Sunday, August 14, 2011

UFC Live Preview

  UFC Live: Hardy vs Lytle takes place tonight at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
  An entertaining welterweight bout between Dan Hardy (MMA 23-9-1, UFC 4-3) and Chris Lytle (MMA 30-18-5, UFC 9-10) headlines this event.
  An important lightweight battle between Jim Miller (MMA 20-2, UFC 9-1) and Ben Henderson (MMA 13-2, UFC 1-0) is the featured co-main event.
   Henderson is an extremely talented fighter who specializes in wrestling and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, which causes him to be deadly with submissions. He also has the endurance it takes to go the distance and more importantly win via decision. Before the merger of the WEC and the UFC, Henderson was the WEC Lightweight Champion by defeating Jamie Varner for the undisputed title at WEC 46, after winning the interim title at WEC 43 over Donald Cerrone. He remained champion until the company's final show where he lost to Anthony Pettis in an very competitive fight. Henderson made his UFC debut in April at UFC 129 winning an impressive bout against Mark Bocek. A win over Miller could put Henderson in the lightweight title picture.
  A win for Jim Miller tonight would almost guarantee that he would be next in line for a lightweight title shot. He is one of the best fighters in the lightweight division that you never hear about. Dating back to UFC 100, Miller is on a seven fight win streak including wins over Mac Danzing and Bocek. He too specializes in the ground game, and can last a full fight in the octagon.
   Prediction: Expect 15 minute chess match on the ground. Both fighters excel best when a fight is taken to the ground and both are master wrestlers. Although it will not cause many fireworks, this fight will be an example of MMA at its finest. I give Henderson the win via decision. Miller does not have any big name wins, which seems to show he has not beat any of the finest lightweights, and lacks finishing fights, even using submissions. Henderson is the type of fighter Miller has not seen before, and Henderson appears to be a quicker version of himself which could cause Miller many problems.
   In March of 2010, Dan Hardy was taking on Georges St Pierre for the UFC Welterweight Championship, now he is predicted to be released from the UFC if he loses against Chris Lytle. Before his defeat against GSP, Hardy had a four fight win streak including wins against solid fighters in Mike Swick and Marcus Davis. Since the title defeat, Hardy has suffered two straight losses in the likes of Carlos Condit and Anthony Johnson. Hardy is too good of a fighter to lose a fourth time, especially if this fight is a stand-up battle. He is a tough boxer, who throws brutal punches from both fists. However, Hardy lacks ground game and hopefully will show improvement of it tonight against Lytle.
   This fight for Chris Lytle will be the last of his MMA career as he announced he will retire after this fight no matter what the outcome is. Lytle has had an outstanding career with notable wins over Matt Serra, Matt Brown, and Kyle Bradley. However, besides Serra, he has no other big time win as he has suffered losses to Josh Koscheck and Thiago Alves. No matter who he fights, Lytle brings a show and gives his all as he has win five fight of the night awards, one knockout of the night award, and two submission of the night awards. Lytle is a boxer as well, but also does really well on the ground and is known to pull off nasty submissions out of the blue.
  Prediction: I expect Lytle to go out with a bang and give Hardy, plus the fans, the stand-up war they want to see. If Lytle cannot handle Hardy's viscous punches, expect to see him take the fight onto the ground and pull of a submission. Lytle wins via submission in round three.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Aftermath of UFC 133

   Another UFC Fight card came and went this weekend as UFC 133 occurred at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, last night.
   The main card in general was very exciting to watch, but it was the co-main event between Victor Belfort and Yoshihiro Akiyama and the main event between Tito Ortiz and Rashad Evans that brought the most buzz.
   Beflort defeated Akiyama via first round KO in a middleweight bout.
   Evans defeated Ortiz via second round TKO in light heavyweight action.
     So what do these results mean to these four fighters, and more importantly the MMA world?
   Yoshihiro Akiyama (MMA 13-4-2, UFC 1-3)- The loss to Belfort marks the third consecutive loss for Akiyama in his UFC career. Usually three losses in a row in any organization (but especially the UFC) means an automatic cut, but I really hope that is not the case for Akiyama. He puts on a show every time he fights, and any fan of the sport has to respect that. It is not like he just lays on the ground for three rounds, he is active, throws punches, but at the same time, takes them. That is just part of the sport. Rumors have been that if Akiyama decides to drop to 170 (welterweight), he will not be cut. That would be the perfect move for him, not only because he would still have a job, but I think Akiyama would find a lot of success in that division. He would be one of the stronger fighters, so if his punch power would be even more deadly than it is already. Akiyama has strong stamina as it is, so even against lighter and quicker opponents, Akiyama would not have an instant disadvantage. He would not go right in and be the number one contender for the title if he won one fight at welterweight, so I could see him fighting the loser of the Dan Hardy-Chris Lytle fight, which is slated to be August 14. This would be an entertaining fight that would help give Akiyama the experience he needs to be successful at welterweight.
   Victor Belfort (MMA 20-9, UFC 9-4)-Belfort's quick work of Akiyama puts him right back in the middleweight title talk. Many had no idea on Belfort's future after he took a quick beating against Anderson Silva at UFC 126 for the title. His performance against Akiyama however, shut up critics and put his career right on track. I do not think Belfort deserves a shot at the title right away, because his performance against Silva the first time was nothing special. He is definitely a top contender for a title shot, but you could say the same for Brian Stann and Chael Sonnen who are matched up for UFC 136. Belfort should then take on the winner of this fight to see who the real number one contender is. Victor Belfort is one of the great middleweights in the world, but he still has a lot of work to do if he wants to become the best.
   Rashad Evans (MMA 16-1-1, UFC 11-1-1)- Evans took care of business at UFC 133 to remain the number one contender for Jon Jones' UFC Light Heavyweight Championship. Even after not fighting for 14 months, Evans looked good and beat a motivated combatant in Tito Ortiz. Evans looked as if he did not experience ring rust at all. His timing was solid, his punches were crisp, and wrestling looked outstanding. Not to mention his will to win. I was astonished when Evans not only broke away from Ortiz's guillotine attempt, but immediately after he took control and put the fight back in his control. I also loved that Evans realized he had a prime opportunity to finish Ortiz and he did with a stellar knee to the stomach, it was a perfect way to show that he is back. I have not seen a performance like this from Evans in a long time, he looked outstanding. Maybe parting ways with trainer Greg Jackson was the best move for him. Jon Jones is the best fighter in the light heavyweight division, but if Evans has the same mindset going to the fight with Jones (When Jones defeats Rampage Jackson at UFC 135), as he did against Ortiz, Evans could possibly win his second UFC Light Heavyweight Title.
   Tito Ortiz (MMA 16-9-1, UFC 15-9-1)- I was really pulling for Tito in this one. The fact that he did not win a fight for five years (while dealing with legal problems) until he upset Ryan Bader was a story in itself. The way fans could tell how happy and excited Tito was to win again just made it better. Since then he truly has been "The People's Champ", and if he would have beat Evans that would have been HUGE. I cannot even being to explain how shocking that would have been. Ortiz may not have gotten the win in this one, but I can easily say that Tito Ortiz is back. Ortiz held off an early surge by Evans, blocked the majority of his punches in the fight, and used some knees that you could tell really hurt him. What impressed me as well was that Tito did not look too bad on his back. He pulled off two submission attempts that I was for sure he was going to get the win by. The guillotine attempt he had was soooooooRua in late August, Tito vs Forrest III could possibly happen and that would be a "mega" fight. Lyoto Machida also has not scheduled a fight for anytime soon, and a rematch with him would also be interesting. Regardless of who he fights, Tito Ortiz will be a threat and can beat whoever he is against. He proved this against Evans.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

