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MMA Link Club: The future of MMAFighting.com

By Zach Arnold | October 14, 2011

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The big story

The turmoil within both Yahoo and AOL over the last year has been plentiful. Key opinion makers & business leaders have left the operations. Financial cuts have been made everywhere. There are talks of private equity brokers buying Yahoo and taking the company private.

When AOL decided to outsource its sports content to The Sporting News, everyone wondered what the future of MMAFighting.com would be. MMA Fighting managed to avoid the axe. AOL then made the decision to pump a ton of cash/stock to Arianna Huffington to buy out The Huffington Post and give her control to Patch.com as well. Months after the deal took place, AOL continued to have financial troubles.

Now, those troubles are of real reported significance. Reuters reported that AOL is looking to Yahoo to buy them out. The chances of that happening are speculative, at best. What it does mean, however, is that outfits like MMA Fighting that aren’t huge money-generators face likely extinction if they are not sold to a new financial backer.

Given the high-profile status of MMA Fighting and the fact that UFC benefits from this from a friendly outlet for them, it’s hard to see how someone won’t buy the operation. But who exactly would be a candidate to buy out MMA Fighting and what would it mean for the MMA media landscape as a whole?

Whatever happens to MMA Fighting, the bottom line regarding the health of MMA media in 2011 is not great. Yahoo has reportedly pulled back some in terms of $$$ expenditures for MMA reporting but is still a big player. MMA Fighting needs stable backing to remain a player. However, the trend in MMA media circles is that the money supply for backing is dwindling, not growing. Zuffa is running more shows, which means more travel for writers who simply don’t have enough $$ to travel all over the place. The MMA sites aren’t generating enough cash to keep up with the breakneck speed of activity. Much like UFC fans are currently having to do with PPVs, the sites are having to cherry pick which shows they can cover and what they can afford. Times are turbulent right now. I’m not bullish or bearish about the current state of affairs.

The wildcard in all of this is FoxSports.com and how much money Fox Sports is willing to pony up to recruit top writers. That and the politics of what the writers could or couldn’t say on that platform.

Member sites of the MMA Link Club

This week’s MMA Link Club featured stories

Five Ounces of Pain: Five years after becoming UFC Middleweight champion, Anderson Silva’s retirement is closer than fans may think

MMA Fighting: Ken Hershman leaves Showtime for HBO

If there was any doubt that we will not see UFC on HBO, those doubts should be removed. And the poaching of Tim Kennedy & Gilbert Melendez to UFC means the end of Strikeforce on Showtime. Josh Gross thinks Ken Hershman may take a stab at MMA using the boxing economic model. I don’t see it happening because MMA fans are heavily conditioned on the promotional model over the TV model and factors such as how ’strong’ or ‘weak’ a promotion is viewed business-wise does impact the way hardcore fans view a product. It’s not right or wrong, it’s just how it is.

NBC Sports: Is Chael Sonnen Vegas bound?

He can apply for a license on December 1st. As our friend Beau Dure noted at Sports Myriad, virtually no one talked about Sonnen & testosterone usage leading into his fight against Brian Stann and few are talking about it after his win. It just proves once again that when it comes to the issue of PED usage in sports, fans only care when the athlete in question is someone that they hate and are looking to use something, anything as a sledge hammer to ‘punish’ them. The people who really do care about a clean sport largely are paying lip service to the topic and nothing more.

Cage Potato: The argument for banning weight cutting in MMA

Not only is the process a dangerous one that has led to the death of several high school and college wrestlers, its side effects are non-reversible and can cause major health problems for fighters later in life. It’s no coincidence that many of the sport’s participants who used to wrestle and cut weight in their youth are now on hormone replacement therapy. Starvation and extreme dehydration — two of the facets of the weight cutting procedure — put stress on the body’s endocrine system and inhibit the production of key chemicals such as testosterone, adrenaline and insulin.

MMA Mania: Scott Coker says Zuffa is committed to continuing Strikeforce

I’ve noticed since he’s no longer ‘the man’ that he’s a lot more comfortable during his interviews, which means he’s a lot smoother at stating half-truths.

5th Round: Roland Delorme of Ultimate Fighter — Stephen Bass laid on his back and was pumped like a hooker trying to pay the rent

Just as David Hill of Fox Sports says, The Ultimate Fighter has done wonders to promote the fact that fighters are not neanderthals.

Bleacher Report: Does the Shogun/Dan Henderson winner deserve a Light Heavyweight title shot?

No, but the gap between Shogun & Henderson versus Phil Davis is quite large right now.

Middle Easy: Vinny Magalhaes says he’ll train Fedor but M-1 needs to pay up

Didn’t Gary “Jerry” Millen threaten to sell the M-1 video collection on eBay?

Low Kick: Interview with Alexander Shlemenko where he says his goal is to knockout Hector Lombard

How about trying to submit him? That or hire Josh Barnett to go into the cage for you and bloody him up.

The Fight Nerd: Book review of Tom Gerbasi’s “UFC encyclopedia”

Overall, this is a great coffee table book full of vivid photos and plenty of information about anything you want to know about the UFC. Gerbasi left no stone unturned while writing this book and paints a great picture of the UFC and their legacy of fighters and events thus far. While there are some spots in it that were basically rewritten by the UFC, I can ignore it for the rest of the content and appearance of the book.

