Tag Archives: Breaking

Prior to UFC London win, Marc Diakiese wanted to be released

LONDON – If Marc Diakiese had gotten his wish, he wouldn’t have even fought at UFC on ESPN+ 5. A trio of losses made him think he needed time to rebuild himself on the local circuit before getting back to the big show.

“After the last fight, I wanted to get released (from contract), because I felt I’m young and learning, but I’m getting beat by mistakes,” Diakiese told reporters, including MMA Junkie, backstage at The O2.

Obviously, not getting his wish turned out pretty well. Diakiese (13-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) snapped his skid with a dominant win over Joseph Duffy (16-4 MMA, 4-3 UFC), outworking the Irish veteran for a unanimous decision.

The announcement of the win crumpled Diakiese, who broke down in tears and could barely pull himself together during his post-fight interview inside the octagon.

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Backstage, he was all smiles.

“I had a lot of doubters, like, yeah after this, he’s out, so it’s nice to get this win out of the way,” Diakiese said.

One major improvement Diakiese credited is his move back home to the U.K., where he got his start. Although he valued his time stateside at American Top Team, he said he got more personal attention with his former crew.

Once a hot prospect in the UFC’s lightweight division, Diakiese can do all the rebuilding he wants inside the promotion. He’s not in a rush.

“I’m just going to be a lot smarter now, not just taking fight after fight,” he said. “I’ll take my time and see what’s next.”

To hear more, watch the video above.

For complete coverage of UFC on ESPN+ 5, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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Volkan Oezdemir: ‘I clearly won’ UFC London fight against Dominick Reyes

LONDON – Volkan Oezdemir needed no more assurance that he came out ahead at UFC on ESPN+ 5 than words from Dominick Reyes’ corner.

“Even the coaches of Reyes came to me before the judges announcement and after the judges announcement and told me I was winning the fight,” Oezdemir told reporters backstage after his split-decision loss to Reyes at UFC on ESPN+5 from The O2. “I don’t want to say it’s (expletive). Maybe I should have produced a little more, but I clearly won the fight.

“I was the better man tonight, and unfortunately the judges didn’t see it that way.”

Reyes (11-0 MMA, 5-0 UFC) took home two 29-28 scores while one judge scored it the same for Oezdemir (15-4 MMA, 3-3 UFC), who suffered his third straight UFC loss after opening his UFC tenure 3-0.

“I think he was good, but I don’t think he was as good as other people I’ve fought,” Oezdemir said. “But at the end of the day, he passed the test. I definitely think I’m going to take the fight if we get a rematch.”

Back to the drawing board is the plan for the Swiss fighter, who rocketed up the light heavyweight ranks only to fall short in a title fight against then-champion Daniel Cormier early last year.

Oezdemir hoped to face surging light heavyweight Thiago Santos or Corey Anderson before he heard the bad news. Although he’d still like those opportunities, he needs to rethink his next steps.

“Definitely a lot of different opponents I’ll be interested in fighting,” Oezdemir said.

To hear more, watch the video above.

For complete coverage of UFC on ESPN+ 5, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

Jorge Masvidal says Leon Edwards ‘put his hands up’ before punches thrown backstage at UFC London

Jorge Masvidal was backstage, minding his own business, doing an interview after his UFC on ESPN+ 5 headlining win when things got out of hand.

Masvidal was interrupted by fellow welterweight Leon Edwards, who was victorious earlier in the co-main event. Edwards started talking trash as he walked by, causing Masvidal to turn his attention. Masvidal didn’t just talk back, though. He calmly walked toward Edwards with his hands behind his back until he approached him. That’s when Masvidal threw a combination of punches that caused a cut under Edwards’ eye.

The entire incident was caught on video by ESPN cameras. In an interview with ESPN, Masvidal offered his side of what transpired, saying the beef with Edwards started on social media and explaining that he threw punches after Edwards raised his hands first.

“One of these hooligans, man,” Masvidal told ESPN. “He’s like talking crap on social media. I seen him here (during UFC London fight week); (he) doesn’t really address me as a man. I wanted to talk to him kind of, and he’s just like dodging me. Whatever, we can handle it after the fight. So I’m doing this interview, and this hooligan comes by saying some stuff: ‘July, get your ass kicked in July – July.’ And I go, ‘Maybe.’

“But whatever. Because maybe I want to kick your ass in April. Maybe I don’t want to wait until July. Maybe I don’t even want to fight you in a prize ring, because you’re not worth a training camp. I’ll just fight you here. Because you’re a scrub.

