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Sunday news review: UFC’s momentum keeps on going

By Zach Arnold | October 14, 2007

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Yuki Kondo defeated Yuji Sakuragi by unanimous decision at today’s Pancrase event in Tokyo at Differ Ariake. Show report here.

Coverage from last night’s HDNet Fights event: Sherdog | Sherdog II | MMA Weekly | MMA Predictions | The Fight Network | Fox Sports

One interesting Cuban-related news item that seemingly flew under the radar is that he is planning a celebrity MMA version of Dancing with the Stars. I’m not sure if he’s entirely serious or if this is a rib. Apparently the rumor of a celebrity MMA show has been active for the last couple of days.

How the oddsmakers see UFC 77. Heat-up coverage for Rich Franklin vs. Anderson Silva: Cincinnati Enquirer | Cincinnati Enquirer II | Newark Star-Ledger | Dayton Daily News | Dayton Daily News II

An interview with Joe Lauzon. Plus, audio interviews with Shayna Baszler & Saulo Ribeiro. Here is a two-part interview series (here and here) with Reese Andy. Andy says that he would like to see 10 weight divisions in the IFL.

MMA Analysts asks if Mark Cuban can produce Couture vs. Fedor.

Over at AOL Fanhouse, making the case that Dana White is in the ‘right’ on Randy Couture’s retirement. Yes, they used the word retirement despite the fact that he is not retiring. Throughout various mainstream media reports, the meme that Couture is ‘retiring’ has taken quite a foothold — like in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. Read more on the Couture departure from UFC at MMA Opinion.

Are PRIDE fighters at a disadvantage in UFC? This writer says they are.

Topics: HDNet, Japan, Media, MMA, Pancrase, PRIDE, UFC, Zach Arnold | 32 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

32 Responses to “Sunday news review: UFC’s momentum keeps on going”

  1. 45 Huddle says:

    Not sure if there is any truth to this rumor, but I saw a posting that somebody said Paulo Filho vs. Frank Trigg in December’s WEC card. If this is true, I like this fight.

    Also, Karo Parisyan is now fighting Ryo Chonan.

  2. David says:

    I would love to see Filho vs Trigg. I am not a huge Trigg fan but acknowledge his skills and would like to see that fight for sure. If Cuban can’t pull Fedor vs Couture then in my opinion he is useless.

  3. Zack says:

    Trigg said on last Wednesdays Tagg Radio show that he doesn’t have a job right now, so who knows. That would be a great matchup if true, but Trigg loves breaking news, so you gotta figure if it was true he’d break it on his show first.

  4. Yeah I heard about the Filho-Trigg rumors as well. That’d be a very solid add to the card, especially considering the WEC is coming off such a long layoff.

  5. jim allcorn says:

    God I hope Cuban’s quote about that proposed show was a rib, because if it’s not, then it’ll be the second horrendous idea for an MMA reality show we’ve heard about this week!

    These people have got to learn that MMA isn’t some sort of a reality based version of the old BLACK BELT THEATER movie showcase. They’re delusional if thats the case.

    I about puked when I read what the premise was for Mark Burnett’s MMA show with Hershell Walker & Jose Canseco. Everyone else who loves MMA should be insulted as well. ESPECIALLY with the involvement of an admitted steroid monkey like Canseco. It’s the last thing the sport needs.

    And the idea that athletes from other sports can simply train for a period of several weeks & then step into the cage with any sort of ability is disrespectful as HELL to all the real MMA fighters out there! I mean, this isn’t a harmless lark like Fox’s old CELEBRITY BOXING specials were, what with their oversized gloves & all.

    From what I’ve seen about Burnett’s show, this is as if they took celeb athletes, trained ’em for a little while & then threw them into a ring with eight oz gloves to knock each other senseless. No commision or network that I know of would go for that scenario. So why is it apparently going to be allowed to take place in a cage under MMA rules?

  6. 45 Huddle says:

    The Ultimate Fighter has always been borderline crap. The only reason I have been a semi-fan of the show is because of the end result. For all the BS we have to watch all season, it still ends up producing 3 to 5 fighters per season who become legit UFC fighters. Most will not be champions, but they are good enough to compete at a high level.

    The EliteXC show really doesn’t do that. Making the concept alone sound pointless. And Canseco isn’t exactly a huge celebrity at this point. Even baseball fans can’t stand the guy.

  7. jim allcorn says:

    I mean, seriously.

    This won’t be some washed up nitwit like “Screach” or ‘Vanilla Ice” making fools of themselve with big ol’ over-sized boxing gloves with an extra cautious ref making sure no one cann get hurt. It was a situation so far removed from actual professional boxing that there was no way whatever occured could have a negative impact on the sport.

    But, MMA is a relatively new sport that the majority of American viewers are still quite unfamiliar with. It still gets mislabled with the now cliche “human cock-fighting” analogy by know nothings hoping to make waves with their scribblings or televised soapbox rants.

