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December, 2013

Searching for the “Real” Ronda Rousey


(TUF has made the public hate Ronda Rousey. But she is who she is. / Photo via Getty)

By Brian J. D’Souza

Being a woman in combat sports presents unique challenges when it comes to audience perception. For Ronda Rousey, the fairy tale-esque origin story of her being an American Olympian with tragedy in her childhood catapulted her into the spotlight as a mainstream media darling. But as quickly as she was built up as the newest UFC star, her coaching position on The Ultimate Fighter has torn her down from the pedestal of adulation.

This all raises the question — who is the real Ronda Rousey? Is she a spoiled brat who overruns boundaries because she feels entitled to preferential treatment? Or was she manipulated into losing her cool on the Ultimate Fighter set, with the results being slickly edited to paint her in the worst light possible?

CagePotato’s Elias Cepeda attributed Ronda’s athletic success to her crazy attitude, writing “Ronda Rousey hasn’t met anyone meaner or madder and that’s a big reason why she’s the champ.” However, the truth can’t be so simple when nice guys like Lennox Lewis and Georges St-Pierre have utterly dominated their competition throughout their respective eras.

Doing media in the lead-up to her rematch with Miesha Tate at UFC 168, Rousey was in fine form recently, riffing lines to FightHubTV that could be penned by whoever writes Chael Sonnen’s politically incorrect jokes.

How long ago was it that Kim Kardashian had dicks in her mouth and now she’s selling my little sister shoes?” she said at one point, trotting out some old material to the delight of the reporters in the room.

Talking to AnnMaria De Mars, Ronda’s mother, I thought I’d uncover some hidden clues to unlocking or understanding Ronda’s personality. The idiom of the apple not falling far from the tree has been used to compare the 1984 world judo champion to her daughter who placed second at the 2007 world championships and earned a bronze at the 2008 Olympic games.

“People are sometimes offended by Ronda because she does not fit how they think she should act,” wrote AnnMaria on her blog about Ronda’s stint on TUF. “At Ronda’s age, given the same degree of provocation, I would have punched out a few people, hit someone with a chair, told everyone to fuck off and walked out.”

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UFC 168 Free Fights: Anderson Silva vs. Yushin Okami, Chris Weidman vs. Mark Munoz, Ronda Rousey vs. Liz Carmouche [VIDEOS]


(Fight starts at the 12:05 mark)

The UFC, in its infinite grace, has released three more classic fights featuring UFC 168 headliners. Above, you’ll see Anderson Silva‘s second-round TKO of Yushin Okami from UFC 134 back in August 2011. The fight marked Silva’s ninth middleweight title defense, and his first UFC appearance in his home country of Brazil.

Below: Chris Weidman‘s savage knockout of Mark Munoz at UFC on FUEL 4 in July 2012, which earned the All-American his fifth UFC victory and a shot at Anderson’s belt the following year. After the jump: Ronda Rousey‘s historic title-fight against Liz Carmouche at UFC 157 in February, which ended (unsurprisingly) in Rousey’s seventh-consecutive first-round armbar — or her ninth, if you count her ammy record. Can she make it a perfect 10 this Saturday?


(Fight starts at the 12:05 mark)

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UFC 168 Tweet-Sized Stats & Facts: The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly


(Image via @spideranderson. Click to view full-size.)

By Reed Kuhn

Note: Reed’s book ‘Fightnomics’ is available now on Amazon (in Kindle and paperback versions), featuring 336 pages of statistical analysis on UFC fighters and the “hidden science” behind their fights. If you’ve been a fan of his Databomb columns, pick up a copy today. A full description of the book is at the end of this post.

While cranking through some statistical analysis of fighters competing at next weekend’s UFC 168 event, I came across a few tidbits that fit the character limit for tweetability. Tweet ‘em all you want, I’ll make more.

The Good:
Anderson Silva has the highest Knockdown Rate of any fighter at #UFC168. 16% of his landed power head strikes cause a knockdown.

