sloths funny photos album covers
Iconic Album Covers Replaced With Sloths

Tag: The Good the Bad and the Ugly

Late Replacement Main Events: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

By Jared Jones

In a year that has seen nine pay-per-view headliners slip through the UFC’s fingers, Cain Velasquez’s injury and subsequent removal from UFC 180 might the biggest blow of them all (I hear a nasty tumble down a flight of stairs is to blame for all this). The TUF curse has now gone international, folks, and while I’m not prepared to start nailing the UFC’s coffin shut, I will say that the champ’s most recent injury has cast an ominous shadow over the UFC’s first trip to Mexico.

Then again, the UFC was able to book a hell of a replacement opponent for Fabricio Werdum in Mark Hunt, and an interim title fight between the two is probably the best thing us fans could ask for, all things considered. Late replacement main events are always a mixed bag, but before we start rioting, let’s all take a deep breath and try to remember a few last-minute headliners that actually worked out…

The Good

UFC 128: Shogun vs. Jones


(This and all photos hereafter via Getty.)

That’s right, the event that marked the beginning of the end for light heavyweights with title aspirations was never meant to happen.

Having just ended the Machida Era™ at UFC 113 in stunning fashion, Mauricio Rua was actually scheduled to face Rashad Evans at UFC 128 until a knee injury forced the latter out of the contest. Rua, who had just had his own knee repaired following the Machida fight, was then matched up against a resurgent and likeable at the time contender named Jon Jones, who had unleashed an And-1 mixtape of asskicking on Ryan Bader just two events prior.

Although it was Rua who held the tremendous experience edge, it was Jones who would dominate the fight from start to finish. Flying knees, oblique kicks, and likely an eye poke or five from the challenger had Rua in defense mode until a particularly vicious knee put him away in the third round. Despite being called up to the biggest fight of his life on a month’s notice, Jones emerged a champion and sent a chilling message to the rest of the light heavyweight division.

That message: “Hey pussy, are you still there? None of you will ever defeat me.”

Read More DIGG THIS

UFC on FOX 10: Henderson vs. Thomson — The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly


(Adriano Martins’s kick-face: Ugly, but fantastic. / Screen-shot via CP reader 5knuckleshuffle)

By Mark Dorsey

It’s starting to become a tradition to bring the UFC to Chicago in January, and this time it was particularly cold in the Windy City for UFC on FOX 10. While the preliminary fights provided a lot of excitement, the main card was dragged down by some dull moments. Nevertheless, there’s still quite a lot of stuff to talk about so join us for a final look back at the event with a Clint Eastwood-esque squinty-eyed glare.

The Good

UFC on FOX Production. At this point, the production of the UFC on FOX series is crisp, well-paced, and truly hitting its stride. The broadcast-introduction they’ve been doing with Ving Rhames narrating the story of the main event fighters while suspenseful music plays in the background was intense, as always. (It kicks the ass of the nu-metal “Bring the Pain” intro from the UFC pay-per-views, at least). Hopefully they keep Marsellus Wallace around.

The Fox analyst crew also did a great job, adding even more professionalism to the proceedings. The enthusiastic Daniel Cormier sounded like a seasoned pro joking about gumbo and jambalaya next to old staples Brian Stann and Curt Menefee. The only drawback about the analysts was that they weren’t used enough. The more time they spend breaking down the fights and analyzing the fighters’ skill-sets, the better. In fact, I’d love to see the broadcast kick back to the desk in between every fight, which would help new fans get more familiar with the fighters and wrap their heads around what they just saw.

Cowboy. Donald Cerrone‘s performance was one of the few highlights in an otherwise lackluster main card. Joe Rogan and Mike Goldberg were doing their best to hype Adriano Martins as a worthy opponent, but despite the fact that Martins looked pretty good for a guy Cowboy had never heard of, Cerrone completely out-classed him. Cerrone was patient, picking his shots in the first round until he finally caught Martins with his hands down and landed a knockout shin kick to the head.

After the KO, Cerrone could have landed another shot to his unconscious opponent but to his credit he held back and didn’t follow up with an unnecessary punch. In fact, his calmness after the fight was chilling. The old adage in football when you score a touchdown is to act like you’ve been there before; that’s exactly what Cerrone did, looking like a stone-cold killer.

Read More DIGG THIS

UFC 168: The Good, The Bad, And the Ugly


(After knocking out Josh Barnett, Travis Browne performed the Warmaster’s trademark throat-slashing victory gesture, which means that legally, he now owns Barnett’s soul for all eternity. / Photo via Getty.)

