Posts Tagged ‘sherdog’


If Ariel Helwani is getting banned for life for doing his job, a job of which he is famous for being more talented than anyone else at doing, than something is rotten in the state of Denmark.

Of course the ban didn’t stick, how could it? Helwani is as trusted a name in MMA news as  Sherdog and as popular aMMA celebrity as Joe Rogan. Of course Helwani’s large and loyal social media following made a stink and rallied the crowd and moved the needle and forced the UFC to reverse its lifetime ban in of Helwani in 72 hours and some change.

The darling of mixed martial arts press being banned for life for literally doing nothing other than his job is a symptom of a larger issue. What is that issue? That the UFC is for sale because it needs to be sold.

Dana White and the Ferrtita brothers have done their duty, their due diligence above and beyond the expectations and effort of what was expected of them when they purchased the UFC in 2001. They came in and turned an underground, in some places illegal, pseudo sport into the new new American past time.

But they are done. They bought low and are ready to sell high. They have had enough and want out. The writing is on the wall. What is the writing? That ESPN is reporting the company is for sale and they just tried to ban one of the most popular MMA reporters in history for doing his job.

Helwani has done as much as anyone to promote the sport of mixed martial arts. The UFC knows this because they have regularly involved him in their Fox Sports Net shows. To go from putting him on their programming to lifetime banning with literally no change in his actions on his part speaks volumes about where the UFC is as a company and where the owners are mentally.

If Dana White and the Fertitta brothers were not ready to sell or looking to sell than they wouldn’t be banning Helwani for doing his job and reporting on UFC news, they would have put him on their airwaves as they have done hundreds of times before to discuss and ipso facto, hype up the news.

White and the Fertitta’s aren’t looking to expand, they’re looking to cash out. They’re not looking for new trails to blaze, they’re looking for their golden parachute. They’re not looking to be bulls blazing forward they’re looking to be bears heading to hibernation. And if they aren’t, then they’re acting like it…and perception is reality.

As long as Joe Silva is still booking the matches then the UFC is in good hands.

In 2001 the UFC was essentially worthless. It wasn’t on broadcast tv, cable, or even pay per view. It was underground. Out of sight and out of mind to the general population and even to the general sports fan. No one, not even a vengeful critic would try to imply that Zuffa has been bad for the UFC or the sport of mixed martial arts. That is an impossible point to make.

Zuffa has earned its payday. They made mixed martial arts legit, then popular, then mainstream, then pop, and last but not least legal in New York State. They slayed the last dragon to be slayed while climbing the final mountain they had to climb. They earned their payout and are entitled to it. The problem is they are now acting entitled to their payout.

White has had public spats with multiple fighters in recent months and those spats have now spilled over into MMA press. It’s time to sell and move on before it gets uglier than it has already gotten. Before the public spats with top drawing fighters becomes anymore costly to the company’s bottom line and potential worth on the open market already has.



by @anarchyroll

Nothing says illegitimate boxing or mixed martial arts prize fight like a fight at a press conference.

UFC 178 was supposed to be headlined by a rematch between Jon Jones vs Alexander Gustafsson for the Light Heavyweight Championship. Their first fight at UFC 165 was a legit contender for greatest fight of all time. Jones won by decision, people like me (Jones haters) consider the decision to be controversial. But it was a unanimous decision, not a split, so it isn’t as controversial as people like me wish it was.

Both men looked not just impressive, but genuinely great in their five round slug fest for the ages. Because Jones defended his belt, there was no guarantee of a rematch no matter how much the UFC fan base salivated for one. Gustafsson removed all obstacles by winning his next two fights, clearing his way for another shot at the light heavyweight crown. Unfortunately, Gustafsson suffered a knee injury during training and had to withdraw from the fight.

Daniel Cormier has been announced as the new opponent from Jones in September. Cormier is a very worthy contender, as he is undefeated in both UFC and Strikeforce. Cormier is so undefeated, he hasn’t even lost a round in fifteen professional fights.

The but in this case is a very big but.

Daniel Cormier needs knee surgery.

Now that he has a world title shot and a huge payday waiting for him in less than 60 days, of course Cormier doesn’t need surgery anymore.

UFC just canceled a pay per view due to an injury, they don’t want the egg on their face of having to do it again. More than the egg on the face, they certainly don’t want to lose all the revenue that would be lost from canceling two world title fights in three months.

Jon Jones is not a paper or fluke champion. There is a case to be made that he is the most dominant champion in UFC or mixed martial arts history. Therefore, putting anything short of an equal parts worthy and healthy contender against him is a full-fledged sham. It is not easy to say that a 15-0 contender getting his earned title shot is a sham, but if he needs knee surgery, then he will be a shell of himself.

Not to mention, how do you replace a fighter with a knee injury with another fighter with a knee injury?!

When substance is lacking, style and ballyhoo take over (see Michael Bay movies). Daniel Cormier has probably uttered two sentences of smack talk during his entire career, now he’s fighting people at press conferences? Give me a break. This fight is a joke, the UFC knows it, the fighters know it, and they are ratcheting up the hype machine to fool casual fans and themselves that the UFC 178 main event is legitimate. Jones vs Cormier is a money grab, pure and simple. It might as well take place at this year’s WWE Summerslam.

