Written by Randi Lotsberg
Being a pro fighter and trying to make it to the big show isn’t just about being good at your game, to be successful there are many elements to making it. Obviously you need to have a good fight record and the more exciting the fights you have the better but then there is the whole entertainment aspect that comes with being successful in one of the worlds fastest growing sports.
Elias ‘The Spartan’ Theodorou is currently undefeated (8-0) in his pro MMA career, not only does he dominate and injure his opponents while keeping his record squeaky clean he is also, as his coach Lachlan Cheng puts it “A social media whore”. When Elias isn’t updating his Facebook and Twitter feed he is also branching out and making himself extremely marketable by pursuing a career in acting and modelling. He recently had a role in CTV’s original series The Listener where he portrays an MMA fighter, modelled in his briefs for the HiM 2014 Rethink Breast Cancer Charity Calendar and has an upcoming role in the movie Number One Contender. On September 22, 2013 Theodorou auditioned for The Ultimate Fighter which could be huge for his professional career, he has a lot to offer a reality TV show with his undefeated record, charismatic personality, his ridiculous outbursts and of course, his hair. When we asked Theodorou what making it onto the series would mean to him he said ”Being on TUF would be a dream come true. I want to be a UFC fighter more than anything else in the world, and TUF would be the vehicle to living my dream wide awake”
MMAxposed had the opportunity to follow and film Elias during his training camp while he prepared for his most recent win against Travis Clark (7-2) at NAAFS in Ohio this past August. We give you the opportunity to see Elias in action with this behind the scenes look into his life and training. Behind every great fighter is a great team of people who help put together all the pieces leading up to victory, in Elias Theodorou: Training Camp we meet with Elias’ coaches Sergio Cunha who is one of the original Chute Boxe members from Brazil who trains many high caliber fighters in the UFC such as The Nogueira Brothers, Anderson Silva, and Mauricio Rua just to name a few. His other coach and close friend Lachlan Cheng who is much like a father figure to Elias by keeping him on track, focused and out of trouble shares his story about being coach to ‘The Spartan’. Training Camp shows the struggles, sacrifice and laughs associated with being a professional MMA fighter and a look into what it’s like to be Elias Theodorou.
As the sport of MMA has grown over the last 20 years so has one of the sports largest and most successful brands TapouT, A fan of the sport or not you are probably familiar with the name. What many would say is an over night success story in reality was many years of hard work spent selling T-shirts out of the trunk of their car and following a dream motivated by nothing more then a passion for a sport that was not even legal in the state they lived.
TapouT was founded in 1997 in San Bernardino, California USA by PunkASS (Dan Caldwell), the late Mask (Charles Lewis Jr) and later joined by SKRAPE (Tim Katz). In 1998 the company brought in about $30,000 and in ten years they managed to make the $100 million dollar mark. Tapout is the perfect example of a success story but what did they do that was different then other companies out there? Personally I think it has a lot to do with their personalities, ability to network and their dedication to BELIEVE!! The laws of attraction and power of positivity can go a long way and these guys are living prove of what one is truly capable of achieving. After the years of work and success they still seem like the cool and humble dudes I am only guessing they were when they started from nothing.
“Follow your own dreams and don’t listen to other people because people are going to tell you otherwise cause it’s not their dream” – SKRAPE
“If you love what you’re doing and it doesn’t feel like work you just keep doing it because you love it and you would do it whether you got paid for it or not.” – PunkASS
Seven weeks out from Mitch Gagnon’s fight at UFC 165 he is confident to finish his opponent Dustin Kimura and have his hand raised inside the UFC octagon on Saturday September 21. The Sudbury, Ontario native is set to make his third appearance inside the octagon and is looking for his second win during his UFC career which would make him 10-3 in his pro MMA career. Kimura is currently undefeated in his pro career. You can watch their bout on the UFC prelims on Sportsnet 8PM/5PM ETPT
Written by: Ryan Manahan
The UFC continued their ‘World Tour” of press conferences on Thursday, this time hitting up the hometown of UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre in scenic Montreal, Quebec. GSP and challenger Johny Hendricks attended the conference, as well as UFC Director of Canadian Operations Tom Wright, and several other Canadian MMA luminaries were in the audience. MMAxposed had the opportunity to catch up with GSP and get his thoughts on a variety of subjects
Regardless of what is said before the match or who is standing across from St. Pierre in the octagon, for GSP, it all comes down to the fight.
