Escudero Knocks Off Nover - New Ultimate Fighter
Phillipe Nover may have been christened the 155-pound Anderson Silva by UFC president Dana White, but it was Efrain Escudero that earned the designation of The Ultimate Fighter in the 155-pound class at Saturday night's Ultimate Fighter Finale.
Escudero used his All-American collegiate wrestling skills to great effect throughout the fight, continually ducking Nover's striking attempts and taking the newly promoted Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt down to the mat. Although Nover was aggressive from his back in searching for submissions, Escudero would control the majority of the positioning and score with his repeated ground and pound attacks.
"I knew Phillipe was a very good striker, so I knew he was going to come out with that strong right," recounted Escudero after the fight. "So as soon as he threw it man, I shot right under it."
Darth Bader Strikes Back - New Ultimate Fighter
He was an All-American wrestler while competing at Arizona State University, but now Ryan "Darth" Bader can add "Ultimate Fighter" season 8 champion to his list of accolades after putting away Vinicius Magalhaes in the first round of their match-up on Saturday night.
Coming into the fight as an underdog for probably the first time ever in his professional career, Bader took it upon himself to impress in his finale match-up and did exactly that.
With his wrestling background and Magalhaes' extensive jiu-jitsu pedigree, the light heavyweight finals saw no ground action, but plenty of stand-up.
The fighters traded kicks early, and both showed good footwork to stay in punching range, but each respected the other's power.
It was a big overhand right from Bader that glanced off of Magalhaes' head that sent the Brazilian crashing to the canvas, rocked and in obvious trouble.
Browning Gets Win, Apologises To Mir
Taking the show as a learning lesson, Browning has obviously grown up since the filming finished. He even offered an apology to former coach, Frank Mir, who has been openly critical of his former student on the show in recent weeks.
"I gave (Frank) Mir a hard time on the show. I just want to apologize to everybody, everyone watching and stuff," said Browning. "Mir was actually an awesome coach. It was more my fault. I don't think I would have put up with myself either. I apologize to Mir and the rest of Mir's team, they were awesome coaches."
TUF 8 Finale - Results (**SPOILERS**)
-Efrain Escudero def. Phillipe Nover by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
-Ryan Bader def. Vinicius Magalhaes by TKO (Punches) at 2:18, R1
-Anthony Johnson def. Kevin Burns by KO (Kick) at :28, R3
-Wilson Gouveia def. Jason MacDonald by Submission (Verbal) at 2:18, R1
-Junie Browning def. David Kaplan by Submission (Armbar) at 1:32, R2
-Krzysztof Soszynski def. Shane Primm by Submission (Kimura) at 3:27, R2
-Eliot Marshall def. Jules Bruchez by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 1:27, R1
-Tom Lawlor def. Kyle Kingsbury by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
-Shane Nelson def. George Roop by Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
-Rolando Delgado def. John Polakowski by Submission (Guillotine Choke) at 2:18, R1
Big Nog and Wand come together in Vegas
Along with coaches Amaury Bitetti and Rodrigo Artilheiro, Rodrigo Minotauro set off this Friday (December 12) for Las Vegas, where the final of the eighth season of the The Ultimate Fighter reality show will take place. In the USA, Minota will only return after his December 27 challenge against Frank Mir. And for this UFC fight to determine who will challenge Brock Lesnar for the definitive UFC heavyweight belt, the Brazilian will count on a big-name buddy: Wanderlei Silva.
Krzysztof Soszynski: Junie Browning wanted to be worse than Chris Leben
“To be honest with you, he did everything for show. It was a whole joke to him. Basically he told me the very first day we met - and before our fights to get into the house - he basically said ‘If I get into this house, I’m going to be the crazy guy. I’m going to get out of hand, I’m going to get out of control, I’m going to pull whatever I can just to get ratings, to become the character that I want to become.’ He said he was going to become the worst Chris Leben ever.”
Magalhaes Sets Sights On Darth Bader, TUF Title
Vinny Magalhaes’ “TUF” experience didn’t start as planned, but everything worked out for the best anyways.
When teams were being selected for the eighth season of “The Ultimate Fighter,” Magalhaes assumed he’d be on coach Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira’s red team. Nogueira and blue team coach Frank Mir agreed--it was a “Brazilian thing.”
Then Mir got control of the first pick, and everything changed. Krzysztof Soszynski was the first blue shirt, and when Nogueira picked “golden boy” Ryan Bader first, Mir snatched up Magalhaes.
Looking back on it now, the UFC newcomer is glad he didn’t put on the red shirt.
Lesnar blasts UFC toward record year
When the dust settled on an unusual year, the biggest news of 2008 was the emergence of Lesnar as the year’s pay-per-view king. Lesnar’s 2.2 million buys over three fights made him the most-watched PPV fighter in 2008. His total was the second highest total in UFC history, trailing only Tito Ortiz, who did 2.25 million in headlining three events .
TUF 8 Finale Weigh-ins
I'm a little surprised this wasn't posted already
Main Card Bouts:
-Phillipe Nover (155) vs. Efrain Escudero (156)
-Ryan Bader (205) vs. Vinicius Magalhaes (205)
-Kevin Burns (171) vs. Anthony Johnson (171)
-Jason MacDonald (184) vs. Wilson Gouveia (189)***
-Junie Browning (156) vs. Dave Kaplan (156)
-Krzysztof Soszynski (205) vs. Shane Primm (202)
-Eliot Marshall (203) vs. Jules Bruchez (205)
-Kyle Kingsbury (205) vs. Tom Lawlor (204)
-George Roop (153) vs. Shane Nelson (156)
-John Polakowski (152) vs. Roli Delgado (155)
***According to UFC.com, for safety reasons, the Nevada State Athletic Commission won't allow Gouveia to make a second weight cutting attempt. The bout will go on at a catch weight of 189 pounds, and Gouveia will forfeit 20% of his purse to MacDonald.
