Monday, November 30, 2009

The UFC Is Shipping Off To Boston

In a historic move rife with significant ramifications for the future of mixed martial arts, the sanctioning of MMA by the newly formed Massachusetts State Athletic Commission was signed into law today. In recent years, the UFC has spent vast amounts of money in the state in an extensive lobbying effort and today is the day that it all paid off. Clearing this hurdle means the UFC and other MMA promotions are now free to organize events in any Massachusetts city including Boston, a historic fight town that is home to Boston Gardens and the legendary Fenway Park.

A native Bostonian, UFC President Dana White has previously expressed interest in both venues, but, as his twitter account makes clear, he still has a couple other sanctioning coups on his mind,
Gov Deval Patrick just signed the MMA bill in Mass!!! I am so excited words can not describe! Here we come Boston!! NY is next!!...Think about where we started. One state to go then Ontario!!!
It's a bit concerning that he didn't mention British Columbia while he was at it, but maybe that's because he already considers it a done deal.

Jake Rosholt Looking For Work

Earlier today, highly decorated wrestler Jake Rosholt (6-2, 1-2 UFC) announced via his twitter account that he's been dropped from the UFC roster.

It's fairly easy to understand why. Rosholt was, after all, last seen on Spike TV hastily tapping to a triangle choke from Kendall Grove and blowing a fight he was clearly winning in the process. When I say hastily, I mean he tapped essentially at the exact instant the triangle choke was locked in. Then again, maybe I'm just bitter because I had picked Jake to win.

In fairness, it was only Rosholt's second career loss, but the UFC has made it clear in the past that the octagon is not the place to sort out or assemble your game. Hopefully Jake can score a few victories in smaller shows and return to the top of the mountain sometime soon.

UFC 107: Preview

UFC 107: Penn vs. Sanchez (Dec. 12th) isn't for another couple weeks, but when the UFC releases an extended preview video it's hard for me not to post it.

I highly recommend purchasing this one, too, since it'll feature the first title fight since UFC 104 and likely the last until welterweight number-one-contender Dan Hardy faces Georges St-Pierre at UFC 111 (March, 20th). Anderson Silva was supposed to defend his middleweight against Vitor Belfort at UFC 109 (Feb. 6th), but a nagging elbow injury will prevent him from competing for a while. Meanwhile, heavyweight champ Brock Lesnar is still recovering from his near-death experience, while light heavyweight champ Lyoto Machida, who is still healing from a broken hand, will rematch Shogun Rua at a UFC in Montreal on May 1st.

But I digress, the point is that BJ Penn's UFC 107 title defence against Diego Sanchez has suddenly become a rare and exciting event for UFC fans. Don't miss it.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

MMA Inches Closer To Sanctioning In Vancouver

An event featuring amateur MMA was staged this past Friday (Nov. 27th) at Vancouver's Edgewater Casino. This was one of the first times MMA fights had been contested in the city in the nearly two-years since a ban on the sport went into effect. The ban affects the entire lower mainland.

The event was promoted by Honour Combat Championships and was seen by many as a trial run ahead of Vancouver City Council's rumoured December vote on lifting the ban. City councilors, Heather Deal, Kerry Jang and Suzanne Anton attended the event and all three were fairly supportive. This event is a hopeful sign for the future of MMA in B.C., now let's keep our fingers crossed for more progress.

In the night's main event, Cloverdale native Johnathon "The Aggressor" Agnew met Tak "Tsunami" Sasaki (below). For more on this story and several quotes from "The Aggressor," see the following article from The Georgia Straight's Stephan Hui: Mixed Martial Art Crowd Isn't "hooligans," fighter says after Vancouver event"

KOTC Catalyst: Review

In several ways, King Of The Cage: Catalyst was a long night for Vernon B.C.'s MMA fans. The card itself, which featured thirteen fights, didn't end until nearly midnight. On top of that, local amateur fighter Tyson Veitch, who had many vocal supporters in attendance, tapped to a rear naked choke, giving CJ Bagg a second-round victory. Other amateur winners included Kamryn Winter and Cam Deleume

The professional card that followed featured a surprising number of come from behind victories, which caused a thrilling roller coaster effect that seemed to wear the crowd's nerves a bit thin.

First, after controlling much of the first round, Leif Optland was forced to quit in the second due to a cut caused by an elbow from Nanaimo's Ryan Billingal. After that, Graham Spencer, who also hails from Nanaimo, bounced back from a tough opening round to win a unanimous decision over Wesley Neil. Other notable comebacks winners included Joe Verbeetan, who locked in a second-round submission on Rakan Khatib, and Kelowna's Brendan Frost who started a bit slow, but used powerful overhand punches to crumple his opponent, Unpeet Rai, in the third round.

Alongside these unpredictable fights, Vernon's frazzled fight fans also enjoyed some of Catalyst's devastating finishes.

First,Trail B.C.'s Darcy James sent Chad Bellwood of Kamloops to the mat with some well-timed knees from the clinch. James had also impressed fans by escaping a fully-locked-in arm bar mere moments earlier. A short time later, Revolution Fight Team's Colin Daynes enjoyed a dominant first round TKO over Kelowna's Mike Reid. The finish was set up by a textbook belly-to-belly suplex. Daynes' Revolution teammate, Matt Baker, wasn't so lucky. Despite opening up an early cut on his opponent Clay Davidson, Baker succumbed to a first-round rear naked choke, set up by a barrage of strikes from back-mount. Finally, Trail's Del Melnyk stunned Brian Coldwell, as well as his numerous vocal supporters, when he finished the Westbank, B.C. brawler via K.O. in the final seconds of the second round.

That left just two fights on the card.

The night's co-main event was billed as in International Super-Fight between Brazil's Vinicius Lemos and South Korea's Chang Hyun "Arm Bar" Kim (pictured above). Both men boasted connections to major MMA stars with Lemos having trained extensively with UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva, while "Arm Bar" Kim is a longtime training partner of undefeated UFC welterweight Dong Hyun "Stun Gun" Kim. Lemos opened up an early cut on the bridge of Kim's nose, but that didn't stop the feisty Korean from edging out a clear-cut unanimous decision victory. Both fighters demonstrated amazing resilience, with Kim's powerful slams and pin-point striking tilting the judges cards in his favour. Kim has made it known that he hopes to continue fighting in Canada. He built the bulk of his 15-5 record in Japan and South Korea and now dreams of becoming a well-known MMA name in North American. Lemos, who fought well even in defeat, will return to Brazil in early December, which was his plan going into the fight.

