MMA Underground

A site for MMA Fans and fighters
by MMA Fans and Fighters.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Owned Entertainment MMA Reality Show Auditions

Owned Entertainment held it's new reality show auditions on Sunday June 22nd, 2008.
The auditions were held at Big John McCarthy's Ultimate Training Academy in Valencia, California (

In case you don't know what the show is all about, here is a description from Owned's website:
"The show will follow a select group of established fighters, upcoming fighters and other MMA professionals. The show is being produced by Owned Entertainment, Inc and Jason Chambers, from History Channel's Human Weapon and partnered with IMMAE. The central location for the show will be at Big John McCarthy's Ultimate Training Academy."

(Big John McCarthy)

Sitting at a table (from left to right) was Jason Chambers (producer), James Hergott (Owned's President) and Harold Hergott (James' father). MMA veterans and noobs were sitting nervously across from the Owned crew and were doing their best to answer some tough questions. But, what could aspiring reality show stars expect? The auditions were for a reality show after all and the questions had to fit the show's format. Fighters struggled to answer questions like, "describe an embarrassing moment in your life". The guys at Owned had to make sure that they weren't going to get a bunch of whiny prima donnas for the show. The pool of people that showed up were some pretty with it and professional people from MMA fighters to boxing instructors.

(Jen Leigh of audtions for the Owned Entertainment MMA Reality Show)

Our own Jen Leigh (a writer for even auditioned for the reality show. Big John McCarthy was there taking care of business at his huge training facility. The Owned guys were great and it looks like they're going to put together a smash hit once they have the right people for the show. They are certainly making all the right moves and aligning themselves with the right people.

We'll keep you posted as the reality show progresses!

Owned Entertainment, Inc.

Welcome to the Big Show - James Lee Interview

Michigan has a funny reputation when it comes to MMA. We were the place for UFC 9 which was exactly the shining moment for the organization. The state came in, just before the show, and fighters were threatened with jail time if they threw punches. MMA pretty much fell off the map for quite a while after that. Then someone found a loop hole in the laws as they pertained to MMA in Michigan. The law stated that amateur and exhibition MMA were not regulated and therefore not against the law. Promotions started hosting events and things were starting to look up. Then it crashed again. The Boxing Commission and State Attorney General's Office began threatening to, and finally did, serve Cease and Desist orders. Their viewpoint was that if the law doesn't say it is legal then it's not legal. Being a Police Officer I know I can't arrest someone for driving a car while wearing a red shirt. Yet if I took the state's standpoint on it, I could. Why? Because the law doesn't specifically state that it is legal to wear a red shirt while driving. So things slowed down and then the laws came into being on March 28th of 2008 and Amateur was unregulated, while we are awaiting passage of Professional regulations.

During the off times, there was little you could do MMA wise. You could go to Ohio and watch or compete in shows, but, you also had the expense of doing that. One relief we had was that King of the Cage was doing regular events in Mount Pleasant. See they were hosting the events at an Indian Casino and since Indian Land is self governed the MMA Laws did not apply. It was through this promotion that a shining star emerged. We really had very little known talent in Michigan; little, as in numbers-wise, not with regard to the talent itself. We had the Legendary Dan "The Beast" Severn, who had reached almost mythical status from his fights in the original UFC. Even with this we had little else in the MMA world to celebrate. That is until James Lee burst into the MMA World. James is a dominating force in MMA. He took the KOTC Light Heavyweight Title and destroyed anyone who challenged him. His debut in Pride really shocked people. James took the fight on short notice and knocked out his opponent, Travis Wiuff. With the collapse of Pride, James is now a part of the UFC stables. As a Michigan Man myself, I take pride in knowing that we have world class athletes.

One thing that surprised me about James Lee was how approachable he was. Here is a man who is well known in MMA and has quite a future ahead of him. He's down to earth and will sit and talk to you at length. He is also taking his knowledge and experience and sharing it. He recently opened the Mash Training Center in Metro Detroit. I thought I would take a minute or two and get the perspective from someone who is right on top of the bubble. He is at the gates of greatness and is ready to step into it. I presented James with some basic questions and asked him about his thoughts on MMA.

James Lee 5'11 205 pro record 25-3

I live in Sylvan Lake, Michigan

Pancrase Brave Tour champ, Gladiator Challenge middleweight champ, KOTC light heavy world champ, Pride 33 champ, and UFC vet,
I wrestled for 21 yrs, Jiu-Jitsu 16 yrs, Kick Box 16 yrs, and I'm a Pro Boxer.

Q: King of the Cage is a well known promotion. Some of the greats of MMA have risen to glory from there. How does it feel to have held the Light Heavyweight Title for King of the Cage?

A: It was a great honor for me to have the KOTC belt for 2 years and the first and only fighter from Michigan to have it. It was great fighting for them. They are a fantastic organization to fight for!

Q: Having fought for Pride and the UFC how would you describe the challenges in being in such a deep pool of talent?

A: It is tough fighting in deep talent pools because of politics. They can either throw you to the wolves or they can build you.

Q: In your debut in Pride, you shocked a lot of people with an impressive knock out of one the Elite in MMA Travis Wiuff. How did this win affect your career?

A: It was a dream come true to fight in Pride and beat Travis under the conditions I did it in. That was an example of Pride trying to throw me to the wolves, LOL! But I prevailed on a 2 day notice and haven't looked back since

Q: You have worked with smaller promotions, either as a fighter or coach for fighters. What is your view of how smaller promotions could improve?

A: The smaller promotions need to care more about the fighter and not just letting anyone fight and better match ups

Q: Who are the top fighters you would like to face? Why?

A: Quinton "Rampage" Jackson I want to fight to get the belt and I want to fight the best and get paid, LOL!

Q: As a fighter, you see the numbers of people jumping into MMA. What advice do you have for them?

A: Fighters should train longer before fighting and be more serious and commit to training.

Q: As a trainer how do you approach making your students more prepared for the cage?

A: I try to stimulate them mentally and have them be consistent in their training. Here at mash gym we provide top level training.

Q: Which do you prefer, Cage or Ring, and why?

A: I prefer a cage because the fighting is continuous.

Q: Thank you for your time. What can we expect to see from James Lee in the near future?

A: You can expect a win from me in UFC 88 on Sept 6the and having the premiere training facility in Michigan! Check us out at Thanks!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Supplementing for MMA with ALLTHEWHEY.COM

There is no secret that you have to be in phenomenal shape if you ever plan on being successful in the sport of MMA. If you are going to survive day in and day out through punishing grappling, lifting, sparring, and body hardening sessions. . . you had better make sure that you have your nutrition down to a science. You can train your butt off in the gym and hit a heavy bag until your knuckles bleed, but if you are not taking care of your body from a nutritional standpoint. . . you might as well have taken the day off. I hooked up with the great people at ALLTHEWHEY.COM to discuss the sport of MMA and their various products that have kept me wanting to come back for more.

When planning a supplement regimen tailored to meet your targets and goals as an MMA fighter, you have to take all aspects of the fight game into consideration. The number one thing that you must take care of as a fighter in my opinion is your joints! Whether you are really reaching to connect a jab, or you got lazy and find yourself in a tight armbar…it's reassuring to know that your joints are healthy and strong (don't get me wrong…I'm still tapping to that armbar). Glucosamine Chondroitin is the oil to your fight ending machine! After both shoulder and knee surgery I began to use this product religiously, rebuilding my cartilage and keeping inflammation down after my long workouts. If you've ever talked to me before about supplementation, you'll know that I tend to rave about Glucosamine Chondroitin and its numerous benefits to both athletes and non-athletes alike.

"I gained 8lb. while adding allthewhey products to my MMA training", Kyle Kaiser

Both Marc Dell and Rob Reed of ALLTHEWHEY.COM are big fans of the sport and admire the great athleticism. Rob told me. . ."Mixed martial arts unlike the football, basketball, and baseball sports of the world, is the only one-on-one sport where every single second of every single match requires 100% total focus on all body parts and a constant strategic strategy. As where boxing is more of an upper body focus…MMA is a full out 3 rounds, balls to the wall matter of "who wants it more."…The will to "prepare to win" overshadows the natural "will to win."

Another product that is a must on my list as far as nutrition for MMA is L-Glutamine. This amino acid will come to be your best friend before and after a hard workout, helping you to recover quickly while assisting to spare the muscle and strength that you've worked so hard to put on. It is a great additive to a lean Whey Protein Isolate shake post workout. Remember that shorter recovery times = you ready to go at the sound of that bell.

I could go on and on about all the products that Marc and Rob have hit spot on at ALLTHEWHEY.COM, but instead I'll leave it up to you to research and teach yourself about the varying degrees of MMA specific nutrition. My advice is to study up and NEVER put something into your body that you don't know anything about. Just like in the sport of MMA, when building up your supplement regimen…knowledge is power! Bad choices can lead to lifelong effects so stay natural and put in the work that your opponent deserves. Train hard, eat well, make positive choices, and you will succeed on and off the mat.

by Kyle Kaiser

MMA Training, Nutrition, Product reviews, and Current events

Photo Credits: for use of their logo

Kyle Kaiser for action shot

KJ Noons defeats Yves Edwards and Retains his Lightweight Title

On Sat. June, 14th 2008 Elite XC aired on Showtime. Fighters such as Nick Diaz defeated Muhsin Corbbrey by TKO, though the fight was not aired. The title bout featured KJ Noons defending his lightweight belt against Yves Edwards. KJ retained his title with a clear win over Yves. KJ gained the belt by first defeating Nick Diaz in November of 2007.

