21 Aug 2009 09:06:30 AM
21 Aug 2009 09:06:30 AM
21 Aug 2009 06:31:03 AM
(Submission savant Megumi Fujii. Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)
When "Carano vs. Cyborg" pulled in 856,000 viewers on Showtime, it proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that there could be a market for women’s MMA outside of Japanese all-girl leagues and one-off fights in the U.S. Strikeforce and Bellator are both planning high-profile women’s tournaments, and 2010 could be the year that women finally gain some measure of equality in the sport. In honor of the coming revolution, we’ve launched a top 5 women’s pound-for-pound list in our Power Rankings section; get to know these warriors below, and let us know what you think.
1: Megumi Fujii (18-0)
Armed with grappling credentials that include two BJJ championships at the Pan American Games and nine All-Japan Sambo titles, Fujii has tapped 15 of her 18 opponents during her five-year MMA career, and outpointed the other three. Her relentless, inventive ground attack is reminiscent of Kazushi Sakuraba in his prime, and at just 115 pounds, the 35-year-old packs more talent per ounce than any other woman in the world. In a sport where retiring undefeated is a mythical feat, Fujii just might pull it off.
Watch this: Fujii’s "Alive" and "Hurt" highlight reels.
2: Tara LaRosa (17-1)
Though Gina Carano and Cris Cyborg draw more attention, hardcore fans know that Tara LaRosa is the most talented female fighter our country has to offer. The former women’s bantamweight champ of BodogFight, LaRosa has run through a who’s who of U.S. talent including Roxanne Modafferi, Amanda Buckner, Shayna Baszler, and Kelly Kobold. She hasn’t lost since 2003, and she’s finished her last seven fights by stoppage. The word is that she’ll be competing next in a women’s 125-pound tournament for Bellator; if that works out, get ready for a whole new batch of YouTube highlights.
Watch this: Tara LaRosa vs. Shayna Baszler
21 Aug 2009 05:52:38 AM
(Time to earn that thing, Effy. Photo courtesy of MMA Frenzy.)
In what will hopefully become a recurring trend, the UFC has decided to air a two-hour commercial-free telecast of UFC 103‘s undercard on Spike TV as a lead-in to the pay-per-view card, according to the OC Register. And why are we being treated to such generosity? Well, MMA-hater Floyd Mayweather Jr. is fighting Juan Manuel Marquez on the same night, and Dana White wants to be a pain in their asses. That’s good enough for us. It’s only a matter of time before the UFC begins counter-programming NBA playoff games and presidential addresses.
UFC 103, which will be headlined by Rich Franklin vs. Vitor Belfort, and also features Mirko Cro Cop vs. Junior Dos Santos, Mike Swick vs. Martin Kampmann, and Josh Koscheck vs. Frank Trigg, has a whopping eight fights scheduled for the undercard. It’s hard to imagine all of them will make the broadcast, but we could be seeing the returns of Vladimir Matyushenko and Dan Lauzon, the Octagon debut of Paul Daley, and Efrain Escudero‘s first fight since winning TUF 8‘s lightweight trophy. UFC 103′s full lineup is after the jump.Read More DIGG THIS
20 Aug 2009 16:45:16 PM
Now that the Brock Lesnar-Shane Carwin UFC heavyweight championship match is officially happening at UFC 106, we thought we’d go ahead and compare some key stats. As you can see, they’re both around the same size (* denotes, well, that’s what he weighs in at, but probably not what he weighs on fight night), with about the same reach. Carwin has more total MMA experience, but has logged less actual Octagon time. They both have NCAA national wrestling titles, though at significantly different levels.
The big difference? Number of successfully resolved feuds with Cage Potato. The mental toughness and fortitude that a fighter gains from that baptism by fire is not to be discounted.
20 Aug 2009 14:53:00 PM
(Finally we’ll discover whether Liddell still knows how to relate to women in a non-nightclub setting.)
Looking back now, it’s hard to believe there was a time when we thought that continuing to fight in the UFC was the worst thing Chuck Liddell could do for his long-term health and career legacy. Then he decided to join a televised dance contest with a bunch of "celebrities" and a disgraced former congressman, and suddenly we find ourselves wishing that he’d just come back and get hit in the head over and over again instead.
According to ET Online, "The Iceman" has been partnered with Russian professional ballroom dancer [ed note: that's a real thing?!] Anna Trebunskaya for the upcoming season of "Dancing with the Stars." Her previous partners on the show include NFL legend Jerry Rice, and actor Steve Guttenberg, who you might remember from such decades as the 1980′s. Following in Guttenberg’s dancing shoes won’t be easy — dude was in "Police Academy" and "Short Circuit" — but if there’s anyone willing to sort of give it a shot in between text messages, it’s Liddell.Read More DIGG THIS
20 Aug 2009 13:32:41 PM
(Brown Pride vs. White Beef.)
