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Tag: Duane Ludwig

Team Alpha Male Searching for New Head Coach as Duane Ludwig Leaves to Start Gym in Colorado


(Duane Ludwig and his Bang Bros. / Photo via CombatLifestyle.com)

When Duane “Bang” Ludwig came on as head coach of Team Alpha Male, it was like a magic bullet for the Sacramento-based crew, who began performing markedly better in all aspects of the game. Now, Ludwig is leaving after a year and a half with Urijah Faber and his gang — and there might be some hurt feelings on both sides.

The basic story is this: Ludwig wants to leave Team Alpha Male in order to open his own gym in Colorado. Yesterday morning, he told Faber about his plans privately, assuring Faber that he’d stay on to complete upcoming training camps for team members. Instead of keeping things discreet, Faber posted a public ad on TeamAlphaMale.com later that day, stating that the team needed a new coach. The news was then reported on last night’s edition of UFC Tonight, and the cat was fully out of the bag.

It wasn’t f*cking supposed to be like this, man,” Ludwig told MMAjunkie yesterday. “I’m not going to bounce on anybody’s fight camp. Then he f*cking went and told the team and did a press release before I knew. I’m like, ‘What the hell?’…I was just giving Urijah the heads up; I didn’t really have much planned. I think he kind of jumped (the gun).

Faber confirmed that Ludwig will remain with the team until May 24th — the same day as UFC 173, which will feature Team Alpha Male fighters TJ Dillashaw and Chris Holdsworth. He also name-checked Mark Hominick, Dan Hardy, Muay Thai trainer Mark Beecher, and grappling coach Robert Follis as guys he’d like to see as Ludwig’s replacement. (Hominick already seems interested.) After the jump: Ludwig explains the strictly-business reasoning behind starting his own gym…

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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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Duane Ludwig’s Secret Coaching Weapon: Watching Fight Tape While High


(“…and I’m not saying it was aliens, okay? But dude. It was aliens.” / Photo via AlphaEntertainmentOnline.com)

Ever since retired UFC fighter Duane Ludwig stepped in as the striking coach for Urijah Faber‘s Team Alpha Male, the Sacramento-based crew has been on a tear. They essentially have three #1 contenders on the team right now (Faber, Chad Mendes and Joseph Benavidez) and Alpha Male hasn’t lost a major bout since Ludwig took over the coaching spot.

Ludwig discusses his recent gig and coaching techniques in a great two-part interview over at MMA Mania that you really should check out in full. There’s a lot behind Ludwig’s approach to coaching and what he brings to the table — over a decade of experience as an elite kickboxer and MMA fighter, for example. But we can’t help but fixate on the last thing he talks about in the interview.

At first he tries to gloss over it but, ‘Bang’ likes the ganja and feels that analyzing fight footage while high helps him get deeper insight. (Also, that giant Team Alpha Male bag of Cheetos from Costco ain’t gonna eat itself.)

“I’m always studying film, looking at fights from all aspects. When I watch a fight, I watch it from A’s corner and then I watch it from B’s corner. Even with that, I look at the fight again and I alter my own consciousness and I watch the fights again just to make sure, just to get some different looks on things. I actually have another guy in Colorado who reviews film for me as well. From one fight in particular, I get a lot of looks. I watch it multiple times from different stages of consciousness and I have other people watching it. I put more research into fighting than anybody does, more effort into this game than people are aware of, that’s for sure,” Ludwig explains to MMA Mania.

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Fightnomics Releases Figures on Most and Least Active Strikers in the UFC, Jon Fitch Nowhere to Be Found


(Click the image for a full size version.)

