Posts Tagged ‘harai goshi’

The Ultimate Fighter Season 12 TUF12 – Ep. 2

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

The Ultimate Fighter Season 12 TUF12 is really based on opposite attitudes toward training. GSP has brought great coaches with him and wants to act as a training partner toward the guys on this team. He said it was a “time for the guys to shine” and that they would be better MMA fighters when they leave the house. He wants them to learn to be better fighters. Koscheck‘s attitude is that of “mindless training”, for the fighters to do what he says in order to learn and “to win”. Very different approaches.

The first fight of the preliminaries was between Alex Caceres and Jeffrey Lentz, Alex’s pick. Dana White said he would not have had the fighter pick the opponent.

Koscheck’s strategy for the fight was to go for the knock out and, if that did not happen, the ground and pound. Lentz wanted to break Caceres, hurt him so badly that he would have to go home the next day.

Caceres (Bruce Leroy) was ready for anything, was planning on being calm, relaxed and letting things flow.

Round 1 had both men kicking.  Lentz got the clinch and held Caceres against the fence many times. He applied knees and twisted his hips several times in anticipation of an harai goshi, which didn’t quite happen. Caceres climbed on Lentz and tried a guillotine, unsuccessfully. Lentz managed a take down and then tried a guillotine of his own. Just before the buzzer Lentz threw Caceres with a very strong harai goshi.

Round 2 had both men throwing high kicks. Lentz had Caceres against the fence again. Caceres tried the guillotine and had a take down of his own. While on the ground, Caceres manoeuvred Lentz into a triangle choke. Tap out.

Although Lentz was the stronger, Caceres used his long limbs to great effect and won the match.

The Ultimate Fighter Season 12 TUF12 is on Spike on Wednesdays at 10:00 p.m. EST.

ayjay

September 29, 2010

The Ultimate Fighter Season 12 – TUF12 – Episode 1

Tuesday, September 21st, 2010

The Ultimate Fighter Season 12 TUF12 – Episode 1 aired last week. Georges St-Pierre and Josh Koscheck are the coaches of these light weight fighters. As with last season, there will be seven preliminaries and the eighth fight will be between two losers to get the last slot.

The episode consisted of elimination fights, some shown in detail, others given the outcome only.

We had several rear naked chokes (hadaka jime), including one standing version:  Jeffrey Lentz, Alex Caceres (calling himself Bruce Leroy), Kyle Watson and Dane Sayers (the standing version)  all won by this technique. Alex Caceres came out in a yellow one-piece jumpsuit, looking like Bruce Lee in one of his movies. Koscheck said that Caceres looked like a banana, but he most likely didn’t get the point. Dane Sayers fought against a Gracie student who had a 76 1/2″ reach. Sayers over-extended himself  early on, but managed to complete the standing hadaka jime to win.

Cody McKenzie won his match with a guillotine.

Mike Budnik, a former pro-skater, threw his opponent, Nam Phan, with a kneeling seoi nage, not something we see often and one of my favourite throws. Phan won the match, though, with a painful-looking body shot.

Jeffrey Lentz, who won by rear naked choke, also threw his opponent with an harai goshi. We love those judo throws.

Andy Main won his match with a juji gatame.

In addition to these matches, we had a knock out, wins by ground and pound, and by decision for the remainder of the competitors.

The Ultimate Fighter Season 12 TUF12 is on Spike at 10 p.m. Wednesday.

ayjay

September 21, 2010

The Ultimate Fighter Season 11 TUF11 – Ep. 3

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

The Ultimate Fighter Season 11 TUF11 Episode 3 had at least one surprise: Chris Camozzi was sent home, having sustained a slight fracture of the jaw during his elimination fight. Dana White was pre-empting a broken jaw by Camozzi’s elimination. Tito Ortiz was then given the opportunity to pick a guy from the eliminated men to come back. He chose Seth Baczynski.

This episode’s fight was between Brad Tavares (Liddell‘s team) and James Hammortree (Ortiz’s team).Yager felt that Tavares was going to win by knock out, while Nick Ring guessed that Hammortree would win by TKO in the second round.

Hammortree, nicknamed “The Sledge”, has a record for the fastest KO in Florida – five seconds. Ortiz was looking for a take down by Hammortree and ground and pound. One of Liddell’s coaches said that Tavares will be “a force to be reckoned with in the UFC”.

Hammortree was the bigger of the two men, two inches taller with a two inch reach advantage. His record was 5 and 1 coming into this fight, whereas Tavares’s record was 4 and 0.

Round one began with a failed take down attempt by Hammortree, Tavares threw his opponent with harai goshiand ended up on Hammortree’s back. He then tried a rear naked choke which failed. Hammortree flipped over and was in Tavares’s half guard.

