Jorge Santiago Hoping To Re-Join The UFC With A Good Showing In 2012
Former Sengoku middleweight champ, and UFC vet, Jorge ‘Sandman’ Santiago (23-10) calls 2011 a “nightmare” having lost both of his Octagon appearances, a TKO loss to Brian Stann at UFC 130 and a decision defeat at the hands of Demian Maia at UFC 136.
After his release by the top promotion, Santiago signed a multi-fight deal with the Titan Fighting Championship promotion and is set to debut on March 2nd versus fellow Brazilian Leonardo Pecanha.
Speaking to Tatame.com, Santiago talks about his “nightmare” year and his hopes to return to the Octagon by stringing together a few good wins in 2012.
NY MMA bill clears Senate committee
The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) today applauded the Senate’s Committee on Cultural Affairs, Tourism, Parks and Recreation for approving S.1707A, which would authorize the New York State Athletic Commission to add Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) to the list of contact sports that may hold matches and exhibitions in New York, and sending the bill to the Committee on Commerce, Economic Development and Small Business for consideration.
"New York is one of only three states that does not allow professional MMA events to take place within its borders,” UFC Chairman & CEO Lorenzo Fertitta said. “It’s unfair to the millions of UFC fans in New York who want to see matches in person without having to travel out of state, and we hope this is the first step in legalizing MMA in New York in 2012. Mixed Martial Arts is the fastest growing sport in history – both in fans and in participants. There are literally hundreds of MMA schools and training facilities in New York, and the UFC has contributed to economic development and job creation in scores of communities around the country and across the world.”
Gary Goodridge Diagnosed with CTE/Pugilistic Dementia
Former UFC, Pride and K-1 star Gary Goodridge has a new battle on his hands, but just like his fights in the cage or ring, he won’t go down without swinging.
Goodridge recently visited a top neuro-physician in Canada where he was diagnosed with early onset CTE/pugilistic dementia.
CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy) by definition is brain damage caused by repeated head trauma, resulting in degeneration of brain tissue. It’s commonly found in boxers, football players, ice hockey players and other athletes who have suffered repeated traumatic shock to the head.
Nevada State Athletic Commission Confirms Positive Test at UFC 143
Feb 9, 2012 - The Nevada State Athletic Commission has confirmed that someone tested positive for a banned substance in drug testing at UFC 143. What has not yet been confirmed is who that someone was, or what that substance was.
In an e-mail to the media sent on Thursday, Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director Keith Kizer acknowledged that there has been great sustained interest in knowing what the results of drug tests were at UFC 143, and he confirmed that someone tested positive. But he declined to elaborate further than that.
"Thank you for the many email and phone calls. I am still waiting for all the steroid and drug test results to come back. We did have at least one positive test. I will send out an email later today on that matter," Kizer said in his e-mail, in which the word "many" was bolded.
Showtime Committed to Women's MMA
When UFC parent company ZUFFA bought Strikeforce, quick examination of previous promotion purchases indicated that the UFC was probably going to eat the good parts and leave the rest in the trash. When the UFC bought the WFA, Pride, and even after time the WEC, the best fighter contracts were taken, and the promotion itself ceased.
And the WFA, Pride, and WEC were the lucky ones. Other competitors, like the IFL, Affliction, and EliteXC simply closed the door and turned off the lights.
Many expected the same treatment for Strikeforce, but at least for now, the promotion is going strong. This is due largely to a deal with Showtime Sports. No broadcast partner, no Strikeforce. Now Strikeforce has signed a contract with Showtime, and the promotion lives.
Keith Kizer taking suggestions for the improvement of MMA regulation
Mixed Martial Arts rests on a vast system of regulation that is nearly invisible to the average fan. Unlike all other sports in North America, combat sport, notably MMA and professional boxing, are regulated by the government, at the State, Provincial, Tribal, and Municipal levels.
One of the most influential and respected regulators in the world is the executive director of the Nevada State Athletic Commission, Keith Kizer, and he wants to know what changes you would like to see in Mixed Martial Arts.
You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition, he is holding an open meeting to solicit public suggestions at 9:00 a.m. PT on Wednesday, Feb. 22, at the Grant Sawyer State Office Building in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The official statement calls for a meeting "to solicit comments from interested persons on any matter related to contests or exhibitions of unarmed combat, or any other matter within the jurisdiction of the NSAC."
