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CagePotato Databomb #4: Breaking Down the UFC Featherweights by Striking Performance


(Click chart for full-size versionFor previous Databombs, click here.)

By Reed Kuhn, @Fightnomics

Last week, we started our series on UFC strikers by breaking down the smallest division in key striking metrics. This week, in time for the Featherweight title fight between Jose Aldo and Frankie Edgar at UFC 156, we’ll look at the 145’ers. A full explanation of the chart and variables is included below.

The Winners

Sniper Award: Cub Swanson has been on a roll lately and tops out as the division’s most accurate striker, landing 37% of his power head strike attempts. For perspective, that’s bordering on Anderson Silva-type accuracy, at least statistically. This has helped Swanson win three straight in the UFC, all by (T)KO, and pick up two straight Knockout of the Night bonuses.

Energizer Bunny Award: Southpaw Erik Koch has more than doubled the striking output of his opponents. But that wasn’t enough to stop the ground Hellbows from Ricardo Lamas on last Saturday’s FOX card. There’s no doubt about Koch’s skills, he’ll just have to wait longer to test them against the current champ.

Biggest Ball(s) Award: Andy Ogle may cry a lot when he’s away from home, but no one should doubt the size of his, ahem, heart. Though he dropped a split decision in his UFC debut against Akira Corassani, he managed to knock down the Swede despite landing only two solid strikes to the head. He’d better improve his accuracy and pull the trigger more often if he hopes to get past the similarly gun-shy yet powerful Josh Grispi at UFC on FUEL 7 next month. Other notable featherweights with knockdown power include Koch, Aldo, Dennis Siver and Dennis Bermudez.

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*Fingers Crossed* Guida vs. Hioki, Grant vs. Wiman, + More Added to Stacked UFC on FOX 6 Card


(We know, Clay, we had a hard time watching your last fight too.) 

It’s looking like the crippling power of this year’s injury curse is going to be tested early come 2013, because the UFC’s first major network event of the year is currently stacked with more budding talent than a Miss Teen USA pageant. Aside from the Cerrone/Pettis, Jackson/Teixeira, and Dodson/Johnson fights that were announced earlier this week, the UFC has recently announced that Clay Guida will be making his featherweight debut against Hatsu Hioki at the same event as well.

Guida’s last performance saw him channel Steve Prefontaine for the majority of five rounds against Gray Maynard at UFC on FX 4, earning him his second straight loss at lightweight following his much more exciting loss to current champion Benson Henderson at the inaugural UFC on FOX event.

Despite the fact that he is coming off a close decision loss to Ricardo Lamas at the same event, there’s no denying that Hioki is still considered to be one of the top contenders at 145, so a win over Hatsu is not only essential for Guida — he has never dropped three straight in his MMA career — but would easily launch him up the list of potential contenders to boot. Let’s just hope he brings a more aggressive strategy against Hioki or we could be in for a long three rounds.

Also booked for UFC on FOX 6…

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You’ve Got To Be F*cking Kidding Me: Jose Aldo Now Out of UFC 153 With Foot Injury


(Can you help me, Siri? Well, you can start by wiping that fucking dumb-ass smile off your shiny, lifeless, screen! And you can give me a bit of fucking good news: a fucking pay-per-view, that actually fucking happens, a fucking title fight, a fucking healthy fighter! Five fucking fights and a ringside seat!)

Well, if the news that Rampage Jackson was out of UFC 153 with an elbow injury wasn’t enough to get you fired up, then maybe this will. Making sure to cap off the summer with a bang, the injury curse of 2012 has struck again. And once again, featherweight champion Jose Aldo is the victim, as he has suffered a foot injury that has forced him out of his UFC 153 bout with Frankie Edgar, whom you may recall was stepping in for an injured Eric Koch. Whom you may recall was originally supposed to face Aldo at UFC 149 until Aldo injured himself for the first time.

It may not have happened yet, but we’re going to go ahead and claim that GSP is out of UFC Whatever with a torn Whachamacallit.

The news was once again delivered by Dana White via his Twitter.

Now Aldo is out with foot injury. Main and co main in the same day!! Another amazing day at the UFC. We have some work to do.