UFC 165 Tickets are on sale to the general public today through Ticketmaster
Watch the media scrum with the current Light heavyweight Champion Jon Jones below:
Tuesday July 9,2013 UFC held their UFC 165 press conference at Real Sports in Toronto, Ontario with the headliners, Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson. MMAxposed correspondent Ryan Manahan sits down with Gustafsson: Watch the interview below
The two fighters addressed the crowd with two different types of positive demeanours. Gustafsson sat to the right of the podium looking refreshed and excited to talk about his upcoming opportunity. Tom Wright told the crowd that Gustafsson had spent yesterday relaxing at a local amusement park in the area. Jones sat to the right of the podium with his Light Heavyweight championship title to his left and a cup of coffee to his right admitting to feeling a little tired. Though he felt tired, he spoke to the crowd with enthusiasm, a sense of humour, and a smile. While the two fighters had opposing energies, there was a great level of respect shared between the two of them.
“Alexander Gustafsson is a guy who really wanted a shot at the title. And he’s a guy that I asked for. He asked for me, I asked for him,” Jones said before complimenting Gustafsson’s boxing and saying he was the the perfect opponent to face when attempting to surpass Tito Ortiz for the most consecutive title defenses at Light Heavyweight. Gustafsson showed Jones a similar level of respect saying, ”I see the greatest test in my career. He’s the champion for a reason.”
While this press conference was designed to promote Jones vs Gustafsson at UFC 165, Jones was asked just as much about former UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva’s loss to Chris Weidman last Saturday night. After the fight, Jones tweeted out, “This sucks,” and further said at the press conference, “To see a great champion go down always sucks.” As result of the loss, Jones went up to top the pound for pound rankings, but Jones did not think too much of it saying, “To become number one because of Anderson’s lost doesn’t make me feel like I accomplished anything,” Jones looked at Silva’s loss more as a form of inspiration, telling the crowd, ”It motivates me a lot to see someone like that lose.”
Jones dissected the Silva loss even further, saying the loss didn’t change his perception of the man many regard as the greatest mixed martial artist of all time and that Silva just made a mistake – “Anderson Silva is a magnificent fighter. I think he has an extraordinary gift. He’s comfortable with his gift. And he abused his gift. He disrespected the gift by disrespecting his opponent… He got disrespectful and the war gods made him pay for it.” He concluded his praise the former Middleweight Champion by saying, “He’s still that great Anderson Silva in my book.”
While Jones answered questions about Anderson Silva, Gustafsson talked about his road to becoming the number one contender for the Light Heavyweight championship. It was only three months ago that he felt his opportunity slipping through his fingers when he had to pullout of the main event of UFC on Fuel TV 9 in his home country of Sweden after suffering a cut just days before the fight. He explained the contrast of pulling out of one main event in his home country to competing for the Light Heavyweight Championship saying, “It was one of the worst experiences of my life. Now I just left it behind me now with my dream fight coming up.”
Johny Hendricks talks about UFC 167, punching GSP in the face, being a new father and Olympic Wrestling
MMAxposed was fortunate enough to partake in this past weekend’s fundraiser and charity event at ‘Woodbridge Heroes’ collectibles store in scenic Woodbridge, Ontario. The event was held in support of the Canadian Diabetes Association, the city of Vaughan food bank and SOS Children’s Villages.
The event, sponsored in part by Haymaker Fightwear, was a rousing success, raising much-needed funds for worthy charities and providing entertainment for children of all ages including super hero costumes and an exotic petting zoo.
Also featured were appearances from real-life superheroes in the form of some of the top names in MMA, including UFC #1 welterweight contender Johny “Bigg Rigg” Hendricks. Hendricks gave this exclusive interview to MMAxposed where he discusses the clash with GSP, becoming a father the day before, whether wrestling will be back in the Olympics and more. Watch as “Bigg Rigg” pulls no punches on any subject!
By Carlin Bardsley
99 Sudbury in Toronto has hosted many events for the arts but now they are home to a different kind of art, Mixed Martial Arts. Evolucao Thai MMA School celebrated their grand opening this past Saturday with a seminar hosted by UFC Light Heavyweight Wanderlei Silva along side close longtime friend, head instructor and co-owner Mauricio Veio. Both Silva and Veio are from the original Chute boxe Acadamy in Brazil which is how they met at the young ages of 13 and 16. Mauricio refelcts on their friendship “Wanderlei my hero, hero for personal, for fighter.” says Veio “Today I am so proud to have Wanderlei in my school.”
