Fightful Fix is your one-stop-shop for all of today's biggest combat sports stories — from Stephen Thompson feeling slighted by Khamzat Chimaev's recent push to Dana White saying "Rumble" Johnson really wants to be in the UFC — conveniently compiled in one place. Take a look below.
Wonderboy disrespected by Chimaev push
Former UFC welterweight title challenger Stephen Thompson spoke with MMAJunkie's Farah Hannoun ahead of his clash with Geoff Neal in the headlining bout of this weekend's UFC Vegas 17 event. He talked about feeling a bit slighted by the promotions push of fellow welterweight contender Khamzat Chimaev and elaborated on why.
“I think he was ranked No. 15, which doesn’t make sense to me,” Thompson said. “I know he’s had one fight in the welterweight division, and his opponent (Rhys McKee) is 0-2 right now and normally a lightweight, a 155er, so it just doesn’t make sense how this guy can jump past everybody who’s worked their behinds off to get to where they’re at, and now he’s ranked No. 15 fighting the No. 3 guy, I believe. It’s just ridiculous to me."
“I had to fight through murderer’s row to get to where I’m at and so did Leon Edwards," Thompson continued. "He was on a (eight-fight) winning streak to get to where he’s at. I had to fight a slew of guys, I mean tough opponents. Robert Whittaker, Jake Ellenberger, Rory McDonald, Johny Hendricks to get to where I’m at, and then this guy just jumps past everybody. I think it’s a slap in the face to everybody who’s worked their butts off.”
Dana White credits Mick Maynard for saving UFC flyweight division
Fresh off the heels of a classic flyweight title fight between champion Deiveson Figueiredo and top contender Brandon Moreno at UFC 256, Dana White didn't credit either for the flyweight division's recent resurgence. Instead, he credited longtime UFC matchmaker Mick Maynard for saving the division when talking to the media after UFC 256.
“I got to give it to Mick,” White said at the UFC 256 post-fight press conference (h/t MMAMania). “Mick went in and restructured and rebuilt that division and it’s one of the most exciting divisions in the UFC now. And tonight we put on a potential fight of the year and potential greatest fight ever in the division’s history. So, congrats to Mick."
“Well, we all know no one cared about it,” he continued. “I sat up here at press conferences before the fight telling everyone why you needed to watch that division and why there were so many great fights, but people just didn’t a s—t. You can’t make people care. They gotta care, or they don’t. Mick had some ideas, he wanted to go in and make some tweaks. And here we are today.”
Colby Covington opens up as a slight favorite over Jorge Masvidal
In what is rumored to be one of the bigger fights in the first quarter of 2021, welterweight contenders and rivals Colby Covington and Jorge Masvidal has odds released for their expected bout. BestFightOdds provided the early line which has Covington as a small favorite over Masvidal.
Dana White says "Rumble" Johnson wants to be in the UFC
Bellator made some huge splashes in free agency recently, signing former UFC title challenger Anthony "Rumble" Johnson and Yoel Romero to their light heavyweight division. UFC President spoke with reporters after UFC 256 about Johnson's decision specifically so sign with Bellator and why he believes he really wants to still be in the UFC.
“Listen, we love the guy,” White told reporters (h/t MMAJunkie). “I have a great relationship with him, I’ve always liked him, never had any problems with him other than some weight cutting issues back at 170 (pounds). He’s a great guy, we love him, we’d love to have him here, but it’s probably better for him to go somewhere else.”
“No, he does want to be with the UFC,” White said. “It just didn’t work out. Ask him. That’s his business, not mine.”
.@ScottCoker expects a "brand new" @Anthony_Rumble in @BellatorMMA and says the signing firms up claim he has "the best 205-pound weight class on the planet."@mma_kings' interview: https://t.co/f2go9VW1Wf pic.twitter.com/HcQ1PN1Ezf— MMA Junkie (@MMAjunkie) December 10, 2020
Brandon Moreno suffers apparent shoulder injury in UFC 256 main event
After his Fight of the Year contending fight against flyweight king Deiveson Figueiredo in the main event of UFC 256, Brandon Moreno spoke with UFC commentator Joe Rogan afterward and mentioned he believes he hurt his shoulder in the matchup.
“I don’t think it’s broken, but I threw too many jabs, and I felt something in my shoulder,” Moreno said (h/t MMAFighting). “After that, I felt amazing. I feel really good, to be honest. [I threw the jab very hard], and something popped in my shoulder. But I think it’s fine."
Figueiredo heavy favorite in potential rematch against Moreno
Staying with the instant classic that was the UFC 256 headliner between flyweights Deiveson Figueiredo and Brandon Moreno, BestFightOdds released an initial line for a rematch between the two. Figueiredo is a near three-to-one favorite in the potential second matchup.
Dana White on Tony-Khabib never happening
UFC President Dana White talked with the media during the UFC 256 post-fight press conference and reflected on a matchup between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson never quite materializing.
“It just didn’t [happen],” White lamented when asked about the fight. (h/t MMAFighting). “It wasn’t from lack of trying. We put that fight together five times. It just wasn’t meant to be. I don’t think about it at all.”
Cub Swanson enjoyed no crowd at UFC 256
UFC featherweight and MMA legend Cub Swanson secured a second consecutive victory at UFC 256, scoring a beautiful second-round knockout over Daniel Pineda. Swanson discussed the win with the media at the post-fight press conference for the event and touched on what it was like fighting in front of no crowd.
“I love the crowd. It’s awesome, but it’s a double-edged sword. It can get in your head sometimes. I’m an emotional fighter around fight time and it can play on my emotions and get me all amped up, and sometimes that’s not the best thing." Swanson said (h/t MMAJunkie). "I was really focusing on being really technical and being really sharp and being really efficient, and I was able to do that. Having really light media, just being in my room hanging out with my corner – I love that. I’m super quiet around fight time, so not having to do all the extra stuff and meet fans, as much as I do love it … but right before I fight, I’d rather be in the zone. So I did enjoy it.”