As you make plans for your various drunken 4th of July celebrations, keep in mind that some of the men you see tonight may be too injured to grill burgers on Monday. Appreciate their sacrifice, ladies and gentlemen. Now then, who wants to see some dudes get kicked in the head and choked unconcious?
Manning the liveblog duties for this evening is CagePotato rising star Jason Moles, who will be providing round-by-round updates from the UFC 132 pay-per-view card beginning at 9 p.m. ET. Travel past the jump to join our little liveblog party, and refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest. Thanks for being here, and may God bless this great nation.
Only days removed from his suspension, MMA’s best trash talker is eager to get his mug back in the spotlight. When asked his thoughts on tonight’s battle between fellow middleweights Chris Leben and Wanderlei Silva, Chael wasted little time in slinging some mud and continuing his verbal tirade on Wanderlei.
Neither Chael’s desire to face the “Axe Murderer” in his return bout nor his delusion that he is the Middleweight Champion have waned. The short video is peppered with gems which prove that Sonnen isn’t suffering from the dreaded mic-rust.
If you caught last night’s weigh-ins and aren’t amped up for this event, something is wrong with you. No, it wasn’t as eventful as last weekend’s affair, but that’s a good thing as all bouts are expected to take place this evening.
Everyone lived up to their contractual agreements and made weight, and everyone lived up to societal expectations and played their respective roles to a tee. If psychotically tense staredowns are an accurate predictor of fights, only time stands between Chris Leben, Wanderlei Silva, and a brawl for the ages. Tito did his best high school bully impression, unsuccessfully trying yet again to make his opponent flinch during the face-off. As for Faber and Cruz, there’s nothing to be said between these two that a few hundred kicks and punches couldn’t say better.
After the jump, check out the Cruz-Faber and Bader-Ortiz weigh-ins and get the full results from the scales.
(That week off made Dana look 10 years younger. PicProps: MMAMania)
Just a friendly reminder that you can check out the UFC 132 weigh-ins right here starting at 7:00 pm ET.
This could be the last time we see “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” flexing in his underwear — unless of course you’re one of his Twitter followers (am I right, ReX?). Let’s place our wagers now who will get into a heated nose-bumping match and who won’t make weight.
Expect the staredown of the decade between Leben and Silva.
Heading into his highly anticipated face-off with Wanderlei Silva tomorrow night at UFC 132, Chris Leben was bound to hear the inevitable question about his last performance against Brian Stann: What went wrong? After all, Leben went into that match with the momentum of an impressive three-fight win streak, and wound up getting flattened within one round. Well, the explanation is simple, and it’s so perfectly Chris that all you can do is nod in sympathy. As he tells Ben Fowlkes:
“I ate a bunch of candy, dude. I’m not lying…I didn’t eat sugar for like two months. Then after I made weight I went and bought gummy bears and chocolate and ice cream, and I ate that. My body hadn’t had sugar, so I was backstage puking, sh—ing and puking when I was on-deck for that fight. That’s not a lie; that’s the truth. And Brian Stann fought an amazing fight, but hindsight’s 20/20. No gummy bears for me this fight.”
Hey, we’ve all been there before, right? I mean, certainly not in our adult lives, but as eight-year-olds on Halloween, yeah we could have totally related to that. Anyway, it’s a good thing that Leben is one of those guys who never, ever repeats his mistakes.
(Rich Franklin looks at this poster to cure his hiccups)
Anderson Silva puts the UFC’s middleweight class on notice 5 years ago at UFN 5
(Video courtesy of Thisis50/TonyScorpio)
Why it matters:
For those who didn’t know who Anderson Silva was prior to his UFC debut against Chris Leben at Ultimate Fight Night 5 back on June 28, 2006, they knew who he was after the fight. Silva was the slight favorite to win the bout (at – 170 to Leben’s +200), but if oddsmakers knew then what we know now, they would be kicking themselves for giving Leben a shot in hell at beating “The Spider.” It took Silva just 49 seconds to dismantle the previously thought un-KO’able TUF 1 veteran whose head was (and is) often described in the same vein as a fire hydrant. Those in the know from witnessing Silva leave a pile of PRIDE and Cage Rage opponents in his wake were not surprised that he beat “The Crippler,” but rather how quickly he did it and the devastating fashion he did it in.
