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Tag: Bang

The BANG Effect: A Statistical Look at 2013′s Most Improved MMA Team [DATABOMB]


(Duane Ludwig [right] with one of his star pupils. / Photo via Sherdog)

By Reed Kuhn, @Fightnomics

An unlikely new coaching star, Duane “Bang” Ludwig has surged to the forefront of the competitive MMA coaching landscape after a fortuitous change of scenery. Ludwig is the obvious candidate for 2013′s “MMA Coach of the Year,” and few would question this, despite little fan awareness of his coaching prowess just one year ago.

Ludwig certainly had a tough 2012 that included three consecutive UFC losses, each one by first-round stoppage, the last of which added a fight-ending and career-threatening knee injury to the insult. But almost immediately after beginning the lengthy rehabilitation process, Ludwig got an unexpected phone call from Urijah Faber, and the creator of the Bang Muay Thai system suddenly migrated from the suburbs of Denver, Colorado to Sacramento, California.

Since Ludwig’s arrival at Team Alpha Male in December of 2012, his team’s fighters have been posting wins and highlight reel finishes at an unlikely pace. It’s even more unlikely, literally, when you consider the low share of TKO finishes that normally occur in the smaller weight classes where most Alpha Male fighters compete. The MMA media have been quick to point to the undeniable results of Team Alpha Male’s performance in the UFC as evidence that Ludwig was the missing ingredient to a team with championship potential. To be fair, the team already included former champions and contenders under Zuffa banners, but none that currently held a UFC belt. Now heading into this weekend’s UFC on FOX 9 card, Team Alpha Male has a chance to rack up not just four more wins, but capture its first UFC title of the Bang Era, and hold leading contender status in several divisions.

With all this hype around a team that is making a lot of noise, it’s a legitimate question to ask: Are they really better, or is this just a nice run of luck? The sudden emergence of Duane Ludwig as the MMA Coach of the Year is an extraordinary claim, and if Carl Sagan were still around (and an MMA fan), he would suggest that we demand extraordinary evidence before reaching such a bold conclusion. So I’m going to run the numbers in excruciating detail just to make sure.

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‘Strikeforce: Payback’ Quick Recap


(Michelle “The Karate Hottie” Waterson puts Tyra Parker to sleep in 80 seconds.)

Main Card:
Duane Ludwig def. Sam Morgan via submission (strikes), 2:01 of round 1
Frank Trigg def. Falaniko Vitale via unanimous decision
Donnie Liles def. Pete Spratt via submission (rear naked choke), 1:59 of round 3
Billy Evangelista def. Luke Caudillo via unanimous decision
Carlos Zevallos def. Andre Walker via TKO, 4:48 of round 1
Michelle Waterson def. Tyra Parker via submission (rear naked choke), 1:20 of round 1
Tyler Toner def. Ricky Johnson via TKO, 3:44 of round 2

Undercard:
Drew Dober def. Lumumba Sawyers via KO (punch), 0:16 of round 1
Alan Gomez def. Jordan Goodwin via unanimous decisio
Eric Galvin def. Jeremy Malaterre via split decision
Turrell Galloway def. Brett Tillis via submission (rear naked choke), 1:21 of round 1
Aaron Trujillo def. Haven Torres via TKO, 2:59 of round 1

And the award for Best Vagina-Ear goes to:

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‘Bang’, Trigg, ‘Karate Hottie’ Set to Do Battle at Tonight’s Strikeforce Show

Michelle Watterson Strikeforce MMA
(Tyra Parker and Michelle Watterson, reppin’ hard for the females. Photo courtesy of MMA Weekly.)

Just two weeks after holding their second show at the Playboy Mansion, Strikeforce is putting on another exciting MMA card, this time at the Broomfield Event Center in Broomfield, Colorado; you can watch the action live tonight on HDNet beginning at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT. Headlining the festivities is a rematch between UFC/KOTC/Strikeforce vets Duane “Bang” Ludwig (16-8) and Sam “The Squeeze” Morgan (19-11). Morgan, who has lost four out of his last five fights, scored a first-round knockout of Ludwig at a Ring of Fire event in 2005. Ludwig hasn’t competed since losing to Takanori Gomi at Sengoku 1 in March.

The co-main event will be a middleweight brawl between broadcaster/t-shirt designer/fighter Frank Trigg (17-6) and Hawaiian grappler Falaniko Vitale (26-8), who has been inactive since winning a four-man X-1 tournament in January. Also notable is the Strikeforce debut of Denver’s own Michelle “The Karate Hottie” Watterson (3-2), a former castmember of Fight Girls who also spent time as a swimsuit model. She’ll be facing Tyra Parker (0-1), who came in a full four pounds over the 112-pound weight limit during yesterday’s weigh-ins, and will have to pay a portion of her fight salary to Watterson. The full lineup for Strikeforce: Payback is as follows:

MAIN CARD (Professional Bouts)
Duane Ludwig (165) vs. Sam Morgan (164.8)
Frank Trigg (183.8) vs. Falaniko Vitale (185.6)
Donnie Liles (170.8) vs. Pete Spratt (170.8)
Luke Caudillo (155) vs. Billy Evangelista (155)
Michelle Waterson (111.4) vs. Tyra Parker (116)
Andre Walker (202.4) vs. Carlos Zevallos (205.4)
Tyler Toner (146) vs. Ricky Johnson (143.6)

UNDERCARD (Amateur Bouts)
Lumumba Sawyers (171.2) vs. Drew Dober (167.8)
Jordan Goodwin (157.6) vs. Alan Gomez (155.6)
Jeremy Malaterre (159.4) vs. Eric Galvin (160)
Brett Tillis (141.8) vs. Turrell Galloway (139.2)
Aaron Trujillo (122.8) vs. Haven Torres (126.4)

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Videos: Slice vs. Blaine, Sudo vs. Ludwig


(Props: BloodyElbow)

So David Blaine did his Dive of Death thing last night, and Esther was right about the Kimbo Slice segment: There was no trick involved whatsoever. Blaine just let Kimbo haul off and slug him in the stomach twice. It was impressive that Blaine didn’t crumple to the ground in agony — though maybe not as impressive as making the Statue of Liberty disappear.


(Props: TheTrollSmasher)

If you’ve never seen the UFC 42 fight between Genki Sudo and Duane “Bang” Ludwig, set aside some time and check this out. Sudo’s gender-bending kabuki ring entrance is easily the most bizarre in UFC history, and calling his style “completely unorthodox” is still an understatement. You’d think that Ludwig would dash in with some punches at the beginning of the fight when Sudo has his back turned, but he was probably too freaked out to understand what was happening. Unfortunately, the fight also ends with one of the most questionable unanimous decisions in UFC history. Maybe Sudo’s geisha-boy antics invoked emotions in the judges that they weren’t quite ready to deal with…

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