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Saturday headlines: StrikeForce at the Playboy Mansion

By Zach Arnold | September 29, 2007

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K-1 held their World GP 2007 event today at the Olympic Gym in Seoul, South Korea. Bonjasky earned a big win over Stefan Leko. The big news coming out of the show is that the World GP finals will take place on 12/8 at Yokohama Arena and not at the Tokyo Dome.

The Canadian Press reports that the TKO event at the Bell Centre in Montreal on Friday night drew 6,500. More coverage of this event can be read at The Montreal Gazette and MMA on Tap.

Today is the Strikeforce event at the Playboy Mansion. Yahoo is streaming the event live, starting at Midnight EST (9 PM PST). If you want to comment on the event as it is happening, post your comments here. Here is a preview in The Orange County Register and MMA Weekly has a profile article on Bobby Southworth. MMA Madness has an event preview. Here are the weigh-in results from Friday night at the Mansion.

Tonight is the Jermain Taylor/Kelly Pavlik fight in Atlantic City, NJ. The Cleveland Plain Dealer asks if Kelly Pavlik can help boxing fight to stay relevant with the rise of MMA.

The Tuscaloosa News (Alabama): Fighting for fun – Ultimate fighting draws growing following

Fox Sports (video): UFC’s hostile preview

Topics: Boxing, Canada, K-1, Media, MMA, South Korea, Zach Arnold | 45 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

45 Responses to “Saturday headlines: StrikeForce at the Playboy Mansion”

  1. penxv says:

    I feel bad for Joe Maxse… his boxing coverage for the Plain Dealer is actually pretty good, but it is all so irrelevant.

    Basically… Maxse needs Pavlik to win so he actually has something to cover

    Also, it is deeply ironic that Kelly Pavlik is supposed to be the great white hope that saves boxing.

    Quite literally, the guy lives in a ghost town… metaphorically as well.

  2. Preach says:

    Also on the menu for today: Nicolai Valuev versus french-canadian Jean-Francois Bergeron. If Valuev wins, he’s in for a rematch against WBA-champ Ruslan Chagaev. And let’s be honest, Bergeron is set up for the fall. He may have been undefeated in 27 fights, but they were all against, well, lower level competition, so Valuev should take this one home easily.

  3. 45 Huddle says:

    I really hope to see Gilbert Melendez in the UFC after this fight. Strikeforce had such a hard time getting an opponent, and they ended up with Kato who isn’t exactly a top level fighter at this point in his career. Even with EliteXC, there isn’t anybody for him to fight at 155 lbs.

  4. KennyP says:

    penxv,

    Youngstown isn’t quite the ghost town that was portrayed on the HBO Countdown special. (Mostly because Pavlik grew up and went to school in old inner-city neighborhoods built around the steel mills–upper south side, Lowellville, Campbell. Those neighborhoods are totally dead, but the area as a whole isn’t.) The images that were shown were used to help create a public image and storyline that would help promote the fight. Like Meltzer keeps saying in the WO, HBO Countdown and 24/7 (and the UFC to a lesser extent) develop and promote “pro wrestling storylines” better than any pro wrestling promotion in the world today.

    That said, this native Youngstowner is rooting hard for Pavlik.

  5. LR says:

    While doing my preview piece for MMA Madness, I was actually looking at the possibilities for fights that Gilbert Melendez could field. The big fight that he’s been looking to do is “JZ” Calvancanti, and Gilbert has stated that he will leave Strikeforce to seek out any organization thath as any of the top fighters so he can prove he belongs in the top spot. He also seemed to want a piece of Aoki as well.

  6. Preach says:

    117:111, 118:111 and 118:111 for Valuev… talk about boxing being a corrupt sport. The win was totally undeserved, it should’ve been at least a draw, though i’d be leaning more toward a slight win for Bergeron, but this decision is absolutely laughable. Seriously, the boos were absolutely deserved… Much respect for Bergeron though

  7. Jordan Breen says:

    I had Valuev 115-113. Bergeron’s bullfighter routine wasn’t exactly Mayweather-esque. The scores obviously sucked, but the right guy won methinks.

