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Tag: New Year’s Eve

[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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Junior Dos Santos vs. Cain Velasquez II Officially Booked for December 29th


(Unfortunately, Ishanguly Meretnyyazov was the referee for this bout, and Velasquez ended up winning 13-11 on points.) 

Sorry, Alistair, it looks like you’ll just have to wait your turn.

In an interview with MMAFighting’s Ariel Helwani that followed the UFC 150 post-fight press conference, Dana White was asked to answer a series of questions with simple “yes” or “no” answers. And although it seemed implausible that The Baldfather could ever go more than thirty seconds without uttering a certain curse word, he kindly obliged Helwani and spilled the beans in regards to several big questions currently circulating in the MMA world. Simply put, bullshit was cut through in record time.

And among the questions present in the back of Ariel’s (and everyone’s) mind was that of heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos and who would be the next man to get viciously mauled to death  bravely sacrifice himself for the good of The Colony ”challenge” him for the title. To put it in the words of DW: Overeem – No, Velasquez – Yes. Although an event has yet to be named, White said in a seperate interview that the pair would likely collide on the annually stacked New Year’s Eve card, also known as the card that Overeem will totally be fighting on.

After the jump: A full video interview, which details everything from the future of the BJ Penn/Rory MacDonald match to the specifics of Jon Jones’ Nike deal, and more.

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The Rearview Mirror: Five MMA Trends We Hope To Have Left Behind In 2011

“Listen, I know we’ve had our moments, but before you make your list just hear me out…” (Photo: Gossiboocrew.com)

We’re only a few hours into the new year, but unless your head hit the pillow just as the ball dropped, you’ve probably already carried some of your bad habits with you into 2012. We are creatures of habit, and change doesn’t come naturally to us. If it did, we wouldn’t make such a big production out of our ‘New Year’s Resolutions’. The sport of mixed martial arts and its fans are no different. Here’s a quick look at some of the bad habits we’ve picked up and poor decisions we’ve made over the past 12-months. Let’s hope we can leave them behind in yesteryear.

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Potential Slugfest Alert: Mousasi vs. Le Banner in the Works for K-1 Dynamite! NYE Show


("Want a Baby Ruth?")

MMAJunkie is reporting that a heavyweight tilt between K-1 star Jerome LeBanner and DREAM light heavyweight champion Gegard Mousasi could be added to the K-1 Dynamite New Year’s Eve show December 31 at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan.

Mousasi says he has verbally agreed to the bout and is awaiting a contract to make the fight official.

"I don’t know if I’m fighting him yet," Mousasi said of Le Banner. "They haven’t confirmed. They asked me, and I said yes, so now if he said yes, the fight is on."

Although some question whether or not at 3-1 (1 NC) in MMA if LeBanner is experienced enough to pose a challenge for Mousasi, "The Dream Catcher" says he feels he will, especially standing.

"If I fight Jerome LeBanner in the U.S., [he] wouldn’t be considered a good MMA fighter," Mousasi said. "But in Europe because he’s a popular K-1 fighter, it’s fighting a big fight. It doesn’t matter if it’s MMA or K-1, so it’s good for me (and) my name in Europe if I could beat him. And he’s big and strong, so it’s a challenge for me to get him down. I know that once I can get him down, I can win. But that’s the challenge."

The fight will be only Mousasi’s second as a heavyweight. He defeated aging MMA veteran Gary Goodridge at last year’s year-end Dynamite! show.

He is currently walking around at 223 pounds and says he likely won’t go into the fight with his 260-pound opponent much bigger than he is now.

"It’s too short a time to put a lot of weight on, so maybe two or three kilos more, but that’s it," said Mousasi, who heard Satoshi Ishii also could be a potential opponent for the year-end DREAM event. "But I don’t consider weight to be that big of a deal. As long as my technique is better, it will make up for his strength."

As far as his next Strikeforce opponent, Mousasi revealed that Mike Kyle may be on tap for him in the New Year.

Check out some Lebanner and Mousasi highlights after the jump.

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Fights Announced for ‘DREAM vs. Sengoku’-Themed Dynamite!! 2009 Card

Dynamite!! 2009 MMA poster Japan New Year's
(The appropriately epic poster for Dynamite!! 2009.)

