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Options limited for UFC 11/21 Las Vegas show with Lesnar out

By Zach Arnold | October 26, 2009

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Now that Yahoo Sports reported that Brock Lesnar has canceled his booking on the November 21st card due to illness, it didn’t leave the company with many options as far as booking a replacement fight.

On paper, booking Shogun vs. Machida in the re-match here would have made sense because both men last trained for each other and there’s a desire for a re-match… but there’s no way either could fight due to medical suspensions by the California State Athletic Commission. Same case with Cain Velasquez, as you could have naturally booked him and Shane Carwin for the November 21st show in a #1 contender’s match (but not with the standard medical suspensions).

Which leaves us with Tito Ortiz vs. Forrest Griffin, a perfectly acceptable fight for business. I would anticipate it drawing better numbers than previous UFC shows over the last few months, but certainly the card could use a boost. Dan Henderson getting a new deal here would make a lot of sense, as a fight with him and Marquardt would really legitimize the card and get the attention of both casual and hardcore fans.

As for Carwin/Lesnar happening on January 2nd in Las Vegas, I wonder if that means Anderson Silva vs. Vitor Belfort becomes the semi-main event or if Silva’s camp backs off of taking that booking. You would think that with Lesnar’s name attached to the PPV that it would increase the chances of Silva’s camp taking the fight because of the bigger buyrate, which in turn means bigger $$$$.

Lesnar’s training partner spoke out about the fight cancellation today in The Las Vegas Sun.

Topics: Media, MMA, UFC, Zach Arnold | 84 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

84 Responses to “Options limited for UFC 11/21 Las Vegas show with Lesnar out”

  1. Alan Conceicao says:

    Any announce team will fail to be totally without bias, 45. You’re preaching to the choir in that respect bringing up the willingess of HBO to root for their contract kids. But that’s the point of why I think having judges listen to commentary is stupid.

    Why do judges need to hear commentary? Judges should be as much an expert, if not more so, than anyone on a microphone. It serves no positive purpose.

  2. Lol very true that MMA Tycoon guy is quite scary lol.

    UFC’s card aint been that great for awhile to be honest. Im sure they will pull something out the bag soon

  3. Fluyid says:

    “Rogan and Goldberg still have their issues…. But they are not half as bad as Frank Mir or the Showtime guys. And HBO Boxing has had some
    embarrassing moments as well. It hard being impartial”

    It really is tough to be impartial and to be able to always rise up above the line of discussion and thinking that seems to organically occur during the fights. In other words, the commentators get going on one line of sort of biased thinking and analysis and then they’re sort of stuck in that mode of thinking throughout that fight/fight card.

    As to the point of being ringside and the intensity, etc., not translating to TV, I don’t want to overdo that point, but it’s nearly impossible to understand the difference between live and up close vs. watching on a monitor sometimes.

    I was in Travis Lutter’s corner for the Trevor Prangley fight, for example, and it was very, very brutal. The video I saw sometime later fell way short of conveying what happened in there, and most people therefore weren’t able to appreciate what Lutter endured and lasted through. Just a brutal, brutal fight.

    PS – Get that MMA Tycoon guy out of here!

  4. Fluyid says:

    Just to stir some crap up and be a jackass, I submit this:

    On October 21st or 22nd, Dana White had this to say (taken from an MMA Junkie article dated October 22):

    “To be dead honest with you, I haven’t looked at the ticket report in three or four days. But the last time I looked, we were at like $2 million. I’m happy.”

    The event was on October 24th, right? So, according to White, three or four days before October 22nd, the gate was at approximately $2 million.

    Does that mean that they didn’t sell any tickets in the last days leading up to UFC 104? The CSAC has announced gross receipts of $1,913,093.62 and a net gate of $1,762,549 for the show.

  5. Mr.Roadblock says:

    Did anyone actually suggest judges listen to commentary? You can have a monitor without the commentators’ track.

    Up close is great, but you can also get distorted. I had a fighter a few years back who was caught up against the cage on the opposite side. We were yelling instructions from the corner only seeing our guy’s feet and the back of the opponent who was wailing away. Then bang, our guy lands an armbar. We went in the cage expecting to see our guy busted up. I grabbed the end-swell, my partner had the towel. Our guy stands up not a mark on him. Says everything hit his hands and forearms. When we got the tape and rewatched the fight, he as right, nothing landed. But if he didn’t land an armbar and the round ended in that position a judge on our side of the cage would think he got murdered.

