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2017 MMAThread Awards

2017 has been a big year for MMA, and here are the MMAThread Awards.

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2017 gave us some massive fights – Jon Jones took on Daniel Cormier to win back the title he never lost, TJ Dillashaw and Cody Gardbant finally threw down, Max Holloway finally cemented himself as the true king of the Featherweight division and the legend that is Georges St-Pierre returned to become the fourth UFC fighter to win belts at multiple weight classes – And this was just from the UFC – Other promotions that killed it this year include Bellator, Cage Warriors and KSW.

MMAThread’s staff have all come together and agreed that the following fighters should receive these awards.

Submission of the Year
Jonno Mears – Boston Crab – FCC 19 – September 30th

FCC or Full Contact Contender is a relatively small regional promotion, but in late 2017 the promotion got a massive amount of publicity thanks to an incredible submission pulled off by Manchester’s Jonno MearsMears entered his second pro fight coming off a TKO win over Will Cairns in his first pro outing – but it was on this September evening in the Macron Stadium in Bolton where he would cement his name in MMA history forever – Mears pulled off a Boston Crab, or as some would remember it has “The Walls of Jerrico”, becoming an instant viral sensation in doing so, the submission brought back many memories for people who used to enjoy the golden days of the WWF/E – The submission is a first in MMA, and incredibly difficult to pull off.

Knockout of the Year
Paul Daley – Jumping Knee – Bellator 170 

Paul Daley is a knockout artist, that is something most MMA fans will know, but normally he gets the KO with his fists, not this time around! Instead after being stalled on the cage wall, Daley managed to catch a break and then came running with a brutal jumping knee that knocked out Brennan Ward cold – Ward is now scarred for life!

Picking the KO of the year was a very tough choice, which so many brutal knockouts this year – but it was Daley’s KO early on in the year that continues to stick out.

Rise of the Year
Francis N’Gannou

There have been many fighters in 2017 who have stood out from the crowd, but none as loud or as hard as N’Gannou. Although only fighting twice in 2017, N’Gannou has turned from contender to challenger and could be one of the biggest challenges for heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic to date – N’Gannou started the year off with a literal bang by TKO’ing former champion Andrei Arlovski, he then finished out the year with a massive knockout win over Alistair Overeem in a fight which would earn him a shot at UFC gold. In between these fights N’Gannou has made Las Vegas and the UFC Performance Centre his new home, living, eating and breathing MMA.

UFC 220: Miocic vs. Ngannou official promo

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Posted by BT Sport on Saturday, 30 December 2017

Fall of the Year
Michael Bisping

Bisping had the year of his life in 2016, he defeated former Middleweight Champion and UFC legend Anderson Silva in London, before replacing Chris Weidman on three weeks notice to take on Luke Rockhold – the fight with Rockhold was for all the marbles, after so many years of fighting Bisping finally got his UFC title shot and he took it with both hands, he knockout Rockhold in the first to not only avenge a loss but to become the UK’s first UFC Champion. He then ended 2016 with a win over former rival Dan Henderson to avenge a devastating knockout years earlier.

2017 was the polar opposite to such an amazing 2017 for BispingBisping was out injured for the start of 2017, then in March we heard rumours of a potential matchup against a returning GSP, that fight was eventually called off and Bisping was again sidelined, in this time Australian standout Robert Whittikar became the new Interim Champion after taking out Yoel Romero. Bisping would finally return to the Octagon in November after a year away he was to finally take on Georges St-Pierre, GSP dominated much of the fight and submitted Bisping in the third round – Just three weeks later Bisping, not one to shy away from an opportunity, took on Kelvin Gastelum as a late minute replacement after Anderson Silva was removed due to a flagged USADA test. At 2 minutes 30 seconds of round one Bisping’s lights were shut out by Gastelum, marking an end to a miserable 2017 for the Brit. Bisping still refused to retire, and here’s hoping we see him back on the winning side of things in 2018.

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Male Fighters of the Year
Max Holloway

Since Max Holloway lost to Conor McGregor back in 2013 he has gone on a 10 fight winning streak, tearing through the Featherweight division to get to the goal, a shot at the UFC Featherweight Title. The fight wouldn’t be a rematch with McGregor of course, McGregor was stripped of the Featherweight Title in late 2016 after winning the Lightweight Title – Instead Jose Aldo had once again reclaimed his spot as the king of the division, something Holloway was keen to put an end to, Holloway came into the fight the Interim Champion, winning the title back in 2016 against Anthony Pettis. In June 2017 Aldo and Holloway faced off to unify the division, after some early back and forth, Holloway put away Aldo in the 3rd round to become the Undisputed Champion.

