UFC 214: Cormier vs. Jones Four Fight Preview

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Daniel Cormier vs. Jon Jones at UFC 214

I’m real excited about this fight tonight and even more excited about some of the fights on the undercard, most of which could be a PPV headliner in their own rights. For the sake of my own interest, I’m only going to dish out my thoughts on the 4 fights on the main card that I consider to be headline-worthy. Don’t get it twisted though, this entire card is stacked from Fight Pass Prelims, straight through to the main event.

Let’s get started…

Robbie Lawler vs. Donald Cerrone

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Jesus Christ! When they originally teased this fight a while back, and then called it off, it was a real kick in the balls.  But I remained patient, and hopeful it would happen, and now here we are. These are two of the biggest bad asses in the UFC and they are the real deal.  They don’t just love to dish out punishment, it’s almost like they both actually enjoy taking a beating too.

Robbie has alway been as intense as they come, but he really put on a show in that bloodbath of a fight with Rory McDonald. He then followed it up with another ballsy performance against a worthy Carlos Condit, before being taken out by the current champ Tyron Woodley and losing his belt.

Donald Cerrone is best known for his fuck-it-all, wild man personality.  He really burst on to the scene when he went on a tear basically accepting, and winning, a fight every 3 to 4 months from the end of 2013- May of 2015.  Which was highlighted by his 2 wins in a matter of 2 weeks in January of 2015. I still remember the story of him waiting in Dana’s office after UFC 182 demanding another fight after he effortlessly avenged his teammates embarrassing loss to Myles Jury.

It is an overused term, but these guys are both warriors in the octagon. They both have good technique, but are a little rough around the edges.  Both have great stand-up skill and have shown they can take it, as well as give it.  But they both have flaws and have been exposed.

Lawler seemed to peak in that fight against The Red King (McDonald), and if you saw it for yourself you’d understand when I say that I think both fighters left a bit of their careers in the octagon that night. If you didn’t, it looked something like this…
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Robbie is most likely on the down-side, while Cowboy looks reborn after moving up a weight class, despite a tough KO loss in his last fight.

Whoever wins this fight is most likely going to get a look for a title fight against the winner of Woodley vs. Maia later that night. That puts a lot on the line for both guys, which is why it’s a solid candidate for Fight of the Night.

Prediction: Cerrone KO – headkick

Next up…

 Cyborg vs. A Sheep

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I can’t even pretend to be overly hyped about the actual fight. I don’t know anything about her opponent Evinger, but I do know that Cyborg is basically a wolf in sheep’s clothing… and it appears like she is going into the ring to fight a sheep. Normally I give a lot of respect to the underdog, but in this fight I don’t see it. But who doesn’t like to see a good old fashioned beat-down?

Prediction: Cyborg – Slaughter

Tyron Woodley vs Demian Maia

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The Welterweight belt is up for grabs in this one.

As much as it pains me to say this, Tyron Woodley has proved a lot since winning the belt from Lawler back at UFC 201.  Both his fights since then have been against a dangerous Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson.  In both of these fights he showed a new ability that he hadn’t displayed before… Patience. In both fights Woodley was deliberate with his striking and didn’t over-extend, or over-exert himself. He also showed that he isn’t afraid of defending against a quality opponent by immediately agreeing to a rematch with Wonderboy after their first fight ended in a draw.

Demian Maia is on a 7 fight win streak, with 3 out of his last 5 ending in submission.  He is probably the quietest killer going in the UFC today.  There is no doubt that Woodley has the advantage in the striking department, but Demian is untouchable on the ground. Woodley has also shown excellent takedown defense.  The only problem is, Maia will take it to the ground however he can get it, and isn’t afraid to pull guard, or even mount because of his confidence on the ground.

For me, this is the toughest fight to call, so I’m going to give you my hope rather than prediction…

Hope: Maia Submission – something awesome (but probably RNC)

 

Which brings us to the main event…

Daniel Cormier vs Jon Jones

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Here’s the thing about this fight – No one in their right mind thinks DC has a chance. You can’t possibly.