It was past 11:30 pm when the main event fighters finally took their places inside the cage. Those fan who remained in attendance were treated to a quick, one-sided drubbing of Jason Volpe at the hands of Revolution Fight Team's Ryan Chiappe. After a lengthy feeling out period, Chiappe scored a takedown, which led to the Revolution fighter taking Volpe's back. Soon after, Volpe tapped to the fifth rear naked choke of the night. The victory must have been a relief for Chiappe and his team who came close to obtaining the very same "KOTC Canadian Middleweight Title" in July before Chiappe lost his first fight with Volpe by DQ, due to an eye-poke. There were no such controversies four months later in Saturday's rematch.

When it finally concluded, King Of The Cage: Catalyst at Vernon's Wesbild Centre featured a satisfying mix of dominant finishes and impressive come-from-behind wins. Fans who stayed put for the entire card undeniably received their money's worth of MMA action.

King Of The Cage: Catalyst Quick Results

Amateur Card

Kamryn Winter def. Aamon Judge by Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Rd. 1

Cam Deleume def. Curran Allen by Unanimous Decision

CJ Bagg def. Tyson Veitch by Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Rd. 2

Professional Card

Ryan Billingal def. Leith Optland by TKO (Cut Stoppage), Rd. 2

Graham Spencer def. Wesley Neil by Unanimous Decision

Darcy James def. Chad Bellwood by KO (Knees from Clinch), Rd. 1

Brendan Frost def. Upneet Rai by Submission (Strikes), Rd. 3

Joe Verbeetan def. Rakan Khatib by Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Rd. 2

Colin Daynes def. Mike Reid by TKO, Rd. 1

Clay Davisdon def. Matt Baker by Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Rd. 1

Del Melnyk def. Brian Coldwell by KO, Rd. 2

Chang Hyun Kim def. Vinicius Lemos by Unanimous Decision

Ryan Chiappe def. Jason Volpe by Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Rd. 1

***Ryan Chiappe (Pictured Above) Claims Vacant "King Of The Cage: Canada Middleweight Title"***

Friday, November 27, 2009

Weigh In Results For King Of The Cage: Catalyst

Weigh-In Results:

Main Event (Picture: Volpe On Left, Chiappe on Right)

Ryan Chiappe (185 lbs.) vs Jason Volpe (184 lbs.)
*** for KOTC Canada Middleweight title***

Main Card

Chang Hyun Kim (157 lbs.) vs. Vinicius Lemos (154 lbs.)

Clay Davisdon (205 lbs.) vs. Matt Baker (204.5 lbs.)

Brian Coldwell (184 lbs.) vs. Del Melnyk (185 lbs.)

Mike Reid (170 lbs.) vs. Colin Daynes (170 lbs.)

Rakan Khatib (170 lbs.) vs. Joe Verbeetan (170 lbs.)

Chad Bellwood (158.5 lbs***) vs. Darcy James (155.5 lbs.)

Brendan Frost (150) vs. Upneet Rai (150)

Graham Spencer (145) vs. Wesley Neil (146.5)

Leith Optland (185) vs. Ryan Billingal (184.5)

Amateur Card

Tyson Veitch (151.5 lbs.) vs. CJ Bagg (151)

Curran Allen (145 lbs.) vs. Cam Deleume (146)

Kyam Winter (125) vs. Aamon Judge (125.5)


***Main card fighter Chad Bellwood failed to make weight for his 155 lb. contest against Darcy James. According to the Vernon Athletic Commission's Vice Chairman, Saleem Taj, both fighters have agreed to fight as scheduled, but that Bellwood will surrender %20 of his purse to his opponent.

Ethan Owusa has pulled out of his fight due to illness. Owusa was set to make his professional debut against Ryan Billingal. He will be replaced by Leith Optland (1-1) who impressed Vernon fans at EFC 8 in October by pulling off a submission victory over a bigger, stronger opponent in Jules Russel.

Amateur fighter Cam Deleume initially weighed in at 150 lbs. for his 145 lb. contest against Curran Allen. After sweating off the remaining pounds, Deleume eventually weighted in at an acceptable 146 lbs.

South Korean co-main event fighter Chang Hyun "Armbar" Kim (14-5) also had some difficulty making weight, which he blamed on the fact that the weight classes are different in his homeland and in Japan. This being his first fight in Canada, he was forced to drop several more pounds than he is accustomed to. He did, however, eventually make it to an acceptable 157 lbs.

MMA's Next Generation

It is a bit of a slow news day today, so I thought I'd link to this well-researched article from It's called "The Future Of The Sport." In it, Cody Brady takes a look at MMA's most accomplished under-30 fighters in an attempt to isolate those that will make a big impact on sport going forward. It's broken down by weight class and, in many cases, you'll probably know of these fighters, but I found I was surprised on several occasions by how young these athletes actually are. In most cases, I was also surprised by how early in their lives they began competing.

It's a really fun read for MMA fans who fall anywhere in between the poles of "casual" and "hardcore."

Georges St-Pierre Intends To Quit While He's Ahead

In a wide-ranging discussion with,UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre discusses his plan to retire well before his body absolutely forces him to:

"It's very hard for a boxer or a mixed martial arts fighter to retire on top," St-Pierre said. "What you need to do is listen to your entourage. When your entourage tells you, 'Georges, you have beaten everybody. I think you're on top now. I think if you lose or if you wait a little bit more, maybe you can take a risk to retire on the bottom or affect your well-being' – when something like that happens to me, when my close friends or people in my entourage start telling me that, I'm going to start thinking about retirement."

Of course, the goal of quitting on top is a lot easier to say while you're young, than it is to actually do when you're old. Just ask Chuck Liddell... and Matt Hughes.

For the entire interview, click here.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Vernon's KOTC:Catalyst Card Is Loaded With B.C. Talent

MMA remains unsanctioned in Vancouver and Victoria, but that hasn't stopped a growing number of B.C. fighters from competing. This Saturday's King Of The Cage: Catalyst (Nov. 28th), scheduled for Vernon's Wesbild Centre, provides these determined professional and amateur athletes with an opportunity to shine. In fact, in most cases, both fighters in any given fight at Catalyst hail from, or at least train in, British Columbia.

