Despite losing his last three fights in very convincing fashions M-1 Global still seems hell-bent on cashing in on the name of Fedor Emelianenko. Though the legendary Russian fighter will always have a loyal and dedicated fan base due to his considerable, and awe-inspiring, exploits in Rings and PRIDE it is safe to say that Emelianenko is clearly on the downslope of his career. Which is why it seems ridiculous that M-1 Global, Emelianeno’s promoter, are asking fans to fork over $30 to watch his next fight on November 20 against Jeff Monson in Russia.
At one time Jeff Monson was as feared a submission master as you could ever hope to see fighting. The guy had sick skills and the fact that he was a hulking anarchist made him seem even cooler to those in love with counter-culture heroes. But time, and a lifetime of wear and tear on the body, has left Monson a shell of the once feared fighter. This was evident this past June as he was beaten like he stole something at the hands of Daniel Cormier. While Monson was able to survive to see the final bell the fact remained that he looked slow, tentative, and well, broken down.
Now we get to see a PPV headline fight feature a past-his-prime Emelianenko taking on a shot version of Jeff Monson. This is the type of headliner fight M-1 Global should be putting on their series with Showtime, not charging fans half of what a UFC PPV costs of an eighth of the relevance. Of course, M-1 Global will point to the fact that you get a complete card for that price. A card that features a light heavyweight title bout between Jose Figueroa and David Weichel in a solid, but not PPV solid, fight. Rounding out the card will be some up-and-coming global fighters (mostly from Eastern Europe) and while that may be enticing to the fan who craves any sort of MMA action, for $30 I’ll take a pass on it.
I know that promoters are in this game to make money but it seems to me that if M-1 Global truly wanted to establish itself as a brand here in America it would air this fight for free on Showtime. In fact, it’s not as if Showtime wouldn’t have welcomed this card as the typical M-1 Challengers card has left a lot to be desired in some instances.
I appreciate the need to make a buck in this game but $30 for a card I have to wake up at 6:30 AM (CST) to even see is asking too much of me.
“M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Monson” Fight Card
In the event that you must see “The Last Emperor” the PPV card is listed below:
Fedor Emelianenko (31-4) vs. Jeff Monson (43-12)
Jose Figueroa (10-4) vs. Daniel Weichel (27-7)
Juan Manuel Suarez (8-0) vs. Aleksander Yakoviev (12-3)
Mairbek Taisumov (15-3) vs. Josh Thorpe (10-6)
Xavier Foupa-Pokam (21-16) vs. Arthur Guseinov (9-2)
The M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Monson PPV can be purchased through iN Demand, DIRECTV, DISH Network and Avail-TVN.no comments
Below is the recap from tonight’s episode of The Ultimate Fighter 14:
Roland Delorme’s foot looks like its about to give birth. Apparently it is some sort of infection but the thing looks f-ing disgusting.
Coach Jason Miller brings in his Muay Thai coach Rafael Cordeiro, founder of Chute Boxe Academy in Brazil. When you speak of legends in coaching, Cordeiro is who you speak of.
Not to me outdone, Coach Michael Bisping brings in a special guest of his own, the one and only Tito Ortiz. Tito drills the guys in the finer points of ground and pound while the camera catches the starstruck faces of Team Bisping.
Dissension arises in Team Bisping as TJ Dillashaw’s comments and superiority complex has riled the ire of some of his fellow teammates. TJ did pull a “bitch move” by requesting an easier fight against Delorme and it’s good to see his teammates call him out on it.
As a means to teach Dillashaw a lesson his teammates Diego Brandao and Akira Corassani devise a plan to go exceptionally hard at him during practice. Understandably, Dillashaw gets pissed but takes out his aggression on Marcus Brimage who fires right back as tempers hit a boiling point. Dillashaw comes off looking like a crybaby as his teammates were playing too rough.
Delorme gets cleared to fight despite his foot growing another body on it.
More pranks from Team Miller as Mayhem surrounds Team Bisping’s coach Tiki Goshn’s car with concrete highway dividers.
TJ Dillashaw may be the most complete fighter on the show right now and training with Team Alpha Male in Sacramento only validates his credentials. In his fight with Delorme it was clear that Dillashaw was simply on another level as he beat the living hell out of him over the course of the two rounds. I give Delorme credit for being a tough S.O.B but damn, this fight was all Dillashaw.
