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Interview With Japanese MMA Veteran Ryan Bow

>> Monday, April 24, 2017

  Today we are interviewing Japanese MMA veteran, Team Nogueira Dubai coach, both Judo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt Ryan Bow. He is from Grand Rapids, Michigan in the USA. He boasts a 17-9-2 MMA record that has some names on it such as Takanori Gomi, Tatsuya Kawajiri, Kotetsu Boku, and Rodrigo Damm. Ryan has fought for famed promotions Shooto, DEEP, and Bodog. He was even once offered to fight for the inaugural UFC Lightweight title against Jens Pulver, but the NSAC denied him the opportunity to do so because he has a cyst on his brain that interferes with his peripheral vision. Now let's get to the interview folks!

How did you get into the martial arts and MMA?
"I grew up around combat sports in general. My father being a wrestling coach, I was always around the sport. At the time, I was more interested in striking arts; mainly from what I'd seen on TV. After watching the cult classic movie, The Last Dragon I was hooked and began training in traditional martial arts.

It wasn't until years later, after watching UFC with my father that I started wrestling to supplement my training."

What do you do for fun when you're not training?
"Honestly speaking, training is what I do for fun. When I'm not coaching, I love being at the gym as a student to further my own skill-set.

When I'm not doing that, I enjoy travelling; experiencing other cultures first hand, learning foreign languages, and web design."

What are your current goals as a martial artist?
"I retired from the sport of MMA in 2008. I dropped out of college to pursue that career. If there were mistakes to be made, I probably made everyone of them along the way. Now my goal is to help young athletes with their careers whether it be as a coach, mentor, or any other capacity.

I also do Brazilian jiu-jitsu and recently achieved one of my goals which was to earn a black belt in it."

Who is your favorite MMA fighter of all time?
"It's hard to point to one fighter and say they are my favorite. But one person that stands out above the rest is Frank Shamrock. More so for showing me the path. I looked up to him as both an athlete and a coach. Frank was one of the first fighters to showcase their ability to grapple and strike effectively, as well as being conditioned.

In more recent times, as everyone else is cheering for the Conor McGregor & Jon Jones' of the sport.

I prefer the athletes that remember what it means to be a martial artist. Athletes that understand that they have young children that look up to them and understand their actions can and do influence the youth negatively.

We need more fighters like Demetrious Johnson & Daniel Cormier."

Were you confident when you made the decision to move to Japan to pursue a career in MMA?
"No, I was scared. Every step of the way.

But, at the time(1997), I felt like there weren't many other options. MMA was illegal in most states. Athletes were being disrespected in the media. Especially in Michigan, there was no outlet to really pursue a career in MMA. 

In my young mind it ws move or give up on my goals."

You are a veteran who has seen just about everything and has done everything. What was the craziest thing you've seen during your time as an MMA competitor?
"One of the craziest thing I saw was how MMA and organized crime groups in Japan(the Yakuza) go hand in hand. Some of their actions are illegal, but it's not illegal to be Yakuza in Japan.

To this day, they remain some of the most influential backers of the sport in Japan. It's not just MMA. The same is true for some other 'normal' industries as well."

You began your career with a 6 fight win streak and then loss for the first time to Japanese MMA Legend and former PRIDE Champ Takanori Gomi. How did it feel to lose for the first time?
"Gomi and I came up through the amateur Shooto rankings together. Shooto was the first MMA organization. (Before UFC's conception in 1993)

Truth be told, I asked for that fight that I lost by decision as a means of revenge for him beating me on points when we were amateurs.

So, I'm 0-2 vs Gomi. You can't win them all lol."

You've lost before and that happens the vast majority of combat sports competitors who compete enough, but you also have two draws on your record. How did it feel to be awarded with a draw?
"With a draw, you always feel like it's unfinished business. Matushita and I fought again immediately after having a draw. I won the second fight clearly.

Versus Hasegawa was another story altogether. We trained together from time to time and we knew each other's strengths and weakness' well. He was a former champion. To this day, I feel that I won the fight. That said, ultimately, I have to blame myself for leaving it to the judges hands. We continued to train together even after the fight. At the end of the day, it was business."

How did it feel to be denied the chance to fight in Las Vegas against Jens Pulver for the first ever UFC Lightweight title?
"Truthfully, I almost retired. I had lost my father earlier that year. He was my number one fan. Having my contract with the UFC cancelled seemed like that final blow at the time. It's one thing to lose. It's another thing when an athletic commission doctor deems you ineligible to compete and strips you of the chance.

For the full story, ready my autobiography lol: Tunnel Visions: Memoirs of a Mixed Martial Arts Champion.

Then came the time to look myself in the mirror. I dropped out of school to pursue a career in MMA. Quitting is always the easiest option. But, when I think about letting down the people that had invested their time into me; to help me succeed, that is simply something I could not do.

I had to believe that my hard work would pay off...eventually...somehow."

We know that you are a Kodokan Judo black belt, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt in gi and a  No-Gi expert, but I haven't heard much about you and 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu. I was just wondering what do you think of that system of grappling for MMA and which is your favorite?
"I'm a big fan of 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu. When Eddie Bravo first made a name for himself I was skeptical about its usage in MMA. But, after visiting his gym in L.A. once, and eventually training with Aoki Shinya, I learned otherwise. To this day, I use various positions he brought to the sport. 

At the end of the day, it's all grappling. Use what you can. Disregard the rest."

You're a high level grappler. Khabib Nurmagomedov currently seems to be unstoppable in that aspect of MMA. Do you see any holes in his grappling that others aren't noticing?
"Khabib is an amazing fighter. I'm a fan. I wish he was getting the marketing push he deserves by the UFC. He's training with one of the top gyms in the world in AKA so I truly believe he can be champion. 

His grappling is his best attribute. I don't see him being outgrappled. Outwrestled...maybe. His true weakness I think is his striking, but as I mentioned earlier, he has a strong team and is in the right place to make those improvements."

What are your thoughts on the current state of Japanese MMA?
"Japanese MMA at it's peak was unmatched entertainment. By that, I mean my own mother who is not necessarily a fan of the sport enjoyed sitting through an 8 hour live event.

It is attempting to comeback with events such as Rizin but, I doubt it will ever peak like it did before. As true with any business, competition is a must. I'm all for large scale event that helps prevent a UFC monopoly."

Any last words for the fans?
"Thanks for take the time to listen to my story. If you're an aspiring fighter, the best thing you can do is to keep investing in yourself. Don't be afraid to take the road less travelled. 

Also, please check out my books:
Tunnel Visions: Memoirs of a Mixed Martial Arts Champion

Comic Book:
Black Samurai: The Misadventures of a Black American MMA Fighter in Japan

Both are available on"

I'm quite confident all of you will enjoy this interview. If you're ever in Dubai stop in at Team Nogueira to train with him and you can watch some of his Shooto matches on UFC Fight Pass!