MMA Convert: Joe Lauzon and Kenny Florian left off of UFC Undisputed 3 video game roster?

MMA Payout: Looking at Brock Lesnar’s new deal with WWE

When this hit TMZ, people went nuts on the MMA message boards. Give me a prediction (% wise) as far as Lesnar making a return appearance in WWE.

Topics: MMA, Media, UFC, Zach Arnold | 63 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

63 Responses to “MMA Link Club: The future of MMAFighting.com”

  1. Sundog says:

    If I’m Fox Sports, and I’ve just poured money into a UFC deal, and I find out that 2 out of the 3 writers who’ve got the best relationship with UFC brass are about to be up for sale at a discount, I pay for that access.

  2. Columbo says:

    I thought MMA was/is the the fastest growing sport in the history of the world! So why is mmafighting.com struggling to find a buyer?

  3. 45 Huddle says:

    1) Huffington Post is a horrible website now that AOL has purchased them. It’s not uncommon to see a headline like: “George Clooney Is On Drugs”….. And then you click on the link and it talks about Clooney playing the roll of a drug dealer in his next movie. Completely sensationalist news at this point.

    2) Ariel Helwani will land somewhere nice. MMA Fighting going away wouldn’t be the end of the world. As long as Helwani does his interviews at some website, that is all that matters.

    3) Once again, Gross isn’t very good. HBO only does top tier programming. There isn’t Top Tier MMA out there besides the UFC. Which means it would be the UFC or nothing.

    4) People are complaining about Diaz, Florian, and Lauzon being left off the roster in Undisputed 3. First, the entire games roster hasn’t been released yet. It is most likely that Diaz is at Welterweight and Florian is at Featherweight. And if Lauzon hadn’t beaten Guillard, nobody would be complaining….

    5) FX Executive told MMA Junkie that the ratings the UFC gets for TUF on SpikeTV are already more then acceptable. Friday’s might slightly hurt the ratings, but I’m sure eventually it will do okay.

  4. Jason Harris says:

    Shame. MMAFighting is one of the few MMA news sites that is current and constantly updated (no offense to FO ;) ) and has journalists that actually handle themselves like professionals. I know a lot of the weird internet base considers any site that doesn’t handle themselves like internet trolls to be in UFC’s pocket, but MMAFighting writes critical and favorable articles the way a real sports outlet would, as opposed to awful places like BloodyElbow who just write Perez Hilton style gossip pieces.

    I hope that whatever happens the main staff from MMA Fighting stays around. MMA doesn’t get enough attention from the old school sports media who handles themselves professionally, and the vast majority of MMA bloggers sold out to become tabloids in the name of pageviews long ago.

  5. kid nate says:

    Hey Jason Harris. You say Bloody Elbow runs Perez Hilton style gossip pieces. Point me to one actual link.
    One.
    We have a strict no rumors policy.

    • Nottheface says:

      You mean a strict “uncredited rumors policy” right? Because you do often post and mention links to stories which are based on a rumor, although you always – to the best of of my recall – acknowledge it as a rumor. Or are you speaking of solely the stories that BE generates themselves? Is there a no rumor policy standard in-house for BE that you don’t hold the other sites you link to as high?

      And if MMAFighting goes under Kid, who will you be looking to grab for MMA Nation?

      • kid nate says:

        If a story is getting a buzz around the blogosphere, we’ll report on it but we don’t do gossip bullshit pieces.
        And the thing none of these fucktards even notice is that Bloody Elbow has the best coverage of actual fighting anywhere on the web.
        Hands down, no contest. No other site even comes close to doing the amount of technical fight analysis and education that BE does. No one.

        • RST says:

          ^^

          Is that real?

          Was that an actual response in defense of the quality of BE writing?

          A+++
          Tremendous!

          You cant get that kind of passion just anywhere!

          (Well maybe in a youtube comments section, BUT NOWHERE ELSE!)

        • Jason Harris says:

          There’s some solid stuff, Judo Chops especially are good, get drowned out by the obviously inflammatory articles posted just to get a rise out of the fanbase and draw out pageviews.

          Good example of the tabloid style stuff? When you guys decided to get into a pissing match with Shane Carwin and mock him on your site repeatedly, then act like he was out of line for calling you out on it.

          The potential to be a good site is there, but the draw of getting 500 comments for a troll piece always seems to come back and has made the news aggregation and occasionally well done article not worth the trouble. I knocked that site off of my reader months ago.

      • kid nate says:

        The Shane Carwin “beef” started when his manager tried to use us to get more money out of the UFC and told us stuff he publicly denied when Dana and Joe Silva got pissed off. We were vindicated in that fiasco.

        • nottheface says:

          I think you wanted to reply to Jason Harris and not me.

          As I’ve said before, the anti-Snowden sentiments came completely out of the emotional response fans had to his “Brock and Carwin Fail to Impress” article and the squabble he had with Carwin and his manager over reporting on their unhappiness with his purse. Those two stories got the whole of fandom to turn on him and their image of him always trolling for page hits now shades everything he writes even when it is the most innocuous of last minute deadline fluff pieces. What’s funny thing is no one seems to recall that he has been proven completely correct in the two stories that got everyone up in arms in the first place. Snowden, I am afraid your branded for life.

