Blogging Platfrm

Saturday

Tuesday

Signing bonuses leading to lockout; Is Lupul done? (Puck Headlines)

Here are your Puck Headlines: A glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com.

A photo posted by P.K. Subban (@subbanator) on Jul 18, 2016 at 5:52am PDT


• We think the Nashville Predators are excited to have P.K. Subban. [@subbanator]

• Get ready: signing-bonus laden contracts could be the trigger for the next lockout. [TSN]

• The Washington Capitals are offering Marcus Johansson $3.85-million. In arbitration, Johansson is asking for $5.25-million. If they can’t come to a deal, the arbitration hearing takes place on Wednesday. [Washington Post]

• Long Beach native Matt Nieto inked a one year deal to stay with the San Jose Sharks. [CSN Bay Area]

• “Paulie Johnson, one of the greatest players in the history of the Waterloo Black Hawks franchise, passed away Sunday at the age of 81. Johnson’s No. 11 has been retired by the organization since 2002 to honor the former Olympic star and United States Hockey League Hall of Fame member.” [The Courier]

• Ottawa Senators GM Pierre Dorion is gambling on experience helping his team by bringing in Derick Brassard and shipping out Mika Zibanejad. [Ottawa Citizen]

• Mike Ribeiro notwithstanding, the Nashville Predators are capitalizing on ‘misperceived character issues’ within other teams’ locker rooms to bolster their lineup. [On The Forecheck]

• Newport Sports super agent Pat Morris pulls back the veil to talk how a client’s free agent search, in his case with Steven Stamkos, impacts sponsorship relationships. [Today’s Slapshot]

• Legit question: Is Joffrey Lupul’s time with the Leafs – if not his career all together – done? [Leafs Nation]

• With the new Las Vegas franchise, George McPhee is getting a second chance at being a GM. Have other GMs who received a second chance to run a team experienced success? [The Sin Bin]

• Not sure if this is a good or bad sign: Brendan Gallagher and Brad Marchand formed a new friendship while playing for Canada at Worlds this past May. [NHL]

• Let the Claude Julien hot seat speculation begin (again)! Could coaching moves by the Boston Bruins signal the beginning of possibly the end? [Boston Sports Desk]

• Don’t let the attendance figures fool you, the Arizona Coyotes are leading the way for growth in the hockey market all around the valley. [Five For Howling]

• Debunking Malcolm Gladwell’s ‘10,000-Hour rule’ as it relates to youth hockey players. Sometimes less means more in the long run. [Eh Game]

• New York Riveters GM Chad Wiseman has been the most active in the offseason remaking his roster; however, he wants to keep the physicality as the hallmark of the team. [Today’s Slapshot]

• Looking back at ‘Stammergeddon,’ the captain’s choice to go back to the Tampa Bay Lightning, and the Toronto Maple Leafs fans over-exuberance when expecting him to sign back home. [Two For Spearing]

• Backdraft 2001: Ranking the forwards, defensemen & goalies from the 2001 NHL draft. [Yahoo! Sports]

• Five ways Rogers could make Hockey Night in Canada. Some serious, some not so much. [Pension Plan Puppets]

• Top 10 soon-to-be fantasy hockey debates. [Dobber]

• The parking lot of the Rose Bowl holds a weekly pickup roller hockey game that’s become a summer tradition for over a decade and it continues to gain in popularity. [Pasadena Star-News]

• Finally, a great cartoon of the current fight between Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins fans. Make sure you stay around for the end and a special appearance… [@bruinshockeynow]

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Jen Neale is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow her on Twitter!

Monday

Evangelista 'Cyborg' Santos suffers fractured skull in violent loss to Michael Page

Michael Page is quickly becoming Bellator’s fastest rising star and the 29-year-old added to his growing legacy with one of the most violent knockouts of all time against Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos at Bellator 158 over the weekend. The unbeaten welterweight...

Evangelista 'Cyborg' Santos suffers fractured skull in violent loss to Michael Page

Evangelista 'Cyborg' Santos fractured his skull at Bellator 158. (Credit: Instagram)

Michael Page is quickly becoming Bellator’s fastest rising star and the 29-year-old added to his growing legacy with one of the most violent knockouts of all time against Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos at Bellator 158 over the weekend.

The unbeaten welterweight scored an absolutely devastating knockout of Santos with a flying knee in the second round of their bout. To put a cap on the scintillating knockout, Page celebrated by channeling the Pokemon Go craze that has taken the world by storm. With Santos still sprawled out on the canvas, Page went to his corner, grabbed a Pokemon hat and then rolled a Pokeball at his downed opponent in an attempt to “capture” his prey.

With a “Cyborg” now in his faux Pokemon stable, Page wrapped up his post-fight celebration with a “Yatta!” pose at the end.

But the celebration would take a back seat to the damage that Page’s knee inflicted on the skull of Santos. The 38-year-old had a very visible dent in his forehead as a direct result of the knee and will need surgery to repair the fractured skull.

Page took to his Instagram to wish his downed opponent a full recovery.

“I am thankful to have had the opportunity to have fought such a person and tested myself,” Page said. “I wish him all the best and a speedy recovery from his operation.”

