Every Fighter Is A Song

Howdy!

My sincere apologies for the delay, but you know how it is… work work work. All’s I can say – it beats the alternative…

Well, in the last couple of days I was toying with an idea about tying two things I love together into one post. Music and MMA. Now, we know that fighters have their walk-in music. Some choose a song based on their current mood, or if they want to make a specific statement. Others have a song they always use. That’s all nice and dandy.

But what I was thinking about was – what song IS that fighter? Which song could represent a fighter? So with that in mind…

Here are ten fighters and their songs:

Conor McGregorThe real slim shady / Eminem

There’s no one quite like Conor, some folks try to be like Conor but they’re not the real Conor now are they? A spark of craziness and a similar spark of genius. Will the real Conor McGregor please stand up?

Jon JonesBohemian rhapsody / Queen

Just like this Queen masterpiece, Jones starts out quiet, develops quickly with some unexpected turns and explodes into a crescendo. To date, though, that peak was followed by a whisper… Let’s hope that – like what usually happens with this song – we will just hit “repeat” and listen again and again as this young lad makes his comeback. Also considered one of the best of all times.

Demetrious JohnsonPlug in baby / Muse

The song is quite short, is mostly burst after burst of energy, and one of the best of its generation. Hold on, did I just describe a song by Muse? or the flyweight champion?

Daniel CormierSweet Home Alabama / Lynyrd Skynyrd

DC may be from Louisiana, but still, we’re talking about some southern gold which some people may have sneezed at, at first. Until they realized it’s just that damn good.

Frankie EdgarWorking on a dream / Bruce Springsteen

Frankie, like the Boss is a Jersey boy who’s busy with the dream. Like the subjects of Springsteen’s song (pretty much – us), Frankie might hit a wall every so often. But he keeps the hope alive, that one day, with the right attitude and hard work – he will realize his dream. Will it happen? I don’t know. The song is a song of hope, and like Frankie, we won’t give up on that.

Nate Diaz (Nick Diaz)Smoke two joints / sublime

Not a man of many words, but says it as it is. For him. Represent yo.

Ronda Rousey – I, Me, Mine / The Beatles

All through the day, I, me, mine, I, me, mine, I, me, mine. Even those tears, I, me, mine etc. It seems like it was always about Ronda doesn’t it? She’s here, She’s there, she’s everywhere (no, that song doesn’t fit). It wasn’t about the sport, not even about the promotion. It was about Ronda. Well, for better or for worse, only time will tell. We’re waiting for the new chapter in this story.

Robbie LawlerBad company / Five Finger Death Punch cover

This song, like the fighter, is a very nice mix of Aggression and heart felt look at one’s career. A warrior like Robbie who’s done this and that, was scorned by so many of us, yet realized his true identity and… well, you know the rest. I can’t deny, till the day I die.

Michael BispingManchester England England / Hair Cast

What can I say? He believes that god believes in “Claude”. That’s him. Hair also attracts polarizing views. Some people love it, while others can’t stand it. I like it.

Fabricio WerdumPais tropical / Sergio Mendes

For I do not owe anything to anyone. For I am happy, very happy with myself. I saw werdum trying to show a “tough” front in promo work. At best it was a not smiling Fabricio. This guy seems to truly be having fun every minute of his career. What wasn’t said of him in the past? he was all but written off until storming all the way to the top of the heavyweight division.

Well, hope you enjoyed. Will be happy to hear opinions, other ideas. What song is you?

Until next time (very soon – UFC197 Predictions…),

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A Fan’s UFC 200 Conspiracy theory

Hello MMA fans and everyone else!

In the past few weeks, we’ve seen updates from UFC regarding the card of their upcoming seminal event – UFC 200 scheduled for July 9th, 2016. To sum up fan reactions (including this fan right here) in a word, it feels – Underwhelming.

