MMA Fighter Challenges People to Punch Him in the Face, Everyone Fails

December, 2008

Programming Alert: Countdown to UFC 92 Tonight

Just as a heads up, if you own a TV and don’t have plans tonight at, say, eleven-ish, you might want to check out the "Countdown to UFC 92" on Spike TV.  Will Joe Rogan’s head explode as he attempts to get you to understand how huge this fight card is?  Will Forrest Griffin make a self-deprecating joke or nine?  Will Wanderlei Silva‘s ESL classes finally pay off?  Will Frank Mir get all weird and start talking about his soul again?  Only one way to find out…

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Maybe We Will Get to See K-1 Dynamite…Via Online Pay-Per-View


(When Bob got stood up by the captain of the football team on prom night, it was simply more than he could bear.)

With crazy freak show fights mixed in among legitimately interesting real fights at K-1 Dynamite on New Year’s Eve, we were more than a little disappointed when we heard that the event might not hit airwaves in the U.S.  This is the type of thing that usually airs on HDNet, but because Dynamite is technically not covered under HDNet’s contract with FEG it may not get shown on American TV’s at all.

Never fear, though, as MMA Payout has passed along a press release from Event Magic TV suggesting that the fight may be available via streaming online video for $29.95 on pay-per-view.  

Yippee.  Nothing quite like paying money to watch fights on the computer, especially when those same fights are likely to be available for free on the internet a day or so later.  

Look, I’m not going to judge you.  I won’t call you a loser for staying home on New Year’s Eve and paying money to sit in front of your computer and watch Bob Sapp fight a guy in a mask while the rest of the world is out partying and kissing strange girls.  I’m not going to do that, because if that’s your plan I assume you already know what a loser you are, and me pointing it out would just be mean and unnecessary.  All I’ll say is that streaming video is a crapshoot to begin with, and Bob Sapp will still be there tomorrow.  So let’s leave it at that.  I know you’ll do the right thing.   

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Videos: Inside MMA, Couture Talks UFC 92, and Something Truly Awful

On this week’s Inside MMA Ron Kruck talks with MMA referee Doc Hamilton.  In addition to have a name like a character in a Western movie, Doc has some interesting things to say about judging flaws in MMA and how those might be rectified, namely by taking a good, hard look at the ten-point must system. 

Randy Couture breaks down UFC 92 with Steve Cofield.  Sounds like even Randy has some doubts about Rampage Jackson‘s mental state right now, and how that might affect things.  Glad we aren’t the only ones.

After the jump, a little something extra that you will immediately wish you had never seen.

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UFC 94 Lineup Complete; Fitch/Gono on Undercard

Georges St. Pierre BJ Penn GSP UFC UFC 94 MMA
(Props: MMA Mania)

The UFC has confirmed the full lineup for UFC 94: St Pierre vs. Penn 2 (January 31st, Las Vegas), and you’ll be pleased to learn that it’s nearly as stacked as this Saturday’s "Ultimate 2008." So stacked, in fact, that Jon Fitch’s fight against Akihiro Gono is slated for the undercard, and may not be televised. Could this be the UFC’s passive-aggressive punishment for the video game licensing agreement drama that led to Fitch being fired for a day? Fitch/Gono does seem more main-card-worthy than Bonnar/Jones, after all. Anyway, check out the lineup below and draw your own conclusions…

Main Card
Georges St. Pierre vs. BJ Penn (for welterweight championship)
Lyoto Machida vs. Thiago Silva (LHW)
Stephan Bonnar vs. Jon Jones (LHW)
Karo Parisyan vs. Dong Hyun Kim (WW)
Nate Diaz vs. Clay Guida (LW)

Undercard
Jon Fitch vs. Akihiro Gono (WW)
Manny Gamburyan vs. Thiago Tavares (LW)
Chris Wilson vs. John Howard (WW)
Jake O’Brien vs. Christian Wellisch (HW)
Matt Arroyo vs. Daniel Cramer (WW)

Related: Georges St. Pierre has been named Sportsnet.ca’s 2008 Canadian Athlete of the Year, after taking in 89% of fans’ votes. GSP beat out wheelchair racer Chantal Petitclerc, Calgary Flames captain Jarome Iginla, Minnesota Twins first-baseman Justin Morneau, and tennis player Daniel Nestor. Said St. Pierre: “It’s an honor for me to have this award and being the first MMA guy to receive something like this…I want to be a good Canadian ambassador for the sport and represent MMA well."

