The ’09 Wish List
Pre-“Ultimate Fighter,” pre-Affliction, pre-state sanctioning, fans will remember the UFC’s modest promotional resolution for 1999: run nine shows. (The campaign was dubbed “9 in ’99,” which is what happens when you can’t afford a marketing department.)
A sad testament to the state of the sport at the time: They could only manage six.
Ten years on, and the UFC is likely to meet or exceed the 20 programs it ran in ’08. Wishes have become largely extraneous, since most requested matches wind up happening sooner or later. The sport’s devotees have everything they could possibly ask for -- free shows, top talent, capable management.
This space, though, works tirelessly to find something to complain about. Some hoped-for events for the New Year:
Video Game News: UFC 2009 Undisputed Hands-on
December 19, 2008 - Last night we got our hands on UFC 2009 Undisputed for the first time, and, while the game's still far from complete and its control scheme has yet to be finalized, we can safely say that this game has all the makings of a future champ.
Former TUF Competitor Traded
Trades are not uncommon in sports, although MMA seemed to be the exception...until now. So it was quite a surprise when former TUF competitor Noah Thomas heard that he was traded from the TKO promotion to the XMMA promotion.
Justin Levens and his wife found dead
No one else has broken this news story yet so I hope its not true.
"TMZ has learned former UFC fighter Justin Levens and his wife were found dead from gunshot wounds in a home in Laguna Niguel, Calif. earlier today.
Sources say cops are investigating their deaths as a possible murder/suicide.
Levens had a career record of 9-8 and fought in several different MMA leagues, including the IFL, WEC and UFC."
Vote For GSP As 2008 Canadian Athlete Of The Year!!!
He regained his UFC welterweight championship from Matt Serra and further established himself as the best 170-pounder on the planet with his five round win over Jon Fitch. Now it's time for you to vote for Montreal's Georges St-Pierre as Sportsnet.ca's 2008 Canadian Athlete of The Year.
Instant Replay Used For First Time In MMA
Instant replay has become an institution for most major sporting events all over the world, and last year the sport of mixed martial arts stepped into that arena when the New Jersey Athletic Control Board instituted the policy, and now it has been instituted in practice as well.
CSAC to Re-Institute MMA Drug Testing
The California State Athletic Commission is one week away from rolling out a new program to streamline and strengthen the drug testing process in one of the country’s biggest hotbeds for MMA. Newly minted Assistant Executive Officer Bill Douglas finalized the program on Tuesday, and said it will take effect at two upcoming California events, a Roy Englebrecht-promoted boxing card and King of the Cage event scheduled for Dec. 11. The CSAC will now conduct steroid testing with one of two World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) labs in the country at the University of California, Los Angeles. In early November, the CSAC became its exclusive client for combat sports testing. Among other clients, the UCLA lab currently handles steroid testing for the NFL, NCAA, and the U.S. Olympic Team.
CSAC threatened with accusations abuse (NEF lawsuit)
New Era Fighting Lawsuit Threat Pressures CSAC Head's Garcia Resignation
IRVINE, California (December 1, 2008) – The recent resignation of embattled California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) Executive Director Armando Garcia apparently came from pressure applied after it was announced a year ago that New Era Fighting (NEF) was filing a $500,000,000 lawsuit against Garcia, alleging a pattern and practice by the California State Athletic Commission of intentionally, willfully and viciously interfering with a licensed and approved event, which effected and injured New Era Fighting in the same or similar fashion as other mixed martial arts promoters, managers and fighters
One Round Too Many - An in depth look at rematches
The holidays are full of repetition. Turkey on Thanksgiving, turkey on Christmas; socks from mom, socks from grandma; Charlie Brown learning, for the 53rd consecutive time, that he needs a more supportive group of friends.
Increasingly, things aren’t looking too different in the cage. After beefing up its roster with international talent and surprisingly adept “Ultimate Fighter”-bred participants, the UFC has returned to the photocopy machine, signing or reportedly considering matches that have already been definitively decided on multiple occasions.
I guess the writer from Sherdog seems to think a little different than me when it comes to the opinion that Wandy Rampage, Chuck Randy, and even Faber Pulver would make a good rematch.
Do Heavyweights Need 2 Weight Classes?
That's a question that has been posed to some Athletic Commission heads in the wake of the massive weight differences in the Brock Lesnar-Randy Couture fight, where Brock weighed in 45 pounds heavier than Randy. While the heads of the NSAC and New Jersey Athletic Commission have differeing views, recent research says that, on a regular basis, David is going to beat Goliath more often than the other way around.
10 Fights That Could Have Been
Mixed martial arts remains a very young sport. Despite a short history that dates back less than 20 years, it has produced some remarkable fights -- bouts like Royce Gracie against Dan Severn, Frank Shamrock versus Tito Ortiz and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira against Fedor Emelianenko.
Every longstanding promoter will admit that for every “superfight” made, another fails to materialize because of injury, a contract dispute or promoters failing to cooperate with one another.
Sherdog.com’s Tim Leidecker has compiled a list of the top 10 fights that could have been during the last 15 years.
