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  • Ovince Saint Preux, Ilir Latifi confirm that UFC on FOX 27 bout is off

    A battle of light heavyweight contenders has been scratched from UFC on FOX 27.

    Heavy hitters Ovince Saint Preux and Ilir Latifi were scheduled to face off at the UFC’s upcoming show in Charlotte, N.C., at the Spectrum Center on Jan. 27, but Latifi has been forced to withdraw due to injury.

    “OSP” broke the news via social media on Tuesday, and less than 24 hours later Latifi confirmed that he is hurt and will need time off to heal:

    . @Latifimma is hurt & out of our scrap next Sat in Charlotte, NC #UFConFOX27 who wants to step up and scrap? I’m even open to going up in weight if NO guys in my division will step up? Looking for someone to do what I do: step up and fight...

    — Ovince Saint Preux (@003_OSP) January 17, 2018

    Very sorry the fight got canceled, a lot of hard work and sacrifice was put in for this fight. @003_OSP give me a couple of weeks to heal and we have a fight so don’t look for another fight, I’ll be back soon. Let’s give the fans a fight

    — Ilir Latifi (@Latifimma) January 17, 2018

    Officials have not commented on the status of the bout, but Saint Preux wrote that he is already searching for a short-notice opponent, going as far as to say that he is open to competing at heavyweight to save the booking.

    Saint Preux (22-10) was last seen picking up his third consecutive win with a head-kick knockout of Corey Anderson at UFC 217, while Latifi (13-5, 1 NC) is coming off of a unanimous decision win over Tyson Pedro at UFC 215.

    UFC on FOX 27 will be headlined by a middleweight rematch between Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza and Derek Brunson.

  • Vitor Belfort rips 'scared' Michael Bisping for turning down UFC London fight

    Vitor Belfort won’t be fighting Michael Bisping on March 17.

    The UFC considered booking a rematch between the former champions at UFC London after Uriah Hall as forced out of a fight with “The Phenom” at UFC St. Louis on Sunday, but “The Count” has voiced his desire to “not be associated” with Belfort again.

    Bisping lost to Belfort via second-round TKO in 2013. Bisping suffered a detached retina in the process of losing to Belfort, who was on testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) back then.

    The Brazilian was urging Bisping to accept a rematch so they could face each other in their retirement bouts in London, but Bisping went on his podcast to say there was a “zero percent chance” he would fight “The Phenom” in London.

    Belfort wasted no time firing back on his social media.

    ”What a shame, Bisping,” Belfort wrote. “UFC just informed me that you have declined the fight. I understand you are scared. The images above pretty much explain it all… So stop pretending that you are tough and just admit that you are afraid. And I thought you were man enough to step up in the octagon with me again, my mistake... unfortunately looks like we will not be delivering to the fans the fight they want to see... Happy retirement, you must be feeling amazing leaving the sport thru the back door... To be a legend is not to everyone!”

    The UFC has yet to announce a main event for UFC London.

  • Jamie Moyle out of UFC 220 bout vs. Maryna Moroz due to injury

    UFC 220 has lost its lone female fight.

    On Wednesday, officials announced that an injury has forced Jamie Moyle to withdraw from a strawweight bout vs. Maryna Moroz that was set to take place on Saturday at TD Garden in Boston.

    The news was first reported by MMA journalist James Lynch.

    According to the UFC’s release, a replacement will not be considered and the bout has been canceled outright. The nature of Moyle’s injury was not disclosed.

    Moyle, a contestant on the 23rd season of The Ultimate Fighter, is 1-1 since signing with the UFC after winning three of her four Invicta FC bouts. She most recently lost a unanimous decision to Viviane Pereira last June.

    Moroz (8-2) is also coming off a loss from last June, where she was outpointed by Carla Esparza. The Ukraine native owns a 3-2 record inside the Octagon.

  • Chuck Liddell: If Chael Sonnen’s comments really got to me, ‘I’d show up to his house’

    Chuck Liddell has not completely shut the door on a comeback, and it was a reality show experience that might have given him the added urge to keep his competitive juices flowing.

    The UFC legend took part in a show called Ultimate Expedition back in August. He and seven other celebrities traveled to Peru and took on the challenge of climbing the nearly 20,000-foot high Mount Tocllaraju. The series premieres Wednesday on YouTube Red and the season consists of 10, 30-minute episodes.

    Liddell told MMA Fighting on Tuesday that it was an incredible experience, one that made him want to get back in some kind of action despite being retired from the Octagon.

    “I’ve been retired quite a while now,” said Liddell, who hung up the gloves in 2010. “I’ve still been trying to figure out where my focus was. I’m trying to stay motivated to do things. For me, it was looking for something to give me that edge back, give me that mental toughness edge back. That drive to go do things and push yourself. I’d taken enough time taking time off and resting on my accomplishments.”

    Summiting Mount Tocllaraju certainly qualifies. Liddell had never done mountain climbing before and the altitude alone, he said, was wild. Their base camp was at 14,500 feet and the high camp was at 16,000 feet.

    “It was pretty crazy up there,” Liddell said. “We had to learn how to rappel, we had to learn how to ice pick up the side of the mountain. It was pretty cool.”