UFC 133 Preview

   UFC 133 takes place tonight at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
   Although the overall fight card is not attractive, this event does feature two interesting fights that could shake up the MMA world.
   This event has taken a beating due to injury.
   The original main event was expected to be light heavyweight champion Jon Jones against Rashad Evans. However, Jones pulled out because injury. Evans could have opted out of the main event as well, but decided to still fight. Jones' replacement was Phil Davis, but he later too pulled out because of injury. Lyoto Machida was expected to jump in and fight Evans, but because of money negation differences, that plan came up short. An unexpected "hero" jumped in and took the fight....Tito Ortiz.
  Expect a stand-up war in the co-headliner between Victor Belfort (MMA 19-9, UFC 8-5) and Yoshihiro Akiyama (MMA 13-3-2, UFC 1-2) in middleweight action. Both fighters have unpredictable knockout power that will make viewers watch in awe.
   Akiyama is on a two fight losing skid in the UFC, but all three of his fights for the organization have been voted as "fight of the night". He debuted at UFC 100 where he defeated Alan Belcher via split decision, but since has lost to Chris Leben and Michael Bisping, who are both excellent fights. Akiyama's battle  with Leben at UFC 116 was considered to be one of the best fights of 2010. Akiyama will put a show on against Belfort no matter what the final outcome is.
   Belfort is looking at this fight as the start on the road to win the UFC Middleweight Championship. He clashed with Anderson Sliva for the belt at UFC 126, but was shockingly knocked out in the first round after Silva unleashed a brutal step kick to Belfort's head. He is a UFC veteran with notable wins over Randy Couture, Rich Franklin, and Wanderlei Silva. Belfort has also fought Chuck Liddell, and Tito Ortiz, but was defeated. He specializes in the knockout game, but can win by submission if needed.
   Final Prediction: Belfort wins via TKO in Round 3. This fight is going to cause some serious fireworks. Expect blood, lots of punches, and just a fantastic fight. Belfort has the experience, the knockout power, and just the desire to win, so I give him the edge on this one. Very likely to be "Fight of the Night".
   The fight I have been waiting for is defentily the main event between light heavyweights Rashad Evans (MMA 15-1-1, UFC 10-1-1) and Tito Ortiz (MMA 16-8-1, UFC 15-8-1).
   Evans, who is the number one contender for the light heavyweight title, has everything to lose in this fight. He is predicted by many to win this fight easily even though he has not fought in over a year. Evans has stellar knockout power and the endurance to win by decision which makes him a tough fighter to face. He has notable wins over Forest Griffin (won the UFC Light heavyweight Championship), Quinton "Rampage" Jackson, Chuck Liddell, Michael Bisping, and Thiago Silva. Evans has lost one fight in his career which was in his title defense at UFC 98 against Lyoto Machida. Rashad Evans is a talented fighter to say the least, but he is not the story of this fight.
   For Tito Ortiz, this fight is another challenge on the way to an "impossible" comeback. From December of 2006 up to October of 2010, Ortiz lost five fights in a row, and was told by many to call it quits and retire. A legal issue with girlfriend Jenna Jamison did not help matters. However last month against Ryan Bader at UFC 132, Ortiz did the unthinkable. He submitted Bader in the first round. Ortiz practically fought for his career as it was stated that he would have been released from the company with a loss.Since, Ortiz has been considered to be a hero and has changed his image which brought in new fans. He says he is in the best shape of his life and can win against anybody; but can it be done tonight?
   It very well could.
   Ortiz is best when he can wrestle and try submissions, but you cannot underestimate his knockout ability. He has an unbelievable resume defeating Belfort, Forrest Griffin, Ken Shamrock, Wanderlei Silva, and Evan Tanner, but all of those wins were said to be during his "prime".  
  Final Prediction: Do not expect this fight to go the distance because it wont. I expect a fighter to be finished, and probably not the fighter you expect. Ortiz wins in round two via submission.
   Yes, I predict it.
    You can never doubt the underdog, and that is obviously what Ortiz is. Its just weird that he looked so good against Bader, and the fact that he is now fighting again just a month after shows he will still be in fighter mode and in that great shape he says he is in. He has nothing to lose in his fight, so he should be relaxed, focused, and ready to shock the MMA world once again.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Fedor Gone From Strikeforce

Breaking News!

   Fedor Emelianenko (MMA 31-4, SF 1-3) has been cut from Strikeforce.
   Emelianenko (34), considered to be the greatest heavyweight fighter of all time in MMA, has lost three straight fights in Strikeforce with the last being July 31 against Dan Henderson via 1st round TKO.
   Emelianenko has notable wins over Mirko Cro Cop, Minotauro Nogueira, Tim Sylvia, and Andrei Arlovksi.
   It was reported earlier in the week that Strikeforce was pushing Fedor to resign with the company and continue fighting.
   Where will Fedor go?
   No idea, but I would not be surprised to see him fight in Japan for the DREAM organization, or even follow Alistair Overeem and join the United Glory World Series.
   I still believe Emelianenko is not retiring anytime soon, because he still believes he has lots to prove, especially now in the direction of Strikeforce.

Video of the Day (8/4)

Probably the most interesting thing you will find in MMA.

A Heavyweight Disaster

Strikeforce has had its share of problems.
  First, the company was bought out by Zuffa in March, making it the sister company of the UFC. This now allows Strikeforce fighters to leave the company to fight in the UFC, and it already lost welterweight champion Nick Diaz for that reason. It also does not help that Strikeforce does not have the popularity its sister company has or a contract with a national television station to showcase its talent to the whole country.
  The company now has even a bigger problem; its "loaded with talent" heavyweight division took two big blows this last week.
   1. Strikeforce has no heavyweight champion as it shockingly released its champion Alistair Overeem (MMA 35-11, SF 3-0). Overeem was suppose to participate in the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix Semi-Finals in September. However, due to injury, Overeem preferred an October fight, so he could be at full strength. Strikeforce did not like its champion "rebelling", therefore Overeem was released on July 29.
  2. Fedor Emelianenko's (MMA 31-4, SF 1-3) legendary career looks to soon be over. Last Saturday, Emelianenko lost to light heavyweight Dan Henderson via first round TKO, which marks Emelianenko's third consecutive loss in the company. Emelianenko, considered to be the greatest heavyweight of all time in MMA, is the biggest attraction in all of Strikeforce, so his career ending soon will kill the company.
   The heavyweight division of Strikeforce currently has no hope. Its two best fighters are Antonio Silva and Fabricio Werdum who in my opinion would only be mid-tier fighters in the UFC. These two fighters are extremely talented, but cannot carry the ratings to make up for the lack of talent that this division possess.
   There is a simple solution to this "heavyweight" disaster, even though it would never happen.
   Fold Strikeforce's heavyweight division, move worthy fighters to the UFC.
   Give fighters like Werdum, Silva, and even Josh Barnett the chance to go into the UFC and fight the best, instead of having them fight lower-tier fighters and be able to win with even lackluster performances.
    Strikeforce has been upset with how its heavyweight fighters have performed in this Grand Prix and in general, but the company has not done anything about it.
   It does not work like that in the UFC.
   The competition is so strong that every fighter has to fight like its his last, otherwise he will get cut; its as simple as that. These fighters would not give those weak performances in the UFC because they simply would not survive.
   There is not enough solid fighters in the Strikeforce heavyweight division for there to be stellar fights on every card, and this Grand Prix has been terrible, so the best option for Strikeforce would be to fold the division over to the UFC.
   If Fedor was younger, and Overeem did not get cut (still does not make sense), then the division could probably last a little longer, but its time to get rid of the division, so Strikeforce finds some way to stop looking idiotic.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Monday, August 1, 2011

Video of the Day (8/1)

Gotta have a tribute to my favorite wide receiver Randy Moss. Wish he didnt retire today, but cant blame him.

What Is Next for Fedor Emelianeko?

Finally writing again, sorry for the delay.
Many blog-worthy stories have occurred in the world of sports during my time off, so expect numerous posts today.

