Episode 3 of the newest installation of TUF starts with the conclusion of the after fight scene from last week. To say ATT is feeling a little defeated is an understatement. Ricardo Liborio tries to rally the troops, saying that these first two fights don’t matter. Over at the fighter house we are treated to the Sherlock Holmes like detective skills of “BBMonstro”, as he sleuths his way around the house to find who took his bottle of red wine. Hard to pin point who exactly, but my money is on ATT’s Michael Graves, who is currently drinking at the poker table. Oh yeah, he also admitted to it, so there’s that. We find our way to the ATT brain trust meeting where Lambert and co are discussing who to match up next. They debate Steve Carl and Steve Montgomery. Lambert settles on the former, Steve Carl. Carl, the former WSOF champ, is my preseason choice to make the finale. Carl tells us his story, growing up in rural Iowa, moving to ATT to fight the best. Lambert hopes that Carl’s experience will help land them their first win. We are then taken to the Blackzilian’s camp where Robinson talks about his teams optimal health, when discussing fighters. Rashad Evans suggests that the Blackzilians apply even more pressure to solidify their lead. The coaches select Valdir “BBMonstro” Araujo, the BJJ and Judo black belt. Araujo is one of the newer members of team Blackzilian, but the coaches feel he is well-rounded enough and experienced enough to beat whomever ATT puts forth. So with that, we have our match up. (ATT) Steve Carl vs. (Blackzilians) Valdir Araujo.
My pick: Steve Carl via TKO.
We’re back from commercial and we’re back to the wine. Dear god, the wine. Homasi and Montgomery resent the fact that their teammate Michael Graves is drinking so heavily, when he may be selected to fight again. We catch up with Steve Carl, who is genuinely concerned about the weight cut. As we arrive at the weigh ins both teams seem to have no idea who the other will put forth. Frank Gentile with the FSAC calls the fighters forward, as Araujo makes weight no problem. Carl gets butt nekkid but is still three quarters of a pound over. As then entire ATT team heads to the sauna to try and help Carl make weight, Michael Johnson and the Blackzilian’s start to get upset that Carl is using “their” sauna. As Tyrone Spong and co head to boot Carl and Top Team out of their sauna, many of Carl’s teammates rush to his defense. A petty argument, that starts to escalate, before cutting to commercial. My guess is that this won’t be a big issue. SIDE NOTE – If it came to blows in that scenario, I’m taking Spong over the entirety of ATT’s sauna posse. Back to the show and turns out I was right. The altercation ends as Carl hops out of the sauna and onto the scale where he makes weight. Back at the ATT gym, we follow Din Thomas, Dan Lambert and Steve Carl go over tape on their opponent. They go over holes in Araujo’s takedown game, (although they admit that is his strong suit) and discuss “BBmonstro’s” weak chin. We get some great insight into the preparation for a fight with some high caliber coaches (Liborio, Lambert) and fighters (Robbie Lawler). At the house, we hear Araujo’s approach for the upcoming fight. He is aware of Carl’s slick submission game, and is sure he will win. Fight day finally arrives, and we see both make their way to the octagon.
Steve Carl (22-4) vs. Valdir Araujo (14-5)
The fighters meet in the center of the cage and exchange missing punches. Araujo throws wild, hard punches that miss. Valdir shoots for a takedown, but Carl stuffs it. Hard low kick from Araujo, and again. Araujo gets in deep on a takedown, but Carl defends well. The fighters are now against the cage, and Valdir seems to have his hands clasped. Carl goes for a ride, but is quickly back to his feet. Araujo presses Carl up against the fence again, but Steve quickly reverses position and gains double underhooks. A few hard shots to the body land for the American, as he is warned not to grab the cage. Carl keeps the pressure on Araujo as the attempts to secure the single leg takedown, but the Brazilian defends well. Arujo goes for the arm drag, which Carl defends well. The round ends with the fighters against the cage. Fairly uneventful round, that was, in all honesty, extremely close.
MMA Latest scored the round 10-9 Araujo
Carl’s coaches remind him that all he needs to do is connect, and he can win. Across the cage, Araujo’s corner wants him to throw the high kick. Round starts and Carl lands a good low kick. Araujo misses with a slow high kick. Carl looks tired already, gotta wonder how the weight cut affected him. Araujo throwing hard, but with the technique of an ancient stone man. hard leg kick connects for Araujo but Carl capitalizes and presses the Blackzilian fighter against the cage. Carl is in deep on a double, but he can’t complete it. Araujo looking for a ninja choke, but Carl is out easily. The Brazilian has Carl pushed against the cage, briefly, but Carl reverses position. This fight isn’t going to gain a ton of new fans to MMA. More cage grappling as Araujo goes for a guillotine as Carl is looking for the takedown. Araujo sinks in the guillotine as he pulls guard and rolls to mount. Carl is forced to tap late in round 2.
Winner: Valdir “BBMonstro” Araujo via Submission in round 2.
With the win, the Blackzilan’s are now up 3-0, and hold a 75 – 0 lead. With the FIRST incorrect pick of the season, my predictions fall to a respectable 2-1.
UFC Announces Liverpool Event, Darren Till Main Event
Scousers are drowning in celebration this evening. Earlier today, UFC officials announced the addition of a Liverpool show to their 2018 event calendar. Liverpool’s, Echo Arena, plays host for the event, which takes place on May 27th.
Liverpool’s own, Darren Till made the announcement this afternoon with Dan Hardy at the UFC Fight Night: Werdum vs. Volkov, ceremonial weigh-in. When asked by Hardy what it means to have the UFC in Liverpool, he had this to day, “Words can’t describe it. It doesn’t do it justice, words. So, it’s coming and I’m going to be the first Scousers to ever have done it. In 200 years they’re going to remember my name in combat sports in Liverpool. I’m gonna take someones chin off in Liverpool, that’s what’s happening”.
