Thursday, March 31, 2011

UFC Quick Quote: Dana White would 'definitely' explore an overtime round

Source: http://www.mmamania.com/2011/3/31/2083328/ufc-quick-quote-dana-white-would-definitely-explore-an-overtime-round

Masakatsu Funaki Fabricio Werdum Harold Howard Alexander Otsuka Jae Suk Lim

Announces from : MMALinker

This feeds is listing all the global announcements of : MMALinker

An MMA community for the fans, by the fans.

Source: http://www.mmalinker.com/forum/

Kazuyuki Fujita Tim Sylvia Jung Chan Sung Antônio Rogério Nogueira Maurice Mo Smith

Matt Hughes has 'one or two' more fights left ... but he has to go out with a win (Video)

Source: http://www.mmamania.com/2011/3/31/2082292/matt-hughes-has-one-or-two-more-fights-left-but-he-has-to-go-out-with

Tim Sylvia Jung Chan Sung Antônio Rogério Nogueira Maurice Mo Smith Yoshiyuki Yoshida

Lew Polley and Zach Davis Join MMAWeekly Radio as TUF 13 Correspondents

MMAWeekly Radio is proud to announce Lew Polley and Zach Davis as correspondents for Season 13 of "The Ultimate Fighter." Read More >>

Source: http://mmaweekly.com/lew-polley-and-zach-davis-join-mmaweekly-radio-as-correspondents-for-tuf-13

Kazushi Gracie Hunter Sakuraba Kalib Starnes Don Barr Jon Jones Kiyoshi Tamura

Moving On: With Noel Devine Gone, Who Will Be West Virginia's Next Great RB?

Things are changing in Morgantown—out with the old and in with the new. 2011 is a year of transition for WVU football, and the excitement is building for what could be in West Virginia’s football future.

Of course, none of this is breaking news to anyone. We are all well aware that Dana Holgorsen is in town and in charge of the Mountaineer offense, an offense that is generally a pass first and run when you can offense that will rely heavily on Geno Smith and the receiving corps.

Even though this is happening, WVU has had a proud history of running backs and rushing yards that hopefully will not die within the next few seasons.

Even though Mountaineer fans are hungry for a good receiver to come our way and give us our first 1,000-yard receiving season since Chris Henry in 2003 and David Saunders in 1996 (our only two 1,000-yard receivers by the way), we still want to see that our running backs continue to be some of the best in the nation.  

Noel Devine was one of the most explosive and electrifying running backs that WVU has ever had. He had the ability at any time throughout his time at West Virginia to bust out on an amazing 80-something-yard touchdown run.

Devine could literally bounce off opponents and continue gaining yards while being wrestled to the ground. He has some of the most spectacular highlights of any college football player that I know of, and I encourage fans to look some of them up on YouTube. He has even been compared to Barry Sanders by NFL Network analyst Michael Irvin and Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano, and rightfully so.

However, I think everyone can agree that during Devine’s senior season there was something amiss. After the Louisiana State game in September, Noel never really regained his “swagger.” Whether it was the issue with his foot or something else (I am not trying to say that there was something else), Noel was not the same explosive running back that we were accustomed to seeing. His statistics below will show this as well.

 

Noel Devine

2007 Rushes: 73 Yards: 627 Touchdowns: 6 Long: 76 Average per Carry: 8.6 (second-string running back)

2008 Rushes: 206 Yards: 1,289 Touchdowns: 4 Long: 92 Average per Carry: 6.3

2009 Rushes: 241 Yards: 1,465 Touchdowns: 13 Long: 88 Average per Carry: 6.1

2010 Rushes: 208 Yards: 934 Touchdowns: 6 Long: 50 Average per Carry: 4.5

Statistics from wvustats.com

 

Out of the 208 carries that Noel had in 2010, he averaged only 4.5 yards per carry.  These are not horrible statistics, yet compared to his 6.1 to 8.6 yards per carry during his first three seasons, this seems substandard for a running back that entered 2010 as a dark horse for the Heisman Trophy, as reported by ESPN senior writer Ivan Maisel.

There are a lot of schools out there that would have given up a lot for a running back that could have gotten 934 yards rushing last season. However, these are not the stats we expected from Devine.

West Virginia has during the past two decades produced an impressive collection of running backs that gained at least 1,000 yards each season. In fact, since 1996 WVU has had 13 1,000-yard rushing seasons by five different running backs, with the exception of the 2004 and 2010 seasons.

So now the question is who will stand up and be the next great Mountaineer running back?

There is a lot of potential on the 2011 roster with talent like Shawn Alston, Trey Johnson, Andrew Buie and Ryan Clarke. Maybe even Tavon Austin could get in the mix, even though it would appear that Holgorsen plans to keep him at receiver, and with good cause. Maybe it could be someone completely unexpected, like when Steve Slaton stepped up in 2005.

Regardless, we have a lot to be excited about in Morgantown. Spring practice is already here, and before you know it September will roll around, and we will all be tailgating in our old gold and blue.

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/621140-moving-on-with-devine-gone-who-will-be-west-virginias-next-great-rb

Leonardo Lucio Nascimento Matt Hughes Nick Serra Kyle Bradley  Anderson Silva

Thiago Silva admits to using "urine adulterant" for UFC 125 drug test, will accept any and all punishment from the NSAC

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

SilvaThiago_CR150_14.jpg
Thiago Silva submitted an altered urine sample to the Nevada State Athletic Commission for his drug test for his bout with Brandon Vera at UFC 125, and the Commission on Tuesday revealed that it was "inconsistent with human urine." Silva has now released a statement, and has admitted his wrong-doing, saying he will accept whatever punishment is handed down to him by the NSAC.

Here is Silva in his own words:

"We make decisions every day of our lives. Some are good and some are bad. When you make a bad decision, you can either make the situation worse by trying to cover it up or lie about it or just stick your head in the sand and refuse to acknowledge it even happened or you can own up to it with an honest explanation, accept the consequences of your actions, apologize to the people affected by it, learn from it and move on. I'm choosing the second option.

I used a urine adulterant when giving a sample following my fight with Brandon Vera. I did so in an attempt to alter the results of the test and knowingly broke the rules of the Nevada Athletic Commission. This was a terrible decision on my part for which I will be punished. I am prepared to accept this punishment, learn from it and move on. I apologize to the Commission, the UFC, Brandon Vera and the MMA fans.

I do want to explain the circumstances behind my actions. Please do not interpret this as an attempt to justify my actions. I know they were wrong and I know I made bad decisions and I know I deserve to be punished. That is why I began my statement with an admission and an apology before going into these details. This is not an excuse, only an explanation.

I had been tested on five prior occasions while fighting for the UFC before the Brandon Vera fight. Four of the tests were urine only and one included a blood sample as well in New Jersey the day before the fight. I passed each of those tests. I suffered a severe back injury shortly before the Rashad Evans fight. It was the biggest fight of my career and there was no way I was going to pull out of it. I fought and lost and was out of action for a year rehabilitating the injury and getting ready to fight again.

I reinjured my back 45 days before the fight with Brandon Vera. After not fighting for a year, I made the decision to not pull out of the fight. I also decided that the only way I could continue with the fight was to take injections in my back and spine that contained substances prohibited by the Nevada Athletic Commission. I also made the decision to use a product to hide the presence of these substances in a urine test.

These decisions were mine and mine alone. I did not share this information with anyone prior to the fight for fear that I would not be allowed to fight. I obviously made a terrible decision. I have since learned that it may have even been possible to fight had I been open and honest and disclosed the injury and treatment prior to the fight. I also realize that not being allowed to fight as a result of the treatment would have been a better result than the mess into which I have now gotten myself.

Again, I take full responsibility for making the decision to break the rules and try to cheat the system. I will accept the punishment I receive and will learn from this. I plan to come back as a better person and professional as a result."


Penick's Analysis: An admission after the fact is much better than a denial, and it's good that he's owning up to it and accepting the punishment coming his way. At the same time, this is one of those situations where you ask "is he sorry or just sorry he got caught?" Had the test not caught that it had been altered, and had Silva gotten off without getting flagged no one would have known what he did. Still, admitting his wrong-doing and accepting punishment is more honorable than attempting to deny it when he's been caught. He cheated, he got caught, he'll be punished, and he'll have this stigma on him in the future. How this affects his spot in the UFC remains to be seen, but if history is any indication there won't be any added ramifications from the UFC.