So far, three fights were announced:

  • Cain Velasquez vs. Travis Browne
  • Gegard Mousasi vs. Derek Brunson
  • Johny Hendricks vs. Kelvin Gastelum

Don’t get me wrong, I’ll take a card featuring these great fighters any day of the week and twice on a Sunday. But we’re not talking about “just” a PPV. We’re talking about the 200th!

Just a reminder – UFC 100 featured both bestselling fighters at the time – George St. Pierre and Brock Lesnar, in addition to other good fights. This is 100 PPVs later and I just don’t see the stakes being raised just yet…

I’ve heard the idea that the announced fights may be prelim fights and that makes perfect sense.

Unless we consider the current schedule for the various UFC biggest stars and Champions:

  • Daniel Cormier (LHW champ) vs. Jon Jones (Technically never dethroned LHW champ) – UFC 197
  • Mighty Mouse (Flyweight champ) vs. Henry CejudoUFC 197
  • Fabricio Verdum (Heavyweight champ) Vs. Stipe MiocicUFC 198
  • Luke Rockhold (Middleweight champ) Vs. Chris WeidmanUFC 199
  • Dominick Cruz (Bantamweight champ) Vs. Urijah FaberUFC 199
  • Joanna Jedrzejczyk (Strawweight champ) Vs.Claudia GadelhaTUF finale

Unscheduled:

Conor McGregor (Featherweight champ) rumored to fight Nate Diazno Featherweight title fight available for UFC #200

Rafael Dos Anios at LW – a phenomenal fighter. Not such a big seller compared to some of the already booked champions.

Robbie Lawler at WW – Another fantastic fighter, who is popular but with less sales power than other champs.

Next on the PPV sales chart? I guess that’s still Ronda Rousey. Who is she fighting? The champion Miesha Tate? Or a rematch with Holly Holm? Either one will be a great fight and well deserving on being on UFC 200 Main card. But what else?

Here is where the conspiratorial speculation begins…

Imagine this card.

  • Frankie Edgar vs. Max Holloway (or perhaps Renan Barao if he goes up a weight class)
  • Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz
  • Co-Co-Main event: Rafael Dos Anios Vs. (Winner of Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Tony Ferguson)
  • Co-main event: Miesha Tate vs. Ronda Rousey or Holly Holm

Now you might be saying, so you took care of every unscheduled champion, “bestseller” except for Robbie Lawler (Who I admit, is popular but not a major seller)… So who’s in the main event?

A-ha!

Another person, from whom we’ve been getting steadily increasing updates and news is no other than…

George St. Pierre!

Ever, the diplomat, GSP claims again and again that he’s not returning. Yet.

But what could possibly be a better tie back to UFC 100? What other fight could the UFC possibly dream for champion Robbie Lawler other than the greatest WW alive? We know that Rory Madonald is occupied with Stephen Thompson. I suspect that following that controversial decision win, UFC may not be in a rush to put Robbie in the cage with Carlos Condit right away. But GSP? Are you kidding me? It is the one and only fight I can see at this point, worthy enough to headline UFC 200.

It could be strictly as advertised – a fan’s conspiracy theory.

But… what if?

ManPraying

By all means, I’d be happy to hear your opinions. Your suggested fight cards. Drop us a line.


UFC 192 – Predictions

Hi everybody!

Well, we had a good run of events taking place at a machine gun pace and then… they slowed down a little. Perhaps it’s for the best though. Don’t want to get the fans exhausted… Oh, who am I kidding? Give us more UFC, give us more! 

A good solid card on paper with pretty much no down side. Women fight to open, Title fight to close and three potential crackers in between.

Edit (Friday, October 2nd, 2015): Today it was announced by UFC that Johny Hendricks weight cutting issues resulted in the removal of his fight with Tyron Woodley from the card, and that instead, Woodley will get the next shot at the WW title (once Robbie Lawler and Carlos Condit will conclude their epic fight).

Instead of the Hendricks fight, a new one was added to the main card and it is between Joseph Benavidez and Ali Bagautinov. The predictions were modified accordingly.