A Go Fund Me page dedicated to raising funds for Santos’ surgery had been shared by many in the MMA community, including Santos’ ex-wife Cris “Cyborg” Justino and UFC commentator Joe Rogan. Over $20,000 was raised in 24 hours to pay for the surgery and Santos is heading back to the U.S. for the procedure.

As for Page, he remains unbeaten with an 11-0 record (7-0 in Bellator) with every victory except one coming by way of submission or knockout. According to Sportsbook Review, Page has been a significant favorite in his last five fights and should certainly see a step up in competition in the near future considering his propensity for finishing fights and his rising popularity.

Kessel gets Cup; Marchand, Bruins talk extension; Hoffman hopes to stay with Sens (Puck Headlines)

Here are your Puck Headlines: A glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com .  •...

Kessel gets Cup; Marchand, Bruins talk extension; Hoffman hopes to stay with Sens (Puck Headlines)

Here are your Puck Headlines: A glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com

Screen Shot 2016-07-18 at 12.52.35 PM

• Phil Kessel finally gets his day with the Stanley Cup and his sister Amanda is enjoying it as well. [Instagram]

• Brad Marchand and the Boston Bruins have started discussions on an extension. [WEEI]

• That conditional pick the Toronto Maple Leafs received from the Anaheim Ducks in the Jonathan Bernier trade? There are a few stipulations, and they all include Bernier being involved in the 2017 Stanley Cup Final. [Sportsnet]

• The Montreal Canadiens analytics consultant speaks about his dismissal and the P.K. Subban trade. [THN]

• Montreal poker player Marc-Andre Ladouceur on the Subban deal: “I think that just the fact that they had to trade him shows lack of leadership in the organization and the team itself.” [Poker Listings]

• “Frustrated fans have to separate the past from the present. Last season was a disaster, but there’s every reason to believe that the Canadiens are headed in the right direction.” [Montreal Gazette]

• With Subban gone, the Montreal Canadiens will again need Carey Price to be Carey Price. [PHT]

• Mike Hoffman is hoping to stay with the Ottawa Senators as his Aug. 4 salary arbitration hearing approaches. [Ottawa Citizen]

• How the Las Vegas NHL expansion franchise grows over the next year will be interesting to watch. [Sin Bin]

• Taking a look at some of the biggest moves in the NHL expansion draft history. [Today’s Slapshot]

• Ryan Johansen is primed for a career year with the Nashville Predators. [Tennessean]

• Wade Redden’s next chapter takes him into a player development role with the Predators. [The Record]

• Chicago Blackhawks president John McDonaugh discusses a “difficult” 2015-16 season. [Chicago Tribune]

• Corey Crawford nearly left the Blackhawks before taking over as the team’s No. 1 netminder. [CSN Chicago]

• The stick Darryl Sittler used for his 10-point game is on display at the Hockey Hall of Fame. Sittler, however, says the stick was lost in a fire. [Toronto Star]

• The Buffalo Sabres ink Alex Nylander to his three-year, entry-level deal. [Sabres]

• Vancouver Canucks head coach Willie Desjardins on 2015-16: “It was the hardest year I have ever gone through. I was disappointed in myself, I was disappointed in the team.” [Eh Game]

• Rest in peace, Wendell Anderson, former Minnesota governor and member of the silver medal winning 1956 U.S. Olympic hockey team. [SC Times]

• Interesting read on the long road of Ryan Daisy, one of the NHL’s newest linesmen for the 2016-17 season. [Sun Chronicle]

• Why the NHL should start a summer league of their own like the NBA does. [The Comeback]

• It’s almost fantasy hockey time. These guys could be late-round gems. [Dobber Hockey]

• Finally, this was quite the shootout goal by Joey Dudek during New Jersey Devils prospect camp last week:

Sunday

Chronicles of Stanley: Crosby, Cup conquer Cole Harbour

The Chronicles of Stanley is an occasional series this summer that tracks the Pittsburgh Penguins as they each get their special alone time with the Stanley Cup.

Every time the winning captain gets his day with the Stanley Cup it is a special occasion. When Sidney Crosby is said captain it’s pretty much a province-wide holiday in Nova Scotia.

Who else would get a personal escort by Mounties, but the forward and savior of the Penguins?

Sid’s weekend with the Cup started on Friday, July 15 in the captain’s hometown of Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia.

Crosby picked up Stanley from the airport. He sets a good example for everyone by belting the chalice into the passenger seat of his car.

He proceeded with his morning routine as if it was just another day. Stanley and Sidney made their way into a local Tim Hortons to surprise workers and those enjoying their Timbits.

The forward had another surprise in mind, this time for the campers of his namesake hockey school who had been working with their idol on and off all week.

From the Penguins:

Pens captain Sidney Crosby was asked about the Stanley Cup a few times by campers attending his second annual hockey school, which took place this week at his hometown rink of Cole Harbour Place.

He told them it coming to town on Saturday, which is when there will be a big celebration – including a parade – going on in the city to commemorate the Pens’ championship.

“I said it was coming tomorrow,” Crosby said with a grin. “Everybody knows there’s something going on in Cole Harbour tomorrow

What they didn’t know was that Crosby had actually planned all along to surprise the kids with Lord Stanley’s silver chalice, scheduling his time with the Cup to coincide with their last day of camp.

