I don't know my best team - Sherwood - Tottenham manager Tim Sherwood says he has so many players of a similar standard that he is unsure of his best side. Harlequins 24-20 Leicester - Harlequins keep their play-off hopes alive as Mike Brown's late try secures a narrow victory over Leicester Tigers. Choi leads rain-delayed RBC Heritage (Yahoo Sports) - HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (AP) -- The second round of the RBC Heritage was cut short because of rain Friday, with K.J. Choi shooting a 4-under 67 for a one-stroke lead over Robert Allenby. Phelps entered in 3 events at comeback meet (Yahoo Sports) - Michael Phelps is entered in three events at his first swimming meet since he retired after the 2012 London Olympics. The 22-time Olympic medalist is set to swim the 50- and 100-meter freestyles and the 100 butterfly at the Arena Grand Prix in Mesa, Ariz., starting next Thursday. He is seeded eighth in the 100 free, which features a loaded field including Olympians Anthony Ervin and Nathan Adrian, along with Yannick Agnel of France, who trains with Phelps in Baltimore, Md. Phelps is seeded 28th in the 50 free. Flyers-Rangers Preview (Yahoo Sports) - The Philadelphia Flyers might have No. 1 goalie Steve Mason back for Game 2 against the Rangers. Mason missed Thursday's 4-1 loss to New York because of an undisclosed upper-body injury. Mason and the Flyers have declined to say whether he has a concussion. Mason took part in a goalie practice Friday at New York's Chelsea Piers and said afterward that he is feeling better than he did a few days earlier. Simmonds qualifies for IPC Euros - Ellie Simmonds, Stephanie Slater and Amy Marren qualify for the European Championships at the British Para-Swimming meet. Grandeur wins Coral Easter Classic - Grandeur wins the Coral Easter Classic by a head, as British race meetings are held on Good Friday for the first time. Reds' Chapman cleared to throw batting practice (Yahoo Sports) - Cincinnati Reds closer Aroldis Chapman has been cleared to throw batting practice for the first time since he was hit in the face by a line drive during an exhibition game on March 10. Chapman sustained fractures of his nose and and a bone above his left eye when hit by the drive off the bat of Kansas City's Salvador Perez. Reds manager Bryan Price said Friday he wasn't sure exactly when Chapman will throw but said it likely will be during the team's 10-game trip that ends April 27. Tulsa hires Frank Haith as new hoops coach (Yahoo Sports) - TULSA, Okla. (AP) -- Tulsa has hired Frank Haith as its men's basketball coach after he spent the last three years at Missouri. Silver wants age limit change, no rush on others (Yahoo Sports) - NEW YORK (AP) -- Even as the NBA prepares for a draft that could be headlined by freshmen, Commissioner Adam Silver remains committed to keeping them in college.

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Rick Hawn looks to bring it in Bellator title bout [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 18, 2014, 12:23 pm]
Bellator fighter Rick Hawn became a seasoned competitor long ago. The Judo player has competed on national and international levels since he was a child. That's probably why the fighter is able to be so fiery in the ring but cool as chilled steel just a few days before fighting for a major championship. Cagewriter is visiting with Hawn as he heads into an April 18 fight against Douglas Lima for the vacant Bellator welterweight title, and he's calm and unhurried as we pester him with technical questions about the differences between Judo and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Hawn is also relaxed as he talks about taking on Lima but admits that winning the Bellator title would be a major accomplishment. "It would mean a lot," he says. Hawn is well-acquainted with desire. His dad had studied Judo before Rick was born and got his son into class early on. By the time Hawn was 12, he had a specific goal in Judo - make the U.S. Olympic team. It was an unusual amount of certainty and commitment for a 12 year-old. Judo wasn't huge in Hawn's small Oregon town so after high school he moved to Colorado to train at Team USA's Olympic Training Center. Hawn says he saw his family only once a year or so while training in Colorado. When he moved to Boston to train with Judo legend Jimmy Pedro a few years later, Hawn worked as many side jobs as he needed to pay the bills while training full-time. Now on opposite coasts and mostly self-funded, Hawn saw his family only once perhaps every other year. "Every day, you wake up thinking of that goal," Hawn remembers of his mindset as a kid and young man pursuing Olympic glory. All this was what was needed to make his Judo dream come true, in Hawn's mind. It might sound excessive to thouse unfamiliar with high-level athletics but you can't say he was wrong. Hawn's sacrifice eventually paid off, and he made the 2004 Olympic team. He placed 9th overall at the Athens Summer Games. When he couldn't do it a second time in 2008, Hawn decided to retire from Jud

