Friday, December 18, 2009

INSANE WEC 45 PREVIEW: Betting Odds, Chances of Fighters Winning, Statistical Analysis and Predictions for Every Fight

Go into insane detail in this 3,800-word preview of WEC 45: CERRONE VS. RATCLIFF. Includes breakdowns of betting odds with analysis, win-loss records, WEC wins and losses, biggest victories, fighter profiles and backgrounds, logical outcomes, Madness Levels and Madman Predictions for each and every fight on the card. WEC 45 will be held Saturday December 19, 2009 at The Pearl at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada. The main card will air live on Versus.

Betting lines are for entertainment purposes only and are included here to illustrate oddsmakers' projections. Madness Levels indicate the amount of insanity inspired in anticipation of a fight on a scale of one to ten. Madman Logic is determined by my trusty sidekick, the Madman Computer, which uses a mathematical formula based on previous results to determine what the most logical outcome would be if either fighter were to win.

Striving to be the most analytically astute fight preview column possible. Let the madness begin...

UD = Unanimous | SD = Split | MD = Majority Decision | SUB = Submission | (T)KO = (Technical)Knockout



Featherweight Bout

JAMEEL MASSOUH (-175) = 61% chance of winning

ERIK KOCH (+145) = 39% chance of winning

Jameel “The Real Deal” Massouh is 21-6, with 10 wins by submission and 7 wins by (T)KO. Massouh has lost 3 times by decision, lost twice by submission and lost once by KO. Massouh is 0-2 in WEC, and is coming off a loss to Leonard Garcia (8/09).

WEC L: Leonard Garcia (SD), Raphael Assuncao (UD)

BIGGEST MASSOUH WIN: over Ryan Healy by Unanimous Decision at EVO MMA (10/08)

Erik “New Breed” Koch is 8-0, undefeated with 6 wins by submission and 1 win by TKO. Koch will be making his WEC debut, and is coming off a win by submission over Tom Ahrens at MCC 20 (4/09).

BIGGEST KOCH WIN: over Joe Pearson by Triangle Choke Submission at Mainstream MMA: New Era (4/08)

LOWDOWN: Jameel Massouh, 25, has an amateur wrestling and karate background. He trains at Dave Strasser’s Freestyle Academy in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Erik Koch, 21, has a Taekwondo background and fights out of Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

MADNESS LEVEL (1-10): 4 – Jameel Massouh is coming off back-to-back losses to Leonard Garcia and Raphael Assuncao, which is the first time in his career he’s been defeated twice in a row. Erik Koch is a young buck who made his MMA debut less than 2 years ago. This is a make-or-break fight for Massouh, 3 losses and he’s not going to be fighting in the WEC again anytime soon. This will be Koch’s first fight on the big stage. I’m going with the more experienced fighter, who desperately needs the win, to come out on top in this one.

LOGIC SAYS: Massouh by SUB –OR– Koch by SUB

PREDICTION: Jameel Massouh

Bantamweight Bout

BRAD PICKETT (-205) = 64% chance of winning

KYLE DIETZ (+165) = 36% chance of winning

Brad “One Punch” Pickett is 17-4, with 8 wins by submission and 6 wins by (T)KO. Pickett has lost twice by submission and lost once by TKO. Pickett will be making his WEC debut, and is coming off a win over David Lee by submission at Ultimate Challenge UK: Payback (3/09).

BIGGEST PICKETT WIN: over Robbie “The Flame” Olivier by Majority Decision at Cage Rage 16 (4/06)

Kyle “K-Deezy” Dietz is 5-1, with 3 wins by submission and 1 win by TKO. Dietz’s only loss was by submission, in his only WEC fight. Dietz is coming off a loss to Rafael Rebello (6/09).

WEC L: Rafael Rebello (SUB)

BIGGEST DIETZ WIN: none over an opponent of any significance

LOWDOWN: Brad Pickett, 31, has a boxing and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu background. Pickett is a British fighter who is know for his ring entrance to the song WALLOP by Chas ‘n’ Dave. Pickett’s ring entrance attire and his nickname are based on the Brad Pitt character in SNATCH named “One Punch Mickey.” Kyle Dietz, 23, has an amateur wrestling and Muay Thai background. In high school, Dietz was a multi-sport athlete, and he was a professional bike rider as a teenager. Dietz trains with Team Evolution alongside the likes of Spencer Fisher and Drew McFedries.