For several of the scheduled fighters at Catalyst, their last chance to compete came at the eXtreme Fighting Challenge 8 event that held less than two months ago on October 10th. That event also took place in Vernon, which means MMA fans in the Okanagan can enjoy a sense of continuity by attending both cards. For example, Ethan Owusa, who scored an amateur victory at EFC 8, will be appearing as a professional at Catalyst against Nanaimo's Ryan Billingal. In addition Rakan Khatib (1-0), who impressed in his debut at EFC 8 with an arm bar submission, faces Joe Verbeetan (1-0), while Brian Coldwell (2-0), who scored a TKO that night, appears at KOTC: Catalyst against Del Melnyk.

As was the case at EFC 8, B.C's Revolution Fight Team will lead the charge. They have four fighters set to appear on Catalyst's main card, including a prominently featured bout matching their own Matt Baker (2-1) against Clay Davidson (3-1), who trains with Kelowna's Team Toshido MMA. In the main event, Revolution's Ryan Chiappe (4-5) squares off in rematch against Jason Volpe (5-2) for the Canadian middleweight title. Chiappe was controlling their first bout in July before losing by DQ due to an unintended eye-poke.

The head matchmaker for Catalyst is Team Revolution founder Bill Mahood (17-7-1), who is also the King Of The Cage Canada Light Heavyweight Champion. According to an article on, Mahood thinks pretty highly of Chiappe's chances, "This is a sport where you can't evolve over night...for Jason to put into effect a skill package to deal with what Chiappe brings to that particular fight, it ain't going to happen in a couple of months."

A major event like Catalyst from a highly-respected promotion like King Of The Cage will only spur the growth of MMA in B.C. and could even nudge the sport closer to province-wide sanctioning.

Heavyweight Shuffle Continues: Gonzaga Out Of UFC 108, Velasquez vs. "Big Nog" Gets A Date

One of UFC President Dana White's favorite, oft-repeated comments is that every morning when he wakes up, as soon one toe hits the floor, he knows he'll probably get news that something [expletive] 'ed up has happened. Well, today was one of those days. Gabriel Gonzaga (11-4) has officially announced that a severe staph infection has forced him out of his planned UFC 108 showdown with up-and-coming Junior Dos Santos (9-1).

This is only the latest in a string of setbacks for the UFC's traditionally loaded New Year's card. Presumably, the UFC is currently looking for a replacement fighter to challenge Dos Santos, but few names spring to mind. I suppose he could face number one contender Shane Carwin (11-0) since Brock Lesnar isn't likely to be healthy anytime soon. Failing that, perhaps there would be interest in Dos Santos vs. Patrick Barry (5-1)?

In other heavyweight news, Antonio "Minotauro" Nogueira (32-5-1) will meet Cain Velasquez (7-0) at UFC 110 in Australia on February 21st, 2010. Their fight was originally scheduled for the New Years show, but was pushed back when "Big Nog" contracted a severe staph infection of his own.

This might be a blessing in disguise for the UFC because, like main-event fighter Wanderlei Silva, Nogueira is a huge star in Japan, which is in a similar time zone to Sydney's. "Big Nog's" notoriety will help drive television ratings in Japan, which the UFC needs if it ever wants to break back into that market.

GSP vs. Hardy Set For UFC 111 In March, 2010

is reporting that, newly-determined number one contender, Dan Hardy (23-6) can now look forward to his shot at Georges St. Pierre's (19-2) welterweight title in March, 2010. The event will be UFC 111 and it's set to go down at New Jersey's Prudential Center.

Dan Hardy is a very dynamic striker and he surprised me a bit by handling Mike Swick so easily at UFC 105, but he'll be taking another big step up in competition when he faces the champ. GSP is 12-1 since his loss to Matt Hughes at UFC 50. Since then he's only lost to Matt Serra, but he's also soundly defeated both Serra and Hughes (twice) in rematches. There's simply nobody as fast and agile in all of MMA and definitely no fighter with better takedowns. The word from GSP's camp is that he has added another ten-pounds of muscle onto his already stacked physique. Yikes! Personally, I think it could be a long night for "The Outlaw," but, as I said, he's surprised me before.

Check out this unofficial preview, it won me over about halfway through with its sheer epic-ness:

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Wanderlei Silva vs. Michael Bisping To Headline UFC's Australian Debut, (Feb 21st 2010)

Fighters Only Magazine announced today that Michael Bisping (18-2), fresh off a career-salvaging performance against Denis Kang, will be Wanderlei Silva's (32-10-1) first middleweight opponent. The fight will be the main event at UFC 110 which will mark the promotion's Down Under debut. UFC 110 is set for Sydney's Acer Arena on Sunday, February 21st, which nearly aligns with the usual Saturday time slot in North America.

The main event should be a thrilling stand-up war as neither has shown a real propensity for takedowns or ground fighting in the past. Wanderlei will have a significant power advantage, but Bisping seems to have learned from his cautious approach against Dan Henderson and should come out guns blazing.

As well as introducing their product to millions of Aussies, this event on the other side of the Pacific is widely seen as an attempt by the UFC to begin muscling their way back into the lucrative Japanese MMA market. At UFC 110, Japanese fans, who are very near to Syney's timezone, will be able to enjoy live, prime-time, UFC action for the first time in recent years. Furthermore, Wanderlei Silva is a major star in The Land Of The Rising Sun-- so any card he headlines in the region is sure to be a hit. Mirko "Cro Cop,"
another major draw in Japan, is also rumoured to be appearing.

It was originally circulated in the MMA rumour mill that Wanderlei's opponent for UFC 110 would be Yoshihiro Akiyama (13-1), who is adored by millions in both Japan and South Korea, but the UFC has apparently decided that fight is not as marketable as Silva vs. Bisping, especially in the U.S. No word yet on whether Akiyama will remain on the card against another opponent.

Australia very much fits the profile of the other markets the Zuffa-owned UFC has entered thus far (the U.K., Ireland, Germany and Canada), but the next couple of years promise to hold several other firsts for the UFC with events rumoured to be taking place in such far-flung locales as France, Italy, Brazil, Mexico City, Hong Kong, China (mainland), and Dubai. The UFC is also rumoured to be planning a summer, 2010 show at Fenway Park in President Dana White's hometown of Boston.

