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Posts from — February 2010

Video: snap, crackle, pop went his arm

Is this one of the grossest arm breaks in MMA history? Cage Potato says it is, claims you’ll puke on your keyboard when you see it. I’m not so sure. I mean, I appreciate the hyperbole and all, but I’m not typing through this morning’s breakfast.

The fight was at Tuff-N-Uff (stupid name, stupider spelling) in Las Vegas on Friday. John Gettle, a student of Frank Mir’s, gets mount on William Kowalski, who seems to have channeled Renzo Gracie and decided that tapping is for pussies (also stupid, very very stupid).

The results are certainly cringe-worthy and wince-inducing. And there is something about the way the arm rubber bands after the snap. But I wouldn’t even say it’s the worst of the of the last couple of months. It’s nothing compared to Shinya Aoki’s brutal mangling of Mizuto Hirota’s wing. What do you think?

February 28, 2010   No Comments

Tim Sylvia and Wes Sims will fight – in Saint John, NB?!

I’m finding this hilarious. Tim Sylvia was supposed to fight Wes Sims at an Adrenaline MMA show on March 20, but the Ohio Athletic Commission killed it by deeming the bout “non-competitive.” That’s an understatement. I can’t think of a less-competitive match-up not involving Kalib Starnes or Junie Browning.

But that’s not what I find so funny. No, what makes me laugh is a story I read in the Telegraph-Journal, the first newspaper I ever worked for back in New Brunswick. Turns out that MMA is coming to Saint John, NB, and it’s bringing the Sylvia-Sims sideshow with it.

The battle of the heavyweight has-been vs. never-was will headline a ten-bout International Fighting Confederation event tentatively scheduled for June 5. Never mind that nobody wanted to see Sylvia face Sims the first time it happened, at another no-name event six years ago.

Now, I’m all for MMA coming to my hometown. I think it speaks to the sport’s exploding popularity that an MMA event would be put on in such a small community. And it’s great that the first event there has managed to land a couple of fighters with UFC experience. Hell, Sylvia was UFC heavyweight champ for a while and has lost to some of the best fighters in the game (Fedor Emelianenko, Minotauro Nogueira, Randy Couture, Frank Mir) and Sims was on The Ultimate Fighter.

But something about it has the feel of the Atlantic Grand Prix Wrestling cards that used to swing through town like a traveling circus when I was a kid. I’d plunk down two bucks to see guys like Leo Burke and “Big” Stephen Petitpas smackdown with the Cuban Assassin and “Killer” Karl Krupp at the Lord Beaverbrook Arena on Tuesday nights.

Maybe it’s that the event’s promoter, Jack Livingston, is more accustomed to putting on shows featuring Aerosmith and 50 Cent than pro fighters. Maybe it’s his PT Barnum shpiel, declaring Sylvia vs. Sims “a world championship fight with these two super athletes.” A fight that a lot of people – including one very important athletic commission – has declared non-competitive.

Obviously, Livingston knows nothing about MMA and is just looking at this as an opportunity to make a buck. Speaking of which, tickets for the event range in price from $59.50 to $99.50 for cageside, which Livingstone notes is a lot more affordable than similar events in Montreal that charge upwards or $300 or more. I’m assuming he’s referring to the pricey UFC cards Montreal has hosted, although he sounds pretty ridiculous comparing his little event to anything remotely resembling the UFC.

Almost makes me wish I still lived back east so I could see what all of Livingston’s fuss is about.

February 27, 2010   No Comments

GSP or Hardy? Carwin or Mir?

Here’s how it breaks down, according to the comments made in this promo video:

Georges St. Pierre is on a whole other level than everybody else in the welterweight division. Dan Hardy says that doesn’t matter because he’s has had more fights than GSP.

GSP says that Hardy is the toughest opponent he’s ever faced. Either he’s forgotten about BJ Penn, Matt Hughes, Jon Fitch, Thiago Alves, Josh Koscheck, hell even Matt Serra, or he’s just being really, really, really generous.

Hardy’s plan is to hit GSP as many times as he can before he gets taken to the ground and then to get back to his feet and do it again. Okay, I’m with him on the first two parts of that plan. It’s the whole “get back to his feet” part that I’m stumbling over. Who gets back to their feet that St. Pierre doesn’t let get back to their feet?

Hardy also asks how many of the fans’ favourite fighters does he have to beat before they take him seriously. Hmm…good question. First, let’s consider all those fan favourites that Hardy has beaten – there’s Mike Swick maybe, or Marcus Davis, or maybe he means Akihiro Gono. All fan favourites compared to Hardy, who sets himself up as the heel, but none of them are what I’d call favourites in the sense that fans are buying their T-shirts and cheering them on regardless of who they fight.

Okay, on to Frank Mir vs. Shane Carwin for the utterly meaningless interim heavyweight belt and a “guarantee” of a shot at Brock Lesnar’s title. Hyperbole all the way considering UFC president Dana White was clear that Cain Velasquez is also in that mix following his destruction of Minotauro Nogueira at UFC 110.

I do get a kick out of Carwin’s comment about his penchant for rendering opponents unconscious: “I’m just competitive and I know that knocking ‘em out wins.”

Oh, and Mir’s obsession with Lesnar is creepy and borderline unhealthy.

February 27, 2010   No Comments

Sarah Kaufman earns inaugural Strikeforce women’s 135-pound title

Sarah Kaufman is the newly crowned Strikeforce women’s 135-pound champion. No surprise there. Anything but a win would have been considered a huge upset. Kaufman seriously out-struck the challenger, Japanese grappling phenom Takayo Hashi, for five full rounds en route to the unanimous decision win at Friday’s Strikeforce Challengers event.

