Conor McGregor could have his next fight at UFC 245 in December, Dana White says when discussing his return

20 Sep

Conor McGregor has been making the kind of noise lately that suggests he is on the cusp of a return to the octagon.

After nearly a year since his loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov and subsequent six-month suspension, it seems the Irishman is finally serious about fighting again.

Conor McGregor has not fought since losing to Khabib Nurmagomedov last October
Getty Images - Getty

He was in talks to face surging lightweight Justin Gaethje before he suffered a broken hand in training and now Dustin Poirier seems to be at the head of the queue.

Earlier this week, Notorious hinted he would be ready to fight in December.

UFC president Dana White, though, said it wouldn’t be in Ireland. “I’m sure you saw his tweet. Conor wants to fight on December 14 in Dublin, but we have [UFC 245] in Vegas.

“So if he doesn’t fight on that card, he will fight early next year.”

The only fight we are expecting for UFC 245 on 14 Decembre at the moment is Amanda Nunes defending her women’s bantamweight title against Germaine de Randamie.

One fight we won’t see is McGregor versus Jorge Masvidal with the latter claiming White has told him he’s ‘too much man’ for McGregor.

WWE and AEW news: Triple H celebrates in the crowd with NXT fans off-air, Kenny Omega says NXT stars would in the ‘dark match’ with AEW

19 Sep

NXT has now debuted on Network television and we’re under two weeks away from AEW doing the same – great times in the wrestling business.

Let’s check out the latest news:

Triple H and Shawn Michaels at NXT UK
WWE

Triple H enjoys himself

The title doesn’t seem newsworthy, but it really is a great watch! After NXT went off the air at Full Sail, The Game came out and gave an impassioned promo to the WWE Universe.

Then, he proceeded to get in the crowd and celebrate with them! He was clearly buzzing and we love to see it.

 

Kenny Omega says NXT wrestlers would be the dark match to his main event

Yep, Kenny Omega has got a dose of the Seth Rollins about him today and he found himself in a combative mood.

When commenting on the ‘war’ with WWE to Sportskeeda, Omega went so far as to say NXT wrestlers would only ever open for him.

Maria Kanellis pregnancy angle

It was said this week that the returning Rusev may be the father of Maria’s baby, but Dave Meltzer has said they are not leading to a big reveal.

Instead, this is designed to be a running joke on RAW.

Maria and Mike Kanellis have become regular fixtures of RAW after so long on the shelf
WWE

UFC news: Ben Askren says what we are all thinking about Conor McGregor – ‘shut up and fight’

19 Sep

Ben Askren isn’t always flavour of the month with MMA fans, but the former Bellator and ONE welterweight champion has said what we’re all thinking with Conor McGregor right now.

Appearing on Ariel Helwani’s show, the accomplished wrestler suggested McGregor is in no position to act like he’s too good to fight anybody or talk a big game – he just needs to be fighting.

Ben Askren spoke to the media at UFC London
talkSPORT

“Conor, shut up and stop trying to act too good for it. Take the damn fight. Take a fight, take any fight, we don’t care,” Askren said on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show.

“We just wanna hear you shut up on social media and actually take a fight. Give me a damn break. It’s been a year, and before that another year.

“Just shut up. No more tweets, let’s fight already. Conor can tweet, he just can’t tweet about fighting everyone without hopping in there.”

Askren is recovering from the fastest knockout in UFC history at the hands of Jorge Masvidal at UFC 239, but he has a chance to get back into welterweight contention when he takes on fellow grappler Damien Maia on October 26.

McGregor seems on course to face Dustin Poirier again and Askren believes if he’s smart, he’ll do that and avoid the surging Justin Gathje.

“The Dustin fight, that’s probably a great fight for him,” Askren said. “Dustin’s got a lot of hype, he just came off a world title shot. If there’s a fight that’s gonna get Conor back in it, boom, that’s it.

“I don’t think they’re gonna make Khabib-Conor, it’s just not gonna happen. Nate Diaz is tied up. Who are Conor’s other options? Justin Gaethje is, but if you’re Conor, I’d rather fight Dustin Poirier before I fight Justin Gaethje.”

Conor McGregor NOT making rumoured return to boxing – Dustin Poirier favourite ahead of Justin Gaethje UFC return in December

19 Sep

Conor McGregor sure likes to use Twitter when there could be a fight on the horizon, doesn’t he?

