It doesn't get much more chaotic in terms of sporting weekends than what was dished up in the UFC over the past few days. Not only did we wake up this morning to news that Mark Hunt would be fighting against Brock Lesnar on the UFC 200 card (epic news) but the bloke who reported this and the confirmed Conor McGregor vs Nate Diaz rematch for UFC 202, Ariel Helwani was booted out of the UFC 199 and told he's kinda banned from attending UFC events.
Oh, there was also the UFC 199 event itself in which Michael Bisping caught Luke Rockhold with a few cheeky left hooks, rocking the former middleweight champ and sealing a rather shocking win.
The other notable fight on this card was between Dominick Cruz and Uriah Faber, with Cruz proving to be far too slick for Faber. Cruz's victory will come close to ending the 37-year-old Faber's career, although Faber did say in the post-fight press conference that he may be keen to fight Sacramento on a UFC card in the near future.
On the one hand we've got Bisping, who has waited for 10 years for his title shot and did the business against Rockhold and on the other hand we have Faber who is yet to win any of his four UFC title fights. Bisping and Rockhold got amongst the verbals in the post-fight press conference which only added to the entertainment and it sets up a possible third fight between the two and a title rematch nicely. Rockhold had the wood over Bisping after beating him in their previous bout, this time around though Bisping took advantage of Rockhold's lazy right hand and made him pay.
Rockhold said after the fight that he had basically slipped up and took Bisping for granted, which is far from ideal when fighting a nemesis. A litte too eager to land a killer shot and Rockhold was torched by a late call up with Bisping replacing Chris Weidman, which only adds more intrigue to a funky middleweight division. Bisping got fairly luck to get this fight, with injuries ruling out the likes of Jacare Souza who is ranked ahead of him and whether Bisping can defend his title once or even a few times is a big question moving forward.
Spare a thought for featherweight Max Holloway who grabbed a decision win over Ricardo Lamas, his ninth-straight win. In those nine fights, Holloway has won two Performance Of The Night bonuses as well as a KO Of The Night and it doesn't look like Holloway will be rewarded with a title shot any time soon. That's tied in with the announcement of McGregor vs Diaz for UFC 202, with Jose Aldo and Frankie Edgar set to fight on the UFC 200 card for the interim featherweight title.
That means that Holloway won't get a shot at the three fighters ranked ahead of him in the near future, even though he thoroughly deserves it. At 24-years-old, Holloway has his best years ahead of him and it'll be interesting to see if the UFC shows Holloway some love by taking an event to Hawaii, where Holloway calls home.
McGregor vs Diaz was officially announced for UFC 202, which is nice but was already in the works for this card. The drama of that announcement is overshadowed by the news that Mark Hunt will take on Brock Lesnar on the already epic UFC 200 card which also features Daniel Cormier vs Jon Jones, Miesha Tate vs Amanda Nunes, Aldo vs Edgar, Cain Velasquez vs Travis Browne, Johny Hendricks vs Calvin Gastelum and TJ Dillashaw vs Raphael Assuncao.
I'll get up to my ears in Lesnar vs Hunt tomorrow (it deserves its own thing) so stay tuned for that. While the UFC serves up great fights, it also got a bit dumb during the UFC 199 event as MMA's best journalist Ariel Helwani was ecorted out of the venue and given some choice orders that just oozed stupidity. Helwani had correctly reported the McGregor vs Diaz rematch and during the UFC 199 event, Helwani reported that Lesnar would make a return to the UFC to fight Hunt.
That Helwani had reported this before the UFC could, apparently didn't go down too well with Dana White and the UFC. They have a history of being kinda silly with Helwani as Helwani was fired from his role with Fox Sports in the States for speaking slightly negatively of the UFC. Helwani is the best in the game, the one bloke who I look up to in MMA journalism and the UFC definitely dropped the ball here.
Thankfully, there's such great action in the UFC, it's just that instead of really celebrating Bisping's crazy victory, much of the attention after UFC 199 was centred around the UFC being silly.