The Outlaw and The Losing Streak
If Dan Hardy had his way he would have shaved the mohawk by now. Five minutes with some clippers, one quick swoop down the middle of his head, and the signature hairstyle that makes him so recognizable to fight fans could be gone. Maybe then he could blend in. Maybe then he could get a moment to be alone with himself and figure out just what in the hell is going on.
He'd do it if he had it his way. But he doesn't.
It's a UFC fight week in Toronto and Hardy has come at the request of Xyience, a sponsor of his that has him scheduled for autograph signings and fan meet-and-greets all week. And Xyience? You better believe Xyience wants the mohawk. That's because the fans want the mohawk. They expect it. You book Dan Hardy and he shows up with a shaved head, it's like having Carrot Top show up as a blonde.
The fans want the guy they've seen on TV. They want the brash, cocky Brit with the punk rock swagger. But after a rough stretch of four straight losses in the UFC -- a 17-month span that dropped him from top contender to just barely employed -- he's not even sure where that guy went, or if he's ever coming back.
"I don't feel like myself right now," Hardy says.
You look in his eyes and you know he means it. He sits slumped in a plush leather chair in the lobby of a posh downtown Toronto hotel. He speaks so softly you have to lean in close just to hear him. The last thing he wants to do these days is draw attention to himself. He knows what people are thinking. And even if they aren't thinking it, they might as well be, since he hears their accusations in the wordless glances from across the room. It's not just the fans, either.
"I start to feel like other fighters are looking at me like, why is he still in the UFC? And I don't want people looking at me like that."
MMA - An Acquired Taste
this is a very well written, objective, article about experiencing a live UFC event for the first time...maybe the first MMA event he ever watched. this is written by Michael Grange from Sportsnet, who is slowly becoming one of my favourite sports journalists to read. its a little long but well worth the read. Grange may still not be a fan of the sport afterwards, but this may be one of the most unbiased and objective articles from a non-MMA fan you will ever read.
Punkass Details Forthcoming Tapout TV Show Revival with MMA@Work (powered by MMAPlayground)
If you've been a fan of the sport for any lengthy amount of time, you probably remember the Tapout TV Series that aired on Versus for 2 seasons from 2007 to 2008.
The series followed Mask, Punkass and SkySkrape as they traveled the country in search of up-and-coming fighters to sponsor.
Punkass joined hosts Josh Webb and Tim Herb on the weekly MMA@Work (powered by MMAPlayground) podcast this past Thursday and provided some details on the revival of the show.
Carlos Newton retires from MMA
According to Mike Russell on CagePotato, MMA legend Carlos Newton has quietly retired in a dignified manner, and has changed his priorities in life and the sport.
“I’m retired,” Newton explained. “The sport just isn’t as competitive as it used to be,” Newton said in an interview with CP. “I’m just concentrating on helping to improve the regulation of the sport and I’m looking into becoming a judge. I think that as fighters we have a lot more knowledge and insight into the intricacies of what’s going on in a fight than someone who has never competed. MMA judging needs fixing and I’m hoping I can help do it.”
Newton had a storied career in MMA, with his most shining moment when he submitted Pat Miletich at UFC 31 by bulldog choke in a dramatic welterweight title match. Matt Hughes would beat Newton for it at UFC 34 via a controversial powerbomb, another highlight reel moment for both men. Newton also fought in Pride FC, and coached and fought in the IFL.
Newton, who ended his career with a record of 16-4, will continue teaching MMA, while he attends architecture school simultaneously. “I’ll always be involved with the sport,” he said. “Definitely.” We wish Newton good luck in his future endeavors, no matter what they may be.
MTV announces new MMA 'docu-series'
MTV will broadcast a new mixed martial arts-themed program beginning early in 2012, the network announced on Thursday.
"Caged," a docu-series which chronicles the lives of four young adults in small-town Louisiana, will premiere beginning on Jan. 9 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on MTV. The show will also air internationally on MTV channels around the world starting in May 2012.
Mariusz Pudzianowski's KSW 17 win over James Thompson changed to no-contest
Mariusz Pudzianowski's controversial majority-decision win over James Thompson in this past weekend's KSW 17 co-headliner has been changed to a no-contest.
Company officials today cited a judge's error for the change.
Following the announcement of Pudzianowski's contentious win in his home country of Poland, an irate Thompson stole the mic from the ring announcer and admonished the organization.
James Thompson Goes On Tirade After Disputed KSW 17 Loss to Mariusz Pudzianowsk
James Thompson, who is most famous for his fight with Kimbo Slice in EliteXC, just cut one of the craziest post-fight interviews you'll ever see after his loss to Mariusz Pudzianowski today. Pudzian was granted a majority decision win after two rounds, despite Thompson controlling the first round quite easily. KSW fights generally only go two rounds, but if the rounds are split, they go to an overtime round. Everyone expected that to be the case here, but apparently not.
After Pudzianowski spoke to the crowd, Thompson took the mic and went off on a profanity-laced tirade against the promotion, which ended with Thompson actually cornering the promoter and yelling at him. The camera cut away before he was done, but he actually ended up tossing the mic at him.
