Though last night’s episode of UFC Primetime opened with BJ Penn expressing frustration about the way he was portrayed in episode 1, it didn’t show him actually quitting the production and storming off or anything. In fact, the supposed tension wasn’t reflected at all after the opening scene. Episode 2 took a closer look at Penn and St. Pierre’s training camps and families. We see Penn’s new daughter, and his new nephew — the fifth member of the Penn clan to be named "Jay Dee." Meanwhile up north, GSP’s grizzled black-belt father shows up to his training camp, and we get a small glimpse of the effect that the elder St. Pierre had on his son’s life. Notably, there was no Dana White whatsoever in this episode, which I guess means he has more important things to do than babysit the lightweight champ. The third and final episode of UFC Primetime: St. Pierre vs. Penn airs next Wednesday. Will BJ show up for it?
The big problem with this Fedor video blog is not that it’s an obvious rip-off of Dana White’s video blog (though it is), but rather that the subject – Fedor – does not speak enough English to really be an active participant. He’s essentially a spectator, which means they have to fill time with way too much Jerry Millen, who has all the charm of a used car salesman on coke.
This is one more example of the way Affliction always goes wrong when they try to do a shoddier version of what the UFC does. Their strength with “Day of Reckoning” is the fight card itself. They’ve got some great fights on there, and instead of playing that up in the days before the event, we get to watch Fedor and his priest Rasputin look sad while Jerry Millen screws around in a limo and Donald Trump name-drops his way through press conferences.
Please, no more. Can’t we just focus on the fights?
Fox Sports Net aired their Fedor: The Baddest Man on the Planet documentary special last night, in which "the mystique of Fedor is uncovered," and "the secrets of the world’s most dominant fighter are finally revealed." And it was pretty damn entertaining, actually. Maybe not quite on the level of UFC Primetime (second episode airs tonight!), but we do get some insight into Emelianenko’s state of mind before and during fights, his shadowy training camp in Stary Oskol, his sado-masochistic bath-house routine, and his uniquely awesome way of trash-talking during grappling sessions. ("The crazy is coming. The crazy is going to happen now. It’s coming. Very soon.") Parts 1 and 2 are above, and parts 3-6 can be found at YouTube.com/DirtyFedor.
Below: This Japanese TV clip shows Olympic judo gold-medalist Satoshi Ishii visiting Las Vegas, where he steps into the Octagon for the first time, tries on the UFC’s "open-finga-glovos," takes some standup tips from Stephan Bonnar, and gives Randy Couture quite a workout.
If Affliction’s Fedor Emelianenko-Andrei Arlovski main event at “Day of Reckoning” this Saturday doesn’t draw as well as expected, you certainly can’t blame a lack of video hype. Above is a preview for what is being billed as a documentary called “Fedor: Baddest Man on the Planet,” which will air on Fox Sports Net Tuesday night. It’s important to note that this was put together by the people from M-1, so don’t expect a warts-and-all look at Emelianenko. More like a really long commercial or an extended version of the "Arlovski 360" hype videos. Speaking of which…
…here’s the latest installment, in which “The Pitbull” explains his plan to “fight like lightweight.” We also get to hear more people talk about how great Arlovski is, how hard he trains, etc. This is the fifth episode. We get it. He trains hard. He’s a good fighter. It’s not as if it becomes more true the more people you can find who are willing to say it on camera.
After the jump, Gilbert Yvel explains to “Inside MMA” why he punched that referee. The short version? It was wrong, but the ref was a dick.
The Telegraph was in Mark Coleman‘s dressing room following his tough loss to Mauricio Rua on Saturday, and videotaped him experiencing all five Stages of Grief. Watch as the Hammer goes from shocked and despondent to furious at his corner ("I couldn’t hear how much time’s left! Scream it!") to blaming himself for not staying on his feet ("It’s my own fault…it’s my own goddamned [expletives]") to spitting blood into a bucket, which could possibly be interpreted as "acceptance." Of course, his post-fight vent-session doesn’t compare to the level of rage he had after taking his first loss to Fedor Emelianenko at PRIDE Total Elimination 2004. In case you haven’t seen it before, video of that incident is after the jump; audio NSFW.
Fight-day installments of the Danavlog tend to be a lot more interesting than other episodes from the previous week, and the 1/17 video was no exception. It opens with DW chatting with Michael Bisping before they do a demonstration of UFC Undisputedin Dublin. Bisping reminisces about the days when he was unbeatable at Street Fighter II. He’s also pleased with the U.K. team that he’ll be coaching on TUF, and very psyched to be a part of it. During the video game demo, Dana White plays as Quinton Jackson, while the Count plays as himself. The simulated fight goes pretty much how it would if Bisping were to actually fight Rampage.