Tavares used the fence to get up, after which Hammortree tried a take down ending on the bottom again with Tavares on his back. Ortiz kept yelling for Hammortree to get “up, up, up”. Hammortree again managed to get in Tavares’s half guard and then side, but there was a huge gap between their bodies and Tavares was up.

Round two had Hammortree rushing Tavares to the fence. Tavares pushed Hammortree and ended in Hammortree’s guard. Tavares applied a knee to Hammortree’s face. While on the ground Tavares was on his knees with Hammortree on his back. He used the fence to stand up, but Hammortree took him down. While on the bottom, Tavares tried a Kimura (ude garami) for some time. At the bell, Hammortree was in Tavares’s guard and butterfly guard.

The Sudden Victory round began with Tavares’s striking. Hammortree attempted a take down which was stuffed and then Tavares rolled into Hammortree’s half guard. Hammortree applied elbows and achieved full mount. Tavares immediately rolled over and was in control.

While bent over, Hammortree tried a take down; Tavares was holding Hammortree’s arm trying ude garami sporadically.

Unanimous decision in Tavares’s favour.

My thoughts: If Hammortree were a striker (witness his record in Florida), why was he trying so hard to defeat Tavares on the ground? Hammortree was jumping from one technique and position to another very quickly, not giving himself the opportunity to establish control.

Tavares deserved the win. His techniques were solid and competent.

Click here to go to TUF11 Episodes 1 & 2.

Click here to go to TUF11 Ep. 4.

ayjay

April 20, 2010

The Ultimate Fighter Season 11 TUF11 – Eps. 1 & 2

Friday, April 9th, 2010

The Ultimate Fighter Season 11 TUF11 began with more fights (or partial fights) in one hour than we’ve seen to date. For people unfamiliar with MMA, there were good varieties of techniques and skill levels. We also had injuries, lots of blood and a couple of boring bits. All ’round, it was one of the best episodes of The Ultimate Fighter that I’ve seen. Nothing was on long enough to cause me to want to change the channel and there was something new in the next five minute segment.

In episode 1 we had 28 competitors and fourteen fights. Those fourteen winners will be fighting in the next few weeks to come up with the final seven. In order to have eight finalists, the coaches will name the eighth person from among the losers of the previous seven matches.

As for the fights on this night, we had some serious bleeding from a head wound, a broken orbital socket (Victor O’Donnell vs. Chris Camozzi (W)), a popped shoulder (Cleburn Walker vs. Kris McCray (W)), and the worst broken nose I’ve ever seen – flattened and askew -(in a bout between very close friends, Clayton McKinney (W) and Charley Lynch). We had several knock outs: Jamie Yager (W) vs. Ben Stark; Jordan Smith vs. Brad Tavares (W); Jacen Flynn vs. Charles Blanchard (W); and Kyacey Uscola (W) vs. Brent Cooper.

Joe Henle (W) won with a juji gatame against Constantinos Philippou, while we had a few matches that went to decision: Josh Bryant (W) vs. Greg Rebello, Rich Attonito (W) vs. Lyle Steffens, Nick Ring (W) vs. Woody Weatherby, and Kyle Noke (W) vs. Warren Thompson. Court McGee vs. Seth Baczynski went to a third round with McGee winning.

In addition to all that excitement we had a Frenchman, Norman Paraisy, who had said that he wanted to prove that the French were fighters and didn’t deserve the negative comments they always got. He gave up after round one against James Hammortree.

One of the best fights of the night was against Victor O’Donnell and Chris Camozzi. Both men fought well, with Camozzi throwing O’Donnell with harai goshi twice, both times quickly and with precision. O’Donnell continued through the fight with a broken orbital socket, eye mostly shut, a very tough guy.

The first episode of TUF11 was fun and I’m looking to see more of the same.

Episode 2 had the coaches, Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz, choosing their team members from the winners of the first episode. After all the men were picked, Ortiz mocked Liddell’s choices when talking to his own team, mentioning the size of the guys Liddell had chosen, most of them being 5’9″ or slightly more. Dana White even went up to Liddell and made comments, suggesting that Liddell had the worse team and White couldn’t understand his picks. Liddell saw something in the men he chose and he was happy with his team.

In addition, Liddell got to pick the fighters for the first preliminary bout, naming Kyle Noke from his team to fight against Clayton McKinney from Ortiz’s.

Comments from Liddell and his coaches about Noke were that he had good strikes, kicks, ground game and no weaknesses that they could see. McKinney was a total other animal. He was complaining continually about his shoulder, injured during his elimination fight. He was not relating to anyone in the house and slacked off during training due to his injury. (An MRI found bone bruising, but nothing structural wrong with it.) Ortiz felt that McKinney had never been truly tested before.