Let the predicting of UFC 192 coming up this Saturday, October 3rd on PPV commence. (All credits go to UFC/Zuffa for all photos.) We ride!

EyePena

Julianna Pena by TKO

benavidezBagautinov

Joseph Benavidez by TKO

JordanMagomedov

Ruslan Magomedov by UD

BaderEvans

Rashad Evans by UD

 

and now! the moment millions of MMA fans have been waiting for, from Huston, Texas! This is the main event of the evening!

CormierGustafsson

Daniel Cormier by Submission

Don’t forget to get back here by Monday morning for the after MMAth!

And of course, don’t forget to watch UFC 192 on PPV – This Saturday, October 3rd!

Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii-t’s TIME!

UFC 187 – Predictions (A.K.A The king is gone but he’s not forgotten)

Excuse my French people but – ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?

DO you realize what a SICK card this is? Seriously, I can’t remember such a loaded card since… like… never.

Leave the fact that we WILL have a new LHW champion following a fight between Anthony Dynamite-In-His-Hand Johnson and Daniel Who-Hadn’t-He-Already-Beat-That-People-Said-He-Won’t Cormier. Leave the fact that this would be one of TWO title fights – the second being Chris Beat-Anderson-TWICE Weidman and Vitor Everyone-Thought-He-Was-Over-But-Hell-No Belfort, It also has a fight with Donald Most-Game-Fighter-In-The-UFC Cerrone and John I-Just-Fought-The-Other-Day Makdessi.

Not enough for ya’?

How about Travis Browne Vs. Andrei Arlovski? or the “curtain jerker” featuring Benavidez Vs. Moraga?

You gotta be shitting me! Who’s that on EARLY perlims? Why it’s the always exciting Mike Pyle. And in the perlims – One John Dodson! Dodson!

SICK SICK CARD!

Ok, I’ll stop before Joe Rogan has nothing left to hype 🙂 On to some predictions. Last time I came out with a whooping 4 out of 5. I’ll try to come close this time as there’s more than one fight that can go either way.

Let’s start predicting the results of UFC 187 coming up this Saturday, May 23rd on PPV. (All credits go to UFC/Zuffa for all photos.) We ride!

Benavidez

Joseph Benavidez by UD

browne

Travis Browne by TKO

cerrone

Donald Cerrone by Submission

weidman

Chris Weidman by UD

and now! the moment millions of MMA fans have been waiting for, from Las Vegas, Navada! This is the main event of the evening!

dc

Daniel Cormier by TKO

Do I really need to say more about this event? Nope.

Don’t forget to get back here by Monday morning for the after MMAth!

And of course, don’t forget to watch UFC 187 on PPV – This Saturday, May 23rd!

Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii-t’s TIME!

YOU DIDN’T REALLY THINK THIS POST WOULD BE OVER WITHOUT SOME JON JONES, DID YOU?

Well, I planned to write a whole post about it, but Kevin Lole over at Yahoo! sports already said it all in THIS GREAT COLUMN.

The Morning After:

You know, when you have a card, so stacked, so hyped like this one, there’s a natural concern that it won’t live up to its potential. Well this one didn’t. it SURPASSED it in flying colors! What a freaking card! In my humble opinion, this was the best fight card I’ve seen since I started watching the sport. We can sit here and reminisce about great fights and events, but I don’t really recall a card where every single fight can stake a claim for fight of the night. and two title fights that delivered to boot. Alright folks, let’s review my predictions:

1. This fight started as aggressively as they come. Definitely not an easy fight to pick. Benavidez was in momentary trouble to start but persevered. Then it was Morga’s turn to show character, which he did for almost 2 full rounds. The third brought us Moraga in desperation mode. Now THIS is how you fight when you know you’re down 2 in the books. I have a ton of respect for Moraga, but I thought Benavidez was more well rounded. Somehow, even though people don’t really talk bad about Joseph, he’s still one of those highly underrated fighters out there. 1 for 1.

