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Tag: On this day in MMA history

On This Day in MMA History: The Gina Carano Lip Bite Gif Was Born (Also, Nick Diaz Fought Frank Shamrock)


(Oh God…can’t…control…the hnnnnnng.)

Although Gina Carano may have stepped away from our beloved sport years ago, her ability to captivate and stimulate MMA fans in gif form remains unmatched to this day. But none of the truly amazing photos, screengrabs, or gifs Carano has been responsible for over the years hold a candle to the night she was captured biting her lip at Strikeforce: Shamrock vs. Diaz on April 11th, 2009 — five years ago today.

In fact, nothing Carano has done since — not the sexy dance or Haywire or even fighting for the Strikeforce Women’s championship — quite compares to the glorious night she bit her lip while staring directly into the soul of our wieners, and I say that with all due respect. Because above all else, Carano has always been a bit of a trailblazer. She brought women’s MMA into the mainstream and was one of the sport’s first crossover stars, to the point that she is still being used to promote WMMA despite leaving it behind some 5 years ago. She also was the first female fighter to bite her lip on camera, capturing the imagination of the country in doing so. And for that last thing, we give thanks.

But there is an unsung hero in all this, a person who truly helped launch Carano’s lip-biting career into the stratosphere and one who finally deserves his due credit. I’m talking about the Strikeforce cameraman who was given the simple assignment of filming Gina Carano sitting ringside and used the opportunity to forever cement his place in MMA History, of course. I don’t mean to overstate this, but the way he ever so slightly pushed in on Carano (phrasing) just in time for the lip bite is a moment of filmmaking history comparable to Spielberg’s dolly zoom shot in Jaws.

Georgia O’Keeffe spent most of her career trying to capture the essence of female sexuality, strength, and femininity, and this anonymous Strikeforce cameraman managed to do it in under 15 seconds. So on this day, we salute you, Strikeforce cameraman responsible for the Gina Carano lip-bite gif (“Reeeeal men of geeenius…”).

Oh yeah, Nick Diaz vs. Frank Shamrock also went down on this day five years ago. We’ve thrown a full video of their fight after the jump, if you’re into that sort of thing.

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On This Day in MMA History: Chuck Liddell KOs Tito Ortiz at UFC 47, Ten Years Ago Today

By Ben Goldstein

I have a couple theories on how superstardom is created in combat sports:

1) Every great fighter needs a great rival to stand in opposition to — an equally skilled counterpart who can push him competitively and generate personal animosity.

2) You either have to be an entertaining talker, or the guy who beats the living shit out of the entertaining talker. (The WMMA corollary is: You either have to be a beautiful woman, or the girl who beats the living shit out of the beautiful woman.)

Both of these theories can help explain why Chuck Liddell was — and continues to be — a cultural phenomenon, and arguably the most famous MMA fighter of all time. They also help explain why some of today’s UFC champions struggle to find the same kind of relevance.

Ten years ago today, Chuck Liddell cemented his stardom by knocking out Tito Ortiz at UFC 47: It’s On!, which took place April 2nd, 2004, at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. Even though it was a non-title fight, Liddell vs. Ortiz 1 was the most compelling, highly-anticipated bout in UFC history to that point — a once-in-a-blue-moon meeting of two rivals who were both incredibly talented, and opposites in every measurable way. It had a storyline as dramatic and exaggerated as any pro-wrestling feud, and yet, somehow, it was real.

Chuck Liddell was the hero, of course. Humble and laconic, Chuck talked with his fists. The only time he showed emotion was after he knocked a guy out, after which he would gallop around the cage, then lean back with his fists at his sides, screaming at the air, the usual deadness in his eyes replaced by unrestrained insanity. He had a cool nickname and a cooler mohawk. He was a white guy, and yes, that does matter. His name was “Chuck,” for God’s sake.

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On This Day in MMA History: The UFC Holds Its First (and Last) Ever 16-Man Tournament at UFC 2: No Way Out

On This Day in MMA History” pays tribute to some of the more bizarre and infamous moments from MMA’s past. Twenty years ago today (!), on March 11th, 1994, the UFC held the only 16-man, one-night tournament in promotional history at UFC 2. It was…epic to say the least. 

