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superCalo: Sweden & Canada Cry; uFc why art thou forsaken me?

Mecca is seen as the centre, where all roads lead (you're not in Rome anymore)  as Yeats once said, things fall apart, the centre cannot hold. 

Such is it with the mMa Mecca, first it was foretold by Dana White at the height of the gSp uFc love affair that Canada was the new Mecca of mMa (this assumes the old Mecca was that land of Sodom and Gomorrah being Las Vegas).
 

However love can die, thus the new Mecca was Brasil. This had added benefit you could pay the local favela fighters the price of a plate of beans and they would be happy, however the Jesus of this Mecca or Jerusalem rather was knocked out, his leg was broken, and so the spiritual home was moved.

There was a new prophet in town, a bearded viking in the land of Sweden, it was not Akira Corassani but rather Alex Gustafsson a former herring fisherman & well known dumplekof. Gustaffason made the champion Jon Jone look vulnerable for a time, such was the excitement that he was given a cover shot on the new EA sports uFC game.

This created problems, the next in line to Jon Jone was the media savvy popeye chicken loving Daniel Cormier who  had dominated every one of his opponents with ease not seen since the prime of one Jon Jone.

The Cormier Jone match was the big one, two dominant fighters in their prime, however the EA sports cover meant that uFc had to fulfill its contractual rights in regards promotion of the game & have the matchup the cover itself promoted. Jon Jone vs Gustafsson had to happen. Then glory, glory to the money making Gods of Las Vegas, Sweden be damned, Ireland was the new Mecca, the crowds were louder & drunker, Dana White coming from Boston meant he was practically 100% born & bred Irish himself

 
With the new spiritual home of mMa being Ireland, there was little room left for the small frozen land of Sweden in the uFcs thoughts, it was time to abandon that particular longboat, and as they say in Stockholm a knee injury in time saves nine, nine million dollars that is.
 
 
The tears of the Swedes may freeze, but there  no money in tears, A shape with lion body & head of man, a gaze as blank & pitless as the sun, so too Danas eyes turn once more wind shadows of the indignant desert birds, to El Dorado, land of Gold, hookers & expensive drinks , abandoned are the hopes & dreams of the foolish Canadian & Swedish fans for what rough beast its hour come at last slouches towards Las Vegas.
 
 
For more foretelling William Butler Yeats : The Second Coming 

Here's the first art released for the Fight Club 2 comic

Stop! Or...I guess don’t stop? I mean starting an article with an action verb seemed like a good idea, but now my infinite neurosis just made me aware of my poor choice of verbs. If you stop reading this...well...then this entire article is pointless. What I meant to do was really call your attention to a little comic called Southern Bastards. It’s good. Go check it out. Then if you like it, in a couple of months when you go to pick up the newest issue, you can go ahead and grab issue number one of the Fight Club sequel comic being published by Dark Horse. Southern Bastards isn't being published by Dark Horse. It’s being published by Image. I am Jack’s horrible segue. But since we're talking about Image - for my money they consistently put out the bust material from series to series.

Anyway, the previously announced Fight Club sequel comic now has a release date, and has been confirmed as being a 10-issue mini-series. One on hand it’s a sequel that is extremely unnecessary. The sort of attempt to cash in that basically all of Fight Club was against. On the other, Dark Horse has a pretty decent track record of comic books based off of, or serving as expansions to films. It’s going to be a little weird seeing as how in the book the ending gets super bonkers. What with the narrator dying and doing that whole spiel about talking to God. Or maybe it was all a dream. Or a metaphor. I don’t know. I’m not 19 anymore. I’m not going to re-read Fight Club.

Fight Club will be on shelves April 8th, 2014. It’ll probably sell out. Then people will sell it for like fifteen bucks on Ebay. So check it out. Or just read Southern Bastards. Seriously. Southern Bastards is great.

Floyd Mayweather hitting the pads will never stop being impressive

There are few fights that have the 'it' factor nowadays. Few fights where you go to sit down to watch them and they feel different. In MMA that's become more and more rare with the stars of the sport losing their battle with father time. It's a sad state that we live in, knowing that the inevitable will come to all these fighters that we cheer for. That's not to say that there aren't excellent fights, quite the opposite actually. The past year In boxing and the past month in MMA has been fantastic but I think it's fair to say that some of these fights lack star power. Especially on the MMA side of the court.

One fighter that doesn't lack star power or the 'it' factor when it comes to his fights is Floyd Mayweather. Each fight he has automatically becomes the biggest fight of the year because of how much is riding on it.

Just seeing him train feels different than any other fighter and seeing him train is different because simply put, he's better than everyone else.