    So, if some athlete from another sport or a celebrity of some other variety , get’s hurt or has their “regular” sporting career ended as a result of something that happens in a cage on this reality show, it WILL negatively effect MMA. Of that, I’m certain.

    Hell, I love THE CONTENDER & THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER. Not only because they involve my two all time favorite sports, but because they feature REAL fighters. Men who’ve dedicated their lives to fighting in the ring or in the cage.

    If Burnett feels the need to produce another combat sports reality show, I’m sure that he could find plenty of real fighters willing to take part in a show created by his people. And I’d watch it. As would millions of others, I’m sure.

    But this nonsense involving washed up football & baseball players along with God knows who else? UGH!

  8. sonzai says:

    The Trigg/Filho sounds legit. No contracts have been signed, but it certainly has been discussed among the particulars. A good fight, better than Mayhem/Filho, imo.

  9. Jeremy (not that Jeremy) says:

    I’m still trying to figure out where Sievert’s report is coming from.

    He takes:

    “Cuban confirmed to the Chronicle’s Brawl Sports that he is in discussions regarding a possible business deal with the M-1 Mix-Fight Championship. However, the Dallas Mavericks owner and MMA fan, turned promoter, said that he has yet to sign an agreement with M-1”

    Adds it to:

    M-1 has been “purchased by an undisclosed America entertainment-related company.”

    and produces:

    “The wait is on to see if that actually turns out to be Cuban.”


    He’s a writer, he should at least make an effort to sensibly consider verb tenses when making up stories from whole cloth.


    Also, Jeff repeated again this week on FORadio during the Fishman intervew repeated an old canard that really annoys me because it’s such a brazen misinterpretation and keeps getting repeated, and therefore is starting to gain the force of truth.

    In this case, the form was:

    “I have to interrupt, but Dana White has clearly told us that he doesn’t need the sponsors, the sponsors need him.”

    Yes, the form was intended as a joke, but this thing comes up again and again, and it is a pretty ludicrous misinterpretation of his statements in that NBC interview.

    I’ll just transcribe a bit of that interview here:


    you know, whether you’re mainstream or not doesn’t depend on who your sponsors are. Mainstream to me is if you walked out on the strip right now and asked everybody out there if they know who Shaquile O’Neal is, and everybody could tell you who he is, that’s mainstream, and we’re, we’re, we’re no where near that yet.

    Q. At the same time, I’m sure you would like to see companies like Coca Cola, Nike, you know…

    I’m cool with Mickey’s and Toyo Tire, believe me you’ll never hear me bitchin’. I, the way that we’ve run this business, the way that we’ve come up, think about it, we didn’t have any mainstream press, we didn’t have any mainstream sponsors and look at where we are. I don’t NBC-BLEEP need Coke to keep doing what we’re doing man, believe me, the bigtime sponsors if they come on, of course that would be fantastic, I don’t need them, 18-34 year old males, they’re here hanging out with me, if Coke wants them, Coke, Coke needs to come to us


    If you feel like watching the interview:

    Because of the way that NBC edited out the question preceding Dana’s early statement, it’s hard to judge exactly what the question was, but just by reading it, you can see that the interviewer was attempting to question, based on what sponsors UFC had, whether that was a sign that UFC is or is not mainstream.

    The reply pretty clearly was attempting to address the question of whether UFC could continue to gain mainstream mindshare without “mainstream” sponsors. Dana’s right, he does have 18-34s in his corner. That’s a category that sponsors typically want to advertise to. UFC already has sponsors though, they’re signed up for deals of certain durations, and that’s that.

    I’d be interested in knowing whether Coke has EVER sponsored any fighting promotion of any sort. Since I don’t have the full background to address the question, I’ll defer to others. Butm, brand sponsorships aren’t just about the age bracket, they’re also about the social position of the association between brand and sport, and Coke has always, to my knowledge, associated themselves with AAA-family style sporting events. The Disney’s of the sporting world.

    Just wanted to get that out of my system, because it’s seriously starting to bug me because Jeff just loves to break it out again and again.

  10. Zach Arnold says:

    There was a post on this topic long ago.

  11. Zurich says:

    Great session of FO Radio! It would have been nice for Jeff to weigh in – from a lawyer’s perspective – one Randy’s contract situation. E.g. is it possible for him to sit out for 9 months, or is he SOL with a non-compete clause, etc.? But I realize that 1) he wouldn’t want his take on it to be misconstrued as a professional opinion, and 2) he doesn’t have the contract in front of him. Still, there seems to be a big divide between Randy insinuating that he’ll be ready to go in 9 months, and Dana saying “not gonna happen”.

  12. KennyP says:


    I think the FO Radio show was taped before news of Randy’s retirement broke.

  13. David says:

    Thanks for the Saulo coverage.

    “Even though Pride Fighting Championships Worldwide closed their office in Tokyo, blurring the future of Japanese MMA, it has been widely rumored that there is movement regarding the formation of a new MMA organization in Japan.”

