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The seduction of Rampaging testosterone

By Zach Arnold | July 25, 2013

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The buzz of the day comes from Damon Martin’s report that Rampage Jackson and Roy Jones Jr. will have a boxing match at the end of the year. The man who couldn’t outbox Ryan Bader while being bloated on testosterone apparently thinks he can beat Roy Jones in a fight. MAIN EVENT MAFIA. Maybe Kurt Angle will show all those bums in MMA what the business is.

Bjorn Rebney apparently can’t contain his urge to go back in revisiting his boxing roots. I’m not sure Sugar Ray Leonard can say the same thing about Bjorn?

The deal Nick Diaz had in place was with Don Chargin. The reported deal in place with Rampage & Roy Jones involves Viacom. Quite a difference.

As long as Colonel Bob Sheridan is doing the play-by-play on PPV, I’m sold. If Viacom wants to flush down their financial investment down the drain, let’s throw a party and watch yet another TNA prospect (like King Mo) get embarrassed on the network.

While everyone is distracted by the prospects of this freak show fight, ESPN was dropping a bomb with the latest from the Biogenesis drug scandal that has gripped baseball.

Jonathan is right on this account. The Shane Carwin drug story got little traction with the masses. However, there are a couple of different elements at work here should a big MMA name get exposed in the Biogenesis scandal. This tweet will explain:

The two factors to pay interesting attention to: 1) ESPN’s coverage. Clearly they have their heavy-hitters on the story with TJ Quinn and Quinn is a bulldog. He will not go away silently. As long as you have a compelling hook like Alex Rodriguez, the story will get attention. If the MMA name(s) are small fish, nothing to fry. If they’re big names, however, look out.

Why would ESPN have incentive to go balls-to-the-wall?

2) Fox Sports 1 is ready to launch. The UFC is one of their high-profile coveted sports properties in getting the network launched as a serious contender in the American sports media landscape. And before the channel even launches, network executives are mocking ESPN for covering drug scandals in sports and marketing FS1 as a network all about ‘fun’ and ‘jockularity,’ which translates to “Best Damn Sports Show Period 2013.”

The question I posed in my article on FS1 is what will they do when a scandal hits the UFC. If FS1 doesn’t cover any scandals with appropriate reporting, it will leave the door wide open to ESPN’s investigators to go for blood. Will FS1 be smart enough to realize that they’ll need to cover serious scandals with serious reporters or will they intentionally (and egotistically) leave themselves vulnerable to outsider attacks that will damage their credibility?

Topics: Bellator, Boxing, MMA, Media, UFC, Zach Arnold | 21 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

21 Responses to “The seduction of Rampaging testosterone”

  1. david m says:

    Zach, bless your heart, but this is silly. ESPN isn’t talking about the steroids to ruin FS1. ESPN is talking about this because it is compelling (at least as far as sports stories can be compelling); the baseball mvp gets suspended for 65 games, other great players are sure to follow, etc. Nobody cares if an mma mid carder gets caught. Hell, Chael drew 900k buys for his rematch with Anderson AFTER testing positive. It doesn’t matter at all.

    I think you also overemphasize the importance of serious journalism on a sports network. Would it be nice if the UFC treated their product as something more than WWE and actually talked about drug suspensions? Yes. Does that stop me from watching? No. FS1 will talk about stories if they reach a mainstream sports level of interest.

    • Zach Arnold says:

      Zach, bless your heart, but this is silly. ESPN isn’t talking about the steroids to ruin FS1.

      I never said ESPN’s original intentions of covering drug scandals involved sticking it to other networks. I said Fox Sports 1 has made it a point to mock ESPN for focusing on such a topic as part of their marketing strategy.

      Which is why ESPN will have all the more incentive to send their A-list investigators to dig deeper, especially on sports properties Fox Sports 1 has business relationships with. If FS1 wants to bury their heads in the sands when scandals hit their leagues, then ESPN has carte blanche to rightfully torch them. And they will.

      I do think that there is room for an argument that Sonnen could have been damaged goods if ESPN had decided to go after him on his testosterone usage. However, MMA was considered relatively meaningless to cover back then for the network. With FS1 using UFC as a top hook to lure viewers away from Disney, I imagine ESPN may have some new-found motivation to take a UFC drug scandal seriously if it involves a top name.

      • david m says:

        I have attended many UFC fights at sports bars and have never once gotten the feeling that fans won’t watch someone who is juicing. If anything, it makes a fighter more compelling for his juicing to be in the public domain. Vitor fights have become must see tv after he morphed into the Incredible Rulk (pronounced in Portuguese style).

        If ESPN does an expose about hoids in MMA, they are giving the UFC free publicity.

        • Chuck says:

          As a general rule of thumb, I don’t go by “fans” at sports bars or anything of the ilk. Actually, about what you said……

          I was at a sports bar to see BJ Penn/Sean Sherk. Guess what? EVERYBODY was rooting for BJ Penn, and the place ERUPTED when Penn wrecked Sherk with the knee strike that took him out. And from I was able to gather, people were booing Sherk because he failed a drug test before that. And this was back in 2008, right when UFC was getting super popular, and clearly most there were newer fans.

          Again, never go by “fans” at bars….