At the fights, Alistair Overeem stops by to to say hello to the UFC prez; giddy as a schoolgirl, Dana starts squeezing his muscles. Overeem points out that he’s not as big as Brock Lesnar. Dana asks him if he’s ready to fight in the UFC, and Overeem says he is if management can work it out. K-1 super-heavyweight champ Semmy Schilt is also in attendance, and Dana makes it clear that he’d be welcome in the Octagon too. Later, Joe Rogan brutally mocks a Dana White superfan directly behind her back, Mauricio Rua is offered the Chuck Liddell fight, and Dana calls Dublin "pound-for-pound the best fuckin’ place we’ve ever been."
Former American League Rookie of the Year Marty Cordova has been a consistent fixture in Dana White’s UFC 93 video blogs this week, and we have no idea why. At first it was just him hanging around in the background, playing with his hair and trying to appear unbothered by Dana’s harassment. Now he takes center stage to determine who can run a faster mile. When video blog historians look back on this decades from now, they will probably pinpoint this as the exact moment that Dana White’s video blog jumped the shark. No MMA at all in this one. Just Dana berating an ex-pro baseball player as they both run on treadmills.
Over at Xtreme Couture Jay Hieron and Chris Horodecki are getting set for their Affliction bouts next weekend. Watch as Horodecki auditions for a job in the organization’s front office by calling this “the biggest show ever” in his interview with Raw Vegas. Riiight. And tickets are selling like hot cakes. Delicious, fluffy, motherfucking hot cakes.
After the jump, a prediction for UFC 93’s main event, as told by "Undisputed."
We finally get a look at Dana White’s video blogger at the start of episode four in the UFC 93 series, and while the task of following the UFC prez around with a video camera may not sound so difficult, it seems like where you really earn your money is when it comes time to absorb some verbal abuse. Other highlights include a lengthy conversation with Irish boxer Barry McGuigan, and then we end with a rant as Dana realizes he was swindled by 82-year-old PR Director Jim Burn during their bet to see who could navigate the streets of NYC faster. Riveting stuff, in other words.
In a preview of the upcoming episode of "Inside MMA" we’re talking drummer greats with Josh Barnett, Gilbert Yvel, and author of Blood in the Cage, L. Jon Wertheim, who also happens to be a friend of the Potato. Everybody seems willing to have a good time and mention their favorite rock drummer, except that Gilbert. Does anything interest that dude besides weird tattoos and poking people in the eyes?
According to our current poll, about 75% of you think Fedor Emelianenko is going to beat Andrei Arlovski during their "Day of Reckoning" main event fight on January 24th. (Also, more of you think the fight will end with a no contest due to accidental cut than a submission win for Arlovski.) That pretty much reflects the general vibe of the latest Affliction promo clip, which focuses on the matchup between the Last Emperor and the Pitbull. While Arlovski certainly has a legitimate chance at winning, few people expect a loss for the Michael Jordan/Tiger Woods of MMA, who is either "unhuman" or "just a human," depending on who you ask. It’s too bad that Affliction doesn’t have access to the PRIDE and UFC video libraries, because the only visual evidence of Fedor’s dominance in the clip is his laughable walk-throughs against Tim Sylvia and Hong Man Choi, and when Arlovski’s past setbacks are mentioned, we don’t see any of the abuse he took at the hands of Timmy. Ah well — they can’t all be $1.7 million productions.
Nutrition Fedor does not have a cook or a specific diet, but sticks to eating three meals a day. While he strives to eat healthily, he does not go out of his way to limit himself. Mostly, Fedor’s diet consists of meat, fish, vegetables and fruits. He also takes in as much liquid as he can, such as fresh juices and herbal teas. Fedor tries to stay away from soda, french fries and candy—some of his favorites when not training. He also refrains from drinking alcohol when he is training.
What is your relationship with Vladimir Putin? “We do not talk on a regular basis. It is just that he had seen one of my fights on TV and took an interest. Vladimir Putin has always been very kind to me and I have always appreciated his interest in my career and the sport of MMA. We have in common our love for Sambo, the National sport in Russia as well as MMA. Vladimir Putin is a black belt in Judo and a master in Sambo. I have promised him that I would always participate in Sambo if I was able to, so that I could be a role model for young people in Russia and continue the rich tradition of the sport."
What countries do you like to visit? “Japan and the United States and any place that has scary roller coasters.
Dana White’s latest video-blogging effort is very long but not very interesting. He pumps a little iron, tries to convert kilograms to pounds, wanders around Dublin, and strikes up conversations with a few fighters. Yawn. Just goes to show that the tedium of anyone’s daily life is still boring, even if they’re the head of the UFC.
Alan Belcher seems to think he’s gotten a good deal for himself in securing a bout with Denis Kang, who’s making his UFC debut this Saturday. Oddsmakers certainly don’t agree, but as Belcher points out, the vibe from the crowd in the UFC is very different from Japan. Just how much that will affect Kang, who’s been around in this sport for a while now, that remains to be seen.
After the jump, Affliction hypes Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou vs. Renato “Babalu” Sobral with some help from Loretta Hunt and Josh Gross.