The Irishman is looking to put recent controversies behind him and get back in the octagon as soon as his broken hand is fully healed, and it looks like Dustin Poirier is in his crosshairs.

Diamond is coming off a loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov, but, before that, he had run through a slew of top lightweight contenders.

McGregor knocked Poirier out in the first round when the two men last met in 2014, but things have really changed since then.

Five years is a long time in the fight game and while McGregor has been to the summit of the division, since his loss to Khabib last November he’s been out of the UFC loop.

Conor McGregor is one of the biggest stars in the world

Poirier is the total opposite and now seems the perfect time for both men to do battle. Poirier wants it, but Justin Gaethje is coming off a very impressive win over Donald Cerrone that could put him in that spot, too.

He was meant to get that fight earlier this year, but McGregor’s injury put the brakes on it. Now, according to Ariel Helwani, the UFC are looking to make the fight with Poirier and make it in December and McGregor is not making a comeback to boxing.

McGregor’s ambitions of having the fight in Dublin are likely wide of the mark, but it seems all sides are motivated to getting the deal done.

Leaked WWE promotion suggests Kofi Kingston will beat Brock Lesnar on SmackDown Live

19 Sep

When Brock Lesnar showed up on SmackDown this week and challenged Kofi Kingston to defend his WWE title against him on the very first SmackDown episode on FOX, most fans instantly thought ‘Brock’s going to be the new champion, then’.

The Beast Incarnate will take on Kingston for the WWE’s top prize on October 4 and it will see Lesnar’s first televised WWE match in 15 years.

Brock Lesnar and Kofi Kingston will be the main event at the first ever SamckDown Live on FOX for the WWE title
WWE

That’s a big deal, and you just know the WWE are going to pay.

However, given that Kingston and Lesnar are being advertised to go at it again a full six weeks later – and also on TV – with Kingston being billed as the champion, many are beginning to think Kingston will somehow come out victorious on FOX’s debut episode.

It would be an interesting swerve, but advertisements are always subject to change and it’s hard to imagine WWE wouldn’t book their top, well-paid star strongly on the biggest platform they’ve ever had.

Brock Lesnar making a statement against Kofi Kingston
WWE

It has long been rumoured that Lesnar will be front and centre of WWE’s move to FOX and while he’ll never return as a full-time star, WWE do intend to use a lot of his dates in the opening months of their time on FOX.

That ought to get the viewers interested enough to give guys like Kingston a chance, if they’ve never watched the show.

WWE news: Big update on Sheamus’ in-ring future after being on the brink of retirement

19 Sep

Nobody has seen Sheamus since WrestleMania 35 – in a WWE ring anyway – and rumours have been rife that he would have to retire from the business.

At 40-years-old, the Irishman has seen and done everything you could ever wish to do in WWE. All except winning the Intercontinental title, that is.

Sheamus (Ireland)
Sheamus is waiting on a call from WWE to return
WWE

It was initially reported that Sheamus had suffered a serious neck injury – similar to the spinal stenosis that ended Edge’s and Paige’s careers prematurely – and he may have had his last match.

Then it emerged that he had recovered from those issues and, in actual fact, Sheamus had suffered severe concussions and some nasty side effects as a result.

He admitted he was working hard to get cleared, but as Daniel Bryan well knows with concussions, that’s no easy feat.

According to Dave Meltzer, Sheamus is now cleared to return to the ring, but WWE just do not have any storylines for him right now.

At least we know we haven’t seen the last of the Celtic Warrior. Of course, away from the ring, he’s kept himself in tremendous condition with his YouTube channel, Celtic Warrior Workouts.
Still, the story of him chasing the IC title is something a lot of fans can get behind.

WWE fans hail NXT’s USA Network debut as ‘the best episode of wrestling ever’

19 Sep

NXT debuted on the USA Network last night and WWE came out of the blocks fast.

Triple H is the mastermind behind the Yellow Brand and he and his crew delivered one of the most exciting episodes in wrestling history.

Triple H is the creator of NXT as we know it
WWE

Fan on Twitter agreed and the show was stacked from start to finish.

Former NXT UK champion Pete Dunne made an appearance and Imperium also made their presence felt, seemingly foreshadowing a War Games with Undisputed Era down the road.

Candice LeRae became the number one contender to the NXT Women’s title after defeating Bianca Belair, Rhea Ripley and Io Shirai in a fatal-four-way match.

