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

December, 2009

Fights Announced for ‘DREAM vs. Sengoku’-Themed Dynamite!! 2009 Card

Dynamite!! 2009 MMA poster Japan New Year's
(The appropriately epic poster for Dynamite!! 2009.)

Members of FEG and World Victory Road held a press conference earlier today in Japan to discuss their collaborative effort for New Year’s Eve, Dynamite!! 2009: The Power of Courage. A batch of fights were announced, and the lineup (via Nightmare of Battle) is looking like this so far…

MMA Heavyweight Feature:
Satoshi Ishii vs. Hidehiko Yoshida

Super Hulk Tournament Final:
Ikuhisa "Minowaman" Minowa vs. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou

DREAM vs. Sengoku Raiden Championship:
Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto vs. Masanori Kanehara
Hiroyuki Takaya vs. Michihiro Omigawa
Hideo Tokoro vs. Marlon Sandro
Hayato “Mach” Sakurai vs. Akihiro Gono
Katsuyori Shibata vs. Hiroshi Izumi
Alistair Overeem vs. Kazuyuki Fujita


Exclusive: Sonnen Brings in Okami to ‘Anchor’ his Training Camp for UFC 109 Fight Against Marquardt

Chael Sonnen Yushin Okami Arianny Celeste Duke of Hazzard
(Sonnen and Okami: Bros before foes.)

By contributor Mike Russell

When Chael Sonnen was asked after beating Yushin Okami at UFC 104 whether or not he was upset that his fight was relegated to the undercard, his reply was:

“We got men and women at war right now – they got real problems – so me complaining about where I come out on the card would be very arrogant. But with that said, there are guys that I’m opening the show for that would never fight after me had Okami not been my dance partner. They call him Yushin “Thunder” Okami, I call him Yushin “Anchor” Okami; he pulls people down, whereas if you get a fight with me – if you get me on the docket, I’m going to pull you up. I’m going to get exposure and attention and people to care about the fight and “Anchor” Okami’s got the opposite effect. So was it annoying? Yes.”

Two months later the Team Quest middleweight apparently had a change of heart, and invited his former opponent to stay with him for a month at his home in Oregon to help kick off the training camp for his UFC 109 showdown with Nate Marquardt on February 6.

“I’m actually on my way to practice right now and Yushin is sitting next to me in the car.”


Frank Mir and Shane Carwin Break Down the Heavyweight Pecking Order

Frank Mir Cheick Kongo UFC 107
(‘Thanks for the workout, chummmmmmmp.’ Photo courtesy of Fight Magazine.)

Because the MMA gods would never be content to allow the UFC’s heavyweight division be both intriguing and problem-free, Brock Lesnar’s illness just happens to have coincided with a number of potential challengers rising up all at once. You’ve got Shane Carwin, who was originally slated for the next shot at Lesnar. You’ve got Cain Velasquez, who’s been running through everyone the UFC puts in front of him. And after UFC 107 on Saturday night you’ve got Frank Mir, who would like to smugly point out that he almost knocked out and then submitted a guy who Velasquez couldn’t finish. You know, just saying.

With Lesnar’s future still uncertain, what will become of these three able heavyweight contenders? If you ask Carwin, he’ll tell you that he wouldn’t mind fighting Mir while all this other stuff gets sorted out:

A win like Frank had last night surely propels him to share the top of the division with Nog, Cain and myself. If beating Kongo was enough to propel Cain to number two contender status, destroying Kongo might edge Cain out. What is more compelling is that Mir made it our of that fight injury free so not only is he at the top of the division he is likely ready to fight sooner then later.

Behold, The MMA Minute

The MMA Minute: post-UFC 107 edition – Watch more Funny Videos

As part of our continuing effort to please our illiterate fanbase while simultaneously infuriating those of you who read Cage Potato in quiet work environments, we present "The MMA Minute."  It’s a brief rundown of the weekend that was in mixed martial arts, telling you nothing you didn’t already know if you actually watched the fights, but telling you that nothing in the wry, almost witty manner you’ve come to expect from this site.  Think of it as a minute and forty-five seconds of your life that you’ll never get back.  Ever. 

