Sympathy for the Giant
Giants are supposed to win. David knocks off Goliath, and it's a story for the ages. If it had gone the other way, it would have been chalked up to physics and forgotten.
And so goes life for Tim Sylvia (Pictures), the 6-foot-8 behemoth that can seemingly do no right in the eyes of many mixed martial arts fans.
"People throughout history love to cheer for the underdog," says Sylvia's manager, Monte Cox. "And they love the little guy to beat the big guy."
On Saturday the former UFC heavyweight champion will fight Brandon Vera (Pictures) -- one of the smallest fighters in the division -- at UFC 77 in a bout of suddenly incalculable importance. Because of last week's announcement that heavyweight champion Randy Couture (Pictures) is leaving the UFC, Saturday's winner will almost certainly get a title shot in early 2008 as well as a chance to reap a windfall as the UFC's new poster boy.
Regardless of the outcome, this much is certain: If Sylvia wins, fans will credit his size; if he loses, they will demean his skill.
"It's always been that way," Sylvia says, resigned. "I actually like it. It helps me and motivates me and puts me in the zone. I want to prove people wrong. I feel like I'm sticking it to The Man."
Cage Rage to Begin Random Drug Testing
For the first time, fighters competing on Cage Rage cards could face drug tests, ProElite, which recently purchased the UK mixed martial arts promotion, announced Wednesday.
"This ensures that the highest safety standards will be in place each and every time a fighter competes in an EliteXC/Cage Rage fight card in Britain," Gary Shaw, president of ProElite's Live Events Division, said in a prepared statement.
Wednesday's news marks a shift for Shaw, who has previously expressed a disinterest in testing fighters under his umbrella for banned substances................
"Mayhem" Free to Explore Options
Jason "Mayhem" Miller is free to fight for any organization that will have him, the middleweight confirmed through his management Wednesday.
Having fought most recently in the Zuffa-operated World Extreme Cagefighting, Miller said he would "explore other avenues."
"I like adventures," the enigmatic Miller said. "I'm the Lewis and Clark of MMA. More Lewis than Clark. Actually, whoever was tagging Sacajawea, I'm him"..............
Ricardo Almeida Back From Retirement, Signs With UFC
The following is an excerpt from an article on GracieMag.com:
On first hand for GRACIEMAG.com, Ricardo Almeida revealed that he has just signed a six fights contract with UFC. Cachorrao is considered one of the most talented fighters today......................
Fedor Emelianenko to Make Contract Announcement on Monday
PRIDE heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko is headed to New York City for a Monday press conference to announce a new contract, MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) has learned.
The Russian fighter, who is one of the sport’s top-ranked fighters and MMA’s most sought-after free agent, will share the details of his recently signed contract at the reception.
Event organizers are tight-lipped about the contract, as well as the fight promotion that signed Emelianenko. However, all answers will be answered on Monday at 5:30 p.m. ET, we’re told.....................
BRANDON VERA: "BELIEVE WHAT YOU SEE"
Akin to P. Diddy’s “Vote or Die” or MTV’s “Rock the Vote” slogan campaigns, Ultimate Fighting Championship heavyweight contender Brandon Vera’s “don’t believe the hype; believe what you see” mantra has become an ever-present staple leading up to his fight Saturday night in Cincinnati.
Vera steps back into the cage to compete for the first time following an 11-month layoff. It was both contractual and managerial issues that kept him from the cage in the months following his dominant victory over former heavyweight champ Frank Mir last November.
But with his management issues sorted out and a fresh start in the UFC, Vera can now finally get back to concentrating solely on fighting.
WHERE IS ANDERSON SILVA?
CINCINNATI – Ultimate Fighting Championship middleweight champion Anderson Silva has yet to arrive for this Saturday’s event at the U.S. Bank Arena. He is scheduled to defend his belt against challenger Rich Franklin, whom he relieved of the title one year ago at UFC 64.
According to sources close to the Silva, he had planned to be in town by now along with the other UFC 77 fighters, but there were delays in the issuance of his work visa.
Hermes Franca picks the perfect time to start his own team
Showing the awesome good sense that led him to take an unmaskable steroid weeks before his title bout with Sean Sherk, Hermes Franca has decided to leave The Armory. Who else is in the Armory? Kurt Pelligrino and Rich Crunkilton, plus a bunch of Brazilian guys who are probably pretty good at jiu-jitsu
Leaving your team to start your own school is all well and good, but here’s why its stupid
TIM SYLVIA PLANS A KNOCKOUT RETURN
Former champion Tim Sylvia returns to action this weekend at UFC 77 in Cincinnati. Standing across from him in the Octagon will be Brandon Vera, who puts his perfect 8-0 record on the line. The fight will be Vera’s first in nearly a year.
Adam Smith Suspended for 21months by CSAC
Mixed martial artist Adam Smith (Pictures), already suspended for violating the California State Athletic Commission's policy on drugs of abuse after testing positive for cocaine and marijuana following his decision loss to Dewey Cooper (Pictures) on Sep. 29 at the Playboy Mansion, has returned a sample that contains the anabolic agents nandrolone and stanozolol.
NSAC Overturns Cerrone's WEC Win
The NSAC revealed Tuesday that the outcome of the Donald Cerrone-Kenneth Alexander fight at WEC 30, which Cerrone won by submission in 56 seconds, has been changed to a No Decision.
It's good to see that the NSAC is really trying to send a serious message to these fighters with regards to drug use. Guess they didn't learn from the Nick Diaz example.
Patience is no virtue for Jason MacDonald
If you ever see middleweight contender Jason MacDonald’s trainer Mark Pavelich around, the first thing you’ll probably notice is his full head of dark hair. But if in the coming months you start seeing some grays popping in, blame his fighter, who will be back in action this Saturday night against Yushin Okami and undoubtedly looking for an early night.
Mahood To Retire Following Steroid Suspension
The California State Athletic Commission on Monday announced that Bill Mahood had tested positive for the anabolic steroid Drostanolone following his loss to Bobby Southworth at Strikeforce’s Sept. 29 event at the Playboy Mansion in Beverly Hill, Calif.
On Tuesday, Mahood released his own statement admitting to using the steroid and indicating that he would likely not fight again.
Behind the Curtain: Zuffa's Finances Come Into Focus
Randy Couture's resignation from the UFC and subsequent speculation about the company's pay scale have shoved Zuffa's finances back into the spotlight.
As a privately held company, Zuffa has no public reporting obligations. The information that is made pubic is carefully screened and released only when convenient to tout the growth and success of the UFC brand.
As a result the company's financial status and business model are largely left to speculation. But recent reports by Standard & Poor's, one of the leading financial services companies in the world, have provided new insight into the finances of the undisputed leader of the MMA world.