Posts Tagged ‘UFC on FX 4’

Tompkins is irreplaceable, but Sam Stout found a comparable coach and cornerman

UFC lightweight Sam Stout and his team have been in search of the right man for the job since the passing of their head trainer Shawn Tompkins in August 2011, and the Canadian has finally found a suitable replacement.

Stout (Twitter: @SammyJstout) defeated Spencer Fisher at UFC on FX 4 in an bout that finalized a trilogy between the two 155-pound combatants.  Stout was victorious in two of their three meetings and he dubbed the bouts as one of the defining moments of his career.

Stout beat Fisher, but not in the typical fashion a Team Tompkins competitor does.  The Canadian sprinkled in takedowns with his lethal kickboxing, something not often seen from the mixed martial artists that belong to the Adrenaline camp.  Stout accepted that his style of competing may have become predictable, therefore a change was in order heading into the third contest against Fisher.

And the change that it is here to stay.

“I can’t get away with being so one dimensional anymore,” Stout told  “My wrestling and takedown defense has always been good, and really, I’ve always had those takedowns in my back pocket.  It’s just been a mental block for me to not go out and use them.  Having a fight where I go out there and take someone down a few times is a big step for me and now I’m not going to feel awkward doing it.  I’m not going to hesitate as much when I see an opening for a takedown, I’m just going to make it part of my game plan in every fight.  That way I’m a lot more difficult to train for.”

Though, Stout has an adequate wrestling pedigree, his jiu-jitsu skills are on par with his colleagues, as well.  Fans won’t see Stout in the ADCC’s any time soon, but that does not mean he lacks submission offense and defense.

It’s just the attire worn by a traditional jiu-jitsu player that makes him avoid the BJJ gyms and acquire a belt in the martial art.

“No way, to get a belt you got to have a Gi,” Stout said.  “I’ve never worn a Gi in my life.  It’s something I’ve thought about, but I’m more of a no Gi kind of guy.  I don’t really need a belt to be confident.  I think about it sometimes, but I’ve never actually taken the steps to do it.”

The victory over Fisher marked the first win from the Adrenaline team since the passing of Tompkins.

Tompkins’ main three guys are Stout, UFC featherweight Mark Hominick and Bellator lightweight Chris Horodecki.  None of them have won a fight since the demise of their late coach, and Stout picking up the first victory since the tragic loss of Tompkins has boosted the morale in the gym.

“It was on all of our minds,” Stout said.  “There was a rough streak between Shawn’s three core guys – Me, Mark and Chris- and nobody has won since he passed, so it was definitely getting a little stressful on us.  Everyone was happy that I got the first one and they both acknowledged it to me that it was nice to get this first one out of the way.  It takes a little heat off us.

“It was a matter of us finding a new rhythm without Shawn there, so I think that was an important win for all of us.”

Stout’s rhythm was found through his training partners and a new cornerman.

Stout trains daily with Hominick, Horodecki and the other formidable combatants at Adrenaline in London, Ontario.  However, there are a few people that stand out in his preparations for his bout at UFC on FX 4.  Carter Walls, who Stout credits for his superb strength and conditioning, Alex Gasson provided pad work for the UFC lightweight, Clint Kingsbury assisted in the wrestling department, and Roland Cunningham worked with him on his BJJ skills.

The biggest adjustment and improvement, Stout admitted, came from his new cornerman.

“With Mark DellaGrotte in my corner for that last fight it was a big confidence boost,” Stout said.  “I think that’s all it is.  It’s just finding that confidence that Shawn used to give us, but with a new coaching staff.

“Me and DellaGrotte have been friends for a while.  I think the reason I was looking at him for a new trainer is because he and Shawn kind of have a similar style.  They use a lot of similar techniques and they both come from similar backgrounds, so I thought it might be an easier transition to work with him and it was.  He’s got some new tricks to teach me and I look forward to getting more time in with him.  For that fight me and him worked together for not even a full week, so imagine what we could do with a full training camp.  When you think about what me and him could do in a full camp together, people need to start worrying about me.”

Even though Stout has the momentum behind him from defeating Fisher, he doesn’t plan to head back into battle soon.

There is an event scheduled in Toronto, UFC 152, on Sept. 22.  The city is about two hours from Stout’s hometown of London, Ontario.  Nonetheless, the Canadian will not be looking to compete on that card.  He is going to wait it out and attempt to get a slot on the following Canadian UFC card.

Stout is not neglecting the opportunity to compete, but would rather heal his injuries in the proper manner before testing his mettle again.

