Archive for the ‘Wrestling’ Category

Chael Sonnen Speaks about Unfairness of UFC Drugs Policy

Image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chael_Sonnen#/media/File:Chael_Sonnen_at_UFC_115.jpg

Ex-UFC fighter, TUF coach, and MMA legend Chael Sonnen has spoken to news.com.au about the confusion and controversy surrounding the UFC drugs policy.

Sonnen blasted onto the UFC radar in his middleweight title bout against Anderson Silva. At UFC 117 Sonnen stunned the world by bashing the incumbent champion from pillar-to-post for four rounds. He was the clear winner going into the fifth, but one mistake allowed Silva to steal the match via an armbar submission.

In a post-fight drug test Sonnen tested positive to elevated levels of testosterone.

Four years later he retired amid more positive drug tests and allegations.

Anderson Silva also returned positive results shortly thereafter.

While many of Silva’s former opponents have sought to assuage their losses against Silva in the wake of the drug scandal Sonnen is more prosaic:

“I knew exactly what he was doing and he knew what I was doing, Sonnen said. “You’ve got to understand, there’s a misconception that the UFC had a drug problem. The reality of it is tht it had an age problem. The guys from my generation … things were different when we started, the rules were different, the rules changed over time and we did not change. We were set in our ways and we kinda said, ‘this is how we’ve always done it and this is how we’re gonna keep doing it.

“When the rules changed there were just a lot of guys who were caught with their pants down and there’s no excuse about it. That’s just the way it happened. [Silva’s] in a jam now because there’s a couple of things that were just ridiculous. He failed for three substances. None of the substances I had ever heard of and I doubt any of your readers had heard of them until he tested positive for them, so that’s a little underhanded.

“When you look close, two of the substances are over the counter at every store in the world. They are sleep-aids … I can tell you – in fight week you’re stressed out of your mind, you’re dehydrated, you can’t sleep, and if he took something that’s gonna help him fall asleep, if I’m gonna be his opponent, take more – take five times as much – its’ fine with me.

“To come out and say that stuff is banned with no warning ahead of time – there’s no list, there’s no one you can call and check, there’s no way to tell until it shows up and there’s a violation – that’s underhanded.

Joe Rogan Weighs Into Rousey-Holm Controversy

Amanda Nunes image: https://twitter.com/amanda_leoa

Veteran MMA analyst and UFC commentator Joe Rogan has disagreed with Ronda Rousey over her choice of opponent.

Rousey raised eyebrows by overlooking number one bantamweight contender Miesha Tate and selecting relative MMA unknown Holly Holm.

Holm is by no means a chump however.

“I’ll be fighting Holly Holm, who is actually the most decorated striker we have in all of mixed martial arts,” Rousey announced.

Holm was a 9 times world boxing champion and The Ring Magazine pound-for-pound fighter of the year before moving to MMA and the UFC.

But Joe Rogan believes Rousey has made a mistake.

“That Holly Holm fight … I don’t think that’s smart,” said Rogan in his Sunday podcast. “I would have gone with Amanda Nunes before Holly Holm. Amanda Nunes looked like a badass when she knocked out Sara McMann. That’s a more dangerous fighter … a more marketable fighter. [Holm] is only the best boxer in the world if Ann Wolf decides not to box.

“The Holly Holm fight is not as intriguing to me as Amanda Nunes would be. “Holm’s big issue is the grappling. Who knows though? You never know. Maybe Holly, because her stand-up is so much more refined, she’s been doing it for so much longer, maybe she can keep Ronda away from her.”

There is mounting speculation that the reason Rousey is so dominant in her division is as much because of the lack of talent as Rousey’s near freakish skills.

Rogan agreed.

 “I’m serious, I just think, honestly, the real problem is that there’s a lack of talent .

“Ronda’s going to have to do things now. She’ll have to do a judo match during the day and then have an MMA fight. Remember when Roy Jones Jr. would play basketball? He played basketball the day of a world title defense – the day of (the defense)!”

Rogan went on: “I think Amanda Nunes has real potential. If you look at Claudia Gadelha, she’s world-class, Joanna Jedrzejczyk – world-class. There’s a few: Cris Cyborg Justino, steroids or no steroids, take away the controversy, go by her performances – ferocious. That’s four. There’re four of them.”

Rousey steps into the ring to defend her bantamweight world title against Holm on January 2nd. It will be the main event at UFC 195 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Frankie Perez Retires After One UFC Bout

Image: https://twitter.com/TeamFrankieP?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor

American lightweight Frankie Perez has retired from the UFC after his first fight.

Perez stunned MMA fans after knocking out hometown hero Sam Stout in the first minute of their fight in Saskatoon Canada.

