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.


December To Remember (UFC’s Greatest Month)

Ladies and gentlemen, we are liiiiiiiiive!

How many times did we hear that in the month of December, the year of 2015? On the second weekend of December alone, Bruce Buffer went all out on the microphone 3 times.

Indeed, it is a December to remember.

And for that reason, I decided to start with The Big UFC Prediction Extravaganza.

That was followed by 3 summary posts for these events:

Last night saw the last UFC event of 2015 and what can I say? It ended with a bang. I am a little disappointed at the score of last night’s main event, but it will pass. The reason we are here is to look at my predictions and say a few words to summarize this run of events which delivered.

We Roll:

Randa Markos Vs. Karolina Kowalkiewicz

Another good display from the ladies. I don’t have much to say as I don’t know these ladies well enough. I can only say that both have a chance to shine in this division. Markos showed a lot of grit and physical strength. Along with training at Tri-Star, that pretty much guarantees a good future. Kowalkiewicz showed very technical striking and conditioning. She wasn’t scared to scuffle with Markos wherever the fight went. 1 for 1.

Michael Johnson Vs. Nate Diaz

I’ll be honest with you. Whenever a Diaz brother fights I have only one hope. The hope that the opponent would shut him up already… Alas, Nate showed up with a boxing presentation that was equaled only by his taunting and head games. A typical Diaz fight. But it worked. It worked wonders. Not only did Diaz put on a clinic on a very strong opponent, he was also able to get under Johnson’s skin very quickly, throwing him off-balance and securing the win very early. You can’t deny Diaz his skills, that much is obvious. I just wish – with all my heart – that he’d grow the hell up already so I can cheer for him… Calling Conor and walking out the wrong side of the cage was on par too. 1 for 2.

Junior Dos Santos Vs. Alistair Overeem

I truly believed Junior was going to circle, jab, close in once with a good punch and finish this early. Instead it was Overeem who did the circling, softening Junior a bit with leg kicks and eventually proving Conor McGregor right. Precision beats power. That was a beautifully placed touch which marked the end of the fight. Are we really going to see Reem fight for a title in 2016? 1 for 3

Donald Cerrone Vs. Rafael Dos Anjos

Oh, my heart still aches from this one… See, when it comes to Cerrone, I’m a regular fangirl…I will never pick against one of my all time favorites. I can’t. I won’t. Even when he’s facing someone who already beat him soundly. Even when that guy is a real champion who fights like a war machine. Rafael Dos Anjos just might be the first really dominant LW champion, in a division that has seen the belt change hands more often than it used to, up until Frankie Edgar dethroned BJ Penn. We will be watching as an underrated, under-appreciated champ plows through very tough competition in awe… and Cowboy? Well, Cowboy Cerrone will always be a people’s champion. One of the most fun fighters to watch and cheer for. A personification of MMA. Skills, Heart, Drive, Entertainment. The whole damn package. 1 for 4

Well, this was a terrible predictions night, clouded by my fan-hood, but when I look past that, I have to say that Joe Silva is indeed, a matchmaker extraordinaire. 4 events, very few misses. Title changes, title defenses, new forces emerging, a lot of entertainment. What can we ask more of this? and if you managed to forget, this all came only a month following the kick that was heard around the world!

Time for some wrapping up. We’ve had 4 cards with many fights, even the prelims were loaded with main card mainstay names. I will make a few picks and they will all come from main cards. Ready? Here goes:

FIGHT OF THE MONTH:

This one goes to the UFC Middleweight title fight between Chris Weidman and Luke Rockhold. A fight that featured nonstop action in all aspects of MMA and ended with a new champion.

Honorable mention: Edson Barboza Vs. Tony Ferguson

KO OF THE MONTH:

You might all be picking the obvious – Conor’s 13 seconds one punch KO of Aldo, and you know what?… you’re probably right. The magnitude of this event overshadows my personal favorite – Frankie Edgar’s KO of Chad Mendes.

Honorable mention: Except for Frankie, Overeem landed a perfect punch which deserves a shout out.

SUBMISSION OF THE MONTH:

Charles Oliveira fought one fight before a main card started… so the submission of the month has to go to Tony Ferguson, with a nice D’arce choke on Edson Barboza. Not only was that executed so well, it also prevented a possible loss due to a point deducted earlier in the fight.

Honorable mention: Supersage Northcutt taking advantage of a reckless drive of his opponent to sink in a brutal guillotine.

Agree? Disagree? Agree to disagree? Leave your comments below. Don’t be scared homie.

That’s all folks.

Before I leave you, I also wanted to share a few more external links to some interesting articles in the wake of this UFC tour de force:

Until next time, have yourself a merry little Christmas and a happy new year!