The new Evolucao Thai MMA School offers much more then other MMA gyms in the greater Toronto area, included in your monthly membership is full access to The Gym @ 99 Sudbury which offers exceptional facilities to add quality workouts to your MMA training you also get access to all classes provided through Evolucau unlimited MMA School classes, Muay Thai Classes, Brazlian Jiu-Jitsu, Wrestling, No-Gi, Boxing plus yoga and fitness classes. You can check out Evolucao and The Gym @ 99 Sudbury at http://www.evolucaothai.com
All images video, editing, music and writing by Randi Lotsberg
UFC on FOX 6 Recap:
By Dustin Perie.
Odd start to the show, first with the panel not realizing the camera was on, then slight audio issues, commentary was in and out, and when it did come back it was Goldberg speaking to presumably his producers, asking if he needs to apologize for the audio issues, great stuff that boarder lined awkward. But enough about technical issues, let’s get to the violence.
Ricardo Lamas 12-2 (+160) vs. Erik Koch 13-1 (-175)
Hats off to Koch for the bad ass entrance music: Scooter – Fire, it’s very dated, but if you are interested in a trip back to the mid 90s, it’s a funky way to do it.
First round started off slow, both men showing off their great head kicks with not much being landed clean. Lamas went for a single leg mid-way through the round, but somehow Koch found a way to stay vertical. Lamas received a warning from John McCarthy about open hand strikes to the face. Right near the end of the round Lamas scored a sloppy takedown which will likely score him the round.
According to me: 10-9 Lamas.
We recently had the opportunity to interview Royler Gracie while he was in Ontario teaching seminars. We caught up with Royler at Robinson’s Karate School located in Bolton, Ontario Canada. Royler reflects on his thoughts about whether his father should be in the UFC Hall Of Fame for his contributions to the sport, the importance of being skilled in more then one of the martial arts and why he chose to make the move to America from Brazil.
UFC 152 is soon upon us and I can’t help but feel a wealth of emotions in my attempt to predict the action. The reason I say this is because it seems that predicting MMA fights are no longer as simple as “fighter A over fighter B” but instead a much more complex and anxious process that could be better described as “provided the physical well-being of fighters A and B is at acceptable competition level, it is likely X will be the outcome.” However if one or more parties are unable to participate and the suitable replacement(s) is/are willing and able to perform on Saturday, I predict Jon Jones won’t walk away from two cards in two weeks if he knows what’s good for him”. The caveat “Both Must Fight For Action” has taken on a whole new meaning, as the possibility that there may be no action has become as real as any other. With Saturday’s outcome hinging on all of these conditions I’ll do my best to predict the winners of UFC 152’s currently billed card.
Jon Jones vs Vitor Belfort
Jon Jones is a very clear favorite to win this fight, and rightfully so. Given his accomplishments over the last year and a half against strikers, wrestlers and muggers, it’s hard to imagine there are any stylistic matchups left to threaten the champ. This is doubly so when considering his opponent is 10 years his senior. However, when you consider Jones’s toughest test to date has come at the lightning quick hands of Lyoto Machida, it is reasonable to think that Vitor, a boxer with a conceivably greater speed advantage, may have more of a chance than odds-makers are letting on. In addition to a certain striking advantage, Vitor Belfort probably has the best jiu-jitsu of any fighter Jones has faced since entering the UFC. That being said, I don’t think Belfort has the advantage in the grappling department and despite still being a very dangerous fighter, his chin isn’t what it used to be and he will be giving up a foot of reach and considerable mass on fight night. Despite having made a case for Vitor’s chances of success, I simply can’t envision him taking control of the fight before Jones takes his confidence away.
Prediction: Jon Jones by TKO in round 3
Joseph Benavidez vs Demetrious Johnson
Joseph Benavidez has long been touted as the uncrowned flyweight kingpin and on Saturday he’ll finally get his opportunity to live up to such accolades. This won’t be easy though and “Mighty Mouse” is no walk in the park for anyone and his ability to outwork opponents often leaves him with his hand raised, despite his original underdog status. Benavidez comes into this fight with real stopping power for flyweight, as demonstrated in his fight with Yasuhiro Urushitani and Johnson may find his chin tested in the early rounds of this fight. Ultimately, I think Johnson’s speed will keep him out of harm’s way for the first couple rounds and as the fight wears on, he will begin to pull away as he continues an unrivaled work rate.
