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21 Humans Who Make Being Human Look Really, Really Hard

August, 2008

EliteXC Confirms KJ Noons’s Bitchassness

KJ Noons Nick Diaz MMA EliteXC

When Nick Diaz rails on about how KJ Noons is ducking him, we generally chalk it up to Nick being his usual abrasive self. Turns out it’s not just trash-talk — EliteXC has been desperately trying to set up a rematch between the two 160-pounders for its October 4th show on CBS, but Noons’s management isn’t even returning EliteXC’s phone calls. Said Jared Shaw:

“I don’t understand it. This fight on CBS is maximum exposure and the opportunity for maximum sponsorship dollars, way more than he could make on Showtime. At this point, I question his management…For some reason (his camp) is not coming straight out and saying no, but they are making it very difficult to make it happen. His manager doesn’t want us talking to him directly. Who knows what K.J. even knows about the situation, but his management is holding us hostage…K.J. signed a contract. All we want is for him to honor that contract, fight on October 4th on CBS, and prove that he’s the champion we think he is. Right now, he’s not representing us as the EliteXC champion.”

You may recall that Noons previously had major contract disputes with EliteXC related to him appearing on CBS cards, so there’s surely more to this story, as much as Diaz would like to believe that Noons is simply terrified of him. But whatever Noons’s motives are, avoiding this fight seems like an offense worthy of a belt-stripping. EliteXC needs the heat from this matchup to boost their third CBS card, which is a do-or-die moment for the organization in some ways. If Noons can’t fulfill the responsibilities of a champion, he’s basically useless to them. Besides, wouldn’t KJ want to prove that his cut-stoppage TKO over Diaz last November was more than a bullshit technicality? Is he cool with being a paper champ?

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Ken-Flo Likely to Face Joe Daddy in November

Joe Stevenson BJ Penn UFC MMA
(Hey, remember this? Brutal.)

MMA Weekly is reporting that Kenny Florian and Joe Stevenson have agreed to face each other at a November 15th UFC event in Portland, Oregon. Florian’s unanimous decision over Roger Huerta on August 9th made it five straight wins for the Bostonian, while Stevenson last fought at UFC 86 in July, disposing of Gleison Tibau via guillotine choke.

I gotta be honest — I’m not feelin’ this matchup. Both guys have little to gain and a lot to lose from the outcome. If Florian wins, his position at the top of the lightweight ladder is unchanged, and he’s still next in line to face BJ Penn. If he loses, the UFC would be without a clear #1 contender, because it seems very unlikely that the UFC would want to set up Penn vs. Stevenson II anytime soon, considering how one-sided their first meeting was in January. I like Joe Daddy, and I wanted to see him built back up to the top incrementally; the Tibau fight was a great start. Most likely he’ll get torn up by Florian, and his stock will drop even further.

In other UFC news: Though Dana White announced that Mike Swick would be fighting on the UFC 90 card in October, Swick doesn’t think he’ll be ready to fight until December, as he’s still recovering from recent surgery on his elbow.

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Quick Hits: MacDonald in for Day at UFC 88, ATT Shakeup, and More


(“The Athlete” is ready to get back after it.)

- Jason “Dooms” Day has been forced to pull out of his UFC 88 bout with fattie-turned-middleweight Jason Lambert because of a biceps injury, but those of you who are fans of seeing Lambert’s man-boobs in the Octagon needn’t worry. Jason “The Athlete” MacDonald is stepping in as a replacement for Day, despite the fact that he just went three rounds in a losing effort against Demian Maia at UFC 87. Good move for MacDonald. If you can’t win ‘em all, the next best way to keep the UFC happy is to fight ‘em all, especially when called upon on short notice.

- Poor Nate Quarry just can’t catch a break. After coming back from a nearly career-ending back injury only to be forced to chase Kalib Starnes in circles, Quarry has now been sidelined with an eye injury that is strangely not related to fighting. Apparently Quarry was at a party where people were hitting golf balls into the woods — like you do, just for kicks — and he accidentally walked into someone’s backswing. Despite breaking the Orbital Floor bone in his eye, Quarry is not seriously hurt, though he will be kept out of action for at least a few more months.

- American Top Team coach Andrei Benkei is leaving the squad due to “ideological disagreements” with head coach Ricardo Liborio. Benkei told Tatame that he’ll still work with several high profile ATT fighters like Thiago Alves and “Bigfoot” Silva, among others, but it’s been reported that Benkei disapproved of the way Liborio was turning ATT into “a big McDonald’s” by selling its name to karate gyms. For shame, Ricardo. Karate gyms? That’s the MMA gym equivalent of giving hand jobs in the Wal-Mart parking lot. You never need money that badly.

