Posts Tagged ‘Endurance Sports’

Ticket Rush for UFC 193

Ronda Rousey Image: https://www.facebook.com/ronda.cips/photos/pcb.10153689082834382/10153689076994382/?type=1&theater

Ticket sales for UFC 193 in Melbourne look set to break all stadium records.

At 10 am on Monday morning the vendors’ servers were smoking as fans rushed to book their seats for what will arguably be the greatest sporting event the southern hemisphere has ever seen.

Seat prices ranged between $100.60 and $468, with the later being sold out in minutes.

Corporate boxes and ringside VIP seats were selling for $18,000 and are all but gone.

Etihad stadium said that the seating capacity will be increased by around 15,000 to 70,800 for the event.

Should they sell out it will set a new world record for an Ultimate Fighting Championship event, beating that of Toronto four years ago with 55,724.

Ronda Rousey Image: https://www.facebook.com/ronda.cips/photos/pcb.10153689082834382/10153689076994382/?type=1&theater

Ronda Rousey Image: https://www.facebook.com/ronda.cips/photos/pcb.10153689082834382/10153689076994382/?type=1&theater

Headliner Ronda Rousey is wooing the city of Melbourne. She has been the darling of the media and fans alike. Her accessibility to media and fans has – and will continue – to only heighten interest that is already at fever pitch.

Rousey’s opponent, Holly Holm, is new to MMA but is a decorated boxer. Should she be able to elude Rousey’s takedowns and grappling she will present the incumbent bantamweight champion with some stiff competition and damaging punches.

Englishman Michael Bisping and his opponent Aussie Robert Whittaker have almost passed unnoticed. But make no mistake this will be an intriguing, brutal, and high-level battle between a veteran and an up-and-comer.

UFC 193 is going to be AWESOME!

Floyd’s Final Fight a Flop

Image: https://twitter.com/floydmayweather

According to some reports Floyd Mayweather’s final fight has been the biggest flop in a decade.

He may have retired undefeated, but the lacklustre opponent he chose for his swansong turned viewers away.

Reports put the viewing public between 400,000 and 550,000 – the weakest numbers in ten years for Mayweather.

UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey told TMZ she wasn’t surprised.

“A lot of people were pissed after the Manny Pacquiao fight. Fans aren’t dumb.’

Rousey appears to have hit the nail on the head. Mayweather vs Pacquiao drew a record 4.4 million pay-per-view buys at an average $100 each. But the fight failed to live up to expectations.

Mayweather fought defensively to out point Pacquiao and win. But it was more a points fight than a real fight.

Mayweather had a winning strategy and superior movement. He fought defensively and landed scoring counter-punches without doing an real damage to Pacquiao.

But rather than attempt to win fans back with a real fight before retiring Mayweather chose an easy opponent and hoped his fame would be enough to buy viewers.

It wasn’t.

Boxing is fast losing legitimacy in the eyes of fight fans around the world. And it is doing so at a fast rate than ever now that the UFC is offering a viable alternative.

Fight fans want to watch fights. If you want to watch points being scored watch tennis.

Ronda Rousey is capturing world attention, She has posted the biggest pay-per-view numbers of all time at UFC 190. Her upcoming fight against Holly Holm in Melbourne is expected to be the largest sales promotion of the year.

MMA Fighters Boycott Nevada in Response to Diaz Sentence

Image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nick_Diaz

The fallout from the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s handling of the Nick Diaz drug charge continues to worsen.

The Commission handed out a five-year suspension to Diaz (effectively ending his career) for testing positive to cannabis after his UFC 183 bout.

Fans and fighters were outraged at the excessive nature of the ban. And MMA fighters are making their displeasure known by refusing to fight in the state of Nevada.

The latest to add his name to the blockade is Henry Cejudo, an Olympic gold medallist.

Fast rising bantamweight Aljamain sterling tweeted that he is intent on doing the same, “ … let the NSAC know,” he broadcast on the 17th, “they need to be unbiased & give a fair process.”