During the match, McKinney switched stances a number of times, and had his hands far too low. The men exchanged leg kicks, but seemed hesitant. After a failed take down by McKinney, he ended in Noke’s triangle choke (sankaku jime) and, with perhaps 30 seconds before the choke was on well, did not escape. Tapout. Win by Noke.

McKinney tried to leave the room immediately, but Ortiz and his coaches made him watch an escape from the triangle and then attempt the escape twice. Ortiz really is a fantastic coach. Instead of letting his own disappointment overwhelm him, something we have seen in past coaches on The Ultimate Fighter (Rampage Jackson certainly comes to mind), he spoke positively to McKinney and showed him how to avoid the triangle in the future.

As for mocking Liddell, fight one goes to Liddell.

The Ultimate Fighter Season 11 TUF11 is on Spike on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. EST.

Click here to go to TUF11 Episode 3.

Click here to go to TUF11 Ep. 4.

ayjay,

April 10, 2010

UFC 110

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

This UFC was the first of many, I’m sure, in Australia. The Aussies seemed to love MMA and the athletes.

The fight between Wanderlei Silva and Michael Bisping in UFC 110 had Silva successfully completing both a right-sided ko uchi gari and a left-sided version of the same throw in the following round.

Ko uchi gari is the minor inner reaping throw which involves taking your leg and reaping out the same leg of your opponent, so if you’re using your right leg, you’d reap out uke’s right leg. This throw uses the smaller muscles and is a smaller throw than o uchi gari (major inner reaping). Silva’s versions, though, looked strong: he caught Bisping’s left leg in the first throw, and reaped out Bisping’s right leg. By catching the leg, as opposed to grasping an arm or gripping around the neck, and then stretching his own leg for a small reap, he was able to stay out of danger himself and, yet, throw Bisping to the ground. In the second throw he caught the right leg and reaped out the left leg. Our video doesn’t show the leg grab, but the principle is the same: the leg is isolated and then is taken out.  The traditional version, showing gripping of the arm and lapel or collar, of ko uchi gari can be viewed here

During the bout between Stephan Bonnar and Krzysztof Soszynski, Bonnar attempted an harai goshi when the men were in the clinch. Harai Goshi (Sweeping Hip or Loin) involves turning your back to your opponent and sweeping out his leg, although variations of position could allow throws to the side instead of to the back. Here is the traditional version of harai goshi. I think Bonnar was positioned a bit too far past Soszynski’s body. When Bonnar swept his leg, he made no contact with Soszynski at all. This is a version of harai goshi for MMAin which Dave throws to the side.

There were few submission attempts in this UFC and the only submission I saw which resulted in a win was a knee bar (Chris Lytle in his win against Brian Foster). I had hoped to write about some beautiful submissions, especially from Soszynski and other groundwork specialists, but such is not the case this time around.

ayjay

February 23, 2010

Strikeforce/M1-Global Fedor vs Rogers

Sunday, November 8th, 2009

The Strikeforce/M1-Global event of November 7, 2009 was live on network television. The main event was a match between heavyweights Fedor Emilianenko and Brett Rogers. The UFC had tried to get Fedor to fight for them, but Fedor wanted to have a joint event with M1-Global. The UFC refused. That is unfortunate. Last night’s fights were in a huge venue which looked sold out. Of the four fights, three were exciting, one not so much.

The first match-up was between heavyweights Fabricio Werdum and Antonio Silva. Werdum is a BJJ guy with a record of 12-4-1. Six of his wins were by submission and he has had four knockouts. His speciality is the single leg take down. Silva, at 263 lbs., is about twenty pounds heavier than Werdum, with a four inch reach advantage. With a background in Muay Thai and BJJ, Silva’s record of 13 and 1 contains nine knockouts and three submissions.

Their three round bout went the distance with Silva not wanting to go to the ground. When he had the option, he stood up and waited for Werdum to get up too. Round 1 had Silva striking Werdum solidly, knocking him down and letting him get up. Werdum applied some inside leg kicks to Silva’s lead leg. At the buzzer, Werdum was down again after receiving an elbow in the clinch.

Round 2 started with Werdum being knocked down immediately. Eventually Silva went to the ground, but Werdum turned him over and was in half guard. Silva got up and was taken down by Werdum who went from half guard to side control. When Silva snuck out, Werdum tried a knee bar.

Round 3 had both men throwing leg kicks and, when in the clinch, Werdum used his knees. Werdum then took Silva down and was on Silva’s back when Silva turtled. He twice kneed Silva’s chin and Silva struck Werdum in retaliation. When on the ground Werdum did some ground and pound from half-guard.

