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Tag: Melvin Guillard

Surprises and Disappointments From UFC on FOX 8: Johnson vs. Moraga


(A triumphant loss for Trevor Smith, and an awe-inspiring punch-face for Ed Herman. / Photo via Getty. Click to enlarge.)

By Adam Martin

UFC on FOX 8 not only provided a number of awesome moments from some unexpected heroes, but it also saw a few fighters who were expected to do big things disappoint in a big way. In the first of a new post-event column only on CagePotato.com, here are three fighters who surprised us at UFC on FOX 8 and three fighters who let us down.

Surprises

Demetrious Johnson: Many expected UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson to successfully defend his title against John Moraga in the main event of UFC on FOX 8, but I don’t think anyone predicted him to win the fight via armbar with just one minute and 17 seconds left in the fight.

But that’s exactly what Johnson did as he earned his first stoppage victory in eight UFC fights, en route to shutting up the critics who called him boring and said he didn’t have what it takes to finish a tough guy like Moraga.

Johnson had all four rounds in his pocket and was ahead in the fifth, but instead of coasting to a win he tried desperately to get the finish and put an exclamation point on his performance, and that’s exactly what he did with his first submission win in the Octagon, a victory that earned him the $50,000 “Submission of the Night” award.

“Mighty Mouse” is always going to have his detractors because of his wrestling-heavy style, and I think his finish of Moraga is a bit of an anomaly, but on Saturday night he deserved all the praise in the world for a brilliant performance, one that has truly earned him his spot amongst the pound-for-pound best fighters in MMA. And hopefully, it’s just a sign of things to come.

Melvin Guillard: It had been over two years since Melvin Guillard last stopped an opponent inside the Octagon, but with his brutal second-round KO of Mac Danzig on the UFC on FOX 8 preliminary card, it’s safe to say that “The Young Assassin” is back.

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Melvin Guillard Avoids Jail Time for Pair of 2010 Assault Charges


(Deal with it. / Photo via Getty)

Earlier this year, we learned that UFC lightweight Melvin Guillard had been charged with two misdemeanor counts of aggravated battery, stemming from separate incidents in 2010. (The charges were unrelated to his assault of Waylon Lowe at UFC 114.) Guillard was looking at up to six months in jail for each count.

Luckily, the Young Assassin will remain a free man. As first reported by SI’s Melissa Segura yesterday, Guillard has been sentenced to supervised probation through June 2015, as well as community service.

That means Guillard’s scheduled slugfest against Mac Danzig at UFC on FOX 8: Johnson vs. Moraga on July 27th is still a go. With four losses in his last five fights, the match is an absolute must-win for the veteran striker. Melvin’s promising a “new and approved young assassin” for his next fight, with a “new vibe” and “new focus.” Meanwhile, Danzig — who is coming off a split-decision loss to Takanori Gomi last November — has far more important things on his mind. Who ya got?

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Classic Knockout Of The Day: Melvin Guillard’s Boxing Debut Doesn’t Go Well


(Props: TheMrsCountryman. Fight starts at the 2:23 mark, knockout happens at 4:16. And yeah, the audio doesn’t work in this clip, so feel free to hum a tune of your choice.)

Ten months before making his UFC debut at the TUF 2 Finale in November 2005, Melvin Guillard decided to take a pro boxing bout in Las Vegas against a Detroit-based fighter named James Countryman. The fight did not go well for Melvin.

About a minute and a half into the match, Countryman lands a big overhand right that levels Guillard. The Young Assassin springs to his feet and nods his head a couple times to signify that yes, he got smacked with a good one, then goes right back into the fight. Seconds later, Guillard catches a left hook from Countryman flush on the jaw and falls backwards into the ropes, unconscious. Game. Over.

Guillard would go onto a successful career in the UFC, but has never boxed professionally again. Countryman boxed for four more years, compiling a 14-1 record through March 2009. Interestingly enough, Countryman’s final boxing match was a decision win against none other than Karl “KJ” Noons, the current UFC lightweight and former EliteXC champion. Noons fought three more boxing matches that year, winning all three of them, and put together an 11-2 boxing record overall before devoting himself to MMA full time — which maybe wasn’t the greatest choice, in retrospect.

- Elias Cepeda

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Now Training at Grudge, Melvin Guillard Returns Against Mac Danzig on July 27th


(The Zangief Piledriver: You’re doing it wrong. Photo via Esther Lin/MMAFighting)

Melvin Guillard‘s falling out with the Blackzilians and subsequent rejection by his old Jackson’s MMA team temporarily left the veteran UFC lightweight without a training home. Yesterday, MMAJunkie reported that Guillard has set up shop at the Grudge Training Center in Wheat Ridge, Colorado, where he has the full support of trainer Trevor Wittman:

I feel me and him have a very good connection, and I know him pretty well,” Wittman said. “I feel we can really help him turn his career around…He asked me to hit mitts with him for the week, and it was a very good connection, and I think that was a part of what helped him make his choice to come here.”

