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This Week In Shit That Fuckin’ Happened (February 22nd to February 28th)

nogAnother week has gone by. Not just any week, though. This was the week yours truly “The Notorious” CRS debuted at Fightlinker. I could spend hours writing about that historical significance, but I figure the history books (or at least countless civil court legal documents) will detail it, so later for that.

But what else happened? I know technically the week isn’t over yet, but I’m not going to write on Saturday. I’ll be too fucked up to see what I’m typing so it will look like “Gesfhf Sd. Pklkes cmslp filde na rellpsy to JB Pnee algsfions of uinsg vaselune dusing hetir fight.” It might give you readers sitting at home on Saturday Night something to do by trying to crack my intoxicated code, but damn if I’m going to do it. So if some crazy shit happens on Saturday by some chance, I’ll save it for next week. But for now….

#1: EARLY STOPPAGES DEBATED BY ARMCHAIR MMA FIGHTERS
The debate about early stoppages is almost as old as Mixed Martial Arts is. Actually if you think about it, the “>first fight in the UFC ended on a very bizarre early stoppage. But it was brought back to focus in the biggest disputed stoppage since Tito Ortiz elbowed Ken Shamrock loopy at UFC 61. Josh Koscheck claims he was perfectly capable of defending himself, those denying this claim even from the comfort of their own homes they could see in his eyes the lights were on but nobody was home.

So we spectators not courageous enough to get repeatedly punched in the head ourselves have been fiercely debating whether we should be okay with a fighter taking extra punches when he is out. Those opposed to this say that while MMA fighters are okay with it, we need to protect them from themselves and help prolong their careers by making sure they take as less brain damage as possible. Others (such as myself) say that the “intelligently defending themselves” rule of thumb needs to be looked at differently by referees. But nothing will change, MMA has been set up to give the referee the total benefit of the doubt, so it will just depend on whether they’re gun shy like this current crop of newer referees, or if they think Yuji Shimada was a pussy like my man Steve Mazzagatti.

#2: TIM SYLVIA VS. RAY MERCER…..BOXING?!
When I first heard about Tim Sylvia putting together a fight with Ray Mercer I thought two things: 1) This won’t draw flies even though it’s so shitty and 2) How pathetic is your self esteem to need to fight some 40 year old novice in a MMA style he knows jack shit about? Well, it turns out now it will be Tim Sylvia fighting in a style he knows jack shit about, since this will be a boxing fight. And it could be a total recipe for Sylvia disaster. On paper a 6’8 guy with KO power on a good day in his athletic prime (well, for Tim Sylvia) fighting a 40 year old man who just makes people sad to watch is in his advantage. But the last thing to go on a boxer is his power, so Big Tim could easily catch a shot to the chin that finishes him. And oh how we’ll all laugh and laugh and laugh if/when that happens. While this will be an absolute joke of a fight, it may be our first big answer to see how a MMA fighters boxing matches up with a full-time boxers boxing. For years boxing purists have said it was impossible for an MMA fighter to stand toe to toe in a boxing ring to trade leather with a boxer. We thought for a while Anderson Silva facing Roy Jones would be the test of that, but since that’s never going to happen, here’s our shitty consolation prize. Tah-dah!

#3: UFC SIGNS YOSHIHIRO AKIYAMA
Not content with having Greg Jackson fighters the only fighters on payroll accused of cheating via grease, the UFC has signed a deal with Yoshihiro Akiyama to have him fight at middleweight. So now the question everybody has is whether the UFC is saying they’re planning on holding shows in Japan with this signing. The once mighty fight world there isn’t at a fraction of the strength it had 2000-06, so you really have to wonder how well a foreign company, even with a loaded show of Japanese fighters, is going to do in Japan. Quite frankly I don’t know what the Japanese ex-MMA fans replaced their fandom with, but maybe there is a hope of something catching their attention again, but I really doubt it’s going to be an American fight company. And you also have to question the resentment the Japanese fans feel about the UFC-PRIDE disaster. I’m American and I’m still bitter about that, so I can imagine how they’d feel about a bunch of round eyed motherfuckers coming in, lying about keeping it open and just leaving everybody high and dry. I can’t imagine they’d sell out the Saitama Super Arena on those good will feelings.

#4: COUTURE WILL FIGHT NOGUEIRA
Well, it’s not Randy-Fedor, but it’s almost as good. Randy Couture finally agreed to fight that other Heavyweight tournament runner-up Nogueira at UFC 101 in Randy’s home base of Portland, OR this August. But wait, wasn’t he supposed to fight Cro Cop in Germany according to Mirko? Well, it turns out he doesn’t feel he’d be able to properly get a 2 month training period in so now it looks like Dana is going to have to talk Cro Cop into dropping down to 205 again. Unless of course he wants to kill off the German market before it starts by giving them an epic Cro Cop vs. Kongo rematch.

But while the Randy-Nog fight will surely be a great fight, I really hate seeing two guys coming off of losses that I like fight each other, because somebody could be given a pink slip for losing. I think Randy’s job would be safer than Nogueira’s would be if he were to lose, since Randy is such a UFC institution losing doesn’t hurt his drawing power. On the other hand, while hardcore MMA fans love Nogueira, the new fans who haven’t seen his PRIDE work are probably scratching their heads on what the big deal is. Think about it, if you didn’t see the epic Nogueira-Fedor fights or Nogueira-Sapp or Nogueira-Barnett fights. If you just saw him get come from behind wins over Sylvia and Herring, would you share the opinion that he’s one of the all-time great heavyweights? I don’t know what his future would hold if Randy defeats him.

#5: OVEREEM WANTS TO KICKBOX SOME MORE
In the “you could be making a big mistake” file, arguably the most sought after heavyweight in MMA right now Alistair Overeem has announced he will be fighting at K-1’s 2008 Grand Prix champion Remy Bonjasky on March 28th at K-1’s 2009 World GP. While Overeem is coming off of a very impressive KO on former champion Badr Hari at the K-1 Dynamite!! show, you have to question the reasoning behind signing on to fight the best kickboxer in the world right now, when so many offers are on the table for his MMA career. Wouldn’t it be smart to walk away knowing you beat the 2nd ranked kickboxer and use that in MMA negotiations rather than risk getting KTFO by “The Flying Gentlemen”? If I was Alistair, I’d try to run through my remaining DREAM fights to get into that big UFC deal he has waiting for him, not to mention the medical suspension that would delay him fighting in MMA for a month or so even if he wins. As we’ve seen repeatedly, Dana is very fickle with his enthusiasm on signing fighters, so why wouldn’t you stay completely safe not to jeopardize his hard-on for you? Kickbox if you want, but facing the world champion? Overeem could live to regret this.

And that wraps it up for this week. Hey, I got through a whole weeks worth of news without rehashing the same tired shit on War Machine or Greasegate. How bout that?

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