Will Fans Benefit from Daniel Cormier’s Move to 205?

Daniel-Bormier
Looks like the Heavyweight Division found its Jon Fitch. Clinch, smother, pop…clinch, smother, pop…clinch, smother, pop…and wait until Bruce Buffer announces the unanimous decision.

The only bright spot in Cormier’s recent win was the genuine disappointment he expressed regarding his performance; it’s nice to see a fighter be honest when their potential isn’t met. That being said, I’m starting to wonder if the perception surrounding Cormier’s ceiling is anything other than hype. Don’t get me wrong, DC is a spectacular fighter capable of stunting anyone’s game; I just wonder if this style is the best we can hope for now that Cormier has entered the shark infested waters of the UFC.

Cormier’s career rocketed into orbit with six straight stoppages, but since then, he’s pocketed just two—a brilliant knockout of Bigfoot Silva and a TKO victory over somebody named Dion Staring. Anemic performances against Frank Mir and Roy Nelson have slowed the Cormier Hype Train, but a drop down to Light Heavyweight will provide more than enough intrigue to keep the cars in motion. I suspect Cormier’s current style is a byproduct of fighting opponents much larger than himself. Hopefully an inspired run at 205 will produce the type of excitement that Cormier knows—and fans hope—he’s capable of.

UFC 166: Velasquez vs. Dos Santos 3; Dizz Picks and Results

Saturday, October 19, 2013
Where: Toyota Center, Houston, TX
Viewership: Pay-Per-View, Fox Sports 1, Facebook

Attendance: 17,238
Live Gate: $2.5 million

Main Card (PPV, 10pm EST)

Champ Cain Velasquez vs. #1 Junior Dos Santos (UFC Heavyweight Title)
Dizz picks: Velasquez via decision 
Results: Cain Velasquez def Junior Dos Santos via TKO (strikes) 5th Round; 3:09

#2 Daniel Cormier vs. #9 Roy Nelson *Knockout of the Night*
Dizz picks: Nelson via (T)KO
Results: Daniel Cormier def Roy Nelson via unanimous decision (30-27 x 3)

#2 Gilbert Melendez vs. Diego Sanchez *Fight of the Night*
Dizz picks: Sanchez via decision 
Results: Gilbert Melendez def Diego Sanchez via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28 x 2)
Fight of the Night: $60,000 to each

Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Shawn Jordan
Dizz picks: Gonzaga via (T)KO
Results: Gabriel Gonzaga def Shawn Jordan via TKO (strikes) 1st Round; 1:33

#2 John Dodson vs. Darrell Montague
Dizz picks: Dodson via (T)KO
Results: John Dodson def. Darrell Montague via knockout (stikes) 1st Round; 4:15
Knockout of the Night: $60,000

Preliminary Card (Fox Sports 1, 8pm EST)

#9 Tim Boetsch vs. C.B. Dollaway
Dizz picks: Dollaway via decision 
Results: Tim Boetsch def. C.B. Dollaway via split decision (30-26 x 2, 28-29)

Hector Lombard vs. Nate Marquardt
Dizz picks: Lombard via (T)KO
Results: Hector Lombard def. Nate Marquardt via knockout (strikes) 1st Round; 1:48

#2 Sarah Kaufman vs. Jessica Eye
Dizz picks: Eye via decision 
Results: Jessica Eye def. Sarah Kaufman via split decision (29-28 x 2, 28-29)

K.J. Noons vs. George Sotiropoulos
Dizz picks: Noons via decision 
Results: K.J. Noons def. George Sotiropoulos via unanimous decision (30-28, 29-28 x 2)

Preliminary Card (Facebook, 6pm EST)

T.J. Waldburger vs. Adlan Amagov *Submission of the Night*
Dizz picks: Waldburger via submission 
Results: Adlan Amagov def. T.J. Waldburger via knockout (strikes) 1st Round; 3:45

Tony Ferguson vs. Mike Rio
Dizz picks: Ferguson via (T)KO
Results: Tony Ferguson def. Mike Rio via submission (d’arce) 1st Round; 1:52
Submission of the Night: $60,000

Jeremy Larsen vs. Andre Fili
Dizz picks: Fili via (T)KO
Results: Andre Fili def. Jeremy Larsen via TKO (strikes) 2nd Round; 0:53

Dustin Pague vs. Kyogi Horiguchi
Dizz picks: Horiguchi via (T)KO
Results: Kyogi Horiguchi def. Dustin Pague via TKO (strikes) 2nd Round; 3:51

The End Of The Heavyweight Division’s Newest Trilogy

ufc155_12_velasquez_vs_jds_001

Saturday night, October 19, 2013, Cain Velasquez and Junior Dos Santos will close the chapter on the UFC heavyweight division’s newest Trilogy at UFC 166.