    The K-1 card was entertaining, but the Bonjasky-Leko stop was a joke. Bonjasky’s knee was fantastic, but Leko made the idiotic move of putting his head down and trying to charge out of the gate before the referee restarted. It came off as him stumbling forward, and it got stopped.

    Sawayashiki is great young fighter, and FEG should be happy they finally have a Japanese fighter who can actually win fights on his own and doesn’t have a weak sauce pointfighting style.

    All that said, Schilt is going to win the GP again this year short of a miracle.

    As I said before, Pavlik would have to be nothing short of extraordinary in the ring to interest the public. He would have to be a complete and thorough banger almost every time out and keep KO’ing guys. That’s not easy on the elite level.

  8. penxv says:

    I’m rooting for Pavlik as well, and I think that he’s the real deal.

    I’ve appraised houses in Youngstown and I have never seen such low prices anywhere. You can get a dump in youngstown for 5-10k… that city is on it’s deathbed.

  9. David says:

    Gilbert vs Shinya, now THAT I would pay for! 🙂

  10. KennyP says:

    penxv,
    yep. It’s sad and disturbing. (That is what happens when a mill town shrinks to half its former size.) But I still remind you that there is a reason the cameras never showed Pavlik’s nice suburban house or any of the many nearby communities that have grown while the city itself dies. (in an adjoining community that is quite vibrant and much more affluent). It wouldn’t fit the story. And that is the same story angle that is played out in portrayals of lots of dying cities (Detroit, Gary, East St Louis, Newark, etc.): Reporters or cameras never seem to mention the very nice communities that thrive next door once the central city itself reaches the tipping point. It just doesn’t fit the narrative.

  11. LR says:

    Wow, I just rewatched that Bonjasky vs. Leko battle and Breen is definitely on the ball with that comment. Leko was leaning to go after Bonjasky and the referee just stopped the bout. Definitely an early stoppage.

    Also, I loved how K-1 did the little Le Banner intro with him running through water with his dogs and it flashing up on the screen “Rock n’ Roll”, it was such a corny introduction, made me laugh so hard.

  12. Preach says:

    Most people that I spoke with would’ve given it a draw, with two (me included) going 114:113 for Bergeron.

    The cruiserweight fight between Alexander Frenkel (GER) and Michael Alexander (USA) also went to decision. Frenkel wasn’t his usual self, given that he didn’t finish the fight this time, and didn’t go in for the kill when Alexander was wobbly, but i think the boy has a bright future. He’s only been boxing for a year now, and 13 fights/13 wins since then isn’t too shabby.

    Other results from this fight card:

    – Benoit Gaudet (CAN) b. Andreas Evensen (NOR) decision
    – Vitali Tsypko (UKR) b. David Gogiya (GEO) decision
    – Francesco Pianeta (GER) b. Colin Wilson (AUS) decision
    – Enad Licina (GER) b. Ismail Abdoul (BEL) decision
    – Andrzej Wawrzyk (POL) b. Drazen Ordulj (CRO) TKO

    All in all a good night of fights, and there wasn’t much booing on, even though most of the fights went to decision. Well, to be honest, there was only booing after the Valuev fight…

    Oh, and i’m also rooting for Pavlik. Given that Arthur Abraham wins his next fight (which will be in early december, they’re still looking at possible opponents) they could be meeting for a title unification bout in the first quarter of 2008…

  13. 45 Huddle says:

    According To Dave Meltzer:

    “–Regarding rumors going around of a Tito Ortiz vs. Dan Henderson fight on 11/17 in Newark, NJ, there is nothing to it. It was something discussed, but not all that seriously. Right now the expected main event for the show is Ortiz vs. Rashad Evans, but Ortiz is playing hardball when it comes to signing.”

    Is it me, or is Tito Ortiz just the biggest pain in MMA? The guy can’t get along with Dana White. So he deals directly with the Fertitta’s. And he still can’t put together a new contract or sign fights with ease. This guy fears competition.