2. Are you kidding me??? That was supposed to be the EASIEST fight to pick and it was a no-brainer. Travis Browne all day every day. By whatever way he chose. Please remind me never to doubt Arlovski. I can’t begin to give credit to this fighter. He found every hole in Browne’s striking defense ad capitalized with stunning power. When Browne, knees still visibly shaking, threw a really hard punch and stumbled Andrei he just shrugged it off and went back on the attack, this time to finish. Again – mad respect for this veteran (even though he fucked up a perfect prediction for tonight). Don’t get me wrong though, he has no business challenging Cain just yet, but… 1 for 2.

3. When it comes to Cowboy fighting – I’m a regular fan girl. I don’t pick against Cerrone. But holy hell, what a fight! First round, Donald uses his reach advantage better than Jon Jones. Second round he comes in, throwing combinations of 4, 5 punches and a kick or two for good measure. The fight ends on one of these vicious kicks. I have nothing but utmost respect for Makdessi who not only stepped up to fight less than a month after his recent one, but also significantly stepped up in competition. Kudos and get well soon Mr. Bull. 2 for 3.

4. If you thought Vitor really stood a chance against Weidman, I think you’re somewhat misguided. Aside from a fluke accident, there was really nothing he had to offer. Weidman is to MW what Cain is to HW. Rockhold, Jacare. Two fighters left to face with any kind of threat to his throne. Can’t wait to see these fights. 3 for 4.

5. It was a simple equation in my books. If Rumble can keep this standing and land a couple of times, the fight is his. If Cormier can impose his style of fight, Rumble really doesn’t stand a chance. Big props to DC for taking a mean blow to start the fight and find his equilibrium fast enough to get a hold of a limb. From there on, it was all DC with a Mixed Martial Arts clinic until the finish via RNC. Am I the only one who doesn’t want to see him fight Bader? I have to agree with DC there. Easiest title defense he can ask for. 4 for 5 😦

What a sick card, what a great night! See you just before UFC 188 people.

Duck,Duck, Goose

Welcome back one and all to an up and running blog thing. I had some domain issues but these were resolved and we’re back in full swing (no pun intended).

I was (and still am) very busy at work, so I did not make it for a UFC174 prediction post. Had I posted it, I would’ve been 4 out of 5 (with Jimmo losing being the missed 1). You’re just going to have to trust me on that one 😉

My favorite fight (as I assume many other’s) was the Rory MacDonald show. It was a thing of beauty, talent, tactics and awesomeness. It was so great that, in comparison, the main event was predictably dull. This doesn’t go to say I think less of Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson. These were too fights where the more complete, all-rounder fighter just had his way with a good-but-not-good-enough opponent.

What happens following a successful title defense, especially following a seemingly ‘easy’ one, is normally the discussion about who’s next for the champion. Such was the case following Jon Jones’ destruction of Glover Teixeira and it started with Demetrious Johnson, seconds after he convincingly put Ali Bagautinov away.

Nothing wrong with wondering who the next challenger is, except that in MMA it seems like every fan is an authority on qualifying the contenders. Most of the time, based on favoritism of course.

When Jones was asked (as every winner does) who he’d like to fight next, his reply was Daniel Cormier. That set fire under some people’s back side. Oh, the cheek on this arrogant prick! Who is he to pick and choose? MMA is turning into boxing (an insult).

When Demetrious Johnson was asked whether now, after both he and John Dodson won so convincingly in their last fights, he’d like a re-match with “The Magician”, he said he’d prefer to fight someone he hasn’t fought yet. Which sanded some more vaginas (pardon my French).

Let’s look at a couple of statistics:

I don’t consider the term P4P (Pound for pound) anything more than speculative opinion, but let’s look at the UFC’s top 5:

P4P

Whether you agree or not, you have to concede the both Jones, as well as Johnson belong in the top 10 (Jones should without a doubt be #1).

Now let’s look at both fighters recent title defenses:

Jones (* will indicate former champions):

 Mauricio Rua* (To win the belt), Quinton Jackson*, Lyoto Machida*, Rashad Evans*, Vitor Belfort*, Chael Sonnen, Alexander Gustafsson, Glover Teixeira.