[Thiago Silva art by Cory Gould (c) MMATorch.com]

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_8921.shtml

Tim Sylvia Jaime Jara Mario Sperry Kazuyuki Fujita Tim Sylvia

ROUNDTABLE (pt. 2 of 2): Is Rashad Evans being too dramatic in his split from Greg Jackson's camp, or is he justified in his feelings? Perez, Hobaugh, Marsh, Williams and Hyden

RashadEvans_150artCG_30.jpg
Is Rashad Evans just in his feelings on Greg Jackson and camp, or is he being too dramatic in the context of being a professional fighter?

ANWAR PEREZ, MMATORCH COLUMNIST

Last time I checked, you get paid to fight, no matter who it is.� This is a sport.� Rashad Evans is being overly dramatic.� If this were the NFL and both Rashad Evans and Jon Jones played for the same team in college, and now are opponents on the playing field, you think Evans or Jones would say "no I can't play in this game because I don't want to face my friend."� It's a business, and as long as fighters are getting paid (Evans being one of the most well-paid when he fights) then there should be no issues.� Evans needs to man up, and take whatever fight is available when offered.� You can still be friends (Matt Hughes and Sean Sherk for example) but you need to get your head re-examined and "man up" as they say.

ERIC HOBAUGH, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

He is only pumping up the fight. He is doing his best to gain attention. �I feel like Greg Jackson clearly outlined the fact he would not corner one fighter over the other if they ever fought. �I believe this is standard operating procedure when a great trainer like Jackson has two fighters fighting for the same belt. Rashad is an emotional fighter, speaking with his heart. It sounds to me like Rashad is upset with the fact that Jones would take a fight against him. Once the fight Is over they will both return to Jackson's camp.

GRIFFIN MARSH, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Call me cliche but doesn't it sound like Rashad is... scared? �I mean, at this point, IF things really went down the way it did, wouldn't Rashad be foaming at the mouth to take this fight? �Instead we hear how good he knows Jones is and then he rips into Greg Jackson openly in the media. �I think Rashad knows it's a fight he can't win.

ALEX WILLIAMS, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Too dramatic.� I'm still not sure why he got so upset.

FRANK HYDEN, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

I can see both sides of this. I understand Rashad's feelings, but this is a business. Sometimes you have to fight guys you would rather not. I don't think Rashad is being disrespected by Greg Jackson and Jon Jones agreeing to fight Rashad if the UFC wants it. I just consider that to be good for business. It might not be ideal for Rashad, but it's something he should have wanted.

[Rashad Evans art by Cory Gould (c) MMATorch.com]

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/roundtables/article_8874.shtml

Urijah Faber Siyar Bahadurzada Wes Soldier Combs  Glover Teixeira Jan Nortje

TUF 13: Brock Lesnar's Road Back to the Title Begins Tonight

Source: http://www.bloodyelbow.com/2011/3/30/2081465/tuf-13-brock-lesnars-road-back-to-the-title-begins-tonight

Oleg Taktarov Jon Olav Einemo John Lewis Jeff Joslin Jay Silva

Nate Diaz vs. Rory MacDonald still on at UFC 129, Wednesday Twitter comments just venting frustration

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

LogoUFC_150_845.jpg
Nate Diaz caused a bit of a stir on Wednesday morning when he took to Twitter to vent some frustrations, and gave the impression his UFC 129 bout with Rory MacDonald was in danger next month.

"Can someone tell Canada to quit trippin and let me up in there I'm tryin to get paid," wrote Diaz. But while that comment could be construed as him having difficulties, his manager Cesar Gracie says he was simply venting about extra paperwork he's been made to fill out for the fight.

Diaz has a mark on his criminal record for disturbing the peace stemming from an incident in Reno, Nevada in 2006, but in comments made to MMAJunkie.com, Gracie said the UFC just found out about the charge recently and wanted him to make sure he had everything in line with the Canadian government and are having him fill out more paperwork to have everything in order.

"He was assaulted by a bouncer," Gracie said. "The UFC said, 'This might give you trouble going in (to Canada).' Well, he's been there eight times since then, and it's never been a problem for him."

"But just to cover all the bases, they want him to do a little paperwork. It's no big deal."

So there is nothing to worry about, and the fight is set to headline the Spike TV Preliminary Card portion of the UFC's record setting event at the Rogers Centre in Toronto. The main pay-per-view card is headlined by the Welterweight Championship bout between Georges St. Pierre and Jake Shields.

Link to Original Source Article

Penick's Analysis: Diaz vs. MacDonald is one of the fights I'm very much looking forward to on this card, so thankfully it sounds like this is nothing. The UFC is right to make sure they've got everything in line, especially with this event, and in the end a little extra paperwork isn't going to kill Diaz. It's only a slight inconvenience in the grand scheme of things, especially in being a part of a card like this.

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_8852.shtml

Keith Hackney Kultar Gill Valentijn Overeem Jake O Brien Dos Caras Jr  

UFC Quick Quote: Jon Jones vs Rashad Evans puts Georges St. Pierre in an 'awkward situation'

Source: http://www.mmamania.com/2011/3/30/2081563/ufc-quick-quote-jon-jones-vs-rashad-evans-puts-georges-st-pierre-in

Brock Lesnar Scott Lighty Ricardo Almeida  Hirotaka Yokoi Gegard Mousasi

TUF 13 Episode 1 Recap: Teams Decided, First Fight Goes Down

Week one of "The Ultimate Fighter Season 13" is in the books. Coaches Brock Lesnar and Junior dos Santos made their team selections and the first fight is already history. Read More >>

Source: http://mmaweekly.com/tuf-13-episode-1-recap-teams-decided-first-fight-goes-down

Umer W Chheena Thiago Alves  Anthony Torres Chris Lytle Kristian Rothaermel

UFC announces list of fighters scheduled to appear at Toronto UFC Fan Expo; Strikeforce to get a booth during April 29 and 30 event

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

LogoUFC_150_843.jpg
The UFC's first ever Canadian edition of the UFC Fan Expo takes place on April 29 and 30 from the Direct Energy Centre in Toronto, and the UFC on Monday announced a star-studded lineup of fighters that will appear in autograph sessions and more during the two day expo. In addition, Ariel Helwani reports that Zuffa's newly acquired promotion Strikeforce will have a booth at the expo.

A massive list of fighters are set to appear during the expo, as the organization announced that UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones, UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva, UFC Hall of Famer Chuck Liddell, UFC Hall of Famer Royce Gracie, B.J. Penn, UFC Heavyweight Champion Cain Velasquez, UFC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz, former UFC Heavyweight Champion Frank Mir, former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Rashad Evans, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Josh Koscheck, Ryan Bader, Stephan Bonnar, Shane Carwin, Matt Mitrione, Brendan Schaub, Jon Fitch, Miguel Angel Torres, Anthony Pettis, Clay Guida, Joe Lauzon, Cole Miller, Sam Stout, Carlos Condit and Jonathan Brookins are all scheduled.

"We're excited to bring some of our top stars to Toronto for the UFC Fan Expo," UFC President Dana White said in a release. "This is going to be the biggest weekend not only in UFC history, but in the history of our sport. I'm looking forward to giving our fans once-in-a-lifetime access to our fighters at the Fan Expo."

Zuffa's purchase of Strikeforce earlier this month also opens up the festivities to that organization, though there's no word on just who will appear for them. Still, the simple fact that they'll have a booth is surreal enough in and of itself.

The UFC Fan Expo coincides with the massive UFC 129 event, which has already smashed records for MMA in North America with 55,000 tickets already sold for the event for an $11 million dollar gate.