        • Jason Harris says:

          If you honestly don’t know why your site has developed a reputation among many in the MMA community as being a combination reposted news from other sites, “opinion pieces” that are deliberately inflammatory forum troll hit pieces with better spelling, and the occasional well written article, then you’re worse off than I thought.

          You have to realize that there are tons of people who dislike your site and especially Mr Snowden (I read below he’s no longer on your site? Big improvement!)

          I have to be honest, it’s been about a year since I visited your site with any sort of regularity. Maybe it’s gotten better. I left when it was clear the bulk of the content was being written to be deliberately inflammatory so you could drum up controversy and get views, or just being reposted from other more professional sites that I also followed.

          What’s frustrating is the potential was there to be a solid resource, but the temptation of easy traffic from the trolljobs appears to be too great. Snowden did it for the majority of his content, probably half the Kid Nate articles were the same deal, and the other, good writers, got buried under it.

          Since I’ve removed BE from my newsreader, I still get all of the MMA news I would have gotten, but none of the troll articles. Why would I add it back?

          @Nottheface: I don’t even remember that Brock and Carwin fail to impress article, but Snowden had a long history of writing hack pieces well before the whole Shane Carwin thing.

        • nottheface says:

          Jason, I am not going to criticize your opinions on Bloody Elbow. That’s your opinion and you are entitled to it. Me, I am a fan of the site and the people that work on it. And even if you disagree with Nate or Snowden, there is still Brookehouse reports on commissions mistakes, Roling’s prospect updates, Fagan’s ongoing examination of judges scoring, Gould’s catch breakdowns. etc All that content without having to read Nate or Snowden. But I will say, from my own subjective view, that the majority of hate directed at those two is completely undeserved and misplaced. Nate is always taken to task in the comments for his alarmist/misleading headlines, but what many of those critics seemingly fail to recognize is that the headlines, while attention grabbing (and that’s a good thing, look up MV Kamath’s “The Professional Journalist”, on how to write the “Bold and Challenging Statement”) are often not his point of view. Nor is the material he blockquoted inside the post his opinions. Instead he is presenting an argument someone else is making and posting it to start a debate. But unfortunately many can’t distinguish the difference.

          And while you may have disliked Snowden’s work before, I can attest that the whole Snowden “Trollden” thing sprang up after the Shane Carwin and Brock at UFC 116 stories. Stories that he has been proven right on. Personally, I like most of of Snowden’s work. He is probably the best historian of the sport out there, and, as Joe and I discussed below, he does solid journalism pieces (at least by MMA standards). Where people seem to find fault with him, is when he publishes his own analysis/opinion pieces. But again, they seem to have trouble distinguishing between why he thought something like Brock-Carwin was terrible or Sanchez-Kampmann was awesome (he’s wrong on the second) and when he does a breakdown of a fighter’s camp costs.

          I think a lot of it also comes down to a generational thing. I am around the same age as Nate and Snowden, maybe older, and all of us probably get labeled as anti-Zuffa because we are much more critical of the promotion than younger fans would like. I think all of us have a very hearty dose of skepticism, since we remember well what was going on with MMA before Zuffa’s purchase (at least they do) and can see how fans attribute not only their actual accomplishments but also things they had little to do with. Zuffa and Dana White have done an amazing job, but the best job they have done is bring Louis XIV concept of absolute power to MMA. Now whenever anyone points out any faults with the Tsar the serfs rally to his defense. Snowden and Nate feel the brunt of that a lot.

          And this is not meant to be a defense of the two, because they are more than capable of defending themselves, but merely my own observations on the matter.

    • 45 Huddle says:

      I’m not sure if you write full on gossip pieces…. But the journalistic integrity is certainly lacking from Bloody Elbow. It’s gotten slightly better now that Snowden’s articles are only linked from that other SB Nation website. But still not where it should be.

      And despite the UFC being the only big league game in town, there is certainly an agenda to push another organization to #2, despite it being unwarranted.

      • Jonathan Snowden says:

        Which articles of mine lack “journalistic integrity?” Is it the historical pieces? The interviews? Just opinion articles you disagree with? I’m honestly curious what someone obviously raised on journalism as stenography sees as unfair.

        Meanwhile, you dumb down the discourse here with continued fictions like 25-30 million watching UFC on Mexican TV and other ridiculous propaganda. It would be nice to see you removed to the UG with all the other astroturfers and allow this site to go back to smart and reasoned conversation and disagreement.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          You biggest problem is that you have no set opinion. Your opinions are purely based on what the UFC says. Or really, the opposite of what the UFC says.

          If Dana White says the sky is Blue, your next article is: “Is the sky Orange?”. If Dana White says Anderson Silva is #10 P4P…. Your next article disagrees with him.

          That is your entire schtick.