  6. Robert Poole says:

    So it is not looking like that Vitor-Silva fight is going to be made. Aside from Anderson Silva’s waffling, there’s Vitor now on record saying he’s friends with Silva and doesn’t want to fight him:

    I wish people would stop training with that guy. Refusing to fight people hurts the fight industry. At least the Klitschkos are brothers. The rest of this is getting silly.


  7. Ivan Trembow says:

    If Koscheck fights for the Fight of the Night bonus instead of the win and foolishly stands with Johnson, then he’s likely to lose. But otherwise, I mean, if Rich Clementi could take Johnson down and beat him, why can’t Koscheck? No disrespect intended to Clementi, but Koscheck is a much better fighter.

  8. Fluyid says:

    Cecil Peoples, speaking with MMA Weekly:

    “So you in a bar with 200 people that are sloppy drunk, and you’re gonna argue with me about the decision? How does that work? Only in America. I give the fight to Machida in a very, very close fight. Now you’re pissed off because it’s my fault that you lost your money. No, it’s not. It’s Machida’s fault.

    If you don’t like it, you can go to hell.”

  9. Zack says:

    “Kizer is Nevada. The fight took place in CA. ”

    No shit….but he employs the same judges, dummy. You don’t think he should be aware of their overall career performances?

  10. Ivan Trembow says:

    Another week. Another unspeakably awful fight on The Ultimate Fighter. It must be Wednesday.

  11. 45 Huddle says:

    I gave up on the show until the semi-finals. But i did read the results online.

    What is worse? The fights or the fact that Rampage is 0-7 as a coach. I don’t care how you edit the show, a coach doing that bad shows he really didn’t want to be there…. I feel bad for the guys he picked.

  12. David M says:

    I have never been more embarrassed to be a fan of mma than after seeing Junk-Mitrione. Mitrione is a psychopath, and both were awful fighters. They literally just stood in the cage, gassed after 2 minutes, and swung at each other with their hands at their waists the entire fight. It was disgraceful. I don’t think either of them has ever slipped a punch before or run a mile.

    Scott Junk landed the worst takedown of all time–he literally just ran up to Mitrione, hugged him, and they fell down. I’m convinced any top 100 hw boxer would be a top 10 contender in mma with a year of grappling experience given how awful most of these guys are.

    After the fight Dana White raved about the fight and how they stood in the middle of the ring and “traded teh bombs.” Actually, I don’t really consider punches to be bombs if you get hit 100 times with your hands at your waist and don’t fall down. Dana is trying to turn this into ultimate boxing, and the only problem is that all these guys suck at boxing.

  13. Detective Roadblock says:

    I think a cruiserweight boxer ie O’Neil Bell would run through these guys. Even without any ground training.

    You’ve got Roy Nelson and some real bums on this show. I can only imagine it is so full of b-rate fighters so Kimbo had a good shot at winning. I know of several HWs that would put on better fights than this.

  14. Alan Conceicao says:

    All the idiots hyping this up to be some sort of exceptional season talent wise have just gone flat quiet now. No real surprise. Next week won’t be any better. I’ve seen Marcus Jones’ fights on Sun Sports – he’s terrible. His KO loss was incredibly amusing, since he held his hands like he was Royce Gracie in 1994.

  15. Fluyid says:

    I stopped watching after season 4, but was briefly duped into this season for two episodes.

    Time to pull the plug on this thing. Right now. Mid-season.

    Replace it with a replay of the old “Joe Schmo” show.

  16. 45 Huddle says:

    The sad thing is that this is the biggest ratings season ever for TUF. The 1st and 3rd episodes were extra high due to Kimbo… But the rest of the shows have all been around 2.7 or 2.8 Million viewers.

    And yet, a much better broadcast in the UFC 103 and 104 prelim shows only get 1.4 Million. People like garbage.

  17. Detective Roadblock says:

    Saturday night is a terrible night for TV ratings. If UFC had PPVs on Wed night the prelim ratings would be through the roof.

  18. Jonathan says:

    I agree with 45 Huddle in so much that 10-10 rounds would give Jordan Breen wet dreams AND that they are bad for the sport.