Mighty Mouse:

 Ian McCall (To win and inaugurate the belt), Joseph Benavidez (Twice), John Dodson, John Moraga.

Both champions have fought a succession of top-tier competition. Some world-class fighters with proven track records. Jon Jones made a few resounding statements with big wins over Shogun Rua as well as Lyoto Machida.

Yet, when both fighters express their desire to compete against someone they haven’t yet fought, they are accused of “Ducking”.

Like Jon Jones or hate him, He stepped into the cage with anyone the UFC put him in with (and won). He did not shy away from competition. On the contrary, he welcomed the challenges of fighting the best the UFC had to offer. After his title defense against Alexander Gustafsson, it was clear to all MMA fans that there’s a re-match in the future.

But then something else happened. Daniel Cormier decided to drop from heavyweight to Jones’ domain, the light heavyweight. Knowing well, he wouldn’t have a shot at the HW title (against his good friend Cain Valasquez), he decided to look for one where the champ was not a camp member.

So now, Jones has NOT yet fight every challenger in the division. There’s a world-class fighter who’ve beaten some really stiff competition, and on a heavier weight class. So by wanting to fight Cormier before he re-matches Gustafsson, in some twisted fan logic, Jones has “Ducked” The Swede… Interesting…

Demetrious Johnson has fought John Dodson. He beat him. He will fight him again. This is simply inevitable. But what’s the pressure on having him fighting Dodson again right now?

Everyone wants to see the best fights all the time. But keep two things in mind please.

We want to see a sport where good performance is rewarded. Fighters who make their way up the ladder deserve to get a shot at the title. If the UFC keep booking re-matches, these fighters will not get the nod they deserve.

We also want to see something new and exciting. If anyone wants to tell me a Jones Vs. Cormier fight is nothing short of exciting, I’d question their love for this sport.

I could go back in time and show how Anderson Silva (no less) or Georges Saint-Pierre, were accused of ducking, even though they fought every top challenger in their respective weight class (and some who moved classes just to have the chance to fight them).

The bottom line, as I see it, is that I can’t see how fighters, great fighters, Champions like Jones, Mighty Mouse, Silva, GSP and others can be accused of avoiding stiff competition when all they do is defend their respective belts against the very best. Us fans should enjoy fresh fights and, more importantly, not be so damn judgmental of people who, unlike us, actually walk into the cage to test their strength and will against the very best in the world.

Let me know what you think:

  • Do you agree?
  • Who should Demetrious Johnson fight next?
  • Who should John Dodson fight next?

As usual, until next time,

UFC 173 Predictions

Preds

 The Morning After:

  1. So, Varner breaks his ankle… I’m giving myself a break on this fight and wish Jamie all the best. He’s one of the toughest fighters I know.
  2. Mizugaki via UD – Bulls eye
  3. Lawler by TKO – Bulls eye
  4. Daniel Cormier wins (which I predicted) but holly shit, I didn’t picture that sub. I love both these guys and can’t wait for DC Vs. Jones/Gustafsson… We may be witnessing the stretch of really dominant champions losing belts?
  5. Talking about dominant champions losing beslt… TJ Dillashaw shocked the world! Or did he? What does it take to beat a guy like Barao? I was always amazed by his ability to keep moving forward and pressuring his opponent, and in general being the agitator. Well, no one was able to give him some of his own medicine. That is until this superb fighter came along and changed the game. TJ opened with a round 1, the likes of which I can’t remember from a contender in recent history. TJ basically said “THIS guy’s here to bring the fight to you!”. I always said about GSP’s dominance – It’s on the opponent to take his belt. Well, TJ wasn’t awarded a belt, he came and he ripped it off of Barao’s waist. Fantastic fight and a very interesting future for the BW division.

3 out of 4 by results (And kudos to DC for the finish!)

More on UFC 173:

Big Country / UFC 166

Hello everyone and welcome back to this humble blog.