“I’ll probably try to get on the Montreal card in November,” Stout said.  “I’ve been fighting for a long time now and injuries are starting to catch up with me.  I like to give myself some time in between (fights).  I like to give my head a break.  I don’t spar for a month after a fight, I don’t do any contact training, but I might do some grappling a little bit.  I often hear about people back in the gym the Monday after a fight and they’re not always doing themselves a favor.”

As anxious as Stout is to get back into the cage, his summer is already filled up with plans.

On Aug. 26 Stout will take part in the Tompkins Memorial Golf Tournament at the Fire Rock Golf Club in Komoka, Ontario.  The affair is open to anyone who would like to play and information can be found at Adrenaline.  A large portion of the proceeds will be donated to charities that Tompkins was affiliated with, as well as the Heart and Stroke Foundation, as a heart condition is what was responsible for the taking of Tompkins’ life.

Stout will always be a Team Tompkins fighter, through and through, but his career must continue.  The unfortunate loss of his coach has sparked Stout to find a new coach, and he is confident that cornerman has arrived.

“Having Mark DellaGrotte in my corner was a big help,” Stout said.  “He was the right man for the job.”

Cub Swanson finishes Ross Pearson, earns $50K bonus

Cub Swanson TKO'd Ross Pearson in the second round of their UFC on FX 4 featherweight clash. (Photo credit: Nick Laham/ZUFFA LLC)

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — Since dropping his UFC debut to Ricardo Lamas last November, Cub Swanson insists he’s a changed fighter.

Given his last two results, you cant’ argue he’s hitting his stride.

Swanson, an eight-fight veteran of the WEC, improved to 2-1 in the Octagon and notched his second consecutive TKO victory when he finished Ross Pearson at 4:14 of the second round during Friday’s UFC on FX 4 card.

UFC on FX 4 took place inside Ovation Hall at Revel Resort and Casino. The main card was televised live on FX while the preliminary card was broadcast on FUEL TV and streamed on Facebook.

Swanson was down 10-9 on two of the three scorecards after the first round but continued to pressure Pearson with volatile strikes that seemed to come from everywhere. Swanson’s free-wheeling strikes were wild at times, allowing Pearson to duck under for takedowns and land a few solid punches from top position. But with under a minute left in the second round, Swanson threw a high kick that connected but also caught by Pearson. As Pearson looked to control the leg, Swanson caught him with a straight left that rocked the Brit and left him crumpled on the canvas. Swanson followed with ground strikes, the first of which missed, as referee Yves Lavigne dove in to stop the fight at 4:14 of round two.

“I’ve grown over time and being more in the spotlight,” Swanson said during the post-fight press conference. “I’m 28 now, and I feel like I’m hitting my groove and putting things together.”

His TKO victory earned him a $50,000 “Knockout of the Night” bonus, his fourth performance bonus under the ZUFFA banner.

“Cub Swanson looked awesome tonight,” said UFC President Dana White. “Pearson is a guy I have a lot of respect for. Not only did he win, he knocked him out. It’s a really good win.”

Some thought Lavigne stopped the fight a tad too early, but both White and Swanson felt it was the right call.

“Earlier in the night Yves had made a call people were questioning (Ramsey Nijem’s TKO over C.J. Keith) and I thought he redeemed himself with a great stoppage in this fight,” White said.  ”When (Pearson) went down his arms were down and he wasn’t able to protect himself. I’m actually happy Cub missed that first shot when he went down.”

“He looked like he fell pretty weird against the cage,” Swanson said. “If they didn’t pull me off I was going to make sure he didn’t get up. I knew the punch fazed him pretty good and I thought it was a good stoppage.”

Swanson saw his overall record improve to 17-5 while Pearson’s record fell to 13-6 and 5-3 in the UFC.

Sam Stout’s Newfound Wrestling Skills Help Him Take Rubber Match with Spencer Fisher

Five years removed from their second fight, Sam Stout and Spencer Fisher were much different fighters and much different stages of their careers. How different, exactly, we found out Friday night.

Stout flashed some new wrestling chops, taking down a crisp Spencer Fisher three times in key spots to earn a unanimous decision victory (30-27 x 3) in the conclusion of their trilogy. The 28-year old Stout (18-7-1 MMA, 7-6 UFC), entering the prime of his MMA career, won his third fight in his last four outings and also picked up “Fight of the Night” honors.

“My wrestling game is something I’ve really been working on for a while, but I’ve been keeping a low profile,” Stout said. “I grew up as kickboxer so I was always conditioned to just defend takedowns and get back to my feet. But this was the right time to showcase I’m a mixed martial artist, and I knew Spencer wouldn’t be expecting it and it would give me the edge to steal those rounds and get that win.”