Unanimous decision in Werdum’s favour. 

Light heavyweight Gegard Mousasi was up next against Sokoudjou (who was called Terry twice). Mousasi’s record is 26-2-1 with fifteen knockouts and nine submissions. His background is boxing with his favourite technique being the jab. Sokoudjou has a record of seven and four with six knockouts. He has a black belt in judo and the leg kick is his favourite technique.

Round 1 began with Sokoudjou connecting with leg kicks. He then tried a take down and eventually threw Mousasi, after many strikes, with a hip throw that looked a lot like harai goshi but without the leg. After some ground work, Sokoudjou again threw Mousasi, this time with o soto gari. The men went through a variety of arm bar and choke attempts including a Kimura (ude garami) and a front naked choke (hadaka jime).

Round 2 started in the clinch with Mousasi applying an elbow and many knees. He then threw multiple strikes and knees again. Then Mousasi did the world’s slowest take down with Sokoudjou ending up in half guard. Mousasi then rolled him over and began his ground and pound which Sokoudjou couldn’t answer. Referee stoppage.

The next bout was between middleweights Jake Shields and Jason Miller. Miller came out with cheerleaders, almost getting clocked by one as he danced by. Now that would have been funny. Both these men have loads of experience, with over twenty wins each. Shields, a black belt in jiu jitsu, is much shorter (6″?) than Miller and his reach is five inches less than Miller’s. He specializes in wrestling using the single leg take down. He had won ten of his twenty-three wins by submission and went into the fight with twelve straight wins. Miller practices what he calls “slap boxing” and loves the jab. Their fight was a championship match set for five rounds.

During this fight, the audience booed a great deal. The bout went the distance so there was lots of opportunity for boredom. Shields seemed in control for the entire fight except he wasn’t capable of completing anything. Miller rolled out of any situation which looked dangerous (Shields’s using his arsenal of submission techniques). At other times, after being taken down (many times!), Miller would be sitting up, his back to the cage, and Shields would wrap up Miller’s legs with his own and stretch them out. Then Shields would throw strikes to Miller’s side. During one of the breaks, Miller’s team yelled at him to do something at the fence.

Miller suplexed Shields at the end of round 1 and slammed Shields in a take down in round 3. At the end of this round, Miller had Shields in a very tight rear naked choke, but Shields lasted until the buzzer.

Rounds four and five had Shields taking Miller down several times and ending up in the scenario I mentioned. Round 5 had Shields on Miller’s back with a figure of four around Miller’s middle, so we thought that he could finally get his submission. As with all the other attempts to submit Miller, Miller rolled out of the hold.

Shields won by unanimous decision, but the audience found much of the bout boring. Perhaps they didn’t understand the level of technique required to attempt the submissions or to stuff them.  They seemed happier when the fighters were standing.

The main card, Fedor Emilianenko versus Brett Rogers, began just before 11 p.m. EST. We actually wondered if the show were going to end at 11 and, just as we talked about it, the television went black! The picture came on again some seconds later, luckily.

Fedor is light for a heavyweight at just under six feet tall and 232 pounds. Rogers is 6’4″ and 264 lbs. with a seven inch reach advantage. Fedor’s background is in sambo and judo, whereas Rogers’s is in boxing and muay thai. Fedor’s last loss was in 2000 and Rogers went into the fight undefeated with 10-0 consisting of nine knockouts and one submission.

Almost immediately, Rogers used a left jab to break Fedor’s nose. Even injured, Fedor took Rogers down twice in the round. While on the ground, in half guard or guard, Fedor did some ground and pound. Rogers held his own, though, on the ground and standing.

Round 2 had Fedor throwing a wide hook which connected. He and Rogers were in the clinch with Fedor throwing many strikes, all of which Rogers stopped. When they were at the center of the cage, Fedor threw a right which knocked Rogers to the floor. Fedor then jumped on Rogers to continue strikes. If Rogers had not moved his leg to block Fedor, he would have been pounded to unconsciousness. Fedor attempted a few other strikes, with Rogers just covering up. TKO Referee stoppage.

Rogers was very upset with himself for losing, but he showed that he deserved to be up there fighting the best in the world. Whereas Rogers looked fine afterward, Fedor had lumps on his forehead, a broken nose and a huge gash across the nose. Fedor said he was looking for an opening and found it in the way Rogers was standing. I expect, in future, Rogers will not stand like that. Rogers was quite keen to have a rematch. 

ayjay

November 8, 2009

p.s.The Ultimate Fighter Season 10 TUF10 guys should take lessons from the heavyweights we saw last night: the fights don’t have to be boring and the fighters had a variety of skills and excellent cardio. The rounds had only thirty seconds between them, yet the fighters did not looked completely exhausted, even those with injuries.

