My recap and review for tonight’s premiere of Fight Factory on Nuvo TV

Fight-factory_medium

Mixed martial arts involves some of the most incredible emotional highs and the lowest of the lows. You have to remember that for every fighter that is celebrating in the cage, another just had his dreams and potentially months of training crushed.

There’s so much going on behind the scenes for every fighter, but they do a pretty damn good job of keeping the fans and media in the dark.

Until now.

Tonight was the premiere of Fight Factory on Nuvo TV, a new TV series which follows all the behind-the-scenes goings-on of American Kickboxing Academy. It explores everything from the intensity of training and sparring, the relationships between the fighters, their trainers, their managers, their families and more.

In both premiere episodes tonight, the series already has me hooked.

Somehow, in each hour-long episode, the show’s creators manage to explore all the nuances that are going on with important subjects like self-doubt, fighter pay, getting older and finding out whether you’re good enough to make it in this wild and crazy sport.

There’s the rookies working their way up in Mark Ellis and Gabriel Carrasco, there’s the fighters in their prime like Josh Koscheck, Jon Fitch and Cain Velasquez, and of course, there’s the other end of the spectrum with fighters potentially on their way out but still trying to hold on like Phil Baroni.

I felt the most impactful part of tonight’s show was Mark Ellis, a national champion heavyweight wrestler out of Missouri who was just getting his start in mixed martial arts. It followed his training, showing how far behind he was while sparring against Cain Velasquez and the adjustments he needed to make if he wanted to be a successful MMA fighter.

When he lost, it was devastating. It showed all the emotions and how he reacted to not being the best at something for the first time. This quote in particular stuck with me:

“I just lost to a guy who was in prison while I was off winning the national title.”

The show also gives you a newfound respect for all the extra work that managers, trainers and agents have to do behind the scenes to keep the cogs turning. There’s always drama, things that need diffused, fights getting cancelled and injuries. It has to be incredibly stressful.

And I haven’t even started on one of the key developing storylines which involves Josh Koscheck leaving the gym after eight years to start his own and the decisions it forces all key members of the show to make regarding how they move forward with the situation.

This is something that is likely going to carry over throughout the season so if you’re a fan of the high school drama, you’ll eat it up.

I’m a big fan of mixed martial arts documentaries and the presentations of Fight Factory was like one of those films moving at 100 miles an hour, but the pacing never felt off. This is must-see television, not just for hardcore MMA fans, but for anyone who can appreciate the hard work that goes into being a success at anything.

I couldn’t possibly recommend Fight Factory any more.

MMAmania.com

Frankie Edgar: Nate Diaz Matches Up ‘Really Well’ with Benson Henderson

Across two five-round fights, Frankie Edgar has spent 50 grueling minutes in the Octagon with Benson Henderson. He dropped both bouts via decision, but it’s safe to say he knows a thing or two about the UFC lightweight champion’s game and he’s willing to share that information with Henderson’s next challenger, Nate Diaz.
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Jon Jones Responds To Chael Sonnen’s “Punk Kid” Remarks Via Twitter Outburst [UPDATED]


(When all else fails, a hypogonadism burn is always a solid standby.) 

Apparently Jon Jones is unaware that Chael Sonnen is a fight promoter first, troll second, and actual fighter third. Be that as it may, “Bones” must have really took to heart the relatively light bit of trash-talking Sonnen aimed in the champ’s direction when announcing his return to the light-heavyweight division on UFC Tonight, as he has already responded, then deleted, several scathing remarks aimed at the former middleweight title challenger via Twitter, because of course he did.

If we’ve learned anything about what arguments over Twitter inevitably lead to, we’re probably going to need a bigger facepalm and a fresh pair of trousers for one of these gentlemen in the near future.

The rest of Jones’ comments are below.

True, Jon, but doing the same thing back to Sonnen on Twitter kind of blends into that whole hypocritical aura you seem to exude. Just sayin’.

Forget what I just said, that was kind of awesome. Chael, the floor is yours.

But you know what I hate about this the most? The fact that Jones is playing right into Chael’s game (see below), which can only mean one thing: an expedited, undeserved title shot for Chael Sonnen if Jones is able to dispatch Dan Henderson at UFC 151. Sure, the next shot has been promised to Lyoto Machida, but we all know how much better Sonnen vs. Jones (or Sonnen vs. anyone, for that matter) would do as far as pay-per-view sales go. Rivalries trump legitimate contenders 9 times out of 10, and the fact that Machida has already faced Jones and lost certainly won’t help those numbers. Sonnen undoubtedly knows this, the clever cow, and is leading Bones into his Jigsaw-esque trap like the pro that he is.

Prediction: If Jones beats Hendo, he will suffer an injury significant enough that Machida will be forced to take another fight in his prolonged absence. Meanwhile, Jones and Sonnen will continue to hype their rivalry until Sonnen vs. Griffin is declared a #1 contenders match (hey, crazier things have happened). Sonnen will win, and Lyoto will be left in the dark, drinking homemade Mai Tai after Mai Tai as a means of consoling himself for not talking enough shit over Twitter to get a rematch with Bones.