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_8847.shtml

Josh Hendricks Darren M Jackson Ivan Serati Umer W Chheena Thiago Alves 

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ultimate Fighter 13: Episode 1 recap and discussion for 'Lesnar vs dos Santos'

Source: http://www.mmamania.com/2011/3/30/2080435/the-ultimate-fighter-tuf-13-episode-1-recap-and-discussion

Per Eklund Rumina Sato Ryan Bader  Mirko Cro Cop Filipović Tito Ortiz

Anderson Silva thinks Jon Jones is "amazing" and believes he'll be UFC Champ for a long time

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

Anderson_Silva_UFC_still_180_27.jpg
One fight that has been heavily discussed since Jon Jones captured the Light Heavyweight Championship on Saturday night is a potential bout between him and UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva.

While there's no clear interest from either fighter about that particular fight at the moment, Silva has given some thoughts about the new Light Heavyweight Champ in an interview with ULTMMA.

"Tonight, Jon Jones... I don't know, amazing," Silva commented. "This is new for Jon Jones. This can continue for Jon Jones.. in more fights, more experience, techniques."

"My opinion of Jon Jones? [He'll be] champion for a long time"

Asked about whether he'd move up to light heavyweight again, Silva was non-commital, but made it clear he's just fine where he's at.

"I don't have a plan to move up or down," he said. "I'm very happy [at middleweight]."

Penick's Analysis: It doesn't sound like Silva has any interest in going up, though he didn't exactly shut it down either. He's got the same impression of Jones as most do at this point, and I don't think anyone is necessarily chomping at the bit to stand across the cage from Jones at this point. This would be a huge fight that I'd love to see, but it's nothing more than a fantasy fight right now.

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_8833.shtml

Tito Ortiz Kevin Kimbo Slice Ferguson Krzysztof Soszynski Ryan Jensen Jens Pulver

Regime Change for Detroit Pistons? Time to Bring Back Laimbeer!

Someone brought to my attention recently that Detroit Pistons articles are beginning to become repetitive and boring. To me, this is a clear reflection of the current squad playing in Auburn Hills.

This team is boring, and without a clear understanding of the direction of the team, it has become an alarmingly repetitive lesson in futility.

The real problem, as everyone with a basketball pulse can see, is that this team was not built to succeed from the very beginning of the season. Add to that the fact that team president Joe Dumars has had his hands tied while ownership sorts itself out, and you have a recipe for repetitive disaster.

On a nightly basis, we are subjected to a team that is inadequately built, and woefully run.

If this team were at least competitive on most nights, some fans would give the team the benefit of the doubt. But instead, this is a terrible team that in no way resembles what Pistons fans have come to appreciate from their once sterling franchise.

This is a team that can not play defense against even pedestrian teams. This is a team whose two main free agents over the last two years, Charlie Villanueva and Ben Gordon, are bench players that are little more than role players at this point of their Pistons careers.

This is also a team that has no clear direction, giving this season a purgatory-like feel.

From day one, it was clear that this team was ill-equipped for a successful season. But still, we gave management the benefit of the doubt and hoped that they would at least develop the young guys and we would have something to show for a lottery-bound season.

On the one hand, rookie Greg Monroe has surprised many with his rebounding ability and desire to improve his game. Personally, I had no clue he could play with toughness. He has been a pleasant surprise, and is the best building block moving forward.

However, everyone else on the roster has been a disappointment, and management needs to take the blame.

What exactly do we have in Austin Daye? We continue to be promised that we have the next Tayshaun Prince in the young forward, but in many ways he has regressed as a player.

What about Rodney Stuckey? Besides being unable to get along with the coach, the only thing we know for sure is that he is not a viable option at point guard.

No matter how you look at it, the problem with this team comes back to management.

Ownership has held the state of Michigan hostage while squabbling over the sale price of the team.

Dumars, despite the restrictions placed on him by said ownership, still has been eerily silent throughout this tumultuous season, and has missed out on opportunities to improve this team. Why exactly did he opt to keep Tayshaun Prince, an unrestricted free agent that is likely gone after this season, when Dallas was offering an expiring contract and a first-round pick? Instead, Prince will walk away and we will have nothing to show for him except maybe a trade exemption.

Sure, this is a fairly weak draft, but wouldn't two first-round picks be better than one? I'm serious, folks, why did he skip out on this deal?

But the biggest reason for the utter disaster that this season has become is coach John Kuester.

Kuester has feuded with nearly all of his players, has zero respect from those players, is quick to throw his guys under the bus, and has yet to show a coherent understanding of how to put forth a competitive team.

Sure, the players are easy targets to blame. They are millionaires that have been petulant at best, insubordinate at worst. They are easy to hate. They are playing a kid's game and earning more than you and I will ever see in our lifetimes.

But they also have a pretty good track record when it comes to winning. They know what they are doing. Can you say the same for Kuester?

Kuester only had one other head coaching gig in his life, and he was a train wreck at the college level.

Since then, he has toiled on NBA sidelines as an assistant coach under some very good basketball minds.

But the problem is that just because you had a good teacher, doesn't mean that you will be a good teacher. Sometimes, people just have that "it" factor that separates them from the frauds. And sometimes, people just don't have what it takes to be an effective coach.

Has Kuester done one single thing to make you believe in his ability as a coach?

Personally, Kuester may be the worst coach I have ever seen in any sport.

Let's take a look at what Kuester had to say when he was introduced as head coach two years ago:

"We'll do things the right way."

"Championships are won playing defense. We will be a grind-it-out team."

"Communicate, help and trust will be the three keys."

"Hamilton and Prince are high character and I trust them."

What a difference a couple years make.

Looking at this team today, these quotes sound like punch lines.

The "do things the right way" mantra was all Larry Brown, and this is as far from a Larry Brown team as possible. Brown teams almost always struggle at first and then improve markedly due to the respect that the players have for him, and his ability to teach and coach up those players.

Nobody on this team respects Kuester, and none of the players have improved under his watch.

"Championships are won playing defense. We will be a grind-it-out team."

This is not only laughable, but sad at the same time. As of March 30, 2011, the Detroit Pistons are giving up the worst field goal percentage in the league at 48 percent. Let that sink in for a second, the Pistons have the worst defense in the game.

"Communicate, help and trust will be the three keys."

If by that you mean "do not communicate, do not help, and do not trust anyone" then you might be on to something. This is a fractured team, solidified only by their distrust and disdain for their coach.

When he was recently ejected from a game, his players clapped. His players have no idea what is expected of them, and they know that their coach will not trust them to play through slumps or bad decisions that are going to happen during the course of an NBA season.

"Hamilton and Prince are high character and I trust them."

This one is almost too good to be true. Of all the players that have had issues with Kuester, these two are the biggest critics. All season long, these two "high character" guys have openly questioned Kuester, to the point that both have been benched at points throughout the year.

Not exactly a trusting relationship.

By any standard of measurement, this team has gotten worse over the last two years, and Kuester has obviously failed miserably at his job. He must be let go after this season.

Who's Next?

With Kuester obviously done in Detroit, the next question becomes who will replace him?

In order to figure this out, we will have to know whether or not Joe Dumars is retained as team president.

Personally, I would let him go and bring in a proven NBA executive such as Kevin Pritchard or Steve Kerr.

That being said, Dumars' name still holds some cachet, and he could just as easily be brought back.

If Dumars returns, the replacement coach will need to be vetted by the ownership.

I have a feeling that the new owner will want to make a splash with his first coach. You can expect rumors of Jerry Sloan, Jeff Van Gundy, and even a return of Larry Brown.

You can expect Dumars to try to discourage all of these picks. Dumars may not have a lot of ego, but a veteran general manager doesn't want a power hungry head coach, and each of these men exemplify that trait.

Additionally, Sloan is likely done as a coach, Van Gundy likes announcing too much, and Brown is likely heading back to the college ranks.

The next group of prospective coaches will focus on hot shot assistants or re-treads. Again, the new owner will want to make a splash, so this will bring to the fore-front a name that will make all Pistons fans united in their delight.

Bill Laimbeer.

For years, Pistons fans have debated whether or not Laimbeer would make a good coach. He has already been a head coach and a winning one at that, but of course that was with the other gender.

That had been the biggest knock against the former Pistons center.

However, for the past year, Laimbeer has been an assistant coach for the Minnesota Timberwolves and while that team has struggled mightily during his tenure, Laimbeer has already won some acclaim from one player: Kevin Love.