KJ told me his thoughts leading up to the fight, "I just trained so hard because I knew Yves is such a great competitor. He's got so many fights under him and I was going in as the underdog where I feel comfortable. I just trained super hard for this fight. Man, it was the longest I've ever trained for a fight because we were supposed to fight on April 26 and it got pushed back, you know a couple months, so this was definitely the longest camp for me. Yves used to be, I guess you could say, the UFC uncrowned champ back in the day."

KJ had the look of a champion after his win over Yves he said, "I caught him with a great shot. It was just a great feeling. Man, it's almost like a relief, all that buildup all that training to that point and to come out on top it's just the most rewarding feeling. All that work you put in you know finally it pays off."

While KJ was receiving his belt and enjoying his victory, the topic of him defending his belt again came up. It became apparent very quickly that Nick Diaz was ready to try and get the belt back from KJ when Diaz and his entire crew including his brother Nathan entered the cage. The next thing that we see as viewers is a free-for-all breaking out. KJ tells me, "I won my fight. I'm in there celebrating with my family and friends and before you even know it these guys are like in the ring and I guess they brought them in. I can understand how they want to pump up a fight. But he got in there (Nick Diaz) and I didn't see his fight before. They said do you think he deserves a rematch? They said no. I mean his fight wasn't that exciting. I guess. That's what I had heard. Afterwards, I still haven't even watched the fights so I've only seen my fight on like YouTube. You know I saw him get mad. This is what I'm telling you, is what I saw on the TV. You know, when I was in there, his brother was behind him. You can't see him on TV. He's flipping and cussing and having words with my dad and I see this and uh you know, I mean, it breaks out. You know what I mean? A scuffle or whatever and I think it's only natural. I mean for everybody, if they're going to throw fingers and talk a bunch of trash. You know, I think just everybody would want to retaliate. At the same time it was ridiculous. I mean, I didn't even get to celebrate, it was like 30 seconds. I mean jeez the whole card was done early. My fight was supposed to go, what, like 30 minutes and they got these guys in here 30 seconds after my win. It's just, whatever."

KJ also let me know what his plans for the future are, "I'm going to work on my gyms. Stay in shape and just go forward with my boxing career. That is really one of my goals. Just want to start building my career in that and keep on fighting."

KJ trains at

Also visit KJ's webpage. The video of the fight is there in case you missed it:

Here are the audio clips from Penny Buffington's Interview with KJ Noons:

by Penny Buffington of MMA-Underground

Monday, June 23, 2008

Thiago "The Pitbull" Alves says to expect a lot of knockouts!

June, 7th. 2008 at UFC 85 in Bedlam, England Thiago Alves proved he is no joke in the welterweight division when he put the dumbfounded look on Matt Hugh's face as he decisively kneed and punched his face till 1min and 2 sec into round 2 for the win by technical knockout. Matt Hughes is known as the greatest welterweight of all time so for Thiago that must have felt great. I spoke with Thiago and was able to get his thoughts before and after the fight.

Before the fight Thiago said it was, "A lot of pressure, I mean not a lot of pressure but, I knew I had to win the fight. The last two weeks I sprained my ankle training and it was kind of really bad. I couldn't make weight and everything. I was really, really nervous but I don't know I think I really sucked it up and everything worked out good."

After the fight Thiago was," In heaven! Just hard work paying off. I was really, really happy man and don't know, I can't describe."

Thiago was four pounds over for the fight. Matt agreed to fight with a reduction to Thiago's purse. Once in 2006 Thiago was fined and suspended for taking a drug to reduce water weight. Rumor has swirled that he may possibly move up in weight class. That's not the case. Here is what he said about the subject, "The end of 2006 I got caught with diuretics and I got suspended for 8 months. But not for this fight though, I really sprained my ankle. I was going to turn down the fight and I called my manager and everything and we called the UFC management." He was told, "Maybe I have to take cortisone shots so I could train. The cortisone shot makes you hold water too. I couldn't walk for 3 days because of the ankle. I always make weight though."

Alves tells me he plans to remain a welterweight and he also says, "The UFC has been good to me. I'm not planning on going no where." He trains in Florida at American Top Team. You can visit their webpage: American Top Team is a highly respected gym. Thiago expressed gratitude for being with them, "ATT is the best camp in the world. We got the best coaches. We got the best training partners in the world. I go to work, yeah I go to work, and it's like a family. All my family is from Brazil and I find a new family here in side of the gym. I couldn't be in a better place."

What can we expect in the future from Thiago "The Pitbull" Alves? "A lot of knockouts. I'm going to get the belt. I'm going to knock everybody out." To his fans Thiago had to say, "I want to appreciate all the support and all that. Everybody who trusts me and knows that I'm going to get out there. God bless you guys keep pulling for me because it's just the beginning."

by Penny Buffington of

Please visit :

Here are the audio clips from Penny Buffington's Interview with Thiago:

The Ultimate Fighter 7 Finale Round-by-Round

Evan Tanner vs. Kendall "Da Spyder" Grove

The first round begins with Grove getting clinched up with Grove and getting hit with an elbow. Tanner takes Grove down and ends up in side control, but Grove gets back up to his feet quickly. Tanner has a cut over his left eye from a Grove elbow. Tanner drops levels for a single leg takedown but Grove connects with a jumping knee. Grove is now on his back and trying to lock up a triangle choke. Tanner gets out but slips to the canvas. Grove jumps onto Tanner's back. Tanner gets back to his feet as the round ends. The second round starts as Grove connects with knees from the Muay Thai plum. Tanner closes on Grove and clinches up against the cage. Tanner lifts Grove up and slams him down to the ground. Grove uses a kimura to get the fight in a standing position. Tanner is dropped by a standing elbow delivered by Grove. Tanner stands and eats more elbows. Tanner recovers but has very little to offer as offense. The third round begins as Grove connects with a body kick. The fighters clinch up for two minutes with no results. Tanner connects with a right hand. Grove replies with elbows. Grove is pushed away from Tanner and eats a right hand. Grove jabs and lands a knee to the body. Tanner finishes the round with a knee as the bell sounds. Two judges score the bout for Grove 30-26 and one judge scores the bout 29-28 for Tanner somehow. Kendall Grove walks away with a split decision victory.

CB "The Doberman" Dollaway vs. Amir Sadollah

The first round begins with Sadollah maintaining a distance and landing two front kicks. Dollaway shakes off the second kick and gets a single leg takedown. Dollaway advances to side control. Sadollah rushes back to guard and synchs in a deep arm bar. Referee Herb Dean rushes in to save Dollaway after one tap. Dollaway complains about the stoppage but was close to breaking an arm. Amir Sadollah takes The Ultimate Fighter 7 crown just 3:02 into the first round.

Diego "Nightmare" Sanchez vs. Luigi Fioravanti

The first round starts as Sanchez shoots in for a takedown but eats a straight right from Fioravanti. Fioravanti connects with a right leg kick. Sanchez responds by connecting with a flying knee. Sanchez lands a right head kick. Fioravanti stops a single leg takedown and connects with a right hand. Sanchez closes in and scores with a left, right combination. Fioravanti stuffs another Sanchez takedown attempt and taunts Sanchez. Fioravanti wags his finger as to say no way. Fioravanti slams Sanchez down to the canvas as the bell sounds. The second round begins as Fioravanti connects with a punch but hurts his left leg. Fioravanti is dropped by a hard punch from Sanchez. Sanchez rushes in and takes side control. Fioravanti stands back up and takes minimal damage. Sanchez connects with a head kick. Fioravanti and Sanchez land hard punches but Fioravanti falls back. Sanchez rushes to finish Fioravanti but Fioravanti recovers quickly and stands up. Fioravanti connects with a nice right hand. The third round starts with Fioravanti landing a left hook. Sanchez shoots but Fioravanti defends well again. Sanchez connects with two right hooks and gets a takedown. Sanchez takes the back of Fioravanti. Fioravanti rolls back to his feet. Sanchez lands a left head kick that rocks Fioravanti. Sanchez connects with a flying knee and a barrage of strikes on the ground. The referee is forced to stop the bout at 4:07 into the third round.

Jeremy "Lil' Heathen" Stephens vs. Spencer "The King" Fisher

The first round begins with Stephens failing a throw and pulling guard. Fisher makes him eat a few glancing blows. Stephens attempts an arm bar and triangle but fisher defends easily. Fisher working from half guard throws a backwards elbow. Stephens gives his back to fisher but defends well. Stephens gets back to guard but eats more punches. The second round begins with a nice right hand from Stephens. Fisher responds with a two punch combination. Fisher lands a right hook. Fisher gets a takedown and lands in side control. Fisher elbows the head until being put in half guard. The fighters are now battling for position on the ground. Stephens gets back up and slams Fisher to the canvas. The third round starts with a left body kick from Fisher. Stephens connects with a right hand and a hard knee to the body. Stephens pulls guard with a guillotine but Fisher defends well. Fisher advances from the mount to side control, where he attacks the head with his right hand. Stephens gets back to his feet and connects with a right hand and jumping elbow. Stephens takes Fisher down to the canvas. His corner yells to get busy with just 90 seconds left in the bout. Fisher defends well from his guard and stands to his feet. Stephens goes for a guillotine as the round ends. All three judges score the bout 29-28 as Spencer Fisher walks away with a Unanimous Decision victory.