MADNESS LEVEL (1-10): 5 – Brad Pickett is an exciting fighter who is currently on a 7-fight winning streak. Pickett fought extensively for Cage Rage in the United Kingdom, where he’s had some notorious battles over the years. This will be Pickett’s fourth fight in the United States. He’s 2-1 on U.S. soil. Dietz is still a somewhat obscure young fighter. Pickett would be a huge feather in Dietz’s cap, should he be able to overcome the veteran Brit.

LOGIC SAYS: Pickett by SUB –OR– Dietz by SUB

PREDICTION: Brad Pickett

Thursday, December 17, 2009

VIDEO: Rashad Evans vs Thiago Silva - UFC 108 Extended 10 Minute Preview

INSANE STRIKEFORCE: EVOLUTION PREVIEW Betting Odds, Statistical Analysis, Fighter Profiles, Madness Levels and Predictions

Go into insane detail in this preview of STRIKEFORCE: EVOLUTION. Includes breakdowns of betting odds with analysis, win-loss records, Strikeforce wins and losses, biggest victories, fighter profiles and backgrounds, logical outcomes, Madness Levels and Madman Predictions for every fight on the main card. STRIKEFORCE: EVOLUTION will be held Saturday December 19, 2009 at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California. The main card will air live on Showtime.

Betting lines are for entertainment purposes only and are included here to illustrate oddsmakers' projections. Madness Levels indicate the amount of insanity inspired in anticipation of a fight on a scale of one to ten. Madman Logic is determined by my trusty sidekick, the Madman Computer, which uses a mathematical formula based on previous results to determine what the most logical outcome would be if either fighter were to win.

Striving to be the most analytically astute fight preview column possible. Let the madness begin...

UD = Unanimous | SD = Split | MD = Majority Decision | SUB = Submission | (T)KO = (Technical)Knockout

Heavyweight Bout

MUHAMMED LAWAL (-600) = 81% chance of winning

MIKE WHITEHEAD (+400) = 19% chance of winning

Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal is 5-0, with 4 wins by TKO and 1 win by decision. Lawal will be making his Strikeforce debut, and is coming off a win over Mark Kerr in M-1.

BIGGEST LAWAL WIN: over Mark Kerr by TKO in 25 seconds at M-1 Global: Breakthrough (8/09)

“Iron” Mike Whitehead is 24-6, with 13 wins by submission and 5 wins by TKO. Whitehead has lost 3 times by TKO and lost 3 times by decision. Whitehead is 1-0 in Strikeforce, and is coming off a win over Kevin Randleman.

STRIKEFORCE W: Kevin Randleman (UD)

BIGGEST WHITEHEAD WIN: over Kevin Randleman by Unanimous Decision at Strikeforce: Lawler vs Shields (6/09)

LOWDOWN: Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal, 28, is one those rare athletes who is both exceptional at his craft and understands how to use gimmickry to get himself over. Lawal could be compared to NFL player Chad Johnson of the Cincinnati Bengals. To say Lawal is an accomplished amateur wrestler would be an understatement. He placed first at the 2002 NCAA Division II National Championships, following a second place in 2001, while attending the University of Central Oklahoma. Lawal transferred to Oklahoma State University and won the 2003 NCAA Division I Big 12 Championship, and finished third at nationals that year. After college, Lawal made the U.S. National Team in 2005 and won the U.S. Senior National Championships three times. Lawal was the number one ranked fighter in his weight class in the United States for three straight years. Lawal was in the co-main event in his MMA debut at Sengoku 5 in Japan, where it took him just over two minutes to finish off Travis Wiuff with punches for the TKO victory. Lawal’s first four fights were in Japan. His last fight with Mark Kerr marked his U.S. MMA debut. Mike Whitehead, 28, was also an amateur wrestler. Without the accolades of King Mo, Whitehead wrestled for North Idaho Junior College, Southern Oregon University and the University of Missouri. Whitehead was a participant on The Ultimate Fighter Season 2, where he lost to Rashad Evans.

MADNESS LEVEL (1-10): 7 – Always lots of madness for a King Mo fight! Whitehead can be boring, but Lawal has been anything but in his short MMA career. This is Muhammed Lawal’s most significant fight yet, in front of an American television audience. Whitehead is a brute, and has only ever been stopped 3 times in his entire 30-fight career. Lawal is a special breed of fighter, though, and seems to be destined for greatness – and if you don’t think so, just ask him. Go King Mo!