During a recent appearance on Dan Patrick's nationally syndicated radio show, he spoke highly of Laimbeer, even claiming that the former Piston had given him pointers on rebounding that had improved his numbers.

These are the types of tangible stories that resonate with players.

Furthermore, Laimbeer commands respect. Check out this excerpt from an article by Lewis Dawson on Sports Report 360:

"Bill Laimbeer has a gift. Laimbeer is an excellent assistant coach. Laimbeer knows how to pull strings and push buttons to get the most potential out of players. Laimbeer and Love communicate well with one another. Laimbeer is helping Love improve each game. Laimbeer should be hired as a head coach in the NBA sometime over the next couple of seasons."

Who better than Laimbeer to repair the Pistons, and what better fit would the former star have for his first NBA gig than his home away from home?

Furthermore, what selection would make more of a splash for the new owner than to return a hero back to his former stomping grounds?

John Kuester was right about what it would take to make the Pistons a winner again. The problem is that he just isn't equipped to make those things happen.

But what Kuester lacks, Laimbeer has in spades.

This is a no-brainer pick for the Pistons, and this decision could shape the next decade of this once-proud franchise.

 

 

   
   

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/650002-regime-change-for-detroit-pistons-time-to-bring-back-laimbeer

Frank Shamrock Gilbert Yvel Tom Howard Takeshi Inoue Nam Phan

Ground Game

Wrestling, jujitsu, ground and pound or submit your opponent for the victory

Statistics : 338 Topics || 2981 Posts Last post by TTY

Source: http://www.mmalinker.com/forum/ground-game/

Paul Varelans Mark Coleman Tito Ortiz Per Eklund Rumina Sato

$30 Everlast MMA Amatuer Hybrid Gloves

Everlast MMA Amatuer Hybrid Gloves – $30 Made of high grade leather. Curved anatomical grip with reinforced seaming around the palm. Get it before midnight or your size sells out.


Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/mmahq/main/~3/8UGKuyNNWlQ/

Jason Lambert Ronaldo de Souza Shane Carwin Mike Nickels Rashad Evans

ROUNDTABLE: With GSP seemingly cooling to a fight with Anderson Silva, do you see the fight happening this year? Hansen, Hobaugh, Hyden, Marsh, Perez, Williams, Pelkey and Penick

GSP_TB150_11.jpg
With Georges St. Pierre not seeming wholly interested in a fight with Anderson Silva, do you think that fight will happen this year if he beats Jake Shields at UFC 129?

RICH HANSEN, MMATORCH COLUMNIST

GSP is going to fight Anderson Silva after he dispatches Shields.� Whenever GSP says anything that sounds less than 100% enthusiastic about the fight, it's a money grab, plain and simple.� And considering the fact that fighters have near zero rights, good for him.� He (and Anderson) deserve every cent that they can bleed out of Zuffa's coffers.� And let's hope that instead of their massive paydays for this fight being a one-time deal, they set a new precedent for fighter salaries.� Especially now that fighters have one less option.

ERIC HOBAUGH, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

I have never wanted to see a fight more than the GSP and Silva super fight. �I am glad GSP has finally started to talk about the reality of what it will take to fight a much bigger fighter in Silva. I am also glad to see GSP is looking at moving up permanently, or that is how I am taking his comments. He has cleaned out his current weight class and so has Silva. It is potentially the largest pay per view fight in history. I get why the fans and the UFC want this fight so bad. I don't see this fight in 2011, though. I think it happens mid-2012.

FRANK HYDEN, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

I think there's a good chance of it happening eventually, but not this year. Assuming that GSP beats Shields, there's nothing for GSP left to do. Who does he fight? Everyone that comes to mind has already been manhandled by GSP. If GSP beats Shields, I'd personally love to see them match GSP against Nick Diaz, just to see what happens.

I think GSP vs. Silva could happen this year, but it would mean a major turnabout for GSP. I want to see that fight happen more than any other fight right now, but only if both guys truly want it.

GRIFFIN MARSH, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Call me cliche but GSP sounded to me like he wants no part of Anderson Silva. �He listed many 'reasons' why he's opposed to the bout. Reasons=excuses. �He should be willing to fight anyone, anywhere. �I don't believe this fight will ever happen. �Anderson Is the best fighter of all time and I think GSP and his camp know it's a fight he cannot win.

ANWAR PEREZ, MMATORCH COLUMNIST

Three weeks ago, I would have said that GSP fights Anderson Silva, no questions asked.� Now, with the acquisition of Strikeforce, regardless of what Dana White says concerning Strikeforce being "business as usual," the UFC's options to make fights for both fighters are a lot more interesting.� Though it's a fight fans want to see, the UFC themselves have to think that it's hard to have their two most dominant fighters face each other, knowing that one would (obviously) lose.� Yes, I know it's a sport.� But, looking from the UFC's perspective, I'm sure they are looking at all the options they have for the future, and wondering if this is a short term gain, or a long time investment.� I think the fight will eventually happen, after a few months of stalling, and when it does, a new era in MMA will unquestionably begin.

ALEX WILLIAMS, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

If the UFC brass is willing to pay GSP a lot for it, I think he'll accept it.� Even though it's not fair to expect GSP to move up 15 pounds, a lot of fans will criticize him if he refuses to do so.� That social pressure (and, you know, millions of dollars) will push him into a bout with Anderson Silva.

MATT PELKEY, MMATORCH COLUMNIST

It seems less and less likely by the day, but let's just get past the St. Pierre-Shields fight at UFC 129 first. That's not my way of saying Shields has a chance at pulling the upset (he doesn't), but let's not forget that Georges St. Pierre is right in the middle of training camp to defend his Welterweight Title. That's a job he takes very seriously and is very focused on. Perhaps he's not actually sitting around every day drooling over the prospects�of a megafight with Anderson Silva like the rest of us keyboard warriors. Perhaps that's why he sounds cool to the idea right now. I imagine the question can get annoying. Maybe St. Pierre takes a huge breath in the middle of the Octagon following a victory over Shields and exhales knowing he's leaving the welterweight division for a new challenge. Maybe he has no intentions of making the move up in weight or even doing a catchweight bout with Silva. No one knows right now, but I we'll get a better idea if we ask him again in two or three months.

JAMIE PENICK, MMATORCH EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

I think there's a slight possibility we can see it this year. The way that happens is if GSP gets past Shields and immediately begins the process of bulking up for this fight. While he works on getting his weight up to make this shift in his MMA career, Silva can take out the last true deserving challenger to his Middleweight Championship in Yushin Okami in August. Then, the UFC can book GSP vs. Silva on the year end show in December/January. I think that's the best-case scenario for the UFC to put this together, and though I think it can happen, it's most likely that this fight happens early in 2012 now. I think it can happen, and I still hold out some hope to see it, but no one knows how things will play out for sure in the next year.

[GSP art by Travis Beaven (c) MMATorch.com]

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/roundtables/article_8821.shtml

Andrei Arlovski Ken Shamrock Paul Varelans Mark Coleman Tito Ortiz

UFC Fight Night Ratings: 2.4 million viewers

MMA Payout confirmed with Spike TV that ratings for Saturday night’s UFC Fight Night held in Seattle peaked at 2.4 million viewers. It was the most watched program on cable for the entire day in the key demographics of Men 18-34 and 18-49. Via Spike TV press release: Spike TV?s live UFC� Fight Night Live? [...]

Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Payout/~3/uplxSXZSjjw/

Luciano Azevedo  Mike Kyle Daiki DJ taiki Hata Caol Uno Sean Sherk

2011 NBA Mock Draft: Could Kawhi Leonard Be the Best Rocket Since Clyde Drexler?

The 2011 NBA Draft is all about finding that special player who can take your team to the elite stages of the NBA. Some need to replace one recently departed player, whether they left through free agency or a trade. While others are looking for someone who could replace a legend.

The Houston Rockets are still looking to replace Clyde Drexler, Charles Barkley and Hakeem Olajuwon, and Kawhi Leonard of San Diego State could be that player.

Leonard has been one of the more breakthrough players of the past NCAA season, and his stock has skyrocketed because of his play. He led the Aztecs to a place where they had not been before.

