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411 Fact or Fiction MMA: Should Conor McGregor Hold Both Titles If He Wins?

November 9, 2016 | Posted by Lorenzo Vasquez

Welcome back to another edition of 411 Fact or Fiction MMA! I’m your host, Lorenzo Vasquez III, it is a great pleasure to bring you the lowdown on the fact and the fiction catching wind in professional mixed martial arts. Thank you, for your votes and comments last week. It is appreciated and I encourage you to do the same this week by voting and leaving your feedback below.

The big show is right around the corner and only a number of days left. The countdown is on for the big UFC 205 MSG card. If you won’t be able catch this one on pay-per-view or by heading down to the local cavern or your favorite drinking hole, be sure to follow your 411 live coverage guru, Robert Winfree, here on 411mania as he provides us with a live play-by-play run down of all the transpring action. Anyway, let’s get back on track! Last week, two of the big dogs, Dino Zee and Wyatt Beougher, collided over subjects like Max Holloway putting it all on the line against Anthony Pettis, T.J. Dillashaw losing out on a rematch with Dominick Cruz, and Bellator MMA actually giving us something worth looking forward too in addition to more. Both competitors came guns blazing and all. Dino, however, quickly took a small lead and made sure to extend his lead while Wyatt struggled from behind, but not without a great effort. Congratulations Dino on your 23-to-15 victory. Thank you both for efforts and contributions.

This week, Jeffrey “The Vile One” Harris will climb through the ropes and stand opposite of “The Toddfather” Todd Vote. These two well-versed and experienced technicians will deliver a fact or fiction clinic as they discuss Tony Ferguson’s claim to a title shot, Michael Bisping ducking the elite middleweights, Conor Mcgregor getting a green light to hold two titles simultaneously, and much more! Grab some grub and make yourself as comfortable as you can because it’s time for another round of, 411 Fact or Fiction MMA! Shall we…

TALE OF THE TAPE
RED CORNER
Jeffrey “The Vile One” Harris
Contributor, Various 411 Zones
0-2-2

VS

BLUE CORNER
“The Toddfather” Todd Vote
Contributor, Various 411 Zones
1-3-0


Tony Ferguson’s winning streak and performance and win over Rafael dos Anjos makes him the undisputed No. 1 contender for the UFC Lightweight Championship Title.

Jeffrey Harris: FACT Check out my column this week. Even though, Tony Ferguson has come from The Ultimate Fighter, he has more than proven himself to be a legitimate talent and athlete. As far as I know, 9-0 is the longest winning streak ever at lightweight in the UFC. Ferguson has not only improved by leaps and bounds, he continues to beat tough opposition. His only loss was a tough decision to Michael Johnson, and since that loss, he’s gone 9-0 in the UFC and 12-1 overall. It’s more impressive that he’s done it at lightweight. You can nitpick over the quality of his opposition, but lightweight is the most talent-rich, stacked, shark-infested, and bloodiest division in MMA. If you did a tournament and took over 50 fighters at lightweight, the fighters who are bottom ranked could probably pull off some impressive upsets because lightweight is highly competitive and there are a lot of tough and impressive athletes at that weight. Ferguson has been more active than Khabib Nurmagomedov. While, Nurmagomedov was on the shelf, Ferguson has been rising through the ranks and been beating tough competition. Ferguson has now gone 9-0. I’d say he’s more than earned his title shot. But he can’t get it because of Conor McGregor. Whoever wins at UFC 205 this weekend should step up to face the true ace of the lightweight version. That man is El Cucuy.

Todd Vote: FACT Outside of Khabib, I would call this 100% fact. Add in that Ferguson has been much more consistent and reliable inside the octagon, and hasn’t been prone to injury or pulling out of fights, Ferguson seems the easy choice for #1 contender. Who else could it possibly be?


Considering Charles Oliveira, stepped in on short notice to fight Ricardo Lamas at UFC FN 98, he should be given slack for not making weight.

Jeffrey Harris: FICTION Even if a fight’s taken on short notice, Oliveira still agreed to come in at that weight. You know what else? Fighters on short notice have negotiated catchweights at the last minute before weigh-ins. It’s not always common, but it’s not unprecedented either. Do you know what else? This is the fourth time Oliveira missed weight in the UFC. In his last four fights, Oliveira is 1-3. Now let’s look at Oliveira’s last three wins, all which were scheduled at flyweight: Myles Jury; Nik Lentz; and Jeremy Stephens. He missed weight for two of those fights. So two out of his last three wins were fights where he missed weight. His team could’ve contacted Ricardo Lamas and the UFC and asked for some sort of agreement where they either didn’t have to make weight or they could’ve had a catchweight since it was short notice. He didn’t do that. If this was his first offense, should he get some slack? Yes. As Robert Winfree says. Everybody gets one. He’s made this a habit and done this four times now. I think it’s time for him to spend some time outside the UFC. I’m not saying he should be gone for good. But he needs to learn from this. Look at Anthony Johnson. He did this three times and got cut. And it taught him that he shouldn’t be a welterweight or middleweight. Now he’s a light heavyweight title contender, when he was way too big for 170 pounds. His attitude about the weight issue used to be abysmal. Where he used to say “F you haters,” when it was him who was constantly messing up. Oliveira needs to learn from this or else he will keep repeating these offenses.

Todd Vote: FICTION If this had been the first time he missed weight, sure. It happens on short notice fights. That said, this is Oliveira’s, what, fourth time missing weight for a fight? That’s not a short notice problem, that is a lack of discipline. Not only that, but it is a complete lack of respect for the sport and his opponents who train properly and make weight. If you cannot make 145, why are you trying to fight in that division?