Melvin’s one of those guys that’s a spot fighter. He has shown spots of greatness…Seeing a guy like that, you can either be at the top of the game or the bottom of a game, or you can be a gatekeeper. When you’re mind is not right and you’re fighting for the wrong reasons and [acting] outside of what you do well, that’s where you see an athlete going downhill. To me, it’s all about where you are mentally.”

Though Grudge has long had a strategic affiliation with Jackson’s MMA — with fighters like Nate Marquardt, Brendan Schaub, and Shane Carwin shuttling between the two camps in the past — the Colorado facility is an independent operation, not subject to the edicts of Pope Greg. And with a fresh start at Grudge, the Young Assassin will look to snap his two-fight losing streak this summer.

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Melvin Guillard’s 2010 Assault Charges Might Have Something to Do With Team Jackson Rejecting His Return


(Sorry Melvin, you know the rules — every time you screw up, we post this picture of you. / Photo via CombatLifestyle)

As we mentioned yesterday, Melvin Guillard‘s announcement that he was leaving the Blackzilians for his old home at Jackson’s MMA was quickly shut down by the Albuquerque-based team, who apparently doesn’t want him back. According to MMAJunkie, it wasn’t only due to Guillard’s lack of loyalty in changing camps — a pair of 2010 assault charges could have also been a factor. Here’s the story:

Two months before UFC lightweight Melvin Guillard announced via Twitter that he was returning to Team Jackson-Winkeljohn in Albuquerque, N.M., the gym’s leaders voted to keep him from doing so. Guillard had inquired about a potential reunion through former teammates, who then passed word to the gym’s administration. The vote was unanimous.

“The Young Assassin” had angered the team in interviews he gave about a move this past year to Florida’s “Blackzilians” team, a source close to the MMA team told MMAjunkie.com. Adding to concerns, Guillard has two outstanding assault charges against him from separate incidents in Albuquerque in 2010…

According to Bernalillo County (N.M.) court records, Guillard currently faces five charges: two misdemeanor counts of aggravated battery, to which he pled not guilty. Three misdemeanor counts of failure to appear in court were settled. A jury trial on the assault charges is set for April 10, where he faces six months in jail for each count, in addition to fines and probation.

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In Wake of Recent Criticism, Anthony Johnson Stands by The Blackzilians, Melvin Guillard Not So Much


(“When I first started The Blackzilian Reverse Diet, I was just a scrawny welterweight fighting in the sport’s highest promotion. But just LOOK AT ME NOW!) 

It would be no hyperbole to say that The Blackzilians are less a training camp and more a black hole (PUNS!) of suckitude that is slowly draining the last remaining scraps of talent from its fighters before it inevitably spits them out as empty, dry husks void of any discernible skills whatsoever. Alright, there may be a little hyperbole in that statement, but to say that the members of The Blackzilians have been underperforming since the camp was established in 2011 is no exaggeration. Alistair Overeem just had his head treated like a speed bag at UFC 156, Rashad Evans just put on his worst performance in years (at the same event, no less), and Melvin Guillard has dropped 4 of his past 5 fights including an inexplicably timid performance in what was supposed to be a grudge match against Jamie Varner at UFC 155. 

That’s not to say that The Blackzilians are doing everything wrong, it just appears that they are relying on the pure talent of their fighters to lead them rather than a team of disciplined coaches. But in light of the recent criticisms aimed at the camp from news outlets across the MMA blogosphere, whateverweight Anthony Johnson — fresh off a unanimous decision victory over Andrei Arlovski at WSoF 2 – told MMAJunkie that said criticisms are “unfair.” Here’s why:

Every team has losses. Losses don’t define who you are.

People always want to talk about the losses, not the wins. Everybody talks about Rashad’s loss. Everybody talks about Alistair’s loss. But Vitor Belfort is one of my training partners. He just high-kicked Michael Bisping (for a knockout win). You all talked about that for five minutes. You’re all still talking about the losses we had. What about the wins we had? 

True, Anthony, we should be talking more about the wins you guys had. The problem is that those wins are coming fewer and farther between than with the guys over at Team Hammer House.