          Dana White said Gilbert Melendez could be next in line. Your next column was: “Gilbert Melendez Needs To Earn His Place In The UFC”

          Dana White says Lyoto Machida is next to fight Jon Jones. Something that Rashad Evans even says he is okay with. Your next 2 columns are: “UFC 140 Fight Card: Why The Time For Jon Jones And Rashad Evans Is Now” and “UFC 140 Fight Card: Jon Jones Should Not Be Fighting Lyoto Machida”

          It gets old and predictable really quickly. No two people ever agree on anything. But it seems like you are only out to disagree with what the UFC does more times then not. And that isn’t journalistic integrity. That is just a writer with an ax to grind looking for page views.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          And don’t even get me started on your “MMA Encyclopedia.” And Encyclopedia is supposed to be unbiased and factual.

          Taken from Amazon’s own preview of the first few pages…

          “It might be best to think of the Affliction clothing company’s foray into the world of mixed martial arts as a noble failure.”

          I mean, that’s how you start off that topic. You are constantly doing stuff like that. Acting as if it’s one thing, when it’s really just another. That isn’t an encyclopedia, that’s an opinion piece that you disguised as one.

          Same with the rest of your writing. You try and act like it unbiased good writing, when all it is, is just an attack on the “establishment”.

          As you will notice…. I have given multiple examples to back up my statements here. I’m not just spouting off.

        • Jonathan Snowden says:

          45 Huddle thinks disagreeing with something the UFC does somehow shows a lack of integrity. Really? I explained my reasoning for the primacy of an Evans-Jones match in those articles. It has nothing to do with Dana White. It has to do with risking something with long term significance for something with short term value. You can disagree. White can disagree. It’s my position and I think I explained it clearly in the articles.

          With Melendez, did I even “disagree” with Dana White? Obviously the UFC saw things the same way – because Melendez is on Strikeforce and not UFC in his next fight. It’s an example of people in the media scrum not realizing Dana doesn’t have a firm grasp on everything the company was doing. I suspect he had no idea they had scheduled a fight for Melendez in Strikeforce when he said that he wanted him in UFC ASAP.

          I’ve written hundreds and hundreds of articles for SBNation. The vast majority of them have been about how awesome the UFC and its fighters are. I’ve written two books about MMA – most of those hundreds of pages have been about how awesome the UFC and its fighters are.

          I’ve given the bulk of my leisure time to this sport for years. I’ve covered dozens of UFC events as a member of the media. I don’t have an axe to grind. I love the UFC. But I don’t think the sport is perfect, and when I see issues I’m never going to be afraid to point them out.

          I don’t need this sport to make a living and that gives me a freedom to write articles about how this business operates or give my opinion without fear of reprisal. I will continue to do that whether or not it upsets astroturfers, website killing posters like yourself, or good old fashioned fanboys.

          By the way an Encyclopedia is a book or set of books with articles arranged in alphabetical order. The idea that its going to be some kind of colorless tome without any opinion or art is an invention of the ignorant. The benefit of or book is that it gives readers an educated viewpoint about the fighters or promotions we are writing about. While the entry you are discussing in this comment was written by Kendall Shields, I think it presents an accurate depiction of Affliction.

        • Jason Harris says:

          It’s just an amazing coincidence that outside of Bloody Elbow every time “Snowden” comes up it’s mentioned with a groan or an eyeroll. They don’t mention the name Snowden on MMAMania articles when they link them because they know everyone will immediately be pissed it was posted.

          Hey, they say if people are talking you’re doing your job right, right? Definitely well known. Just not considered credible by most.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          Everybody disagrees with the UFC. I certainly do. A few days ago I was commenting on how they are running too many PPV’s and it is hurting their business. But that isn’t really what we are talking about here and you know it.

          What we are talking about is you doing it basically all of the time. It’s the volume of it that makes it garbage “journalism”. It is pretty obvious that if Dana White said a few days ago that Gilbert Melendez didn’t deserve a title shot right away in the UFC…. That your next article would have been: “Why Gilbert Melendez deserves an immediate title shot”.

          And basically everybody who is familiar with your work knows it. It’s common knowledge that is your schtick. That you are just the anti-UFC opinion. There have been long posts on The UG with people talking about this. You’re a known entity. Do you think somehow all of these people have it wrong about you? I’m not just making this stuff up.

          Jason Harris is correct.

          The sad thing is…. You know MMA. You have a lot of knowledge. But just like Josh Gross…. That knowledge is completely wasted…

        • Jonathan Snowden says:

          Fagan, Nate, Zach, Brookhouse – people who are above the comment line, not below it – understand the deal here. We all write five times a week or more. Of course it’s easy for some forum troll to cherry pick articles to make a misrepresentative case about the tone of someone’s work. There is so much of it, it’s easy.

          I read earlier this week that I wrote so much about M-1 on Bloody Elbow it was a “joke.” I wrote seven articles over two years. Out of 600 or so. You’ll excuse me if I’m skeptical about that and other statements about what I do.

          Do you really think invoking the lowest common denominator is someone unsettling? I would be surprised if a phony astroturfer like “45 Huddle” liked what I was doing. It would be a clear sign something was wrong. That person doesn’t want a diversity of ideas. They want a feel good company line.

        • fd says:

          http://www.bloodyelbow.com/2010/11/15/1815052/is-b-j-penn-building-excuses-for-ufc-123-bout-with-matt-hughes

          “Penn wants you to know he’s smaller than Matt Hughes. A lot smaller. Never mind that he has begged for a return to welterweight, that some in the sport are whispering he essentially vacated the lightweight title because he couldn’t get interested in fights in that division”

          This is a lie. Nobody in the sport was “whispering” that. You made it up out of whole cloth in order to imply that BJ Penn threw two fights (and apparently did such a bad job of throwing the first one that people continue to argue that he in fact won it.)

