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joe rogan

For Joe Rogan, the opportunity to sit Octagon-side on a Saturday night and call UFC action is a true thrill.

Rogan’s been doing it since 1997, going from interviewer to color commentator. He reflected on his career during a recent appearance on “UFC Tonight.”

“I do it out of joy, not as a job,” he said. “DC (Daniel Cormier), I am so excited about your fight with Jon Jones. I don’t like sports like football. I get bored. The stakes have to be really high. Mixed martial arts is the highest level of competition human beings can be in besides war.”

Rogan’s first UFC appearance came at UFC 12: Judgement Day in Alabama. The promotion has expanded since, and Rogan’s continued his stand-up comedy career along the way. That February event saw Mark Coleman defeat Dan Severn to become the first-ever UFC heavyweight champion, and also featured a soon-to-be titleholder in action named Vitor Belfort.

“I started off the post-fight interview at UFC 12 in 1997 and Vitor was there, and he’s still fighting,” Rogan said. “I don’t know how he keeps his motivation and not just training, but also mentally.”

Currently, the likes of Ronda Rousey and Conor McGregor garner much of the headlines, and Rogan understands why.

“She’s not just a once in a lifetime athlete, she’s a once ever. She’s so dominant. She’s not just a really beautiful girl just getting by, she’s smashing people,” he said. “Conor McGregor is a dynamo, a great talker and is so confident. He has unique moves. He’s so loose and confident. He says he’ll knock people out in first round and does. He’s a legit superstar.”

yoel romero

Tim Kennedy is a fighting man. Always has been, always will be.

While Kennedy is currently recovering from surgery, he talked with Submission Radio about his most recent fight – a controversial loss to Yoel Romero.

Kennedy appeared to have the fight in hand, but Romero survived a late second round flurry. He came out in the third and finished Kennedy, but only after being given extra time to recover between rounds due to excess vaseline on his body.

Now that it’s been two-plus months, has Kennedy gotten over the whole ordeal? Not a chance.

“Nah I’m still pissed off, you know. At the sport, at the ref, but most importantly at myself. You know I made a huge mental error in that fight. I thought the fight was over a few different times. I thought I knocked him out when John (McCarthy) pulled me off him. And then after I knocked him out I’m sitting there on the stool, trying to figure out what’s going on. You know my corner’s celebrating, the fans are celebrating, I’m like ‘yeah it’s done, cool,'” Kennedy said. “I’m watching him telling John and his corner ‘no mas, no mas’ you know like ‘I’m done, no more, no more.’ And then me standing up when the bell sounds and walking over there and John telling me ‘Nope it’s done. Go back to your corner.’ So again I start celebrating. I’m like ‘whoa, yeah’ and then I turn around and we’re supposed to be fighting. You know, I had left the ring before that third round and I had left the ring when the third round didn’t start. When I was supposed to win. Which is a big error on my part. I should have stayed in there – evidently – obviously till I guess, I don’t know when.

“So I’m really disappointed at the sport, I’m really disappointed in John, I’m really disappointed in myself. So I’m gonna keep hunting. You know I got five more weeks of hunting season. I’m still training. I’m still doing two or three workouts a day when I’m not up in the mountains, but I’m not there yet.”

The loss snapped a four-fight win streak for Kennedy (18-5), and was his first defeat inside the Octagon. He had picked up wins over Roger Gracie, Rafael Natal and Michael Bisping upon coming over from Strikeforce in 2013.

Along with disappointment in himself over the Romero fight, Kennedy also voiced his displeasure with the Nevada Athletic Commission.

Conor McGregor

Despite the series of interesting questions directed towards him during a question-and-answer event in Brazil, UFC featherweight contender Conor McGregor would see no issue challenging Jose Aldo in the country.

McGregor, who is set to face Dennis Siver in January at UFC Fight Night from Boston, talked about such a fight during a recent appearance on “UFC Tonight.”

“I have no problem whatsoever fighting him in Brazil,” he said. “When I did the Q&A in Brazil, they were screaming at me. I love that. Passion is a beautiful thing and the Brazilian people are passionate people. I’m prepared where ever and whenever, just give me the date and the weight and I’ll show up.”

That passion has helped give McGregor a strong fan base in a short amount of time with the promotion. He is viewed as a cult hero in his native home of Ireland, where he previously held gold with the Cage Warriors promotion.

Following a first round stoppage victory over Dustin Poirier, McGregor was flown to Brazil to help promotion the recent UFC card. Some thought he might be pushed into a title fight, but instead, he’ll meet Siver.

“He’s a veteran. I think he’s a short, compact fighter,” McGregor said. “I believe his reaction time has remained the same over his career. I’ll look to capitalize on it. I will prepare, I will show up and I’ll get the job done.”

And while that title fight isn’t yet signed, “Notorious” isn’t too concerned. He knows that eventually his day will come.