Undisputed Era now hold all the gold in NXT!
WWE

Roderick Strong became the North American champion after defeating the Velveteen Dream, too. That means the Undisputed Era have all the gold as Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly are the NXT Tag Team champions and Adam Cole is the NXT champion.

Lio Rush also made an unexpected return to WWE after reports earlier this year suggested he had been suspended for having an attitude problem. Matt Riddle also battled Killian Dain in a street fight.

Matt Riddle and Killian Dain went to war on NXT’s debut show
WWE

Triple H has found a spot for him, though, and the NXT universe was treated to a TakeOver level show for the USA debut.

Can they keep the momentum going? With AEW debuting on TNT in the exact same timeslot in a couple of weeks, you bet they will.

WWE and AEW news: Details behind Brock Lesnar’s title challenge, Vince McMahon wants to bury Cedric Alexander

18 Sep

This week’s Raw and SmackDown shows have gone down well with the WWE universe.

Below, talkSPORT gives you the latest gossip and rumours from the wrestling world.

WWE: Brock Lesnar
Brock Lesnar has the WWE title in his sights
WWE

Details behind Brock Lesnar’s WWE title challenge

Kofi Kingston successfully defended his WWE Championship against Randy Orton at Clash of Champions on Sunday.

However, he faces his biggest challenge yet in Brock Lesnar after accepting The Beast’s challenge for his title on SmackDown this week.

The pair will go head-to-head on SmackDown’s debut episode on FOX on October 4.

Post Wrestling say the match has ‘been in the works for a long time’.

And we could have got a glimpse into the future as Lesnar hit Kingston with a devastating F5.

Vince McMahon wants to bury Cedric Alexander

The Wrestling Observer’s Dave Meltzer reports Vince McMahon wants to bury Cedric Alexander.

The former 205 Live high-flyer has had impressive matches with AJ Styles and Drew McIntyre since being called up to the main roster.

And he has even been feuding with Styles for the United States Championship in recent weeks.

However, Meltzer claims Alexander’s push will be brief.

Kevin Owens ‘sues’ Shane McMahon

Shane McMahon fired Kevin Owens on last week’s episode of SmackDown after the self-proclaimed Best in the World lost to Chad Gable in the King of the Ring semi-finals.

But this week, Owens filed a $25million wrongful termination lawsuit against McMahon.

What happens next is anyone’s guess…

Chris Jericho reveals why he quit WWE

There was a time when Chris Jericho and Owens were meant to go one-on-one for the Universal Championship in the WrestleMania 33 main event.

However, Goldberg beat Owens for the title at Fastlane and ended up losing it to Lesnar at the Show of Shows.

The match between Jericho and Owens was demoted to a United States Championship contest, which the latter won.

Jericho, who left WWE last year and is currently AEW’s world champion, told the Mature Audiences Mayhem podcast: “Vince said that it’s going to be me versus Kevin Owens for the world title at WrestleMania and you are going to win the title, f*** yeah!

Chris Jericho won the AEW World Championship at AEW’s All Out pay-per-view last month
All Elite Wrestling

“Next week, he doesn’t tell me, but I hear that it’s changed to Brock Lesnar versus Bill Goldberg for the title.

“And not only did they take us out of the main event – and, once again, just because I was told I have no right to it and things change all the time, I’m a big boy, I can handle it.

“But to take us from the main event slot and then move us to the second match on the card on a card that has 12 matches on it? I was like, that’s a f****** insult.”

Keith Lee EXCLUSIVE: After four failed tryouts with WWE, I was going to give up wrestling – William Regal and Dusty Rhodes saved me

17 Sep

Keith Lee is a big man with a big presence and with NXT heading to two-hours on the USA Network this week, he looks set for a bigger role.

The 34-year-old has been signed with WWE since April of 2018, but he is still looking for the spot his talent commands.

Keith Lee in an NXT ring
WWE

A combination of injuries and NXT’s limited space in the main event scene have stuttered the Texas-native from his ideal path.

talkSPORT caught up with Lee at a Progress show last Sunday where Lee teamed with Matt Riddle against Moustache Mountain.

Hi Keith! How does it feel to be back in the UK, a place where several promotions have been good to you?

I’ve voiced several times that Europe is a place in general that I miss, up to and including Ireland. So it was awesome to come back. Not quite the big return I would have liked… but the crowd was there and made me feel just as special as always and at the end of the day, that’s what it was about for me.