Here’s a little history between the two: the two men first squared off at UFC on FOX 1. The contest ended at 1:04 of the very first round due to an over hand right delivered right behind the left ear of Velasquez. Velasquez dropped to the mat where Dos Santos put in a few extra shots before the referee Big John McCarthy could call an end to the bout. The second time these big men met was at UFC 155 Dos Santos vs. Velasquez 2 and this fight had a very different outcome. Velasquez came out of the gate swinging and rocked Dos Santos. Velasquez bullied Dos Santos against the cage almost the entire night, crushing blows to the head of Dos Santos and takedowns almost at will. Velasquez put in the performance of a lifetime against Dos Santos and by the time the bout was over, Dos Santos was almost unrecognizable.

Since then, the two have each had another bout where each man was the victor. Velasquez faced another man he has beaten inside the octagon before, Antonio Bigfoot Silva. Bigfoot lasted a meer 1:21 inside the octagon against Velasquez before he forced referee Mario Yamasaki to call an end to the bout via TKO. Again in this performance, Velasquez continued to look better than ever and seems to have kept the hunger he had before becoming the champ. Dos Santos, in his bout, faced the man with the iron chin, Mark Hunt. Dos Santos blasted Hunt for over three rounds with all he had while managing to avoid any real power shots from the heavy hitter, Hunt.  Then out of nowhere, Dos Santos lands a wheel kick to the head of Hunt and that was all she wrote. Hunt fell to the ground and Dos Santos pounced until referee Steve Mazzagatti jumped in and called a stop to the bout at 4:18 of the third round. The two warriors have each gained experience in one fight since last meeting each seeming to add new weapons to their wheelhouse since last meeting.

The main criticism towards Velasquez is he does not produce the punch power to finish Dos Santos. He very well may have mangled his face and made Dos Santos almost unrecognizable; however, he was unable to finish Dos Santos. Velasquez does have one outstanding quality and that’s his cardio. Velasquez seems to have the gas tank of a 155’r and we will look to see him drag this fight into the later rounds. Velasquez will put on a pace in the first :60 of the fight and continue that pace until they call a stop to this bout or the 25:00 timeframe is up that’s not even including Velasquez’s superior wrestling ability over Dos Santos. Dos Santos has been known to fade in later rounds and that has spectators worried for him going to into this fight against a cardio machine; however, Dos Santos possess knockout power with one blow from either his hands or feet so as long as the fight stays on its feet, the longer Dos Santos seems to have the advantage. As we have seen in the second bout, Dos Santos was taken down almost at will; however, he seemed to be able to stand up and continue the fight on his feet.

How will this fight take place? We will find out on October 19, 2013, at UFC 166!

Follow me on Twitter at @mmadocket and Facebook at www.facebook.com/MMADocket and stay tuned on www.mmaelite.net  for the latest on MMA news.

Nick Diaz: Right Place, Wrong Time

Nick Diaz
Nick Diaz is a warrior—he’s willing fight anyone, anytime, anywhere. Just a few years ago, the world of MMA catered perfectly to such temperaments. Unfortunately for Diaz, the landscape has drastically changed. No longer the underground renegade it once was, Mixed Martial Arts has injected itself into mainstream media. The Ultimate Fighting Championship has become MMA’s most powerful organization, but as Benjamin Parker famously told his nephew, “With great power comes great responsibility.” In Diaz’s eyes, responsibilities such as interviews, magazine shoots, and press tours have nothing to do with battle. His only concern is persevering through war, both mental and physical—promotional pageantry is nothing but meaningless.

For many fighters, fierce demeanors are forged through tumultuous childhoods. Nicholas Robert Diaz is no different. He grew up on the harrowing streets of Stockton, California without the guidance of his biological father. Years of bullying forced his mentality to callous. Diaz turned to karate and aikido in hopes of minimizing the beatings he’d routinely receive. Taking to the arts like a desert to rain, Diaz slowly transformed himself from victim to savage. He still didn’t look for fights, but now he had no trouble finishing them.

