Tuesday, November 30, 2010
-Josh Koscheck talks to Fighter's Only about the misconception of him as a person and his gameplan for his UFC 124 bout with Georges St. Pierre.
Penick's Analysis: If Koscheck truly believes that GSP's hands aren't that good, he should be paying more attention to what's happened to those close to him. Jon Fitch got picked apart in the striking department against St. Pierre, and to think GSP's not capable of that in every fight is naive and not the mindset Koscheck should be approaching this fight with. If he thinks that's the case and that's the best way to win this fight, he might be in for a rude awakening. Of course, this is still the fight game, and the upset can't be written off - especially with the Matt Serra fight always in the back of people's minds. But this will be in front of a rabid hometown crowd for GSP, and having already learned his lesson once, I don't know that it will be repeated. Of course, we'll all find out next Saturday, and the anticipation for this fight couldn't be any higher.
[Josh Koscheck art by Cory Gould (c) MMATorch.com]
Filed under: StrikeforceWith Fedor Emelianenko, Alistair Overeem, Fabricio Werdum and Josh Barnett among the names on the promotion's roster, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker has singled out his heavyweight division as the one he's most excited for in 2011.
"I think we're going to finish  off strong and I look forward to 2011 cause I think the thing we're getting real excited about is our heavyweight division," Coker said on Monday's edition of The MMA Hour. "And I think you're going to see some great heavyweight matchups that people have been dying to see in the past."
Although Coker would not reveal any exact details, announcements could be made as soon as Dec. 4 during the promotion's year-end "Henderson vs. Babalu" event.
"A certain someone who was supposed to fight recently but didn't has been talking s*** about me," Bisping said in video posted on his official website, Bisping.tv. "He says that we're going to fight soon. I don't know if that is to be the case or not. I haven't spoken to my manager. I'm keen to find out exactly who my next fight is going to be. I know I'm fighting in Australia; Sydney.
"I'm looking forward to going back there again. Main event is what I'm led to believe, so I'm very excited about that."
Bisping was a part of the UFC's first trip down under in 2010, where he lost a close decision to Wanderlei Silva at UFC 110.
"Australia is a great place," Bisping said. "Fingers crossed, the fans are going to be a bit kinder this time. Last time, I do believe there were 20,000 Australians all chanting, 'Bisping is a wanker.'"
UFC 127 is expected to take place from the Acer Arena on Sunday, February 27, which with the time delay would air live in the U.S. on February 26. The only other rumored bout for the card at this time is Carlos Condit vs. Chris Lytle.
Penick's Analysis: If the UFC is going to be running this as a pay-per-view event there's not a chance Bisping vs. Rivera is the night's main event. That would be the worst pay-per-view headlining fight the UFC had put on in a very long time, and I just can't see them doing that. If the event airs on Spike TV, that's a different story, but with the plan being a pay-per-view card, I could see this being the co-main event at best right now. Still, I think it'd be a good fight, and certainly one worth putting together.
[Michael Bisping art by Cory Gould (c) MMATorch.com]
The event, which took place at the Palace of Auburn Hills in the Detroit Suburbs on Nov. 20 held witness to the climb of former UFC title challenger Dennis Hallman as well as the demise of former [...]
However, do those ratings underscore an entertaining season of the UFC's long-running reality series?
That's the question we asked in our latest MMAjunkie.com weekly poll, in which we asked readers to assign a letter grade to "TUF 12."
Monday, November 29, 2010
PARK: B.J. Penn's 21 second win over Matt Hughes a start; upcoming Jon Fitch bout to determine future
Penn looked healthy, focused and more motivated than ever as he entered the Octagon last Saturday in incredible shape. There was no doubt that claiming this rubber match win was of paramount importance to Penn, and in doing so may have thrown his hat into the ring with the best of the rest at 170 lbs.
With suggestions being made of a Jon Fitch clash in February; it won't be long before the credibility of this current welterweight charge is determined. The victory over Hughes was a huge one, and will give Penn great momentum leading into his next bout. However, it is not an accurate measuring stick in determining whether or not Penn is able to make a successful run at the welterweight title.
Jon Fitch will pose a different threat to "The Prodigy" than the one he faced against Hughes. While the Hall of Famer had been enjoying a late resurgence, in what must be regarded as the twilight of his career, Fitch on the other hand is arguably in the prime of his life.
With an overall UFC record of 13-1, Fitch's sole organisational loss was a five-round encounter - in which he was categorically dismantled - against Welterweight Champion Georges St. Pierre.