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Epic Prize-Claiming Fail: Greg Kelly

Casino card cheat
(You can have the t-shirt or your hand. You can’t have both.)

When beloved CagePotato commenter Old, Bald and Irish won a CP "Hall of Fame" t-shirt for his epic Affliction/car-wreck-related comment last week, it was kind of a big moment, as OB&I tries so damn hard on all our little contests, but rarely wins anything. (Sorry, buddy.) Anyway, we’ve grown quite familiar with Irish. His real name is Michael, and we know where he lives. Which is why we were taken aback when we got this e-mail in our feedback account on Saturday from a dude named Greg Kelly (street # and town name have been redacted):

Cp rocks. Glad you liked my roadside accident/affliction comments. Address:

G. Kelly

xx Partirdge Hill Road [Ed. note: From what I can tell, he misspelled his own street name. OBI would never do that.]

xxxxxxxxx, MA xxxxx [Ed. note: He's from Massachusetts, and he's a thieving A-hole? SHOCKING.]

Peace. Thanks for the T.

Yeah, peace bro. Surprisingly, this is the first time that someone has e-mailed us trying to claim a contest prize that they didn’t actually win. You’d think it happens all the time, but it doesn’t. So Greg, consider yourself banished from the site. Caption contests live and die by the honor system, and the dishonorable shall not be tolerated. Please use this post’s comment section to tell Greg what a doucheface he is.

Seriously — posing as Old, Bald and Irish? Of all people…

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Exclusive: Rampage Jackson Says He Didn’t Ask For Fight With Wanderlei Silva, But He’ll Take It

In our recent talk with him, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson said it wasn’t his idea to take on Wanderlei Silva in his first fight back in the UFC since losing his title in July.  The fight he asked for?  A rematch with Forrest Griffin.  The UFC, apparently, had other plans for him.

“Fighting is my job.  That’s how I look at it. I didn’t ask for Wanderlei.  I wanted a rematch with Forrest.  But I don’t get to pick my fights.  I fight the ones they give me, and they’re giving me Wanderlei.”

After everything that’s happened, Rampage seems more convinced than ever that he deserved to win the fight against Griffin.

“I still think I won that fight.  I was the champ, and I think I did enough in that fight to stay the champ.  You’re supposed to have to take the title away from the champion, and he didn’t do that.  Even though it goes down on my record as a loss, I feel like I won that fight.

“I don’t see how anyone could give him that first round.  I don’t know how a guy can get dropped and win the round.  The judges must have been picking their noses or something, but I still feel like I won.”

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Christmas with the Coutures


(Here comes the pain, Whoville.)

Yeah, that’s Randy and Kim Couture enjoying the hell out of themselves at their Christmas costume party.  Combat Lifestyle was there and captured the magic in a photo album you really should take a look at. 

While there is absolutely no way I can go to sleep tonight without having a nightmare about Randy the Grinch up there, I do have to admire his willingness to go all out and his attention to detail.  Not only did he do the whiskers, he did the creepy long eyelashes too.  That’s a man who is committed to his costume.  We also gotta give respect to Shawn Tompkins, who nailed the "dick in a box" thing perfectly…

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Brandon Vera Gets Downgraded

Brandon Vera UFC MMA
("My career went that-a-way.")

It looks like all those weak performances are finally catching up with Brandon Vera. The Truth — who has gone 1-3 in his last four fights, most recently dropping a split decision to Keith Jardine at UFC 89 — is reportedly finalizing a new contract extension with the UFC. I’d be willing to bet that he was forced to take a pay cut, as his $100,000 to show/$100,000 to win salary made him unquestionably the most overpaid fighter on the UFC’s roster. But even more painful than the possible money issue is who he’s fighting next. According to 5oz., Vera will be taking on Michael Patt at UFC 96 (March 6th; Columbus, Ohio).

