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Chaos: Weidman-Machida go balls out, Struve faints, Ronda asked to save Staples Center August UFC show, empty seats

By Zach Arnold | July 3, 2014

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On Saturday afternoon in Florida, we had the World Series of Fighting debut on NBC broadcast television. As John Nash discovered before the UFC helped pass a secrecy law in Florida, the TV deal between WSOF and NBC is a barter deal. WSOF got access but NBC isn’t paying anything out of pocket. It’s a good news/bad news scenario. At least MMA is able to get on network television, but there’s no ad campaign whatsoever to promote anything. Just filler programming in the mindset of TV suits.

The WSOF card on Saturday had one fight in particular that I was extremely interested in watching. I thought it would be the most compelling fight this weekend. Well…

Then came the UFC 175 card at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. Perfect symbolism for UFC’s situation right now. Total chaos everywhere. Dana going nuts in press row and with staffers.

To show you the internal panic within UFC…

In addition to Ronda, expect Faber to get asked for a quick turnaround to fight on the last-minute UFC booking at Arco Arena in Sacramento on August 30th. If you’re noticed, UFC has done their guy Andy Foster a big favor with three shows within 60 days in California. I personally consider it a political contribution of sorts with three $35,000 TV tax checks, but the flipside is that none of the A-listers are going to work any of the shows unless Ronda saves the day at Staples. And as we saw on Saturday night, she’s turning more into Brock Lesnar (big TV attraction more than a live gate attraction).

And in front of 6,500 people on Sunday night, BJ Penn was painfully put into retirement by Frankie Edgar.

Topics: MMA, Media, UFC, Zach Arnold | 28 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

28 Responses to “Chaos: Weidman-Machida go balls out, Struve faints, Ronda asked to save Staples Center August UFC show, empty seats”

  1. rst says:

    Weidman/Lyoto is Ace!
    To anybody who cares about MMA.
    Any day of the week!

    I can only imagine the blame game and the twitter insultists if either of the headliners couldn’t continue on schedule.

    Afraid for Struve.
    I like Struve.
    Was in love with Struve suddenly becoming a badass,
    but I’m still terrified by the heart thing.

    Its not worth him dying in the cage.
    And I’m not convinced that 3rd world medical okays are okay.

  2. 45 Huddle says:

    Once again the UFC is putting on too many cards. If they only put on 1 card this weekend, the PPV would look more like this:

    Chris Weidman vs. Lyoto Machida
    Ronda Rousey vs. Alexis Davis
    Frankie Edgar vs. BJ Penn
    Matt Mitrione vs. Stefan Struve
    Uriah Hall vs. Thiago Santos

    Amazing what one extra good fight would do to that PPV.

    These MMA PPV’s are looking ugly lately….

    • 45 Huddle says:

      As for the fights I am interested in seeing…. this weekend is better then the majority of the year already.

      Weidman/Machida, Struve/Mitrione, Penn/Edgar, Gaethje/Newell I am all pretty excited for.

      And while I won’t pay for a Rousey headlined PPV…. her fights usually feel like an event so that is a bonus.

    • rst says:

      One the one hand, obviously reducing the cards to the good stuff makes better cards.
      But there could also be an argument that the washed out modern cards have higher quality dudes from the bottom up then early MMA.

      There might be an argument that a mass aproach does enable a larger pool that creates an enviroment for greater achievement.

      The dudes holding the belts now would probably knock out yesterdays MMA champs with a sneeze.

  3. king famous says:

    I’ve been too busy with World Cup to care about anything the UFC does. I don’t feel I get my money’s worth out of their product.
    I’ve been enjoying what ROH has been doing.

  4. Diaz's cashed bowl says:

    WSOF… I feel dirted just thinking about watching it. but…. JZ by flying knee, Hallman by guillotine choke, Newal by one arm choke, I want to see that.

    The peanuts i’ll pick from ufcs 12 hour log are Faber, penn, Drysdale, and 175s title fights.

    I disagree with the assertion that yesterdays champs couldn’t compete. HW division i’ll take prime Maurice Smith, Coleman and Couture over Santos, Cain and Hapa.

    Pat wouldn’t get wasted by any of the top guys, oh and Vitor is actually a currently competing “yesterdays champ” I don’t need to remind you of his accomplishments inside the cage.
    Hard to imagine Bustamante being sneezed into unconsciousness by anyone at 185.
    Having rolled over Lindland twice, and (essentially)drawing with Liddell, rampage and Erickson in their prime while being outweighed, Busta never shied away from fighting larger opponents. Unlike many current champs like Aldo and GSP.