As his record indicates (21 finishes inside 26 wins), Diaz has always been as game as they come. Media obligations, however, are a different story. Diaz secured a title fight against Welterweight Champion George St. Pierre at UFC 137 but quickly lost his spot when he blew off a mandatory press conference. Nearly seventeen months later, Diaz reclaimed a shot at St. Pierre’s belt, but not without another dollop of drama. True to past form, he once again began shirking his promotional responsibilities. According to Dana White, Diaz cost the UFC upwards of $50,000 by skipping mandatory interviews for the organization’s pre-fight “Countdown” program. Nick eventually fulfilled his obligations, but it’s clear he experiences great discomfort partaking in any duties extracurricular to fighting. In fact, when recently asked about owning a computer, Diaz replied, “After my last fight I bought one. I have no clue how to work it nor have any intention of chatting on here…”

And there you have it. Nick Diaz is not a self-promoter. Nick Diaz is not a marketing guru. Nick Diaz is not a social butterfly. Nick Diaz is a fighter. Rather than a Jack-of-all-trades, he prefers to be the master of one. He yearns for the glory days when fights were exclusive to fighting. To be fair, many fighters enjoy the newfound exposure raining upon them. In Diaz’s case, he’d be much happier training under an umbrella. Unfortunately for Diaz, umbrellas no longer exist in the transparent world of social media and 24-hour news cycles. Only time will tell if the Stockton native can successfully adapt to the ever changing atmosphere of MMA, but even if he never finds comfort in today’s era, one thing’s for sure—when Diaz enters the cage, he’s most certainly in the right place.

Update: Mike Pierce Post UFC Fight Night 29

BARUERI, BRAZIL - OCTOBER 9:  (L-R) Rousimar Palhares celebrates after defeating Mike Pierce in their welterweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at the Ginasio Jose Correa on October 9, 2013 in Barueri, Sao Paulo, Brazil. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

It’s been a long drawn out process for the MMA community awaiting word on UFC welterweight Mike Pierce’s injury to his left leg.  Just a few minutes ago I was able to get a short statement from Team Sports Lab Coach Phil Claud on some clarity of the issue.

Mike will know the extent of the damage to his knee and ankle tomorrow after his evaluation. He will be receiving an MRI with one of Oregon’s top Orthopedic Surgeons.” said Pierce’s long time coach.  Claud felt a personal and professional responsibility for Pierce as he does for all the fighters he coaches.

Claud went on to state, “I, as his coach, take total responsibility for the game plan that put Mike in a career ending situation.  Mike will be back to fight another day but the unfortunate fact is that he is in fact injured.”

As we all know and don’t have run it through the ground, Pierce fell victim to yet another mishap involving Rousimar Palhares, as a submission was held on to, much time after the referee had waved off the bout last Wednesday at UFC Fight Night 29 in Brazil.  Palhares since has been suspended 120 days by the Brazilian Athletic Commission, had his $50,000 Submission of the Night bonus stripped, and eventually cut from the UFC.

At this time, Mike needs the support of all MMA fans, friends, and family so he can return to do what he loves to do and that’s fight in the UFC.” Claud further stated.  I tried to reason with Claud a bit and assure him that game plans are always constructed by coaches and that he had no fault in the extended and unnecessary hold of the leg lock.  Then a sign of relief when he said, “Highest of highs and the lowest of lows.”

I think Team Sports Lab’s Phil Claud will be just fine.  He’s as tough as the boys that he coaches.  Unfortunately, for Mike Pierce, it seems unavoidable.  He is injured and will have to take some time off to recover.

Best wishes to you, Mike.

(photos courtesy of ufc.com)

 

UFC Fight Night: MAIA vs SHIELDS

foxsports1

UFC Fight Night 29 airs tonight on Fox Sports 1!

The welterweight main event will feature Demian Maia against Jake Shields. With a win, Maia is one step closer to joining a rare group of fighters that have challenged for a title in multiple weight classes.

Here is the full fight card. Comment below and let us know your predictions!

