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UFC Fight Night Weigh In Highlights

Posted by Mark Figula on September 17, 2011 at 3:40 PM Comments comments (0)

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Mayhem Miller and Bisping Talk TUF

Posted by Mark Figula on September 15, 2011 at 1:40 PM Comments comments (0)


With season 14 of The Ultimate Fighter just a week away, we get a preview of things to come in this audio conference with coaches, Michael Bisping and Jason "Mayhem" Miller.


Click Here For The Audio Feed at ProMMA

Dan Henderson Talks Fedor and a Return to the UFC

Posted by Mark Figula on September 13, 2011 at 4:35 PM Comments comments (0)

 

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The Evolution of the MMA Fighter

Posted by Mark Figula on September 12, 2011 at 2:30 PM Comments comments (0)


By Mark Figula, The Mouth of MMA Senior Editor


It happened one small step at a time...  The Brazilians would say "pouco a pouco."  The "mixed" in mixed martial arts became less about seeing what happens when one style faces another in a "mixed" match-up and more about who can create the best and most seamless blend of all the styles into one true mixed martial artist.


The first breath of it came early in 2005 when Joe Rogan stated that a young George St. Pierre was the future of the sport.  A seamless welding of Olympic level wrestling, ADCC-worthy jiu jitsu, and some top level striking (K-1, Golden Gloves, World Muay Thai Council, et. Al.).  The champions of today are coming up and fighting with all these martial skills working as one rather than with a single great skill and a game of catch-up for the rest.  One look at a Jon Jones bout and you will see how effective it is when you take a young fighter and teach him the whole game from early on.


On the flip side, at Saturday's Strikeforce we saw what can happen when a truly talented master of one aspect of the game doesn't bring enough of the other skills with him into the cage.  It took only one round for Roger Gracie to get knocked flat in his bout against "King Mo" Lawal.  All the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in the world does no good if you can't get your opponent to the ground first.  The same goes for all the great striking if you can't stop a fighter from putting you on your back.


It seems a simple and logical concept, does it not?  Then why do so many fighters still think one set of skills is enough?  Perhaps it harkens back to the origins of the sport when Royce Gracie dominated all comers with nothing but the most remedial strikes and take downs.  That was before everyone learned to defend submissions, though and - more importantly - before everyone began wrapping their game around a core set of wrestling skills so they could control which aspect of their game they got to utilize.


Perhaps it's a mental resistance that comes from being so dominant in one's area of expertise that being a student again is a less than attractive idea.


Maybe it is plain old overconfidence.  A fighter thinks that learning the basics of other aspects of the game is enough to supplement superiority in his chosen martial art.  That may have worked in 2005, but the future is now.  A fighter like Jon Jones is the first of many to come and if the Roger Gracie's of the world want to hold MMA belts, they will have to be more than just competent wrestlers and strikers... They will have to be world class!



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Mark "The Ezequiel" Figula is the biggest wuss to ever enter a cage... the most spindly chickenass dude to ever tap out at NAGA... the boy who was told that the pen is mightier than the sword... and thus he writes. Check out his home page of scribblings at www.markfigula.com.

 


Josh Barnett's Post Fight Interview

Posted by Mark Figula on September 11, 2011 at 8:50 PM Comments comments (0)

 

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Strikeforce Fallout

Posted by Mark Figula on September 11, 2011 at 5:45 PM Comments comments (0)

By Mark Figula, The Mouth of MMA Senior Editor


It started with eight and now is down to two.  Strikeforce's last, best idea has left two men standing who are neither an emperor nor a demolition man - although the latter chose greener pastures in facing Lesnar at UFC 139.  His stand-in, Oklahoma State's wrestling phenom, Daniel Cormier proved that he belonged in the tourney with a drubbing of Antonio Silva.


The pending match-up of Cormier and Josh Barnett is an intruiging one.  Perhaps no one would have considered Cormier a real contender at this point in his career, but wrestlers of his caliber are never more than a year at a top MMA camp away from doing serious damage in the cage.


As Cormier noted in his post fight interview, Josh Barnett is the most complete opponent he'll have faced. Cormier clearly has power and is probably not being overly confident when making the claim that "Josh won't take me down."  If Daniel's hand (hurt when connecting with the giant chin of Silva)  is able to heal up fast enough, he should meet Barnett sometime early next year.  It will be anybody's fight.


Other fallout from the card was equally as eye opening...


After a 19 month layoff, AKA's Luke Rockhold took a unanimous decision win over Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza.  The Brazilian showed better striking than most of his jiu jitsu counterparts in the sport, but it was not nearly enough against the hungry challenger who threw nearly twice as many strikes as the soon to be deposed champ.  Jacare did try to take the fight to the ground often, but Rockhold showed fantastic ability to avoid being put in inferior positions while working his way back the feet.  Rockhold might not have been well known before this fight, but he has a bright future ahead of him.


The other Brazilian Jiu Jitsu phenom on the card, Roger Gracie looked completely over matched in his one round KO loss to Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal.  The former champ was all bluster after his win:


“I just threw this right hand. I caught him upside the ear,” Lawal said. “I wasn’t sure he was out, so I hit him with some street punches, some club punches, you know what I’m saying?”


While this win may not put Lawel back in title contention, it certainly puts him only a fight or so away.  For Gracie, it's back to the drawing board.  The lanky grappler will have to show he can develop a stand-up game or at the very least enough of a wrestling game to put the fights on the ground where he wants them.


Also on the main card Pat Healy showed his heart and well rounded game when he pulled out a submission win against Maximo Blanco.


The biggest winner of the night, however, was San Jose's AKA with a perfect 4 - 0 sweep.


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Mark "The Ezequiel" Figula is the biggest wuss to ever enter a cage... the most spindly chickenass dude to ever tap out at NAGA... the boy who was told that the pen is mightier than the sword... and thus he writes. Check out his home page of scribblings at www.markfigula.com.

 


Cung Le to Face Belfort at UFC 139

Posted by Mark Figula on September 10, 2011 at 1:25 PM Comments comments (0)

Former Strikeforce Middleweight Champion, Cung Le has reportedly signed with the UFC and will be facing Vitor Belfort at UFC 139 in October. In all likelihood this bout will be the main event, replacing the Velasquez - Dos Santos fight which was moved to the November 12th card.

Belfort, who is 2 - 1 since coming back to the UFC for the third time is coming off a first round KO of Yoshihiro Akiyama.

Le, who vacated his Strikeforce belt to work in film, will be back in the cage for the first time since his KO of Scott Smith in June of 2010.

Le is a very popular figure among MMA fans and if he can recapture his form, could prove to add some excitement to a division which has become a tad bit lackluster after being mopped up by its champion, Anderson Silva.




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Mark "The Ezequiel" Figula is the biggest wuss to ever enter a cage... the most spindly chickenass dude to ever tap out at NAGA... the boy who was told that the pen is mightier than the sword... and thus he writes. Check out his home page of scribblings at www.markfigula.com.

Strikeforce Weigh-Ins Video

Posted by Mark Figula on September 9, 2011 at 9:10 PM Comments comments (0)

 

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Diaz to Face Penn at UFC 137...

Posted by Mark Figula on September 8, 2011 at 11:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Although the outspoken Welterweight may not deserve it, the fans deserve the fights they want and the UFC has delivered BIG TIME.


From Dana White's Twitter:

“This is crazy, but here we go again. You wanted it, so you got it. Penn versus Diaz, Oct. 29 in Vegas.”


This just might be more compelling than the original GSP - Diaz fight... Especially considering how pissed at Diaz B.J. Penn is likely to be.  It will be interesting to see if Cesar Gracie is in Diaz's corner for this.

Roger's Pre-Fight Press Conference

Posted by Mark Figula on September 8, 2011 at 6:40 PM Comments comments (0)

 

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