UFC Weekend Special – Part 3

Hello there people of the MMA universe and other internet dwellers. WHAT A WEEKEND! What a treat. Short preamble today, mostly to put things in context and since I have a bunch to say down the line.

The great prediction extravaganza starts right here with THIS post.

On Part 1 – we summarize Thursday’s UFC Fight night

On Part 2 – we summarize Friday night’s TUF Finale

On Part 3 (the one you’re currently reading) – we are summarizing UFC 194.

We Roll:

Max Holloway Vs Jeremy Stephens

It seems like this was a classic case of two good strikers respecting each other enough to avoid an all out war. Stephens went for multiple TD attempts – which seems to confirm this, and Max didn’t open up as he usually does. But don’t let this fool you. It wasn’t a bad/boring fight. Just not a slug fest. I picked up 1 for 1 with Holloway’s decision win.

Demain Maia Vs. Gunnar Nelson

Before this fight started I was wondering about one thing only. Will this be a BJJ contest, or would these two guys cancel each other out and opt to strike? Well, after a 15 minutes BJJ clinic by BJJ master Demian Maia, the answer was – neither. Maia just took over and dominated the fight with TD after TD and submission attempt after another. Nelson’s ability to weather this attack is testament to his ability and heart. 2 for 2. Seems like I’m well on my way to a 100% prediction night!

Ronaldo Souza Vs. Yoel Romero

Or am I?…

In my little world, there’s no way Romero knocks out Jacare, so this will either be a decision win for Souza, or a submission win. You know, I don’t like it when judging and refereeing gets in the way, but last night was a case where it just overshadowed the fight and it’s a damn shame. It’s a shame of a title contention magnitude. Leave aside the negligible spoiled prediction rate here. Three things just screamed to high heaven as wrong. One being the overall score. Jacare won rounds 2 and 3. Romero somehow got the decision win… Two, being that phantom 10-8 round… where? when did that happen?… the fact that Yoel dropped Jacare in the first (just a tumble, Jacare was a 100%) and controlled half of the round? Up until then, Jacare was out striking him… how does that translate into 10-8? I just don’t get it. and Three… that fence grab… Jacare – an excellent BJJ practitioner mind you – was well on his way to a beautiful TD when “Mr. No gay for Jesus” grabs the fence… Oh shame on you. What would Jesus do? immediately following that, Yoel drops Jacare for a TD of his own. Now, true, the ref stood them up immediately for the cheat, but come on man… that’s not enough. The judges completely ignored that. A point should have been deducted there. That really pissed me off… now Jacare has to reset his quest for a title shot. 2 for 3.

Chris Weidman Vs. Luke Rockhold

Well, while everyone were busy getting their panties in a bunch for Aldo and McGregor, mine were in a bunch for this one. My own main event of the evening. Having watched Rockhold close up, mauling Phillippou and following him ever since the Strikeforce days I knew he had it in him to beat anyone in MW. He is exactly as advertised. Strong, skilled in all disciplines, hard-working and training in AKA with elite fighters doesn’t hurt him one bit. First round was ok. I even tended to give it to Luke. Second one was definitely Rockhold’s with multiple kicks and strikes. Third started good for Weidman but then he tried a spinning kick and the fight spiraled out of control for him, with Rockhold in full mount and raining leather. Dear Herb, I normally like your reffing decisions. This should have been stopped right there and then. But I get it. A champ gets a chance to redeem himself. Not for long though. Luke picked up where he left off and finished the fight to win the belt. That, ladies and gentlemen, is the only way to win a belt off of a reigning champion. 3 for 4.

Jose Aldo Vs. Conor McGregor

It’s been quite a few hours since that moment in history – and make no mistake, that was historical in UFC terms – and still, It’s hard to find the right words to express the shock. Not that Conor won. I predicted (along with many) that he would. But damn… 13 seconds… I won’t bore you with too much verbiage here. Conor said it all – “Precision beats power and timing beats speed“. The man knows… ask Chad Mendes who’ve been a victim twice in his last fights to exactly that. Jose Aldo is a legend of the sport, and not even that can taint his status. Conor is a legend in the making. I honestly can’t say where his limits are… I’d like to see Frankie/Conor as soon as they’re ready. Regardless of the outcome of this one, I look at the list of LW UFC fighters and drool at the prospect of him going up a weight class… 4 for 5.

Thank you judges for spoiling what should’ve been a perfect prediction night… but it’s all good. 4 out of 5 following the previous night’s 6 out of 7 more than compensates for the miserable 1 out of 4 that started this prediction extravaganza

And it’s not over until Donald Cerrone sings folks!