What’s so great about performing in the UK?

I think number one is the fans. Especially when they do the song ‘Hey Jude’ but in the form of Keith Lee – that is my favourite thing on the planet. I love it so much. But after that, it’s just the opportunity to put on Keith Lee matches. My style, my way. I don’t really feel like today was like that but… in singles competition, my type of martial art is something that I love and enjoy. I love the appreciation that is shown for it.

Do you feel like you get the opportunity to have ‘Keith Lee style’ matches in NXT?

I would say… lately I’ve had that opportunity, but initially, absolutely not. There’s definitely a lot of things that I am suggested not to do and/or cannot do in general, and that’s just the way it goes, man. It’s a different system, a different style there and a different vision for what they want from me. I just kinda have to work within the context of what they want from me.

Fans have loved the matches between Keith Lee and Dominik Dijalkovic
WWE

A lot of fans felt your recent match with Dominik Dijakovic was of a TakeOver level, which is a big compliment in this day and age. That must be good to know people are beginning to realise what you can do?

If I’m being honest, I would say that that match with Dijakovic was not a TakeOver level match for us. I just feel like that was a drop in a bucket, just a taste. Everything we do I feel like is just a taste test. Like, here’s an appetiser. We have yet to produce or fight to a level that allows us to go into a full course meal. And I don’t know if or when people will see it. But they will know when they see it! I’m happy that people view it as a TakeOver level match but for me, it’s just another day at the office. We’ll see what the future holds I suppose.

The things you guys did together in his final match with PWG was insane, is that the kind of match you’d love to show people on a WWE platform?

I feel like I’m the epitome of that niche right now. I feel like I’m the representative of that entire niche right now. Being a guy that is 340lbs and doing what I do, not just flippy things, but catching guys that are 300lbs and throwing guys up in the air that are 300lbs – people lost their minds when I popped up Lars for the spear bomb, they had no idea! I am an all-around ridiculous athlete and I think I am the staple holder for that entire genre that is wrestling art.

That being said, I also believe that because that is the case, I have to do things in a minimalistic way so that they mean something. That match that we had [Dijakovic at BOLA], there was so much happening that it made the other things mean less.

Do you feel that with NXT moving to two hours on the USA Network this Wednesday that there will be more opportunities for you?

Perhaps. Live television is going to give a lot of people the opportunity to see Keith Lee in his finest hour, so to speak. Meaning, the collar is off, the leash is gone, handcuffs are gone and I get to do things the way I want to do them, so I’m looking forward to that.

We saw you tag with Matt Riddle to form the Limitless Bros – is that something you’d consider doing full-time or are you focused on singles?

I think I’ve always been a singles guy. I’m not going to say I’m opposed to it. If it makes business sense, and I am first and foremost a businessman, I will do a tag. If it doesn’t make sense, of course I’m going to focus on my singles. I love the struggle of the fight, the battles, I love the energy, drama and emotion, all those things are what I love about this sport.

To me it makes sense it [NXT] becoming a two-hour show means they’ll be more opportunities and with more opportunity, I don’t think there’s much of a choice [but to feature me more]. Because whenever I got out there, it doesn’t matter whether they’re beating me, it doesn’t matter anything, I’m the one that shines. I put out a tweet a while ago and it simply said it doesn’t matter how they view me or where they put me on the card – I’m the main event. If I so choose to be, that’s what’s going to happen. Because I can steal any show I choose to. So if the opportunities come, I will take my spot. That’s just how I roll.

Performers in NXT are regularly given the chance to come and perform with Progress, Evolve and the likes, is that something you still cherish?

I don’t know if Evolve have any interest in me, actually. But regardless of what the situation holds, I love going back because A) for meeting up and seeing old friends, acquaintances, meeting new people, seeing new talent – because that’s another passion of mine, seeing people come up, blossom and help them any way I can – and B) I was happy coming back to the UK because I was able to get Nandos yesterday.

Keith Lee thanks Dusty Rhodes for helping him improve on the mic and develop his character
WWE

I understand you’ve told this story a few times, but can you explain how ‘bask in my glory’ became your thing?