Fisher, 36, hinted at retirement leading up to the fight but was not at the press conference and was not interviewed inside the Octagon following the fight. However, he told FUEL TV in a post-fight interview he will likely retire. If a comeback is in order, he said it will come in the featherweight division.

The Stout-Fisher trilogy, a rarity in MMA, began with one of the best fights in UFC history, a split-decision win for Stout at UFC 58. Fisher evened the series with a unanimous decision victory at UFC Fight Night: Stout vs. Fisher, in 2007. In the days prior, during the fight and at the post-fight news conference, it was obvious the two hold a great deal of respect for one another.

“We’ve  spent 45 minutes in tha cage together, and we have a bond,” Stout said. That’s a pretty rare thing; three wars with the same opponent. He’s a class act. We spoke after the fight, and if I get out of this press conference while they’re still selling drinks I’m going to by him a beer.”

Dana White thought Fisher, even with retirement on his mind, performed admirably.

“I though Fisher looked better tonight than he has in a long time. It won ‘Fight of the Night’, so I think that says a lot. To be honest, I thought he looked as good as he’s ever looked tonight, so maybe he’ll rethink that (retiring).”

If Fisher does indeed hang up his gloves he’ll do so with a 24-9 overall record and a 9-8 mark in the UFC.

Brian Ebersole outlasts T.J. Waldburger, talks mover to lightweight

Dana White’s comments said it all regarding not only Brian Ebersole’s showing against T.J. Waldburger, but his UFC tenure as a whole.

“I love watching this guy fight,” White said. “He came out of nowhere and he’s always exciting and fun to watch.”

Waldburger dropped Ebersole in the first round and looked to have a deep D’Arce choked applied, but the 66-fight veteran was able to escape danger. He was never in trouble in rounds two and three, and went on to claim a 29-28 unanimous decision victory across the board for his 50th mixed martial arts victory.

“Fighting this long I feel pretty lucky to have my health and the opportunity to keep playing the game I enjoy,” said Ebersole, who has never lost by knockout or TKO. “The submission was either a D’Arce or a Brabo. He had the one carotid but couldn’t get to the other. I had the leverage to change position when I wanted but I was glad I was patient, but not too patient to let him sink it in.”

Since stepping in for Carlos Condit and defeating Chris Lytle via unanimous decision at UFC 127 in a “Fight of the Night” performance, which was also his UFC debut, Ebersole has added three more wins in the Octagon. He is currently riding an 11-fight win streak. Not many fighters would be looking to make changes in the midst of such a run, but Ebersole admitted he’s planning on changing divisions in the near future.

“I’m sick of being a giant killer,” Ebersole said. “I’ve fought at heavyweight, light heavyweight, middleweight. At one point in 2008-2009 I used to wake up at 171 pounds. So if I can stick with the vegan/vegetarian diet in the next three or four months my metabolism is really going to shrink me down. I should be waking up in the 170s, so if that starts to happen I’m going to make a very concerted effort to become a lightweight.”

Ebersole’s record now stands at 50-14-1 (1 no contest) with a perfect 4-0 mark in the UFC. Waldburger fell to 15-7 with a 3-2 UFC record.

Gray Maynard edges Clay Guida in polarizing UFC on FX 4 main event

Gray Maynard won the final three rounds on two scorecards to earn a split-decision win over Clay Guida at UFC on FX 4. (Photo credit: Joe Camporeale/US PRESSWIRE)

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — The full realization set in for Gray Maynard after 10 minutes in the Octagon with Clay Guida.

Guida was bouncing around with limitless energy as usual, but this time it was different. This time “The Carpenter” wasn’t bobbing and weaving and pressing forward. This time he was infinitely more cautious. If Maynard was going to win the fight he needed to chase Guida down and get his hands on him, which proved easier said than done.

“It took me two rounds to realize, ‘Okay, this guy’s going to do this the whole fight’,” Maynard said during the post-fight press conference.

So Maynard stalked Guida, at times literally running at him while throwing punches. Guida, understandably, wanted no part of Maynard’s powerful hands, but as the fight wore on he was doing more moving and less sticking. Maynard, in between imploring Guida to fight with some choice words and hand gestures, finally got his hands on his opponent with a fourth-round guillotine attempt and several solid knees from the clinch earlier in the third round. Guida landed only six percent of his strikes in the third round and Maynard built momentum from there to take the final three rounds and the fight, 48-47, 47-48, 48-47 for a split-decision victory in the main event of UFC on FX 4.

