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

June, 2013

Video Preview: Bellator’s ‘Fight Master’ Is Kind of Like ‘The Voice’ With a Bad Case of Cauliflower Ear

Fight Master: Bellator MMA

By Elias Cepeda

You never know with this MMA reality competition show stuff. Sometimes it hits gold (many *cough*mostly early*cough* seasons of The Ultimate Fighter, for example) and sometimes you get The Iron Ring. Major media companies getting behind these reality-show endeavors is never a guarantee of compelling and convincing fight television content and neither is past success – as evidenced by several dud seasons of TUF (Ed note: *makes “watching you” gesture toward TUF 16*.)

That said, we were kind of interested to see what Spike TV was doing with their second go at MMA reality television, especially after the cast was announced. Fight Master is the network’s first foray into post-UFC MMA reality programming and features Randy Couture, Frank Shamrock, Joe Warren, and Greg Jackson coaching aspiring Bellator fighters. The show debuts next week on Spike, but we got a sneak peak at the first episode Wednesday afternoon. After the jump, we’ve provided a little bit more info about the show’s structure, as well as the good and not-so-good aspects of the production, thus far.

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John Howard Once Broke Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s Nose During Sparring Session, Regrets Not Hurting Him Worse [COOL STORY BRO]


(Two years after this fight, Dennis Hallman would show up to UFC 133 wearing baby-blue man-panties. Crazy. It’s like everybody John Howard meets turns into one of humanity’s greatest villains. / Photo via Sherdog)

John Howard is the former UFC fighter best known for knocking out Dennis Hallman and Daniel Roberts, and getting his eye blown up by Jake Ellenberger. Tamerlan Tsarnaev is the thankfully-dead Boston Marathon bombing mastermind who was formerly a regular at Wai Kru MMA in Boston, where he trained as a boxer. As “Doomsday” explained during an appearance on Sherdog’s Beatdown radio show on Monday, Howard and Tsarnaev were occasional training partners at the gym, which didn’t work out so well for the future murderer:

The reason why he trained at my gym was because he was a good boxer. He wanted a good sparring partner, and most gyms he went to, a lot of guys couldn’t hang with his boxing. He was beating guys up. The reason why he came to Wai Kru was because you had me as a UFC fighter and you had other good strikers there who weren’t scared to take a beating or give one. That’s how I knew him.

One day we was sparring and it got a little too physical. Me being an MMA fighter and him being a boxer, it was like a little rivalry thing and we were boxing and we kind of went kind of hard one time. I give him credit. He was a good boxer, but because of the power I possess, I could put anybody down, I believe. What happened was, he got a little cocky. He was touching me up. He was getting the best of me. We went at it, and I caught him with my left hook, my famous left hook, and broke his nose. When I broke his nose, he covered his face. His body was open, so I turned my angle and I hit him with a body shot — with my right hand, a body shot, and I dropped him. That was the end of the sparring match…

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Patrick Cote and Hector Lombard Chosen as Coaches for ‘TUF: Canada vs. Australia’…Sort Of [UPDATED]

When word first broke that the infamous rivalry between Canada and Australia (?) would take center stage during the next non-Brazilian international season of The Ultimate Fighter, we reacted as we typically do, by turning underwhelming news into a farce. For why would the UFC even bother attempting to promote a rivalry between countries where none such rivalry exists? Not only does it dramatically narrow down their choices for potential participants, but it similarly limits the promotion’s ability to shoehorn in a rivalry between coaches (as they are wont to do) who are both hailing from the countries/nations being represented and are still relevant in today’s MMA landscape.

Look, we get that the point of an international TUF is to, you know, pit foreign nations against one another. But when you start booking coaches from entirely different weight classes, coaches who might not even be able to fight one another at the season’s close, no less, doesn’t that kind of eliminate the point? In any case, that’s what we’ll be privy to during TUF: Canada vs. Australia, which will feature Patrick Cote and Hector Lombard as coaches…sort of (Via FiveOuncesofPain):

According to the MMA Sun, Patrick Cote and Hector Lombard have been targeted as head coaches. An official announcement is expected by week’s end. It also appears the UFC has Kyle Noke lined up just in case Lombard ultimately decides he cannot accept the role based on the expectation of moving down from 185 pounds to compete against Cote as a welterweight. 

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Speculation Time: Jon Jones + Georges St. Pierre + October = Double Title-Fight Super-Card


(Or better yet, a San Do Three-Man Fighting superfight for the ages. Photo via Kaboom-Magazine.) 

According to a tweet sent out by UFC Central, Dana White expects Georges St. Pierre to make his next title defense against Johny Hendricks in October, although no date or venue have been determined. Similarly, UFC Tonight recently reported that Jon Jones’ camp expected the light heavyweight champion to be fully recovered from the gnarly toe injury he suffered at UFC 159 and back in action in October, preferably against #1 ranked contender Alexander Gustafsson. This, of course, can only mean one thing: DOUBLE TITLE-FIGHT SUPER-CARD.