Though coming into the bout with an 11-fight career in MMA, this was Perez’s first on the big stage with the UFC at Fight Night 74.

After his TKO win Perez said in a backstage interview that he had had enough of the sport.

“At 26, this is my first win in the UFC and my last.

“I’m done after this. I bought my dreams true and I’m ready for the next chapter in my life. I’m done putting my family and my body through all this.

“It’s all about my family. I’ve dedicated my life to this sport since I was 17 – and now I’m 26.

“I’ve never taken a year off, or even a break. I’ve been fighting non-stop since I was 17. I’m just ready for the next chapter. I want to open up a school, find a girl, and make some babies.

“I love this sport. I’m a fan of this sport, and it just felt right doing it (leaving) on top. It’s just a lot of years dedicated to this sport, you know, and that was it. That was everything and I let it all out.

“I lived it, man. I came here and I competed against one of the best lightweights ever – and I knocked him out. I don’t know what better way there is to go out.”

Fight commentator for Fox Sports, Michael Bisping, questioned the resilience of Perez: “I am glad,” said the Englishman. “and no offence to Frankie Perez, because I don’t know the guy … But if he retired after knocking someone out on his second UFC win, I would say he hasn’t go the cojones to really be in this sport.

“It’s a tough sport. He said he is sick of what it does to his body. He’s sick of feeling like this. Well guess what, this sport isn’t designed for everybody. And if you don’t enjoy it, yeah, step away. Step away and let the real men do it.”

Perez shrugged of Bisping’s comments. “Bisping’s a clown, so it ain’t no big deal – words don’t get to me.”

Transgender MMA Fighter Continues to Divide Fight Community

Fallon Fox images: https://twitter.com/fallonfox

UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey has revised her position on fighting transgender athletes; she says she will decide whether to fight an opponent on a case-by-case basis.

Her revision comes as the MMA world is split over the question of Fallon Fox, known to be the first transgender athlete in MMA.

Fox opened up about her gender reassignment in an article published by Sports Illustrated.

“A reporter came after me,” she told the magazine, “and asked me questions about my past. I was scared I could be outed, I felt like I had it coming, so I got ahead of it.

“The scope of anger and vitriol that I received initially … That was disheartening, tragic. It was mind-blowing.”

Fox immediately divided opinion in the MMA world.

She was described by UFC fighter Matt Mitrione as a “lying, sick, sociopathic, disgusting freak.”

While UFC commentator Joe Rogan was just as outspoken: “You’re a f*@king man!” he raged. “And she wants to be able to fight women in MMA. I say no f*@king way. If you had a dick at one point in time, you also have all the bone structure that comes with having a dick.”

Rousey initially refused to even consider fighting Fox, but has since reviewed her position.

Fox was born Boyd Burton on November 29, 1975. He showed signs of struggling with his gender from the age of 5; when he would sneak into his sister’s bedroom and dress in her clothes.

He later married his girlfriend, with whom he had a child. But the confusion continued.

In 2000 he came across the term ‘gender dysphoria’ and began to understand his condition.

Burton served with the navy between 1996 and 2000. Upon his release he began to seek treatment with a therapist.

But in 2006 Boyd decided to make the change and flew to Thailand for gender reassignment surgery.

She described having the procedure as ‘empowering’.

She returned to the US a woman and continued driving trucks for a living.

Then she came across MMA.

“You see things in movies with strong female characters that can fight; but seeing it in real life sucked me in. I saw these women in MMA and thought they were amazing.

Fox said fighting made her “feel like I was just like everyone else.”

She now has an MMA record of 5-1 (all against women fighters).

She believes her previous gender gives her no advantages.

“I’ve been through a lot of things to change myself from male to female … they decrease my testosterone levels to lower than any other female on the planet who’s not transgender.”

The medical fraternity back up these claims.

“Male to female transsexuals have significantly less muscle strength and bone density, and higher fat mass, than males,” said Dr Eric Vilain, director at the Institute for Society and Genetics at UCLA. Dr Vilain was integral in assisting the association of boxing commissions piece together its transgender policy.

However, UFC supremo Dana white remains unconvinced.

“Bone structure is different, hand s are bigger, jaw is bigger, everything is bigger. I don’t believe in it. I don’t think someone who used to be a man and became a woman should be able to fight a woman.”

Club Revolt in NRL Gives Ultimatum to CEO Smith

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NRL CEO Dave Smith has been given an ultimatum: Either you go or we do.

The threat comes from some of the most powerful figures in rugby league –  frustrated with the changes and inconsistencies implemented by Smith in his year at the helm.