Gus is out of UFC 178, Cormier is in against Bones Jones for the strap

My god this past 24 hours of MMA. We've seen Eddie Bravo and Rickson discuss the rubber guard, Chael Sonnen land a gig at the NSAC, Vitor Belfort get licensed by Nevada to fight Chris Weidman for the title, now Alexander Gustafsson has torn his meniscus and is out of UFC 178. 

In comes Daniel Cormier, the person who rests atop the Frate Trane list and a man who we've backed as the only person who could ever beat Jones at light heavyweight. Of course, there's a caveat, there's always a caveat when the MMA universe decides to fold into itself to burp out a mind-blowing switcheroo, and that's Daniel Cormier's knee.

Cormier has had a 'jacked up' knee for just about his entire fighting career, and he was just about to go under the knife in early July when he opted out of the procedure (during the whole Bones contract controversy). As I write this, I'm starting to think this has less to do with a good ol' fashioned shake up and more with a conspiracy theory involving whomever took out Cat Zingano's knee...

Get Cat Zingano and Gustafsson behind some two-way glass and see if they can spot the same perp. That's what needs to happen here. Jon Jones never wanted to fight Gus, and how he's not a day after it's announced? And did anyone notice that the Smoking Man has been at the last few UFC shows? Who opts out of surgery to repair a torn LCL? The same guy who only has 50% of his ACL remaining - Daniel Cormier. Is 1 torn MCL equal to 1 torn LCL and 50% of an ACL?

Whatever, I'll be cautiously thankful for now. This is the fight we wanted to see, so we won't look a gift match in the mouth. Whatever that means.

September 27th, we look forward to living until you're the present.

Here's Everything That Happened to Self-described “Square” Chael Sonnen at Today's NSAC Hearings

If you’re a fan of MMA and you can’t remember what you get paid to do at work anymore, you may have been watching or listening to the broadcast of Chael Sonnen’s hearing before the Nevada State Athletic Commission.

To sum things up, Chael admitted he was guilty, and the Commission wanted to rub it in a bit.

According to Assistant Attorney General Eccles, Chael used five drugs that were prohibited at all times. And he wasn’t sympathetic because Chael never actually fought while on the drugs. He cheated, he got caught, and a great penalty would be appropriate.

Chael’s attorney characterized the actions the Commission had already taken against his client as “severe.”

Three different doctors prescribed the drugs to Sonnen. But according to Chael, that isn’t unusual. He wasn’t physician-shopping. Nonetheless, Chael admitted he was guilty, he said he was ashamed, and he indicated that he was not prepared to offer any defense.

Now, it’s time for a lesson in pharmacology.

Two doctors testified about the drugs Chael was using. Dr. Trainor explained that Clomiphene can be used as a masking agent, to conceal performance-enhancing drugs. Moreover, it restores the body’s natural production of testosterone. Anastrozole is an anti-estrogen medication used to treat breast cancer. He called it a “drug to cheat.”

According to Trainor, HGH is used to enhance muscle mass, and EPO is typically used by cancer patients with low red blood cell counts. It increases the blood’s ability to contain oxygen, thereby increasing the user’s stamina. He speculated that Chael must have used HGH recently, because it is so difficult to test for.

Sonnen denied taking any other prohibited drugs, but he admitted he has taken Ambien. He complained that there is quite a bit of confusion about drug testing.

Assistant Attorney General Eccles was flabbergasted. He found it unbelievable that a man using needles didn’t know what was prohibited. He asked for a two-year suspension and a firm deadline by which Sonnen had to pay a fine.

Commissioner Lundvall acknowledged that Sonnen has already suffered quite a bit. For instance, he lost his jobs at the UFC and at Fox. He wondered why the Commission should be inclined to continue piling on. And he suggested a novel punishment: condemning Sonnen to work with the Commission to educate them about how fighters cheat.

They found him guilty. Sonnen agreed to abide by a 2-year suspension. He agreed not to fight in any other jurisdiction for that time (we don't know about Metamoris), an concession that the Commission might not have had the authority to enforce. He was ordered to reimburse the NSAC for the costs of testing, he received no actual monetary penalties, and he was sentenced to work with the Commission.

So in the end, Chael scored a sweet new job.

Now that’s over, and the most interesting quote from the hearing, in my opinion, came from Chael.

When asked if he wanted to clear the air about any other hypothetical substances he had been taking, he answered, “I’ve always been a square. I have never tasted alcohol.”

Maybe that’s true, the part about the alcohol. And maybe the caption of this video is totally wrong, and training at Tenth Planet is just like totally, totally relaxing.