• In terms of Knockdown Rate, #UFC168 fighters Robert Peralta (14%) and Travis Browne (12%) are also way above average.

• Tibau vs Johnson at #UFC168 will be a rare Southpaw vs Southpaw matchup, or what I call a “Cyclone fight” due to the clockwise spin.

• Mostly likely to attempt takedowns at #UFC168 is Ronda Rousey who attempts 4 TDs per 5 min. round. Not that her rounds ever last that long.

• The most active standup striker at #UFC168 is Dennis Siver, who outworks his opponents by 59% in volume while standing.

• Hardest fighter to hit at #UFC168 is Anderson Silva, who avoids 82% of all head strikes thrown at him. Still, Weidman may only need one.

• Highest takedown defense at #UFC168 are Weidman & Browne, both 100%. Neither have been taken down despite each facing 7 attempts.

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Watching Royston Wee Will Set You Back $10, and Other Info About the UFC’s New Digital Network


(Subtlety was never the UFC’s strong suit…)

Remember that subscription-based, digital UFC network we talked about a couple weeks ago? You know, the one that promised cards full of unfit for television jobbers like Royston Wee?

Well, the UFC officially announced the price point: Access to the “UFC Fight Pass” will cost $9.99 a month.

What exactly does the monthly fee get you?

Access to international fight cards like UFC Fight Night 34, the UFC’s MMA fight library which includes fights from Pride, Strikeforce, and the WEC, as well as the UFC’s TV show archives (TUF, UFC Unleashed, etc.). Subscribers also get access to any original content the UFC is willing to put on the network, such as interviews, features, and whatever else.

It seems Alexander Hamilton carries a bit of respect at Zuffa, though initially the entire video library won’t be available. Marshall Zelaznik, the UFC’s Chief Content Officer, elaborated on this during the MMA Hour:

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Horrible Photoshops, Love Children, Cosplaying, and Gabe Gonzaga on a Donkey: Highlights from the CagePotato Tumblr


(Joe Rogan is intrigued by our Tumblr. / Screencap via @3amMMA)

The CagePotato tumblr has surpassed over 650 followers! We figured it has been a while since we shared some of our Tumblr highlights with the vast majority of the Potato Nation, so that’s why we’re making this post. We’ve got some interesting stuff to share with you guys—and it’s all SFW (though there are no Al Bundy GIFs, sorry):

-This is an oldie but a goody: Someone once made an MMA-tabloid complete with ridiculous stories like Ariel Helwani having a lovechild with Arianny Celeste. Funny stuff.

-For some reason, the UFC tried to photoshop Anderson Silva‘s shorts and it looks like shit. Really, it looks like a 5th grader was screwing around with MS paint.

-Tristar hinted at a GSP return. Hmm.

-An awesome traditional martial arts fail—a different one than we posted earlier today.

-Cain Velasquez, Ryan Bader, CB Dolloway, and Aaron Simpson as young ASU wrestlers.

-Your worst nightmare.

-Eddie Alvarez doing parenting right.

-A titanic, earth-shaking sumo body slam.

-Armani is trying to get involved in the MMA game with a shitty, generic sweatshirt. I’d rather wear affliction…

-Remember Ronda Rousey‘s awkward spot on FOX NFL a few weeks ago? The one that had families asking more questions about her wardrobe than about the fight? So do we.

Check out a sick wrestling takedown, Jackie Chan in drag, and more after the jump.

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Traditional Martial Arts Fail of the Week: Finnish Jedi Knight Looks Like a Tool


(Video via Break.com)

Ready to see some bullshit “martial arts” get exposed in hilarious fashion?

Good! Because that’s just what we have in store for you with our new somewhat-regular feature: Traditional Martial Arts Fail of the Week.

From now on, on each weekend that doesn’t host a UFC event we’ll be posting the most laughably atrocious foibles, gaffes, and mishaps from traditional styles (and other Bullshido like Dim Mak).

For the inaugural video, our friends at Break.com have uncovered a Finnish Jedi by the name of Jukka Lampila. Lampila claims mastery of the “Empty Force”—a mysterious power that can control an attacker that requires no physical prowess or martial proficiency. Though, according to the official website, we’re not doing this formless art justice in our description.

