Exclusive: At All Costs, Alistair Overeem Is Out for Justice Against Golden Glory
In this exclusive interview, UFC heavyweight Alistair Overeem talks to MMAWeekly.com about the ongoing legal situation with his former team at Golden Glory and much, much more.
Overeem took time on Wednesday to talk to MMAWeekly.com about his upcoming fight with Junior dos Santos, the work he’s been doing with the Blackzilians and he fires back at his former team at Golden Glory and the lawsuits that have been filed by both parties.
Damon Martin: First let’s start with what’s coming next for you in the UFC. It’s going to be Junior dos Santos for the title. I want to start by asking your thoughts on him as a fighter and his striking?
Alistair Overeem: Junior dos Santos is the heavyweight champion of the UFC so he’s the best fighter in the world at the moment and he has that belt around his waist, which I’m still missing. He’s a very strong fighter with knockout power in his punches, and he moves very well for a heavyweight. His boxing skills are the best in the MMA business so that would make for a very interesting fight. It will be a classic striker versus striker, which an audience always loves to see. It will be a great fight for sure...
Bas Rutten Picks Dos Santos to Beat Overeem
Former UFC heavyweight champion Bas Rutten believes current champ Junior dos Santos will beat Alistair Overeem if they fight this year.
In an interview with the Sherdog Radio Network’s “It’s Time!” show with Bruce Buffer, the colorful MMA personality gave his thoughts on the matchup and a variety of other topics, including his Fuel TV show “Punk Payback” and Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos’ positive test for an anabolic steroid.
Rutten on telling Overeem’s camp which opponents could make for difficult matchups: “I always told them … make sure to avoid Junior dos Santos. I think him and Cain Velasquez, although with Cain, he cannot take a punch too great. But still, Cain is a monster and he should have simply shot in on Junior dos Santos, I think. I actually thought he was going to win that fight, but he didn’t. He got tagged, and that can happen to anybody. Anyway, I always said try to stay away as long as you can from Junior dos Santos. That right now could be a very big threat together, believe it or not, with Cheick Kongo. I think that would also be a great opponent for him.”
On how Overeem matches up with dos Santos: “I think Alistair, everything he does is one single shot because he knows he’s got that glass jaw as well. He’s been knocked out quite a few times in the past, even by Chuck Liddell as well. Every time when he punches, one hand is up. He throws single shots; he doesn’t throw combinations. You saw that when he fought [Fabricio] Werdum. Werdum was actually tagging him more than he did to Werdum. I think that Junior dos Santos, with his combinations, his reach, I think he’s going to tag him and he’s going to throw combos and I think that yeah, he’s going to take this fight.”
On Cristiane Santos testing positive for an anabolic steroid: “You could say it doesn’t come as a surprise. I don’t think anybody was surprised, but I always say … you’d better [be] 100-percent sure that you know something before you say it. If I say, ‘Oh, she’s on steroids’ -- I could never say that. … But yeah, she does have the looks from it. She’s unbelievably strong. For a woman she just looks very, very extreme muscular, even more so than bodybuilders.
Guy Mezger Saved a Woman From Knife-Wielding Scumbag Last Month
(In your face, Jon Jones)
In spite of the fact that Guy Mezger retired seven years ago this month from active MMA competition, the 44-year-old former Lion’s Den fighter proved recently that he is still a badass.
Mezger, who is the president of HDNet, stepped in to offer assistance to a woman who was being roughed up by her boyfriend outside a Dallas sports store the week before Christmas and soon found himself in a fight with the angry beau.
According to the UFC 13 tournament winner, most of the onlookers just stood and gawked as the angry man repeatedly pushed the terrified woman to the ground while hurling obscenities at her, so he decided to try to diffuse the situation by stepping in between the pair and talking it out with the attacker. The next thing he knew, the guy was rushing him.
Sonnen: I don't think Silva will fight again
Chael Sonnen believes a much-anticipated rematch against Anderson Silva will never happen.
In fact, he doesn’t think Silva -- the current UFC middleweight champion -- will fight again. Period.
During a pre-fight conference call Friday ahead of his meeting with Michael Bisping at the UFC on FOX 2 show on Jan. 28 in Chicago, Sonnen said he was done with the man he referred to as "cowardly."
