Monday, October 31, 2011
Biggest Winner: Nick Diaz
I remember around this time last year, before Diaz fought KJ Noons, watching him put on the boxing gloves and headgear in his gym in Lodi, Calif., and walk down one sparring partner after another. In the beginning, most of them did pretty well against him. They landed some punches, circled away, and you could see their confidence growing. But Diaz never slowed down, never stopped coming, and eventually he'd end up backing every single one of them against the fence and digging into their ribs with hooks that you could hear over the constant stream of Tupac songs that blared from the stereo. One by one, he wore them down with sheer pace and pressure until they quit, both mentally and physically.
Diaz performed the exact same act of will against Penn on Saturday night, and it was just as effective. He started slowly and gradually cranked up the volume, confident that his opponent would wilt before he would. He took it and he dished it out, and by the end of three rounds there was no doubt that he was the better fighter. Of course, as soon as the fight was over, he went back to being the bizarre, mercurial person we've gotten to know (and yet not know) over the last several years. Even when things had gone well for him, he remained unhappy. Even when he was offered the title shot he'd recently squandered, he remained utterly convinced of his own status as the permanent victim. What can you do with a guy like that? Put him up against the champ, I suppose. Let him do what he does best, which is fight, and hope the rest of us can tolerate what he does worst, which is just about everything else.
Biggest Loser: B.J. Penn
The nicest thing you can say about Penn's performance is that he didn't quit. Even though he didn't look thrilled about it, he got up off the stool for round three and took his medicine for five more minutes. Other than that, the bright spots were few and they dimmed in a hurry. I can understand why Penn, a nearly 33-year-old former champ, thinks it would be better to hang it up than continue on as some novelty act or gatekeeper, but beware of any retirement announcement that comes in the emotional moments just after a bad beating. This is the same Penn who licked blood off his gloves and promised death to future opponents while jacked up on post-fight adrenaline. If those were the highs, this could simply be the low. Calling it quits in the cage immediately after a loss is a little like breaking up during an argument. The chances of it sticking are inversely proportional to how long you've been together. Six months? Sure, one bad argument might do it. But Penn and MMA have had a lengthy, sometimes rocky relationship. Seems unlikely that they won't try to patch things up at least once or twice.
Hardest Working Man in the Fight Biz: Donald Cerrone
His submission of Dennis Siver was his sixth straight win and his fourth of 2011. Apparently he's not content with that, because he immediately turned around and lobbied for another fight before the end of the year, which it now looks like he'll get against Nate Diaz at UFC 141 in December. I'm not sure if Cerrone is putting title shots and other typical concerns out of his mind because he's savvy enough to see the situation for what it is in the crowded lightweight division, or if he's driven only by the reckless pursuit of a paycheck. Either way, he's at his best when he's busiest, and 2011 is turning out to be a banner year for his career and his bank account. After all the paper he's stacked via purses and bonuses, this is one year when you really want to be on "Cowboy's" Christmas list.
Most Impressive in Defeat: Eliot Marshall
Brandon Vera came into the fight with Marshall as a 5-1 favorite, then nearly got his head knocked off and his arm snapped in half, but still somehow emerged with the decision victory. It goes down as a loss for Marshall at a time when he can't afford it, but will the UFC brass see the process rather than the result? It might not have been a spectacular fight, but for Marshall it was clearly a step in the right direction. It would be a shame for the UFC to cut him after a third round like that, which just might have been the single best round of his UFC career. If he sticks to his promise to retire after another UFC release, that's the kind of finish that could keep a man up at night for years to come. If only he'd had just a few more seconds. If only he'd landed one or two more punches. You can play that game for a long time, particularly if it cost you your career.
Least Impressive in Victory: Hatsu Hioki
He did just enough to get the decision over George Roop, but not much more. At least Hioki started off his stay in the UFC with a win, which is more than you can say for a lot of his compatriots. Though if that's the best you can do against a mid-level featherweight like Roop, how far can you really go in this organization? Maybe Hioki struggled with nerves, and maybe Roop's size and strength gave him more problems than he expected. I don't know. What I do know is that the Hioki we saw on Saturday looked like just another fighter, not some big name acquisition. You hate to judge a guy too harshly on the basis of one performance, so let's just say that Hioki still has plenty of work to do to make a name for himself on this side of the Pacific.