Holloway was scheduled to face off against Frankie Edgar in his first title defence on December 2nd, however, Edgar became injured and former champion Jose Aldo was brought in as a replacement – this second fight played out much the same as the first and Holloway again put Aldo away in the 3rd to cement himself as the number one Featherweight. 2018 should be a bright year for Holloway, we expect him to face off with Edgar.

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Female Fighter of the Year
Rose Namajunas

Thug Rose! Thug Rose! Thug Rose! – That’s all the word Daniel Cormier could muster up after Rose Namajunas pulled off the almost unthinkable in 2017, she stopped reigning Strawweight Champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk. Rose started that year with a submission over Michelle Waterson to become the number one contender, before finally taking on the Champion in the latter half of 2017. Rose dominated Joanna forcing her to tap to strikes and become the new Strawweight Champion – Rose’s post-fight interview will be one of the most standout moments of 2017, not for being controversial, but for being so humble.

One to Watch
Darren Till

Before Till took on Donald Cerrone in October, many Welterweights were asking just who this guy was, well after he dominated the always durable Cowboy, stopping him in the first round during their showdown in Poland, there was very little doubt that everyone knew who he was now! Darren Till has now put the entire Welterweight division on notice as he looks to establish himself as a top contender in 2018.

Till is undefeated and a very hard hitter, he is definitely a fighter to keep an eye on during 2018, don’t be surprised if he fights for a title before the end of the year, or will at the very least earn a shot by the end of the year.

Gym of the Year
Next Generation MMA – Liverpool

Next Generation based out of Liverpool is home to fighters such as Chris Fishgold, Paddy Pimblett and Molly McCann, it is also the home for many upcoming amateur talents. – 2017 has been a great year for the gym, Chris Fishgold returned to the cage at Cage Warriors 88 to defeat Alexander Jacobson, defending his title for the third time and the year was topped off when Molly McCann was named as Cage Warriors Fighter of the Year – 2018 is looking to be a big year as it may potentially see several fighters from the gym moving on to the UFC.

Fight Predictions 

Conor McGregor vs Georges St-Pierre
Conor McGregor had just one fight in 2017, and it wasn’t even in the Octagon, he has yet to defend his 155lb title and many are calling him to be stripped, which is why this fight prediction makes the most sense. GSP made his UFC return, submitting Michael Bisping to become the Middleweight Champion, he soon vacated the title and will drop back to Welterweight (170lbs).

McGregor is now all about the money fight, and it would take one big offer to lure him back, the only true money fight to be made would be a showdown with GSP – It is why this prediction (and it is just that, a prediction) suggests that Conor will be stripped of the belt and Khabib and Ferguson will fight for the unified Lightweight Title in March.

Conor will then return titleless around August time to take on GSP in a PPV extravaganza, after this fight – win or lose, it would be down to Conor to decide whether he wants to fight again.

Special Mentions

Cris Cyborg 

Cyborg was a serious consideration for the female Fighter of the Year award, Cyborg’s biggest fight in 2017 was with the UFC and the way the promotion was mistreating her, at one point pleading with the UFC to just let her fight – She was finally supposed to fight for the 145lb title, but her opponent Germaine de Randamie refused to fight her, branding her a cheat – for this refusal the UFC stripped Randamie and this is where things finally started to look up for Cyborg, she fought Tonya Evinger in July to finaly get the title she’d long been yerning for – Cyborg’s time is NOW!. To top of her tremendous year Cyborg dominated Holy Holm to a decision win at UFC 119, Cyborg showed she isn’t just a big hitter, she stuck to a game plan and proved that she is an all-around fighter. 2018 is already set to be another big year for the Brazilian, word is that she’ll take on Amanda Nunes next in a super fight.

Demetrious Johnson 

Might Mouse is clearly the number one pound for pound fighter in the world, he has been such a dominant fighter and in 2017 he made UFC history – he officially defended his Flyweight title 11 times, surpassing the 10 title defences made by former Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva. It was during this title defense, Mighty Mouse decided to remind everyone just why he’s one of the greatest fighters to ever step inside the Octagon, in the 5th round of his title match against Ray Borg, he suplexed Borg and quickly (in mid-air) transition into what can only be described as one of the best armbars you will ever see.

