The Offense of ‘Intelligent Defense’
It didn't deserve a MacArthur fellowship, but I don't see anything defensively dull or dimwitted about Josh Koscheck turning his hips and extending his arm to shield Paulo Thiago from pouncing on him Saturday at UFC 95.
Brian Cobb butt scooting and attempting a weak double-leg doesn't warrant a Nobel Prize in defense either, but I would hardly call it brainless or idiotic.
Unfortunately, it seems they still weren't "intelligent" enough.
Let me be clear about what this is, or more pertinently, what it isn't. This is not an assertion that any of the evening's contentious proceedings would've wound up with a different victor if allowed to continue. This is not a criticism of any of the stoppages at UFC 95, nor is it an indictment of officials Dan Miragliotta, Kevin Mulhall, Leon Roberts and Marc Goddard.
In fact, given the current climate of refereeing in MMA, all of the event's referees did their jobs to the letter and their stoppages were just.
Instead, this is an inquiry into whether the refereeing standards in MMA are appropriate. UFC 95 was not an assortment of irresponsible stoppages but an illustration of the intensifying issue of what constitutes a justifiable end to a fight, as the margin between winning and losing in MMA has become hideously deformed.
Great editorial by Jordan Breen
Josh Koscheck Is Not Happy
Josh Koscheck is clearly not happy about the stoppage in his UFC 95 fight with Paulo Thiago. In this backstage video from The Telegraph he insists his hands were up, his eyes were open, and his guard was ready. His cornermen seem to feel the early stoppage was part of a trend on the night -- perhaps a dig at "regional referees" in the U.K.?
UFC 95 - Results, Fighter Bonuses & Attendance Figures
Diego Sanchez def. Joe Stevenson via Decision (Unanimous)
Dan Hardy def. Rory Markham via KO (Punch) at 1:09 of Round 1
Nate Marquardt def. Wilson Gouveia via TKO (Strikes) at 3:10 of Round 3
Demian Maia def. Chael Sonnen via Submission (Triangle Choke) at 2:37 of Round 1
Paulo Thiago def. Josh Koscheck via KO (Punch) at 3:29 of Round 1
Terry Etim def. Brian Cobb via TKO (Strikes) at 0:10 of Round 2
Junior Dos Santos def. Stefan Struve via TKO (Strikes) at 0:54 of Round 1
Evan Dunham def. Per Eklund via TKO (Strikes) at 2:13 of Round 1
Mike Ciesnolevicz def. Neil Grove via Submission (Heel Hook) at 1:03 of Round 1
Paul Kelly def. Troy Mandaloniz via Decision (Unanimous)
UFC 95 AWARDS AND BONUSES
(All awards include a $40,000 bonus for each fighter.)
UFC 95 Fight of the Night
– Diego Sanchez and Joe Stevenson
UFC 95 Knockout of the Night
– Paulo Thiago
UFC 95 Submission of the Night
– Demian Maia
This was Demian Maia's fourth "Submission of the Night" in five UFC fights.
The UFC treated fans watching UFC 95 on Setanta Sports to all 10 bouts on Saturday night in England. Even the British fans that weren't able to attend were able to see their countrymen fight, most of which faired well.
The fans that did make it to the O2 Arena treated the UFC to a strong attendance of 13,268, totaling ticket revenue of slightly more than $1 million U.S. Both are considered strong numbers during tough economic times, especially with a fight card sans a championship bout.
Like never before: A conversation with UFC lightweight Diego Sanchez
UFC 95 “Sanchez vs. Stevenson” is set to go down tonight starting at 9 pm ET from the O2 Arena in London, England. Headlining the event opposite Joe Stevenson will be Diego Sanchez, a former welterweight contender making his much-anticipated debut at 155 lbs.
The inaugural Ultimate Fighter (TUF) middleweight champion had resisted the move in recent past, especially since he was knocking on the door of a potential 170-pound title shot with a win over Thiago Alves at UFC 90: “Silva vs. Cote” back in October.