Dante Rivera vs. Matt Riddle

The first round begins with Rivera landing a low kick. Riddle clinches up and goes for a single leg takedown but Rivera defends well against the cage. Rivera grabs Riddle's neck and swings him around. Riddle gets away and knees Rivera in the lead leg. A grazing knee knocks out Rivera's mouthpiece. Referee Herb Dean stops the fight and Rivera puts it back in. Riddle goes back to the clinch and continues to knee the thigh of Rivera. Riddle takes Rivera down and finishes the round by connecting with elbows. The second round with both fighters trading punches and knees from the clinch, as Rivera gets the better of the exchange. Riddle pushes his opponent back against the cage. Rivera takes more knees to the thigh and then fails on a judo throw. Rivera pulls guards but Riddle gets in the mount. Riddle locks in a guillotine but gives it up to strike. Riddle almost seemingly finishes Rivera but goes for a sloppy arm bar. Riddle throws on a triangle from his back as the round ends. The third round begins as Riddle is in top control. Rivera attempts the rubber guard but Riddle passes. Both fighters stand and connect with body kicks. Riddle gets another takedown but the fighters are stood up quickly. Riddle gets another takedown and mounts Rivera. Riddle punches the head and attempts a triangle choke as the round ends.

by Kurt Hall of

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Many Women Want to Look Good Naked, Others Want Trophies with Their Six Packs

It's a gorgeous evening in Denver, Colorado. My friend Lauren and I lug our oversized gym bags out of her beat up Volvo station wagon. Lauren Sugihara is a striking girl, with exotic looks and an hourglass figure. I could be a tattooed version of sporty spice. On the outside we may look like your average girls, getting ready for a weekend spin class. We are wearing sports bras and our hair is in ponytails, but as we get ready to workout we pull out hand wraps, shin guards, boxing gloves and mouth guards from our bags. Our gear smells like a guy's locker room. We carefully remove our jewelry before warming up. I chat with Lauren about work and life as we wrap our hands and several minutes later we are kicking and punching each other in the head. This is our idea of fun. In fact, I flew from Los Angeles to help Lauren train for an upcoming fight. She's had two amateur Muay Thai fights and with some more ground work hopes to fight MMA soon. Most people wonder why nice girls like us would want to hit each other in our spare time, let alone step in the ring or cage and put our pretty faces on the line, but this is what we train for and for many of us it's what makes us feel truly alive.

The week before my training trip to Colorado I received a call from Kim Couture, wife of the 5 time UFC Champion Randy Couture. She was in Hollywood for an autograph signing tour with Randy and wanted to train with me to help prepare for her upcoming fight on ESPN Friday June 20 th. Kim started training last October and will be making her pro debut. I was happy to assist. I jump at the chance to spar other female fighters. It's hard to find training partners similar in weight and experience, for women it's even harder. Kim and I train hard, spar, tag each other with hard shots to the face, legs and body, then hug, shower and go out for lunch. Over chicken salads I learn that Kim is a country girl at heart, a caring mother, an on point business woman and a loyal wife.

Training with these two beautiful and talented women got me thinking about women and fighting. Women fighters are breaking the mold. Many are like Lauren and Kim. They are attractive, intelligent, successful women. Some have never been competitively athletic before discovering their love for fighting. They run businesses, raise kids, and they have never been in a street fight. There is a unique duality to these women; a side of them that only comes out in training. Women are not often encouraged to play sports in high school. They are told it's not okay to punch, hit and shove. Fighting doesn't come natural to most girls. So why with all the social norms against them and when they have so many other roles to play, do these women choose to fight?

There's not much money in female fighting, at least in the beginning. I often spend much more money on training, supplements and medicals than I ever make on a fight. So what drives us? Kim says, "The more people tell me I can't or shouldn't be doing something, the more it drives me to not only do it, but to achieve it!" For me I love the physical rush of training, I love that it's hard; I love the mental journey of preparing for a fight and the adrenaline of a victory. Lauren says she loves to fight because she is simply, "More happy doing it than not."

I train personal fitness clients for a living and I also teach a women's Muay Thai program in Hollywood. I recently ask my girls why they like to train. They used words like challenging, focused, fun, intense, physical and different to describe training. One girl jokingly commented she just wanted to look good naked. All the girls in class that night have never fought, so when I asked them if they would want to fight in the future 4 out of 5 surprised me and said yes. Some said they wanted the challenge, a way to test their skills, another said it would make her husband proud. My youngest student, who is 18, grinned sheepishly at me and said she wants to fight because she wants a trophy.

I take a good look at my girls; I wonder how many of them really will fight someday. I wonder how many of them will last through the training. It's not that they can't do it. They can! I truly believe that anyone can train like an athlete, but having the dedication and the drive to follow through is a different story.

The girl who said she wouldn't fight said it's because fighting is scary. She's right. It is frightening and it's not easy either. Someone once told me it takes three qualities to make a great fighter: skill disciple and conviction. Training is all about discipline. The good female fighters I know train like the guys do, many people don't take us seriously and that makes us train harder. We sweat until we feel like we might pass out, we spar, and we get bruised and sore and wake up the next day to do it again. Lauren and I talked about how there is little room for a social life in our worlds. She's at a receptionist desk for 8 hours Monday through Friday. She's also a DJ and a playmate model. I start training clients starting at 7am and am often teaching until 9pm. We both train 2-3 hours a day ourselves so all we have energy for at the end of the day is a shower and some food. It's not glamorous by any means. It's me on the couch with packs of frozen peas on my shins, rubbing arnica gel on my sore neck and eating chicken and veggies. It's a simple, beautiful life to me. I don't see it as making sacrifices, I'm just living.

The physical challenge doesn't bother us. It's the mental challenges that Lauren and Kim said were most difficult to deal with, the conviction part. Lauren tells me she struggles with confidence but relies on the faith that her family, trainers and friends have in her. Kim feels similar, saying "(My greatest challenge is) being aggressive. I have to turn it up a lot in training more than my personality is used to. Also being confident in my own skills and letting it all go in there (is a challenge)." I can relate. When I first started fighting I had 70% discipline, 20% skill and 10% conviction. It's only after 6 years of hard training and winning a few more fights than I've lost that I feel those percentages are more even.

I think for many female fighters confidence builds more slowly than men. We worry how our technique will look. We focus on honing our skills; we want to be taken seriously. Aggression and confidence come when we feel comfortable with our knowledge. From my experience women always want to figure things out and make it look perfect. For this reason there are some sharply skilled women out there in the fight world. Some may not be packed with muscle or bursting with fierce energy, but they have the mechanics to fight and as their records build so does their conviction.

Whether or not you agree that women should fight, there is one thing you can't argue about when you watch a women's match. They are incredibly intense. They are just as competitive and power driven as men in the ring. Female fighters put it on the line and fight hard. Some fight for the love of it, some fight to prove others wrong, some fight to gain confidence and self respect and every single one of them dreams of wearing a big, shiny championship belt around their waist.

Kim Couture just fought on Friday Jume 20th (ESPN 8pm)

Lauren Sugihara fights in Colorado in July.

Roxy Richardson fights July 19th at the Pechanga Casino in Temecula, CA.

Photo credits:

Smokin' hot picture of Lauren are courtesy of Lauren's myspace page:

Picture of Roxy demonstrating a left body kick with Lauren for students of Gym Riki courtesy of Dan Raabe

Friday, June 20, 2008

The Ultimate Fighter: Regular Season Finale

At the top of the hour, we began with this week's fight; the last semi final fight featuring CB Dollaway vs. Amir Sadollah. Round 1 began with flurry from CB followed by a push kick from Amir. Both mean do the Thai clinch and exchange knees with a bit of dirty boxing. CB received a knee to the body, bouncing back to his feet, he picked up Amir and slammed him to the canvas. In guard, CB landed strikes. Amir went for an arm-bar after CB postured up, but was unsuccessful. CB would attempt to pass but ended up in closed guard, with his posture being controlled for a moment. CB picked up Amir and landed back in butterfly guard. Amir scrambled to stand. CB throws a push kick that connects and shoots for another takedown. Back in guard, CB worked on strikes until Amir gave away his back but he spun out back into guard and blocked strikes until the end of the round. Round 2 began with standing up square off. CB threw a blocked high kick, throwing shots and a knee to the body. Amir would land a body blow that would bring CB to the mat. Bouncing back, he would shoot in for successful takedown. Raining down while in guard, Amir rolled to secure an arm lock. Amir would receive strikes in guard while trying to control posture. CB would posture up landing strikes and elbows. A bleeding Amir, scrambles and stands to almost land a push-kick on CB, whilst he was leaning on the cage. Round 3 began with a leg kick and left hook followed by a right, followed by flying knee from Amir. CB attempts a slam from the cage, but it would be stuffed but the second one would not be. CB would almost nearly lock in a rear-naked choke before Amir turned out of it, and escaped; which was amazing defense on his part. Amir would attempt some weird submissions from the north-south position. Back in guard CB would land strikes before succumbing to an arm-bar sending Amir to the finals at the palms.