Prediction: Demetrious Johnson by unanimous decision
Michael Bisping vs Brian Stann
Michael Bisping may very well be at the end of his rope with this fight, should he lose. He has a great record against a number of very tough opponents regardless of the outcome, he will undoubtedly fight on for years to come… but should he lose, at what cost? Bisping may find himself at the bottom of the pile if he loses to Brian Stann on Saturday and what makes this so interesting is the outcome really depends on which game plan he chooses to employ. Bisping actually has very underrated grappling skills, despite hailing from a nation that has, traditionally, poor grappling skills. Given that Brian Stann is certainly no pushover on the ground (unless your name is Chael Sonnen), it is far and away, the weakest aspect of his game. If Bisping employs the same technical boxing game plan he has used against most of his recent opponents, I feel that he is gambling with his future. Brian Stann has proven an ability to put away both brawlers and technicians in absolutely brutal fashion. Stann will fearlessly go toe-to-toe with “The Count” and employ the counter punching that has made him so successful since coming down to middleweight.
Prediction: Brian Stann by TKO in round 2
Matt Hamill vs Roger Hollett
Matt “The Hammer” Hamill makes his return after a brief 17-month retirement and it will be interesting to see what shape he returns in to the octagon. If Matt aims to head-hunt as he has done in the past he may find himself getting beaten to the punch (no pun intended). Hamill, after re-evaluating his career will likely come back using the game plan that brought him success in his early days, take them down and pound them out.
Prediction: Matt Hamill by TKO in round 3
Cub Swanson vs Charles Oliveira
Cub Swanson has been a modest tear, cutting down George Roop and bringing the fight to a much larger Ross Pearson. Swanson may be small but he is scrappy and when he hits his stride he packs a hell of a wallop. I feel though he may find it harder to impose his game on Oliveira as Do Bronx has a rangy style that can be just as sporadic and unpredictable as Swanson’s. Furthermore, Cub’s commendable bottom game that served him so well against Pearson will likely count for nothing if he finds himself under Oliveira. With that in mind, I don’t foresee many areas that Oliveira will not be comfortable taking the fight.
Prediction: Oliveira by submission in round 2
Predictions by Farrell Tremblay
Chris Clements has had a dream since he was in high school to get into the UFC. This past year after beating UFC veteran Rich Clementi at The Score Fighting Series, his dream finally came true. At the age of 34 he made his UFC debut and faced Keith Wisniewski, taking home yet another win. It has been a great year for Chris; he got married to the love of his life, they had their first child, and his UFC debut was just five weeks later. This is Chris’ story about his dream, his family, and his life.
Phil Baroni is getting ready for his fight against Rodrigo Ribeiro at ONE FC in the Philippines on August 31th, 2012. He tells us about a new reality series called Fight Factory TV, which is set to premier August 15, 2012 on Nuvo TV.
Attard talks about the step up in competition, the “sketchy” Discipline MMA show in Belleville and his preparation for Saggo. Saggo talks about training with legends all over the world, his passions, and fight mentality.
Download MMAxposed podcast Episode 6 HERE
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.
Written by Jordan Maskell
This Saturday nights UFC on FOX 4 may very well determine the next challenger for the UFC Light Heavyweight championship according to Dana White. The UFC President had originally indicated the winner of the main event between Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Brandon Vera would decide who would get the shot. However, after a large opposition by fans it was announced the co-main event between Lyoto Machida and Ryan Bader would also be taken into consideration.
White stated the fighter who wins in the most impressive fashion and makes the biggest impact would be granted the title shot. Current champion Jon “Bones” Jones has finished all four men in previous bouts. The champ will face Dan Henderson at UFC 151 on September 1st in Las Vegas.
Shogun (20-6-0) has not fought since losing a five round war to Henderson at UFC 139, which many named 2011 Fight of the Year. Vera (12-5-0, 1NC) has one win, two losses and one no contest in the last three years in the UFC. Meanwhile, Machida (17-3-0) will be competing in his first fight since losing to Jones at UFC 140 in Toronto, Ontario. Bader (15-2-0) on the other hand recently defeated Quinton “Rampage” Jackson by unanimous decision, and Jason Brilz by a first round knockout.
Lightweights Joe Lauzon (20-7-0) and Jamie Varner (20-6-1, 2NC) will also compete on the main card. Lauzon is coming off a KO loss to Anthony Pettis at UFC 144, while having two consecutive Submission of the Night wins before that. Varner is currently riding a three-fight win streak. He has two knockouts and one submission victory in his last three fights.