Jones has been eating up and spitting out worthy, healthy challengers for years. What is he going to do to someone who just a month and a half ago needed surgery in two different parts of his knee?

sportsrollby @anarchyroll

The distance between the #1 and #’s 2 & 3 are vast in the world of professional mixed martial arts.  When the distance between the Ultimate Fighting Championship and the closest things resembling competitors; the World Series of Fighting and Bellator MMA is as great as it is, desperate times call for desperate measures. One doesn’t need a look at their financial books, one need only look at the crowd size of their televised events to know that even if neither company is at immediate risk to going out of business, they are both desperate to bring new and existing mma fans into their respective folds. Which brings us to the event, if one can call it that from this past week.

World Series of Fighting challenged Bellator MMA to a cross promotional pay per view event.

Why? The same reason Sirius and XM are now the same satellite radio company. The same reason Pro Wrestling USA was formed in the 1980s. The same reason kids get in free at the local rodeos and wet t shirt contests are held at bars.  Good for the sport? Sure.  Good for the fans? Yes. A desperate attempt to stay relevant and stay within the same galaxy as profitability, absolutely.

I am in favor of a WSOF vs. Bellator show, just not on PPV.  PPV has been in decay for ten years and in 2014, the corpse is starting to stink.  WWE the PPV innovator and porno the PPV dominator, are or have moved to online Netflix style stream services to compete with rampant digital piracy. The ratings for Bellator are aight, WSOF’s ratings, well not so much.  TNA Impact Wrestling, the whipping boy of the pro wrestling critic world, gets double Bellator and 10x WSOF and is considered less than second rate by the hardcore sports entertainment fan base.

Desperation is a stinky cologne.  The idea of this show reeks of it not matter how in favor of it I personally am. Bellator doesn’t need the WSOF, but it’s not vice versa. WSOF desperately needs more eyeballs on its product both in the arenas and on screens. Bellator can just as easily scoop up all the fighters WSOF has if they company were to fold due to unprofitability, which is presently what the promotion is.

I’m not a WSOF hater, as a pro wrestling fan, let me tell you competition is VITAL to combat sports, real or simulated.  Two national promotions on cable television is the minimum needed for the fans, three is even better. Both of pro wrestling’s boom periods of the 80s and 90s were directly correlated to a “Big Three” national promotion hydra (80s: NWA, AWA, WWF | 90s: WWF, WCW, ECW). So don’t get me wrong, I am rooting for WSOF to stick around for a long time and for Bellator to start averaging over 1 million viewers a week on a regular basis. A cross promotional event would pop a rating, fill an arena, and be good for the sport of mma as a whole.

But would the NFL do a cross promotional event with the Super Bowl champions versus the CFL Grey Cup winner?  And would they put it on PPV or on television where the biggest possible audience could see it. Why does the UFC put titles on their FOX cards at least once a year? Why did WWE just move all their PPVs to an a la carte digital cable service for $10 a month when they were charging $60 per event? It’s about eyeballs on screens, selling ads to those eyes, and popping a rating to gain leverage in future contract negotiations.

So if you’re gonna do it, do it right. Bellator is on Spike, owned by Viacom, which owns CBS.  Put the event on CBS in prime time, show the world that mma is more than just the UFC, not just to the hardcore fan base willing to pay $50 at home or $5 at a bar. Yes, please, thank you, you’re welcome.

@anarchyroll 's sports writing blog

by @anarchyroll

Anderson Silva’s career is over. I would’ve been able to take some semblance of pleasure in writing that if he didn’t repeatedly redeem himself from the disgrace of a fight against Demian Maia in Abu Dhabi. If he would’ve broken his leg after that fight, his tombstone would read he was retired by karma. But that’s not what happened, post Chael Sonnen feud, Anderson Silva redeemed his reputation and legacy as the greatest fighter in the history of mixed martial arts (forgive me Fedor).

Silva’s injury (shown in above video) is as gruesome an injury as can occur in a sporting event. I saw it live at didn’t see the break until the replay, but I did notice the greatest mma fighter of all time throwing a simple low kick, then falling to ground, screaming in pain. I was equally sickened that the UFC went on business as usual, actually announcing Weidman as the winner with belt coronation by Dana White, then sending Joe Rogan to interview Weidman as if there was anything to intelligent to say. But UFC has learned much from WWE, and WWE has taught any live entertainment company that even if a performer falls from the top of the building to his death in front of your whole audience, scrape him off the mat, and keep moving forward.  Send a ham to the widow.

Anderson Silva was a prick for a few years, as many of the greatest of all time in their profession inevitably become for a little while. We can all thank Chael Sonnen for literally knocking some sense into him during their epic fight at UFC 117. Spider escaped that fight with his title and his pride, but thankfully left his ego behind. He became a gracious, quiet warrior, the perfect mma ambassador to the world. He netted the biggest sponsorship deals to date in the sport with Nike, Burger King, and Gatorade all putting logos on his flag and attire usually reserved for Tapout, Venom, and

The sport is better for Spider’s dominance, more popular and respected due to his one man dynasty. The sport is worse now that he is gone. He may make a comeback fight, but a full comeback is out of the question, it’s impossible, he’s 38 not 28. If he chooses to fight again hopefully Dana White and the UFC will have the dignity to give him a feeder like they chose to not do during Chuck Liddell and Randy Couture’s swan songs in the octagon.

Spider Silva was and is a model for athletes and savants of all walks of life. Great talent comes with great responsibility. Not a responsibility to satiate one’s ego, but to become as great as possible to be remembered in history and to inspire those in the present to be their best as well. Spider Silva got there after taking a detour to douchebagville. He leaves the sport of mma not just rich, not just a legend, but as of now the greatest of all time.

Now let’s all be sure to thank Dana White for booking the Spider vs. GSP super fight two years ago when it was the right thing for the sport to do and he repeatedly said he would.  Thanks Dana!!!