“It’s going to be fun to see the looks on their faces when we arrive,” Crosby said on the drive over to the rink.

And it was certainly priceless to see the kids’ reactions once they realized what was happening.

It’s the kids that remind you just how special this trophy is. Check out a few snapshots from the camp and the looks on the kids faces.

He followed it up with more surprise visits. First to a children’s hospital and then the Camp Hill Veterans Memorial Building in Halifax to make the day of senior citizens in residence.

After an event filled Friday, the superstar held court for the main event on Saturday.

According to Google, in 2011 the population of Cole Harbour was approximately 25,161. Dan Rosen of NHL.com reported nearly 30,000 people came to the parade held for Crosby and Lord Stanley.

He followed up the parade by having a Q&A with Gord Miller from TSN.

One of the first people to take the mic was 84-year-old soon-to-be retired municipal councillor Gloria McCluskey.

From CBC News:

“Sidney, you gave me some nervous moments this winter. I never missed one game. I hope you feel the love here today. Cole Harbour is your hometown, but we all claim you, Sidney,” [McCluskey] said. McCluskey also proposed renaming Cole Harbour Place for Sidney Crosby.

It’s not the first time Cole Harbour has considered renaming an area for its famous son. City council is mulling over renaming a local street, Forest Hills Parkway, for Crosby as well.

If he wins another Cup, we say go all in and change the name of the city to Crosby Harbour, Nova Scotia.

The love from his hometown knows no bounds. It appears the love it mutual from the superstar who sees himself as ‘still a guy from Cole Harbour.’

Sidney was nearly everywhere one could possibly be in and around the city over the weekend. As he told the Penguins website, he hadn’t slept much in these hectic two days, but wasn’t worried about it.

“I think you run on adrenaline for two days when you have it and I wasn’t going to try and save myself for today,” Crosby said with a smile. “I was going to get every hour I could with the Cup. It’s going to be moving on tonight, so just got to soak up everything.”

No word if he took a nap with the Cup like last time.

Previous Chronicles of Stanley: Zatkoff takes Cup down water slide

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Jen Neale is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow her on Twitter!

Friday

Jaden Schwartz inks five year, $26.75-million contract

St. Louis Blues v Chicago Blackhawks - Game Four

The St. Louis Blues and restricted free agent Jaden Schwartz avoided arbitration as the forward signed a five year, $26.75-million contract, as first reported by Jeremy Rutherford.

The deal holds an average annual value of $5.35-million and runs through the 2020-21 season. According to General Fanager, Schwartz’s contract contains a modified no trade clause for the 2019-20 and 2020-21 season.

Drafted by the Blues in 2010 at No. 14 overall, Schwartz, 24, has played a total of 240 games with the team scoring 70 goals and 87 assists.

The forward was limited to 33 games this past year after fracturing his ankle in practice just seven games into the regular season. The injury required surgery causing him to miss 49 games from October to February.

He returned to finish the regular season and played all 20 playoff games for the Blues. He tied with David Backes at 14 playoff points good for second on the team behind Vladimir Tarasenko and Robby Fabbri with 15 points each.

Blues GM Doug Armstrong recognizes Schwartz as a key piece to the evolving arsenal in St. Louis.

From the Blues website:

“He’s part of that core we have moving forward,” Blues General Manager Doug Armstrong said. “Schwartz and (Vladimir) Tarasenko, Robby Fabbri, Colton Parayko, Alex Pietrangelo, Jake Allen – we’re trying to build around these guys. Having Schwartz wrapped up in that group, we know we now have a core that we can build around and try to win a championship around.”

One player not mentioned on that list of the core – Kevin Shattenkirk.

Shattenkirk’s name has been on the trade market for a forever and a day. His agent expressed his surprise at the Blues not dealing the defenseman at the draft as many had anticipated would happen.

Perhaps we’re reading between the lines, but appears as if the GM is resigned to the fact that Shattenkirk will no longer be a part of the team. It’s not a matter if, but when and for how much in return.

The defenseman carries a $4.25-million cap hit and has one year left on his contract before becoming a UFA. With Schwartz’s deal on the books, the Blues are bumping right up against the cap with just over $3-million in space.

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Jen Neale is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow her on Twitter!

RIP Jack Riley; Vegas trademark issues (Puck Headlines)

Here are your Puck Headlines: A glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com.

Reading Royals Ugly Sweater

• The Reading Royals (ECHL) will wear the glorious ugly Christmas sweater featured above against the Adirondack Thunder on December 23.