Congratulations to all the winners and heres hoping 2018 is a big year for MMA.

 

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LIVE! UFC 238 Weigh-In

WATCH! Live weigh-ins for UFC 238 as Henry Cejudo takes on Marlon Moraes for the vacant Bantamweight Title

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Tomorrow night (or Sunday morning if you’re in the UK) the UFC is back!

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UFC Flyweight Champion Henry Cejudo is set to face off against Marlon Moraes for the vacant Bantamweight title.

Cejudo was originally supposed to be in a much-rumoured rematch with T.J Dillashaw, after being T.J back in January to successfully defend his 125lb title.

However, things changed in March when T.J vacated his 135lb title after being flagged by USADA for a failed drug test.

In steps Marlon Moraes in what is expected to be a barn burner of a fight, and one in which Cejudo could become the next two-weight champion in the UFC.

In the co-main event UFC Women’s Flyweight Champion Valentina Shevchenko makes the first defense of her 125lb title after beating Joanna Jedrzejczyk in December for the then-vacant title.

Plus Tony Ferguson returns after some much-publicised personal issues outside of the cage to take on Donald Cerrone in what is expected to be a fight for the number one contender’s spot.

The winner is expected to face off against the winner of Khabib Nurmagomedov vs Dustin Poirier which is set to take place at UFC 242 in September.

Watch the Weigh-Ins LIVE below

Full Fight Card:

EARLY PRELIMS (UFC Fight Pass)

Women’s Flyweight (125lb)
Katlyn Chookagain vs Joanne Calderwood

Bantamweight (135lb)
Eddie Wineland vs Grigory Popov

Middleweight (185lb)
Bevon Lewis vs Darren Stewart

Women’s Strawweight (115lb)
Xiaonan Yan vs Angela Hill

PRELIMS (ESPN / BT SPORT 1)

Featherweight (145lb)
Ricardo Lamas vs Calvin Kattar

Women’s Strawweight (115lb)
Karolina Kowalkiewicz vs Alexa Grasso

Bantamweight (135lb)
Aljamain Sterling vs Pedro Munhoz

Women’s Strawweight (115lb)
Tatiana Suarez vs Nina Ansaroff

MAIN CARD (PPV / BT SPORT 1)

Heavyweight (265lb)
Tai Tuivasa vs Blagoy Ivanov

Bantamweight (135lb)
Jimmie Rivera vs Petr Yan

Lightweight (155lb)
Tony Ferguson vs Donald Cerrone

UFC Women’s Flyweight Title (125lb)
Valentina Shevchenko vs Jessica Eye

UFC Bantamweight Title (135lb)
Henry Cejudo vs Marlon Moraes

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Andy Ruiz Jr. wants $50 million to face Anthony Joshua in the U.K for rematch.

Andy Ruiz Jr. demands $50 million to face Anthony Joshua in U.K rematch

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Andy Ruiz Jr. is on top of the world after defeating Anthony Joshua this past Saturday, and now he’s calling all the shots.

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Currently it is unclear where or when, if at all, a rematch will happen. AJ has stated in the post-fight press conference that he “didn’t has about a rematch clause” because he was so confident he’d beat the Mexican heavyweight.

However, despite Joshua’s comments his promoter Eddie Hearn insists there is a rematch clause and they reckon the fight will take place in November, December.

This is however, all based on whether Matchroom can get a deal with the newly crowned champion. The ball is now of course in Andy Ruiz Jr’s. hands.

In an interview with Fight Hub Ruiz has recently stated that he will take the rematch, but if AJ & Hearn want it in the UK then they are going to have to dig deep in their pockets to make it happen!

“I think they said November, December but right now my team are negotiating. I gotta stay busy, healthy and be ready for the rematch”.

“I would love it to be in Mexico or the United States, but it all depends on what we negotiate. If they want me to go over there (U.K) then they have to give me $50 million dollars”.

Ruiz also stated that he expects Joshua to fight differently but he will once again come out victorious.

“I have the faster hands and I can take a punch” said Ruiz.

So what do you think? Will Anthony Joshua face Ruiz in the U.K or will Mexico get a star studded night of action? Sound off in the comments below and be sure to check back with MMAThread for all the latest MMA & Fighting News.

