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Tag: Ikuhisa Minowa

Here’s What a UFC Magic the Gathering Set Looks Like

You didn’t hear about Dana White’s latest announcement: An MMA-related Magic the Gathering set?

Well,there’s a reason you didn’t hear about it: It didn’t happen. Thankfully, one of our favorite past times is figuring out what products should needlessly be merged with our MMA obsession. A few days ago, we arrived at Magic the Gathering (MTG for short). We played the addictive card game back in high school. We wondered what a set of MTG that spans the entire MMA world might look like. The below cards–featuring the likes of Dana White, Conor McGregor, Greg Jackson, as well as several “MMA memes”–are the result of our mental meandering.

A few notes: We haven’t played Magic in about 10 years so some of the gameplay semantics might not be totally accurate. Also, some of the abilities are for the purposes of chiding MMA as only irreverent CagePotato can. All real photos in the cards come from Getty Images, save for the photo of “Minowaman” Ikuhisa Minowa, which comes from Sherdog. Another card’s image comes from a YouTube screen capture (you’ll know which one).

With that, here are the cards. We hope you enjoy them:

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VIDEO: Minowaman May Have Turned a Guy’s Leg Backwards on Saturday


(Props: hirochan60 via MiddleEasy)

As I tweeted earlier, I wish I had a better-quality video of this, and I’m not sure what that says about me. Basically, Ikuhisa “Minowaman” Minowa fought Swedish rookie Goran Jettingstad at Inoki Genome Fight 1 in Tokyo on Saturday, and may have possibly turned his leg completely backwards during a leg lock. I had to watch this crowd-shot footage three or four times to wrap my head around it, but yeah, that seems to be what happened.

Keep in mind that Minowa was competing in his 102nd professional fight that evening, while Jettingstad came into the match with a professional record of 0-0. (Good one, Japan!) Anyway, we’ll update this post if a better video appears. By the way, our old pal Brett Rogers also competed on the Inoki Genome Fight 1 card, where he KO’d Yusuke Kawaguchi in 28 seconds. Video of that knockout is after the jump…

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The Top 24 Mixed Martial Artists Who Lost Their First Fight


(Renan Barao: Started from the bottom, now he here. / Photo via Getty)

By Adam Martin

At the UFC 165 post-fight presser last month, UFC president Dana White showered praise upon UFC interim bantamweight champion Renan Barao, calling him one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the sport and remarking that the media hadn’t given enough credit to his eight-year, 32-fight undefeated streak, which has remained pristine since May 2005.

Barao has only tasted defeat once, and it was in the first fight of his career. The fact that he’s rebounded with the longest current undefeated streak in mixed martial arts — despite the fact that his first loss could have ruined his confidence forever — is absolutely amazing to me, as many young would-be prospects have crashed and burned in their debuts, never to be heard of again.

It got me thinking: What other mixed martial artists lost their first fight but then went on to have great success? I expected to bang out a list of ten fighters, but once I started doing the research, it blew my mind that some of the best fighters to ever compete in the sport, and a number of currently top 10-ranked fighters, actually lost their very first fight.

And so, I compiled a list of the top 24 MMA fighters of all time who lost their first fight. The list is based on accomplishments in the sport, overall skill level, and potential. Enjoy, and if I somehow missed somebody notable, please leave a comment below and explain why he or she should be included.

Honorable mentions: Matt “The Wizard” Hume (5-5), Wesley “Cabbage” Correira (20-15), Ryan “The Big Deal” Jimmo (18-2), Rodrigo Damm (11-6), James Te Huna (16-6)

24. Travis “The Ironman” Fulton (249-49-10, 1 NC)

(Photo via ThunderPromotions)

On July 26, 1996, at the age of 19 years old, Travis Fulton fought Dave Strasser in his MMA debut at Gladiators 1 in Davenport, Iowa, losing the fight via first-round submission. He then went on to win 249 fights, the most wins in mixed martial arts history. Fulton also holds the record for most fights (309) and most knockout wins (91) in MMA history.

Mind = blown.

Was Fulton a can crusher? Yes, yes he was. Or, should I say, yes he is, as he beat some nobody in his native Iowa just this past March. But you don’t win 249 MMA fights by accident, and Fulton deserves a place on this list based on volume alone.

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[VIDEO] Amorphous Tim Sylvia-Like Blob, and Other Attractions from Inoki Bom-Ba-Ye 2012

Mirko Cro Cop VS Shinichi Suzukawa

DREAM 18 wasn’t the only Japanese MMA event on New Year’s Eve. Inoki Bom-Ba-Ye 2012 – a hybrid MMA/Pro-wrestling card – also provided the MMA community with some freak show goodness. We’ve been putting off coverage of this event until videos surfaced because frankly, when the main event features a post-prime Cro Cop vs. a disgraced sumo wrestler turned professional wrestler, well, yeah, this event can wait a few days.