• The first general manager of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Jack Riley, passed away at the age of 97. [Post-Gazette]

• The new Las Vegas franchise appeared to be locked into the black, grey and gold color scheme and the name ‘Black Knights’; however, trademark and trade name registration issues could put a halt to those plans and lead to a change. [The Sin Bin]

• Now former Montreal Canadiens analytics consultant Matt Pfeffer clarifies his remarks regarding the argument he made for the Habs keeping P.K. Subban. [Sportsnet]

• Arbitration isn’t a positive process for both player and team. In a really rare circumstance, Marcus Johansson and the Washington Capitals are ready to head to the meeting for a second time. [Washington Post]

• Restricted free agent Dylan McIlrath inked a new one year with the New York Rangers. [Blue Shirts United]

• The Carolina Hurricanes re-upped Ryan Murphy for two years and Dennis Robertson, Keegan Lowe, Brody Sutter and Brendan Woods on one year deals. All the contracts are two-way. [Canes Country]

• Vancouver Canucks GM Jim Benning talks about his offseason moves and the search for a left winger that will relieve some of the pressure on Sven Baertschi. [The Province]

• The Columbus Blue Jackets have had their share of significant injuries. The team looks to “bridge the gap between the medical staff and the staff of strength and conditioning coach Kevin Collins, so that players don’t get injured and injured players get comprehensive treatment that gets them back on the ice quickly.” To do so, they hired Nelson Ayotte as a “consultant to help establish a ‘high performance’ department.” [Blue Jackets Xtra]

• The Florida Panthers may have spent $200 million on roster improvements, but the team’s biggest gamble appears to be picking Tom Rowe over Dale Tallon as general manager. [Sun-Sentinel]

• Top rated Nashville Predators goaltending prospect Juuse Saros expects himself to challenge Marek Mazanec for the backup role with the team this season. [The Tennessean]

• Michal Kempny was a highly sought after KHL defenseman who signed with the Chicago Blackhawks in May. He knows now he has to prove to the team in order to secure a roster spot this fall and talks about his development. [The Athletic]

• The Rangers continue to offer bridge contracts to highly valued young talent and while giving big contracts to less than stellar players. [Today’s Slapshot]

• “Whether you believe in the merit of advanced statistics or not isn’t really the point of this discussion … not only is the game changing on the ice, the game is changing from an analysis, managerial and administrative perspective, as well … This is to say that professionals from different, and highly educated walks of life are beginning to take an interest in the game and its analysis, and I find it exceptionally alarming that the “establishment” does not want to hear what they have to say.” [Blue Seat Blogs]

• For the second consecutive years, the Stars hosted Korean hockey players during their development camp to give the players a feel of what it’s like to compete at the NHL level and to take that knowledge back to their country to help develop the game. [NHL]

• Dallas Stars: “The care and feeding of eight defensemen, or how development is a two-way street.” [Defending Big D]

• Looking at the value of having a forward with net front presence and his impact on scoring. [TSN]

• Canadian hockey super star Natalie Spooner talks about her involvement with the Champions Fund which hands out grants to women’s hockey programs, players and organization to grow the game. [Eh Game]

• Mighty Ducks podcast featuring Ty McClary who played the lassoing hockey playing cowboy Dwayne Robertson in D2 and D3. [The Quack Attack]

• Fantasy hockey grade for the offseason moves of the Anaheim Ducks. It ain’t pretty. [Dobber]

• Finally, check out the New Jersey Devils prospect camp as the kids play 3-on-3. MOTION SICKNESS WARNING for GoPro helmet cams.

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Jen Neale is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow her on Twitter!

Thursday

UFC 200 prelims: Joe Lauzon, Jim Miller, Gegard Mousasi deliver first-round TKOs

Julianna Pena W3 Cat Zingano LAS VEGAS – Julianna Pena scored the biggest win of her career Saturday when she rallied to win the final two rounds on all three judges’ scorecards and take a unanimous decision in a women’s bantamweight fight over Cat Zingano...

Molson happy with Subban trade; Leafs vs. Pokémon (Puck Headlines)

Here are your Puck Headlines: A glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com.

• So, should we consider those ‘vows’ broken…? [@keeperofthecup]

• Montreal Canadiens president Geoff Molson gave his blessing for the P.K. Subban trade and believes his team is better off for it. [CP]

• Montreal is following suit of many AHL-NHL franchises by moving their affiliate from St. John’s, Newfoundland to Laval, Quebec to be closer to the big club starting with the 2017-18 season. [The Telegram]

• The Canadiens are holding a contest for fans to name the new AHL team. Something tells us the ‘Subbanantors’ won’t be accepted. [Canadiens]

• Cam Ward on five-year-old son who was born deaf and received cochlear implants: “When you first get the news that your son is deaf, you worry that he’s not going to be a “normal kid.” But what’s been so amazing about this roller coaster we’ve been on the past five years is that Nolan isn’t just a normal kid. He’s way more than that. He never complains. He doesn’t see himself as different. He’s the bravest guy I know.” [The Players’ Tribune]

• Check out David Amber’s journey from struggling sideline reporter to host of the late games on Hockey Night in Canada. [Sportsnet]

• 5,000 kids from around the world applied to Sidney Crosby’s youth hockey camp in Cole Harbour. Only 160 were accepted through a lottery system. [The Chronicle Herald]

• The Sabres moved up five spots in the draft to get Rasmus Asplund. He’s out to prove they made the right decision. [NHL]

• The New York Islanders are going to have to get ‘Mozart/Shakespeare level creative’ in order to improve with their very limited cap space. [Eyes on Isles]

• For the first time, in a long time, the Buffalo Sabres are having to watch their cap room very closely as they prep for the future. [Sabre Noise]

• Hartford Whalers fans are still feeling the sting of losing their team to Carolina but their booster club remains as dedicated as ever. [The News & Observer]