The semi-final match ups are mulled over and it’s telling that Johnny Bedford seems eager to to fight his teammate John Dodson. Dodson, as you may recall, was the Team Miller fighter who was more than happy to be a mole for Team Bisping.
Semi-final match ups are TJ Dillashaw (who again doesn’t want to fight the toughest guy in his weight class) against Dustin Pague. John Dodson and Johnny Bedford are matched up. At featherweight: Akira Corassani will fight Dennis Bermudez and Diego Brandao against Bryan Caraway.no comments
It’s safe to assume that there is great deal of nervousness with any high-level athlete returning to the game after an extended absence due to injury. However, this prospect is even more daunting if you’re a professional prizefighter. After all, the prospect of getting in a cage with another person hell bent on removing your head from your shoulders is scary enough when your 100% healthy. Just imagine the nerves if you’re unsure how your body is going to react the first time you ask it to do something after rehabilitating an injury.
Under normal circumstances this would be as unenviable a proposition for UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez as he prepares to enter the cage on November 11. Velasquez has been on the shelf for over a year with a shoulder injury suffered in his title winning domination of Brock Lesnar back in 2010. Unfortunately for Velasquez this this fight coming up against the hard-hitting Brazilian Junior dos Santos is anything but normal as the two will be the featured fight on the UFC’s historic inaugural fight on network television. As far as fight cards go, this may be the biggest one, in terms of cultural relevance, in the history of the sport.
Despite the enormity of the event Velasquez seems unfazed by all the hoopla.
“I’m going to treat it like any regular fight I’ve had,” Velasquez said on a media call this afternoon. “I’m not really thinking about the magnitude of the fight, I’m just thinking of the fight itself. “
Velasquez would later state, “For me it’s just a great opportunity. I’m hoping to make it an exciting fight for the fans. We’re definitely going to do out there and throw down and the fans are going to like that.”
The UFC, arguably, couldn’t have picked to more fan-friendly fighters to christen their debut on FOX. Both Velasquez and dos Santos are two hulking heavyweights with a penchant to stand and trade cage rattling bombs. Fireworks in this fight aren’t so much expected as they are guaranteed. Additionally, when you factor in that both fighters are humble, soft-spoken, engaging, and, well you have yourself a recipe for record viewership of an MMA fight.
UFC President Dana White mirrors these sentiments.
“I’m confident in Junior and Cain,” explained White. “We made this fight the first fight on free TV for a reason. That’s why we made this fight because it’s going to be an awesome fight.”
I have to agree with White on this, yes, it’s going to be an awesome fight. However, despite the gravity of being the biggest fight in UFC history, Velasquez takes it all in stride.
“There’s always butterflies [when I fight],” explains the UFC champion. “Right now it’s not going to be any more than usual. For me, that makes me feel ready as it is natural for me to be nervous.”no comments
Following his loss to Roy Nelson this past Saturday night Mirko “Cro Crop” Filipovic somberly announced his retirement from the sport of MMA. The former K-1 kickboxer and PRIDE legend has been fighting professionally since 1996 so bear in mind that fighting career spanning over a decade in the fight game is an eternity on the body. 37 years old may not seem like an unfathomably old age to be fighting at but when you consider the absolute wars Cro Cop has been in against some of the best fighters in the world, and, well you can’t really blame the man for calling it quits after a truly remarkable career.
Of course, his recent unimpressive string of fights in the UFC has left some of the newer MMA fans, let’s call them the uniformed, questioning why such reverence is awarded to the former Croatian special officer. But if you were to see Cro Cop in his prime, when he was knocking people out with highlight reel head kicks in PRIDE, then you would know why the former kickboxer-turned-MMA legend enjoys a legion of hardcore fans.
Cro Cop’s retirement is bittersweet to a fan like me. I loved watching Filipovic kick the holy hell out of his opponents but the fact is that the six surgeries he’s had to undergo in recent times have left him a shell of his former self. Cro Cop will be missed in the cage but his legend is already etched in MMA lore.no comments
Former Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz is an enigma wrapped in a riddle locked away in some sort of Saw movie type mechanical box contraptions. The Stockton, CA (209!) representa’ is like a living, breathing example of the Chappelle Show skit, “When Keeping it Real Goes Too Far.” For a fighter with such remarkable ability in the cage the fact that some of Diaz’s best years have been spent toiling away in the MMA minor leagues that Strikeforce is perceived to be is a testament to Diaz’s uncanny ability to turn lemonade into lemons.