Maiquel Falcao Suffers Heart Attack, Hospitalized in Brazil
Former UFC fighter Maiquel Falcao, who is just 30 years old, has suffered a heart attack and remains hospitalized in Brazil, according to Tatame. Falcao apparently suffered the heart attack while training in Santa Catarina, Brazil. His manager made the following statement:
"Maiquel is still on the Intensive Care Unit and might stay there for few more days, when he’ll go through a catheterization. He’s lucid and improving fast", his manager Marcelo Brigadeiro told TATAME on Wednesday
Dean: Officiating Needs to Match MMA’s Growth
There’s no shortage of complaints when it comes to the judging and refereeing of MMA.
Herb Dean is widely considered one of the best officials, though, and he’s trying to improve the situation through his referee school.
“I think the sport has grown tremendously, and the officiating needs to keep up,” Dean told the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Savage Dog Show.” “There’s a lot of things in officiating that we can change, and the best thing that we can do is first of all, make sure we’re all on the same page. I think that’s what these training courses do. The other guys who do training courses, we talk about it. We make sure we’re on the same page. So then when people go through training, now there’s mechanics that are accepted and there’s the right way to do things and the wrong way to do things. Now people are learning that.”
Dean is one of the Association of Boxing Commissions’ approved trainers for referees and judges. He teaches two eight-hour courses, MMA Official 1 and MMA Official 2, which involve coverage of rules and criteria, mock judging, referee mechanics and more. Aspiring officials can register for the courses at HerbDean.com.
ProElite 3 scheduled for Jan. 21 at Blaisdell Arena; Grove vs. Minowa targeted
The promotion has targeted Jan. 21 for an event to take place at Blaisdell Arena in Honolulu, Hawaii, sources today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). HDNet is expected to broadcast the event's main card.
Additionally, ProElite 3 is expected to feature a middleweight contest between promotional veteran Kendall Grove (13-9) and Ikuhisa Minowa (51-32). Bout agreements have been signed
FX airs first UFC event in January with Neer vs. Ludwig, Barry vs. Morecraft
The first official UFC-FOX event takes place in January (exact date TBA) when the organization makes its debut on FX.
Officials today announced the event, though its name and venue weren't revealed.
Two fights are official for the card: welterweights Josh Neer (32-10-1 MMA, 5-6 UFC) vs. Duane "Bang" Ludwig (22-11 MMA, 4-2 UFC) and heavyweights Pat Barry (6-4 MMA, 3-4 UFC) vs. Christian Morecraft (7-2 MMA, 1-2 UFC).
Additional event details are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.
Spike TV to premiere 'MMA Junkie Live' news-magazine show in 2012
Spike TV will debut its first-ever primetime mixed-martial-arts news magazine show, "MMA Junkie Live," in January 2012, it was announced today by Jon Slusser, senior vice president, sports and multi-platform programming, Spike TV.
Broadcast live from the iconic MTV Studios in Times Square, the heart of New York City, this half-hour, multi-platform show will feature a look ahead at the weekend’s big mixed-martial-arts fights, and a look back at the action from recent bouts.
Partnering with the award-winning MMA news website, MMAjunkie.com (part of the USA TODAY Sports Media Group), the half-hour show will be hosted by an all-star team of MMA experts and journalists who will engage in discussion and debate regarding the latest news from the sport.
"MMA Junkie Live" will also feature live in-studio interviews with many of the world’s top fighters, in-depth features, action-packed highlights, as well as viewer interaction via Twitter, Facebook and other social-media channels.
USA TODAY Sports Media Group acquires MMAjunkie.com
USA TODAY Sports Media Group announced today the acquisition of leading mixed-martial-arts site, MMAjunkie.com and its related editorial assets across all platforms, including its daily radio show.
The site's editor-in-chief, Dann Stupp, and its entire editorial staff, including award-winning lead staff reporter John Morgan, will remain in place and will report to Dave Morgan, the USA TODAY Sports Media Group's senior vice president of content and editor-in-chief.
"This is an exciting acquisition for us, and one that greatly enhances the editorial capabilities of the USA TODAY Sports Media Group in covering mixed martial arts across all platforms," said Tom Beusse, president of the USA TODAY Sports Media Group. "Since its inception, MMAjunkie.com has established itself by breaking stories on a regular basis and providing fans with the most relevant and complete coverage available for this evolving and fast-growing sport, and we will continue to strengthen and expand that coverage for our fans."
With more than one million unique visitors per month, MMAjunkie.com is one of the leading online news destinations for the sport, as well as a content partner for several print, online and TV outlets. It also produces the daily podcast/radio show "MMAjunkie.com Radio," with a TV simulcast syndicated through Fight Now TV...
SB Nation announces acquisition of MMAFighting.com
Great news for mixed martial arts (MMA) fans.
MMAmania.com parent company, SB Nation, today (Nov. 7, 2011) announced that it has expanded its MMA portfolio by acquiring MMAFighting.com.
SB Nation Chairman and CEO Jim Bankoff made the announcement on today's edition of The MMA Hour.