Chad Ford of ESPN says that "He's still developing his game offensively, but when you watch him, it's hard not to see what makes him special. NBA scouts love guys with intangibles, and Leonard appears to have them."

Matthew Kamalsky of DraftExpress says that "A great deal of Leonard?s success, and much of the attention he?s receiving from the next level, can be attributed to his impressive physical profile and high energy level. Standing 6?7 with a huge wingspan and adequate physical strength for a wing, Leonard is not the most fluid player around, but there?s an effortlessness with which he moves in the open floor that is impressive to say the least."

Either way, Leonard will be a lottery pick in the 2011 NBA Draft. He used his collegiate career over the last couple of seasons to get him to the next level. He has all of the physical skills to succeed in the NBA, and would be a perfect fit for the Houston Rockets.

For more on the draft and some possible first round selections, make sure to check out Bleacher Report Cavaliers Featured Columnist Jesse Dorsey, who previews the NBA Draft 2011: Has Jimmer Fredette Worked His Way Into the Top 10?

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/648531-2011-nba-mock-draft-will-terrence-jones-be-a-top-five-pick/entry/57456-2011-nba-mock-draft-could-kawhi-leonard-be-the-best-rocket-since-clyde-drexler

Marcelo Brito  Wagnney Fabiano Johnnie Morton Randy The Natural Couture  Royler Gracie

Warren vs. Galvao, Makovsky vs. Robichaux, featherweight semifinals official for Bellator 41 in Arizona

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

Logo_Bellator_150_264.jpg
Bellator Fighting Championships officials have officially announced the previously reported pairings for the season four featherweight tournament semifinals at Bellator 41, and in addition to those two fights, they have announced a pair of non-title fights for the event from two of their champions.

Bellator Featherweight Champion Joe Warren will meet WEC veteran Marcos "Louro" Galvao, while Bellator Bantamweight Champion Zack Makovsky meets 11-0 Strikeforce vet Chad "Robo" Robichaux in non-title action on the card.

Then, the semifinals for the featherweight tournament take place as Patricio "Pitbull" Freire meets Wilson Reis and Kenny Foster meets Donald Strauss. The event takes place at the Cocopah Resort and Casino in Yuma, Ariz. on April 16, airing live on MTV2.

"As an MMA fan, I can't wait for this event," said Bellator Chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney. "Both Super Fights and Semi-finals should be spectacular fights. And, Cocopah Casino's outdoor venue is an amazing venue for MMA. We've wanted to bring an event to Arizona for some time. Overall, this should be a great live event on MTV2."

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/Bellator/article_8863.shtml

Daniel Acacio Gregor Gracie Elvis Sinosic Ron The Monster Sparks Marzagui Ayoub

ANNOUNCEMENTS

As we make changes and improvements to our forums, we will tell you about it here.

Statistics : 25 Topics || 427 Posts Last post by agonzalez1

Source: http://www.mmalinker.com/forum/announcements/

Houston Alexander Sean Sherk Cain Velasquez B J Penn Sean O Haire

Pictures and Multimedia

Share pictures, videos, sounds, games, GIFs etc..

Statistics : 3758 Topics || 50352 Posts Last post by Cornbread Mafia

Source: http://www.mmalinker.com/forum/pictures-multimedia/

Kultar Gill Valentijn Overeem Jake O Brien Dos Caras Jr   Anthony Pettis

Announces from : MMALinker

This feeds is listing all the global announcements of : MMALinker

An MMA community for the fans, by the fans.

Source: http://www.mmalinker.com/forum/

Josh Barnett  Gleison Tibau Pedro Rizzo Randy Couture Tony DeSouza 

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

ANNOUNCEMENTS

As we make changes and improvements to our forums, we will tell you about it here.

Statistics : 25 Topics || 427 Posts Last post by agonzalez1

Source: http://www.mmalinker.com/forum/announcements/

Yoshihiro Akiyama  Colin Robinson Dan Hardy Rodrigo Gracie Joe Riggs

Video: Brock Lesnar - "I Know I Can Beat (Junior dos Santos)"

Source: http://www.bloodyelbow.com/2011/3/28/2077425/video-brock-lesnar-i-know-i-can-beat-junior-dos-santos

Wu Haotian Daniel Puder Brock Lesnar Kenichi Yamamoto Andrei Arlovski

MMALinker - Channel list

An MMA community for the fans, by the fans.

This channel list is listing the available RSS feeds.

Source: http://www.mmalinker.com/forum/

Antônio Rogério Nogueira Maurice Mo Smith Yoshiyuki Yoshida Ivan Titenkov Clay Guida

Who Was Backstage At iMPACT! Last Night?, Young/Robbie

– After taping the Apr. 7 episode of iMPACT! yesterday in Orlando, Florida, TNA tapes the Apr. 14 episode today. It is the “go home show” for TNA Lockdown.
– The latest episode of TNA Xplosion features Eric Young vs. Robbie E (with Cookie).
– Northeast based independent wrestler Slyck Wagner Brown worked a dark match at last night’s iMPACT! taping at Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida. He lost to Amazing Red.
Wrestling News

Source: http://www.ifight365.com/2011/03/who-was-backstage-at-impact-last-night-youngrobbie/

Mark Coleman Tito Ortiz Per Eklund Rumina Sato Ryan Bader 

Being honest about Chael Sonnen

I will start off by saying I am no way shape or form a Chael Sonnen fan. I respect him as a fighter and thats about it. After saying that, honestly i kind of feel bad for the guy right now. The guy is considered the number two MW in the world and was about to have a immediate rematch against Anderson Silva and then boom he gets caught juicing. Everybody was slandering his name and pretty much said hes nothing but a juicer and had no real chance against him if he wasnt doping. People went on to call him a cheater over and over again. He then goes on to say he has a condition where he needs testosterone injections and to be honest he was already digging himself in a bigger hole. He then went on saying the people that did the tests got letters about the elevated testosterone was needed (no one truly knows but Sonnen and that doctor) and people say the guy has always been considered a liar and is even a bigger cheater and is just admitting to it. He gets his suspension cut in half and called out numerous people (Wandy, Anderson, Akiyama, and now Bisping). Soon he gets a case on laundering or fraud (i cant remember off the top of my head) and people are bashing him like crazy again. Some of the hate this guy gets is amazing, but at the same time im starting to think is he really bringing it upon himself? Does he really deserve all the hate and slander he gets? And why?

Source: http://www.sherdog.net/forums/f44/being-honest-about-chael-sonnen-1612885/

Luciano Azevedo  Mike Kyle Daiki DJ taiki Hata Caol Uno Sean Sherk

Season Six

The Ultimate Fighter: Team Hughes vs. Team Serra premiered on September 19, 2007- December 8, 2007 - Welterweights

Statistics : 62 Topics || 878 Posts Last post by KeyboardPacifist

Source: http://www.mmalinker.com/forum/season-six/

Valentijn Overeem Jake O Brien Dos Caras Jr   Anthony Pettis Hector Ramirez

MMATORCH POLL: Which light heavyweight fighter stands the best chance against new UFC Champ Jon Jones?


Which light heavyweight fighter stands the best chance against new champ Jon Jones?
Rashad Evans
Lyoto Machida
Rampage Jackson
Forrest Griffin
Phil Davis
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
Dan Henderson
"King Mo" Lawal
Gegard Mousasi
None of the above
  


Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/Torch_MMA_Polls_37/article_8838.shtml

Kerry Schall Cheick Kongo Travis Lutter Tom Murphy Anthony Perosh

Jeet Kune Do

Hey, I know there are similar posts to this but I wanted to get in depth.

Now I know JDK is a kind of mixed martial art. I trained in it a...

Source: http://www.mmaforum.com/standup-technique/89529-jeet-kune-do.html

Mirko Cro Cop Filipović Tito Ortiz Kevin Kimbo Slice Ferguson Krzysztof Soszynski Ryan Jensen

LSU Football: Opposing Defenses Be-Ware of Running Game in 2011

LSU sophomore running back Spencer Ware quietly made a name for himself as a freshman, but won’t be quiet in 2011. 

Ware, making a number change from No. 16 to No. 11, will be featured much more in 2011 than he was in 2010.