Last night on UFC166 I went 2 for 3 with my predictions. I went with Cain Valasquez to retain his Heavyweight title, with Cain’s training partner, Daniel Cormier to beat Roy Nelson, and with Diego Sanchez to beat Gilbert Melendez.

I went with Cain, considering his well roundedness, his skill and unparalleled tenacity. It proved to make the difference and Cain won convincingly.
I went with Diego Sanchez because I like him and that was more of a wishful thinking kind of deal. Melendez won fair and square. Not a shocking result by any stretch of the word.
Then there was Daniel Cormier Vs. Roy (Big country) Nelson…

Before we go any further I’d just like to say that I respect any fighter who’s willing to step into the octagon and fight. Win or lose, these guys are doing what most of us don’t have the guts to do.

I like Roy Nelson. I don’t really know anyone who does not. What’s not to like? The guy won’t say “No” to any fight. He’ll go in the cage with anyone and look to take his head off with a thunderous overhead right. Roy says he wants to be a UFC champ, and I wish him all the best with that.

But I see a big problem (No pun intended) standing in his way.

Roy came to last night’s fight in the best shape in his career, weighing in at 249 lb… and although much smaller than ever before, still sporting a pretty significant gut.

Now, Big country is many things. He’s full of fight and heart, he has a granite chin and the aforementioned KO deliverer. Add all of that to a black belt in BJJ and you should definitely have a legitimate title contender. This is not the issue though. The issue is that Roy seems to have two obstacles on his way to realize his dream.

Look at photos from last night and check out the two main eventers – Junior “Cigano” Dos Santos and Cain Valasquez. Go ahead, check it. I’ll wait.

Alright. That is what a legit title contender should look like. At the absolute peak of his physical readiness. Junior lost that fight (Someone has to lose…) but he fought for 5 rounds against a man with a machine like endurance.

Roy looked like a zombie after a round and a half.

Now, don’t get me wrong. Physical build alone does not guarantee anything. Look at the likes of Chiek Congo, or Thiago Alves to see how well-built musclemen could underachieve (and this is not a knock on these two guys either). In addition, fighting Daniel Cormier, a decorated Olympic wrestler, WILL do that to a man.

But this is not the first time we see Roy taking huge breaths after 1 round.

It looks to me (and I’m no expert) that our legs shouldn’t be carrying so much weight around. Not if we need to move (fast preferably)  for 15 to 25 minutes inside a cage and fight. There has to be a balance between strength and weight. Muscle and fat.

Cain is not a skinny all muscle guy. His physical condition is proof that there is such a balance. It can be achieved.

The second obstacle in Roy’s way seem to be his insistence to rely on one technique – his KO punch.

It is evident by looking at the champions, that one skill set is no longer enough to rule. You have to round-up your game. Cain could not be a threat on his feet without his wrestling and wouldn’t scare anyone with his wrestling without his hand work or his leg work for that matter. Look at GSP, Aldo, Jones, Henderson. The top-tier of MMA are well-rounded fighters who could be dangerous all over and are utilizing all of their arsenal to get the win.

Roy has a fantastic BJJ. He just chooses to stay away from it, for reasons beyond my comprehension. The same could be said about Frank Mir.

I’ll say it again. I LOVE Roy Nelson. I hope he goes the extra mile and rounds up his game in addition to working on conditioning. With these additional layers… what a scary thought for his opponents…

I won’t finish this post without bowing down in awe to two great men. Cain Valasquez and Junior Dos Santos. Truly the baddest men on the planet. This heavyweight trilogy was nothing short of phenomenal. These two professionals have shown all that is noble and  great in MMA. Respect to the sport, to each other and to the fans. Junior lost the fight, but NOT an inch of respect. It’s fights like this one that make a fan like me stand up and cheer for both men and completely forget the result. It was a battle of two gentlemen who embody the essence of martial arts.

Thanks for checking this out. Let your voice be heard. what did you think of UFC166?