Douglas Lima looks to bring Bellator title home [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 18, 2014, 11:38 am]
  Since losing a decision to Bellator welterweight champion Ben Askren in 2012, Douglas Lima has won four straight fights via KO or TKO and has earned another crack at the title. He'll get it tonight in Council Bluffs, Iowa in the main event of Bellator 117. Lima will get another shot at Bellator gold tonight but won't get a chance at revenge with Askren. Though Askren never lost his belt, he was released by the promotion and allowed to walk away. Now, the belt is vacant and Lima will take on Rick Hawn, who is also on a red-hot four win fight streak. The Brazilian admits that he hoped to be able to face Askren for the belt. "It is a little bit of a let down, yeah," he tells Cagewriter. "Anytime you have a loss like that you want to try and get even." That said, Lima is focused on things he can control - namely being ready for Hawn, a former Olympic Judo competitor with nasty strikes on the feet. "But, you know what, being a champion is what is important to me," Lima goes on. "I want that belt and it doesn’t matter who I have to beat to get it." Although Askren was virtually flawless during his Bellator run, Lima may face a more diverse set of dangers from Hawn. "He’s good everywhere," Lima says of his Judoka opponent. "Obviously, he’s got great Judo, but he also likes to strike on the feet. He’s a good, well-rounded fighter for sure." Lima, however, believes that he himself is even more well-rounded than Hawn. "I’m confident, man," he concludes. "I just think that I put everything together really well. If we stay on the feet, I believe in my striking. If he takes me down, I think my Jiu Jitsu will be able to handle him. I can’t wait for the fight to prove it." Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter

UFC newcomer Alex White's miraculous life [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 17, 2014, 4:36 pm]
Last summer at a media luncheon, a reporter sarcastically asked UFC president Dana White how it could be true that fight sports like boxing and MMA helped individuals make better lives for themselves. White, no bleeding heart, was trying to make a point about how many people had used the discipline of training and professional opportunities of competing in fight sports to turn their lives around. "You can't tell me punching saves lives!" the reporter was quoted as saying, incredulously. The crass writer could not have seen through his own snark to realize how ignorant his comments made him look. The point doesn't need much arguing but, suffice to say, that, with the abundance of studies showing the positive psychological, physical and social effects of competitive sports as well as seemingly endless anecdotal tales of fighter after fighter pulling themselves and their families out of real violence and poverty, to say nothing of a common sense understanding that any type of disciplined work, including that found in gyms across the world, is character-building, the writer proved himself to be a poorly read and out of touch reporter of a singular variety. Fight sports, of course, are the toughest sports. It isn't the punching and kicking that magically helps lay and expert practitioners alike better themselves. Learning skills, working hard, maintaining discipline and developing a sense of self-worth. These are the things that fighters talk about when they say "fighting saved my life." Alex White fought for his life long before he began to train martial arts. And, it's hard to say if that training "saved" his life all over again. If fighting didn't save Alex's life, though, it dramatically changed it for the better. When Alex White was four years old, he drank gasoline placed in milk jug near other jugs that were filled with lemonade. Friends say that he died three times before his family was able to get him to a hospital. When doctors finally did get a look at poisone

