By: Matt Marcone
The UFC finally delivered to the network audience by putting on four excellent fights and an all around great show. The judges were not needed on the main card and a future light heavyweight title shot was awarded.
UFC President Dana White said that whoever put on the most impressive performance in the two main event fights would earn a shot at the light heavyweight championship.
Both Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Lyoto Machida were victorious, earning fourth and second round finishes respectively.
“The answer is I think Lyoto Machida was the most impressive tonight,” says White. The boss has spoken, enough said.
Machida proved once again that he only needs his opponent to make one mistake to finish a fight. After frustrating Ryan Bader on the feet in the first round, he waited for him to charge in and landed a straight right hand. That was all it took at 1:32 of round two.
The main event saw Brandon Vera nearly pull off a huge upset with a tight guillotine in the opening round, but Shogun defended it perfectly.
The 2012 Ontario Open International Jiu-Jitsu Championship was held last weekend at Seneca College in Toronto, ON.
The two-day event had close to 1,500 participants from all across North America take part in the high level BJJ competition.
All ages and skill levels participated in both GI and No-GI competition, while the event also featured an vendor expo and prizes.
The competition was sanctioned by the Ontario Jiu-Jitsu Association and followed International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation rules. It was a successful and entertaining weekend for all Jiu-Jitsu enthusiasts.
Here are some photos of the event taken by Randi Lotsberg.
MMAxposed had the opportunity to sit in on one of the final days of filming “The Fight Exchange” produced by Aaron Avruskin and directed by Mark Johnston. Some of the filming took place at Evolucao Thai in Toronto and included appearances by Canadian fighters Sam Stout and Chris Horodecki from the Adrenaline Training Centre, and also Brazilian fighters Claudia Gadelha, Daniel ‘Jacare’ Almeida and Felipe Olivieri.
The Canadians trained out of Nova Uniao in Brazil whose members consist of UFC greats B.J. Penn, Jose Aldo and Bellator’s Marlon Sandro. “The Fight Exchange” series follows six fighters, three Canadians and three Brazilians living and training in each others’ country to prepare for battle. Stay tuned for the release of this series in October 2012 on the Superchannel in Canada.
By: Matt Marcone
Canadian fighters are climbing the MMA food chain faster than ever before.
Veteran UFC referee “Big Dan” Miragliotta says Ontario’s influence in the sport is becoming far more apparent. The province has only been regulating MMA for 16 months, long enough to notice a radical change.
“I see fighters coming down to New Jersey and a lot of these east coast larger events that are out of Canada, where before you would never hear of these guys,” Miragliotta explains. “The exposure they’re getting is great, Ken Hayashi [the Ontario Athletics Commissioner] is doing an excellent job with the commission there. The guys they have that are working with him know the sport and have learned by doing it.”
Provincial or state athletics commissions sanction all professional MMA bouts. Many have come under fire from fans for failing to provide adequate judges and referees.
Miragliotta, an employee of the commissions says many people have no idea how difficult MMA regulation is and sees little room for development.
“Honestly they’re doing a great job, I wouldn’t even say they have to improve,” says Miragliotta about the Ontario Athletics Commission. “I like what they’re doing. They’re bringing people in that know it [MMA], that have been around for a long time and are used enough to help people who are there to learn and become more proficient.”
Miragliotta has officiated some of the biggest fights in the sport but often enjoys local bouts just as much as main event headliners.
“It’s like college football,” says Miragliotta. “I enjoy watching college football more than pros because these are young guys that are trying to get to that level and are giving you 100% all the time. They’re really trying their hardest because they want to get to where these other guys are; making the big bucks, making the recognition, getting endorsements, commercials…”
Miragliotta also gave his thoughts about the likelihood of Paul Daley returning to the octagon. UFC President Dana White fired him for striking Josh Koscheck well after the final bell at UFC 113 in Montreal.
“Had he maybe said to Dana that he was frustrated, he was upset and that he screwed up, I think Dana would’ve suspended him and maybe fined him and that would’ve been it,” says Miragliotta. “But him telling Dana that he didn’t hear the bell, that he didn’t care, that’s what got him fired. It was a very bad mistake on his part.”
White has repeatedly said Daley will never return to the UFC because of the incident but has used similar rhetoric with fighters like Tito Ortiz, Nate Marquardt and Karo Parisyan, only to change his mind later.
“I think Dana’s like everyone else, you forgive and forget a little bit, as long as the circumstances are right,” says Miragliotta. “I don’t see why he wouldn’t. If they picked him up, that would be great but if they didn’t it would be a sad thing because Daley’s a good fighter. I mean you go to jail for murder and you get out in 20 years on probation, just for sucker punching somebody to be fired for life is a major penalty, but that’s up to him [Dana].”
