Scrutinising the UFC’s Response to Mark Hunt

For MMA fans that haven’t been living under a rock over the last few days, it’s no secret that Mark Hunt has, once again, gone on a public tirade against the UFC. This time, it is to protest the its decision to withdraw him from his upcoming bout against Marcin Tybura, which would otherwise have headlined the UFC’s return to Sydney next month. It’s an issue that warrants scrutiny, not just because it shines further light on the volatile relationship between the UFC and one of its biggest Australian stars, but also for the promotion’s inconsistent approach to fighter health and safety.

You can read the rest of this article at MMASucka.

Navigating the UFC Middleweight Logjam

When Michael Bisping and Georges St. Pierre meet in the Octagon at UFC 217, at the iconic Madison Square Garden, it will mark a nearly two year period since a legitimate number one contender will have fought for the UFC middleweight championship.

The last time this occurred was in December 2015 at UFC 194. On that night challenger Luke Rockhold (T)KO’d then-champion Chris Weidman in the fourth round. An immediate rematch was slated for UFC 199 six months later, but fate intervened.

You can view the rest of this article at MMASucka.

Not Worth The Risk – A look at Johnson vs Dillashaw

This article was originally published on Fight News Australia.

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Given the year that MMA fans are having, it’s perhaps not that surprising that many appear to be clamouring for a “super-fight” between flyweight champion and pound-for pound king Demetrious Johnson, and former bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw.

After all, a full five months into 2017, there have only been a handful of standout UFC cards, and if the ratings are any indication, “Might Mouse’s” last title defense against Wilson Reis failed to capture the attention of the broader fan base. Compare this year to 2016 – where the company had five events that broke one million pay per view buys – and the demand for a big fight is understandable. Especially given that it’s compensation for the loss of the highly anticipated bantamweight title fight between Dillashaw and reigning champion Cody Garbrandt, which was pulled from UFC 213 due to Garbrandt injury woes.

Continue reading “Not Worth The Risk – A look at Johnson vs Dillashaw”

A Division Held Hostage

This article was originally published on Fight News Australia.

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So this is where we are in 2017. A 36- year old career welterweight who has been inactive for more than 3 years, leapfrogging a laundry line of contenders in a higher weight-class that he’s never fought in before, to fight for a belt that he may not defend – or worse, defend against big names instead of legitimate challengers.

Continue reading “A Division Held Hostage”

Between a Rock and a Hard Place

This article was originally published on Fight News Australia.

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2016 was truly a year to be a UFC fan.

In the space of a meagre 12 months, there were seismic shifts in almost all of the promotion’s weight classes, with 10 new champions being crowned and five new additions to the pound-for-pound rankings*. We saw the short-lived return of Jon Jones, the capitulation and resurgence of Conor McGregor, the likely end of Ronda Rousey’s fighting career, and the birth of potential superstars in Stipe Miocic, Max Holloway and Cody Garbrandt. These and countless other storylines sent MMA media and fans into a frenzy on what felt like a weekly basis, and for better or worse continued to garner mainstream attention.

Continue reading “Between a Rock and a Hard Place”

The Spectacular Rise & Catastrophic Fall Of “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey

This article was originally published on LowKickMMA.

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After 13 months of speculation, the MMA world got an answer to the myriad of questions that surrounded the return of former bantamweight queen Ronda Rousey when she lost in quick and destructive fashion at last week’s UFC 207. Continue reading “The Spectacular Rise & Catastrophic Fall Of “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey”

Cyborg, The Interim Belt Era & The Death Of Meritocracy

This article was originally published on LowKickMMA.

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And just like that, another belt was born, and with it the potential for a new era in women’s combat sports. In light of recent history, this is no insignificant occurrence, but as is becoming the norm when the UFC make big announcements, the decision left many MMA pundits (rightfully) shaking their heads.

Continue reading “Cyborg, The Interim Belt Era & The Death Of Meritocracy”