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ufc 175

UFC president Dana White made an appearance on FOX Sports 1 recently to promote UFC 175. White discussed a number of subjects, including the recent decision to part ways with Chael Sonnen.

“It’s never easy making decisions like this,” White said. “Chael is a person I personally care about; I know a lot of people at FOX care about him too.

The guy had four banned substances in his system. Four banned substances in his system leading up to a fight here in Las Vegas. It’s a tough one. It’s one of those hard decisions you have to make. It was definitely a hard one.”

Sonnen was scheduled to fight this weekend against Vitor Belfort before failing the first of two tests given to him by the Nevada Athletic Commission. He was the co-host of “UFC Tonight” on FS1 opposite Kenny Florian.

White also talked about this possibly being the final time BJ Penn fights, as he takes on Frankie Edgar Sunday. Hear the entire interview with White in the video below:

ufc 175

Hey, you just beat the legend, Anderson Silva, for a second straight time. So, Chris Weidman, what are you doing next?

That’s the question Weidman will begin answering this coming weekend when he faces Lyoto Machida at UFC 175 in the main event.

Not to take anything away from Machida, a former light heavyweight champion and a man considered one of the top fighters in the world, but for Weidman, it has to feel like a letdown.

And there’s nothing that could really change that outside of facing a fellow UFC champion.

The challenge ahead for Weidman is a difficult one – both inside the Octagon and outside of it. In terms of matching up with Machida, that’s a task in and of itself.

But mentally, Weidman has to get over Anderson Silva and all the hoopla and prestige that he brought with him to the Octagon. One thing going in Weidman’s favor is the timing of the card, as it takes place almost a year to the day when he first beat Silva.

For Weidman, fighting on the Fourth of July in Las Vegas could become a tradition. It allowed him to drape the U.S. flag over his body last year when he finished “The Spider” with a second round knockout blow and let off an incredible thrill through the night.

Weidman’s win changed the entire course of the UFC. It gave Johny Hendricks a chance against Georges St-Pierre – and he almost came through. It gave TJ Dillashaw a shot vs. Renan Barao – and he prevailed. Weidman’s win was a motivating factor for all the underdogs out there to go out and succeed inside the Octagon.

Now, as the hunted, “The All-American” must regain that status as the underdog and prepare just the same way he did for Silva; feeling as if the entire world is against him and he has nothing to lose.

As always, FightLine will have complete coverage of UFC 175 this Saturday night, including live play-by-play and all your post-fight news and information.

ufc rankings

Cub Swanson’s sixth straight win has left him in the position of next contender to the UFC featherweight title, at least according to the official UFC rankings. The rankings were released on Monday.

Swanson earned a decision over Jeremy Stephens this past weekend, moving past Frankie Edgar and Ricardo Lamas. He is now No. 2, behind only current contender Chad Mendes to Jose Aldo’s reign atop the division.

Stephens, despite the loss, moved up to No. 10 at 145 pounds.

Brad Pickett, Takeya Mizugaki, Bryan Caraway, Alex Caceres, Nik Lentz, Conor McGregor, Michael Johnson, Bobby Green, Mauricio Rua, Fabio Maldonado and Andrei Arlovski all moved up in their respective divisions.

nate diaz

Myles Jury took a bit of a page out of the book of Nate Diaz, posting on Twitter Sunday that he has already accepted a fight with the former No. 1 contender.

“Nate Diaz I respect u a lot, BUT… I confirmed to fight you & have been waiting on you for a week,” Jury posted. “Are we getting after it or what?”

The 25-year-old alum of The Ultimate Fighter has won all five of his UFC fights, including a recent decision over Diego Sanchez. He has a submission win over Chris Saunders an a second round knockout of Ramsey Nijem to his credit.

Diaz, meanwhile, has been adamant that he wants a new contract to return to fighting following a win over Gray Maynard. He negotiated a deal prior to his world title fight with Benson Henderson, which he lost via decision.

ufc fight night 44

Jon Anik doesn’t hide his emotions when it comes to discussing the sport he covers.

Anik, who will be joined by Brian Stann tonight to call the action at UFC Fight Night 44 from San Antonio, recently discussed the card with FightLine.

The event features a headline bout between featherweight contenders Cub Swanson and Jeremy Stephens, but there are plenty of other reasons to tune in, according to Anik.

“The co-main event, with Nico Musoke and Kelvin Gastelum, is a special fight for me,” Anik said. “Not a lot of people are familiar with Nico, but he stepped up on short notice and got the ‘Submission of the Night’ against Alessio Sakara.”

Musoke has won both of his UFC fights, scoring a decision vs. Viscardi Andrade earlier this year in Brazil. He is 12-2 overall and will be facing the unbeaten Gastelum (8-0), a winner on The Ultimate Fighter.

“I think Nico is smart enough to realize the intensity that Gastelum brings (is dangerous),” Anik said. “He’s just 22. If you don’t get to him early, he is going to be a hard guy to beat.”

Another main card bout will see Cezar “Mutante” Ferreira face off against Andrew Craig. Ferreira (7-3) was a winner on TUF: Brazil, but suffered a knockout loss to CB Dollaway this past March. Craig (9-2) is 1-2 in his last three overall, but holds wins over Chris Leben and Rafael Natal.

“When Mutante is one, he is a guy who can be featured on FOX Sports 1 main cards and pay-per-views for years to come,” Anik said. “It will be interesting to see how he responds to the knockout loss.

“Craig is a hard guy to put away, but I think Mutante has a treat opportunity. This has ‘Fight of the Night’ written all over it with two guys who can take damage and dish it out.”

Anik made sure to not forget about the main card opener, as Joe Ellenberger will finally make his long-awaited UFC debut against James Moontasri. Ellenberger is the brother of Jake Ellenberger and owns a 14-1 career record.

“A rare blood disease kept Joe out of competition and he has been dealing with getting five or six different opponents,” Anik said. “I expect his best foot forward. Here is a guy who has had so many struggles, but is realizing his dream and kicks off five free hours of fights on (FOX Sports 1).”

Ellenberger was diagnosed with paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria, a disease that has just about 8,000 known cases in the U.S. He has gone through numerous changes in opponents, including scheduled fights with Frank Trevino, Johnny Case and Bryan Barberena.

FightLine will have complete coverage of the card, including live play-by-play of the action.

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