By Mark Dorsey

Featuring an eagerly awaited rematch between the greatest middleweight of all time and the undefeated phenom who took his belt, UFC 168: Weidman vs. Silva 2 was one of the most anticipated UFC cards of 2013. Thankfully, the highly entertaining main card did not disappoint. Showcasing great performances, unsportsmanlike conduct, leg-snapping horror, and a fart heard around the world, UFC 168 left us no shortage of things to talk about. Here’s our clear-eyed look at what went down on Saturday night.

The Good

• With the state of WMMA still burgeoning, the co-main event of Ronda Rousey vs. Meisha Tate was an important fight for solidifying Women’s Bantamweight as a legitimate and financially viable division for the UFC. Thanks to the highly publicized rematch between Anderson Silva and Chris Weidman, the UFC’s two biggest female stars had a high-profile PPV stage to showcase their skills. Thankfully, for the UFC and the fans, Rousey and Tate did not disappoint. Rousey put on a dominating performance and capped it off with a third-round submission victory. The best part? Tate made the fight competitive.

“Cupcake” managed to last three rounds and in the process took Rousey down, escaped multiple submission attempts, and threw some good upkicks from the bottom that had Ronda using caution. On the whole, Tate was outclassed by the better fighter but she showed that Rousey is not invincible — and that’s a good thing. Rousey is an incredible athlete but the UFC cannot base their entire WMMA venture on one fighter. They need contenders and they need the fans to believe that those contenders stand a legitimate chance of winning; otherwise, interest will wane quickly. Rousey looked great, but beatable. That’s exactly what needed to happen. With Sara McMann, Cat Zingano, and Alexis Davis all serving as reasonable challenges, the future of the women’s bantamweight division is looking bright.

Read More DIGG THIS

UFC on Fox 9: The Good, The Bad, And the Ugly


(Uh…guys? I’m pretty sure that’s Herb Dean. / Screencap via r/MMA)

By Mark Dorsey

Before we get into the endless promotion for the year-ending and stacked UFC 168: Weidman vs. Silva 2, let’s take one last, clear-eyed look at what went down at WEC UFC on Fox 9. The injury-cursed event seemed destined to be a disappointment to many fans who consider the lighter fighters boring, especially considering it was the lightest fight card in UFC history, with an average weight of just over 145 pounds. The fact that the fights were taking place at the Sleep Train Arena seemed like a bad omen, foretelling the coma-inducing boredom that might have resulted from a night of decisions. Nevertheless, despite the haters, the smaller guys provided a card of highly entertaining fights and they showcased why many MMA purists consider them the most exciting fighters in the sport.

The Good
• Too often, referees only get noticed when they screw up. However, the officials for this card should be praised for a solid night of work in which they did their jobs properly and kept the focus where it belongs: the fighters. Props to John McCarthy, Herb Dean, and Mike Beltran for getting through the 11-fight card with no critical errors. Even Dana White, who has been openly critical of MMA officiating in the past, praised both Big John and Herb Dean, saying, “These are the best guys” and complimented his one-time nemesis, McCarthy, saying, “When John is in that Octagon, he is in absolute and total control.”

• Much has been written lately about the success of Team Alpha Male under head trainer, Daune “Bang” Ludwig. Saturday night gave the camp an opportunity to showcase how deserving they were of that praise, with four fighters from the Sacramento-based crew competing. As a whole, the team didn’t perform flawlessly, but they did manage to win two of their four fights. It was a great night for Urijah Faber, as the hometown hero steamrolled Michael McDonald and established himself — again — as the top contender in the Bantamweight division. Chad Mendes also did what he needed to, beating Nik Lentz by unanimous decision. On the losing side, Danny Castillo dropped a close decision to Edson Barboza that many thought should have been a draw, and Joseph Benavidez got knocked out cold by Demetrious Johnson. Other than Benavidez, Team Alpha looked good, and judging from their backstage reaction to Urijah Faber’s win, they truly are a tightknit group that will continue their upward trajectory.

Read More DIGG THIS

MMA Fighters Transitioning to Pro-Wrestling: The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly


(Let me guess, it’ll sound something like “Tito Ortiz, The Huntington Bad Beach Boy: Future NTA world TNA heavyweight champion of the world.” Capture via ProWresBlog.Blogspot.Com.)

For some MMA fighters, professional wrestling was just a one-time cash grab. For others, it became a second career. Inspired by yet another week of TNA Impact Wrestling’s efforts to get anyone to care about the professional wrestling experiments of two broken-down MMA legends, we’ll be examining fighters who took up professional wrestling after they made their names in MMA in our newest installment of The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly.