        • 45 Huddle says:

          Snowden,

          You would have a point if it was just me saying these things. But it is basically everybody.

          A lot of people write article all week long on various MMA Websites. The guys at MMA Fighting write probably around 5 articles a week, and none of them troll in their articles like you do. And they don’t always go with the UFC opinion. But their pieces are balanced.

          In your mind there are two options. You are either talking the UFC company line or you are an independant thinker questioning it to the end. There is a huge middle ground that you completely ignore. And that is where a good journalist hovers 99% of the time. You do not go that route enough.

          There are people on here backing me up on here…. And almost nobody ever backs me up on this website. That should tell you how strong the Snowden dislike goes. And most of the people on here (including myself) are free thinkers when it comes to MMA.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          And let’s examine this “diversity” of ideas you speak of. For example, let’s bring up the Jones/Machida/Evans Title Shot issue. You wrote 2 articles on the topic to help diversify the topic out there.

          But here is the problem. There are 5 people/groups involved here….

          Dana White, Jon Jones, Lyoto Machida, Rashad Evans, & The Fans.

          Dana White was okay with the fight. So was Jones and Machida. Evans specifically wrote a letter saying he was okay with it. And I would say the majority of fans were okay with it due to the style match-up it threatened Jon Jones with.

          Everybody was okay with the fight being made for the most part. There was no disgruntled party involved.

          That’s the END of it right there. There is no issue.

          EXCEPT….. In the mind of Jonathan Snowden!! The man who will bring diversity to the intellectual MMA Media landscape. And that is what you tried to do. You tried to turn a NON-ISSUE into an ISSUE. You tried to stir up sh!t that wasn’t even there.

          And that is what makes you a troll reporter. You are not thinking outside of the box. You have you head in the gutter. Even when everybody is comfortable with what is happening…. You still try to question it…. Not because you are some superior intellect. But because you troll for attention and page views.

          By comparison…. Ariel Helwani gets sh!t on all of the time by fans who say he goes with the Zuffa line….. Yet, in interviews he brings up the uncomfortable questions to Dana White. He will come back to questions from 6 months ago to see if Dana White can shed more light on the topic. He actually is a good reporter.

          Instead of writing 5 articles a week…. Perhaps you should take a month off…. Study Helwani…. And see if you can use your MMA IQ for a better purpose instead of just being a 30+ year old internet troll with a website allowing you to write articles….

        • Jonathan Snowden says:

          I’m not sure why I would need to “study” Helwani. I know how to shoot videos in a hallway after an event. I think Helwani does very well for himself – but what does that have to do with 99% of people who will cover this sport? Some people are willing to do what it takes to be the platform of choice for UFC messaging. I had that opportunity and decided to try another route. I’m happy with the huge gains we made at Bloody Elbow and the site becoming such a strong hub of both news aggregation and strong opinion.

          Your “support” on this site consists of unsuccessful people trying to do what we do, typically disgruntled message board folk, and a guy who apparently thinks people in B.J. Penn’s camp telling me he wasn’t that interested in the Edgar fights is a “lie” and someone extrapolating that paragraph was somehow me suggesting Penn “threw those fights.”

          These are your cohorts. I think I’m on plenty solid ground. It’s a shame they’ve allowed you such free reign here. I remember when this was a place for honest discussion, not a haven for a troll who tries to overwhelm with volume. Almost all the smart posters here have left and I suspect what looks like a decline in traffic over the last few months is related to this. Too bad. This has always been such an interesting site.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          Helwani was just one of 10 examples in MMA…. Take your pick…

          I think you will find that if the name Snowden is brought up on any MMA website, that you will quickly be disappointed by the comments being made. Not just here.

          And if any discussions have slowed down on MMA websites, it’s because the number of hot button topics are basically gone. Fedor is in the twilight of his career. The sport is no longer fractured. There isn’t much to discuss except for the fight themselves really. Which sort of leaves people like you out in the cold and looking even more obnoxious when you try to stir up sh!t.

      • Mike Fagan says:

        I’d appreciate it if you sent me an email (mikeypatriot at gmail dot com) with what you think we can improve on.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          Like I said, since Snowden has been gone, things have gotten a lot better. But I will give you three suggestions (with examples….

          SUGGESTION #1

          http://www.bloodyelbow.com/2011/10/15/2492146/antonio-mckee-id-like-to-vote-dana-white-out-of-the-ufc

          Just because it has been said, doesn’t mean it needs to be reported. This is a perfect example of this. This is an irrelevent fighter making an irrelevent comment. It has no chance of happening. No basis on reality. It would be better if it was just buried and never talked about again. It’s not just BE, but a lot of places. It seems like they feel the need to just report any off the wall comment a fighter makes. This really adds nothing to the MMA discussion and is a perfect example of something that should really just be ignored.