Actually, the fact that Nick Diaz enjoys an army of loyal fans despite not having fought almost exclusively in Strikeforce and Japan is a testament to the drawing power of the modern day anti-hero. Diaz is a walking Tupac song and his “I don’t give a f**k!” mentality may have earned him a legion of fans but had done little to get him the riches he feels are entitled to him.
So Diaz fans let out a cheer of acceptance when UFC president Dana White signed him to a lucrative deal with the UFC and immediately put him into a HUGE fight with reigning UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre. Of course, with Diaz going all Diaz it wasn’t long before such a lucrative endeavor would vaporize into thin air as the Stockton Bad Boy essentially went M.I.A. during the media commitments leading up to UFC 137. A justifiably miffed White cut Diaz from the card and inserted Carlos Condit as his replacement. Then White, seeing the need to bolster his snake bit UFC 137 card, promptly reinserted Diaz in as the co-main event against former champion BJ Penn. Now there are those (including myself) who felt that the Diaz-Penn bout could have stolen the show from GSP and it seems that the cosmos felt the same was as Diaz-Penn were promoted to the main event following GSP-Condit being scratched due to a GSP injury.
Nick Diaz and BJ Penn are basically the same type of fighter. Despite each being absolutely transcendent with their jiu-jitsu both fighters tend to take an almost giddy pleasure in beating the hell out of their opponents with their two fists. Though eerily similar stylistically, mentally Diaz and Penn couldn’t have been more different. While Penn may display a penchant for theatrics and a supreme confidence in his ability, Diaz is just plain insane. For all the warrior mentality talk and graphic threats of violence for his opponents, Diaz is the quiet, sulking kid in the corner looking for any little excuse to kick your ass on sight. These are the type of people you do not want to meet in a dark alley and following Saturday’s fight, Penn may very well feel like he was jumped by a gang of thugs.
It’ funny, you knew that a Diaz-Penn fight would be memorable. Something about these two fighter’s temperaments all but guaranteed that fireworks would be imminent but would there be anyone who could have foreseen such an utter display of dominance? Going into the fight the smart money was on Penn. Not only is Penn widely considered a living legend, but the caliber of fighters the Hawaiian has battled, and beaten, dwarfed any of Diaz’s accomplishments. But there is one thing that people didn’t count on with Diaz; his borderline crazy intensity and endless conditioning. Not only did Diaz beat Penn to a pulp, he did so in such a methodical merciless manner that it was downright scary. This was a beat down plain and simple and while Penn was able to gamely make it to the end (which has to go down as a testament to his spirit) the fact remains that Diaz set the UFC record for most significant strikes landed in a fight with 178 landing on Penn over the course of their three round fight. Yeah, it was that type of fight.
Though, in a way you sort of have to root for Diaz’s success. Despite being the post child for bipolar disorder the fact remains that his skill set in the cage is uncanny. With his attitude relegating him to Strikeforce for so long it’s sort of refreshing to see him gain the mainstream recognition his fans claimed he deserved for years. With his stock clearly on the rise the UFC has already scheduled a GSP-Diaz for Super Bowl weekend with poor Condit having to step aside and again wait his turn for a shot at the title.
Of course, as we’ve seen with Diaz nothing is certain until the cage door closes.no comments
Bellator Welterweight Championship
Ben Askren (9-0) UD Jay Hieron (22-5)
Scores: 48-47 (Hieron), 48-47 (Askren), 48-47 (Askren)
What you see is what you get with Askren. You know he’s going to one thing and that is shoot for the takedown. Granted, it may not be the most appealing style of fighting but it has kept the wrestler undefeated in his career. Against Hieron, an entertaining fighter with swagger for days, Askren was taking to the deepest waters he’s encountered as an MMA fighter but despite a very game effort by Hieron, Askren again managed to do just a little bit more to win the fight in the judges’ eyes. I personally thought that a case could have been made for Hieron given his vast edge on the feet and his ability to not be completely smothered by Askren. Still, the fact remains that even though Askren’s main weapon is his wrestling, he is getting more comfortable on his feet. Once he gets the rest of his skills on on par with his wrestling the outlook is bleak for the rest of the Bellator welterweights.