  2. Alan Conceicao says:

    RJJ/Rampage in a boxing match is absolutely ludicrous. I love it. I would never pay to watch it, but I love the sheer stupidity on the part of Bellator to make a fight like that. Where does one even begin there?

  3. 45 Huddle says:

    RJJ vs. Rampage is stupid on so many levels. Hmmm, where to begin…

    1) Rampage will lose. Which means a lot of the money Viacom is investing in Rampage will go out the window. In general, MMA fighters will get wrecked in boxing…. And Boxers will get wrecked in MMA.

    2) If Viacom says “No” to this boxing match, Rampage is going to talk smack about them in the media for a long time. We all know his history with organizations.

    3) Rumored to go up against UFC 168? SAY WHAT?? Even if they go with 12/14 it is up against UFC on FOX. If they go with 12/21, nobody will buy it due to X-Mas. Horrible time of year for it.

    I don’t even see 5% good in this fight.

    I didn’t agree with mmalogic on the last thread… But he did call this one perfectly. He said once the tournament format failed to pull in decent ratings, that Viacom would go the freakshow route. He couldn’t be more right.


    The MMA guys using… It won’t be a big story unless GSP or Jones were caught.

    With that said, anybody caught using the lab… With proof they were prescribed illegal substances…. Should be banned for ONE YEAR by the UFC.


    Fight Master did 441,000 viewers.

    With Bellator we know so far:

    1) Reality Show is a bust.

    2) Countdown Type shows can’t pull in good ratings.

    3) Their attempt at showing replays of Bellator at the beginning of the year failed.

    4) The ratings for the live show with TNA as a lead-in were decent but still lost about 50% of the TNA audience.

    So far (one event) without the TNA lead-in, the live fight ratings were bad.

    And they are being moved to Fridays.

    One has to wonder how much longer these failures can continue. Bellator is basically down to live events. At what point does Viacom pull the plug and then see how much they can get for the organization from either the UFC, Showtime, or a 3rd party…

    • 45 Huddle says:

      According to Dana White via The UG…. Fight Master only got 57,000 males 18-34.

      Holy jumping epic failure of a show.

    • The Gaijin says:

      Even as shot as he is RJJ will destroy Rampage and would work Anderson as well.

  4. 45 Huddle says:

    MMA Logic is Ariel Helwani…

    In this post, Dana White says:

    “I will tell u this, I have no clue who MMALOGIC is but he said something in this thread earlier that gave him away. Pretty f#ckin sure I know who he is now.”

    So I looked at MMA Logic’s 2nd post, and he says:

    “On the bright side, Joe Rogans Syfy show pulled great numbers with 1.3m viewers.”

    Type in “Ariel Helwani On The Bright Side” into google…

    He says it all of the time.

    MMA Logic is Ariel Helwani’s side account….

    The mystery has been solved!!

    • Alan Conceicao says:

      LOL if this was true I’d die laughing.

      I’m fuckin’ going with it. That and that 45 Huddle is also Ariel Helwani. It only makes sense.

    • 45 Huddle says:

      I’m a nobody.

      But it does make sense for Helwani. He has some inside connections to say some of the stuff he does. Seems exactly like the type of guy who would do it.

      And Dana White is familiar enough with his speaking style that something he said triggered it off.

      • nottheface says:

        I would love for that to be true. But I just don’t see it. What kind of pathetic life does Ariel have that he can’t waste hours writing the shit Logic used to on Bloodyelbow.

        Oh, wait. He’s an MMA reporter. His life is probably pathetic.

    • Jonathan Snowden says:

      Greatest moment in the history of the internet.

    • The Gaijin says:


      Remember – mmalogic is a multi-millionaire who figured out Google’s algorithm and then sold it for beacoup bucks. He is also a genius algorithmic stock trader and business guru who knows tv, the internet and mma. Unless Ariel has been hiding something from us or has an amazingly active imagination, likely not him.

      Also – why are you trolling the UG as “Bellator Fan”?

      • 45 Huddle says:

        I am not “Bellator Fan”, but it would be funny if I was.

        I have had one account in the last 3 years on The UG. I only had it for less then a month. I used it to give away my UFC DVD Collection and that got purposely banned in order to avoid wasting any more time on that site. I did troll The OG for a little bit when I was on. That place is hysterical in terms of the lack of brain power over there.

        • The Gaijin says:

          Just to be clear – I was being tongue in cheek. That said, “Bellator Fan” clearly stole your whole conspiracy theory. Like, word for word stole it.

  5. Fluyid says:

    Which commission is going to approve Rampage vs. RJJ, a beginner boxer who weighs 230 vs. a shot Hall of Famer who is maybe 185 or so?

    • 45 Huddle says:

      Somebody will, which is sad. I can’t imagine it happening in CA, NV, PA, MA, or NJ. My guess that if it is a big state it will either by TX or FL….

  6. Manapua says:

    45 Huddle and MMALOGIC are the same person

  7. [...] Last week, disgruntled Biogenesis employee Porter Fischer claimed that there were names from both boxing & Mixed Martial Arts on the Biogenesis clients list. There has been lots of skepticism about any impact there would be if a big-name MMA fighter/fighters was implicated in the scandal. After all, Shane Carwin didn’t draw much heat for his drug scandal. We addressed those issues last week. [...]


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