“There is a multitude of descriptions for the term but none of them might reveal its meaning in all aspects,” is how the site describes Empty force or “Efo” for short.

But get this, they even advertise that there’s zero technique involved and that you can skip classes without missing out on learning:

With Efo, there are no specific forms or technics [sic] and each trainee applies it the way it best fits oneself. In Efo there are no “courses” that would start and end somewhere.  Instead, the fundamental principles (relaxation, mind and breathing) are exercised during every session. Thus, anyone can join and train any time. And if you can’t join each and every session, you won’t miss anything irreplaceable.

Judging from the video, the Efo website is telling the truth; you won’t miss anything at all from ditching this guys classes.

When confront by students cult-like true believers, Jukka Lampila—a man who has “trained in budo since 1985″—comes across as a modern-day Luke Skywalker, disposing of foes with Force-powered strikes.

But when skeptics step up to the plate, things change. We don’t want to spoil it for you, so check out the video and enjoy watching this fraud eat crow.

If you see any video that’s good (or bad) enough to make the cut, let us know! Send it to tips@cagepotato.com.

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Friday Link Dump: Rousey Wants Holm in the UFC, Serra Brothers Are Squabblin’, The 12 Best Schwarzenegger Kills + More


(“Silva vs. Weidman 2″ extended preview, via YouTube.com/UFC)

UFC 169 Could Be Forced To Go Up Against NFL’s Super Bowl (MMAConvert)

Schedule Permitting, Anderson Silva Intends to Coach on Chael Sonnen’s TUF: Brazil Team (MMAFighting)

UFC Champion Ronda Rousey Hopes UFC Signs Holly Holm (MMAJunkie)

Ridiculous Timeline of Biggest UFC/MMA Stories of 2013, Pt. 1 (Jan.-April) (MMAMania)

Serra Brothers Split, Nick Locked Out of BJJ Gyms (BloodyElbow)

MMA Tweet-O-Rama: Botter, Dundas and Snowden Prepare for UFC 168 Drama (BleacherReport)

Boys Behaving Badly: Why ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ Is the Best Movie of the Year (The Escapist)

20 Homophobic Twitter Reactions to Phil Robertson’s Suspension (EveryJoe)

The 12 Best Arnold Kills (Out of All 509) (Break)

The 50 Greatest Star Wars Gift in the Galaxy (HiConsumption)

The Worst Mixtape Covers of 2013 (Complex)

The 25 Most Viral Photos of 2013 (WorldWideInterweb)

Five Ways the World Got Worse in 2013 (MensFitness)

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Last-Second Christmas Present Ideas: War Machine Launched a Clothing Line, Y’all.


(MICROSOFT PAINT IS ALPHA MALE SHIT! Photo courtesy of Alpha-Male-Shit.myshopify.com. Of course we aren’t joking.)

Do you have some last-second Christmas gifts to buy for the MMA fans in your life? Do said fans often find themselves looking at MMA t-shirts and thinking “Yeah, this assortment of glitter, botched Hanzi and skulls is fantastic, but I need something a little more ridiculous.” Do you have no problems with dropping twenty-five bucks on a shirt that was blatantly designed in Microsoft Paint, and probably in under twenty seconds?

Then do I have some excellent news for you: War Machine has launched a clothing line – subtly called “Alpha Male Shit” – and it is exactly what you’re assuming it is.