LOGIC SAYS: Lawal by KO –OR– Whitehead by SUB

PREDICTION: Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal

Middleweight Bout

RONALDO SOUZA (-270) = 69% chance of winning

MATT LINDLAND (+210) = 31% chance of winning

Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza is 10-2, with 9 wins by submission and 1 win by decision. Jacare has lost 2 times by KO. Jacare will be making his Strikeforce debut, and is coming off a No Contest with Jason “Mayhem” Miller in a rematch at DREAM 9 (5/09), before that was an upkick KO loss to Gegard Mousasi (9/08).

BIGGEST JACARE WIN: over Jason Miller by Unanimous Decision at DREAM 4 (6/08)

Matt “The Law” Lindland is 21-6, with 7 wins by submission, 7 wins by TKO and 6 wins by decision. Lindland has lost 3 times by (T)KO and lost twice by submission. Lindland will be making his Strikeforce debut, and is coming off a loss by KO to Vitor Belfort at Affliction: Day of Reckoning (1/09).

BIGGEST LINDLAND WIN: over Pat Miletich by TKO at UFC 36 (3/02)

LOWDOWN: Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, 30, is a legendary Brazilian submission grappler with a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. His nickname, Jacare, of which he is almost always solely known, is Portuguese for alligator. Jacare is a two-time Openweight World Jiu-Jitsu Champion and an ADCC (Abu Dhabi Combat Club) submission grappling tournament winner. Jacare has fought once before in the United States, for Gracie Fighting Championships in 2007. All of his other fights have been in Brazil or Japan. Jacare lost in the Finals of the 16-man DREAM Middleweight Grand Prix to Gegard Mousasi. Matt Lindland, 39, is an Olympic Silver-medalist in Greco-Roman wrestling, winning at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Lindland earned his nickname “The Law” because of a lengthy court battle he went through to the make the U.S. Olympic Team. Lindland had lost in the finals of the Olympic trials to Keith Sieracki. Lindland appealed the match, claiming he had been tripped, which violates the rules of Greco-Roman wrestling. An arbitrator ordered a rematch and Lindland won. The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) attempted to keep Sieracki on the team, and appealed in federal court. The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decided in Lindland’s favor. The USOC attempted to appeal to the Supreme Court, but the motion was denied and Lindland got his spot on the team, and went on to win the Silver medal. Lindland and Jacare met in a submission grappling match in the 2003 ADCC tournament, where Jacare won by submission in the non-striking affair.

MADNESS LEVEL (1-10): 8 – Several years ago, Matt Lindland was considered one of the best middleweight fighters on the planet. He has since fought 4 times over the past 3 years, going 2-2, with losses to Vitor Belfort and Fedor Emelianenko. Now Lindland is the underdog against Jacare, who was still making his name in the submission grappling world when Lindland was at his peak in MMA. I’ve been a huge fan of Jacare ever since his BJJ days and participation in the ADCC tournaments. To see him flourish in MMA is an awesome site to behold. Will this be a passing-of-the-torch fight, or the return of the Law? I’m rooting for Jacare, cause I’d love to see him become a star in the U.S. I’m picking Lindland, because it’s now or never for him. With his focus now away from his recent failed political run, one more run in MMA can start here and now for him. Of course, like a true madman, I’ll be rooting against my own pick. Go Jacare! No wait, go Lindland! Ah screw it, go Jacare!

LOGIC SAYS: Jacare by SUB –OR– Lindland by KO

PREDICTION: Matt Lindland (Risky Upset Special)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

VIDEO - Strikeforce: Evolution Trailer with Updated 12/19 Fight Card


Location: HP Pavilion in San Jose, CA

Broadcast: Showtime


Cung Le vs. Scott Smith (M)

Josh Thomson vs. Gilbert Melendez {Lightweight Championship}

Matt Lindland vs. Ronaldo 'Jacare' Souza (M)

Muhammed 'King Mo' Lawal vs. Mike Whitehead (H)


Antwain "The Juggernaut" Britt vs. Scott Lighty (LH)

Daisuke Nakamura vs. Justin "The Silverback" Wilcox (L)

Alexander Crispim vs. AJ Fonseca (F)

*Robbie Lawler vs. Trevor Prangley has been cancelled after Prangley had to pull out due to injury and a replacement opponent was unable to be found.