Leben still wakes some nights in a cold sweat, screaming, from the recurring nightmare of Silva turning him into a human bobble-head with his pinpoint jabs.
Okay, so it’s not the next UFC event on the docket — that would be this Sunday’s UFC Live: Marquardt vs. Story show — but we might as well start getting hyped for the next pay-per-view card. UFC 132 goes down July 2nd in Las Vegas, featuring a bantamweight title fight, a fan-friendly matchup of sluggers, and Tito Ortiz‘s ongoing quest for redemption. The extended video preview does a decent job of explaining why you should care, but as is usually the case with these things, the hype is based on a series of well-worn fight cliches. Lets run ‘em down…
“I’m not the same fighter I was then. Things are just different. It’s not the same anymore.” (Dominick Cruz)
When Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber first met in March 2007, the California Kid was the WEC’s reigning featherweight champ and the promotion’s first home-grown star. Cruz was a promising contender, but he was still a little green, and wound up getting choked out in under two minutes.
Cruz hasn’t lost a fight since, and now the roles are reversed; he’s the reigning champion (now at 135 pounds), looking to stave off a title challenge by his old rival. Admittedly, Cruz is a much better fighter in 2011 than he was four years ago. His footwork has developed into a dynamic, utterly unique style of controlled chaos; his integration of boxing and wrestling has become seamless, and maddening for his opponents.
The reason that “I’m not the same fighter” is a lame cliche, even when Cruz says it, is that it implies your opponent is the same fighter. Which he’s not, obviously.
Yeah, if you’re looking for warm fuzzies, you can stop reading now. These two aren’t on the list. (Pic: MMAConvert.com)
Being a father must be one of the most thankless jobs on Earth. I say this not as a dad, but as a son who can only imagine what I put my father through. Sure, there are probably some happy times, like watching your son get his first hit on the baseball court, but largely it’s a never ending torrent of putting up with your son’s immature bullshit, and for that you get thought of one day a year at which time you’re rewarded with an ugly ass tie and a “Free Oil Change” coupon for the truck your son smashed up.
On this special occasion, take a few minutes to grab your old man, have a seat, and enjoy some good old fashioned shadenfreude with some of our sport’s less celebrated father-son moments. You may laugh, you may cry, but hopefully you’ll both realize that things could be a lot worse. Who knows, after a beer or two you may even decide to celebrate your strengthened bond by taking a class together.
To all the dads out there, keep fighting the good fight.
(Leg kicks, why have you forsaken me? / Photo courtesy of allelbows.com)
Today, as you know, is Easter — a day in which Christians celebrate the resurrection of Jesus, three days after his crucifixion. To commemorate the holiday, we’d like to take this time to remember notable resurrections in the sport of mixed martial arts. (Because we’re respectful like that.) There’s nothing more incredible than watching a dude get the living crap beaten out of him for minutes at a time, and then somehow, miraculously, finding the strength to knock his opponent dead before the last bell. So without further ado, here are 11 of our favorite “Back From the Dead” MMA fights of all time…
Thanks everybody for your responses. Anybody who has followed my career knows that I’ve always loved interacting with my fans. This blog gives me a chance to keep in the game, at least mentally. I’ve had a few hits to the head and I suffer from some memory loss but I hope that this column helps to dispel some myths and educate you about the things I’ve learned throughout my life. Some of your questions had me cracking up, and most of you clearly have way too much time on your hands. It’s good to be half man, half amazing and black by popular demand…
‘MyDonkeyPunch’ asks: What was the craziest thing a fighter whispered to you when fighting?