"Should I stay or should I go now?
 If I go there will be trouble,
 An I stay it will be double"

  I never ever thought that a song by the Clash could summarize the current situation of MMA heavyweight legend Fedor Emelianenko (MMA 31-4-1, SF 1-3), but it does and makes perfect sense.
  Emelianenkeo, 34, considered to be the greatest heavyweight of all-time in MMA with wins over Tim Sylvia, Mark Coleman, Andrei Arlovski, Mirko Cro Cop, and Minotauro Nogueira (the list could go on), is going through a tragic downfall.
   After winning his first fight at a Strikeforce event against Brett Rogers in November of 2009, Emelianenko has lost three straight fights for the company. He was surprisingly submitted by Fabricio Werdum in June of 2010, a nasty swelling of his eye cost him a loss against Antonio Silva in the first round of Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix in February, and as of most recently, a TKO stoppage loss by Dan Henderson (which was very questionable) last Saturday, at the Sears Centre in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.
   So the question that is probably constantly ringing in Emelianenkeo's head is: "Should I stay or should I go?"
   Strikeforce has already stated that they want him to sign another contract with the company, but Emelianenkeo has nothing else to prove in the sport. He has one of the best fighting resumes you can ask for, and has helped the sport gain world-wide popularity.
   Even a three fight win streak cannot hurt his credibility.
   Emelianenkeo could retire this week and still be known as one of the best. This losing streak would just mean that he is out of his prime and its time to quit. Anyone could understand that because you cannot be the best forever.
   Although I personally think he should retire because he has nothing else to prove, I do not think Emelianenkeo will take the "Should I go" route. Fighters never quit unless they truly know its time, and I do not think Fedor thinks its his time yet; and that could possibly be true. He did not take a true beating in any of those losses, he was highly competitive and could have won all of those fights. Emelianenkeo's situation cannot be compared to Wanderlei Silva's, where Silva just walks into the octagon and gets knocked out within seconds. I expect him to train more and harder than he has ever done before to show us he still has it, I just hope it does not ruin his career when it is retirement time.
   "If I go there will be trouble." These lyrics fit well too because if Emelianenkeo does retire at this time, it could hurt him mentally. He could regret retirement if he really does think he could have won those three fights. Most likely, by the time he realizes he regrets his decision, it will be too late to do anything about it.
   "An if I stay it will be double"- If Fedor does continue to fight and continues to lose, his career could be in jeopardy. His historic resume could be overshadowed by the fact that he was another fighter who tried to keep fighting after his prime and it cost him both physically and mentally.
  I, like all of you, have no idea what Fedor Emelianenkeo will do. I hope that he retires, but I could easily see him returning to fight for the sole reason that in each of his last three fights, he has still shown flashes of greatness. I would love to see Fedor come back and win some more fights, but I just do not know if he could.
   The decision will be here eventually, but expect Fedor to stay fighting. Lets all just pray that the trouble is not doubled.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Back From Vacation

Back from vacation, sorry for no posts, will be posting about Fedor sometime today.


Monday, July 25, 2011

Why the Reds Need Drew Stubbs

  If any player has been the target of recent criticism by many for the Cincinnati Reds, without a doubt, it is center fielder Drew Stubbs.
   Stubbs "apparently" can do nothing right, as he is said to strikeout too much (which is true, 130), not hustle, and is a complete waste for the team.
  Hopefully, the people who demand Reds General Manger Walt Jocketty to trade Stubbs witnessed his performances this weekend against the Atlanta Braves and realize just how valuable he is to this Reds team.
   Not only did Stubbs win the series for the Reds by hitting a walk-off home run to win game three 4-3, but he played extremely consistent throughout the series as if he had something to prove.
   On Friday, he hit a homer, going 1-4 in a loss. He almost made a web-gem worthy catch in which he almost robbed a home run, but he knocked the ball over the fence at the last second. Its the effort here that counts to show that he does in fact hustle.
   He however made up for that mistake in Saturday's win in which the Reds pounded Atlanta.
   Stubbs went 1-3, but showcased his speed with a stolen base, and showed just how good he is at bunting. Not only did he lay down a sacrifice bunt that advanced runners, but Stubbs put down a perfect bunt down third base line for a single.
   In the final game of the series yesterday, Stubbs hit his 13th homer of the year to win the game, but also had another hit (2-4), and a stolen base.
   Sure his season numbers are not great, as Stubbs has 100 hits, 34 RBIs, and a batting average of .256, but these stats are indeed respectable.
   What makes Drew Stubbs so valuable to the Cincinnati Reds is the little things he does throughout games.
   He has amazing speed, and uses it to change the momentum of games.
   Stubbs can run out bunts for hits, he can steal bases (25 this year), and he uses that speed to make fantastic catches in the outfield, whether it involves diving, jumping at the fence, or colliding with his fellow outfielders.
   In other words, but makes Stubbs so different is that he is truly a team player, and will do whatever it takes to help the Reds win.
   He might not be as big as a name as Joey Votto, Jay Bruce, or Brandon Phillips, but he works just as hard, and it is a shame that fans do not see that.
   What they see is that he has 130 strikeouts, and yes that is sad, but sometimes you have to look beyond the numbers because he is quite valuable to this team, and is one of the go-to-guys, you do not talk about unless its about how much he strikeouts. Its quite easy to turn on Stubbs because of that, but Reds fans have to realize that he is talented player who does little things that are not always noticed, to help the team win.
   Stubbs will never be the power hitter or star of the Reds, but he is the rare player the team has that is not only one of the fastest players in all of baseball, but also one of the best team players who puts what it takes for the team to win first, above individual numbers.

Video of the Day (7/25)

Its football time!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Marquardt to England? Faber vs Bowles

  Two big Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) stories broke out during the later part of the week, so it is time to take a look at them and try to figure out the overall impact on MMA as a whole from each story.
   The big news of the week regards former UFC Middleweight contender Nate Marquardt (31-10-2).
   After being released by the UFC in late June due to failing a medical physical  (low testosterone levels) on the day of the weigh-in for his first fight at welterweight against Rick Story, Marquardt has finally found a new home; across the pond.
   Marquardt officially signed a deal to fight for the British Association of Mixed Martial Arts (BAMMA).
   When I read this, I was extremely surprised, because I really expected Marquardt to end up fighting for Bellator, but when it was announced Bellator would not sign Marquardt; the BAMMA was his best option.
   Marquardt, who is ranked as being one of the top five middleweights by many and has notable wins over Demian Maia, Dan Miller, and Martin Kampmann, will now fight in the UK's largest MMA Company.
  I did not know anything about the BAMMA so after looking up some information, this is not a bad move for Marquardt at all.
   If all goes well, he could eventually be signed by the UFC again or at least its sister company, Strikeforce.
   The BAMMA is very similar to the typical United States MMA rules. Each fight is three rounds, with each round being five minutes long. Notable fighters have taken part in BAMMA events including: Bob Sapp, Seth Petruzelli, James McSweeney, Frank Trigg (Middleweight), and Murilio Rua (Middleweight, Shogun's brother). Three of the five weight classes in the BAMMA (Lightweight-Heavyweight) have no champion, however the BAMMA Middleweight Champion is Tom Watson (no not the golfer).
   I expect Marquard to stay at his traditional 185lb weight (Middleweight) and if he does, he could have it good in the BAMMA.
   I would love to see Marquardt fight Rua right away in his BAMMA debut, then take on the winner of Watson vs Trigg, which is for the BAMMA Middleweight Title on September 10. He has better talent than either fighter, so I could see him winning the championship after two fights.
   Just after two fights Nate Marquardt could be on top of the BAMMA Middleweight world.
   I would like to see him defend the title once, then Strikeforce or UFC should be calling, because if all goes planned he would be on a three fight win streak against better than average talent. Strikeforce would be a better fit for him after the BAMMA because he could come back and get some good preparation fights immediately and be ready for the big time.
   First however, he has to do well in the BAMMA.
   Marquardt made a fantastic move by signing with the UK organization, which offers good fights against exceptional talent. This is the first step in the right direction for Marquardt's comeback.

   The other news-worthy story is that the drama in the UFC Bantamweight Division is finally settled.
  Sadly, there will not be a third fight in the rivalry between champion Dominick Cruz (MMA 18-1, UFC 1-0) and Urijah Faber (MMA 25-5, UFC 1-1) just yet.
   Cruz and Faber headlined UFC 132 in which Cruz defended his UFC Bantamweight Title in an extremely close fight that could be a candidate for fight of the year. I, along with many others, demanded an immediately rematch, but I guess we will have to wait, as both fighters have been scheduled fights with different opponents.
   Cruz will defend his championship against Demetrious Johnson (MMA 10-1, UFC 1-0) on October 1 at UFC on Versus 6 in Washington DC. This will be the first time in UFC History where a championship fight will be broadcasted on a non numbered card.
   Johnson is coming of a great win over Miguel Torres (MMA 39-4, UFC 1-1) and is deserving of a title shot, but expect Cruz to retain his title.
   The fight between Faber and Brian Bowles (MMA 10-1, UFC 2-0), which will take place at UFC 139 on November 19, in San Jose, California, is more appealing at least to me.
   Faber is an exciting fighter, who just does not stop pushing in a fight, and does whatever it takes to win. Matching him up with a versatile fighter like Bowles who is just as deadly on the ground with submissions as he is with his knockout power, will make this a very entertaining fight.
   Whoever wins is next in line for a title-shot, and either fighter will be a tough opponent for Cruz, but I would love to see Cruz vs Faber III.

Video of the Day (7/23)

Makes me want to go play street hockey

Thursday, July 21, 2011

What We Learned in Pittsburgh?