• Did you know there is a road hockey ban in Toronto? One politician is working to get that rule off the books. [CTV News]

• Weren’t the New York Rangers supposed to make a blockbuster trade this offseason? [Blue Seat Blogs]

• Last season the New Jersey Devils were the second worst 5-on-5 possession team in the NHL. What kind of improvement should the team expect this year. [All About The Jersey]

• Comparing the Toronto Maple Leafs’ big three to … Pokemon’s big three. [Leafs Nation]

• Watch Jack Eichel and Jimmy Vesey take a couple shifts together at the Foxboro Sports Center Summer League in Massachusetts. Good sign for Buffalo Sabres fans? [Die By the Blade]

• Reviewing the season of Columbus Blue Jackets’ forward Cam Atkinson who set personal highs in almost all offensive categories. [Buckeye State Hockey]

• Assessing the draft value of goaltenders and their likelihood of finding success in the NHL. [NHL Numbers]

• Teams finding ‘diamonds in the rough’ through the late rounds of the draft is highly improbable, but the strategy in doing so can be improved. [Flames Nation]

• As NWHL teams begin to finalize their rosters, some players who made the team last season are being left off the paid list and having to opt for unpaid practice player positions. [Today’s Slapshot]

• “His deep-voiced bark is still matched by its bite, and the tough love he bestows upon the kids of the nation’s oldest minority-oriented youth hockey program remains as strong as ever. Neal Henderson, founder, coach, and father-figure of the Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club, turned 79 over the weekend.” [Color of Hockey]

• Evaluating the Eastern Conference free agent signings for a one year fantasy hockey league. [Dobber]

• Finally, the bane of every hockey reporter’s existence: the canned sound bite. Learn nothing, yet everything from this video of how to be an NHL player giving an interview.

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Jen Neale is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow her on Twitter!

Will Brooks wins UFC debut by decision, calls out new champ Eddie Alvarez anyway

Will Brooks won a narrow decision over Ross Pearson in his UFC debut. (Getty)

The UFC lightweight division has just become even more competitive as former Bellator lightweight champion Will Brooks made his successful UFC debut by defeating Ross Pearson by unanimous decision at The Ultimate Fighter 23 Finale.

Brooks signed with the UFC on June 16 after being released from Bellator despite being the promotion’s reigning lightweight champion. The same day he signed, Brooks was thrust into a fight with Pearson after James Krause, Pearson’s original opponent, was pulled from the fight. But the short notice didn’t affect Brooks as the former champion looked sharp against the former TUF winner.

Brooks and Pearson spent much of the bout standing as Brooks utilized short knee strikes to the torso and leg kicks to keep Pearson from settling into a comfortable boxing match. The former Bellator champion did manage to secure a takedown in the second round but was unable to put his vaunted wrestling to work as Pearson managed to shrug off his attempts to take his back. Regardless, Brooks infighting was strong enough to take the round.

Both fighters came out swinging in the third with Pearson catching a second wind as he surged at Brooks with powerful strikes to the midsection and whipped punches around his guard. Brooks survived the assault and halted Pearson’s momentum with a takedown. Both fighters slugged it out to close the show. In the end, Brooks secured a 29-28 score across the board to earn a unanimous decision and had a message to the division’s new lightweight champion.

“Eddie Alvarez, hold onto that belt a little bit,” Brooks said during his post-fight interview. “You got away from me in the other organization but I’m here now.”

Brooks won the Bellator lightweight championship after Alvarez vacated the title during a dispute with Bellator that eventually landed the new lightweight champion in the UFC. Brooks would go on to defeat Michael Chandler – who split fights with Eddie Alvarez – on two occasions to secure his spot as the top talent in the Bellator division. But he won’t be satisfied until he gets his shot at Alvarez.

Brooks may not be next in line, but he’s certainly making sure that he puts the new champion on notice.

Report: Flyweight champ Demetrious Johnson out of UFC 201 with injury

UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson is out of the co-main event of UFC 201, where he was scheduled to defend his title against Wilson Reis. The 29-year-old sought to defend his title for the ninth time since claiming the inaugural title after winning the UFC flyweight tournament back in 2012.

Since becoming the first UFC flyweight champion, the normally durable Johnson has proven to be dependable during his four-year title reign as this will be only the second time that he has had to pull out of a fight. Globo originally reported the news that Johnson would be out of action although the type of injury has yet to be revealed.

UFC 201 takes place on July 30 in Atlanta, GA. The headliner is scheduled to be a welterweight title fight between Robbie Lawler and Tyron Woodley for Lawler’s UFC welterweight title. It is not yet known whether the No. 8-ranked Wilson Reis will remain on the card. Reis is 3-1 since cutting down to flyweight in August of 2014.

The injury is just another in a long line of considerable setbacks that the UFC has suffered thus far in 2016.

 

TMZ report: Former fighter aims death threats at Dana White before UFC 200

(Getty)

A former MMA fighter has targeted UFC president Dana White with death threats and has allegedly claimed that he will show up at UFC 200 with a crew and guns to murder White.

According to TMZ, Dan Quinn is looking to get payback on some unresolved issues between he and White. Although he has never fought in the UFC, Quinn has made White a target for several years. Back in 2012, Quinn left death threats on White’s voicemail and threatened to shoot him in the head.