Sanchez had to withdraw from the bout, however, because of a rib injury. Alves went on to strafe last minute replacement and top player in the division, Josh Koscheck, to score a convincing unanimous decision win.
Dana White talks Greasegate, UFC 97, Toronto and 100
LONDON - UFC president Dana White says Canadian fighter Georges St. Pierre was illegally greased during his UFC 94 win over B.J. Penn last month.
"Do I think that he got greased? Yeah, I do," White told The Canadian Press prior to the UFC 95 weigh-in Friday at the Dominion Theatre. "Absolutely, 100 per cent, I think that that guy was rubbing grease on him.
"Do I think Georges was trying to cheat? Absolutely not at all. But that cornerman was rubbing grease on him. You cannot do that."
Dana Talks UFC 99, 100, More
In an interview in the UK earlier today, Dana White discussed some of the many plans in the works for UFC 99 & 100 later this year. They include GSP vs. Thiago Alves, possibly BJ Penn vs. Kenny Florian for the UFC Lightweight Title and Ryoto (Lyoto) Machida finally getting his Light Heavyweight Title shot.
McCarthy talks Vaselinegate and Strikeforce
“Big” John McCarthy talks Vaselinegate and Strikeforce’s purchase of Pro-Elite
As a referee in mixed martial arts for over a decade, “Big” John gave his thoughts on the recent controversy revolving around Vaselinegate with Georges St. Pierre and B.J. Penn:
It has been a problem for a long time. It is one that we [referees] have addressed before. As much as people want to make of it; I don’t ever want to suggest that the performance by GSP in that fight was aided by Vaseline....that is ridiculous! His performance was not based at all by having Vaseline on him. He beat B.J. Penn soundly and because of the mistake by someone in his corner people try to make it a bigger deal than it really was. We stopped allowing fighters to have their corner men apply Vaseline to them in the locker-room because we did find that some people were applying it to areas that were illegal. You have commissioners in the back that work both MMA and Boxing matches and sometimes those lines get crossed because there are some differences between the two that sometimes get overlooked. So that is why the fighters get there pre-fight Vaseline at the cage now. This allows the referee or an inspector to watch the cut-man or cornerman when it is applied. Even now though there are times that Vaseline still ends up on a fighter’s back by accident. I don’t think it was intentional or an attempt to cheat but I agree it should have been stopped by the inspector and checked to make sure who ever was applying the Vaseline to GSP’s face didn’t touch him anywhere else. I think the situation was handled well and it wasn’t like they were rubbing handfuls of Vaseline all over his chest and back. I think it has been blown out of proportion and that it didn’t have any effect on the fight. The new rules established by the UFC should stop these incidents from occurring in the future but there is still going to be the chance that the cut-man accidentally touches the fighter somewhere other than his face. Its just human error and not cheating. As far as B.J. goes, I am sure he is upset that it happened but I highly doubt he is going to use that as an excuse for why he lost the fight.
Nightmare comes to UFC 2009 Undisputed
Diego "Nightmare" Sanchez is the latest confirmed addition to the UFC 2009 Undisputed roster. Video and still Images on IGN.com.
On a side note- I can't remember the last time I was so impatient for a game to get released. Hurry up already!
Into The Crow's Nest - An Exclusive Conversation With David Loiseau
411's Todd Bergman recently had the opportunity to speak with UFC veteran David "The Crow" Loiseau. Among the topics discussed were David's past UFC fights, his return to the Octagon, training, Evan Tanner, the GSP/BJ Penn situation, and the origin of his nickname among other things. This is a candid interview from one of the world's most popular and exciting fighters.
Yes, I am the guy who did this interview!
Etim Doing His Homework On Newcomer Brian Cobb
Terry Etim may be fighting a relatively unknown quantity in the shape of UFC debutant Brian Cobb on Saturday night, but he wasn’t born yesterday.
Cobb - who has a solid wrestling background and has won most of his fights by submission - told UFC.com yesterday that he is looking to stand and bang with Thai boxer Etim on Saturday night, but the Liverpool fighter is not buying that for a minute.