    I would love to see Rashad beat him….

  14. Jordan Breen says:

    Abraham better hope Taylor wins if he’s looking for a unifier. I personally think Taylor represents a good style match-up for him because of Abraham’s start-stop hyperoffense, whereas Pavlik could push the throttle on him the entire time and beat him up badly.

  15. Tomer Chen says:

    Abraham better hope Taylor wins if he’s looking for a unifier. I personally think Taylor represents a good style match-up for him because of Abraham’s start-stop hyperoffense, whereas Pavlik could push the throttle on him the entire time and beat him up badly.

    The only thing is that Taylor is planning to move up in weight after this fight because he’s getting too fat for 160 lbs. Abraham would have to flash a buttload of money for Taylor to entice him to fight again since he was trying to beg Pavlik to go to SMW to face him for this fight..

  16. Jordan Breen says:

    “The only thing is that Taylor is planning to move up in weight after this fight because he’s getting too fat for 160 lbs. Abraham would have to flash a buttload of money for Taylor to entice him to fight again since he was trying to beg Pavlik to go to SMW to face him for this fight..”

    Yeah, I completely forgot about that shit. Sauerland and Abraham aren’t gonna flash shit all for Taylor to stay at 160. Doesn’t matter though, cause Taylor can’t beat Calzaghe or Kessler, so.

  17. xx2000xx says:

    I hope somewhere they post a direct link to the yahoo streaming because we’ll for sure get spoiled with the Taylor fight tonight by going to their main page with their big ass pictures/letters that you can’t avoid.

  18. ColumbiaLou says:

    If Matt Hughes has any extra bibles, the woman on Survivor needs one. Thank you. More to come.

  19. 45 Huddle says:

    Perhaps I am too use to MMA now…. Cause I’m watching Boxing on HBO & Showtime…. And I just can’t get a thought out of my head….

    That boxing would be so much better with much smaller gloves. Not tiny gloves like in MMA… But perhaps just enough padding to avoid broken hands and additional cuts….

    These gloves being used now just take all the fun out of the fights….

  20. 45 Huddle says:

    Fantastic Fight between Taylor and Pavlik….. Even with those big gloves… lol

  21. KennyP says:

    Defend Youngstown!!! 🙂

    What a fight! I thought there was no way Pavlik would survive the second round. Just making it the 90 seconds to the bell was huge. But he survived and was the aggressor in the fight.

    That is how you make yourself marketable. Knocking out the undefeated world champion, who beat Hopkins twice and drew Wright. Now he can sell tickets vs. Abraham in the US (though that fight is destined to be another HBO show).

  22. CapnHulk says:

    The quality of the Strikeforce stream is pretty good.

  23. 45 Huddle says:

    I agree. I had a tad bit of lag when I first started to watch, but since it has been very good.

    Puder isn’t exactly good…. More that his opponent is just bad.

  24. 45 Huddle says:

    Joe Rogan was shown in the audience behind Michael Clarke Duncan….

  25. CapnHulk says:

    Yeah, this hasn’t been a very stellar match.

  26. Fan Futbol says:

    The Taylor-Pavlik fight was fantastic. Pavlik just kept coming, even after getting floored (and stumbling around the ring!) in round two. Awesome fight.

    FF

  27. Adam Morgan says:

    Is it just me or is Cecil Peoples just completely incompetent? He always just looks like he has no idea the right time to step in and stop the fight.

  28. CapnHulk says:

    Not nearly enough fog.

  29. CapnHulk says:

    That’s at least the third time someone has entered using “Welcome to the Jungle.”

  30. Adam Morgan says:

    Did Shamrock just say that Thomson is openly gay? Is this common knowledge? I had no idea.

  31. CapnHulk says:

    I’m almost positive that Shamrock is just being a dick.

  32. 45 Huddle says:

    Josh Thomson is straight.

    Josh Thomson wore a shirt a while back that basically called Shamrock his B!tch….

