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Tag: Melvin Manhoef

Video Tribute: The Eight Most Insane Moments in DREAM History


(“You’ll never get me Lucky Charms!”)

For nearly four years, the Japanese MMA promotion DREAM did its best to carry the mantle of PRIDE, presenting the same mix of top international talent and freak-show comic relief, all inside of a traditional ring, rather than a filthy American cage. But we were hit with some sad news this weekend as multiple sources reported that DREAM has ceased day-to-day operations, and will no longer be producing events. So as we like to do when great MMA traditions die, let’s take a look back at some of the fights that made this promotion so unique, so entertaining, and so balls-out insane…

#8: Kazushi Sakuraba vs. Melvin Manhoef
DREAM.4, 6/15/08 

Though Kazushi Sakuraba’s fame was partly based on his willingness to absorb damage from larger fighters, the level of savagery that Melvin Manhoef inflicted on him during their meeting at the Yokohama Arena probably should have convinced Saku to walk away from the sport. The moment when Manhoef drags Saku away from the ropes by his leg so he can dive in to continue the assault (see the 2:43 mark above) remains one of DREAM’s most indelible and brutal moments.

#7: Shinya Aoki vs. dumb-ass gaijin
DREAM.7, 3/8/09

Another tradition that DREAM inherited from PRIDE? Absurd mismatches. At the time of this fight, Aoki was widely considered to be a top-3 lightweight, while Gardner was an obscure 13-7 journeyman who was coming off a loss to Brian Cobb. Aoki’s domination on the mat was no surprise, but the fight became legendary for how it ended. Stuck with Aoki on his back, Gardner took advantage of a brief pause in the action — and the near-silence in the Saitama Super Arena — to wave to the crowd and shout “Hello Japan!” Aoki immediately wrapped up Gardner’s neck and choked him out, causing the crowd to break out in laughter and Bas Rutten to cry “Oh my God it is so dumb! So dumb! Why?!” Some things just can’t be explained, Bas.

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Graphic Visual Evidence: Melvin Manhoef Kicks Destroy Everything, Including Melvin Manhoef

The fight doesn’t show too much damage. That’s waiting for you after the jump. (Video: Our boy Zombie Prophet)

While Zuffa takes a load off, smaller organizations world ’round are stepping out from big brother’s shadow. In addition to last night’s stateside action, One FC 3 “War of the Lions” brought us an evening of duels straight out of Singapore. Originally slated to take on Renato Babalu, Melvin Manhoef didn’t let a change of opponents deter his game plan: maim everything in sight. Though he only threw down with Deep Light Heavyweight Champion Yoshiyuki Nakanishi for two minutes, he managed to deliver an impressive amount of damage to both of their legs before his gaping shin injury resulted in the bout being ruled a no-contest.

A bevy of unappetizing pictures and a slow-mo video of the injury await you after the jump.

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Babalu vs. Manhoef to Headline One FC’s Third Event in March

Robbie Lawler Melvin Manhoef Strikeforce MMA photos
(No matter how many times his trainers warned him against it, Melvin was convinced that he would become the first person to pull off the Statue of Liberty play in mixed martial arts competition.)

Exciting news today comes compliments of upstart Asian promotion One Fighting Championship. In addition to signing a ten year television partnership with ESPN Star Sports, One FC announced at a press conference this morning that their third event will be headlined by Strikeforce veterans Renato “Babalu” Sobral and Melvin Manhoef squaring off in a light heavyweight contest.

After a successful debut event back in September of 2011, One FC signed a huge partnership deal with over 15 smaller promotions and 23 gyms and announced plans to put on 3 different shows in 3 different countries in 2012. The second show, titled “Battle of Heroes,” will transpire on February 11th from Jakarta, Indonesia, and features a heavyweight tilt between Bob Sapp and Rolles Gracie as well as a headlining lightweight bout pairing Pancrase one-timer Felipe Enomoto against 5-2 K-1 veteran Ole Larson.

One FC 3, which is set to go down on March 31st from the Singapore Indoor Stadium, will also feature Japanese leglock master Masakazu Imanari facing off against undefeated prospect Kevin Belingon, Eduard Folayang, Zorobabel Moreira, and Eddie Ng taking on unnamed opponents, and Singapore’s own Nicole Chua making her MMA debut. It’s nice to see a small promotion gaining some momentum, no?