A two-sport athlete, Ware will also be playing baseball for the Tigers, and will probably be a No. 1 or No. 2 running back for the football team.

With very few rushing opportunities as a freshman, Ware made his mark catching balls out of the backfield, averaging 10 yards per catch on 11 catches.

His rushing numbers came primarily in two games, a 32-10 victory over McNeese State where he carried the ball five times for 31 yards, and in the Cotton Bowl where he exploded for 102 yards on 10 carries including a long of 26.

Ware is a competitor, so Tiger fans can be assured of one thing: Whether he is the starting running back or a role player, Ware will do whatever it takes to help the Tigers win.

Tiger running back coach Frank Wilson, like many fans, expects Ware to work his way into the starting lineup and increase his touches.

Ware has shown that when he gets touches, he can make things happen.

New offensive coordinator Steve Kragthorpe has many weapons at his disposal at LSU, but a talented running back like Ware who can make plays on the ground or running routes out of the backfield will make his job a lot easier and a lot more fun.

Having other talented backs to share the workload with will keep Ware fresh and a hopefully improved passing game should help him to exploit defenses with his speed and pass-catching abilities.

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/648256-lsu-football-opposing-defenses-be-ware-of-running-game-in-2011

Harold Howard Alexander Otsuka Jae Suk Lim Kestutis Smirnovas Wilson Gouveia

The Ultimate Fighter (TUF)

Discuss The Ultimate Fighter.

Statistics : 95 Topics || 1091 Posts Last post by UchiMata

Source: http://www.mmalinker.com/forum/ultimate-fighter/

Cain Velasquez B J Penn Sean O Haire Victor Valimaki Fedor Emelianenko

Diaz vs Daley

Im callin Diaz wins via rear naked choke 4 minutes into round 1.. Who do you think wins this welterweight championship fight? Its less than 2 weeks away..

Source: http://www.sherdog.net/forums/f2/diaz-vs-daley-1612337/

Kyle Bradley  Anderson Silva Tokimitsu Ishizawa Masakatsu Funaki Fabricio Werdum

Big Brazilian booty: I'm told Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 13 coach Junior dos Santos is somewhere in the...

Source: http://www.mmamania.com/2011/3/28/2076822/im-told-tuf-13-coach-junior-dos-santos-is-somewhere-in-the-above-pic

Andrei Semenov Tim Sylvia Jaime Jara Mario Sperry Kazuyuki Fujita

Monday, March 28, 2011

UFC 128 RESULTS: Urijah Faber wins UFC debut with decision win over Eddie Wineland

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

FaberUrijah2_150_37.jpg
Former World Extreme Cagefighting superstar Urijah Faber made his UFC debut on Saturday night at UFC 128 in New Jersey, and in a three round battle with Eddie Wineland, Faber earned a unanimous decision victory.

Wineland came out to fight, showing off some good takedown defense in the first round and landing some good strikes of his own during the round. But in the second Faber took over the fight. Getting Wineland to the ground early, Faber spent much of the round landing elbows and punches in Wineland's guard.

In the third, Faber took over in the striking game, tagging Wineland with strikes and avoiding his counters. Then, Faber brought the fight back to the ground again when he stuck with a takedown attempt and got Wineland to the ground. With more elbows and strikes in Wineland's guard, Faber rode out the end of the fight and picked up his first win inside the Octagon.

Faber now likely gets a fight with UFC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz, a man he defeated once before for the WEC Featherweight Title.

Penick's Analysis: Wineland gave Faber much more of a challenge than most expected, but Faber still pulled off an impressive win. It wasn't the most exciting Faber fight, but he still picked up a good win and sets himself up for a good fight with Cruz.

[Urijah Faber art by Cory Gould (c) MMATorch.com]

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_8804.shtml

Cheick Kongo Travis Lutter Tom Murphy Anthony Perosh Urijah Faber

Round 5 Releases "Ultimate Collector" Series 6 Featuring Six New Figures & Limited-Edition Runs of Joe Rogan, and Bas Rutten (Press Release)

The following press release was sent to MMATorch this morning...

Round_5_series_6.jpg


Round 5 Releases "Ultimate Collector" Series 6 Featuring Six New Figures & Limited-Edition Runs of Joe Rogan, and Bas Rutten

Markham, ON (March 28, 2011) ?
Round 5 President Damon Lau announced the release of the "Ultimate Collector" Series 6 featuring six figurines, representing a broad range of popular characters. Included in the Series are current fan favorites light heavyweight champion Jon "Bones" Jones, Dan "The Outlaw" Hardy, and Gray "The Bully" Maynard, plus a UFC 69 Championship Edition of Matt "The Terror" Serra. Series 6 will hit retail shelves in the Spring of 2011.

Also included in Series 6 arelimited edition figures of UFC play-by-play commentator Joe Rogan and UFC 20 heavyweight champion turned world-class trainer and broadcaster Bas "El Guapo" Rutten. The Rutten figure includes a replica of the classic Ultiman UFC championship belt he won at UFC 20, Rutten's final fight in the UFC.

The limited edition figures will be sold exclusively on round5mma.com and will be available for pre-order on April 11th.

"We have been getting tons of requests from fans through Facebook and Round5MMA.com for all of these guys," said Lau. "We are thrilled that we could release such a diverse range of figures this Spring"

Fans can view an image of early sculpts of the new series at http://www.round5mma.com/blog/

"'The Ultimate Collector' Series 6 is our most innovative, varied release to date," said Lau. "From active contenders, current and former champions, to Hall of Famers we've got something for every collector in Series 6. I am proud to offer a Series that pays homage to the current superstars in the sport and some of the UFC's greatest moments."

As with previous "Ultimate Collector" items, Series 6 will be presented in stylish, UFC-themed packaging that includes action shots from the Octagon as well as a short bio.

For a list of retailers carrying Ultimate Collector Series 6 and all Round 5 products go to: www.round5mma.com.

About Round 5

Since 2008, Markham, Ontario based Round 5 has been the industry leader in creating officially licensed UFC collectible figures of top tier and emerging UFC fighters. Round 5 is dedicated to creating products that accurately capture the likeness and trademark poses of the athletes they represent, and most importantly, to remaining true to the sport of MMA and its personalities.

Round 5 products are sold in over 50 countries around the world, and can be found on www.round5mma.com, and at major department stores in the United States, and Canada.

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_8897.shtml

Kristian Rothaermel Royce Gracie Daniel Acacio Gregor Gracie Elvis Sinosic

Anthony Johnson swears he'll make weight for UFC Fight Night 24 bout with Dan Hardy, reportedly began camp around 230 lbs.

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

LogoUFC_150_847.jpg
One of the storylines coming into this Saturday's UFC Fight Night 24 events is the return of Anthony "Rumble" Johnson, and whether or not he'll be able to get down to the welterweight limit following a 15 month layoff.

By his own admission this week, Johnson allowed his weight to get out of control while out with injury, and according to a report from ESPN's Josh Gross, Johnson ballooned up to the 230s in his weight as late as eight weeks ago when he began his camp for his bout with Dan Hardy on Saturday's card in Seattle.

"I was out that year and it did some damage to me," Johnson said. "I let myself get out of shape. I put that weight on. That was my fault being lazy. The only thing I was thinking about was living the life and having a good time. I'm injured. I'm going to party and have a good time. Then I just finally sucked it up and said I need to get back into the gym, because I don't want to kill myself [in the gym] to fight."

Johnson has missed weight twice in the UFC, both times failing to come anywhere near the 170 lb. limit. Back in 2007, he missed weight by 6 and a half pounds for a bout with Rich Clementi, and then in October of 2009 he missed weight by 6 lbs. for a bout with Yoshiyuki Yoshida. He had attempted to cut 50 pounds over a matter of weeks for that fight, and is in a similar situation here.

Of course, he's assuring fans and the UFC, as well as Hardy, that he's on track to make weight, but until he steps on the scale on Friday it will remain in question. And though he continues to say 170 lbs. is his home, his natural size is likely to necessitate a move up in divisions sooner rather than later.