Last week’s TV rights negotiations saw Fox Sports and Telstra effectively snubbed from the deal. This caused much heated discussion and finger pointing among club presidents towards Smith and Australian Rugby League Commission Chairman John Grant.

In response, 12 clubs are considering breaking away from the NRL in 2017 when their contracts expire.

The new 12 club league would leave out those clubs currently being supported by the NRL: Wests tigers, St George Illawarra, Newcastle, and the perennially embattled Gold Coast.

The influential figures were incensed when Fox Sports and Telstra were omitted from the TV right negotiations.

This fury was only multiplied when News Corp then partnered with the Seven Network to inject $2.5 billion into AFL through a revised television deal – money that could have gone to them.

These blunders are, however, just the latest in a long list of complaints against Smith: Inconsistent judiciary rulings, the insipid and unclear changes made to the shoulder charge rule, and the multi-million dollar blowout of executive salaries for certain staff employed by Smith have incurred ire at every turn.

The game’s powerbrokers, it seems, have finally had enough.

Former Ravens Cheerleader Sentenced After Raping Teenager

Image: https://twitter.com/hashtag/mollyshattuck

Former Baltimore Ravens cheerleader Molly Shattuck has been sentenced to two years of probation after pleading guilty to raping a 15 year-old boy while at a vacation rental home in Delaware.

Shattuck, now 48 years-old, fell to her knees sobbing at the sentence. She was given a wholly suspended prison sentence of 15 years, ordered to report every second weekend to a probation centre in Delaware, was registered as a sex offender, and must continue therapy.

The parents of the then teenaged boy had urged the judge to send Shattuck to prison as a warning to other potential paedophiles.

“At the end of the day, there’s nothing we can do to take this pain away from him,” his father told The Associated Press.

Shattuck pled guilty to one count of fourth-degree rape. The plea came only days before her scheduled trial on two other counts of third-degree rape, four counts of unlawful sexual contact, and three counts of providing alcohol to minors.

The young boy (a classmate of one of Shattuck’s children at the McDonogh School in Owing Mills, Maryland) told police that last September Shattuck began an inappropriate relationship with him near Baltimore. He alleged the relationship culminated in sexual activity at a vacation rental home in Bethany Beach over the Labour Day weekend.

The indictment against Shattuck alleged she provided alcohol to three boys under the legal drinking age on August 30 and 31 last year and that she had sexual contact with one of the boys on August 31.

Shattuck apologised to the teen, who was not in court, on Friday, and to his parents.

“I take full responsibility for what I did. I never, ever, ever intended, obviously, to hurt anybody. I will spend the rest of my life making this right.”

Shattuck’s lawyer told the court how his client had been publicly humiliated by the press coverage. He stressed that Shattuck was a “… caring, empathetic, good and decent person.”

Prosecutor John Donahue, however, disagreed, “This was not a momentary lapse in judgement. She (Shattuck) groomed him, seduced him, supplied him with alcohol, (and) then took advantage of him, all for her own gratification.”

Rousey Announces Holly Holm as Next Opponent

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Undisputed UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey has stunned the MMA world – again. In defiance of public expectation she has announced her next title defence will be against American Holly Holm.

The champion was expected to fight Miesha Tate at UFC 195, at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Januray 2.

But the superstar announced on breakfast television that Holm would be given the honour.

“She ‘s the most decorated striker we have in all of mixed martial ars,” said Rousey about Holm.

“Not the women’s division, not the bantamweight division. She’s a 19-time boxing champion. Holly Holm was The Ring Magazine pound-for-pound Fighter of the Year, and definitely my biggest challenge to date. I’m super excited about it.

“She’s not the average chick I would fight. She’s the best striker I’ve ever fought, and striking is something I learned much later in my career.

“I can take anybody. I prepare for a five-round war every time I get in there. No one’s easy until you beat them. Holly Holm is the type ready to go 12 boxing rounds.

“I don’t ever expect the fights to be easy and fast.

“A lot of the guys you see, the first round is more of a feel-out period, and they’re both kind of sizing them up and taking their time.

“There’s no feel-out period in my fights. It starts right away. You don’t know what’s going to happen, and the first exchange is the most dangerous.”

You can  say that again Ronda!

The champion’s last three title defences have lasted a combined 64 seconds! She holds the perfect record of 12-0 with only one of those fights going to the second round. Her last fight, against Bethe Correia at UFC 190 lasted a mere 34 seconds.

Holm is also undefeated with a UFC record of 9-0. She is four years older than Rousey, at 33; and has most recently won a decision victory against Marion Reneau.

Holm has slipped under the radar thus far. Her 33-2-3 (with nine knockouts) record from professional boxing hasn’t yet got the respect it deserves in the UFC.

It appears that’s about to change.