Report: Satoshi Ishii Suffered Cerebral Edema Against Fedor Emelianenko, MMA Career May Be Over
Fading Russian MMA legend Fedor Emelianenko beat Satoshi Ishii by TKO in the first round at the Dream New Year 2011 event. According to reports coming out of Japan, Fedor did more than finish Ishii in that one fight, he may have ended his MMA career. Fight Opinion has the details:
Japanese weekly publication Cyzo reports that doctors have told Ishii that he suffered a cerebral edema from the NYE beating. As a result, he was warned that any further blows to the head would cause some serious damage. As Cyzo put it, Ishii is facing a retirement crisis. There had been some discussion that he would face Ricardo Arona in late March in Brazil but that fight didn't look to be in the cards. After this latest development, the MMA prospects for Ishii look to be bleak as well.
ONE FC 2 To Be Streamed Live On Facebook, Tape Delayed On ESPN Star Sports
ONE Fighting Championships' second event will happen in Jakarta, Indonesia. Their first event was streamed on Sherdog.com, but now it looks like they're changing it up a bit and will be taking a page off the UFC's playbook by properly utilizing their social media platforms.
According to Rolles Gracie, who is one of the competitors on the ONE FC card, the event will be streamed live and free on the promotion's Facebook page, with a delayed telecast available all over Asia on ESPN Star Sports.
ONE FC will be hosting a press-conference in Singapore on Tuesday and I expect this TV deal, along with the competitors for their March show, to be part of the laundry list of announcements that will be made.
Key bouts on the card in Indonesia include a lightweight bout between Felipe Enomoto and Ole Laursen, who has been named as the #8 ranked lightweight in the 2010 World MMA Scouting Report, and a featherweight bout between URCC Champ, Honorio Banario and Bae Young Kwon.
Old-School Vale Tudo Org IVC Returns with New Rules, Cage
The seminal fight promotion which propelled the careers of Wanderlei Silva and many others is primed to return to Brazil after a 12-year absence.
This week, in an interview with Brazilian TV channel Combate’s “Face to Face” program, International Vale Tudo Championship (IVC) Founder Sergio Batarelli discussed plans to revive the organization he started in 1997.
“I was the first one to bring the UFC to Brazil, and since then, I’ve kept an excellent relationship with the UFC people,” explained Batarelli, 51, who was instrumental in arranging “Ultimate Brazil” in 1998. “They said the UFC needs a top event in Brazil to select fighters, like I used to do in the ‘90s. After talking with them, I got together a group of top sponsors, and the IVC will be back in the middle of the year with a new name, IVC MMA, and new rules.”
Along with the new moniker and as-yet-unannounced guidelines, IVC MMA will trade its vale tudo-era net-lined ring for a cage upon its return.
Fedor Emelianenko To Fight Bobby Lashley In 2012
Bobby Lashley may not have gotten a fair shake from the MMA community. He entered the fight game after a career in the WWE and was viewed by almost everyone as a 'poor man's Brock Lesnar'. It's how the WWE fans viewed him when he made his wrestling debut and it's how MMA viewed him as well. During his time in Strikeforce, he was criticized for taking easy fights, with most viewing him as an expensive can-crusher. He'd deflect this accusations by saying that he is new to the business and taking his time to develop. He'd then add that if people had a problem with how he's handling his career, he'd like to fight Fedor instead. Well, it looks like Bobby Lashley will get his wish.
Michael Bisping: Criticism of UFC Fighter Pay Makes Me Mad
"To be honest, it makes me mad, because people don't understand," said Bisping. "I've worked hard, and I get [the amount stipulated in the contract], but when Dana comes into the locker room and gives me a check afterwards, they don't have to do that. Far from it. I was already very happy with the money I was getting, but then they'll hand you another check on top of that and say, 'Well done...good job,' and there'll be another huge check inside the envelope."
"When I was an up-and-coming fighter I used to fight in these sh---y little shows and make no money," he said. "I used to sleep in my car. I couldn't pay my bills. I had to work on the weekends. So if I had to go out now [as an incoming UFC fighter] and I had to win a few fights, make six [thousand dollars to show] and six [thousand dollars to win], that's $12,000, plus maybe two or three thousand more in sponsors, and fight three or four times a way, that's not bad money. I'd be able to pay my bills and train full-time."
