Ed Soares praises Cain Velasquez, blasts critics who say "Big Nog" is done
While manager Ed Soares is heartbroken that his friend and client Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (32-6-1 MMA, 3-2 UFC) got knocked out at this past weekend's UFC 110, he has nothing but respect for Nogueira's opponent, Cain Velasquez (8-0 MMA, 6-0 UFC).
For fans and media who lit up message boards with posts about the former PRIDE heavyweight champion's apparent career end, Soares has no love.
"It's real easy to talk about people when you're sitting behind a computer with a bag over your face because nobody knows who you are," Soares told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) on Tuesday as he fought a case of jet lag.
Velasquez turned in a huge upset in the UFC's sold-out Australian debut when he beat Nogueira to the punch in early standup exchanges. A little more than two minutes into the bout, Velasquez landed a concussive right hand that put Nogueira down and out.
UFC president Dana White said the Hispanic heavyweight is now on standby for a title shot against champion Brock Lesnar in the event that the winner of an interim heavyweight title match between Shane Carwin and Frank Mir is injured.
Soares, who manages a host of top Brazilian UFC fighters, said Nogueira was in the best shape of his life for the contest. "Big Nog" simply guessed wrong on Velasquez's game plan.
"Everyone in [Nogueira's] camp really believed that Cain was going to shoot and ground and pound from the guard," Soares said.
Soares offered none of the bluster that often comes from a losing fighter's camp in the wake of defeat and instead praised the young contender's skills and poise.
"It's a breath of fresh air to see a guy like Cain moving up the ranks," Soares said. "I see a lot of similarities in him and Nogueira as far as their work ethic and how humble they are. He's a great guy, and congratulations to him. He fought a great fight and came in with a great strategy.
While the loss was understandably disappointing for Nogueira, there was no hesitation from Soares about his fighter's next step.
"He gets back on the horse and fights some more people," Soares said. "It could happen to anybody."
Soares blasted those who said the loss meant Nogueira's career was essentially over.
"What are you talking about?" Soares asked. "Six months ago, Nogueira's back, and now he's done again?
"It's really easy to talk about these people when you're not the one putting your ass on the line and stepping into the octagon. Anybody that steps into the octagon, that can happen to."
Soares also had some harsh words for some of the critical fans who have said the loss shows Nogueira's career may now be over.
"These fans love the sport so much," Soares said. "Well, they should really analyze the things that they say, because at the end of the day, these guys are human, too. I read some of the stuff that people put on the Underground and forums, and people need to realize—whether it's Nogueira, whether it's one of our fighters or not one of our fighters—that these people are human too and they have feelings and it's not cool.
"It's easy for you to sit being your computer with a fake name and write stuff about people and say that 'he's done.' These people, for as much as they love the sport, they should be a little more compassionate about the people that go in there and put their ass on their line."
The focus should be on respect for both competitors, he said.
"Nogueira is a legend and Cain is a legend in the making," Soares said. "I'm upset that Nogueira lost, but to see Cain beat him and the respect that Cain gave him, you've gotta take your hat off to both of those guys."
Frank Mir issues apology after Brock Lesnar death comments
Frank Mir today issued an apology following an interview in which he said he wanted rival and UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar to be "the first person that dies due to octagon-related injuries."
The comments, which were made over the weekend to WXDX-FM, caused quick condemnation from an industry still trying to win mainstream acceptance.
In today's UFC.com release, UFC president Dana White stated he is "disappointed" by Mir's comments and that "he won't be saying anything like that again."
Mir, a longtime UFC fighter and former champ, was Lesnar's first opponent after the former WWE star signed with the UFC. Lesnar battered his opponent at the February 2008 fight before Mir secured a submission for the come-from-behind win. The trash-talk was plentiful prior to their July 2009 rematch, and it continued even after Lesnar scored a lopsided TKO win.
Although Mir has never bitten his tongue when it comes to Lesnar, many understandably thought he crossed a line when wishing death upon the current title-holder.
"I would like to apologize to Brock Lesnar, his family, the UFC and UFC fans for the stupid remarks," Mir stated. "I respect Brock, all the other fighters, and the sport of mixed martial arts. I'm sorry that I stepped out of line."
White assured it won't happen again.
