Posts Tagged ‘UFC’
In an act of selflessness, Tom DeBlass retired from MMA, for now anyway.
In less than three years DeBlass (Twitter @TomDeBlass) acquired two Ring of Combat belts (heavyweight and light heavyweight) and compiled 7-0 MMA record before making it to the UFC and suffering his first career setback.
Making his UFC debut on just more than a week’s notice in Sweden, the New Jersey native lost a majority decision to Cyrille Diabaté at “UFC on Fuel TV 2: Gustafsson vs. Silva.” He followed the performance up with a hard-fought decision loss in his middleweight debut against Riki Fukuda, a combatant DeBlass thinks highly of, at “UFC on Fuel TV 6: Franklin vs. Le.”
Neither defeat is anything to be ashamed of, and at 30-years-old, DeBlass is only getting better. Though, he is improving daily and could definitely have a successful mixed martial arts career if he stayed in the sport, the former ROC light heavyweight champ decided to take the altruistic route.
“It’s tough,” DeBlass told MMADiehards.com. “It’s tough to walk away from MMA because I know I have so much to give, but at the same time I have to look at the big picture. It’s not all about me and I have to realize what’s important.
“I don’t want to be one of these guys four or five years from now chasing a dream. I don’t want to look back and my daughter is 6-years-old, I lost students in my academy because I wasn’t there for them, I have students that could be champions but aren’t because I didn’t pass on my experiences. I have the opportunity to do that now, so why not do that?”
DeBlass said his original plan never had intentions of becoming a professional mixed martial artist. Six months prior to his MMA debut, the Ocean County BJJ instructor was content doing battle in the ADCC’s.
DeBlass’ desire to compete is what drove him to test his mettle in MMA and he said he loves the sport, however, following the loss to Fukuda isn’t the first time he pondered retirement.
“I was thinking about retiring before this fight,” DeBlass admitted. “I saw the affect it had on people around me.”
DeBlass said, likewise to friends and family suggesting he should continue competing, there were an equal amount encouraging his choice to retire. But, no matter what their opinion, they all supported his decision and understood his reasons.
Now out of the cage, DeBlass has stepped away from competing in mixed martial arts, but not entirely separated from the sport.
“I talked to Nick Lembo (Counsel to the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board) and I’m going to be the second UFC fighter to ever judge an event,” DeBlass explained. “That’s behind my teacher Ricardo (Almeida). I’m getting into judging, I’m going to judge an event, I’m going to be competing in jiu-jitsu. I’m still around.
“I’m jumping right back into grappling competitions. I’m jumping right into Abu Dhabi trials (next spring). Dean Lister just won the Abu Dhabi at 36-years-old, I’m only 30. I’ll compete in the black belt No-Gi competition. I’ll still be there with my teammates. I’ll be there next week helping my teammates prepare. I’m not going to stop training, I’ll be cornering my teammates, I’m staying in shape. You know, nothing has changed there.”
DeBlass said he is thankful to have experienced what MMA has had to offer, as he is grateful for his support staff through all his life decisions. His soon-to-be wife Delilah, mom, dad, coaches Almeida, Mark Henry and Matt Pletcher, as well as the students in OCBJJ have supported him as he exits the sport.
And they’ll be the same people rallying behind him if he returns.
“Sure, the talent is there if I decide to come back, but MMA is so fickle no one knows what can happen,” DeBlass said. “I made my decision and am doing what’s best for me now and I can’t regret that. Down the road who knows what will happen. I’m crazy, man. Don’t be surprised if you do see Tom DeBlass fighting again.”
Down three going into the fourth, an addition to the coaching staff and Mark Hominick is prepared to get back in the win column.
Hominick (Twitter @MarkHominick) has come up short in his last three outings, but has the opportunity to get back to his winning ways on Nov. 17 at UFC 154 against Pablo Garza at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec.
