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Here's What Happens When Strangers Draw Your Selfies

November, 2008

Oh Yeah, Josh Hendricks is Cut Too


(Not so fun while it lasted.)

Josh “Heavy” Hendricks has one thing going for him: he doesn’t have to worry about anyone putting him in a video game. His knockout loss to Gabriel Gonzaga was enough to get him bounced from the UFC after only one fight. Granted, he did not look like he was up to the level of competition in the UFC. Gonzaga absolutely dominated him in his brief few minutes in the Octagon, before knocking him out and then punching him again while Steve Mazzagatti was busy sorting out his tax deductions in his head.

But at the same time, making your UFC debut against a guy like Gonzaga is a tough way to start and finish. It’s kind of like being brought up to the majors for one at-bat to face a pitcher who almost made the All-Star team last year. You strike out on three pitches, no one in the clubhouse says a word to you, and the next day you catch a Greyhound back to Rancho Cucamonga to play for the Quakes again. And yes, that type of thing has been known to happen in baseball, so this isn’t a case of the UFC being uncommonly dickish. It’s just another one of the normal dickish things that happens in pro sports.

Best of luck in your future endeavors, Hendricks. At least now you’ll have plenty of time to pound out that screenplay you’ve always wanted to write about the aliens that come to earth to intervene in the Revolutionary War. Can’t wait to read it.

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Mike Swick: Scab?


(Woody Guthrie would be so disappointed in you, Mike.)

As the UFC’s scorched earth policy toward AKA and its fighters unfolds, it’s looking like not everyone in the stable is getting cut. In an interview with USA Today, Dana White claims that Mike Swick was the only AKA fighter to call and say, essentially, he’ll do anything Dana wants:

The only fighter that called me from AKA was Mike Swick. Mike Swick called me from AKA, that was it. And Mike Swick said, “Listen, I don’t know what’s going on. I don’t care what’s going on. I’m with you, I’m in business with you guys. You guys are my partners.” And I said, “I appreciate that, Mike. We look at you the same way.”

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Lil Fabie’s First Trip to the Strip Club

Urijah Faber MMA WEC tall girls

Urijah Faber MMA WEC tall girls
(Photos courtesy of CombatLifestyle. For more from this ridiculous set, click here.)

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Total Horseshit: Jon Fitch Dropped From UFC Over Video Game Licensing

Jon Fitch UFC MMA
(Photo courtesy of ryanmcfadden.com)

Yeah, about that Fitch/Gono fight: It’s not going to happen because Jon Fitch, the UFC’s former #1 welterweight contender, and one of only three fighters to ever achieve eight consecutive wins inside the Octagon (the other two being Royce Gracie and Anderson Silva), has been fired. MMA Mania breaks it:

Jon Fitch was today handed his walking papers for refusing to sign an agreement that would give the promotion exclusive lifetime video game rights to his name and likeness…

Christian Wellisch — who also didn’t ink the paperwork — was also released. Others who do not sign the agreement could also be let go in the future…

Fitch was apparently approached about the issue when he turned in his signed bout agreement to fight Akihiro Gono at UFC 94: “St. Pierre vs. Penn 2? on January 31. And when he and his representatives attempted to negotiate the video game deal it was all or nothing. He didn’t sign it and was terminated shortly therefafter.

Give us the exclusive right to use you in video games forever, or you’re fired. Let that sink in for a moment. Wellisch may not have been going anywhere in the UFC’s heavyweight division, but Fitch is a top-five welterweight — an enormous asset for any MMA organization — and to drop him over something so ultimately trivial is pure insanity.

Kevin Iole adds that Dana White no longer wants to work with American Kickboxing Academy fighters or anyone represented by DeWayne Zinkin and Bob Cook, which includes Josh Koscheck and Cain Velasquez:

“We’re looking for guys who want to work with us and not against us, and frankly I’m just so [expletive] sick of this [expletive] it’s not even funny,” White said from Honolulu, where he flew Wednesday from Toronto to hold a news conference to announce the B.J. Penn-Georges St. Pierre fight for UFC 94 on Jan. 31 in Las Vegas.