UFC: Swanson vs Lobov Results

>> Sunday, April 23, 2017

  Overall a decent night of fights. There were some good performances and finishes. I was only able to tune in for the Fight Pass prelim and the Main Card. Swanson put on a solid performance and the judges awarded him the decision for his efforts. Swanson really began to find his groove during the third round, and despite being ahead he continued push forward enroute to the victory. Interesting to see where he goes from here. I think he will likely fight the winner of Aldo vs Holloway, and he would love to avenge the losses he holds to both of them.
  Al Iaquinta appeared to have retired at the what was the height of his career. A four fight win streak over solid opponents, consisting of three KO/TKOs, rising up the ranks, and gaining more attention amongst the fans. Then he refused to fight unless the UFC would pay him more. Maybe he decided his love for this was stronger and decided to push on with it, he had the flame light up inside of him again while on the sidelines and couldn't resist it, maybe he needed the money, or maybe all of those combined. Whatever the reasoning it was fantastic to see him comeback. He came across the cage, got in Diego's face, kept Diego from getting anything serious off, and then came the right hand. Crack! Diego was hurt, and not much later another one. Crack! Diego had fallen. He rushed in, landed one more punch to the grounded and hurt TUF winner and it was all over. Just 38 seconds believe it or not. Great to see the lad back. At the same time the wars Diego has competed in and that he is known for have caught up with him. He can not continue to take shots to the chin like that anymore, but at the same time Diego has not evolved at all so I wouldn't expect him to leave his ways that have stayed almost the exact same sine very early in his UFC career. On top of that Sanchez is now 4-6 in his last 10, and one of those if I remember correctly was one that I saw not one single person say that he won against Ross Pearson, and he hasn't had win streak since 2010-2011. Maybe it's time to hang them up, or maybe he will be one of those guys who does so when it is too late, if it isn't already, or when they are made too like the Iceman was....
  OSP is back on the winning side after three consecutive losses. Expect him to take on the winner or loser of Gustafsson vs. Texeira. Depends actually. If Jones gets the title shot then expect Manuwa to take on the winner of the Swedish vs Brazilian, but if Manuwa gets the title shot instead expect the OSP to take on the winner. Interesting division, but still lacking so much... The division has never been incredibly stacked, but has had memorable faces. They lost Davis and now Bader who were both top 7 or 6 at their times of leaving for Bellator. Most doubted they would become champions, but they were winners most often and at the top. Divisions are made of contenders, and not champions unless we're talking about heavyweight where nobody holds on to the belt for long, but then again nobody did in Light Heavyweight either except for Ortiz, Liddell, and then Jones who raised the bar high in terms of title defenses. Hopefully they can sign some prospects soon.
  I was most excited to see Dodson make a statement, but it was a lackluster and uneventful fight. Dodson could have pushed the action much more, and Wineland should have mixed it up more. He just jab, cross, and that was literally it with an occasional hook in there. Dodson negated the jabs by simply putting his lead hand out there to halt it and also by simply retreating backwards, but occasionally he countered. Wineland landed roughly 14% and I believe if he had mixed in some leg kicks at the end of his attempts to offensive it could of halted Dodson very briefly when retreating backwards thus opening up a bit more room to attack once more.
  Perry landed a vicious short range elbow to put Ellenberger to sleep, and expect to see him get some much bigger fights soon!

Featherweight Bout
Cub Swanson(25-7) vs. Artem Lobov(14-13-1)
- Cub Swanson Victory
- Unanimous Decision

CO-MAIN EVENTLightweight Bout
Al Iaquinta(13-3-1) vs. Diego Sanchez(29-10)
- Al Iaquinta Victory
- Round 1
- KO

Light Heavyweight Bout
Ovince Saint Preux(20-10) vs. Marcos Rogerio De Lima(15-6-1)
- Ovince Saint Preux Victory
- Round 2
- Submission(Von Flue Choke)

Bantamweight Bout
John Dodson(20-8) vs. Eddie Wineland(23-12-1)
- John Dodson Victory
- Unanimous Decision

Lightweight Bout
Joe Lauzon(27-14) vs. Stevie Ray(21-6)
- Stevie Ray Victory
- Majority Decision

Welterweight Bout
Jake Ellenberger(31-13) vs. Mike Perry(10-1)
- Mike Perry Victory
- Round 2
- KO

PRELIMINARY CARD(FS1)Middleweight Bout
Thales Leites(27-7) vs. Sam Alvey(30-9)
- Thales Leites Victory
- Unanimous Decision

Flyweight Bout
Dustin Ortiz(16-7) vs. Brandon Moreno(14-3)- Brandon Moreno Victory
- Round 2
- Submission

Lightweight Bout
Scott Holtzman(9-2) vs. Michael McBride(8-2)
- Scott Holtzman Victory
- Unanimous Decision

Strawweight Bout
Jessica Penne(12-5) vs. Danielle Taylor(8-2)
- Danielle Taylor Victory
- Unanimous Decision

Bantamweight Bout
Alexis Davis(18-7) vs. Cindy Dandois(8-3)
- Alexis Davis Victory
- Unanimous Decision

Lightweight Bout
Bryan Barberena(13-4) vs. Joe Proctor(11-5)
- Bryan Barberena Victory
- Round 1

Flyweight Bout
Matt Schnell(9-4) vs. Hector Sandoval(14-3)
- Hector Sandoval Victory
- Round 1
- KO

Fight of the Night: Lauzon vs Ray
Knockout of the Night: Mike Perry over Jake Ellenberger
Submission of the Night: OSP over Lima
Best Performance of the Night: Cub Swanson
MY Overall Event Rating: 7/10