UFC’s The Ultimate Fighter Season 9 Finale TUF9

Sunday, June 21st, 2009

The Ultimate Fighter Season 9 Finale (TUF9) was one of the best events the UFC has put on.  Not only was it free (yay), the fights got better and better, from one fight to the next. Even Joe Rogan changed his mind about which fight was the Fight of the Night.

The first broadcast fight was between Nate Diaz and Joe Stevenson. You’ll recall that in his bout with Diego Sanchez, Stevenson kept the fight standing and lost. In this battle, he and Diaz spent a great deal of time on the ground, trading guillotine choke attempts. Stevenson had Diaz at the fence several times applying knees. To avoid knees to the head, Diaz put one knee on the ground, but Stevenson was in control each time.

The best segment of round one had Stevenson trapping both of Diaz’s arms, one with his legs and the other with his arm. Diaz was at the fence and rolled over, but his arms were still trapped, with Diaz on the bottom. Diaz managed to escape, but then got put in a very tight guillotine, which came close to ending the fight.

Round two was more of the same, guillotine attempt by Diaz, Stevenson in Diaz’s half guard, Diaz turtling and Stevenson’s applying knees. Stevenson controlled the round while standing and on the ground.

Round three had Stevenson attempting a single leg take down, but Diaz did an harai goshi, ending up in Stevenson’s half guard and then full guard at the fence. Diaz managed to pass the guard.

Stevenson then did his own take down and kneed Diaz’s side at the fence.

Standing again, Diaz tried a take down and many, wild strikes, but little was connecting.

Unanimous decision in Stevenson’s favour.

The Ultimate Fighter lightweights were up next – Ross Pearson versus Andre Winner. I must admit, I thought Pearson had a wider range of skillsets than Winner, and would completely dominate Winner, who is mostly a stand-up guy.

Almost the entire match was standing, with many clinches at the fence as the men worked for superior positions. (I heard no booing here and this fight was not much different from the UFC 99 fight between Spencer Fisher and Caol Uno in which the audience booed throughout as the fighters jockeyed for position.) They traded knees, used dirty boxing, with Pearson throwing huge overhand looping strikes and Winner a flurry of body strikes just before the end of round one.

Round two had Pearson kicking to the head and body, trying a take own, and connecting with knees, while Winner managed a strong uppercut and knees of his own. The round ended with Winner’s flurry of strikes again.

Round three had the men in the clinch for a good portion again, trading strikes and knees. Pearson’s uppercuts were effective as was his take down of Winner. Winner went down to one knee and up again. While in the clinch, Winner had some shoulder strikes and short jabs. Pearson had a straight jab which rocked Winner.

Unanimous decision in Pearson’s favour, but Winner was not easily dismissed.

Chris Lytle and Kevin Burns came up next. Lytle had fifty-seven professional matches coming in to this fight.  Burns came in with ten. Lytle wanted to have fight of the night and knock out of the night, so we expected big things.

Lylte came out with huge punches, big looping strikes, and big kicks. Burns applied leg kicks, high kicks, body kicks, knees and strikes. He rocked Lytle with an uppercut, tried to deal with him on the floor, but Lytle came to. Burns followed up with many strikes and knees up to the buzzer.

Round two had Lytle rocking Burns with his overhand shots. Burns managed a take down, ending in half guard.

While standing Lytle kept striking Burns’s left side, doing combinations, one strike to the head, the other to the ribs. Burns backed up throughout most of the round, half turning his body as he went.

Round three began with a huge overhand right by Lytle which produced an enormous cut over Burns’ left eyebrow, with blood pouring down his face and chest immediately. That did not stop Burns, though, as he answered with a knee and body kick.

Lytle punched Burns’ left temple again, causing him to stumble. Burns tried head kicks and strikes, but he was exhausted.

Unanimous decision in Lytle’s favour.

The Ultimate Fighter welterweights Damarques Johnson and James Wilks fought next. Johnson mouthed off a great deal during season 9, opinionated, and expressing real hate toward Wilks.  Johnson was also regarded as the U.S. team’s best chance.

What we saw from start to finish of this fight was complete domination by Wilks. He began with strong jabs and knees, such that Johnson was protecting himself at the fence, unable to reciprocate.

Wilks took Johnson down and while in Johnson’s guard, tried a heel hook. Johnson slipped out of it, but a few seconds later Wilks tried it again.  Wilks then trapped one of Johnson’s legs and compressed it, while Johnson struck Wilks on the head many times as he tried to extricate from the leg compression.

While in Johnson’s guard, Wilks tried an oma plata, and as Johnson moved around, the arm got more and more trapped, such that people on our boat were groaning, imagining the worst.

