson with their series tied at one win each.

A former PRIDE champion, “The Last Emperor” is one of the most revered and respected heavyweight fighters the sport has seen. Stone-faced and quiet, Emelianenko boasted one of the most impressive unbeaten streaks in the history of MMA, not losing a bout between 2001 and 2009. A multi-time world champion in MMA and Sambo, Fedor recently returned to the sport after a brief hiatus, accumulating two decisive wins since his return to action and competing against Matt Mitrione in an instant classic at Bellator: NYC.

Matt Mitrione remains poised to make an impact in the Bellator heavyweight division following three knockout wins since signing with Bellator in 2016, including a first-round KO of Fedor Emelianenko at Bellator NYC this June. The Illinois native and standout defensive end at Purdue University earned All-Big Ten honors in 2000 and subsequently earned his way into the NFL where he played six seasons as a member of the New York Giants and Minnesota Vikings. Mitrione ultimately found his way into MMA where he became a high-level competitor, defeating the likes of the late Kimbo Slice, Derrick Lewis and Gabriel Gonzaga.

Bader will make his third appearance for Bellator and first since defending his light heavyweight championship at Bellator 186. Fighting out of Tempe, Ariz., Bader began his professional career on an impressive run, steamrolling the competition en route to a 12-fight winning streak and winning one of the most competitive seasons of The Ultimate Fighter in franchise history on Spike in 2008. “Darth” continued his path of dominance by collecting 15 over some of the 105-pound division’s top talent, including victories over former world champions Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, Rashad Evans, as well as two wins over Phil Davis. Currently riding a four-fight winning streak with victories in nine of his past ten bouts, the former two-time NCAA Division I All-American wrestler from Arizona State University will look to become a current two-division champion in Bellator MMA.

“Rampage” Jackson signs multi-fight deal with Bellator

Bellator announced today that they have reached a multi-fight deal with Quinton “Rampage” Jackson (37-12), exclusively securing the talents of one of the most well-known and fan-favorite competitors in MMA history. This multi-fight deal was the result of a lengthy negotiation with Jackson’s manager Tiki Ghosn from Arsenal Sports Agency, and it promises to deliver to the Bellator fans more of the signature MMA action “Rampage” is known for.

“Rampage” is expected to return to the Bellator cage in early 2018.

Fighting out of Irvine, Calif., “Rampage” has made five appearances with Bellator, accruing an impressive mark of 4-1. His legendary career has seen him compete against some of the top names in the sport, generating a loyal army of fans along the way due to his exciting fighting style and unique personality. The former PRIDE star and UFC champion is the proud owner of epic highlight-reel slams and knockouts earned throughout his epic battles with the likes of Chuck Liddell, Dan Henderson, “King Mo,” Kevin Randleman and, perhaps most-notably, his trilogy with fellow Bellator athlete Wanderlei Silva.

The Memphis, Tenn.-native was also a coach on one of the most memorable and successful seasons of The Ultimate Fighter on Spike in 2010. Coaching opposite Rashad Evans, the season featured multiple future Bellator stars, including Matt MitrioneRoy Nelson and the late Kimbo Slice.

“I am excited for this new beginning and looking forward to an action packed 2018,” Jackson said. “I can’t wait to get back in the cage and put on exciting fights for both the ‘Rampage’ and Bellator fans.”

“With ‘Rampage’ Jackson, you know what you’re going to get every time he steps inside the Bellator cage – an exciting fight and interest from fans all over the world,” Bellator President Scott Coker said. “I knew that keeping ‘Rampage’ with Bellator was integral to our continued growth as a promotion and I’m pleased that we were able to come to an agreement that allows us to plan some great future matchups for him.”

An avid user of the video platform and community for gamers, Twitch, via his channel “RampageIsHuman,” Jackson has managed to connect with his fans in a yet another unique way. Whether on the silver screen, in the Bellator cage or the pro wrestling ring, the 39-year-old remains one of the most-recognized stars in the sport’s history.

The addition of Jackson adds depth to an ever-growing Bellator roster, which has recently seen free agents Gegard Mousasi, Rory MacDonaldFrank Mir, Roy Nelson, Michael McDonald and current Bellator light heavyweight champ Ryan Bader join the Viacom-owned promotion.

Check out this highlight-reel featuring some of “Rampage’s” top Bellator moments:https://youtu.be/0eSzSVe8q2g