Buy Tickets to LIVE MMA Events at

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

SEE How Diego Got Cut, BJ High Kick Opens Bloody Gash - Plus Inside the UFC 107 FightMetric Numbers for Penn vs Sanchez

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As you can see in this GIF, the fight-ending cut to Diego Sanchez's forehead was caused by a rare B.J. Penn high kick.

To fully appreciate the royal beatdown put upon Sanchez by Penn, we need to go inside the absolutely astonishing numbers with FightMetric.

During the 5 rounds of action in their UFC Lightweight Championship bout at UFC 107, Penn landed 150 strikes out of 214 attempts, 137 of which were successful strikes to Sanchez's head. Sanchez, on the other hand, landed a paltry 8 strikes total, out of 108 attempts. This makes a 70-pecent success ratio for Penn, and 7-percent for Sanchez. While Penn landed an average of 30 strikes per round, Sanchez couldn't even muster up 2 successful strikes per round. To further compound the EPIC FAIL of Diego Sanchez's performance against BJ Penn, Sanchez attempted 27 takedowns during the fight, and had ZERO success. Sanchez didn't just lose at UFC 107, he got utterly destroyed.

VIDEO: WEC 45: CERRONE VS. RATCLIFF Preview with Complete 12/19 Fight Card

WEC 45: CERRONE VS. RATCLIFF -- 12/19/09

Location: The Pearl at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, NV 

Broadcast: Versus


Donald Cerrone vs. Ed Ratcliff (L)

Chris Horodecki vs. Anthony Njokuani (L)

Joseph Benavidez vs. Rani Yahya (B)

Scott Jorgensen vs. Takeya Mizugaki (B)


Bart Palaszewski vs. Anthony Pettis (L)

Muhsin Corbbrey vs. Zack Micklewright (L)

Chad George vs. John Hosman (B)

Courtney Buck vs. Brandon Visher (F)

Kyle Dietz vs. Brad Pickett (B)

Erik Koch vs. Jameel Massouh (F)

Buy Tickets to LIVE MMA Events at

L = Lightweight (155 lbs) | F = Featherweight (145) | B = Bantamweight (135)

Sunday, December 13, 2009

UFC 107 RESULTS - Complete Recap and Madman Awards for Penn vs Sanchez 12/12/09 in Memphis

UFC 107: PENN VS. SANCHEZ was held Saturday December 12, 2009 at the FedEx Forum in Memphis, Tennessee.

The main event saw B.J. 'the Prodigy' Penn establish himself as the greatest lightweight fighter in the history of MMA. UFC announcer Mike Goldberg said, "Penn has a way of making exceptional athletes look ordinary." This is exactly what Penn did to Diego 'Nightmare' Sanchez, a highly-conditioned athlete who had no answers to the questions presented to him by Penn in what ended up being a 5-round shellacking. To Sanchez's credit, he stayed the course with Penn, took his beating and never quit. In the final championship round, Penn sliced open Sanchez's forehead and the fight was called off by the ringside doctor, resulting in a TKO win for Penn. Very quickly into the fight it was clear that Penn was the superior fighter, as he has been against every other lightweight contender he's faced since he's been champion. Announcer Joe Rogan suggested maybe the UFC should steal Shinya Aoki away from Japan. As things stand now, Aoki appears to be the only lightweight fighter in the world that even comes close to Penn in being considered the best. This was only Sanchez's third fight in the UFC lightweight division, after he dropped down from welterweight, so there are plenty of great fights left for him. Although he won't go forward as champion, he'll still have plenty of opportunities to put on exciting fights for the UFC fans. On this night, Sanchez was simply outclassed to a level where he wasn't able to make the fight exciting on a competitive level.

In the co-main event, Frank Mir put an exclamation point on the idea that he is one of the UFC's top heavyweight fighters. It took Mir just over a minute to finish off Cheick Kongo. Mir had been touting his improved stand-up in interviews, citing his work with Mark DellaGrotte, and proved his point by catching Cheick Kongo with a big left hand that sent him to the mat. Mir followed Kongo to the ground and sunk in a guillotine choke for the quickest win of the night.