"Frank's been with the UFC a long time, he's a two-time heavyweight champion and a commentator for the WEC," White stated. "I think his emotions are running high right now, he has a big fight coming up next month, and he's still upset about his loss to Lesnar. He's been talked to, he regrets what he said, and he won't be saying anything like that again."
Mir next fights at UFC 111 on March 27, when he meets Shane Carwin for an interim heavyweight title. Lesnar, sidelined since the second Mir fight due to a severe case of diverticulitis, is likely to face the winner in a title-unification bout. As MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) recently reported, the fight is likely to take place at UFC 116 on July 3.
CRO COP back in Croatia, says Rothwell at 112 is a maybe
I'm very sorry Ben had to pull out few days before the fight, but Dana said we might fight on UFC 112 in Abu Dhabi.
I admire Perosh for taking the fight. There were much better fighters there who turned down the fight but I understand them, they didn't have time to prepare.
I'm very sorry I've hurt Perosh. I tried to do the fight with as much consideration for him as I could. I avoided the ground cause i'm 7-8 kg's heavier then him. Even Dana asked me why I didn't finish im but I just couldn't do that to him when he was so bloody.
Mirko says it's possible he will take just a few days to rest and then he probably goes back to training cause he's maybe fight as soon as april.
Mirko also commented his old rival and friend Nog
Nog asked me before the fight what do I think Cain's game plan is gonna be. I told him Cain certainly won't go for his legs. Even his trainer said to me after the match that i guessed the game plan right. I'm sorry it ended that way for Nog, but he entered the fight a bit careless. He held his hands to high and naively enetered in punch exchange and in that kind of situation it's 50:50 and you need some luck.
UFC 111's Rory Markham implements fight-camp trash talk
UFC Rory Markham isn't just training to fight – he's training to fight trash talk.
At UFC 111, Markham (16-5 MMA, 1-1 UFC) faces a dynasty in the world of trash talking: a Diaz brother. Although Nate Diaz (11-5 MMA, 6-3 UFC) is the kinder, gentler version of older brother Nick Diaz, he also can talk a good game, especially during a fight.
Markham said he isn't going to be distracted by verbal warfare when they meet on March 27 in Newark, N.J., but just the same, his sparring partners have orders to talk smack during training sessions.
If Diaz decides to go there, the heavy-handed IFL veteran said it's fine with him.
Tim Sylvia: The Hinkle Fight Is Off
Seems Tim Sylvia can't get a fight these days. The former UFC Heavyweight Champion was to have faced Wes Sims at Adrenaline 4 on 3/20, but the Ohio Athletic Commission said no. "Non-competitive". Then they gave him Brandon Lee Hinkle. Off according to Sylvia. "Something else is in the works," promises the former Affliction headliner.
Sinosic: I Will Most Likely Need A Complete Shoulder Reconstruction
The King isn't dead, but he's likely not fighting again for a while. Australian MMA pioneer Elvis Sinosic, who had to miss his scheduled UFC 110 fight due to a shoulder injury, now says he'll likely need a complete shoulder reconstruction at some point. The full extent of the injury won't be known until he has an MRI and a process called Key Hole surgery.
UFC Quick Quote: Paulo Thiago 'not ready yet' to face Georges St. Pierre
Up-and-coming UFC welterweight Paulo Thiago talks to Tatame.com about his place in the 170-pound weight class. While many of the division's top fighters are arguing over who should be the next man to challenge current champion Georges St. Pierre, Thiago is content to work his way up the ladder and eliminate any doubts about becoming the next number one contender.
Anthony Perosh Scores Four-Fight Deal With the UFC
After being soundly thrashed by Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic on two days' notice at UFC 110, Anthony "The Hippo" Perosh has been signed to a four-fight deal by the UFC, according to a report on InfiniteMMA. Perosh sports a career record of 10-6, a UFC record of 0-3 (including losses to Jeff Monson and Christian Wellisch in 2006) and victories over a bunch of random Australians.
Lyoto Machida: “It wasn’t Minotauro’s day”
UFC light heavyweight champion, Lyoto Machida usually trains with Rodrigo “Minotauro” Nogueira at Black House gym in the US. But the karate fighter wasn’t happy at all with the UFC 110 main event, between Nogueira and the undefeated Cain Velasquez.
Werdum: “Wanderlei is more mature”
Former UFC heavyweight fighter, Fabricio Werdum helped on Wanderlei Silva’s training to fight Michael Bisping at UFC 110. In an exclusive interview to TATAME.com, the Strikeforce fighter commenter the “Axe Murderer’s” victory.
