The UFC (and several MMA-themed outlets) were recently compromised, but quickly recovered, while Cat Zingano’s lawsuit against Halle Berry has come to an end. Jake Paul does a little MMA training, while the “Lazy King” pulls off a big comeback. It’s your Sunday MMA Quick Hits!
Several MMA-related outlets hacked, including UFC
The UFC’s official Youtube channel was briefly taken control of by crypto scammers on Wednesday. The hack — through methods unknown — saw live streams picturing Elon Musk (obviously recorded from old sources) promoting bitcoin and related schemes.
The MMA world remains box of spiders pic.twitter.com/PvgO4Y5i9t
— José Youngs (@JoseYoungs) January 18, 2023
While the UFC was the highest profile victim, veteran MMA journalist James Lynch, who has provided coverage to multiple outlets (including this one) also lost access to his Youtube and other Google accounts, as well as his Twitter. MMA Sucka’s Youtube channel was reportedly compromised as well.
Thankfully, it looks as if this has been sorted out, at least on the Youtube front.
Cat Zingano drops lawsuit against Halle Berry
Former UFC title challenger and current Bellator MMA contender Cat Zingano has dropped a lawsuit she launched against Helle Berry.
The lawsuit stemmed from Zingano’s involvement in the Berry-directed and starring film Bruised. Zingano alleged that Berry had approached her to take part in the film, and had told her “not to make any plans” to ensure she would be available for filming. That led to Zingano turning down a UFC fight, which “Alpha” claimed cost her her roster spot.
After her release by the promotion, Berry allegedly put the kibosh on Zingano appearing in the film, saying only UFC fighters could take part. Notably, Valentina Shevchenko starred in the film as an antagonist.
Per a report by My News LA, Zingano’s lawyer presented a motion before Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Douglas W. Stern on Tuesday asking that the case be dismissed “with prejudice,” meaning the suit cannot be re-filed. No reason was given, though it is possible the parties reached a settlement.
Zingano is expected to compete for the Bellator MMA women’s featherweight championship later this year.
Bruised premiered on Netflix last year.
Jake Paul Does a Little Grappling
Jake Paul signing with the PFL might be the most underappreciated story of the year so far. Sure, it made headlines, but Paul’s following could be a real shot in the arm for the league. His stance on fighter pay and being an advocate for mixed martial artists may also draw some bigger names to the promotion, as they attempt to do what no promotion outside the UFC has successfully managed in years: launch a profitable series of PPV events.
Francis Ngannou, anyone?
The fact that Paul intends to compete in the sport is also noteworthy. His business model of boxing past-their-prime MMA fighters was only going to last so long. While the cynical might suggest he’ll just switch sports but keep beating on the elderly, his path to victory will be much more difficult regardless. Let’s be honest, Anderson Silva, who gave Paul a real run for his money in boxing, schools him in MMA.
Ahead of his February 2023 boxing match-up with Tommy Fury, Paul opted to do a little grappling. In a social media post labelled “first day of jiu-jitsu” Paul was seen on the mats — and this might signal that his crossover to MMA could come sooner rather than later.
All Hail the Lazy King
Abdoul “The Lazy King” Abdouraguimov is arguably one of the best fighters not signed to a major promotion. He made our 10 Welterweight Prospects the UFC Should Sign in 2023 feature earlier this month, and frankly, he should have been signed to the big leagues last year.
Apparently unable to secure a UFC deal by just being a plain old dominant welterweight, “The Lazy King” moved up to middleweight at ARES 11 and… was frankly beaten through the better part of five rounds.
Then Abdouraguimov turned up the heat, snatching a kneebar with less than a minute left in the fight. The much larger Rafal Haratyk, who had been winning the bout, was forced to tap. With that, Abdoul Abdouraguimov had the win, the ARES middleweight title, and is now a double-champ in the promotion.
The UFC had better come calling after that. While he shouldn’t be fighting at middleweight, “The Lazy King” would be a huge addition to the UFC’s welterweight division. If not, Bellator MMA or the PFL would be wise to snatch him up.
La folle victoire d'Abdoul dans les dernières secondes 😍
— CANAL+ Sport (@CanalplusSport) January 20, 2023