Dana White On UFC 106, Brock Lesnar's Condition, And More

This video is a bit long, but it's got some good quotes and it features more information about Brock Lesnar's intestinal infection. Plus, it's just really funny. I'm not generally the world's biggest fan of Yahoo Sports' MMA blogger Steve Cofield, but he really nails this interview with Dana. Classic stuff.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

B.C. Biography: Tyson Veitch

Citizens of Vernon have another great reason to arrive on time for King Of The Cage: Catalyst this Saturday-- his name is Tyson Veitch, he's a local high school student, and he'll be appearing in his second amateur fight at the top of the under card.

Competing in such an established and respected promotion is a fantastic opportunity for this dedicated young fighter. He'll get to experience the thrill of fighting in front of the 3000-strong hometown crowd at the
Westbild Centre, and Tyson's friends and family will have their first chance to see him fight live.

I caught up with Tyson to ask him some questions about training, future plans, his feelings about his upcoming fight, and, perhaps surprisingly, his budding rap career.

One of the first topics we covered was the scare he had less than a week ago when he learned that his intended opponent had pulled out of the fight with a torn
ACL. Soon after, Tyson was relieved to learn, via Facebook, that a replacement fight had been found for him. According to Tyson,"His name is C.J. Bragg and he was supposed to fight another guy, but the other guy got the swine flu. So they just scrapped us together." Now that he has a new opponent, there's very little on Tyson's mind besides training.

There's been some change on that front too, though. The gym where Tyson has been training for some time, Alliance
MMA in Vernon, recently relocated. Okay, so it's more like it became subsumed into another gym-- namely,the Avatar Self Defense in Kelowna, B.C. As a result, Tyson has joined with Team HaVoK MMA who make their home there. Still, not everything about Tyson's new training facility is unfamiliar, "Yeah for a while now I've been training with Jason St. Louis at Alliance and he's known the guys at HaVoK for a while. His gym wasn't doing so good so we decided to start going out there and, yeah, they're a really good team. Jason's teaching BJJ out there now; he's their new BJJ coach."

In the end, it sounds like the change was for the best. After all, training at a bigger, better equipped facility, especially in a larger centre like
Kelowna, also means an increase in the quantity and quality of training partners. That sort of challenging environment can only help a developing fighter. According to Tyson, who considers himself a well-rounded fighter, he trains "probably between six and ten [hours per week], but that's not including running and doing other stuff." That number has only gone up in recent weeks with his fight at KOTC: Catalyst looming.

One thing is clear, he spends a lot of time training for a guy who's still in high school. Of course, with
MMA having become such a priority for Tyson, school isn't the first thing on his mind. When asked how he balances his studies with his MMA training, Tyson responds, "Ugh! Yeah, I try." When pressed for his opinion of high school, he explained that, as it was for so many of us, he considers getting his diploma a necessary challenge to be overcome, "Naw, I don't like it. So I'm just trying to get that done." The candor was appreciated and, certainly, we all must sometimes do things we don't truly enjoy.

Luckily for Tyson
Veitch, he has more than enough passions in life to keep him inspired.

One of them is the dream of turning pro one day in mixed martial arts. When asked if such a move is in the cards, he revealed, "I actually wanted to turn pro right away, but my trainers told me to get like five or ten amateur fights to get some experience. So yeah, I'm just doing that." Again, that's probably for the best. It gives him time to wrap up that school thing, right Tyson? "Yeah, so I'll keep doing amateur fights for another year or two or something."

Another of Tyson's passions is his a rap group called
CreativeBloodline. He's one of the group's three members along with with his brother and their good friend, "We just have fun in my brother's basement. He has a beat-making program." As you might have guessed, Tyson is being extremely modest here. In fact, CreativeBloodline has numerous slickly-produced tracks available on their myspace account. A quick glance at the page reveals them to be a top notch local group. They've opened for major acts like Sweatshop Union and won numerous group and individual awards. Tyson goes by the stage-name "Ora," wile his brother is known as "MC Leverage" and their good friend is "Killimatic." I'm generally not the type to lavish praise, but I can honestly say that CreativeBloodline has created some of the tightest raps I've heard in some time.

Given the importance of a great walk out song, it's not surprising that Tyson
Veitch intends to bring CreativeBloodline with him to the Westbild Centre this Saturday, "We're going to be performing at the King Of The Cage. I'm going to perform first-- sing a song-- and then walk out."

Unsurprisingly, Tyson is also passionate about putting on great fights for
MMA fans, "That's what it's all about-- giving the crowd a show." He's so excited, in fact, that he's not even nervous about his upcoming fight, "I'm anxious more than anything. I just want to get in there, close up the gate, and and start throwing down." Of course, there's no reason for Tyson to doubt his skills. He's fresh off a decision win in his first amateur fight, which took place in Lethbridge, Alberta. It was on the undercard of the Rage In The Ring 13 show on October, 17th. On that night, Tyson fought against a young, local fighter named Kolton Menzak, " I just went in there and did my gameplan. I did exactly what I wanted to do. I took it to the ground. "

Obviously, Tyson hopes to be victorious in front of his own hometown crowd at King Of The Cage: Catalyst and he's dong everything he can to ensure that happens, "I'm feeling good. I was in really good shape for my last fight and that was only like a month ago. So my
cardio base is already up. I just needed to keep it up. I've just been doing some runs, doing shark bait [numerous rounds with fresh opponents], and I've been training lots. I feel good and I'm ready to go."

As if there weren't enough good reasons for
MMA fans to check out King Of The Cage:Catalyst this Saturday (Nov. 28th), Tyson Veitch will open the night with a live musical performance, a great local sports story, and all the fighting fury he can muster.If you're in the area, and you've got $38 to spare, how can you possibly resist?

Ticket information is available at, or by calling (1-250) 549-7469.

Additional information available at the King Of The Cage Canada's official site.

CreativeBloodline's myspace page can be accessed at:

Here are the sites for Avatar Self Defense:
and Team HaVoK:

Forrest Griffin On His Fight With Tito and More

I don't post just any interview video I can find, you know. I look for clips in which the MMA personality is offering a new take or opinion than they've shared elsewhere. This video has all that. Forrest Griffin talks about how, exactly, the Tito Ortiz fight interrupted his honeymoon, shares honest reactions to the Anderson Silva fight, and admits that he was fooled by some of Tito's headgames. The video even includes a semi-apology from Forrest for his recent surliness.