   After watching Cincinnati lose two out of three in Pittsburgh; I learned a lot. For one, the Pirates are for real; the team has great pitching that shut down a decent Reds lineup, and solid hitting to back its pitching up. A team like Pittsburgh deserves to win, and it is nice to see the Pirates only 0.5 games back out of first in the NL Central.
    Even though the Reds did not look great; Cincinnati can still win the division, and although Cincy is 4.5 games out of first in NL Central, the team is in a perfect position to win the division for a second year in a row, if certain aspects of the the team's game changes from its performance in Pittsburgh.
   1. Cincinnati has to get runs on the board to win. In the first two games of the series, the Reds scored ZERO runs. How do you expect to win games if you cannot get runs?
   You cant; simple as that, regardless how good your pitching is (Reds' starters looked great too), you are not gonna win and the first two games of the series showed this.
   This all starts with Joey Votto and Jay Bruce, two of the three franchise players of the team (besides Brandon Phillips). These two have to start hitting the ball, and I cannot say that enough. How many times do I have to bash them until they do?
  Apparently a lot because they looked awful against the Pirates.
   Bruce went 2-6, Votto 1-11.
   That is right, the reining 2010 NL MVP with even a .318 batting average went 1-11.
   Votto and Bruce have to start hitting and getting on base for the Reds to win. They are the most dependable hitters on the team, and if they cannot hit, what does that show to the rest of team? Both are power hitters, but even if they do not hit the long ball, that is okay; they have to get hits and start bringing runners in, Cincinnati simply cannot win if they do not; because those two men are the best pure hitters Cincy has.
   Maybe Votto is just going through a slump, and Bruce just must be going through the same slump he has been going through since the end of May; but both players just need to get their confidence up and start hitting the ball again; the Reds cannot have success without them.
  2. The Reds have to stop playing two short stops, I cannot stand seeing a new short stop every game. Edgar Renteria is great, and bringing the 2010 World Series MVP to Cincinnati was a great move, but why play him if the Reds already know that Zach Cozart will be its future at the six position? Cozart has 11 hits in 33 at bats with a .333 batting average. Those stats just hint that Cozart is gonna be great, so why not just keep playing him to give him the experience and help develop him into a better player? It is great that the Cozart can learn from a great player like Renteria and he is the perfect mentor for Cozart, but manager Dusty Baker should start using Renteria as a key pinch hitter, and let Cozart help produce wins at short stop day in and day out, because this kid is gonna be really really good.
  3. Pitching is not as bad as it seems for the Reds. We all know that pitching can be a serious problem for Cincinnati, but it looked solid against the Pirates. All three starters (Dontrelle Willis, Mike Leake, and Johnny Cueto) all looked great against a good team. Sure Leake is not always the most consistent pitcher, but he is still a threat on the mound against any team. Willis might not pitch as well as he did when he was with the Florida Marlins, but if he can have strong outings (like he did against the Pirates) more so than weak ones, Willis can be a lock for the Reds rotation for the rest of the season and be one of the best bottom of the rotation pitchers in the league.
   Cueto is a different story, because he has had a terrific season, and is only Reds pitcher to do so. He is the most dependable pitcher the team has, and Cincinnati needs to continue to build the pitching rotation around this solid ace, because he will be the go-to-go guy for years to come.
   Edinson Volquez can be good too, but he has to overcome his problems in the first inning, and do not get me started on Homer Bailey. We all know how I feel about Bronson Arroyo too, but in conclusion, the Reds pitching can be very good, but most of the time, its not. It is time for a change.
  Which brings me to my last observation, 4. The Reds need a player who can be a boost for a playoff push. The way the team is playing right now the only place they are going is in the cellar of the NL Central. Cincinnati needs a star player who can handle being the team's Energizer Bunny. Whether it would be a starting pitcher, closer, or an outfielder, the Reds just need someone to kick-start the team. I would love to see the Reds acquire Ubaldo Jimenez (Colorado Rockies), Heath Bell (San Diego Padres) or my favorite player in the trade mix, Houston Astros outfielder Hunter Pence who is not only having a great season at the plate, but has always been an outstanding defensively who can make great plays at anytime. The Reds might have to give up a lot of prospects, and maybe starting pitchers in Leake and Bailey, but in order to win, sometimes you have to make change, and it is time for the Reds to do just that.
   Yes, Cincinnati might have lost two of three in Pittsburgh, but al ot can be recognized in this series that can lead to much better things like a playoff berth.

Video of the Day (7/21)

Love this commerical

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

UFC and Strikeforce Questionable Decisions

   Both the UFC and its sister company; Strikeforce have made choices that I not only do not like but understand.
   With the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix finally into its semi-finals, it was announced that the two semi-final fights would take place on September 10. These fights were expected to be Antonio Silva (MMA 16-2, SF 3-1)  vs Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion Alistair Overeem (MMA 35-11, SF 3-0) (Which should have been set for the final, I do not know why both men were put in the same part of the bracket, but that is a different story) and Sergei Kharitonov (MMA 18-4, SF 1-0) against Josh Barnett (MMA 30-5, SF 1-0). These fights do not sound great nor are pay-per-view caliber (thankfully it is said to be not), but I would watch them and I am sure other fans would too.
   However, I have no desire to watch this lackluster tournament now.
    Overeem was pulled from the tournament last night due to an injured toe. That it is not the part I have a problem with, but with the way Strikeforce handled the situation. 1. They replaced Overeem with Daniel Cormier (MMA 8-0, SF 2-0). No disrespect to Cormier, but the tournament was not very attractive even with Overeem in it, so now that he has been replaced makes it even worse. Strikeforce kept saying this tournament would showcase the best heavyweights in the world, and my question is how can that be if they will not let even its champion participate? Which brings me to my second point; why couldn't Strikeforce decide to postpone the card for a month? Overeem said himself that he preferred an October fight, so his toe could be fully healed and so he could still be in the tournament. Why couldn't the company honor that request? Doesn't Strikeforce have enough respect for its champion? You think the company would, but apparently not. Also who now wants to watch a tournament that has been highly publicized, with not any must see fighters, the Grand Prix was a disappointment with Overeem in it, now it is just a failure.
   If you thought the Strikeforce decision was bad, its sister company did not do any better.
   UFC announced that UFC 138 would take place in Birmingham, England, on November 5, and would be on Spike TV via tape-delayed. That is problem number one because whenever Spike airs a tape-delayed card (especially in England) the card tends to suck; this card is no different as UFC President Dana White announced that the main event would be Chris Leben (MMA 26-7, UFC 12-6) vs Mark Munoz (MMA 11-2, UFC 6-2) in a middleweight bout.
   When I read this, I was not very excited, and I am sure others were not either, but White did try to spice this fight up a little bit. This would be the first main event where a title is not on the line that would be five rounds.
  Is this a good move?
   I would not pay to watch this fight if it was three rounds, so why would I pay if it was five? That would be an extra ten minutes of a boring fight, in which I predict Leben to dominate.
   White could have done so much better in this main event. Leben deserves the spot and should be in line for a middleweight title shot, but he deserves better than Munoz, but since the middleweight division is so weak, this is what we get.
   If this is the main event, I do not even want to imagine what the rest of the main card is.
   White should not even bother having fights in England if this is what is scheduled.
   The last two days just show that although Strikeforce and the UFC are the two biggest MMA companies in the world, they both are know where near being perfect.

Video of the Day (7/19)

The All Balls Brawl, what a show.