Miragliotta says he is happy to be a part of the growth of MMA by being a referee but eventually plans to retire and train fighters.
You can listen to the entire interview on episode three of the MMAxposed podcast. He talks about life on the road away from his family, unified rules and standups.
Todays podcast is BIGGER then ever with Canadian fighter Ryan “Big Deal” Jimmo and UFC ref “Big” Dan Miragliotta. We also tshare our predictions for UFC 145
The UFC returns to Japan this weekend for the first time since Dec ‘00 with an action packed card! Here’s the breakdown of the main card:
Main Card (On Pay Per View):
Anthony Pettis (12-2) vs Joe Lauzon (20-6)
“Showtime” Pettis has only one loss in his last 6 fights – a decision loss to Clay Guida. Since that loss he won a split decision against the always touch Jeremy Stephens, and will look to build on that win with an impressive showing against Lauzon. Pettis has an excellent standup game and will want to establish himself as the superior striker. Lauzon has won 3 of his last 4, and there’s no secret he’ll want to get this to the ground as quickly as he can. Lauzon’s won post fight bonuses in his last 5 fights – and 6 of his last 7 fights overall. Pettis’ should have the ground skills to hang with Lauzon, but I expect these fighters to definitely start the PPV with a bang!
Pettis via TKO, Rd2
Hatsu Hioki (25-4-2) vs Bart Palaszewski (34-13)
Hioki is on a 5 fight win streak and has won 10 of his last 11. After grinding out a decision win against George Roop in his UFC debut, Hioki will be looking to take the fight to ground, where 12 of his wins have come by submission. With wins in 4 of his last 5 fights, including a 1st round KO win over Tyson Griffin, Palaszewski will be looking to dominate on the feet early and have another impressive performance to continue his climb up the ranks.
Palaszewski via 1st Rd TKO
Yushin Okami (27-6) vs Tim Boetsch (14-4)
Okami will look to rebound from his loss to Anderson Silva. “Thunder” Okami won’t have the typical strength advantage that he’s accustomed to, so he’ll have to be a little more technical to get Boetsch to the ground to deliver his GnP tactics. On a 2 fight win streak since dropping to the middleweight division, Boetsch will look to use his wrestling to stifle Okami’s takedown attempts. Look for Boetsch to use his striking to get the advantage over Okami.
Boetsch via Decision
Yoshihiro Akiyama (13-4) vs Jake Shields (26-6-1)
This is a battle of 2 fighters who desperately need a win. Sexiyama sports an impressive 13-4 record, however he’s lost 3 in a row and a 4th may spell the end of his UFC stint. He has a balanced attack and poses a threat both on the feet and on the ground. Before his recent skid began with a loss to Chris Leben, Akiyama was unbeaten since 2005 – a span of 14 fights (incl 2 no contests). Shields himself is on a 2 fight skid after winning 15 in a row that saw him climb to the top of the Strikeforce ladder. He’ll need to get this fight to the ground where he’s at his best and play to his strengths. Shields will need to pull out an impressive win if he hopes to keep job, never mind any relevance in the welterweight division.
Shields via Decision
Mark Hunt (7-7) vs Cheick Kongo (17-6-2)
After losing 6 fights in a row that saw him face some top tiered competition (incl Fedor, Overeem, Barnett, and Mousasi), Hunt has reeled off back to back wins and will be looking to prove he’s not just a one dimensional fighter against another power puncher in Kongo. Looking to extend his own 2 fight win streak, Kongo will want to display his evolution of skills and show that he is the more versitle fighter and the one that’s more deserving of the win. Although it would make for a hugely exciting fight, Kongo should look to avoid an exchange of firepower if he hopes to establish himself amongst the upper echelon of the heavyweight division, or risk remaining amongst the card fillers of UFC.
Kongo via TKO (GnP) Rd2
Quinton Jackson (32-9) vs Ryan Bader (13-2)
Rampage has seen a tremendous amount of success in Japan in the past, sporting a 14-5 record in the land of the rising sun. He’ll be looking to use his experience to his advantage to overcome Bader arsenal of weapons, which match if not exceed Rampage in power punching, wrestling, and overall strength. Rampage needs to show that he’s evolved compete with this new breed of fighters or face the possibility of being relegated to a role of gate keeper. Bader will want to regain the momentum that saw him rise up the light heavyweight ranks before suffering his first defeat at the hands of current champ Jon Jones. He’ll need to use his footwork to avoid Rampage’s attack and show that the time is now for “Darth” Bader to establish himself as one of the top fighters in the UFC’s light heavyweight division.
