MMA Fighter Challenges People to Punch Him in the Face, Everyone Fails

Tag: Affliction

Fedor Emelianenko Wears Amazing Sweater to Affliction Press Conference


(Oscar, his life partner Tito, and their mentally-challenged adopted son Fedor. Mad props: MMA Mania.)

Earlier today in New York, Affliction held a press conference featuring Fedor Emelianenko, Oscar De La Hoya, Tito Ortiz, Donald Trump, Tom Atencio, and Vadim Finkelchtein. (I totally would have been there if not for the fact that something completely historic was happening at the same time; awesome scheduling as always, guys.) All the star power in the room was unfortunately upstaged by Fedor’s horizontally-striped pastel-hued Ultimate Sweater, which probably made De La Hoya and Ortiz very self-conscious about their boring tailored suits. When asked about his sweater, Emelianenko replied, "you dress for job you want, not for job you have."

Just kidding. But according to this Sherdog recap of the presser, here’s what actually went down:

— De La Hoya called MMA’s progress “incredible” and said he expected his company’s success in boxing to follow in MMA through working with Affliction. 

— Affliction VP Tom Atencio said he plans to promote four MMA events per year with Golden Boy. On the UFC’s counter-programming tactics, he said: "They’re going to do what they have to do to make sure that they’re the only game in town. With the organization that we have and the partners we have, I just don’t see that happening."

— "Day of Reckoning" color-man Tito Ortiz said he looked forward to “possibly” fighting for Affliction. 

— Fedor Emelianenko explained that prior to his World Sambo Championships loss in November, he wasn’t as prepared as he should have been, but he’s "fully motivated" for Arlovski. Regarding Arlovski’s much-publicized training with Freddie Roach and Roach’s criticism of Emelianenko’s boxing technique, Emelianenko said, "I never claimed that I had the best boxing technique in the world…[Roach] has trained a lot of great fighters and maybe he’s right, but we’ll see what happens in the ring. We’ll see what Andrei has to offer. We’ll see what I have to offer him.”

After the jump: M-1 Vice President Jerry "Gary" Millen completely bites Dana White’s style with his own video blog, which covers yesterday’s press engagements. What Fedor is wearing at the 4:42 mark may shock you.

Read More DIGG THIS

Andrei Arlovski to Earn Over $1 Million for “Day of Reckoning”

Andrei Arlovski Ben Rothwell MMA Affliction
(Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)

We were all a little shocked when Affliction’s impressively bloated salaries were made public following their "Banned" show last July. But the word on the street was that the super-high payouts were more of a publicity stunt than a part of the actual business model, and several fighters were reportedly asked to take pay cuts for their next Affliction appearance. Well, it looks like at least one "Day of Reckoning" fighter will be taking in considerably more bread this time around. Yahoo! Sports has the scoop:

[Andrei] Arlovski’s contracted pay was $170,000 for his final UFC fight last March, where he stopped Jake O’Brien. Arlovski received $500,000 to win and a $250,000 winning bonus for his first bout with the new organization, his TKO of Ben Rothwell in July.
 
With escalator clauses in his contract, his fight in the main event of Affliction’s Saturday pay-per-view card at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif., will pay him in excess of $1 million, a number confirmed by UFC officials, who had right of first refusal on Arlovski’s new contract.

Assuming Affliction keeps half of each $44.95 pay-per-view purchase, Arlovski would need to pull in nearly 44,500 buys himself this Saturday to justify a million-dollar salary. Tom Atencio was adamant that "Banned" drew over 100,000 buys, which is impressive for a non-UFC event, but when your total fighter payroll is over $3 million, you’re kind of effing yourself in the A, financially speaking. Plus, Donald Trump Jr. gets his cut whether Affliction turns a profit or not. And Affliction’s partners/underminers in Golden Boy have already sold 17,000 seats to the Shane Mosley vs. Antonio Margarito boxing match in L.A. on the same night as "Day of Reckoning," which should steal a lot of spectators and media attention from Affliction. And of course, many MMA fans will be saving their money for "UFC 94: St. Pierre vs. Penn 2" on January 31st.

So yeah, a million bucks sounds about right.

Read More DIGG THIS

Videos: Fedor “Documentary” Preview, Arlovski 360, + More

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.

Read More DIGG THIS

Videos: Danablog #5, Hieron and Horodecki, + More


Dana White’s UFC 93 video blog, episode 5 – Watch more free videos

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."

Read More DIGG THIS

Videos: Danablog #3, Belcher-Kang, + More Affliction Hype


Dana White’s UFC 93 video blog, episode 3 – Watch more free videos

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.

Read More DIGG THIS

Affliction Video Hype: Arlovski’s Entourage, Barnett vs. Yvel Preview

If the purpose of Arlovski 360 is to get fans to relate to Andrei on a personal level, he loses a little bit of ground in the latest episode, as we’re introduced to the Pitbull’s personal chef, jeweler, flag-maker, and club-owner homeboys. One of his friends even delivers the line "Guys wanna be like Andrei, and girls wanna be with Andrei." Must be nice. Meanwhile, Fedor is probably making his own borscht, sewing his own flags, and sleeping with his wife exclusively. [*shudders*] Careful of that rock-star lifestyle, Andrei — you saw what it did to Chuck.