They join female bantamweight Leslie Smith in expressing their dismay at the Star Chamber-like actions of the NSAC.

“This situation is just the latest example demonstrating the need for mixed martial artists to stand together,” said Smith. “(We need) to influence our sport and have our voices heard by speaking together as the mixed martial arts fighter association.”

These fighters are fervently hoping others will make a similar stand. Alone they will accomplish little; but should the stars decide to follow their lead the NSAC may actually be answerable to someone.

Heavyweight Matt Mitrione blasted ex-UFC fighter now executive Matt Hughes for his comments supporting the NSAC. UFC superstar Ronda Rousey has labelled the ban ‘unfair’. For Diaz to receive a penalty five times greater than that given to Anderson Silva. Silva tested positive for steroids in the fight against Diaz.

‘It makes no sense at all.’

She describes herself as a close friend to Diaz and is shocked at the suspension.

UFC Stars Front Media in Melbourne

Rousey image: https://twitter.com/RondaRousey?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor

UFC boss Dana White has fronted the media ahead of UFC 193 in Melbourne. Sitting beside him was MMA superstar Ronda ‘Rowdy’ Rousey, challenger Holly Holm, Strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzehczyk, and her challenger the ever hopeful Valerie Letourmeau.

The air was literally electric with anticipation.

It’s been a running joke that White was initially reluctant to have a women’s UFC division. But since changing his mind, Ronda Rousey has become the franchise’s greatest drawcard and asset.

White chuckles about being reminded of his opposition.

“She’s broken through – it’s amazing,” he said to new.com.au. “She’s the biggest star we’ve ever had.”

And White has had some stars. Chuck Liddell crossed over from Strikeforce, Georges St Pierre and Anderson Silva were megastars. But no one – and White confirms this – no one has ever been as big as Rousey.

“Normally it’s a f*@king nightmare to manage somebody like her. But the thing with Ronda Rousey is the more rich and famous she gets, the easier she is to deal with. It’s not supposed to be like that. It’s always the complete opposite. Any of these guys, if they get this much fame, this much money, they lose their mind. Ronda is the exact opposite.”

And it’s not just White who benefits.

Rousey was clearly jetlagged when approached by reporters. And while everyone would be wise to be cautious around the most dangerous female athlete on the planet they found her approachable and friendly.

After a recent appearance on the Ellen DeGeneres show the popular talk show host felt she’d got the best from the UFC stable.

“She’s got unbelievable charisma,” White continued describing Rousey. “She’s intelligent. She’s literally the whole package.”

And Ellen DeGeneres agrees.

But Rousey adapts to her situation.

“She’ll fight anyone, anywhere, anytime,” said White about the fighter Rousey. “She’s mean. She’s nasty. She doesn’t just want to beat you, she wants to destroy you. She comes out of that tunnel with bad intentions.”

All of her previous opponents agree.

First Ever American Ninja Warrior Wins $1 Million

Image: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c-PC9CGpqSE

Isaac Caldiero, the first ever winner of American Ninja Warrior, has decided he’s not going to splurge after winning the US$1 million first prize.

“I might buy myself a nice shirt,” he told MarketWatch, a financial new website.

Caldiero managed to jump, twist, swing, and climb his way through the four-stage obstacle couse in the fastest time to become the inaugural winner of an event that has captured the attention of fans around the world.

But he clearly hasn’t let the prize go to his head, “You’re not going to see us driving around in a brand-new Ferrari. I’m going to be smart with the money and invest it.”

Only time will tell if the investment was a smart idea or a rip-off. But 33 year-old Caldiero will likely give up his job as a busboy.

“For the past six years, my girlfriend and I have lived on less than $10,000 a year.

“There have been times I’ve had less than $20 to my name. There were times I’d eat cereal and water for breakfast and live on ramen noodles and potatoes, and sleep in fhe front seat of my car or in the RV.

“Who needs all that consuming anyway?

“It’s a lot of sacrifice but it’s worth it to have the ultimate freedom we have.”