Wilks grapevined Johnson and tried for the choke, but Johnson’s chin was down. For some seconds they fought this until Wilks trapped one of Johnson’s arms with his leg and tried for the choke again. Tapout at six seconds before the buzzer in round one. Technique of the Night.

Wilks’s battle with Johnson had the potential to be fight of the night until Diego Sanchez came out against Clay Guida. Both these fighters have at least two dozen professional fights. Sanchez is a BJJ black belt with one school and brown with his current school. Guida is a wrestler wth fantastic cardio, who came out singing and jumping.

The match went the full three rounds with both men succeeding in take downs and ground and pound. In round one, Sanchez connected with a head kick to Guida and Guida hit the dirt. We thought it was a knock out as his head bounced, but amazingly, Guida got up straight away.

Round two had Guida in Sanchez’s full guard and Sanchez elbowing the top of Guida’s head. Now Guida had blood from his nose and from the top of his head. Sanchez tried a Kimura, but Guida freed the arm and did some ground and pound. He then trapped Sanchez’s arm behind his back (we’d just mentioned it as a possibility).

Round three had Guida chasing Sanchez with strikes and combos. Sanchez really had slowed down by this point, even though he wasn’t the one bleeding profusely everywhere. Guida attempted a take down and Sanchez, an arm triangle, which Guida spun out of. While in Sanchez’s full guard again, Sanchez attempted the Kimura again. Blood was everywhere and Guida was slick, resulting in his avoiding all the arm bars.

Split decision in Sanchez’s favour. Fight of the Night. In the post-fight interview, Guida was still jumping around as he’d been before this brutal match. He’s amazing.

ayjay

June 21,1 2009

UFC TUF9 US vs UK – Episode 6

Thursday, May 7th, 2009

Episode 6 of The Ultimate Fighter Season 9 (TUF9) eliminated a lightweight fighter and a welterweight.  Cameron Dollar was chosen to fight against Martin Stapleton for the lightweight fight.

Dollar’s background is in wrestling and his stand up is severely lacking, causing Henderson to be frustrated with Dollar’s stand up work. Dollar admitted that it wasn’t his forte and that he was really only keen on learning the grappling techniques. He also talked about his being very nervous before any fight and looked uncomfortable everywhere, including in the house. He looked afraid of Stapleton, even as Stapleton walked through the room. Henderson’s game plan for Dollar was to punch his way in and take Stapleton down.

Stapleton is a BJJ guy who is/was (?) in the Royal Marines. Bisping talked about him as being the best wrestler in the UK team, a good boxer, with excellent cardio, etc. Both Bisping’s and Stapleton’s attitudes assumed Stapleton to be the stronger fighter.

Round 1 had Stapleton attempting take downs until Dollar did his own with a nice harai goshi, by the fence. He eventually ended up on Stapleton’s back and with the fence on one side, got Stapleton in a grapevine and did a strong rear naked choke (hadaka jime).

Even though Dollar is an annoying, egomaniacal kid, he proved that his ground skills are good: he can take someone down, apply a solid choke and make him tap out.

During the break between fights, Bisping apologized to Amasinger for missing his fight. It seems he had severe jetlag and finally overslept. I know that sounds feeble, but I can appreciate the problem, having had it myself.

Fight number two was between Frank Lester and James Wilks. Lester came across throughout the episode as a nutbar: he cursed and swore his way through every conversation and ranted about Wilks, his disdain for him, and wanting to beat him, non-stop. Wilks has lived in California for some years while training and this seems to be the thorn in Lester’s side. Unfortunately, Lester’s attitude made him come across as immature and irrational. It’s just a fight - for television – not the end of the world.

Bisping thought Wilks could beat Lester in all areas of the game; Henderson spoke of Lester’s speed of punches.

Round 1 had both guys doing sporadic jabs (Lester side-stepped his way in circles and Wilks followed) and Wilks applied a front kick. Bisping kept yelling at Wilks to get his left hand up and jab and he did neither. Wilks eventually got side mount and had a loose yoko shiho gatame, with Bisping shouting something to get him to close the gaps.

Here’s where this fight got weird. In Dollar’s match against Stapleton, when Dollar made contact on the ground, he stuck to Stapleton like glue and got his win:  in this match, Wilks would try one technique after another, leaving gaping holes between himself and Lester, so that Lester would manage the escape and run off. Wilks would then chase after the guy and try again. At the fence, Wilks kneed Lester in the face, managed another take down and did a little ground and pound until the bell.

During the break, Lester said that his teeth got knocked out. In fact, his artificial front teeth, whether crowns or partial plate, were knocked out and stuck in his mouthguard. His corner had to remove the teeth in order for him to put his mouthguard in. The referee told the corner to put the teeth on ice.