    Get off the fence and choose one way or the other.

  19. Mark says:

    Saturday night is a terrible night for TV ratings. If UFC had PPVs on Wed night the prelim ratings would be through the roof.

    Due to how late the shows end on the east coast, I don’t know about that. Wednesday shows running from 10pm-1am on the east coast when you have to go to work Thursday morning compared to being able to stay up later on a weekend would make a difference.

    And also, Fight Night shows have aired on week nights and only did slightly better than the prelim Saturday shows.

  20. Detective Roadblock says:

    Friday and Saturday nights are TV wastelands. Since most people are out doing something. Monday and Thursday are TVs biggest nights followed by Wed and Tues.

  21. Mr.Roadblock says:

    Two random thoughts that just popped in my head:

    1. Paul Williams (6’1″ Super Welterweight boxer) would beat everyone on this season of TUF.

    2. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Kimbo slipped into the TUF Finale. One of the guys gets an injury OR has a licensing problem in Nevada the week of the fight.

  22. Alan Conceicao says:

    Kimbo has a guaranteed contract with the UFC for at least one fight. He’s either going to be on the Finale or on UFC 107 in a big role making a lot of money.

  23. Mr.Roadblock says:

    I mean in the actual Final. Not just on the show. One of the 2 guys who are fighting for the contract drops out, is injured or has a medical/licensing issue. Of course it would be the “better” fighter this would happen to.

  24. Alan Conceicao says:

    I would consider that an issue if Kimbo was on the same contract as everyone else. But he isn’t. I think everyone by now recognizes that he’s not fighting for 8/8 when he gets off the show. I’d also bet money that sooner rather than later, we learn that he was paid to be on the show in the first place (in addition to all the perks about his family and management team being housed).

  25. Mr.Roadblock says:

    I’m sure you’re right about him getting paid to be on the show. He may even have a bonus in relation to the Nielsen Ratings.

    If he wins the Final I’m sure he won’t be subject to that contract. But I won’t be surprised to see him in there. Because a win will allow him to be sling shotted with one or two victories (if they can find guys bummy enough) from a title shot. Imagine Kimbo vs Brock.

  26. 45 Huddle says:

    Paul Williams would get wrecked in MMA. Sorry, but his style of fighting is not cross over worthy. There are some boxers who would do well making the transition. Paul Williams is not one of them.

    Also, I don’t think the UFC could find any way of getting Kimbo close to a title shot. He would lose to anybody credible.

  27. David M says:

    Why would Paul Williams not cross over? Too fast, too much reach, too accurate, and too athletic? Yeah, maybe if he were more like UFC veteran Scott Junk he would have made it into teh Octagon. Scott Junk basically summarized everything that is so embarrassing about mma last nite in his pre-fight interview when he said (paraphrasing) “When I fight, I throw technique out the window and just try to put my hand through the other guy’s head.”

    All this shit about a boxer’s style not translating to mma is pure bullshit. These guys have so much better timing, speed, accuracy, punching power, movement, etc., that there is nothing about a boxer’s style that wouldn’t cross over. Obviously they would have to do years of grappling training to be really competitive (except at hw, where even a month of jiu jitsu would put Wladimir Klitschko as a top 5 hw), but if BJ Penn can dominate everyone at 155 with just a jab and some head movement, what would a real boxer do?

  28. Jonathan says:

    David M

    BJ Penn dominates the 155lb division because of his overall skill set, which includes takedown and submission defense, ability to slip punches, stamina, and mindset/knowledge inside the Octagon.

    You make it seem like ALL he has is a jab and weave and that is why he is a dominate 155 champ.

  29. 45 Huddle says:

    Williams and an awkward lanky. It works for boxing. It would get him taken down every single time in MMA. Even when his opponents clinch on him in boxing, he doesn’t look stable enough.

    “All this shit about a boxer’s style not translating to mma is pure bullshit.”

    Nope, it isn’t BS at all. Look at every single sport that is part of MMA and you will see absolutely fantastic athletes who are completely unable to make the transition. Why? There skills only translate to that one sport and they are not able to transfer them.

    There are NCAA National Wrestling Champions who completely fall flat in MMA. Same with BJJ World Champions. Semmy Schilt is the best or one of the best K-1 guys, and he is average at best at MMA. His striking skills do no translate to MMA.