Caldiero and his girlfriend are avid rock climbers and search around the US for the most exciting climbs.

“This (prizemoney) is going to enable us to do some amazing things and go to some amazing places.”

Caldiero was only one of two people to finish all four stages of the obstacle course. It then became a race to scale a 23 meter rope in the fastest time.

Caldiero shot up the rope in 26.14 seconds; nearly a whole four seconds faster than his British opponent Geoff Britten.

The Mountain Beaten in Arm-Wrestling

The Mountain image: commercialgymtrainer.blogspot.com

Hafthor Bjornsson, runner-up in the World’s Strongest Man competition, winner of a slew of strongman competitions, and player of Game of Thrones character The Mountain Ser Gregor Clegane has been beaten in an arm wrestling match.

The 25 year-old Icelandic giant (2.06m and 180kg) was challenged and soundly defeated by by Devon Larratt – a man just over half his size (102kg).

To be fair, the Canadian, Larratt, is an arm wrestling legend. He won the left hand championship of the World Arm-Wrestling League in 2014.

But no one was prepared for the  apparent ease he had in dominating Bjornsson.

Bjornsson wasn’t playing around. He threw all his considerable bodyweight into defeating Larratt, who virtually toyed with the big man before pinning him.

In their second match Larratt even had the cheek to give Bjornsson advice, before again winning the contest!

Nick Diaz Suspended for Five Years for Pot?!

Image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UFC_183

The MMA world has gone into overdrive, outraged at the five-year ban to UFC welterweight Nick Diaz for allegedly testing positive to marijuana.

Diaz was also fined a ridiculous 33 per cent of his prize purse – $165,000.

If these penalties seem inordinately heavy when compared with the crime, it’s because they are.

The man Diaz fought before the controversy (Anderson Silva at UFC 183) returned a test positive for steroids. He received only a one-year ban.

Lucas Middlebrook, Diaz’ attorney, presented an aggressive defense to the Nevada State Athletic Commission on Monday. In an at times fiery session he questioned the very validity of the test results.

Middlebrook argued that separate tests by the Sports Medicine Research & Testing Laboratory (SMRTL) and the World Anti-Doping Agency both showed Diaz had marijuana well below the 150ng/ ML limit.

The only positive test above the limit was returned from Quest Diagnostics, showing 700ng/ML for marijuana.

Middlebrook then called upon an expert witness to discredit the lone positive result.

Image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nick_Diaz

Image: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nick_Diaz

“With all due respect,” said Middlebrook, “if the commission imposes discipline based on the complaint as written, which wholly igmores the two negative tests, thereby depriving this man of his earnings and his future ability to earn a living, it’s not only the highest form of administrative abuse of discretion, but it’s ripe for judicial review and reversal.”

 But the commission had the scent of blood in their nostrils and argued that Diaz had not claimed the use of marijuana on the pre-fight questionnaire – a document all athletes are required to sign.

Diaz showed his contempt for the proceedings by choosing to plead his Fifth Amendment right to refuse to answer the questions put to him.

MMA fans around the world were stunned.

Marijuana isn’t a performance enhancing drug (the way steroids are). Diaz certainly broke the rules, but banning him for five years effectively ends his career; and to recieve a penalty five times worse than someone using PEDs is absurd.

But what has outraged sportsfans most is the declaration made by Chairman Francisco Aguilar that the sentence is also for things other than the marijuana. “This is  not just a casee of marijuana,” he said. “I think this is a case of complete lack of disregard for the sport.”

But Diaz wasn’t on trial for his attitude.

And while he was also suspended in 2007 and 2012 for marijuana use it seems to be drawing an awfully long bow to say this equates to a ‘disregard for the sport’.

Fans Ignore Mayweather’s Last Fight

Mayweather image: en.wikipedia.org

Boxing fans gave Floyd Mayweather the send-off he deserves, ignoring his last fight against chump Andre Berto.

With the fight taking place today there were still hundreds tickets still available.