Link to Original Source Article

Penick's Analysis: Missing weight to the levels that Johnson has done on two occasions isn't acceptable, and hopefully he can get himself to the one pound allowance for this fight on Saturday night. It's not fair to his opponents when he arguably should be fighting a weight class above if he doesn't get himself all the way down to the weight they also need to come in at. It's a little shocking that he was 60 lbs. above this weight limit when he started camp, and though it's not impossible to cut down that much over an eight week camp, it's not necessarily a good thing for him either. He really needs to put serious consideration into a move up to middleweight, because unlike another large welterweight in Thiago Alves, he's also got more height to go with his frame. It's a move he should probably make, but for this weekend, for Dan Hardy and for the UFC hopefully he does what he's supposed to and makes weight on Friday afternoon.

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_8857.shtml

Oleg Taktarov Jon Olav Einemo John Lewis Jeff Joslin Jay Silva

UFC wants Wanderlei Silva vs. Vitor Belfort II this summer; Silva lobbying for bout with Chris Leben

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

SilvaWanderlei_150_25.jpg
The UFC is making an effort to put together a rematch nearly 13 years in the making between Vitor Belfort and Wanderlei Silva, but "The Axe Murderer" is making things uncharacteristically difficult.

After turning down a fight with Brian Stann at UFC 130, Silva is now lobbying for a bout with Chris Leben instead of the fight with Belfort, even though Belfort has already verbally agreed to meet him in the Octagon.

"We asked him to take [a fight with Stann], and he turned it down," UFC President Dana White said following Saturday's UFC 128 event (quotes transcribed at MMAJunkie.com). "He said, 'I don't like it because everybody likes this guy.' That's kind of a weird philosophy, but I'll accept that. Wanderlei's a warrior. He always goes out there. So we offered him the Vitor fight, and now he's on Twitter lobbying to fight Chris Leben.

"I don't want him to fight Chris Leben. I want him to fight Vitor Belfort. Vitor Belfort has accepted the fight, wants the fight, and now we're fighting for Wanderlei to accept the fight."

According to White, the fight would take place in Las Vegas, most likely on the July 2 UFC 132 event. There is a possibility the fight could happen as early as UFC 130 in May, but the July 2 date is the target at the moment.

Penick's Analysis: I'm not sure why Silva is now being difficult in regards to this fight when he was the one initially who called Vitor out after the loss to Anderson in February. Both seemed ready and willing to take the fight then, so with the UFC trying to put it together you'd think that Wanderlei would be all over it. And it's not as if Wanderlei has a history of shying away from fights. I can understand his desire to fight Leben as it's a fight that is sure to be exciting with both going balls to the wall trying to take the other's head off, but a Belfort rematch could be the very same style potentially, albeit perhaps a bit more technical. Hopefully Silva will come around and they can get this fight together.

[Wanderlei Silva art by Cory Gould (c) MMATorch.com]

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_8816.shtml

Rodrigo Gracie Joe Riggs Dan Cramer Jai Bradney  Wanderlei Silva

UFC announces list of fighters scheduled to appear at Toronto UFC Fan Expo; Strikeforce to get a booth during April 29 and 30 event

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

LogoUFC_150_843.jpg
The UFC's first ever Canadian edition of the UFC Fan Expo takes place on April 29 and 30 from the Direct Energy Centre in Toronto, and the UFC on Monday announced a star-studded lineup of fighters that will appear in autograph sessions and more during the two day expo. In addition, Ariel Helwani reports that Zuffa's newly acquired promotion Strikeforce will have a booth at the expo.

A massive list of fighters are set to appear during the expo, as the organization announced that UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones, UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva, UFC Hall of Famer Chuck Liddell, UFC Hall of Famer Royce Gracie, B.J. Penn, UFC Heavyweight Champion Cain Velasquez, UFC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz, former UFC Heavyweight Champion Frank Mir, former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Rashad Evans, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Josh Koscheck, Ryan Bader, Stephan Bonnar, Shane Carwin, Matt Mitrione, Brendan Schaub, Jon Fitch, Miguel Angel Torres, Anthony Pettis, Clay Guida, Joe Lauzon, Cole Miller, Sam Stout, Carlos Condit and Jonathan Brookins are all scheduled.

"We're excited to bring some of our top stars to Toronto for the UFC Fan Expo," UFC President Dana White said in a release. "This is going to be the biggest weekend not only in UFC history, but in the history of our sport. I'm looking forward to giving our fans once-in-a-lifetime access to our fighters at the Fan Expo."

Zuffa's purchase of Strikeforce earlier this month also opens up the festivities to that organization, though there's no word on just who will appear for them. Still, the simple fact that they'll have a booth is surreal enough in and of itself.

The UFC Fan Expo coincides with the massive UFC 129 event, which has already smashed records for MMA in North America with 55,000 tickets already sold for the event for an $11 million dollar gate.

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_8847.shtml

Jon Jones Kiyoshi Tamura Mike Van Arsdale Sam Hoger Alexander Gustafsson

UFC FIGHT NIGHT 24 RESULTS: Phil Davis edges Antonio Rogerio Nogueira by decision in Seattle

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

UFC_Fight_Night_24_poster_180_6.jpg
Saturday's UFC Fight Night 24 event saw "Mr. Wonderful" Phil Davis pick up the biggest win of his career in a decision over top 10 ranked Antonio Rogerio Nogueira. Though Davis got the win, he ran up against an extremely difficult test in Nogueira, and showed that talk last week of him being the challenge for UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones was far too premature.

The fight was fairly even through the first round and a half. Nogueira's takedown defense was superb, and he managed to hold Davis off on multiple attempts through the first eight minutes of the fight. However, Davis stayed busy on the feet, and though he didn't land flush on a ton of shots, the accumulation of kicks in the first round edged it for him on the judges scorecards.

Then, in the second, Davis was finally able to get Nogueira to the ground. He would do that multiple times over the final seven minutes of the fight, but Nogueira's stellar guard wouldn't allow for much damage to be delivered. Ultimately, Davis was able to secure the victory by decision, ultimately out-striking Nogueira 72-16 overall in the fight.

It may not have been the most thrilling victory, and Davis still has a ways to go in his development, but the fact that he was able to accomplish what he did at 26-years-old against a top 10 fighter in Nogueira was still impressive. He's not Jon Jones, and he won't immediately be jumping into the title picture, but he belongs against top competition right now and he proved that on Saturday night.

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/UFC_2/article_8888.shtml

Kenichi Yamamoto Andrei Arlovski Ken Shamrock Paul Varelans Mark Coleman

Satoshi Ishii Out of Strikeforce Debut Due To Disasters in Japan

Former Olympic gold medalist Satoshi Ishii will have to wait to make his Strikeforce debut. He was forced out of Friday's event due to the recent earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Undefeated Lorenz Larkin replaces him. Read More >>

Source: http://mmaweekly.com/satoshi-ishii-out-of-strikeforce-debut-due-to-disasters-in-japan

Jaime Jara Mario Sperry Kazuyuki Fujita Tim Sylvia Jung Chan Sung

2011 NFL Mock Draft: Will the Bears Protect Jay Cutler with 29th Pick?

The Bears One Offensive Line Away From Super Bowl In 2010

The awfulness of the Bears offensive line was covered up somewhat by different schemes implemented as the season went on, but all that did was put a band-aid on a very bad situation.

Jay Cutler got sacked a lot in 2010 and the line looked overwhelmed in many games. The Bears adjusted as the season went on, but the damage was done and this team can not go into the 2011 season with what they put on the field last year.

The first step toward rebuilding that line is by drafting Gabe Carimi. Carimi will help reduce the 60 sacks the line allowed in 2010. With Carimi, you stop talking about if Cutler was healthy enough to come back in the game because Cutler isn't getting the crap kicked out of him.

If the Bears don't address their line at the top of the draft, it should be an offense worthy of termination for every person in that front office.