Monday, July 18, 2011

The UFC's Biggest Problem

   Anyone would think that the toughest job in the UFC would be being a fighter; I mean the fighters are the one who get punished inside the octagon right?
   If there is a role that is harder in the UFC than being a modern gladiator, it is being the matchmaker of the fights.
   The matchmaker not only has to plan who fights who based on records, but also by looking at the combatant's popularity, financial demands, and a lot more. It is not an easy job to say the least.
  Once a fight is officially set, you would think Joe Silva's work is done.
   Think again, because lately, Silva's best friend has been tainting his match-ups; injuries.
   Silva had to deal with Phil Davis pulling out of the UFC 133 main event against Rashad Evans last week, and now has just dealt with the co-main event of the card being completely destroyed due to Antonio Rogerio Nogueira being forced out of a fight with Rich Franklin, in which no replacement could be found.
   UFC 133 is not the only example of a UFC Event in which a fighter has pulled out of a fight due to injury; at least one fighter per fight card suffers some type of injury during his camp that forces him to withdraw from the fight.
    The question is can injuries in camp be prevented, especially so close to fight time?
   If it were not for injuries, we would have seen so many good fights already this years including Brock Lesnar vs Junior Dos Santos and BJ Penn vs Jon Fitch 2, however when it comes to training, MMA is unlike any other sport.
   An MMA fighter has to go full speed in any workout, because there is so many different aspects to the sport; you have to be well rounded in boxing, kick boxing, wrestling, ju-jitsu, and much more to succeed, which requires dedication and complete determination. If a fighter does not train at full go in every workout of his camp, he could have the short end of the stick going into the fight.
   Now the problem with taking every workout as serious as you can is that you are more prone to injury.
   Sadly, this cannot be taken care of because all fighters (like all athletes) are different in their bodies and what parts of their body are least bound to get injured, but, because MMA fighters have more frequent and harder workouts on their bodies, injuries occur more in many places.
   The only way I could see this problem being taken care of is if there was more time between each fight a fighter would have, but the fact that most fighters like to have around four fights a year to help their families financially makes this idea somewhat impossible. For this idea to actually work a fighter would fight two fights a year; three if lucky.
   Injuries in cage-fighting are not going to stop anytime soon, especially in ruthless camps where fighters become the best they can be. I feel terrible for Silva because this fact is exposed on his job the most, but he just has to realize (like all of us) that these gladiators are training their hardest to makes us viewers happy.

Video of the Day (7/18)

My favorite video of all time.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sports News of the Day (7/17)

Golf: Darren Clarke won the 2011 Open Championship at Royal St. George's Golf Club in Sandwich, England. This was Clarke's first major victory. Clarke shot an even part for the final round; to finish the tournament at five under par. The story of the day however, was a comeback by Phil Mickelson who shot a 68 (-2) today to finish the tournament at two under par and to be tied for second with Dustin Johnson (72). At one point during the round Mickelson was at six under par.
   Notables: Clarke (70, -5)-First; Phil Mickelson (68, -2), Dustin Johnson (72, -2)- Tied for second; Thomas Bjorn (71, -1)-Fourth; Anthony Kim (70, Even), Rickie Fowler (72, Even)-Tied for fifth; Sergio Garcia (68, +2)-Tied for ninth; Steve Stricker (71, +3), Martin Kaymer (73, +3), Lucas Glover (74, +3)-Tied for 12th; YE Yang (72, +5), Zach Johnson (74, +5)-Tied for 16th; Tom Watson (72, +6)-Tied for 22nd; Rory McIlroy (73, +7), Adam Scott (75, +7)-Tied for 25th; Stewart Cink (71, +9), Bubba Watson (74, +9), Tom Lewis (74, +9)-Tied for 30th

World Cup: What a finish to the 2011 Women's World Cup, held in Germany. Japan stunned the United States 3-1 in penalty kicks after the game ended in regulation at 2-2.
    Alex Morgan broke the 0-0 tie in the 69th minute with a strike that went in the lower right hand corner of the goal to put the Americans up 1-0.
   Japan responded in the 81st minute with a goal of its own to tie the game 1-1 by Aya Miyama.
   In extra time, Abby Wambach put the US up 2-1 in the final minute of the first period of ET.
   Japan forced penalty kicks when Homare Sawa scored in the closing minutes of the second period of ET to make the score 2-2.
   Japan then dominated the PKs to win the World Cup.
   The US out-shot Japan 27-14.

MLB: The Cincinnati Reds took a big series win today against the St. Louis Cardinals after defeating the Cardinals 3-1 at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati.
   The Reds are now only 3.5 games out of first place after these two weekend wins.
    The Cardinals took an early lead in the game when Lance Berkman (1-4) hit his 25th homer of the year in the second inning to put St. Louis up 1-0.
   Zach Cozart (2-4) scored in the sixth for the Reds after the Cardinals' Jamie Garcia threw wild pitches that went past the catcher to tie the game 1-1
   Ryan Hanigan (1-3) brought in Miguel Cario (1-3) in the seventh with a single to put Cincinnati up 2-1, and Cozart sealed the deal in the eighth with a solo shot to give the Reds the game 3-1. This was his first home run of his career.
   Drew Stubbs went 2-4 and Joey Votto 1-3 for Cincinnati.
   Albert Pujols and Matt Holliday went a combined 1-7 for the Cardinals.
   Homer Bailey (4-4) took the win for Cincy; pitching 7.1 innings, giving up one run off three hits, while striking out four. Francisco Cordero earned his 18th save of the year.
   Garcia (9-4) took the loss for the Cardinals; pitching seven innings, giving up one run off six hits while striking out six.
   Cincinnati (47-48) now travels to Pittsburgh to have a three game series with the Pirates starting tomorrow.
   St. Louis (50-45) travels to New York to have a three game series with the Mets starting tomorrow.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

British Open Third Round Coverage (100th Post!)

 Third round action at the 2011 Open Championship is currently underway in Royal St. George's Golf Club in Sandwich, England.
   Conditions on the course are extremely difficult with intense wind and light rain.
Notable Performances (Note: Not all golfers are done playing for the day, so the leader-board might change throughout the day)
Darren Clarke (Even par through 6; -4), Dustin Johnson (-2 through 12, -4)- Tied First; Thomas Bjorn (Even par through seven; -3), Lucas Glover (+1 through 6, -3)-Tied for second; Rickie Fowler ( -2 (68), -2)-Tied for fourth; Martin Kaymer (+3 through 7, even)-Tied for 12th; Steve Stricker (+1 through 14, +1); Zach Johnson (+1 through 14, +1), Phil Mickelson  (+2 through 12, +1)-Tied for 13th; YE Yang (+2 through 14, +2), Anthony Kim (+2 through 13, +2)-Tied for 18th; Tom Watson (+2 (72), +4), Sergio Garcia (+4 (74), +4), Rory McIlroy (+4 (74), +4)-Tied for 27th

More Scores will be posted tonight.

Video of the Day (7/16)

This tops Heath Bell's entrance at the All Star Game

Friday, July 15, 2011

Done For the Night

Sorry I did not have anytime to post anything today, extremely tired so will not be posting anything tonight either, stay tuned for new posts all day tomorrow.


Video of the Day (7/15)

I would have put the uncensored version, but its extremely inappropriate

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Sports News of the Day (7/14)

MLB News: The Toronto Blue Jays defeated the New York Yankees at the Rogers Centre in Toronto 16-7.
    The big news is that Blue Jays star Jose Bautista left the game in the fourth inning with ankle injury when he slid into third base. Bautista has 31 home runs and leads all of baseball.
    Boston Red Sox star David Ortiz and Baltimore Oriole pitcher Kevin Gregg were both suspended for four games for their actions in last Friday's bench clearing melee between the two teams. Oriole pitcher Mike Gonzalez and Oriole manager Buck Showalter were both suspended a game, but both have decided to appeal their suspensions.
   The Cincinnati Reds begin a three game series against the St Louis Cardinals tomorrow at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati. The Reds (45-47) are currently four games behind the Milwaukee Brewers while the Cardinals (49-43) are tied for first place. The pitching match-up is expected to be Jake Westbrook (STL,7-4) vs Johnny Cueto (CIN, 5-3). The game starts at 7:10 PM

GOLF: The 2011 Open Championship started today at the Royal St George's Golf Club in Sandwich, England. 20 year old Tom Lewis  and Thomas Bjorn(65. -5) are currently leading the pack. Lewis is only an amateur and was the big surprise of the first round.
    Notable Performances: Lucas Glover (66, -4)-tied for third, Grame McDowell and Martin Kaymer (68, -2)- tied for sixth, Adam Scott, Bubba Watson, Steve Stricker, Roger Allenby (69, -1)-tied for 18th, Phil Mickelson, Justin Leonard, Stuart Cink, Dustin Johnson, Rickie Fowler (70, even)-tied for 36th, YE Yang, Lee Westwood, Ben Crane, Rory McIlroy, Luke Donald (71, +1)-tied for 51st.
Second round begins tomorrow.