Since the loss Fitch has gone on another tear, winning five straight unanimous decisions, including dominating victories over Thiago Alves and Paulo Thiago. With size on his side and a habit of patiently grinding his opponents down; it is clear that Fitch will prove a daunting task for B.J. Penn should this proposed UFC 127 clash come to fruition.
One thing that has haunted the career of Penn has been the questions so often raised of his motivation and commitment to training. While only those behind the closed doors of Penn's gym can honestly answer those questions, it remains to be seen if Penn will be able to replicate the same intense hunger that the third Hughes encounter provoked.
Defeating a fighter like Jon Fitch will require a similar level of focus; should Penn be able to display strong enough take down defence and use speed to defeat strength - similarly to his first bout with Hughes - then Penn could find success.
Looking ahead, it is hard to imagine that a third bout with Georges St. Pierre would end any differently than their last encounter. The natural talent that Penn possesses has carried him a long way in his career. Such skill and technique will almost always prevail in the classic war against size; but when an athlete can combine such high levels of skill and technique as well as size, in the way that St. Pierre does, then it makes it very difficult to envisage a way in which Penn could ever inflict defeat on the exceptionally talented Canadian.
One thing is for sure, B.J. Penn looked sharp on Saturday. His striking landed hard and fast and, in the circumstances of UFC 123, would have given many a man trouble. Only hindsight will show if last Saturday was just a marquee-like victory for Penn, or if it was something of a re-birth in the career of "The Prodigy" that will see him once again become a force in the welterweight division.
Chris Park is the MMATorch UK Specialist and guest columnist at ESPN.co.uk. Please email any comments or questions to Chris at; firstname.lastname@example.org or look us up at http://www.facebook.com/mmatorchuk2 our new MMATorch Facebook home for UK Fans!
(Video courtesy YouTube/JoeRogan.net)
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UFC 123 PREVIEW: "Mr. Wonderful" Phil Davis doesn't want fans to think he's just another lay and pray fighter
Davis, a four time All American and NCAA D-1 wrestling champion at Penn State, has already racked up a 7-0 record in his MMA career, which began just two years ago. But while he brings a superior wrestling game to many in the light heavyweight division, Davis isn't content with skirting by on his wrestling talents.
In fact, Davis was disappointed in himself when he failed to finish Rodney Wallace in their bout at UFC 117, and in an interview with MMAFighting.com, he talked about how he wants the fans to see him as a fighter.
"It just wasn't a great fight, you know," Davis said of his UFC 117 bout. "I just felt like it was kind of an off night. I went out there, did what I needed to do, but I couldn't get a finish. And I felt like that was a guy I should have gotten a finish on. I left kind of feeling like, I guess I won, but I don't really feel like a winner."
"I don't want the fans to think I'm another one of those guys who just lays and prays and does nothing. I'm more than capable of putting on an entertaining fight, and that one just wasn't all that entertaining."
And although he's undefeated thus far in his career, Davis says doesn't think about that, and he approaches each fight as if it were his first.
"You can't think of yourself as undefeated, because there's a losing side to someone being undefeated," he said. "I think of it as, every time I get in the cage, I'm 0-0. It doesn't matter if it's my hundredth or millionth fight. What's important is always this fight."
Link to Original Source Article
Penick's Analysis: Davis definitely has a fan-friendly outlook on how he approaches his career. This is a chance for him to really introduce himself to a lot of people. Two of his bouts have made UFC broadcasts, and his anaconda choke over Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 112 in Abu Dhabi was especially impressive, but on the main card of this pay-per-view event, Davis can really show people what he's got against a tough guy in Tim Boetsch. The betting line is a little outrageous heading into their matchup, but it's absolutely a fight Davis should win. And it's one I'm looking forward to.
Due to the last second cancellation of the Alessio Sakara-Jorge Rivera bout, we scrapped the betting contest entirely for UFC 122, which means the Cambo "Rambo" Nelson vs. Casey Vaccaro betting title bout is just being pushed back to this Saturday. On the prediction side, champ Eric Marchment turned in another successful title defense and moves on to battle former champ, and toughest test to date, Kubi. Good luck to all involved in the title fights, but better luck to the rest of us in the pools. Let's take a look at the card...