Corey Hill Returns To Action On 3/20
Corey Hill's comeback trail continues on March 20 at Xtreme Combat League: Evolution in Michigan, where he'll face Mark Hoist in a 5-round fight for the XCL Lightweight Championship. Hill said he came out of his 1/23 return fight pain-free but was still a little critical of his performance.
UFC Debuts Live on Big Screen in HD with UFC 111
For the first time in UFC® history, UFC fans can head to their local movie theater and take in all the action in the Octagon™, live and broadcast in high definition on the big screen starting with UFC 111: St- Pierre vs. Hardy on Saturday, March 27 at 10:00 p.m. Eastern / 7:00 p.m. Pacific.
Dana White, UFC President, today announced the UFC has closed a deal with NCM Fathom to present a series of live UFC fights in more than 300 select movie theaters nationwide, as well as plans to have UFC fighters host screenings in various markets. Tickets are available to this special in-theater event at www.FathomEvents.com and presenting theater box offices. For a complete list of theater locations and prices, please visit the web site (theaters and participants are subject to change).
“This is an opportunity to provide our fans with another cool way to watch UFC programming on the big-screen, live, in high-def and in surround sound,” said White. “UFC 111 has a stacked undercard and St-Pierre vs. Hardy and Mir vs. Carwin are both title fights, so this is the perfect event to kick off our new deal with NCM Fathom.”...
Bonnar & Soszynski Want Rematch
Stephan Bonnar (11-7) and Krzysztof Soszynski (19-9-1) were locked in a closely contested fight at UFC 110 when an accidental collision of heads opened up a cut on Bonnar that forced an end to the fight at 1:04 of the final round.
Typically when a fight is stopped in the third round due to an unintentional foul the judges decide the outcome according to the scorecards, but Soszynski was awarded the TKO win despite the replay indicating the laceration was caused by a head butt.
At the UFC 110 post-fight press conference, Bonnar said he wanted a rematch with “The Polish Experiment.”
“I want to finish the fight man. It was only a few minutes left, right? And it was a head butt,” Bonnar told the media. “The worst part is – take a close up on this head – this cut is actually shaped like a ‘K’ for Krzysztof, so now I’ve got to walk around with a scar in the shape of a ’K’ on it, so I’m pissed off. Yeah, I’d love a rematch.”
Soszynski welcomed another fight with “The Ultimate Fighter” season one finalist.
“I agree with Stephan. If the UFC wants it and the fans want it, I think we should finish what we started, but it’s up to the UFC,” stated Soszynski.
The loss was Bonnar’s third in a row while Soszynski got back on the winning side of things after losing to Brandon Vera. He had racked up a three-fight win streak before the Vera loss.
THQ VP: There’s Nothing In EA Sports MMA To Entice You To Buy It
EA, which is a very well known company and who makes big sports games, they couldn’t get our license. They were not fans of the UFC, they were not fans of mixed-martial arts–and they decided to change their business plan and became a “me-too” company and create a “me too” fighter. They couldn’t get what they really wanted, so they tried to create a game that would compete with us. We have a lot of respect for them, but there’s nothing in that game that would entice me or anyone I know that’s an MMA fan to buy it. If you want stars, the best organization, the best graphics, you’re going to stick with what you bought last year because this year’s game is even better. And the fact that we didn’t cheat or cut corners in 2010, I think our fans are going to be very happy.
—THQ Executive VP Don Gold, in an interview with , claiming EA Sports MMA can’t compete with UFC Undisputed 2010
Wanderlei Says Preparation Key To His Rebirth
"This victory is very, very important for me at this point in my career," Silva said when talking about the importance of the fight. "The UFC is the best event in the world, every fight here is tough. Bisping was a great opponent tonight, other guys come to fight in the UFC, all guys are tough guys."
Dan Hardy: Koscheck and Fitch had their chance against GSP -- and they got beat up
"[Koscheck's] just bitching because I’m in this position and he’s not. There are a lot of guys out there and I know Jon Fitch said a few things the other day as well. Everyone’s entitled to their opinion and I’m sure those guys feel like they’re in a better position than me to contend for the belt, but they don’t know me and they don’t know what experience I’ve got and the fights I’ve come through to get to this stage."