          SUGGESTION #2

          http://www.bloodyelbow.com/2011/9/17/2431002/ufc-fight-night-25-jake-shields-vs-jake-ellenberger-preview

          The article starts off with: “For most fans Saturday night, UFC Fight Night 25 is nothing more than eleven irrelevant match-ups leading up to a showdown between former UFC welterweight contender Jake Shields (26-5-1) and challenger Jake Ellenberger (25-5). To uninformed fans, Shields should walk through Ellenberger, just in time to catch Floyd Mayweather take on Victor Ortiz. While it is difficult to dismiss the perceived irrelevance of the other eleven bouts on the card, Shields vs. Ellenberger isn’t without implications.”

          Besides the really bad prediction (I predicted Ellenberger)…. I don’t need to come to a MMA website to read about a fight card…. Only to be told that it’s irrelevent. If I came to read about a fight or a fight card…. I care enough about it that I don’t think it’s irrelvent. It seems that too often extra comments are interjected into the articles that are not only unnecessary, but sort of a smack in the face to the readers themselves.

          SUGGESTION #3

          Less is more. Have you ever gotten so much junk email from one company that you either unsubscribe or just start to ignore it all together. Bloody Elbow can sort of get like that in the week leading up to the events. It seems like there are 30 to 40 articles before each event. I’m not sure on the exact number, but it feels like a lot. Almost so much that as a reader I just don’t read everything. Perhaps a way to condense some of the content would be beneficial. That is my opinion on the matter, others might disagree.

        • Jonathan Snowden says:

          He’s a house troll and not even a creative one. What could he possibly tell you that is valuable?

        • RST says:

          ^^

          This is the probably the only writer worth reading @ BE.

          Oops, that looks wrong, I mean Fagan to be sure.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          Snowden,

          How is that a troll post? He asked me my opinion and I gave it to him. The only thing I did was write it here instead of emailing him. And I gave specific examples of the things I didn’t like with links. That is hardly being a troll.

          Like I have said, the website is much better once you left. I actually don’t mind going there now as place that posts various information from various websites. But everything can be improved, and those are my thoughts on how it could be.

          A troll would just say they s#ck and that it’s it.

        • Zack says:

          Of course he doesn’t want to send you an email. He’s a troll who wants to grand stand, so he’ll post it here. I think Zach’s site is great, and have read his stuff going back to Puroresu Power, but it’s annoying as hell that every third post on this site is by 45 Huddle. He writes more than Zach LOL

      • Nottheface says:

        Yep, Snowden has written some horrible hit pieces – The Shane Carwin pay piece, the piece about Brock and Carwin not impressing him. Man, did the interweb get all over him about those hack jobs. But wait, in retrospect he was 100% right about both of those.

        You should try rereading his stuff after wiping away the vitriol that the collective has planted into our head about him. He might be too opinionated at times for your taste, but the guy knows his stuff, and is proven right when going against the grain more often than not.

        • Joe says:

          It’s ironic to me that people criticize Snowden’s “journalistic integrity” because he’s one of the only MMA writers I see who actually does “journalistic” writing (investigating stories, getting sources, objective analysis, etc.). Most MMA writers are basically just bloggers, and the good ones will freely admit that.

        • RST says:

          I dont care for Snowdens writing because he DOES know what he’s talking about.

          I’ve seen him make plenty of sense when he wants to. Which is what makes it obvious to me that when he writes one of his terrible troll jobs that he’s doing it on purpose.

          I think he’s trying to be racy or something, but its mostly just annoying.

  6. Joe says:

    It’s funny to talk about him in this way, but Ariel Helwani is the star of MMAFighting. Ben Fowlkes, MDS, and Chiappetta are good writers who will end up somewhere, but Helwani’s status in the MMA world is the only thing that makes the website a special commodity above and beyond any other MMA site. It’s definitely not the “brand recognition” of the website name. So, I mean, why not just wait for the site to fold and just hire Helwani?

    • Mike Fagan says:

      The domain name has a lot of value, for starters.

      • 45 Huddle says:

        That’s short term for a guy like Helwani.

        He has a face on that website, which isn’t common for MMA. Most people don’t put a face with a name or even an article.

        People come to that website for his interviews. If he went somewhere else, most of that traffic would likely follow. It might not happen right away, but overtime it certain would.

        But Helwani is the exception to that rule….

        • Joe says:

          For a site like, say, mmanation, that has good writers and solid parent company backing but is struggling somewhat to build an identity, hiring Helwani would immediately thrust it to the head of the class and greatly expand its reach and credibility.

          Heck, if Sherdog gets him it would likely put them over the Zuffa ban and would forever rid them of the creepy hotel room interview thing.

        • Mike Fagan says:

          I don’t disagree with that, but when I say the domain name has value, I’m talking SEO (and not the four-letter word type of SEO). It’s very difficult to build trust with Google. MMAF has that.

  7. RST says:

    Well as far as MMAfighting I hope they find a way, they’re probably nice guys, but the writing there ranges from bad to terrible other then poor Fowlkes IMO.

  8. edub says:

    Jeez, a freaking pissing contest between 45 and Snowden.

    It’s like picking Olberman or O’Reilly. Whichever one you agree with still annoys everyone.

  9. edub says:

    Anybody else dumb enough to order Bad Chad vs. Hopkins tonight. I took the bait.

    • edub says:

      Hahahahahahaha….