CSAC Appoints Interim Leaders To Replace Garcia
While the search to find a permanent replacement for fformer executive Armando Garcia goes on, the CSAC today appointed staff analyst Bill Douglas to oversee administrative functions of the state office and assist chief inspector Dean Lohuis, who will now oversee its field operations. A new executive director is to be appointed in March.
Chuck Liddell drops out of USO tour. Rumored to be kicked off.
The abrupt end to Chuck Liddell's participation in an international USO tour to support American troops has raised a few eyebrows.
The former UFC light heavyweight champion was part of a contingent of five celebrities joining a U.S. Marine general on an eight-day, five-country USO tour this week.
Liddell made the first part of the trek on Monday to Eielson Air Force Base near Fairbanks, Alaska, with rap duo the Ying Yang Twins, model and singer Mayra Veronica and comedians Gabriel Iglesias and Edwin San Juan. However, Liddell pulled out of the tour on Tuesday due to what both the USO and his management team, Zinkin Entertainment, deemed to be an unspecified illness.
However, unconfirmed reports quickly surfaced following Liddell's decision to bow out, including one that he was asked to leave by the USO after members of his entourage were found partying with minors............
Hansen talks DREAM, Alvarez & More!
Joachim Hansen ‘The Hellboy Returns on NYE’
DREAM Lightweight Grand Prix Champion Joachim Hansen took some time out of training to talk with PDG about his tournament victory, Eddie Alvarez, training and fighting on NYE.
PDG: You replaced Eddie Alvarez, who beat you earlier in the GP; how did that affect the way you fought in the finals?
Hansen: Eddie Alvarez and Shinya Aoki are two totally different fighters. I knew a little about Aoki’s style because I fought him in PRIDE in 2006. I knew I had to be very careful with Aoki when on the ground and to not make any big moves that could leave me open to his submission game. If you could clone Alvarez and Aoki into one person you would be close to having the total mixed martial arts fighter!
A Brief Reflection on 15 Years of the UFC
by Jordan Breen (email@example.com)
"Hello ladies and gentlemen. You are about to see something you have never seen before ... the Ultimate Fighting Challenge."
Uttered 15 years ago to this day, the introduction for the promotion that would bring mixed martial arts to the masses wasn't even competent, let alone stirring. More like taking forceps to the eyeball during delivery.
"Hello, I'm Bill Wallace, and welcome to McNichols Ar ... "
The birth moment went from awkwardly inept to outright ignominious as the man dubbed "Superfoot" quite literally belched through the foreword to fighting history. This was not "Call me Ishmael." More like dropping the newborn skull-first on the floor.
A difficult delivery, fortunately, didn't have any bearing on the spectacle of the evening's proceedings. With a thunderous kick to the face in less than 30 seconds, Gerard Gordeau liberated the teeth of hapless sumo Teila Tuli, freeing them to explore the thin Denver air. And that was just a prelude to the skinny Brazilian fellow in his pajamas.
Yes, every ardent MMA fan, whether they were watching live on pay-per-view from day one thanks to a Black Belt magazine subscription or whether they became smitten with the sport one Saturday night on Spike TV, can appreciate the milestone, the magic and the mockability of the first Ultimate Fighting Championship. By now, it is nothing short of cultural fact that Royce Gracie revolutionized fightsport with his early UFC dominance and fully held up his end of the bargain to his big brother Rorion in what began as an infomercial for Gracie jiu-jitsu. Today, the magnitude of that moment is a mandate to the point where it becomes almost drained and dull.
Armando Garcia’s Top Ten Greatest Misses
Word broke over the weekend that Armando Garcia had tendered his resignation as executive director of the California State Athletic Commission and his resignation is scheduled to be accepted when the CSAC convenes on Nov. 17.
Many people responded to the news by hailing the development as good for MMA and ripping Garcia. However, most people neglected to say what was bad about Garcia and seemingly were just repeating someone else’s ideology rather than having formed their own opinion.
But there was a site that actually took the time to lay out the case of why Garcia’s departure is a good thing. Fightlinker.com listed a myriad of links outlining all of the controversies that Garcia had been involved in during his three-year tenure as CSAC’s executive director. The article was much more than a simple proclamation that Garcia was bad for the sport; it served as a detailed outline of just exactly why he is bad.
Even though I covered most of those controversies, I was still overwhelmed by the sheer volume of them. Being that I like to be organized, I decided to compile a top ten list of Garcia’s greatest misses in honor of his impending departure
STUDY SHOWS UFC IS POISED TO CONTRIBUTE MILLIONS TO NY ECONOMY
NEW YORK, NY – A study released today showed that Ultimate Fighting Championship® events in New York City and Buffalo would have a significant impact on state and local economies by generating tax revenues, creating jobs and boosting tourism industries.
Professional mixed martial arts is one of the highest grossing arena sports in the country, drawing sell-out crowds and bringing in millions of dollars in ticket and concession sales. One of the fastest growing sports in America, MMA is regulated in 36 states including New Jersey, Pennsylvania, California and Florida. Legislators in Albany will consider regulating the sport in New York State when the legislative session begins in January.