- It’s not MMA news, but it’s worth mentioning: Sumo wrestling has been rocked by a drug scandal. A totally lame drug scandal. Russian Sumo wrestler (they exist?) Soslan Aleksandrovich Gagloev was arrested for possessing a third of a gram of weed. According to CNN, it’s “enough to land him in prison on a diet of forced labor for five years if he’s convicted.” Five years for a third of a gram in Japan? Nick Diaz should really be informed about that before returning to fight for Dream again.

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Evans, Franklin Talk UFC 88

If there’s one thing I love in fighter interviews it’s passive-aggressive remarks. Anybody can go out there and talk smack about an opponent or openly question his heart and his skills. But subtlety is a lost art in this business, and it can go a long way. For a great example, check out “Sugar” Rashad Evans’ remark about Liddell’s torn hamstring in this ESPN video. Says Evans, “at his age, injuries like that become harder to heal.”

Then he follows that up by saying he doesn’t expect it to be a big deal in the fight because Liddell is such a great fighter. I just really wish he would have added, “because, you know, Chuck’s sooooo experienced and has been fighting for soooo long, he can hobble his way through a fight with the best of them.”

After the jump check out Rich Franklin’s breakdown of his upcoming fight with Matt Hamill. Does he expect to be able to avoid Hamill’s takedowns all night? He does not. At least he’s being realistic.

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Cote Anticipates Facial Rearrangement

Anderson Silva Patrick Cote UFC MMA
(Props: MMA Rated via Bloody Elbow)

I only have one thought looking at this photo from yesterday’s UFC 90 press conference in Chicago: Anderson, you’re wearing a pink-and-white polo shirt — would it kill you to pop that collar?

Even in his fey-frat-boy gear, the Spider still cuts quite an imposing figure, and Patrick Cote knows that no matter how the fight ends, he’ll be looking pretty messed up afterwards. He makes peace with that idea in the AOL Fanhouse video below, and also states that he wants to fight Silva at his healthiest. Which works out well, because Anderson Silva doesn’t get sick — sick gets Anderson Silva.

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Creepiest Fighter Blog Entry Ever?

From a Suki MMA post titled “Gono is getting ready”:

** Aug 19 **
Gono posted a picture of himself in his blog.
Akihiro Gono UFC MMA

** Aug 18 **
Sex and the City was on when I turned on TV before going bed. It was the first time for me to watch that show. I liked a lot because this show contained lots of sex talk and stuff. I’m going to rent the complete series at Tsutaya(rental video).

Ewwwwww. On the plus side, Akihiro had the common courtesy to black out his junk at the bottom of the photo. Domo, homey.

For a more coherent update on Gono, click here.

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Penn Prepping for Year-End Fight — With or Without GSP

BJ Penn UFC MMA

Just as Kenny Florian won’t be sitting on the bench until BJ Penn decides to give him a title shot, Penn also wants to get another fight in by the year’s end, even though Georges St. Pierre has said he doesn’t plan on returning to the Octagon until 2009. According to a report by MMA News, BJ’s brother JD has confirmed that the UFC’s lightweight champ is back in the gym and training for a fight in December, and his fight against GSP will likely be pushed back until February 2009 when the UFC holds it’s Superbowl Weekend card.

So maybe a Penn/Florian title fight at the end of the year is still a possibility? Then again, JD’s claim that BJ will fight in both late December (against TBA) and early February (against GSP) is so unlikely it’s barely worth discussing.

The good news is, the UFC’s year-end card could wind up being so stacked that it doesn’t even need a high-profile BJ Penn fight in the lineup. Besides the heavyweight title match between Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Frank Mir, NBCSports has suggested that a superfight between Anderson Silva and Chuck Liddell as well as a light-heavyweight title match between Forrest Griffin and Wanderlei Silva are both outside possibilities. (It’s also been reported that the UFC is trying to set up a fight between Quinton Jackson and Wanderlei Silva for a November event, despite Silva’s preference to fight on the December card.)

Potentially related: If Tyson Griffin beats Sean Sherk, he wants Kenny Florian next.

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UFC 90 Already Nearing a Sell-Out in Chicago


(You’d be smiling too if you sold $2 million worth of tickets.)

Just a few hours after tickets for UFC 90 at Chicago’s All-State Arena went on sale, roughly 80% of them were snatched up. This means that by the time the UFC’s press conference for the event on Monday was over they’d already pulled in around $2 million in live gate money. All this for an October 25 event featuring Anderson Silva against Patrick Cote (rest his soul) and Diego Sanchez taking on Thiago Alves. It’s safe to say the UFC will be returning to Chicago frequently from now on.