Dana White calls for 'Minotauro' Nogueira to retire [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 17, 2014, 9:22 am]
Legendary former heavyweight champion Antonio Rodrigo "Minotauro" Nogueira suffered yet another traumatic loss April 11 when he was knocked out in the first round by Roy Nelson. After nearly fifteen years, forty three professional fights and numerous ring wars, UFC president Dana White believes that it is time for Nogueira to retire. “As soon as he got knocked out I was getting blown up by media guys saying, ‘What do you want to do? So, out of respect for Nogueira I didn’t want to say anything until he said something publicly. Then he came out and said he wants to fight Frank Mir. I don't want to see Nogueira fight ever again. He should retire," White said in a media scrum last night after the TUF: Nations Finale card. "He is a war horse. That guy has been in - just the battles in PRIDE he's been in - let alone the fights that he's fought in the UFC. He's one of the most respected fighters in the world by other fighters, let alone by fans. And I like him very much, too, so I wanted to give him the opportunity to say something first. I wanted to give him the opportunity to say something first, but now I’m going to say Big Nog, I love you, but I’d love you to never fight again.’” Do you want to see Nogueira move on to greener and safer pastures with his life? And, what can White do to help convince the warrior to hang 'em up? Let us know in the comments section. Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter

Dana White confident Gina Carano wants to fight [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 17, 2014, 8:56 am]
Dana White and Gina Carano did recently meet to discuss bringing the former Strikeforce champion into the UFC for her first fight since 2009 and, according to the UFC President, the meeting went well. Carano does not have a deal to fight anyone yet but White was optimistic when he spoke with Fox Sports last night after the TUF: Nations Finale card. "Gina and I had a good meeting. I'm very confident that she does want to come back and she does want to fight. We do not have a deal but, umm, we might," White said. Rousey, of course, next defends her bantamweight title against Alexis Davis this coming Fourth of July weekend in Las Vegas. According to White, Carano isn't only interested in fighting Rousey - "Conviction" wants to take on whoever the UFC champ is at the time. "No, this isn't a 'I'm just coming back to fight Ronda Rousey.' [Carano] wants to fight whoever the champ is," White insisted. Speaking of women fighting, White also opined on the controversial question of who would win a real fight between Rousey and boing champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. "MMA fight or street fight, Ronda Rousey easily, easily wins that fight," White said. Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter

Tim Kennedy wins decision over Michael Bisping [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 16, 2014, 8:40 pm]
Tim Kennedy got the last word in his feud with Michael Bisping with a unanimous decision win in the TUF: Nations Finale Wednesday night. Scores were 49-46 (twice) and 50-45 in favor of Kennedy, who moved into the top five of the middleweight division with this, his third UFC win. Kennedy used a persistent grappling attack to best Bisping over five rounds. The former Army Ranger sniper controlled the fight with multiple take downs and dominant positions repeatedly achieved on the ground. Per usual, Bisping proved resiliant and used his excellent conditioning to fight until the end. Bisping's toughness and sharp striking on the feet, however, were not enough to keep Kennedy off of him and prevent him from controlling him in the clinch and on the ground. The win is Kennedy's fourth straight. Bisping, who was returning after nearly a year lay-off because of serious eye injuries, has now lost two out of his last three fights and three out of his last five. Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter

Michael Bisping on Tim Kennedy - 'He's an idiot.' [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 16, 2014, 3:25 pm]
Though he's fought professionally since 2001, middleweight Tim Kennedy is a relative newcomer to the UFC. On the other hand, his TUF: Nations Finale main event opponent tonight, Michael Bisping, is a seasoned veteran of the world's top MMA promotion. The outspoken British star is not only confident in his own ability to get the win against Kennedy, he also believes that his opponent lacks professionalism, all-around. "Fighters should behave accordingly, because we're not court jesters. We're not kids working on a school project. We're professional athletes, and this guy is kind of cheapening the whole thing," Bisping said of the wise-cracking and often silly Kennedy in a recent interview with Steph Daniels. "He's making these stupid videos. This isn't Comedy Central. We're not here to be judged on the best skit. It's about going out there and fighting to your best ability. I don't think he's representing the sport as he should. He's certainly representing himself well, but not the sport." Bisping went even further, questioning how well the proud war veteran Kennedy represents his Army brothers and sisters. "I made the comment about him not representing the armed forces very well because he's acting like an idiot," Bisping said. "I'm sure when he was in the service, he was a very good representative, but he's not a soldier any more. He needs to stop going on about it. Good for you, you did a great job. I commend the service you provided for your country, I really do, but you decided to leave the military to fight in the UFC. Your service days are over. Please stop talking about it. Focus on the fight at hand and what you have on your plate now." At the end of the day, though, Bisping doesn't doubt that Kennedy might be a good person. Decent human being or not, however, Bisping is sure that Kennedy isn't a top fighter. "I don't feel that he has what it takes to be a marquee fighter," he said. "He's got his propaganda machine out there rolling with all these videos fro