UFN: Penn vs Rodriguez Results

>> Monday, January 16, 2017

  Decent fight card with some interesting moments. The interesting moments really all occurred in the prelims. BJ Penn was finished once again in yet another awful return from retirement. Penn is a legend and pioneer in the sport. He is the first MMA fighter I ever had the chance to hear about and ultimately he is the reason I began watching. I would like to see him retire for good after the beatdowns by Diaz, MacDonald, Edgar, and now Rodriguez.
  He was great in his era, but let's be realistic here. The sport has moved past him. Look at his best wins and none of those guys would even be top 15 in their divisions today even if they were in their primes unfortunately. Penn hasn't evolved either. At least he hasn't shown us any evolution. He put on some great performances and battles in the past though that we continue to love him for. He fought at different weight classes and still only one person has come close to beating his record for title defenses at lightweight in the UFC, and that is Benson Henderson who he is tied with at three. Penn fought at welterweight 7 times, but only has two wins there, both over the same opponent. A majority of his career was spent fighting the same people. He fought Frankie Edgar x3, GSP x2, Matt Hughes x 3, Caol Uno x2, and Jens Pulver x2. That is 12 of his 29 fights against the same opponents. I don't mean to talk down on the legend who has inspired me, but we should look at things for what they are sometimes. Please hang up the gloves and you definitely will be missed.

Main Event: Lightweight Bout
Yair Rodriguez(10-1) vs. BJ Penn(16-11-2)
- Yair Rodriguez Victory
- Round 2

Co-Main Event: Lightweight Bout
Joe Lauzon(27-13) vs. Marcin Held(22-6)
- Joe Lauzon Victory
- Split Decision

Welterweight Bout
Court McGee(19-6) vs. Ben Saunders(20-7-2)
- Ben Saunders Victory
- Unanimous Decision

Flyweight Bout
John Moraga(16-6) vs. Sergio Pettis(15-2)
Sergio Pettis Victory
- Unanimous Decision

Lightweight Bout
Devin Powell(8-2) vs. Drakkar Close(7-0-1)
Drakkar Klose Victory
- Unanimous Decision

Bantamweight Bout
Frankie Saenz(11-5) vs. Augusto Mendes(6-1)
Augusto Mendes Victory
- Split Decision

Heavyweight Bout
Aleksei Oleinik(51-10-1) vs. Viktor Pesta(10-4)
Aleksei Oleinik Victory
- Round 1
- Submission(Ezekiel Choke)

Lightweight Bout
Tony Martin(11-3) vs. Alex White(11-3)
Tony Martin Victory
- Unanimous Decision


Paige VanZant Open To Fighting Ronda Rousey

>> Thursday, December 15, 2016

  Paige VanZant and Ronda Rousey at one time mutually praised one another, but after VanZant congratulated Holly Holm on her victory over Ronda things changed. Ronda would go on to confront her backstage one day going off on the 115 pound division's rising star saying things such as "Fuck you", "How dare you?", "Fairweather bitch", and saying Paige crossed her by congratulating Holly despite saying nothing negative of Ronda. This says a lot about how strong Rowdy is inside her head, and it's not looking good. That was all according to Miesha Tate, and Paige confirmed that everything Miesha said was true. Now Paige has expressed that she would be open to a fight with Ronda, but under certain conditions.....

""If she wants to meet me at 125 (pounds). I would have to go up. I would consider going up to 125. It's not that big of a weight gain for me.
"We'll see if we meet at 125."

  Now this match up has a much higher probability of occurring than the potentially historic and legendary bout between Cyborg and Ronda at Ronda's original weight class of 145 pounds. With a female featherweight division opening up in the UFC there is a chance Ronda moves up, but I belive that will only occur if Cyborg stops competing under the UFC banner..... Which says a lot. Very few fighters truly duck opponents and most of why fights are dodged is all business, but some cases are very real.



An MMA Odyssey: Discovering Martial Arts

  I am confident that if you are reading this then you know who I am because you are probably a fan of my MMA Repz: Your Opinion page on Facebook where you most likely found this article. So I have been training MMA on and off for a few years, but now I have been back to training consistently. I want to document my journey as a mixed martial artists so that I have something to look back on, so you guys have something to follow, and also so the fans of the page can actually get to know me outside of my posts and comments on the MMA Repz facebook.