Hominick’s three losses in a row were against Jose Aldo in a title match at UFC 129, Chang Sung Jung in a bout that lasted seven seconds, and a “Fight of the Night” defeat against Eddie Yagin. It’s not often a UFC fighter maintains employment with the promotion after dropping three matches consecutively, therefore, Hominick recognizes he is in a must win scenario when he meets Garza.
“I’ve been in these situations before and I feel I perform best when I am in these situations,” Hominick told Jason Kelly and guest co-host Michael Stets on MMA DieHards Radio on the MMA DieHards Radio Network. “The pressure is on. But, when I break down the last three fights, (there’s Jose) Aldo, I took one of the best pound-for-pound to the limit, almost took his belt. I feel like the “Korean Zombie” was a seven second mistake, and the last fight was a split decision. I try to take the positive with the negative and they were all competitive fights except the “Zombie” fight. I just have to get back on the winning track.”
It is rare a UFC combatant has a fourth chance to prove their worth, but Hominick is a valuable veteran in the sport.
Hominick is respected amongst his peers and “The Machine” said his support system spans outside the gym. The former UFC featherweight No. 1 contender has compiled a large amount of fans during his 12 years as a prize fighter. He said the response he receives from Twitter followers makes him believe his fans appreciate what Hominick does for them in the cage.
“I put on exciting fights,” Hominick said. “Two of my last three fights were “Fight of the Night” and the “Korean Zombie” fight won a bonus as well, just in the opposite direction. Those are the fighters they put on the pay-per-views. The guys who lay it all on the line and I feel like I’m one of those guys. That being said, I still feel like I’m amongst the top of the division so I have to go out there and prove that.”
Hominick debuted in the Octagon at UFC 58 in March 2006, and defeated Yves Edwards in the lightweight division. The Canadian returned to MMA’s grand stage at “UFC Ultimate Fight Night 5” and conquered Jorge Gurgel, which was also in the lightweight division.
Hominick bailed on the UFC for other promotions until settling in with the WEC in order to compete in his proper weight class- the featherweight division. He continued fighting at 145 pounds in the WEC until the Zuffa merged the two promotions, which is something all mixed martial artists didn’t opt to do. Instead, fighters would compete above their weight class for the chance of showcasing their skills in the UFC and receiving a bigger payday plus recognition.
Nowadays, with the UFC having weight classes less than 155 pounds, combatants are attempting to fight in a lower weight division to ensure a size advantage. Others drop a weight class to suit their proper division to compete in. In either instance, Hominick welcomes all newcomers to the UFC featherweight division.
“I like it because it brings credibility to the weight class,” Hominick said. “A lot of people know these guys’ names so it brings a lot more attention. But again, you’re a fighter and you want to compete where you think you’re going to be a champion and where you’re going to perform best. Sometimes it takes guys a little bouncing around to see where they’re at, but my whole career have been at 145 (pounds), aside from the two in the UFC when they didn’t have the featherweight division.”
Likewise to Hominick finding a home in the featherweight division, its well-known the Ontarian’s home gym is Adrenaline Training Center in London, Ontario.
ATC was created by Hominick, Sam Stout and Chris Horodecki – three of the late Shawn Tompkins’ focal students. All three have evolved together and watched one another’s careers develop. MMA has known the three to be inseparable, but recently they’ve each been branching out in their own directions, seeking instruction from sources outside the Canadian based gym.
“We’re not going anywhere,” Hominick said. “The three of us own a gym and train day in and day out in London. We all need a leader in that corner. It’s about fining where you in best. I made my decision first because I knew I was going to be with Jeff (Curran) because I’ve been training with Jeff since 2004. I’m comfortable with him and he’s got a great team.
“Sam (Stout) has been with (Mark) DellaGrotte for a bit and Chris (Horodecki) went to Tristar and really liked training with them. I think moving forward we have to go where we’re each comfortable, but we’re still a team. We’re not going anywhere.”
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There’s no way to dance around it. Kirstie Alley is going to get booted off “Dancing With the Stars” in tonight’s double-elimination episode. (And we suspect Emmitt Smith or Kelly Monaco are going with her.) There. Ya happy? Now you don’t have to watch the show and you can listen to your favorite Tuesday night MMA show, instead! No excuses, beeyotches! Just be here! Because we may not be oppan gangnam style, but we mos def are oppan PDR style.