Alpha Male Shit solves the dilemma that apparently alpha males face all the time: How does one demonstrate how badass he (or she!) is while doing everyday things like grocery shopping, visiting the zoo or mowing the lawn? The answer, obviously, is to wear a shirt proclaiming that you do Alpha Male Shit; this way, even the alpha male getting his teeth cleaned can remind his dentist that he’s usually more awesome than this. If you think I’m joking, then take a look at what appears to be the brand’s signature design (I base this squarely off the fact that there are four variations – including a female version! – of it in the shop right now):

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Insane Knockout Double-Feature: A 5-Second Falling Tree KO, And the Most Brutal Liver Kick You Will See All Year

One thing that has always separated CagePotato from our MMA peers — you know, aside from our standing with the UFC, our limited staff, and our “It’s 12 o’clock somewhere” policy in regards to drinking in the office — is our commitment to bringing you readers the greatest knockout videos from across the globe, no matter how rare, unknown, or shoddy the footage itself is. But every now and again, you guys repay the favor and drop something like the above gem in our mailbox. It almost melts the ice from our cold, dead hearts to know you guys actually care. Almost. 

In this case, CP reader Rob Fernandes passed along a video of an amatuer bout between Ian “The Korean” Park and Jose Jovel with the subject title “Awesome 5 second KO” and a description that read “I’m sure fans wouldn’t mind seeing a semi out of shape welterweight Frankenstein his opponent.” Naturally, we felt compelled to pay it forward, so check it out and let us know what you think of Jose’s jandiwork (see what I did there?).

Of course, this wasn’t the only vicious knockout to be shared with us recently, so join us after the jump for a video of the most vicious liver kick KO since McCarthy vs. Loiseau.

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Interview: Duke Roufus Discusses GLORY, The Pettis Brothers, And the Chaotic Art of Striking


(Roufus [at far left] with Sergio Pettis, Anthony Pettis, Ben Askren, and Roufusport BJJ coach Daniel Wanderley. Photo via Dave Mandel/Sherdog.)

By Elias Cepeda

Duke Roufus had an illustrious career as a kickboxer before becoming even more well-known as an MMA coach. In recent years, his highly regarded Roufusport camp has produced such talents as UFC champion Anthony Pettis, his younger brother Sergio, and former Bellator champ Ben Askren. In advance of the Glory 13 event in Tokyo this Saturday that Roufus is doing color commentary for, CagePotato sat down with him to look back on the twists and turns of his career, and look towards the future of some of his biggest stars.

CAGEPOTATO.COM: What would you say your role with Glory is, Duke? We hear and see you doing color commentary during events but when you were in Chicago last fall, you also had a big presence in all sorts of other pre-event activities.

DUKE ROUFUS: Well, about ten years ago they had me do color commentary for K-1 on pay-per-view broadcasts. This was really a natural progression when they came back with Glory. My role is that of a color commentator but I’m also just a huge kickboxing enthusiast. I love the sport. I’m just as big a fan as a participant.

We’ve always heard Joe Rogan talk about “K-1 level striking” in certain UFC fighters — meaning that a particular guy had great striking, so much so that he could survive in K-1, which was recognized as the top kickboxing promotion in the world. Has Glory replaced K-1 in that role?

Yeah, for sure. K-1 just struggled internally. Japanese kickboxing and MMA have had some internal issues. The guys from Glory have really stepped up. They are also huge kickboxing enthusiasts. Now, all the best fighters are fighting for Glory. We also did something similar to what MMA did with unified rules, and we’ve tried to set that up for kickboxing. We want to make it a fan-friendly fight. The fans can really tune in and enjoy the fights. We created a rule set that makes it fun for the fan.

As an expert kickboxer and one who knows Muay Thai so well, don’t you think that the Glory rules could be better, though? You have many fighters who have trained and competed under full Muay Thai rules — using elbows, using the clinch, using sweeps — and now they get to this point and they’re not allowed to use these effective weapons.

Well, with those things allowed, the tournaments would have a different outcome, that’s for sure. There would be more cuts from elbows and so more guys wouldn’t be able to move on in the tournament. And clinching is how you defend not getting elbowed.

The uneducated fan boos when the clinch happens. Uneducated MMA fans do the same thing when Jiu Jitsu happens in a fight. I understand clinching and the art of it. I understand trips and dumps. Unfortunately here in America, people want to see big punches and big kicks. It can be difficult to understand Muay Thai. Even the scoring is a little difficult to follow. Kickboxing is very similar to boxing. That makes it easy to follow.

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