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Tag: Bjorn Rebney

Bellator 110 Recap: Rampage KOs M’Pumbu, King Mo Edges Zayats, Rebney Announces Next PPV


(Photo via Getty)

Bellator is back, but not necessarily in a big way. Bellator 110 saw the more marketable Rampage Jackson and Muhammad “King Mo” Lawal prevail, but neither man looked stellar.

What about the rest of the card? The event started off rocky. The first two preliminary bouts ended in unsatisfying no contests—the first due to an accidental illegal knee. The second was the result of an accidental eye poke.

Of note: Daniel Weichel defeated Scott Cleve in the quarterfinal round of Bellator’s season 10 featherweight tournament. He won via submission, though the rear-naked choke was set up by a gorgeous straight right. When Cleve was on the mat, his brains were far too scrambled to adequately prevent Weichel from taking his back and working for the choke. In another prelim quarterfinal bout, Will Martinez upset the highly touted, 21-year-old prospect, Goiti Yamauchi via unanimous decision. Martinez was stronger and fought a smarter fight. He bullied and smothered Yamauchi, who was stymied by Martinez’s aggression.

The main card kicked off with the third featherweight tournament quarterfinal.

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And Now He’s Fired: Bellator Releases Ben Saunders, For Some Reason [UPDATED]


(“You want to put me on a t-shirt? Sure, sounds great buddy!” — Marcus Davis / Photo via topmmanews)

Since his Bellator debut in 2011, Ben Saunders has been one of the most visible and entertaining members of the promotion’s welterweight division. But unfortunately, he was never able to win a tournament, failing to secure the Big Check in three consecutive years. And so, in the wake of his head kick knockout loss to Douglas Lima at Bellator 100 in September, Bellator has released the Killa B. Bjorn Rebney explained the decision in a statement released to MMAMania:

I’ve been a ‘Killa B’ fan for years, and Ben’s given 100 percent of his heart every single time he’s stepped into the Bellator cage. After competing in three Bellator tournaments, Ben could never get to the top of that mountain, and as we continue to grow and expand I spoke to Ben and we both decided it was time to move in a different direction, so we provided Ben his complete release.

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Ben Askren *Released* by Bellator (!) For Being “A Completely One-Dimensional, Utterly Dominant Fighter”


(Bjorn Rebney: Putting the “backhand” in “backhanded compliment” since 2008.)

You gotta love the Bellator business model, Nation. Two aging, injury-prone UFC stars who are 3-7 in their past 10 combined? BUILD A PPV AROUND THEM, DAMMIT. A longstanding (albeit incredibly boring) champion who has dominated every last opponent placed before him? LET HIM SPREAD HIS WINGS AND FLY, DAMMIT.

And so goes the Bellator career of welterweight champion Ben Askren, who was released into the murky waters of unrestricted free agency earlier today. A press release sent out this morning has the details:

Ben Askren is now an unrestricted free agent after Bellator released the undefeated welterweight. The Bellator Welterweight World Title will be vacant until Douglas Lima faces the winner of the Season 9 Welterweight Tournament later this winter when the new Bellator Welterweight Champion will be crowned.

“I’ve said it many times, Ben’s a completely one-dimensional fighter who is utterly dominant in that dimension,” (Ed note: BUUUUUURRRRNNNN?!) Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney said. “I had a number of discussions with Ben and it became clear it was time for both parties to move in different directions. We’ve relinquished any right to match here and Ben can sign with whoever he chooses to sign with. Ben’s been at Bellator since the start of his career, I respect him and what he’s accomplished and wish him the best wherever he goes.”

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Post-Bellator 106 News Roundup: Bjorn Rebney Plans Another PPV, Alvarez Tweets Picture of F*cked Up Eye, and More


(The purple hue really brings out the chestnut color of Alvarez’s eyebrows. / via twitter)

The best Sundays are post-event Sundays. There’s tons of great articles to read about the valiant, violent displays of physical fortitude that occurred the night before.

Usually, there’s not enough interest in a Bellator card to warrant a slew of interesting sound bites and pictures. But Bellator 106 was different. Bellator 106 was the canceled PPV that became one of the most important free, non-UFC televised cards in MMA history. Let’s look at some of the fallout, the crucial and the just plain cool.

Dana White, predictably, had nothing positive to say about Bellator 106 (but that’s not just because he’s a jerk; the show really wasn’t that great). Bjorn Rebney responded to Dana’s comments about karmic justice like a shady Winnebago salesman, saying “If karma is that we just put on the best mixed martial arts fight I’ve ever seen, that’s karma I’ll take big boatloads of.”

Rebney had some other important statements. He pessimistically dismissed the future of Bellator’s “Ultimate Fighter” knockoff “Fight Master.” Typical of post-Viacom buyout Bellator, Rebney didn’t do this without taking a shot at the UFC.