"I guarantee you Anderson Silva and my paths will never cross in the cage again," Sonnen said. "I don’t think he will fight anybody.
"That’s my personal opinion. But it’s a fact that (he) turned down a fight with me four times."
Sonnen added that Silva even turned down the offer when it was presented to him in person by (UFC chairman) Lorenzo Fertitta.
With fighter pay in spotlight, UFC vets shed light on life in octagon's middle-class
For three of the UFC's rank and file, the bottom line rarely ends at "show" and "win."
Sponsorships, performance bonuses, and discretionary bonuses help to line the pockets of George Roop, Jacob Volkmann and Nam Phan.
They are not millionaires. But despite a wide disparity in pay with their headliner counterparts, figures disclosed by the fighters painted an upper-middle-class living.
Pay-per-view dollars are, for now, a faraway dream that Roop, Volkmann and Phan hope to realize. They have won and lost and are no strangers to the preliminary card. They draw hardcore interest but are known by a casual few.
Featherweight Roop, a veteran of "The Ultimate Fighter 8," has fought nine times in the now-defunct WEC and UFC and carries a record of 3-5-1 under the Zuffa-owned promotions. Lightweight Volkmann signed with the promotion in 2009 and has fought seven times in the UFC, where he's amassed a 5-2 record including five consecutive wins inside the octagon. Phan, a veteran of "The Ultimate Fighter 12," has fought four times in the UFC as a featherweight and carries a 1-3 record.
Thirty-nine millionaires have been created by the promotion, according to UFC executive Lorenzo Fertitta, who defended his company's pay structure in a controversial segment aired on Sunday for ESPN's "Outside the Lines." Responding to charges that top stars are compensated handsomely while lower-tier fighters risk life and limb for as low as $6,000 a fight, he said the company shares around 50 percent of its revenue with athletes under contract.
Roop, Volkmann and Phan's guaranteed pay leans toward the lower end of what fighters make in the promotion.
But they're not struggling...
Cesar Gracie Responds to B.J. Penn's Angry Tweet
"BJ Penn has apparently not come to terms with the beating he received at the hands of Nick Diaz...."
"At some point it is up to those around you to protect you from yourself. To take you aside and let you know you are wrong and help save you from your folly. Unfortunately for Penn he is surrounded by "Yes Men" that are unwilling to do that. The outcome will be predictable, resulting in a fighter that will never push himself to the fullest and will always have excuses for his losses."
- Cesar Gracie
UFC 141 pay-per-view (PPV) buys for 'Lesnar vs Overeem' could top 750,000
Not exactly, but considering that UFC 141: "Lesnar vs. Overeem" was held on a Friday night and not Saturday, coupled with the fact that Brock Lesnar was facing Alistair Overeem, an international fighter who was making his Octagon debut, and suddenly 750k seems like a home run.
Dave Meltzer breaks it down in his Wrestling Observer newsletter:
Gina Carano Speaks on MMA Hiatus and Future Plans
MMA Fighting recently caught up with the elusive Gina Carano to discuss why she disappeared from the MMA landscape for the last two and a half years, her upcoming film, "Haywire," which opens in theatres nationwide on Jan. 20, how she landed the starring role in the film, whether she will ever fight again, and the emergence of Ronda Rousey as perhaps the new face of women's MMA.
Houston Alexander arrested for child abuse after boxing son due to talking dirty on Facebook
Police ticketed popular MMA fighter Houston Alexander for child abuse after the 39-year-old became upset with his 16-year-old and made him box with him.
Police reports say officers were called to a home near 44th and Maple for a domestic disturbance. The older Alexander told them he was having trouble with his teen son, who was "having explicit sexual contact on Facebook with some unknown females." The 16-year-old reportedly lied and "made him very upset."
According to police reports, "Alexander then retrieved boxing gloves and told his son, 'If you are going to lie to me, then we are going to box.'" The two reportedly boxed in the basement. Officers describe the teen as having a "slight bloody nose and pain to his right side."
Alexander was cited for misdemeanor child abuse.
Fight Path: Adlan Amagov goes from war-torn Chechnya to Strikeforce co-headliner
For his first eight years or so, Adlan Amagov liked to play outside, particularly soccer. He has four brothers and one sister, and the large family was close, living in the village of Sernovodsk in the Republic of Chechnya.