The injury is apparently related to the motorcycle accident Aldo was involved in just under a week ago, which shows us that the injury curse has moved on from simple hope crushing to full-on psychological warfare. Fuck you, injury curse. Fuck you right in the pooper.

So…Edgar vs. Sonnen, anybody?

In related injury news…

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Booking Roundup: Brookins vs. Yahya, Simpson vs. Markes at UFC on FUEL


(This is where we’d normally make some sort of Geico Caveman reference, but those jokes, like the commercials, have been played out to the point of eye-gouging redundancy. So, uh…beauty and the beast?) 

Though they may not get your engine revving, a couple of sure-to-be-undercard bouts have been booked for the UFC’s debut on FUEL TV, the first of which being a featherweight match-up between grappling wizards Jonathan Brookins and Rani Yahya. After lateral dropping his way through season 12 of The Ultimate Fighter, Brookins recently saw a four fight win streak snapped at the hands of featherweight contender Eric Koch in a three rounder reminiscent of Couture vs. Vera that saw Brookins unable to get Koch to the mat.

Yahya, on the other hand, is likely fighting for his future in the UFC. Just 1-3 in his past four, with the lone win coming against a struggling (and last minute replacement) Mike Brown, we last saw Yahya on the losing end of a unanimous decision to Jose Aldo‘s next challenger, Chad Mendes. Prior to the Brown win, Yahya was outclassed by Takeya Mizugaki in another decision at WEC 48 and TKO’ed by future flyweight champ Joseph Benavidez at WEC 45.

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Lauzon/Pettis Booked for UFC 144, Poirier/Koch for 143

Anthony Pettis Clay Guida cage reverse kick showtime TUF 13 finale MMA gifs UFC gif Joe Lauzon Melvin Guillard UFC 136
(A classic battle of style vs. SUBstance.)

Fresh off his upset Submission of the Night victory over Melvin Guillard at UFC 136, Joe Lauzon was quick to respond when called out by former WEC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis, who scored a decision victory over Jeremy Stephens at the same event. Well it looks like “Showtime” will be getting his wish, as the two have been booked to lock horns at UFC 144, in what could easily be a Fight of the Night match-up. Prior to their 136 victories, Lauzon scored a quick and nasty kimura victory over Kurt Warburton at UFC Live 4 whereas Pettis was wrestlefucked into oblivion by Clay Guida at the TUF 13 Finale in June. This is the point where I’d normally say that a victory here would rocket either man near the top of the lightweight ladder, but considering that the division is currently more crowded than a So-Cal Quinceanera, let’s just say that a victory here will keep either man…from losing.

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Technique Video of the Day: Kick Like Duke Roufus (in Theory)


VidProps: WorldMartialArts/YouTube

Duke Roufus knows a thing or two about kicking. Also about punching. Oh, and knees and elbows, too.

Hmmm. Let’s start over…

Duke Roufus knows a thing or two about striking, and since his retirement from kickboxing competition, he’s passed along his knowledge to fighters from the Roufusport Martial Arts Academy in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Pat Barry, Danny Downes, Matt Mitrione, Anthony Pettis (and his little bro Sergio), Alan Belcher, Ben Askren, and Eric Koch (and more) have all spent time with Duke sharpening their stand up skills, and Roufus has been credited with pushing innovation in MMA striking. Belcher’s cage-spring superman punch and Pettis’ Showtime Kick were both attributed to training with Roufus, because they apparently practice that kind of crazy stuff over there.

But we must remember the words of Mr Miyagi: “first learn stand, then learn fly.”

Watch this video of Roufus breaking down technique for Thai-style low kicks. Watch it twice, then go find a bamboo tree. Kick that bamboo tree until it falls. You’re now halfway to being a Roufusninja, and don’t leave us comments about how bamboo is technically grass. That’s bullshit. No one ever became a ninja by kicking grass; that’s clearly a moronic idea. You think Tony Jaa took a level in badass by kicking over blades of grass? Absolutely not. He kicked down trees and made friends with elephants.

As far as we know, Duke Roufus does not have an elephant friends. What he does have is this video of kicking technique, and you need to quit arguing and watch it.

[RX]

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