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Free Stuff!!

September 30, 2011 5 comments

Okay, so I’ll spend most of tomorrow working on the blog and cleaning stuff up.  The October 2011 rankings will be up along with the UFC Live preview.

However, that’s not the important thing here.  The important thing is that I’m going to give something away.  For free.  To a reader.  It could be any of you, really!

That is, it could be any of you that leave a comment on this post.  You can say whatever you want, I don’t care.  Consider this a test run for future prizes.  I know I’ll at least get one comment, so if only one person comments, then that person is one prize richer.

What will this prize be?  The winner will receive one 8.5 x 11 UFC mini-poster from my own personal collection.  I will provide a list of available posters to the winner and send that out to whoever is selected.  You might be getting one stored in a FedEx folder in my desk, you might be getting one right off my wall!  Hanging on my wall as we speak!

Not only that, but I will write a personal mini-recap on the back of the poster for the winner.  Yes, the poster will likely be framed and hung, but my notes will make your poster completely unique.  Nobody else in the world will have my musings written on the back of your UFC poster, that’s just for you!

Okay, so leave a comment.  Is this a not so thinly veiled attempt to encourage commenting?  Probably, yes.  Whatever, I don’t care.  Just leave any old comment on this post and you will be in the running for this very special prize!

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Categories: Site News

Bellator 52 Preview

September 27, 2011 Leave a comment

So I’m leaving for Phoenix tomorrow morning and wanted to get my Bellator preview completed now.  Yes, it’s many days early, but I can promise that this won’t get done if I put it off until after my trip.

Oh goodness, I think there’s going to be a fat, sloppy mess of a card Saturday night.  I mean that in the best possible way, really.  I do enjoy Bellator, but that doesn’t necessarily mean I have to be a fan of a couple of average heavyweights and a bunch of not so good ones squaring off to be beaten down by Cole Konrad.  While Konrad’s good, he’s not exactly a world beater, meaning the presumptive reward for the tournament winner is a bunch of cash just to lose to a slightly above average heavyweight.

Inauspicious fate aside, we still have a tournament to conduct.  Right away, Neil Grove and Blagoi Ivanov are the names that jump out at me.  Grove has some Bellator experience, while Ivanov is a promising fighter who is one of the few men to have defeated Fedor Emelianenko in sambo competition.  Abe Wagner is another name to look at, but frankly, the talent pool here is fairly shallow to begin with.

Nonetheless, Bellator 52 will still air live on MTV2 this coming Saturday at 8:00 PM CST with a replay shown at midnight.  Oh great, so here are my options: watch UFC Live on Versus and catch a super late Bellator replay, or flip back and forth and potentially miss something great.  I may have to renounce being a very old 26 year old for just one night to catch all of this MMA.  Then again, we’re just talking about fat boys.

Speaking of fat boys, maybe I should just call this tournament Bellator’s 2011 Fat Boy Festival?  Is that too demeaning?  Does it make a difference that each of these eight men could probably kick my ass?  Of course they could kick my ass, they all outweigh me by 70 pounds.  Also, they are trained fighters and I’m a very delicate professional male.

Heavyweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Neil Grove (11-3-1) vs. Mike Hayes (15-4-1)

Neil Grove is going to knock Mike Hayes out.  I have every confidence in this.  When Grove wins, he wins by knockout.  I don’t expect him to lose this fight.  Ergo, Neil Grove will beat Mike Hayes by knockout.

Heavyweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Blagoi Ivanov (4-0, 1 NC) vs. Thiago Santos (8-1)

I’ve noted that I’m interested to see how Ivanov fares against tougher competition.  He’s a world class sambo practitioner with good hands, but he hasn’t really been challenged thus far.  Thiago Santos holds a notable win over ranked fighter Shamil Abdurahimov, but it’s been more than a year since he last fought.

I could see Ivanov winning by submission in this one, but I worry that he’s still quite green with only five fights to his name.  Awesomely, one of those fights was declared a no contest when the ring broke.  Well I guess I don’t have a choice then, I’m picking Ivanov.

Heavyweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Eric Prindle (7-1) vs. Abe Wagner (10-4)

Abe Wagner holds a recent win over Tim Sylvia, negated by the fact that it’s the year 2011.  Eric Prindle holds notable wins over…well, he has seven wins.  Actually, he does hold a victory over Chris Barnett, a fighter with some wins at heavyweight despite standing 5’9”.  Still, Wagner is 3-2 in his career against fighters with UFC experience, a feat that seems less impressive when the two wins are against Sherman Pendergarst and Matt Andersen.

Comparing resumes, it’s hard to see where Prindle holds any kind of advantage.  He has good hands, but so does Wagner, who has also shown off a bit of submission skills in his five year career.  Wagner’s current 7-2 stretch only features losses to current UFC fighters Aaron Rosa and Travis Browne, certainly not the most shameful losses.  I like Wagner to take a TKO victory in this bout just based on his experience, which should be enough to carry him through this fight.

Heavyweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Mark Holata (11-2) vs. Ron Sparks (7-0)

I like Mark Holata to win this fight, as he seems to be a more well-balanced fighter than knockout heavy Ron Sparks.  Holata might be at a bit of a height disadvantage, but I think he can pull off a decision win.  Holata could be an interesting name in this tournament, given his current eight fight winning streak.  That includes wins over Strikeforce and Bellator fighter Shawn Jordan and former UFC competitor Carmelo Marrero.  Holata might impress in this tournament, but then again, Ron Sparks might punch him really hard and win it in ten seconds.  Who knows?

Featherweight: Genair da Silva (10-4) vs. Bryan Goldsby (13-14)

Heavyweight: Josh Burns (6-4) vs. Zak Jensen (10-7)

Heavyweight: Liron Wilson (9-4) vs. Justin Frazier (4-0)

Light Heavyweight: Matt Van Buren (3-0) vs. Nick Nichols (0-0)

Lightweight: Cosmo Alexandre (0-0) vs. Josh Quayhagen (0-0)

Categories: Event Preview

Key Fights – Week of September 26

September 26, 2011 Leave a comment

I must say, it’s not a bad week of fights when you get a free UFC Title fight.  That’s right, my friends – Dominick Cruz defends his UFC Bantamweight Title on Versus this Saturday.  Honestly, this is probably the best free card the UFC has ever offered.  There are some fun fights on the main card, all of which feature ranked fighters.  Blackeye Promotions, quickly becoming the premier spot for women in MMA, also has a good show this week featuring Roxanne Modafferi and Ediane Gomes.

The rest of the week?  Not as great, I guess.  Bellator has their season five fat boy tournament, where Neil Grove and Blagoi Ivanov pulverize six other sweaty heavyweights for a chance to fight king of the Bellator heavies Cole Konrad.  In Japan, where sound logic is not needed for MMA match-making, someone decided that Yuki Kondo should fight again.  Don’t worry, it only feels like the 36 year old Kondo has been around forever.  The former Pancrase Middleweight Champion will be back in action for the longstanding promotion.

Check out more fights for October in the upcoming fights tab.  I’ve recently updated the upcoming fights with more bouts for the month so make sure to take a look!

Blackeye Promotions 5 (10/1/2011)

  • Women’s Lightweight: Roxanne Modafferi (15-8, No. 3 WLW, No. 5 WWW) vs. Barb Honchak (4-1)
  • Women’s Middleweight: Ediane Gomes (7-2, No. 13 WMW) vs. Ashley Sanchez (4-2)

Freestyle Cage Fighting 49 (10/1/2011)

  • Women’s Welterweight: Jan Finney (8-10, No. 14 WWW) vs. Kaitlin Young (4-5)

UFC Live – Cruz vs. Johnson (10/1/2011)

  • Bantamweight Title: (c) Dominick Cruz (17-1, No. 1 BW) vs. Demetrious Johnson (9-1, No. 7 BW)
  • Heavyweight: Stefan Struve (21-5, No. 22 HW) vs. Pat Barry (6-3)
  • Welterweight: Anthony Johnson (9-3, No. 20 WW) vs. Charlie Brenneman (13-2)
  • Lightweight: Mac Danzig (20-8-1, No. 20 LW) vs. Matt Wiman (13-6, No. 25 LW)
Categories: Weekly Fights

UFC 135 Results

September 25, 2011 2 comments

Light Heavyweight Title: (c) Jon Jones d. Quinton Jackson (Submission – Round 4, 1:14)

I should say first that I was pretty pleased with Rampage’s performance.  His defense was solid as he avoided a lot of Jones’ big strikes and defended the takedowns well.  I thought he fought a smart fight and looked to be in shape and I really think Rampage has a lot to be proud of.

