MMA Fighter Challenges People to Punch Him in the Face, Everyone Fails

Tag: Jon Fitch

Jon Fitch vs. Josh Burkman Rematch Set for World Series of Fighting 3 Main Event


(Burkman bombs out on Aaron Simpson at WSOF 2 last weekend. Photo via Rick Albrecht for CagePotato)

World Series of Fighting’s third event is slated for June 14th in Las Vegas (venue TBA), and will be headlined by Jon Fitch‘s promotional debut against Josh BurkmanMMAFighting.com first confirmed the news with WSOF president Ray Sefo, adding that the fight will be a non-title bout.

It’ll be the second meeting for Fitch and Burkman, who previously faced off in April 2006 at UFC Fight Night 4, with Fitch scoring a second-round victory by rear-naked choke. Burkman was cut by the UFC following an 0-3 skid in 2008, and has since gone 7-1 outside of the Octagon, including impressive wins over Gerald Harris and Aaron Simpson at World Series of Fighting’s first two events.

Fitch vs. Burkman represents a very different strategy for WSOF compared to the headliner of their last event. Instead of putting on another moneyweight freak-show, the promotion is simply fielding the two best welterweights they have under contract — which makes sense in theory, though it does lack Arlovski vs. Johnson‘s novelty value. And if you were a Fitch-hater before he was released from the UFC for being too expensive, your opinion probably hasn’t changed much since.

So what do you think? Is Fitch vs. Burkman 2 a compelling main event, or should WSOF just stick to “fun” fights to draw viewers in?

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Jon Fitch to Make June Debut for WSOF, Possibly Against Josh Burkman

Right before Josh Burkman and Aaron Simpson locked horns last night in New Jersey at the World Series of Fighting event, the organization’s President Ray Sefo announced that the winner of the bout would get Jon Fitch in June for his promotional debut. Fitch is the former #1 UFC welterweight title contender that was recently released by the top promotion and snatched up by Sefo and WSOF.

Both Burkman and Simpson are also UFC veterans. Fitch was ring side last night in Jersey and appeared ready to make good on Sefo’s plan.

Burkman, however, may not be. After knocking Simpson out in the first round and stringing together his fourth straight win, Burkman balked at fighting Fitch next. Burkman believes that he has earned a shot at the organization’s vacant welterweight title and that Fitch has yet to.

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Jon Fitch Signs Four-Fight Deal With World Series of Fighting, Expected to Make Debut on June 14th


(Photo via Esther Lin/MMAFighting)

Following his controversial dismissal from the UFC, top-ten welterweight Jon Fitch has found his next home with World Series of Fighting. WSOF’s senior executive vice president Ali Abdel-Aziz revealed last night that Fitch has agreed to a four-fight contract, and will likely make his debut at the fledgling MMA promotion’s third event on June 14th. Fitch confirmed the news on twitter, saying that he’ll be officially signing contracts today.

Fitch’s opponent for the 6/14 card has not been determined yet, despite Gerald Harris‘s admirable efforts to troll his way into the booking.

In a related story, former UFC lightweight Jacob Volkmann — who was also recently fired during the UFC’s ongoing mass executions — will be making his World Series of Fighting Debut at WSOF 3 against former Strikeforce standout Lyle Beerbohm. “Fancy Pants” left Strikeforce following back-to-back losses to Pat Healy and Shinya Aoki, but has racked up five straight wins since then.

World Series of Fighting’s next event — headlined by Andrei Arlovski vs. Anthony Johnson — takes place March 23rd at the Revel Casino in Atlantic City. The full lineup for that card is after the jump.

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Wow, Even Urijah Faber is in Danger of Being Cut at UFC 157


(The relevant ranting starts around the 20 minute mark, but scroll back to the 12:40 mark if you want to see White basically have a mental breakdown when discussing Jon Fitch.) 

When the UFC announced that their latest batch of mass firings included none other than former #9 ranked welterweight Jon Fitch, the MMA community responded somewhat alarmingly to say the least. When Dana White stated that the decision came as a result of Fitch’s price tag being too high — at a paltry 66K no less — it revealed a bigger problem that could be looming on the horizon for the UFC: Overspending. As BG pointed out, multiple television deals and decreasing pay-per-view buys could at least be partly to blame for the UFC’s recent string of…let’s just call them frugal decisions.

