***This week, TJ Grant is out again, meet the next opponent of Anthony Pettis! Plus Cyborg talks Tito Ortiz and her future in Muay Thai, Jon Jones talks his all-time ranking and why he wants to beat Gustafsson so badly, and Irish UFC superstar Conor McGregor is live in the studio! All this and much more, this week on Inside MMA LIVE!***
Inside MMA Live on AXS.TV report by Steve Te Tai
Originally aired LIVE Friday, September 20 at 9pm EST on AXS.TV
UFC 165: Toronto
They run down the card headlined by Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson. If Jones is victorious that will be six consecutive title defenses in the light heavyweight division which would be a record. Bas loves the card, in particular, the Pat Healy fight.
Gustafsson said he will get his distance, he will move and be fast. It’s very hard to prepare for someone like Jones who is unpredictable. While you should have a game plan, he knows to not stick to hard to it, because of Jones’ unpredictable style. He says to go out there and have fun and not put too much pressure to win or lose, because that’s where mistakes are made says Bas.
Bas says Jon Jones can take this fight on his feet, but will likely not take the risk and go for the takedown and ground and pound from the top. He just needs to pick a good time when to go for it. Gustafsson still loves to box and will try to keep this on the feet and probably shouldn’t even attempt a kick. When it goes to the ground tie up Jones in the guard, and needs to avoid being underneath Jones because of the elbows raining down.
Glover Teixeira told IMMA that Jones is a smart guy and will take this fight down to the ground and finish it there. He knows it won’t go five rounds. Glover says he can trade with him standing and can also wrestle him too since he trains with the best wrestlers in the world.
Renan Barao needs to avoid the big swings from Wineland, since Wineland lost 4 of his 8 by submissions. Take him to the ground and go for submission or ground and pound. Wineland needs to be more compact since if he misses big he’ll be taken down. Never plant the feet and defend the takedown at all costs.
Cyborg makes Muay Thai debut
Kenny sat down with Cyborg for an interview prior to her Muay Thai fight with Jennifer Colomb. She says she just trains standup and cardio for this prep and no jiu-jitsu. In her MMA fights she tries to keep it standing since she likes her Muay Thai background which is important to her. Everytime she competes in something outside of MMA like wrestling or jiu-jitsu, she always learns something and that’s why she signed up for this Lion Fight.
She expects to fight MMA again in November or December. When they were both in Strikeforce, Ronda was 145 like her, and always boasted she wanted to fight Cyborg. Then she’s gone for a year (suspended) and Ronda talks even more, but drops to 135. She wants this fight and fans want this fight so thinks they should fight at 140. She does expect to fight Lion Fights again.
She is happy to have Tito Ortiz in her corner, who is more than her manager, he is a great friend too and supports her.
Pete Spratt retires?
After being knocked out by Tim Means last week, Pete Spratt retired in the ring. However, since then he’s filed an appeal with the commission feeling the elbow that knocked him out was illegal.
John McCarthy addresses this in a segment where he demonstrates with a couple of fighters. He explains that if you run an imaginary piece of duct tape down the middle of someone’s head, that area is illegal to elbow strike. However, to the left and right is perfectly legal. The elbow from Means was in the legal area, which they show in slo-mo and freeze frame. Bas explains he used to aim for that area specifically when he fought. Bas mocks the idea of Spratt battling this decision since no one has ever won an appeal to overturn a decision ever. Bas thinks this is just an excuse to come back to MMA.
AXS Fights Highlights
Legacy 23 from San Antonio had:
--Leonard Garcia over Nick Gonzalez in a crazy slugfest which ended with RNC. Kevin Aguilar will decide the featherweight championship against Garcia at the next Legacy show.
BAMMA from London had:
--Mansour Barnaoui over Curt Warburton
--Jason Jones over Max Nunes
MFC President: Mark Pavelich
They run down the show from familiar Edmonton, Ontario. Mark Pavelich joins us from the phone to talk this show. He has three title fights for this packed show. When he builds his shows, he always looks for “finishers”, and says he was the first guy to use that term in MMA fourteen years ago. He wants 205 guys who fight like lightweights, etc. Alvey has a chin of steel and has never been knocked out and is on the rise but faces a 10-0 Jason South. Then he talks Birchak as one of the most entertaining fighters in the business and so is his opponent Tito Jones. He says if Smealinho Rama’s fight goes past the first round he’ll buy everyone a drink.
They show a graphic that only the UFC has been around longer than MFC, having formed in 2001 just like WEC, but WEC was absorbed in 2010. He says he’s looking to come to America so invites any American casinos to give him a call to see what the 2nd oldest MMA group looks like.
--Bellator 99 had Patricio “Pitbull” Freire KO Diego Nunes.
--Allen Nelson KO’d Cameron Martin at Legacy 23.
--Chris Lopez KO’d Mike Salazar with a straight punch also from Legacy 23.
--Dane Mulivai KO’d Jay Cobain from XFC Australia.
--WSOF had Derrick Mehmen with a great KO that literally turned Rolles Gracie around
--One FC from Indonesia saw Alain Ngalani KO Mahmoud Hassan with a spinning kick to the forehead.
Eddie Wineland: Firefighter!
Ron Kruck does a profile piece on UFC bantamweight contender Eddie Wineland who still works as a firefighter in La Porte (Illinois?). It’s an interesting job that accommodates everything he needs to do as a fighter. They speak with his captain who puts over Eddie as a humble and down to earth guy. Both jobs require to be in good physical condition.
His first fight with Barao was postponed when Renan was injured. Wineland sees this as having two full training camps to prepare for this fight. He works 110 days a year in 24 hour shifts, and doesn’t see himself quit as a firefighter even if he was UFC champion, since he likes the break from fighting and the paycheck.
