Well it appears UFC 178 just is not supposed to be the blockbuster event everyone had it pegged as way back in March, when Alexander Gustafsson reclaimed his #1 competitor’s slot with a success over Jimi Manuwa. Few watched Jon Jones’ April name defense against Glover Teixeira as over a mere detour on the road to Jones/Gustafsson two, and the masses were right. Although it took a while to choose a particular date and place, the bout was highly anticipated whenever and where it would occur. Then, all of a sudden, Alexander Gustafsson was made to drop from the fight with a torn meniscus. No problem, in stepped Daniel Cormier to take his own place and the MMA world was even more enthusiastic. Then the notorious media day brawl took place, and UFC 178 became a must-watch event for more than just the MMA community. It had the type of buzz that few UFC events garner, and probably would have been the largest grossing light heavyweight bout since Quinton Jackson vs. Rashad Evans back at UFC 114. Obviously, things seldom visit program in MMA, as well as the backup programs fall through occasionally. Jon Jones declared yesterday that he too was injured in training and forced from UFC 178. The company has rescheduled Jones and Cormier to headline UFC 182 in January, in which they will probably share the card with Ronda Rousey in a year-end (or starting) card that hearkens back to the days of stacked events around the New Year. The one issue with all this however, is that this was assumed to function as Alexander Gustafsson’s battle all together, and by January he will probably be ready to go. Will the UFC actually forego what could be another classic between Jones and Gustafsson for the buck signs apparently obvious for Jones and Cormier? It will be interesting to see how this plays out during the upcoming few weeks, but early signs are that the Swede is going to end up a very unhappy camper. Of course in MMA news when it rains, it pours, and it was a busy day outside of the Jones injury. UFC 177 along with flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson believed that the domino effect from the accident, as his title defense against Chris Cariaso will now be moving to the main event of UFC 178. Understanding that lovers would be frustrated with all the shift, Johnson tweeted (tongue-in-cheek),”Bad: You’ll have to wait a little longer to see me win . Good: I am the newest UFC 178 headliner. Bout time that card gets a true main event.” To complete UFC 177, the company has gathered a bout between a set of highly touted champions from the regional circuit. Former Bellator and Tachi Palace Fights champion Joe Soto will compete only three weeks after his latest bout, and he will be carrying on former MFC champion Anthony Birchak in one of the better conflicts between UFC newcomers that has been made in 2014. The bantamweights will probably complete a spot on the UFC Fight Pass prelims. Soto’s old promotion also announced a set of spells yesterday, as heavy hitters Doug Marshall and Melvin Manhoef will headline Bellator 125 on September 19th. While this bout is of almost zero significance in any kind of divisional ranks, it should be violent and fun for however long it lasts. Following in precisely the exact same mould is the co-main event on the card comprising Brian Rogers and James Irvin, just two of those men found on any highlight reel of flying in MMA history. Betting lines will likely lean towards Manhoef and Rogers in their respective bouts, since they are the talented strikers in what ought to be completely striking contests. A set of AXS TV promotions declared upcoming bouts as well, together with Legacy FC 37 being headlined by two of its former winners, Leonard Garcia and Daniel Pineda. Garcia just lost his featherweight belt to Damon Jackson at Legacy FC 33, also Pineda — a former lightweight and featherweight champ in the promotion — was just re-signed after being cut out of the UFC. It is quite probable that Jackson is going to be signed into the UFC before this bout occurs on November 14th, and if that’s the case this could determine a new champion too. Following Garcia’s quick loss in his last outing, expect the people to prefer Pineda, and he will likely open as a small favorite. RFA continues their tour across the Western United States as RFA 18 takes place in Albuquerque, New Mexico on September 12th. The event will be headlined by flyweight champion Matt Manzanares defends his belt against undefeated Albuquerque native Joby Sanchez. Sanchez only knocked off Antonio Banuelos last week at Tachi Palace Fights 20, and will probably be carrying this bout on just over a month’s notice. This line should be shut, but the people may push it slightly towards Manzanares because he is the more well-known of both.
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