The Friday Five: February 9th, 2018

1. Dana White Says Floyd Mayweather Was Up For MMA Rematch With McGregor:

UFC President Dana White dropped a bombshell this week when he claimed that Floyd Mayweather always intended to fight Conor McGregor inside the Octagon.

As reported by Bad Left Hook, during an appearance on UFC Tonight, White claimed that Mayweather was interested in an MMA rematch.

“You know, Floyd said leading up to the fight with Conor that he would do both. So, um, we’ll see what happens. Obviously the only way making that fight again makes any sense is if he comes into the octagon.“

 

2. Deontay Wilder Continues Attacks On Anthony Joshua:

WBC Heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder not only called Anthony Joshua a “Country champion” and not a “world champion, he unleashed a verbal tirade on the popular British boxer, claiming that Joshua is afraid of him and that Joshua is calling everyone out in boxing that’s not Deontay Wilder.

“Ya’ll looking at the best heavyweight in the world! And he right here, from America!…Ya’ll fighting for heavyweights! Put ‘em in the ring with me, see what’s gon’ happen! I’ma knock ‘em out! I promise you that! Any heavyweight, listen, any one of you! And all you scrubs calling my name out, don’t worry. Once I handle what I gotta do, I got you too! I promise you that.

“Anthony Joshua call everybody name but my name!…Anthony Joshua talkin’ bout Dillian Whyte! He talkin’ bout Jarrell Miller! He don’t even mention Deontay Wilder’s name. In fact he say I’m too easy. He says he’ll ram his jab down my throat! No homo! He say he’ll knock me out with one punch! But they don’t wanna sign that contract though!

“Here’s the deal right here…I’ll go anywhere! I’ll go to his home! I’ll go to his front yard!

 

3. Luke Rockhold Says Good Riddance to GSP & Bisping:

Speaking exclusively to FIGHT SPORTS Luke Rockhold discussed the flux going on in the UFC’s middleweight division. Since dropping the title to Bisping at UFC 199, Rockhold sort of became the odd man out. Bisping was holding out for the big fight vs. “GSP,” which resulted in the interim title fight between Whitaker and Romero. It’s been a bit of a whirlwind, and the St-Pierre’s return combined with the interim title has certainly muddied the waters, but Rockhold says he’s always known where he stands among the others.

“I’ve always known my place,” Rockhold told FIGHT SPORTS. “It’s just the general public got mislead for awhile. I’ve always known where the division stands. Now everyone is trying to figure it out. Whitaker has been the man. He’s proven himself. He’s beaten Jacare [Souza] and Yoel, and the time he did it, it was a statement.

“Yoel is a gangster in the division. He’s a guy you have to really watch out for. And there’s a reason why he and Whitaker fought to a five-round division, going 2-2 into the fifth. That’s the top-tier guys, the cream of the crop. You beat either of these two guys you are a champion. As for the rest of them: good riddance.”

 

4. UKAD Spends Six Figures On Tyson Fury Steroid Investigation:

Following a nearly two year battle between Tyson and Hughie Fury and the UK Anti-Doping Agency UKAD, the total cost to the UK tax payer has been revealed.

Per a report from World Boxing News, the original suspension sought by UKAD would have seen a four year ban for either Fury, but was negotiated down to a backdated ban for two years.

Fury in an interview in December with BT Sport said he has no regrets about what has happened, and is looking towards the future and putting “2017 in the rear view mirror.”

This leaves Tyson, former world heavyweight champion able to continue his career, although UKAD now has to find a way to pay the bill.

In a statement sent to World Boxing News via a response to a Freedom of Information (FOI), UKAD Chief Executive, Nicole Sapstead said:

“The money spent by UK Anti-Doping in the Fury case shows that if we determine there is evidence of doping, we will pursue a case against an athlete, coach or doctor, regardless of their public profile or status.

“In this case, two Anti-Doping Rule Violations were upheld and two-year bans given to each athlete.”

 

5. Mark Hunt Says He’s Still ‘One Of The F****Ng Best’

Speaking exclusively with FIGHT SPORTS, Hunt, 43, who is currently the No.5-ranked UFC heavyweight, just continues spitting in the face of ‘Ol Father Time. On Sunday, the Kiwi veteran will face No.9-ranked contender Curtis Blaydes at UFC 221, inside Perth Arena in Perth, Australia.

A veteran of over 70 fights between MMA, kickboxing and boxing, Hunt defeated Derrick Lewis by TKO in his last bout, proving to be an ageless warrior once again. He will turn 44-years-old in March and is still competing at a high level.

What does he attribute that to?

“I attribute that to being one of the best f***ing fighters in the world,” Hunt told FIGHT SPORTS. “That’s what it is (laughs).”

Hunt’s opponent Blaydes, is 17 years his junior, but Hunt doesn’t appear to be too concerned about him. In fact, he admitted to not being all that familiar with Blaydes either.

“To be honest, I don’t know much about Blades,” said Hunt, who resides in Australia and will be fighting in The Land Down Under for the sixth time at UFC 221. “He’s in the Top 10 for a reason. He’s a great fighter. I have no disrespect for him. I’m looking forward to locking horns with him on Sunday.”

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