Next up, we heard Dana speaking about an incident that occurred after the competitors left the house and went on their way. Jesse Taylor and some of the guys were staying at a hotel, when they returned Jesse Taylor booted out the window of their limousine. After this, he entered to hotel where he harassed female guests. After being approached by security he began bragging about being a UFC fighter. This not sitting well with Dana, he brought the coaches in to discuss the situation and explain what he was going to do. It was clear that Jesse was not to be going to the finals but be out of the UFC for good, for the way he had conducted. For the first time in seven seasons, a finalist was kicked off of the show, post-season.

Dana brought back the last two semi-finalists Tim Credeur and CB Dollaway to fight for a spot in the finals and Amir and the coaches as well as Dana himself would speculate. Round 1 began with a square off, followed by low kicks in unison. Seemingly intent to exchange, both ground fighters would throw low kicks at each other. CB lands a body kick. Tim misses a high kick and throws a flurry. CB landed a leg kick before both men exchanged furiously after a brief stand off. CB throws a body kick and body shot, plus an inside leg kick. After a throw of hands by Tim, he caught CB and dropped him to the mat, scrambling, CB would get a takedown after a sprawl. Tim would go for a leg, Cb would land shots before Tim would scramble to his feet. We closed off the round with another throw of hands. Round 2 would begin with a missed high kick followed up by a takedown by CB. Standing back up, they would square off and exchange. Tim threw a superman punch that would barely connect. Tim got caught and ate some shots almost being stopped by the ref. But, he would recover quickly, still eating shots. Exchanging again, CB would be the one to back up in distress during the back and forth exchange. Tim ate one on the chin and shrugged it off. CB shoots and Tim sprawls but still gets taken down in guard, throwing shots posturing up to pass before the horn. Round 3 began with a flurry from Tim and a takedown by CB. Standing up, CB would land a low kick. Another exchange would end with a leg kick from CB. CB would shoot for another takedown into butterfly guard. After a scramble, CB got another takedown followed by another scrambled. Holding Tim's ankles, most likely for a pass attempt, Tim would scramble back to his feet. There was another flurry by Tim and a takedown by CB, finishing the fight by landed strikes from top and bottom. The judges' decision would be CB Dollaway by a close decision.

So it is Amir Sadollah and CB Dollaway in the finals on Saturday, June 21st. I will not be covering it, as I am making my amateur debut the same day. It has been a joy covering this season, perhaps I will look forward to next season on THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER!

by Joshua E. Ottley of

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Elite XC: KJ Noons vs. Yves Edwards

By Kurt Hall of

KJ Noons vs. Yves Edwards

This fight was for the Elite XC lightweight title. Noons lands the first strike of the fight with body kick. Edwards stands in the pocket and lands a straight right to the body and a nice right hand to the chin of Noons. Noons counters Edwards punches with a stiff straight right that makes Edwards fall to the canvas. Noons rushes in with a fury and begins to throw some lighting quick punches and even a couple of elbows from top position. Referee Mario Yamasaki steps in to stop the fight just 48 seconds into the first round.

Fireworks after the fight

There was a scuffle during the post-fight interview. Nick Diaz enters the cage after the fight to challenge KJ Noons for his title. Mind you, he was already beat by Noons last year. Hand gestures and words are exchanged between both parties. KJ Noons' dad begins to get fired up and attacks a member of Diaz's possee. One of Noons' cornermen are seen throwing punches. Noons' dad put Nick Diaz in a Muay Thai plum but the exchange was broken up quickly. Nick Diaz exits up the ramp with his brother Nate throwing up double middle fingers. It looked like something in the WWE and doesn't belong in MMA in my opinion.

Nick Diaz vs. Muhsin Corbbrey

This fight was meant to be fought at the 160 pound division but Diaz weighed in at 9 pounds over. So the fight took play at a catch weight of 168 pounds. Corbbrey keeps a good distance at the start of the fight and lands a straight right to the body of Diaz. Diaz gets the Thai plum and knees Corbbrey in the body. Diaz lands a triple jab on Corbbrey with his right hand. Corbbrey lands a nice leg kick. Corbbrey is starting to time his counters on Diaz well. Corbbrey counters two Diaz jabs with two straight rights of his own. Corbbrey then lands a body kick and follows it up with a nice uppercut. Corbbrey finishes the round with an overhand right that scores for him. The second round starts as both fighters land hooks on each other. Diaz begins to close in but Corbbrey lands an uppercut. Diaz shoots in for a single-leg takedown but Corbbrey stuffs it. Corbbrey uses nice head movement to move away from Diaz's jab and straight left. Diaz lands 2 nice left hands. Corbbrey uses good foot movement to avoid being part of a slugfest and the crowd begins to boo. Diaz begins to taunt Corbbrey and lands a left hand. Corbbrey answers by landing a right hand and begins to back up again. Diaz shoots for another takedown but cannot take Corbbrey down to the canvas. Diaz goes to the clinch and trips Corbbrey down to the canvas. Diaz ends the round in side control. The third round begins with Diaz shooting in for a takedown but Corbbrey defends again. Diaz scores with a nice uppercut and takes Corbbrey down with a body lock. Diaz is now is in Corbbrey's half guard. Diaz is now bleeding from a cut over his left eye. Diaz has passed to side control and is working on a kimura. Diaz steps over Corbbrey's head and drops down to lock in an armbar. The submission attempt is very deep but Corbbrey escapes. Diaz is back in side control throwing punches. Diaz stands up and lands some more punches. Diaz advances to the mount and continues to overwhelm Corbbrey with punches. Referee Chris West is forced to stop the fight 3:59 into the third round.

Murilo "Ninja" Rua vs. Tony Bonello

The stare down is interesting as Bonello throws some unkind words at Rua. Bonello starts the fight aggressively by missing on a head kick but landing an uppercut. Bonello pulls guard and attempts to put Rua into an armbar. Murilo Rua defends easily and advances to side control. Rua begins to elbow Bonello in the head. Rua is controlling the fight and battering Bonello with left elbows. Rua obtains the mount but quickly decides to go back to side control. Rua begins to throw elbows to the head and body again. Rua advances to knee-on-belly and pounds out Bonello. Referee Mario Yamasaki stops the fight just 3:16 into the first round.

Dave Herman vs. Ron Waterman

Dave Herman begins the round by making Waterman eat some punches and Waterman takes an inadvertent finger to the eye. Waterman slowly drops levels and takes down Herman to the canvas. Herman gets back up to his feet but Waterman gets him back down to the canvas. Herman stands back up and scores with a jumping left-footed kick. Herman hurts Waterman with a nice knee to the body. Herman pounces on Waterman and is now in the mount. Herman pounds Waterman out from the mount. Referee Chris West is forced to stop the contest just 2:19 into the fight.

Rafael "Feijao" Cavalcante vs. Wayne Cole

The bell for the first round sounds and both fighters begin to trade some aggressive strikes in the center of the cage. Feijao reverses an inside trip to get a takedown. Wayne gets back to his feet quickly. Feijao lands an unintentional knee to the groin and gets warned by referee Mario Yamasaki. The fight continues as Feijao lands a knee to Wayne Cole's head from the clinch that rocks him. Feijao runs in and forces Cole to the ground. Cole gives up his back to the Brazilian and Feijao ends the fight with punches. Referee Mario Yamasaki ends the fight just 2:47 into the first round.

Photo Credit: TOM CASINO Copyright 2008 EliteXC

Saturday, June 14, 2008

The Amateur-ville Horror comes To Amityville (Detroit)

by JP Berube of

In an historic event, one MMA-Underground writer is fighting at another MMA-Underground writer's event! MMA-Underground is a site run by MMA writers, fans, fighters, and promoters, so it was just a matter of time before a mind-blowing event like this happened for the site.

Joshua E. Ottley has been writing MMA blogs for,, and the LA Times. Joshua will make his amateur debut in a matter of days. Joshua calls himself the "Saxon Battle Axe". He is self trained in the arts of Thai boxing, freestyle submissions as well as Greco-Roman Wrestling, which he calls Hybrid Vale Tudo; which is more of a mixed up style of Vale Tudo, always having been widely considered to be a mix of Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (standing for anything goes in the Brazilian dialect of Portugeuse).

JP: Joshua, how long have you been obsessed with all things MMA?

Joshua: I wouldn't say it was an obsession until around the time that the sport began to make it's resurgence from its obscure hiatus, if you will; in the earlier part of this decade. Having only basic cable, I watched Spike TV and The Ultimate Fighter show, and I saw how much the sport had progressed since its brutal beginnings. I had always appreciated for Royce Gracie and his family’s opinions about not hurting adversaries unnecessarily; although at times it was hard to stomach for a young lad of my age then, as I'm sure most die hard fans would agree. It was at the time of this previously stated resurgence that I realized how much more the sport of MMA had to offer than my lifelong love, as well as the extremely one dimensional style of American Boxing! I was hooked and began watching every move as attentively as a young adult with A.D.D. could.

JP: What made you decide to finally step into the ring?