I'm pretty sure everyone knows how this works by now, but just in case... Basically you pick the winners of each fight, including method (e.g. KO, submission, decision) and round. The winner is the one who picks the most fights correctly. Ties will be broken by who had the most number of rounds and methods correctly predicted. In case anyone is wondering, only rounds and methods in fights where you predicted the correct winner count.
Lyoto Machida (-280) vs. Quinton Jackson (+220)
B.J. Penn (-175) vs. Matt Hughes (+145)
Gerald Harris (-250) vs. Maiquel Falcao (+190)
Phil Davis (-650) vs. Tim Boetsch (+450)
George Sotiropoulos (-260) vs. Joe Lauzon (+200)
Mark Munoz (-150) vs. Aaron Simpson (+120)
Brian Foster (-145) vs. Matt Brown (+115)
Karo Parisyan (-155) vs. Dennis Hallman (+125)
Mike Lullo (+425) vs. Edson Barboza (-625)
Paul Kelly (-160) vs. T.J. O?Brien (+130)
Nik Lentz (+160) vs. Tyson Griffin (-200)
As you can see, there's a number attached to each fighter. That number represents how much money you can make off each fighter. The way it works is, if a fighter has a positive number he's an underdog. The positive number means if you were to bet $100 dollars on him, you would make the amount of the positive number. For example, if you were to bet $100 on Hughes and he won, you would make back the hundred you bet, plus $145 for a total payout of $245.
If the fighter has a negative number, that number represents how much you would have to bet to make $100 on the fighter. For example, if you bet $175 on Penn and he won, you'd make back the $175, plus a $100 profit, for a total payout of $275.
Each contestant has $1000 in theoretical money. You can bet it on as many fighters as you'd like, but you have to bet on at least three. The most you can bet on a single fighter is $500, and bets have to be in multiples of $100.
I'm setting a deadline of 6 p.m. (EST) Saturday to get all of your picks in. The betting lines are courtesy of bodog.com.
Note: In the event that one of the #1 contenders fails to show for their title shot, the champ will defend against the next best performer from the previous contest. You've been warned, so bring your A game everybody!
As always you can submit your picks one of three ways: by emailing me at email@example.com, posting them on the message boards, or by leaving them in the comments section right down there. Good luck!
He revealed as much on ESPN's Sportscenter on Wednesday morning, and said that he expects to head back down to the 155 lb. division after dispatching of Matt Hughes in their rubber match at UFC 123 on Saturday.
"I know I'll get my chance again," Penn said on the program. "I plan on going out and beating Matt Hughes, and honestly, deep down in my heart, I know I'll be Lightweight Champion again."
This diversion up to welterweight to face Hughes came about as Penn wanted to stay as active as he can following consecutive losses to Frankie Edgar, and also because he feels he has a score to settle after the two split fights years ago.
"I'm probably stuck somewhere in between [lightweight and welterweight], but it doesn't matter," Penn said. "We can get down at 170 lbs. or 155 lbs. It doesn't make a big difference to me."
Penn and Hughes meet on Saturday in the co-main event of UFC 123 from The Palace in Auburn Hills just outside of Detroit, Mich.
Penick's Analysis: This is more clear than Penn's comments last week about his plans following this bout, and it makes more sense for him. I honestly believe Frankie Edgar may just be the kryptonite for Penn in the lightweight division. His combination of speed, striking and takedown ability were enough to keep Penn off his game in two fights, but I don't know that anyone else in the division is capable of duplicating that. We'll see what B.J. Penn shows up on Saturday, but if he gets through Hughes with a relative amount of ease, he'll be well on his way towards getting back in the title picture when he drops down.
[B.J. Penn art by Cory Gould (c) MMATorch.com]
Sunday, November 28, 2010
A 5-time UFC champion, garnering three-titles in the heavyweight class as well as an additional two as a light heavyweight, Couture is in a point of his career now where his future as a professional fighter is becoming more bleak by each passing [...]
In today's edition of The Sunday Junkie, our weekly reader-feedback feature, fans tackle all aspects of the controversial termination and what it could mean in light of the upcoming UFC-WEC merger.
But this week's winning entry came from Vermont's Nic "nicvolk" Volk, who found some holiday spirit in explaining why he's personally thankful for the sport of mixed martial arts.
PROGRAMMING REMINDER: The Ultimate Fighter off this week, returns with two hour final episode before finale on Dec. 4
By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief
Karo Parisyan's return to the UFC was short lived, as he is once again out of the organization according to a report from...
