MMA Observer
    1. Brendan Schaub’s New Lease on Life 

      Peter Carroll writing for Fighland Blog.

      Despite the now infamous loss to Browne, Schaub may be more popular than ever. With Joe Rogan dressing down his friend live on his podcast, which [was] beamed around the world to hundreds of thousands of MMA fans, MMA fans saw themselves picking sides of the argument.

      Carroll touches on a good point.

      The berating/caution Rogan delivered to Schaub may have been meant as a (public) warning of sorts from a friend, but looking back, its effect seems to be significantly increased interest in and support for him.

      Personally, I’m looking forward to watching his debut at light heavyweight.

    2. Shamrock, Slice to Be Randomly Drug Tested for Bellator Fight 

      Marc Raimondi writing for MMA Fighting:

      A fight between Ken Shamrock and Kimbo Slice was scheduled for seven years ago and didn’t happen. For it to go down this time, there will be some hurdles.

      Doesn’t exactly boost my confidence on the prospects of this fight going ahead.

    3. UFC Not the Only Outfit Waiting to Unveil MMA at Garden 

      Bellator President Scott Coker speaking to the New York Post:

      Madison Square Garden is like the crown jewel of sports, of course we’re going to be in that mix. MMA has a great safety record. I was always confused as to why it was illegal in New York in the first place.

      I have to say, if Bellator books the first professional MMA event in New York it will be a bit of an letdown.

      After the first event it really doesn’t matter, but there would be something satisfing about the first big event there being a UFC super card in Madison Square Garden.

    1. Barnett: ‘If I Fought Travis Now, I’d Want to Take His Fucking Head Off’ 

      David St. Martin at MMA Fighting summarises comments Josh Barnett made on his recent Joe Rogan Show appearance regarding Travis Browne.

      Barnett:

      If I fought Travis now, I’d want to take his fucking head off. He disrespected me in the ring after the match, all this shit. He fucking cut his throat, he did all this stuff. That’s my thing. He did it to mock me for winning.

      I would love to see these two fight again down the line – though for that to make sense Barnett would need to win one, and Browne lose one, in the meantime.

      Barnett doesn’t sound like he has UFC title hopes foremost on his mind, throughout his discussion with Joe Rogan. More like he’s looking for individual fights and challenges that hold a personal interest to him.

      Barnett mentioned a grappling match with Nogueira in Metamoris, serving as a rubber match following their two battles in Pride years back, as something of interest to him. He also mentions the possibility of fighting Roy Nelson next in the UFC.

      His appearance on the show was characteristically entertaining. You can watch the full thing on YouTube.

    2. PED-Enabled Wins Should Become Losses, Not No Contests 

      Jeff Harder writing for Fightland:

      … From this angle, PEDs have more in common with disqualifications—the eye pokes, groin shots, and other fouls that end fights—and DQs are labeled as defeats for the offending athlete. A fighter’s wins and losses should reflect the fact that they broke the rules, whether they kicked someone in the balls or stuck a syringe in their ass.

      Of course, the true punishment comes from suspensions and fines, and reclassifying no contests as losses for PED users doesn’t do much to clarify the longstanding issues around drug testing. It also raises a few questions: does it make sense to declare a fighter that initially lost the winner?

      Personally, I think it makes sense for the fighter who tested positive to have their record changed to a DQ loss, and for the clean fighter’s record to show a No Contest.

      Overturning losses into wins would just be bizarre. It would create records that would feel factually inaccurate.

      Either way, I agree that the true punishment for PED use comes from suspensions and fines. That should be the focus, alongside increased testing.

    3. Ronda Rousey Participates in Wrestlemania 31 

      Have to admit – I didn’t see that coming.

      A few weeks ago most of the MMA community was sure Wrestlemania would signal time for Lesnar’s return to MMA; instead, it marked Rousey dipping her toes into pro wrestling.

      I thought Rousey’s appearance was fun. She looked like she was genuinely excited to take part, and the WWE certainly put her across as a massive star.

      Via Reddit.

    1. World Series of Fighting 19 

      MMA Fighting with a free stream of WSOF’s prelims tonight, then you can watch the main card on NBC (within the U.S.).

      In the main event WSOF’s lightweight champion Justin Gaethje (13-0-0) defends his title against Luis Palomino (23-9-0).

    2. Anthony Pettis ‘Would Love’ to Fight Nate Diaz Next 

      Marc Raimondi writing for MMA Fighting.

      A fight I’d love to see. It will either be a good tune-up for Pettis, or a slingshot for Diaz.

      But whoever “Showtime” has to go through, whether it be Diaz or anyone else, he wants a rematch with dos Anjos before another crack at gold.

      I’m not exactly sure how that would work, though.

    3. McGregor 

      “It was phenomenal,” Conor said regarding the atmosphere at the UFC 189 World Championship Tour press conference in NYC. “It just goes to show the love they have out here in New York for MMA. It shows that when the show gets done and when it all gets finalized, we’ll blow it out of the water here in New York, so it was good to come here and see it.”

    4. NSAC Discusses Overhaul of Drug Testing Policies 

      Shaun Al-Shatti writing for MMA Fighting.

      what one expert called “the PED epidemic in MMA.”

      Expert.

      Numerous influential figures within the anti-doping community held informational sessions regarding the subject, and though zero changes to the commission’s policy were formally proposed, the NAC intends to revisit the subject during its next gathering in April.

      Speaking through gritted teeth.

    5. Lesnar Is Definitely Retired 

      Dave Meltzer writing for MMA Fighting:

      Former UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar signed a new contract Monday night with World Wrestling Entertainment, and said he was closing the book on mixed martial arts for good.

      Definitely, definitively, retired.

    6. Brock Lesnar Retires 

      It’s going to be hard to move on from the Sworded Thorax.

      Lesnar’s era is in the history books. A new one beckons.