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Here's What Happens When Strangers Draw Your Selfies

January, 2010

Video of the Day: This Wanderlei da Silva Guy Might Have a Real Future in MMA


(Props: MMA Scraps)

Yes, we know he’s only 20 anos, and his takedown defense needs as much work as his cardio, but dammit, there’s something about this Wanderlei da Silva kid.  He has a certain star quality about him, something that makes him exciting to watch even when he’s getting beat.  Just check out the 1:10 mark when he gets kicked out of the ring and "the crowd goes wild," or so we are told. 

We gotta admit, we’re impressed by his ability to hang in there against the bigger Dilson Filho and survive the initial onslaught to land that big elbow in the clinch.  At the risk of getting too carried away after only seeing one of this youngsters fights, we’re going to go out on a limb and say that da Silva is definitely going places.  Just as soon as he stops leaving himself wide open with those big, looping hooks.   

P.S. An extra-special bonus is after the jump.

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Set Your DVR: Brock Lesnar to Appear on Wednesday’s Sportscenter


(This may be your best chance yet to hear the phrase ‘pencil-necked geek’ said aloud on ESPN.)

Change of plans, Potato Nation.  Remember that press conference this week where Dana White said Brock Lesnar would be in attendance to fill us in on his health status and future fighting prospects?  Yeah, that’s not happening anymore.  Instead he’ll be appearing on Wednesday’s edition of "Sportscenter" on ESPN, where he’ll probably do the bare minimum in terms of answering questions while also making it very clear that this was not his idea.  Lesnar’s scheduled to appear at 11 am EST, but if we’ve learned anything by sitting around in hotel rooms and watching ESPN in a constant loop, it’s that you’ll probably be able to catch it throughout the day, just like you’ll probably be really sick of all the clever one-liners about last night’s NBA games by noon. 

The real question is, will Brock actually tell us something worth hearing in this interview?  Or is he going to continue to act like his condition is a state secret that must not be discussed?

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Next UFC “Primetime” Show Will Attempt to Make GSP-Hardy Seem Like a Competitive Fight

Dan Hardy
(‘Of course I’m wearing me bandana. I’m not going to walk around during flu season without taking the necessary precautions, now am I?’)

Ever since the first installment of "UFC Primetime" in the run-up to last January’s Georges St. Pierre-B.J. Penn fight blew our collective minds, we’ve been waiting for Spike TV and the UFC to get together on another collaboration of slow-mo walking and carefully crafted storylines.  Surely, we thought, they were waiting until they had an especially compelling title fight.  Or, as we learned in an email from Spike TV today, a title fight that most people expect to be a total squash match.

Beginning on Wednesday, March 10, Spike will run a three-part "Primetime" series to hype the UFC 111 main event bout between GSP and Dan Hardy.  Presumably this will be where they attempt to sell us on the idea that Hardy offers a considerable challenge to the welterweight champ, and that the oddsmakers who currently have St. Pierre pegged as a 6-1 favorite have no clue what they’re talking about.

The show is bound to be visually compelling with great production values, so it will still be worth watching.  But didn’t we already get all the backstory we needed on GSP last time?  And wouldn’t it be more fun to see this done for a future fight that seems a little more competitive?

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Greg Nagy’s Trainer Doesn’t Sound Terribly Optimistic About His Chances Against Herschel Walker


(Greg Nagy, previously known as ‘TBA’.)

If you search the internet in an attempt to learn something about Greg Nagy, you will learn that he’s either a professor of Classics at Harvard who knows everything there is to know about archaic Greek poetry, or else he’s the 1-1 heavyweight tapped to face former NFL player Herschel Walker in his MMA debut at Strikeforce: Miami.  We’re more interested in the second guy, though all we know about him so far is that he started his pro career in 2009 and is coming off a loss.  In other words, Strikeforce isn’t bringing him in because they necessarily think he has a bright future in their heavyweight division.

Talking to MMAFighting.com, Nagy recited the typical here-to-make-a-name-for-myself script, but it was the comments from his trainer, Roland Sarria, the man who recommended him for this fight, that were more telling:

"They’re roughly the same size so I thought it was a good fit," said Sarria, who also runs the Rage in the Cage Training Center where Nagy trains. "You can’t put [Walker] in with Fedor [Emelianenko], right? Greg is 1-1, he’s a good-looking kid. I’d say he’s a bit more advanced than Herschel, but not by much. I thought it was a good matchup."

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Exclusive: Nate Marquardt Is Going to Keep Beating Guys Until They Have to Give Him a Title Shot


(‘I’ve always wanted to do this!’)

by Cage Potato contributor Elias Cepeda

After spending all of 2009 making a strong case for himself as the UFC’s top middleweight contender, Nate Marquardt finds himself facing Chael Sonnen at UFC 109 while Vitor Belfort leapfrogs him for the title shot against Anderson Silva.  In this exclusive interview Marquardt opens up about his dealings with the UFC, his thoughts on fighting Sonnen, and the bout with Dan Henderson that never materialized.

CagePotato.com: In your last fight you took on Demian Maia at UFC 102 and knocked him out in 21 seconds. I imagine you probably couldn’t be happier with that result?

Nate Marquardt: Totally (laughs). There wasn’t much more I could have asked for.

You’ve spoken before about training to do specifically what you ended up doing. Did the fight go the way you thought it would or were you surprised by the quickness?

I don’t think you could ever plan for a fight to end that quickly. When I gameplan I look for specific stuff that’s going to work on the guy that I’m comfortable doing. Other than that you can have a gameplan but it can’t be your only thing. You have to be a smart fighter and when something you weren’t training for happens you have to be able to change your game in the middle of the fight.

