Steroids in MMA
Which MMA Fighter Will Test Positive For Steroids Next?

January, 2009

BJ Penn Scores Best Blow Yet in Pre-Fight War of Words

(Come on bro, the handicapped kid falling off his crutches in the middle of the road wasn’t *that* funny…)

BJ Penn on Hardcore Sports Radio, via MMA Mania:

"It’s surprising that [Georges St. Pierre is] in such good shape without the use of steroids or growth hormones, he’s eating cheeseburgers and all that. (GSP trainer) Firas [Zahabi], after the fight, he can go home, walk to his bedroom, take his shoes off, lie down in his bed, take about 20 or 30 minutes and go fuck himself."

BOOM. You know, if this whole fighting thing doesn’t work out, Penn has a future as an insult comic; he’s got the rhythm down perfectly. Can’t wait to see what other parting words the Prodigy has on the last episode of UFC Primetime, which airs this Wednesday on Spike TV. Assuming he was actually around for the the third episode’s taping, that is — and you can never tell with these hot-blooded Hawaiians.

St. Pierre‘s hype-building style is a little more reserved, but he still slips his shots in when he can. Check out the interview video below, where he brings out the classic "he have said a lot of bad thing about me" chestnut that worked so well for him before his second fight with Matt Serra, and clarifies that he’s also willing to fight Penn to the death, should it come to that. Damn…whoever’s reffing Saturday’s main event better make sure they don’t fall asleep on the job.


Freddie Roach Says The Fight Was Too Easy For Arlovski

(Is there any situation not improved by sound effects from Super Mario Bros.?  Props: MMA Scraps.)

Freddie Roach has figured out what went wrong for Andrei Arlovski on Saturday night.  It’s simple really.  Fighting the world’s best heavyweight proved too easy.  This bored Andrei, prompting him to try the flying knee that he was not awake long enough to finish:

"He made a young man’s mistake," Roach told MMAInsider backstage. "It was too easy for him. He was winning the fight handily I thought, controlling the fight like we planned. He got a little cocky, and he tried the flying knee from too far away, no setup, and he paid for it. … But Fedor swings hard, that’s his thing. He probably had his eyes closed, but he just got lucky, I think. If we had followed a more disciplined fight, and kept to the game plan, I think it was going to be easy."

I agree with Roach on one point: Arlovski did make a mistake.  As for the rest of his explanation, it’s just more evidence that Roach doesn’t understand the differences between MMA and boxing.  In the boxing world, a man who wins via one-punch knockout after landing fewer punches than his opponent until that point is almost always the beneficiary of a lucky punch.  Not so in MMA, especially when that man is Fedor.

You can say he got lucky.  You can accuse him of closing his eyes and hoping for the best.  But you can’t explain away his record.  Arlovski may have helped him out with that mental error, but a right hand like Fedor’s sure improves a man’s luck considerably.


The Potato Index: Affliction Aftermath

(The t-shirt with short shorts hidden underneath is not a good look for anyone, I don’t care who you are.  Photo courtesy of NBC Sports.)

There was a lot to love and hate about Affliction’s second effort, from the free undercard on HDNet to the painfully moronic antics of  Scott Ferrall and Chuck Zito.  We’ve been crunching the numbers on every aspect of the event since it ended on Saturday night, and here’s what we came up with.

Fedor Emelianenko +312

The tough part about being Fedor is that it’s hard to do anything too impressive at this point.  Just winning isn’t enough.  As if sensing this, he went ahead and finished a top five heavyweight with a one-punch KO in the first round.  Now that’s sufficiently impressive.

Andrei Arlovski  -43

Let’s be honest: right up until he began feeling too good about himself and leapt into unconsciousness, Arlovski looked good.  His striking was sharp and accurate and fast, and he was using his reach well.  For about three minutes, he seemed like the better fighter.  And then…

Josh Barnett +30

Great, he pounded on a guy with no ground game for three rounds until said guy decided to quit.  Big deal.  This is exactly why this was a bad fight for Barnett.  There’s nothing for him to gain at this point by beating a guy like Yvel.  At least it clears the way for a fight with Fedor.  Assuming Affliction can hang around that long.


Got Five Seconds? Help CagePotato Lift the MMA Ban in New York!

Madison Square Garden New York
(Madison Square Garden — the Promised Land.)