He was also quoted in an release from the promotion saying, “I can’t believe UFC is finally coming to Liverpool and I’m going to be headlining Echo Arena. My name is going to be remembered in 200 years time for being part of this historical event and I can’t even describe how much that means to me”. Till will headline the card, his opponent is yet to be announced.
In the official release, it quotes David Shaw, Senior Vice President International and Content, claiming, “The stars really aligned for the Octagon to touch down in Liverpool. We have seen such phenomenal demand from fans in the region for a live event. Pair that with having such a rising, local star in Darren Till it made absolute sense to bring our first live event to this historical combat sports city in 2018”.
UFC Liverpool lands on a date speculated for a different venue, in a different country. Reports swirled last month, specifically one from MMAFighting.com, which claimed the May 27th date belonged to the UFCs return to Dublin. A return to Dublin doesn’t seem to fall completely out of the realm of possibility. For now, it remains to be seen.
The UFC also announced two bouts, both in the Middleweight division, booked for the event. Elias Therodorou takes on Trevor Smith, and Daniel Kelly goes up against England’s Tom Breese.
Marco Reyes Flagged for Potential Anti-Doping Policy Violation
Earlier today, UFC officials announced that Lightweight, Marco Reyes was flagged for a potential UFC Anti-Doping Policy violation. The potential violation hails from a sample collected on March 8th, 2018, in an out-of-competition test.
Reyes made his way into the UFC through The Ultimate Fighter Latin America, season 2. Competing in the lightweight bracket, Reyes defeated Christhian Soto by 2nd rd. TKO of a preliminary round bout. He then went onto to face Horacio Gutiérrez, in the semifinals of the tournament. Gutiérrez defeated Reyes in the opening round by TKO.
Following his elimination from the tournament, the Mexican fighter met Cezar Arzamendia on the series finale, The Ultimate Fighter Latin America 2 Finale. Reyes impressively defeated Arzamendia, whom was the first overall pick for Team Gastelum, by 1st round KO.
From there, Reyes defeated Dong Hung Kim (rd. 1, KO), and Jason Novelli (Split Decision) respectively, before falling to rising contender James Vick. Most recently, the Lightweight fighter dispatched Matt Frevola in the opening round, ruining the Long Islanders promotional debut. His bout against Frevola took place at UFC Fight Night: Stephens vs. Choi, on January 14th of this year.
The UFC statement on the matter reads as follows:
The UFC organization was notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Marco Reyes of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collected on March 8, 2018.
USADA, the independent administrator of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, will handle the results management and appropriate adjudication of this case involving Reyes. Under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, there is a full and fair legal process that is afforded to all athletes before any sanctions are imposed. Additional information will be provided at the appropriate time as the process moves forward.
Dillon Danis to make Pro debut against Kyle Walker at Bellator 198
Mixed Martial Arts officially adopted another incredibly talented jiu-jitsu practioner today. Bellator officials announced today the long-awaited debut of Dillon Danis, whom the promotion had signed in the year previous. After zero amateur and countless jiu-jitsu matches, Danis makes his debut at Bellator 198: Mir vs. Emelianenko, against Kyle Walker.
Kyle Walker enters the match up also making his Bellator debut. Walker recently made a resurgence in 2016 after taking off, almost exactly, 3 years. Since returning to the professional scene his record is 0-3, losing each fight by stoppage (2 Sub, 1 KO).
Walker looks to snap his streak yet, his opponent could provide a major challenge. In terms of advantages for Walker, he has a massive and obvious one. His experience. Walkers opponent fights for the first time in the sport of MMA. While Danis competed in many top-level jiu-jitsu tournaments and matches, comparing the competition would stop and end upon examining the rule sets. It is quite obvious, the difference. Danis will have a bit of adversity to overcome, in that respect.
In spite of this, Danis’ team, he trains out of the highly regarded SBG Ireland. Even before his MMA training, he trained under Marcelo Garcia. He earned his black belt in April of 2015, following an incredible 2014. In that year, Danis became UAEJJF World Champion, winning gold in the 82 kg (181 lb.) Brown belt category.
The prospect of what that could look like inside the cage is exciting. He may have developed some striking techniques but, the lack of time dedicated to that training in undeniable. Experience and time is required to develop skills of any kind.
Bellator 198: Mir vs. Emelianenko, takes place on Saturday, April 28th from the Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Illinois. Bellator 198 features the third of four preliminary bouts in the promotions Heavyweight Grand Prix, Fedor Emelianenko takes on Frank Mir. It serves as the nights main event. Other bouts on the card feature; Emmanuel Sanchez against Sam Sicilia, Neiman Gracie faces Javier Torres, Rafael Lavato Jr. vs. John Salter, and more.
- Interviews3 months ago
Exclusive: Alexander Gustafsson eyeing summer 2018 return- wants title shot next
- Opinion5 months ago
A list of fighters who fought Michael Bisping – while on steroids
- Interviews5 months ago
Sage Northcutt on Moving to Sacramento and Life at Team Alpha Male
- Rumours3 years ago
Proto MMA History: The Day Antonio Inoki Almost Killed The Great Antonio
- Cage Warriors5 months ago
EXCLUSIVE: Matt Inman Talks Cage Warriors 87, His Love For Fighting And Craig White Possibly Tiring Himself Out.
- BAMMA4 months ago
BAMMA 32: Official Results and Live Stream
- Interviews5 months ago
Tim Means on Lawsuit Against Supplement Companies “I’m Going to Shut Them Down”
- Interviews5 months ago
Exclusive: Derek Brunson: “Anderson was definitely a little lubed up”