Members of FEG and World Victory Road held a press conference earlier today in Japan to discuss their collaborative effort for New Year’s Eve, Dynamite!! 2009: The Power of Courage. A batch of fights were announced, and the lineup (via Nightmare of Battle) is looking like this so far…

MMA Heavyweight Feature:
Satoshi Ishii vs. Hidehiko Yoshida

Super Hulk Tournament Final:
Ikuhisa "Minowaman" Minowa vs. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou

DREAM vs. Sengoku Raiden Championship:
Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto vs. Masanori Kanehara
Hiroyuki Takaya vs. Michihiro Omigawa
Hideo Tokoro vs. Marlon Sandro
Hayato “Mach” Sakurai vs. Akihiro Gono
Katsuyori Shibata vs. Hiroshi Izumi
Alistair Overeem vs. Kazuyuki Fujita

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Prepare to Have Your Mind Blown: It’s Not Just Sengoku and Dream For NYE, It’s Sengoku vs. Dream


(Aoki has been on the internet all day trying to figure out who these Sengoku jokers are. It would probably help if he didn’t keep pausing every five minutes to shop for new tights on Amazon.)

Instead of splitting the Japanese MMA vote with two separate New Year’s Eve events, Sengoku and Dream have decided to not only combine their efforts, but to pit several of their fighters against one another in a Sengoku vs. Dream battle royal.  Of course, because they’re still a little over a month away from the event, the organizers haven’t seen fit to nail down the complete fight card yet.  That’s just not how they do, but chances are that the final lineup will be co-headlined by the K-1 bout between Masato Kobayashi and Andy Souwer, along with Hidehiko Yoshida taking on MMA newcomer Satoshi Ishii in the battle of the gold medalist judokas.

Aside from that, it’s a toss up.  Several cross-promotional fights are expected, but far from finalized.  If you were hoping to see Dream lightweight champ Shinya Aoki take on Sengoku lightweight champ Mizuto Hirota, well, first you’ll need to explain to Aoki exactly who Hirota is:

"Who’s the champion now? Because I don’t know,” [Aoki] said. “Right now, I’m number one. I feel that I’m [at the] top now, and if I fight him, I fight him. I didn’t say I wanted to fight him, and no one knows who he is, so if we fight … well, I’ll have to think about it.”
 

Oh, Shinya.  You crazy guy.  Allow us to provide a little primer for you after the jump. 

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Cro Cop Back to the UFC If He Beats Choi on NYE?


(Unless he’s using it as a part-time chicken coop, what does Cro Cop want with a cage these days anyway?)

Our buddy Robert at FreeFightVideos has a report that suggests a return to the UFC for Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic might be as simple as a win over Hong Man Choi on New Year’s Eve.  Cro Cop has apparently been dropping hints lately that the fight at K-1 Dynamite will “end one chapter and start another” in his career, and insists he’s not retiring.  So okay, maybe he just means he’ll end the injury-riddled, lackluster performance chapter and begin another kicking ass chapter in 2009, right?

But Cro Cop has been increasingly vague about his plans for 2009, and when Dana White appeared on the “Best Damn Sports Show,” he stated that, “if [Cro Cop] wins, he will definitely be welcomed back into the UFC."

As Robert points out, Cro Cop still keeps a cage in his training facility, though he wouldn’t seem to have any use for it if he plans to keep fighting in Japan. Maybe the thing is just a pain in the ass to take down, or maybe he plans to come back to the UFC for some unfinished business.

Either way, does it seem odd to anyone else that a fight with Hong Man Choi, of all people, is the deciding factor in Cro Cop’s UFC career?  Choi is not really an MMA fighter.  He’s a kickboxer, in the loosest sense of the word, but mainly he’s a sideshow attraction. 

Everyone mocked Fedor for even taking a fight with Choi, and now it’s the fight that determines Cro Cop’s readiness to reenter the Octagon?  Why not ask him to beat Alistair Overeem to prove himself?  Or beat…anyone else, really.  Anyone with actual MMA experience, who isn’t wearing a mask at the time of the fight.  Then again, where is he supposed to find an opponent like that on New Year’s Eve in Japan?

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Cro Cop Talks Choi Bout, But Will American Fans Be Denied Their NYE Freak Show?


(‘Do not mistake my kindness for weakness, my friend.’)

Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic writes on his blog that he has signed the contract to make the rumored bout with Korean giant Hong Man Choi official.  It will be contested under MMA rules, not K-1 kickboxing rules, which is nice for Cro Cop, who is hoping to end this rough year on a high note:

I must say I’m happy with this opportunity to fight again in this year. This wasn’t the best year for me and I’m hoping that I’ll end it in a good spirit. I’m also happy to fight again in Japan at New Year’s Eve, which is always truly a fantastic experience.
[…]
Although I’m still having some difficulties with my old injuries there won’t be any excuses left in case of a bad result. I’ll handle this issues in January, but against Choi I’ll be ready and nothing will stop me this time. I’ll just do my best and end this year with a win hopefully. Then I’ll focus on 2009 and work on the further steps in my career.

You know something, it really has been a tough year for Cro Cop.  He’s struggled with injuries, got his testicles smashed by Overeem, had his training partner busted for being a serial armed robber, and then there’s that whole weirdo video game thing.  Fortunately, fighting a giant on New Year’s Eve is an old Croatian folk remedy guaranteed to bring good luck.  It works best if you also sleep with a virgin on the same night, though isn’t that the story with all Croatian folk remedies? 

But hold up, American fans, there’s a strong possibility we may not even get to see the big K-1 Dynamite show.  HDNet Fights CEO Andrew Simon tells MMA Fanhouse that since their contract is with K-1, and since Dynamite is not technically a K-1 show, it’s a bit of a tricky situation.  If HDNet isn’t showing it that means it may not air in the states at all.  Which would be, as the kids say, a total bummer.  Let’s hope they work something out.

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Preparing for Overeem Rematch, “Cro Cop” is Worried About His… Knee?


(They aren’t there to protect “Cro Cop” from you. They’re there to protect you from “Cro Cop”.)

Despite having one of his testicles relocated to the inside of his body by Alistair Overeem‘s low blows during their last meeting, Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic says when they go around again this New Year’s Eve at K-1 Dynamite it’s oddly not his junk that he’s worried about. In an interview with a Croatian website, then translated on MMA Fanhouse, Cro Cop says his trick knee has been acting up and that he’ll have to undergo another surgery on it immediately after the fight with Overeem:

“The advice I got from my doctors was that fighting Overeem only two months after my knee operation was a suicide mission. I already had missed the July bout and postponing my September bout was not an option for me. I have only myself to blame.”

“I’ve had several operations this year, and I’ll have to undergo another one straight after the NYE event. It’s frustrating to have to undergo all these operations but that’s the sportsman’s life. Many others have had it worse then me.

“Sportsman” seems like an odd translation in this context. I have an uncle who’s really into fishing. He calls himself a sportsman. Other than a love of pranks involving the threat of violence, my uncle and Cro Cop really have nothing at all in common.

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Fedor Still Talking That New Year’s Eve Jive?


(‘Bring me your tired, your freaks, your outmatched fools. I fight them on eve of the new year, yes?’)

The official Dream website has posted an interview they conducted with Fedor Emelianenko, but unfortunately for me it’s all transcribed in squiggly lines that I can make neither heads nor tails of. Good thing Suki came along to translate it, otherwise we might have missed this:

- Japanese fans are expected to see you fight in NYE in Japan again.

I want to fight in Japan again; however, I cannot control everything. God knows what will happen. Whether I fight or not in NYE depends on a negotiation between my manager and DREAM.

Perhaps Fedor is just blowing smoke here to keep his Japanese public happy, but that’s a very different story than the one Tom Atencio is telling. He claims to have verification from Fedor’s management that he absolutely, positively will not fight on New Year’s Eve. So, assuming Fedor is not consciously lying in this Dream interview, this means:

1) Fedor’s management is willing to rent him out to the highest bidder, regardless of whether they’ve already committed him to fight elsewhere.

2) Fedor’s management doesn’t necessarily tell Fedor everything that’s going on.

3) There are some nuances being lost in translation.

The first option seems plausible because, well, Fedor is managed by crazy Russians, according Dana White. The second option is also not too unrealistic, for the same crazy Russian reasons. Option three is especially possible since Fedor’s comments had to go from Russian to Japanese to English. In other words, yeah, we don’t know what the hell is really going on. Which probably puts us in the same boat as Fedor.

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