“Affliction is still out there trying to build its company. Let [Fitch] go work with them. Let him see what he thinks of those [expletives]. [Expletive] him. These guys aren’t partners with us. [Expletive] them. All of them, every last [expletive] one of them.”

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More Bad Press For Affliction

Affliction Jesus shirt
(Spoooooky.)

No, it’s not another revelation about the criminal activities of Affliction’s owners or the fight card they’re still trying to put together, this one is related to the business the company actually makes a profit from: overpriced clothing. Reader Forrest Knighton clued us into a story from Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, where a Catholic woman has successfully gotten an Affliction shirt pulled from Nordstrom for being offensive to her religious beliefs.

The shirt is similar to a painting of Mary holding baby Jesus (for you non-religious types, that’s the one Ricky Bobby prays to), only in true Affliction style Mary’s face is replaced by — what else — a skull. This, said area shopper and busybody Judy Carbo, “hurt [her] heart.” She continued with this completely ineffective analogy:

“If you were Jewish, you wouldn’t want to see a swastika on a shirt. If you were African-American, you wouldn’t want to see anything desecrating you.”

Comparing a stupid t-shirt that replaces Mary’s face with a skull to symbols of the Third Reich? Classy.

Now don’t get me wrong, I find Affliction’s shirts offensive, too. But that’s because they’re ugly in a ‘when in doubt, use skulls’ kind of way and they cost five times what they ought to. But if they can’t sell idiotic shirts at idiotic prices, how is Fedor supposed to get paid? And what about Tim Sylvia? Who but Affliction would pay him $800,000 for thirty-six seconds worth of work? Think it through, Judy.

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Fitch/Gono Slated for UFC 94, Aurelio Cut + More UFC Quick Hits

Jon Fitch Diego Sanchez MMA UFC
(When Jon Fitch says he’s going to wear your ass like a hat, it’s not a threat — it’s a guarantee.)

According to a report on MMA Mania, Jon Fitch will begin his road back to title contention with a fight against Akihiro Gono at UFC 94 (January 31st, Las Vegas). Fitch, who most recently dropped a unanimous decision to welterweight champ Georges St. Pierre at UFC 87 in August, was previously scheduled to face Gono in March, but a hand injury forced “The Japanese Sensation” to drop out of the match; Gono went on to lose a decision to Dan Hardy at last month’s UFC 89. The UFC’s Super Bowl weekend card will be headlined by Fitch’s old nemesis GSP facing BJ Penn, as well as Lyoto Machida vs. Thiago Silva.

In other UFC news…

— Apparently back-to-back losses were enough to get Marcus Aurelio‘s contract shredded. Five Ounces of Pain reports that the American Top Team fighter has been let go following unanimous decision defeats at the hands of Tyson Griffin (at UFC 86) and Hermes Franca (at UFC 90). Though Aurelio has had an impressive career and holds victories over Takanori Gomi, Masakazu Imanari, and Rich Clementi, he leaves the Octagon with a 2-3 UFC record.

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Never Surrender: ‘Just a Wall to Wall Adrenaline Rush’

(Props: Yardbarker.com)

Holy crap, you guys. Here’s the first trailer for Never Surrender, which stars Georges St. Pierre, Anderson Silva, BJ Penn, Heath Herring, and Quinton Jackson. Judging from the preview, the movie seems to be about UFC stars kicking people. But according to the plot summary on IMDb, there’s more to it than that:

Never Surrender is an erotically charged [Ed. note: seriously?], controversial action-thriller set in the world of underground street fighting where an MMA fighter who has been drawn into the world by an erotic [Ed. note: there's that word again!] and sexy promoter, quickly realizes that there is no way out, other than death.

Erotic and sexy, huh? Might this mysterious promoter be based on Gary Shaw, perhaps? Never Surrender is written and directed by Hector Echavarria, and will hit theaters in the Spring. Someday a smart filmmaker will make a good movie about above-ground street fighting, but for now this will have to do.

After the jump: A new promo for WEC 37, where Frank Mir talks about what a beast Miguel Torres is. The clip they show at 0:39-0:42 is just one of the reasons that Torres’s most recent fight against Yoshiro Maeda was immediately hailed as a fight-of-the-year candidate.