Anthony Pettis vs. Josh Thomson!
Having already missed his first title shot with Ben Henderson, TJ Grant’s lingering concussion effects are pulling him out of the December slot, which has now been filled by Strikeforce veteran Josh Thomson. Thomson speaks via “Facetime” on his laptop and says this title shot will show that he belongs on the top.
WSOF pill popper?
Elvis Mutapcic’s fight was pulled at the last minute for last week’s WSOF fight since his manager was seen with undeclared pills in the locker room. Elvis doesn’t like this since his reputation has been marred from this incident since they said he took pills which he didn’t. He is considering a lawsuit. New Jersey athletic commission says they would vigorously contend a lawsuit and they feel justified in their actions.
Benjamin Brinsa was recently cut by the UFC when neo-Nazi allegations from his past were put out. He claims this was part of a smear campaign from a hometown writer and vehemently denies any Nazi ties. Brinsa spoke with IMMA via phone and through translator. The pictures from the internet aren’t from a demonstration, they were from a football match when he was 16. He has friends from all over like Russia, Poland, and Greece, and found out from the internet that he was supposed to be a Neo-Nazi and it’s a crazy situation and thanks those who supported him. He reiterates that he has absolutely no political, racist, xenophobic, or Nazi ideas.
Chad Mendes doesn’t get title shot
Mendes will face Nik Lentz at UFC on Fox 9. Mendes feels the Aldo camp is trying to duck him. He feels 4 KO’s in a row, especially over a guy like Clay Guida. Ultimately its up the UFC so he’ll keep doing his job until they feel it’s his time.
Bas with Conor McGregor
Bas speaks with the popular Irishman on the balcony overlooking Nokia Plaza. Conor says he tore his ACL towards the end of the 2nd round in his last fight. His surgery is done and he’s been rehabbing with boxer Andre Berto, and Lou Ferrigno who is completely jacked, solid as a rock with veins popping out of his ankle. He’s doing the identical treatment that GSP did to return from this injury in ten months.
Bas shows the clip from his fight in the UK where he won a belt for Cage Warriors, where he jumped into the crowd. He talks about how this was special for Ireland, as no Irish fighter had won a championship like that before in MMA, so rather than having Irishman jump into the cage, he jumped out to be with them, and they went nuts, hugging and mobbing him.
He did some kickboxing and boxing, but generally in and out of gyms trying to learn to defend himself, but onc he met his coach who taught hi MMA it put him on the right track.
Jon Jones with Ron Kruck
Kruck spoke with Jones after the weigh-ins in Toronto. To break Tito Ortiz’ title defense record would mean the world to him. To step out and be one of the best ever. It’s within arm’s reach and he can’t wait to reach out and seize it. To break the record which has stood for ten years would make him the best light heavyweight ever. He already believes that, but breaking this record would prove it.
He absolutely feels he has still challenges. Even guys that train at Winkeljohn’s who aren’t even in the UFC challenge him. Even Kruck could challenge him on a bad day.
He sees this fight against a bigger, taller fighter as a way to prove it is his mind and skill that make him a good fighter, not his size advantage.
The game plan is to not give Alexander what he wants. They know Alexander wants to stand with him and show who the better boxer is. Jones wants to do that, but on his own terms. They will remain extremely unpredictable and aggressive, put that heat on him and watch him melt.
Jake Shields LIVE
Jake Shields, who fights Demian Maia at UFC Fight Night 29, joins us live on the big screen from the El Nino gym. He wants to show the best American Jiu-Jitsu guys can beat the best Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu guys. Anything can happen in this fight but he’d like to win with jiu-jitsu.
Demian is the most dangerous guy he’s ever faced on the ground. He is actually the first guy he’s fought where he has to worry about getting submitted.
He’s full vegetarian but now and again eats a little egg or cheese, so he doesn’t consider himself vegan. He does like animals too and doesn’t like eating them, but he doesn’t like to impose his views on other people.
He was middleweight in Strikeforce since he didn’t want to fight his “brother” Nick Diaz, but is more comfortable at welterweight.
He’ll be going to Brazil a week early to adjust to the humidity.
They show Floyd Mayweather on the way to the ring from last week with Lil’Wayne and Justin Bieber at his side. They show Floyd questioning this as a majority decision and not unanimous. CJ Ross scored this bout 114-114, and was also a controversial judge for Manny Pacquiao, but since has notified the NSAC that she is taking an indefinite leave of absence from judging.
Conor McGregor Q&A
--Do you think your success will help other Irish fighters into the UFC?
100% yes. There are so many guys in his gym coming right behind me. He’s just proud to put his nation in the spotlight. In Q3 next year, the UFC will be in Dublin, so he hopes he can get more guys in for that show.
--Will coming off this major knee injury affect your mentality in future fights?
Nothing can break his mind. Injury or not, he’s an intelligent mixed martial artist and an always adjust and adapt. He will make this injury return look easy.
--Were you shocked by the reception you got in Boston?
To walk out there to see the entire place in green was great, seeing all those proud Irish-Americans. It’s something he’ll take with him forever. It motivates him to push on through. It’ll be ten times as crazy when UFC comes to Dublin and show the nation what true combat is. He wasn’t expecting that honestly, leprechaun costumes, Irish flags, etc.
Upcoming MMA shows
--Oct 4, Maximum Fighting Championship 38 (Jason South vs. Sam Alvey)
--Oct 11 Legacy 24 (Leonard Garcia vs. Kevin Aguilar)
--Oct 12 CFA 12
--Oct 18, XFC 26 (Hot Sauce Holtzman © vs. Roger Carroll)