Tonight, Amy and Alex welcome to the show Neil Magny from Season 16 “The Utlimate Fighter” and BMX legend T.J. Lavin.
Magny (Twitter: @NeilMagny) is in the quarterfinals on the current season of TUF and on this past week’s episode was paired against Strikeforce veteran Bristol Marunde in the round of eight. The two will fight for the right to move on to the semifinals. The Chicago area’s Magny, had a 9-2 record before entering the TUF house, and he’ll talk to us about his time in the house, what it’s been like to watch the show each week and his big-show aspirations in the sport.
Lavin (Twitter: @tjlavin), simply put, is a legend and one of the greatest BMX riders in history. He’s also a musician, host of “The Challenge” on MTV, a massive MMA fan – and a newlywed. He married his longtime girlfriend earlier this month. We’ll talk a little MMA, how often he thinks about the accident two years ago that had him in the hospital for a month and how we can get 200,000 Twitter followers, like him.
Tune in to Punch Drunk Radio every Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET for exclusive fighter interviews, special guests, breaking news, contests, event recaps and much more – only on the MMA DieHards Radio Network. If you can’t be here live, you can catch the archive on demand right HERE following the broadcast or at iTunes.
“I knew [the UFC] was going to get big, but what Dana White and the Fertitta brothers did, they turned it into inspiration for the new generation. Now, the news the kids, they grow up like baseball, like soccer. They grow up thinking one day I want to be baseball player, they want to be soccer player. Today, they train thinking they want to be UFC fighter. They start young now.”
- Royce Gracie joined The MMA Hour, and talked about the growth of the UFC since his days of competing in the cage.
“I remember Rorion (Gracie) and I and [executive producer] Campbell [McLaren] walking around. I was walking around smoking a cigar and drinking a single-malt scotch and we looked at each other and said, ‘This is huge. This is unbelievable. We’re taking over the world. This is going to rock people right to their socks.’ We knew it.”
- In an interview with mmafighting.com, Art Davie, one of the original owners of the UFC, recalled his thoughts of what the world’s premier MMA organization would become when he started the promotion.
“Yeah, I do [expect St. Pierre to be more aggressive]. I think that’s because of a lot of the criticism that he’s got lately, you know he’s going to try and make a statement. He’s going to try and come back with some gusto and, you know, I think that’s going to be a mistake though.”
- Condit talked to mmamania about St-Pierre’s claims of wanting to finish “Natural Born Killer” and how it could work against the champ.
I want to fight Condit first and then we will see what’s going to happen. I take one fight at a time and we will see. Different weight class and we will see the terms of the fight if it happens. It’s very complicated so right now I’d rather not think about it, just focus on Carlos Condit and then after we will sit down and talk.”
- St-Pierre was a guest on sportsradiointerviews.com, and he stressed that fighting UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva is not on his mind as he is approaching a welterweight title bout with Condit.
“I will go to Canada for UFC 154. I’m going to stay there to film an action movie that me and Lyoto will participate in [with Steven Seagal]. But it is not my character to step in there and call somebody out. So I think this won’t happen. I fact I don’t just think, I am sure.”
- A. Silva admitted to sportv.globo.com that he will be in attendance at UFC 154, but has no intentions on challenging GSP should defeat Condit.
“I really believe if GSP and Silva fight Georges will have his hand raised. I have a lot of respect for Georges having lost to him twice. GSP is not a great wrestler, but he transitions so well from striking to wrestling that he will be on Silva’s legs before Anderson even knows what’s going on. I believe Georges is that quick and I don’t think Silva will be able to do a whole lot with Georges on top of him.”
- Matt Hughes gave his opinion on the outcome of a hypothetical match between Siva and St-Pierre via bjpenn.com.
