10 Questions for Lorenzo Fertitta
He’s the majority owner of the most successful fight promotion in the world -- yet Lorenzo Fertitta rarely takes centerstage.
However, to commemorate UFC 100, fans were treated to a special one-hour question and answer session with the reserved billionaire casino owner last Saturday at the UFC Expo in Las Vegas. With the fans at the helm, here are some highlights:
We have “The Ultimate Fighter” for the 155ers on Spike TV, but what about something for the 135- and 145-pounders on Versus?
Fertitta: We talked a lot about developing some sort of reality show for Versus. Now, we certainly don’t want to copy “The Ultimate Fighter” and what we’ve done on Spike, but we have been working on concepts where we can try to find new talent, bring new talent back to the WEC. You will see something happen where we have some kind of a show that will be a breeding ground for new talent to get into the WEC.
There’s an online petition called FedorChant.com, where a thousand people are going to cheer “Fedor” (Emelianenko) during the main event (at UFC 100). Is that going to put more pressure on you, and just the fact that Fedor doesn’t want to sign because of sambo, was that something that you’d ever overlook?
Drew McFedries vs. Tomasz Drwal at UFC 103
A middleweight contest between Drew McFedries and Tomasz Drawl is on tap for UFC 103 on Sept. 19 in Dallas, MMAWeekly.com has learned from sources close to the fight.
The UFC has yet to make its second trip to the Lone Star State official, but the American Airlines Center is expected to host.
UFC 100: In defense of Brock Lesnar
At UFC 100 on July 11, Brock Lesnar soundly defeated Frank Mir in front of a hostile crowd and millions of viewers at home to unify the UFC heavyweight championship.
The former WWE superstar spent eighteen months preparing for that moment. In fact, since his debut at UFC 81 in February of 2007, Lesnar has done nothing but listen to how green he is.
And how he couldn’t finish Heath Herring at UFC 87 despite the fact that the “Texas Crazy Horse” has no ground game. Or how he was losing to Randy Couture at UFC 91 but scored the win because Father Time robbed “The Natural” of his reaction speed and Lesnar has giant mitts.
Leading up to his rematch with Mir, everything about Brock was how awful he was technically, how preposterous it was that a 3-1 wrestler was championship material. Mir even offered to train him after the event to help him become better.
Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic Signs Three-Fight Deal With UFC
Heavyweight veteran Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic has signed a three-fight contract with the UFC, ending weeks of speculation about whether the popular Croatian fighter would return to the UFC or ink a deal with Japan-based DREAM.
UFC co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta announced the signing on Saturday during a Q&A with fans at the UFC Fan Expo in Las Vegas before UFC 100.
UFC 100 was a Flop Outside of the Octagon
Over the last year, Dana White and the UFC spent countless hours and a tremendous amount of money to promote UFC 100 – which was billed as the most important night in Mixed Martial Arts history.
There were countdowns on both Yahoo! and Spike TV leading up to the event. Even ESPN – which had previously given MMA very little coverage in the past – spent all week leading up to UFC 100 promoting the spectacle.
I had waited months to see UFC 100. Yet when it was over I turned to the room full of people I was watching it with and asked, “That was it?”
UFC 100 was no different than any other UFC pay-per-view event. It was a few fights, they showed me Turkish from the movie Snatch sitting in the crowd and then I was given the disturbing mental image of Brock Lesnar mounting his wife.
The new UFC Octagon girl is…
Forty beautiful women spiced up the action inside the UFC Fan Expo at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center Saturday in hopes of becoming the next UFC Octagon Girl.
After three rounds of judging, including a sultry bikini competition and a sportswear round, Las Vegas resident Natasha Wicks won the contest.
In Search of the Elusive Mainstream
For many fans, mainstream press coverage of MMA is some kind of validation. Having been looked down upon for years for enjoying such a violent sport, seeing it on Sportscenter makes them think everyone else was just late to the party. Going mainstream is now the biggest straw man out there; it's a debate-shifting tactic more than anything else, and bringing it up assumes that going mainstream is actually an option. The idea that ESPN would one day have an "MMA tonight" and anchors of SportsCenter would discuss it alongside football and basketball as an equal was always a preposterous notion. Take away the two most controversial events at UFC 100, and you still have a blood-soaked mat starting the show, a man who couldn't open his eye and could barely walk after his fight, a vicious one-punch knockout, and a main event comprised of one man headlocking the other and beating his head in. After all this, do we really believe it is Brock Lesnar's antics that will keep this sport from going mainstream?