Joshua: I had always wanted to get into the Boxing ring as a teen, but always seemed to lack the confidence, on top of being sidetracked by my own rebellious nature against everything at that time. When I began self-training in MMA I knew it would always be a GREAT way to release my anger in better ways than just fighting in the streets as well as a way to become a truly disciplined athlete, given due time. I had found a new confidence in my overall abilities, not just in combat but in life in general. So, I applied this to my training and watched all the greats as well as each and every movement they made on the TV screen. I also was reading a lot of martial arts text books. Although my confidence oozes to the point of near cockiness at present, I always knew I might need some formal training to even be considered to fight. But, through my new found writing endeavors, I met my esteemed colleague Staff Sgt. John Poe. John seemingly saw something in me that he knew he could bank on for his side project (aside from being a Detroit Police Officer) in Combat X Fight League. At that point, as some would say, a star was born!

JP: Now you haven't had any formal or, shall I say, traditional MMA training in a gym have you?

Joshua: I have one lesson in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, which was also free! Around here (Leamington, the southernmost tip of Ontario and Canada as a whole) there is nowhere really to train in anything but Karate or Tae Kwon Do; which John doesn't really seem to take very bright shining to I find. The BJJ lessons were in near by Windsor, and only trained a ground game as well as setting up the takedowns with low body attacks, as I was informed. For me this would not do, as I could already train most of this on my own and had it burned into my brain! There was no use for me to drive 45 minutes, 3-4 times a week for stuff that I already knew how to do and, besides that, BJJ is only part of MMA. I did have the opportunity to learn some good defense, which I absorbed like an un-squeezable sponge. I felt it was to my benefit to save the gas money and all funds in general until I could move away to a more suited lo-cal!

JP: Are you nervous at all about your MMA debut?

Joshua: Most people would be, but by Jesus' grace, I am fearless and in control of my own destiny for once in my life! Being my own coach and stuff would seemingly worry most people, but I've done mostly everything for myself in this life and there is a level of trust there that I don't have for any other human being, not yet at least. I already have a great bunch of supporters behind me, and great sponsors who are helping me with fight gear and supplements. I plan to shamelessly plug them at the end of this interview! All these add up to great base under my feet and with my previously stated confidence level, I don't plan to lose!

JP: What do you know about your opponent?

Joshua: I know absolutely nothing. I am training for every possible outcome though. My plan is to hear his style, even if it is at the weigh-ins or even from the announcer himself, and work my game from then on. I am coming to do a job that I've been striving for my whole life! The only things that will worry me is if he's a Judo blackbelt that can throw me around with minimal effort, but even then I'll shoot in and pound him out before he can do the same!

JP: What have you been doing to train for this fight?

Joshua: I've been conditioning like crazy. I used to do a lot of rip workouts and stuff just to make myself look better, but now it's mostly all cardio with a few rip workouts a day. Besides that, I’ve been training my Muay Thai for two hours or more every morning. I wake up at dawn, and don't stop until I can't go anymore. I have sparring partners that I train my ground game with 3-4 times a week, and I've been working on my Thai flow immensely inside of all that. My game gets more solid by the day! He won't have much to give me that I can't deal with; this much is certain.

JP: What happens if you lose? Will you fight again?

Joshua: Not that I plan on losing, but of course, I have the pure spirit and heart of a warrior, who likes to keep it on the field of battle, per say. The only way he will make me submit is if I know that one of my limbs is in true jeopardy. I won't drop my hands for him to KO me, and if he lands one or ten, I know from experience that I can take it. I will press forward to the bitter end. So, to answer your question, YES, YES I WILL!

JP: Has being an MMA writer for MMA-Underground helped motivate you to get into the cage?

Joshua: I wouldn't say being a writer motivates me exactly, but the group of people I have to work with are a real boost to my confidence, even though I don't really need it! They are all excellent folks and by doing what we do, we all help each other get farther in life, I feel. Also, meeting John Poe is clearly not even close to a blessing in disguise, but a true gift from my God, I believe. I have always been motivated to this, but like I said, you guys are the best!

JP: Do you have a favorite type of music that you like to put on while training?

Joshua: Personally, I like mostly anything to just chill and listen to, and it kinda works out the same for when I'm training. The stuff I mostly listen to is extremely motivational, doesn't really matter what it is. I'd have to say anything from the Rocky movies, of course. I have a wide array of other stuff though. It just mostly has to be motivating to me, overall. Although, sometimes I just listen to Hardcore, because that movement of music reflects what I've been through in my life through most of its lyrics. Also, sometimes I just rock out to the kind of metal you can't even understand the lyrics too. It just all depends on my mood I guess! On a side note, when I'm done I listen to Enya to relax and regroup.

JP: Are you following any special type of diet to prepare for this fight?

Joshua: I ain't gonna lie, I follow my own version of Mac Danzig vegan diet. He is the reason I became a vegetarian. I always thought it would be detrimental to my protein intake if I stopped eating meat, seeing him on TUF6 was almost like looking into a mirror of my future self, personality wise and I was stoked when I actually met him over the net and he assisted me in my dietary efforts. I love animals and the fact that most other fighters aren't vegetarian gives me some extra motivation to smash in their faces! Although, for now being stuck here in Leamington, I don't have many alternatives in the way of fake eggs, ice cream, pizza and chocolate. I keep the intake of these at a minimum, I don't consume eggs by themselves, and I only drink soy milk. Most of my protein comes from Tofu as well as Avacados, even though they taste like really bland kiwis to me and sometimes kick in my gag reflexes! It's all for a good and justifiable cause to me as a person.

JP: What is your motivation for fighting? Is it the money? Are you doing it for the fans?

Joshua: My motivation as of right now, and as it will be for all time, is to come out to prove that I am more than what people will try to say I am. I am coming to make new fans, but mostly out of my efforts to be a role model for the kids as well as kicking faces in the name of my Lord Jesus! The money is a plus, and we all gotta eat. I do plan to raise a family someday and these are just the things that I have in mind when I train and why I do it so hard. I'm far from greedy and as selfless as they come, but I DO CRAVE THE RESPECT, and Ill receive it through these efforts, or so I hope!

JP: What does the future hold? Are you just doing this for fun, or do you eventually want to fight in one of the big organizations?

Joshua: Of course I want to go big someday! I don't feel that I need to be in the UFC right away, but I will want to make a name for myself, quite thoroughly I might add before I do, when and if it happens! The MMA scene is exploding, and promotions are popping up everywhere. I'll fight in every last one of them, once a week if I have to, just so I can prove my worth as a professional, someday in the near future!

JP: Is there anyone that you would like to thank for making your first fight a reality?

Joshua: I would definitely like to thank Sargeant John Poe of the Detroit Police Department, and the owner, of course, of Combat X Fight League LLC for taking me on what could be called a gamble, by some. I don't plan to disappoint by any stretch of the imagination! Also, I'd like to thank YOU, Jean-Paul Berube! If not for you adding me to your friends list I would not have met John in the first place and I wouldn't be anything more than what I was before then; just a self trained fighter with nothing but hope and true faith in his heart! I'd also like to thank TUF6 winner Mac Danzig for his dietary guidance and former IFL champ Matt "Suave" Horwich for his spiritually uplifting support online, these men are both great role models for our sport and the template for solidifying my future as one myself! Also, I'd like to thank my sponsors who have provided me with all my ring attire which I only had to pay for a groin and mouth guard, actually! They are Kyle Kaiser of Fight-4-Christ MMA and Submission Wear, who also writes with us on MMA-Underground, and is a great man and Christian role model in his own right. Also, Brian "The Hitman" Williams who set me up with IcemanRx, which is Chuck Liddell's supplement company, he is a great man as well. Last but not least, Hans Molenkamp from Triumph*United Visual Propaganda Agency for all of his concern with making me a stylish son of a gun with the duds and trunks he's provided me with! All you guys are AWESOME!! THANKS SO MUCH AND MAD BLESSINGS! Oh, and I can't forget about my Lord through whom all things are possible to those who hold him close to their hearts through even the worst turmoil! - 2 Samuel 22:35/Psalm 140:7

Joshua's Shameless plugs:

JP: Thanks for your time Joshua. I wish you luck in your MMA debut! Make us proud brother!

Joshua: Oh, I'll try more than my best, brother of mine! I can't even seem to find the words to describe what I plan to put forth to represent the MMA-Underground team, and everyone else who has supported me, thus far. I'm STOKED, Thanks so much JP, you're like the dad I never had!

Here is the Flyer to the Combat X event that Joshua is fighting in:

Friday, June 13, 2008

The Ultimate Fighter 7: Episode Eleven

In the beginning of this week, we saw this season's coaches challenge, which would be a Basketball free throw competition. It began with Dana declaring that the winning coach would receive 10 G's and that the fighter money would be doubled from 1 G to 2, but only if Rampage could make a successful 3 point basket; which he did with ease. His skills on the court would not follow up very well, as he would lag behind Forrest in the actual competition. Forrest and his team would receive the prize money, as the two coaches would have a brief yet warm embrace as well as a hand shake.

Jesse Taylor then gave a speech about his alias "JT Money" whilst getting a logo etched into his hairline with buzz-clippers. After this, as foretold by the man himself to me personally, the massive drunk-fest would ensue. With some being more reserved than others, my boy JT Money would be at the head of the pack when it came to all out sousing! His opponent Tim Credeur would attempt to calm the extremely wasted Taylor down by bringing him into the hot tub to sober up. But, not before the drunkard urinated in his swim trunks again, but this time on the bathroom floor. Following Credeur's departure from the hot tub, Taylor attempted to hold himself under water before Credeur secured a body lock, dragging him from the enclosure. Taylor proceeded to pass out. Waking up he lacked a hangover, going ape-dung gorilla up on the cement wall of the yard, in the morning.

