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

October, 2014

Video Highlights: Carla Esparza Chokes Out Angela Hill on TUF 20


(Props: TheUltimateFighter on YouTube)

Last night’s episode of The Ultimate Fighter: A Champion Will Be Crowned featured #1-seeded former Invicta champ Carla “Cookie Monster” Esparza taking on #16-ranked Angela “Overkill” Hill. And while Hill and her coaches were confident that the fight would be a lot more competitive than the rankings suggested, Esparza’s elite wrestling skills overwhelmed the Muay Thai champ. Once Esparza secured a takedown, she aggressively went for Hill’s neck, eventually sinking a rear-naked choke late in the first round. With Esparza’s win, Team Pettis is now up 4-0 on Team Melendez.

As for Angela Hill, she may have been eliminated in the first round, but she’s left a lasting impression on her teammates…

Respect the gas.

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Just Who the Hell Is Bellator 130 Headliner Linton Vassell, Exactly?


(Photo via Sherdog)

When Bellator light heavyweight champion Emanuel Newton was inexplicably booked to face former UFC journeyman Joey Beltran at Bellator 124, we were concerned to say the very least. Beltran has always been a gamer, sure, but his recent performances (which included a KO loss to Rampage Jackson and a decision win over Vladimir Matyushenko under the Bellator banner) didn’t exactly paint him as a man ready to face one of Bellator’s most elite fighters. Then this happened:

So yeah, Beltran *might* have been a little out of his league that night, but being that two of Bellator’s top light heavyweights are currently locked in a WWE-style feud with one another, viable contenders appear limited for “The Hardcore Kid.” Just take a look at Newton’s recently scheduled next opponent, if you don’t believe us…

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The Bad Guy Is Back: Chael Sonnen Cuts Promo for ‘Battlegrounds MMA One’

Battlegrounds MMA is hosting an old-school one-night eight-man tournament this Friday at the BOK Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma, featuring Jesse Taylor, Cody McKenzie, and blah blah blah that part’s not really important. What’s important is that the $19.95 PPV will be commentated by semi-disgraced UFC star Chael Sonnen and pro-wrestling legend Jim Ross. The fighters might bring the steak, but brother, Sonnen and Ross will provide the sizzle.

Above, Sonnen hypes the event in his usual silver-tongued style. Below, Jim Ross commentates video games, just because it’s hilarious.

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Interview: ‘Kingdom’ Actor Jonathan Tucker Discusses His Journey Into MMA Culture


(“The great majority of people who are fighting are not doing this for money and glory. There’s something else that drives them to the cage.” / Photo via kingdom.directv.com)

Though mixed martial arts has inspired its share of movies — both decent and dreadfulKingdom is the first TV drama to be set in the world of MMA. The series, which premieres next Wednesday, October 8th, on DIRECTV’s Audience channel, focuses on ex-fighter Alvey Kulina (played by Frank Grillo), his two sons, and their daily battles inside and outside of the cage.

Providing some of the show’s necessary tension is Jonathan Tucker, who plays the troubled black sheep of the Kulina clan. Jonathan took some time last week to chat with CagePotato.com about his preparations for the role, and the lengths that the cast and crew went to in order to ensure authenticity. Read our interview with Jonathan below, follow him on Twitter @jonathanmtucker, and visit Kingdom’s official site to learn more. 

CAGEPOTATO.COM: Kingdom takes place in the setting of a mixed martial arts gym and professional fighting, but it really seems to be about a father’s relationship with his sons. Tell me a little bit about the character you play, Jay Kulina.

JONATHAN TUCKER: Jay’s kind of this high-wire act, who’s part warrior, part jester. There’s a lot of characters in MMA gyms, and everybody’s being driven to fight for some different reason. Everyone’s finding a sort of healing in the training or the fighting or the camaraderie of being in a gym like that. And for Jay, there’s a sense of distance that he gets from the training and fighting that keeps him out of the other addictions in his life. And when he loses that ability to train, he succumbs to a lack of self-confidence and turns to alcohol and drugs and sex — which is certainly something that I got to see among people in different gyms around Los Angeles.

How much physical preparation was required for a role like this, where you’re portraying a fighter? What was that process like?

We did a two-week boot camp with Joe “Daddy” [Stevenson] and his team, and Greg Jackson, out in Pomona and Victorville, and I did a lot of individual coaching at different places around LA. I was already generally walking around at the weight I was on the show, but when you give a person a few months to really step it up and focus on the diet and the workouts, that extra 5% difference really shows.

I was dragging my ass to the gym every single minute I wasn’t working, and then fight training; we rolled in the morning, got in conditioning right afterwards, then we’d have time for lunch, we’d go box, and usually do some kind of kickboxing in the evening. Of course, we had the luxury of time. All we’re really trying to do on the show is honor the fighters who are trying to pay their rent, who are always working a second job, who are supporting families. The luxury that we had to just train without worrying about paying our mortgage, that was something we never took for granted.

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