UFC on FOX: WTF?!?!

You know I’m mad when you force me to abbreviate.

I just don’t get it. In the first event, you decided to only do one fight, granted it was a title fight that had potential for fireworks, but still. It was also one that could end just like it did: with a really f***ing fast TKO. Your fear of bad fights overshadowed the simple math of how awesome the other fighters on the card are.

And, of course, it was the fight right before that featuring fan favorites Ben Henderson and Clay Guida that was Fight Of the Night and no one outside of Facebook saw it.

So, how do you make up for that mistake? Let’s do a couple of fights that will decide the #1 contender.

Okay, I can get behind that, you don’t necessarily want to give away your championship money draws (even if Diaz vs Conduit could end up being a bloody brawl worthy of the ages).

Here’s the problem: your contenders are all wrestlers. Wrestlers that are known for going to decision and stalling things out.

Great idea guys!

Sure, there is always a punches chance that the fight. Just didn’t happen.

Kind of a b**** isn’t it? Strikers might end the fight in 10 seconds and wrestlers might prolong the fight into agony. I can’t imagine the Dana has had a solid s*** in years because of this kind of stuff.

And which bout was Fight Of the Night? The fight immediately preceding the FOX broadcast featuring the highly explosive Evan Dunham and Minnesota’s own Nik Lentz.

Dunham showed excellent standup and Lentz showed to have a sort of epiphany as a fighter. He evolved from wrestler to grappler and striker. He showed poise on his back and his striking looked far more crisp that Minnesotan’s tend to show on the big stage.

And no one saw it.

Get your s*** together. I get that there are $$$ in PPV, but the opportunity for the sport to reach the masses needs to be more important than cash in hand. One more snoozer of a main event fight and fans are just going to start getting annoyed at seeing the plugs in the lower corner of their TV screens during more exciting sporting events.

Now I don’t blame Dana or Joe or anyone for the performance of the fighters. That’s ignorant and, at worst, I’m stupid.

What? There’s a difference.

These guys are contenders and can be marketed because of their personality. It’s not his fault they turned into sivs on the small screen big stage.

How scary is it that, right now, it looks like Nate Diaz in his booked fight for UFC on FOX 3 could have a direct impact on the future of MMA in the mass market?

(several minutes later, after a sip of Two Gingers Whiskey and a Red Bull…that’s right, shame is not one of my vices)

Okay, I feel better. That all being said, I feel nothing but the utmost joy in what the future looks like for MMA. The undercard featured some great fights with men that are taking full advantage of their opportunity on the big stage.

Like:

Now those that know me know I despise heel hooks, but that set up is all kinds of awesome and worth a shot. Of course, I’m the Baby Huey of BJJ around here so there is a chance that you might suddenly hear a strange echoing pop for miles and miles away.
In the end, it is just a sad trend that the established fighters are the ones who are playing it safe. I know, they have a lot to lose, but let’s face it, the UFC and MMA have even more to lose when riding on the backs of your weak a** performances.

MMA and Boxing: We Are Not Enemies

“My combat sport is better!”

“No, my combat sport is better!”

That’s all I hear when I have to listen to two idiots argue over the virtues of mixed martial arts versus boxing.

Stop it.

We are not enemies.

Boxing and mixed martial arts are no exclusive of each other. Without boxing, MMA would still look like the slap fighting that it was back in the 90s, little better than those old Toughman competitions that we all knew and loathed for their exposing real-life fighting for anything other than the Bruce Lee movie we wanted it to be.

And boxing should be thrilled to see that MMA has revitalized people’s love for the simplicity of a punch. I’m yet to go to an MMA event where people booed because there was “too much striking”.

If you want to argue about $$$, fine. Leave it at that. But don’t compare the two or argue that one is more superior or more realistic or any other bulls*** like that. Leave the “liar liar pants on fire” jibs to the playground.

Let’s face it MMA fans, people and fighters alike love some good striking.

Look at the line up for the UFC on Fox 2 that is coming up this weekend.

Rashad Evans fancied himself something of a Mohammad Ali when he faced Lyoto Machida.

Well, maybe from Ali vs Fraizer.
Or Ali post-Parkinson’s Disease.
Too soon?
Michael Bisping claimed before his Dan Henderson fight that he barely ever got hit in training. That must be some great head movement! And I bet that he would never be so dumb as to circle Henderson’s famous right hand…
Hmm… maybe some of this boxing terminology is getting lost in translation.
Well, then look at Maia. A world champion grappler that has succeeded in MMA. He has known that to really survive you have to adapt and train. If for nothing else than to survive the 10 seconds it takes to get a well-timed take down…
Son of a b****.
Okay, so maybe some of the fighters on the upcoming card don’t quite have the appreciation or the dedication to the “sweet science”. Then again, maybe it is over rated.
I mean, let’s take a heavyweight with huge heavy hands and a history of first round knockouts and put him against someone that is more prone to working range and patience with timing. I think we all know how that would end.
Are you starting to understand?

