Never let it be said that Sherdog.com readers are a shy lot: a
recent round of op-eds on the lightweights, Fedor Emelianenko(Pictures), Frank Shamrock(Pictures), and other topics was met with
questions, comments, and the occasional plea to be un-banned from
I wish I had that kind of pull around here. Maybe one day. In the
meantime, enjoy some premium queries and rambling answers,
including a question on Royce
Gracie(Pictures)'s fate and a drop-in on former
UFC announcer Bruce Beck.
According to CSAC Commissioner Armando Garcia, there's virtually no
chance Gracie's publicly tainted win will be excised from the
"Unfortunately, our rules do not support a change of decision for
positive drug tests at this time," he stated. "I have already
drafted a regulation change to resolve this. I anticipate the rule
will go into effect later this year."
Since the amendment won't be retroactive, Gracie won't have to
worry about the victory -- only the asterisk beside it. His
deadline to file an appeal expired on July 13.
More on Fedor
I wanted to inquire about your regard for Fedor Emelianenko(Pictures). Normally, I would agree
with you 100 percent … MMA has entirely too many facets, styles,
and talented, diverse fighters for even a great athlete to go
I think, however, that Fedor is the exception. He has proven that
he is human. Kazuyuki
Fujita(Pictures) made him see stars. He decided to
clinch with Kevin
Randleman(Pictures), and he nearly got his neck
broken for his troubles. Even Mark Hunt(Pictures) used his much larger frame to
hold Fedor down against his will for eight minutes. Be that as it
may, Fedor always found a way to win (by submission in all of those
I will say that we do have some common ground. Since his 2005
victory over Cro Cop, his opposition has been disturbingly weak (no
disrespect to Lindland … he was merely oversized). Furthermore,
according to recent events, he seems to want to hand-select his
opponents. This all tells me that Fedor is falling in love with his
own legend, and he might know that his end is near. The very
problem with being human (and as I said, Fedor has proven himself
human) is that our greatness never lasts. -- James R. Milicevic,
I'm not sure his victories over Cro Cop, Arona, and Schilt could be
considered "brutal." They were fairly strategic affairs that saw
Fedor dominate position and control the flow of the bout.
Impressive, but if you want devastating where those men are
concerned, you'd have to look to Gabriel Gonzaga(Pictures), Quinton Jackson(Pictures), and Sergei Kharitonov(Pictures), respectively.
Fedor is undoubtedly an elite force in his division, but someone
always has your number. If he can reach an agreement with the UFC
-- likely, considering their substantial pay scale and sponsorship
potential -- then we'll find out just who that is.
My best guess is that Fedor's downfall won't come via KO or
submission, but the stateside rules. Someone who can control Fedor
on the mat, even temporarily, has the potential to FedEx some
elbows and open up a nice gash on his tissue-paper brow that could
get the fight stopped. It may be a maligned victory, but the rules
say it's as valid a method as any.
Nice piece on the lighter weights. So you don't think that this
season's low ratings for TUF had to do with the fighters being
lightweights? I would hate to think that was the case.
What do you think about the Zuffa turning PRIDE into "WEC Asia" or
remaking it along the lines of the Bushido series in which lighter
weight fighters are the major focus? I've got to believe that all
the quality bigger fighters from Pride will be headed to the UFC.
-- David Penn
TUF's diminished ratings this season are probably due more to
viewers getting a "been there, done that" vibe than disinterest in
the lightweights. Even so, their Pulver/Penn live finale drew
Spike's second-highest rating (2.6 million viewers) for a fight,
second only to the Shamrock-Ortiz groaner.
If September's season six draws meager attention, then I wouldn't
be surprised to see the series take the inevitable reality TV tact
of altering the format. Producer Craig Piligian recently told me
that a woman's edition has already been discussed.
Nog vs. Car
Just wanted to point out that Rodrigo Nogueira getting run over
by a truck was no legend. It is a well-known fact, and he has
spoken about it in several interviews, including a live TV show in
Brazil called Domingão do Faustão. I'm sure you'll find concrete
references to the accident online if you research enough. -- Igor
The constitution needed to be a professional fighter is beyond my
comprehension, and often taken for granted by spectators. If you
ever run into Josh Gross, ask him to relate the "Bas Rutten(Pictures) Tokyo Crosswalk" story. These
guys are another species entirely.
Dana White's waste of airtime had me angry for three days. I
lost 90 minutes of my life and all I could think was "Dana White is
airing his personal pissing match."
It does appear that Tito
Ortiz(Pictures) is being marginalized and there
is no reason to do this to a top fighter. -- Mike Molag
White's bizarre smear campaign against Ortiz continued after his
fight with Rashad Evans(Pictures) last weekend, where White
speculated that he was no longer an elite athlete. This after
calling him a "total moron" in interviews.
Ortiz is a caustic, abrasive character, and he's not to everyone's
tastes (including mine). But it's inarguable that he was Zuffa's
first and only marquee talent; his feud with Ken Shamrock(Pictures) gave them their first signs of
life as a pay-per-view entity, and offered a degree of momentum
that may have helped save the company.
I think that kind of legacy deserves better than what White is