She shrugged off Hashi’s few (and feeble) takedown attempts, and while Kaufman is no slouch on the ground, she had no interest in swimming with the shark, preferring to let Hashi get back up every time she was knocked down (which was often). The result was, well, it was a smart gameplan perfectly executed by Kaufman, although watching from home it reminded me of Anderson Silva vs. Thales Leites. It was a little on the dull side.

Hashi was clearly powerless on her feet yet Kaufman seemed reluctant to go in for the kill. She played it safe. Safe doesn’t mean exciting but it is smart, especially when there’s a title on the line. I don’t blame Kaufman at all. She showed cage intelligence, never allowed Hashi an opening to mount any sort of serious assault.

Yes, it’s her third straight decision win after eight consecutive KO or TKO victories. As a fan, I want to see knockouts and submissions, especially from a fighter like Kaufman, who’s fully capable of pulling off both. What I got was a striking clinic – stiff, head-snapping jabs, sharp rights and inside leg kids as she stalked Hashi for 25 minutes.

After the fight she apologized to fans for not being able to finish Hashi as she’d hoped. This morning, she went for her traditional day-after-battle run. Think about that – she goes five dominating rounds (that didn’t exactly leave her unbloodied) and less than twelve hours later she’s hitting the pavement. Nothing to apologize for if you ask me.

There were a couple of other notable fights on the rather lackluster card. Rolles Gracie look-alike Luke Rockhold scored an impressive first-round TKO over Paul Bradley in their middleweight tilt. Right hooks and kicks did all the damage to the seriously outclassed Bradley. Meanwhile, the co-main event between wrestler Trevor Prangley and striker Karl Amoussou ended with a poke in Amoussou’s eye and a technical draw due to doctor’s stoppage. Too bad, too, because Amoussou looks like one dangerous cat.

February 27, 2010   No Comments

Cro Cop, Yvel, Rothwell and Barry get new UFC 115 dance partners

A little dosey doe is going on with the June 15 UFC 115 card in Vancouver. Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic was expected to meet Ben Rothwell, who pulled out of their UFC 110 fight with an illness, but instead will square off with Pat Barry. Meanwhile, Rothwell will fight Gilbert Yvel, who was expected to face Barry. I really like this switch-up. It puts Cro Cop against an equally dangerous striker in Barry, a former K-1 kickboxer, while forcing Yvel to let his hands fly against Rothwell. Somebody’s going to get knocked out.

February 26, 2010   No Comments

Counting down to tonight’s Sarah Kaufman vs. Takayo Hashi

Sarah Kaufman and Takayo Hashi

For the record, I’m predicting Kaufman by first-round TKO in tonight’s Strikeforce Challengers women’s 135-pound title bout.

February 26, 2010   No Comments

GSP pimps Under Armour and Krasinki-Phelps separated at birth

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I’m pretty sure most or MMA’s female fans would prefer Georges St. Pierre had made that naked workout video. They’ll have to settle for him fully clothed in this Under Armour ad. As a side note, is it just me or does Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps look like Office star John Krasinski?

February 26, 2010   No Comments

Chuck Liddell’s naked situation

My gut reaction upon seeing this Peeping Tom video of Chuck Liddell and girlfriend Heidi Northcott getting buff in the buff was to throw up a little bit in my mouth. There are somethings I just don’t need to see. Liddell’s little Iceman slapping thighs is one of them, even if it’s blurry.

Turns out the clip was staged. It’s a viral video advertising the new Reebok ZigTech sneakers, the only thing Liddell is wearing while he exercises. It’s actually the second Reebok video the Ultimate Fighter coach has been in – he appeared, along with a handful of other sports stars, in a video featuring Jersey Shore’s Pauly D and “The Situation.”

And while I may need a breath mint after watching it, I have to admit that it does the trick. Now I have no idea what it will do for sales of Reeboks (MMA fighters don;t wear shoes in the cage so I’m not sure how being associated with Liddell will help). But it is bringing MMA more mainstream exposure – latenight talking head Jimmy Kimmel mentioned the naked Chuck clip in his monologue yesterday.



February 26, 2010   No Comments

Fedor Emelianenko will fight Fabricio Werdum – eventually

Strikeforce continues to baffle with its scheduling skills. The heavyweight bout between Fedor Emelianenko and Fabricio Werdum thought to be on tap for the promotion’s April 17 card airing on CBS has been moved to a yet to be scheduled May event (that will likely air on Showtime, considering there’s little chance CBS will air back-to-back cards).

That leaves Jake Shields to defend his middleweight belt against Dan Henderson and a still-rumoured bout between light heavyweight champ Gegard Mousasi and Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal to entertain on CBS. While it makes sense not to put all their eggs in one basket, having Fedor on that card with Henderson, Shields and Mousasi would have been must-see TV. Oh, and still no sign of heavyweight champ Alistair Overeem. Maybe Strikeforce should put out an APB.

February 25, 2010   No Comments

Making some noise for Sarah Kaufman

I’m going to pimp this again: Sarah Kaufman vs. Takayo Hashi at Friday’s Strikeforce Challengers VI. It’s for the inaugural women’s 135-pound title. Sherdog has an interview with Kaufman that does a decent job of breaking down the match-up, especially if you’re unfamiliar with either fighter. I can understand if you don’t know the Japanese fighter – even though she’s ranked top-three in the division this is her North American debut. But Kaufman is one of the top pound-for-pound female fighters in the game. And she’s deserving of the title shot and the headlining berth on the card.

February 25, 2010   No Comments

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