Andrei Alovski in "Universal Soldier: Regeneration"

Have you ever wondered to yourself, "What is former UFC Heavyweight Champion Andrei Arlovski up to these days? For that matter, when was the last time Dolph Lundgren or Jean-Claude Van Damme were in a reasonably big movie?" Well here's the answer to all those burning questions: "Universal Soldier: Regeneration." I have a feeling this one might fall squarely into the so-bad-it's-good category. I can't wait.

Monday, November 23, 2009

UFC 106: Salaries and Bonuses

The big winner for UFC 106 was Josh Koscheck who won both Submission Of The Night and Fight Of The Night honours en route to netting $246,000. The decision to give him both awards is odd given that his fight with Anthony "Rumble" Johnson was widely criticized for being a sloppy affair. That's pretty fair since both fighters were guilty of clear rule infractions. It seems to me that the UFC just wanted to reward Koscheck and Johnson for stepping up at the last minute to save the card, but they really should have done that behind the scenes. After all, if the Fight/ Submission/ KO Of The Night awards come to be seen by the fighters as little more than a popularity contest, they can no longer serve their purpose as motivational tools.

The UFC paid $1,301,000 in disclosed salaries and bonuses at UFC 106, with a whopping %57 of that going to just three fighters: Forrest Griffin, Tito Ortiz, and Josh Koscheck. Note: these figures do not include the so-called "locker room bonuses" that the UFC confidentially hands out to solid performers on a regular basis.

-Forrest Griffin: $250,000 (includes $150,000 win bonus) defeated Tito Ortiz: $250,000

- Josh Koscheck: $246,000 (includes $53,000 win bonus, $70,000 Fight of the Night bonus, $70,000 Submission of the Night bonus) defeated Anthony Johnson: $87,000 (includes $70,000 Fight of the Night bonus)

- Paulo Thiago: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus) defeated Jacob Volkmann: $6,000

- Antonio Rogerio Nogueira: $170,000 (includes $30,000 win bonus, $70,000 Knockout of the Night bonus) defeated Luiz Cane: $19,000

- Amir Sadollah: $30,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus) defeated Phil Baroni: $25,000

- Ben Saunders: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus) defeated Marcus Davis: $27,000

- Kendall Grove: $44,000 (includes $22,000 win bonus) defeated Jake Rosholt: $15,000

- Brian Foster: $12,000 (includes $6,000 win bonus) defeated Brock Larson: $25,000

- Caol Uno: $20,000 fights to majority draw with Fabricio Camoes: $10,000

- George Sotiropoulos: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus) defeats Jason Dent: $8,000

KOTC Catalyst: Main Event Primer For Vernon Fights

On their official website, King Of The Cage Canada has posted a great preview of the main event for their Catalyst show, which goes down in Vernon this Saturday, Nov. 28th. It's a rematch between Ryan Chiappe (4-5), who trains at the highly-respected Team Revolution that's based out of B.C.'s lower mainland, and his opponent, Jason Volpe (5-2). Their fight on Saturday will be for the KOTC Canada middleweight title and is a do-over of their July title fight, which was awarded to Volpe after he received an unintentional eye-poke from Chiappe and was unable to continue. In an extremely classy move, Volpe then refused to accept the belt, opting instead to settle the score at a later date.

The KOTC Article gives a lot more background information and I highly recommend a read to anyone who may be attending the show in Vernon or who is interested in B.C. MMA. Here's a quote from Chiappe that's found in the article:

"I'm not a rule maker, judge or a ref, but all I know I was that I was in complete control of the fight," said Chiappe, when asked recently to comment on his first bout with Volpe. "I thought it was close to being finished, but I guess the complaint was that he got poked in the eye. We got stood up and he was given the choice to continue or go on. I think he took the easy way out. That's not really for me to say though. I'm looking to the future now not the past."

Sunday, November 22, 2009

UFC 106: Post-Fight Quotes

We all saw what went down last night, but what do the fighters have to say for themselves? Let's take a brief tour of the verbal fall-out, shall we?

Tito Ortiz says he won:

I thought I won the first round and I thought I won the second round. You see the damage on his face? I got him good. In the third round I was gassed, but after taking 18 months off, I want to see another fighter come in here [and undergoing back surgery] and do what I just did. I gave my heart and soul, man. I entertained the fans. And for me not getting "Fight of the Night," I'm taken back by it, but it is what it is. I thought I won. The judge called it 30-27, I mean what the fuck, are you blind or something? But hey, it is what it is, I'll be back. I feel good. I'm sorry I let my fans down. I thought I won.... I'm pissed."

(I gave Tito only the second round. He came close in the first, but didn't do enough damage on the ground and couldn't keep Forrest down.)

Anthony "Rumble" Johnson says Koscheck is a faker:

"I didn't hit him in the head, I hit him in the arm. I don't know why he would act like [that], I guess he was gassing. That's the only thing I can think of, [him] trying to find some kind of excuse to complain. I know I didn't hit him in the head. I thought I timed it perfect but I didn't and that's my fault. After him poking me in the eye it made a big difference. Then he did it twice and got both eyes the second time because when he swings, he jabs with his open hand and the right didn't even hit me, it was just the open palm strike and my eyes, my eyes are burning like hell right now. After I hurt him, he needed that, he needed some kind of excuse to recover, but it's all good."
(I don't understand the controversy here. "Rumble" hit "Kos" with a knee that was all sorts of illegal. He should be thankful that Josh blocked it because, if he'd been finished by it instead, Johnson would have left UFC 106 in disgrace. Each clearly poked the other in the eye, but I don't believe any of it was intentional. By the way, Joe Rogan is wrong. There's no way a fighting mitten that encloses the fingers could ever work.)

Ben Saunders says he's out to smash some fools:

"I'm always down to bang, man. My initial martial arts training came from Jeet Jun Do and striking background. I know what I'm good at and I say almost anybody's going to be vulnerable to my knees, whether it's to the face or the body or the arms -- whatever, it's gonna work either way. [Davis] in particular, when I fight people who are shorter than me it definitely works out even better. People shot me off like, 'Oh, I beat bums, I'm a nobody and this and that.' It kinda hurt a little bit but at the same time I know what I'm capable of and I didn't show what I was able to do in that Swick fight and it actually worked against me. I knew that this fight was going to be very important for me to come out and not just win, but demolish my opponent and get my name back on the contender list."

(I fell into that camp of people who thought Saunders was overrated. Good on him for proving me wrong.)

