Ariel reconnects with ESPN UFC Insider Brett Okamoto to discuss Dana White's Contender Series and if Urijah Faber deserves a title fight (3:02). Plus, did Henry Cejudo save the flyweight division? Then, Ariel and ESPN's Marc Raimondi delve into the dangers of weight cutting, a conversation spurred by the controversial Aspen Ladd knockout this past weekend in Sacramento (27:24). Ariel then explains why Ladd should move up to the 145-pound division. Lastly, NewYorkRic weighs in on the big Bellator featherweight tournament announcement and Jorge Masvidal's next matchup after answering the question: can Germaine de Randamie earn back the trust of the fans and of the UFC (47:51)?
Episode 54: Faber, Shevchenko, Ortiz, GDR, Hall, Coker, Hardy, more
Ariel Helwani's MMA Show starts off with a recap of a jam-packed weekend in MMA. Ariel's old friend, Andre "Touchy" Fili, first joins the show to discuss what he calls "the best weekend of his life" (8:40). Next, UFC featherweight Ryan Hall talks about his weekend win in Sacramento before passionately explaining why he deleted his Twitter account (31:30). Then, just days before his Saturday fight in San Antonio, Alexander "The Great" Hernandez looks ahead to his matchup with lightweight Francisco Trinaldo (52:50). Next, Bellator President Scott Coker announces some big news about the male featherweight division (1:08:00). UFC legend Tito Ortiz then explains why he is ending his retirement to face Alberto del Rio in Combate America later this year (1:27:25). After that, just days after tying the record for the second-fastest KO in the history of her division, Germaine de Randamie explains how she's moved on from her rocky past and why she's adopted a positive mindset (1:47:30). Plus, she discusses a potential fight with UFC featherweight champion Amanda Nunes. The man of the hour, bantamweight Urijah Faber, then discusses his return to the Octagon and what it's like now fighting as a father (2:27:12). Julianna Pena then talks about her win this weekend, her first fight since giving birth in January 2017 (2:48:10). Pena's opponent in that 2017 fight, Valentina Shevchenko, then discusses a possible trilogy fight with Nunes and what life feels like as a champion (2:56:40). Lastly, UFC heavyweight Greg Hardy talks about his boxing workouts at Floyd Mayweather's gym, if he still has the itch to play football and if he feels accepted by the MMA community (3:14:10).
The MMA Reporters: Episode 25
Ariel welcomes back ESPN's Marc Raimondi to discuss Jorge Masvidal's UFC 239 win and if he deserves a shot at the welterweight belt (2:45). Plus, the guys also talk about Tito Ortiz's decision to fight former WWE champ Alberto del Rio at Combate Americas. Then, NewYorkRic discusses Jon Jones' fight this past weekend, the beef between he and Israel Adesanya and who the light heavyweight champion should fight next (27:00). Lastly, Sacramento radio legend Carmichael Dave tells Ariel about his close relationship with UFC bantamweight Urijah Faber, who will return to the Octagon this weekend at UFC Sacramento after a two-year hiatus (47:33).
Episode 53: Masvidal, Askren, Adesanya, Covington, Ngannou, Chiesa, Brown, more
Ariel Helwani's MMA Show starts off with Ariel's reaction to this past weekend's UFC 239 event in Las Vegas. Next, featherweight Arnold Allen discusses the 6-0 start to his UFC career (8:11). Mike Brown, coach of Jorge Masvidal, then explains how he prepared Masvidal for the Ben Askren fight...and the flying knee that led to a UFC record (26:44). And, after beating Diego Sanchez on Saturday, UFC welterweight Michael Chiesa describes the "weird" fight week that led up to his tough win (49:26). Another UFC welterweight, the always-confident and entertaining Colby Covington, tells Ariel the real reason he agreed to fight Robbie Lawler instead of Kamaru Usman (1:06:35). Next, Dominick Reyes says he'll present a difficult challenge to light heavyweight champion Jon Jones if given the opportunity to fight him, a man he idolizes (1:26:05). The recently-retired Jimi Manuwa also explains why he made the decision to step away from the octagon (1:51:12). Then, in his first interview since getting knocked out cold Saturday night, Ben Askren discusses how he's handled the public ridicule he's received, how he feels physically and emotionally and if/when he'll fight again (2:06:45). Next, UFC heavyweight Francis Ngannou discusses who he may fight next (2:33:39) and Israel Adesanya then reveals where he will fight Robert Whittaker before predicting when he'll fight Jones (2:49:46). Last but not least, Masvidal talks about his stunning knockout of Askren and where he must go from here in order to get paid the way he feels he deserves (3:05:15).
The MMA Reporters: Episode 24
Ariel returns from vacation and speaks with ESPN's Marc Raimondi about International Fight Week and the biggest storylines heading into this weekend's UFC 239 event in Vegas, like what's at stake for the legacies of Holly Holm and Jon Jones (2:42). Plus, they talk about the Ben Askren/Jorge Masvidal matchup and the August 3 Colby Covington/Robbie Lawler fight. Before welcoming on MMA reporter Peter Carroll to talk about this weekend's bloody Cage Warriors main event, Ariel announces the experience of a lifetime for UFC fans everywhere (37:10). Lastly, Shaun Al-Shatti of The Athletic discusses his lengthy new piece on the "enigma" that is Michael Bisping and more (58:48).