  5. Diaz's cashed bowl says:

    whew! would you look at Ariany? Ugh!
    no crowd response for the undercard fighters
    UC “headliner” Faber gets a huge crowd response.
    No response at all for the first MC fight.
    Second fight has a few shouts for Hall.
    Third, light cheering for Struve.
    Forth starts with video package for Rousey who gets a big mixed crowd response.
    Video package for main event. Machida comes in light 184.5 gets a decent crowd response.
    Wideman is at 185 gets some boos in with the applause.
    Machida looks under the weather, neither fighter seems to be the favorite with the weigh in crowd.

  6. Diaz's cashed bowl says:

    Face it matchmaking is a lost art at ufc central. They blew it matching te-huna against Nate and Soa vs a wet blanket in New zealand. The partisan crowd went home less than happy that night i’m sure. And that crummy squab Arlovski fight? now a rematch of the crummy Arlovski Bigfoot fight?

    Had they matched soa with Arlovski it would have 1 been a better fight, 2 soa had a good shot at beating Arlovski 3 At least had lost Soa vs Arlovski it would have been against a former UFC champ, not a nobody.

    Also, sad to see Struve on the card. He has no future in mma except as a punching bag. With an 8 year career he needs to hang it up to protect what few brain cells are left in his frequently rocked melon of a head.
    Compare to Shilto at the same points in their respective careers… Shilt had no ground game but was basically untouchable on the feet,Shilt went to K-1 and was arguably the greatest champion they’ve had. Struve has a better ground game but its ineffective against lesser ground fighters like Hunt. Struve at least should do some metamoris events and sharpen his ground game in lieu of retirement.
    “Mans got to know his limitations”
    Metamoris might be the new thing for has been fighters and roiders to keep competing and cheating without taking a beating.

  7. klown says:

    I’m super excited about Weidman-Machida. I’ll also watch Rousey-Davis, Struve-Mitrione and Penn-Edgar. The rest, I couldn’t care less about.

  8. Alan Conceicao says:

    With me heading to the cottage in a little bit where there’s no cable and no internet, I guess I might watch WSOF simply because it is there. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have watched any of these shows.

  9. 45 Huddle says:

    I want to like the WSOF, but I just can’t get into it. Fitch fight was boring. And the main event was depressing. Watching a 1 handed man take a beating was not good television.

    Is there really a need for the WSOF and Bellator when the UFC is putting on 50 shows a year?

  10. Jon says:

    Gaethje/Newell was a good fight, but Gaethje’s power was too much. Fitch was Fitch, nothing to see there.

    I’m DVRing the show Sunday night but I’ll clock in for the Penn/Edgar fight.

  11. you've got to be kidding me says:

    this article from july says the nevada state athletic commission cleared stefan struve with his heart condition based on a letter of recommendation… not based on the results of any tests they ordered themselves, but A LETTER. http://mmajunkie.com/2014/07/stefan-struve-cleared-to-put-off-career-ending-heart-surgery

  12. Chris says:

    True Blood, The Last Ship, and the Leftovers, are on Sunday. So I will DVR the UFC.

  13. 45 Huddle says:

    Weidman vs. Machida was very good. The rest of the PPV was garbage.

    The next PPV should be cancelled…

  14. Tradition Rules says:

    Uriah Hall need to get some type of “back stage bonus”, for the fight. If that didn’t impress Dana White….

    The bone was sticking out the side of his toe and he manned up ans was a warrior. But the truth is the fight should have been stopped,how the doctor let that continue is beyond me. The chances for Hall getting an infection with an open wound like that….

    I was pulling for Alexis Davis for a few reasons, even if Rhonda Rousey is good for women’s MMA, mainly though, because she was such an underdog AND I wanted to see a challenging fight. Not because I wanted to see Rhonda lose. But it can’t be denied she is the real deal. She nailed Davis with TEN punches once she had her grounded in that headlock. Davis was out after the second punch and the slow motion replay showed the first punch didn’t even hit properly,…so she actually was out after the FIRST punch. I thought Davis would have been a bit more evasive at first to not let Rousey get ahold of her right away, maybe land some Muay Thai shots first.

    Sad to hear about what happened with Struve.

    Font’s KO of Roop was something to see.

    Main Event was incredible. Weidman did an amazing job of pressuring Machida and controlling the octagon. I was pulling for Machida, but to be honest, I would have,and will be pulling for Weidman against any other opponents.
    If Machida gets a rematch down the road though, …. ;)

    Machida looked very good being aggressive, especially when adding more actual boxing and mixing his Muay Thai at the very end. Weidman is awesome and going to be a great draw for the UFC, I believe.

