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FILA moves on from MMA, IMMAF pledges to continue sport's development
The International Wrestling Federation, FILA, has removed its claim to be the governing body for MMA, opening the door for the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation to become the official oversight organization for the sport.
Vitor Belfort's latest win fuels testosterone debate, which may be a good thing
Right off we might as well talk about it. Why not? We're thinking about it, whether we want to admit it or not. How could we not be, when it's right there staring us in the face? Vitor Belfort pulls off an amazing spinning heel kick against Luke Rockhold at UFC on FX 8, then declares that he's "stronger than ever," and it's like he's begging us to talk about it. On the broadcast we hear references to his impressive career turnaround, and it feels like they're hinting at the things they can't or don't dare say. Or maybe they aren't. At least not intentionally. Maybe it's a Freudian slip, or no slip at all. Maybe it's just that when you get an elephant this big in a room this small – and when that elephant keeps stomping on the heads of all who come near it – anything you say feels like it's either directed right at the damn thing or else conspicuously avoiding mention of it. That's where we are with Belfort and his testosterone usage. Tucked away in Brazil, where the commission is brand new and therapeutic-use exemptions for former steroid cheats are apparently no problem, he faces a problem he doesn't seem to want to acknowledge. The more fights he wins and the more highlight-reel finishes he stacks up, the more he stokes a fire that he'd rather we just ignore. The thing is, we probably would ignore it if we could. We'd rather watch and enjoy and be awed by these finishes that look like something out of a video game. But knowing what we know, it's impossible to come away from Belfort's recent performances without wondering how much of what we just saw came from him and how much came from a syringe. And honestly, that's what really sucks about testosterone use in MMA – for the fans, anyway. The fighters, sure, they have to worry about the concussions and the competitive imbalance and all the rest of it. Those of us on the couch get stuck with the nagging doubt and bitter aftertaste. Guys like Belfort are making this sport hard for a thinking fan to relax and enjoy. We see him pull off some fantastic move and we can't appreciate it for what it is. We just can't. Unless we want to become the willing marks in this little PED carnival, we have to ask whether he could have done that without a steady injection of steroids (and for the last time, while the testosterone that occurs naturally in your body is a hormone, the synthesized testosterone that MMA fighters are injecting is a steroid; let's stop dancing around it and call it what it is). But testosterone doesn't kick people in the head, right? You need to skill to do that. And that's true. You also need skill to hit a baseball over a fence, but I think we've learned that it doesn't hurt to get an infusion of chemically-enhanced power and explosiveness to give that existing skill a little extra push. It also doesn't hurt to get that push all through training camp. That's the thing about performance-enhancing drugs. They take what you already have and improve it with the help of some stuff you don't. That's why athletes use them. You think Belfort would be putting up with all the scrutiny from the media and the criticism from fans if this stuff didn't work? It's worth noting how Belfort is handling that scrutiny, by the way. With the UFC's help, he's managed to avoid the prying eyes of the various U.S. state athletic commissions, many of which aren't exactly all that strict to begin with. But when John Morgan of MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) asked him about his testosterone use after his win over Rockhold, Belfort's response was to try to silence him as quickly as possible. "Can somebody beat him up for me, please?" Belfort said of Morgan at the post-fight news conference. "Can somebody beat him up?" Right, because nothing says "I'm using a totally legitimate medical treatment" quite like threatening those who ask questions about it. It's not just immediately after the fight that Belfort avoids these questions, either. Let's not forget, back before the UFC confirmed that he was using testosterone, Belfort refused to admit it, even when asked point blank about it by ESPN. It was only after the UFC outed him that he voiced his support for full public disclosure for all testosterone users. If the UFC hadn't put his business in the streets, he'd probably still be doing it in secret. The sad part is, Belfort doesn't seem to realize how much the controversy is hurting him. He seems genuinely oblivious to the fact that, in the minds of many fans, there's an asterisk next to all these wins. Maybe he didn't need the testosterone to beat Rockhold. Maybe he could have pulled off that kick without it. But the thing is, we'll never know. Neither will he. He can tell us that it's all him, that the testosterone has nothing to do with his career resurgence. But if that's true then why doesn't he get off the juice? If it's not responsible for his success, then it shouldn't matter if he stops using it. And if he won't stop using it, then he can't be surprised when we won't quit talking about it. Maybe that's the silver lining here, is the enduring force of the conversation. The more fights Belfort wins while on testosterone – and the more violent, spectacular finishes he reels off in the process – the more he fuels the debate. Looking at Twitter on Saturday night, the first response to his knockout of Rockhold was a kind of stunned amazement. The second response was skepticism and suspicion. By Sunday morning, it was the suspicion that lingered. It'll keep lingering, too. Just ask all those power hitters from baseball's steroid era. Performance-enhancers like testosterone might be fast-acting, but the stain they leave behind is a stubborn one. The way Belfort's headed, he'll still be staring at it long after his fighting days are done.