MMA: A heavyweight battle between Matt Mitrione (MMA 5-0, UFC 5-0) and Cheick Kongo (MMA 16-6-2, UFC 9-4-1) is slated for the October 29 card, UFC 137, which will be at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The UFC Welterweight Championship fight between Georges St Pierre and Nick Diaz will headline the card.
   Mitrione has notables wins over Kimbo Slice, Joey Beltran, and Christian Morecraft. Kongo is coming off an incredible fight at UFC Live in June where he came from almost being knocked out to knocking out Pat Barry in stunning fashion.
   Roy Nelson (MMA 15-6, UFC 2-2) is expected to take on Mikro Cro-Cop (MMA 27-9-2, UFC 4-5) at UFC 137 as well.
   Nelson is coming off back to back losses from Frank Mir and Junior Dos Santos while Cro-Cop is also coming off two losses against Brendan Schaub and Mir.
   The loser of this fight could be released from the UFC.

UFC 133: Evans vs Ortiz

If you have not heard already, Rashad Evans (MMA 15-1-1, UFC 10-1-1) officially has an opponent for a light heavyweight bout at UFC 133, which is expected to be on August 6, at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
    Evan's original opponent, Phil Davis (MMA 9-0, UFC 5-0) pulled out of the fight on Tuesday, due to a knee injury he suffered at camp. UFC President Dana White then believed that Tito Ortiz (MMA 16-8-1, UFC 15-8-1) would step in, however he originally declined. White  turned to Lyoto Machida next (MMA 17-2, UFC 9-2) to take the fight, however his camp demanded a significant amount of money from White in order to participate, which White immediately declined.
    The UFC even planned to ask Vladimir Matyushenko (MMA 25-5, UFC 7-3) to accept the fight, until White got an unexpected phone call, from someone who might need to change his nickname from the "Huntington Beach Bad Boy", because lately Tito Ortiz has not been the bad boy at all, in fact he has been a hero as Ortiz told White he would take on Evans making the UFC 133 main event between the two official.
    Ortiz is coming off a surprise win against Ryan Bader (MMA 12-2, UFC 5-2) at UFC 132 which saved his career in the UFC. If Ortiz would have lost (as he was expected to) he would have been released from the company, however he submitted Bader via a guillotine that shock the world. This was Ortiz's first win in almost five years, and was the start of a comeback in the hope of receiving a title shot.
    I really like the new Tito Ortiz.
Ortiz seems to be more determined than ever, and seems like he is willing to do whatever it takes to get better and win fights, and deciding to take on Evans just five weeks after the Bader win is certainly showing this.
Ortiz fought Evans before in 2007, which ended in a draw. It did not help Ortiz that he was deducted a point in the second round for grabbing the fence of the octagon.
  Critics will say Ortiz was a completely different fighter in 2007, and I agree with this statement.
   He is much better now.
   Ortiz's motivation has skyrocketed, he is 100 percent focused on training, and he is determined. I do not know if that was true even in his prime, and it is so great to see this transformation that he first showed against Bader. I have never seen anyone so excited to win a fight, and seeing his reaction to the win was just awesome.
   Going into this UFC 133 fight against Evans, Ortiz is the major underdog. It obviously makes sense that he is, but once again I think he likes this situation. Yes, he does not have as much to lose as he did going into the Bader fight, but Ortiz still feels he has to prove to the MMA world that he can still be a championship contender, and I think he could easily do that if he keeps the same mind-set going into this fight as he did in his last.
   I cannot wait for this fight to happen and I really hope Ortiz stuns the world again. He is focused, determined to improve, and has completely changed his ways, how could you not root for him?

Video of the Day (7/14)

Kenny Powers is back, along with some NFL friends.

2011 ESPY Award Winners

The 2011 ESPYS took place last night at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, California. Here is the list of all the winners at the ESPN Event.
Best Team-Dallas Mavericks (NBA)
Best Male Athlete-Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks, NBA)
Best NBA Player-Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks)
Best Coach/Manger-Rick Carlisle (Dallas Mavericks, NBA)
Breakthrough Athlete-Blake Griffin (Los Angeles Clippers, NBA)
Best Play-Abby Wambach's header in the 2011 Women's World Cup against Brazil in the quarterfinals.
The Arthur Ashe Award for Courage-Dewey Bozella
Best Championship Performance- Tim Thomas (Boston Bruins, NHL)
Best Female Athlete- Lindsey Vonn (Skier)
Best Male College Athlete- Jimmer Fredette (BYU, Basketball)
Jimmy V Award-Anthony Robles (Arizona State, Wrestling)
Best Male Athlete with a Disability-Anthony Robles (Arizona State, Wrestling)
Best Game-Philadelphia Eagles vs New York Giants (38-31 Philadelphia, NFL)
Best Upset-VCU defeating Kansas to advance to the Final Four (College Basketball)
Best NFL Player-Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay Packers)
Best MLB Player-Roy Halladay (Philadelphia Phillies)
Best Moment-Roy Halladay (Philadelphia Phillies)
Best Driver-Jimmie Johnson (NASCAR)
Best WNBA Player-Diana Taurasi (Phoenix Mercury)
Best Fighter-Manny Pacquiao (Boxer)
Best Male Golfer-Rory McIlroy
Best Record-Breaking Performance-Rory McIlroy (Golf)
Best Female Golfer-Cristie Kerr
Best Male Tennis Player-Rafael Nadal
Best Female Tennis Player-Serena Williams
Best Female College Athlete-Maya Moore (Uconn, Basketball)
Best Male Action Sport Athlete-Shuan White (Snowboarding/Skateboarding)
Best Female Action Sport Athlete-Stephanie Gilmore (Surfing)
Best Jockey-John Velasquez (Kentucky Derby Winner)
Best Female Athlete with a Disability-Mallory Weggemann (Paralympic Swimmer)
Best MLS Player-Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy)
Best Track & Field Athlete-Tyson Gay (Sprinter)
Best Comeback-Mark Herzlich (Boston College, Football)
Castrol NFL Strongest Performance-Arian Foster (Houston Texans)
Capital One Cup-Stanford (Women's) Florida (Men's)
Best Sports Movie-The Fighter

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Ubaldo Jimenez to the Reds?

  With the Major League Baseball trade deadline quickly approaching, teams have to decide whether to be buyers, sellers, or just stay out of it trade talks entirely.
   And it sounds like for the first time in a few seasons, the Cincinnati Reds might be buying.
   If anything, Cincinnati needs to increase its depth in its pitching. The team needs a true ace. Edinson Volquez and Mike Leake can all be great at times, but inconsistency is a problem for both. Bronson Arroyo has his moments too, but in my opinion he should focus on his guitar playing. With that being said, the Reds need pitching, and Cincy General Manager Walt Jocketty not only knows this, but finally is willing to do something about it as he has expressed interest in the Colorado Rockies ace Ubaldo Jimenez.
   Jimenez is not having a great year at the moment with a 4-8 record, 95 strikeouts, and a 4.14 ERA, but he has amazing potential, which was showcased tremendously last year.
   He won his first 11 of his 12 starts in the 2010 season, threw a no-hitter against the Atlanta Braves, and was on the NL All-Star Team. He finished the year with a 19-8 record, 214 strikeouts, and a stellar ERA of 2.88.
   If the Reds did get Ubaldo, he would definitely help the front part of the pitching rotation, and a 1-2 punch with Jimenez and Johnny Cuteo (who is the best pitcher the Reds have) would be tough for any team to face in a series. Cincinnati needs a veteran pitcher who can go out and pitch well in all of his starts, and that is the type of pitcher Jimenez is.
   Now the question is what would Colorado want for its' ace? I would not be surprised to see Cincinnati having to give at least two of its starters for Jimenez. I could see Homer Bailey (who should have been traded seasons ago) or even Leake be in this mix of this trade. I could see Colorado demanding some nice minor leaguers as well, since Cincinnati has one of the best farm systems in all of baseball.
   Is it worth giving up young talent?
   Cincinnati needs a player who can push the team come playoffs and help lead to another NL Central Title, and with the stuff Jimenez has as a pitcher, he could certainly be that person so yes, it is so worth it.
   If Jocketty takes action and does get get Jimenez, the Reds not only have a chance to win the NL Central for the second year in a row, but now Cincinnati has a great chance to make a big playoff run.

Video of the Day (7/13)

The most dramatic all-star entrance I have ever seen.