Of course, the UFC also recently stated an interest in booking Jones against Anderson Silva at Cowboys Stadium in October, which can only mean one other possibility…

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The War on Drugs: California Ruling Strikes Down TRT Exemptions for MMA Fighters Until Further Notice


(Image via Fightland/RyanLoco)

A decision made during a California State Athletic Commission meeting in Los Angeles on Monday could have a major impact on the ongoing testosterone replacement therapy debate in MMA. Among the topics covered during the eight-hour session was a new proposed rule that would standardize the process for obtaining therapeutic use exemptions for testosterone. But the rule was successfully challenged by Department of Consumer Affairs lawyer Michael Santiago. As FightOpinion reports:

“[Santiago] said that until there is a statute/regulation on the books regarding testosterone that the commission should not be using an ‘underground’ policy of approving T usage. He argued that testosterone is considered a banned substance.

The end result is that fighters like Dan Henderson, Chael Sonnen, and Frank Mir will not be allowed to use testosterone while fighting in California until a law is on the books that explicitly spells out approval for T usage…[T]he UFC will be furious about this development given how many guys they have fighting in California who love testosterone. Vitor Belfort’s sympathy plea for continued testosterone usage means he won’t be fighting in California any time soon…

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UFC 161 Fight-Picking Contest: Win a Copy of ‘Enter the Dragon Ultimate Collector’s Edition’ on Blu-ray!


(Enter The Dragon 40th Anniversary Ultimate Collector’s Edition cover image via Facebook.com/EnterTheDragonFilm. Pick up a copy right here.)

In 2008, we declared Bruce Lee’s Enter the Dragon to be the Greatest Fight Movie of All Time, and our opinion hasn’t changed much since then. Here’s what we wrote about it at the time:

Perhaps the most perfect martial arts movie ever made. Bruce Lee infiltrates the secret island lair of an evil mastermind by way of entering his martial arts tournament. Not only does this film have all the prerequisite elements — faceless crowds of henchmen, evil dude with deadly hand attachments, philosophical digressions — it also features a cast that’s a who’s who of martial arts movies, including Black Belt Jones himself, Jim Kelly, as well as Bolo Yeung and Jackie Chan (uncredited). If the plot seems cliché, that’s probably because it’s been copied so much since then. Because it works.

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the 1973 classic, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has just released a re-mastered “Ultimate Collector’s Edition” of Enter the Dragon, which includes three new featurettes, a ton of vintage documentary footage, commentary by producer Paul M. Heller and writer Michael Allin, and collectible art cards, among other extras. And guess what? We’ve got two copies of the set to give away. Ladies and gentlemen, it’s fight-picking time.

This Saturday, Rashad Evans and Dan Henderson are meeting in the three-round main event of UFC 161. All you have to do is tell us who will win and how. Your entry should look something like this…

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Let the Ratings Decline Begin: Bellator to Begin Airing Events on Friday Nights


(Aaaaaaaannnnndddd it’s gone.) 

The study of TV trends/viewership is an interesting and incredibly thorough one, but there is perhaps no television trend more notorious than the Friday Night Death Slot, which maintains that any program placed in the graveyard slot (approximately 8 p.m. to 11 p.m.) on a Friday night is ultimately destined for cancellation. Countless examples can be cited to back this theory: Malcolm in the Middle, Firefly, the criminally overlooked Happy Endings, and of course, Fridays. In fact, the dreaded time slot can even be held (at least partially) accountable for the abysmal ratings of TUF 15 and TUF 16.

Of course, some scheisters out there will try to convince you that Friday night is primo advertising time, throwing all sorts of fancy “facts” and “numerical data” at you in the process, which probably explains why Bellator is voluntarily moving their events to Friday nights starting in the fall. Loretta Hunt was the first to pass along the news:

To avoid the NFL crush, Bellator MMA will move from Thursday to Friday nights this fall, Spike TV president Kevin Kay exclusively told SI.com during a screening this week forFight Master, its original MMA reality series debuting on June 19.

I don’t want to see Bellator going head to head with the UFC,” said Kay. “I don’t think that makes any sense for fans. No matter who would win in that scenario (Author’s note: The answer you’re looking for is “the UFC”), you don’t want to not give the fans the choice to watch both.

Kay goes on to cite TUF 16 as an *example* of a show doing well during the Friday slot, as well as the Discovery Channel’s “Gold Rush”, which averages 4 million viewers on Friday nights. Yes, a show that captures all the drama of sifting through sand reels in 4 million of us — week, after week, after mind-numbing week — before we switch over to the History Channel to watch people drive trucks across icy roads for the eighth year in a row. Meanwhile, Arrested Development was cancelled after 3 seasons. This is why we can’t have nice things, Nation.

-J. Jones

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The Entertainer: Quinton Jackson Heads Into an Uncertain Future

By Elias Cepeda

The past week or so has been an exciting one for fans of Quinton “Rampage” Jackson. It’s also been a little bit of a worrisome one as well.

Jackson has gushed about his new deal with Bellator and the TNA Impact professional wrestling organization. He says he’ll only be asked to fight when he wants to, that he’s excited to finally get to try out a long-time love of his — pro wrasslin’ — and that the Viacom family that owns Bellator might create opportunities for him on television and in movies, through their Paramount pictures movie house.