    Yes, there are the Brock Lesnar, Josh Koscheck, and BJ Penn’s of the world who do both well. But they are the exception. Actually, what is more likely is guys who are very good at that one sport (but not the best), and their skills translate the best.

    I do believe if the sport of boxing was gone tomorrow and all of the athletes moved over to MMA…. That we would have one of those guys as World Champion in MMA. I just don’t think they would completely take over the sport. And the one’s people think would be the best, likely would not be. It would be the guys right below that level….

  30. David M says:

    You just changed your argument. You said his style wouldn’t work, now you’re saying he doesn’t have the right body type. I agree that his body type would make him susceptible for takedowns, but he is very fleet of foot and hand, and given how long his arms are and how awful mma fighters are at avoiding punches, he would probably be able to jab and anticipate takedowns because nobody in mma would stand with him for more than a few seconds before shooting in out of fear of getting hit.

    K-1 striking has nothing to do with boxing. K1 is for people who weren’t good enough at boxing to make it in that sport. 48 year old Ray Mercer knocked out one of the most decorated HWs in mma history in 9 seconds. Andre Arlovski hit Sylvia for 5 rounds and didn’t do that, and 48 yr old Mercer hit him once and he fell like a tree. Maybe 6 years ago Rampage went into K1 and KO’d Abidi, and Tom Erikson, a 40 yr old wrestler, KO’d Mike Bernardo, a K1 legend. K1 is a joke.

  31. David M says:


    I’m the biggest BJ fan on this board, and I am keenly aware of how good he is at all areas of the game. My point was that on the feet, he dominates people basically with a jab and good head movement. Obviously he can stay in the pocket because he isn’t worried about getting taken down. However, his hand skills are so much less than those of a guy like Paul Williams that I don’t even think the latter would need to stay in the pocket, he could just use his freakish reach and speed and movement. I am not suggesting he could come in and dominate mma without some significant grappling training. Rather, my point is that he would be so far beyond what any of these guys have ever seen on the feet that to call his skill set or even his frame as inadequate would soon seem ridiculous.

    In mma now, if a wrestler wants to take a striker down, he can just bumrush him and close the distance because he knows that most mma “strikers” are not good at striking. Trying to run in on Paul Williams would be suicidal. Too fast, too long, too accurate, too much movement.

    Since we are on the boxing topic, what are the odds that Mayorga comes to the cage for his first match with a cigarette in his mouth?

  32. Mr.Roadblock says:

    You know an in shape Mayorga could win TUF 10. Really anybody with a crisp 1-2. Shane Mosley would mop the floor with these guys. I’m only listing boxers that are outweighed by these mooks by 60lbs or more.

    I haven’t seen a punch on TUF blocked with anything other than a face yet. I don’t think any of these arm punching HWs could drop any of the welterweight boxers I’ve named here.

    Before anyone gets crazy about boxing vs MMA, it should be noted I’m only talking about the weak class of TUF 10 fighters.

  33. Steve4192 says:

    I agree that a competent boxer could beat a number of the brawlers on TUF 10, but you are crazy if you think they would win the whole thing. Wren & Madsen are both fantastic wrestlers and neither guy looks to ‘stand & Wang’, and Nelson is too smart to stand with a boxer.

    None of the boxers mentioned would get past those guys, especially not the lighter guys being mentioned. Do you honestly believe that Shane Mosley would be able to KO Justin Wren before Wren could clinch up and use his Greco to take him down? I sure as hell don’t.

  34. Mark says:

    Friday and Saturday nights are TV wastelands. Since most people are out doing something. Monday and Thursday are TVs biggest nights followed by Wed and Tues.

    I realize that. But my point is UFC has put on far superior Fight Night shows than the no starpower prelims they’ve shown that didn’t do much better in weeknight timeslots, so I cannot imagine the prelims they chose to show doing any better on Monday than they would on Saturday. With the exception of a big main event like Ortiz-Shamrock or the hype from the TUF 10 season premiere helping it out, they usually average a 1.3 to 1.7. My point is it’s the show quality that makes the difference: if it was a fight you really wanted to see you’d stay in to catch it. And UFC isn’t even showing the best prelim fights on the card.


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