Here's a video interview with UFC President Dana White offering his reactions to UFC 106:

Saturday, November 21, 2009

UFC 106: Results

I went a measly 3-6 (%33.3) with one draw (which won't be counted) tonight. My record now stands at 118-71 (%62.4) and 14-5 (%73.7) in main events.

It was only the second time I've ever had a sub-.500 outing and, percentage-wise, it was my worst showing ever.Suffice it to say, there were a few places that I zigged when I should have zagged.


---Forrest Griffin def. Tito Ortiz by Split Decision
***Josh Koscheck def. Anthony Johnson via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Rd. 2
***Antonio Rogerio Nogueira def. Luis Cane via TKO, Rd. 1
---Amir Sadollah def. Phil Baroni via Unanimous Decision
---Paulo Thiago def. Jacob Volkmann via Unanimous Decision
---Ben Saunders def. Marcus Davis via KO, Rd. 1
---Kendall Grove def. Jake Rosholt via Submission (triangle choke), Rd. 1
---Brian Foster def. Brock Larson via TKO (strikes), Rd. 2
Fabricio Camoes vs. Caol Uno declared a majority draw after three rounds
***George Sotiropoulos defeats Jason Dent via Submission (armbar), Rd. 2

--- Incorrect Pick *** Correct Pick

UFC 106 started out well when Sotiropoulos easily handled Dent, but that fight had lock written all over it so I can't take much credit there.

I was right that Fabricio Camoes had Caol Uno's number, but unfortunately he hit Uno with an illegal up kick and lost a point. That resulted in a majority draw, which cost Camoes the win and me a few percentage points.

I don't know what Brock Larson was thinking about, but the fact that he was deducted two points in the first round showed that his head clearly wasn't in the octagon. I knew Foster had a puncher's chance, but virtually nobody thought he would dominate Larson like he did.

Kendall Grove and Ben Saunders both pulled of upset victories on SpikeTV and that's when my card busted wide open. Grove was, as I predicted, being handled fairly easily by Jake Rosholt before "Da Spyda" locked in a fight-ending triangle choke, that is. Saunders looked much more impressive as he thoroughly dominated Marcus Davis for the duration of their one-round bout. "Killa B" was just too big for Davis to handle. His superior size gave him tons of leverage and made it all too easy for him to find a home for his knees in the clinch.

Jacob Volkmann put up a very good fight and even threatened with a late submission against the BJJ-ace, Paulo Thiago, but ultimately it was Thiago's striking and superior conditioning that won him the fight. I admit I massively underestimated Thiago's stand-up-- my bad.

I got way too cute with my Phil Baroni call, I can see that now. Some of those uppercuts he landed in the first were pretty solid, but, as usual, he gassed right out after the first few minutes. I thought he would have fought a but smarter for a change, but, in hindsight, I don't really know why I gave him so much credit. You have to admit though, Amir's stand-up has never looked even close to that sharp before.

I nailed the assessment that "Lil' Nog's" technical boxing would trump Luis Cane's brawling, so that was nice. I didn't think Nogueira would take him out in the first round, though. Light heavyweights: consider yourselves put on notice.

I'm particularly proud of my Josh Koscheck call, perhaps the lone bright spot for me on the whole card. A lot of people were predicting a KO win for "Rumble" in this one, but I saw through the hype enough to know that "Kos" had a better all around game. It showed.

As for the main event, my pick of a dominant win for Ortiz was based on the assumption that Tito was in great shape, which anyone who saw him gas in the third round could clearly tell was not the case. Tito had released some training videos that seemed to indicate he was in top form, but those sorts of things can obviously be deceiving. As I predicted, Tito did do a fair amount of damage from Forrest's guard and, had he not faded-out so horribly in the final round, he might have secured the TKO I predicted right on schedule. In the end though, it was my bad for assuming Tito would be back to his old self before I'd seen it with my own eyes.

I know you can't win them all, but I feel like I should virtually always fare better than one-in-three. I had some bad breaks, which I can't control, but I also made some half-baked calls, which I'll do my best to learn from. I've only been at this for a little over a year and, even though my overall record is fairly respectable, I have a long way to go before I feel I'll reach my fight-picking potential.

Whatever you do, don't write me off just yet.

Weigh-In Results

Good news for fans of Anthony "Rumble" Johnson (8-2)-- he made weight for UFC 106, instead of missing by six pounds like he did at UFC 104. Looks like he shouldn't be banned from fighting as a welterweight after all, but at 6'2", and with a body type like his, I still have to wonder how much longer this twenty-five-year-old can manage the cut. Word is that he walks around at well over 200lbs. between fights.

Weigh-in results (All Fighters Made Weight):

  • Forrest Griffin (205) vs. Tito Ortiz (204)
  • Anthony Johnson (170) vs. Josh Koscheck (171)
  • Paulo Thiago (169) vs. Jacob Volkmann (170)
  • Luiz Cane (205) vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (205)
  • Phil Baroni (170) vs. Amir Sadollah (170)
  • Marcus Davis (170) vs. Ben Saunders (170)
  • Kendall Grove (186) vs. Jake Rosholt (185.5)
  • Brian Foster (171) vs. Brock Larson (171)
  • Fabricio Camoes (155.5) vs. Caol Uno (155.5)
  • Jason Dent (155) vs. George Sotiropoulos (155)
Fan Q&A Session with Dana White at the Weigh-Ins:

Friday, November 20, 2009

UFC 106: Predictions

I went 6-5 (%54.5) at UFC 105, which was slightly disappointing. In fairness, with six upsets, it was a tough night for a lot of people, but I take full responsibility for a few of my misses. I fell into the trap of undervaluing Micheal Bisping based on his KO loss to Dan Henderson at UFC 100, and I also failed to go with my gut on the Gustaffson and Siver fights. My record now stands at 115-65 (%63.9) and 14-4 (%77.8).

I know that UFC 105 was just last week, which could have led to a case of MMA-fatigue for some, but there won't be another numbered UFC card until the middle of December (UFC 107 on Dec. 12th). You don't want to sit around for a whole month with only T.U.F. 10 to tide you over, do you?

Ranked Fighters Include:

Forrest Griffin (#5 LHW), Tito Ortiz (#25 LHW), Josh Koscheck (#4 WW), Anthony Johnson (#16 WW), Antonio Rogerio Nogeuria (#9 LHW), Luis Arthur Cane (#10 LHW), Paulo Thiago (#7 WW), and Marcus Davis (#20 WW).