That said, Jon Jones still looked incredible.  Rampage’s defense may have been good, but he couldn’t do anything on offense.  Jones kept Rampage at a distance, landed strikes, controlled the clinch, and eventually submitted Rampage in the fourth round.  I think Rampage showed that there are ways to defend against Jones, but we still haven’t seen any fighters mount significant offense against “Bones.”

Now we’ll see the very contentious title fight between Jones and Rashad Evans, while Rampage has lots of potential opponents.  Shogun Rua in Japan and Lyoto Machida seem like the most likely at this point.

Welterweight: Josh Koscheck d. Matt Hughes (KO – Round 1, 4:59)

This fight looked so promising for Hughes – until Koscheck started to hit him.  Hughes’ tentative striking seemed to be pretty effective, but then Koscheck decided to hit Hughes harder and for more prolonged periods of time.  The result was a knockout that very well could have ended Matt Hughes’ career.

We might see Koscheck go up against Diego Sanchez or the loser of GSP vs. Carlos Condit (meaning Carlos Condit), while it seems likely that we’ll never see Hughes again.  Hughes stayed competitive even until the later portions of his career, but knockout losses to B.J. Penn and Koscheck don’t bode well for the former Welterweight Champion.  A shame, since Hughes has always been a fan favorite.

Heavyweight: Travis Browne d. Rob Broughton (Unanimous Decision)

Rob Broughton did nothing except get his ass kicked last night.  Travis Browne needs a step up in competition since I think he can hang with the middle tier fighters at heavyweight, especially after his previous win over Stefan Struve.  I think a Browne vs. Roy Nelson fight could be nice, though I’m not sure what Big Country’s status is right now.

Lightweight: Nate Diaz d. Takanori Gomi (Submission – Round 1, 4:27)

Wow did Diaz look sharp.  He kept Gomi at a distance with his superior reach and chained together some great submission attempts before finishing Gomi with an armbar.  Diaz definitely belongs at 155 pounds since he won’t have to get thrown around like he did against Rory MacDonald.  Good showing for Nate.

Heavyweight: Mark Hunt d. Ben Rothwell (Unanimous Decision)

MARK HUNT!?  REALLY!?  Oh my God, that was insane.  What were the odds last night that Hunt would submit Rothwell, because that almost happened.  I think the world would have imploded if Hunt beat Rothwell with that second round armbar, so I guess I’m grateful that he didn’t finish the fight.  Then again, I had to watch an extra round of that sloppy mess so who knows.

Middleweight: Tim Boetsch d. Nick Ring (Unanimous Decision)

After a tight first round that Nick Ring seemed to control, Tim Boetsch settled in and looked really good in the second and third rounds.  Boetsch landed some big punches and took Ring down, including an absolutely gorgeous hip toss in the third round.  I really, really love Boetsch at middleweight and this performance was quite impressive.

Lightweight: Tony Ferguson d. Aaron Riley (TKO – Round 1, 5:00)

Ferguson looked pretty sharp and beat Aaron Riley up pretty badly, breaking Riley’s jaw in the process.  The fight was stopped after the first round due to the injury, but I didn’t see Riley coming back even if the fight continued.  Ferguson looked pretty sharp in this one and could make some noise at lightweight.

Bantamweight: Takeya Mizugai d. Cole Escovedo (TKO – Round 2, 4:30)

Featherweight: Junior Assuncao d. Eddie Yagin (Unanimous Decision)

Light Heavyweight: James Te-Huna d. Ricardo Romero (KO – Round 1, 0:47)

Categories: Fight Results

Bellator 51 Results

September 25, 2011 Leave a comment

Bantamweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Alexis Vila d. Joe Warren (KO – Round 1, 1:04)

There’s only one thing that matters from last night and that is pictured above.  Congrats to Eduardo Dantas, Ed West, and Marcos Galvao for advancing to the bantamweight tournament semifinals, but this was one of the most stunning moments in Bellator history.  Alexis Vila demolished current Bellator Featherweight Champion Joe Warren in under 90 seconds, brutalizing Warren with some devastating striking punctuated with the knockout shown above.