Bear in mind that this article is focusing on mixed martial artists who transitioned to professional wrestling careers, and not fighters who started off as professional wrestlers. So that means fighters like Brock Lesnar, Ken Shamrock, Bobby Lashley, Giant Silva, Bob Sapp, Dos Caras Jr. (aka Alberto Del Rio), Dan Severn (Google it) and Sakuraba will not be covered here — although a few of these men will make appearances in this article. Let’s start off on a positive note…

The Good

The Professional Wrestling Career of Josh Barnett.

When you’re thinking of good instances of an MMA fighter turning to professional wrestling as a second career choice, Josh Barnett should immediately come to mind. There have been other fighters who dabbled in professional wrestling, but Barnett is one of the only ones to be just as popular and successful in it as he was in MMA.

Before his transition, Barnett became the youngest heavyweight champion in UFC history by defeating Randy Couture at UFC 36. After being stripped of his title due to a positive drug test, Barnett set his sights on the Japanese professional wrestling scene, where the fans value legitimacy and toughness from their wrestlers more than mic skills and charisma (although Barnett has both in spades). He immediately challenged for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, and although he came up short, he went on to enjoy the most relevant crossover career of any fighter on this list before his return to the UFC earlier this year put a halt to the wrasslin’ for the time being.

It’d be easy to call his work with the incredibly underrated Perry Saturn or the technical wrestling clinic that he put on against Hideki Suzuki his most impressive stuff, but it’s probably not. Honest to God, Barnett’s biggest accomplishment may be the fact that he managed to pull Bob Sapp — who has the same cardio and technique in wrestling as he does in MMA — through a watchable match. How many people can claim that?

Read More DIGG THIS

Headlining an Event in Your UFC Debut: The Good, The Bad, And the Ugly


(Money. Girls. Fame. Private locker rooms that you don’t have to share with old men washing their balls. A win for Ilir on Saturday would be truly life-changing. / Photo via LoveStrandell)

First-time UFC jitters are bad enough when you’re curtain-jerking on the prelims. Can you imagine what it would be like to go from relative obscurity to UFC headliner? Well, Ilir Latifi is about to find out this Saturday, God bless him. Come to think of it, his UFC on FUEL 9 opponent Gegard Mousasi is technically in the same situation, although at least the Dreamcatcher has had the benefit of previously competing in major promotions like Strikeforce, DREAM, and PRIDE.

Latifi is a long shot in every sense of the word, but of course this is a sport where anything can happen. Plenty of fighters have found themselves at the top of the lineup for their first UFC fight and made the most of it. Others have crashed and burned in horrific fashion. So which camps will Latifi and Mousasi fall into? Read on for a brief history lesson, and let us know what you think…

The Good


- Anderson Silva. In one of the most stunning UFC debuts, period, the up-and-coming Brazilian striker stepped into Chris Leben‘s world in the main event of Ultimate Fight Night 5 in June 2006 and scored a flawless victory over the southpaw slugger, dramatically altering the course of history in the UFC middleweight division. Silva was granted an immediate title shot and hasn’t lost a fight since.


- Alistair Overeem. Watching the Reem tear Brock Lesnar apart at UFC 141 validated everyone who ever thought that Lesnar was a pro-wrestling fraud, and that Overeem was the future of the heavyweight division. It hasn’t exactly worked out like that, but at the time, it looked like we were entering a new era.

Read More DIGG THIS

‘TUF 17: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen,’ Episode 2 — The Good, The Bad, And the Ugly

You’d think that Jon Jones would understand the importance of having a tremendous reach advantage, considering it’s one of the key elements of his own success in the UFC. But I’ve already said too much. Read on for our quick breakdown of the best and worst moments from last night’s episode of The Ultimate Fighter 17: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen, which produced the season’s first middleweight quarterfinalist.

The Good
- The sheer glee on the faces of the castmembers as they enter the TUF mansion for the first time, especially the ones who are used to living a much more humble lifestyle. Not a single one of them goes straight to the booze closet and starts breaking shit. Luke Barnatt is just thankful for six weeks of free food. The house is “astronomically extraordinary,” according to Gilbert Smith. Enjoy it guys, because that beautiful house will soon become…YOUR PRISON.

- Sonnen wearing wind-pants to every appearance in the gym — gotta love it — and the familiar faces among the assistant coaching staff, including Frank Mir (Team Jones), Vinny Magalhaes (Team Sonnen) and Mike Dolce (Team Sonnen).

