Matt Mitrione Turns Down Fight with Daniel Cormier; Rashad Evans Passes on Glover Teixeira

September 30, 2012
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Matt Mitrione at UFC 119Short notice fights are nothing new in the UFC and while some fighters seize the moment to step up and help out the promotion, other times the wiser decision if somebody truly isn’t ready is just to pass and wait for another opportunity.

For all the fighters that accept short notice fights, there has always been a laundry list of fighters that pass on those last minute bouts that we rarely hear about.

With fighters falling by the wayside almost daily due to injury, more and more fighters are being asked to step up and fill those vacant slots.

Recently former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir fell out of his scheduled crossover fight to Strikeforce where he was set to face recent heavyweight Grand Prix champion Daniel Cormier.

The UFC thought they found a viable replacement in former Ultimate Fighter competitor Matt Mitrione, but according to UFC President Dana White he said ‘thanks, but no thanks’.

“I guess he doesn’t want big opportunities, I get it,” White said about Mitrione passing on the fight with Cormier in Strikeforce.

Mitrione is currently preparing for a bout against Phil De Fries at UFC 155 in December, and recently had been campaigning for a fight against Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson as well. Unfortunately White was none too happy that he turned down the fight against Cormier while openly discussing a fight against a light heavyweight instead.

“Mitrione’s not getting any younger,” White said about the heavyweight fighter.

White did promise however they would continue to search for a suitable replacement to step in and face Cormier on the Nov 3 card in Oklahoma.

Meanwhile, it was also revealed on Saturday that former UFC light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans was the first call officials made when they needed a replacement for UFC 153 in Brazil.

According to Evans, when Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson dropped out of his scheduled bout against Glover Teixeira due to injury, the UFC came calling asking him to step in to take the fight.

While Evans has recently been in the gym coaching fighters like Vitor Belfort, he hasn’t been in full training mode himself and he opted to pass on the fight and wait for a chance to return when he’s back in camp and back in shape.

“They offered me a fight, but it was against Glover Teixeira and I only had three weeks to fight and I haven’t been training. I was like, ‘no way, not with that notice in Brazil.’,” said Evans.

Evans said his hope is to return to action later this year, possibly in December but more likely in January or February.

To hear the entire conversation with White from UFC on Fuel 5 check out the video courtesy of Fighter’s Only.

  • andthenisaid

    Mark Hunt

    • KBEsq

      Look – I really like Hunt. He’s a great fighter and a good guy. I realize he’s had some wins, but Cormier? Really?

      Hunt’s fight with Rothwell was embarrassing. I know they were at altitude, but still. He was done by the end of the first round.

      What is going to stop Cormier from taking Hunt down and beating him up? Nothing. Sure, Hunt has a ‘puncher’s chance,’ but so does anyone.

  • ultimatebrosky

    Didn’t Fabricio Werdum say he would take the fight with dc ? Give it to him…

  • BlackDog2009

    Except that Werdum was in the same HW tournament that Cormier won and Werdum was not able to get to the end of it, he lost an got eliminated… so it kind of sets an anticlimatic event if Werdum fought Cormier. I’m starting to think UFC fighters are *&ssies, and is it me or is everyone ducking Teixeira?

    • ultimatebrosky

      I can see how that argument could be used…. Maybe if it was to replace Barnett in the finals I’d say hell no bit the grand prix is over and Werdum has put together a couple wins since then… I think they could get away with it… But since they’re throwing mitrione at him I’m guessing they want as many contenders Si they can get without them eliminating each other like in the lhw division right now

      • ultimatebrosky

        Strive would be a great replacement…. I don’t think he was too banged up, he’s still in fighting shape… But his whole dad situation might not let it happen…

    • bwade181994

      First,nobody is ducking glover ,rashad is out of shape and doesnt want the risk of gassing out if it goes to the later rounds and any way rashad isnt even a rampage to begin with,rashad is still atop the lhw rankings,his only losses where in championship bouts,why let glover get such a high profile fight?they gave him rampage for a reason.same reason shogun ducked him because at the time of the offer he was still atop of the rankings.

      • andresgarica

        lol you can spin it as much as you want but both Rua and Rashad ducked Glover…plus you make rampage seem like he is a slouch yet he almost KO rashad in their fight and only lost via DECISION…rashad has been in the gym training other fighters for weeks how the heck is he out of shape? he’s been sparring, wrestling, working ground game and still had 3 weeks on top of that…quack quack

        • bwade181994

          Its kinda not considered ducking if u will fight the if u had time to train u probaly nevered played a sport a day in your life especially a sport that highly depends on your cardio being extremely good to do good in it.Oh and rashad was coaching him not his sparring partner theres a diffrence glover has been traing for the longest.Rampage got beat convincingly and rashad alo rocked him,just because some1 rocks someone doesnt mean they did good in a fight same with the bisping and stann fight, bisping got rocked but clearly outclassed him in every aspect of mma,simple as that.did i “spin” this good enough for u?

    • maddawgmar

      I don’t think that is the case. Because the guy who beat Werdum (Overeem) never lost in the tournament. That tournament was BS any ways, Cormier only had to win two fights and the others had to win three.

  • MaritalArtist

    Moody wants texiera, because texiera is that good. Who wants to fight a guy whose first name is “glover”. He will knock you out with either glove.

  • MaritalArtist

    *nobody wants texiera

  • fightfankevin

    Does Dana offer higher salaries to guys who step in last minute?

    • MikeMc1983

      We’ve heard from time to time people mention getting paid more for taking last minute fights. We can really know if everyone does, or how much. I’m guessing that is just a case by case situation.

  • stevemcz11

    I think Rashad should drop a few ranking points for turning down the fight and Texiera should go up a few. It would have been a marketable fight and Rashad could have asked for a training camp or something. At this rate Texiera will get a title shot for his first UFC fight 🙂

    • andresgarica

      doubt it seeing as he already had his UFC debut

  • dgs

    I hope more fighters do this. I think it’s ridiculous to expect a fighter to step up on three weeks notice to fight someone like Cormier or Texiera. While there is always the chance a fighter can win a short notice fight, more often than not they lose, and that does nothing for their record. Going into a fight against a tough opponent when you’re out of shape is a good way to get injured as well.

  • BlackDog2009

    Well in this day and age where fighters are getting injured and hurt while training, you might as well get hurt while you make your bosses happy, fans happy, be a company guy and make money too all at the same time.

  • faytnc28311

    James te huna and glover

  • stak

    I’m glad Evans turned down the fight. I’m not interested in watching him run around the cage or holding his opponent down doing whatever he can to avoid fighting.

    • MikeMc1983

      Thats just wrong. This article has nothing to do with Gsp. Leave him out of it. 😉

  • dathump

    I can understand Evans not taking a last minute fight, his last fight was a title fight, and its not like a win is going to put him back in the mix right away. Mitrione is another story, Here is a guy who has been slowly getting better, has nothing to lose by taking this fight, should get a big paycheck and the only way he would get a high profile fight. That one i dont get.

  • I can understand Rashad not taking the fight on three weeks notice without training but Mitrione should have taken that fight; it’s a payday and a great chance for him to make a big impact.