A bout between Heavyweights Ben Rothwell and Travis Browne was scheduled for this card, although Rothwell was forced to withdraw due to injury. Browne was later pulled from the event all together, while the Welterweight matchup between Mike Swick and DaMarques Johnson was promoted to the main card. This has set up a Heavyweight fight between Browne and Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva for a UFC on FX event later this year.
Written By Jordan Maskell
With the news that Frank Mir will enter the Strikeforce cage to face David Cormier, the question is how many more UFC-Strikeforce bouts will we see in the future? The most recent cross promotion bout announced looks to be the first within Strikeforce. However, this is following a string of Strikeforce crossovers with former champions including Nick Diaz, Jake Shields, Dan Henderson, and Allistar Overeem making the transition to the Octagon.
It has been revealed that the Strikeforce Heavyweight division will eventually be dissolved, as after this fight both Mir and Cormier will compete solely in the UFC. This will be done to focus on developing the depth of other weight classes, including a women’s division within the company. Many former Strikeforce Heavyweights have already entered the UFC including Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva, Shane del Rosario, Shawn Jordan, and of course Overeem.
Until now, both rosters have been considered exclusive to its respected promotion, although there have been exceptions to this rule. UFC President Dana White has said in the past that fighters from Strikeforce will not crossover to the UFC while there is a deal between Showtime and Strikeforce. The company was bought by the UFC’s parent company Zuffa in March 2011. He has said before he would not sign Strikeforce fighters while they were contracted with Strikeforce due to the deal with Showtime.
MMAxposed reporter Matt Marcone caught up with Dan “The Outlaw” Hardy at the “Heroes” comic book store in Woodbridge, Ontario. It was an awesome event that had everything from real transformers cars to memorabilia to exotic animals in the petting zoo. Not too often do an MMA fighter, batman, iron man, bumblebee, two camels and a lemur all get to hang out in one place!
He was one of the nicest guys we’ve had the pleasure of interviewing and bluntly spoke about having to rediscover his passion for mixed martial arts.
Hardy stormed onto the UFC welterweight scene in 2008, winning four in a row and earning a title shot against Georges St. Pierre. After losing a decision to the reigning champ, Hardy consecutively dropped three more fights to Carlos Condit, Anthony Johnson and Chris Lytle.
Due to his fast paced style and willingness to push the action, the UFC opted not to cut him and gave him another fight against Duane Ludwig. Their decision proved to be justified as he knocked him out with a devastating hook in the first round.
In the interview, Hardy opens up about star wars, his upcoming fight with TUF 7 winner Amir Sadollah, and finding his spirituality. He also gives his prediction for the upcoming title fight between St. Pierre and Condit, two guys he’s very familiar with.
Hardy’s bout with Sadollah is scheduled for September 29, 2012 in his hometown of Nottingham, England at the UFC on FUEL TV 5.
UFC lightweight Sam Stout attending the Show Your Strength Charity event this past weekend with fellow training team mates Mark Hominick and Chris Clements. Sam reflects on Jens Pulvers documentary DRIVEN, bullying, Stanley Cup Finals and his upcoming fight at UFC on FX 4
MMAxposed reporter Matt Marcone was at the “Show Your Strength” charity event held at the Toronto Underground Cinema. The event had a free screening of the documentary “Jens Pulver – Driven,” and was in support of programs to promote athletics for youth at risk.
He spoke with Canadian MMA fighter Mark Hominick about the documentary, Jens Pulver’s legacy, Sam Stout vs. Spencer Fisher three, Kenny Florian’s retirement, and the Stanley Cup finals.
Written by Donny Oliveira
On Saturday May 26, 2012 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, the UFC returns with a stellar card featuring for the first time all heavyweight action on the main card. The Champion Junior dos Santos will attempt his first defense of the title against 2 time former HW champ Frank Mir. The landscape of this division can change drastically after this card and it should be action packed with plenty of excitement to go around.
Written By Donny Oliveira
With all the activity in MMA today, if you blink, you may miss a very exciting card!! Such is the case with the UFC on Fuel TV card on Tuesday May 15, 2012 at the Patriot Center in Fairfax, Virginia. The main event has “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung squaring off against Dustin Poirier in what could be a #1 contender fight for Champion Jose Aldo’s Featherweight Title. Sung Jung has won his last 2 UFC bouts including a 7 second knock out victory over former #1 contender Mark Hominick. Poirier is on a 5 fight win streak and either fighter has yet to taste defeat in the UFC Octagon.