No weight classes, no time limits, no judges, and up to four fights in one night. Yes, the early nineties truly were a time when men were men. That was at least according to the rules of UFC 2: No Way Out, which somehow managed to up the ante from the promotion’s first event the previous November.

Taking place on the evening of March 11th, 1994, UFC 2 pitted previous tournament contestants Patrick Smith, Jason Delucia, and UFC 1 winner Royce Gracie against a gaggle of unknowns in what would become the promotion’s first and last ever sixteen-man, one-night tournament.

As expected, the tournament served as little more than an informercial for the superiority of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu once again. In just over 9 minutes of total fight time, Gracie dominated Minoki Ichihara, Delucia, Remco Pardoel, and Morris to claim his second straight tournament victory. Being that the UFC has long since abandoned the one-night tournament format due to safety concerns, Royce’s four victories at UFC 2 stands as a record that will likely never be broken in the UFC.

But aside from providing us with the biggest tournament in promotional history, we also have UFC 2 to thank for:

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On This Day in MMA History: Nick Diaz Gogoplatas Takanori Gomi While High as a Motherf*cker at Pride 33


(Major thanks to r/MMA for refreshing our memories.)

On This Day in MMA History” pays tribute to some of the more bizarre and infamous moments from MMA’s past. Seven years ago today, Nick Diaz and Takanori Gomi engaged in a classic battle at PRIDE 33: The Second Coming, only to have Diaz’s gogoplata win overturned as the result of a failed drug test for marijuana. Not that a little weed could ever soil the memory of what turned out to be one of the most thrilling fights in PRIDE history. 

“That little guy, I don’t know what the fuck, he was doing some karate in there…he’s fuckin’ do some little Hadouken fuckin’ punch in there to me.” — Nick Diaz, whimsically breaking down his all out war with Takanori Gomi at Pride 33: Second Coming on February 24, 2007 — seven years ago today.

Heading into their clash at Pride 33, Takanori Gomi was considered the undisputed king of the promotion’s lightweight division, and possibly, the entire lightweight landscape, having collected 13 wins beside just 1 loss with 7 brutal knockouts in his Pride run. Diaz, on the other hand, was riding a two-fight win streak in the UFC and had just made the genius decision to cut his second stint short by signing with Gracie Fighting Championships, a promotion that went under almost as soon as it sprang up. Itching for a fight, Diaz then signed a two-fight deal with Pride and agreed to face Gomi in a 160 lb. catchweight bout in his debut.

What ensued was a ten minute battle for the ages.

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On This Day in MMA History: Joe Rogan Loses His Sh*t Over Spilled Bag of Ice [VIDEO]

On This Day in MMA History” pays tribute to some of the more bizarre and infamous moments from MMA’s past. Four years ago today, on February 6th, 2010, UFC 109: Relentless took place, featuring Mark Coleman’s final appearance in the UFC, Matt Serra’s final victory in the UFC…and an Octagon ice spill that will forever live in infamy. The following post was published on CagePotato three days later.

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Those of you who missed the Spike TV broadcast of the Melvin Guillard-Ronnys Torres fight at UFC 109 didn’t just miss a very close three-round scrap, you also missed a chance to see Joe Rogan flip out over something besides marijuanalocker room meat-gazers, or the craziness of space. I refer now, of course, to an ice spill in the Octagon.

It’s no one’s fault, really, except maybe the person who decided to use a cheap grocery store produce bag in Torres’s corner. The thing comes apart at the most inopportune time, and the result is a group of grown men trying frantically to clean up a large pile of ice while Rogan yells at them and a packed arena boos their efforts.

The difficulty these men (or, as Rogan refers to them, “the goddamn Three Stooges”) have in this task just goes to show how much more difficult everything becomes in a high-pressure situation. Try unlocking your front door while someone yells at you about what an incapable moron you are, or clean up broken eggs on the kitchen floor as your emotionally unstable girlfriend stands nearby and refers to the situation as “a disaster.” Then maybe you’ll understand.