1. Carolina Panthers: Patrick Peterson
2. Denver Broncos: Marcell Dareus
3. Buffalo Bills: Cam Newton
4. Cincinnati Bengals: Julio Jones
17. New England Patriots: Ryan Kerrigan
18. San Diego Chargers: Cameron Heyward
19. New York Giants: Tyron Smith
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Adrian Clayborn
5. Arizona Cardinals: Von Miller
6. Cleveland Browns: Da'Quan Bowers
7. San Francisco 49ers: Nick Fairley
8. Tennessee Titans: Blaine Gabbert
21. Kansas City Chiefs: Akeem Ayers
22. Indianapolis Colts: Anthony Castonzo
23. Philadelphia Eagles: Derek Sherrod
24. New Orleans Saints: Muhammad Wilkerson
9. Dallas Cowboys: Prince Amukamara
10. Washington Redskins: A.J. Green
11. Houston Texans: Cameron Jordan
12. Minnesota Vikings: Jake Locker
25. Seattle Seahawks: Justin Houston
26. Baltimore Ravens: Torrey Smith
27. Atlanta Falcons: Brooks Reed
28. New England Patriots: Titus Young
13. Detroit Lions: Nate Solder
14. St. Louis Rams: J.J. Watt
15. Miami Dolphins: Mark Ingram
16. Jacksonville Jaguars: Aldon Smith
29. Chicago Bears: Gabe Carimi
30. New York Jets: Phil Taylor
31. Pittsburgh Steelers: Mike Pouncey
32. Green Bay Packers: Robert Quinn

For a look at all things related to the NFL Draft, check out our NFL Draft Hub.

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/646865-2011-nfl-mock-draft-will-mark-ingram-move-into-the-top-10/entry/56908-2011-nfl-mock-draft-will-the-bears-protect-jay-cutler-with-29th-pick

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ROUNDTABLE: Who poses the biggest threat to Jon Jones following his UFC 128 destruction of Mauricio "Shogun" Rua? Hansen, Hobaugh, Hyden, Park, Marsh, Perez, Williams, Pelkey and Penick

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Who poses the biggest potential threat to Jon Jones after his destruction of "Shogun" Rua?

RICH HANSEN, MMATORCH COLUMNIST

Jon Jones is a heavyweight who possesses the ability to cut down to light heavyweight.� Once he starts lifting for mass/bulk, and once he doesn't have to be so stringent on calories, he's going to be a 250 pound heavyweight fighter.� As a result, i don't see anyone having a realistic chance to defeat him at the 205 weight class; at least not anyone who is currently on the radar.� So, I see a small handful of fighters who pose a chance (excluding the fluky "puncher's chance," which most fighters at this level do possess.

�- Some 19 year old kid we've never heard of.� He might not even be at a big time gym yet.
�- Cain Velazquez - A dominant wrestler who can shoot double-legs might be able to get Jones on his back.
�- Alistair Overeem/Junior Dos Santos - Jones has yet to be hit hard.� These guys not only have power, but the technique to get inside the reach Jones possesses.

ERIC HOBAUGH, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

After the total domination of Shogun by Jon Jones at UFC 128, I have my doubts of there being a fighter at light heavyweight who can beat Jones. �Shogun was an excellent opponent on paper. He was the champ. He had years of experience against top tier fighters. He had an excellent chin. �He was and is one of the best fighters ever. �I do think Rashad Evans will have some advantage, because he trained against Jones at Greg Jackson's camp. That advantage will not be enough. Jon Jones will dominate Evans just like everyone else he has faced. I would love to see a Jones and Anderson Silva fight, but don't hold your breath for this one. Silva will not take this fight, because he knows he cannot win. I think Jon Jones will have to go up to heavyweight to see any real threat in the octagon.�

FRANK HYDEN, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

I think the biggest threat to Jones in the immediate future is himself. That's sort of a cop-out, but it's true. It's easier to be the hunter than the hunted. If Jones maintains his approach to fighting and training, there doesn't appear to be much that can stop him. I think Lyoto Machida poses a threat to Jones, just because of his style. More than him, though, I think Quinton Jackson poses the biggest threat to Jones, mainly because of his immense power. Having said that, though, I don't think any of the light heavyweights in the UFC pose a formidable threat to Jones right now.

CHRIS PARK, MMATORCH UK SPECIALIST

Last Saturday's encounter was extremely brutual and pretty much exactly how i predicted the bout would go - only it lasted a round or two longer.

With that in mind I don't see an immediate threat to what I believe will be a long and successful time at the top for Mr. Jones.

There will of course be a line of challengers forming, starting with Rashad Evans, then the likes of Rampage Jackson, Lyoto Machida and company all craving a shot at the new kid on the block.

Once the dust settles in 12 months or so there may be a new rising star on the horizon, but for now, no one can touch this guy in my opinion - not even Anderson Silva.

GRIFFIN MARSH, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Anderson Silva absolutely. �He's quicker, more powerful and a more accurate striker than Jones. He also has a proven chin, having taken plenty of solid punches from fighters more powerful than Jones. �For Jones to beat Silva he will have to hold him down for five rounds and well, we've seen what Anderson has done to strong wrestlers, he's finished them. �Like Lyoto Machida, Jones doesn't use a boxing defense. �He leaves himself wide open to strikes and when considering everything together, I�just don't think he's shown the cardio or the ability to take a punch that he will definitely need in a bout with Silva. �Silva has a proven record and chin. �He can stand with Jones in the pocket, take his assault and counter. �

That's where things get interesting. �With having allowed multiple fighters to get back to their feet after taking them down, I don't see Jones holding Silva down, and I just see Silva taking it to him, then taking him into the fourth and fifth rounds, which is something we haven't seen. �I just don't think Jones' defense is near good enough to hang with Anderson. �One day Anderson will lose, age gets us all. �But Jonny "Bones" isn't the man to do it. Anderson is a nightmare for jones stylistically.

ANWAR PEREZ, MMATORCH COLUMNIST

After Jon Jones fully dismantled Shogun Rua, it's kind of hard to pinpoint who in the division can be a threat to him.� It certainly won't be Rashad Evans, who faces Jones next.� My guess, and I do believe it's too early to hedge bets on this, is that Anderson Silva will be the one to threaten Mr.� Jones.� But, before we start calling the "Bones Era," let's see how Jones does his first few fights before we start calling him the next Georges St. Pierre or Anderson Silva.

ALEX WILLIAMS, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Phil Davis, but not for awhile.� When Shogun Rua won the Pride Grand Prix at age 23, I would have bet good money that no one in MMA would be able to dominate him like this six years later.� I don't think there is any 205 pounder in the world who can take Jones.� Phil Davis is a blue chip prospect, though.� Perhaps in a couple years, he will have developed enough to give Jones a battle.

MATT PELKEY, MMATORCH COLUMNIST

Um... Cain Velasquez? And that's not a joke. Jon Jones vs. Cain Velasquez will be the new GSP vs. Silva in about three years. As Jones continues to grow and mature physically, he's not going to want to keep making a 30-40+ pound weight cut. His future will be in the heavyweight division. At light-heavyweight, only Phil Davis possesses the physical abilities and wrestling acumen it's going to take to seriously challenge Jones, and he might still be a couple years away. His fight on Saturday against Nogueira should give us some indication of how close he is. Rashad just signed his own death warrant. Rampage would get massacred. Machida would be intriguing until the fight started. Who's left? Forrest Griffin? Yeesh. To beat Jones, someone is either going to have to knock him out or put him on his back. None of the current top challengers at light-heavyweight can accomplish those things. Rampage won't be able to get close enough to touch him until he's flying�through the air on the way to the mat courtesy of a Bones throw. Rashad's takedowns will get shrugged off or countered. Machida might be able to dance in for a strike or two, but I just can't envision a scenario where he knocks out, submits, or is just better over the course of a five round fight than Jon Jones.

JAMIE PENICK, MMATORCH EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

I honestly can't envision a light heavyweight currently on the UFC's roster taking Jones out. It's going to take him moving up to heavyweight, which is absolutely in his future, for him to face his biggest challenges, because there will be fighters with the size and wrestling in that division to give him troubles, as well as a number of fighters who hit harder than everyone at 205 lbs. Jones is a very special talent, and though his list of victims doesn't warrant anything near an "all-time" best distinction as of yet, he's the type of fighter that we won't see often, and if he keeps his head about him going forward and makes good moves and continues to improve his game, he will absolutely reach that transcendent level that only few are a part of at the moment.

Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/roundtables/article_8853.shtml

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