Jackson left the UFC earlier this year, not just on a three-fight losing streak, but also embittered by what he felt was poor treatment from the organization. Likening promoter/fighter relationships to that of personal, romantic ones, Jackson told CagePotato last week, “…me and Bellator, we tongue kissing right now, baby.”

The fan in me has a soft spot for Jackson. Like many of you, I’ve watched him fight for over a decade. He’s always done so with courage and in exciting fashion. Back in the day, “Rampage” may have also been the most accessible top fighter in the world. There was a time where he set up a phone line specifically for fans. He made the number public and waited for calls. When they came in, he’d pick up whenever he was available, and chat with whoever wanted to talk to him.

Not a whole lot to dislike about a guy like that, right? So, if Jackson has found a new, better situation for himself, where he feels happy, no one can begrudge him that.

The thing is, we’ve seen this situation play out before with the fighter. Being enamored with an organization before ultimately souring on them, and feeling rejected and disrespected when it was all over. While with Pride, Jackson often seemed quite happy. He defended the Japanese promotion in public and compared it favorably to its competitor at the time, the UFC.

By the time the UFC signed Jackson, however, he acted as if it was a life-saving event. I remember speaking with Jackson near the end of his Pride tenure and again shortly after he’d signed with the UFC.

At that time, Jackson didn’t only express satisfaction with his new UFC contract, he spoke of Dana White as if he were a personal friend who had saved him and done him a favor. Six or so years later, Jackson and White routinely trash each other publicly.

During a media conference call last week, Jackson said that Bellator promoter Bjorn Rebney is a guy who “gets it,” and is the type of boss he’s been waiting for his entire career. Jackson says that things are different this time around.

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WTF?! of the Day: Bigfoot Silva Attempting Cut to LHW to Fight “Mentally Sick” Thiago Silva


(“God, I could so go for an eclair right now-NO! FIGHT IT, BIGFOOT! PUNCH THE HUNGER AWAY.”) 

We know, we know, not a goddamn word in that title makes sense.

Let’s run a hypothetical scenario by you: You’re a 6’4”, 285-pound, acromegalic UFC fighter. Your head is the size of a Ronco Showtime Rotisserie & BBQ and your fists were the models upon which Hulk Hands were molded. Being that you’re Brazilian, you also have an eternal blood feud with another UFC-employed fighter/camp that can be traced back to ancient blood drawings on the Pico da Neblina.

So your enemy of all enemies finally gets back from his most recent suspension and picks up an impressive win inside the octagon. You could use a nice win yourself, being that you were just knocked out by your division’s champion for the second time (in a year) in your last fight. However, the 70 pound weight advantage you hold over your foe all but rules that option out. Do you a) Needle the shit out of the guy until he agrees to fight you at a catchweight or b) Try and settle things on the streets — no gloves, no rules, ala Rocky V.

Well, if you’re Antonio Silva, the answer is c) attempt a suicidal weight cut to get to that sonofabitch, who in this case is light heavyweight Thiago Silva (via FightersOnly):

I personally will attend the doctors to see if I am able to lose weight without spoiling my health. If can do it, I will drop weight to make this fight for sure. All I want to do is just fight him because words won’t make him change.

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“Fight for ALF” Update: Please Donate Your MMA Memorabilia to the Cause!


(Signed Stephan Bonnar page from the official UFC 127 program, courtesy of Jason Moles. You want it? Then go donate. More photos after the jump.)

In less than two weeks, our “Fight for ALF” campaign to raise money for AngryLittleFeet‘s medical expenses has raised $2,090, or about 42% of our $5,000 goal. That’s friggin’ incredible, and we want to thank everybody who has donated to our efforts.

So far, our only incentives for donation — besides the warm feeling you get from helping a human being who deserves it — have been CagePotato t-shirts for a $50 pledge, and a vague promise of a cam-show from BG or Karma to whoever donates a thousand bucks. (Still looking for our first rich pervert.)  But me and Jason Moles came up with a much better idea the other day. Basically, it goes like this…

- If you have any cool MMA memorabilia that you’re willing to part with (signed posters, rare videos, fight-worn gear, etc.), email bgoldstein@breakmedia.com with a description of the item and a photo if possible.
- After a week or so, we’ll pick out the ten best submissions, and rank them in order based on quality. Special thanks to Moles for submitting the first item, a UFC 127 program ”autographed by Punkass, KenFlo, Arianny [I think], Palmer and a few of the fighters from that card.”
- At the end of our 60-day fundraising drive, these ten pieces of MMA memorabilia will be awarded as prizes to the top donors, in order of the size of their donations.

So: If you have some killer MMA artifacts to donate, let me know. And if you haven’t kicked in a few bucks to CagePotato’s Fight for ALF yet, please do so right here. Keep in mind that the leading donation is currently $500, which came from a giant-hearted member of the MMA industry who wishes to remain anonymous. (But we know who this person is, and dude, we can’t tell you how much that meant to us.)

PREVIOUSLY: Donate to “CagePotato’s Fight for ALF” and Help Support Laura “angrylittlefeet” Nicholson’s Fight Against Cancer

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