Saturday, November 27, 2010
UFC NEWS: Leonard Garcia injured, replaced by newcomer Ian Loveland against Tyler Toner at Ultimate Fighter 12 Finale
In his place steps UFC newcomer Ian Loveland to face off against Tyler Toner on the event, which airs live on Spike TV from Las Vegas on December 4.
Loveland brings a 13-7 career record into his UFC debut, but he has won six straight fights, with five straight stoppage victories. The 27 year old Team Quest fighter has gone to decision just once in his career, and in his seven losses, six were by submission.
Toner had a six fight fight win streak of his own snapped in September in a loss to Diego Nunes in the WEC. He's looking to bounce back in this UFC debut, and improve to 12-2.
Link to Original Source Article
Penick's Analysis: This bout wasn't going to make the broadcast, so it's really most unfortunate for Garcia as his UFC return is delayed. This is a great opportunity for Loveland on really short notice, and for Toner he still gets to fight on this card and make his UFC debut. It could still be a highly entertaining fight as well.
BJJ Renzo Gracie book ? Cash ?...
UFC NEWS: Maiquel Falcao robbed of victory over Gerald Harris earlier at UFC 123 due to premature stop to round one
But the fight never should have gotten to that point.
It's being brought to the attention of those same fans, writers and fighters everywhere that the first round of the fight ended prematurely, and cost Falcao what would have been a clear victory.
For some reason, the first round of the fight was stopped six or seven seconds early. Falcao had locked on a rear naked choke with time running out in the fight, and the clap came down for the ten second warning, but the horn sounded early as Falcao had the choke locked on.
Harris appeared prepared to tap, and complained when Falcao didn't let go of the choke at the horn. But with the horn sounding early, the fight was allowed to drag on, and the terribly tentative third round of the fight put a gigantic damper on what could have been a very impressive debut.
There's no clear reason as to why or how that went down, but someone royally screwed up and cost Falcao a more decisive victory in his UFC debut.
Penick's Analysis: I'm really surprised that this actually happened and that most of us haven't realized it until days later. We usually trust the timekeepers at cageside to be doing their jobs correctly, and Harris was saved from getting choked unconscious by an early horn. It's not a good situation for anyone involved, especially Falcao, but I don't know if anything more will come from it.
After a controversy-filled UFC 123 win over Gerald Harris, you likely recognize Falcao as either the Brazilian robbed of a submission win, the thug that held on to a rear-naked choke too long or the bore who refused to engage in the bout's final round.
But Falcao insists he's none of those things and will shortly be known by another tag: top middleweight contender.
UFC brass recently announced that the matchup, which was previously reported by MMAjunkie.com, will take place on the evening's preliminary card.
"UFC 125: Resolution" takes place Jan. 1 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, and the night's main card airs on pay-per-view.
Michael David Smith at MMA Fighting says...
Coleman/Shogun 1 fight and ring riot...
UFC officials on Tuesday announced that the bout between the Ultimate Fighter alums will move from the UFC 125 preliminary card to the main card of the Fight for the Troops 2 event on Spike TV later in the month.
A preliminary card bout between Willamy "Chiquerim" Freire and Waylon Lowe was also confirmed for the Fight for the Troops 2 event.
Miller meets the fifth Ultimate Fighter veteran in his last six fights. He's gone 4-1 in that stretch, defeating Jorge Gurgel, Junie Browning and Ross Pearson by submission, with an additional submission win over Dan Lauzon to boot. The sole loss was by knockout to season eight winner Efrain Escudero.
Wiman has won two straight since dropping back to back decisions to Jim Miller and Sam Stout. However, his last victory was tainted by an early stoppage by referee Yves Lavigne in his bout with Mac Danzig in June. Wiman had Danzig in a neck crank, and Lavigne stopped the bout when he believed Danzig to be out, but Danzig was not unconscious and immediately protested the stoppage. The two were scheduled to meet in September before injuries took them both out of the bout, and they're now both taking on different opponents.
Fight for the Troops 2 comes to Spike TV on January 22 from Fort Hood in Texas, headlined by a lightweight bout between Kenny Florian and Evan Dunham.
Penick's Analysis: This is a good fight for the Spike TV card, and the two are deserving of a televised bout with the fights they've had recently. It leaves a fairly clear picture of which fights on 125 may be chosen for an hour long prelims broadcast on Spike if they choose to do one (and with the card they have, it's highly likely), and gives the Fight for the Troops event another really solid matchup.
Friday, November 26, 2010
Joe Lauzon walked away...
