Combat Sports

Mitrione hospitalized, Emelianenko's Bellator debut in San Jose canceled

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USATSI

Mitrione hospitalized, Emelianenko's Bellator debut in San Jose canceled

SAN JOSE — Matt Mitrione was hospitalized for undisclosed reasons Saturday, forcing the cancellation of his fight against heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko in the main event of Bellator 172.

Mitrione took part in the pre-fight activities throughout the week and attended Friday's weigh-in before he was ruled out only hours before the scheduled three-round bout.

Flyers announcing the cancellation were taped to poles in the parking lots and fans were offered full refunds.

The rest of the card went on as planned.

Emelianenko, the 40-year-old Russian who once crafted a winning streak that spanned nearly a decade, is widely recognized as one of the greatest heavyweights in the MMA history and was scheduled to fight in the United States in more than five years. The fight against Mitrione, a former UFC contender, was to be Emelianenko's first in Bellator.

Khabib Nurmagomedov sorry for UFC 229 brawl but still mad at Conor McGregor

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USATSI

Khabib Nurmagomedov sorry for UFC 229 brawl but still mad at Conor McGregor

Khabib Nurmagomedov took only one question in his UFC 229 post-fight press conference and responded with a 3-minute statement, issuing an apology to the Nevada Athletic Commission and the city of Las Vegas for the post-bell brawl that he started.

The UFC lightweight champion, a Russian who trains in San Jose, said his friends there know the real Khabib, not the one who attacked one of Conor McGregor's teammates Saturday night.

"My whole team, where I'm training [in] California, seven years, everybody knows who I am," Nurmagomedov said. "All my friends, like everybody who knows me, they know who I am."

UFC heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier, who trains with Khabib, defended his American Kickboxing Academy teammate earlier in the night, tweeting "... it wasn't fight stuff, it was personal" for Nurmagomedov.

That indeed seemed to be the case, as Khabib remained defiant about McGregor, pointing out all the things "The Notorious" has said about him and done before their meeting at T-Mobile Arena. Khabib then called McGregor and his teammates "tap machines" -- implying they're quitters -- and he bragged that Russian president Vladimir Putin called to congratulate him after the fight.

McGregor famously posed with Putin for a photo at the World Cup Final in July, and called the president "one of the greatest leaders of our time." 

Watch Khabib's statement in the video and link below, but be warned that it contains some NSFW language.

This Saturday night wasn't all right for fighting, though. UFC president Dana White said Nurmagomedov is under investigation by the Nevada Athletic Commission for the post-fight fisticuffs and could face a fine, a suspension or possibly the loss of his championship belt.

Daniel Cormier defends Khabib, his friend and teammate, after UFC 229 brawl

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Associated Press

Daniel Cormier defends Khabib, his friend and teammate, after UFC 229 brawl

Daniel Cormier is in Khabib Nurmagomedov's corner -- even now, after his friend made the wrong decision at UFC 229.

Khabib, who trains with Cormier at the American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose, made a mess of his Saturday night win in Las Vegas by leaping out of the octagon after the fight, allegedly after one of Conor McGregor's teammates yelled something at him.

The bad blood that boiled before the fight certainly spilled over afterward, and Cormier, the UFC's heavyweight champion, tried to deliver some perspective after brawl that Khabib sparked.

Cormier and UFC fighter Luke Rockhold, who also trains with them in San Jose, were in the octagon after the fight, trying to calm down the situation. And now we wait to hear if Khabib even will retain the UFC lightweight championship he fought so hard for, as the Nevada Athletic Commission investigates the whole thing.

Cormier's tweet drew reactions from fighters and fans alike ...

Sounds like the fight has only begun ...