Bader via Decision
Frankie Edgar (14-1-1) vs Benson Henderson (15-2)
Edgar has had “The Answer” for every opponent to date, including the man responsible for the lone defeat on his record, Gray Maynard. His “never say quit” mentality and the heart of a true warrior make him dangerous no matter how much trouble you think you have him in. His gas tank seems to never run dry, so he can keep up a relentless pace that’s almost impossible for most to keep up with….unless your name is Benson Henderson. Henderson is a big 155’er, has cardio for days, and is probably the most well rounded fighter and toughest challenge that Edgar has ever faced. He’s won 3 in a row since dropping the WEC belt to Anthony Pettis, and the former champ is looking to establish himself as THE top lightweight in world. I’m a huge Edgar fan, but I have to say Henderson will be too much and may have the question that Edgar can’t answer.
Henderson via Decision
JP (MMAFreak) Castillo
Budding mixed martial artist Ryan Dickson is a young man with all the tools necessary to evolve and succeed in the sport of MMA. The Hamilton native is a skilled wrestling and jiu-jitsu competitor by his roots and competes in BJJ competitions all over the world. He is getting set to compete in the Abu Dhabi World Pro BJJ Championships later this month. “Abu Dhabi” is one of the most prestigious grappling competitions in the world and Dickson will be competing against the best of the best in BJJ.
The Jeff Joslin MMA student made his MMA debut in 2011 and went 2-0 in his first two fights. Dickson grabbed a first round, arm bar victory over Brett Biederman in a Global Warriors Fighting Championship event in August, followed by an absolute mauling of Josh Tavierne in The Score Fighting Series’ Meltdown in The Valley in December. He tapped Tavierne out via rear-naked choke in the second round.
Dickson is well aware of his prowess in submissions but he is extremely humble and grounded, two traits paramount for success in this sport. Dickson has the reputation of being a sponge in his training with teacher, local MMA pioneer and former UFC fighter Jeff Joslin. His various training methods show he is the perfect student of the game who knows he needs to learn and train everything to get to where he wants to go.
“I train alot in BJJ but I also enjoy Boxing and Muay Thai which I try to train most days of the week. I also started my training in wrestling in high school and I train with Brock University Wrestling 2 times a week as well as at Joslin’s.” Dickson said. “I also spend a lot of time watching and studying pure boxing, wrestling, Muay Thai as well because a lot can be learned from all of them.
In his victory over Josh Tavierne last December, Dickson’s technical ground game dominated, frustrated and embarrassed his opponent, and it is clear he trains to do exactly that.
“I like to emulate the technical fighters in MMA. Edson Barbosa, Benson Henderson, Rousimar Palhares and my coach Jeff Joslin as well.”
Dickson’s next MMA fight is in his hometown of Hamilton on March 16th for The Score Fighting Series where he will take on Team OAMA fighter Chris St. Jean.
“He’s experienced and well rounded and I’m looking forward to the fight.” Dickson’s goals for this year are clearly set.
“At the end of 2012, I want to still be undefeated and still have all my wins by submission or knockout. I don’t really care who I fight I just want to keep active, doing a fight every month or two months.”
The MMA future is bright for Ryan Dickson.
One of the most anticipated UFC fights in recent months took place this past Saturday night when Nick Diaz took on “The Natural Born Killer” Carlos Condit.
The bout was contested as a five-round interim welterweight title fight, showcasing some world-class mixed martial arts action. But the fight wasn’t without controversy, so now the rematch is on!
Nick Diaz, a former Strikeforce, WEC, and IFC champion was on an 11-fight win streak coming into this fight, six by TKO and three by submission. Carlos Condit, the final WEC champion, won his last three fights via TKO, with two “knockout of the night” and one “fight of the night” honors. The matchup seemed perfect between the two welterweights to determine the interim champion for the injured Georges St-Pierre.
Late Tuesday, UFC President Dana White confirmed via Twitter that Condit had agreed to a rematch, with details being worked out this coming Friday. Recent reports indicate GSP would not be ready to compete against Condit until later this year, leaving plenty of time to schedule the rematch. He is slated to finish rehabilitation on a torn ACL in June, and could potentially return in the later part of 2012.
During their first contest, Condit landed 151 significant strikes, with a total 159 strikes. Diaz on the other hand was more aggressive throughout, while landing only 105 significant strikes, with a total of 117 strikes, and one successful takedown. In his previous appearance at UFC 137, Diaz landed over 200 significant strikes on BJ Penn.
When the results were announced, the judges had it scored 49-46, 49-46, and 48-47 in favour of Condit by unanimous decision. Diaz was obviously not impressed, much like a large portion of the Vegas crowd who booed the newly crowned champ. In the post fight interview Condit mentioned he found his flow in the later rounds and that movement was a key to the victory. Diaz said he was not going to take this as a loss, indicating his views on who dictated the pace of the fight.