“So I tell him, ‘Just say it to my face like a man.’ You’re saying it walking away. We’re both men, you know. And as I’m walking up to him, I’ve got my hands behind my back to signal I’m not coming here for problems. But he put his hands up like this – it’s on video – and walks towards me. Well, where I’m from, if you do that, you’re going to punch me in the face, and that’s not going to happen. You’re a (expletive) dork; you’re JV, beta. You are what you are. You’re just a loser in life. You’re not going to get a hit off me. So I gave him the three piece with a soda, and then just glide out of there.”

Regardless of blame, the altercation was a jarring sight and an unfortunate turn considering the moment Masvidal had seized not long before when he knocked out Till. Masvidal didn’t gloat over his win and praised his fallen opponent while asking the UFC for a title shot and performance bonus – which he earned double the money.

Masvidal said that even though it might not have appeared this way on camera, he “was scared.”

“It might not have looked it, because I’m cold-blooded, but I was scared out of my life,” Masvidal said. “I said, ‘This hooligan is here and is going to assault me.’ He shouldn’t have done that and walked towards me like he was going to punch me. I got the first one in. Am I going to be in trouble because I got the first one in?”

That was too early to determine in the immediate aftermath of the incident. UFC executive Dave Shaw said during the post-event news conference that “we’ll review all the details … and take next steps from there.” Shaw added that UFC President Dana White already was looking into it. White expressed shock over the incident to ESPN.

“I can’t even believe that this happened,” White said. We need to do a much better job of making sure this shit doesn’t happen at any of our events!!!!”

For complete coverage of UFC on ESPN+ 5, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

Conor McGregor gives fiery locker room speech, drops the puck at Boston Bruins game

Conor McGregor is dealing with some legal trouble at the moment, but that isn’t stopping him from living his life – specifically as a special guest at an NHL game.

On Saturday night, the former two-division UFC champion attended the Boston Bruins-Columbus Blue Jackets game in Boston, where McGregor did the ceremonial puck drop. It was Irish Heritage Night ahead of St. Patrick’s Day at TD Garden.

As you might expect, the crowd went wild as McGregor was announced, and he walked onto the ice with his trademark “Foggy Dew”/“Hypnotize” playing in the arena. You can check it out here (via Twitter):

(Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports)

Prior to that, McGregor gave Bruins players a pre-game speech in the locker room, which you can check out here (via Instagram):

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The Bruins tweeted out a photo showing McGregor commanding the players’ attention as he roamed the locker room.

The Bruins went on to defeat the Blue Jackets 2-1 in overtime. Brad Marchand busted out a McGregor celebration after scoring the winning goal.

McGregor last week was arrested on charges of strong-arm robbery and criminal mischief after allegedly smashing and stealing a fan’s cell phone. The incident was caught on tape.

For more on the UFC’s upcoming schedule, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

The Blue Corner is MMA Junkie’s blog space. We don’t take it overly serious, and neither should you. If you come complaining to us that something you read here is not hard-hitting news, expect to have the previous sentence repeated in ALL CAPS.

Fight Tracks: The walkout songs of UFC on ESPN+ 5 with Neil Diamond and the Eminem Curse

While it takes intense training, world-class skills and maybe even a bit of luck to register a UFC win, picking the right song to accompany you to the cage is a key talent, as well.

Inside, see what the fighters of Saturday’s UFC on ESPN+ 5 event in London went with as their backing tracks.

Pancrase flyweight king Senzo Ikeda signs with ONE

Senzo Ikeda, the reigning flyweight king of Pancrase, has been added to ONE Championship’s debut event in Japan on 31 March.

The post Pancrase flyweight king Senzo Ikeda signs with ONE appeared first on Asia MMA.

ONE Championship enters into partnership with Pancrase

Ahead of its Japanese debut on 31 March, ONE Championship has announced a landmark deal with Pancrase to allow its roster of athletes to compete with ONE.

The post ONE Championship enters into partnership with Pancrase appeared first on Asia MMA.

Pancrase to crown featherweight king in May

A featherweight unification bout has been added to Pancrase 305, with interim champion Isao Kobayashi set to face Argentinian grappler Nazareno Malegarie.

The post Pancrase to crown featherweight king in May appeared first on Asia MMA.

Complete card announced for ONE: A New Era

ONE Championship has completed the lineup for its Japan debut on 31 March, a card with 16 fights in total, four of which are championship matches.

The post Complete card announced for ONE: A New Era appeared first on Asia MMA.

ONE’s flyweight tourney gets underway in Japan

The opening round of ONE Championship’s flyweight tournament is set, with four first-round fights added to ONE: A New Era on 31 March.

The post ONE’s flyweight tourney gets underway in Japan appeared first on Asia MMA.