Sports News of the Days (7/13)

MLB: The National League defeated the American League in the 2011 Major League Baseball All-Star Game 5-1 at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona.
   The AL got its lone run in the fourth with a solo shot by Adrian Gonzalez off Philadelphia Phillies' (second) ace Cliff Lee to take the lead 1-0.
   The NL responded in the bottom of the fourth with a three-run homer from NL Home Run Derby Captain, Prince Fielder (Named All-Star Game MVP), to put the NL up 3-1.
  An RBI single in the fifth by Andre Ethier increased the NL's lead to three runs, making the score 4-1.
   A ground rule double by Pablo "Kung Fu Panda" Sandoval brought in Starlin Castro in the seventh to finish the game's score 5-1; in the NL'S favor.
   The Washington Nationals' pitcher, Tyler Clippard, took the win, with Giants closer Brian Wilson earning the save.
   Texas Rangers' CJ Wilson took the loss.
   The NL now has home-field advantage in the World Series.

   The Milwaukee Brewers, already stacked with talent, just got a little better, as the team traded for Mets closer Francisco Rodriguez.
   The Brewers will give up two players who will be named later.
   Rodriguez has a 2-2 record, with 23 saves, and an ERA of 3.16.
   Although he may have faced a lot of legal problems lately, Milwaukee made a fantastic move by snagging the closer, and now have a better chance to win the tough NL Central.

World Cup: The US Women's Soccer Team will face France today at noon in the semi-finals of the 2011 Women's World Cup in Germany.

UFC News: The UFC 133 main event is officially in jeopardy as Phil Davis (MMA 9-0, UFC 5-0) pulled out of a light heavyweight bout against Rashad Evans (MMA 15-1-1, UFC 10-1-1) which was expected to take place August 6 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
  You have to feel bad for Evans, because he has gotten screwed over lately. Evans was slated to fight for the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship at UFC 128 against champion at the time Shogun Rua, and waited over a year for the fight to happen, but an injury forced Evans to drop the fight. He was then suppose to fight now champion Jon Jones for the title, but Jones pulled out, and now this happens.
   Evans still wants to be part of this card, and the UFC has been looking for replacements. The organization has contacted Tito Ortiz, who upset rising star Ryan Bader at UFC 132, but Ortiz declined to fight. I cannot blame him for that because Ortiz is not ready to fight a guy like Evans anytime soon.
   Lyoto Machida is thought of to be the replacement fighter. Machida fought Evans at UFC 98 for Evans' UFC Light Heavyweight Title in which Machida knocked him out and became the champion.


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Sports News of the Days (7/11)

Fell asleep before I could recap yesterday's sporting news so here it is.

MLB: Robinson Cano, second baseman for the New York Yankees, wins the 2011 Home Run Derby at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona. Cano defeated Adrian Gonzalez (BOS) in the final round 12-11.
David Ortiz (BOS) and Prince Fielder (MIL) were both eliminated in the second round.
Matt Kemp (LAD), Jose Bautista (TOR), Matt Holliday (STL),and Rickie Weeks (MIL) were all out after one round.
   The 2011 All-Star game, which takes place tonight at Chase Field in Phoenix, has its pitching match-up officially set.
   The NL will start Philadelphia Phillies' ace Roy Halladay. Halladay is 11-3, with 138 strikeouts and an ERA of 2.45
   The AL will start Los Angeles Angels' phenom Jered Weaver. Weaver is 11-4, with 120 strikeouts and an stellar ERA of 1.86
   First pitch is expected to be at 8:05 PM.
NBA News: Amar'e Stoudemire plans on not joining other NBA superstars to play basketball in Europe if the NBA Lockout progresses into the regular season. Stoudemire averaged 25.3 points per game and 8.1 rebounds in his first season with the New York Knicks.
MMA News: The UFC released welterweight John Howard yesterday, as a result of losing three fights in a row. Howard (MMA 14-7, UFC 4-3) had won four UFC fights in a row, including a victory over Dennis Hallman, before losing three in a row against Jake Ellenberger, Thiago Alves, and Matt Brown.

   A welterweight bout between Carlos Condit and BJ Penn is slated to be possible for the UFC 137 card, which is expected to be at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in  Las Vegas, Nevada, on October 29. The headliner of the card is Georges St Pierre vs Nick Diaz for the UFC Welterweight Championship.
 Condit (MMA 27-5, UFC 4-1) is on a four fight win streak in the UFC including big wins over Dan Hardy and Don Hyun Kim.
 Penn (MMA 16-7-2, UFC 12-6-2) moved up to the welterweight division after losing his UFC Lightweight Title to Frankie Edgar and not being able to win it back in a rematch. Penn then moved up to welterweight and knocked out Matt Hughes before fighting Jon Fitch to a draw in February.

Video of the Day (7/12)

Gotta love dance-offs

Monday, July 11, 2011

Home Run Derby Perdictions

So excited to watch tonight's home run derby! I expect a lot of home runs and expect it to be extremely exciting.

My Top Two
Prince Fielder defeats Jose Bautista

Could see Matt Kemp or Matt Holliday in the final as well.

Lets see what happens!

The Right Choice

   We witnessed history last Saturday when future hall of famer, New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, became the 28th person in Major League Baseball to reach 3,000 hits, when he hit a home run against the Tampa Bay Rays at Yankee Stadium.
   Not only did he stop there, but he went 5-5 on the day and drove in the winning run as well to win the game.
  It was a heroic performance in a legendary career for the Yankee hero.
   12 time all-star, five time Golden Glover, one of the 13 players in franchise history to ever be named captain, and I almost forgot, five World Series Championships. I despise the Yankees, but Jeter deserves all the recognition he has achieved over the years because not only is he a likable guy, but just a hardworking player who does not give up. Any fan of baseball should respect what he has done, and should only praise the Yankee great.
   Now here is a scenario for you. You are at the game on Saturday in the outfield stands and Jeter is at the plate still with 2,999 hits. It would be just cool to see the 3,000th hit right? Well what if Jeter gets the ball on the sweet spot of the bat and the ball sails over the outfield wall into the stands? Pretty cool? Now just  imagine if the ball hits the hands of your dad and the balls fall directly in your possession. Okay, stop daydreaming of yourself being in this situation, because it already happened, to a 23 year old whose name will now forever be remembered.
   When security came to Christian Lopez and took him to a suite, he then faced a difficult situation. What does he do with the ball? Does he keep it his possession, keep and then sell it, or give it to Jeter for a price? Lopez could have used the money as he as $100,00 in students loans to pay, and not only could have had those paid off, but probably still could have had some spending money if he would have sold the ball on either eBay or back to Jeter.
   However, he did neither one; he used his brain and gave it back to the person who deserves it most; Jeter. For how much you ask? Nothing, absolutely nothing.
   Lopez made a choice that most of us certainly would not have done. He easily could have made a profit on the ball, but yet, he still did the right thing. Why request money on a ball that you got just out of pure luck? Lopez paid Jeter the biggest amount of respect by giving him the ball for nothing, and he got a lot in return for doing it. He got autographed Jeter gear, plus season tickets in a Yankee suite for the rest of the year including the playoffs. Yes, this is a lot items he received, but would not the money be more in value for himself?
   Apparently not because Lopez has shown VALUES are more important than any money value out there. Jeter deserves the ball, he earned it and he has worked so hard in his career to get to that milestone. How could someone not give Jeter the ball? I am so glad Lopez did what he did, simply because it was the right thing to do.
   As much as I love Mike Greenberg, who is half of the duo on ESPN's Mike and Mike in the Morning, it killed me that he bashed Lopez for not keeping the ball and making a profit out of it. Greenberg is right when he said Jeter does have the jersey, cleats, and bat that he used to get the 3000th hit, but Jeter deserves the whole enchilada, and by receiving the ball, he got just that.
   Christian Lopez, by giving the ball back to its rightful owner, did something most people in this world do not do enough; the right thing. How could anyone bash him for that?

Video of the Day (7/11)

Sorry for no posts yesterday, was on the road all day from vacation.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Friday, July 8, 2011

Top 5 players in the MLB (Part 9)

It is finally time to wrap up this series. With only one position left to cover, it is time to look at the top right fielders in Major League Baseball.
5. Justin Upton (Arizona Diamondbacks)- It was really tough to decide who to put at this spot, because there were many players who could have easily been on it. Ichiro (Seattle), Carlos Beltran (New York Mets) or Nick Swisher (New York Yankees) all could have been on this list (I really wanted to give it to Ichiro because since his rookie year in 2001 he has been one of the best hitters in baseball), but I had to give this spot to Upton. Justin Upton has had a breakout year and will be a promising right fielder for years to come. He has 99 hits (22 doubles) with 15 home runs, both are on pace to be career bests. Upton also has 46 RBIs with a batting average of .295. I would not be surprised at all to see that average be around .310. He has always shown speed and has 14 stolen bases this year. If Upton could work on that strikeout total (69), he would be more of a deadly offensive threat. Upton's speed and willingness to dive and jump to make superstar plays makes him an outstanding right fielder. He has 187 put-outs which is second among all right fielders and even has two assists. Upton does have a whopping seven errors, which needs to be improved for the Diamondbacks to have more success. His fielding percentage is .964. Upton is a talented superstar who is not only a great right fielder, but one of the most dynamic players in the game.

