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UFC 97: The New Guys


(Foupa-Pokam’s most recent fight, against Kyacey Uscola at PFC 12 in January. The KO comes at the video’s 8:12 mark.)

UFC 97: Redemption goes down this Saturday in Montreal, and among the card’s horde of Brazilians, Canadians, and TUF vets are three dudes who will be looking to prove themselves in the Octagon for the first time. These are their stories…

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BRIAN STANN (LHW)
Experience: 6-1 record primarily in the WEC, with all wins by first-round TKO. Holds victories over Aaron Stark, Steve Cantwell, and Doug Marshall.
Will be facing: Krzysztof Soszynski (16-8-1, 1-0 UFC)
Lowdown: Stann became the WEC’s light-heavyweight champion in March 2008 when he knocked out Doug Marshall at WEC 33, but lost the title in his first defense when he was TKO’d by Steve Cantwell — who Stann had defeated in a previous fight. Stann and Cantwell were supposed to have their rubber match at UFC’s "Fight for the Troops" event last December, but Stann was forced to pull out with a foot injury; Cantwell went on to snap the arm of Razak Al-Hassan then brag about it. A former Captain in the U.S. Marines and Iraq war vet, Stann was awarded the Silver Star after saving the asses of his entire 42-man platoon following an unfortunate ambush-situation near Karabilah, which was later portrayed on the History Channel show Shootout! He hails from Scranton, Pennsylvania.

XAVIER FOUPA-POKAM (MW)
Experience: 20-9 record (18 wins by stoppage in the first two rounds) with multiple appearances in Cage Rage and Palace Fighting Championship.
Will be facing: Denis Kang (31-11-1, 0-1 UFC)
Lowdown: Currently riding a seven-fight win streak, the 26-year-old Frenchman describes his Muay Thai-based style as "very violent." Professor X splits his training time between Team Quest in Temecula, California — where he acted as an Anderson Silva-mimic when Dan Henderson was preparing for his middleweight title fight against the Spider at UFC 82 — and Cyrille Diabate’s Snake Team in Paris. Before devoting his life to fighting, Foupa-Pokam was a cameraman and director’s assistant, and calls filmmaking his "second passion." He has three DQ losses on his record, due to an ill-fitting mouthpiece that kept falling out (in a fight against Martin Kampmann), an accidental groin strike, and an illegal elbow on the ground during an event where they weren’t allowed. Canada will be the twelfth country he’s competed in.


TJ GRANT (WW)
Experience: 13-2 record (12 wins by submission) with multiple appearances in King of the Cage and TKO, and wins over UFC vets Chad Reiner and Forrest Petz; has never competed outside of Canada.
Will be facing: Ryo Chonan (16-8, 1-2 UFC)
Lowdown: Grant is representin’ Fit Plus in his homebase of Nova Scotia, where he acts as an MMA instructor. A purple belt in jiu-jitsu under Jorge Gurgel — as well as a three-time provincial wrestling champion — Grant has rounded out his game by studying Muay Thai in Thailand. The 25-year-old has the home-field advantage in his fight against Chonan, as he’s already fought at the Bell Centre three times. In preparation for the fight, he’s been drilling his wrestling with Ben Askren.

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Jubbie- April 14, 2009 at 2:02 pm
I agree Stann needs work. But K-Sos could easily wilt from power punches like in his last fight. If it goes to the ground, it's probably over for Stann though.
Walrus- April 14, 2009 at 1:51 pm
Hold up,

Stann hails from Scranton, PA. Perhaps Stann is an alias for a certain head-kick wielding Dwight Schrute?


hmmm...
That's what I said- April 14, 2009 at 12:46 pm
As a native of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton region, I appreciate your reference from The Office. It enjoyed it for a long time...
MJM- April 14, 2009 at 11:31 am
Stann is a great guy with gutz galore; but, unfortunately K-Sos has a much more complete skill-set. I would love to see Stann win, but unless he lands a quick KO he will likely get submitted. He does need some time in the farm league.
Lysol- April 14, 2009 at 9:51 am
For the first time in a while, I can actually see all three of the new guys winning their debuts.
poopiestick- April 14, 2009 at 9:15 am
Huh, the French dude was like "It's great to fight in the USA because American fans are knowledgeable and it feels good."

The white guy was like. "I don't like French guys. I'm Ice cold. I put people on ice."

What a herb.
K.E.G.- April 14, 2009 at 9:04 am
agreed. He has alot of potential, but isn't going to be able to grow in the UFC
Imbecile- April 14, 2009 at 8:46 am
The nice thing about Brian Stann is that he is the first to tell you he needs improvement in all aspects of his game. The downside is that he doesn't have enough time to get that level of improvement while fighting in the UFC. Stann has a great story, and he is a genuine American hero who deserves the utmost respect. Unfortunately, he probably needs to fight in some of the lower leagues a bit more before taking the step up. For me, Stann having to immediately jump into the UFC was the most unfortunate part about the WEC dissolving the higher weight classes.
Anonymous- April 14, 2009 at 8:42 am
i hope they all lose
jj- April 14, 2009 at 8:39 am
Chonan by flying-scissor heel-hook
K.E.G.- April 14, 2009 at 8:14 am
I feel bad for Stann. He's an inspirational dude and deserves our respect but I don't see him being able to hang in the UFC unless he realy improves every aspect of his game besides hitting hard. Although I can't fucking stand the "Polish Experiment" and hope Stann kills him before his inevitable demise.
richorama- April 14, 2009 at 7:58 am
Fupa: noun. Fat upper-pussy area.
my cock- April 14, 2009 at 7:57 am
Wow CP you actually reporting MMA news that doesn't have to do with whore girls. Seriously are you actually doing your job now jerkoff....
CoconutSkin- April 14, 2009 at 7:53 am
It's going to be my FIRST time too
Tom- April 14, 2009 at 7:52 am
first bitchesss!!!
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