Let's Hope We've Seen the Last Of: Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic
He acquitted himself well in what he'd have us believe was the final fight of his career. He took some of Roy Nelson's best shots and even fired off a few of his own (though with that beard he probably had to guess at the location of Nelson's chin). Even if he didn't have enough to pull out the win, he still did better than most of us expected and ended on a classy, dignified note in his post-fight remarks. Unlike Penn, his retirement declaration didn't seem driven by emotion. It was clearly something he'd given a lot of thought to before the fight, and he did what he said he'd do if he came up short. The question is, will he disappear from the fight game entirely, or just the UFC? Cro Cop wouldn't be the first man to have a hard time turning down an easy buck from some small-time promoter looking to sell what's left of his name. You couldn't exactly blame him if he gave in to a tempting offer from M-1 Global or ProElite somewhere down the line, and he clearly still has at least a little bit of gas left in the tank. Still, no matter how many times you see that particular drama playing out with an aging fighter, it never gets any easier to watch. For the sake of his legacy and his health, let's hope Cro Cop really does know when it's time.
Most Disappointing: Cheick Kongo vs. Matt Mitrione
In retrospect, it seems silly. This was the co-main event? The UFC seemed to be banking on some heavyweight fireworks to help out a flagging fight card after the injury to GSP, but what it got instead resembled a staring match more than a slugfest. If you could knock a man out just with crazy eyes and feints, Mitrione would be the heavyweight champ by now. But once Kongo finally realized that the "Meathead" blitz wasn't coming, he settled down and managed to wrestle his way to a decision win. It was a fight both men might rather forget, albeit for different reasons. Kongo looked tentative and overly defensive in his first fight since the comeback win over Pat Barry. Mitrione never got started at all, and showed his inexperience on the mat in the final frame. In the end, it was a bummer of a fight that likely reminded the UFC why these two aren't quite ready for the top of a pay-per-view card just yet. Meanwhile, Donald Cerrone will just be over here, kicking people in the head on Spike TV for free.
Begging for His Walking Papers: Tyson Griffin
He missed weight (by a lot), looked flat and uninspired from the opening bell, and got himself knocked out in a little under three minutes for his fourth loss in five fights. I know he said he was under the weather coming into this fight, but I don't see how Griffin doesn't get cut after this terrible weekend. After he missed weight, he was on Twitter basically shrugging his virtual shoulders and explaining that he had "no excuses." Okay, so he's taking responsibility for his mistakes. That's a good sign, right? Then he gets knocked out and he's back on there telling his followers about his after-party at the Luxor. I'm not saying he needs to post pictures of himself crying into an appletini at Cathouse, but if he's not feeling a sense of desperation about his career now, what's it going to take?
Best Quick Change: Roy Nelson
He showed up to fight looking like a roadie for Foghat, then showed up to the post-fight press conference looking like a henchman from a James Bond movie. That's versatility, right there. Okay, so maybe that, plus his current one-fight win streak, isn't enough to get him that title shot he asked for, but at least it keeps him in the conversation at heavyweight. The guy's a character, and he can fight a little bit. Now his physique is even moving in the right direction, though there's still work to be done in that department before he appears in an Under Armour ad alongside GSP.
The Best and Worst of UFC 137
Sunday, October 30, 2011
Saturday, October 29, 2011
Anderson Silva aparece tanto na televisão que ele mesmo admitiu em sua última gravação, para o programa de entrevistas de Marília Gabriela no SBT, que pode mudar de ramo.
“Estou pensando em televisão. Achei interessante”, disse o campeão do UFC. Depois de tocar mais uma vez em velhos assuntos (“Sempre fui muito bem resolvido com relação à minha voz”), Anderson quebrou o silêncio e falou pela primeira vez sobre a insistência do desafeto Chael Sonnen, que quer outra luta pelo cinturão.