Hey Potato Nation. As you might be aware, MMA competition has been banned in New York since 1997, during the height of the "human cockfighting" scare. Though 37 states including California, Texas, Florida, and Illinois, have passed laws regulating mixed martial arts, the Empire State is still officially opposed to the sport — and old, crusty, and illogical forces are at work to keep it that way.

But rather than complaining about the situation, we’re going to do something about it. That’s why we’re asking you to take a moment out of your day, go to our online petition, read it (that part’s optional), and sign it. The petition is directed at the New York Assembly Committee on Tourism, Arts & Sports Development, who sunk last year’s effort to get MMA sanctioned in New York, and will be voting again on the issue in the very near future. Our hope is that opponents of MMA in New York’s State Legislature will get a little more education on the issue, and realize that public opinion — which every politician lives and dies by — is firmly on the side of our sport.

We know what kind of emotion-driven, infuriatingly uninformed arguments we’re up against. We know that having to compete out-of-state affects Matt Serra’s performance. And I think we all agree that MMA should be legal everywhere in the country, particularly in a major city like New York. (I’m just saying, it would be nice to take a subway to a UFC event rather than an airplane.) Please spread the word about our petition to any MMA fans you know, and as always, keep hope alive.


(And if you have a Digg account, please show some love.)


Faber Wins Easy, Varner Retains Lightweight Belt at WEC 38

Jens Pulver Urijah Faber MMA WEC
Donald Cerrone Jamie Varner WEC
(Photo courtesy of MMA Weekly; gif courtesy of the UG.)

Former WEC featherweight champ Urijah Faber was able to score a victory over Jens Pulver for the second time last night at WEC 38 — and in 23 minutes and 26 seconds less than it took in their first meeting last June. Their co-headlining bout started fast and physical, with Pulver tossing Faber to the ground after a high kick attempt. But it wasn’t long before Faber drilled a vicious left hook to Lil’ Evil’s ribs, doubling over the former UFC champ and backing him up. Faber seized the opportunity and fired off punches until Pulver hit the ground, then followed Pulver to the mat and set up a fight-ending choke. The win earned the California Kid a $7,500 Submission of the Night bonus.

Jamie Varner and Donald Cerrone also got some extra cash for the evening’s Fight of the Night, in which Varner defended his lightweight title and gave Cowboy the first loss of his career. Though Cerrone was the aggressor for most of the fight, and won many of the striking exchanges — thanks in large part to the long reach of his left high kick — Varner was able to take the challenger down at will, and inflicted major damage with his ground-and-pound. In the middle of round three, a punch from Varner opened a cut near Cerrone’s left eye that clearly inhibited his vision; his right eye was already swelling shut from previous abuse.

In the fifth round, Cerrone scored a successful takedown of his own, but made the mistake of bouncing a knee strike off Varner’s head while the champ was still kneeling. The action was immediately halted, and was never restarted, as a seemingly agonized Varner told doctors that he couldn’t see, and shouted "fuck!" more times than I’ve ever heard on basic cable. The fight went to the scorecards, where two judges saw it for Varner, and one judge (possibly blind himself) called it for Cerrone. The crowd booed Varner; distraught about how the fight ended, he told the fans "fuckin’ boo me, I’m better than that," and promised Cerrone a rematch as soon as he was cleared by the athletic commission.


Videos: Affliction “Day of Reckoning”

Be honest, when Fedor’s legs went briefly wobbly at around the 0:17 mark, you thought to yourself, ‘Oh shit, Arlovski might actually do it.’  Then Arlovski jumped into one of those "overhand murderballs" that Goldstein warned against, and you remembered, ‘Oh yeah, it’s Fedor in there.’

More videos from last night’s fights after the jump.


Affliction Payouts Are as Ludicrous as You Expect, in More Than One Way

Fedor KO's Arlovski GIF
(Props: Keegan on the UG)

Affliction paid out a little over $3.3 million in disclosed fighter salaries for “Day of Reckoning,” pretty much guaranteeing that they’ll take a financial loss on this event, as we all expected.  Naturally, the payouts include several head-scratchers and jaw-droppers, including $1.5 million to Andrei Arlovski for his 3:14 KO loss to Fedor Emelianenko last night.  At least when you compare it with Tim Sylvia’s $800,000 loss in 0:36, it’s proportional.  Now someone explain to Mark Hunt where his $4 million is.

