Surprise! Eddie Alvarez vs. Cowboy Cerrone is apparently going down at UFC 178!

Remember the rumors that there was going to be some big “surprise” for UFC 178? Well, surprise. According to reports, Eddie Alvarez has left Bellator and will be fighting Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone at UFC 178 in his UFC debut. This has been a long time coming now, with Alvarez almost joining the UFC months ago only for the dastardly Bjorn Rebney to pull the rug out from the situation. Then again, that led to Eddie Alvarez vs. Michael Chandler so I guess waiting isn’t an awful thing, right? The big fight that everyone still wants to see is Gilbert Melendez vs. Eddie Alvarez, which is still entirely an option. Donald Cerrone is on a crazy four-fight winning stream right now and was slated to face Khabib Nurmagomedov until Khabib injured his knee. We’ve heard for a few days that Cerrone had another bout offered, but weren’t clear as to what it was.

Well, now we know. Donald Cerrone vs. Eddie Alvarez, awesome fight. It’s almost like the UFC wants to win all of us back now or something, huh? Nick Diaz vs. Anderson Silva, Eddie Alvarez vs. Donald Cerrone. We’ll take it.


*Stuff* People Tweeted @MiddleEasy: UFC on FOX 12 Edition is Here!

With an entire box of Topps Knockout cards on the line, this *Stuff* People Tweeted @MiddleEasy took an extra day to come out. I'm sorry for the delay, but the winner had to be meditated on for more than a mere 48 hours. I had to walk away, gain some life experiences then come back to the tweets thousands of people sent us on Saturday during UFC on FOX 12. Only then would I be able to look at these tweets in a new, fresh light. I had to gain perspective. I had to ascend.

Then I had to see which tweets made me chuckle again so I could decide where to send $160 worth of UFC cards. 

Below is the best from *Stuff* People Tweeted @MiddleEasy: UFC on FOX 12 Edition!












And @Jimsterjam gets the box of Topps Knockout 2014 cards in a major acknowledgment of irony. Yes, he did a Tim Means tweet, but if you dissect it, he did a Tim Means tweet in the best way possible - without trying. We try to shake things up.

Hey, @Jimsterjam, email and we'll get you your prize.

We attempt to predict upcoming UFC main events by morphing the fighters into the same being?

MMA is relatively unpredictable, and picking fights can be a subjective exercise.  But maybe that's an illusion.  Maybe MMA isn't the problem, and we're just not using all of the available information.  That changes right now.  Using advanced morphology technology, combined with cutting-edge personality analysis (a free iPhone app called FaceFusion), fight results have never been more clear.  Book your ticket to Vegas.  Shit just got surreal.

Roy Nelson vs Mark Hunt

What do you get when you combine feared strikers Mark Hunt and Roy Nelson? An unimposing man-lion who has entered the witness protection program in an Amish community. A secret Lion King crafting hand-built cherry wood coffee tables by candlelight. But don’t let Royben Huntersheim fool you. After all, at least half of him once ruled the PRIDE.

Expect the fight to start gently, like two men easing down a country road on horseback. But you can’t domesticate the King of the Jungle. It will end violently, when one of them realizes that the other looks a lot like a nicely fattened gazelle.

Result: Hunt via trot-off KO in R1.

Bisping vs Le

Yes, Michael Bisping is brash. But on a superficial level, he is a well-tailored English gentleman. Cung Le is his Vietnamese-American counterpart. A Prada-suited throwback to the Lê Dynasty. Both are regal while ringside. But combine them, and you have a deranged vagrant on a stained park bench. Absconded from his 72-hour hold at a psychiatric hospital, he plays solo checkers with an unopened bottle of antipsychotic medication.

Expect this bipolar fight to be unpredictable and dangerous. Manic and depressive. It will start slow, change personalities mid-round, then peel off the face of a dead prostitute before being stopped by the authorities after a disturbing TKO.

Result: a confused audience boos, then cheers maniacally as a weirdly unconventional punch sends Bisping’s eye into the lap of a hot dog vendor in R3.

Cain vs. Werdum

Fabricio Werdum and Cain Velasquez are not remarkably handsome men in their own rights. But combine them, and you have created an Anti-Frankenstein, the most attractive human being in the sport of Mixed Martial Arts. A manufactured creature with a slightly ascending eyebrow, a confident jawline, and warm eyes that invite you to the most classically romantic battle in UFC history.

Joe Silva has nailed this one. Because these men are less than the perfect sum of their flawless parts. Their styles will clash harmoniously, like Asian fusion cooking, producing the most visually appealing fight of the year. It will be like visiting the ballet for the first time. And actually enjoying it.