When the round started, Lester kept his distance from Wilks, either because he was hurt or tired, or both. Wilks took Lester down at the fence a couple of times and, after side and full mount, achieved a juji gatame.

One or more of Lester’s teeth were knocked out: we saw him spitting blood into a bucket and someone else said that a tooth had been spit up. He’s a tough guy, then, if that’s the case. Instead of going into round 2, he should really have gone to the hospital to have the teeth reinserted.

The Ultimate Fighter Season 9 TUF9 is on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on Spike.

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 1

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 2

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 3

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 4

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 5

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 7

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 8

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 9

ayjay

May 7, 2009

UFC TUF9 US vs UK – Episode 4

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

Episode 4 of The Ultimate Fighter Season 9 (TUF9) US vs UK aired last night, resulting in the elimination of one of the fighters. The US had won the coin toss, so Dan Henderson, the US coach, picked Mark Miller (US) to fight Nick Osipczak (UK) in the welterweight division.

The overriding theme of the night was one of the problems when making assumptions:

In a previous episode, Henderson had mentioned that the UK fighters had limited experience on the ground. In reality, one of Bisping’s assistant coaches (actually one of his own coaches) is a grappling guy.

Dana White was impressed by Mark Miller and thought that in the preliminary eliminations Nick Osipczak didn’t look very strong, so guessed that Miller was going to win.

Michael Bisping and his coaches analysed Mark Miller’s preliminary elimination fight in great detail. Bisping saw a one-dimensional stand-up fighter with no ground skills if he were on his back. Their approach when training Osipczak was based on those assumptions.

In the actual fight, we had two strong fighters with a myriad of skills on the ground and standing. Round 1 had Osipczak doing an harai goshi on Miller almost immediately, taking him to the ground near the fence. When in Miller’s guard, Osipczak accomplished nothing, resulting in Miller’s turning over and being in Osipczak’s guard. When the bottom, Osipczak actually did some elbows and in future ground fighting, Osipczak was far more effective from the bottom than the top.

When standing again, Miller punched Osipczak, causing his opponent to hit the floor. Again from standing, they traded punches, most of them connecting.  Osipczak took Miller down again and applied elbows and then punches to the ribs. The next take down was by Miller with Osipczak on the bottom holding Miller in a guillotine. It sure looked like Miller tapped out twice, but he managed to get his head out.

There was another take down by Osipczak just at the buzzer. A very busy round with both fighters working their full game.

Round 2 had Miller coming in with big punches, but being taken down again with Osipczak in side mount applying elbows, doing yoko shiho gatame (!), and knees to Miller’s ribs. Osipczak had his head caught in a guillotine choke many times, a couple of which looked strong. Miller rolled to the wrong side while holding Osipczak in the choke and Osipczak didn’t manage to stop the roll even though his arm was posted to that side. Weird. On the bottom, Osipczak tried ground and pound, elbows, and a figure of four, causing Miller to cover up from the top!

The referee had them stand up at this point. Osipzcak looked down and did a head kick that knocked Miller out.

UK 1; US 0.

This was a big win for the UK team, partially because the US guys had done a couple of pranks (how old are these people?!), irritating the UK guys. Bisping wisely told them to be big about it and not retaliate. I hope the rest of the fights are as entertaining as this one was.

UFC‘s The Ultimate Fighter Season 9 (TUF9) is on Wednesdays on Spike at 10:00 p.m. EST.

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 1

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 2

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 3

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 5

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 6

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 7

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 8

Click here to go to TUF9 Episode 9

ayjay

April 23, 2009

UFC 94 – St-Pierre versus Penn 2

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

I hope everyone got to see UFC 94 – St-Pierre versus Penn 2 last night: we saw probably the best UFC night that I can remember. Wow, there are some talented guys out there. This time around, no one seemed injured or lethargic and no one backtracked in order to avoid connection. The fights were evenly matched, too.

Nate Diaz versus Clay Guida- Here we had a brown belt BJJ guy (Diaz) with an eight inch reach advantage against a champion wrestler who loves takedowns.

Guida was amazing in round 1: He controlled the stand-up, managed a te guruma (hand wheel) to take Diaz down and applied a neck crush (Full Nelson) which looked deadly.

Round 2 had Diaz finding his reach and connecting, but Guida still dominated, holding Diaz around the torso. Guida attempted another te guruma. Diaz took Guida down with harai goshi a couple of times, but Guida did not let go of his hold.

Round 3 had Diaz doing a little showboating (annoying) and he connected with far more punches, did another harai goshi for a takedown, but Guida stayed attached. Guida, himself, managed a couple of takedowns.

For a little guy, Guida is tough, persistent and talented. Guida, by split decision.