Bellator Feature Featherweight Fight
Jeremy Spoon (12-0) UD Adam Schindler (9-3)
Scores: 30-27, 29-28, 29-28
In what turned out to be an enjoyable little scrap Jeremy Spoon bested a tough Adam Schindler by way of better striking. Like most enjoyable fights this battle had some ebb and flow that made for some great viewing. Early on it looked like Schindler was in control as he managed to rock Spoon in the opening round and then used his exceptional wrestling to control the action on the ground. However, Spoon would rally back in the second round as he battered and bloodied Schindler with crisp, effective punching. While Schindler was still dangerous with his takedowns in the end it was Spoon’s superior striking and comfort standing that allowed him to take the second and third rounds in route to victory.
Bellator Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal BoutThiago Santos (10-1) SUB 1 (Rear Naked Choke) Neil Grove (11-5-1)
Time of Submission: 0:38
I admit that I had thought of Santos as little more than a one-trick pony. Sure, the Brazilian’s BJJ was on another level but his overall game seemed to be lacking. Against Grove we really didn’t see more dimensions from Santos but the overhand right that he floored Grove with seconds into the fight made me shoot up and take notice. With Grove on the ground you knew that Santos was itching for the submission which came moments later when he sunk in a rear naked choke to end the fight.
Bellator Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal Bout
Eric Prindle (9-1) KO 1 Ron Sparks (8-1)
Time of Stoppage: 0:40
Holy cow! Part of the reason why heavyweight fighters are given such a lofty appreciation is the potential for explosion in the cage. This was the case for Prindle who may have landed the most highlight worthy left hook of 2011 in scoring a one-punch knockout of Sparks seconds into this fight.no comments
Below is a recap of tonight's The Ulitmate Fighter 14:
The episode kicks off with one of Team Miller's coaches, Ryan Parson, jawing with Michael Bisping. Bisping gets the "Douche Bag Award" for dropping the, "I have more money than you," retort.
I'm always a big fan of the training footage on TUF. It's sort of cool to see how professional fighters get down in the gym. I just wish the show would incorporate more of this footage.
Steve Silar will take on Diego Brandao in a highly anticipated grudge match. It appears that there is no love lost between the two fighters.
Brandao comes off as a bad ass in the editing of the show so it's sort of touching to see him break down a little as he discusses the death of his father.
Diego Brandao goes all "Beast Mode" on Silar destroying him with a barrage of wild hooks. Damn, Brandao looked downright scary and may be my new pick to win the show.
Bisping rubs the victory of his team in the face of Mayhem Miller and Co. and it's clear that Miller wants no part of it. Still, turnabout is fair play.
Roland Delorme's foot looks like it was injected with an air balloon. Mayhem believes its staph.
John Dodson aka the Team Bisping Mole gets to fight John Albert.
TJ, by default, is selected to face Roland "My Foot is Grotesque" Delorme.
It's immediately clear that Dodson in on a much higher level than Albert and his speed and technique are on full display early on. Though he slowed in the second round Dodson gets the decision nod. Nothing against Albert but Dodson was clearly better. Even if he is a rat.
Bellator Fighting Championship may be the best MMA action you are not seeing. When UFC parent company Zuffa purchased Strikeforce this past spring, Bellator was suddenly thrust into the sole #2 spot for domestic-based MMA. However, despite that ascension up the rankings Bellator has largely gone unnoticed by all but the most hardcore of MMA fans.
While the UFC, even on their watered down basic cable offerings can generate viewership in the millions, Bellator’s largest viewership to date was 325,000 this past May. Part of this has to do with Bellator’s seemingly annual shuffling of broadcast partners. The Chicago-based promotion began airing fights on ESP Deportes before entering into a less-than –awesome deal with Fox Sports Net, before landing in a marginally better home on MTV2. Despite being part of the MTV family, MTV2 is a channel that many look to as an afterthought and seems to miss a good section of the coveted 18-34 demo.
Granted, the UFC has the history and the big name fighters while Bellator has only been around in its current form since 2009. Like Band-Aid is to adhesive bandages so too is the UFC synonymous with the sport of MMA.