Nelson fought for the promotion in March of 2009 in their only event to date, March Badness, prior to joining the cast of The Ultimate Fighter's 10th season. Square Ring Promotions then filed suit, claiming they had the right to match any contract he would have been offered.
But while Nelson said he believes he's being sued along with Zuffa for breach of contract, he doesn't feel he owes anything to the promotion that hasn't run another event since that March Badness card. He discussed the situation on Monday with Ariel Helwani at MMAFighting.com.
"I guess from a lawyer's stand point or even a jury's stand point, I think it's kind of hard to say if you have any claims if you've never put on another MMA event ever in your whole entire life that I know of," Nelson said.
Nelson was scheduled to fight Shane Carwin at UFC 125 on New Year's Day, but when Carwin pulled out due to injury, Nelson was taken off the card entirely. Nelson said he thinks his removal had more to do with the integration of the WEC than this situation with Square Ring Promotions.
"I think they wanted it's the UFC and there's no rhyme or reason with stuff, usually," Nelson said. "It's a bigger way to roll in WEC into the UFC. It's a good way to start showcasing like Jose Aldo and trying to capitalize off like a Urijah Faber, the little guys."
"At the same time I look as a plus that my knee got better faster and I'll be ready anywhere in 2011."
Link to Original Source Article
Penick's Analysis: I'm sure this situation will find itself worked out in quick enough fashion to get Nelson back into the cage by the spring. At least, I hope that will be the case, as there are plenty of fights that I'd like to see him take in the heavyweight division. And he's got a case against Square Ring Promotions' claim, as it's hard to claim contractual rights if they're not actively promoting fights. At the same time, I'm not a lawyer and won't pretend to know the intricacies of this case. I'm just hopeful that it gets taken care of in a timely manner so Nelson can get back into the cage.
UFC QUOTABLES: Maiquel Falcao says UFC debut made him be too careful against Gerald Harris, promises change in style in next fight
When I came to the third round, I knew I had dominated the action in the first two rounds, so I was expecting Gerald to come and try to knock me out. I was ready to counter and finish him when he missed, but it did not happen, and I kept waiting for it. When I realized he wasn't going to come forward, it was already the last 10 seconds of the fight. It won't happen in my next fight. I will finish it very early and then apologize to the fans across the world...
Dana's criticism was fair. People pay to watch big fights and not strategy games. I think that the fact it was my debut made me be too careful. I was only thinking about winning. I am very grateful to the UFC, Dana and (UFC matchmaker) Joe Silva because they gave me the opportunity I have been waiting for all my life. I will pay them back with the fights they want to watch. You all can look forward to my next fight because now that the debut is over, I will go in there to finish the fights like I have always done in my career...
Sometimes just winning is not enough. Now that all the pressure of the UFC debut is gone I will be able to fight the way I like: finishing people and cementing my place in the elite of the middleweight division."
-Maiquel Falcao talks to MMAJunkie.com about fighting too cautiously in his UFC debut against Gerald Harris at UFC 123.
Penick's Analysis: Falcao knew he was ahead in that third round, so with the threat of cuts coming for even a single loss (as Harris would come to experience), I completely understand why Falcao played it safe. That said, he played a very dangerous game by not doing anything himself in that third round, because it wouldn't have been unlike the UFC to have cut both fighters regardless of the fact that he won if they hated that round. That said, I hope Falcao comes out and impresses in his next fight and doesn't play it entirely safe, because when he let loose on Harris at the end of the first round and for parts of the second, he showed a lot of excitement in his style and reason to want to see him fight again.
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Dennis Hallman made quick work of Karo Parisyan to finish off the undercard at UFC 123 on Saturday. Hallman knocked Parisyan down with a left and then a right, then finished with six unanswered punches. The fight was called at 1:47 of the first round.
This was Parisyan's first bout back since leaving the UFC on bad terms last year. He was welcomed back but didn't give a particularly inspiring performance. MMA veteran Hallman improved his record to 66-13-2. Parisyan's is now 26-6.
Additionally, Dec. 4 Strikeforce headliner Dan Henderson calls into the show to discuss final preparations for his Showtime bout and long-awaited rematch with Renato "Babalu" Sobral.
MMAjunkie.com Radio airs from 12-2 p.m. ET (9-11 a.m. PT) live from the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino's Race & Sports Book. Listen to and watch a video stream of the two-hour show at www.mmajunkie.com/radio.