"SB Nation, unlike a lot of other sports sites, from the beginning, put our emphasis on coverage of MMA. We have a lot of big sites in our portfolio like MMA Mania and Bloody Elbow. Those sites will continue to exist as they do exist now and its not really our plan to merge those sites whatsoever."
While it's impossible to say this without drawing a humorous comparison to Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), you can expect it to be "business as usual" around these parts.
Fighters in L.A. for BJJ tournament stop a robbery at hotel
Two mixed martial artists from Oregon were in Los Angeles for a grappling tournament, but they ended up using their skills to do much more than win a match. They subdued an armed robber who was holding up the clerk at their hotel. Watch the security video in this report from KCAL-TV.
Brent Alvarez runs Twisted Web MMA in Eugene, Ore., and Billy Denney is his student. They were walking through the hotel lobby when they saw the robber, who had gone behind the hotel's counter, pulled out a gun, and demanded money. The clerk handed over the cash, but yelled for help. Alvarez and Denney jumped on the robber, and while Denney controlled his wrists, Alvarez sunk in a rear naked choke. They held him in place until police arrived.
Alvarez is 2-2 in amateur bouts, while Denney is 7-2. According to the Twisted Web Facebook page, Denney took third at the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation no-gi worlds. (In no-gi, participants wear a rash guard or no shirt instead of the traditional martial arts uniform of a gi.) Alvarez went 1-1 in his fights.
No matter their results, I have a feeling that Denney and Alvarez will remember this trip to L.A. for something other than the tournament. Kudos to them both for being brave and using martial arts to do more than win a match
Cesar Gracie Makes Formal Offer To Unite Team Penn & Team Gracie Into One Fight Team/Alliance
“I was reminded by something that happened many, many years ago. I think BJ was probably about 17 at the time, we were at a tournament and I was giving one of my guy’s instructions. At the time there was an alliance, it was my school and Ralphs school and we where one team and BJ was on that team.
I was giving one of my guys instructions and I looked over to my left a little bit and I saw BJ’s eyes focused on every word I was saying and he kind of smiled and said, ‘You always have the best advice, that’s why I always listen to you.’
And it just reminded me, years and years have passed since then, but BJ, take my advice now, it’s time to make something new happen. “
These are the sentiments of famed coach and leader of the Gracie Fight Team, Cesar Gracie, as he tells it exclusively to BJPENN.COM this afternoon...
Judge Orders Sanctions Against Fertittas In Xyience Case
A federal bankruptcy judge has ordered sanctions against Fertitta Enterprises for failing to turn over e-mails from its chief financial officer suggesting the firm might have had a hand in the bankruptcy of sport-drink maker Xyience. The Fertittas, Las Vegas gambling tycoons who also own the Ultimate Fighting Championship franchise, are accused by the trustee of bankrupt Xyience of lending the firm $12 million at a time of crisis and then using the loan to strip the company’s assets from its shareholders.
Xyience is a major sponsor of Ultimate Fighting Championship, which the Fertittas bought in 2001 for $2 million and quickly turned into a cash machine. The energy-drink company was founded by a twice-convicted felon and sales genius named Russell Pike, who raised millions of dollars from Midwest labor unions and other investors who later accused him of fraud. The Fertitta brothers also control Station Casinos, which emerged from bankruptcy in 2009.
In an Oct. 28 order, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Lloyd King held that William Bullard, the chief financial officer of Fertitta Enterprises and a manager of Xyience, failed to comply with discovery requests for documents related to the company’s bankruptcy. Bullard said e-mails had been destroyed, yet he was obligated to keep them since he knew the loan deal might spawn litigation and trigger rules requiring the retention of all relevant documents. (At a November 2007 Xyience board meeting, before the loan was made, he refused to serve as a director because of threatened shareholder litigation.)
E-mails were later found on computers at a Las Vegas beer company where Bullard also works. They detailed how Fertitta proceeded with the loan even though there was a potential $150 million buyout offer from Canada’s Cott Corp. Judge King said Fertitta’s “wilful, bad-faith discovery behavior justifies the imposition of monetary sanctions” to be determined at a December hearing...
Former Strikeforce Fighter Brett Rogers Arrested Again
Brett Rogers was arrested again early this morning. The Apple Valley Patch in Apple Valley, MN is reporting that Rogers was arrested on an outstanding warrant related to his June arrest. This past June, the former Strikeforce fighter was arrested and charged with felony third-degree assault against his wife. Rogers pled guilty to that charge, and was released pending sentencing. Today's arrest was for failing to comply with certain conditions of that pre-sentencing release.
Rogers was also arrested in late September for violating the order of protection issued after the June domestic assault.
Officials deny Bobby Lashley vs. Tim Hague booked for Shark Fights 21 headliner
The same day someone from the company's official Twitter account announced the fight, Shark Fights officials since have denied that their next event will feature a heavyweight headliner between ex-WWE star and Strikeforce vet Bobby Lashley and UFC vet Tim Hague.
Shark Fights officials today told MMAjunkie.com the fight hasn't been booked.
They also said they "have no idea" who tweeted the news from the company's Twitter account.