Usually I was the one trash-talking during the fights so I’ll tell you about one of the coolest things that anybody ever whispered to me outside of the ring. After I won one of my K-1 fights in Las Vegas, I got the opportunity to meet Muhammad Ali who was there to present a trophy to the GP winner. Ali had always been my hero growing up so meeting him was a dream come true. When I shook Muhammad Ali’s hand, he pulled me in a close embrace and whispered, “You’re one tough nigger.” I was so honored and excited and it was hard to describe how much that experience meant to me.
‘bgoldstein’ asks: Fill in the blank: __% of fighters use steroids.
Let me answer this question by making an analogy. What percentages of race car drivers use high-quality gasoline? The reason why I ask that is because when you’re running a high-performance vehicle you want to use the fuel that will give you the greatest edge in winning. If you are not using the same quality of fuel as all of the other top drivers, you will start to fall behind no matter how good your engine is.
Sometimes it feels like nearly every middleweight fighter not crippled, crazy or comatose has gone on record in the last few months expressing a desire to fight Wanderlei Silva. At the risk of turning this post into a glorified game of MMA telephone, the reconstructed timeline looks something like this … buckle up, because this is going to get complicated …
This week Leben reiterated his desire to fight Wanderlei and then Wanderlei supporters allegedly launched a Twitter revolution directed at Dana White, urging him to make the fight between the two sluggers. Guess what, though? White ain’t even trying to hear that, see. He wants Wanderlei to fight Belfort, maybe in a big money fight at UFC Rio later this year. But NOW guess who may not want to fight Vitor? That’s right, Wanderlei. Wait, what? An attempt to make sense of it all after the jump …
"Hopefully, my next fight will be Wanderlei Silva, who is obviously a legend in the sport, and it would be an honor to fight your guy from the UK, Michael Bisping, an amazing fighter who has truly distinguished himself in the weight class …” Stann tells the Telegraph’s Gareth Davies. “He has proved himself to be an exciting, all-round fighter and has the ranking. Guys like Michael Bisping and Wanderlei have what I want in the sport — the respect and the rankings, and that’s where I want to be.”
We expect Leben to be all kinds of pissed once he hears about this. After replacing Silva against Akiyama on very short notice then scoring a miraculous submission victory, Leben called out Wanderlei Silva, and Silva happily accepted the challenge. But instead of keeping Leben benched until the Axe Murderer recovered from his injuries, the UFC decided to throw him into a fight with Brian Stann on New Year’s Day. Stann won in dominant fashion, then he called out Wanderlei Silva. His wish was granted. Life’s not fair, Chris.
As we recently learned, the next season of The Ultimate Fighter will be coached by a grumpy mountain man who probably won’t spend any more time on set than he absolutely needs to, and a Brazilian dynamo whose grasp on the English language is limited to simple phrases like "I believe too much in my boxing" and "tub you are a cold — so we’re not expecting a verbal rivalry on par with Tito/Ken or Rampage/Rashad. Still, it’s TUF, so somebody’s gonna get told at some point. Can this season’s insults possibly stack up to some of our past favorites?
#5: "You’re like an expert swimmer who’s never been in a pool."
Matt Serra’s epic dress-down of Marc Laimon was his star-making moment — and a firm bitch-smack to every sideline-hater who talks tough without any intention of actually backing up his words. A year later, Serra was coaching that damn show.
Like a Katy Perry song, it’s annoying as hell, and yet you can’t get it out of your head. "Bro, you’re a male nurse" — I say that to all my friends now, no matter what their professions actually are. And it aggravates them too.
("Damn, those NyQuil shooters Chuck bought me last night seemed like a good idea at the time." Photo props ESPN.)
Remember in grade school when your team would win a game of baseball at recess and without fail there was one shlub who would say that the winning run didn’t count because the sun was in his eyes or the batter didn’t touch second base?
Well Chris Leben’s shlub is Burton Richardson, the head trainer at the Ultimate Training School in Hawaii who claims that "The Crippler" had a fever and chills and was vomiting in the locker room in the hours leading up to his UFC 125 fight with Brian Stann.
