Written by: Ryan Manahan
The UFC continued their ‘World Tour” of press conferences on Thursday, this time hitting up the hometown of UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre in scenic Montreal, Quebec. GSP and challenger Johny Hendricks attended the conference, as well as UFC Director of Canadian Operations Tom Wright, and several other Canadian MMA luminaries were in the audience. MMAxposed had the opportunity to catch up with GSP and get his thoughts on a variety of subjects
Regardless of what is said before the match or who is standing across from St. Pierre in the octagon, for GSP, it all comes down to the fight.
Watch the media scrum with the current Light heavyweight Champion Jon Jones below:
Tuesday July 9,2013 UFC held their UFC 165 press conference at Real Sports in Toronto, Ontario with the headliners, Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson. MMAxposed correspondent Ryan Manahan sits down with Gustafsson: Watch the interview below
Alex Ricci (7-1) takes home the win against Luis Felix (9-7) via unanimous decision at Substance Cage Combat 1.0 this past weekend at the George Bell Arena in Toronto. Carlin Bardsley (In The Cage With Bards) catches up with Alex after the fight. Check out the video below:
Johny Hendricks talks about UFC 167, punching GSP in the face, being a new father and Olympic Wrestling
MMAxposed was fortunate enough to partake in this past weekend’s fundraiser and charity event at ‘Woodbridge Heroes’ collectibles store in scenic Woodbridge, Ontario. The event was held in support of the Canadian Diabetes Association, the city of Vaughan food bank and SOS Children’s Villages.
The event, sponsored in part by Haymaker Fightwear, was a rousing success, raising much-needed funds for worthy charities and providing entertainment for children of all ages including super hero costumes and an exotic petting zoo.
Also featured were appearances from real-life superheroes in the form of some of the top names in MMA, including UFC #1 welterweight contender Johny “Bigg Rigg” Hendricks. Hendricks gave this exclusive interview to MMAxposed where he discusses the clash with GSP, becoming a father the day before, whether wrestling will be back in the Olympics and more. Watch as “Bigg Rigg” pulls no punches on any subject!
By Carlin Bardsley
Predictions by MMAxposed’s Farrell Tremblay
After losing UFC 151 and Strikeforce: Melendez vs Healy, we almost lost UFC 153 as well. Although the card doesn’t have the same relevant fights as it did a month ago, we now have some very exciting matchups that can really be best described as “fun”, even if they have no impact on any division. Let’s break down the insanity of an already broken down card.
Anderson Silva vs Stephan Bonnar
This fight has a lot of people really excited. Rightfully so, these two fighters have a history of exciting fights with spectacular outcomes, but before I cloud the matter with such misleading facts, let’s be clear about something: People aren’t excited about this fight in the same way they were excited for GSP vs Nick Diaz. The excitement people feel for this fight is really more akin to giddy sadism or the strange fascination we have watching wildebeest cross crocodile infested rivers on the Discovery Channel. Stephan Bonnar is one tough S.O.B. but is he ever out of his league. I believe his ability to absorb unnatural amounts of punishment will take this fight into later rounds but I will be shocked if Anderson Silva finds himself in any sort of danger at any point in this fight. Yes, this is MMA and anything can happen (just ask Matt Serra) but this is also the greatest man to ever fight in the sport and he will deliver that greatness by the fistful
Prediction: Silva by TKO
Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira vs Dave Herman
You have to respect a guy like Nogueira. He is a legend of the sport, and if he retired tomorrow would have nothing but fond farewells from the MMA community. He’s a former champion in the two most prestigious promotions this sport has produced. Coming off a devastating loss to Frank Mir and nearly a year of inactivity, the last thing Big Nog needed to do was take a fight on short notice against a lower tier heavyweight on a two-fight losing streak but he stepped up when the UFC needed him the most. Dave Herman probably isn’t the caliber of fighter we would have seen Nogueira fight had he been matched up on more organic terms, but he is still a tough, durable fighter with heavy hands who may have the spryness of a young fighter to put them on the aging Brazilian. The more likely scenario is that Nogueira boxes his way inside Herman’s sloppy standup, takes him down and takes home a limb.
Prediction: Nogueira by submission
UFC 152 is soon upon us and I can’t help but feel a wealth of emotions in my attempt to predict the action. The reason I say this is because it seems that predicting MMA fights are no longer as simple as “fighter A over fighter B” but instead a much more complex and anxious process that could be better described as “provided the physical well-being of fighters A and B is at acceptable competition level, it is likely X will be the outcome.” However if one or more parties are unable to participate and the suitable replacement(s) is/are willing and able to perform on Saturday, I predict Jon Jones won’t walk away from two cards in two weeks if he knows what’s good for him”. The caveat “Both Must Fight For Action” has taken on a whole new meaning, as the possibility that there may be no action has become as real as any other. With Saturday’s outcome hinging on all of these conditions I’ll do my best to predict the winners of UFC 152’s currently billed card.