Our buddies over at Fightnomics continue to crank out the finest in UFC-related empirical data. They’ve given us a breakdown of everything from how fights end by division to submission success rates by technique, and now they’ve released a statistical compilation of every single significant strike thrown in UFC history. And in even better news, it appears that the average pace at which significant strikes are thrown has nearly tripled since the promotion’s inception, even with Jon Fitch’s seventeen fights taken into account:

Since 2007, UFC fighters average 6.8 significant strikes per minute (SSpM) of fight time. Again, this is not just while standing, but also from dominant clinch and ground positions.  Significant strikes do damage, score knockdowns, set up submissions, or cause referees to jump in for the save.  Significant strikes generally define the action in a fight, and as the analysis shows, fighter output by this metric has changed drastically since the early years of the UFC.

Through the 1990’s, UFC fighters attempted an average of only 2.8 significant strikes per minute.  Averages for UFC fighters then more than doubled to 6.9 SSpM after the sport matured under Fertitta’s Zuffa umbrella.  Modern UFC fighters also score more knockdowns and throw a slightly higher percentage of power strikes than the old guard, further suggesting greater endurance. In terms of accuracy, about 42% of these significant strikes land on target.

My main question, of course, is whether or not those girly leg kicks Carlos Condit used to outpoint Nick Diaz at UFC 143 were factored into these figures. If so, this graph is therefore invalidated by the gold standard for significant strike measurement: The Unified Rules of Stockton. Obvious trolling attempts aside, this data should at least hinder the notion that lay-n-pray is the fastest rising trend in MMA, despite that scared bitch Georges St. Pierre’s endless attempts to prove otherwise.

After the jump: Fightnomics breaks down the most active and least active strikers in the UFC. And somehow, Jon Fitch is nowhere to be found.

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UFC on FUEL 5 Aftermath: The Future Has (Possibly) Arrived

When the UFC first announced that Stefan Struve vs. Stipe Miocic would be the main event of yesterday’s UFC on FUEL 5, most of us assumed that the fight would serve as a coming out party for Stipe Miocic. Even though he hadn’t faced any big names in his UFC career, the heavy-handed prospect certainly looked like he was Cleveland’s next best hope for a champion. Putting Stipe in the cage with a fighter that (arguably) has a weak chin could produce a highlight reel knockout and put Miocic “in the mix” at the heavyweight division.

Except that didn’t happen. Miocic managed to land some heavy shots throughout the fight, but in the end Struve proved to be too much, earning the TKO in the second round. While Miocic outworked Struve throughout the first round, Stipe Miocic had no answers for the lanky heavyweight’s offense once Struve actually started using his jab. Sorry, Cleveland, but you really should have seen this one coming.

This isn’t meant to take anything away from Stefan Struve, as he looked pretty impressive with his victory. Any questions about his chin seemed to be answered yesterday, as he weathered some heavy punches on his way to earning the TKO. And forgive us if we’re harping on this, but when Struve actually uses his jab, he’s a completely different fighter. His lanky attack creates problems for everyone in the heavyweight division, warranting a post-fight comparison to Jon Jones from Chael Sonnen (except Chael added that Struve has twice the courage of Jon Jones, naturally). The twenty four year old fighter improves to 9-3 in the UFC, and is currently riding a four fight win streak.

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UFC on FUEL 5: Struve vs. Miocic — Live Results & Commentary


(Just remember, Stipe: The bigger they are, the funnier they lawn-chair. / Photo via MMAJunkie.com)

The UFC makes its first (and only!) U.K. stop of 2012 today, with a card that’s low on star power but high on potential fireworks. If you’re reading this right now, it means you’re at least sort-of interested, and that’s good enough for us. So which heavyweight main-eventer is about to put himself “in the mix”? Can Dan Hardy string together his first back-to-back wins since 2009? Will Matt Wiman be just another notch on Paul “Sassangle” Sass‘s sassbelt? And WTF is wrong with Kyle Kingsbury, anyway? The answers to most of those questions will be revealed shortly.

Handling liveblog business for the UFC on FUEL 5 main card broadcast is George Shunick, who will be stacking round-by-round results after the jump beginning at 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m PT. Let us know how you feel in the comments section, and refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest. And as always, thanks for spending part of your weekend with us.

