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Mike Whitehead Gazes Into the Spirit World

(Props: MMA TKO)

Mike Whitehead enjoyed significant advantages in both MMA experience and sheer poundage when he faced off against "King Mo" Lawal at Strikeforce: Evolution last night, but neither could keep him from getting knocked into a wonderland of confusion before the first round was up.  That might be partly because when Whitehead fights as a heavyweight he shows up looking a little more rotund than usual, which doesn’t seem to help his speed or explosiveness any.  Or it could just be because Lawal really is as good as he says he is.

Whitehead came into this fight thinking he was getting hosed by being labled an underdog, despite having twenty-five more fights than Lawal.  That vacant stare in his eyes as the referee comes over to pull Lawal off of him?  We’d like to think that’s Whitehead looking into the abyss and seeing just how wrong he was.  Maybe with a change of attitude and a little less excess weight it could have been him guzzling Rockstar like it was neon pink champagne last night. 

Cagepotato Comments

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steampunk22- December 21, 2009 at 10:43 am

FINALLY someone agrees. :)
portland mma- December 21, 2009 at 8:18 am
I think your list is a travesty my fight wiffa chetto (typing that hurt my soul) John Rocker at number 10? That guy would take on any ethnic fag on a subway any fucking day of the week.

Also, Gilbert Melendez better be top 10 @ lightweight in the rankings.
FightZen- December 21, 2009 at 5:54 am
If there was ever a reason NOT to fight in Strikeforce, it's helmet cam.

Who wants to see a close up of themselves after being punched into retard-land?
molky brothers- December 21, 2009 at 5:43 am

I couldn't have said it better myself.
Robocop Didnt Tap- December 21, 2009 at 5:07 am
I would've put The Most Interesting Man in the World from the Dos Equis commercials at a solid #5 in the rankings, but that's just me.
PhilDZnutts- December 20, 2009 at 5:28 pm
I think Whitehead went to the same place Babalu did his last fight. They both touch the face of God.
MostDiabolicalHaterThisSideOfTheMississippi- December 20, 2009 at 4:00 pm
I do love a receding hairline mohawk.
Sabado Gigante- December 20, 2009 at 3:47 pm
@ Wiffacheeto:

How is Ben "abadi abadi abadi that's all" Fowlkes ahead of John Rocker???? I think Rocker is top 3 fo sho... Followed by that vato, I forgot his name but he is also known as Shonuff The Master imo
steampunk22- December 20, 2009 at 2:43 pm
Yeah fair enough, its a difficult balancing act for them. Not really their fault I guess, they're the little fish in the tank.
MostDiabolicalHaterThisSideOfTheMississippi- December 20, 2009 at 2:34 pm
Word nephew.

I just dont want Strikeforce to fail due their own self sabotage. They are better off thinking long-term instead of going out Tom Atencio/Jared Shaw style.
steampunk22- December 20, 2009 at 2:30 pm
I'm looking forward to him fighting a decent fighter, thats all. Until he does I just don't really care about him. I've got a long list of favorite fighters right now and there's no place on it for King Mo just yet. ;P
MostDiabolicalHaterThisSideOfTheMississippi- December 20, 2009 at 2:25 pm
You don't build fighters into superstars by throwing them to the wolves right away (unless the fighters name happens to be BROCKLESNAR).

It's not Mo's fault Whitehead came in all floppity and overweight. He did what he needed to do and pounded him out taking virtually no damage. So we should be able to see him back soon.

There is no reason to throw him in with Babalu or Dan or Mousasi right now. Let him get better. He has legitimate credentials and with that kind of personality and ring-entrace awesomeness he should be allowed to progress, not get chopped off at the knees.
steampunk22- December 20, 2009 at 2:16 pm
The Wiuff fight isn't worth that much really, but its a standout on an otherwise unimpressive list of fighters.