Result: an abnormally satisfying draw after five rounds of the most beautifully choreographed fighting this side of Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon.

Jones vs Cormier

Take a look at this combination of Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier and I bet you’ll say, “Why, what a nice picture of Cormier. Looks like he’s thinned down quite a bit.” That’s because Daniel Cormier is dominating this morph like a leather-suited Genki Sudo at a submissive Japanophile convention. He’s completely absorbed Jon’s face into his own. And assuming the existence of a spirit-face connection, he’s absorbed that as well.

Despite a recent knee injury, this one is all Cormier. You’ll forget that Jon Jones exists, and you’ll revel at the mystery that Cormier appears to be fighting himself the entire time. He will mount Jones until he disappears, absorbing the champion through osmosis.

Result: Daniel Cormier via soul-annihilating ground and pound in R2.

Anderson vs Diaz

"The morphed face of Diaz-Anderson is a man who is spiritually exhausted. His eyes have seen some kind of genocidal horror. He would weep, but his tears are bunched up against the surface tension created by two thousand years of resigned wisdom over the futility of human existence.

If this fight even happens, expect a chronically depressed Anderson to circle morbidly as he reflects on his sad losses to Weidman. Like a wounded Vietnam Veteran after the Battle of Khe Sanh. Meanwhile, a stoned and lethargic Diaz will taunt him, but his heart won't be in it. The whole thing just seems so meaningless. 

Result: The fight is canceled before it happens. Like dismal clockwork, Anderson is re-injured during training. It is a testament to the inevitability of worldly disappointment. Or Diaz doesn't show up. Why would he? It's not like it will make a difference in the grand scheme of things."

If you want to watch Jessamyn Duke get a huge pin shoved into her wrist, we have footage

Titling the articles that feature surgery or any type of uncomfortable readjustment of the human body are usually a challenge. At first, the title was, 'Do you want to watch Jessamyn Duke get a huge pin shoved into her wrist?' And honestly, I don't know how many people want to see a huge pin shoved into anyone's wrist. But, there are people out there who do indeed like watching pins getting shoved into wrists. Hell, there's people that dig watching pins getting shoved into worse places than wrists, like penises (the wrist of the genitals) so then I decided to just go with the open-ended, 'If you want to watch Jessamyn Duke get a huge pin shoved into her wrist, we have footage.' That seems like the best option, right? I mean, if you want to see this, you're here. If you don't, you aren't, and these words to you don't even matter. 

If an article isn't read, is it ever really written? If a video of a pin getting shoved into Jessamyn Dukes wrist isn't watched, did it ever happen? Yes, on the second point, it happened. Layzie was there. He promised me this is all true and only in a few of the infinite dimensions featuring Jessamyn Duke and this pin that gets shoved into her wrist does this not happen. 

What if this only turns Duke into an explosive fighter, considering the pin being pulled from her flesh looks like a grenade being primed for chucking?

Urijah Faber makes an appearance in GTA5, but only if you’re totally stoned

About two decades ago, my brother came home covered in blood after a trip to Wal-Mart. He told my mother that he’d accidentally cut off a local television meteorologist while driving. The guy followed him into the parking lot, got out of his car and aggressively reached into my brother’s vehicle, trying to take his car keys. So my bro went full defensive cumulonimbus, knocked the weirdo down with his car door like Knight Rider, and broke his nose. This would be a stupid story if we hadn’t turned on the news later that night and learned that the weather man was out with a “skiing injury.” And just two years ago, that same local celebrity confessed that he has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, that he's been experiencing manic episodes.

Years after the alleged meteorological offensive, I was working as a 911 dispatcher about twenty miles southwest of that assault-o-mart. I received a call from that exact same weather man, reporting some loose cattle on a country road. I wanted to ask if it was him who got beat up that day. It was my chance to resolve our Great Family Mystery, the biggest thing that happened since my mentally ill Uncle bought a worm farm in Mora. But it seemed like an unprofessional thing to do. And I also worried that the forecast was cloudy, with a chance of lawsuits. So I suppose I’ll never know, and I’ll just keep whispering at campfires about the time my brother and the local God of Thunder threw down at W-Town. It is almost certainly better that way.

That long, windy build up was designed to introduce this video of an allegedly pixelated Urijah Faber smoking a joint on Grand Theft Auto 5. In this case, we won’t be speculating for two decades about it. Why? Because we know it isn’t Urijah. It doesn’t even look like Urijah, and the video creator is clearly so stoned that he’s given himself glaucoma.