What Part of "MIXED MARTIAL ARTS" Don’t You Understand?

I’m a pretty smart guy.
I applied to college once.
I didn’t get in, but I hear that The DeVry Institute is pretty exclusive and it’s all about who you know.
So, for the life of me, I just can’t figure out why there are so many fighters out there (at all stages of the game) that don’t seem to understand the concept of MIXED MARTIAL ARTS.

There are actually people out there that have the unbelievably great opportunity to JUST BE FIGHTERS. They brag about three training sessions a day and have their little highlights from training to make everyone see how intense they are… then they gas out or throw a kick that is just a notch worse than… well, me.

There are a lot of incredible athletes out there- yes, Brock Lesnar is one- that decided to make the transition into mixed martial arts with a fairly limited game.
The key is that they are really really really good at that one thing they do. 
Damian Maia is another.
I was about to list about a dozen other fighters until I realized that they were all grapplers. That makes me sad, but it brings up a good point:
All fights start standing up.
It is probably why wrestlers do so well at the early stages of their careers. A good take down is hard to stop and when the fight is in the cage, you are about as likely to get back up when pinned against the cage as I am to win a… well, anything. Fill in your own damn joke, I can’t be doing everything for you.
Then they start to go against fighters that have been doing it for a while. Fighters that have been also training muay thai or *gasp* boxing!
Which leads me to another points: FOCUS MITS AREN’T BOXING!!!
Don’t get me wrong, this impresses the hell out of me. It looks really cool and it exemplifies exactly how fast Sean Sherk really is. He has incredible take downs and body fat that makes me a combination of jealous and gay. There is just one problem:
Maybe TWO problems:
Which leads to:
Fighters don’t let you get a foot away from them to work combinations.

And it’s not like Sherk is the only one to show this sort of behavior. There is a ridiculous number of fighters out there that will coast by on the talent that have presented and worked on prior to MMA. Well, MMA isn’t wrestling. MMA isn’t muay thai. MMA isn’t boxing. MMA isn’t BJJ. It is all of the above.

Train that way for f***’s sake!

So, then who does it right, at least as far as boxing is concerned?
Lots of guys. Look at guys like Chris Lytle or Junior Dos Santos. Guys that actually TRAIN BOXING when they train. I’m not talking about focus mits or heavy bags or wearing boxing gloves while still allowing takedowns. 
I’m talking about actual boxing. Find your range. Learn to move your head. When a real punch is flying at you with no chance for a takedown, you can learn to focus, find your feet and get range on your opponent to land the punches you dream about.
If you want the glory and you want the glory and you want to be the guy on the highlight reel… or perhaps the guy that actually finishes a fight and gets a shot at the title, stop doing things the way you always have, step outside of your comfort zone and figure out exactly what you are f***ing doing wrong!

And it isn’t just grapplers. Houston Alexander showed how you can punch like a freight train but look like an up-turned turtle on the ground. TRAIN LIKE YOU WANT TO BE THERE!

Or at least like you want people like me to stop bitching all the time.

Now, if you will excuse me, I have a flight to catch in which I will criticize the pilots for their technique then immediately to a 4-Star restaurant to tell them how to cook.
Why does everyone suck except me?

Upcoming Grappling Events in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Beyond for 2012

I know, I know, it’s been a while since I updated this. Sue me.

01/14/2012Iron Man Grappling Event at Neisen’s Sports Bar (Savage, Mn) Cost: FREE

Rumor has it that this one will feature two weight classes: under 175 and over 176. The winner of each division will get $100 and some free swag from www.americanmmagear.com (as posted by Ozzy Judge, so blame him if information is incorrect), call (952) 846-4513 for more information.

01/14/2012ISI Brazilian Jiujitsu Tournament (Beaver Dam, Wi) Cost: $35.00

To be held at Third Heaven Martial Arts in Beaver Dam. Not much information available. Try contacting them via Facebook or their website HERE. I’m not going so I’m too lazy to look into it.

01/28/2012King Grappler (Madison, Wi) Cost: $50 at the door or preregister by 01/19 for $40 HERE

Go HERE for details, address, rules, etc.

02/25/2012- MKG- Minneapolis Gi Tournament (Minneapolis, Mn) Cost: $25

For more details, information and preregistration HERE

03/03/2012Chicago Winter International Open IBJJF Championship

More details to come. 

NAGA, IBJJF and Grapplers Quest Tournaments will be updated when they come available.