    Hmm, no wonder so many of the legit Japanese fighters have yet to sign. I know the UFC is looked at as a proverbial (Ranallo, Pride) ‘dead end’ but now things are coming together. My question to Mr. Arnold is, what kind of contracts have the Japanese been suckered into by Shady White?

  14. Zach Arnold says:

    It was taped the night of the announcement.

  15. Zach Arnold says:

    Hmm, no wonder so many of the legit Japanese fighters have yet to sign. I know the UFC is looked at as a proverbial (Ranallo, Pride) ‘dead end’ but now things are coming together. My question to Mr. Arnold is, what kind of contracts have the Japanese been suckered into by Shady White?

    Elaborate on your question further and I’ll answer.

  16. David says:

    What kind of contracts are the Japanese fighters from Pride signing with UFC. Ryo Chonan, Mach, Gomi, Okama, Donkongojuske (sp). Is Dana White roping them in Western-style or are they covering their asses so they can fight in Japan in the event that a new organization can start up.

    What do you think?


  17. David says:

    Wow, I am not good at explaining my thoughts. What type of contractual agreements do the Japanese fighters who fought under Pride, now have signed with the UFC… Thanks

  18. LR says:

    My interpretation of the Cuban story is that he is looking to work a deal out with M-1, as in a possible co-promotion or some way of working together. I didn’t get the sense that he was trying to buy M-1. M-1 has already been bought, he’s looking to work with them.

    That’s how I looked at it.

  19. Zach Arnold says:

    UFC had whatever PRIDE fighters they could get to work with them to sign the standard UFC deal. In other words, no strange or unusual provisions.

  20. David says:

    That is not specific. Do you know that for a fact. Like how many fights are these guys signing for and how will the UFC promote them. From your speculation I feel like they are fixing to get themselves walked over.

  21. Arnold Zachary says:

    Of course he doesn’t know, David. The only things he does know he gets straight from the Wrestling Observer, just like Trembow and all the rest. If Meltzer ever pulled the plug on the Observer these guys’ little charade as “experts” would come crashing to a halt.

  22. Preach says:

    Anyone got any news on the World Victory Road Inc. press conference? It’s 9 pm over there, and the conference was slated for 3 pm if i remember correctly…

  23. Jake Rossen’s piece at Sherdog today is quite nice.

  24. Nolan says:

    Why no Spirit MC love?

    I was at the fights yesterday, my second Spirit MC, and aside from an awful lot of accidental low blows (two out of three of my teammates were canned more than twice in their fights) and stops to check cuts, it was an exceptional card.

  25. Nolan says:

    Sorry for the double post:


    Jung Hyun Cho def. Hong Seok Kim

    Wan Ki Chae def. Gu Yeon Won

    Seung Hwan Kim def. Young Sam Jung

    NamSun Kim def. Ho Joong Kim

    Ok Myoung Kim def. Jae Hyun So

    Dae Gun Kim def. Gi Young Nam

    Jung Gyu Choi def. Kelvin Fitial

    Ryuichi Murata def. Gil Myung Chun

    Seung Hwan Kim def. Wan Ki Chae

    NamSun Kim def. Ok Myoung Kim

    Chang-seob Lee def. Tae Hwa Lee

    Yoon Young Kim def. Sang-il An

    70 kg. Tournament Final:

    Kyeong Ho Kang def. Seung Hwan Kim

    90 kg. Tournament Final:

    Ryuichi Murata def. Jung Gyu Choi

    Ryuichi Murata’s victory in the tournament earned him a future title shot against Dennis Kang.

  26. There’d be more spirit love if we could somehow manage to see the show. Unless you’re in Korea, your SOL AFAIK. Although if I’m not, i’d love to know where i can see it.

  27. Jonathan says:

    Did the Yakuza kill Zach Arnold? Because here it is Monday and still no update. I am getting scared. What would a world without Zach Arnold be like?

  28. tomkay says:

    I see that Matt Hughes no longer has the Xyience link on his affiliations page but now has Nutritox has anyone tried their products?

  29. Jeremy (not that Jeremy) says:

    I’ve never even heard of Nutritox.

    I could try asking my GNC mole (regional sales manager).

    His take on Xyience was that although their products were good, they didn’t move much in terms of sales volume because, in his judgment, they didn’t have a large enough product line to get enough shelf space to be really visible in stores.

  30. Jeremy (not that Jeremy) says:

    Here’s an interesting five degrees of separation for you:

    UFC employs Matt Hughes
    Matt Hughes endorses Nutritox
    Nutritox is a supplement associated with the Dallas Mavericks
    The Dallas Mavericks are owned by Mark Cuban
    Mark Cuban is doing some small time investment in MMA to supply content to his HDNet television channel, which could involve employing a small number of high profile fighters to supplement their a la carte content from minor MMA organizations worldwide.

  31. The Gaijin says:

    Looks like there’s another UFC fighter disgruntled with the UFC’s contracts and/or negotiations for new deals.


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