"Poor Officiating" and Inexperienced Competitors
I've been covering MMA heavily since 2002 and there's only been one broken limb. Tim Sylvia's arm was snapped by Frank Mir at UFC 48. Most fighters know when to tap in a dangerous situation or the official must protect the fighter from his own ego getting in the way of safety. You had a lethal mix on live television last night with an inexperienced fighter and a tentative official.
I hate to dump on a guy who just had his arm broken but why was Razak Al Hassan given a fight in the UFC? By the looks of it, he might not make the cut in a 32-man field to get on the The Ultimate Fighter. He shouldn't be in there with someone like Steve Cantwell and he definitely shouldn't have been fighting on the televised portion of the card. If Al Hassan is not smart or experienced enough to tap then referee Mario Yamasaki had to err on the side of caution. He's way too experienced to allow that to happen to a fighter.
Efrain Escudero to honor his late father with TUF finale victory
Props: NBC Sports
“I wanted to stay and be with my family. The UFC is always going to be there, and it was a bad moment for my family. I got the invitation for [The Ultimate Fighter], and my dad made me promise that if anything were to happen, I would go. He wanted me to go in and give it 110 percent with no regrets. I’m dedicating the whole show to my father. My goal is to get on the mic, and the only way to get on the mic is by beating Phillipe. Then I’ll have a chance to tell everyone why I did this show. I want to tell everyone that this whole show, and everything I’ve done is because of my dad.”
Injuries From ''Fights For The Troops'' (Hill out for 12-18 months)
Sportsline.com has the rundown of the injuries from last night's action starting with the word on Corey Hill:
Once the fight was stopped, officials rushed into the ring to attend to Hill. The show was delayed for approximately 20-25 minutes while medical personnel placed Hill's leg in an immobilizer, administered a pain-killing injection on the spot, and placed him on a stretcher.
Afterward, CBSSports.com overheard a medical official with the North Carolina Boxing Commission indicate that Hill had suffered a broken tibia and that he was scheduled to undergo emergency surgery. It is believed that Hill's recovery could take between 12-18 months.
More about Yoshida, Goulet, Al Hassan
Anderson Silva Off UFC 95
Anderson Silva has informed the UFC that he won't be ready to fight by UFC 95 in London. This leaves the UFC in a really bad position, as they once again have a London show where they have to scramble for a main event, and it's hard to think of anything they can come up with for a show that is scheduled for PPV.
UFC 91 PPV Buys Announced
It was the biggest PPV in UFC history...almost. According to Dave Metlzer of Wrestling Observer, UFC 91 did a reported 1,010,000 PPV buys. If true, that would make it #2 all-time among UFC PPV buys, just 40,000 behind the record-holder: UFC 66.
Thales Leites Wants Anderson Silva
DreamFighters.com: Dana White has made public that you are just about next in line to fight for the title against Anderson Silva - What do you have to say about that?
WE STILL WORKING ON THAT. I’VE BEEING DOING MY BEST IN MY FIGHTS AND I’VE COMING FROM FIVE WINS SO I THING I DESERVE THAT.
Juanito Ibarra: "I have the formula; Wanderlei can beat Rampage easy"
Juanito Ibarra talks about Silva-Jackson and a little more insight on Rampage and the UFC.
On Silva vs. Jackson...
"I have the formula that can make Wanderlei Silva beat Rampage easy; easy! And I also have the formula where I think Rampage can beat Wanderlei Silva easy and I’ve always said that. I don’t care how many times Wanderlei beat Rampage and how he beat him, I just know this and I told people because they were telling me Wanderlei was asking for me. I ain’t believing nothing until I get the phone call from him. Otherwise, it’s just a big rumor to me. I’m not trying to get off of that, I’m just saying, it’s a similar situation of knowing both parties and knowing their weaknesses."
More on Rampage...
"These kid’s get paid nothing and in our case, we turned down a million dollar movie deal (Wolverine) just to say, 'Hey Dana, we appreciate you. We appreciate the UFC.' And then you get Dana when all of this Rampage stuff comes out saying he’s not a fan of me. He doesn’t know how much I sacrificed and we sacrificed to make him happy. He fought 1 time and the year before, we fought 3 times. The UFC did comply with us on a lot of stuff realizing that Rampage was fighting outside of the country in the UFC. They made the adjustments as far as PPV money and bonuses that we get and that was cool. It was a headache for me and I made it happen, but then again, here is a kid that could be a national star, Rampage Jackson, and you have him fighting internationally to save your television deals and I’m just trying to get his life in control. He’s making money and I’m trying to teach him how to save it and mentoring this guy and showing him all of the demons he should be looking out for and they were just throwing stuff at us as fast as we could blink."
On Cheick Kongo fighting Lesnar...
"I’m not taking nothing from Brock Lesnar, but my kid Cheick Kongo was supposed to fight Brock Lesnar and Kongo was injured and Joe Silva told me, 'Hey we need him.' I told him he was injured, but I flew him out to Connecticut to my specialist doctor, who is also Shaquille O’ Neal’s doctor. He evaluated him for 3 or 4 days and said, 'This kid can’t fight.' He had separations in his shoulder and I told Kongo that he couldn’t fight a guy walking around at 310. He’s a big guy, but this guy is going to fight at 270. Kongo fights at 230 so he had to be at 100%. I think Kongo had a better chance, matchup and style-wise, than Randy did against Lesnar because of his long legs, arms, kicks and all of that."
More in the full interview: