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Archive for November, 2011

Counting on Mayhem

November 30, 2011 3 comments

Miller

This Saturday will mark the last time that the UFC has an event on Spike TV. January begins their official deal with FOX.

The fight that I imagine most are looking forward to is the middleweight throw down between Michael “The Count” Bisping and Jason “Mayhem” Miller.

The two spent this past season being coaches on The Ultimate Fighter, (a sort of reality show where the winner joins the UFC’s roster of fighters) and after being in close quarters with one another, both have talked about the ass-whooping they plan to implement.

I can’t say I care for Bisping too much. He just comes off as cocky and arrogant. I think talking should take place in the cage. I can’t deny that some trash talking does amuse me, so I guess I’m contradicting myself a little.

Anyways onto the fight.

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Sparring Etiquette

November 30, 2011 Leave a comment

I recently read an article about UFC welterweight fighter Rick Story, where he was accused of continuing to punish a downed team member during practice.

Story replied with his side of the incident, and we are left with a sort of “he said,” “she said” dynamic.

Working for an armbar

This situation left me thinking about the etiquette that comes with training among team members.

I have been very fortunate to have worked with people over the years who show no interest in trying to display some sort of macho dominance. That should not be what this sport is about.

If someone is just looking to get in the ring and swing haymakers looking for the knockout, then they are missing the point. The goal should always be to work together in a way that you both benefit from.

What I have always enjoyed about people I have trained with is that there is never any bragging or withholding of information. Whenever I’ve been caught in a submission, guys are quick to let me know what I did wrong, and how to avoid the same mistake in the future.

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The Axe Murderer Strikes

November 22, 2011 Leave a comment

Wanderlei “The Axe Murderer” Silva was a terrifying man in the former Japanese fighting organization Pride.

The Axe Murderer

In twenty-eight fights he finished seventeen of them, and most of those were knockouts. It was certainly not advised to try and trade punches with this man.

Early in his career he had a few fights with the UFC, but it was not until 2007 where he would return and call the UFC his home.

Unfortunately his performances have not been duplicates of the destruction he caused in Japan. His record stands as three wins and four losses.

One of those wins came this past Saturday against former Strikeforce middleweight champion Cung Le.

How’d he do it?

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Pride Never Dies

November 22, 2011 Leave a comment

By the end of round three I had slid off the couch and was on my knees shouting at the television. I have no idea what I thought I was doing. Other friends found themselves standing while flailing their arms and shouting as well.

This is the beauty of mixed martial arts.

Henderson and Rua exchanging blows

I’m not sure I can possibly put into words this past Saturday’s main event between Dan Henderson and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua.

As an English writing major I guess finding ways to to put words together and articulate feelings is suppose to be my strong point.  But honestly, unless you watched this fight I’m not sure you’d understand.

Both Henderson and Rua left pieces of themselves in the octagon. Throughout the twenty-five minute battle the commentators talked about “heart” and “warrior spirit” and both attributes were easily made evident.

So what happened in this fight?

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Blood Sport?

November 14, 2011 1 comment

Two men face each other locked in a cage. They stand on a canvas with blood stains from previous matches.

Fist fly as knuckles try their hardest to rattle internal organs, or turn off the lights upstairs. Audible thumps and cracks are heard with every shot landed.

Sometimes they grimace and sometimes they smile as they are locked in what they may consider a battle for their lives.

Should these men who have signed up to fight each other be considered savages?

Absolutely not.

Dos Santos after winning the title

What stood out to me beyond the knockout this past Saturday night was Junior’s reaction when talking to UFC commentator Joe Rogan.

Rogan asked Junior if winning the belt even felt real and Junior was visibly choked up. He told Rogan that he had no words to describe what he was feeling.

This was not some mindless beast with an unquenchable bloodlust. This was a man who had grown up in poverty in Brazil, and had spent countless hours dedicating himself to his craft.

Though I’ve always enjoyed the thrill of testing my skills against an opponents in the ring, I don’t receive any satisfaction in hurting someone. While sparring at the gym I sometimes find it hard to really go at it and let my hands go.

I don’t go looking for confrontation throughout my day, that’s something I’d rather avoid. Honestly, I’ve got a soft spot for writing fiction about broken hearts.

But when I have an actual match, and there’s an audience to put a show on for, a switch goes off in me and it’s time for war.

Dos Santos with coaches after victory

I do not think most people involve themselves in this sport just to cause harm to another person. Like any other sport there is just a primal urge to compete.

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Heavy Hands

November 14, 2011 1 comment

Well I was partially right in my last post, though it would appear mostly wrong.

Velasquez did not win via ground and pound; he never even got the chance to bring the fight to the ground.

And I’m not sure the battle I predicted really happened either seeing as the fight was over in sixty-four seconds.

I did say I was sure the fight wouldn’t last the full five rounds, so I’ll pat myself on the back for that.

So what happened?

Velasquez and Dos Santos at the weigh ins

First let me say that right before the referee (Big John McCarthy) said “let’s get it on,” I was nervous. I’m not sure I could explain why, but my buddy next to me stated that he was nervous as well.

The two men met in the center of the octagon. Velasquez held his hands high and Dos Santos kept his lead hand low.

Velasquez landed the first shot with a leg kick. He would land another four, which would count for his total offense throughout the fight. He did catch a front kick thrown by Dos Santos in an attempt to take the fight to the floor, but Dos Santos shrugged him off.

Neither man’s punches counted for much until a bomb of an overhand right thrown by Dos Santos at 4:05 of the round.

The punch landed right behind Velasquez’s left ear and he dropped ending up on his back. Dos Santos swarmed, and with killer instinct threw nine punches before Velasquez rolled to his side and for a moment went limp.

Big John quickly stepped in to stop the fight, and though Cain was quick to get up he did not protest the stoppage.

Dos Santos after the fight had been stopped

I’ll admit I was hoping for a few rounds of close back and forth action, but the beauty of this sport is that it can be finished at any given point, in any fashion, by either man.

So congratulations to Junior, he is certainly one bad man.

(Highlights from the fight can be seen here)

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Heavyweight Premiere on FOX

November 9, 2011 5 comments

The UFC will air on network television for the first time this Saturday on FOX.

Considering the sport was once labeled as “human cockfighting” and banned from pay-per-view in the early days, this advancement is huge.

There will be preliminary fights that air on facebook, but only the main event will air on FOX. The UFC went big with their main event, treating fans to a heavyweight show down between champion Cain Velasquez and challenger Junior Dos Santos.

FOX did a nice job with the promo using a popular Rolling Stones song to get the audiences attention.

Valasquez has gone 7-0 in the UFC with six finishes by way of knockout. Though a former wrestling champion at Arizona State University, he has been able to implement all aspects of being a mixed martial artist.

Dos Santos also has gone 7-0 in the UFC with five knockouts. Nicknamed “Cigano” for gypsy, he is labeled the best boxer in the heavyweight division.

So what happens when these two meet?

The two things I’m sure of is it will not go all five rounds, and these two will collide in an absolute battle.

If I had to pick, I would say Velasquez via ground and pound.

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