      Wow, a terrible ending. With a terrible decision by the ref. Just complete insanity all around.

      Chad was winning while Hopkins was doing his normal thing, then Hopkins jumped on his back and Chad threw him off. Hopkins couldn’t continue, and the ref called a TKO. Just garbage all around.

      Fluyid if your around I’d love to hear what you have to say.

      • Fluyid says:

        I didn’t see it (was judging at a local show here) but from everything I read it was totally pathetic. So sorry you bought that stinker. How was the undercard? Man, every time there’s a bad boxing PPV and people get ripped off I die a little bit inside. :(

        [I actually won a really big amateur tournament one time with the exact same scenario. Some guy (one of Kenny Weldon's fighters, actually) jumped on my back got tossed off. I got awarded a KO victory and won some big deal tournament.]

        Anyway, memory lane notwithstanding, I think that deal last night should have been a NO CONTEST.

        Here is a direct quote of the rules:

        “If an accidental foul causes an injury severe enough for the referee to stop the bout immediately, the bout will result in a NO DECISION if stopped before four (4) completed rounds.”

        I copied that directly from the rules.

        Was it an accidental foul? From the tiny gif I saw, it sure looked like it to me. Maybe I’m wrong.

        • Fluyid says:

          Oh and by the way, here’s an update on a former TUF cast member who ventured over into boxing:

          “…debuting heavyweight Eric Reza (1-0) won by decision over MMA fighter Darrill Schoonover (0-1) with scores of 40-36 twice and 39-37.”

  10. fd2 says:

    “a guy who apparently thinks people in B.J. Penn’s camp telling me he wasn’t that interested in the Edgar fights is a “lie” and someone extrapolating that paragraph was somehow me suggesting Penn “threw those fights.””

    “Wasn’t that interested in the Edgar fights” does not mean “essentially vacated the lightweight title” to anyone with a working command of english. “Essentially vacated the lightweight title” means giving up the title – and when a guy does so by losing two fights, that means throwing fights.

    • kid nate says:

      well he sure as shit didn’t train with marinovich for frankie edgar 1 or 2.
      Am I really supposed to believe that the B.J. Penn who got better and better over 5 grueling rounds with Diego Sanchez just a few months later faded so hard in a pitty pat bout with Frankie Edgar?
      B.J. did his best once he was in the cage with Edgar, no doubt, but it’s fucking obvious he didn’t train for those fights as hard as he’s capable of training.

      • fd2 says:

        Well, first of all, your entire post is a non sequitor, since none of it addresses the fact that “wasn’t interested in the fight” does not equal “essentially vacated the title” to anyone with a working command of the english language (although having read some of your opinion pieces, I’m not certain that includes you, so I can forgive you being a bit confused.)

        But to address your actual post -

        “well he sure as shit didn’t train with marinovich for frankie edgar 1 or 2.”

        Well he sure as shit didn’t train with marinovich for Hughes III, Fitch, or Diaz either, despite him being “revitalized” and “taking things seriously again”. Gee, it’s almost as if he stopped training with Marinovich for reasons completely unrelated to how seriously he’s taking upcoming matches!

        “Am I really supposed to believe that the B.J. Penn who got better and better over 5 grueling rounds with Diego Sanchez just a few months later faded so hard in a pitty pat bout with Frankie Edgar?”

        Hmm, yes, it’s almost as if trying to constantly switch between defending punches and defending takedowns against a guy who’s successfully taking you down and landing hard punches on you MIGHT be more tiring than defending desperate doubles shot from ten feet away by a guy who you’re hitting at will!

        Also I think Gray Maynard might dispute your characterization of bouts with Frankie Edgar as “pitty pat”, or unlikely to tire you out.

  11. macaroni says:

    “never underestimate the fragile egos at play with MMA media writers”

    That was some rather foresighted writing given the comments.

    • trevor says:

      Jonathan Snowden thinks he has integrity.

      • Chris says:

        “Some in the industry have whispered that Mr. Snowden has a great deal of integrity.”

        That’s how you take a complete fabrication and make it seem like a credible piece of information, Snowden-style.

        • Jonathan Snowden says:

          Some MMA fanboys are worse than the wrestling fans ever were. The anger over me suggesting that B.J. Penn hadn’t lived up to his potential or reputation was astounding. Especially since the first person to float that idea to me was Penn himself. He’s much more open to discussing his career in a rationale and critical way than his fans are. Typical of MMA fans who are angered beyond comprehension by even the slightest criticism.

  12. Zack says:

    Bloody Elbow sucks. Its the only site I’ve ever been banned from. Mike Fagan banned me for disagreeing with him on a video game. I wasn’t even insulting. No need to visit a site where the writers are so sensitive.

  13. edub says:

    Fluyid:

    -Now here’s where it gets gray: It was obviously an accidental foul (or just two intentional fouls back to back), but the ref didn’t call it. So does that mean it just becomes a fall? All rationality points to an accidental foul, and in turn it should have been ruled a NC.

    Does the CSAC have an instant replay cause?

    -The undercard was decent. You’ll find yourself yelling at Kendall Holt and Antonio Demarco to let their hands at certain times. Demarco actually did to get Linares out of there in a Good fight. Makes me pissed that I’ll never get a chance to see Edwin Valero box again (even if he was a garbage human being).