UFC, Stockton-Style: 11 Times Nate Diaz Moved the Needle

UFC president Dana White recently said a lot of made-up things about Stockton-born badass Nate Diaz last week, but most baffling of all was the claim that Diaz the Younger doesn't move "the needle" with fans.
 
We here at MiddleEasy don't need to tell you how false that sounds, and shame on Dana for his lies.
 
But rather than whip out charts and graphs about TV ratings and all that noise, we're just going to show you the evidence. Not only does Nate Diaz move the needle, these are the 11 times he threw it through the goddamn wall.

11.)UFC Cuts Nate From Their Bulls*** Rankings, MMA World Explodes 

Even though the UFC rankings were on TV and being used to make matches, nobody really cared until Nate Diaz got bounced from the lightweight list.
 
That was when everyone started paying attention, though, forcing the UFC to make up rules about "activity" on the fly just to save face.
 

10.) Nate Wins The Ultimate Fighter 5

 
Remember when this show mattered?
 
Maybe it's more accurate to say "Nate Diaz Beats the F*** Out of All the Sorry Motherf***ers Stuck in the TUF House With Him," but we're not going to split hairs here. Diaz—amazingly enough—was one of the calmer fighters in the house that year, saving up his aggression for next-level beatdowns and winning the whole thing.
 
You wouldn't have blamed Nate for losing it and smothering someone in the night, either. Karo Parisyan was being a huge dick, B.J. Penn was making everyone else cry, and guys were running around wearing thongs on Week Two.
 
God, TUF sounds like a nightmare.
 

11.) Nate Humiliates Kurt Pellegrino 

 
Bad: Getting caught in a triangle.
 
Worse: Getting caught in a flying triangle.
 
Way Worse: Getting caught in a flying triangle and getting caught so deep that Nate has time to flip you off without even cranking in the choke.
 

8.) Nate Chokes Out Melvin Guillard

 
True story: Melvin Guillard's own training partners have said that he's just too stupid to learn Jiu-Jitsu.
 
You know what else is stupid? Trying to set up a takedown by playing dope-a-rope. This isn't boxing, Melvin. Shame on you.
 

7.)Nate Outclasses Jim Miller 

 
If there was one BJJ guy in the UFC who could've submitted Nate Diaz, it would've been Jim Miller. Unfortunately for him, every fight starts on the feet, and he ate a few dozen Stockton-flavored shots to the mouth on the way to the mat.
 

7.) Nate Avenges Nick, Taps Takanori Gomi 

 
Lots of rules in MMA are stupid as Hell, but few are dumber than MMA fighters getting fined and suspended over marijuana. That's not a performance enhancer in any way, if you know anything about the drug.
 
Hell, Nick Diaz should've just been given an honorary PRIDE Championship for being high in the first place.
 
But good 'ol Nate made up for that robbery after four long years, stopping Gomi with a Round-One Rousey Special when he probably could've just won by KO.
 

5.) Nate Calls Miesha Tate's Boyfriend a 'F*g'

Look, we're not condoning Nate's use of the F-word (no, we don't mean f*ck), but you've got to admit that Bryan Caraway is what some would say is a complete tool. Like, it's part of MMA history that Caraway is a total prick, since he hates weed, wants to fight women, and begs Dana for money he didn't earn.
 
But Nate had a stance, and he paid 20,000 big ones to make it. 'Gotta wonder what the UFC charges a non-needle-mover.
 

4.) Nate Brutalizes Gray Maynard 

 
Just to remind everyone, Nate tried to prevent this from happening. Maybe he somehow knew how hard he was going to batter what was left of Gray Maynard's brain, but let the record show that he gave him an out.
 
Instead, the UFC put the match together anyway and Nate went to work, winning his series against the "Bully" and setting a new record for "how hard can you beat a man against a fence" in the process.
 

3.) Nate Cuts Greatest Post-Fight Interview in History

 
What's that, Jon Anik?
 
You have questions?
 
Aw, that's adorable, but you're not needed here.
 

2.) Nate Immortalizes Donald Cerrone Rivarly 

 
About the only thing that could've made this victory better is if Nate knocked out Cerrone with one hand, just holding that middle finger in front of his face all the way down.
 
What we got at UFC 141 was still pretty good, though, and we can't even decide if the best part of the whole thing was Nate smacking away Cerrone's hat.
 
 

1.) The Strikeforce Brawl 

Sure, most photos of that infamous MMA event in Nashville only show Nick and Jake Shields, but Nate was right in the mix, adding to the 100-man pile up that went down when Jason Miller stuck his face in the cage.
 
Hell, if you watch the tape, Nate actually pushes Shields out of the way just to get to Miller, throwing his hat and shooting for a takedown in the middle of like 10 guys. 
 