But as it turns out, Fitch & Co.’s departure is just the beginning. Oh yes, a great deluge of firings is headed our way, Potato Nation, one consisting of up to 100 UFC fighters. And if you think the first name that Dana White would place on the potential chopping block would be one of the Shane Del Rosarios, Keith Wisniewskis, or Leonard fucking Garcias* who are currently winless in the promotion, well you just don’t know how The Baldfather thinks. Believe it or not, former WEC champion Urijah Faber was the first to be mentioned as in danger of losing his job with a loss at UFC 157. When asked if his “down the ladder” argument in relation to Fitch applied to guys like Faber, White was characteristically frank (24:50):

Could be Saturday [that he's cut]. You never know, There’s over 100 guys. We’re heavy. 

The argument to cut Faber instead of Fitch already makes sense when considering both fighter’s records in the promotion (Fitch: 13-3-1, Faber: 2-2), and that argument only gains more momentum should Faber lose to Ivan Menjivar — who he is currently a 3-to-1 favorite over — tomorrow. But from a business standpoint, releasing as hot a commodity as Faber (or fighters like him) into the arms of “Viacom MMA” seems like promotional suicide, does it not?

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Jon Fitch Was Too Expensive For the UFC, and Bellator Doesn’t Want Him Either [SAD]


(Fitch finds himself on the wrong end of a Fitch’ing against Demian Maia at UFC 156. Photo via Getty Images)

In the wake of Jon Fitch‘s surprise firing during the Great UFC Bloodletting of February 2013, even die-hard Fitch-haters criticized the move. As the general argument goes, how the hell are you going to cut a fighter who’s one of the ten greatest welterweights in the world by your own rankings, and whose last victory over Erick Silva was a Fight of the Night performance that proved he still has greatness left in him?

UFC president Dana White explained the decision to media yesterday at the UFC 157 press-conference in Anaheim, calling Fitch “super f—ing expensive,” then laying out exactly why he’s not worth the money:

Jon Fitch was ranked number nine, OK, however you want to look at that, he’s ranked number nine, whether it’s right or wrong or the rankings are bullshit or whatever. Ranked number nine right now. Now, this isn’t a case where Jon Fitch was ranked No. 9, No. 7, No. 6, No. 4, No. 2 and then we cut him. He was ranked No. 1, fought for the title and then he was ranked No. 2. He was ranked No. 3, 6, 7, and now he’s 9. That’s called the downside of your career. He’s on the downside…

He had a draw, then a loss, right, then a win, then a loss. It’s good, he got more money. He got Fight of the Night because it takes two guys to do that. Right? If Erick Silva’s wrestling wasn’t right there, that wouldn’t have been Fight of the Night. At the end of the day, when you really break it down, who did Erick Silva beat? This was Erick Silva’s first real big fight and big test. And it was a damn good fight. That’s called the downside. He’s not buzzsawing through guys, he’s not doing a [Johny] Hendricks. So it’s not like Jon Fitch was on this incredible fucking winning streak and ‘the greatest fucking welterweight in the history of the world and a fucking Hall of Famer. The guy’s never won a fucking title in his life.

In other words, Fitch is #9 with a down-arrow, and Erick Silva was never that accomplished to begin with, though Silva nevertheless deserves all the credit for how good that fight was. [*I promise this is not a Scanners gif*] But let’s get back to the more important issue: That Jon Fitch, who makes $66,000 to show, is “super fucking expensive.” Please take a moment to realize what an absolute joke your favorite sport is. Ben Fowlkes puts it best on MMAJunkie:

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And Now They’re Fired: Jon Fitch, Paul Sass, and 14 Other Fighters Axed by the UFC


(You think it would be damn near impossible to sum up an 18-fight UFC career in one image, yet here we are.) 

Wow.

When we announced just hours ago that Jacob Volkmann had been cut from the UFC as part of a vast, government-led ploy to disarm the public following a 1-2 run in his last 3 fights, little did we know that his termination was just the precursor for one of the largest mass firings in UFC history. But that appears to be the case, as it was recently made public that Volkmann was but one of 16 fighters to be cut from the UFC today.