During the training session, we heard from both men of how the two opponents were dear friends, and that still practicing together, as well as helping each other, was pretty weird. Dana then speculated on the clash of styles, being Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Wrestling and that it is always interesting to see these two styles go head to head!

We also heard two great examples of why we, as fighters, press on to do what we do everyday. First it was Tim Credeur breaking down in front of the camera and the world, recalling that he was close to retirement before his wife convinced him to press and that "good things happen to good people", proving that behind every great man there's a woman. Next we heard Jesse Taylor claiming that when he's in the cage his opponents are fighting him and his son, which is quite a powerful statement. Although I’m not a father myself, I know that it would be great motivation to buy my kid the power wheels I never got for Christmas. These were two perfect examples of the raw emotion put forth behind the squaring off, cold stares, and swinging fists of mixed martial arts.

Round 1 of the first semi-final fight began with an inside leg kick from Tim Credeur, followed up with a takedown by Jesse Taylor; into closed guard. With Credeur controlling the posture of Taylor, JT still landed some shots in guard. Still being controlled posture wise, Taylor would land a few solid hammer fists. Credeur would like for a few different submissions when Taylor was finally able to posture up, unable to rain blows down because of this. Moving back to closed guard, JT would manage to land some really solid blows to Credeurs face, yet again. JT was then swept but would immediately bring Credeur back to the bottom position where he looked for a Triangle choke, or an arm lock, but wouldn't manage to succeed. Credeur would taste more punishment before the end of the round! Round 2 began with a touch of gloves. Credeur missed a high kick, spinning around. But, Credeur would almost use Taylor's momentum to sweep him to the ground, but this was also unsuccessful. Once again, utilizing closed guard, he would work the butterfly, once unsuccessfully but the second time he would sweep Taylor to gain a mounted position. This would not last long as Taylor would execute a sweep of his own. Trying to make Credeur stationary against the cage, working on ground and pound that would slide away, so this wouldn’t not occur. Taylor would land some shots before passing to half guard, then back to full guard, still slamming his fist into Credeur's face. Credeur would try another unsuccessful sweep before the close of the round. Round 3 of this semi-final fight began with both men looking like they wanted to exchange hands, but this wouldn't be the case as Jesse Taylor once again shoots for a take down with Tim Credeur sprawling. Still working for the takedown, JT would succeed in doing so. Credeur working butterfly guard, was looking for multiple different submissions, but would eat shots from a postured up Taylor for his troubles. Credeur would then gain Taylor's back for a moment, but rolled to escape almost being locked up in an arm-bar. After this, Credeur was within and inch of locking Taylor in an Omaplata shoulder lock, but would also power out of this submission, as he had with all others; showing great submission defense. After getting back to full guard, Credeur would work the butterfly before Taylor would pass to half, still working on his trademark ground and pound. With 20 seconds left, Credeur would come close to securing another Triangle but wouldn't manage to succeed, and would spend the rest of the fight eating more shots from Taylor.

Preceding the official decision there would be a sobbing embrace, followed by a shot of Taylor vomiting and cracking jokes before he was declared the winner.

Next week we will have CB vs. Amir in what should be one of the most exciting fights this season. Also, one of my buddies get's the boot on the Ultimate Fighter!

by Joshua E. Ottley of

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Making a Small MMA Show Look Big-Time (Fight Promoting)

Old sayings hold true, for the most part. One that has plagued me, unfortunately, is "You never get a second chance at a first impression". This is especially true for promoters, not matter what you are promoting. A poor debut, or event, can kill your reputation and eventually your promotion. It is important that you present a very professional and entertaining product to your customers. We have to be realistic when dealing from the promoter’s side. No matter what you call it, you are a business. Your fans are your customers and therefore, your income. What you provide them will be the basis of your success or failure. Some people are made for promoting and some really have the want and drive to do it, but are better off in more of a "support" kind of role. Just because you want to be a promoter doesn't mean you can do it. The reality of promoting is that it is a lot of hard work and eating a spoon full of crap while smiling. I spoke with other promoters and compiled their suggestions for success - along with the things I've learned - and have finally put them to print. The topic of this article is making your show look like the BIG TIME.

I am notorious for refusing to allow others to do anything with my promotion. I have always been someone who has trouble allowing someone else to work with my ideas. I simply feel that allowing others to have a say in "my dream" makes it no longer "my dream”. I had to learn the hard way, and have slowly begun to loosen the reigns and let others help me. The reason: "one man shows" do not work and it shows. Overextending yourself will lead to so many problems. Not only will it affect the quality of your show, but it will have such and impact on you mentally and physically. Create a core base of people to help you. I have an excellent core group that I rely on. These are all people that I trust and they know what I want to do and where I want to go with my promotion. They also give it to me straight. There is no time for BS-ing. Just tell me like it is. My wife Chantell has been my best friend and partner for over 19yrs now. I trust her with every aspect of my life and I honestly would have nothing if it wasn't for her. She is the only person who can yank me back into line, when it is needed. I have to admit that I can get over-excited about an idea and need her to be that base that keeps me centered and concentrated on the whole picture. She is also the only person who handles finances. Let's be honest here, I will spend it if I have it and sometimes if I don't. She keeps the un-ending mountain of dead trees (aka receipts) in order and in an easily understood system. She also keeps me focused on deadlines and appointments. I have a lot of responsibilities and can be overwhelmed like anyone else. Rob Beals is my best bud and bro. He believes in what we are doing and is always thinking of ways to help improve. I can trust him to have my best interest at heart and know he will always push me forward. Donn Nadeau is more like family than a friend. We have known him since he was about 9yrs old. His mother is one of my wife's good friends and he grew up less than half a block away from us. He is now 20yrs old, in the Marine Corps Reserve, and works for the laborers union in Detroit. He has that youthful excitement that us older ones have kind of lost with time. He's always willing to get right into the mix with everything. On the other hand it's his youthful excitement that helps to get me into trouble, but that mainly happens at events like Bike Week or the Biker Rodeos. I have a lot of other people who help from time to time, but, these are my core group. We put a lot of hard earned hours into making things work, and it shows. There is a downfall to this as well. You have to make sure that, if it is your promotion, everyone realizes that. I had a problem with people trying to say they were my partner or it is our promotion or show. I had to put a stop to this. I am the one who owns the company, I am the one who puts it on the line, and have fronted all the money. No one else is going to come in and just think it's theirs. You want to be a partner, then flip half the bills, take responsibility for things, and be prepared to except blame if something goes wrong.

It doesn't matter if you are promoting in front of 200 people or 20,000, they should all walk away felling like they've been to the same quality of event. The product you present should "feel" the same no matter how much you made off of the event. It doesn't take a UFC Budget to do this either. You can present a very expensive and hi-tech looking event on a minimum wage budget. You have to look for the deals because they (normally) don't just fall in your lap. Just taking a few extra minutes can help improve your production tremendously. I like people feeling like they are at a "WWE" type of production. Not in the "soap opera" style story lines, but the feel of the setting. I have a huge entry way with fog machines and flashy lights. It isn't expensive, but it sure looks it is. I have light rigging, for venues where it is needed. My PA system is loud and clear. I have huge banners with my logo on them and they’re placed where they are very visible. I use an MC that works the crowd into a near frenzy. I have so little invested in my set up, that most people can't believe it. It's not that I don't like to spend money, I just didn't have it when I first started promoting, so I learned to find deals and it carries over to now. If the venue you are using has room for an entry way, use one. It makes the show a bigger spectacle for fans and fighters. They get to make this grand entrance and feel like a star for a little bit. The fans love it because it gives them this BIG TIME type feel for the show. An entry way can be done for next to nothing. I have Kennel Fencing that was used as a portable cage system. I am a Herpetologist and keep large crocodilians. It is one of my true passions and I used to do alligator shows at festivals and fairs. The alligators I did these shows with measured between 6 and 8 feet in length. I have 2 that are pushing 8 1/2 feet long. My actual career takes main stage and, with a promotion a few years back, I just didn't have the time to do the fair shows. I am a pack rat and kept the cage panels. These work perfectly as they look like the panels in the cage we use for the fights. Simply using other items to support and tie them together, I have a nice looking entry. Add a fog machine I have from Halloween and lights with flasher switches to create a strobing affect. Local beer distributors can make your banners in house that are very nice and will do it to advertise their business. The lighting rig I have for over my cage is extremely simple. It is metal tubing that bolts together in a square and holds 8 of those 1,000 watt shop lights. It looks like a pro set up and cost less than $100.

A good announcer will make your show that much bigger and bolder. I don't advise anyone to try and promote and announce. It is hard enough to keep all of the controlled confusion of an event under control. I personally use Phil Davey to handle the announcing at my events. Phil has been at it for a long time and really gets the crowd going. His antics keep everyone happy and entertained. A good announcer will be able to stretch out delays, which happen at almost every show. A good announcer is worthless if you can't hear them. Make sure you have a good sound system that covers your needs. You can get a decent 2,000 watt system for under $2,000. I have one that I picked up new for $1,200. You can get used systems for a lot less. You have to hunt for them, as most people think that you should pay the same amount for a system, that's a couple years old, as you would for one that's new.