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On This Day in MMA History — Tito Ortiz Told Us How We Feelin’ Right Now at ‘Affliction: Day of Reckoning’


(Props: chaplinshouse)

On This Day in MMA History” pays tribute to some of the more bizarre and infamous moments from MMA’s past. Five years ago today, on January 24th, 2009, Affliction’s short-lived MMA promotion held its second (and final) event at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. And though “Day of Reckoning” was a memorable card in its own right — featuring Knockout of the Year candidates from Fedor Emelianenko, Vitor Belfort, and Jay Hieron — the event has become legendary for the botched, tongue-tied commentary efforts of Tito Ortiz. The following post was published on CagePotato two days later.

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(An enormous head, filled with 12 pounds of cookie dough. Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)

We just wanted to share these quotes from Tito’s absolutely stunning broadcast debut at “Day of Reckoning,” collected from these threads on the UG:

Sobral/Sokoudjou

“Here we are with Seraldo Babalu, you did an awesome job, saw why you’re a black belt in jiu-jitsu, getting an awesome submission there, I want to tell me what you see, let’s go ahead and see by the fight, what you saw, in the ring.”

“You showed the dominance by getting the takedown and looking for a choke in that position. We know the weakness that you had, but you actually showed the heart and determination of a champion of how tough of a light heavyweight you really are, here in the Affliction card. What do you think of the future of you, um, future opponents?”

“Yes, and uh, my back will be better in about three months, so I know all the fans would love to see me and you get it on. You know what, you’re an awesome fighter, congratulations tonight. Everybody lets give a hand to Renato Babalu, one of the greatest light heavyweights, of the night.”

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On This Day in MMA History: Tim Sylvia Shits His Way Into Our Hearts (and Permanent LOLBanks) at Fight Night 3

Not taking anything away from Assuerio, he’s a tough dude, obviously. I hit him a couple of times and couldn’t finish him. I was really sick for the fight. I got really sick Saturday and had problems holding my innards. When I was warming up, I had a few problems, and I actually had a few problems in the ring when I was fighting.

I don’t know what it was. It got really cold when we were outside working out and stuff, going back and forth from the room. I caught something, and I just couldn’t hold in my number twos… If you look at the fight you’ll see that when my shorts came down, you’ll see the wet mark in my underwear.

That’s former UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia, discussing the infamous night in which he shat himself during his main event bout with Assuerio Silva at Fight Night 3 on January 16, 2006 — eight years ago today. It was an incident that has become the subject of a joke or two over the years here at CagePotato, and one that has also become all the more relevant in light of last night’s Fight Night 35, wherein Yoel Romero allegedly suffered a similar intestinal malfunction during his fight with Derek Brunson (although Romero will tell you that the much-speculated stain on his shorts was the result of water and sweat). 30rockeyeroll.gif

Of course, Fatty Boom-Boom wasn’t the first fighter to suffer a case of the squirts (no, not that kind) in an MMA fight. Hell, he wasn’t even the first to admit to committing the act in the UFC. That honor goes to…

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On This Day in MMA History: Jon Jones Tastes Defeat (Kind Of) at the TUF 10 Finale


(Photo via Sherdog)

Ultimate Fighter Finale cards weren’t always so garbage-ass. On December 5th, 2009 — four years ago today — the TUF 10 Finale went down in Las Vegas, with a lineup featuring Jon Jones (before he became light-heavyweight champion), Frankie Edgar (before he became lightweight champion), Kimbo Slice (who was one of the most popular figures in the sport at the time), as well as Roy Nelson, Brendan Schaub, and Matt Mitrione. Today, a UFC card with those names would be sold as a pay-per-view, and it would probably do pretty damn well*. In 2009, this was just another free show on Spike TV, a cable channel that everybody knew how to find. Damn…we just didn’t know how good we had it back then.