Here’s how the disclosed salaries broke down:

Fedor Emelianenko $300,000 (no win bonus)
Andre Arlovski $1,500,000 (win bonus would have been $250,000)
Josh Barnett $500,000 (no win bonus)
Gilbert Yvel $30,000 (win bonus would have been $9,300)
Vitor Belfort $200,000 (includes $80,000 win bonus)
Matt Lindland $225,000 (win bonus would have been $75,000)
Renato "Babalu" Sobral $90,000 (includes $30,000 win bonus)
Thierry Sokoudjou $50,000 (win bonus would have been $50,000)
Paul Buentello $90,000 (includes $20,000 win bonus)
Kiril Sidelnikov $10,000 (win bonus would have been $25,000)
Dan Lauzon $12,000 (no win bonus)
Bobby Green $4,000 (win bonus would have been $4,000)
Jay Hieron $45,000 (includes $25,000 win bonus)
Jason High $10,000 (win bonus would have been $5,000)
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira $150,000 (includes $30,000 win bonus) def. Vladimir Matyushenko $50,000 (win bonus would have been $30,000)
L.C. Davis $14,000 (includes $7,000 win bonus)
Bao Quach $7,000 (win bonus would have been $6,000)
Albert Rios $6,000 (includes $3,000 win bonus)
Antonio Duarte $3,000 (win bonus would have been $2,000)
Brett Cooper $10,000 (includes $5,000 win bonus)
Patrick Speight $2,000 (win bonus would have been $3,000)



Affliction: Day of Reckoning, Night of Liveblogging

Fedor Emelianenko Andrei Arlovski MMA Affliction Day of Reckoning
("Fedor, you hear of this ‘Stevia’? It melt 40 pounds of fat and six tumors from my uncle Wladimir’s body. I’m just saying." Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)

Quick prediction for tonight’s main event: During the pre-fight face-off, Fedor and Andrei will say "I must break you" to each other simultaneously, after which Fedor will quickly call "jinx," prohibiting Andrei from speaking until someone says his name, which won’t be until the afterparty. As for the fight itself, you already know how we stand on that. Anyway, the main card for Affliction’s second event is about to pop off. Results from the undercard, and round-by-round updates/commentary for the pay-per-view broadcast await you after the jump. TONIGHT WE DINE IN HELL!


Friday Link Dump

(Andrei looks ripped.  Fedor looks chubby.  Yep, everything went as expected at the Affliction weigh-ins.)

– Oh yeah, Fedor knows how to fight a good striker.  (USA Today)

– Donald Trump Jr. talks Dana White, UFC.  (MMA Payout)

– Mike Chiappetta tells MMA fans, ‘Yes, we can.’  (NBC Sports)

– One last look at Arlovski’s boxing skillz.  (MMA Fanhouse)

– Brit boxers don’t sweat the UFC, or so they say.  (The Sun)

– The New York Times goes from covering to lambasting MMA.  (NYT)

– Foot injury sidelines Mike Swick for at least three months.  (Five Ounces)

– "Fighting Chance" promises to be the oddest MMA movie yet.  (

– Top 5 MMA spectator brawls.  (MMA Journalist)

– Who’s afraid of Mark Cuban?  Major League Baseball.  (Scores Report)

– "Notorious" is just aiiiight.  (

– Inside the Taco: New Employees.  (Holy Taco)

– 13 insanely horrible local TV ads.  (Screen Junkies)

– Cop knocks protester out cold.  (Nothing Toxic)


Affliction “Day of Reckoning” Picks: Our Turn

(*slow clap* ‘Yes, yes, Mr. Emelianenko.  We are all very impressed with your accomplishments.  But now you must taste my pee-pee-pee.’)

All right, so we didn’t do all that well with our UFC 93 picks (I mean, we both beat the hell out of Perennial, though who didn’t?), but we’re loading up again for Affliction and hoping to beat our fairly dismal scores of 13 (BG) and 14 (BF) this time around.  

If you haven’t already, remember to add your picks to our Affliction: Day of Reckoning Pick-em Contest for your chance to win an autographed copy of L. Jon Wertheim’s Blood in the Cage.

Naturally, we’ll be liveblogging all the action Saturday night beginning at 9 pm ET, so make sure to come on back and join the party.  As a side note, we’re scratching the Dan Lauzon-Bobby Green bout from our pick-em contest on account of the late switch, so don’t even sweat it if you got your picks in before Chris Horodecki’s bulging disk cost him a chance to fight.  

Our picks are after the jump.