Steroids in MMA
Which MMA Fighter Will Test Positive For Steroids Next?

Tag: Robbie Lawler

“Strikeforce: Lawler vs. Shields” — Blow by Blow

Robbie Lawler Jake Shields MMA Strikeforce
("Guys, you can get some of those cupcakes *after* we take this face-off picture, okay? Guys?" Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)

Hello, and welcome to a special "From Press Row" edition of the CagePotato liveblog. That’s right – I’m typing to you from the Scottrade Center in St. Louis tonight, not from my usual spot on my couch in Brooklyn. The good part? I’m about 25 feet from the cage and wedged between some of the brightest minds in MMA journalism. The bad part? Slamming beers, eating wings, and loudly showing bias towards my favorite fighters is frowned upon here, apparently. But we’re gonna try to have a good time anyway. Live round-by-round results are after the jump, starting at 9 p.m. CT. Hit that "read more" link and refresh the page every few minutes to get all the latest. Time to do work, son.


“Strikeforce: Lawler vs. Shields” Weigh-In Results

Kevin Randleman MMA Strikeforce
(Kevin Randleman is athletic *and* explosive! Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)

All fighters successfully weighed in today for Saturday’s Strikeforce event, which will be held at the Scottrade Center and broadcast on Showtime. CageWriter passes along this little detail from the weigh-in:

Phil Baroni came out in a bathrobe, and yelled at the Showtime employee trying to direct the fighters for cameras. Nick Diaz responded to a fan who yelled, "Nick the [expletive]" by flipping the middle finger.

Yeah, that sounds about right. The numbers are after the jump. Don’t forget to swing by tomorrow night starting at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT as we liveblog the televised card. Fire up, Potato Nation!


Friday Link Dump

Robbie Lawler Strikeforce MMA St. Louis mascot Fredbird
(Fredbird hypes up Robbie Lawler before he throws out the first pitch at yesterday’s Cardinals/Reds game at Busch Stadium. Photo courtesy of Esther Lin/Strikeforce.)

- Urijah Faber and Mike Brown fill out Sports Illustrated‘s "Cheerleader of the Week" questionnaire. Hilarity ensues. (Asylum)

- Due to Cung Le’s movie career, Strikeforce will soon introduce an interim middleweight belt. (CageWriter)

- As if Team U.S.A. needed another reason to hate Jason Pierce. (SPIKE)

- Fedor Emelianenko discusses why he couldn’t sign with the UFC. (MMA Fanhouse)

- USA Wrestling is trying to bribe wrestlers not to jump ship to MMA. (Fightlinker)

- It’ll be Choi vs. Minowa and Mousasi vs. Sokoudjou in the second round of DREAM’s "Super Hulk" tournament. (MMA Mania)

- Kenny Florian will join the broadcast team at WEC 41 on Sunday. (MMA Junkie)

- Weigh-in results for tonight’s Bellator show. (MMA Madness)

- Mike Brown discusses how he got his start in fighting, and how his loss to Joe Lauzon turned his career around. (Scores Report)

- Urijah Faber is packing on leg muscle and working on a clothing line. (Ask Men)

- Redneck backyard MMA fight ends in head-kick KO. (NothingToxic)

- Spiders Flee From Paris Hilton’s Vagina. (HolyTaco)

- Trailer and production photos from It Might Get Loud, starring Jimmy Page, Jack White, and the Edge. (ScreenJunkies)

- Wreck of the Week: Drunk Fan Edition. (AllLeftTurns)

- Daily Market Madness. (WallStreetFighter)

- The Citizen Kane of beer pong trick-shot videos. (Break)


Ben vs. Ben — Strikeforce: Lawler vs. Shields + WEC 41 Double-Feature

Jake Shields Robbie Lawler MMA Strikeforce
(My God, the animosity between these two. It’s like the entire room could burst into flames at any moment.)

MMA fans have a full dance-card this weekend, with Strikeforce putting on a stacked Showtime event on Saturday night (10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT), and the WEC following it up on Sunday night with a show on Versus headlined by featherweight champion Mike Brown’s second meeting with Urijah Faber (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT). Be sure to come back here Saturday night for the Strikeforce liveblog — and get psyched for the whole shebang by reading the latest installment of the longest-running MMA argument on the Internet. Ben vs. Ben starts right now

Brett Rogers says he wants to stand and bang with Andrei Arlovski on Saturday. That sounds like a horrible idea for "The Grimm," given that Arlovski is just as big and strong as he is but with much more technical striking. Does Rogers stand a chance with that strategy, or is he an unconscious man walking at this point?