Also, there’s a cat in it, though any resemblance that cat may have to the one that went missing from the house down the street from mine is purely incidental.  That little girl can cry and put up all the posters she wants, it’s not going to change my position on the matter.


‘UFC Undisputed 2010′ Trailer Promises Kimbo Haymakers


Saturday night’s Spike Video Game Awards crowned UFC Undisputed 2009 as the year’s Best Individual Sports Game, beating out such notable titles as Fight Night Round 4 and Wii Sports Resort. And while that’s not a huge accomplishment considering that the UFC and Spike are in bed together and the whole broadcast was basically just one big advertisement, the ceremony did offer a first look at next year’s installment of Undisputed.

We begin with a montage of UFC stars telling us what being a fighter does and doesn’t require. To be honest, it sounds like a very demanding profession. Tito Ortiz tries so hard to sell his line, God bless him. Though there isn’t much actual game-footage to judge, some minor improvements are on display: Anderson Silva switches from southpaw to orthodox stance. Frank Mir is held against the fence. And of course, Kimbo Slice joins the cast, swinging some wide-ass punches at a faceless opponent. UFC Undisputed 2010 is slated to hit stores on May 25th — what improvements would you like to see in the updated version?


The Potato Index: UFC 107 Aftermath

(Diego, we don’t want to embarrass you or anything, but, well, your brain is showing. Photo courtesy of Fight Magazine’s UFC 107 gallery.)

The results from UFC 107 are in and the numbers have all been tallied up. And don’t worry, after concerns arose that some of our stats had been poorly calculated, we hired some real experts: the dudes who counted all the votes in the most recent election in Afghanistan. See, they’ve got real world experience!

Join us to see who’s up, who’s down, and who made little progress in either direction after UFC 107, all according to the arbitrary numerical rankings system of the Potato Index.

B.J. Penn +193
What kind of champion goes five rounds with the number one contender to his title and only gets hit eight times? The thoroughly dominant kind. Penn is without question the world’s best lightweight right now, but that doesn’t mean he has to jump divisions right away. Stick around, beat up Gray Maynard, issue a few futile challenges to Shinya Aoki, then go. You’ll have our blessing.

Diego Sanchez -12
On Saturday night we learned that Sanchez isn’t really in Penn’s league (which we already knew, or at least suspected), but he is one of the toughest SOB’s in MMA at any weight class. One gets the sense that if the doctor hadn’t stopped it, he would have kept going all night. Fortunately for his face, it doesn’t work like that.


Is BJ Penn Ready to Leave the Lightweight Division Again?

BJ Penn Rudy Valentino UFC 107
(Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)

Following his four-round drubbing at the hands of Georges St. Pierre at UFC 94, the general consensus was that BJ Penn should return to the 155-pound division for good, and give up his pipe-dream of becoming the UFC’s welterweight champion. Penn did return to lightweight competition, and went on to completely demolish the division’s two top contenders, Kenny Florian and Diego Sanchez. He now finds himself in same position as his nemesis GSP, where no challenger to his title seems quite worthy enough. So will we be seeing the Prodigy make another run at welterweight next year? Dana White lays it out:

"Off the top of my head, there’s probably a couple other guys here (in the lightweight division) that deserve a shot at B.J. before he took off. There’s probably a couple more, and then I would consider him cleaning out his division…I don’t think he has (forgotten St-Pierre), and I think if he cleans out this division, I think he’s probably going to want to go back to 170 and take a run at that again. And I think [Penn] is a different human being now than he was last time they fought. (But) he’d have to fight – you don’t just abandon your title, move up to fight 170 (pounds) and fight ‘GSP’ with the way you lost to him last time. He’d have to fight a couple top contenders at 170, then maybe."