The card took place inside the the brand-new Revel Resort and Casino’s Ovation Hall. The Maynard-Guida bout headlined the four-fight main card, which was broadcast live on FX following a six-fight preliminary card on FUEL TV.

Frustration was the overarching theme for the battle between two of the top lightweights in the world. At one point, Maynard dropped his hands and walked straight at Guida with his chin out, finally prompting an exchange in the fourth round. The sold-out crowd was very much pro-Guida as he entered the Octagon, but switched their support to Maynard midway though, expressing the same frustration at Guida’s gameplan. It was that kind of fight. Bizarre, unexpected and polarizing.

“Personally, I don’t act like that,” Maynard said. “It’s a fight, I’m here to work so let’s work. I was pissed off. I’m a human too. I get mad.”

UFC President Dana White was even more to the point.

“That fight sucked,” White said as he helmed the post-fight press conference. “The style of Clay Guida is to move forward and that’s what’s made him a fan favorite.”

“First of all, I don’t think it was a split decision at all. I think Gray Maynard won that fight easily. Nobody can win or lose a fight when the other guy is running around in circles. Gray Maynard moved forward and pressed the action. He was literally full speed running and throwing punches. It’s crazy. It reminded me of the Kalib Starnes fight.”

Starnes infamously backpedaled and ran from Nate Quarry in an ugly, lopsided loss at UFC 83.

White added: “Because this was a main event I think it’s worse.”

Starnes was immediately cut for his antics, but White clarified there will be no such disciplinary action for Guida.

“Clay Guida is a warrior,” White said. “The guy has fought for us a zillion times and has put on some of the best fights in UFC history.”

“Tonight, I don’t know if he had a premonition he should fight like this or he got some bad advice. I’m not his trainer, I’m not his coach. But to make a guy like Clay Guida go out and fight like that? That was the game plan?”

Guida, who arrived late to the press conference – after White had left to catch a flight to Brazil for UFC 147 – with his left eye swollen shut, had a different view.

“I felt good about my performance,” Guida said. “I think sometimes the judges have a misconception of what mixed martial arts really is. I think mixed martial arts is the guy who gets hit the least is usually the victor. I think with a little more movement and landing a few more strikes I would’ve gotten the nod. He’s a big heavy puncher, man. He punches holes in walls for practice, and I didn’t want my head to be one of those.”

In the first two rounds Guida moved in and out of harm’s way while connecting on several jabs and leg kicks, including a jab that cut Maynard’s nose in the opening round. The second round saw more of the same. Maynard was loading up his big right hand but could only find air against the nimble Guida. Ten minutes in and it was clear Guida was ahead on the scorecards.

In the third round the fight began to swing Maynard’s way. He was pushing forward and engaging even more, but that didn’t entice Guida to stand and trade. Instead Guida backpedaled and circled even more, forcing Maynard to chase him around the cage. The boos rained down from the New Jersey crowd. Maynard took the bout’s first shot attempt that Guida was able to shrug off near the fence. His frustration mounting, Maynard threw his hands in the air urging Guida to engage, but to no avail. Maynard was able to trap Guida against the fence and land a pair of knees to the face as the round came to a close. This was the swing round. Judges Eric Colon and Suzanne Sanidad gave Maynard the third round, 10-9, while Jose Tabora had Guida up, 30-27, heading into round four.

Maynard landed two knees early in the fourth but still couldn’t find a home for his right hand. His stalking of Guida was more pronounced now, and after closing his opponent off and landing several knees in the clinch, Maynard dropped his hands and paced toward Guida with his chin out. Finally obliging, Guida hits Maynard with a combo and then shot in on a double-leg takedown. Maynard was ready and locked in a guillotine as they went to the ground. The choke looked secure, but Guida was able to break the hold by repeatedly slamming Maynard’s back into the mat while being choked.

In the fifth, Maynard still couldn’t get Guida to stay in the pocket and found his best success closing him off and initiating the clinch against the fence. Guida landed a right head kick, one-two combo followed by an uppercut early in the round, but Maynard was still unshaken. Guida continued to move around the cage and was finally issued a warning by referee Dan Miragliotta. Maynard got in on a single-leg takedown attempt with just under a minute left, but had no room against the fence to finish.

“The gameplan was to keep him guessing and get in and out,” Guida reiterated. “He was swinging for the fences but we weren’t there. He landed probably only three or four (significant strikes). I landed enough head kicks, four or five, probably, and landed some good jabs. I think I stopped all of his takedowns.”

