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Great fights that never happened

Most MMA sites don’t take the time to do anything but post breaking news and generic analysis of breaking news. It’s pretty rare that we get an article that delves into the history of the sport. Well, rare outside of Sherdog, and most of the time they’re just way too holier-than-thou for me. Well, today we’ve got a good article on fights that never happened by MMA on Tap. It goes over a number of high profile matches that nearly occurred but got iced because of injuries. The list included:

  • Evan Tanner vs Jeremy Horn (UFC 59)
  • Matt Hughes vs Karo Parisyan (UFC 56)
  • Rich Franklin vs Matt Lindland (UFC 56)
  • Patrick Cote vs Lee Murray (UFC 52)
  • Ken Shamrock vs Ian Freeman (UFC 43)
  • Evan Tanner vs Vladimir Matyushenko (UFC 38)
  • Tito Ortiz vs Vitor Belfort (UFC 33)
  • Randy Couture vs Mark Coleman (UFC 17)

Of course, the Franklin / Lindland fight has become something of a legend as it feeds people’s opinions that a) the UFC cares more about entertainment than skill and b) the UFC protects it’s champions from boring / dangerous fighters. I never knew about the Couture / Coleman fight, and as much as I shat on the idea of this fight now, it would have been pretty awesome to get into a time machine and check that out.

  • Accomando

    “…Tito Ortiz vs Vitor Belfort (UFC 33)…”

    Tito won that fight.

  • Earhole

    Tito beat Vitor at 51. Vitor was hurt for their original scheduled bout at UFC 33, which is what is cited in the article. He fought The Janitor at 33, who if I remember correctly was wrestling pigs in a unitard when they asked him to replace the replacement…

  • Accomando

    I know they didn’t fight at 33.

    All the fights listed that “never happen”, never actually happened, except for the Belfort/Ortiz fight, which is why I mentioned it.

  • fightfan

    That has been bothering me big time. I didnt read the comments here. I knew that Tito and the phenom has fought before!!

  • j

    Randy Couture vs. Mike Ditka
    Bo Cantrell vs. Warpath
    Mark Cuban vs. Dana White
    2 Girls 1 Cup vs. Fedor

  • fightlinker

    Yeah, but who knows how a fight pre-“Vitor’s sister dying and his life going into a tailspin” would have gone?

  • Xavier

    They’re stretching the word “great” by listing Cote vs. Murray.

    Karo would have killed Hughes. Dana protects his paper Welterweight champions from Armenian Justice.

  • Jackie Chiles

    Hughes was killing everyone when that fight would have taken place. I think he would have taken Karo down and pounded him out…

    The Hughes aura of invincibility was still in tact. Now its a combination of guys knowing he’s beatable, and other fighters becoming more well rounded while Hughes’s skills are not developing any further. He’s too stuck in his ways to really improve greatly at this point.

    But yes, I think Karo should get a title shot at some point in the future. Although, I don’t think he can beat guys like Fitch and St. Pierre.

  • Drew

    Wasn’t Couture vs Arlovski supposed to happen at one point? I remember Randy discussing it

  • Atom

    I want ALL of the brothers to fight.
    The Nogs
    The Lauzons
    The Hughes
    The Shamrocks (yet)
    There should be enough Gracies out there by now to find two that don’t get along.
    Also, Bigfoot vs. HMC just for shits.

  • Earhole

    Nice piece overall, but to call all of ‘em “what wouldas” is a bit of a stretch. Would the Lee Murray fight be interesting if he wasn’t busted? Tanner was a fun guy to watch, but to get multiples on that list is a bit ridiculous.

    Coleman v. Couture gets me a bit moist, and pre-worst-life-ever Vitor v. pre-STD-cocktail Tito is probably my favorite. But once Jeremy Horn makes a list, I have a hard time suspending disbelief. He’s “crafty” and “has tools in his box” (huhuh), but those are the same adjectives used to described 40 year-old lefty relievers and the white punt returner who has shifty quickness instead of, you know, real quickness. Hey, I liked Jesse Orosco, but watching him duel it out with Jose Canseco isn’t going to make my top-10 list…

  • Tommy

    I don’t know bout you guys but I wanna see Wanderlei fight Jardine next. Also Chuck vs either Shogun or Machida

  • Jackie Chiles

    I want to see w. Silva drop to 185 and have a rubber match with Henderson or take a crack at A. Silva.

    Machida will be LHW champ soon. I think he could frustrate Chuck and take him out of his game like jardine did. He won’t stand and trade like Silva did.