“I’ve got to say wow! It’s like a dream. I feel like I’m in a dream right now. Thank you, lord. You know, I just saw him timing my kicks, so I waited for him to punch and then threw that overhead right and I got lucky and hit him.”
- Cung Le talked to Fuel TV about his walk off KO over Rich Franklin at “UFC on Fuel TV 5: Franklin vs. Le.”
“Penn said I was backing out from the fight and that’s just ridiculous. How can you fight with 38 stitches in your head? I would have looked like sh*t. I’m not about to go into the biggest fight of my life with no training for it.”
- Rory MacDonald told MMA DieHards there was no way he was about to scar B.J. Penn after suffering a major laceration to his head.
“It’s not just Ronda, it’s not just myself, that’s for sure. If Ronda’s coming over to the UFC obviously there’s going to be a division around that, it’s not just Ronda. I know Ronda’s getting a lot of the credit and what not, but she didn’t have a lot to do with from the ground up.
“We’re at the top of the mountain now that’s kind of how I feel anyways, with this accomplishment coming into the UFC, we’ve kind of reached that final goal. But we had to start at the bottom and a lot of the pioneers Tara, Marloes, Molly Helsel, the girls that were really fighting back in the day before we were making any kind of money, or there was any kind of publicity, or much acceptance of it.”
- Miesha Tate talked to MMA Weekly about Ronda Rousey joining the UFC and the advancement of WMMA over the years.
“I have no news. I think we’ll just have to wait until the end of my suspension.”
- Cris “Cyborg” Santos admitted to Tatame that she hasn’t had any offers from the UFC.
“Looks like Mitt Romney has a new favorite fighter and Rampage Jackson has another opponent he can’t beat.”
- Chael Sonnen commented to TMZ regarding Rousey in the UFC.
“We talked with the UFC and they said they aren’t bringing anymore bantamweights in until next year. My manager talked to them after my last fight to see where we’re at and they said, ‘Josh is one of our top five prospects we want to bring in.’ They said they have to actually cut a few guys from the division, even though they don’t want to, but the division is just so stacked at the moment. I’d like to get a fight in and a good win before they start looking at who they might bring in.”
- The Score Fighting Series’ Josh Hill explained where he sits with the UFC via MMA DieHards.
“I like to play with it and say I’m hated everywhere I go. But to be honest, that isn’t the case. I think you get a lot of people together, and there’s a pantomime effect, the ol’ boo or whatever. But generally, for the most part my interactions with the UFC fans, they’re always positive.
“Certainly on Twitter, every day I almost get 20 messages with people saying, ‘You know, I used to absolutely hate your guts, and now you’re one of my favorite fighters.’ So that’s nice. Obviously it’s always nice to be appreciated. But it’s not necessarily anything I’ve consciously done or changed. I think maybe, just over time, people are warming a little. Who knows?”
- Michael Bisping told The MMA Hour that he isn’t the public enemy he gets labeled as from time to time.
“When Benson came out he kind of was throwing a low leg kick, which did throw me off a little bit. But I felt I made the adjustment within that first round, and I feel that rounds two through five he didn’t really catch me with it at all the rest of the fight. I’m sure that’s something Jose is going to pay attention to, being that he’s such a devastating leg kicker, but I’ve been working my Muay Thai and working some things. Like I’ve been saying, this challenge is going to make me step up and address it.”
- Former UFC lightweight champ Frankie Edgar talked to mmafightcorner.com about the similar attacks Jose Aldo may use in their upcoming match that Benson Henderson utilized in his last bout against “The Answer.”
“Who I have fought and how I have fought, it says something about me. That shows that I am content fighting wrestlers, bigger guys, jiu-jitsu guys, all the division has to offer, I’m okay with and ready for it. When you look at my record at 10-0 as a professional and look at Jon Jones record when he was 10-0, who was his toughest guy? Stephan Bonnar and he did not finish him.”
- Daniel Cormier compared his road to 10-0 against Jon Jones’ on Fight Hub TV, and believes it was more difficult and more impressive.