DC has had a good time pretending to be the Light Heavyweight Champ.  He even defended it a couple times against some quality opponents. However, the one true champ has returned from his exile and is here to take back what is rightfully his.

Say what you want about Jon Jones outside of the octagon;  He is a coke sniffin’, shit talkin’, arrogant ass dude… But the dude can fight.  In fact, he should be – and most likely is – the best fighter we have ever seen enter the octagon… And fans (including myself) love him for all of it.  There is just something about a guy who can party and yet perform his job a high level that people enjoy watching. His talent level and personality even allows people to look past his ugly hit-and-run incident.

While on the other hand, DC is the nerd in the office who goes about his business quietly, does everything right, and can quickly suck the life out of the office christmas party by explaining that, “I don’t need to do alcohol to have a good time.”

…Shut up, Daniel.

DC once addressed a hostile crowd of boo’s aimed at him from Jones’ fans by saying,

“Guys, I have been sober. I haven’t done all these things. I haven’t wrecked my car. I haven’t been suspended. I didn’t get stripped from my championship. I didn’t do all those things. Guys, these are normal things that adult human beings do. You cheer this guy for saying he is not going to do these things any more.  I have done this my entire life, but you boo me. Thank you.  Thank you!”

… Shut up, Daniel.

Obviously he was met with even more boo’s.  This is the fight game.  People love the bad guy, especially when the alternative is a squeaky clean do-gooder.

Now, none of that has to do with the actual fight, but honestly it is what really fuels the fire for the excitement. DC was absolutely picked apart in their first match. Jones lit him up on the feet, and completely out-wrestled him, which was the only advantage DC had going into it. Since then, Cormier hasn’t added anything to his arsenal. He is the exact same fighter… An undersized, scrappy wrestler.  And he will once again be facing the most complete fighter on the planet.

Prediction: Jon Jones TKO – elbows.

 

There you have it. Just a few thoughts one one of my favorite cards of the year so far.

BJ Penn is embarrassing himself

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BJ… Please stop.

His last two trips to the octagon have been cringe-worthy. Not to mention he has the same weathered/ half-dead appearance that CM Punk had in his MMA debut. His fight style has gone from “explosive accuracy” to “uninspired apathy”.  Who is forcing him to do this, because it looks like he doesn’t want to be there.
Sad.

Five Reasons Conor McGregor Will Beat Floyd Mayweather

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There’s no longer a reason to doubt whether or not this fight is actually going to happen. It is clear that both fighters are on board, and Dana White has come out recently saying he would not stop the fight from taking place. Plus the latest reports point to a deal being very close to done for September (maybe?), which was basically confirmed by Conor at a boxing event not long ago.

This leaves money as the only obstacle, and because this will almost certainly be the biggest PPV event since Wrestlemania XIV… Wrestlemania XIV? The start of the Attitude Era? Boston Gardens? New Age Outlaws vs. Cactus Jack and Terry Funk in the first ever Dumpster match? The Undertaker does battle with his brother Kane for the first time ever? Stone Cold defeats Shawn Michaels to begin his reign as WWE champion? C’mon? You don’t know XIV? Anyways…

Bottom line is money will not be in short supply. There could, however, be some disagreements over who should get the larger piece of the pie or how that money should be split among promotions and organizations.  Keep in mind though, as of recently, McGregor is killing Mayweather in PPV sales. Apparently people are just now realizing how Floyd has managed to stay undefeated all these years – Never get hit, and counter effectively. Masterful boxing, but not very entertaining to the average fan.

On the other hand, Conor is a supernova of excitement both in and out of the ring. He is one of the finest trash talkers of our generation, and is able to back it up with knock outs and bloodbath performances. Still, no one seems to be giving him a shot in this match.  Some even ridicule the notion of it ever happening. Well I’m here to tell you, not only will this most certainly happen, but Conor is probably going to walk away with the victory as well. Here’s why…

Continue reading “Five Reasons Conor McGregor Will Beat Floyd Mayweather”

My pizza has reached its crust

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I’ve come here to report that I am officially out of the pizza game.