DstryrSG - Rickson Gracie finally steps to the forefront of BJJ in a very visible way

The Rickson Gracie we know, the myth, the legend, has for many years been seen as the soul of Jiu Jitsu. The conscience of Jiu Jitsu. Part myth, part reality, we, he's been embraced by the practitioners and students of the Jiu Jitsu as its patron saint. Perhaps it all began with the the 1999 documentary film "Choke," which revealed his philosophy and captured his presence.

But, Rickson's been low key, to say the least, in recent years. He's quietly lived much of his life in Brazil (so I am told), away from the UFC-hyped community and from the IBJJF tournament world as well. He's done the occasional interview (we spoke to him in 2012) and continued teaching seminars. But, he hasn't taken a leadership role in the BJJ community at large. Until now.

By now, I mean last week, when Rickson launched his Jiu Jitsu Global Federation. The mission of the JJGF is impressive and massive in scope. Rickson's views on the modern-day Federation-style competition Jiu Jitsu is poignant, honest and, we think, correct. He was the featured guest this past Friday on Budovideos' "This Week in BJJ" web series. The result is literally mandatory viewing material for all grapplers. If you did not watch, you must watch now.

Watch Rickson...

A Lesson in Street MMA: History is made as a dude bats 1.000 - 5 punches, 5 knockdowns

There's multiple lessons to be learned in this incredible edition of Street MMA, but there's almost always more than one lesson to be learned in the only fighting organization not to take place within a geometrical shape. 

Of course, lesson one is the old standby: learn to film properly with your phone. My entirely unscientific research has led me to believe that roughly 80% of the human population doesn't know how to point their phone in order to record in the proper aspect ratio. It's not hard to do, just hold your phone sideways. 

Maybe it's because so many people are in the heat of the moment and want to get recordin' but I have a feeling it's Idiocracy sinking it's claws deeper into society. I mean, these combatants are, after all, fighting in a gas station parking lot in a cutoff T-shirt and camouflage cargo shorts. Which, of course, in itself isn't a crime against higher, or even mediocre intelligence, but when combined with the fact that you are engaging another man in combat while hoopin' and hollerin' in a gas station, the chance is that you own a gun rack and have watched ICP's hardcore wrestling organization. God bless America.

Lesson 2 is that you shouldn't let the adrenaline get to you. Yeah, you have a bunch of dudes that may also be wearing camouflage shorts, and in solidarity you may feel like you can conquer the world, but adrenaline is also what leads a lot of people directly towards a world of pain. Take this video for example. Clearly some transgression passed to make this fight get okayed by the matchmakers, but it's still absolutely OK to walk away from a fight. Don't follow the crowd. Would you jump off a bridge if that bridge was wearing camouflage shorts too?

Lesson 3 is to put your hands up. Damn.

Lesson 4 is that the crowd will turn on you if you get blasted in spectacular fashion, even if you initially get sucker punched. But hey, when you walk up on a dude and you're posturing for a fight, you should be ready if you're within striking distance. Maybe this dude just didn't realize he was fighting Dhaslim. I dunno. 

And in the end, the final lesson is that you probably should never get into another scrap again if you get dropped 5 times in 5 punches. What a killer jab.

Nick Diaz. Anderson Silva. January 31st. Nuff Said.

Do I even have to explain this to you?

Anderson Silva will return on January 31st at what we are assuming is UFC 183 to face an also-returning Nick Diaz in what should be the Superfight to end all Superfights. This is why the word “Superfight” even exists, for those rare instances where you get what you want.

We get what we want this time.

Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz.

This is happening. This is real life. 

A Master Lesson in Trolling From Jonathan Dwight Jones

It seems like time we all take a lesson in internet trolling by UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones. Jon Jones is a troll. That much we all should agree upon, right? From Direct Messages on Twitter to his public messages and Instagram comments Jon Jones has proven himself adept at the art of trolling the world and his opponents. Sure, sometimes he goes too far and has to claim that his phone was stolen or hacked, but I believe that we’ve all had such lapses in judgement, have we not?

Let us now examine the latest piece by Jonathan Dwight Jones where he sees an illustration on Instagram of Alexander Gustafsson, a Swedish flag and the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship and how he responds.

Note the clear lack of punctuation, also the restraint. Could he have gone into further detail? Of course. Did he? No, instead, he opted for a few quick words. Those words undoubtedly cut like fire through ice on the recently-injured Gustafsson who must now sit back and be cuckolded by Daniel Cormier. [Source: The Power Double on the UG]

Joe Rogan vs. Ed O'Neill: The Hyperreal Fight That Never Was

Ed O’Neill doesn’t do Twitter.  He doesn’t enjoy taking photos with adult fans.  Even his Facebook profile was “automatically generated based on what Facebook users are interested in.” Perhaps O’Neill himself was automatically generated by the Universe, based upon what guys who watch television at 2 a.m. are interested in.  The only evidence I’ve found that he uses a computer at all is his admission that he checked Google while preparing for a speech at Youngstown State University last year.