Even with such early success Dana White went ahead and poured on the hyperbole at Monday’s press conference:

”This is a bold statement in a town with the White Sox and Cubs and the Bears, but I guarantee you this will be the most exciting live sporting event you have ever seen,” White said. ”I can’t explain it to you. You have to experience it.

”The closest thing that comes to it is when Mike Tyson was in his heyday. There was so much excitement about someone getting knocked out.”

After that last remark we imagine that White looked over at Cote, shrugged, and silently mouthed “Sorry!” before continuing on.

White also vowed that UFC 90 would be the highest-grossing event in the arena’s history, edging out Wrestlemania for that honor. Then they moved on to discuss Thiago Alves’ problems making weight, which we’ve all been assured won’t be a problem this time around, even though he’s currently about thirty pounds over.

In a final bit of UFC 90 news, Mike Swick is expected to be added to the card, though an opponent has not yet been named.

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Kimbo Slice’s Next Opponent to Be Announced Any Day Now


(Up next: a real fight, or a shameless hype match?)

What do you do if you’re Pro Elite and you want to distract people from the bad news regarding event cancellations and concerns that you’re on the verge of going under? You find a way to get Kimbo Slice back in the news. That may be why Elite XC is planning to announce Slice’s opponent for the October 4 event on CBS some time at the end of this week or early next week.

Eite XC representatives supposedly said that the organization is considering three possible opponents for Slice, two of which are “big names” within MMA circles. Since Brett Rogers is probably not considered a big name to anyone other than hardcore fans who want to see him test Slice, it’s fair to assume that the other two names belong to older, past-their-prime fighters.

Ken Shamrock has been rumored as a possible opponent for Kimbo, as has Don Frye. We’d like to dismiss that as idle chatter, if only it didn’t sound so much like something Elite XC would do. Brett Rogers has very cleverly put Elite XC in a position where they almost have to give him Kimbo, or at least they have to if they want to have a chance at Kimbo being taken seriously as a fighter on the rise.

Since that seems low on their list of priorities, the only thing stopping them from tossing an aged and battered Shamrock in there is probably availability and/or price. Fortunately for MMA fans, that may be enough to make the Slice-Rogers fight happen.

In other Pro Elite-related news, the brief stock price explosion is now over. The stock fell from $8.00 to $2.75 on Monday, still a small improvement from the $2.50 mark where it jumped up from on Friday. Hope you sold your shares when you had the chance. And by shares we mean that old Camaro that’s on blocks in your front lawn. And by sold we mean had it towed away before those raccoons made it into a permanent home.

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The Top 10 Greatest MMA Bloodbaths

10. Randy Couture vs. Gabriel Gonzaga
(UFC 74, 8/25/07)


At 44 years of age, Randy Couture was the one who was supposed to look busted up after his heavyweight championship match with 29-year-old Brazilian wrecking ball Gabriel Gonzaga. But in one of the greatest triumphs of his career, Couture broke down the bigger, younger fighter with his wrestling and dirty boxing. About three minutes into the first round, blood began to pour out of Gonzaga’s shattered nose, giving Randy’s back a nice, red coat. The steady flow interrupts the challenger’s breathing and vision, leading to a brutal ground-and-pound finish in the third.

9. Robbie Lawler vs. Scott Smith
(EliteXC: Unfinished Business, 7/26/08)


In the second round of their EliteXC middleweight championship do-over, Scott Smith nailed Robbie Lawler with a series of standing elbows that opened up an ugly gash on the top of Lawler’s head. With blood pouring out of the wound, Lawler turned up the intensity, doing his best to finish Smith before a doctor could stop the fight. About 90 seconds later, he succeeded — but not before a spray of “plasma” fell into commentator Mauro Ranallo’s lap. The video doesn’t really do it justice; you should also check out this photo from the fight, and this photo of the aftermath.

8. Chase Beebe vs. Eddie Wineland
(WEC 26, 3/24/07)

Chase Beebe Eddie Wineland WEC MMA
It may have been the most grisly demolition of a cauliflower ear in MMA history. Midway through a five-round bantamweight title match, challenger Chase Beebe dropped an elbow from the top that burst Eddie Wineland’s overripe right ear, causing it to spray blood several feet across the mat. Wineland, who had already suffered multiple cuts near his eyes from Beebe’s precision striking, soldiered on to the fifth-round bell with what appeared to be a gaping hole in the side of his head. Beebe took home the belt and Wineland hasn’t fought in the WEC since.

After the jump: Things really start to get disgusting.

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