Quinn is known for some extraordinarily strange videos and his bizarre support of Stevia, which is a sweet leaf sugar substitute that grows North and South America. He has been jailed on several occasions and some of his offenses include domestic violence and possession of a firearm by a felon.

Quinn hasn’t fought since 2010 after losing three fights in a row and holds an MMA record of 5-7-1. His unusual behavior is nothing new but this certainly raises a few red flags. A source told TMZ that Quinn bought tickets for UFC 200. How he’ll get weapons into the arena is a different ordeal entirely as the T-Mobile arena in Las Vegas has significant security detail for everyone who will be attending the UFC’s biggest fight of the year.

UFC 200 prelims: Joe Lauzon, Jim Miller, Gegard Mousasi deliver first-round TKOs

Joe Lauzon celebrates after knocking out Diego Sanchez. (Getty)

Julianna Pena W3 Cat Zingano

LAS VEGAS – Julianna Pena scored the biggest win of her career Saturday when she rallied to win the final two rounds on all three judges’ scorecards and take a unanimous decision in a women’s bantamweight fight over Cat Zingano at UFC 200 at T-Mobile Arena.

Zingano controlled the first and came out storming in the second. The former title challenger, fighting for the first time since her loss to Ronda Rousey at UFC 184 last year, threw Pena twice in the opening seconds of the second round.

Zingano had a dominant position, but was unable to do anything with it. She tried to pin Pena’s arms with her legs, but it failed and it allowed Pena to get top position.

Pena dominated the rest of the fight from that point. She took Zingano down in the third round and basically didn’t let her up, out-grappling her over the final five minutes.

It is Pena’s biggest win and should move her into serious title contention after a win over the third-ranked Zingano. It was her fourth consecutive win, the second-longest in the women’s bantamweight division.


Kelvin Gastelum W3 Johny Hendricks

LAS VEGAS – Kelvin Gastelum got back on the winning track by outstriking former welterweight champion Johny Hendricks Saturday at UFC 200 at T-Mobile Arena, scoring a unanimous decision.

Gastelum landed the 1-2 repeatedly in the first round, snapping Hendricks’ head back and appearing to stun him on several occasions.

Hendricks, who missed weight by a quarter-pound at Friday’s weigh-in and looked gaunt on the scale, didn’t have a lot of energy. He rallied in the second and landed more strikes, but he didn’t have the fire that marked him during his run to the championship.

Hendricks was coming off a devastating knockout loss earlier this year to Stephen “Wonder Boy” Thompson and was looking to get his career turned back in the right direction.

But after the loss and missing weight again, he may be forced to move up to middleweight.

Judges had it 30-27 twice and 29-28, all for Gastelum. Yahoo Sports had it 30-27 for Gastelum.


TJ Dillashaw W3 Raphael Assuncao

LAS VEGAS – T.J. Dillashaw returned after a heartbreaking loss to Dominick Cruz in January in which Cruz lifted the bantamweight title from him by outclassing Raphael Assuncao on Saturday at UFC 200 in T-Mobile Arena.

Dillashaw lost a hotly disputed decision to Assuncao on Oct. 9, 2013, but he clearly got revenge on Saturday. All three judges scored it 30-27, as did Yahoo Sports.

The first round was a battle of footwork, as each man was battling for position, but Dillashaw’s defense was impregnable. He didn’t land a lot himself in the first, but he blocked just about everything Assuncao threw.

He opened up in the second, bloodying Assuncao’s nose with a hard and quick jab and the occasional right hand behind it. Dillashaw mixed in his share of kicks, as well, and cruised over the last two rounds.

Referee Mark Smith halted the bout briefly in the second to have the ringside physician check Assuncao. Dr. David Watson told Yahoo Sports that Smith was concerned about blood in Assuncao’s eye, but Watson ruled he could continue.

He was dropped by a Dillashaw right shortly after and never got back on track. Dillashaw also controlled the third.


Sage Northcutt W3 Enrique Marin

LAS VEGAS – Sage Northcutt returned to the win column on Saturday, but the 20-year-old wunderkind was once again mostly underwhelming.

Northcutt was nearly submitted twice in the second round, but fought his way out of each attempt and went on to score a unanimous decision over Enrique Marin in a lightweight fight on the prelimary card of UFC 200 at T-Mobile Arena.

Northcutt, who lost his last fight to Bryan Barbarena, fighting while he had a case of strep throat, clearly took the first round. He was faster, more active and carried the fight in the opener.

Marin, though, fought back in the second. He locked in an arm bar briefly, but Northcutt fought his way out of it. He couldn’t get to his feet, though, and Marin later went for a Kimura. Northcutt managed to wriggle free of that just before the bell.

The third round was largely uneventful, as Marin seemed to have little energy left. Northcutt didn’t do much, as they grappled along the cage for long stretches in a battle for position, but he was more active and got the verdict.

All three judges scored it 29-28 for Northcutt, as did Yahoo Sports.


Joe Lauzon TKO1 Diego Sanchez

LAS VEGAS – There was little doubt that there would be fireworks in the bout Saturday at UFC 200 between Joe Lauzon and Diego Sanchez. For more than a decade, they have been among the most exciting fighters in MMA.