Jon Jones vs Vitor Belfort
Jon Jones is a very clear favorite to win this fight, and rightfully so. Given his accomplishments over the last year and a half against strikers, wrestlers and muggers, it’s hard to imagine there are any stylistic matchups left to threaten the champ. This is doubly so when considering his opponent is 10 years his senior. However, when you consider Jones’s toughest test to date has come at the lightning quick hands of Lyoto Machida, it is reasonable to think that Vitor, a boxer with a conceivably greater speed advantage, may have more of a chance than odds-makers are letting on. In addition to a certain striking advantage, Vitor Belfort probably has the best jiu-jitsu of any fighter Jones has faced since entering the UFC. That being said, I don’t think Belfort has the advantage in the grappling department and despite still being a very dangerous fighter, his chin isn’t what it used to be and he will be giving up a foot of reach and considerable mass on fight night. Despite having made a case for Vitor’s chances of success, I simply can’t envision him taking control of the fight before Jones takes his confidence away.
Prediction: Jon Jones by TKO in round 3
Joseph Benavidez vs Demetrious Johnson
Joseph Benavidez has long been touted as the uncrowned flyweight kingpin and on Saturday he’ll finally get his opportunity to live up to such accolades. This won’t be easy though and “Mighty Mouse” is no walk in the park for anyone and his ability to outwork opponents often leaves him with his hand raised, despite his original underdog status. Benavidez comes into this fight with real stopping power for flyweight, as demonstrated in his fight with Yasuhiro Urushitani and Johnson may find his chin tested in the early rounds of this fight. Ultimately, I think Johnson’s speed will keep him out of harm’s way for the first couple rounds and as the fight wears on, he will begin to pull away as he continues an unrivaled work rate.
Prediction: Demetrious Johnson by unanimous decision
Michael Bisping vs Brian Stann
Michael Bisping may very well be at the end of his rope with this fight, should he lose. He has a great record against a number of very tough opponents regardless of the outcome, he will undoubtedly fight on for years to come… but should he lose, at what cost? Bisping may find himself at the bottom of the pile if he loses to Brian Stann on Saturday and what makes this so interesting is the outcome really depends on which game plan he chooses to employ. Bisping actually has very underrated grappling skills, despite hailing from a nation that has, traditionally, poor grappling skills. Given that Brian Stann is certainly no pushover on the ground (unless your name is Chael Sonnen), it is far and away, the weakest aspect of his game. If Bisping employs the same technical boxing game plan he has used against most of his recent opponents, I feel that he is gambling with his future. Brian Stann has proven an ability to put away both brawlers and technicians in absolutely brutal fashion. Stann will fearlessly go toe-to-toe with “The Count” and employ the counter punching that has made him so successful since coming down to middleweight.
Prediction: Brian Stann by TKO in round 2
Matt Hamill vs Roger Hollett
Matt “The Hammer” Hamill makes his return after a brief 17-month retirement and it will be interesting to see what shape he returns in to the octagon. If Matt aims to head-hunt as he has done in the past he may find himself getting beaten to the punch (no pun intended). Hamill, after re-evaluating his career will likely come back using the game plan that brought him success in his early days, take them down and pound them out.
Prediction: Matt Hamill by TKO in round 3
Cub Swanson vs Charles Oliveira
Cub Swanson has been a modest tear, cutting down George Roop and bringing the fight to a much larger Ross Pearson. Swanson may be small but he is scrappy and when he hits his stride he packs a hell of a wallop. I feel though he may find it harder to impose his game on Oliveira as Do Bronx has a rangy style that can be just as sporadic and unpredictable as Swanson’s. Furthermore, Cub’s commendable bottom game that served him so well against Pearson will likely count for nothing if he finds himself under Oliveira. With that in mind, I don’t foresee many areas that Oliveira will not be comfortable taking the fight.
Prediction: Oliveira by submission in round 2
Predictions by Farrell Tremblay
Written by: Matt Marcone
With just two days to go before the Score Fighting Series’ fifth event in Ontario, we present episode seven of the MMAxposed podcast. We get a real heart to heart interview with Hector Lombard, who dropped a split decision to Tim Boetch in his UFC debut.
It was Lombard’s first loss in 25 fights and he opens up about the haters, his injury during training camp, and Dana White’s post-fight comments saying he should fight at welterweight. He also gives his thoughts on a new possible training destination, making it to the big show, and who he wants to fight next.
In what many are predicting could be fight of the night, Canadian striking sensations Jesse Ronson and Alex Ricci also join the podcast. They will be fighting each other at SFS5 in Hamilton on Saturday, August 25th and both sound desperate to get inside the octagon.
Ronson talks about his mentality going into his fight on July 28 knowing he couldn’t afford to get hurt, the intensity of his sparring sessions and the origins of his nickname. He also thinks a victory could possibly send him to the UFC’s stacked lightweight division.
Ricci talks about the fight with Ronson, competing on four of the five Score Fighting Series cards, and a UFC dream of his own.
Let us know what you think!
(8:00) Jesse Ronson
(18:45) Alex Ricci
(27:30) Hector Lombard