"If you win, and you start getting some notoriety with the fans and put on a good show, your pay's going to quickly go up. You start at six and six because the UFC is running a business. It's not, 'Oh, this guy's good enough to be in the UFC? Let's pay him a quarter of a million dollars.' It's not like that. They'll pay you a decent amount just for showing up, and even that's a big jump up from the regional show that you're used to. If you do well, they'll take care of you. They'll probably give you a bonus backstage and you'll quickly be in a new contract with a significant pay raise. If you put on good shows, you'll find success."
"From my initial involvement with the UFC on, the UFC has done nothing but take great care of me and my family," said Bisping. "They've always gone above and beyond the call of duty. They really have. With bonuses, with care, if I ever have injuries they give me access to the best doctors and then pay for everything. Myself and my family, we're living a great lifestyle. ...I'm making more money in one fight than I could have in 20 years of my old job. So you'll never hear a bad word come out of my mouth about the UFC's pay structure.
Forget Instant Replay
Using video or instant replay to decide a critical element of a mixed martial arts fight is an interesting idea, but it’s not necessary. Let the referees make their decisions, rightly or wrongly, and live with it.
UFC president Dana White indicated following UFC 142 that video replay would be considered in the wake of the controversial decision made by referee Mario Yamasaki to disqualify Erick Silva following his apparent victory over Carlo Prater for illegal strikes to the back of the head.
Yamasaki, a veteran referee, made the decision on the spur of the moment, and afterward he was criticized by announcer Joe Rogan. White also tweeted that he thought Yamasaki made the wrong call and later paid Silva his win bonus.
Effectively, Yamasaki has been thrown under the bus for what he believed to be the right call.
If you use video replay, based on how it’s implemented in other sports, a call can only be overturned based on conclusive evidence. And it’s the referee who normally overturns it, although some sports go to a command central, which is an independent board that makes the final ruling.
In this case, a video replay would have to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that Silva did not, in fact, hit Prater in the back of the head and thus overturn his disqualification. It appeared that Silva hit Prater at least once and possibly two or three times -- even Rogan, an educated and respected analyst in MMA, could not say for sure. So, based on that result, would the evidence have been conclusive enough to overturn Yamasaki’s decision? No.
Sean McCorkle Thinks MMA Should Do Away With Drug Testing
UFC fighter Sean McCorkle, who has always been known for his blunt honesty, has another idea, though. If it were up to him, McCorkle would level the playing field by doing away with drug testing completely.
"What you end up with is a situation of where the guys who are beating the test, where the guys who can afford to get a doctor to prescribe whatever they want, where the guys who have access to stuff, they have an unfair advantage already," he said on Tuesday's edition of The MMA Hour. "I think we'd be pretty naive to think that every person who's ever taken anything was caught. So I think, to me, in all professional sports, I say, let guys do whatever they want to do and be done with it. I don't think anybody's going to make or break their career based on steroids unless you're talking about longevity, because to my understanding, the majority of them are used for recovery from injury."
"There's stuff at [nutrition store] GNC that will make you pee hot for a PED, and it's not necessarily something that's going to enhance your performance at all," he said. "It's just something that's banned."
Boxer Wladimir Klitschko Wants to Learn MMA
In the eternal debate of MMA versus boxing, count heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko as a fan of mixed martial arts.
While some boxing traditionalists have shunned MMA as the wicked stepchild of combat sports, there are more and more pugilists coming out in support of it.
Current WBA, IBF, WBO, IBO and Ring Magazine heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko was resistant to MMA when he first watched, but as time passed he couldn’t help but become a fan of the athleticism and skill involved.
“I wasn’t such in Russia when I watched it live the first time, and to be honest I didn’t really like it before. But when I was watching it, I got into the style of MMA and I think I have a lot of respect for MMA fighters. It’s a very tough sport. I don’t think I’m ready to practice it and fight in the cage, I think I’m too old for it, but I have a lot of respect,” Klitschko told the Jim Rome Show recently.
Nate Marquardt, BAMMA Sever Ties; Former UFC Contender Now a Free Agent
Nate Marquardt's run in BAMMA has come to an end before it ever really started.
According to Marquardt's manager Lex McMahon, the UK-based BAMMA has agreed to release Marquardt from his contract following the organization's decision to delay their ninth event from Feb. 11 to March 24. Marquardt was scheduled to fight Yoshiyuki Yoshida in the main event of BAMMA 9 for the organization's welterweight title.