"First, great job by Brian Stann. He never looked better. Many have commented that Chris was very slow and looked off last night. The truth is that Chris was sick. He had a fever and chills when he stepped into the cage. He was vomiting in the lockeroom before the fight, and after a hard warm up he didn’t have a drop of sweat. Big heart to fight like that, but he was moving slow motion. He was very sharp in training. He will be back."
(Above: "You’re lucky our dads are here, dweeb. I’ll just take that fancy little belt of yours next time." Below: Something old, something new… / Photos courtesy of the UFC 125 Weigh In Pics gallery on CombatLifestyle.com)
Good lord, is it really 2011 already? I’m still writing "PRIDE NEVA DIE" on all my checks! Another unpredictable year of MMA begins tonight in Las Vegas, as lightweight underdog-champion Frankie Edgar attempts to make title defense #2 against old rival Gray Maynard. Plus: Chris Leben and Nate Diaz try to keep their streaks going, Brandon Vera fights for his job, and a lightweight smash-up between Clay Guida and Takanori Gomi. Click through for round-by-round UFC 125 updates — beginning at 9 p.m. ET with the live prelims broadcast on ION — and remember to refresh the page every few minutes for the latest results. Let’s all try to be the best keyboard warriors we can be this year, okay guys?
UFC 125 goes down tonight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, and CagePotato will be posting live results beginning with the ION prelims at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT. I’m sure most of you are still nursing crippling hangovers, so let’s ease into the New Year gently: Above, some of tonight’s fighters share their resolutions for 2011, and Dong Hyun Kim re-invents himself as a trash-talker. (Ed. note: KEEP THE 209 OUT OF YOUR MOUTH, SON.) After the jump, the very same dudes warm up and discuss their matchups at Thursday’s open workout.
If 2010 was a cold beer, we’d be down to the backwash. December puts all of us MMA-pundit types in a reflective mood, and this year gave us a double-crapload of big stories, insane fights, rising stars, and utter embarrassments to wrap our heads around. And so, we’d like to pay tribute to 2010 in the best way we know how — sarcasm and insults, mostly. Without further ado, here are 15 things we felt were worthy of some end-of-year recognition, Potato-style…
The Giant Silva Freak Show Award, presented each year to the match that’s made strictly for gruesome entertainment value; fighters should ideally exhibit a tremendous difference in either size or experience level. Winner:Randy Couture vs. James Toney at UFC 118, in which a tubby boxing champ trash-talked his way into a co-headling bout against an MMA legend, and got choked out before he was able to land a single punch. This marks the first time in eleven years that the Giant Silva Award hasn’t been granted to a fight held in Japan. Also receiving votes this year:Herschel Walker vs. Greg Nagy
The Wanderlei Silva Unintentionally Homoerotic Smack Talk Award, known as "The Wandy"ispresented each year to the fighter who, when trying to hype a fight, inadvertently makes reference to having gay sex with his (or her) opponent. Winner:Josh Koscheck, for the utterly disturbing wild-eyed, tongue-waving description above of what he was planning to do to UFC welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre during this season of The Ultimate Fighter. Also receiving votes this year: Matt Horwich, for his cringeworthy rant about how he was going to Mike Tyson 10th Planet protagonist Renato Laranja.
Try not to look too shocked, y’all: Chris Leben went on Ariel Helwani’s "The MMA Hour" radio show yesterday and made a number of incredible statements about his October arrest on suspicion of drunk driving in Hawaii. And when we say “incredible,” we mean it in the most literal sense, as in, not credible. Among other things, Leben said he doesn’t believe his latest DUI arrest is “going to be a big deal,” that “nothing is going to happen with it” and – if you want to know the truth – he’s not 100 percent sure he’ll even be formally charged with DUI after the truth comes out at his upcoming February court date. Oh, and he also compared himself to the former president of the United States.
"George (W.) Bush got a DUI and he ended up being the president," Leben said. "I really feel as though nothing’s really going to happen with it, honestly. I don’t want to talk about it too much, and it’s still in the works. But I don’t think it’s going to be a big deal."