“I heard that we would be compensated; I don’t know what the figures were. I haven’t been yet. I’m not saying we’re not because the fight would have just happened last weekend, so maybe they’re going to take care of us now, but I don’t know anything about it.”
- Jorge Masvidal detailed his financial situation with Strikeforce to MMA Weekly.
“We’ve been on this paperwork, but you know the government. If you owe them a dime they’re on you, but if you want something from the government its hurry up and wait. They probably have my papers just sitting on a desk, waiting for someone to rubber stamp it and then it’s approved. There’s nothing we can do about it but wait.”
- Ryan Ford explained to MMA DieHards the issues preventing him from competing in a Bellator tournament.
Cung Le is certainly destined to be an action movie star in Hollywood, but he’s far from finished in MMA.
The UFC greatly wanted Le to headline the organization’s first trip to China because of his dynamic fighting style and celebrity status.
UFC on Fuel TV 6 and CotaiArena in Venetian Macau Resort Hotel played host to the fight and Le made them proud.
A foot injury sustained in a July victory over Patrick Cote led many to believe that Le was competing at less than full-strength heading into the Franklin bout.
However, after a short feeling-out period, Le settled in and landed a crushing overhand right to Franklin’s chin that flattened the former UFC middleweight champion.
Two minutes and 17 seconds is all the Sanshou kickboxer needed to secure what is arguably the knockout of the year.
“That’s the biggest fight of my life,” said Le post-fight. “I don’t even know what to say. Lucky punch, I guess.”
“I came in and waited for him to punch, and I just came in with the overhand right and caught him.”
While Le’s always been a true and respectful professional, it certainly wasn’t a lucky punch. It was a precise, well-timed strike that left Franklin more devastated than we’ve ever seen him.
At 40 years of age, Le showed no signs of slowing down as a professional fighter and if he did I surely missed it.
Rewind to April 2010 and the city of Nashville prior to Strikeforce on CBS and Le mentioned to me in an interview that he had been working diligently on his boxing and that the world would be surprised.
Some two-months later he went on to knockout Scott Smith and claim revenge of his only career loss at the time.
Now, catching things up to present day, Le proves that he not only has punishing power in his kicks, he also possesses it in his hands as well.
89-percent of Le’s victories have come by knockout and he saved the most impressive performance of his career for last.
A world-class fighter who’s acted alongside the likes of Channing Tatum, Jean-Claude Van Damme, and most recently RZA, and Russell Crowe in “The Man with the Iron Fists” , Le’s accomplishments are nothing short of impressive.
Whether or not that decision involves continuing a successful fighting career is up to Le, but his performance against Franklin is one for the highlight reel that will be shown for years to come.
Paulo Thiago’s night turned out to be far different than his stunning Octagon debut knockout of former title challenger Josh Koscheck.
His opponent, Dong Hyum Kim (16-2-1) wasted little time pressing the action and taking Thiago to the mat.
The welterweights put their skills on display as part of the UFC on FUEL TV 6 main card, which took place from CotaiArena in Venetian Macau Resort Hotel.
While Thiago (14-5) owns a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt, he was unsuccessful in making Kim pay for putting him on the mat.
Kim’s grappling proved to be superior and while his style delivered boos from the fans at times, he did what was necessary to claim victory over the ever-tough Brazilian.
The first and second frames ended with Kim working towards submissions on the black belt and while he was unsuccessful getting the tapout, he certainly showed that his game is improving.
Heading into the third and final round the action stayed on its feet for an uneventful first 90-seconds until Kim decided to press the action back to the mat where he continued his ground domination.
While Thiago wasn’t in the title picture heading into the bout, he was expected to present a tough challenge for Kim but his foe had far different plans.
Kim delivered an impressive and dominant 15-minutes of action and while he’s not considered to be ranked in the upper echelon of the division he’s certainly no easy challenge for anyone.
With the unanimous decision victory, Kim secured his sixteenth victory, seventh inside in the Octagon, and proved that while Carlos Condit sidetracked him at UFC 132, he’s now ready for tougher competition in his next Octagon appearance.