Main Event:

205 lbs.: Tito "The Huntington Beach Bad Boy" Ortiz (-105) vs. Forrest Griffin (-125)

I traditionally breakdown the main event in great detail before revealing my pick, but I'm just going to call this one straight-up: a one-sided beat down favouring "The Huntington Beach Bad Boy."

Tito Ortiz (15-6-1, 14-6-1 UFC) claims he was hampered by chronic back pain in recent fights and that, after a successful surgery, he's now feeling healthy for the first time in years. Even with that bulging disk, Tito has been holding his ownin the UFC: he survived Lyoto Machida's onslaught, fought Rashad Evans to a draw, made it to the third round against a vintage Chuck Liddell, obliterated Ken Shamrock (twice), and, before that, defeated Forrest Griffin by split-decision at UFC 59. The point is, the "Tito's-washed-up" talk was a bit premature considering he hasn't been fighting at anything near %100. At UFC 106, I think we'll see a repeat of the first round of Ortiz vs. Griffin I, but for all three rounds this time.

I don't mean to sound like I'm totally disregarding Forrest's development over the last few years, because it has certainly been impressive. That said, I just don't think he's physically explosive enough to handle the pressure Ortiz is going to put on him. Without a doubt, Griffin's best weapon is the leg kick, but overusing it might only make it easier for Ortiz to take him down. Tito has been diligently closing holes in his game as well, as evidenced by his recent work with Freddie Roach- the greatest boxing coach in the world and Manny Pacquiao's head trainer. Forrest's best bet might be to rush Tito right off the bat in hopes that Tito's ring rust from his 18-month layoff will make him susceptible to an early finish. Ultimately though, I don't think Griffin will have any answers for Ortiz's takedowns or his patented ground'n'pound from full-guard.

I don't think Tito Ortiz will take a serious run at the title, but, if he's really as healthy as he says, I think he'll get by Forrest Griffin at UFC 106 with relative ease.

Ortiz by TKO, Rd.3.

Main Card:

170 lbs.: Anthony Johnson (-130) vs. Josh Koscheck (EVEN)

The trendy pick is definitely Anthony Johnson (8-2, 5-2 UFC) by K.O, but not so fast. He looked fairly unstoppable in his recent knock out of Yoshiyuki Yoshida at UFC 105 and, aside from losing to Kevin Burns via eye poke, Johnson's only loss in the UFC was in his second fight against Rich Clementi, but there are still lingering questions about "Rumble's" cardio and his ground game.

Josh Koscheck (13-4, 11-4 UFC), on the other hand, is very well known to UFC fans. He's been among the most active fighters in the welterweight division with an average turnaround time of just over 3 months. Once considered a one-dimensional wrestler, "Kos" has recently built up a reputation as a competent striker, which was bolstered by his (T)KO of Frank Trigg at UFC 103.

Koscheck should have a significant wrestling advantage, but it's difficult to know whether he'll even attempt takedowns or opt to fight "Rumble" standing just to prove a point. Actually, doing so might not be as bad of an idea as it sounds. Johnson has tons of power, but his technique is still a bit jerky, so it's possible that Koscheck could pick him apart. Ultimately, "Rumble's" reach and power advantages should be negated by Koscheck's superior kickboxing technique and top-tier grappling. If Koscheck fights smart and keeps Johnson guessing, I think there's a solid chance he pulls out the victory.

I'd estimate there's a %40 likelihood that "Rumble" is just too strong and knocks "Kos" out cold, but that means that, in my mind, "Kos" still has a better than average chance to win.

Koscheck by Unanimous Decision.

205 lbs.: Luis Arthur "Banha" Cane (+120) vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (-150)

Luis Arthur Cane (10-1, 3-1 UFC) is basically undefeated with his only loss having come by way of an illegal beatdown via knees to the head of James Irvin while "The Sandman" had a knee down. Cane has scored eight of his ten wins by way of (T)KO; however, he had some trouble in his last two fights against Sokoudjou and Steve Cantwell. It's possible that his brawling style is beginning to falter against top competition in the UFC. If that's the case, the road won't get any easier against Rogerio Nogeuira (17-3, 0-0 UFC) whose technical boxing and superior ground game could give "Banha" fits. Though his chin is not quite as legendarily as that of his heavyweight twin brother Roderigo, Rogerio has only been (T)KO'ed once in his career. He should be able to sit back all night and out-box Cane when "Banha" attempts to rush in throwing wild haymakers.

I'm a big fan of Luis Arthur Cane, but I think he's in over his head against BJJ master, PRIDE stand-out and all around great fighter, "Lil Nog" Nogueira.

Nogueira by Unanimous Decision

170 lbs.: Phil Baroni (+160) vs. Amir Sadollah (-200)

Amir Sadollah (1-1, "-" UFC), the surprise winner of The Ultimate Fighter 7, is easily the most hyped fighter in all of MMA that possesses an official record of one-and-one. His submissions are his strong point, but he has yet to threaten any opponent standing up. At the same time, Phil Baroni (13-11, 3-5 UFC) is the only fighter to have remained relevant with a 13-11 record. Fans love these guys more for their heart and charisma than for anything they've done recently inside a ring or cage.

But who will win? I know this much, "The New York Bad Ass" will probably win the first round with a furious barrage of strikes. The unknowns are a) whether Sadollah can survive that early barrage given that he was (T)KO'ed by a wrestler in his last fight against Johnny Hendricks, and b) whether Sadollah's can win the next two consecutive rounds or lock in a late submission against Baroni who usually runs out of gas by the third round.

The conventional pick here is Sadollah based on the widespread belief that he has the goods, which predominates despite the lack of evidence to support such a notion, and the assumption that Baroni is a washed up has-been, which, in fairness, is a bit more convincing. Still, Baroni must realize that this is possibly his last chance to go down in MMA history as a solid competitor. I think he'll finally fight smart enough to avoid gassing before either winning at least two rounds or knocking Sadollah out cold, whichever comes first. I'm not immensely confident of that, but I'm willing to put it out there.

By the way, all you Baroni haters should take note that he's only been submitted twice in his whole career, which has been 12x longer than Sadollah's in terms of fights despite the fact that Baroni is only four years older.