  15. rst says:

    I expected Lyoto to do quite well, he being focused and on an upswing again from the looks of the Gegard bout.
    But he did even better then I though he would. I actually thought he had a chance to win it, but I expected if he did it would be one of those weird Lyoto Blitzkriegs where he catches a guy and unloads like the Evens or Thiago fights. Although he lost the decision, I thought the 5 rounds he put in were more impressive then what I expected from his chances to win. I dont see how anyone can argue with a rematch of that one eventually if he and Weidman clear out the rest of the top of the division.

    Is Rousy getting any better?
    (Or even very good?)
    The frankenstein headlock into hip toss is the same opening she’s been doing from the beggining but now with hammering on a chicks face instead of the armbar. She’s good enough at it becasue it keeps working, but its also the same move children instinctively do when they rassle in a schoolyard. I dont think that even Lyoto Machida could do that so telegraphed and work so easily everytime on even an average dude mma fighter.
    I’m not sure that I’m as impressed with how great she is more then less then impressed with the pool of wmma.
    Like being the best chick nascar driver or something.
    (I’d be more impressed if rousy was as hot as Danika Patrick.)

  16. klown says:

    Incredible fight between Weidman and Machida.

    Rousey is scary. The competition she faces is not on her level. Who can she fight that would put up a fight?

  17. Diaz's cashed bowl says:

    That fight were the guys toe was hanging off should have been stopped right there. That was completely irresponsible, the toe had an open fracture with the bone sticking out. It could have come clean off with a toe stomp or grated off with the cage. No workplace in america would have a on site doc so s#itty as to tell this guy to go back to work, if they did they would be sued.
    Remember when Mir was on queer street with santos? doc asked him where he was and he answered with the wrong casino? That should have been stopped right there, what good are doctors if they actually ignore injuries whenever the moollah strikes them.
    I have had some worthless docs that just toss you a bottle of pills instead of doing some actual testing before, I recognize them in the ufc now.
    Joe trt rogan enabling the whole deal is also disgusting, “c’mon its just a broken bone” “faber did it…” Joe even goes so far as to badmouth the doc if it looks like he might stop it.

  18. klown says:

    Very sad to see BJ Penn go down like this. Retired fighters really should think twice before attempting a comeback. I hope Anderson Silva and GSP were watching.

    Props to Penn for a fantastic career, and for being one of the most original and entertaining fighters and personalities in the history of MMA.

    • Diaz's cashed bowl says:

      Penn’s nine years were up before the first Edgar fight. High level fighters can fight high level fights for 9 years until they start loosing badly. After his 9 years, Penn went 1-5-1 in the last 4+ years against high level opponents. He reminded me a bit of Saku and his ill fated drop to 170, he just had nothing left
      Compare penn to saku, retirement was suggested after aronas beating, which was at the 9 year point, however Saku smartly kept fighting against B level and shot fighters(except for Manhoef and Tamura and a roided up Royce) for another 4 years with a 10-3-1 nc during that period.

      Penn’s nother fighter for the metamoris/shot ufc fighter receptacle.

      • klown says:

        It would actually be pretty cool to see Penn in Metamoris.

        Metamoris could be great, but I was disappointed by their invitation to Sonnen. It’s one thing to become a warehouse for retired MMA fighters, but it’s another thing to become a refuge for drug cheats.

  19. king famous says:

    Very glad to see Edgar finish BJ this time. I’m a New Jersey homer so I’ve always rooted for him. So is the UTC going to make territory belts, for each country and their world cup will feature champs from foreign lands competing for the true world title?
    I could definitely get into something like that. At this point I watch more reality TV cooking shows more then I watch the ufc

    • Chuck says:

      Why? That would be pretty stupid man. For one thing, UFC is only so big. How many fighters are there in UFC from Germany? From France? From Japan? From China? From Mexico? Unless they do a British title and/or a Brazilian title, that wouldn’t work. Maybe a European title, Asian title, etc. just by continent. I guess that wouldn’t be so bad. But by country? Extremely stupid idea. Except maybe for Brazil, but might as well make it for South America, in case of any future fighters from Peru, Bolivia, etc.

      We have to get over the fact that MMA is a popular niche sport, and it will never have the popularity or reach of soccer, baseball, cricket (seriously, it’s getting big world-wide), or even judo. What would be next? Inter-continental titles? Super titles (ala the WBA)? FECARBOX titles? Enough with the ancillary belts!

      • king famous says:

        I guess I was responding to the UFC’s comments of well the cards in other countries are not for me, and I don’t have to like them if I don’t want to.
        But it is the extra cards which have made the american product weak and caused me to not watch it.
        I’d love to see a season or regular schedule and unique rules and scoring for mma. The fact we use another sports scoring system is ridiculous.

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