    Liddell, 48, said he injured his shoulder in a movie stunt earlier last year and was rehabbing it. Then, he got the call for Ultimate Expedition and had only two weeks to get back into shape. He thought he’d have three months.

    “I said, oh well, I guess I’ll get in shape out there,” Liddell said.

    When he got back from Peru, Liddell was back in the gym often at Unbreakable MMA in West Hollywood, Calif. That is what helped fuel some of the rumors of a potential comeback in the fall. Liddell said nothing has really changed in that regard. He would consider a return to the cage for the right amount of money, he reiterated.

    Liddell said he won’t come back just because of some of the things Bellator headliner Chael Sonnen has been saying about him. “The Iceman” said he saw some of the incendiary comments Sonnen made last month and he’s brushing them off.

    “To be honest, it’s out of line,” Liddell said. “It’s stupid. But whatever. My bank account is still fine, you don’t have to worry. That won’t be the reason I’m coming back. I’m sure he wishes I had lost all my money so I would come back for less. For me to come back and fight him, they’re gonna have to pay me big.”

    Sonnen said at a Bellator 192 media day that any potential fight between he and Liddell was a “dead issue.” He threw some heated barbs at Liddell in the process.

    ““What I think, regardless of the way I tell the story, I think that Chuck is probably a pretty good guy,” Sonnen said. “He’s gotta walk around with that haircut, looks like he lost a bet. That can’t be easy to do. … It’s not easy to be Chuck. You’re broke, you snorted all your money away. It’s not an easy to life. He doesn’t need me to kick him while he’s down, either. If he wanted to come back, we could agree to a match and then maybe things would be different. But I think in this setting, I wish him well.”

    Things heated up back in the fall with Sonnen and Liddell going back and forth on social media and in interviews. Liddell said people mistook what he was trying to say initially.

    “You know him, he runs his mouth,” Liddell said. “He’s saying I turned down a fight with him twice; no one has offered me a fight with him. Like I said, he started lipping off at me when he saw me working out in the gym. I said, if I was gonna come back he’d be a perfect match. He can’t break an egg with his hands, he’s not gonna outwrestle me, he’s not gonna be able to lay on top of me — he’s not gonna pull that lay and pray with me.

    “Chael is Chael. He’s got a big mouth and that’s how he’s made his living. He’s not the most exciting fighter in the world, but he’s got a big mouth and people like to watch him.”

    Sonnen, 40, will fight former Liddell foe Quinton Jackson in the main event of Bellator 192 on Saturday night in Los Angeles. It’s a first-round matchup in the Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix. Liddell said he might attend the event at The Forum in Inglewood, but he’s not sure yet. As far as who he’s picking, Liddell said it “depends on which ‘Rampage’ shows up.”

    Liddell had lunch with Bellator president Scott Coker a few months ago, but the discussion was only about being an ambassador for Bellator, not a fighter, Liddell said. If he were to come back — and it’s not out of the question — Liddell said it won’t be because he needs the money and it won’t be because Sonnen is poking at him.

    “If he was saying something for a specific reason to get a certain response from me, I’m not gonna let it happen,” Liddell said. “Sorry. I’m not gonna let him get to me. If it was something where he really pissed me off and I wanted to fight him, I’d show up to his house. We don’t need the money, I’ll show up to his house. We’ll find out real quick.

    “The problem with him to take it serious is he takes a lot of liberty with facts. He doesn’t need his facts to be true — he just makes them up as he goes. It’s hard to get mad at someone who everything he’s saying is made up.”

    It’s pretty clear to Liddell that Sonnen is just trying to lure him out of retirement verbally. Though the former UFC slugger is unsure if Sonnen understands what he’d be getting himself into.

    “I don’t think he realizes how hard I hit,” Liddell said. “But he knows it’s a big pay check for him. It seems like he doesn’t mind being a punching bag for a big pay check.”

    The buzz of a Liddell comeback has been coming on more and more lately. Liddell said he refuses to say it won’t happen, but that doesn’t mean it will.

    “It’s always open,” Liddell said. “It depends on if it makes sense or not. The door was always open. I’m always a fighter. I still miss it and I love fighting. It’s just hard to say never.”

    And the experience during Ultimate Expedition seems to be what got Liddell’s adrenaline pumping again. He said he’s working on another show that he’s very excited about, too, he just can’t discuss it yet.

    “It got me hungry for more,” Liddell said of climbing Mount Tocllaraju. “It got me going.”

  • Live Chat: UFC 220 and Bellator 192 preview, Jon Jones polygraph and more

    This is the Promotional Malpractice Live Chat.

    Today on the podcast, we'll preview the big week in MMA action ahead of us. There's two major events to note. First, UFC 220, which features a heavyweight and light heavyweight contest, each intriguing in their own right. Bellator, meanwhile, offers the first round of the heavyweight tournament and an excellent welterweight scrap between Douglas Lima and Rory MacDonald. What is at stake for both organizations? How will dueling broadcasts affect each other? We'll dig into all of it.

    Plus, it was reported by MMA Fighting yesterday that Jon Jones has taken and passed a polygraph. The attempt appears to be to show involuntary consumption of a banned substance. Is there more to the story? I'll...

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