Below: Gilbert Yvel — generously described here as "a fairly controversial fighter with a bit of a checkered past" — is going to rely on his unpredictability to beat Josh Barnett at "Day of Reckoning," and the general consensus is that Barnett will try to stand and bang with him. Sounds like a crowd-pleasing strategy, as long as it doesn’t blow up in his face… 

Read More DIGG THIS

Affliction Loses Hominick, Defends Yvel as DoR Draws Near


(Running around shirtless like that, it’s no wonder he got sick.  A little chicken soup will fix you right up, Mark.)

Affliction’s second event has hit its first real snag as the organization revealed that Mark Hominick has come down with pneumonia and has been forced to pull out of his bout with former IFL fighter L.C. Davis.  Affliction is looking for a replacement for Hominick and hoping that they won’t have to scratch the bout altogether.  Fans of brutal head kick knockouts should remember Davis for this little beauty (skip to 12:22, and have your ‘holy shit’ face ready), and it’d be a real shame if he ends up with no one to fight.

In other Affliction news, Tom Atencio has been hitting the media circuit hard lately.  He spoke with USA Today about the many questions surrounding “Day of Reckoning” and disputed rumors of poor ticket sales, and also responded to the backlash against Gilbert Yvel ever since it was announced that he’d take on Josh Barnett in the evening’s penultimate bout.  On the subject of Yvel’s penchant for illegal and downright despicable acts in the ring, Atencio called for leniency:

Those are in the past. It’s been four years since he’s had any problems, yet people still want to bring that up. Yeah, did he do things wrong? Yes he did. Did he pay for them? Yes he did. We sat in front of the California athletic commission and they approved him to go forward in the process. So I think that’s just it. I think it needs to be dropped. He has a chance to prove himself and if he comes out and fights and he puts on a good show — which I think he will; I know he will — then let’s just leave it alone.

After the jump, Atencio appears on Inside MMA and assures everyone that things are going juuuuuust fine.

Read More DIGG THIS

Affliction Faces Its Own “Day of Reckoning”

Day of Reckoning Affliction MMA Sokoudjou Lindland Atencio Arlovski Barnett Ortiz Sobral
(Hey, at least you’ll get to keep those totally sweet t-shirts…)

You may have completely forgotten about it because there’s been virtually no promotional push to speak of, but yes, Affliction will be holding its long-delayed sophomore MMA event just 12 days from now, at the Honda Center in Anaheim. Fedor Emelianenko will face Andrei Arlovski, Josh Barnett will take on Gilbert Yvel, and very few people will be watching.

According to Bloody Elbow, only 1,400 tickets to "Day of Reckoning" had been sold as of last week. (FYI, the Honda Center can hold about 18,000 spectators.)   At first, Tom Atencio wouldn’t confirm or deny that figure, but now he’s saying that the ticket sales are comparable to last July’s "Banned" event, where over 6,000 tix had been sold three weeks before the show. CagePotato can neither confirm nor deny how full of shit Atencio’s public statements are.

So, a few things come to mind…

Read More DIGG THIS

Friday Link Dump

(It was going fine until the 1:57 mark. Then things get really uncomfortable.)

- Affliction can’t stop talking about how awesome they are. (Yahoo!)

- Thiago Silva is expecting a track meet against Lyoto Machida. (Tatame)

- Is the UFC phoning it in for UFC 93? (Fightlinker)

- Neil Grove to make UFC debut against Justin McCully. (Fighters Only)

- Tim Kennedy talks war and MMA. (Five Ounces of Pain)

- HIT Squad Dodgeball.  (Matt-Hughes.com)

- Rich Franklin trains for Dan Henderson. (MMA Mania)

- Gina Carano says she doesn’t get paid what you think. (AskMen.com)

- This is why you don’t run from the cops. (Break.com)

- 7 TV shows that really need to exist. (Screen Junkies)

- 10 things Tim Tebow should have put on his eye black. (Holy Taco)

- Skater owns bully. (Nothing Toxic)

- This is too adorable to ignore. (Hip to Code)

Read More DIGG THIS

Affliction’s Atencio Hints at Gilbert Yvel Backup Plan


(When you absolutely, positively need someone who will poke you repeatedly in the eye, there really is no substitute.)

While there are any number of reasons why an athletic commission might not license Gilbert Yvel (he is, after all, one of MMA’s most despicable people), it seems as if the CSAC is going to let him fight.  They’ve cleared him to apply for a license, which basically means that all he has to do pass medicals and not pull an Aleks Emelianenko and get himself benched at the last minute.  

But just in case Tom Atencio says he has “people in line if it doesn’t work out."

Trouble is, finding a credible replacement to face someone like Josh Barnett isn’t the same as finding someone to go against Paul Buentello in an undercard fight.  There you could just call up Gary Goodridge and nobody would feel as though they’d lost out.  In the case of Barnett, you’ve got to get a high-level replacement in order for the fight to feel like anything other than a consolation prize or premeditated ass-whipping.  

Atencio wouldn’t say who he has lined up, but whoever it is can’t be a serious opponent for Barnett.  It would have to be someone with enough of an ‘I don’t give a fuck attitude’ to take that fight on short notice, and also someone who is a non-UFC heavyweight not already on the Affliction card, which rules out Paul Buentello, thank God.

Fortunately Affliction has set hopes low by giving Barnett someone like Yvel to begin with, but dammit, if we see “Big Daddy” Goodridge come shuffling out at the last minute again, whatever credibility Affliction has left will be destroyed just as surely as he will.

Read More DIGG THIS
CagePotatoMMA