    Between Frank Shamrock and Mauro Ranello…. MMA Commentating has hit an all new low. Completely PATHETIC.

  33. Adam Morgan says:

    Thanks for the clarification.

  34. 45 Huddle says:

    Actually… I shouldn’t say he is straight… I actually don’t know his sexual orientation…. But I am certain if he is gay, he is not open about it.

    Either way, Shamrock was just being a loser.

  35. Adam Morgan says:

    Cung Le: “Um. Josh has a girlfriend, actually. I’ve met her.”

  36. Adam Morgan says:

    Shouldn’t it be Melendez who comes out to Marley? 😀

  37. 45 Huddle says:

    Renato Sobral is announcing and he said he signed with Strikeforce.

    I would assume Bobby Southworth vs. Renato Sobral will happen at some point.

  38. CapnHulk says:

    Strikeforce makes me realize how good UFC cards can be, even when we bitch sometimes.

  39. xx2000xx says:

    The highlight of the show for me was Kendra. Few interesting facts from tonight:

    The UFC and MMA are the same.
    Strikeforce is as big as the UFC.
    Hef doesn’t approve of MMA but it’s the big thing now.
    Blonds always win.

  40. IceMuncher says:

    “Strikeforce makes me realize how good UFC cards can be, even when we bitch sometimes.”

    And how good the UFC commentating is. Sure, Goldie and Rogan aren’t perfect, but after listening to Mauro and Frank I’ve got a newfound appreciation for them.

    Best part of the night had to be Kendra constantly bringing up the UFC. I’m still laugh when I think about how much that must have upset the guys running Strikeforce.

    It also goes to show how incredibly hard it’s going to be for anyone to overtake the UFC, or to even catch up them. The UFC has ingrained their trademark into the general public’s mind. They don’t know MMA, but they know UFC. I saw it first hand with my cousin. He met a guy at a party that was an MMA fighter, and he asked me what that stood for when he saw me the next day. I told him it stood for Mixed Martial Arts. He immediately replied “Oh, you mean like the UFC? I heard about that, but I’ve never seen it”.

  41. el feo says:

    Pavlik is just too sick. What a comeback. All his fans in the front went nuts when he backed Taylor into that corner. Andre Berto in the opener and Chad Dawson on Showtime looked good as well.
    Strange that Pavlik was behind on all 3 judges’ scorecards when HBO and Taylor himself in the post fight interview saw it for Pavlik up till the 7th, even with the 10-8 round.

    I agree, Strikeforce,etc are fun to watch and I wish them the best, but they do make one appreciate the overall quality of the UFC fighters and cards.

    Shouldn’t the C and NSAC train more refs and judges so Cecil Peoples can retire? That or pay more. I thought government employees were overpaid?

  42. Rohan says:

    “Is it me, or is Tito Ortiz just the biggest pain in MMA? The guy can’t get along with Dana White. So he deals directly with the Fertitta’s. And he still can’t put together a new contract or sign fights with ease. This guy fears competition.

    I would love to see Rashad beat him….”

    I know a lot of people on here hate pro-wrestling but Tito is the best money heel in the business. Like Ali (in the early years), Eubank (for the UK fans), Flair and Mayweather he knows how to promote a fight, play the bad guy and draw people on the idea of him getting beat. I love the guy and his promos on the Vendetta card are the popular favourite amongst all my casual UFC watching flatmates.

  43. 45 Huddle says:

    Oh, I agree. Ortiz is one of the best 5 drawing fighters in MMA right now, along with Randy Couture, Chuck Liddell, Quinton Jackson, & Matt Hughes. So he is worth a lot of money. But my problem is that he ALWAYS has contract issues. The guy just is never happy.

  44. The Gaijin says:

    Huddle’s comment makes me wonder this…who is the biggest “draw” in MMA?

    Gracie? Saku? Liddell or Ortiz?

    Anyone got any ideas on that one?

    p.s. I don’t mean “right now” but overall/ever.

  45. Smoogy says:

    Gaijin: Ever? Yoshida.

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