Main Card:
Damien Maia vs Jake Shields (Welterweights)
Erick Silva vs. Dong Hyun Kim (Welterweights)
Thiago Silva vs. Matt Hamill (Catchweight of 208 lbs. — Silva missed weight)
Fabio Maldonado vs. Joey Beltran (Light Heavyweights)
Rousimar Palhares vs. Mike Pierce (Welterweights)
Raphael Assunção vs. T.J. Dillashaw (Bantamweights)

Preliminary Bouts:
Ildemar Alcantara vs. Igor Araujo (Welterweights)
Yan Cabral vs. David Mitchell (Welterweights)
Iliarde Santos vs. Chris Cariaso (Flyweights)
Allan Patrick vs. Garett Whiteley (Lightweights)

Video: Joe Schilling Interview with Marcus Kowal at Glory World Series 10

Marcus Kowal of MMA Elite and Systems Training Center interviews Glory Middleweight Champion Joe Schilling at Glory 10 in Los Angeles Sept. 28 2013.

It was an amazing fight and an amazing night for fight fans! Joe Schilling, the hometown favorite, defeated No. 1-ranked Artem Levin in the finals of the four-man, one-night middleweight tournament. Levin won rounds 1 and 3, but Schilling got a vicious knockdown on Levin in the 2nd round, giving Schilling a 10-8 round. After 3 rounds the fight was called a majority draw. Do you know what that means? SUDDEN DEATH! Glory goes to a sudden death round to decide the victor. It was a very close overtime round. Both fighters showed a lot of heart. In the end, Schilling came away with the belt.

It was a great night for the Glory franchise. It was their second fight in the US, with more coming in the near future. It is the #1 kickboxing league in the world. Glory recently inked a multi-year deal with Spike TV which is great for fight fans in the US. Look for a future Glory World Series event to air later this fall on Spike TV.

Jones vs. Teixeira Set For Super Bowl Weekend; Why It’s The Wrong Call…For Now

In an interview with ESPN.com, UFC President Dana White told them that Jon Jones wouldn’t be facing Alexander Gustafsson in a rematch for the UFC Light Heavyweight title, but rather he’d be facing Glover Teixeira in  New Jersey on Super Bowl weekend Feb 1st.  Already this morning, fans and MMA personalities took to twitter to express their concern in the decision.

This tweet below is from Front Row Brian, an aggressive yet intelligent individual who described himself in an interview once as an MMA Super Fan:

Not one word of that could you disagree with from a fan nor business stand point.  Jones vs. Gustafsson at UFC 165 was hands down the fight of the century.  With all the opponents that Jones has walked through, MMA fans across the world waited in suspense to see how the 6’5 Gustafsson would be able to handle Jones.  We all knew how the fight went, so no need to go into details.

After UFC 165, the buzz of the Jones vs. Gustafsson had fans ordering the event from PPV post event (which doesn’t happen nearly as often).  So, why, might you ask, doesn’t a Jones vs. Gustafsson 2 make sense to be next?   Why is Glover Teixeira the wrong call?  Allow me to elaborate.

Right now, as Front Row Brian provided in metaphor,  the Jones vs. Gustafsson topic is on fire. Fans are split in who they feel won the fight.  Whether they’re biased or unbiased, the reasoning is inconclusive.  MMA has a high turn over rate due to the small window that is provided for athletes (age, injury, personal/financial issues, etc).  Having said that, each organization has to take advantage of every hand that is dealt to them before it sets sail down the stream.

Jones vs. Gustafsson 2 has many entities to it for all those involved.  Jones, Gustafsson, UFC, fans, everyone would benefit from this.  The build up for a rematch had immediately started as soon as the winner of the first match up exited the voice of the long time octagon announcer Bruce Buffer.  So, why Jones vs. Teixeira next if you’re company is about making money?

Let’s forget the fact that Teixeira hasn’t beaten anyone of higher quality than Ryan Bader, who has inevitably been exiled from the Top 10 in UFC’s LHW rankings.  Throw that out for a moment.   However, allow me to provide one solid example as to why Jones vs. Gustafsson makes more sense than any rematch you can muster.

I have no choice but to bring up Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen bouts from UFC 117 and UFC 148.  In their first match up, no one expected Sonnen to dominate the long time Middleweight Champion through out the entire fight before getting caught in a submission late in round 5 as time was set to expire.  The bout, for Silva, was considered to be the comeback of the century.