I could be wrong, but I watched The Mentalist for eight straight hours yesterday, which leads me to believe that I am spot on.

[UPDATE - 4:30 p.m. EST]

Wait a minute…as I’m writing this, it seems Jones has used the Avatarian connection that all people with the same last name share to hack into my brain and respond to my worries before I could even publish them (same wording and everything), stating the following on Twitter:

For everyone who thinks I’m “falling into chaels game” I know exactly what I’m doing.. #AreYouNotEntertained

Touche, Jon. Now stay the fuck out of my head thank you very much.

[UPDATED - 4:45]

This article has officially become a liveblog, people. Here’s Chael’s pair of responses:

Advice to @jonnybones. Take some of that Nike money, hire new writers.

Boarding plane to Oregon now, home of your corporate wage masters. Next time you are in town, knock on my door. Don’t drive.

I don’t really understand hashtags, but I think a #BOOMHEADSHOT is appropriate here.

Tune in for more.

-J. Jones

Cagepotato

Hendo: “I’d love Jones to try to TKO me, won’t have to chase him”

Yesterday the UFC released footage of Jon Jones predicting a TKO win over his next opponent Dan Henderson. Something Henderson has never suffered in his career. During the airing of last night’s UFC Tonight ‘Hendo’ responded to the brash comments from the champ. “[My right hand] must be a pretty good trick. It’s kept me …

The post Hendo: “I’d love Jones to try to TKO me, won’t have to chase him” appeared first on Caged Insider.

Caged Insider

One FC 6 to Feature Shinya Aoki-Arnaud Lepont, 3 Title Fights on Oct. 6

Former Dream lightweight champion Shinya Aoki will make his One Fighting Championship debut a little later than expected.
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Lightweight Rankings: Ben Henderson’s Unprecedented Run

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

UFC lightweight champion Ben Henderson has won 15 of his past 16 bouts.

No other fighter who has held the UFC lightweight title can claim such a run against 155-pound competition: Not Jens Pulver, not B.J. Penn, not Frankie Edgar. Sean Sherk only lost one of his first 32 career fights (30-1-1), but that was mainly done at welterweight. The only lightweight (161-pound) champ in PRIDE history, Takanori Gomi, won his first 14 career bouts en route to the Shooto 154-pound title before dropping his next two fights. He went on another 14-1 (1 no-contest) run in his prime, but never quite matched Henderson’s run.

So while Henderson’s split-decision in a razor-close fight with Frankie Edgar remains a subject of debate, there’s no denying what Henderson has accomplished in mixed martial arts’ deepest division. The champ is 10-1 since entering Zuffa, 6-1 against fighters currently ranked in the divisional top 10. Even BenHen’s biggest detractors have to tip their hat to what the current UFC and former WEC champ has achieved.

As the man who got the wrong end of the decision on Saturday, for all the respect Frank Edgar has rightly earned, the fact is, wins, losses and draws matter when you’re compiling rankings.

If a college football team played four games against top-ranked teams and only won once, would that team be ranked in the top three simply because they came really, really close in all their games? Highly unlikely, even if said team was on the wrong end of a bad call by the officials.

Likewise, Edgar has stepped into the Octagon four times in the past two years and has emerged the victor once. Most other fighters would be dropped out of their division’s top 10 with such a record. In Edgar’s case, you acknowledge his elite level of competition and the razor-thin margins as mitigating factors and keep him in the top five. But whether you get the W at the end of the night is the bottom line, and while Edgar’s loss was debatable, it wasn’t a Manny Pacquiao-Tim Bradley-type robbery. At some point, the won/loss/draw record in recent fights begin to outweigh the “what ifs.”

Official MMAFighting.com policy: Fighters under commission suspension are ineligible to be ranked for the duration of their suspensions.

Fighter’s ranking last time out is noted in parentheses.

1. Ben Henderson (1): No rest for the weary with Nate Diaz up next.

2. Gilbert Melendez (2): If Zuffa can step up and get Frank Mir to fight Daniel Cormier, then they need to find a way to get Melendez a top-notch opponent.

3. Nate Diaz (4): He’s 3-0 in the past 10 months since dropping down to lightweight, including a masterful finish of the previously unfinishable Jim Miller.

4. Frankie Edgar (3): The big question: Will he stay at 155 or drop to 145?

5. Gray Maynard (5): Doubled down and found a way to take a decision from an opponent who was looking to avoid contact in Clay Guida.

6. Donald Cerrone (NR) Two convincing wins since the last time the lightweight rankings were compiled give him eight victories in his past nine fights.

7. Anthony Pettis (7): Has a chance to make a high-profile statement when he meets Cerrone.

8. Clay Guida (6): Let’s hope the real Clay Guida buried Impostor Guida somewhere in the desert.

9. Jim Miller (8) No fight set, still healing ankle after May loss to Nate Diaz.

10. Michael Chandler (9) Bout with tourney winner Rick Hawn is next for unbeaten Bellator champ.

Honorable mention: Joe Lauzon, Eddie Alvarez, Shinya Aoki, Pat Healy, Jamie Varner.