With the Brock Lesnar vs. Shane Carwin rumor now widely confirmed, multiple sources are reporting that Cain Velasquez will now take on new UFC acquisition Ben Rothwell at UFC 104. Unfortunately, this means Chase Gormley has been left without an opponent. On the other hand, who cares about Chase Gormley? The battle between the young juggernaut (Velasquez) and the big, hardy veteran (Rothwell) may determine the UFC’s next heavyweight contender after Carwin. Who ya got?
In other UFC news…Read More DIGG THIS
20 Aug 2009 12:07:24 PM
(Props: all elbows)
AllElbows.com‘s latest bit of King Mo-related video hype focuses on Mo’s last fight against Ryo Kawamura at Sengoku 7. It was the first time that Lawal wasn’t able to finish an opponent, and he explains that was because his knee was injured during the fight, not because he couldn’t destroy Kawamura if he wanted to. Blame Dean Lister. Now that Mo has gone through knee surgery and rehab, he’s ready to start knocking fools out again.
As you may recall, his next opponent will be Mark Kerr, the waaaaaaay-past-his-prime UFC/PRIDE old-schooler, who’s currently riding a four-fight losing streak. Kerr is a replacement for Don Frye, who disgraced himself by pulling out of the fight. The ridiculous squash match will headline M-1 Global’s "Breakthrough" event in Kansas City next Friday, which will be broadcast live on HDNet beginning at 9 p.m. CT. Other fights on the card include Karl Amoussou vs. John Doyle, and that weird sparring exhibition between Fedor Emelianenko and Gegard Mousasi. If you can find the motivation to DVR this thing at some point in the next week, congratulations — you are a hardcore MMA fan.
After the jump: A classic-rock soundtracked tribute to heavyweight fighters and the interconnectedness of all humanity.Read More DIGG THIS
20 Aug 2009 10:46:30 AM
(Coker lays out Strikeforce’s Fedor plan for Cage Writer)
There’s something about hearing Scott Coker say that he plans to get Fedor Emelianenko on TV once or twice before giving him a shot at the Strikeforce heavyweight title that makes me cringe. It’s sort of like going on a picnic and declaring that nothing could possibly ruin this perfect day. You’re just begging to be attacked by fire ants and hornets before being washed away by a flash flood.
I can understand why Coker thinks Fedor is Strikeforce’s ticket to pay-per-view success, and why that trail needs to be blazed with one or even two instances of Fedor clubbing some warm piece of meat (no offense, Paul Buentello) on Showtime before fans are willing to cough up the cash to see him fight for a title. But there’s a troubling hypocrisy about that logic that is impossible to ignore.Read More DIGG THIS
20 Aug 2009 09:17:07 AM
When I was a kid it was considered something of an accomplishment to have beaten “Mike Tyson’s Punch Out!” on Nintendo. Then one day the kid who probably should have been in special classes beat it and brought in a Polaroid of the final screen as proof. Years later he would start a wildfire that destroyed several homes and we never saw him again, but that’s not the point. The point is, the pool jump is now to the sporting world what beating “Punch Out!” was to my elementary school. Not that Jake Rosholt isn’t a fantastic athlete – he obviously is – but he’s also a kind of goofy-looking white guy who manages to make even the backwards pool jump look somehow unimpressive. I don’t know how he does it.
Like the first time your dad referred to something as “the bomb,” the Jake Rosholt Pool Jump is the undeniable sign that pool jumps are no longer cool. Time to move on to some other essentially pointless display of athleticism. How about jumping out of a pool, through a hoop of fire, and into a different pool, all without spilling your drink. You can’t tell me that there’s not some NBA player out there who’s bored with the off-season and looking for a way to kill an afternoon.Read More DIGG THIS
20 Aug 2009 07:33:19 AM
MMA Madness and Fighters Only are both reporting that Shane Carwin has been pulled from his UFC 104 bout against Cain Velasquez, and will instead take on Brock Lesnar at UFC 106 (November 21, Las Vegas). Velasquez may remain on the UFC 104 card against a different opponent.
In the original scenario of Carwin vs. Velasquez as a #1 heavyweight contender fight, Brock Lesnar would have to sit out until early 2010. If the new reports are accurate, it would suggest that the UFC (or Brock himself) thought it would be best if Lesnar fought one more time this year, even if the challenger hasn’t definitively earned his shot. Not that Carwin can’t compete with Lesnar, but it would have been ideal if the Engineer of Pain had one more fight to build up his name. Carwin had this to say on his website:
Can’t confirm or deny? Well, we know what that means…Read More DIGG THIS