UFC's Tim Kennedy - 'I will never break.' [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 16, 2014, 9:45 am]
Michael Bisping has said a lot of bad things about and to Tim Kennedy. As the former Army Ranger readies to face Bisping tonight in the main event of the TUF: Nations Finale, he isn't sweating the negativity too much, though. "No not at all. we are never going to be best friends, best buds, holding hands running through the fields together," Kennedy joked during a recent interview on the Fighting Words podcast with Ray Flores. "I really don’t care. He is a jerk at all times... I don’t respect the guy, I think he's dirty fighter so I don’t respect him as a person. I just don’t care what he says. There is nothing that he does and says that I care about." Readers of his Yahoo! Sports blog leading up to this bout will know that Kennedy doesn't think too highly of Bisping as a person and hasn't himself been shy about criticizing the Ultimate Fighter winner. Kennedy does, however, recognize that Bisping is a solid fighter and expects the Brit (who is returning after a long injury layoff) to be in top form. "No,I don’t think so," Kennedy replied when asked if he expects Bisping to be rusty in the cage. "The best way to get rid of Octagon rust is to train hard. [Bisping] knows I’m coming after him. He’d be an idiot not to train hard. I think he’ll be ready to go." While Bisping has had forced inactivity of late, Kennedy earned three big wins last year and is riding high. Even so, he's a big underdog to his opponent. That's a-ok to Kennedy. "I don’t like being the favorite so I’m cool for this," he said. "I’m excited that I get to fight the nuymebr five guy in the world and everybody thinks I’m going to lose. They are going to be shocked…and I’m just going to do what I do, [and that's] winning." Kennedy and Bisping are doubtless both equally confident of victory heading into tonight's UFC main event. Kennedy's certainty in one particular area likely can't be matched, however. Bisping can and has shouted and cursed in Kennedy's face and "The Count"

[VIDEOS] TUF: Nations Finale fighters weigh in [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 16, 2014, 7:49 am]
All fighters on tonight's TUF: Nations Finale weighed in Tuesday. Not to spoil too much for you all but there are at least a few can't-miss moments from the weigh ins (video below). Ryan Jimmo vs. Sean O'Connell shared a tender moment, Dustin Poirier and Akira Corassani went the opposite direction and Michael Bisping lost his gosh darn mind for the second day in a row when faced with his main event opponent, Tim Kennedy. Now, as they say, all that is left are the fights. Oh, you're interested in what Bisping and Kennedy were saying to one another, were you, you curious lil' bugger? Well, go ahead then and check out the NSFW alternate video below that has both men mic'd up. Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter

Vitor Belfort 'embarassed' by TUF: Brazil brawl [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 15, 2014, 1:29 pm]
Only someone as wonderfully strange and adept at grabbing attention as Vitor Belfort could make the TUF: Brazil set brawl between Wanderlei Silva and Chael Sonnen about himself. The former champ has nothing to do with the feud and fight between Silva and Sonnen but he still has strong, pious, feelings about the whole ordeal. “The cat fight between Silva and Sonnen embarrassed me,” Belfort wrote on his Facebook page in Portuguese, according to a report from MMA Junkie. “Firstly, MMA is not fighting people not prepared inside the Octagon,” he went on. “That’s what I do. Secondly, there is no more room for a sport like MMA to accept this behavior when [the sport] has clear rules for anti-sport attitudes both inside and outside the Octagon. Third and most importantly, MMA cannot, ever, influence behaviors where the discussion ends in aggression as if this was the appropriate model of behavior. Millions of young people suffer violence inside and outside the school, and the TV cannot be propelling this behavior and athletes must not represent any violent attitude by lack of control, whatever the provocation.” We suppose that, after pulling out of a title fight because he couldn't continue to use TRT, Belfort has a lot of extra time on his hands these days. Enough time to draft of the occasional treatise of judgment on other fighters, it seems. “MMA fighters should, as a matter of urgency, be aware that the behavior inside and outside of the octagons can influence millions of people for better or for worse, and I chose influence for good because MMA also picked this way. Anything outside of that is no longer MMA, [and] definitely doesn’t represent me,” pastor Belfort went on. Well, no one asked you for a comparative moral analysis between yourself, Sonnen and Wanderlei, but thanks anyway, Vitor. Personally we don't consider two grown, unarmed men settling differences with their fists embarrassing. This haircut, however, is pretty embarassing. So is this

Vitor Belfort 'embarrassed' by TUF: Brazil brawl [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 15, 2014, 1:29 pm]
Only someone as wonderfully strange and adept at grabbing attention as Vitor Belfort could make the TUF: Brazil set brawl between Wanderlei Silva and Chael Sonnen about himself. The former champ has nothing to do with the feud and fight between Silva and Sonnen but he still has strong, pious, feelings about the whole ordeal. “The cat fight between Silva and Sonnen embarrassed me,” Belfort wrote on his Facebook page in Portuguese, according to a report from MMA Junkie. “Firstly, MMA is not fighting people not prepared inside the Octagon,” he went on. “That’s what I do. Secondly, there is no more room for a sport like MMA to accept this behavior when [the sport] has clear rules for anti-sport attitudes both inside and outside the Octagon. Third and most importantly, MMA cannot, ever, influence behaviors where the discussion ends in aggression as if this was the appropriate model of behavior. Millions of young people suffer violence inside and outside the school, and the TV cannot be propelling this behavior and athletes must not represent any violent attitude by lack of control, whatever the provocation.” We suppose that, after pulling out of a title fight because he couldn't continue to use TRT, Belfort has a lot of extra time on his hands these days. Enough time to draft of the occasional treatise of judgment on other fighters, it seems. “MMA fighters should, as a matter of urgency, be aware that the behavior inside and outside of the octagons can influence millions of people for better or for worse, and I chose influence for good because MMA also picked this way. Anything outside of that is no longer MMA, [and] definitely doesn’t represent me,” pastor Belfort went on. Well, no one asked you for a comparative moral analysis between yourself, Sonnen and Wanderlei, but thanks anyway, Vitor. Personally we don't consider two grown, unarmed men settling differences with their fists embarrassing. This haircut, however, is pretty embarassing. So is this

Glory fighter Tyrone Spong undergoes successful surgery [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 15, 2014, 12:35 pm]
Tyrone Spong broke his leg last week in Istanbul in the finals of the Glory 15 light heavyweight tournament when Gokhan Saki checked a leg kick from Spong. Simlar to how former middleweight champion Anderson Silva got hurt last year when Chris Weidman checked a leg kick from "The Silva," Spong's leg snapped on contact and fell to the ground. Fortunately, Spong is home and has undergone successful surgery. "I want family, friends and fans to know I'm okay," Spong said in a report by Dave Doyle. "The trip home to Florida was a long one and I am thankful to be back in Florida. I had surgery in this morning and it went perfectly." Spong would appear to be in relatively good spirits and he said his doctors have given him a time table for when he can resume hard training and fighting. "My doctors said it turned out to be a clean break and they feel confident that I will recover 100 percent," he went on. "They said I can be training for a fight as early as six months if I rehab properly. I feel very optimistic." Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter

Michael Bisping goes off on Tim Kennedy at presser [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 15, 2014, 12:10 pm]
Tim Kennedy and Michael Bisping will finally square up in the main event of the TUF: Nations Finale UFC card on Wednesday. As you may have read on our pages here at Yahoo! Sports, Bisping and Kennedy have engaged in verbal warfare leading up to their bout. When the two middleweights faced-off Monday at the pre-event press conference, Bisping showed that all the trash talk had gotten to him and spouted a slew of profanities at Kennedy. Kennedy, who as a U.S. special forces war veteran, has had much more stressful moments than an un-armed loud mouth shouting at him, just smiled throughout. Watch video of Bisping losing his cool below. The language is absolutely not safe for work, unless you have a colorful workplace so, make use of those ear buds, bud. Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter

UFC's Mike Brown - 'I don't think I'll fight again.' [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 15, 2014, 9:25 am]
UFC featherweight Mike Brown recently pulled out of a scheduled April 19 bout with Estevan Payan because a nagging and serious neck issue had flared up again. While the former world champ is reluctant to use the "R" word, retirement, he says that he likely won't ever fight again. “I don’t think I’ll fight again,” Brown told MMAjunkie. “I haven’t retired, just in case, because I don’t want to be a guy who walks away and comes right back.” “I accepted it like seven weeks out, but my neck was kind of bothering me and it’s too much on my neck,” Brown detailed. “I was training and in good shape, but then I started losing some strength in my hand again. When I get banged in the head some of my grip strength goes away and it’s just a reoccurring injury.” In a game where you get hit in the head daily, not being able to take those hits anymore should pretty much be a game-ender. Brown's neck issue clearly has to do with disc and nerve issues, resulting in the temporary loss of full use of his left hand. “It’s hard when you’ve got only one hand that’s working properly. I can’t hold onto anything with my left. If I try to grab somebody’s wrist they can easily pull away because my strength is gone. Usually in a month or two, that strength comes back, but if I bang my head and get a stinger, it goes away again. It’s just continuously active," he explained. Brown, who won and retained the featherweight world title by beating Urijah Faber twice, currently coaches other fighters at American Top Team in Florida. He feels fortunate to already have that role to transition into fully should he never himself personally compete in MMA again. “Coaching is something I’ve always wanted to do since I was younger,” Brown said. “I wanted to coach pro fighters, high-level guys because I love the fight game. I got lucky to be at ATT doing what I love. I would do it for free, and I’m really lucky to do what I do. “I’m lucky I’m at American

Rory MacDonald wants UFC title shot with win over Woodley [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 14, 2014, 2:40 pm]
Rory MacDonald is scheduled to face fellow UFC welterweight contender Tyron Woodley at UFC 174 this summer and, should he win, the Candian believes he will have earned a shot at champion Johny Hendricks “When I beat Woodley, hopefully [I get a title shot] in the fall or winter in Toronto or Montreal,” MacDonald told MMA Junkie in a recent interview. “Hendricks is a great fighter. I have a lot of respect for him. He’s definitely a good fighter, and I’m excited to see him in the future.” MacDonald was on the verge of getting a title shot before losing to Robbie Lawler last fall. Since then, MacDonald's teammate and mentor, Georges St. Pierre, left MMA and gave up his welterweight title, and MacDonald got back in the win column by beating Demian Maia. The young fighter from Vancouver believes that he's finally hitting his potential. “I definitely feel like I’m hitting my stride now this year,” he went on. “My focus is at an all-time high, and I couldn’t be happier. “I’m striving to be a champion in the welterweight division." MacDonald doesn't hope to replace St. Pierre, however. All he can do, he knows, is become the best "Ares" that he can be. “I don’t want to fill Georges’ shoes. That’s an impossible task," he concluded. "I don’t want to be Georges. I want to be myself. I want to represent my style of martial arts and my own personality." Follow Eiias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter

Rashad Evans talks Alistair Overeem leaving team [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 14, 2014, 11:31 am]
  UFC heavyweight Alistair Overeem has left the Blackzilians team of South Florida and appears to be headed to Jackson/Winkeljohn's MMA team in Albuquerque, NM. Blackzilians team leader and former UFC champion Rashad Evans himself trained for years at the Jackson/Winkeljohn MMA hot-spot and doesn't seem to torn up about the Dutch fighter leaving the Jaco Training Center. "It’s not a big deal at all to be honest," said Evans in a recent interview with John Joe O'Regan. "Alistair was one of those guys who was on the team but never really committed to being part of it. He would run his own camps, bring in his own guys, train by himself, so him going somewhere else won’t make much difference, it isn’t a huge loss. "The funny thing was, he would run his own camps and bring his own people in, then go out there and lose and blame everybody but himself. So now if he goes to Jackson’s and doesn’t learn to open up and step out of himself then he is going to get the same results...He just doesn’t trust people." According to Evans, Overeem is not a coachable fighter and so, isn't a fighter who improves that much. "Suga" says that a great MMA fighter needs to live outside of their comfort zone. "And at the end of the day as an athlete you have to be coachable. And being coachable is a humbling thing. You have to be like, ‘let me put aside all my own thoughts and let me hear what is coming in’. Then afterwards you might weigh up what you want to take on and what you don’t," Evans said. "But when you come into a situation with a mind set on only what you want to do, only think what you want to think, then you’re not going to get any better. "The thing with Alistair is he only does what he wants to do. He doesn’t want to get out of his comfort zone. He doesn’t want to do anything to get out of his comfort zone, even in training. He doesn’t want to train too hard or push himself too hard because it’s out of his comfort zone. "But if you look at a fight,

Nick Diaz to Roy Jones Jr. - Buy out my UFC contract so we can fight [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 14, 2014, 10:18 am]
Nick Diaz was at Saturday's Manny Pacquiao vs. Timothy Bradley II fight in Las Vegas and afterwards spoke about his love for boxing and his own boxing aspirations. "I love to watch [Pacquiao]," Diaz began in his interview with Fight Hub. "I love the way he fights. I try and take what I can. This year has been good to me because I can go out and make a lot of these boxing shows. Usually I have to fight. People don't think I am a serious boxing fan but most of the time I had 3 to 6 fights a year in a career that lasted 13 years." The kinda, sorta retired UFC welteweight loves boxing so much that he says he hopes someone buys his contract out from the UFC so that he can box professionally. ‘If I could get somebody to buy my contract out from the UFC, I'd be fighting out here. Tell [Roy Jones Jr.'s] guys to buy my contract so we can fight," Diaz said (video below). Jones Jr., of course, is a former pound-for-bound boxing king, but is well past his prime and should have retired for the sake of his health years ago. That hasn't stopped him from seeking out big MMA names like Diaz and Anderson Silva as prospective opponents in recent years, however. Diaz, who has always found success with his hands in MMA bouts, says that his decades of experience in the practice ring sparring high-level boxers makes him curious how he could do against them in competition. The Stockton native also specified that he'd like to box at 167 pounds, if possible. "Of course, sparring is different than fighting but I'd love to see what I could do," he said. For now, Diaz is still in the UFC and is sticking by his demand of $500,000 to fight or a title fight. "I'd like to fight for the world title against Johny Hendricks but these guys [the UFC] are kinda holding out. I'm trying to renegotiate my contract and negotiate some fights for this year. I don't know what will happen, maybe nothing. That's fine. Either way I can't complain. I had a good run. I've already had 37 fights but I would like to