This was paradoxically an incredibly easy and difficult decision to make. For one, I love working in the food industry. The fast pace of a kitchen mixed with the artistry of cooking and the human interactions with customers is like nothing I have ever experienced in my myriad of other jobs. There is nothing better than the dinner rush on a Friday night when everyone on the team is clicking and orders keep coming.  You can enter a flow-state where nothing matters except for the prospect of clearing those slips from your view, and your actions become fluid as you work to achieve that goal. Some nights it seems like you know the orders before they come in, and every move you make is done without thinking.

Opposite of that, there is nothing worse than when nothing goes right.  You can’t get ahead, and just when you do – turns out that calzone wasn’t supposed to have cheese, and as you’re fixing it, you burnt those two pizzas in the oven. Dummy. Funny enough, even those nights are why I love the food industry. When I waited tables we called it “getting in the weeds”.  It’s the kind of night where you really get to see what you are made of in a high-pressure situation.

I find a lot of joy and value from experiences like these; the flawless flow of execution, as well as the sigh of relief after you finally bail all the water from a sinking ship. However, it wasn’t Continue reading “My pizza has reached its crust”

Pizza Shop Chronicles

There was a random scavenger hunt this weekend that featured a bunch of things involving the shop.

  • Pictures with the staff
  • Make a pizza
  • Get the delivery guy to sing the National Anthem, which he did not know the words to… (Goddamit Steve)

Fun stuff, ya know?

But one of the tasks on this list was not so fun and it involved the illegal removal of several of my napkin dispensers.

Since the scavenger hunt I am down 2 napkin dispensers. Their absence has not gone unnoticed.  Customers are complaining of greasy fingers with no hope of relief. Old Man Jim, our morning delivery guy, is have a particularly difficult time coping with the loss. Perhaps it is his senility, or perhaps it was just his deep connection to these napkin dispensers, but he is reminded of them every morning… And feels the need to remind me as well.
Shut up Jim. I know the napkin dispensers are gone.
Fuck.

Wrestlemania 32 Recap (sorta)

This might be pretty pathetic considering I don’t watch much wrestling, but if we are going to grade last night’s Wrestlemania with either a pass or fail, I’m giving it a pass.  They did just enough to keep me interested and even had a few intriguing matchups with some pretty interesting characters.

One guy who seems to move the needle is Dean Ambrose.  His match against Brock Lesnar was nothing short of average but at least there was a clear cut heel vs. hero scenario. In the end Lesnar won, but Ambrose will definitely benefit from the performance.

The only other match on the card that was worth seeing for me was Shane O Mac vs. The Undertaker.  Shane’s arrival to the WWE basically signaled my exit. However, I had always seen through years of internet boredom, that Shane went on to have an incredible career as a wrestler. He became known for doing some pretty impressive things that required both athleticism and guts. Shane would even gain the respect of just about every member of the locker room by going above and beyond to prove he belonged as proof of this video tribute to him (which I highly recommend watching). Continue reading “Wrestlemania 32 Recap (sorta)”

Conor McGregor Gets His Rematch Against Nate Diaz at UFC 200

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I intend on coming correct with a breakdown of every card in the future, but I just wanted to get this out there as soon as I heard it.  My initial thought was, “why the hell would Conor do this?”  So far from what I’ve read it looks like everyone close to Conor did what any normal, caring, business savvy person would do… They begged him not to take the fight. This is a lose-lose situation for Conor. If he loses again it will seriously damage his dollar value in the UFC, but even if he wins it does almost nothing to help him unless he can win the necessary rubber match that would happen next year.

However, word from McGregor’s coach is that Conor has been “obsessed” with fighting Nate again.  Even Dana White Continue reading “Conor McGregor Gets His Rematch Against Nate Diaz at UFC 200”