The main event, Cro Cop vs. Suzukawa, proved that no matter how far past his prime he is, Cro Cop can still submit a clueless jabroni making his MMA debut. In other words, it was a decent freak show fight that played out exactly as it should have. It just wouldn’t be New Year’s Eve without a freak show fight, now would it?

The co-main event displayed Japanese judoka Satoshi Ishii fighting against what was apparently Tim Sylvia. Despite committing himself to the most explosive workout program in all of MMA, The Maine-iac showed up looking like he hasn’t even thought about training since his Arlovski fight in September, and did it ever show. Ishii took the fight by unanimous decision.

Video after the jump.

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[VIDEO] Manhoef and Minowa Snap Losing Streaks Against Less-Than-Worthy Competition at Road FC 9


No, the legendary Super Hluk title was not on the line.

At a glance, these fights could have just as easily been included in this morning’s can-crushing roundup. Both fights featured established names taking on little-known Korean fighters with less-than-stellar records- one of which ended rather predictably. But perhaps that wouldn’t be a fair interpretation of the phrase “can-crusher.”

Over the past three years, Melvin Manhoef has deteriorated into a fighter who is only capable of defeating his own shins, having gone 1-4 (1) since 2009. Last night, Manhoef was matched up against 14-9 (2) Korean fighter Jae Young Kim. Despite his mediocre record, Kim had won ten of his fights by knockout and wasn’t lost on the ground, either; his most recent fight was a victory by North-South choke against Hee Seung Kim.

The duo produced an entertaining three round fight that saw Manhoef walk away with a split-decision victory. Manhoef may have looked slow at times, but his ground game appears to be less of a liability than it has usually been, as he was taken down but never submitted. He now stands at 25-9-1 (1) overall.

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SFL 2 Results: Duffee Smashes Grove, Shlemenko Stuns Minowa


(Minowaman vs. Shlemenko. Sorry Seth, this is what you get for taking the weekend off.) 

At the minimum, last night’s Super Fight League 2 card was a small, albeit significant, improvement over the upstart promotion’s first card. The fact that Bob Sapp was not participating already ensured this. Yes, it was still riddled with the goofy, often laughably bad commentary of Phil Baroni and some other guy who I don’t really care to look up at the moment, but overall, it was able to deliver more action and dramatic finishes than this weekend’s Bellator card could account for, and considering it was free, who are we to complain? If only they could get rid of those awkward crowd shots.

But before we get to the most exciting finish, perhaps we could focus on the oddest one– Alexander Shlemenko’s first round TKO of Ikuhisa Minowa. Minowa continued his rough streak against recognizable-named opponents this morning, and it looks like he could be on the shelve for a little longer than usual this time around. For the first couple of minutes, the fight was vintage Shlemenko, featuring more spinning death attacks than a tornado in an axe factory. Minowa simply had no answer for “The Storm” on the feet, and was stalked around the cage until around the two minute mark, when Shlemenko was able to land a well timed knee to Minowa’s skull that sent him reeling backward.

Minowa seemed to be alright, reaching for a leg log in the moments afterward, but when Shlemenko was able to pull out from danger, Minowa suddenly curled up in the fetal position with an apparent rib injury. No word yet on exactly how bad he is hurt, but we’re going to guess that the injury was more, you know, real, than the quad injury that felled Sapp in his main event clash against James Thompson at SFL 1. The announcer not named Phil Baroni was kind enough to inform us that Shlemenko has now fought 13 times in the past two years. That is fucking insane. And speaking of insane, Shlemenko’s thirst for his well deserved rematch against Bellator middleweight champion Hector Lombard might just be driving him a bit loony. After defeating Minowa, Shlemenko gave what was perhaps the greatest post fighting interview of all time, calmly stating, ”Hey India. Hector, I kill you.” If only Lombard could come to an agreement with the Bellator brass, perhaps we could watch these two throw down again.

The Duffee/Grove video, along with the full results are after the jump. 

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Super Fight League Adds Shlemenko-Minowa and Kelly-Rudiger to Second Event


(Contrary to what this painting implies, Minowa will not be taking on Gabe “Godzilla” Rudiger. Seems like a wasted opportunity to us.) 

India-based promotion Super Fight League is quickly making waves in the MMA landscape. Aside from being the first promotion to sign an exclusive broadcast deal with Youtube, they’ve managed to sign UFC veterans Todd Duffee and Trevor Prangley and held a mildly successful first event earlier this month. Sure, Bob Sapp was there, a sentiment we are getting sicker and sicker of typing, but just listen to SFL’s theme song and tell us that these gentlemen are not on the short path to success. Go ahead. We’ll be right here. Haaaaangin out.

But if you weren’t convinced by Super Fight League’s first event, then you will be more than happy to learn that they’ve decided to move on from the undisputed queen of freak show fights in Sapp to the undisputed king of freak show fights in Ikuhisa Minowa for their next event. Oh yes, one of the greatest fighters to never hold a major title will be taking on two time Bellator middleweight tournament winner Alexander Shlemenko at SFL 2, which goes down on April 7th from Chandigarh, India.

