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Tag: Nick Denis

UFC Bantamweight Nick Denis Retires From MMA to Protect Brain Health


(Photo via UFC.com)

For a number of reasons having to do with the sport’s culture, rule set and diversity of techniques, MMA simply is not as dangerous a sport as, say, boxing or American football in terms of brain trauma. That said, it is still quite dangeous and fighteres face a myriad of potential dangers in training and in competition.

Featherweight Eddie Yagin was just ordered to take six months off from MMA to let his brain heal. Many other active fighters conceal or ignore brain trauma and don’t retire or take the rest they need in order to hopefully have some quality of life as they age.

So when UFC bantamweight Nick Denis announced on his tumblr blog this week that he had decided to retire from MMA, it was bittersweet. Bitter because the international community had only begun to see how skilled and talented the twenty nine year-old was after two fights in the globe’s top organization. Sweet because, as he detailed on his blog, he made a thoughtful and proactive decision to protect what is left of his health.

One of hardest things for athletes to do is walk away, no matter their physical condition or age, because it means a forced change of identities. They have to find a new way to define themselves, a new set of activitites to spend their lives doing.

Denis seems at peace with his decision and confident that he will find new things to “obsess” over. We are glad and we hope so.

His written statement announcing his retirement is insightful, moving and inspirational. Read it and then go out and get started pursuing dreams and accomplishments that will make you worthy of a nickname as awesome as the one Nick “The Ninja of Love” Denis has.

“I would like to think that I don’t have an ego. Sometimes though, I think it might just be so big that it can’t be hurt.

I really believe in living life. I always tell people, quite casually, ‘follow your heart.’ I don’t just say it for the sake of having words come out of my mouth, it is something that I truly believe in and do. I couldn’t imagine living my life and ignoring my true feelings and desires, just for the sake of living a ‘rational’ and safe lifestyle. That is why I quit my Ph.D. in biochemistry to move to Montreal, train full-time and make my way to the UFC.

To me, it was the only available option. What other choice did I have?

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Booking Roundup: Bedford-Denis, Bermudez-Garza Added to ‘UFC on FOX 3′ Card

“Honesly, Dennis, it’s going to take more than few circumvallate papillae to frighten moi!” (Original images: MMADiehards.com & RazziMe/JohnPorter)

We’re just a few of months away from the UFC’s return to broadcast tv, but the ‘UFC on FOX 3′ card is still filling out.

When we last (and first) saw Nick Denis, he was caving in the skull of Joseph Sandoval via standing hellbows on the ‘UFC on FX: Guillard vs. Miller‘ card. That impressive 22-second debut has earned him a return bout against TUF alum Johnny Bedford. “Brutal” fell to season 14 champion John Dodson in the show’s semi-finals, but returned at the TUF 14 Finale to absolutely bulldoze future-flyweight Louis Gaudinot.

Two other TUF vets, Dennis Bermudez and Pablo Garza, will square off on the May 5th card. Bermudez looked to be seconds away from finishing off Diego Brandao when the crafty Brazilian latched on an armbar and snagged the first ever TUF featherweight plaque. Garza lost his elimination bout to enter the season 12 Ultimate Fighter house as well as his WEC debut, but was brought to the UFC where he picked up consecutive first round stoppages over Fredson Paixao (via “Lawn Chair KO“) and Yves Jabouin. “The Scarecrow” is looking to bounce back from his second round submission loss to the streaking Dustin Poirier.

The rest of the card is after the jump.

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‘UFC on FX: Guillard vs Miller’ GIF Party: The Finishes & Other Highlights

Guillard choking, in every sense of the word. (Photo: UFC.com)

While the ‘UFC on FX’ debut may have lacked the big names of UFC 142, the fights themselves packed just as much fire-power. For the second straight week, six fighters were able to put away their opponent and double their earnings in less than a round. Punches, chokes, and a torrent of brutal hellbows were all used to send grown men into la-la land, and we’ve got the GIF’s to prove it.

(Thanks to Zombie Prophet for the GIFs)

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‘UFC on FX: Guillard vs. Miller’ Aftermath: Bringing Back the Ban


Barry didn’t check on Morecraft, but it’s safe to say he got some fans. Props: UFC.com

Overall, the UFC’s fourth biggest debut on a television network, which showcased two of the best lightweights coming off of losses and the organization’s second best announcing team, was as successful as it could have been. Sure, there were some long pauses in between the fights, but that’s to be expected when you draw out 60 minutes of actual fighting into a five hour television broadcast. The rattling punches and tapping hands that signaled an early end to many of last night’s fights kept a perfect rhythm with a drum we’ve been beating on CagePotato for quite some time now: The key to victory in mixed martial arts is evolution, not regression. If a fighter wants to stay relevant- or even employed- within the UFC, he needs to develop himself into the most complete fighter he can.

