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« | Home | »

Wednesday headlines: No child’s play

By Zach Arnold | May 1, 2007

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By Zach Arnold

Take a look at photos today for an angle ran by Hustle Entertainment (aka Hustle, the pro-wrestling product produced by Dream Stage Entertainment). Hustle, which DSE claims was transferred to a new company called Hustle Entertainment (tickets for Hustle’s 5/9 Korakuen Hall show are still being sold officially by DSE), is using the same facilities to do business in as Dream Stage Entertainment did in the past. This isn’t the first time that it has been noticed since Zuffa LLC reached an agreement for the PRIDE asset sale with Dream Stage Entertainment.

Huh. I wonder what UFC (who supposedly retained the services of ex-DSE employees) thinks about their PRIDE facilities being used by those same ‘ex-DSE’ employees to continue running a pro-wrestling operation?

If you’re confused, I’ll elaborate further. PRIDE & Hustle were companies promoted by Nobuyuki Sakakibara under the Dream Stage Entertainment banner. DSE’s offices are in Aoyama, Tokyo. Once DSE reached an agreement with Zuffa LLC (parent company of UFC) to sell the PRIDE assets, Sakakibara resigned as President of DSE. DSE also claimed that they transferred ownership of Hustle to a new company (called Hustle Entertainment). In the PRIDE asset sale agreement, Zuffa agreed to retain the majority of employees working for DSE. The ‘new’ PRIDE under Zuffa is supposed to use the old DSE facilities. Now, at those very same facilities, ‘ex-DSE’ employees are running angles and promoting the pro-wrestling promotion Hustle Entertainment… which used to be promoted by Sakakibara.

Do the Hustle. Royal Burnell sure is.

Meet Mikko Rupponen. He’s fighting Hiro Yokoi in this video clip.

And I don’t even know what to say about this video clip.

Today’s headlines.

  1. The North Platte Bulletin (Nebraska): New women fighters featured on ‘Contagious’ fight card for May 5th
  2. CBS Sportsline: Conversation with Tito Ortiz, Part I
  3. CBS Sportsline: Conversation with Tito Ortiz, Part II
  4. Marketwire (PR): SUN and Hooters spice up Art of War 2 event on May 11th
  5. MMA Ring Report: Jason MacDonald bringing his best to belfast
  6. UFC Junkie: Cincinnati UFC event still in works, U.S. Bank Arena to host
  7. Gracie Mag: Toquinho denied visa interview – only a miracle can take him to ADCC 2007
  8. MMA California: CSAC MMA town hall meeting
  9. The Fight Network: Trigg’s Take: My Final PRIDE
  10. USA Today: Nearing a 10-count, boxing needs a classic bout
  11. The Globe and Mail (Canada): The build-up (for De La Hoya vs. Mayweather)
  12. Yahoo Sports (Kevin Iole): Little big man (article about Freddie Roach)
  13. USA Today: Creative blitz for De La Hoya vs. Mayweather
  14. The Baltimore Sun: Visual appeal (talking about MMA web sites)
  15. Jake Rossen: Letters from the cheap seats
  16. The St. Petersburg Times (Florida): Fight of the Century has it all (De La Hoya vs. Mayweather)
  17. UFC HP: Ivan Salaverry returns this month to take on Terry Martin at UFC 71

Topics: Boxing, Japan, Media, MMA, PRIDE, Pro-Wrestling, UFC, Zach Arnold | 33 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

33 Responses to “Wednesday headlines: No child’s play”

  1. Jordan Breen says:

    It is extremely unfortunate that Rupponen injured himself doing construction. Him against Drwal would’ve been an awesome match-up that could’ve promoted either guy into a big show.

  2. Zack says:

    Erin…are you going to attend and report on that CSAC meeting this month? Sounds extremely interesting.

  3. Khzarn says:

    Rupponen has repeatedly ran into bad luck whilst trying to get into big shows. Either he gets injured, the fight gets cancelled or he straight out loses and misses the opportunity.

    I was at Fight Festival to see that fight, and the last few elbows he threw on Yokoi could really be heard across the arena.

  4. klown says:

    I’ve seen the Rothwell vs obese kid video. It is truly disturbing. Someone should be arrested for this.

  5. What’s chilling is someone on the UG forums says these kinds of crazy mismatches happen all the time in amateur shows across the midwest

  6. Liger05 says:

    What is the deal with Hustle?