“I don’t really pay attention to that. When they call, I show up. If a fight presents itself, I make a case for it,” he said. “I could wait for the title shot, but I knew there would be a wait, so I requested another fight. Competing is what I love to do and money is what I love to get.”

ufc 180

Fabricio Werdum won his first major MMA title Saturday night, becoming the interim UFC heavyweight champion after delivering a picture-perfect knee to Mark Hunt in the main event of UFC 180.

While most winners are unsure about what is next, Werdum knows: Cain Velasquez and a match to unify the belts.

Velasquez suffered a knee injury that required surgery a few weeks out from a planned fight with Hunt. He is expected to return in early 2015.

“When he’s 100-percent, I’d like to (fight Velasquez) in Mexico or in my city in Brazil,” said Werdum, during his post-fight interview on FOX Sports.

The first round of the scheduled five-rounder appeared to be dominated by Hunt, as he floored Werdum a couple of times. However, that all just led to the setup for the new champion.

“I faked a takedown and got the knee,” he said. “He knew I was going to take him down, so I faked one.

“This is a special one. I’ve waiting a long time for this one. I’m very happy. He punched very hard. I had two months preparing for this here in Mexico. He was very strong in the first round and he’s very smart guy. I watched him in K-1 and I trained very hard.

Werdum (19-5-1) has won five straight since a 2011 decision loss to Alistair Overeem, and he is 8-1 overall since his first stint in the UFC ended with a TKO loss to Junior dos Santos. UFC president Dana White talked about that moment after seeing Werdum’s performance on Saturday.

“That’s the way it works. You fight in the big show and lose, get cut, go fight in other organizations and make it back some day,” he said. “At the time, I never thought Fabricio would be back, but that’s how it works.”

will brooks

Welcome to our live coverage of Bellator 131: Ortiz vs. Bonnar.

Tonight’s card comes to us from the Valley View Casino Center in San Diego. The main card airs on Spike TV following online prelims.

FightLine will have complete coverage of the main card, along with quick results from the prelims.

PRELIMINARY CARD

In earlier action:

Rolando Perez vs. Mark Vorgeas ruled a draw (29-27, 26-30, 28-28)

Jordan Bailey def. Alex Higley via submission (rear-naked choke) at 3:27 of Round 1

Nick Garcia def. Matt Ramirez via submission (guillotine choke) at :56 of Round 1

Andy Murad def. Bubba Pugh via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

Jonathan Santa Maria def. Ron Henderson via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 30-27)

A.J. Matthews def. Kyle Bolt via KO (strike) at 1:39 of Round 1

Joao Faria def. Ian Butler via submission (arm-triangle choke) at 1:58 of Round 3

MAIN CARD

Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal vs. Joe Vedepo

We begin the Spike TV main card with former Strikeforce champion Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal (13-4) taking on Joe Vedepo (17-8), who is stepping in on short notice as a replacement for Tom DeBlass.

Round 1: Vedepo comes out to meet Lawal in the center of the cage, showing no signs of backing down. Seconds in, and Lawal scores with an uncontested takedown. Lawal pounding away with shots. Vedepo tries to kick his way out and might have landed an illegal blow, but Lawal just ignores it and goes back inside the guard. Some swelling and bleeding on Vedepo, as Lawal is dominating this fight through four minutes. He’s using his power and strength advantages, landing rights at will. Lawal transitions to the back, which allows Vedepo to get to his feet. Switches to a takedown off a guillotine from Vedepo to end the round.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Lawal

Round 2: Lawal brushes him to the side to start, keeping Vedepo on the canvas with his wrestling. Possible kimura for Vedepo, as he has the right arm trapped, but he’s unable to secure it. Vedepo works to his feet, but his eyes have swelling around both of them and his face is a bloody mess. Lawal just teasing him with his hands down by his side, trying to get Vedepo to make a mistake. Vedepo again gets out of control and taken down. Lawal flexing his might inside the closed guard with lefts and rights.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Lawal

Round 3: Big lefts land by Lawal to open the round, rocking Vedepo. He’s teeing off on him, as Vedepo is defenseless. He shoots for a takedown, gets denied and has Lawal on his back punishing him with shots. That’s all, and this one is over.

Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal def. Joe Vedepo via TKO (strikes) at :39 of Round 3

Mike Richman vs. Nam Phan

Former UFC and Ultimate Fighter competitor Nam Phan (20-13) makes his debut against Mike Richman (17-5) in a catch-weight bout after Phan was unable to cut down to bantamweight.

Round 1: Richman landing his jab with ease, peppering the face of Phan. He’s already bruised him up with the shots, and Richman drops Phan. Another flurry of rights and this one is all over, as Phan is down and out.

Mike Richman def. Nam Phan via KO (strike) at :46 of Round 1

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