So basically, the former top heavyweight contender is now at the bottom of the light-heavyweight ladder, taking on a guy who was trounced by Tim Boetsch in his UFC debut. Vera has gone from prospect, to star, back to prospect again. He’s one train stop away from Palookaville. As long as the UFC continues to pursue expansion into the Philippines, they’ll want to keep Vera around, even if it’s just to beat up unknown caucasians. But it’s not like he’ll be headlining a card anytime soon.

Of course if Vera loses to Patt, he’s done. We’ll have witnessed one of the most dramatic rises-and-falls in recent MMA history. It’s not a very likely scenario, but this is MMA — and this is Brandon Vera — so anything can happen.

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Bob Sapp to Fight Cartoon Character at ‘Dynamite!! 2008′

Bob Sapp Jan Nortje MMA Strikeforce
(Bob’s fist-allergy starts acting up at the worst possible time.)

There are freak show fights, and then there are fights that re-define the phrase "freak show." Bob Sapp’s next MMA appearance — his first in Japan since he beat comedian Bobby Olugun at last year’s K-1 Dynamite New Year’s Eve event — will be one of those fights.

It was announced today that the Beast will be competing at K-1/FEG’s Fields Dynamite!! 2008 card (December 31st; Saitama, Japan) against Kinniku Mantaro. And just who is this Mantaro fellow? Allow Nightmare of Battle to explain:

Kinniku Mantaro is the 59th prince of Planet Muscle (Planet Kinniku) and son of the first Kinnikuman, Suguru Muscle and Belinda Bibinba. Raised during times of peace, he is a spoiled, cowardly, lazy teenager, much like his father was except with more emphasis on cowardice and less on clumsiness. He usually start matches off in a cowardly state, only managing to get a few good moves in due to luck. However, when his friends are in trouble or his opponent is being dishonorable, he manages to reach the state of Kajiba no Kuso Djikara (Burning Inner Strength). When this happens, the Niku-Mark appears on his forehead and his strength, stamina, and technique increase many fold.

What we’re talking about here is a character from the Japanese comic series/cartoon Kinnikuman, which American audiences might remember from the ’80s collectible figurine line M.U.S.C.L.E. Playing the role of Kinniku Mantaro will be Akihito Tanaka, a heavyweight pro wrestler seven-time All-Japan Wrestling Champion who has been training recently at Kazushi Sakuraba’s Laughter 7 gym. And yes, he will be wearing the Kinniku mask during the fight, which will be "produced by DJ OZMA." Holy Crap. Good-natured comic relief, or the low point of Japanese sports entertainment? We’ll find out on New Year’s Eve. The nearly-complete lineup for Dynamite!! 2008′s otherwise-compelling card, and video of Kinniku in action are after the jump.

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Shane Carwin to Kick Gabriel Gonzaga’s Ass in March

Shane Carwin UFC MMA
(That guy in the lower left still has nightmares to this day. Photo courtesy of 5oz.)

Great news, everybody: Shane Carwin may finally be getting a real opponent. Not to say that his past opponents haven’t been "real," in a literal sense — they’ve all unquestionably had height, width, and depth, and existed in what we all perceive as the physical realm — but anybody who’s seen the massive heavyweight prospect fight knows that he has enough talent to be a title contender, and deserves better competition than the palookas he’s been stomping lately. Over ten fights, Carwin has racked up ten first-round stoppages, with the longest being his pro debut against Carlton Jones, which went to the 2:11 mark. His two opponents in the UFC, Christian Wellisch and Neil Wain, were rescued at the 0:44 and 1:31 marks, respectively. 

So anyway, it looks like he’s getting Gabriel Gonzaga (10-3) next. FiveOuncesofPain reports that Carwin and "Napao" will be meeting at UFC 96 (March 7th; Columbus, Ohio). Gonzaga was briefly considered one of the ten best heavyweights in the world, before consecutive losses to Randy Couture and Fabricio Werdum derailed his momentum. Since then, he’s gotten his balls back with quick stoppage victories over Justin McCully and most recently Josh Hendricks at last month’s UFC 91. Gonzaga and Carwin both lie somewhere in the middle of the UFC’s heavyweight ladder, and the winner of their fight will take a big step towards a title shot. Though Gonzaga has unraveled against tough competition in the past, he’ll be the first legitimate test for Carwin. Should be a corker. 

In other fight-booking news…

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