Then, when he was 8 years old, Amagov's school was bombed in the opening stages of the First Chechen War. Life changed.
"In 1994, it all stopped," Amagov told MMAjunke.com (www.mmajunkie.com) through interpreter and manager Sam Kardan.
-Interesting read on the guy that's fighting Robbie Lawler in January.
Winkeljohn Analyzes Jones Versus Hendo, Evans.
For his next title defense, UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones could face the winner of the Jan. 28 matchup between Rashad Evans and Phil Davis. He could also face Dan Henderson, who’s coming off a win in November over Mauricio “Shogun” Rua.
Jones’ trainer Mike Winkeljohn likes how the champion matches up against all three possibilities.
“They all present different challenges,” Winkeljohn told the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Savage Dog Show.” “I’m not sure which one’s the biggest. Dan’s big right hand is always a big challenge. [He’s] somebody that could be able to close that gap and find a hole and try to get to Jon’s chin. That’s probably the dilemma with him, but he’s small. I don’t think he can outwrestle Jon. I think Jon beats him everywhere. I don’t think he can hit [Jones] with that right hand.”
Glover Teixeira visa issues fixed
Glover Teixeira finally got a visa to fight in the U.S.. After months of waiting, the light heavyweight granted permission to enter the country and its destination should be the UFC.
"I knew that the visa should leave, but the interview was scheduled for today. All went well and my passport arrives 10 days with a visa, "he said," I'm very close to signing with the UFC. In fact they called me to fight in the UFC against Fabio Maldonado Rio, but I'm a hand injury and did not have time to train. Ed Smith talked to Joe Silva, who told me to rest assured that my place in the UFC would be guaranteed. In the coming weeks, I will meet with them and sign, everything is well underway. "
Glover explained his injury and revealed that hopes to fight in the first quarter of 2012.
"I hope my next fight is already in the UFC in February or March," he said, "I hurt in the fight against Ricco Rodriguez. My hand injury is not serious, it is only in cartilage, but bothers. So I'm trying not to be always bothering me about it. I think here about 20 days I can train, but I'm doing physical conditioning and everything else. I just can not punch, because it is precisely the part that bothers."
Nogueira explains why he didn’t knock Mir out.
After having the wino n his hands and wasting it trying to choke Frank Mira t UFC 140, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira had to pay a high price, since he was submitted with a kimura and broke his arm. The defeat might have been one of the most painful ones on the legend’s career, due to the way it happened, since Mir was the first one to ever knock the Brazilian out, and now the first to submit Rodrigo. On his official website, the tough guy talked about what happened and tried to explain it to his fans.
Rankings: Jones’ stunning rise in 2011.
At this time last year, Jon Jones was considered a bright prospect, but one who still had a ways to go before he could be considered a truly elite fighter. In the December 2010 Yahoo! Sports pound-for-pound Top 10 poll, Jones fell squarely in the “votes for others” category, with just four points.
Ishii, Monson Fights Represent the Last Phase of Fedor's Career
The best heavyweight in MMA history will make his return to the ring on New Year's Eve in Japan, when Fedor Emelianenko faces the former Olympic judo gold medalist Satoshi Ishii, and the fan reaction to that fight has been decidedly mixed.
On one hand, you have fans who loved seeing Fedor's glory days in Pride who figure that there's nothing wrong with seeing him back in Japan on New Year's Eve, which was once an annual tradition. On the other hand, you have fans who are disappointed that Fedor won't be facing a high-level opponent, as Ishii is just 4-1-1 in his MMA career and doesn't have anything close to the kind of MMA resume that Fedor has.
Junie Browning turns himself in to Phuket police
Junie Allen Browning visited a police station on Phuket late today in the latest twist to the American fugitive fighter's battle to tell his side of a brawl that started in a bar and continued at a local hospital.
Browning's surprise appearance with his wife Louna and a lawyer came at the Chalong Police Station in southern Phuket.
At the police station at the same time were others who participated in a now-notorious Phuket brawl.
The wounds inflicted in Browning's fight with tourists and staff 10 days ago at a bar on Phuket and in Patong Hospital, where the injured were all taken, were real. However, the varying accounts of what actually took place and who was the aggressor leave the facts yet to be decided.
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."