Among the dead are a few guys you probably wont recognize (C.J. Keith, Motonobu Tezuka (?), Simeon Thoresen), a few guys who probably had it coming (Vladimir Matyushenko, Mike Russow, Mike Stumpf) and a couple of guys who couldn’t find a win in the UFC if they sold their souls to Dana White Satan (the continuously underwhelming Jorge Santiago and poor, poor Jay Hieron).

However, if you were to continue looking over said list, you would find a couple inclusions that would not only make you scratch your head, but possibly shave your head, eyebrows, body hair, and nipples off in a hallucinogenic stupor. After the jump, we’ve compiled our own list of the most shocking entries.

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UFC 156: Aldo vs. Edgar Aftermath — Parlay Destroyed


Photo via Getty Images

“I don’t think that was supposed to happen.”

That was the text I received this morning from a friend who is very much a casual MMA fan regarding last night’s UFC 156. Even though I assumed that my friend was talking about the end result of Bigfoot vs. Overeem, that statement could just as easily apply to almost any other fight on the card. We’re all familiar with the cliché that any fighter can beat anyone else on any night at this level, but we rarely see the underdogs win as frequently – and as convincingly – as they did last night. Simply put, it was an awful night for the guys who were supposed to win.

So let’s start off with the fight that went exactly as we all assumed it would: Jose Aldo defeated Frankie Edgar by a close, yet unanimous decision. Naturally, Edgar grew stronger as the fight went on. And naturally, the fight was close enough to justify an immediate rematch if one were to be booked (it probably won’t but who knows), because that’s just how Frankie Edgar fights work.

It’s impossible to be disappointed with Frankie Edgar’s effort in any given fight, and last night was no exception. Edgar provided Aldo with his stiffest challenge to date – after the champion returned from the longest layoff in his career, mind you – but Aldo was simply the better fighter.

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UFC 156: Aldo vs. Edgar — Main Card Results & Commentary


(“The name’s Frankie. I fight dudes twice.” Photo via MMAFighting)

Tonight at UFC 156 in Las Vegas, Jose Aldo goes for his fourth-consecutive UFC featherweight title defense, while former lightweight champ Frankie Edgar attempts to become the third fighter in UFC history to pick up a belt in two different weight classes. And that’s just the cherry on top of a stacked Super Bowl Eve card, which is loaded with big names and high stakes from start to finish.

Also on the menu: Alistair Overeem returns from suspension to clinch his heavyweight title shot with a win over Antonio Silva, while a victory for Rashad Evans over Lil’ Nog could set him up for a middleweight title fight against Anderson Silva for some reason. Plus, Jon Fitch and Demian Maia look to continue their recent surges in the welterweight division, while Joseph Benavidez and Ian McCall square off at flyweight because honestly, who else are those guys going to fight?

Round-by-round results from the Aldo vs. Edgar pay-per-view card will be stacking up after the jump beginning at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT, courtesy of George “Bigfoot” Shunick. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and please toss your own thoughts into the comments section.

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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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Booking Alert: Jon Fitch vs. Demian Maia Added to UFC 156 in February


(Demian Maia’s neck-crank of Rick Story — it just never gets old, does it? / GIF via Fightlinker)

With Jon Fitch coming off a redemptive Fight of the Night victory over Erick Silva at UFC 153 — his first win in over two years — the Indiana-bred wrestler is suddenly a factor again in the welterweight division. And so, the UFC will be giving him another opportunity to cement his contender status at UFC 156: Aldo vs. Edgar (February 2nd; Mandalay Bay Events Center, Las Vegas), where he’ll face off against Brazilian grappling specialist Demian Maia. The promotion confirmed the booking last night.

After hitting a wall at middleweight, Maia dropped to 170 earlier this year, debuting with a fluke-ish TKO-via-muscle-spasm victory over Dong Hyun Kim. But against Rick Story at UFC 153, we finally saw flashes of the Old Maia, as he picked up his first submission victory since his triangle-choke of Chael Sonnen in February 2009. And man, was it nasty.

We all know that this is going to be a grapple-fest, and odds are that it’ll go the distance. But considering that Fitch has turned over a new leaf in his approach to fighting — and that Maia has located his jiu-jitsu again — it could be an entertaining scrap. Who y’all got?

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