 

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GSP set to announce retirement – Khabib offers one final fight

GSP expected to announce retirement. BUT, Khabib may throw a spanner in the works

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Former UFC Welterweight and Middleweight Champion Georges St-Pierre is expected to announce his official retirement tomorrow in a planned press conference

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GSP was last seen in the Octagon at UFC 217 in November of 2017 when he submitted then UFC Middleweight Champion Michael Bisping to snatch the title, becoming a two-weight champion.

Since then GSP has been out of action due to ulcerative colitis which forced him to vacate the Middleweight Title just over a month after winning. Since then GSP has been linked to ‘super fights’ with various opponent including Conor McGregor, Anderson Silva and most recently UFC Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov.

Today news broke that GSP has arranged for a press conference to take place tomorrow, where according to multiple sources, he is expected to officially announce his retirement. This comes after GSP says he wanted a fight with Khabib to become a three-weight champion (the first in UFC history) since that fight never materialised he now wishes to call an end to his fighting career for good.

However, since the news broke, Khabib has called out GSP stating that “he doesn’t want to be the reason St-Pierre retires” and that he wants to give the former champion one last fight. Khabib’s most recent outing inside the Octagon was a submission win over former Lightweight Champion Conor McGregor in what was the biggest pay-per-view in UFC history, however, after the win Khabib scaled the cage and attacked Conor’s cornermen causing a brawl both inside and outside the cage.

Khabib received a 6 month suspension and a fine for the NSAC, however, Khabib’s training partners received 12 month suspensions and Khabib has gone on to state that he will not fight for the UFC until their suspensions are up, if that’s the case we won’t see Khabib inside the Octagon until at least November at the very earliest – Only time can tell now whether the time frame suits GSP’s desires, or if this is truly the end for one of the greatest fighters to have ever graced the Octagon.

If this truly is the end for GSP, then he leaves behind a legacy that many fighters will look up to, unbeaten for 13 straight fights, two-time UFC Welterweight Champion and one-time UFC Middleweight Champion. GSP is truly heading for the MMA Mount Rushmore.

Don’t forget to follow MMAThread on Facebook for all the latest breaking news, and be sure to check on the site for all the latest interviews and news articles.

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Cage Warriors 101 – Live Results & Updates

Live results from Cage Warriors 101

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Cage Warriors returns to Liverpool for an action-packed night of fights for Cage Warriors 101 – Full results and fight card details are below.

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Cage Warriors North West Undercard

Adam Shelley vs Marcus Lewis – CWA Lightweight Title Bout
Adam Shelley – R1 – TKO

Joffe Houlton vs Carl Dilks – Light Heavyweight
Joffe Houlton – R1 – SUB – Kimura

Adam Caldwell vs Ben Petches-Kelly – Lightweight
Ben Petches-Kelly – DEC

Harrison Teare vs Tom Somerset – Welterweight
Tom Somerset – R1 – TKO

Oskar Stachura vs Jamie Hayes – Welterweight
Jamie Hayes – R1 – TKO

Teddy Stringer vs Richie Lunt – Lightweight
Teddy Stringer – R1 – TKO

Danny Dixon vs Mariusz Mikolajewski – Welterweight
Mariusz Mikolajewski – R1 – SUB – Rear Naked Choke

Cage Warriors Under Card

James Sheehan vs Ian Garry – Welterweight
Ian Garry – Decision – 30-25, 30-25, 30-27

Andrew Lofthouse vs Gavin Kelly – Featherweight
Gavin Kelly – Decision – 30-27

Anthony O’Connor vs Steven Hooper – Lightweight
Anthony O’Connor – DEC

Mark Kinsella vs Tomasz Wojtyna – Welterweight
Mark Kinsella – DEC – 29-28, 29-28, 29-28

Adam Wilson vs Harry Ettridge – Bantamweight
Adam Wilson – DEC

Main Card

MAIN EVENT
Tom Aspinall vs Sofiane Boukichou – Heavyweight
Tom Aspinall – R1 – KO

Bryan Creighton vs Manuel Bilić – Bantamweight
Manuel Bilic – R3 – Technical Submission

Tim Barnett vs Adam Ventre – 160lbs catchweight
Tim Barnett – R2 – KO

Matt Bonner vs Madars Fleminas – Welterweight
Madars Fleminas – SPLIT DEC – 29-28, 28-29, 29-28

Mick Stanton vs Jenaid Ebanks – Middleweight
Mick Stanton – DEC – 30-26, 30-26, 30-25

 

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