This marks the second time BAMMA has delayed Marquardt's promotional debut, as he was originally scheduled to fight for BAMMA in December.
Meltzer: Brock beats most former UFC heavyweight champions
Most people's opinion's of a fighter don't usually go back more than a couple fights. A popular rule to live by in most MMA gym's is that you are only as good as your last fight. But when a fighter retires, you have to look at what he accomplished when he accomplished. Brock Lesnar has lost two fights in a row and announced his retirement from the UFC and sport of MMA.
Most fans have been harsh on Lesnar losing his last two fights in the way he did, but most forgot that not only did Brock Lesnar win the UFC heavyweight title after only three professional MMA bouts, a feat unprecedented in any combat sport, he successfully defended it two times. In his latest Wrestling Observer newsletter, Dave Meltzer discusess Brock's legacy:
The next question is Lesnar’s legacy. Most have been positive about it. The reality is he was an amazing athlete who won the title despite inexperience and a long layoff from competitive sports, succeeding based on athletic ability and a lifetime of wrestling to beat some solid people at their own game.
Jimy Hettes represents the next, great generation
I have seen a lot of fighters really early in their career.
I judged Tim Sylvia's first fight. At first he thought his opponent was me. I was glad I wasn't - the opponent ended up in the ambulance with foam coming out of his mouth, and that was with palm strikes only.
I trained with Mike Brown before he ever fought. We touched hands standing, he heel hooked me.
I saw Jon Jones fifth fight. Actually, I missed it, as I looked down, more less.
When you see the ones who are going to be great, you know. I got that feeling Saturday night, but it wasn't an obscure fight in some obscure arena in some obscure place, it was on the main card of UFC 141 in Las Vegas, when Jimy Hettes dominated Nam Phan for three rounds, including two 10-8 rounds on two judges score cards.
I think the undefeated Jimy Hettes is going to great.
Following risky move, Chicago MMA fighter paralyzed in amateur bout
This past Saturday at an MMA event in Joliet, Ill., 20-year-old amateur fighter Jeff Dunbar was stuck in a bad way.
In the ninth of 11 scheduled fights at a Dec. 17 Fight Card Entertainment event, fellow fighter Rudy Bahena clung to Dunbar's back, torqued a standing rear-naked choke, and had his opponent desperate enough to try the unthinkable.
Believing to be out of better options, Dunbar dove forward, hoping he could spike Bahena into the canvas. It was an ill-fated decision – one that's now cost Dunbar the use of his limbs and forever changed his life.
Jon Jones Receives No AP Athlete of the Year Votes
Despite having what many (including myself) feel is, without a doubt, the greatest year in the history of mixed martial arts, Jon Jones did not receive a single vote in the AP vote for Athlete of the Year. To Mike Chiapetta of MMA Fighting, this was proof that it is the mainstream that needs to catch up to MMA, not vice versa.
From the article:
I'm not arguing that Jones should have won the award. The winner, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, had an amazing calendar year. He won the Super Bowl, led his team to a 19-game win streak and has them in position to possibly repeat. Runner-up Justin Verlander of the Detroit Tigers won both the American League Most Valuable Player and Cy Young awards, the first pitcher to do that in 27 years. Third-place went to tennis star Novak Djokovic, who won 10 tournaments -- including three majors -- and finished the year with an exceptional 70-6 record.
Jones, MMA Fighting's Fighter of the Year, had arguably the best calendar year in MMA history, winning four matches overall, defeating three former UFC champions and becoming the youngest title holder in UFC history. He wasn't exactly invisible doing it, either. He was a guest on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Jimmy Kimmel Live, and on the day of his title win, helped thwart a robbery, an act that resulted in major national attention.
If a boxer like Manny Pacquiao or Floyd Mayweather put together a year like that, you better believe that they would have earned votes.
But because Jones fights in a cage instead of a ring, his accomplishments go unappreciated and unrecognized. It's not like this was a small sample size; 212 alleged experts in sports cast ballots for the award.
The problem with saying this is an example of a larger ignorance of MMA is that to vote for Jones meant that the voters would have had to have not voted for who they truly felt was deserving of the award. Yes, maybe some (most) of the voters are ignorant of MMA, but would more information have caused them to vote for Jones over Rogers? Is a courtesy vote really that important?