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CagePotato Databomb #5: Breaking Down the UFC Lightweights by Striking Performance


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

By Reed Kuhn, @Fightnomics

Last week we broke down the UFC Featherweight division in key striking metrics. This week we’ll look at the largest (numerically) UFC division, the Lightweights. A full explanation of the chart and variables is included at the end of this post.

The Winners

Sniper Award: Daron Cruickshank finally showed off his striking skills in his second UFC appearance against Henry Martinez on the UFC on FOX 5 card in Seattle. With nearly 50% accuracy, he looked like he was practicing on a heavy bag before mercifully dropping an iron-chinned Martinez with a head kick KO. Interestingly, the “Detroit Superstar” is set to face another division sniper, John Makdessi, in March at UFC 158.

Energizer Bunny Award: Tim Means is two wins into his UFC career, and has almost doubled the standing output of his two opponents. He also maintained good accuracy and scored two knockdowns in those performances.

Biggest Ball(s) Award: Melvin Guillard has been punching above his weight for a long time in the UFC. To date Guillard has 12 knockdowns, putting him 3rd all-time in the UFC behind Anderson Silva and Chuck Liddell. Not bad for a lightweight.

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UFC 155: Dos Santos vs. Velasquez II — FX Prelims Results & Commentary


(I don’t care what they’re arguing about. I’m always going to side with the guy who’s not wearing bikini briefs. / Photo courtesy of Esther Lin’s UFC 155 weigh-in set on MMAFighting.com)

As an appetizer to tonight’s UFC 155 pay-per-view blowout, the UFC has slated four promising preliminary matchups on FX, featuring battle-tested sluggers (Melvin Guillard vs. Jamie Varner, Brad Pickett vs. Eddie Wineland) and streaking rising stars (Erik Perez vs. Byron Bloodworth, Michael Johnson vs. Myles Jury), all looking to close out 2012 with a bang, bro.

Handling the liveblog for this leg of our journey will be Anthony Gannon, who will be jotting down round-by-round results after the jump beginning at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and if you’re watching along with us, shoot us your own thoughts in the comments section.

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The Ultimate Fighter 16 Finale Aftermath — The Perfect Ending to the Series You Didn’t Watch


Photo courtesy of Getty Images.

If you haven’t been keeping up with a television series, taking the time on a Saturday night to watch the series finale is a gigantic waste of time. Heading into the finale of a season that we could not have cared less about, the UFC realized that they were facing this exact problem. The promotion realized that if the finale was going to generate any kind of interest, it would have to actually place as little emphasis as possible on the fighters from the show. Rather than focusing on the contestants, the finale was a card packed with current UFC talent.

In an effort to ensure that this wouldn’t backfire, the promotion made sure that the guys filling in for whoever was actually on this season of The Ultimate Fighter were guys you’ve heard of. One great fight led to another great fight, and pretty soon we were anticipating one of the best free shows we’ve been given in a while. As we wrote yesterday, on paper, this card wasn’t so much a TUF Finale as it was a genuinely stacked lineup of free fights that included one main card match between two guys you’ve never seen before.

Even though injuries scrapped the fight between this season’s coaches (as is tradition), and Jamie Varner was forced off of the card at the last minute (more on that later), this event exceeded all of our expectations. Actually, that puts things too mildly: this may have been, top to bottom, the best event of 2012. Let that sink in: A TUF Finale produced a legitimate candidate for Event of the Year – when was the last time we’ve been able to say THAT?

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The Ultimate Fighter 16 Finale — Main Card Results & Commentary


(Mitrione refused to undergo VADA drug-testing. Nelson refused to shampoo the crabs out of his beard. / Photo courtesy of CombatLifestyle. For more photos from this set, click here.)

It doesn’t matter if you haven’t watched a single episode of The Ultimate Fighter this season. (Spoiler alert: You haven’t). Tonight’s TUF 16 Finale on FX is still one of the greatest free cards of the year, partly because there aren’t any TUF also-rans mucking it up.

Instead, we’ve got two heavyweight slugfests (Roy Nelson vs. injury fill-in Matt Mitrione and Pat Barry vs. Shane Del Rosario), a lightweight battle that will likely end up in a brutal stoppage (Melvin Guillard vs. Jamie Varner), a pair of featherweight contenders trying to bounce back from submission losses (Dustin Poirier vs. Jonathan Brookins), and a TUF 16 welterweight final featuring a man so dehumanized by his time in captivity that at this point he’s nothing more than a vessel for unspeakable acts of violence.

Taking us through the play-by-play this evening is Level 8 Liveblog Wizard Anthony Gannon, who will be updating us with main card results after the jump beginning at 9 p.m. ET. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and please, please, please, leave us some comments in the comments section.

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