Maybe you remember Nelson’s nasty one-shot KO of Schaub at the event, and maybe you remember the 15-minute wheezefest that was Kimbo vs. Houston Alexander. But the reason that the TUF 10 Finale remains infamous four years later is because of a bullshit little rule known as “no 12-to-6 elbows,” which may very well be the most arbitrary and baseless rule in MMA history. Essentially, MMA fighters are allowed to crack each other’s skulls wide open with their ‘bows, either standing or on the ground, but if your elbow is moving vertically downward, you might as well be a villain in a Jean-Claude Van Damme movie. My goodness, somebody could actually get injured with those things.

Jon Jones, who was 22 years old at the time, had earned a prime spot on the TUF 10 Finale main card thanks to his 3-0 run in the UFC light-heavyweight division, which included a hilariously madcap decision win against Stephan Bonnar, and a second-round submission of fan-unfavorite Jake O’Brien. This was the pre-backlash Jon Jones, a guy who was universally beloved for his dynamic wrestling ability and his improvisational striking, which he picked up (as the legend goes) from watching YouTube videos. Matt Hamill was supposed to be just another stepping-stone in Jones’s quick rise to the top — a recognizable TUF-guy for him to squash. And that’s exactly what happened, even though Hamill wound up winning the fight on a technicality.

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On This Day in MMA History: War Machine Ruins a Porn Star’s Birthday Party


(Photo via emmreport.com, obviously.)

On This Day in MMA History” pays tribute to some of the more bizarre and infamous news stories of MMA’s past. The fiasco described below took place on November 28th, 2009, exactly four years ago today; the following post was published two days later. Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!

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So did you guys do anything crazy this weekend? Like, maybe beat the shit out of half the guest-list at a porn star’s birthday party? No? Well, you’ll never believe this, but that’s exactly what MMA tabloid hero War Machine did on Saturday night. Multiple reports are coming in, so we’ll try to piece this together from what we have…

— On Saturday night, Machine heads out to a b-day party for adult film actress Brooke Haven, held at a porn studio in Van Nuys. He appears to be in good spirits, though he was reportedly pissed off that his agent, Derek Hay (aka “Ben English”), wasn’t getting him enough work.

— Things quickly turn south when War allegedly punches his girlfriend, Alanah Rae, then drags her outside. This part of the story is hazy because although Terez Owens reports that Rae personally confirmed with him that War Machine decked her, she later went on Twitter to deny it. Still, there seems to be no difference in opinion over what happened next…

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On This Day in MMA History: “The Last Emperor” Decapitates Brett Rogers, Earns Dana White’s Respect & Retires With P4P G.O.A.T. Status Intact

I definitely have a huge advantage when it comes down to exchanging punches. That’s my strong point, and that’s definitely going to be his weak point.

I can’t not picture me knocking him out. So he better do some chin-ups or whatever he needs to do to make him strong, because I’m coming for him. He’s not going to be able to handle my power standing and banging. He stands in the pocket with me, he’s gonna get knocked out. 

Those words might as well have served as the last will and testament of noted patriarch Brett Rogers, who upon saying them, all but signed up to be violently and karmatically (for a number of reasons) knocked out by Fedor Emelianenko at Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Rogers on November 7th, 2009 – four years ago today.

Us Zuffa shills tend to forget this, but before Anderson Silva, Jon Jones, or Georges St. Pierre started dominating our “Greatest Mixed Martial Artist of All Time” (aka “The G.O.A.T”) debates, there was an emotionless Russian killer who was universally viewed in this light. His name was Fedor Emelianenko, and after quietly building a reputation as PRIDE‘s most dominant fighter over in Japan, “The Last Emperor” made his long-awaited stateside debut against Tim Sylvia at Affliction: Banned in July of 2008.

The fight would confirm what we already knew about Fedor, as would his next fight with Andrei Arlovski at Affliction: Day of Reckoning, but it wasn’t until his monumental signing with Strikeforce (a Strikeforce was kind of like a Bellator, but we don’t have time to discuss semantics) that US fans were truly introduced to the mythical Russian. And for his first “true” test, Emelianenko was given Brett “Da Grim” Rogers, a then-undefeated slugger who had one-upped Fedor by KO’ing Arlovski in just 22 seconds in his previous fight.

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