    -The announce team (Lampley, Kellerman, and Steward) were all over Linares. It got so bad that at points Steward was saying that he was the greatest prospect he had ever seen before the KO loss a couple fights ago. I bet on Demarco (+400), so I was rooting for him obviously. But the over the top love from everybody on staff really had me hoping he lost.

    It wasn’t a terrible card because of the good work by Demarco and Linares. But the ending of Hopkins-Dawson was annoying. Thats two PPVs in the past two months ruined by crummy endings in boxing.

    • Fluyid says:

      Still haven’t seen the fight or read any articles on it, so I don’t know what is being said. I might be wrong here, but I don’t think the CSAC can go back in now an overturn the ref’s call. I surely could be wrong on that. I believe these discretionary calls aren’t subject to review at a later day. I guess we’ll see.

      Another thing is, could that have been ruled an intentional foul? Chad did indeed intend to shuck Hopkins off, didn’t he? I really don’t know, but I suppose any call could have been made…… TKO, accidental foul, intentional foul. I probably ought to shut up until I at least see the bout. I’ve only seen a gif of the ending that a guy emailed to me.

      I had to laugh when you talked about cheering for the other guy when the announcers were building one guy up. That’s how I watch pretty much all sports. I hate when announcers do that cheerleading stuff and it always makes me want to see the who is being built up lose.

  14. fd says:

    Snowden -

    “Some MMA fanboys are worse than the wrestling fans ever were. The anger over me suggesting that B.J. Penn hadn’t lived up to his potential or reputation was astounding. Especially since the first person to float that idea to me was Penn himself. He’s much more open to discussing his career in a rationale and critical way than his fans are. Typical of MMA fans who are angered beyond comprehension by even the slightest criticism.”

    Once again, “essentially vacated the lightweight title” is not suggesting that BJ “hadn’t lived up to his potential or reputation”. It’s suggesting that he deliberately lost. I will guarantee that “Penn himself” didn’t float the idea that he “essentially vacated the lightweight title”, and neither did anyone else aside from you.

    If you genuinely meant to imply nothing more or less than “didn’t train as hard as he should have” by “essentially vacated”, then you should be thoroughly embarrassed as a professional writer, because that’s simply not what those words mean.

    • Jonathan Snowden says:

      I’m not especially proud of that column. It didn’t do a good job of expressing my point. Sometimes you swing and miss.

      • Jonathan Snowden says:

        But I absolutely reject the idea that a reasonable person would believe I suggested Penn threw a fight. Of course he didn’t. I have way too much respect for him to suggest that. Besides, if I had some suspicion or reportage supporting that, I certainly wouldn’t bury the lead with an oblique reference in a unrelated story.

        I think it’s fairly clear that I was trying to indicate Penn didn’t always train hard or get mentally involved in his fights at lightweight:

        “Never mind that he has begged for a return to welterweight, that some in the sport are whispering he essentially vacated the lightweight title because he couldn’t get interested in fights in that division, preferring to return to 170.”

        • fd says:

          “I think it’s fairly clear that I was trying to indicate Penn didn’t always train hard or get mentally involved in his fights at lightweight”

          As I said above –

          If you genuinely meant to imply nothing more or less than “didn’t train as hard as he should have” by “essentially vacated”, then you should be thoroughly embarrassed as a professional writer, because that’s simply not what those words mean.

        • nottheface says:

          Uh, maybe I’m dense but I deciphered it to mean exactly that. It might not be as succinct or as explicit as you would have preferred, but there seems to nothing about the statement that “he essentially vacated the lightweight title because he couldn’t get interested in fights in that division” that couldn’t be construed as meaning that he self-sabotaged his title defense because he didn’t take his fights or his training serious enough.

        • edub says:

          It could have meant a lot of things:

          The problem I see, because I was a long time Snowden hater until I went back and read pretty much every single article he wrote over a year’s time, is people take little things like this and point to it as “evidence” that he is being malicious. When it is more him offering a diversity of ideas in any given article. He’s a highly critical human being, and he doesn’t hold back when he writes.

          It was poorly worded thought, that gives detractors a chance to jump at. As he pointed out it wasn’t the basis of the article, and he didn’t elaborate on it because it was meant to be a comment leading into BJ’s lack desire to keep working hard at LW.

          And just to be clear, no I am not a fan of his work. I disagree with him on many ideas he has: Miletich and Ranallo being a better anouncing team than Goldie and Rogan, Rashad Evans not being an explosive athlete, The UFC going over the top to compare Jones to Tyson, Shane Carwin- Brock Lesnar not being and exciting/enjoyable fight, etc..

          However, when he is critical, there is usually good evidence behind his stance.

        • Dave says:

          As I said above –
          If you genuinely meant to imply nothing more or less than “didn’t train as hard as he should have” by “essentially vacated”, then you should be thoroughly embarrassed as a professional writer, because that’s simply not what those words mean.

          As a professional writer who sometimes puts out a lot of material I can vouch for the fact that when you are writing in a rather high volume on assorted topics you might not always pick the correct words to explain what you are thinking.

          Everybody sure is glad that keyboard warriors are there with their grammar and rhetoric books to tear them apart, though.

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