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Classic Mismatch: Duane Ludwig vs. Shad Smith, Who Was Wearing a Pair of Vans at the Time [VIDEO]

Thanks to Manny Yarborough GOAT for digging up this classic fight from King of the Cage 4 back in June 2000, in which a young Duane Ludwig beats the absolute dogshit out of MMA pioneer Shad Smith, who entered the cage wearing the same pair of sneakers and white socks that he showed up to the arena in. No, this would not be Shad’s night. Ludwig’s Muay Thai was nasty even back then, and the referee was as shitty as most local refs were in those days — two factors that combined to produce an uncomfortably violent late-stoppage. Skip to the 2:25 mark for the beginning of the end.

After the jump: Shad’s 2004 King of the Cage bout against Krazy Horse Bennett, which is worth watching just for their pre-fight promo packages. A credit to humanity, both of these guys.

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Barnburner Alert: Che Mills vs. Duane Ludwig Booked for UFC on FUEL 5


(Duane, how many times do I have to tell you to STOP SLEEPING ON THE JOB??!!!!)

Well, well, well…it looks like the UFC has finally delivered a free card matchup that doesn’t make us yearn for the days of Arlovski/Sylvia III. Word just broke (and by just, we mean a good six or seven hours ago) that veteran strikers Duane “Bang” Ludwig and Che Mills have been paired up for UFC on FUEL 5, which goes down on September 29, 2012 at the Capital FM Arena in Nottingham, England and features a headlining matchup between heavyweight contenders Stefan Struve and Stipe Miocic. Mills broke the news via his Twitter:

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After stringing together a pair of wins over Nick Osipczak and Amir Sodallah to save his UFC career, Ludwig again finds himself with his back against the wall. He has dropped his last two contests to Josh Neer (via Ambienotine) and Dan Hardy (via lead left hook of death) and could be looking at his final fight under the promotion if he is not successful against Mills.

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UFC 146 Aftermath: Five Fights, Five Finishes

By Elias Cepeda


Props: MMAFighting.com

Junior dos Santos is a walking, terrifying public relations smashing machine. Not only did he Babe Ruth it and fulfill his prediction of winning by 2nd round stoppage over former two-time champion Frank Mir Saturday night, but he also provided the best feel-good photo op of the year so far.

Junior trains out of Luis Carlos Dorea’s Champion Boxing gym in Brazil which, in addition to being headquarters for world-class fighters, is home to a vibrant youth boxing program. After training one day, the UFC Primetime cameras caught one of the little tikes hanging asking Junior to take him with him to the states for his title fight.

At the time, Junior said, “we’ll see.” But he ended up bringing the 9 year-old kid and his family to Vegas to watch him win. After beating Mir, he lifted the lucky young fighter onto his shoulders and posed for the cameras along with his coaches.

Dos Santos definitely appears to have the Wanderlei Silva nice guy/maniac fighter balance down pat. Try as I might, that image warms my cynical heart, and I don’t give a damn how orchestrated it may or may not have been. Who doesn’t like watching a kid’s dream come true before their eyes?

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UFC 146: Dos Santos vs. Mir — Live Preliminary Card Results and Commentary


It may be an all heavyweight main card, but the bantamweight is stealing the show. Props: MMAFighting.com

We’re just hours away from UFC 146, so it’s time to turn on FX and watch the preliminary card. This evening’s all heavyweight main card will kick off with the lighter guys, as Diego Brandao makes his first post-TUF appearance against Darren Elkins, Dan Hardy and Mayhem Miller fight for their careers against Duane Ludwig and C.B. Dollaway, and Edson Barboza takes on Jamie Varner in what may potentially be the squash match/upset of the year. Handling tonight’s liveblogging duties will be Seth Falvo, who will be frantically checking to see if his beloved Philadelphia 76ers can take Game Seven during commercial breaks. Come in after the jump for live play-by-play.

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