Green Faces Big challenge in Bolonti

Green image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Danny_Green_(boxer)

Boxer Danny Green steps into the ring against Argentinian powerhouse Roberto Bolonti at Hisense Arena on Wednesday.

Green admits it won’t be an easy fight.

His opponent has won 36 of his career 39 fights; with his only losses coming at the hands of world champion Jurgen Brahmer and leading contender Tony Bellew. Even then the fights were close and went the full distance.

Green, on the other hand, has spent the last three years fishing, surfing and making sporadic television appearances.

“It’s a risky fight,” said a very wary Green, “because Bolonti has been active, in real fights and I’ve only been training in the gym.

“He’s match-fit and won a title fight by knockout in Argentina only two weeks ago. He jumped at the chance to fight me on short notice so that shows how keen and confident he is. It only makes for a more exciting fight.”

Notorious fight-picker Anthony Mundine is watching the fight carefully. He is looking for an ‘adequate’ opponent for his last few money-spinning fights. Depending upon the form green shows Mundine may choose to step into the ring with him for the third time.

When the two last met (in 2006) the match became the riches ever on Australian shores. Mundine outpointed a surprisingly flat-footed Green in a rather boring 12 rounmds.

Green enters the ring against Bolonti with a record of 33-5 (28 KOs); while Bolonti boasts 36-3 (25 KOs).

MMA Fighter Competes While Pregnant

Novaes image: https://www.facebook.com/KinberlyNovaesMMA/photos/a.322660901169403.55953.322659281169565/624491547653002/?type=1&theater

Questions are being asked after a pre-fight medical exam failed to identify the pregnancy of Brazilian mixed martial artist Kinberly Novaes.

Novaes was weight-cutting for four weeks prior to a fight weigh-in. Despite severely curbing her calorie intake she gained one kilogram during a six-day period.

Novaes was reluctant to visit a doctor, but she eventually allowed herself to be persuaded.

“The doctor immediately asked me if I was pregnant,” Novaes said to MMAFighting.com. “I insisted I was not, that I had an intestine issue. But he asked for a blood test. One hour later, he told us I was pregnant. I cried a lot, ran out of the hospital, but I realised that was good news. I thought I was sick, but I had a baby instead.”

The concern comes because it meant Novaes was 24 weeks pregnant. This meant she was 12 weeks pregnant in her fight against Renata Baldan. She defeated her compatriot in May for the 115-pound Brazilian Noxii title.

Noxii promoter, Brunos Barros (whose organisation is not overseen by the Brazilian MMA Athletic Commission – accepted responsibility for the dangerous oversight.

“I didn’t ask for the exm. That’s the truth,” he told MMAFighting.

“I didn’t even think about the possibility of a woman fighting while pregnant, going through a camp and dehydrating and everything … Thank God everything is fine with the baby.”

A morphology ultrasound revealed the foetus was ‘healthy and strong’ relieving Noaves and her partner Jacson Carvalho (also an MMA fighter).

Novaes said she was worried about the unborn child when she found out she was pregnant.

“I suffered a lot to make weight for my last fight. (I) couldn’t dehydrate properly … and I was already training to fight again next week, but the doctor said everything is fine.”

Novaes announced on her Facebook page that she was withdrawing from her scheduled August 21 fight. But she intends to climb back in the cage in 2016 to follow her dream of breaking into the US market.

Rousey v Tate 3 – Worth Watching?

Miesha tate image: https://twitter.com/mieshatate

With the feud over fight-weight between Rousey and Justino seeming intractable (Rousey wants to fight at 135 lbs, Justino at 145 lbs) many are giving up on the idea of the two meeting.

That leaves the UFC roster: Many are wondering if there are any UFC women bantamweights who can even take Rousey to the first round bell? The champion has needed a total of 64 seconds to destroy her last three opponents, and never has never even looked threatened.

Enter Miesha Tate.

Again.

Miesha has fought and lost to Rousey twice. She coached opposite her in the during the TUF 20 season. And she is riding on a high after defeating the formidable Jessica Eye.

Could the third time against Rousey be a charm for Tate?

Tate thinks so.

Tate and her coach looked through Rousey’s recent fight against Bethe Correia – all 34 seconds of it. Even though it was a lopsided slaughter both believe Rousey was far from flawless. And she plans to exploit those weaknesses.

Furthermore, Tate is euphoric after beating a superior striker in Eye. “… beating someone at their own game – someone who was supposed to outbox me and be such a great striker and all of these awesome things – says a lot about the evolution of my striking game,” said Tate.

Tate has also changed her strength and conditioning training, moving to Phase 1 sports in Las Vegas. It’s training venue for elite athletes. Tate says she has dramatically improved her power and endurance.