It was no shock, then, there was an early finish in their fight at T-Mobile Arena. The manner of the finish was the stunner.

Lauzon stopped Sanchez at 1:26 of the first after lighting him up with strikes. Lauzon is a submission expert has seven first-round finishes in his UFC so the fact that he won wasn’t a shock.

But the conventional wisdom was that it would be Sanchez by strikes or Lauzon by submission.

“It’s super satisfying,” Lauzon said. “ … I hit him with a really good shot to start that.”


Gegard Mousasi TKO1 Thiago Santos

Gegard Mousasi used a series of right hands to knock Thiago Santos down Saturday in their middleweight bout at UFC 200 at T-Mobile Arena.

When Mousasi couldn’t get the finish, he backed off to allow Santos up. A second later, he used a right cross to deck Santos again and finish the fight at 4:32 of the first round.

Santos was unable to do anything significant and was fending off Mousasi for most of the fight.

Earlier in the fight, Mousasi landed three rights that seemed to hurt Santos. Mousasi took him down and tried to work for a choke. He wasn’t able to get it and after dropping an elbow, Santos kicked at his stomach and Mousasi backed off.

The minute Santos was up, Mousasi hit him with the right and the fight was over. It was his second straight win and fourth in his last five.


Jim Miller TKO1 Takanori Gomi

LAS VEGAS – Jim Miller wasted no time snapping his two-fight losing streak in the opening bout of UFC 200 Saturday at T-Mobile Arena.

Miller took Takanori Gomi down after catching a kick early in the fight, and that was the beginning of the end. Miller, a noted submission artist, looked for a choke early on before he starting unloading with ground-and-pound.

Miller landed at least a half dozen clean shots as Gomi was unable to defend himself. Referee Mark Smith jumped in to halt it at 2:18.

The finish was Miller’s ninth in his UFC career, tying him for second most in UFC history with Donald Cerrone and B.J. Penn. Joe Lauzon entered the show with the most, at 11.

Tuesday

Top 10 knockouts since UFC 100

Seeing an amazing knockout at a UFC fight is the easy part. The hard part is picking between them.

There were literally dozens of bouts that could be chosen for the 10 best knockouts since UFC 100.

I pared the list down to 25 before making the final 10. Undoubtedly, you’re not going to agree with my picks. That’s fine, because there is an argument to be made for many more other than the ones I chose.

Here are my top 10:

10. Thiago Santos KO1 Steve Bosse, UFC Fight Night 70 – This fight ended in just 29 seconds and was as definitive of a finish as you’ll ever see.

Bosse was moving forward, and preparing to throw a punch. Santos braced on his right leg and caught Bosse with a perfectly placed kick to the head, knocking the Canadian cold. The shin landed right on the jaw and Bosse never knew what hit him.

9. Thomas Almeida KO2 Brad Pickett, UFC 189 – Pickett attempted a flying knee on Almeida, who saw it coming and danced out of the way. Seconds later, Almeida tried his own and the fight soon ended.

Almeida acted as if he were going to throw a right knee and switched to the left. It made a sound that was audible to those at cageside and it put Pickett out flat on his back.

8. Mauricio "Shogun" Rua KO1 James Te Huna, UFC Fight Night 33 – Rua has long been one of the sport’s biggest stars, but there was pressure on him entering this fight to prove he wasn’t finished, as he’d lost two straight and three of four.

The powerful Te Huna moved forward and was stalking. As he prepared to throw a punch, Rua fired a lightning-quick left hook that landed on the chin 63 seconds into the fight and put Te Huna out. Rua fired a vicious right from the top before the referee could get in to stop it.

7. Paul Felder KO2 Danny Castillo, UFC 182 – Felder had a great first round and was picking Castillo apart.

In the second, he changed up a bit to great affect. He caught Castillo with a perfectly timed spinning back fist that sent Castillo out in a hurry.

6. Michael Bisping KO1 Luke Rockhold, UFC 199 – There were many equally as devastating finishes as this, though Bisping’s KO of Rockhold was mighty devastating. This one, though, goes on the list because of its significance.Michael Bisping (L) throws a punch at Luke Rockhold during their UFC 199 fight. (Getty)

Bisping had been around the UFC for more than a decade and never sniffed a title shot. Many regarded him as little more than a gatekeeper, and he got this shot at the middleweight title only when Chris Weidman pulled out with injury.

Bisping was a huge underdog, but he unloaded a spectacular combination seemingly out of nowhere to drop Rockhold and claim the title.

It was as shocking of a finish as any on this list.

5. Stipe Miocic KO1 Fabricio Werdum, UFC 198 – Again, the significance of this fight, in which Miocic won the heavyweight title, vaults it over others and puts it in my Top 10.

But you want to talk about power, timing and speed? Watch Miocic’s finish of Werdum.

Werdum was moving forward, pushing Miocic backward. Miocic was backpedaling, trying to create the proper distance, when he threw a short right. The punch connected on the jaw and put Werdum out cold.

4. Dong Hyun Kim KO3 John Hathaway, The Ultimate Fighter: China Finale – The sound of Kim’s elbow catching Hathaway on the chin was like a baseball bat catching up to a 98 mph fastball.