For an example of this, look no further than Melvin Guillard. Both fans and pundits were calling his performance “Vintage Melvin” while the dynamic striker aggressively pursued Jim Miller, arguably coming closer to knocking out the submission specialist than anyone else has. However, after one flying knee attempt too many saw Miller putting Guillard on his back, “Vintage Melvin” demonstrated the same ground game that has always been his kryptonite. An impatient Melvin Guillard did everything he could to get back to his feet, which resulted in Jim Miller taking his back and sinking in the fight ending choke. “The Young Assassin” is now 10-6 in the UFC, with all of his losses coming by submission. While permanently relegating Guillard to the undercards may be a bit drastic, it’s obvious that Guillard will never be a contender unless he fixes those holes in his ground game- something far easier said than done at this point in his career.

Jim Miller did exactly what we knew he needed to do to win. He weathered the storm against Guillard’s attack, he was persistent with his takedown attempts and he kept the fight on the ground once it went there. While a quick submission wasn’t exactly unexpected, it was still impressive enough to earn him Submission of the Night honors.

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Partial Card Announced for First MMA Show in Ontario; Includes UFC, WEC, Sengoku and Shooto Vets

Knockout Entertainment Canada announced the line-up today for its historic first sanctioned mixed martial arts event held in the province of Ontario in a press release sent out this morning.

MMA: The Reckoning will take place on April 2 at Casino Rama in Orillia and will feature a range of veterans from several notable promotions. The main event will feature a welterweight tilt between UFC veteran Josh Burkman and up-and-coming Canadian fighter Jordan Mein. A former training partner of Jason Day, Mein, who defeated Joe Riggs via second-round TKO in January and won his last bout in February by rear-naked choke is said to be on the UFC’s radar, so a win over an Octagon vet like Burkman, who is 3-0 since being dropped by the promotion would likely elicit an invitation to fight for the Vegas-based promotion. Conversely, a win over a highly-touted prospect like Mein would almost definitely earn Burkman a call back from UFC matchmaker Joe Silva.

Also on the card will be former IFL and WEC lightweight Chris Horodecki, Shooto veteran Antonio Carvalho, three-time Sengoku fighter Nick Denis, TUF 9 contestant Dean Amasinger, and Canadian grappling standout Misha Cirkunov.

The event, which promoters say could feature at least one additional big name bout, is the first of several shows already approved by the Ontario Athletic Commission for the first quarter of 2010.

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‘Sengoku Eighth Battle’ Results and Videos; Hioki, Sandro Advance in Featherweight GP


(Marlon Sandro vs. Nick Denis; props to MMA Scraps.)

After a shaky start that saw Maximo Blanco get DQ’d after misinterpreting the "foot stomps yes, soccer kicks no" rule, and Travis Wiuff getting kneed in the balls about two dozen times before losing via TKO, Sengoku managed to put on a pretty damn entertaining show yesterday (or late Friday for us). The focal point of "Eighth Battle" was the quarterfinals of their featherweight grand prix, and unsuprisingly, top-ten featherweights Hatsu Hioki and Marlon Sandro advanced to the semis; Hioki was able to submit Ronnie Mann in the opening round, while Sandro needed all of 19 seconds to flatten Nick Denis with punches.

Elsewhere in the bracket, Michihiro Omigawa continued his career comeback, stopping Nam Phan with ground-and-pound late in the first round; after entering the tournament with a 4-7-1 record, Omigawa now holds back-to-back wins over two very credible featherweights. Korean fighter Chan Sung Jung wasn’t so fortunate, as he dropped a decision to Masanori Kanehara in what many fans felt was a race-based robbery.

Complete results from the event and more fight videos after the jump…

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Sengoku Featherweight GP Quarterfinals, Late Tonight on HDNet

Ronnie Mann Hatsu Hioki MMA Japan Sengoku
(Main-eventers Ronnie Mann and Hatsu Hioki. Image courtesy of allelbows.)

Attention insomniacs and members of the undead: HDNet is hooking you up tonight with a live broadcast of "Sengoku Eighth Battle," which kicks off at 3 a.m. ET/midnight PT. Though the card lacks big names, it will feature the quarterfinals of their ongoing featherweight grand prix — and if the fights are as entertaining as the FWGP’s first round, we’ll be in for a treat, so DVR this bitch at the very least. Here’s what the matchups will look like…

FEATHERWEIGHT GRAND PRIX BOUTS
Hatsu Hioki vs. Ronnie Mann
Michihiro Omigawa vs. Nam Phan
Masanori Kanehara vs. Chan Sung Jung
Marlon Sandro vs. Nick Denis

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