“I landed the harder shots. He ran the whole time and kicked me in my leg with little baby leg kicks the whole fight,” stated Diaz. “That’s the way they understand to win in here, I don’t want to play this game no more.” Following this, the Stockton native announced his “retirement” from competition, saying he would still help out his teammates like brother Nate Diaz.
I find it amusing all the drama that goes on with UFC fighters between their hissy fits, and Dana issues. The question is whether all the temper tantrums are legit? Or are they just intelligent ways to get the fans and media going to create media hype and attract more attention and higher viewer ratings for upcoming fights. UFC is MMA but UFC is also a source of entertainment. It’s not just about the sport, it’s about engaging fans, viewer numbers, and the big bucks brought in from sponsors. So with that being said… What do you think?
Let’s recap a bit here starting with Miguel Torres and the whole Twitter incident. Dana kicked him out of UFC for what he clearly stated as unacceptable behaviour. The media ate that shit up. As no surprise to me Miguel was back in the UFC in no time.
Then we have Chael Sonnen, after I saw his interview with Michael Landsburg I thought either this guy is a complete idiot or a freaking genius. I decided to steer toward the genius side after analyzing the scenario. This man knows exactly what he is doing in these interviews to help him take his popularity or lack of to the next level. Alot of people don’t like the guy but personally I think he is just playing the part of being an entertainer as well as a fighter or “The Robin Hood of MMA” in his eyes.
Now on to Nick Diaz who after UFC 143 announces that he is retiring. If that’s not bullshit then I don’t know what is. It’s all part of the plan to get the people going. Diaz lost that fight fair and square, yes you can say it was close, but stand there and taking shots and egging someone on for most of the fight does not constitute a win and defintely shouldn’t be means for a rematch. Sure he got some good shots in and was able to take Condit down in the 5th round. But Condit kept landing hits and kicks throughtout all 5 rounds, sure they weren’t very damaging but at least he was doing something substantial enough that the judges voted in his favour.
Nick will be fighting again guaranteed, Condit will go on to fight against GSP and the UFC family will live happily ever after.
Moral of the story – Don’t believe everything you see or hear.
Written by Matt Marcone
Carlos Condit is the new interim UFC welterweight champion.
Condit answered his critics Saturday with a very close decision win over crowd favourite Nick Diaz.
Condit was able to circle and move, landing several leg-kicks and jabs but never came close to finishing the Stockton native. Judges scored the bout 49-46, 49-46, and 48-47, much to the chagrin of the Vegas crowd.
Diaz verbally taunted Condit the entire fight, landing a wicked body shot combination and nearly finished him with a rear-naked choke.
“This ain’t right,” Diaz told colour-commentator Joe Rogan. “I pushed him back the whole fight. I walked him down. I got the take down. I’m the guy who went on top. Had I thought I wasn’t ahead, I’d bet you anything I’d have finished that arm lock.”
“While he was talking, I was landing punches,” Condit said.
Perhaps most shocking was the bombshell announcement that followed.
“I think I’m done with this MMA,” Diaz said. “It’s been great out here. I’ve had a good career. You guys pay me way too much, but I don’t think I’m going to get enough to keep going in this. It’s been a good time.”
If UFC 143 was Diaz’ last fight, one of the sport’s most prolific fighters is walking away in his prime. Condit now faces teammate Georges St. Pierre for the undisputed title later this year.
In the co-main event and fight of the night, Fabricio Werdum was able to out-strike Roy Nelson for three straight rounds. Many thought Werdum’s best chance to win the fight was to take it to the ground, but he proved he’s more than a one-trick pony.
Werdum landed some devastating knees in the clinch that ultimately paid dividends, with “Big Country” unable to mount any serious offence. All three judges scored it 30-27 in favour of the Brazilian.
Other fights saw Josh Koscheck win a controversial split decision over fellow wrestler Mike Pierce; the bout could’ve gone either way.
Rising Brazilian bantamweight star Renan Barao outpointed Scott Jorgenson for three rounds, improving his record to an impressive 28-1-1.
UFC newcomer Stephen Thompson showed why he hasn’t lost in combat competition since he was a young teenager. He knocked out Dan Stittgen with a beautifully timed head kick, earning him knockout of the night honours and improves to 6-0.
Submission of the night went to featherweight Dustin Poirier, who improved to 4-0 inside the Octagon.
Next stop for the UFC is February 15th on Fuel TV where Jake Ellenberger takes on fellow welterweight contender Diego Sanchez.