That began because my first tryout with WWE was in 2008, three years after I started. I had an entire week of just a single tryout, just me. I got turned down that time and Dusty Rhodes told me that I was trash on the mic, basically. 2011, I had another tryout. This time only three days. Bit better on the mic, but not quite there. 2013 when the Performance Center first opened and they had their first big try out – I was there with like 31 other guys – and that tryout was the one I had where I felt like I came into my own with talking and presenting myself as an entity. 

And in that tryout, Dusty Rhodes said to me, and I quote: “You’ve got it. You have a presence that I feel like I can bask in.” He said, “Take it and do with it what you will.” So before I left I was like “What do you think about bask in my glory?” and he was like “I like it, baby.” It was created by Dusty Rhodes, that’s why I hold on to it so dearly because that moment meant so much to me and I probably would have quite wrestling – because I got turned down that time too – I probably would have quite wrestling were it not for that conversation with him and William Regal. They are the only two reasons I continued to wrestle. I’ve been using it ever since then.

It’s his passion and his words that touched my heart, so I used it.

Speaking of Dusty’s influence, how is it working with the crop of great minds they have in NXT right now?

Triple H is a brilliant mind. I’ve had a few talks with Shawn Michaels but it’s not like personable talks like I’ve had with Triple H. Honestly, and some of you are going to laugh at this, the biggest impact on my career since I started at the Performance Center is a man called Terry Taylor. There’s so many stories about him, but his mind is absolutely brilliant when it comes to wrestling. He has affected me in such a positive way, the way in which I do things and how I progress. Just a lot has elevated for me personally since working alongside him.

We caught Keith Lee at another fantastic Progress Wrestling show in London and you can catch him when NXT debuts on USA Network THIS Wednesday. UK fans will get the show 24 hours later on the WWE Network.

NFL news: New England Patriots top power rankings, Antonio Brown latest, Cam Newton injured, and New York Giants bench Eli Manning

17 Sep

New England Patriots remain top of the NFL.com power rankings after their dominant 43-0 victory over the Miami Dolphins on Sunday night.

There is, though, a new No.2 on the list with the Kansas City Chiefs leapfrogging the Los Angeles Rams on the list.

New England were victorious on Sunday night
Getty Images - Getty

The New Orleans Saints were the biggest fallers of the week with a loss to the Rams compounded by an injury to Drew Brees which will likely keep the quarterback out for six weeks, and possibly more.

Brees, 40, has previously only missed one match in his 19-year NFL career.

Antonio Brown latest

According to reports, Britney Taylor, the woman who has accused Patriots wide receiver Brown of rape in a civil lawsuit last week, has completed talks with league investigators.

Brown has denied the allegations made against him and there is currently no criminal investigation into the accusations.

Brown scored his first touchdown for the Patriots against Miami at the weekend
Getty Images - Getty

Cam Newton a doubt for week 3?

Carolina Panthers superstar quarterback Newton might be absent for their clash with the Arizona Cardinals.

The Panthers confirmed on their official website the 30-year-old was not at practice when the session opened on Tuesday morning.

It’s believe an aggravated foot injury now has him a doubt for the weekend’s game. If he were to miss out, backup Kyle Allen would likely start.

Newton has struggled so far this season as he returns from off-season shoulder surgery.

Newton has not had the best start to the season
Getty Images - Getty

New York Giants bench Eli Manning

There will be a change of quarterback for the Giants after a 0-2 start to the new season.

Two-time Super Bowl winner Manning is now out with rookie Daniel Jones, no. 6 pick in the 2019 draft, starting in week three.

“Eli and I spoke this morning,” coach Pat Shurmur said Tuesday in a statement. “I told him that we are making a change and going with Daniel as the starter. I also talked to Daniel.

“Eli was obviously disappointed, as you would expect, but he said he would be what he has always been, a good teammate, and continue to prepare to help this team win games. Daniel understands the challenge at hand, and he will be ready to play on Sunday.”

Manning will be a mentor to Jones
Getty Images - Getty

Steelers trade for Dolphins star Minkah Fitzpatrick

Miami have lost another star with safety Fitzpatrick joining Laremy Tunstil and Kenny Stills on the list of players who have now quit the club this season.

The 22-year-old felt it was ‘time to move on’ following reported issues since the arrival of coach Brian Flores.

Fitzpatrick moves to Pittsburgh along with a 2020 fourth-round pick and a 2021 seventh-round pick, in exchange for a first- and fifth-round pick in 2020 and 2021 sixth-round pick.