Obviously, Leben comparing himself to the leader of the free world – even a really, really bad one – is a bit of a stretch. Also, forgive us here at CagePotato Legal Services if we can’t take such an optimistic view of his upcoming court appearance. Let’s review some facts.
"I want to make my next fight for here in Toronto, maybe in April. I started my rehab for my knee right now and I started to lift weights, but I don’t train martial arts right now. I’m gonna wait two weeks to see what’s gonna happen with my knee," Wand explains. "If it feels better I’m gonna fight on the first show in Toronto. [Chris Leben] is a really good opponent. His style’s like my style. He likes to fight. He’s no afraid to fight toe-to-toe, so he’s a good opponent. He’s going to fight right now in one of the next UFCs, but I want to fight against him."
As far as a possible fight with Sonnen goes, Silva thinks that unlike Anderson Silva, he’ll have the upper hand if the bout comes to fruition, citing a certain sparring session he had in Vegas with the testosterone deficient, smack talk abundant middleweight to support his opinion.
"Sonnen, he’s more of a wrestler. I think that’s a good fight for me, too," Silva says. "I trained with him one time at [Xtreme Couture] and I killed him there, you know? I think he’s a good opponent too. He’s tough.
hotsaucemonster [winner]: and i guess at that moment i realized that perhaps it was me that had the nasty ass stank breff the whole time
Dana_Plight [first runner-up]: "Every guy I went to high school with, except for one, is dead. Someone poisoned the grape soda at the high school reunion. The one survivor was diabetic, he couldn’t drink grape soda…and that’s why you shouldn’t join a gang."
Maine Blazer [second runner-up]: James Toney sees two rednecks.
hotsauce, please shoot me your address and I’ll send you something nice. Dana and Maine, you guys are eligible for some CP shirts (see the end of this post). We’d also like to take some time to pay tribute to some of the week’s other comment-section power-players…
(The UFC should make it interesting and let Leben get hammered for the bout)
UFC middleweight Wanderlei Silva is pretty sure his next opponent will be Chris Leben and that the fight will take place in Toronto in April.
The Brazilian MMA icon revealed the news in a recent interview he did with Fighters Only.
“I think I want to fight in April in Canada — I want to fight in Toronto. I think against Chris Leben. I want to fight with him next,” Silva informed Fighters Only when asked about his eventual return to the Octagon.
“I think he is interesting, he is my size, he is aggressive, he fights to the front (comes forward)," he explained. I think we are going to make an interesting fight.”
We were half joking earlier this year when we compared Chris Leben to that screw-up brother of yours who borrows your car, gets high and then crashes it. Right now however, that assessment seems sadly apt after Leben wrecked his truck on a Hawaii freeway earlier this week and was arrested on suspicion of DUI. Again.
Here’s the word straight from the document of record, by which we mean a story from a local television station in HI: “Officers arrested Christian Leben, 30, a middleweight fighter known as the Crippler, on suspicion of operating a vehicle under the influence of an intoxicant Tuesday. He was released from custody after posting $1,000 bail. Police say Leben was driving on the west-bound side of the H1 Freeway just before 2 AM, when he lost control of his pickup and crashed into a wall near the Kapiolani Boulevard off ramp. He was allegedly driving without a license and without insurance.”
(Man, that is some crazy, high-level, top-of-the-food-chain…uh, what exactly am I looking at here? Photo courtesy of MMAWeekly.)
As first reported by MMAFighting, UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar will attempt to make his second belt defense against Gray Maynard at UFC 125, which is slated to go down New Year’s Day 2011 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. Both fighters are coming off big decision wins at UFC 118, with Edgar shutting down BJ Penn in a rematch of their first title bout, and Maynard outpointing Kenny Florian. Edgar and Maynard previously met at UFC Fight Night 13 in April 2008, with Maynard scoring a unanimous decision victory and handing Edgar his only career loss to date. Both fighters are tied on the UFC decision-fight leaderboard.