UFC Morning Update: Edgar Favored over Henderson, Brandon Saling Fallout

Jeremy Botter@jeremybotterMMA Senior WriterMarch 9, 2012

Frankie Edgar
Frankie EdgarMichael Cohen/Getty Images

March isn't the most exciting month when it comes to MMA action, so you can expect a few slow news days here and there. That's pretty much what we experienced on Thursday.

But never fear. I'm still here to point you towards the latest and greatest from the MMA world in your Friday edition of the UFC Morning Update.

Edgar Favored Over Henderson in Rematch

This is quite the surprise. Frankie Edgar, who made history as the first UFC champion ever to go into consecutive title defenses as the betting underdog, is once again the favorite for his summer rematch with Ben Henderson.

Edgar opened up at -125, while Henderson sits at -105. 

Two things about this:

  • If you're a fan of Ben Henderson, the time to jump on this number is right now. In just a few days time, it's almost guaranteed that the number will move in favor of Henderson. He'll be the favorite by the time next Friday rolls around.
  • I'm a little surprised that Edgar opened up as the favorite. In my eyes, Henderson handily won the last fight, and he's only going to do better the second time around. Of course, you could make the same case for Edgar. But I think Henderson wins the rematch by an even bigger margin, leaving no doubt who the lightweight champion is.

New Written Series Focuses on Grudge Training Center

I've long maintained that Ben Fowlkes of MMAFighting.com is one of the best writers in the MMA game, and he proved it with part one of a series focusing on one year inside the Grudge Training Center in Colorado.

Fowlkes had planned on doing a book, but ultimately decided that he didn't have enough material to tell the story in book form. 

Luckily for us, he's releasing one part of the story each week. The first part is called A Hard Winter, and you should make time out of your morning to read it.

Maybe because he had no idea what was coming, or maybe because it was his natural state, Wittman had every reason to smile as he wheeled his desk chair around the cramped little office inside the Grudge Training Center in Wheat Ridge, Colo., using the pictures that covered all four walls as starting points for one story after another about his strange life in the fight game.

Each photo, some framed, some just ripped from magazines and tacked to the wall, was a story in itself. Each story led to another, which then led to another and another. Each story began with the same bursting enthusiasm from Wittman, who always seemed so full of energy he could hardly keep himself in his chair. Each story usually ended badly for someone, if you stayed with it long enough.


Promotion Admits Shock Over Brandon Saling's Past

The fallout over one-time Strikeforce fighter Brandon Saling's past continues. Saling already had his fighting license revoked by the Ohio and New Jersey athletic commissions for falsifying information on his license application.

NAAFS, a small promotion out of the Cleveland area, booked Saling for fights as recently as January and February of this year. NAAFS CEO Greg Kalikas told MMAWeekly.com that he was completely stunned by the revelations that Saling is a registered sex offender with Neo-Nazi ties.

“I was really as surprised as everyone else that knew Brandon to be quite honest. I can’t say I had a lot of direct one-on-one contact with him, he’s usually dealt with our matchmaker, but the times that I’ve seen Brandon and watched him interact with other fighters and fans, we would have never have seen this coming. We were very surprised,” Kalikas told MMAWeekly.com.

“Obviously, we weren’t aware his criminal record or his tattoos, or what they stood for. Obviously, that’s something we wouldn’t condone. Our state athletic commission is investigating the matter, and we’ll let them do their job and leave it their hands at this point. We had no idea and if we did, we certainly wouldn’t have allowed him to fight and represent the NAAFS.”


Videos of the Day

Dana White unedited media scrum from UFC on FOX 3 press conference: Dana White is easily the most accessible sporting organization executive in the world. White participated in his traditional media scrum after the UFC on FOX 3 press conference, and we've got the unedited video of the entire thing.

Gene LeBell says Ronda Rousey would beat Bruce Lee: "Judo" Gene is one of the best characters in the history of martial arts. He's well-versed in the art of entertainment, and this latest gem is no exception.

Tim Sylvia shows off his cardiovascular training: For whatever reason, Tim Sylvia decided to post a video of his cardio workout to The Underground. It's Sylvia's latest attempt to prove that he's ready for a UFC comeback...a comeback, I should mention, that is never going to happen. Part of me feels bad for Sylvia here, and part of me hopes he continues to make these videos well into the foreseeable future for my own entertainment.