Rich Franklin - I believe I can beat Anderson Silva [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 14, 2014, 9:27 am]
Rich Franklin may have just been called out on Twitter by MMA's favorite felon - Chael Sonnen - but that isn't who "Ace" was talking about in a recent interview. The former high school match teacher has already lost badly to Anderson Silva twice but a true champion never gives up. That's why, though he says he doesn't hold a grudge for the Brazilian who took the UFC middleweight title away from him in 2006, Franklin says he'd not only welcome a third crack at the injured "Spider" but is also confident he would beat him. “Would I fight Anderson a third time? Absolutely," Franklin said during a interview on Submission Radio (audio below. Franklin comes on at about the 1:25 hour mark.) "Is it because I feel like I have some unfinished business? Not at all. It’s just, in my mind as a champion and to have the mentality of a champion I 100% wholeheartedly believe that I can beat Anderson in a fight. Not just Anderson but just anybody like that’s the mentality you have to have. If somebody says 'Rich do you think you can beat Anderson Silva in a fight?' Absolutely, yes. 'Rich do you think you could beat Jon Jones in a fight?' Absolutely yes. Like, you have to answer yes to those questions and not just because it’s a formality, but because you believe that stuff, because you believe in yourself and if you don’t believe in yourself then you don’t have any business pursuing a title in a sport or something like that, you don’t have any business in the pursuit of being the best. And so yeah I would take a fight with Anderson. It wouldn’t be for any reason like redemption of vengeance or retribution or any other kinda cool word that we’ve seen on a UFC poster before, but yeah I would fight him and I believe I could beat him and that’s just me with the champions mentality.” Training to and then ultimately getting in a ring or cage to fight another trained athlete for sport is a pretty audacious thing. As Franklin explains, real fighters - especially fightin

Matt Brown training with Jon Fitch for UFC Fight Night [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 13, 2014, 10:36 am]
UFC welterweight contender Matt Brown has a new training partner in his camp as he prepares to take on Erik Silva May 10 in Cincinnati - former world title challenger Jon Fitch. For years, Fitch was a top-5 welterweight before being unceremoniously released by the UFC last year. Brown is known for duking it out on the feet while Fitch is most known for his excellent wrestling. Cagewriter spoke with Brown from his camp in Syracuse, NY recently and "The Immortal" said that the contrast in styles between he and Fitch has proven useful. "We are very different fighters in that a lot of the things I want to work on, he’s really great at and some of the things we likes to work on, I’m decent at," Brown said. "Specifically, getting to work on wrestling with him. But, we’re also not so different of fighters after all, you know? (laughs)". Indeed, both men are well-rounded and, despite their different strengths, each in their own way fight with a blood and guts style. Brown's Brazilian Jiu Jitsu coach recently accepted a teaching job at the gym Fitch works at and moved to from California awhile back. That re-location of his coach prompted Brown to move his camp to New York as he prepares for the fight with Silva back in his own home state of Ohio. That Fitch has fought and beaten the Brazilian is certainly not lost on Brown either. "Plus, he fought Erik Silva," Brown said, adding on to the positives of working with the grinding former Purdue wrestling team captain. "He’s probably spent more time in the ring with Silva than any other person in the world...We talk about him as an opponent all the time. That helps me get a feel for what he may be like to fight." Brown is returning to action after a serious back disc injury that forced him out of a scheduled fight against Carlos Condit in March. He has the bulk of camp left to go before fighting Silva but so far he couldn't be happier with the experience. "It's worked out," the fighter out of Columbus said. "It might mak

Ronda Rousey vs. Alexis Davis set for UFC 175 [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: April 12, 2014, 10:19 am]
UFC bantamweight Alexis Davis made a good point after her most recent win (in February against Jessica Eye) when she asked, rhetorically, who else in the UFC women's 135 pound division was 3-0 other than her and champion Ronda Rousey. No one, it turns out. That accomplishment has evidently not gone unnoticed by the UFC brass and, despite weeks of other rumored opponents for Rousey, Davis will get the next shot at Rousey's title stap. Friday night the UFC announced Davis will challenge Rousey at UFC 175 on July 5 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The UFC continues to bet big on women's fights, placing this one on the July 4 weekend card, historically one of its top cards each year. Rousey has also emerged as one of, if not the, most in-demand fighter in the UFC. The fight will be Rousey's third in about six months' time. She would have filmed two major motion pictures within a year by that point as well. Do you think Davis can threaten Rousey' reign of armbar terror? Let us know in the comments section. Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter





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