Baroni by K.O., Rd. 1

170 lbs.: Paulo Thiago (-200) vs. Jacob Volkmann (+160)

Paulo Thiago (11-1, 1-1 UFC) burst into the mainstream MMA consciousness with his first-round (T)KO of Josh Koscheck at UFC 95. That surprising win, combined with Thiago's then-unblemished record, led to him being ranked as high as fourth in the world at welterweight, thus making him the most overrated fighter since Matt Serra defeated Georges St-Pierre. Since then, Thiago has come down to earth somewhat after suffering his first career loss to Koscheck's good friend Jon Fitch. I said he's overrated, which is still true even at his current #6 spot, but Thiago does have excellent submissions skills and obviously, given the result of the "Kos" fight, a decent amount of power. That said, the wrestling prowess of Jacob Volkmann (9-0, 0-0 UFC) who won three NCAA Div. I wrestling titles and last year's World Grappling Championships (no gi) at 176 lbs, should be enough to negate Thiago's jiu-jitsu.

Thanks to the various neurosis of Karo "The Heat" Parisyan, Volkmann gets to introduce himself to UFC fans by taking out the highly-ranked, if undeservedly so, Paulo Thiago.

Volkmann by Unanimous Decision

Under Card (Guaranteed To Air On SpikeTV):

170 lbs.: Marcus "The Irish Hand Grenade" Davis (-225) vs. Ben "Killa B" Saunders (+185)

Ben Saunders (7-1-2, 3-1 UFC) has not accrued the type of octagon experience that's usually required before an up-and-comer gets thrown in with top-ranked contenders. Nonetheless, his JDK-clinch massacre of Brandon Wolff last December was so transcendentally bad-ass that Saunders was immediately given the go ahead to start fighting top-ten guys. That didn't work out very well for "Killa B" against Mike Swick and his odds don't improve much against Marcus Davis (16-5, 8-2 UFC). Davis should be extremely motivated after suffering a close, split-decision loss to now number one contender Dan Hardy at UFC 99. Davis' stand-up technique is significantly better than Saunder's and, if he prefers, Swick has already shown that holding "Killa B" down is not exactly difficult.

Saunders does have a much longer reach and arguably more flashy, if unrefined, stand-up, but Davis' superior skill and octagon experience should more than negate those potential advantages-- meaning that Saunders will return to fighting lower-level guys to improve his all-around game, while Davis should get one more shot at the division's elite.

Davis by (T)KO, Rd. 2

185 lbs.: Kendall "Da Spyda" Grove (+155) vs. Jake Rosholt (-190)

Kendal Grove (10-6, 5-3 UFC) has seemingly been on the verge of getting cut by the UFC for about two years now. Coming off yet another loss, this time to Ricardo Almeida who will now fight as a welterweight, "Da Spyda" desperately needs a win here or he'll drop to having lost four of his last six. I just don't see how the lanky Hawaiian can pull that off against Jake Rosholt (6-1, 1-1 UFC), a magnificent wrestler who just got finished submitting Chris Leben at UFC 102. Rosholt is one of the best American college wrestlers of his generation having won three Div. I national titles for Oklahoma State. If Almeida, whose wrestling is decidedly sub par, was able to take Grove down repeatedly, there's no reason to think Rosholt won't walk right through him. At the same time, if Rosholt's ever-improving stand-up negated Chris Leben's power-punching, he shouldn't have trouble navigating his way through Grove's flying, octopus-like tentacles, which, though painful, don't pack that much wallop.

Rosholt's relentless takedowns and subsequent barrage of ground'n'pound should get Grove frustrated enough for the former Oklahoma State Cowboy to lock in a crowd-pleasing submission.

Rosholt by Submission, Rd. 3.

Under Card (May Not Be Broadcast):

170 lbs.: Brian Foster (+400) vs. Brock Larson (-600)

Brock Larson (26-3, 3-2 UFC) should steamroll Brian Foster (12-4, 0-1 UFC) here. In fact, this fight was likely only arranged to give Larson a tune-up after his disappointing decision loss to Mike Pierce. Larson is stronger, way more experienced, and should finish Foster with ease. Still, at these odds, a value bet on a power-puncher like Foster might not be such a bad idea if you fancy a gamble.

Larson by (T)KO, Rd. 1

155 lbs.: Fabricio "Marango" Camoes (+150) vs. Caol Uno (-180)

Japan's Caol Uno (25-12-4, 3-4-1 UFC) can do no wrong in the eyes of many MMA fans. As a result, his reputation as a world-class competitor far outstrips what you'd expect if you only saw his UFC record or were told that he has lost three of his last four. Uno is a decent fighter with some decent submissions, but I believe he's the odds favourite here based mostly on name recognition. Unlike Uno, Brazil's Fabricio Camoes (10-4, 0-0 UFC) is on a tear right now, having won seven consecutive fights since September, 2006. Like Uno, he's also a submissions specialist, but Camoes brings far more raw power to the octagon. Another telling fact is that, in the three years since September of 2006, during which time both fighters have gone to battle seven times, Uno has had five fights go to decision, while "Marango" has finished every fight with only one making it to the second round.

I don't mean to rip on Caol Uno, who is at the tail end of a very respectable career, but I think Fabricio Camoes is ready to step into the MMA spotlight and will do so via upset stoppage here.

Camoes by (T)KO, Round 2.

155 lbs.: George Sotiropoulos (-500) vs. Jason Dent (+325)

Ultimate Fighter 6 stand-out George Sotiropoulos (10-2, 3-0 UFC) possesses high-caliber jiu-jitsu and solid all around skills to help distinguish himself from the pack at 155lbs. Sotiropoulos, an Aussie who now lives and trains in the USA, should be a lock to appear on the card at UFC 110 in Australia, but the quality of his opponent will likely be determined by his showing at UFC 106. Luckily for Sotiropoulos, Jason Dent (19-9, 1-2 UFC) shouldn't pose much of a threat. They're both submission specialists, which means that neither is very likely to submit the other, but, whereas Sotiropoulos has tapped some very legit guys, Dent has mostly feasted on inexperienced opposition at regional shows in the Mid-West.

Outside of his slight grappling edge, I believe Sotiropoulos has distinct advantages everywhere else. Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi!

George Sotiropoulos by Unanimous Decision

I really didn't set out to pick so many upsets, but it's a crazy sport and I just calls'em as I sees'em. Enjoy the fights.