UFC hit China for the first time with “UFC on Fuel TV 6: Franklin vs. Le,” and it was a night of decisions capped off by “Knockout of the Year” candidate.
In the night’s main event, Cung Le sent Rich Franklin back to the U.S. with a single punch.
It wasn’t a lengthy bout by any means. Both combatants were still in a feeling out process when Franklin threw a leg kick and Le answered with a devastating right hook. Franklin’s head twisted as his body went stiff and he timbered to the canvas.
Le had no reason to follow up with ground and pound, as it was apparent Franklin was unconscious at the 2:17 mark of Round 1.
Le is now on a two-fight win streak, yet he was contemplating retirement after his last victory. Following the match he didn’t comment on what will be next, but he didn’t hint towards retirement.
After being tangled up, unable to attack and knocked down once, Thiago Silva battled back to submit Stanislav Nedkov.
Nedkov, though the smaller combatant, was successful in tying Silva up against the cage. When the Brazilian wasn’t avoiding takedowns, he would clasp a plump clinch on Nedkov and attempt knees, but they seemed ineffective.
The hardest punch, oddly enough, came from the smaller Nedkov. Nedkov planted an overhand right on Silva’s temple that dropped the Brazilian. Nedkov pounced on Silva, but time ended in Round 2.
Round 3 showed that Silva had enough. Down 20-18 on all judges’ scorecards, he dazed Nedkov with punches, then dumped the Bulgarian on his back. Silva was quick to mount Nedkov and rain down punches. Silva transferred to a head-arm choke, eventually forcing Nedkov to tapout.
The come from behind victory gives Silva his first win since 2009; meanwhile, Nedkov’s undefeated career now has a record of 12-1.
In a display of grappling technique, Kim Dong-Hyun dominated Paulo Thiago over 15 minutes.
Dong-Hyun attached himself to Thiago’s body early into each round, and stayed on the Brazilian for the entirety of the frames. Thiago made it difficult for Dong-Hyun to complete a submission, but he could not get the Japanese fighter off him.
Dong-Hyun bashed Thiago with ground strikes in Round 3, even throwing the dreaded double axe handle punch a few times late in the stanza. It was a presentation of exceptionally high-level grappling on Dong-Hyun’s behalf that earned him a unanimous decision.
The victory places Dong-Hyun back in the win column after losing to Damian Maia at UFC 148 in July. As for Thiago, he has suffered back-to-back losses under the UFC banner.
Takanori “The Fireball Kid” Gomi showed glimpses of his old self in a victory over Mac Danzig.
Gomi appeared confident and composed from the start of the bout. His boxing was fluent, he mixed up attacks by shooting for takedowns, meanwhile, Danzig didn’t loosen up until midway through Round 2.
Nearing the end of the second round, Danzig accomplished a takedown and applied a guillotine-choke. It was deep, but Gomi held on until time expired.
Gomi’s overall performance was equivalent to that of his PrideFC days, a vicious striker who aims for an entertaining fight. The Japanese mixed martial artist was awarded the victory on two of the three judges’ scorecards, which puts Gomi on a two-fight win streak.
John Tuck defeated Tiequan Zhang while putting a jiu-jitsu clinic on display.
Shortly after the first round began Tuck and Zhang were on the ground, tangled up. Tuck attempted armbars, triangle-chokes, rear-naked chokes, amongst other submissions, yet Zhang was impressive with defense. Tuck stayed aggressive throughout the bout, often trying to end the match via submission, and his transitions were smooth and effective.
Zhang tried to keep the fight standing in the third frame, but Tuck’s length allowed him to still get the better of the Chinaman.
Tuck picked up a unanimous decision victory and improved his undefeated record to 7-0. Zhang, on the other hand, dropped to 15-4 and is on a three-fight losing streak inside the Octagon.
On the preliminary card, John Lineker defeated Yasuhiro Urushitani, and Riki Fukuda conquered Tom DeBlass, both via unanimous decision, while Alex Caceres bested Motonobu Tezuka via split decision.