“Ele não merece lutar comigo”, disparou Anderson. “Não cheguei aonde eu cheguei sendo arrogante ou provocando alguém. Nesse meio não existe espaço para isso. O mais importante ele não fez, que era me vencer. Ele ainda caiu no antidoping, o que é pior”, continuou.
“Nessa coisa de provocação ele acaba denegrindo a imagem do esporte. Eu não acho que ele deveria estar nesse esporte porque ele não tem controle emocional nenhum”, encerrou o lutador brasileiro.
Anderson quebra silêncio sobre Sonnen: “Ele não merece lutar comigo”
Friday, October 28, 2011
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Monday, October 24, 2011
Sunday, October 23, 2011
As Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic’s storied career winds to its conclusion, he has no shortage of highs and lows to reflect upon. There are fighters who have accomplished more in mixed martial arts, but very few have embarked on such a varied and unique journey. From top-level kickboxing and novelty MMA competition to the highest levels of Pride Fighting Championships and the UFC, Cro Cop has seen all the sport of MMA has to offer while fighting on four different continents.
In advance of what could be Cro Cop’s final MMA bout -- a featured matchup with “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 10 winner Roy Nelson at UFC 137 on Saturday at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas -- here is a look back at the moments that defined the Croat’s career, for better and for worse.
Mirko "Cro Crop" Filipović- Legacy of destruction
Saturday, October 22, 2011
Thursday, October 20, 2011
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
You've got to know I'm not sitting here with my phone, waiting for a call," he said. "I'm waiting for some training. I'm trying to get some relax time before I have to go back for another four hours of training. I'm training hard. I train harder than these guys, I fight harder than these guys, I look better than these guys, and that's why. I don't get no help and I don't worry about no help. That's what takes up all my time, training and trying to become the best in the world here. And that's the best in the world! That's what you're dealing with here. This is a whole world out there and ain't nobody can beat me? That's pretty bad.
There's a whole world out there and no one can beat me?
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Sunday, October 16, 2011
After rewatching the whole fight, i just realized that everytime i fought for M-1 against a Russian fighter, i was the hand picked guy... i mean, i am assuming that after seeing one of the M-1 directors rooting for my opponent everytime he'd hit me, but not having any reaction when i'd hit him nor when dropped him. Thanks M-1, i appreciate your business, you can have your belt back. - Vinny Magalhães
Magalhaes wins at M-1 Challenge
Saturday, October 15, 2011
Friday, October 14, 2011
Thursday, October 13, 2011
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Monday, October 10, 2011
Sunday, October 9, 2011
Saturday, October 8, 2011
Friday, October 7, 2011
Ariel Helwani: How did this fight come about?
Jon Jones: The way the fight came about was Dana called me into his office just a few days ago, and he asked me to fight Rashad Evans at UFC 140. Without hesitation, I said 'absolutely'. There's nothing I want to do more than to get past this Rashad Evans chapter in my career, because it's been a nuisance. He's been the antagonist in my career. So, I'm predicting that maybe Rashad thought that I would turn the fight down, knowing that I just got done finishing my title fight. I'm sure he thought that I would say no to him, and I'm sure he would have went with the approach of, 'Oh well, Jon Jones is ducking me again; he turns down the fight in nine weeks.' To his surprise, I took the fight, and after I took the fight, he decides that his hand isn't ready, and he's going to need more time. So, with me already agreeing with Dana that I would take a fight at UFC 140, Dana called me back and said, 'Hey, listen, Rashad decided that he can't compete at UFC 140, what would think about fighting Lyoto Machida?' And I said 'absolutely'. My feet were swollen after my fight, but they are healed now, and I want to fight. My health is good, I'm a young guy, and I want to fight. So I took the fight against Lyoto in nine weeks from now. This is four fights in 10 months against three former champions in the same year. I don't think that's ever been done.
Jon Jones explains how his fight with Lyoto Machida came about for UFC 140