Kim spun and when he faced Hathaway, he unloaded one of the most powerful and perfectly placed elbows ever. Hathaway never saw it coming and he was out cold.

3. Chris Beal KO2 Patrick Williams, UFC 172 – Beal treated those customers who arrived early to watch this fight, the card’s opener, to a great flying knee knockout.

Williams was moving to his left along the cage as Beal gauged the distance. He’d been having success with his hands and perhaps Williams was watching for those.

Whatever, when Williams took a step to his left and dropped his hands, Beal leapt into the air and caught Williams on the chin with a knee.

He just walked away, knowing his work was over.

2. Yair Rodriguez KO2 Andre Fili, UFC 197 – Rodriguez is one of the most creative and innovative fighters in the sport and he showed it against Fili.

As Fili was moving away, Rodriguez leaped and seemed as if he were about to throw a right head kick. He adjusted in air and put Fili completely out with a left that landed with a sickening thud.

1. Edson Barboza KO3 Terry Etim, UFC 142 – Barboza is one of the sport’s finest and most dangerous kickers, but he usually confines his attack to the legs and the body.

He got the finish on Etim with a spinning wheel kick to the jaw that was awe-inspiring to watch.

Barboza was in command of the fight and Etim was trying to make something happen. As Etim attacked, Barboza spun and hit Etim in the face, planting him, with the wheel kick knockout that is my choice as the best KO in the UFC since UFC 100 in 2009.

 

Rafael dos Anjos: 'Of course I can beat' Georges St-Pierre

Rafael dos Anjos turned a corner in his career that saw him go from middling lightweight contender to one of the best pound-for-pound fighters on the planet. Before 2012, the Brazilian had a record of 15-6 and had yet to beat an elite fighter at lightweight. But since his last loss to Gleison Tibau, RDA has compiled a record of 10-1 while claiming the UFC lightweight title and knocking off former champions such as Donald Cerrone, Benson Henderson and Anthony Pettis. The improvement in the cage is jarring. He’s a relentless pressure fighter who has torn through his opponents.

“I don’t do fight camps anymore because I live in camp,” dos Anjos told Yahoo Sports when asked how he went from fringe contender to dominant force. “I breathe martial arts every day of my life. Every night that I put my head on the pillow, I go to sleep knowing that I can do more. I’m working toward perfection. I’m trying to be the best ever.”

Dos Anjos’ road to establishing himself as the best pound for pound fighter in the world will continue when he faces Eddie Alvarez at UFC Fight Night 90 during a fight weekend in Las Vegas that will feature a staggering five title fights. And rest assured, dos Anjos has no desire to be the first to hand over his title to another fighter.

If you play it by the numbers, dos Anjos should have an advantage over Alvarez before they even set foot in the Octagon. Alvarez lost his UFC debut to Donald Cerrone, who was flattened in a matter of minutes by dos Anjos in December. But RDA doesn’t believe that it will have any bearing on what happens in the cage between the two fighters who refuse to take a step back.

“I think every fight is different based on who is fighting,” dos Anjos said. “I know how durable he is and the wars that he has been in. But I’m in my comfort zone and cannot wait to defend my title.”

The champion is ready for the kind of war that Alvarez tends to bring with him into a fight. But while Alvarez has suggested in previous interviews that he can use dos Anjos’ aggressiveness against him, the Kings MMA fighter scoffs at the notion.Rafael dos Anjos will defend his title on July 7 against Eddie Alvarez. (Getty)

“I’m an aggressive fighter but I’m not stupid,” he said. “I have a strategy and that’s why I’m a champion. I don’t know what he means by that but it’s not going to be fun for him on fight night. If I have the opportunity to finish like I did with Cerrone, I will finish him.”

There are big fights on the horizon should dos Anjos get past Alvarez. There’s a possible rematch with Khabib Nurmagomedov, who is the last man to beat dos Anjos over two years ago. Dos Anjos believes the unbeaten Russian certainly deserves a shot at the title and is definitely interested in getting revenge. But there was also a report that Georges St-Pierre may be interested in fighting at lightweight. If that’s true, dos Anjos would certainly love to face the man he considers his idol.

“I’ve always said GSP is one of my idols and I’ve always looked up to him,” he said. “I like the way he fights and I like who he is outside of the Octagon as well. But if I have the chance to fight one of my idols, of course I’m going to take it.”

And don’t think for one second that dos Anjos will be starstruck by standing across the cage from one of the most dominant champions in the history of the UFC. It’s a fight that dos Anjos would love to have because he has no doubt he can beat him.

“Of course I can beat him,” he said with a laugh. “I am confident in my game and can beat anybody.”

And if it isn’t St-Pierre, dos Anjos couldn't care less who they throw at him next. It could be a rescheduling with Conor McGregor – who dos Anjos was supposed to fight in March before having to pull out due to an injury – or it can be Nate Diaz. It doesn’t matter to RDA; all that matters is that he’s defending his title and continuing to show that he’s the best in the world.

“I don’t pick my fights but whoever deserves a shot at my title I will beat them," dos Anjos said. "I don’t care if it’s Conor McGregor or Nate Diaz or whoever. My job is to defend this title.”

 

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