  7. Grape Knee High says:

    Yawn.

    Must be another slow news day if random speculation about Hustle is supposed to be anything significant.

  8. I thought the UFC doesn’t deal with pro-wrestling.

    Then again, Dana said the same thing about pro-wrestlers.

  9. The Gaijin says:

    What the HELL is with all the rabbit punches, what looked to be a downward elbow to the spine/head and jumping “mark hunt” knee to the back of the head being allowed by the ref????

    (a) Ben Rothwell should know that’s cheap as hell, dangerous and illegal
    (b) the ref should have been on top of that from the get go…instead of allowing basically every strike that Rothwell landed be on the back of the head.

  10. Zack says:

    Out of the 4 people in the UFC hall of fame, 2 were pro wrestlers.

  11. SB says:

    Rothwell vs Butterbean Jr. = amateur MMA at its finest

  12. D. Capitated says:

    No one in America knows what the hell Hustle is and probably never will, either. The fact that they run the same arenas and have the same crew doing lights and production is beyond irrelevant. OMG WCW RAN MGM GRAND BEFORE DANA IS A HYPOCRITE

  13. So why is Dana worried about Kurt Angle?

    He’s just a pro wrestler.

  14. Zach Arnold says:

    I’m amazed that there are people who still don’t understand the implications of what I am talking about in regards to DSE. You practically have to have blinders on to not ‘get it’ in regards to what is happening.

  15. Grape Knee High says:

    Zack, it’s because there’s nothing to get. The simplest explanation is: “Who cares?”

    Even Matt Drudge wouldn’t touch the kind of ridiculous assertions you like to make.

  16. Zach Arnold says:

    So you know for a fact that UFC is OK with ex-DSE employees running a pro-wrestling promotion out of the PRIDE offices for a company that used to be promoted by Nobuyuki Sakakibara?

    Seriously. I want to know what you must know.

  17. D. Capitated says:

    So why is Dana worried about Kurt Angle?

    He’s just a pro wrestler.

    How is he worried? By mocking a broken down non-fighter who talks trash and will probably be dead within a year? Yeah, that’s pure terror from Dana’s voice, imagining how the dude who sells 20,000 wrestling PPVs will revolutionize the business fighting Bob Sapp for K-1 or something.

    Zack, it’s because there’s nothing to get. The simplest explanation is: “Who cares?”

    We have a winner, kids.

  18. D. Capitated says:

    So you know for a fact that UFC is OK with ex-DSE employees running a pro-wrestling promotion out of the PRIDE offices for a company that used to be promoted by Nobuyuki Sakakibara?

    What evidence do you have that the Fertittas are sweating bullets about it? I heard Ticketmaster sells WWE and UFC tickets AT THE SAME TIME. UFC must be worked.

  19. D. Capitated says:

    I hate to look like I’m spamming this with replies, but c’mon. Dude, they’re running the same arenas? Really? Wow, what a shock. What other arenas were they going to run other than Saitama Super Arena? Were they going to move their shows to Ariake Colosseum just to prove a point? Give us a list of alternate “safe” indoor venues that seat 20,000 people and aren’t domes, Zach. I’m all ears.

  20. 45 Huddle says:

    WEC 6/3 Show, live on Versus.

    Welterweight Title: Brock Larson vs. Carlos Condit
    Featherweight Title: Urijah Faber vs. Chance Farrer
    John Alessio vs. Alex Serdyukov
    Mark Hominick vs. TBD

    Those are the 4 biggest bouts on the card. Solid card. I really like the main event.

  21. 45 Huddle says:

    Few interesting notes about the WEC Website….

    1. It is very similiar to the UFC website, which is to be expected.

    2. Under fighter profiles, it lists all the fights a fighter had in both the UFC and WEC. For example, Brock Larson’s profile shows his 2 fights in the UFC.

    3. It does not show WEC fights from before the UFC purchased it, With Urijah Faber, it only shows his 2007 fights in the WEC. So the UFC is really looking at the WEC as a brand new company.

    Hopefully this trend carries over onto the UFC website. It would nice for them to acknowledge Noguiera’s 20+ Pride fights, and give the casual fans more of a perspective of the fight game.

  22. What happened to Mayhem Miller?

  23. 45 Huddle says:

    He is on the May card….

  24. Then tell me the reason why Dana wants to talk to Angle every time he looks in Pro Elite’s direction, D. I’m all ears.

    Also, what is not to get about the above story?