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Training Camp Journal: Sarah Kaufman Edition

Esther Lin

Canadian Bantamweight Sarah Kaufman will look to regain the Strikeforce bantamweight title on Saturday when she meets current champion Ronda Rousey in San Diego, Calif. The fight will air on Showtime.

MMAFighting.com’s E. Casey Leydon spent time with Kaufman and her team in Albuquerque, N.M., recently as she prepared for what will undoubtedly be the biggest fight of her career.

Watch Training Camp Journal: Sarah Kaufman Edition below.

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UFC 150 Medical Suspensions – Eight Fighters Suspended

Benson Henderson reacts after defeating Frankie Edgar at UFC 150 inside Pepsi Center on August 11, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Nick Laham via UFC.com)

The Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies’s Office of Boxing issued medical suspensions to just eight of the twenty fighters competing at last weekends UFC 150: Henderson vs. Edgar event.

The longest suspensions were handed down to Melvin Guillard, Justin Lawrence and Jared Hamman, who all received 60-day sentences. Guillard was knocked out, while both Lawrence and Hamman suffered TKO losses.

UFC 150 took place on August 11, 2012 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado. Headlining the pay-per-view event was a UFC lightweight title rematch between champion Benson Henderson and former title holder Frankie Edgar. Of the two fighters, only Henderson received a medical suspension and must be cleared by a physician before he can fight again. The exact nature of the suspension was not released by the agency.

The full list of suspensions, as posted by MMAFighting.com, is as follows:

Benson Henderson: Must be cleared by a physician
Melvin Guillard: 60 days
Buddy Roberts: 30 days
Justin Lawrence: 60 days + physician clearance
Jared Hamman: 60 days
Ken Stone: 30 days
Dustin Pague: 45 days
Eiji Mitsuoka: 45 days

TheMMANews

Strikeforce Odds For Ronda Rousey vs Sarah Kaufman In San Diego

March 3, 2012; Columbus, OH, USA; Ronda Rousey punches Miesha Tate during the Strikeforce Grand Prix final at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Greg Bartram-US PRESSWIRE

As far as the oddsmakers are concerned, there is virtually no way the Strikeforce women’s bantamweight strap is changing hands this Saturday night (Aug. 18, 2012) at the Valley View Casino Center in San Diego, California.

The evidence?

Prominent betting sites from around the Internet have Ronda Rousey pegged as anywhere from a -550 to a -800 favorite against knockout artist Sarah Kaufman, who is sitting in the +375 to +500 range. To get a sense of how little a shot Kaufman is being given, Mike Massenzio was at or around +400 against Rousimar Palhares back at UFC 142. Cody McKenzie was in the +425 range in what was considered the biggest mismatch of the year against Chad Mendes.

But are these odds fair?

What Kaufman offers, more than anyone Rousey has fought before, is a dangerous striking attack. While her knockout output has dropped off lately, she stopped her first eight opponents via knockout. In addition, she’s arguably the most experienced 135-pound female against the upper tier of the division, taking on (and defeating) the likes of Miesha Tate, Shayna Baszler, Roxanne Modafferi (kicking off a five-fight skid), Liz Carmouche and Alexis Davis.

The Carmouche fight is of particular interest, as despite the “Girl-Rilla’s” great strength and wrestling prowess, the fight took place entirely on the feet and comprised Kaufman kicking Carmouche’s booty for 15 minutes on the feet. Further, Kaufman has gone at least three rounds in every fight since May 2009, meaning her cardio is up to snuff.

Rousey, on the other hand, has zero experience past the five-minute mark.

On paper, that’s a lot in Kaufman’s favor. The issue is that, while she’s tough to take down, she’s not hard to clinch. Modafferi and Carmouche were both able to at least latch on to her, and against somebody with the Judo prowess of “Rowdy,” that’s suicide. Despite Kaufman’s brown belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, she’s dogmeat if the fight hits the mat.

Plus, her only loss is an armbar submission … Rousey’s specialty.

With all that said, though, her striking ability, takedown defense and experience strike me as worth about a $ 10 bet. In any case, this fight ought to be great and can potentially be even greater with a victory in the sportsbook.

Strikeforce: “Rousey vs. Kaufman” will also feature former middleweight champion and member of the Brazilian jiu-jitsu trinity, Ronaldo Souza, in action against Derek Brunson. Prospects Tarec Saffiedine and Ovince St. Prieux will also by in action.

Remember that MMAmania.com will provide LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the main card action on fight night (Sat., Aug. 18, 2012), which is slated to air at 10 p.m. ET on Showtime. The latest quick updates of the under card action will begin to flow earlier than that around 8 p.m. ET with the “Prelims” bouts on SHO Extreme.

See you then, Maniacs!

MMAmania.com

Invicta FC 3 Gets Jessica Penne-Naho Sugiyama Title Bout, Shayna Baszler-Sarah D’Alelio Co-Main

Invicta Fighting Championships’ third event will be headlined by an atomweight title confrontation.
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