Vila is one of the top lighter fighters in the world and is my pick to win this tournament, and as I warned last night on Twitter, Zach Makovsky has good reason to be worried if Vila gets through this tournament.  Warren can now defend his Featherweight Title against Patricio Freire in a fight he could easily lose.

Bantamweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Eduardo Dantas d. Wilson Reis (TKO – Round 2, 1:02)

Dantas proved emphatically that he’s a threat in this tournament following his TKO win over Wilson Reis.  This was a surprised as Reis has been one of the most solid fighters at featherweight, but Dantas proved he’s the better man at bantamweight.

Bantamweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Ed West d. Luiz Alberto Nogueira (Unanimous Decision)

Ed West has trained with Don Frye.  Ed West won this fight.

Bantamweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Marcos Galvao d. Chase Beebe (Split Decision)

“We’ll see this one go to a tight decision and I think Galvao will score the win here.”

Hey look!  I really called that!  I’m pleased to see Galvao get the win, since he deserved a bit of retribution after his bogus loss to Joe Warren.  Galvao advances to the tournament semifinals where he certainly won’t get an easy draw.  Vila, Dantas, and West are all super tough and I’m really pumped to see the semifinals of this tournament.

Bantamweight: Jessie Riggleman d. Farkhad Sharipov (Split Decision)

Women’s Catchweight (127 lbs.): Jessica Eye d. Casey Noland (Split Decision)

Featherweight: Frank Caraballo d. Dustin Kempf (TKO – Round 1, 1:19)

Light Heavyweight: John Hawk d. Allan Weickert (TKO – Round 2, 5:00)

Light Heavyweight: Dan Spohn d. Dane Bonningson (KO – Round 1, 1:09)

Lightweight: Joey Holt d. Clint Musser (KO – Round 1, 4:07)

Categories: Fight Results

UFC 135 Preview

September 24, 2011 Leave a comment

Well, tonight should be fun.  Did I say fun?  I meant OMG RAMPAGE IS FIGHTING JON JONES FOR THE TITLE!!!  Yeah, this fight is going to be really awesome.  I’m really anxious to see how this fight goes since I really have no clue which way to go.  A welterweight battle between Matt Hughes and Diego Sanchez was scrapped when Diego got hurt, but Josh Koscheck is a good replacement on such short notice.  This could possibly be Hughes’ last chance on such a big stage.

There are some fun heavyweight battles on the slate, with Travis Browne vs. Rob Broughton and Ben Rothwell vs. Mark Hunt.  Takanori Gomi will also be fighting Nate Diaz, who he hopes will be slightly less tough than Nick Diaz.  The preliminary card is also strong with two fun fights on Spike and Takeya Mizugaki fighting Cole Escovedo on Facebook.

As with last week’s fights, I will not be making picks for the benefit of my Bloody Elbow fight group on MMA Playground.  I don’t feel it is prudent to do anything to tip my hand and give my opponents a leg up.  It would not be fair to my team to do that.  You can tell how seriously I take something so ludicrous, but this is the closest thing to war I’ll ever see.  That is, until aliens from another planet or Muslims execute their long suspected takeovers of earth.  In those cases, I probably still won’t fight and will stand subserviant with our new overlords.

UFC 135 airs live on pay-per-view at 9:00 PM EST/8:00 PM CST.  Two preliminary fights will be broadcast on SpikeTV at 8:00 PM EST/7:00 PM CST while the remaining preliminary fights will be aired on Facebook beginning at 6:40 PM EST/5:40 PM CST.  For now, I’m going to eat pizza and watch college football.

Light Heavyweight Title: (c) Jon Jones (13-1, No. 1 LHW) vs. Quinton Jackson (32-8, No. 3 LHW)

Welterweight: Josh Koscheck (15-5, No. 6 WW) vs. Matt Hughes (45-8, No. 21 WW)

Heavyweight: Travis Browne (11-0-1, No. 19 HW) vs. Rob Broughton (15-5-1)

Lightweight: Takanori Gomi (32-7, 1 NC, No. 17 LW) vs. Nate Diaz (13-7)

Heavyweight: Ben Rothwell (31-7, No. 13 HW) vs. Mark Hunt (6-7)

Middleweight: Tim Boetsch (13-4) vs. Nick Ring (12-0)

Lightweight: Tony Ferguson (11-2) vs. Aaron Riley (30-12-1)

Bantamweight: Takeya Mizugai (14-5-2, No. 9 BW) vs. Cole Escovedo (17-7)

Featherweight: Eddie Yagin (15-4-1) vs. Junior Assuncao (12-4)

Light Heavyweight: James Te-Huna (12-5) vs. Ricardo Romero (11-2)

Categories: Event Preview

Bellator 51 Preview

September 23, 2011 Leave a comment

This is what I’ve been waiting for – the season five bantamweight tournament!