However, this may all soon change as USA Today’s Sergio Non broke the news today that media conglomerate Viacom (MTV Networks, Spike, Showtime, Epix) has purchased a majority stake in Bellator. Not only does the move provide some financial stability to the upstart promotion but it also will boost Bellator’s exposer with an imminent move to Spike TV to take place in 2013. Viacom is no stranger to MMA as their Spike TV was, and still is in capacity, the home of UFC on basic cable while their Showtime network has been a long-time broadcaster of Strikeforce events. With the UFC’s jump to FOX next year and Showtime’s contract with Strikeforce ending soon it was clear that Viacom was looking to fill to void of MMA on their major airwaves. Enter Bellator with whom Viacom has been working flirting with more and more as its negotiations with the UFC soured.
As Spike TV President Kevin Kay explains to Non, owning a viable MMA promotion has its clear advantages:
"As we realized that our relationship with UFC was likely to come to an end, our Viacom mergers and acquisitions folks, and us, started to have conversations with MTV2 about getting invested in a mixed martial arts promotion and become owners as opposed to renters," Kay said. "You're building value in something that you own, and you own it for the long term. You're not in a constant state of negotiation."
Despite the UFC’s deal with FOX, their current deal with Spike TV allows the network to still air UFC content through 2012. Hence the reason Bellator will not move to Spike TV until 2013.
Here we go, your recap of tonight’s The Ultimate Fighter 14:
Coach Millar and Steven Silar determine that John Dodson is the mole who has been ratting out Team Miller’s game plans to Team Bisping so they hatch a plan to throw them off. As Diego and Silar have traded verbal barbs back and forth, many thought that they were going to be the nex to fight. Instead, Team Miller plans to put Diego on ice for another week but the move is a secret as Team Bisping ebelve that Diego is the next fight.
Team Bisping gets the bad intel from Dodson and believe that Diego Brandao is fighting next. A wound up Brandao is then shown going “Beast Mode” in training.
Josh Ferguson feels that his “swagger” was jacked by Dustin Neace who has begun to rock a cowboy hat with the letter “B” on it (the “B” stands for beast. Wish I was making that up). Fed up, Ferguson takes Neace’s hat while Neace is sleeping and hides it. Neace thinks that Akira Corassani is behind the theft of his hat and in retaliation destroys Akira’s stuff and throws his training equipment all over the locker room.
Understandably, Akira takes offense to this and challenges Neace to a bare-knuckle fist fight in the house’s garden. Yes, you read that correctly, a bare-knuckle fight in a garden was the gauntlet thrown down.
Not surprising, Akira and Neace are picked to fight. Tempers boil over and the two get into a fight at the fight announcement. After a melee ensues, Bipsing and Miller start screaming at each other and pushing one another. In one word: chaos.
Coach Miller calls out Dodson on his being two-faced. Though, Dodson seems to have no care. Damn rat.
More product placement as Bisping arrives to the weigh-ins late in, yep, a Dodge Charger.
Controversy surrounds the Akira – Neace fight at it appeared that Akira may have tapped to a heel hook in the first round. The ref didn’t stop the fight and Akira claimed to not have tapped so the fight was able to continue. Akira would rally back to get the decision victory for Team Bisping’s first victory.
Adding insult to injury, Miller’s car gets towed for being in a handicap space. Though, let’s be real, how often is your car automatically towed for parking in a handicapped space ON PRIVATE PROPERTY!no comments
When the UFC initially announced the main event for UFC 137, taking place in two weeks, it was championed by fans and media members as what happens when the UFC gives people what they want. Initially, the main event would have pitted UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre against Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz in a much ballyhooed UFC vs Strikeforce fight. However, since that initial announcement the card for UFC 137 has been shaken up a bit.
First, there was the matter of Diaz suddenly going AWOL during the press junkets resulting in his being pulled from the card only to be re-inserted to the co-main event against BJ Penn. While Diaz vs. Penn is a great fight it diminished some of the luster that was reserved for a champion vs. champion battle between GSP and Diaz. Inserted into Diaz’s place in the main event was deserved challenger Carlos Condit. Though Condit is a worthy challenger, his name hardly resonates with the casual fan and many were concerned about how well a GSP vs. Condit fight could sell to the general public.
Now there is news that St-Pierre has suffered an injury to his knee today during sparring that has forced him off the card. As a result Diaz vs. Penn has been promoted to the main event, though UFC President Dana White has indicated that the fight will remain a three rounder. As for Condit, he’s off the card as well and appears that his camp is electing to wait for St-Pierre to heal so they can reserve the title fight.
UFC 137 goes down on October 29 in Las Vegas.no comments