it’s Christmas, so there aren’t a whole lot of “quick hits” to go over this week in the MMA world. Most of the promotions have closed up shop for the remainder of 2021, save for RIZIN FF, whose annual New Year’s Eve show goes down as planned.
We’ll get to what’s left in this edition of Sunday MMA Quick Hits.
Triad Combat Is Coming Back
Consider yourself warned. We actually did cover this development throughout the week, with Kubrat Pulev vs. Junior Dos Santos and Vitor Belfort vs. Chad Dawson being announced for the next Triad card, tentatively scheduled for sometime in February 2022.
The inaugural Triad Combat card got something off a pass in the MMA world. Probably because, at the end of the night, Team MMA won the event. That said, it was a night full of blatant mismatches and a main event that never should have been sanctioned in Pulev vs. Frank Mir.
Pulev vs. JDS feels somewhat more competitive, but with Dos Santos having lost four straight all by TKO, it’s hard to expect anything different in a match-up that focuses solely on striking and eliminates the best weapons mixed martial artists have over boxers.
Thus far, Triad Combat has been another Triller cash grab, looking to make bank on the MMA vs. Boxing rivalry and names from years gone by. It certainly doesn’t feel like a real sport thus far, and nothing announced for Traid Combat 2 seems to contradict that.
Dana White Thinks Nick Diaz Should Retire
As members of the media we have a hard time telling fighters to retire. Our role is to report, not to judge who should or shouldn’t compete, unless a fighter is so obviously compromised in terms of health and safety as to cause genuine concern for their future well-being.
Dana White has in the past flip-flopped on that issue. On the one hand, he forced pal Chuck Liddell to hang them up. On the other, he was considering another BJ Penn fight, until Penn started getting knocked out in parking lot brawls.
Earlier this week, White touched on the subject of Nick Diaz, whose long-awaited return at UFC 266 saw him retire from his fight with Robbie Lawler early in the third round. It was a shocking turn of events for the ever-popular Diaz. Or maybe not. Diaz has long been vocal about his dislike of fighting. He just happens to be good at it. Even against Lawler, he looked good early, until the tide turned and his cardio appeared to fail him (Diaz would later question why the fight had been booked in the first place).
White told ESPN this week that “regardless of how good he looked and what he did after such a huge layoff, I don’t think Nick should fight.”
“I just don’t think Nick does it because he loves it. I think he does it because he has to do it,” White explained. “People always ask me what’s the key to success? It’s all about being happy and doing what you love.
“When I always talk about the people who sit in bumper to bumper traffic and go to a job they hate, that’s what I feel like when Nick Diaz is getting ready for a fight. He’s in bumper to bumper traffic going to a job that he doesn’t love at all.”
Does Diaz really need the money at this point? Does he not know what to do with himself? In all honesty, with Nate carrying the 209 flag, do we need Nick Diaz to fight again? Let’s just hope we don’t get another BJ Penn situation here.
BJ Penn Will Fight if Hulk Hogan Walks Him to the Cage
Speaking of BJ Penn, he told his official website this week that he’d fight again if pro wrestling icon Hulk Hogan walked him to the cage.
The Hulkster was an idol of Penn’s growing up, he revealed. “You know how it is, everyone has that guy they look up to as a kid and for me that man was ‘The Hulkster’. Hulk Hogan was my hero and such an inspiration for me growing up.”
Understandable. You couldn’t be a kid in the 80s (or 90s, or even early 2000s) and not see Hogan everywhere. Later, Penn added “imagine walking out with him? Geez, I would come back for one more fight to make that happen.”
Hogan is reportedly undergoing some pretty daunting health issues of late, and Penn is better off staying retired. So file this one under wishful thinking.
Tyron Woodley Paid 5K for the Best Meme of Him Being KO’d by Jake Paul
Who says Tyron Woodley doesn’t have a sense of humor about himself? Woodley, who suffered a devastating knockout loss at the hands of Jake Paul in their rematch last weekend, has taken the high road and stayed humble ever since. Woodley knows he should never have let his hand drop when he did — he had his guard high, then practically invited Paul to turn out the lights for no apparent reason.
This week, he offered a $5,000 bounty for the best meme of him being
knocked out disconnected from the earthly plane and sent flying out into the ether. The winner was a doozy.
Daniel Cormier Is Not a Fan
Everything we just wrote about T-Wood would likely rub Daniel Cormier the wrong way. DC is no fan of Woodley poking fun at himself following the loss, it seems.
Cormier’s reaction piece on ESPN was blunt and to the point:
“Dude that was not good, that was a bad look. And you know what’s worse? The after. I don’t know what T-Wood’s doing on social media. He posts the knockout, he makes a contest about it. It’s like Jake Paul is beating these dudes so bad that they start to make fun of themselves.”
While Cormier would give a bit of credit to Paul, he also noted that with Jake Paul’s resources, he has all the time in the world to train. Still, that’s no excuse, in DC’s opinion, for the reaction of Woodley and others.
“The kid can fight a little bit, but the reality is this. My biggest issue is, these guys go in there and fight this dude, they lose to him. Ben Askren was immediately almost making fun of himself. It’s almost like you’re so embarrassed that you lost to the Disney kid or the YouTuber that you start to almost become self-depreciating. It’s bad. Bro it’s bad what’s happening to these dudes.”
Jake Paul is Still Yet to Call Out Anyone His Own Size
“I just knocked out a five-time UFC champion and embarrassed your whole company. Please let me get Kamaru Usman, please let me get Diaz, please let me get Masvidal, please let me get McGregor. I’m going to embarrass them too, I promise you that, Dana. I promise you that.”
Those were Jake Paul’s words after beating Woodley last weekend. What’s really wild? The largest of the competitors he named is Kamaru Usman, who fights at welterweight, like Woodley did. Jake Paul is a cruiserweight walking around over 200lbs beating guys 30lbs lighter than him. It’s almost a surprise he isn’t calling out flyweights at this point — McGregor’s best run was at 145 after all. Yes, he and Diaz and Masvidal have all ventured up to 170, but it’s not what any of them are best known for. They’re undersized for 170, yet Paul is fighting at 190 and above.
Note the total lack of callouts for guys his own size, unless they’re well past their prime.
Prazeres Blasts USADA After Earning Four Year Suspension
After failing multiple drug tests and being handed a four-year suspension by USADA in what was his second infraction under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, Michel Prazeres initially intended to retire from MMA. However, he had a quick change of heart this week, after learning USADA couldn’t stop him from fighting in his native Brazil.
Prazeres failed four separate drug tests between August and November of this year, for clomiphene and its metabolites (desethyl-clomiphene, clomiphene M1, and clomiphene M2), oxandrolone metabolites, and the exogenous administration of testosterone, and possibly for injecting the kitchen sink while he was at it. He later told MMA Fighting that his positive tests were the result of fertility treatment, and that he had been prescribed Clomid by his doctor. Not so for oxandrolone (an anabolic steroid), which he admitted to using, but not for nearly a decade.
“I told [USADA] everything. I said my wife and I were doing treatment to have another baby,” Prazeres told the website. “This is not a steroid, this is a medication. They interviewed me, my wife and my doctor, they took all the receipts and medical records, the exams I’ve done, and these sons of b*tches still do that?”
“USADA is a b*tch, it’s a wh*re,” Prazeres added. “They punish the person as they please.”
Well, that’s settled then. Prazeres later said that he couldn’t “give a sh*t” about USADA. “I can fight in Brazil, I can make money in Brazil.”
Prazeres had asked for (and was granted) his release from the UFC a week ago, prior to news of his doping infraction being announced.