Gray Maynard and Frankie Edgar are among the names of lightweight fighters who have enjoyed great success recently, and could be tapped as Penn’s next opponent. But good luck selling them as actual threats to the belt. If the UFC’s main-event-drought continues, they might be better off using Penn for exhibitions against tough welterweights like Josh Koscheck, Jon Fitch, or Thiago Alves — at least until an undisputed #1 lightweight contender emerges. Few people are clamoring for Penn/GSP III at this point, but I think we all want to see Penn get an even greater challenge his next time out, even if it takes him out of his most effective weight class.


UFC 108 Cursewatch: Rory Markham Pulls Out of Martin Kampmann Fight

(Markham starches Brodie Farber during his Octagon debut last July.)

Following withdrawals by Anderson Silva, Brock Lesnar, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Gabriel Gonzaga, Carlos Condit, and Tyson Griffin, MMA Weekly reports that the latest fighter to pull out of UFC 108 (January 2, Las Vegas) is Rory Markham, who recently aggravated an old achilles tendon injury, and may be out of action for up to a year. Markham, who hasn’t competed since his first-round knockout loss against Dan Hardy at UFC 95, was slated to take on fellow welterweight Martin Kampmann, who is coming off his own loss against Paul Daley; Kampmann is still expected to compete on the card against an opponent to be named later.

Though not all of the matchups have been officially confirmed, UFC 108′s lineup is currently looking like this:


UFC 107 End-of-Night Bonuses Go to Grant, Johnson, Belcher, Gouveia

Alan Belcher Wilson Gouveia UFC 107
(Wilson Gouveia [in the Brazilian shorts] and Alan Belcher [in the Fairyland shorts] slug it out at UFC 107. Photo courtesy of MMA Fanhouse.)

Despite some thrilling moments in UFC 107‘s main card, the UFC awarded all of its traditional end-of-night bonuses to preliminary card fighters. Scoring the $65,000 pay bumps were…

Knockout of the Night: TJ Grant, for wrecking Kevin Burns with a right hook in the closing seconds of their one-rounder, which kicked off the prelims.

Submission of the Night: DaMarques Johnson, who upkicked the wits out of Edgar Garcia, then quickly finished him with a triangle choke in the first round of their fight. The memorable sequence — which was shown at the end of the pay-per-view broadcast — occurred shortly after Johnson was punched to the mat.

Fight of the Night: Alan Belcher vs. Wilson Gouveia, which also made it to the PPV broadcast. Though their match was the second-shortest of the night, it was a fast-paced striking war that ended with Gouveia crumpling under Belcher’s onslaught. And really, are you going to give it to Clay Guida three fights in a row? You know he’ll just blow it all on shampoo and energy drinks…


Penn vs. Sanchez: This Is What Domination Looks Like

Diego Sanchez UFC 107
(Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)

If you watched last night’s UFC event, you already know that BJ Penn vs. Diego Sanchez was one of the most lopsided five-round fights in UFC history. But exactly how bad did things get for the hapless challenger? According to FightMetric, Sanchez threw 108 strikes at Penn, and only landed eight of them. Seriously. Eight, the whole fight. That’s a 7% success rate. By comparison, Penn was able to touch Sanchez 150 times out of 214 tries, for a remarkable 70% success rate. Compounding his failure, Sanchez also went 0/24 on his takedown attempts. (Fun fact: Penn hasn’t been successfully taken down by a lightweight since Takanori Gomi, six years ago. But hey, kudos to Sanchez for trying anyway.)

Of course, you could also just look at the above photo to understand what a bad situation the Nightmare found himself in at the FedExForum. Allow Dana White to explain what you’re looking at:

“In 10 years of being in this business, I don’t know if I’ve ever seen anybody more busted up than Diego is right now,” White said. “His whole lip is split open in half, in two different places. When I say split open, it’s torn down to this stuff down here [indicating a point on his chin]. His forehead is as open as [Marvin Eastman], the kid that Vitor Belfort kneed [at UFC 43]. They pulled that thing wide open. His face? I think his nose is broken. I don’t even know how Diego kept coming forward. He’s a tough kid, man. I’m almost positive his nose was broken by the third round. That Tony Robbins [expletive] works.”  

After the jump: A completely unmarked BJ Penn discusses his victory.