In the Karo Parisyan versus Dong Hyun Kim fight, we had two top judokas competing. We expected to see lots of throws and perhaps some submission attempts. Parisyan did attempt an armbar which he seemed to have on for a long time, but Kim managed to get out, even with the armbar on. Parisyan also threw Kim with an harai goshi in the second round and got side control. There were lots of kicks and punches, mostly by Kim. One punch came to Parisyan’s face while Kim was on his back – very strong and impressive.

Kim had lots of techniques which were surprising from a judoka, but then we heard that he is a top MMA guy in Korea. He was lots of fun to watch.

In round three, Parisyan had Kim in his guard and kicked Kim in the face, causing him to lose a point.

Parisyan won the match by split decision, but Kim was great, and the winner, in my humble opinion.

Stephan Bonnar versus Jon Jones: Jones is a twenty-one year old, with only his third night of professional fights, against Bonnar, who is 31 and very experienced. Most of Jones’s fights had ended by knock-out, so I was unsure of his cardio should this go the full three rounds. In round one, Jones kicked, used knees, took Bonnar down with sasae tsurikomi ashi, did a frightening suplex, a spinning back elbow, knocking Bonnar down, and a knee to the chin. Whew.

Round 2 had Jones doing a spinning back kick, ending in his being in Bonnar’s half-guard, but still in control. There were some great throws.

Round 3 had Bonnar applying some nice punches. Jones ended up in Bonnar’s guard again, but applied some knees to Bonnar’s body. As expected round 3 was slower on both guys’ parts, with neither winning the round.

Jones by unanimous decision. This guy has potential and was thrilling to watch early on in the fight.

The co-fight of the night starred Lyoto Machida and Thiago Silva, both undefeated at 13-0.  Machida’s fighting style is different from most: he is a karate guy, stands quite tall, slightly angling his upper torso backward. He tends to walk backward and when the time is right, comes in for the quick punch or kick. His opponents end up following him around the ring. Unlike a fight we saw last year in which the back peddler was avoiding contact completely, Machida really does go after the other guy, but in his own fashion. Silva is a striker and ground and pound guy, with nine of his thirteen fights ending in the first round. This should prove to be fun.

Silva, as expected, followed Machida around the octagon. Machida would step in and kick, back up, step in and punch, back up, and more of the same. He was in control and Silva accomplished virtually nothing. At the end of the round, Machida took Silva down with a nice sweep. While Silva was on his back, Machida jumped forward into the guard and threw a punch at Silva’s head. Silva’s head had nowhere to go. He was out. KO of the night at 4:59 of the round.

The other co-fight of the night was Georges St-Pierre versus B. J. Penn. GSP is famous for his takedowns, managing 75% of his attempts and Penn is known for landing 61% of his lead jabs, as well as being incredibly flexible. GSP is a karate guy, with BJJ and wrestling thrown into the mix; Penn is a world champion jiu jitsu guy.  I have been looking forward to this fight.

Dave and Mike thought GSP would win by KO in round 1 and Malcolm suggested round four. I have no luck with this sort of thing, so didn’t guess.

Round one had the guys in the clinch up against the fence with knees applied by both. GSP tried take downs, but Penn avoided them nicely. GSP dominated the round.

Round two started with both men punching and connecting. GSP took Penn down and while in his guard, applied elbows, two big punches while in the half-guard and then got side control. He then struck knees to the body and punches to the head. Penn suffered a cut under the left eye.

Round three had GSP’s striking, Penn’s nose bleeding, GSP’s taking Penn down, moving from half guard to full guard, basically going wherever he wanted and doing whatever he wanted. He threw elbows and punches. Penn tried to get up and then tried to take GSP down, but really, GSP controlled everything.

Round four was more of the same: GSP did not let up, punched and elbowed Penn so many times. I want to count them just to see how many were applied. It was astounding. Since Penn moved his head and then moved his legs, the referee didn’t stop the fight, but someone should have. Penn’s corner should have thrown in the towel. During the break, the doctor came to look at Penn and asked if he knew where he was. Penn’s brother said the fight was over.

Joe Rogan blamed part of the decimation of B. J. Penn on his fighting outside his comfortable and natural weight, that he is a natural 155-er and shouldn’t be fighting at welterweight; however, Penn has fought everywhere from lightweight to heavyweight before and tends to go to whatever weight class he wants to win in. He wanted the belt and he wanted to vanquish his previous loss against St-Pierre. No one forced him to do anything.

Georges St-Pierre looked fantastic in this fight, in excellent shape physically, and in complete and utter control.  UFC 94 – S-Pierre versus Penn 2 was certainly worth the money. Fight of the Night.

ayjay

February 1, 2009