With Michael Bisping ducking Jacare Souza because “it is not a money fight,” while earlier calling for a bout with Georges St-Pierre or Nick Diaz, it is becoming increasingly believable that Bisping is avoiding the best in the division to milk the title for all it’s worth.

Jeffrey Harris: FACT But you know what? No one at middleweight wants to fight Ronaldo Jacare Souza. Jacare should’ve fought for the title a long time ago. Weidman avoided a fight with him too and instead opted for a fight with Vitor Belfort, when it should’ve been Jacare in that scenario. Weidman chose Belfort because he was a bigger name. Pretty much no one wants to fight Jacare in the UFC because it would more than likely be the worst fight of their career and their lives.

Todd Vote: FACT It’s the McGregor Curse. Conor won himself a title and left the division for money fights in different divisions. Who the hell can fault any UFC fighter for trying to do the same thing? The blueprint is there. Win a couple of big fights, get yourself some attention and milk it for all the big money fights you can. Title fights are no longer necessarily the money fights. That’s a problem that is on the UFC brass. Why should anyone care about titles, when they are just a stepping stone to big money fights?


SWITCH!

Everyone is overreacting to Ronda Rousey’s comments that her fight with Amanda Nunes is one of her last ones and it shouldn’t cast any doubts; whether or not she lost to Holly Holm, her fight career was coming to an end anyway and she’s known it since Hollywood came back knocking on her door.

Todd Vote: FACT I’ll go fact based on the over reacting portion. We all knew that her career had a timer on it, we all expected that she would go to Hollywood full time at some point. I won’t say the devastating loss to Holm didn’t move that whole time table up a bit, but it was always bound to happen.

Jeffrey Harris: FICTION It should cast doubts because it’s hard to know where her head is at after the loss to Holly Holm. When a fighter has one foot out the door, you sometimes wonder if the fighter has mentally checked out. We don’t really know if Rousey has mentally checked out of the sport yet. I’m not sure it’s over reaction so much as asking valid questions of how much we can expect from Rousey. Just for example. Let’s say she wins the title at bantamweight. Would she defend the belt? Or would she relinquish it and then take a catchweight fight with Cris “Cyborg” Justino? It’s hard to say because no matter what Rousey says, it’s hard to know exactly how she truly feels and what she’s looking to do next. Also sometimes fighters retire and then come back and continue fighting anyway.


Unfortunately, Phil Davis’ light heavyweight title win at Bellator 163 is bittersweet; for one, he finally won a gold strap, however, hardly anyone will care at this point.

Todd Vote: FACT I’ve got Bellator 163 sitting in my DVR at home, and reading these questions, finding out that Davis won the title, didn’t prompt me one bit to go turn it on any sooner than I intended to watch it. So, I guess fact.

Jeffrey Harris: FICTION Phil Davis gets paid regardless. Apparently, Bellator MMA offered him a better deal than UFC, and he took what he felt was the best deal for him. He probably wasn’t going to be winning the title and taking home those PPV buys in the UFC. If he ever becomes a free agent again, no matter what, holding a title in another organization can improve whatever deal he could get if he were to ever return to the UFC. I always thought Phil Davis was a tremendous athlete and wrestler. However, I felt he always failed to evolve as a fighter. His grappling is top notch, but his transitions are weak, and he still looks clueless with his striking. I feel that’s why he generally failed in always securing contender status. In Bellator MMA he gets to be the big fish in a smaller pond. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. Because not everyone is going to be a contender or a UFC darling. Phil Davis doesn’t really have to worry unless the checks stops coming or the lights go off at the Bellator MMA office.


Maybe, it wouldn’t be such a bad idea to let Conor McGregor, if he beats Eddie Alvarez, hold both the featherweight and lightweight strap simultaneously for a few defenses.

Todd Vote: FACT If he is capable of holding and defending both belts, so be it, but that would limit the number of times each belt gets defended to about once per year, would it not? Unless Conor plans to defend each title every 4 months, I don’t see how he can wear them both and defend both and not keep both divisions on hold while he trains for the other.

Jeffrey Harris: FICTION I don’t just say no to that. But in the words of Vince McMahon, I say “Hell no!” Playing to the whims of Conor McGregor has created a logjam at featherweight, and now it’s happening at lightweight. It means Max Holloway, 9-0, doesn’t get a title shot. It means Tony Ferguson or Khabib Nurmagomedov aren’t getting title shots. Not to mention, Conor McGregor looks like 100 miles of bad road when he cuts down to featherweight. It makes him look like a walking corpse. I’m not sure he can safely make that weight ever again, especially, after he’s spent so much time fighting well above featherweight. I find it highly unlikely McGregor could go back and forth between two weights and defend both belts. Also, McGregor hasn’t even won the lightweight belt yet. He’s not the lightweight champion, and he could very well lose his fight against Eddie Alvarez. Not to mention, what happens if he wins and then starts losing? Saying he could hold and defend both belts for a few defenses sounds highly unrealistic. Quite frankly, I’m predicting it never even happens that he wins both belts.


So who won? Was Todd able to hand Jeffery and his vile ways a defeat? Or, did Jeffrey school “The Toddfather?” You’ve got until midnight eastern on Saturday to vote, so make sure you make your voice heard!


And that’s it for today but, as always, we’ll be back next week with another contest! And please, be sure to vote!

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