UFC 100 Salaries, Lesnar, St. Pierre get tops
UFC 100's two successful title defenders, heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar and welterweight title-holder Georges St. Pierre, each earned event-high $400,000 paydays from the July 11 event.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today requested and received the list of official disclosed salaries from Nevada State Athletic Commission executive director Keith Kizer.
UFC 100, which took place at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, had a total disclosed payroll of $1,790,000.
Quote of the day : Frank Mir "Within Half-An-Inch Of Catching Brock Lesnar"
"When Lesnar didn't come after me, that really threw me off." "He didn't land any punches on his feet, did he?" "I didn't expect him to run." "He ran like a lightweight. ... It's my fault. I should have trained that he would be intimidated from the standup" fighting position."
This is pretty delusional to me. Does anyone agree with this. I just didn't see it the same way Mir does, and I think he's kidding himself.
Did the judges ‘rob’ Alan Belcher at UFC 100 with Yoshihiro Akiyama decision win?
Ringside announcer Joe Rogan thought so, voicing his disappointment during the pay-per-view (PPV) telecast and following it up on his Twitter.com page in all caps:
“Alan Belcher got ******* ROBBED.”
“The Talent” and “Sexyama” went toe-to-toe for three fulls in their middleweight showdown at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, last night (July 11, 2009). It was an exciting back-and-forth battle with both fighters exchanging several hard shots
GSP ADMITS INJURY WAS VERY BAD DURING TITLE WIN
On Saturday night, Georges St. Pierre took another step towards proving that he belongs in the same sentence as other legends of sports history such as Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky, and Muhammed Ali. But when he faced Thiago Alves at UFC 100, he spent almost half the bout with an injury that would have put most others on the sideline, asking for the fight to be stopped.
UFC 100 Wrap-Up: The Brock Lesnar Era Begins
Brock Lesnar doesn't just stop offense. He stops all movement from underneath. He keeps hips from swiveling and shoulders pinned to the mat. He uses a combination of size to blanket his opponent, strength to control them and natural athletic power to throw short yet crushing strikes in tight range. The secret to Bruce Lee's "one inch punch" was just physics: can you generate enough force in the one inch margin to knock a man off of his feet? For Lesnar, it's a similar circumstance. Even with Mir's head cradled in one arm and the other arm hand fighting with Mir, Lesnar needs only a few inches to land a substantive punch that won't turn the lights out, but quickly accumulates the punishment. Mir previously criticized Lesnar's ground and pound for not creating enough distance when he strikes, but if your power is so massive that you require nothing more than a marginal space, what can one reasonably do to defend?
The Appeal of Georges St. Pierre Demands a Move to Middleweight
There's something special about Georges St. Pierre. Every time he fights, I'm left in awe by his performance. Last night he fought a 200 pound man who Josh Koscheck could not take down. Mohammed Lawal, an excellent wrestler in his own right, did not think St. Pierre would be able to take Alves down. He was wrong. St. Pierre was able to take him down almost at will, and did it even with a bad groin injury in the last two rounds.
St. Pierre's run has been filled with fights that raised doubts. Would he crack under the pressure against Serra? Could he handle Fitch's tenacity and wrestling ability? Could he deal with Penn's quicker boxing and legendary jiu-jitsu? Could he take down a guy nobody else could, and if not how could he deal with a superior striker on paper? Since his loss to Matt Serra, he's answered every question with a resounding yes.
Shane Carwin: Brock Lesnar Is "Lame"
Shane Carwin blogs about Brock Lesnar's post fight antics:
"I cannot say I was surprised by anything that night other then Brock's reaction to beating a very tough Frank Mir. Frank is a legend and a great guy who got out powered not out classed. The sponsor issue, you need to talk to your manager not the fans or Dana."
UFC Fan Expo 2009 draws estimated 30,000 attendees, Hawaiian UFC event may do same
A centerpiece of the UFC's historical UFC 100 event was the organization's first-ever fan expo.
Part trade show, part grappling competition, part meet and greet, UFC president Dana White said at the UFC 100 post-event press conference that UFC Fan Expo 2009 drew an estimated 30,000 to 50,000 attendees.
And with a few potential stadium shows on the horizon, those figures may not be the last time a group that large gathers in the name of a UFC event.
Sean Sherk vs. Gleison Tibau agree to UFC 103 bout; Rich Franklin still possible headliner
A lightweight contest before former champion Sean Sherk (33-4-1 MMA, UFC) and Gleison Tibau (12-7 MMA, 5-4 7-4 UFC), who will make his 10th appearance in the octagon, is nearly set for UFC 103.
A source close to one of the fighters over the weekend told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) verbal agreements are in place and bout agreements are expected to be signed shortly.
UFC 103 takes place Sept. 19 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas. Although not official, Rich Franklin is expected to headline the event.