Your staff and crew represent you and your promotion. Find a decent screen printer and have your own shirts made. You don't have to go overboard on the shirts. I use black shirts with white printing. I have my company name on the front and "Staff" on the back. It presents a more organized and professional look to your fans. My refs wear black Polo's with the logo embroidered over the heart. I have a real pet peeve with shows that have refs wearing a t-shirt and jeans. It just looks so cheap and unprofessional. It honestly looks like they stepped in off the street and jumped into the cage. As the promoter you set the tone, so dress appropriately. You don’t have to be there in a $3,000 suit, I personally hate suits and have to wear them for work. I wear a nice black polo with my company logo embroidered on it and my name. It looks professional and is casual enough that you look approachable to anyone.

Whether you choose to use a cage or a ring, make it look nice. Maybe you can't afford to buy a cage or ring, or can't for another reason, it doesn't mean that you can't make the cage/ring look like it's yours. You can go on eBay or a local banner shop and have tall thin banners made. These can be any color you want and have your promotion name or website on them. They can be placed around the poles of the cage/ring and give it a nice look and feel. I own my cage and have added my website address to the inner cage pads. I literally bought 6 inch tall vinyl letters from a crafts store and applied them to the padding. They glue on and I'm going to have to make a new pad cover since it's almost impossible to peel them off. While we are on the subject of the cage, try using a different look for it. I went with yellow pads and floor covering. This serves 2 purposes and it stands out so much. The yellow is not a common color used for the cages, so I don't have to worry about my cage looking like everyone else's cage. It is also a great color for lighting purposes. The yellow reflects the light and it's like the cage itself is a light source. I have gotten untold amounts of positive reviews about the cage and the top of the list is, "I would never have thought of using that color, it looks great.” So don't worry about being original, do something to stand out; just don't copy my cage colors. Please have someone do a mock up for you of your colors before deciding though. Some colors just don't go together or look horrible. I've seen cages that look so cheaply done, and they are the same setup as mine, just different colors for pads. Make sure you know about the cage/ring you are buying. Ask around and find out from people who have the same setup before you drop the $8,000 plus on a cage/ring. There are incidents that have been reported about some and simply asking about a product could save you from a law suit. I'm not going to name makers of cages on here, you can email me directly and I'll tell you who made mine. It's the only one I can personally tell you about and I love it.

You have to also make yourself available and seen. Get out there and shake hands with the fans. Smile and make eye contact with them. Just taking a second or two to do that will make a big impact on them. Your VIPs pay a lot to be VIPs, so make them feel like it. I'm not saying you have to like everyone or even like talking to people; suck up your pride or fears and do it. My wife likes to tell people that I can sell ice to and Eskimo. While that's not true, I did however sell them some freezers (just kidding). No it's the fact that I make a connection with people. I am 39 years old, have served in the Army, have been a Police Officer for 15yrs, have been all over the country and world, and seem to constantly get myself into trouble. I have a lot of life experience which I can share with people or relate with others life experiences. Making that connection with people will do wonders for you.

You have to look at the whole picture. Think about events you have gone to, whether they are MMA or not. You know how you felt about poorly set up events. They could have had some of the best action you have ever seen but, the fact that it looked poorly setup had an impact on you. There is a venue that has some of the best concerts, for those who are fans of certain types of classical music (like Slayer or Danzig). I won't go there anymore; I simply refuse to. I am not going to spend my hard earned money to go to a place that smells foul, is filthy, and looks like it hasn't been maintained since it was built. The sad fact is that I miss some great concerts because of this, and I'm not alone. I tell friends about an upcoming event at this place, and the answer is the same "I'd go if it was anywhere other than that place". You don't want to be "that" promoter. Take a little time and spend a little money. You may not have the top of the line concert series equipment, but that doesn't mean you can't look like you do.

by John Poe of MMA-Underground (Owner of Combat X)

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Affliction Banned Fight Card

In Association with Roy Englebrecht Events

"Affliction Banned" Live on Pay-Per-View 6PM/PT

Saturday, July 19, 2008


Main Event - HW











"Affliction Live" on FSN (Fox Sports Net) 5PM/PT

Saturday, July 19, 2008


HW (Fox Sports Net)


HW (Fox Sports Net)


LHW - swing fight (may not be broadcast)


LHW - swing fight (may not be broadcast)


WW - swing fight (may not be broadcast)


LW - swing fight (may not be broadcast)



by JP Berube of

Monday, June 9, 2008

UFC 85 Round-by-Round

by Kurt Hall of

Matt Hughes vs. Thiago "Pit bull" Alves

The first round begins with a single leg takedown attempt by Hughes that Alves sprawls out of. Hughes shoots in for a double leg but Alves defends and Hughes pulls guard. Hughes goes for an armbar but ends up taking a left hand from Alves for the attempt. Alves allows Hughes to stand back up and gives Hughes a knee to his midsection. Hughes takes the shot in stride and takes Alves down to the canvas. Hughes controls Alves from top position but has trouble producing any offense except for a couple of elbows to the thighs from side control. Alves pulls into the butterfly guard but Hughes ends up into Alves' half guard. Alves stands back up to his feet and ends the round in Hughes' full guard. The second round begins with Alves landing a knee as Hughes shoots in for a takedown. Hughes now has a large cut near his right eye. Alves lands a flying knee on Hughes' falling head. Alves pounds out Hughes and referee Herb Dean stops the fight at 1:02 into the second round. Hughes injures his knee after getting hit by the flying knee. Hughes is expected to fight Matt Serra in his next fight. Thiago Alves is the presumed next welterweight title challenger.

Michael "The Count" Bisping vs. Jason "Dooms" Day

The first round begins with two fighters struggling to find their range within the first minute of the fight. Day scores the first strike of the fight with a straight right hand. Bisping clinches up and gets a trip to takedown Day. Bisping begins to throw a large volume of lefts and rights. Day survives the exchange but Bisping is now in side control. Day stands back up to his feet but Bisping takes him back down to the canvas with a nice double leg takedown. Bisping throws more lefts and rights and forces referee Dan Miragliotta to stop the fight just 3:42 into the first round.

Marcus "The Irish Hand Grenade" Davis vs. Mike "Quick" Swick

Swick begins the first round by throwing and missing on three head kicks in the first 30 seconds. Davis clinches up with Swick and pushes Swick to the cage and attempts to throw Swick down but Davis ends up pulling guard. Swick advances to half guard but is quickly put back into full guard after going for side control. Davis' head is pushed into the fence by Swick and Swick hits Davis with a left hand to the head. Swick lands some right hands and then throws some elbows to open a cut over the right eye of Davis. The bell for the second round sounds as Swick lands a nice right hand and trips Davis to the canvas. Swick throws some lazy punches from half guard and defends a kimura attempt from Davis. Both fighters are now on their feet and Davis lands a stright left to Swick's mouth. Davis gets a trip takedown on Swick and is caught in a triangle attempt. Davis defends the submission easilly and Swick gets back to his feet. Swick takes Davis down and ends the round in side control. The third round begins with Davis and Swick throwing knees and punches with neither fighter gaining an advantage. Swick gets Davis into the Muay Thai plum and Swick grazes Davis in the chin with a knee. Davis goes for an inside leg trip but Swick defends well and lands a knee to Davis' body. The right eye of Davis is bleeding badly. The cut under the eye is very severe. Referee Mario Yamasaki takes a point away from Swick for holding onto the fence. Swick shoots in for a takedown and lands in Davis' full guard. Swick uses punches to control the remainder of the round on the ground. All three judges agree that Swick takes the fight via unanimous decision 29-27.

Nate "The Great" Marquardt vs. Thales Leites

The first round begins with both fighters displaying some low quality striking. Leites lands a right hand that drops Marquardt to the canvas. Marquardt is now mounted and Leites transitions and takes Marquardt's back. Marquardt gets back to full guard but Leites quickly passes to half guard. Leites continues to side control but Marquardt rolls and gets back to his feet. Marquardt lands two right hands to the body of Leites. Marquardt lands an uppercut that has Leites backing up to the fence while rocked. The second round begins as Marquardt lands a nice straight right to Leites' body. Marquardt pushes Leites next to the fence and Leites is destroyed by an illegal knee. Marquardt gets a point deduction for the strike. The fight has resumed and Marquardt gets a quick takedown. Leites' nose gets busted up by Marquardt and Marquardt is warned for punches to the back of the head. Marquardt begins to turn up the pace and begins to tee off with some fast ground and pound. Leites is a bloodied up mess as he begins to cough up blood traveling into his mouth from his nose. Referee Herb Dean stands up the fighters. Leites takes down Marquardt and quickly transitions to the mount. Marquardt moves to the half guard as the bell sounds. The third round begins with Leites throwing a flying knee that gets caught by Marquardt and Marquardt obtains a takedown. Leites is elbowed to the side of the head and Marquardt is deducted a point due to an elbow to the "back of the head." The elbow actually lands on the side of Leites' head near the ear. Marquardt takes Leites down as the action resumes. Leites lands a couple of elbows to the head from his guard position. Leites begins to work for a kimura but Marquardt defends well. Marquardt ends the round by power-bombing Leites. The bout is scored 28-27 twice for Leites and 28-27 once for Marquardt. Leites takes a tough split decision victory.
Fabricio "Vai Cavalo" Werdum vs. Brandon "The Truth" Vera
The first round begins as Vera lands a low kick on Werdum. Vera clinches up with Werdum against the cage. As both fighters break away from the clinch Werdum lands a right hand on Vera. Werdum takes Vera down and lands into the half guard. Vera kicks Werdum off of him and stands back up to his feet. Vera stuns Werdum with a nice right hand. Werdum trips Vera down to the ground and quickly transitions into the mount. Vera covers up as Werdum begins to throw punches from the mount. Referee Dan Miragliotta stops the fight with just 20 seconds left in the first round. Werdum takes the fight via TKO in the first round. The stoppage looked bad and Vera protests the stoppage.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Who is Matt Hughes in it for?