We last saw Babalu suffer a first round KO loss to Dan Henderson back in their December 2010 rematch; apparently the former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion has been recovering over the past year from a brutal snowboarding accident that happened shortly thereafter. Who would’ve guessed? Fun fact: Babalu was the focus of a 2009 music video from Massachusetts based heavy metal kings Shadows Fall.

Manhoef has not fought a MMA match since falling to a first round submission (go figure) at the hands of Tim Kennedy at Strikeforce: Feijao vs. Henderson in March of 2011, and has dropped 5 of his last 7 mixed martial arts contests. His luck in the kickboxing world has not been much better; Manhoef last competed just three days ago at It’s Showtime 2012 in Leeuwarden, where he dropped a unanimous decision to 7th ranked heavyweight contender Tyrone Spong. You can find that video after the jump, courtesy of IronForgesIron.

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Strikeforce Announces Tim Kennedy vs. Robbie Lawler Signed For July 30 ‘Fedor vs. Henderson’ Card in Chicago

Continuing in Zuffa’s new social media trend of announcing newly-signed bouts before the MMA media gets wind of them, Strikeforce announced today via Twitter that a middleweight bout between Tim Kennedy and Robbie Lawler has been added to its July 30 Fedor vs. Henderson card in Chicago.

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‘Strikeforce: Feijao vs. Henderson’ Aftermath — Master Hendo, the Curse Is On Thee

Strikeforce Dan Henderson Rafael Feijao Cavalcante
(“Dudes, *tell* me you just saw that!” Props: Esther Lin/Strikeforce)

Add the Strikeforce Light-Heavyweight Championship to the list of MMA’s Great Curses. When Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante fell victim to Dan Henderson‘s mythical “H-Bomb” right hand last night in Columbus, he became the fourth-consecutive Strikeforce LHW champ to lose the belt without making a single successful defense. (Quick refresher: Babalu Sobral lost it to Gegard Mousasi, who lost it to King Mo, who lost it to Feijao, who lost it Hendo.)

Time will tell if Dan Henderson suffers the same fate. In the meantime, the decorated vet’s arrival as champion helps bolster the 205′ers as a marquee division in Strikeforce. Besides Dan and all the former champions previously mentioned, SF’s light-heavyweight roster now includes guys like Roger Gracie, Mike Kyle, Rhadi Ferguson — tell Fedor Emelianenko to drop 20 pounds, and you’ve got the makings of another great World Grand Prix, especially if their heavyweight tournament continues to run into delays.

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Tim Kennedy’s Opponent Switched Again, Will Now Face Melvin Manhoef in Columbus


(Melvin Manhoef highlight reel, via StillW1ll)

After his decision loss to Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza in August, Strikeforce middleweight contender Tim Kennedy has had quite an adventure finding his next opponent. First, everybody in the world was ducking him. Then, he was slated to have a tie-breaker match with Jason "Mayhem" Miller. Then, Strikeforce decided to nix that idea and put Kennedy up against exciting prospect Luke Rockhold, who has been inactive for a year due to a shoulder injury. Well, that’s off now too. Due to a reported leg injury suffered in training, Rockhold has been forced to withdraw from his meeting with Kennedy at Strikeforce: Feijao vs. Henderson (March 5th; Columbus, OH). Replacing him? None other than balls-to-the-wall striker Melvin Manhoef.

Manhoef has one of the most impressive finishing percentages in MMA, with 23 of his 24 career victories coming by way of KO/TKO. However, he’s lost four of his last six fights — three by way of submission, and one by Hail Mary KO at the hands of Robbie Lawler. Manhoef last competed at Dream.15 in July, when he lost to Tatsuya Mizuno by kimura. Kennedy’s keys to victory are very simple: Slow the pace down, check (or dodge) Melvin’s brutal leg kicks, and get the fight to the ground as soon as possible. Let’s hope this is the last opponent swap for Kennedy, because we’re actually kind of psyched to see this one go down.