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Gina Carano Promoted to World’s 68th Hottest Woman


(‘Aw shucks, you guys. If I had known my hotness was going to be honored I’d have remembered to wear a shirt.’)

It may be a new year, but Gina Carano has apparently only gotten more physically attractive since 2009.  AskMen.com came out with their ‘Top 99 Most Desirable Women of 2010‘ list, and "Crush" moved up five spots from #73 last year to #68 this year, putting her ahead of starlets like Angelina Jolie (#88) and Jessica Simpson (#82), and just behind Izabel Goulart (#67), whoever that is.  The point is, Gina’s star is still on the rise.  It’s like my grandfather always said, ‘Good things happen when you take your clothes off on the cover of ESPN the Magazine.’

But Carano isn’t the only woman from the MMA world to grace the list.  UFC ring girl Arianny Celeste broke into the double-digits to nab the 98th spot overall.  Officially, that means she’s hotter than Jamie-Lynn Sigler (#99) from "Entourage," but not quite as hot as porn star/sort-of-mainstream actress Sasha Grey (#97). 

But hey, 98?  That’s, you know, good and all.  Nothing to be ashamed of there, Arianny.  We’re sure all the kids and that one dude’s prom will be impressed.  Unless that French chick from "Amelie," who came in at #93, shows up.  They see her and hear that accent, forget about it.  The boys will line up to pour her a glass of punch and you’ll end up slow-dancing with the creepy P.E. teacher who smells like coffee and old newspapers.  Don’t think it can’t happen. 

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Fight Booking Roundup: Koscheck vs. Daley, Kongo vs. Buentello, + More


(‘Why, Anthony? I trusted you!’)

Today many people agreed to fight many other people for money at a later date, and as tedious as it is to run through all the fights that you’ll eventually learn about one way or another anyway, we might as well drag ourselves through it one more time:

Josh Koscheck announced via Twitter today that he will fight Paul "Semtex" Daley in a "co main event" bout at UFC 113 on May 1st.  Daley has been grumbling about wanting a crack at Koscheck lately, and Koscheck responded by tweeting, "[t]his kid is going 2 get what he’s asking 4. XOXO"  Wait a minute, are we sure Koscheck’s Twitter wasn’t hacked by a fourteen year-old girl?

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Videos: Fedor Cracks a Smile, GSP Advocates Bossing Women Around, + More


(Props: MMA Share)

If you’re feeling a little down today and are considering taking a long hot bath with a clock radio to top off the evening, you aren’t alone.  Today is what many have come to call "Blue Monday."  It’s officially the most depressing day of the year.  In an effort to help you soldier through it, we found some fun videos that only sort of have to do with MMA. 

Those of you who read Neal Taflinger’s excellent profile piece on Fedor Emelianenko in the October ’09 issue of Fight Magazine may recognize this little scene on the M-1 Global tour bus.  Those of you who didn’t read it will have to live with that decision for the rest of your sad lives.  Taffy is the guy with the bright orange hair in the back of the bus trying to conduct an interview via Fedor’s interpreter.  Fedor is the Russian dude grinning from ear to ear after shoving some ice down the back of Gegard Mousasi‘s trousers.  Some things transcend all language and cultural barriers, and ice in somebody’s pants is undoubtedly one of those things. 

More MMA-related pick-me-ups await you after the jump.

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Matt Hughes Easing Back Into Training Like an Old Man Into a Hot Bath

Matt Hughes Cindy Crawford
(The best part about going to a Bentley dealership? Signing the lease agreement.)

His showdown with fellow MMA legend Renzo Gracie is still about four months away, but Matt Hughes is beginning to slowly work his way into training camp. The former UFC welterweight champ wrote on his blog that it’s not quite as easy to get into fighting shape as he gets on in years, so he’s starting early and taking it slow. As for how he’s preparing for the bout after his recent lackluster outings, Hughes seems to have figured out that as awesome as the HIT Squad and its camouflage mats might be, he needs to seek outside help from time to time.

Hughes says he’ll be doing some of his training out in Utah with Matt Pena, Demarques Johnson, and his “ground wizard,” Jeremy Horn (seen here overseeing the execution of a fat kid). Either this is a sign that Hughes is looking for any excuse to get out of changing diapers, or else he realizes that he needs a good showing against Gracie if he wants to stick around in the UFC without becoming fodder for the young bucks. Just from what he saw while kicking back and watching Spike TV, he seems like he might be a tad concerned about how the UFC will guard his legacy in the years to come:

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Wait, the UFC Actually Made James Toney an Offer? And He Turned It Down?!

James Toney
(Looks like someone is getting ready to do some shucking and ducking.)

After weeks of stalking UFC president Dana White and regaling us all with stories of side check kicks and training under his father, an original “death fighter,” James Toney says he finally received an offer to fight in the UFC. The problem? That offer “was a joke,” according to Toney, who told FightHype.com that he’s decided to look at it as a sign that DW isn’t serious about signing him to a contract, which is weird because we expected a pro boxer with no MMA experience whatsoever to get several millions of dollars upfront.

Toney apparently expected the same, despite the fact that MMA fighters still don’t pull the kind of paychecks that even old, chubby boxers do. But don’t worry, he says he’s already aware of that. He just doesn’t seem to think it should apply to him:

“…this offer was laughable. That’s why I wanted the camera guy in the room with us when I sat down with Dana, so the fans would know I was serious and if it didn’t happen, it wasn’t because of me.”
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