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CagePotato Ban: Bringing Back Your Old Self

Wanderlei Silva pride MMA
(If you see the old Wandy, please call our missing-legend hotline at 1-888-AX-MURDR.) 

“I’ve rededicated myself, I’m completely remotivated. I just need to get back the old Clay — getting them to the ground, going from my strikes to putting them on their back and making them panic in there.”Clay Guida

"This fight you’ll see the old Wanderlei, he never steps back, always forward, forward. This is the real Wanderlei." — Rafael Cordeiro on Wanderlei Silva

"I’m not really worried about who I’m fighting. I’m fighting me right now. I’m fighting against myself, trying to be the old me."Jens Pulver 

"I’m putting [Forrest Griffin] on his back. Back to the old Tito Ortiz, man, my ground and pound where it’s lethal…they’ll be carrying him out on a stretcher."Tito Ortiz

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For as long as there have been losing streaks in combat sports, we’ve had to suffer through the creaky cliché of fighters promising to return to their "old" selves. Seriously, I wouldn’t be surprised if at least one gladiator in ancient Rome shuffled off to an epic poet after a loss and said, "Yeah, I might have gotten run through with a javelin in my last fight, but I’ve been training hard and you’re all going to see a return to the old Heropoulos, giving the fans at the Colosseum what they paid to see — me disemboweling Christians with a trident." And for some reason, the sound-bite is being employed more and more these days (see above), which is why we’d like to send it on a one-way ferry ride to Ban Island, where it will hopefully never be heard from again. The reasons are quite simple, really…

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Strikeforce News Roundup: Fedor’s Injury Update, Jerry Millen Violates CagePotato Ban + More

Fedor Emelianenko Brett Rogers Strikeforce
("I’m gettin’ too calm and emotionless for this shit." Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)

— Though it was initially rumored that Fedor Emelianenko could be out-of-action for 4-6 months due to a jacked-up left thumb he suffered in the first round of his fight against Brett Rogers, his condition has been upgraded. Sherdog reports that the Last Emperor underwent surgery yesterday to fix his injury, and will have a half-cast removed in just 4-6 weeks:

[T]he fighter’s reps said two pins were placed in Emelianenko’s hand to correct the dislocation, and that the bone had not fractured… Emelianenko also said that his nose was not fractured, as was earlier suspected…Emelianenko said he planned to return to training, sans striking, upon his return to Russia later this week. M-1 officials said Emelianenko could headline his second co-promoted Strikeforce card in the first quarter of 2010.

— Cristiane "Cris Cyborg" Santos is expected to make her first Strikeforce title defense against Marloes Coenen on January 30th in Miami, according to MMA Weekly. Santos was originally slated to compete on last Saturday’s "Fedor vs. Rogers" card, but her return was pushed back after she suffered an injury during the 2009 ADCC‘s in September.

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Cage Potato Ban: Offering to Fight For Free


(‘Rampage, I’m not saying that you’ve turned into a little Spencer Pratt-acting, Hollywood punk bitch. But your actions and your statements lately have been very Spencer Pratt, Hollywood punk bitch-esque.’)

It’s been a while since old CP had to lay the ban hammer down on something.  Ever since people stopped comparing Kimbo Slice to Mike Tyson, it just hasn’t seemed quite as necessary.  But when we read both Rashad Evans and “Rampage” Jackson insisting, on separate days and in separate venues, that they would fight one another for free, we felt that we had no choice.  It stops here, gentlemen.  No more offering to fight for free.  

Here’s why:

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Cage Potato Ban: Talking Us Through The Replay


(‘I am waaaaay too high for this bullshit right now.’)

It is inevitably the most uncomfortable, unproductive moment of any UFC broadcast. It’s more worthless than the extended video game/shitty action movie promos. More worthless even than the closeups on celebrities in the crowd, which at least has the virtue of Shaquille O’Neal’s childlike exuberance for the sport and Mandy Moore’s impressive cycle of facial expressions (wholesome, enthusiastic, coquetteish — all in a few seconds!).

The most cringeworthy moment of any UFC pay-per-view comes when we hear those magic words from Joe Rogan: “Talk us through the (insert name of alcoholic beverage sponsor) replay.”

Please, someone tell me when this has ever yielded any commentary worth hearing. It’s not that fighters don’t have anything interesting to say. It’s just that they usually don’t have anything interesting to say right then. They’re out of breath, riding high on adrenaline, and already thinking about the after-party. What do you want them to say?

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CagePotato Ban: Kimbo Slice – Mike Tyson Comparisons

kimbo-slice-mike-tyson.jpg

Let’s get something straight: Kimbo Slice is not Mike Tyson. He’s not a Tyson-like figure. There’s no “aura of Tyson” around him, no impending “Kimbo Slice’s Punch Out” ready to hit shelves. It’s a bad analogy. If you don’t believe me, just look at the people who keep making it.

First it was Gary Shaw, who kept bringing it up in last week’s media conference call. His thesis was, essentially, that while Kimbo doesn’t have many fights he does have the same kind of energy and popularity that made Tyson a star in the eighties and early nineties.

It’s not hard to see why Shaw likes this comparison. Just as Don King made a lot of money off “Iron Mike”, Shaw stands to do the same in regards to Kimbo. I don’t fault Shaw for drawing the comparison and attempting to force it on others. He’s a promoter. That’s what he does. But the rest of us should know better than to swallow that message without thinking about it.

For instance, Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports starts a recent column with this sentence: “It’s hardly a stretch to suggest that Kimbo Slice is the Mike Tyson of the 21st century.”

Really? It’s not a stretch to suggest that a guy with a 3-0 pro record is the 21st century version of a once-dominant heavyweight boxing champion? Seriously?

Let’s imagine for a moment that this is a true statement. If it were, it would prove only that the 21st century is dumber than the late 20th century. It would mean that we live in a time that values the cult of celebrity over actual accomplishment, and that we have become so obsessed with fame that we have lost the ability to make qualitative value judgments.

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