“Reality fight TV is having its difficulties now. You can see it in the UFC’s ratings, they’re having the lowerst-rated TUF they’ve had in the history of the show,” he said (he was right, by the way).

Read about Bellator’s next PPV, King Mo’s surprising salary, and more after the jump.

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‘Rampage vs. Tito’ Ticket Sales Confirm That Bellator Is Pretty Much F*cked, You Guys


(“Move it, asshole, you’re blocking the box!”)

By Matt Saccaro

The ticket sales for Bellator’s November 2nd pay-per-view debut are bad — basically as bad as they could possibly be less than a month out from the card.

On Friday, MMAJunkie’s John Morgan tweeted that the PPV had sold only approximately 1,700 tickets, with another 2,000 on consignment. Matt Roth of MMAMania noted just how dire the situation really is. He pointed out that the venue can hold over 13,000 people, meaning that Bellator would have to sell in the neighborhood of 10,000 tickets in less than 20 days to secure a sellout. That probably isn’t going to happen — not even if Tito Ortiz and Rampage Jackson became giants like in the awful trailer for the PPV.

Bjorn Rebney better be prepared to get a job at his dad’s Winnebago dealership; winter is coming for Bellator. Nobody is going to attend their PPV, and it’s probable that, at an expected price between $35-45, nobody is going to purchase their PPV either. Nobody gives a fuck about their product and their titles are considered worthless. If the UFC stacked three title fights on a card, you’d expect success, even if it were the titles for the three lightest weight classes. But with Bellator, which is offering three title fights on its PPV (although one is a dubious interim title), nobody knows or cares. Hell, we’re a site whose fanbase is comprised pretty much of entirely hardcore fans, and judging by the front page poll, a third of you never even watch Bellator. If they can’t get the hardcores, what fucking chance do they have at getting the casual fans to drop money on this PPV?

Even more concerning is a recent report from MMAPayout about Bellator 102, which UFC “star” Cheick Kongo headlined. The show’s gate was only $73,410.43. A paltry 1,482 people attended the show but nearly half of those tickets (604 of them to be precise) were comped. Now, are you ready to be really amazed? Let’s look at the salaries

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Palhares-Gate Update: Bellator Doesn’t Want Him, Palhares Issues Half-Assed Apology


(Rousimar Palhares doing “God’s work.” / Photo via Getty Images)

Remember when we described serial knee-destroyer Rousimar Palhares as a “good-natured idiot-manchild“? Well, apparently Bellator has a similar opinion of the Brazilian.

At least that’s the impression we get from their recent decision not to sign him. Bjorn Rebney told TMZ the following about why he his Viacom puppet master decided to pass on Palhares:

“Risks already exist for the courageous, world class fighters who either enter the Bellator cage; without adding further unnecessary risks into the mix. Fighter safety is paramount to me and my team.”

That eliminates one destination for the recently disgraced Palhares — MMA’s version of Lenny from Of Mice and Men. Maybe he’ll go to World Series of Fighting, although Jon Fitch has already refused a hypothetical fight against him due to safety concerns. But it seems like Bellator missed a good catch here. Palhares is a talented fighter coming off a win. He had tons of heat, so the signing would’ve generated tons of press — for a Bellator signing, anyway — or at least more press than signing a UFC castaway whose career highlight is getting kicked in the face.

Palhares (or his people) sensed that he was becoming damaged goods. Consequently, he issued an explanation/apology yesterday that you can check out after the jump.

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CagePotato Roundtable #25: Who Is the Most Despicable Person in MMA?


(Joe Son: The “Too Obvious to be Eligible for Inclusion” Pick.)

In celebration of the possibility that deplorable scumbag Joe Son may be getting the death penalty, we’ve decided to update our blatantly outdated “Most Despicable People in MMA” list in the form of our newest roundtable discussion. Read on for our picks, and please continue to send your ideas for future Roundtable topics to tips@cagepotato.com.

Matt Saccaro


(Photo via Esther Lin/MMAFighting)

MMA can be a sordid, awful business — a wretched hive of scum and villainy, as Obi-Wan Kenobi would say. Some characters are worse than others though. The classless fighters and “let me bang bro” douchebags that litter the landscape are only small time. The real people you need to watch out for are the promoters, for they’re the ones pulling the strings, greasing the wheels, and killing the dogs.

Yes, killing dogs. You read that right. And that’s the main reason why I have to throw Bjorn Rebney’s name into the “who is the most despicable person in MMA” discussion: He was allegedly involved in the brutal murder of a rival’s dog.

It’s quite a tale so here’s the abridged version: Back in Rebney’s boxing promotion days, he was partners with a man named Seth Ersoff. Eventually, they found themselves at odds and a lawsuit developed. As Ringtalk noted, the situation escalated and somehow Ersoff’s dog wound up with a metal spike through its head.  