BG: WTF? Is Rogers supposed to take Arlovski down and sub him out with his battle-tested Grimjitsu? I’m not trying to hate on Brett’s ground game, because none of us have actually seen it; he’s a brawler, and thus far he’s only had to face other brawlers. Arlovski, on the other hand, actually has some submission skills in his back pocket. So while we know that Rogers will be fighting an uphill battle on Saturday night, I’d say his odds decrease even further if the fight goes anywhere else besides stand-and-bangville.

Brett’s only shot is to stick to his bread-and-butter and swing those hamhocks. The fact that Arlovski’s hands are far more technical means that the Grimm will probably get picked apart. But Arlovski’s unreliable chin makes him vulnerable to what Rogers brings into the cage. That’s what makes this fight compelling for me: Brett Rogers definitely should not be able to beat Andrei Arlovski — but he just might.

BF: With regard to the submission skills in Arlovski’s back pocket, I hope your finger slipped and you really meant to type ‘submission skill.’ As in, his straight achilles lock. That’s all the dude’s got on the mat and he goes to it like it’s his signature killer move, so let’s not pretend that there any Arlovski-platas in the near future.


Gambling Addiction Enabler: Strikeforce – Lawler vs. Shields

Brett Rogers
(If Arlovski comes in with the same game plan as that big-ass tire, at least we know Rogers will be ready for him.)

There are exactly two indicators that something is important in contemporary American society: 1) there is a commemorative plate about it, and 2) you can bet on it.  Don’t believe me?  Then just consider two of the most important things happening in MMA this week – the Strikeforce event on Showtime this Saturday night, and the “Ultimate Fighter” Kimbo-mania that has set the internets on fire. Kimbo Slice is currently a +275 underdog to make it into the final two on this season of TUF.  The fact that there’s even a line this early on tells you what a big deal it is.  Still waiting on that commemorative plate, though.

Of course, if you like something closer to immediate gratification, you can just choose from these lines on Saturday’s Strikeforce fights, courtesy of

Jake Shields (-115) vs. Robbie Lawler (-105)
Brett Rogers (+300) vs. Andrei Arlovski (-340)
Joe Riggs (+105) vs. Phil Baroni (-115)
Scott Smith (+300) vs. Nick Diaz (-310)
Kevin Randleman (-110) vs. Mike Whitehead (+105)
Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante (-370) vs. Mike Kyle (+300)

The breakdown…


Riggs a No-Show For Strikeforce Conference Call, Baroni Continues to Talk About His Sex Life

(Some say Goldberg had a legit sexual harassment claim after what happens in the 0:49 mark in this interview, but clearly he was asking for it walking in there dressed like that.)

The war of words between Strikeforce fighters Joe Riggs and Phil Baroni this week seemed to promise an interesting encounter on today’s media conference call to promote Saturday night’s Strikeforce event on Showtime.  The only problem is that Riggs failed to pick up a phone in time, so Baroni was left alone with Jake Shields and the notoriously tight-lipped Robbie Lawler to do all the talking.  Fortunately Baroni had prepared all his life for just such a moment.

Some highlights from the NYBA:


Strikeforce News: Thomson Out of 4/11 Co-Headliner With Broken Leg; Lawler/Shields + Babalu/Feijao Added to June Card

Gilbert Melendez Josh Thomson MMA Strikeforce
("Josh, bro, you ever look at your hands? I mean really *look* at them? It’s like, why do we have five fingers anyway? Who decided that? It would be cool if I had six, but I’d probably be able to get by with just four. Or like, why is there a thumb on only *one* side of your hand. I feel like I’d be able to get more done with two thumbs on each hand. Do you ever watch ‘Fringe’? Great fuckin’ show." Photo courtesy of

With less than two weeks to go before Strikeforce returns to action on Showtime, the second-biggest fight on the "Shamrock vs. Diaz" card (April 11th, San Jose) has been scratched from the lineup. Strikeforce announced last night that lightweight champion Josh Thomson broke his left leg above the ankle while sparring with Billy Evangelista yesterday, and will not be having his rematch with Gilbert Melendez next Saturday. Said Thomson:

“I’m very upset. All the hard work was done and it was time to fight. I was looking forward to putting on a great show for the fans. All I can say is that I’ll be back when I get healthy.”

Strikeforce is searching for a late replacement for Melendez so that the former champ can still compete on the card. Tough break (literally) for Thomson, but on the bright side, we didn’t want to see him fight Melendez again anyway. Their first meeting last June saw Thomson  dominate Melendez with his striking for all 25 minutes of the match; El Nino was never really in the game. And Melendez hasn’t fought anybody since then, so it’s not like he’s legitimately earned another crack at the champ. We’ll keep you posted on the random-ass opponent they scare up for him. The full lineup for "Shamrock vs. Diaz" can be seen here.