4. Nick Markakis (Baltimore Orioles)- Markakis is one of the most consistent players who know no one talks about, and it is a shame he plays for a not very popular Baltimore team because Markakis is as good as a player can get both offensively and defensively. Markakis has 105 hits, and he has a chance to break his career best 191 hits that he had in the 2007 season. He is not a player that hits for power; as he only has seven home runs and 35 RBIs, but he is a great asset to any batting line-up. Markakis can advance a base if needed, with his seven stolen bases, and he can get to first via walk with his 23 this year. I like that he only has 36 strikeouts which shows he is a calm and patient hitter. Markakis currently has a batting average of .292, but if he continues to hit the ball, that average should increase throughout the season. Markakis is as good as a fielder can get. He has 186 put-outs, seven assists, with a fielding percentage of 1.000. Markakis is extremely talented in both aspects of the game and could be a big time player for any Major League franchise.

3. Andre Ethier (Los Angeles Dodgers)- Ethier is like a wiser and more talented version of Markakis, which is why he is at number three on this list. His ability to be great at both parts of the game has made him one of the prime-time players of the Dodgers, and to be one of the best right fielders in the game. Ethier is on pace to have over 160 hits this season for the first time in his career with his current 100 hits, he also has seven home runs and 42 RBIs. If those power-hitting numbers increase, the Dodgers have the chance to be more of a threat in the NL West. Ethier has an outstanding batting average of .312 and it could easily be higher if he did not have a whopping 69 strikeouts. Ethier is also a great fielder with 151 put-outs, 7 assists, and a fielding percentage of 1.000. Ethier is one of the best-all around players in the league and is worthy to be on the all-star team almost every year.

2. Hunter Pence (Houston Astros)- I really wanted to put Pence at one because not only is he the best hitting right fielder overall, he is one fantastic fielder who makes great plays daily. Pence is a player any team would love to have because he gives his best day in and day out and continues to get better. Pence is an offensive stud, who is a tough batter to get out in all of his at bats. He has always racked up large hit numbers, but his 2011 season could be his best. Pence has 112 hits and could be on pace to hit 200 which would be his first season to do so. Although he may not show it at times, Pence can hit the long ball and has ten this year. He could be at 20-25 by the end of the year. Pence still has 59 RBIs despite not being a true power hitter, but all of his hitting numbers could be better if he had less than 77 strikeouts. Pence has an amazing .325 batting average and I would love to see it at .340 come October. Pence is a much better right fielder than his numbers show. He always makes the big catch plays when needed, and is one of the most defensive clutch players in the game. Pence has 171 put-outs, eight assists, just four errors, and a fielding percentage of .978. There are not many all-around players as Pence in all of baseball, and he is one of the most promising players in the game.

1. Jose Bautista (Toronto Blue Jays)- Last year, Bautista came of know where and hit 54 home runs. It was the shock of the season from a guy whose previous best was 16. He instantly put Toronto on the map, helped re-establish the franchise, and became its heroic player. For an encore season, Bautista is proving that he is the best power hitter in all of baseball and is putting up even better numbers than last year's. He has 96 hits and is on pace to hit over 160 which would be extraordinary for a big bulky hitter like Bautista, and 61 RBIs which is on pace to be a career best as well. His 29 home runs are an MLB best and I would not be surprised at all if he had 60 by the end of the year. Not are his five stolen bases impressive, but so is his 73 walks which is 19 higher than his strikeout total (54) and shows he does not swing at just anything; it has to be in his zone which I love about his hitter philosophy. The number I love about his most is his batting average which is an insane .330. A power hitter typically does not have a batting average like this, so seeing Bautista have this good of an average makes him even more unique. His fielding numbers may not be as good, but they are still respectable. Bautista has 148 put-outs, with eight assists, and just three errors, which gives him a fielding percentage of .981. If Bautista keeps up these power hitting numbers for the entire season, he will easily be called the best player in baseball and could over take Albert Pujols for that title and hold it for a very long time.

Video of the Day (7/8)

Greatest soccer save of all time.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Sports News of the Day (7/7)

MLB: The Cincinnati Reds lost the first game of four at Miller Park tonight in Milwaukee, against the Milwaukee Brewers 5-4.
   Ramon Hernandez hit his ninth homer for Cincinnati. Miguel Cario, Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips, and Hernandez all went 2-4 for the Red legs. Jay Bruce after an impressive outing against the Cardinals last night, went 0-3.
   Rickie Weeks (2-3) hit his 16th long ball for Milwaukee. Corey Hart went 2-3, and Prince Fielder went 1-3.
   Chris Narveson (6-5) took the win; pitching six innings, giving up two runs off seven hits, while striking out five. John Axford recorded his 23rd save of the year.
   Homer Bailey (3-4) took the loss; pitching six innings, giving up five runs off eight hits, while striking out one.
   Game two of this series is tomorrow night at 8:10 PM at Miller Park in Milwaukee. with the pitching matchup being Zach Greinke (MIL,7-3) against Mike Leake (CIN, 8-4).
   The New York Yankees fell to the Tampa Bay Rays tonight 5-1 at Yankee Stadium. Derek Jeter went 1-4 with a double. This is 2,998 hit of his career and now two shy of 3,000.

   A fan who attended tonight's Texas Rangers-Oakland A's at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas, died after falling 20 feet from the stands and landed on his head in attempt to catch a ball thrown in the stands by Rangers' outfielder Josh Hamilton. Prayers go out to his family.

   Chicago White Sox's Paul Konerko and Philadelphia Phillies' Shane Victorino won the final vote to be a part of the 2011 MLB All Star game held in Phoenix, Arizona, next Tuesday.

A Stellar Move

  So I will finish the final part of the top five players in the MLB tomorrow looking at the right field position.
  Tonight, I want to talk about a move in the NBA that I found really surprising, but to be a great decision.
   With the NBA lockout in full swing, and not appearing to slow down anytime soon, NBA players have an extremely difficult decision to make. Do players wait out the lockout and see if there is a season (which i doubt there will be at this rate) and workout on their own; or do they move across the world for a year and play overseas?
  One of the NBA's elite, New Jersey Nets point guard Deron Williams, has already made that decision IF the lockout does happen, and I believe it is the right choice.
   Williams has agreed to deal with Besiktas, a team in Turkey, to play for a year if the lockout does happen.
   Most of you are probably wondering why I think this would be a good decision on Williams part, and I will gladly tell you why.
   The best way to improve at any sport is through live action.  While other players (I hope) would be working out and playing pick-up ball, Williams will be playing regulated basketball against professionals. He still will be playing competitive basketball against potential NBA talent, just in another country that feels like its million of miles away. Williams will have his jumpshot timing down, and his decision making on lock and be a step up ahead on everyone else come training camp.
   Another reason why this is great is that Williams could gain some new knowledge to make his basketball IQ even stronger. Overseas basketball is completely different than the American game. In the international game, defense involves lots of zone concepts, there is a lot more three point shooting, and basketball in general is more of just a team game. If Williams really does go to Turkey, he could bring all of these concepts into the New Jersey game plan. He could help coach Avery Johnson come up with ways to put more zone concepts into the defensive strategy without being hurt by the defensive three seconds in the lane call, he can be more dependable as a three point shooter, because I would expect him to shoot the ball more in Turkey than he does now, and just find little ways for the Nets to play more as a team. With new experiences always come learning opportunities, and Williams going to Turkey would mean that he could come back to New Jersey at the end of the Turkish season as more of a complete player who can help his teammates become more complete as well.
   My favorite reason for this move is that it shows Williams' character; he simply loves to play basketball. Being able to move to the other side of the world just to play a sport, to me, does not show he did it for the money (most American players who play overseas do not do great financially), but that he just wants to get better, stay in shape, and continue to play the sport he loves.
   Deron Williams is making a great move if the lockout does happen, and I really hope other all-star caliber players find it in themselves to move overseas and play basketball there also.


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