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Tag: Melvin Manhoef

Melvin Manhoef Hangs Up His Gloves

Fighters Only passes along the news that Dutch kickboxer and mixed martial artist Melvin Manhoef has announced his retirement, citing a desire to spend more time with his family. Manhoef compiled a career MMA record of 22-5-1 — with all but one of his wins coming by way of extremely violent KO/TKO — and he holds notable victories over Evangelista Santos, Ian Freeman, and Kazushi Sakuraba (who he kicked the living crap out of at DREAM.4 in June). Manhoef’s last performance was a submission loss to Gegard Mousasi in the semi-finals of DREAM’s middleweight GP last Tuesday, which snapped a five-fight win streak.

Though his retirement is not quite an Anderson Silva-level shocker, his stint in DREAM seemed to mark the beginning of a new stage in his career, not the end of it altogether. Here’s hoping that this family-man bit is only a temporary phase. In the meantime, enjoy the above highlight vid of Manhoef beating dudes like they said shit about his mama.

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Videos: Dream’s Night of Beatdowns

Gegard Mousasi vs. Melvin Manhoef

Zelg Galesic vs. Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza

The conclusion of Dream.6′s middleweight Grand Prix, plus more, after the jump.

Props: MMA Scraps

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Mousasi Wins DREAM Middleweight GP; Aoki, Kharitonov, Akiyama Also Victorious

DREAM.6 Japan MMA Mousasi Aoki Jacare Manhoef Cro Cop

Armenian-Dutch fighter Gegard Mousasi put in a career-making performance at today’s DREAM.6 in Saitama, Japan, earning quick stoppage victories over Melvin Manhoef and Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza to win the middleweight grand prix. In his first fight of the night, Mousasi easily dominated Manhoef, quickly scoring a trip-takedown, then securing the mount and clamping on a triangle choke when Manhoef reversed the position. Manhoef attempted to slam out of it, but was forced to tap at the 1:28 mark. Meanwhile on the other side of the bracket, Souza enjoyed a similarly brief win over Croatian Zelg Galesic. After getting a double-leg takedown, Souza passed from guard to mount and snatched an armbar when Galesic tried to buck.

Both men moved into the GP finals relatively fresh — not that they needed to be. When Mousasi and Souza finally met in the last fight of the night, it seemed like Mousasi was in over his head, as Souza first slammed him then began to drop punches from half-guard. But Souza made the fatal error of standing up, and Mousasi caught him with a Hail Mary upkick that knocked Jacare out cold as he began to dive in for a punch.

DREAM.6′s non-tourney featured matches went pretty much as expected, with the stars beating up on the cans. Shinya Aoki returned to his flamboyantly winning ways, hopping on the back of WEC castoff Todd Moore and finishing him at the 1:10 mark with a neck crank. Jimmy Ambriz should be applauded for lasting over two minutes with Sergei Kharitonov, who battered The Titan with vicious strikes until Ambriz was forced to tap on the ground. After abusing him for most of the first round, Yoshihiro Akiyama submitted karate practitioner Masanori Tonooka (1-2), who, let’s just say, is no Lyoto Machida.

The only real surprise (and disappointment) was how the heavyweight feature between Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic and Alistair Overeem played out.

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Why No One Knows When To Quit, Especially Sakuraba

I don’t believe in telling fighters they should retire. Not really. When fans and writers insist that a legend of the sport should give it up it always seems so hollow. What do we know about what someone like that should do with their lives?

But even I have to admit that Kazushi Sakuraba’s beating at the hands of Melvin Manhoef in Dream.4 this weekend was difficult to watch. I’ve always had a soft spot for Sakuraba. He embodied so many of the best fighter attributes. He was tough and resilient, and at the same time he was also crafty and dangerous. He always seemed like he was having fun, even on his worst nights.

That’s why it’s so hard to see him continue past his prime. He’s obviously not having fun these days. His efforts are joyless and perfunctory, like a man waiting on his pension. And yet, for some reason, he can’t seem to walk away.

I used to wonder what it was that made pro athletes hold on too long. Almost everyone does it. The difference is that a baseball player who’s too old and too slow gets sent to the minors. A basketball player who can’t keep up gets cut.

But with fighters it’s a different story. They either step down significantly in competition, or they start taking some bad beatings. Sakuraba has done both. The former may harm his legacy somewhat, but it’s nothing compared to what the latter will do to you.

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DREAM.4 Quick Results

Kazushi Sakuraba (left) and Melvin Manhoef
(“The goggles…they do nothing!”)

Melvin Manhoef def. Kazushi Sakuraba via TKO (strikes), 1:50 of round 1
Ronaldo Souza def. Jason Miller via unanimous decision
Zelg Galesic def. Taei Kin via TKO (injury), 1:05 of round 1
Gegard Mousasi def. Dong Sik Yoon via unanimous decision
Hideo Tokoro def. Darren Uyenoyama via unanimous decision
Ralek Gracie def. Alavutdin Gadzhiev via submission (armbar), 3:02 of round 1
Alistair Overeem def. Tae Hyun Lee via KO, 0:36 of round 1
Shinya Aoki def. Katsuhiko Nagata via submission (gogoplata…FROM THE TOP!![?]!), 5:12 of round 1

(Shinya Aoki vs. Katsuhiko Nagata)

(Melvin Manhoef vs. Kazushi Sakuraba)

(Alistair Overeem vs. Tae Hyun Lee)

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Weekend Betting Guide: EliteXC, Adrenaline, DREAM.4

Jason Miller shaving MMA
(Mayhem is not to be underestimated.)

Hat tip to BloodyElbow for alerting us that all three major MMA events this weekend are open for wagering at BetCris.com. Let’s run through the numbers…

EliteXC: Return of the King (June 14th; Honolulu, Hawaii; live on Showtime)
Yves Edwards (-130) vs. KJ Noons (even)
Nick Diaz (-450) vs. Mushin Corbbrey (+370)
Murilo Rua (-250) vs. Tony Bonello (+200)
Dave Herman (-155) vs. Ron Waterman (+125)
Rafael Feijao (-280) vs. Wayne Cole (+220)

Notes: Nick Diaz just got surgery to file down his sharp ocular bones, which is supposed to prevent his face from shredding so easily (and losing him another fight). Sounds dodgy to me, and it hasn’t yet been proven that the procedure was a practical success. With odds that wide and Diaz’s scar tissue still a question mark, we’d definitely throw a double-sawbuck on Corbbrey, who has shown some great submissions in his relatively brief career. Undefeated Australian King of the Cage vet Tony Bonello (16-0-1, 14 wins by submission) may also be a good underdog bet, even if the competition he’s faced is nowhere near the level of the guys that Ninja Rua has gone up against.

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Fight of the Day: Melvin Manhoef vs. Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos

Our earlier mentions of Chute Boxe and rope-a-dope reminded us of this light heavyweight match from Cage Rage 15 (2/4/06), which could easily earn a place in our greatest fights of all-time list. The first round features as much slugging as you’d expect from these two, but it’s the second round that makes the fight legendary. Cyborg and Melvin become so exhausted from whaling on each other that at one point they can do little more than stand with their hands down and suck air. Luckily, Manhoef has a little extra in the tank. Watch Cyborg baby-punch Melvin’s lifeless body at the end — totally adorable. (Fight starts at the 2:26 mark.)

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