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DREAM 15 Aftermath: Aoki, Mousasi Go Back To Japan, Where the Competition is a Little Easier


(VidProps: YouTube/evilbyte)

Give the DREAM bosses some credit, these guys sure know how to build suspense into what otherwise might be a fairly straightforward and pleasing night of MMA fights. As it turned out, there was no surprise run-in from Alistair Overeem and the Japanese promotion with the fly-by-the-seat-of-its pants matchmaking style never found a fight for Ricco Rodriguez. We hope it paid for the flight and the sushi, at least.  On the bright side, DREAM finally did manage to convince Gegard Mousasi to put in the 31 seconds of work it took to defeat an overweight Jake O’Brien and Shinya Aoki likewise bounced back from an embarrassing loss in Strikeforce a few months ago to put a quick and typically stoic beating on Tatsuya Kawajiri.

Like “Sweet and Sassy,” Aoki called it an early night, withstanding some heel kicks to the face as he locked up an Achilles lock that secured the tap and appeared to damage his Kawajiri’s leg in just one minute, 53 seconds. A couple of days after possibly declaring his bi-sexuality at the event’s weigh-in (we assume he was being ironical), Aoki ditched his trademark colorful tights for relatively conservative board shorts and rushed from the ring following his win to get some lovin’ from his (possibly female) fiancé.

After the jump, O’Brien vs. Mousasi, where it will take you all of the first 15 seconds to see why the American had a little trouble making weight …

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Robbie Lawler Didn’t Really Want to Stand and Bang with Melvin Manhoef After All


(Props: Fight Magazine)

Strippers, the government, our immediate family – we expect them to lie to us. We’ve gotten so used to it that we barely even notice it anymore.  We just give them our money and try not to think about what it’s really being spent on. But Robbie Lawler? Him, we thought we could trust. When he told us that he wanted to stand and bang with Melvin Manhoef, when he laughed off the idea of taking down an opponent for the first time in recent memory, we believed him. It seemed like a bad idea, but at least it seemed like a sincere bad idea. Only after the fight do we learn that it was all a ruse.  That lying son of a bitch.

As Lawler admits in this video, he didn’t really want any part of Manhoef’s vicious stand-up. The only reason the fight stayed on the feet at all was because Lawler couldn’t find an opportunity to get it to the mat. Instead he got his leg kicked to pieces and his head rattled a little bit before he managed to land that totally pre-planned, super technical right hand. It worked out for him in the end, but at what cost? With this trust now broken, his relationship with the MMA world may never be the same.

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‘Strikeforce: Miami’ Fight Videos — Diaz vs. Zaromskis, Lawler vs. Manhoef, Lashley vs. Sims


(Nick Diaz vs. Marius Zaromskis)

From last night’s Strikeforce: Miami show. More after the jump…

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‘Strikeforce: Miami’ — Live Results + Commentary

Cris Cyborg Cristiane Santos Marloes Coenen Strikeforce Miami weigh-ins
("Nice flower-tattoo, cupcake. I just got a tattoo of the Virgin Mary being ripped apart by pitbulls, directly on my asshole." / Photo courtesy of Strikeforce. More pics are below, including one of an alarmingly fat Wes Sims.)
Marius Zaromskis Nick Diaz Strikeforce Miami MMARobbie Lawler Melvin Manhoef Strikeforce Miami MMABobby Lashley Wes Sims Strikeforce Miami MMAHerschel Walker Greg Nagy Strikeforce Miami fight MMA photos

Tonight’s Strikeforce event at the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise, Florida (aka "Miami") has such a fantastic mix of high-level MMA and can’t-look-away freak shows. On the top of the card you’ve got Nick Diaz battling for Strikeforce’s vacant welterweight title against head-kickin’ rising star Marius Zaromskis, while 145-pound lady-champ Cristiane "Cris Cyborg" Santos makes her first belt defense against Dutch submission artist Marloes Coenen. On the other end of the card, 47-year-old former football star Herschel Walker will kick off his cage-fighting career against Greg Nagy, while Wes Sims — who owns the physique of a 47-year-old — will do his best to avoid getting squashed by pro-wrestler Bobby Lashley. And somewhere in-between, Robbie "Brawler" Lawler and Melvin "Man-Hoof" Manhoef will launch leather at each other until one of them can no longer intelligently defend himself. If you’re not excited for this card, then you probably don’t use words like "excited" in general. Live results from the Showtime broadcast will be piling up after the jump, starting at 10 p.m. ET. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest.

Update: Dubus22 wins the t-shirt! Please send your name, address, and size to feedback@cagepotato.com.

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