The spoon fed comment is mostly in regards to his last two fights though. He's a quick guy for 205 (where he SHOULD be fighting) and he's an up-and-comer so he's got no business fighting fat, slow, washed up heavyweights. Shit Mark Kerr had gone 3-14 leading up to the Lawal fight, and Mo was 5-0 at the time. Next he gets to fight a massively out of shape (especially when he has proven that he CAN be a fit fighter) Mike Whitehead who is coming off a victory over a no name fighter, and a decision over the mostly terrible Kevin Randleman. His last real fight was against Babalu, which he lost. In that fight however, atleast Whitehead weighed in at a healthy 206, not this forty pounds over fat ass version we saw last night.

I just think that he's being catered too a little bit, especially with this last fight, Strikeforce wants a good return on their investment so they tossed a fat Whitehead to Mo.

I'm not saying King Mo is a bad fighter, I'm saying he hasn't fought anyone that should grant him the hype he is receiving.

And its not that I don't like him, I just want to see him actually fight someone that matters. It was his first fight for a lot of western audiences last night, so I'm not surprised it was kind of geared to be a one sided beatdown.

I would love nothing more than King Mo to fight a fighter who LEGITIMATELY poses a threat, and I want to see that fight at LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHT. He isn't going to win me over by beating bottom of the barrel fat asses.

If King Mo can do that, and then win in convincing fashion without spraying energy drink all over the mat, I'll believe the hype and I will probably be a fan. I like a confident fighter with a personality, it makes for good watchin'.

Until then I'm mostly gonna write him off though.
Endocat- December 20, 2009 at 12:59 pm
I also dont understand the spoon fed comment

He made his deubut against Travis Wuiff, a very experienced fighter with a 57-13 record. He has faced a lot better competition in his first 6 fights than a lot of other "established" fighters.

i think you just don't like him, and will be quick to always cut him down.

Endocat- December 20, 2009 at 12:55 pm

He keeps his hands down because he is making fun of his opponents ability.

All i see is a guy getting away with something he shouldn't
Endocat- December 20, 2009 at 12:52 pm
We're in the spirit world, asshole. They can't see us.
steampunk22- December 20, 2009 at 12:52 pm
I watched this fight last night and I think that Whitehead looked worse more than King Mo looked good, if you catch my meaning. Had Whitehead challenged King Mo with striking more effectively, pushed the cage control a little harder and kept Mo on his heels it would have been a very different fight. Of course he didn't and we saw him briefly drift off into the land of wind and ghosts.

The reason I say that Mo didnt look good, Whitehead looked bad, is that when Mo gets a real fight with an aggressive striker, they are going to do all of the things listed above and King Mo is going to get KTFO.

He keeps his hands down in EVERY FIGHT. He utilizes decent boxing head movement, but his skill set is limited to being a power puncher with apparently solid wrestling who has yet to have to prove that he has much in the way of legitimate striking defense or a strong technical submission game. I think that against someone who is willing to strike aggressively Mo is going to be in trouble.

In the very least, I want Mo to fight a top tier fighter and have the rest of his game exposed. There is always a chance that he turns out to be a well rounded, full fledged mixed martial artist, but I'm a little suspicious. He's been pretty spoon fed so far.
peanutbuttter- December 20, 2009 at 12:10 pm
Hey did anyone watch 'Sports Jobs' after WEC? They had Junior Seau go and be corner man for Forrest before his fight with Anderson Silva. Everything about it made me believe that the show was responsible for the way that fight turned out.
MyFightWiffaCheeto- December 20, 2009 at 11:49 am
"CagePotato Moneyweight Rankings
1. Don Zimmer
2. Pedro Martinez
3. King Mo
4. Ben Fowlkes
5. Anderson Silva
6. Dan Henderson
7. Rampage Jackson
8. Jason Miller
9. Josh Barnett
10. John Rocker

Just on the outside, Gegard Mousasi, Andy Pettitte, and Zuluzinho
Sabado Gigante- December 20, 2009 at 11:43 am
I was looking throught the Cage Potatoe rankings and I couldn't find the Moneyweights. What the duece!?