At UFC 85, Matt Hughes took a licking from up-and-comer Thiago "Pitbull" Alves. Many athletes have acquired a lifetime of experience by age 34 and are in their prime. Matt Hughes looked like a tired old man in the Octagon.

While Alves is no joke, and has some impressive victories over good fighters like Karo Parisyan, Alves is well known as a heavy handed striker, and has finished the majority of his fights with knees and punches. Alves has yet to fight the best of the best. By contrast, Hughes has beat the best of the best; some of which would likely school the "Pitbull". So why does Hughes looks like he's done?

I used to admire Matt Hughes as the great champion that he was. Hughes was one of the guys that other fighters idolized and wanted to be like. So I'm left wondering why Matt Hughes looks less like a world champ and more like a man that's desperate to survive a fight?

What has changed for Matt Hughes? Did he forget how to fight? Does his fear of losing outweigh his hunger to win? Did his ego finally usurp his ability? Or has what motivates him to fight changed?

It appears that Matt Hughes is in there fighting for Matt Hughes. I don't think that he cares about the fans at all. I think the main reason that Hughes is still in the game at all is strictly for selfish reasons. He wants to leave the game with a win over Matt Serra.

I feel like Matt Hughes really showed his true colors on The Ultimate Fighter 6. He was more concerned with winning the stupid contest than he was about mentoring the young fighters on the show. He came off as cocky and arrogant and the fact that he was so affected by Matt Serra's comments speaks volumes about the guy. I think that his whole motivation for fighting changed at that point. I think that Hughes ego was rocked by Serra's comments, and by getting a couple of lessons from Georges St. Pierre in the Octagon.

On that note, I think Hughes is finished. I really wouldn't be surprised if he loses to Matt Serra, if he is allowed to fight him, because of his motivations. Many fights have been lost by those who aren't mentally prepared to fight. I think Hughes lost his mental edge a long time ago and I don't think it's ever coming back.

About Matt Serra, Hughes said, "I want that fight. My wife wants that fight." If I could ask Matt Hughes one question it would be, "What about the thousands of MMA fans Matt? Did you forget about the people that helped you get to where you are today?"

by JP Berube of

Friday, June 6, 2008

Shane Carwin has a knockout UFC debut (Shane Carwin Interview)

Shane Carwin made his UFC debut at UFC 84 on May, 24th. 2008. What a debut it was! Shane knocked out Christian Wellisch just forty four seconds into round one. It was a spectacular knockout! I got to speak with Shane to get his thoughts on the fight. Shane told me, "I felt good before the fight. I trained; forever it seems like, for this so my confidence was there as far as conditioning and technical stuff. Once you do all that stuff, with things in the right place, I felt comfortable before the fight. A couple of days before the fight my nerves started to get to me a little bit, but I just relaxed and let things be. Right before the fight, once I got warmed up and was ready to go, I felt great and was excited to get out there and fight."

After the fight Shane's mood had changed. He said," Oh man, complete excitement! I don't know if I've ever been that excited even after I won the national championship in wrestling! It was great to be there and it was such an experience. The UFC treated me well. I was excited for me, my teammates, my coaches, family, and all my friends as well."

Shane has a mixed martial arts record of 10 wins with no losses. His first fight was in 2005 for World Extreme Cagefighting. He has also fought for Extreme Wars, Ultimate Texas Showdown, The Art of War and Ring of Fire. Shane does not have a manager. He says, "I like it that way. My management team is my coach Trevor, (Whitman) Nate Marquardt and Christian Allen. All my trainers and me come together and collaborate." He trains out of Denver, Colorado at T's KO Fight Club. You can visit the website at the following web address: He also has a major sponsor:

Shane "The Monster" Carwin plans on staying with the UFC as long as they will allow him to. This makes me happy to know. As a fan I go for the really nice guys that can kick some major ass. See how Shane describes himself, "I'm a normal guy. I'm down to earth and very approachable. I like to go out and fight. That is what I love to do. I like to finish quick. I like to be exciting. I think that is just my fighting style, explosive." I'm all for it! When is the next Shane Carwin fight?

by Penny Buffington of

Here are the audio clips from Penny Buffington's Interview with Shane Carwin:

The Ultimate Fighter 7: Episode Ten

This week, the UFC and Spike TV had once again brought us two fights in one hour, topping off the quarterfinal action, this season.

The beginning of this installment gave us an exciting recap of the final fight that occurred in last week's episode, between Amir Sadollah and Matt Brown in which Sadollah had won an extremely hard fought WAR by triangle choke submission. We also then saw footage of Jeremy May requesting a rematch with Brown on the season finale, taking place on the 21st of June. This left Brown somewhat boggled and wondering as to what he thought would happen after their previous encounter in the Octagon. Returning to the house, we also heard Jesse Taylor spewing his own disgust at May, leaving May to plot a sneaky course of action like the class-less weasel that he is. He attempted to get a rise out of Taylor to the point of the semi-finalist lashing out against him, thus losing his bed in the house and subsequently his spot in the semis. Later on that evening the smelly skunk May, using whatever "liquid courage" he could muster, attempted to bring his nefarious plot to fruition by referring to Taylor as a "bitch", and making some rather distasteful anti-Semitic remarks that didn't seem to sit too well with Taylor, Dolce or anyone else for that matter. This caused Taylor the need to be restrained by his fellow house residents. Afterwards, May would attempt to give some minuscule show of respect. Although, he might as well have gotten on his knees and kissed Taylor's ass, even though I still don't think it would've made a lick of difference to help his situation.

The first fight of the night featured "Crazy" Tim Credeur vs. Daniel Cramer. Round 1 began with an inside leg kick from Credeur, who moved immediately into a wrestling clinch against the cage. Working for the take down it was Credeur who wound up on the bottom, with Cramer working on some ground and pound. Credeur would then scramble back to the feet after a few connections. Cramer then gained a takedown of his own, but would be swept almost immediately. Credeur gaining side-control, wouldn't keep it for long as Cramer would also scramble back to the feet. Credeur, then seemingly trying to pull guard whilst reaching for the leg of Cramer, who would be warned by the ref not to utilize the cage to gain leverage. Credeur would then pull Cramer to the ground securing a solidly impressive heel hook, due to his overall method of doing so in general. So, Tim Credeur would be the first individual this week to advance to the semi-finals, via submission and tap out.

Next up it would be CB Dollaway vs. Cale Yarbough. CB went on camera conveying his dislike for Yarbough's mouth, sense of humor as well as his staring problem. Cale would go on to state the holes that he had observed in Dollaway's striking, and that he would attempt to capitalize on these to the fullest extent during the fight. Forrest also stated, admittedly unknowing I might add, that he feels that CB is an arrogant prick; which kind of made me wish he would wrap those big ears of his around his mouth for just a moment.

Preceding the last match of the quarterfinals, the world bore witness to the most massive amount of destruction that the interior of the house has ever seen. Words can't really describe the chaos and carnage that the residents would inflict upon the walls or otherwise. This left the abode in shambles, as well as it's residents feeling somewhat relieved of stress, apparently.

Round 1 of the last quarterfinal match-up began with a body kick from CB, followed up by a take down. Dollaway started right into the raining of vicious strikes from the top. Soon after CB gained mounted position, landing even more blows. Yarbough would be forced to give his back away, with CB attempting to sink in the hooks to no avail. Yarbough, remaining in turtle position, was the recipient of several shots from Dollaway to the side of his cranium. After the refs repeated commands to fight back, the fight would be over for Yarbough and the supremely dominant Dollaway would have his shot in the semi-finals via T.K.O. stoppage in the first round.

Following the fight, Forrest would ask his remaining 3 team members who they wanted to fight in the semis. Forrest also requested that someone stop the machine that is my buddy, CB Dollaway. Jesse Taylor would step up, and Forrest agreed that he has the best to chance to get the wrestler on his back, as well as gain the win over him. The next day, the semi-final fights would be chosen. With Rampage MIA, Forrest thought that he would surely get his way. After a brief discussion with all the combatants, Rampage would finally arrive, stating it was his lack of sleep that forced him to be late. Dana then announced the fights, and it would be: Tim Credeur vs. Jesse Taylor and CB Dollaway vs. Amir Sadollah in the semi-finals. So no one really got their way, and the semi-finals are about to ensue, next week on the Ultimate Fighter!

by Joshua E. Ottley of