Welcome to Midnight Mania!
Truly, MMA is the sport of recency bias and pointless pound-for-pound/greatest of all time discussions. Each and every time a new champion is crowned, the accomplishments of the old guard are quickly tossed aside, and the discussion quickly heats up: is this new champion the best yet?
Of course he is! Until the next one.
UFC color commentator Joe Rogan is prone to such wild declarations, but he may have surpassed himself this time while discussing the Welterweight division and legacies of champions Georges St. Pierre and Kamaru Usman. “GSP” is widely, widely regarded as one of the greatest fighters of all time. A two-division champion with nine title defenses to his credit, St. Pierre utterly dominated the 170-pound ranks from 2007-2013.
On his podcast with country singer Luke Combs, Rogan explained that the competition level rising so much in recent years meant that Usman’s own title defenses were more valuable. In fact, he argues that the men Usman defeated were as sharp or sharper than “GSP” himself.
“I just think the level of competition he faced is higher. GSP was so good he raised the bar,” Rogan said (via BJPenn.com). “But, you look at GSP’s victories he beat some very good guys but I think the guys Kamaru Usman beat, Colby Covington, Jorge Masvidal, Tyron Woodley, I think they are better.”
Combs — who, again, is a country singer — interrupted and asked if he really believed that Jorge Masvidal was superior to St. Pierre. Rogan did not walk back his opinion in the least!
“Yeah,” Rogan responded. “I think if Masvidal was around at that time he would be dangerous for everybody, I think he is on another level. I think everyone is on another level, the Masvidal that knocked out Ben Askren, that was one of the craftiest moves that anyone has ever done. He went sideways and ran straight at him and Askren’s instincts kicked in and he kneed him into the dark lands. Just one shoot, boom, into the shadow realm. Masvidal, I mean he knocked out Yves Edwards with a f—king head kick back in the day. He is a f—king assassin. Masvidal is a gangster.”
What’s especially hilarious about this response is that Masvidal was “around at that time.” In the years of St. Pierre’s title reign, Masvidal was famously inverted triangle choked by Toby Imada, shutout by Gilbert Melendez in a Strikeforce Lightweight title fight, and then failed to make a run in UFC’s 155-pound division.
I personally have been writing about Jorge Masvidal’s underrated and overlooked skills since 2015, prior to his resurgence and subsequent fame. I would consider myself a long-time “Gamebred” fan from a technical stand point. He’s a really skilled fighter with lots of tricks up his sleeves.
He still ain’t no Georges St. Pierre.
Two more UFC fighters fail drug tests for Ostarine.
UFC fighters Kyler Phillips and Darrius Flowers have been suspended by the Nevada State Athletic Commission due to positive drug tests for ostarine. Story headed to @MMAjunkie.
— Nolan King (@mma_kings) March 21, 2023
Leon Edwards silencing certain members of the crowd and thrilling the rest is forever rewatchable.
The absolute highest caliber of art.
I’m not defending Colby Covington or his very dumb comments, but have you see how many “Chaos” headlines there have been in the less-than-a-week span since he broke radio silence?
The irony of threatening someone (who’s not even a fighter) out of the cage, while simultaneously pressing charges against someone who did the same thing to you ♂️ https://t.co/v1OeFJEqDb
— Billy Quarantillo (@BillyQMMA) March 21, 2023
The best Marlon Vera quote in recent times:
Age is among the biggest factors of success in the lower weight classes, whereas experience is comparably more valuable than athleticism amongst the bigger fighters. A couple additional fun facts: Alexander Volkanovski turns 35 in September, and Aljamain Sterling turns 34 in July.
So I went ahead and totaled up the record for all the guys over 35 years old between 185 and 265 in UFC title fights.
It’s 28-31. https://t.co/mJGOgoOca9
— Zane Simon (@TheZaneSimon) March 21, 2023
Sean Strickland takes a stand against Hasbulla.
Slips, rips, and KO clips
A slick jump triangle counters the takedown attempt:
“Chito” has an unreal highlight reel. Here are some older stoppage wins (click through for more):
March 23, 2019
Chito drops Frankie Saenz with a jab & finishes him in 85 seconds. Many blows to the back of the head.
Saenz has a win over Merab pic.twitter.com/MRt6zlBeXg
— Ocelot MMA (@Ocelot_MMA) March 20, 2023
Bad time to make a mental error.
Wing suits seem so futuristic.
Midnight Music: ??, 1978
Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.