So yeah, for a guy who doesn't move the needle, it's pretty convenient that he's only a major player in one of the most memorable post-fight brawls in combat sports history. 
 

Eddie Talks, Rickson Listens. Eddie Bravo Explains the Rubber Guard to Rickson Gracie. Nonstop. For several minutes.

Two days ago, Rickson Gracie appeared on Joe Rogan Experience #524. After the show, an excited Eddie Bravo finally had his chance to explain the history of the Rubber Guard to the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu super guru.

In the video below, Rickson listens intently to a fevered Eddie Bravo for several minutes. Bravo talks. Rickson occasionally responds.

“Uh huh.”

“Of course.”

“Yeah.”

“Yes. Yeah. Yes,” he said.

In a world where members of the Gracie clan have sometimes resented the Tenth Planet figurehead, the dialogue was refreshing.

“OK,” Rickson continued.

Joe Rogan left the room around the seven minute-mark. Perhaps to enjoy a few seconds of silence in his sensory deprivation tank.

But seriously, the meeting was not only fantastic to watch, it really was an important moment in the history of the sport.

Eddie got to not only demonstrate his setups on Joe, he got to work them on Rickson himself. Rickson Gracie isn’t just the ultimate Jiu-Jitsu practitioner, he’s also been an incredible innovator. I learned a new variation of a one-step Rickson armbar just a year or so ago, that he was said to have invented while surfing. So I imagine he views Eddie as a kindred spirit of sorts. And he doesn’t appear to view Eddie as any kind of threat at all. Why would he? He’s Rickson Gracie.

When Rickson does get around to talking, he has some excellent feedback for the animated inventor.

“If the guy tried to be defensive, it’s hard for you. I believe you have to combine some kind of strike, some kind of punishment. With your feet, with your elbows maybe, to create that kind of panic.”

And so, Eddie demonstrated a position he calls “Muddy Waters,” an immobilizing high guard designed to expose the head to elbow strikes, or to transition to an armbar.

“That’s interesting,” said Rickson.

“That’s stuff I would love to show Kron,” Eddie answered.

Rickson listened to Bravo’s invitation to help his son, to perhaps add one more trick to his arsenal of home-grown Jiu-Jitsu.

“Any weapon is good when we go to battle,” Rickson he said.

“Let’s make this again.”

Underage Drink Fighting: Is training children how to fight drunk good for the sport?

Something that sometimes gets lost in our age of pragmatic MMA is the old cinematic beauty of the “less functional” traditional martial arts. On the other hand, there is obviously value in not deluding a young man with the idea that he’ll be able to tiger claw his way out of a bar fight with Renzo Gracie.

Somewhere in between those two ideas is the elegantly clumsy art of Drunken Boxer Kung Fu, a fighting style that was probably invented by an intermittently graceful wino who couldn’t stand still long enough to throw a proper punch. In this video, an 11-year-old student of the Dragon MMA Academy in Ephrata, Pennsylvania appears to take several invisible shots of high-proof rum. He performs some acrobatic kicks, then collapses, passing out face down like an unemployed samurai who spent his last government assistance check on a case of sake.

I don’t wish to make light of some really nice choreography that the young man really should be proud of. But in the context of “MMA training,” I imagine this stuff could get a fellow killed in the parking lot of a VFW.

Today in the world of odd Japanese PS Vita commercials...

It's no secret that I love Japan. Even before I got into MMA, I was always a huge gamer and growing up just as the arcade scene peaked, the idea of going to Japan was always something that lured me. Then I got big into MMA, specifically Pride. At that point it was all over, it turned into full blown fanboy mode. Japan is cool, I want to be cool and to be cool I need to go to Japan.

At this point though, I really don't. Not because I wouldn't have a totally rad time there, I would. It's just that I built it up so much that it can't possibly live up to my expectations.

I mean just look at this commercial, Japan can't possibly be like this. I mean... I don't want to go there to see young boys. It's just the commercial is weird that's all. I know it's weird but I don't want to go to Japan because of it. Listen, I'm not even going there so shut up. No I'm not gay or a pedophile. I should learn to stop while I'm ahead. I'm sorry.

MiddleEasy Presents: Cold Topic with Spilled Bag of Ice: MMA Superstars

@SpilledBagofIce and @DirectorPatrick sit down and talk about the fighters on the MMA fans' lips -or tweets. None other than rising superstar Conor McGregor and bona fide superstar Ronda Rousey. Cliche as it is: Love them or hate them, you can't ignore them. So, me and Patrick don't ignore them and rather discuss their potential both as fighters and marketing gold. Take a half hour and give it a listen and then feel free to add your opinion to the comments. Hashtag: Dickriders.

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