Mayweather hit the media in an eleventh-hour attempt to drum up interest. He declared the challenger a genuine threat, though those with even a passing knowledge of boxing will tell you Berto is a massive underdog.

Berto’s trainer, Virgil Hunter, also stepped in to beat the drum, hinting at ‘personal issues’ between the two fighters.

Both are well-worn avenues for attracting interest. But it appears to be too little too late.

Mayweather’s camp believed the simple fact of this being the champion’s last fight would be enough to fill the stadium. Upon this assumption they didn’t think it mattered who walked out from the opposite corner. Why then, would Mayweather choose an opponent that could actually challenge him?

It appears the boxing public are a little more discerning: Boxing fans go to watch boxing. Mayweather fans go to watch Mayweather. It appears there are more of the former than the latter.

 

Mayweather won against Berto without much trouble. This win puts him equal with heavyweight legend Rocky Marciano at 49-0.

Ticketmaster were offering hundreds of empty seats in prices between $150 and $1,500.

Blachowicz Beaten Up in UFC 191

Image: https://twitter.com/JanBlachowicz/status/640641449512538112/photo/1?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw

Corey Anderson won a lop-sided heavyweight match up against Jan Blachowicz in UFC 191 on the weekend. It seems the loss has damaged more than just Blachowicz’s face and body.

Blachowicz posted a picture of his battered face after the fight.

He wrote, “I have to take a break for the next few months. I have to think, put everything together, do some analysis, and primarily to restore my passion and spark that I lost. In a few hours I’ll come back to you guys and I’ll say more.”

And Blachowicz has good reason for the rethink.

Judges scored the bout 30-25, 30-25, 29-26 to Anderson.

Anderson overwhelmed Blachowicz with his wrestling and improved Brazilian jiu-jitsu. H didn’t have it all his own way, saying after the bout, “I got my teeth knocked in again, but came out with avictolry; that’s priceless.

Blachowicz managed to land a few shots in the first round. Anderson adjusted by switching to a grappling-focused fight. Blachowicz was unable to match him in this area and Anderson controlled the rest of the fight.

Anderson took balchowicz to the canvas in the first, but nearly got trapped with an armbar.

In the second he caught a kick from Blachowicz, took his opponent to the mat, and mounted him for top-position.

Anderson then laid on the ground-and-pound with a torrent of damaging g punches and elbows.

In the end it was his superior conditioning that allowed Anderson to keep pouring on the pressure

“I’ve got cardio and pressure forever,” he said. “I don’t get tired.

Anderson now moves to a record of 6-1; while Blachowicz drops to 18-5.

Olympian Turned Call-Girl Tells All

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

American track and field superstar Suzy Favor Hamilton has released her autobiography Fast Girl – A Life Spent Running from Madness this week.

In it she describes how she went from celebrating her 20th wedding anniversary with a threesome to being an AUS $800 an hour escort in six months.

Favor Hamilton, now 47, tells how she “devoted myself to sex (and) my need to be unsurpassed in the bedroom …” and how it “replaced the need to be best on the track.”

Favor Hamilton explains that sex was the avenue through which her bipolar disorder manifested itself.

It effectively bought about the end of her athletics career once the media got hold of the facts. She was vilified in the press, her sporting achievements all but overshadowed – even though she represented the US at three Olympic Games.

“I still crave that high,” Hamilton says about the risky-sex that fuelled her mania.

Hamilton says her pre-finish collapse at the Sydney 2000 Olympics began the downward spiral that would finish with her feeling suicidal.

She found a way out through thrill-seeking behaviour and self-medicating.

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

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

Her double life was exposed by a reporter from the website The Smoking Gun; which exists to bring to light factual but outrageous stories of public interest.

But upon the birth of her daughter and a course of prescription antidepressants when remembers “suddenly having more energy than I could remember (ever) having. I wanted ot live like I had never lived before.”

Hamilton became a real estate agent, a motivational speaker, and high class hooker.

She became one of the most sought after call girls in Las Vegas and loved every minute of it.

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

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