Fans and analysts debated about the fight all the way up to the remach at UFC 148.  UFC 117 ended up totaling out at 600,000 PPV buys.  Now, an immediate rematch could’ve been warranted at that time, but Sonnen tested postive for elevated levels of testosterone.

Fortunately, Silva continued his win streak and Sonnen was able to get back on track to link up with Silva for a rematch. Based off the heat of the first match up, the build up was tremendous.  Tremendous enough that the Silva vs. Sonnen 2 match up amassed 400,000 extra PPV buys from the first and topped 1,000,000 PPV buys.

If you’re the UFC you have to say to yourself, 1,000,000 PPV buys are hard to come by these days in light of the Fox deal.  UFC 158 with Welterweight Champion George St. Pierre vs. Nick Diaz is the only PPV card this year that has seen 1 million buys.

This is a business and businesses are about profit and making money.  Who can legitimately justify Jones vs. Teixeira on a level of financial gain when you put it on the scale with a Jones vs Gustafsson rematch?  I can’t think of anyone.  To even speak of it is an abomination.  Truth is, we need to see Teixeira matched up against a higher level of competition before we throw him in with Jones.  Though he’s defeated Bader, Jones also easily defeated Bader as well.

In hind sight, much like TJ Grant came up injured for the Ben Henderson fight that was supposed to take place at UFC 164 last August, will we see a change of plans?  Will Teixeira end up injured?  Will we end up seeing the rematch we all believe should be taking place?  It’s only been 5 days since Gustafsson nearly walked away with the UFC Light Heavyweight crown, so let’s give it a couple of weeks and see what unfolds.

I can testify, I want to see this rematch, I know Gustafsson is on fire for the rematch, many analysts want to see this rematch, and most importantly, the FANS want to see this rematch.  UFC needs to capitolize on the momentum of this golden opportunity while it’s still in front of us.

Alexander Gustafsson get robbed? UFC 165

robbed

Wow… when i heard one judge had it 49-46 for unanimous and STILL UFC LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION… i have to say i was a little shocked.  One because some blind judge had the fight 49-46 but that Jon Jones won the fight via unanimous decision.  I can’t lie… this isn’t the first time i’ve felt like this and i kept hearing over and over from Joe Rogan that this was a close fight but Alexander was busting the champ up for the first 3 rounds.  I’ve never seen Jon Jones frazzled like that before or punched like that EVER.  Couple random thoughts…

I thought Alexander’s footwork looked good against the champ.  I agreed when Big country tweeted:

Roy “Big Country” Nelson – I am impressed with @alexthemauler footwork, he is making @jonnybones work tonight
Bisping took the words right out of my mouth when he tweeted this after the fight:

Official Michael Bisping – I’m sorry but that’s bullshit.

and agreed when our Swedish MMA Elite author and fighter Marcus Kowal wrote this:

@MarcusKowal – 49-46? That’s about as good judging as @MannyPacquiao vs Bradley. Congratulations to @JonnyBones, however, for showing his skills and heart. #UFC #UFC165 #MMA @MMAELITEBRAND

I just texed Marcus to get a video reaction from this fight and would love to hear his thoughts coming from a hometown perspective.  I hope it’s angry.. hahahah.

Great fight regardless and great card.  That Renan Barao kick didn’t look as brutal in the replay as it did live but it was still a nice finish.  Can’t wait to see him fight Dominick Cruz one day.  I must say… i’m really looking forward to Glover vs Bones though.  I think glover takes it.  i’m not bias at all. HAHAH.

@deepfriedpro

 

(Video) UFC 165: Official Weigh-in

UFC 165 in Toronto:

MAIN CARD 10PM/7PM ETPT
Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson
Renan Barao vs. Eddie Wineland
Matt Mitrione vs. Brendan Schaub
Francis Carmont vs. Constantinos Philippou
Pat Healy vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov

FOX SPORTS 1 PRELIMS 8PM/5PM ETPT
Myles Jury vs. Mike Ricci
Ivan Menjivar vs. Wilson Reis
Chris Clements vs. Stephen Thompson
Mitch Gagnon vs. Dustin Kimura

ONLINE PRELIMS 6:15PM/3:15PM ETPT
John Makdessi vs. Renee Forte
Jesse Ronson vs. Michel Prazeres
Roland Delorme vs. Alex Caceres
Nandor Guelmino vs. Daniel Omielanczuk