- Uriah Hall telling Sonnen he wants to fight the best guys in the house, after Sonnen makes it known that he’d like Hall to get an easy road to the finals. Hall’s attitude is a refreshing contrast to Bubba McDaniel, who is fixated on getting the matchups that would give him the best chance of advancing in the tournament, and spends the first half of the episode lamenting how the Smith vs. Barnatt selection puts Team Jones at risk for losing control of the picks.

Read More DIGG THIS

‘TUF 17: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen,’ Episode 1 — The Good, The Bad, And the Ugly

The Ultimate Fighter returned last night with the two-hour premiere of “Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen,” and since the show is no longer on Friday nights, we figured we’d give it a look. Full results from the 14 middleweight elimination fights and team selections are at the end of this post, but first, let’s run through what worked, what didn’t, and what really didn’t…

The Good
- Allowing the fighters’ friends and family members to watch their elimination fights. It raised the emotional stakes for the competitors, removed the eerie silence that plagued the elimination rounds of previous seasons, and led to moments like this. Also, Andy Enz’s dad should be hired as an assistant coach. ”REFUSE TO LOSE!”

- The stoppages. Eight of the 14 elimination fights ended in the first round. In general, there weren’t a lot of point-fighters or reality-show goofballs on display — just a bunch of raw, aggressive dudes who came to win.

Read More DIGG THIS

UFC 152: The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly


(I kept telling the bouncers that I was over 21; I even showed them my ID and told them that it was *my* afterparty that they were bouncing, yet this happens once again…) 

After enduring the longest card free drought in nearly two years, the UFC returned to action last Saturday, delivering an event that was thoroughly satisfying from top-to-bottom, unless you happened to be in the small minority of people who wished ill upon either Michael Bisping or Jon Jones, that is. But as is the case with most UFC events, the evening was not without its share of ups and downs, so join us as we take take off our fanboy pants, pull our analrapist stockings over our heads, and take a look back at the event that was…

The Good:

Seth Baczynski’s Second Tour of Duty: One of the more improbable, if not unknown, comeback stories currently circulating the MMA world, the story of “The Polish Pistola’s” second octagon run has seen him score submission victories over TUF 13 alum Clay Harvison, TUF 7 alum Matt Brown, and earn a split decision victory over Lance Benoist. His beautiful knockout of Simeon Thoreson this past weekend should have easily earned him the KOTN award, but we imagine that Baczynski will be happy enough knowing that he has more than earned a shot at some stiffer competition — and considering his finishing rate, a main card spot — in the near future.

Vinny Magalhaes‘ Second Tour of Duty: While we’re on the subject of TUF alums kicking major ass their second time around, we can’t overlook TUF 8 finalist Vinny Magalhaes, who clearly packed some of his M-1 swagger for his return to the big show (figuratively speaking, of course). Granted, it makes your job a hell of a lot easier when your opponent decides to play directly into your strengths, but for now, we’ll just congratulate Vinny on a sweet finish and a successful return.

Read More DIGG THIS

Moving Up In Weight: The Good, The Bad, And the Ugly


(Overeem, before adding horse-meat and anti-inflammatory meds to his diet.)

By Josh Hutchinson

Whether it’s Jon Jones wanting to move up to heavyweight, or everyone wanting Frankie Edgar to cut to 145, weight-class-shifting is a hot topic for MMA fans and pundits alike. And while we’ve recently covered the perils and benefits of dropping to a lower weight class, the same can be said for moving up in weight. After jumping to heavier divisions, some fighters’ proverbial stars have shined brighter, some have dimmed, and some have gone God-damn-supernova — and it’s never easy to predict which fighters will have success. Check out some notable examples below, and tell us which other fighters you think would do well with some extra meat on their bones.

The Good

Alistair Overeem

(Same guy as above, same backdrop, and yet something is different…)

All insinuations aside, Overeem is a prime example of success at moving up a weight class. As I previously mentioned, Overeem has gone 12-1-1 since making a full commitment to heavyweight, and while the quality of opponents he faced was often questionable, that is still a hell of a good run. If you take a look back at his time at light-heavyweight, the stats are not nearly as impressive. Overeem’s losses usually came at the hands of the light-heavyweight division’s top guys, like Chuck Liddell, Antônio Rogério Nogueira, and Ricardo Arona. His run at light-heavyweight showed that he couldn’t hang with the elites of the respective weight class, and was vulnerable to being manhandled by stronger opponents.

After doing whatever it is he did to bulk up, he turned his fortunes around and achieved the greatest stardom of his career, becoming the poster child for successful jumps up the weight-class ladder. If it wasn’t for some bad decision-making, he would be fighting for the sport’s highest prize this weekend. Here’s to hoping he gets his shit together soon.

Read More DIGG THIS
CagePotatoMMA