Tito Ortiz and Quinton Jackson are two of the biggest names in the history of MMA. They previously made names for themselves in the Ultimate Fighting Championship and headlined some of the biggest pay per views and television specials that company ever produced. Spike Television, Bellator, and Impact Wrestling are swinging for the fences, bringing in two former UFC stars of this magnitude to help gain interest to their product. Last night on Impact Wrestling we saw both of these men make appearances in the same segment. The night before the two men faced off in the cage of Bellator Fighting Championship. This is the type of synergy Spike TV wants between Bellator and Impact.
This past Saturday UFC presented the eighth installment of fights for the Fox network. Demetrious Johnson showed why he is a champion getting an armbar finish in the 5th round at 3:43 seconds which set a record as the latest finish in a UFC fight ever. John Moraga delivered one strike that seemed to break the champion’s nose but the two fighters were seemingly on different levels the whole fight. The 125 pound weight class doesn’t have a ton of contenders ready so the landscape is open. Demetrious Johnson brought up the idea of a super fight against the 135 pound champion, I like the champs swagger but we saw that fight and the champion Dominick Cruz always seemed one step ahead. I like seeing Demetrious at 125 and I look forward to his next defense.
This Saturday UFC presents its eight special on FOX television. The main event is John Moraga vs Demetrious Johnson for the 125 pound championship. John Moraga may be an unknown to most of the crowd as he hasn’t had a televised fight as of yet with the company. He faces Johnson who was a top contender at 135 though when he had his opportunity at the champion Dominick Cruz he fell short. He found himself then competing in the newly created 125 pound weight class and becoming its first champion.
Courtesy of impactwrestling.com:
Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, the mixed martial arts icon and action-movie star has agreed to a monumental, multi-year partnership with Spike TV, Bellator MMA, and TNA Wrestling, it was jointly announced today by Kevin Kay, Spike TV President, Bjorn Rebney, Bellator CEO, and Dixie Carter, TNA Wrestling President.
Huntington Beach, Ca – Mark April 13 on your calendar and make sure you tune into MavTV for the LIVE return to the cage of David “TANK” Abbott, the world’s most famous cage fighter, in a world championship match against Reuben “Warpath” Villereal at Gold Country Casino in Northern California for the King of the Cage Superfight title!
Alex Goff’s ‘Punch in the Face’ – February 25, 2013
Three things we learned this weekend:
- It is possible to have a signature finishing hold in the UFC. Ronda Rousey again showed she is a virtuoso of the move called an armbar last night in her win over Liz Carmouche. Liz showed heart and toughness going against the champion but not unlike the other seven professional and her two amateur fights, Ronda ended it quickly with her armbar. Seemingly Ronda has a business opportunity beating down her door as I think we would all like to know how to defend ourselves with one hold that is impossible to defeat. 1st step encounter an attacker, 2nd step armbar: An instructional guide to the mastery of the only irreversible submission by Ronda Rousey. This is a book just waiting to be written.
- People like fights. I believe you had a vocal minority of internet fans and writers try to test the limits of this argument. Without the use of real data or facts, they built the argument that Ronda Rousey and women in general did not earn or deserve the opportunity that was presented to them last night. We learned back in 2008 with the introduction of Gina Carano to the national stage that she was able to attract viewers and last night’s sold out crowd in the Honda Center shows that fight fans have respected women for a while. Ronda securing the attention from many major news outlets to include Time Magazine cements to me that people enjoy fights. There is a logical and responsible threshold to this. Weights and Sexes shouldn’t be tampered with. I don’t think we will ever see a responsible governing body allow a man vs. women fight, but we know within our current confines of weight and sex, fighting works. Women fighters will be respected and interest will be garnered for their fights. Women will face the same limitations that men face as you will see matchups that won’t be as interesting as others but it appears that Women fighters are okay in the American public’s eye.
- Last night we may have just learned how stable the road can be for an athlete to come out as a homosexual. A Marine who did three tours in Iraq, Mixed Martial Artist Liz Carmouche also happens to be a lesbian. Leading up to her opportunity of a lifetime to fight in the main event of UFC157, some writers and media coverage went very far to discuss this aspect of the story. I don’t want to downplay the significance of any of the events that took place last night including the fact that we saw the debut of the first openly homosexual fighter. We learned that in the world of fighting a person’s sexuality isn’t a factor when determining who can beat the other up. What we will come to learn is that a person’s sexuality isn’t a factor in who can run faster or catch the ball better either. Being openly gay has less impact on performance than someone’s dietary choices. Hopefully Liz will inspire and pave the way for other homosexual athletes in other popular sports to come out.
This Thursday January 24, 2013 Bellator Fighting Championship Presents Bellator 86 from Thackerville, Oklahoma. This will be the debut what is being called this generation’s first two sport athlete Muhammed Lawal or King Mo. We saw King already debut on Spike TV but it was for Impact Wrestling.
King Mo had a very interesting 2012: he failed a drug test, dealt with staph he contracted after knee surgery, and he began to learn professional wrestling while training at Ohio Valley Wrestling. Mo’s knees seemingly are an issue going into this fight but as he told me, “I went to Holland to test myself against top fighters and I left there with no injuries.”
We also have big title fight between Karl Amoussou and Ben Askren. These guys are not fans of each other in the slightest. Askren’s eighty seven wins in college wrestling ranks in the top-10 all time in NCAA history. Ben uses his wrestling very effectively and controls his opponent on the mat for most of his matches.
Ben has been accused of using a boring “lay and pray” style in his fights to which he responds:
“People just try to get under my skin. In one of my interviews after the Lima fight, people want to see me lose for whatever reason whether it’s my attitude or anything. When I get on top and I do it quickly, they know that I won’t get knocked out and they won’t submit me. It sucks for them because they know what’s going to happen which is 25 minutes of me winning. Come next Thursday, the fans will be disappointed again because there’s no way that belt isn’t leaving with me.”
I was able to ask Karl if the fans begin to boo in reaction to Ben Askren’s controlling style will this affect his game plan at all he said, “My nerves are good. I’m calm and cool. I’m ready to fight standing up, I’m ready to wrestle and I’m ready to grapple. If fans are ready to boo as often happens in Askren fights if it goes to the ground, but that’s not my biggest concern. I’m coming to win the belt.”
Bellator 86 will have 4 big fights Thursday night but the title fight and King Mo’s debut will be defiantly worth checking out.
— Alex Goff @AlexGoff84
At Bellator 85 which happens to be Bellator Fighting Championship’s debut in front of a possible 100 million homes on Spike TV we will see three title fights two of which are title fights and one is a matchup in the first round of the light heavyweight tournament. Renato Sobral a veteran of MMA since 1997 has a record of 37-9 though recently he only fought once in 2012 and before that hadn’t fought since December 2010. Sobral says, “Training for this fight and for me to fight in this tournament format has to be smart. You have to train with a vision to fight again in a short period.”