    A pro wrestling organization that still has ties with the ‘kuza is running it’s promotional duties in office facilities that now belong to the Ferttitas.

    Is this sinking in? Do I have to break out the Mackrel?

  25. Grape Knee High says:

    Seriously, Zach, 9/11 conspiracy theorists have nothing on you.

    The burden of proof is not on me. It’s on YOU, since you’re the one making baseless allegations of impropriety. Just because it looks suspicious to you — a Matt Drudge wannabe for MMA — doesn’t mean it actually is.

  26. D. Capitated says:

    Then tell me the reason why Dana wants to talk to Angle every time he looks in Pro Elite’s direction, D. I’m all ears.

    The only place I’ve heard the story that UFC wants him now is from Angle himself. Angle’s said a lot of things. Do you believe all of it?

    Also, what is not to get about the above story?

    A pro wrestling organization that still has ties with the ‘kuza is running it’s promotional duties in office facilities that now belong to the Ferttitas.

    Is this sinking in? Do I have to break out the Mackrel?

    All the fight organizations in Japan, and, if you believe what’s said here, most business in the Tokyo area, have/has ties to the yakuza. Again, what is the story? Some employees work in both! They run the same venues! The same light crew! Oh, wow, none of that means absolutely anything at all! Lots of divergent groups use each others production crews. Venues happen to hold lots of different events. What does any of this prove? Especially when it comes to how Dana White supposedly feels?

  27. PizzaChef says:

    I understand the implications of Zuffa still keeping links with an alleged yakuza organization, and the fact these are suppose to be two seperate companies but to be honest. I don’t think some PRIDE fans won’t give a shit simply because they will see that some of the old guard is staying. They’ll make it as a positive for PRIDE and not think about it. I mean why stress over it? I’m not that interested in it although I know the implications. But I have other stuff to worry about.

  28. Kev says:

    “I hate to look like I’m spamming this with replies, but c’mon. Dude, they’re running the same arenas? Really? Wow, what a shock. What other arenas were they going to run other than Saitama Super Arena? ”

    D., Zach never said anything about arenas. He said facilities, which would in this case be be offices. Hustle has been holding press conferences in DSE’s old digs, which should be Zuffa’s.

    GHK, sorry, you lost me. Something smells fishy at DSE’s old offices and you just seem to be in denial about this. Attacking Zach doesn’t really help your argument.

  29. Grape Knee High says:

    “GHK, sorry, you lost me. Something smells fishy at DSE’s old offices and you just seem to be in denial about this.”

    I suppose you also believed Zach on the big “STEROID SCANDAL FROM THE UK” a few days ago? Apparently, I had my blinders on for that one too. Oh whoops, I guess it doesn’t make much sense in talking about this since everyone’s forgotten about it already.

    If anything the most likely thing is that Hustle is temporarily renting/using the space until they can secure a more permanent location. Or DSE hasn’t officially been sold to Zuffa yet. Or maybe it’s one of a myriad of reasons.

    Maybe they are doing it without Zuffa knowing. WHO CARES. If Zuffa wants them out, they’ll get rid of them when they find out.

  30. iain says:

    holy crap, props to the kid for staying in there. Apart from that though, punches to the back of the head are evil, especially if the guy is way out of your league. She should of just armbarred him or something.

  31. Tomer Chen says:

    What’s chilling is someone on the UG forums says these kinds of crazy mismatches happen all the time in amateur shows across the midwest

    It’s happened nearly forever in most of the less regulated/unregulated states in Boxing, as well. In “Boxing Confidential” by Jim Brady has a chapter (“The Thrill of Defeat”) detailing how Pat O’Grady (former Boxer and Boxing analyst Sean O’Grady’s father) basically had guys fight each other 100 times under 100 different names to pad their records and to try and get big money fights.

    Wacky crap like the Rothwell fight has been happening for many, many decades in Boxing. That’s the problem when a good chunk of states don’t feel regulation is necessary or the ‘commissions’ (and I use the term loosely) can be ‘persuaded’ by promoters to look the other way.

  32. SB says:

    In the end Butterbean Jr wanted to prove he was a man. He was wrong. Its is own fault. Atleast he got some internet fame. Took a assbeatin to get it but he got it.

  33. […] aftermath of the asset sale purchase, in which Hustle (Sakakibara’s pro-wrestling operation) was running angles out of the same office that PRIDE had been using in […]

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