Friday, May 22, 2009

UFC 98 Preview

ufc98Here is an actual email from an actual reader/listener:

You know that UFC 98 is coming up....maybe it gets a mention some where in your media empire? Do soccer fans email you about mentions too? I dont know if i like the redirect from BobsBlog to Dmagzine but i am you

Cody the No 1 p1

I get that email about 3 times a week, from good-strong followers who would like me to take my fandom of MMA fighting to my media outlets.

My hesitation is based on the idea that although I watch it, I am not positive I fully understand what is going on in an MMA fight. On the other hand, some of you have made that same point about my thoughts on our traditional sports so maybe I should just get over that.

Anyway, I am a big fan of the UFC. I was introduced to it in about 2004 by my friend Kevin Scott and have followed it reasonably closely ever since. I say reasonably closely because I certainly do not follow the daily rumors or news items between Pay-Per-Views, and I don't go to message boards, but I do get pretty much every single PPV (so Dana White has a ton of my money) and I do follow the addicting Ultimate Fighter tv show.

With that context in mind, Greg Garcia emailed me a number of UFC/MMA questions for his website and I thought I would just use those as a basis for this controversial first-ever MMA entry at InsideCorner:
Hey Bob,

Greg Garcia, loyal listener here. To make a long story short I am covering MMA for the I know you are an MMA/UFC fan & would like to hear more MMA talk on the show.

Anyhow, I wondered if you could may be throw me a bone and answer a few of the questions below.

What are your thoughts on Dana White's f-bomb lased tirade on Loretta Hunt and the criticism that followed? Did you think he got the criticism he deserved or perhaps he got off easy?

To me, he is a lot like Mark Cuban. He doesn't follow the tradition of the media protocol that has been laid out, and some people find it refreshing. I think the venom is awfully over the top, but I think he is great for the sport and a person who is very interesting. He makes enemies, but he seems ok with that. He would likely approve of the criticism, because that would get his sport more publicity, and we all know Cuban and Dana both agree there is no such thing as bad publicity.

Do you think Chuck Liddell will fight again or is he done?

Yes and yes. The money is too good to say no, but he is done. He now has a light switch on his chin that is easy to access.

What do you think Rashad Evans has to do to be successful against Loyoto Machida? Which guy do you think matches up better with Rampage Jackson?

Well, I have learned to stop doubting Rashad Evans. I have never given him the respect he has been owed, and he seems to improve with each fight. Machida also is topping out, and his destruction of Silva caught me off guard back in January. His last 3 fights have impressed greatly, so while I wish I could give you a strong pick on Saturday, honestly, I have no idea. I think I will go with Rashad, but I am really torn.

I do think Rampage would be favored to beat either, but these guys are both top quality. 205 is much better than it was 24 months ago, in my opinion in the 2nd level.
After a years of brewing has the luster of a Hughes vs Serra match passed? Both men seem on the brink of retirement what do you think a match like this means if anything?

Nobody loves Matt Hughes more than I do, but I just want him to stop. He hasn't looked good since BJ Penn in 2006. I never thought Serra had much but a big mouth and one lucky punch against GSP, but obviously at this stage of Hughes' decline, it would not shock me at all to see Serra get the win. If you want greatness at 170, then look no further than GSP - Alves in July at UFC 100.
Why do you think the UFC has yet to hold an event in Dallas?

I have no idea. I am sure it would sellout the AAC, and it would be massive. I wish I knew why it has been ignored. I really need to look into it more.
Man, I know you get tons of emails so if you don't have the time I understand. Love the show, keep up the good work!


Greg Garcia

Actually, Greg, time is something I always have if it is for sports blogging.

Ok, so here is what you need to know about UFC 98 from the MGM-Grand in Las Vegas with my picks in bold:

Main Event: Rashad Evans, the Champ at 205 takes on challenger Lyoto Machida for the belt.

Matt Serra vs Matt Hughes - this pick is blind faith only.
Sean Sherk vs Frank Edgar
Dave Kaplan vs George Roop
James Irwin vs Drew McFedries
Chael Sonnin vs Dan Miller

UFC Promo Video

Enjoy the fights...if you enjoy fights.

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