Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Ryan Bader Vs. Carmelo Marrero
Tyson Griffin Vs. Rafael dos Anjos
Junie Browning Vs. Cole Miller
Gleison Tibau Vs. Jeremy Stephens
Ricardo Almeida Vs. Matt Horwich
Brock Larson Vs. Jesse Sanders
Tim Credeur Vs. Nick Catone
Jorge Rivera Vs. Nissen Osterneck
Rob Kimmons Vs. Joe Vedepo
Tim McKenzie Vs. Aaron Simpson
Steve Steinbeiss Vs. Ryan Jensen
Kampmann vs Condit
A great free main event fight, Condit vs Kampmann is going to be exciting. The two aggressive strikers have a tough test against each other. Condit has hype and the weight of his WEC belt on him as he makes his much anticipated UFC debut while great things are expected of Kampmann one division south of where he started his UFC career.
Condit has showed technical Muay Thai skills and a dangerous submission game off of his back, both courtesy of his lanky frame. He'll enjoy a 4 inch reach advantage in this fight which he'll use very well and combined with good angles and footwork will make Kampmann work to get inside. That being said, when Kampmann gets inside, look for him to strike, dirty box and clinch and use his size advantage to wear Condit down. Also, Kampmann has good takedowns and a good top game he can use if things get frustrating on his feet, and despite Condits move to the wrestling heavy Arizona Combat Sports, his takedown defense is his weakest area. Condit though has shown a great guard with quick armbars and triangles that keeps him dangerous when taken down.
Look for Kampmanns size and power to control Condit and take away the Unanimous Decision.
Other notable fights come courtesy of last seasons TUF contestants as Ryan Bader takes on Carmello Marrero and Junie Browning takes a step up in competition against ATTs Cole Miller.
Sunday, March 22, 2009
When fighters should retire is becoming a hot topic lately as some MMA legends have lost their dominance in the twilight of their careers. For some fighters such as Ken Shamrock, the choice seems obvious. Others, such as Matt Hughes or Chuck Liddell, the choice isn't as black and white. Both fighters, however, have upcoming bouts that should help determine what they've got left. Liddell's opponent, "Shogun" Rua, has looked very beatable even in his victory over Mark Coleman. Liddell has never had cardio issues, and if Rua shows up like he did in his past two fights, Liddell should have no problem getting a win. Hughes has a tough (but winnable) fight with Matt Serra. Having fought more than Serra recently and having good submission defense, Hughes should be able to pull off the decision win with his wrestling. However, retirement would seem inevitable if either loses. The question is if they win, will they choose to leave the sport on a high note, or will the thrill of victory keep them hooked and following the way of Shamrock?
Monday, March 16, 2009
Headed by Miguel Torres, Uriah Faber, Mike Brown and a new 125 lb division, the little guys are making noise and showing why smaller and faster make for exciting fights. Miguel Torres is a pound for pound king who puts on fights that would put Anderson Silva on the edge of his seat. Unfolding drama north at 145lbs between new champ Mike Brown and the returning Uriah Faber adds to the excitement and with a deep list of legitimate contenders there are some great match ups on the way. Did I mention WEC cards are free?
Aoki, Alvarez, Hansen, Kawajiri and JZ make up half of most of the 155lb Top Ten Lists and they're all in the same place. Add that mix to the tournament format still alive and well overseas and enjoy.
The biggest North American contender to the throne held by the UFC. With the demise (thank God) of EliteXC, Scott Coker and Co. have grabbed some great fighters to add to their stable as well as a tv deal with CBS. Coker has shown he knows what he is doing and has steadily grown his brand for long term success. His fighters speak very well of how they're treated and even Dana White has nothing bad to say. While no division is exceptionally deep, they have solid fighters across the board and are more willing to play nice with other promotions to put on the fights that fans want. Expect BIG things from Coker and Strikeforce this year.
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Now the meaning behind this phrase is no doubt to belittle the skills of the victor and chalk up the W to a "lucky" shot. Now let's look at this honestly without thinking how your friend, favorite fighter or hero lost a fight that from your couch you thought they had no business losing.
When does a fighter throw a punch? When they are trying to inflict damage to their opponent. Has anyone ever thrown a punch thinking, "Man I really hope this punch doesn't hurt them or knock them out, I'm really just trying to set up my takedown."? I doubt it. Punches may be thrown at different angles for different strategic reasons or to set up another attack but every time you see four knuckles flying at your face it's safe to assume the person owning those knuckles is not trying to make your day better.
So where does the luck get attributed? That person's lucky he threw the punch? Well he meant to throw the punch so that isn't it. Intention shows skill, he is doing something he trained to do to damage his opponent. Is he lucky the other guy didn't slip or block it? Well no one gets hit on purpose. That means the guy that got hit either didn't see it (lack of awareness) or didn't respond properly (lack of skill).
So no matter how you look at it, when one guys is one the canvas and the other is flexing for the cameras, a knock out shows a skill gap between two fighters.
Friday, March 6, 2009
Quinton Jackson v. Keith Jardine
Winner: Quinton Jackson Knock Out 2
Matt Hamill v. Mark Munoz
Winner: Mark Munoz Unanimous Decision 3
Gabriel Gonzaga v. Shane Carwin
Winner: Shane Carwin Technical Knock Out 1
Tim Boetsch v. Jason Brilz
Winner: Tim Boetsch Technical Knock Out 2
Brandon Vera v. Michael Patt
Winner: Brandon Vera Knock Out 1
Kendall Grove v. Jason Day
Winner: Jason Day Technical Knock Out 1
Pete Sell v. Matt Brown
Winner: Pete Sell Unanimous Decision 3
Tamdan McCrory v. Ryan Madigan
Winner: Tamdan McCrory Unanimous Decision 3
Aaron Riley v. Shane Nelson
Winner: Aaron Riley Technical Knock Out 2
Gray Maynard v. Jim Miller
Winner: Gray Maynard Unanimous Decision 3
Jackson vs Jardine
Jardine will not be able to do what Forrest did. Forrest has much crisper, straighter hands which helped keep Jackson at range as opposed to Jardines crazy-monkey-loopy punches. While Jardine does have great kicks that were also a big part of Forrests victory, Jackson and his camp know there coming. Jackson power and crisp boxing will make it a short night for The Dean of Mean and likely net him a KO of the night.
Maynard vs Miller
The Miller brothers are known for stepping up on short notice and still winning. They've shown they have solid submissions and stand up and are well rounded with good cardio. Where we have seen the lightweight part of the Miller duo successful is top position, pushing the pace. I think Maynard presents problems here and we'll see Miller need to deviate from his normal plan to win. We know Maynard is the better wrestler. The key here will be standup, and if Millers submission game off his back is equal to his top game. I think Maynard will try to stand to see how that goes before going back to his wrestling bread and butter. Maynard is most likely to win and most likely by decision but the pace both these fighters set should earn a Fight of the Night bonus.
McCrory vs Madigan
I know its Madigan's debut and McCrory's 5th Octagon appearance but look at Madigans training and kickboxing record. If I were a betting man Madigan is a sick underdog bet since he's an underdog somewhere around 200 points last I saw.
Grove vs Day
A little biased here since Day trains at a Roy Harris school in Canada and I'm a Roy Harris man myself, but I'm still thinking this plays out like Day vs Belcher and Grove shows us his suspect chin like he did against Cote and Rivera.