Bellator 51 airs live on MTV2 tomorrow at 9:00 PM EST/8:00 PM CST with a replay shown immediately after the first airing.  How convenient, Bellator will air two broadcasts that nobody will see because of UFC 135.  More accurately, Bellator airs live tomorrow night and shall be viewed Sunday morning with minimal spoilers having been read.

Bantamweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Joe Warren (7-1, No. 8 FEW) vs. Alexis Vila (9-0, No. 8 FLW)

Holy shit, holy shit, holy shit…this fight is going to be incredible.  I’ve been looking forward to this fight when it was announced.  Here we have two top ten fighters at their respective weight classes with top notch wrestling.  Vila is more advanced with his striking, but he’s also 40 years old, though that’s not much older than Joe Warren at 34.

The most interesting thing about this fight is the weight.  Warren is cutting down from his normal weight of featherweight and the diminutive Vila is moving up from flyweight to compete in this tournament.  I wonder how much both fighters will weigh closer to fight time.  I’m not sure how much Vila would typically cut to make 125 and I have to imagine Warren will be close to 150 at fight time, if not heavier.

Frankly, I didn’t think that Joe Warren looked great against Marcos Galvao, while Vila’s wins at flyweight are fairly impressive.  He has the wrestling credentials to match any other fighter and his striking has been extremely good thus far.  I like Vila to score the TKO win in this fight and I don’t know if it will be that close.  A first round KO from Vila wouldn’t stun me, though I’m sure we’d have a number of surprised MMA fans should that happen.

Bantamweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Eduardo Dantas (10-2) vs. Wilson Reis (12-3, No. 25 FEW)

Here we have another featherweight in Wilson Reis dropping down to fight former Shooto bantamweight contender Eduardo Dantas.  Reis has long been impressive fighting for EliteXC and Bellator, defeating fighters like Abel Cullum and Deividas Taurosevicius.  Dantas lost in his biggest fight for the Shooto Bantamweight Title against Masakatsu Ueda, but has shown some nice submissions and trains out of the impressive Nova Uniao camp.

Still, I think Reis is still sore after losing to Patricio Freire in the season four featherweight tournament finals and he’ll be coming out with a vengeance in this one.  Again, I’m not sure if a weight cut will negatively impact Reis, but I think he’ll be in good enough shape to take a unanimous decision victory.

Bantamweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Luiz Alberto Nogueira (11-1) vs. Ed West (16-5)

Ed West has trained with Don Frye.  Ed West will win this fight.

Bantamweight Tournament Quarterfinals: Chase Beebe (18-7) vs. Marcos Galvao (9-4-1)

I’d love to pick Chase Beebe blindly on account of his Chicago ties, but Marcos Galvao is absolutely not a pushover.  I feel like the WEC veteran Galvao beat Joe Warren in their April fight and definitely deserves a spot in this tournament.  Beebe recovered nicely from a five fight losing streak, going 7-1 dating back to 2010.

Galvao is another Nova Uniao fighter with very good Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and I think he’ll avoid Beebe’s submissions in this one.  We’ll see this one go to a tight decision and I think Galvao will score the win here.

Bantamweight: Jessie Riggleman (10-2, No. 19 FLW) vs. Farkhad Sharipov (13-3)

Women’s Lightweight: Jessica Eye (3-1) vs. Casey Noland (3-1)

Featherweight: Frank Caraballo (6-4) vs. Dustin Kempf (6-4)

Light Heavyweight: Allan Weickert (6-8) vs. John Hawk (5-3)

Light Heavyweight: Dan Spohn (5-0) vs. Dane Bonningson (1-1)

Lightweight: Clint Musser (2-0) vs. Joey Holt (1-0)

Categories: Event Preview