Jon Fitch won a rather uneventful unanimous decision over late replacement Mike Pierce. Fitch had been scheduled to fight both Ricardo Almeida and Thiago Alves, before both fighters had to pull out due to injury. Pierce was given the spot after scoring an upset win over Brock Larson at UFC Fight Night 19. Pierce lost the first 2 rounds to Fitch, but came back in the closing moments of the third round to land some big shots that had Fitch clinching for survival. It ended up being too little, too late, though, as Fitch's hand was raised for the decision victory.

Kenny 'KenFlo' Florian handled Clay 'the Carpenter' Guida with relative ease, tapping out Guida in the second round with a rear-naked choke. Guida was bloodied up in the first round, suffering a nasty gash on his head from a Florian elbow. Joe Rogan called Florian's elbow a potential murder weapon. Although Florian lost in his previous fight to BJ Penn, he came out of the gate strong in this rebound fight, taking out a serious fan favorite and legitimate lightweight contender in Clay Guida.

The opening PPV bout ended up being the Madman Fight of the Night. Stefan 'Skyscraper' Struve and Paul 'the Headhunter' Buentello had a 3-round war. Struve locked up Buentello in a body triangle for most of the first round, but wasn't able to secure the submission. The second round saw Buentello make a comeback. There were several spots in the second round where both fighters threw caution to the wind and stood toe-to-toe trading blows. Struve attempted a flying knee, but was met midway through the air with a punch that dropped him to the canvas. Despite eating some serious strikes from Buentello, Struve was able to survive the second round. The third round was the closest round of the fight. Two judges went with Struve and one judge called it a draw, resulting in a majority decision win for Struve. This was a great fight and Struve's third UFC win in the 2009 calendar year. Despite his lanky babyface appearance, Struve proved his mettle against Buentello. He stood and banged with the heavy-handed Buentello, and not only lived to tell about it, but walked away with the win. Buentello earned himself another fight in the UFC with this borderline loss. Struve expressed disappointment with his performance in his post-fight interview, even going so far as to say he believed the fight should've been ruled a draw. While his point was humility in victory, surely he's not looking to give up the win bonus that came with the majority decision.

In preliminary card action that aired on tape-delay during the PPV, Alan 'the Talent' Belcher, who was fighting in his hometown of Memphis, made a statement against Wilson Gouveia. In his pre-fight interviews, Belcher declared he was going to make sure he's on the main card the next time he fights, and with this TKO win, he certainly has earned this privilege. Meanwhile, Gouveia's UFC struggles continue. DaMarques Johnson looked dead to rights early on against Edgar Garcia, getting caught in a Peruvian necktie submission. Johnson stayed calm and somehow managed to work his way out of the choke. He then turned the tables on Garcia, and caught him in a triangle choke. Unlike Johnson, Garcia was not able to escape, and had to tap out to the TUF 9 runner-up.

In unaired preliminary bouts, T.J. Grant pounded out a TKO win over Kevin 'the Fire' Burns with just 3 seconds left in the first round. Rousimar 'Toquinho' Palhares caught Lucio 'the Spartan' Linhares with a heel hook in the second round, winning by submission against his Brazilian countryman. Johny Hendricks and 'Handsome' Matt Wiman both won by unanimous decision over Ricardo 'Golden Boy' Funch and 'Sugar' Shane Nelson, respectively.

UFC 107 was a night of statements. B.J. Penn proved he is basically untouchable in the UFC lightweight division. Frank Mir proved his wins over Brock Lesnar and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira were no flukes. Mir suffered a few mid-career setbacks, but he's come a long way since, and is now better than he's even been. Kenny Florian proved he very well might be the best UFC lightweight fighter not named B.J. Penn, which creates an awkward title situation since Florian has already lost to Penn in a UFC Lightweight Championship fight, and also lost in an earlier title opportunity against Sean Sherk. Perhaps the third time will be the charm for Florian. Alan Belcher proved he needs to be on UFC main cards with a quick and exciting technical knockout of Wilson Gouveia. Finally, DaMarques Johnson and T.J. Grant both proved they belong in the UFC, and avoided possible pink slips with impressive wins.

This was the final UFC event of 2009 and capped off a great year of UFC fights. Stay tuned to over the next several weeks as we look back at 2009 with a variety of year-in-review articles, leading up to the announcement of the 2009 Madman Awards.

Complete Results and UFC 107 Madman Awards after the Break.