So that guy consenting to a match against Joe Rogan at Metamoris the other day wasn’t Ed.

“Ed doesn’t have a twitter account,” Rogan said on the Underground Forum.  “It’s fake.  Ralek tweeted that it’s fake yesterday.”

Oh what a simultaneous letdown and relief.  The Pride-style freak show must not go on, even though we probably wouldn’t mind if it did.

But Ed is sixty-eight years old, Joe’s elder by over twenty years.  And unlike Rogan, he’s not exactly sculpting a physiological shrine these days.  Even though Joe “[hasn’t] rolled in many months” because of a back injury that is “much improved,” the match would not be competitive.  It just wouldn’t.  No matter how much we want it to be in a comic book crossover sense.

If this brief hoax has had any value, it at least has us talking about Al Bundy and Jiu-Jitsu.  So as the Gracies are fond of saying, let’s turn some lemons into an alcohol-free lemon, broccoli, avocado and acai berry smoothie.

True to his television role, O’Neill really did play football in his twenties.  He was even a linebacking 15th-round draft pick for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1969, until he was cut during training camp.  Three years later, he delivered a single line as a police officer in the movie Deliverance.  To his credit, he didn’t tell anyone to squeal like a pig.  He landed the Married With Children role in 1987.

Over two decades ago, O’Neill began studying Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with Rorion Gracie.  John Milius, author of the screenplays for the movies Conan the Barbarian and Apocalypse Now, introduced the men.  O’Neill received his black belt in 2007.  And in the documentary I am Bruce Lee, he called it the “greatest achievement of my life, apart from my children.”

O’Neill described his first day at the Gracie Academy in this video.  

As is customary in Jiu-Jitsu introductions, he makes an implied reference to perceived homosexuality, the great initial hallmark of the sport. “[They are] rolling around on top of each other.  The place is very clean.  I’m thinking, it’s very clean, nice.  So now I’m thinking I’ve got to get out of here.”  But Rorion challenged the 230-pound O’Neill to hold him in mount.  And when he couldn’t, he enrolled.  16 years later, he earned his black belt.

“I didn’t expect to get it.”

“But I said,” he smiled.  “Sixteen years.  This must come naturally to me.”

Now, Rorion calls Ed, “As tough as they come.”

“In real life, he’s a major headache.”

Still, O’Neill appears to be a man of fewer words.  In fact, when he received his black belt from Rorion, he was “speechless.” He took his belt and left the stage.

And that speech to Youngstown State University in 2013 was the first he had ever given.  “I sat down to write the speech,” he said.  “I had never written a speech before.”

“I got cut by the Pittsburgh Steelers the day Neil Armstrong walked on the moon,” he said.  “Good day for him.  Not too good for me.  So for the next several years, I was a bit lost.”

He tried selling used cars, selling steel, and then he started drinking too much.  But after he became interested in acting, he quit a job as a “horseshit manager” for a bar, and relocated.  It was a difficult experience.  He remembered being surprised by his own groans while he was walking down a cold street.

“I didn’t want the city to beat me.”

He finally secured a role as an understudy on Broadway.  The man he was backing up was fired two weeks into rehearsal.  “So I go from a busboy, $40 a shift, I’m co-starring in a Broadway play. Don’t ask me how that happens, but that’s how that happens.”

When he read the script for Married With Children, he didn’t think it would work.  “Who wants to see a show about a family as screwed up as yours and mine?”

“Now I’m in my 60s . . . my that went quickly . . . and I’m playing Jay Pritchett on Modern Family . . . When they told me that Sofia Vergara was going to play my wife, I said, ‘Well that makes perfect sense.’”

In retrospect, all the groans he was making on the cold streets of Ohio sound different now.  “I think now of those little sighs as happy moans . . . because I was trying, and it wasn’t easy, but I didn’t quit.”

“I suppose if there is any lesson to be learned from all this . . . just never give up on yourself.  Find a way or go down swinging.”

It seems certain now that O’Neill won’t be doing that in a literal sense against Rogan at Metamoris.  But that’s no knock on him.  He’s an accomplished and, apparently, contented man.   And as he says at the close of his speech to the graduates of Youngstown State, he's too smart for that.  

“Never bring a knife to a gun fight.”


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