Standing in the center of the Octagon while Bruce Buffer read the scores, Maynard could’t help thinking the decision could go Guida’s way.

“There’s people out there that think that’s good,” said Maynard about Guida’s strategy. “It’s not even moving, it’s moving to the other end of the cage. A couple of steps I understand. You’re still in the pocket and still there able to hit me. But it’s still a fight. You can’t just go from one end of the cage back to the other end. You have to give me a chance too.”

The momentary bad blood present during and shortly after their 25-minute fight dissipated in the press conference. Guida praised Maynard as “an athlete and a wrestler he’s always looked up to”. Maynard seemed disappointed his emotions got the best of him.

“It was a frustrating fight, you saw it in my face,” he said. “I don’t act like that. My emotions came out. It’s nothing personal. It’s a fight. It got  heated. He’s a cool guy.”

Whom Guida fights after this is anybody’s guess. As for Maynard, he wants the belt, and wouldn’t mind another tilt with a familiar foe.

“Of course I’m trying to go for the belt again, and I think the (Frankie) Edgar fight, that’s a good fight. Part 4.”

UFC on FX 4 bonuses and attendance

UFC on FX 4 Medical Suspensions

UFC on FX 4 complete results

Gray Maynard: UFC on FX 4 workouts “On the whole…it’s me”

Michael Stets caught up with Gray Maynard, at the UFC on FX 4 open workouts in Atlantic City, N.J. Maynard spoke about the changes in his training, leaving Xtreme Couture, and his match up vs. Clay Guida this coming Friday, June 20.

Clay Guida: UFC on FX 4 workouts media scrum

Clay Guida media scrum from yesterdays UFC on FX 4 open workouts in Atlantic City, N.J., on June 20, 2012.

Maynard, Guida on weight for UFC on FX 4 main event

Gray Maynard (left) and Clay Guida each weighed in at 155 pounds prior to their clash at UFC on FX 4 in Atlantic City. (Photo credit: Bob Badders/MMA DieHards)

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. – Lightweight contenders Gray Maynard and Clay Guida each weighed in at an even 155 pounds Thursday during the official weigh-ins for UFC on FX 4.

Maynard and Guida headline the UFC on FX 4 card, which takes place Friday night at Revel Resort and Casino’s Ovation Hall. UFC on FX 4 will be the first professional sporting event to take place at Revel, which opened last month. The four-fight main card will be broadcast on live on FX while the preliminary card will be televised on FUEL TV. Two preliminary fights – Dan Miller vs. Ricardo Funch an Ken Stone vs. Dustin Pague – will be shown on Facebook.

Maynard (10-1-1, 1 NC MMA, 8-1-1, 1 NC UFC) is coming off the first loss of his career, a TKO loss to then-champion Frankie Edgar at UFC 136. Guida (29-12 MMA, 9-6 UFC) also enters the fight off a defeat. He lost a unanimous decision to current champ Benson Henderson at UFC on Fox: Velasquez vs. Dos Santos.

The winner will be able to keep their spot high in the pecking order of a stacked lightweight division, while the loser could be lost in the shuffle of the UFC’s deepest division.

Also in a lightweight battle, Spencer Fisher (156) and Sam Stout will conclude their trilogy (155.5), which began with an epic three-round battle at UFC 58 that still stands among the best fights ever inside the Octagon.

Another main card brawl is a welterweight fight between 65-fight veteran Brian Ebersole (170) and T.J. Waldburger (170.5). Ebersole has won 10 in a row and 14 of his last 15, and is 3-0 since debuting at UFC 127. Waldburger (15-6) has won by submission in his last two fights over Mike Stumpf and Jake Hecht.

Rounding out the FX main card is a featherweight clash pitting Ross Pearson (146) and Cub Swanson (145.5). Pearson (13-5 MMA, 5-2 UFC) has alternated wins and losses in his last four fights and is coming off a unanimous decision win over Junior Assuncao at UFC 141. Injuries kept WEC vet Swanson (16-5 MMA, 1-1 UFC) from making his UFC debut for 12 months, and after a submission loss to Ricardo Lamas at UFC on FOX: Velasquez vs. Dos Santos, he responded with a knockout of George Roop at UFC on FOX: Evans vs. Davis.

All other fighters were on weight except newcomer C.J. Keith, who weighed in at 157 pounds for his lightweight bout with Ramsey Nijem. Keith will forfeit 20 percent of his purse.

UFC on FX 4 Weigh-In Results

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