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Brock Lesnar, Patriots Guard Neal Reminisce About the Good Old Days

Stephen Neal
(It’s creepy how his eyes just follow you.)

One of the few people to beat Brock Lesnar in his college wrestling days was New England Patriots guard Stephen Neal (seen above), who beat the new UFC heavyweight champ 3-2 back in 1999. In today’s Boston Herald, both men look back on the match and the different paths they’ve taken since then. Though Neal is an NFL offensive lineman now, he never played football in college. He was just a big, strong, athletic freak who somebody saw a lot of potential in. Kind of reminds you of someone else.

At the time of their meeting in the NCAA tourney, Neal was the defending champ and future World Champ. Lesnar was a bit of an underdog, to hear him tell it:

“I literally had about three months of wrestling at the Div. 1 level and the next thing I knew I was the Big Ten champ in the NCAA finals against returning national champion Stephen Neal,” Lesnar said. “I didn’t even know what was going on until it was over. It was a whirlwind. I didn’t have time to be scared or nervous. I just figured, ‘Well, I’m beating everyone else, I don’t know why I can’t beat this guy.’ But I came up a little short.”

Both men remember the match well. Lesnar powered out of Neal’s early single-leg attempt before shooting for a double-leg takedown of his own. Neal spun deftly away for the two-point reversal and it was game on.

“I think I surprised him a little when he attempted that takedown and was unsuccessful,” Lesnar said. “I had overpowered him and muscled my way out of it.”

Am I the only one who thinks “muscled my way out of it” has been something of a mantra for Brock Lesnar over the course of his life? You can’t argue with the results, I suppose.

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XARM Heavyweight Championship Will Make You Feel Better About Your Life, Worse About Society

Do you know what today is? Yes, it’s Wednesday, November 19. But in the history books it will be remembered as the premiere of the XARM Heavyweight Championship. Finally!!!

For those of you who missed our earlier mention of XARM, where we appropriately grouped it with dudes breaking things and a monkey doing pushups, XARM is the brain child of UFC co-creator Art Davie. It’s also pronounced “ex-arm,” though I admit I’ve been calling it “zarm” when mocking it to my friends and family. But now they’ve put together their own heavyweight tournament, premiering today on Ripe TV, complete with several XARM “Boot Camp” episodes. So basically, I’m in no danger of running out of material for mockery.

The idea of XARM is that it combines arm wrestling (which, let’s face it, peaked in popularity with “Over the Top”) and a really lame, stationary version of MMA. The two men are tied together, sometimes with duct tape, then they punch each other wearing MMA gloves. If that sounds like the stupidest thing you’ve ever heard, then congratulations, your brain works properly.

In the press release announcing the heavyweight championship, Art Davie calls it “the most intense 3 minutes in sports.” Really makes you glad this guy isn’t still running the UFC, doesn’t it?

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Dana White: Gina Carano Welcome in the WEC


(Courtesy of billyjoemaclellan via Fight Opinion)

Near the end of yesterday’s raucous Georges St. Pierre/BJ Penn/Dana White press conference in Toronto — directly after a young boy asks GSP if he’s scared he’ll lose his belt — an audience member asks Dana White if he plans to install a women’s division in the UFC. White has spoken before about his contention that there aren’t enough talented female fighters to create a women’s division in the UFC, and he restated his feelings yesterday, but the second part of his answer (starting at the vid’s 2:08 mark) was pretty interesting:

Gina Carano is a star. I think she’s talented, I think she’s got all the tools, so what I’m willing to do is bring Gina into the WEC. And we could do fights whenever there’s a challenger for Gina. ["Cyborg!" shouts an audience member.] Obviously. So I think that’s how I’ll test the waters and see how it goes.”

Hey, one-offs are better than nothing. It’s great to see that there’s at least one venue open for Carano to compete in, and with Crush on the roster, the WEC can continue to pursue its goal of putting on a pay-per-view event, which took a minor step backward after poster-boy Urijah Faber lost his title to Mike Brown. Once Dana White sees how quickly Gina takes over as the WEC’s biggest draw, a proper women’s division can’t be far behind.

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