World Anti-Doping Agency Raises Cannabis Threshold for Athletes
The World Anti-Doping Agency has increased the threshold required for an athlete to test positive for cannabis use. During a May 11 meeting, WADA’s executive committee decided to increase the threshold level for cannabis from 15 ng/L to 150 ng/L, significantly reducing the chances of an athlete testing positive for out-of-competition use...
Former UFC Lightweight Paul Kelly Convicted of Trafficking Heroin
Former UFC lightweight Paul Kelly faces a lengthy prison sentence after being convicted of running a heroin trafficking ring in Liverpool, England.
Marquardt, Schaub, Zingano form new fight team
Nate Marquardt, Brendan Schaub and Cat Zingano have formed a Colorado-based MMA fight team.
Ken Shamrock: MMA forcing better boxing matchups – except with Floyd Mayweather
Ken Shamrock is a pretty rabid boxing fan these days, especially now that the sport's bigger names are actually boxing other top guys. Everyone but Floyd Mayweather Jr., that is.
Submitted May 16, 2013 12:00AM by prophecy033 - 2 comments
Filed under: Other Combat Sports, General MMA, MMA Personalities
South Florida mayors to fight MMA bout for charity, Italian dinner
Carlos Hernandez and Michael Pizzi are mayors of neighboring South Florida cities. After trading rhetorical jabs, they've decided to trade real ones this summer in an MMA bout for charity.
WSOF 3 adds Gruetzemacher-Sanders, Beebe-Murphy to prelims
World Series of Fighting continues to fill out the card for its next show, WSOF 3 next month in Las Vegas. Chris Gruetzemacher (11-1) will meet Jerrod Sanders (11-1) in a featherweight bout, while Carson Beebe (13-2) takes on Joe Murphy (6-0) at bantamweight. WSOF officials on Wednesday announced the new fight pairings. All four fighters will be making their WSOF debuts. WSOF 3 takes place June 14 at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. The main card airs on NBC Sports Network. The main event is a welterweight bout between former UFC title challenger Jon Fitch and fellow UFC vet Josh Burkman.
Submitted May 15, 2013 6:29PM by DrivenDavies15 - 0 comments
Filed under: Other MMA Organizations, General MMA
Showtime targeting return to MMA
The dissolution of Strikeforce marked an end of an era for Showtime, however according to Showtime Sports executive Stephen Espinoza, the network's absence from MMA will only be temporary.
Tim Sylvia wants to fight Frank Mir or Pat Barry
"The Maine-iac" has once again expressed his desire to return to the UFC, where the former heavyweight champion hasn't competed since 2008.
Submitted May 14, 2013 1:26PM by prophecy033 - 18 comments
Filed under: General MMA, Miscellaneous, MMA Personalities
Mayorga "suspended", MMA win changed to No Contest
Ricardo Mayorga's controversial win during his MMA debut has been overturned, and he has also been "suspended".
Manhoef/Khalidov set for June 8th in Poland
Middleweights Melvin Manhoef and Mamed Khalidov are scheduled to compete in the main event of KSW 23 in Gdansk, Poland later this month.
Bang Ludwig lights up reefer to watch fight tape
Duane "Bang" Ludwig, the new head coach for Urijah Faber's Team Alpha Male, says he likes to break down fight videos in various states of consciousness including straight, high and on a nutritional supplement. He also has a guy in Colorado watch.
Leonard Garcia heading to Team Alpha Male
Former UFC featherweight star, Leonard Garcia details his plans for the future, what went wrong in the McKenzie fight, and flirting with a possible weight change.
Weight cutting & head trauma threaten MMA
How safe is MMA? Recent articles point out the serious risks to fighters from head trauma and improper weight cutting.
Connecticut gets one step closer to legalizing MMA
MMA may be struggling to become legal in New York, but neighboring Connecticut is one step closer. The state on Tuesday saw a bill to legalize the sport pass its House of Representatives by a resounding margin.
DDP, Sinosic, Shamrock, Baroni, Varner and more give UFC 159 Predictions
Submitted Apr 26, 2013 3:44AM by nwowolfpack - 1 comment
Filed under: UFC, Interviews, General MMA, MMA Personalities
Yoshihiro Akiyama’s Manager Jailed For Allegedly Stealing $140K From Him
Fan favorite Yoshihiro Akiyama is back in the limelight but this time, it’s not for his fighting career. Instead Akiyama makes headlines today for being the alleged victim of an embezzlement scandal five years ago that saw his now-former manager steal approximately $140,000 from Akiyama.
World's No. 1-rated female boxer to shift to MMA
The world's No. 1-rated female boxer is leaving the sport and will focus on a mixed martial arts career. Holly Holm announced Tuesday that she will dedicate herself to an MMA career after her last scheduled boxing match May 11 against Mary McGee. The 31-year-old Albuquerque boxer is focusing on MMA just as the sport is beginning to embrace female fighters. In February, Ronda Rousey and Liz Carmouche made history by fighting in UFC's first women's bout.
Meet Mac Engel, who wants to know when the UFC is coming to Cowboys Stadium
Mac Engel asks everyone the same question. The gas-station attendant. The daycare workers. His friends. The mailman. And yes, especially UFC President Dana White.