In other news…


UPDATED: Shields/Riggs Bout Bumped From Shamrock vs. Diaz Lineup, Shields/Lawler in May

Jake Shields Gilbert Melendez MMA Strikeforce
(Jake Shields, pictured here with his son Gilbert Melendez.)

Multiple sources have informed FiveOuncesofPain that a welterweight matchup between Jake Shields and Joe Riggs, which was slated to go down at Strikeforce’s "Shamrock vs. Diaz" event on April 11th, has been scrapped. Writes 5oz:

Neither Riggs or Shields is injured and one source indicated that Shields is being saved for a possible headlining slot against Robbie Lawler during a tentative Strikeforce event scheduled for May in Seattle. Additional sources have confirmed that the possible Lawler vs. Shields matchup could be officially announced by Strikeforce officials during a Thursday press conference in Los Angeles as early as today.

While he was the 170-pound champ of EliteXC, Shields had entertained the notion of going up in weight to challenge Robbie Lawler, due to the lack of challenges at welterweight. We thought the new bodies at Strikeforce would keep Shields entertained at 170 for a while longer, but it sounds like he’s more interested in big fights than welterweight tune-ups, and we respect that. Besides, weight classes are more of a suggestion than a rule at Strikeforce anyway.

Update, 5:30 p.m. ET: Shields vs. Lawler has officially been announced for Strikeforce’s May event, which will take place somewhere in Washington state. It will be a non-title fight, contested at middleweight.

In other Strikeforce news, former UFC heavyweight champ and PRIDE vet Kevin Randleman has reportedly signed a deal to return to MMA competition under the Strikeforce banner. Randleman last competed at Sengoku II last May, where he won a unanimous decision over Ryo Kawamura. Though "The Monster" was terrifying in hs prime, he has lost seven of his last ten fights. The date of his next match and his opponent have yet to be announced.


CagePotato Power Rankings Updated

Shane Carwin UFC 96 MMA
(Shane Carwin — one of the ten best heavyweights in the world. Photo courtesy of

In the wake of UFC 95, WEC 39, and UFC 96, we’ve tidied up the heavyweight, light-heavyweight, middleweight, welterweight, and featherweight top ten lists in our Power Rankings section. Some notable changes…

— Shane Carwin enters the heavyweight list at #9 after taking out his first Top 20 opponent in 69 seconds.

Keith Jardine leaves the light-heavyweight list (temporarily, at least) after his loss to Quinton Jackson on Saturday. He may have beaten a post-peak Chuck Liddell and a pre-peak Forrest Griffin, but it’s unclear if he has what it takes to beat a high-level opponent when they’re at their best.

Robbie Lawler and Jake Shields drop a spot due to inactivity. Not their fault, but whaddya gonna do. Luckily, their stints in Strikeforce begin soon.

Josh Koscheck falls to #8 on the welterweight list after being upset by Paulo Thiago. Kos definitely still has the talent of a top-ten fighter — he’s just made some unfortunate choices.

— Jose Aldo ascends to #6 on the featherweight list after his fourth brutal stoppage win in the WEC.

Check ‘em out and let us know if you see things differently.

Unrelated, but important: Thanks so much for all your awesome nominations in our Best MMA Bars forum thread. We’re going to start compiling our list soon, so if you have any others to share, please let us know!


Strikeforce’s Coker Talks Fighters, Potential Matchups

(More headkicking in store for Shamrock in ’09?)

Ever since Strikeforce purchased “select assets” from Pro Elite we’ve been wondering a) which select assets, and b) what the hell does he plan to do with them?  In an interview with USA Today, Coker inched closer to answering those questions, saying he’s spoken with 10 Pro Elite fighters and only one of them has tried to renegotiate his deal (we assume this was Kimbo Slice insisting he take a pay cut and be place on the untelevised undercard).  

Coker also said he “would like to invite K.J. Noons to fight [Strikeforce lightweight champ]" Josh Thomson, and added that he’s in talks with Noons’ agent, Mark Dion, to make that happen. 

You’ll recall that Noons essentially turned his back on EliteXC when they tried to make him fight Nick Diaz on CBS and Noons was unhappy with the payscale and with rematching Diaz in general, who was slated to make more than him despite losing the first meeting due to a cut stoppage.  Thomson is a quality, name opponent, and if Noons decides he doesn’t want to fight him either, we in the MMA world would probably do well to forget about “King” Karl altogether and let him box his little heart out.

As for other fights on Coker’s mind right now…