The next MMA post can be expected following next Saturday’s event, in which we will summarize a December to remember!

We can finally rest a little…

Thank you,

 


UFC Weekend Special – Part 2

Hello there, had enough yet? Didn’t think so.

First thing’s first, let’s put you in perspective. UFC scheduled 3 events in 3 consecutive nights and at this time, after 2 of them, I’m summarizing my predictions as well as give a few of my thoughts about the fights.

It all starts on this magnificent prediction post (or is it?), then comes Part 1, annnnd noooow…. Part 2.

We Roll:

Oh, hold on please… It seems like I totally messed up the prediction post. I honestly don’t know how it came to be that fights from the prelims showed up as main card and visa versa… but you know what? I will take that in stride, just like Mr. Tony Ferguson (more on that later) and count my apparent blessings…

NOW We Roll:

Joby Sanchez Vs Geane Herrera

What a fun fight that was. Bombs launched, exchanged, momentum shifted once or twice. In the end, the revolutionary put a stop to Joby via a second round TKO. Woo Hoo. 1 for 1 in my prediction for the night.

Gabriel Gonzaga Vs. Konstantin Erokhin

After a fun night came one of the slowest, most sluggish and mainly – tentative HW fights in history, no less. For 2.5 rounds, they mostly circled, threw some shadow boxing punches and Gonzaga went for a late TD on both first rounds. In the third, Gonzaga decided to try the TD earlier and easily scored it – which only begged the question – Why? Why for the love of GSP haven’t you done that way earlier in the fight?… Oh well. If there ever was a boring decision victory, Gonzaga nailed it. On the bright side – 2 for 2!

Tatsuya Kawajiri Vs. Jason Knight

The commentators kept telling us how good Knight is, but I think we discovered a little hole in his game. Yes, TD defense is not his strong suit. Then again, it’s Kawajiri. Not the most exciting fight ever, but it worked. Also on the prediction side. 3 for 3.

Ryan LaFlare Vs. Mike Pierce

It was nice to see Pierce back with the UFC. I think he deserves another chance. Not everyone wins a belt, but Pierce is not a pushover either. Unfortunately for him, he met LaFlare who’s size and reach were just a little too much for him to solve. Mike did tag him a couple of times and all I can say is good luck for both these guys.  4 for 4.

Joe Lauzon Vs. Evan Dunham

When you have Joe Lauzon in a fight you know 2 things with the utmost certainty. One – There will be blood. Most likely Joe’s. Two – It will absolutely never be a disappointing fight. Check and Check. However, what we saw last night was a new and improved Evan Dunham. What a beautiful display of striking. Combination after combination, clinch work, distance, you name it – he nailed it. It seemed like he completely messed up Joe’s game plan and for the most part, with no answer. Great fight. I’m dropping the first prediction here… 4 for 5.

Tony Ferguson Vs. Edson Barboza

My personal main event of the evening. Ladies and gentlemen, I’ve learned my lesson. See, I picked against El Cucuy twice in the past and failed on both counts. No more. I won’t say much about the fight. Find it. Watch it. Instead, let me riddle you this – what happens if you give a guy skills on every facet of the game, striking, grappling, TD defense and then add a granite chin, a no quit mental attitude and a big gas tank to boot? Yeah, you have no choice but to call him El Cucuy. Ferguson is without a doubt – the best TUF winner ever. I see a title fight within 18 months. 5 for 6.

Frankie Edgar Vs. Chad Mendes

Frankie Edgar will forever be the most underrated, most disrespected, unappreciated phenomenon. It seems like it doesn’t matter who this guy beat or what he accomplishes, forever I will hear the same things about him. This is the guy who beat Hall of famer BJ Penn twice – while being half his size – and destroyed Gray Maynard. This is the fighter who gave Aldo his toughest title defense (at least until tonight), and if you consider the considerable size advantage Conor has, a case can be made that tonight’s main event won’t even contradict the above statement. Frankie Edgar, folks, is one of the best mixed martial artists ever. If he’d have been denied a shot at the FW title now, I think we could have closed up shop and call this boxing… Luckily, even Dana had only one answer. The right answer! more than that. Regardless of the result in the UFC194 main event, If Conor goes up to LW before facing Frankie, I will forever doubt his ability to beat him. This fight has to happen. 6 for 7 on my predictions tonight!

As the night progressed (with the exception of the weird TUF final) the fights improved and we finished strong with a shocking KO.

And on the prediction side? A resounding win! 6 for 7. I did have a good run of 100% nights, but none of them were based on a 7 fight night.

Hope you get some rest because… tonight’s the night! Aldo, McGregor, Weidman, Rockhold… and it goes on…

So, Don’t blink!