We last saw Minowaman in action at the “meh” ProElite 3 event, where he was outpointed by TUF 3 winner Kendall Grove. True to form, Minowa rebounded from the loss by picking up a first round submission over a 1-6 fighter that I am not going to bother looking up again because I already closed the tab. The Super Hulk Champion could be in for a long night against Shlemenko, a 44-7 kickboxing expert who showcased an improved submission game in his Bellator 50 guillotine joke victory over Zelg Galesic. If this fight features anything less than ten spinning backfists and a dropkick we will eat our hats.

Also set for SFL 2…

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CagePotato Roundtable #3: Who’s Your Favorite Fighter to Never Win a Major Title?


(In the heart of the child who made it, the Super HLUK belt is the most prestigious title on the planet.)

CagePotato Roundtable is our new recurring column in which the CP writing staff and some of our friends all get together to debate an MMA-related topic. Joining us this week is MiddleEasy.com founder Zeus Tipado, who was kind enough to smoke an entire bag of PCP and channel the spirit of Wallid Ismail. If you have a suggestion for a future Roundtable column, send it to tips@cagepotato.comThis week’s topic: Who’s your favorite MMA fighter to never win a major title?

Ben Goldstein

We take personality for granted these days. Everywhere you look, the MMA ranks are packed with shameless self-promoters, aspiring comedians, unrepentant assholes, and assorted clown-men. But in the UFC’s infancy, fighters tended to come in two types: Stoic (see Royce Gracie, Dan Severn) and certifiably insane ( see Joe Son, Harold Howard). David “Tank” Abbott changed all that. He entered the UFC with a fully-fledged persona, and managed to stay in character through his entire career. Simply put, he was the UFC’s first villain, and he played that role more effectively than anyone has since.

Heralded as a “pit fighter” — a term invented by UFC promoter Art Davie — Tank’s martial art of choice was hitting guys in the head really hard, which he did while wearing the sort of fingerless gloves that soon become industry standard. It’s difficult to overstate the impact that Tank’s debut at UFC 6 had on a 14-year-old Ben Goldstein as I was watching the pay-per-view at my friend Josh’s house. It wasn’t just that Abbott starched John Matua in a mere 18 seconds, or that Matua’s body seized up when his head hit the canvas. It’s that Tank reacted to the knockout by mimic-ing Matua’s stiffened pose. Tank actually mocked John Matua for having a seizure. Ruthless! And how about his destruction of Steve Nelmark at the Ultimate Ultimate ’96, which had to be the first “oh shit is that guy dead?” moment in UFC history. Tank was a living reminder that the UFC was very real, and very dangerous.

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‘ProElite 3: Grove vs. Minowa’: Simply Put, It Was an Improvement


Brent Schermerhorn vs. Kaleo Gambill, the lone knockout from the main card. All videos props to IronForgesIron.com

When we last checked in on ProElite, the promotion was in the midst of a heavyweight grand prix that had the announcer for the evening tweeting mid-bout that he was falling asleep. Mix in unimpressive victories for Tim Sylvia and Andre Arlovski, and a disappointing performance from Reagan Penn, and the phrase “rock bottom” comes to mind. Things could have gotten more boring, sure. But if they did, we wouldn’t waste time telling you about it.

Needless to say ProElite’s third installment, which took place last night in Hawaii, was a step in the right direction. While the main event and co-main event were nothing to write home about, the card saw some entertaining fights and quick finishes.

In the evening’s main event, Minowa started out strong, landing leg kicks against Kendall Grove and securing a takedown at the end of the round. However, Grove was able to find his range by the second round, and outpointed Minowa en route to a unanimous decision. We don’t know how much time Minowa spent training against a person sitting on someone else’s shoulders poking at him with sticks in preparation for his American debut, but our guess is “not enough”.

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Awesomely, Minowaman Will Be Fighting Kendall Grove in Hawaii

butterbean eric esch minowaman ikuhisa minowa mma photos
(Avenge us, Kendall. AVENGE US.)

Remember yesterday when we found that amazing drawing of Ikuhisa Minowa fighting Godzilla, and used it as an excuse to run a relatively pointless post confirming that Minowaman would not, in fact, be fighting Brian Stann at UFC 144? Man, the crazy antics we get up to when nobody’s watching.

The thing is, we actually have some legit news to pass along about DREAM’s reigning Super Hluk [sic] champion. MMAFighting is reporting that Minowa will make his U.S. MMA debut at ProElite 3 (January 21st, Honolulu) where he’ll face rangy UFC veteran Kendall “Da Spyder” Grove. Okay, so it’s not the kind of freak-show matchup we’re used to seeing from Minowaman — but at least Grove is really tall for a middleweight.

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