But there’s no definitive proof of Rebney murdering this poor, innocent dog, so I can’t judge him solely on that action — something that he might not have been responsible for. But there are other bad actions that make him a perfect candidate for CagePotato’s “Worst Human Being in MMA” award…

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Cheick Kongo Becomes the Latest UFC Castoff to Be Signed by Bellator


(“And stay outta mah goddamn onion patch!” / Photo via MMAFighting.com)

Bellator announced in a press release today that it has signed heavyweight striker Cheick Kongo, who will make his debut for the promotion this fall, and will be featured in its Season 9 Heavyweight Tournament. Kongo was released by the UFC earlier this year following a knockout loss to Roy Nelson at UFC 159. Since then, the 38-year-old has been keeping busy with his high-end clothing boutique in Los Angeles (seriously), but the lure of the cage was too great to ignore. As he explained:

After my contract was up in the UFC, I really wanted to take some time and reflect on everything. After talking to the people around me, especially someone like my longtime friend in Rampage, he told me how well Bellator has been treating him and what we can do with Bellator, and after getting to know Bjorn Rebney, it just seemed like the right fit for me. I know I have plenty of fight left in me, and my fight in October is the first step to getting that Bellator Heavyweight Title.”

Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney added: “If you’re an MMA fan, you’re a Kongo fan. No matter who he fights he’s always going to bring the fight and put on a great show, and he’s one of the best guys you’ll have the pleasure of dealing with in MMA.”

Holy crap, let me stop you right there…

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Friday Link Dump: Update on Donald Cerrone’s ‘Boat Rage’, Palhares Gets First Welterweight Opponent, 35 Fun Facts About Kobe Bryant + More


(New “Possibilities” commercial from Nike. Jon Jones shows up at 0:43)

UFC: Donald Cerrone Cooperating With Authorities on Alleged Boating Incident (MMAJunkie)

Bjorn Rebney: ‘Tito Ortiz and Rampage Are 2 of the 4 Faces on MMA Mt. Rushmore’ (BleacherReport)

Frighteningly Unsafe Underground Combat League Still Plugging Along (BloodyElbow)

Rousimar Palhares Cuts to Welterweight, Meets Mike Pierce at UFC Fight Night 29 (Sherdog)

Ratings Report: UFC 163 and UFC 161′s Low PPV Numbers Are Just Latest Indicator of Trend (MMAFighting)

*swoon* (Facebook.com/CagePotato)

Free Fight: Martin Kampmann vs. Jake Ellenberger (YouTube.com/UFC)

The Bella Twins Are Total Divas (MadeMan)

35 Things You Didn’t Know About Kobe Bryant (Complex)

Bob Harper: Diet Trumps Exercise (Men’s Fitness)

Bizarre Crimes You Won’t Believe Actually Happened (DoubleViking)

What to Do When Someone Is Treating You Like an Asshole (EgoTV)

15 Of The Funniest Reactions To Ben Affleck As Batman (Break)

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And So It Ends: Eddie Alvarez Settles With Bellator, Will Rematch Michael Chandler at November 2nd PPV


(As part of their co-promotional agreement with Viacom, Alvarez and Chandler will also appear in a tag-team match against the Nasty Boys. / Photo via Getty)

MMA’s most public and nasty legal battle since the UFC vs. Randy Couture has reached a thankful conclusion. MMAJunkie’s John Morgan breaks the news that former Bellator lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez has settled his contract dispute with Bellator, and will compete in a title-fight rematch against Michael Chandler at the promotion’s “Rampage vs. Otiz” pay-per-view, November 2nd at the Long Beach Arena.

Maybe it’s not the best-case scenario for Eddie, but at least he’ll be competing and earning money again, for the first time since last October. As he explained to MMAJunkie:

I couldn’t be happier right now. We’ve been trying to settle since the very beginning of this. [Ed. note: O RLY?] We were able to compromise and put it behind us. I’m happy to put my name on the dotted line and move forward with my career…I’m not big on problems. I normally just deal with solutions. In business, there are problems just like a relationship. There’s good, there’s bad, and there’s ugly. You need to be able to compromise and not deal with problems.”

Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney wouldn’t disclose terms of the settlement, but stated that his promotion was able to find “a common ground” with Alvarez. Rebney also mentioned that there will be more big-name additions to the 11/2 card.

And so, Bellator’s first pay-per-view gets a pay-per-view-caliber fight, and Eddie Alvarez likely ends up with a new contract that was considerably better than his old one. (Competition is never a bad thing in the fight game.) But can Alvarez stay competitive in the rematch, after a year-long layoff? Check out video of Alvarez vs. Chandler 1 after the jump, and let us know what you think…

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