I never realized until looking at this picture
that there is tape keeping that light up
Coach Johnny(Left) Me(Right)
  Here's a little bit about myself. I am a 21 year old from the city of Grand Rapids, MI in the United States. That is the same city that produced legendary boxers such as James Toney and of course Floyd Mayweather. Then we have MMA fighter Ryan Bow who is a MMA vet in the Japanese MMA scene, coach at Team Nogueira Dubai, and a Kodokan Judo black belt that he earned in Japan. I have a son who turns two years old later this year. I am a virgo. I am African and Caucasian descent. Now to clarify my father is a Black man, but him nor his parents are from Africa, but at the same time our history did not begin with slavery in America. It began with men and women in Africa. My hobbies include listening to music, exercising, watching fights, going for walks, writing, reading, and probably some things that simply haven't come to mind at this moment haha.

Getting Into The Martial Arts
  I've always been interested in this since day one. It's just something I have always naturally gravitated towards. As a child I grew up watching a lot of anime and any martial arts movies that I could get my hands on back when Blockbuster was still a thing, but Family Video had all of the better martial arts movies anyways. My main things to watch were Dragon Ball / Z/ GT, Jackie Chan/ Jet Li/ Bruce Lee films, and I loved Kung Fu Hustle. So naturally these things influenced me early on with many other things.

Before my first time sparring
  I take it that my mom noticed my interest in martial arts early on. Then again, how could she not? I was always outside in the front yard throwing punches, kicks, knees etc in the air pretending that I was Gohan(Dragon Ball character), or other various characters from the Dragon Ball universe. Anyways, one day out of the blue my mother told me to get dressed in some sweatpants and a short sleeve shirt. I did just that, we got in the car, and I had no idea where she was taking me. We reach the destination, and it is an elementary school. We enter and make our way to the gymnasium where I find people wearing uniform known as a gi. The instructor, a man named Dennis, made me bow to enter. I got in line, and had what I remember being a fun hour despite not knowing exactly what I was doing. By the end of the class I learned that what I was doing was an Okinawan form of combat known as Karate. This would become a two to three time a week thing for the next four years.

  I did compete in two Karate tournaments as a child, but lost both. I was foolish back then, and that's why I lost. I didn't get to see my dad too often, but he came to one of the two tournaments I competed in. I was going up against a girl, and stupidly I looked back to the crowd while the match was going on to see if he was watching me. I wanted to impress him. He was watching the adult matches that were occurring simultaneously to mine, and every time I looked back she scored. So I lost, doubt I impressed my dad, and probably didn't look good to anyone in the crowd at all. Unfortunately I have no pictures of me as a kid in my gi or anything. I remember taking some, but when I was younger we lost most of the photos of myself as a child when we moved at one point.

  I wrestled one year in school. I wrestled at the 145 pounds weight class, and walked around 142 pounds. I remember trying to make weight for 140 one time, and they wouldn't let me because I weighed 140.8. I was disappointed. It's pretty hilarious to myself looking back on it. This was the only year that I wrestled, and it was amazing. My record by the end of the season was 8-8. I lost my first three matches. My last match I was down on points, and we ended up out of bounds. So the referee halted the action, told us to get back to the center of the mat, turned around, and right when his back fully turned to my opponent and I my opponent slammed into me with an intentional headbutt that split my right eyebrow. They fix the cut, but tell me that it will likely open again. The action resumes, and within what felt like seconds I received a headbutt again that opened my wound once more. The match was stopped, and my opponent awarded the win. I cried after when nobody was around to be honest. Not because I lost, but because it ended the way it did. I wasn't going to complain to the referee for him to be disqualified though even after people on my team and in the crowd told me that they could clearly see the headbutt. Learning experience for sure though.

  Wrestling really changed my perspective on MMA though. I didn't understand a single thing about the grappling, often called it boring, and used the term "lay n pray" a lot. I could identify a lot of things going on MMA that maybe the casual fan could not, and my eyes looked at the grappling aspect of MMA in an entirely new light. I believe wrestling made me a better person I believe, and for that I thank the sport. I wouldn't change anything about that one season.

Fascination With MMA
  I discovered MMA from a comedy video on YouTube actually. I've been following famous youtube comedian NigaHiga for years, and I believe I first subscribed to him back when he had roughly 30,000 subscribers. Now he has over 17 million. He had a famous series of videos that I found hilarious, titled "How To Be *Insert whatever he was going to act like in a humorous fashion right here*" Eventually he would go on to drop "How To Be A UFC Fighter" featuring non-other than the famous BJ Penn. Meanwhile finding the video was funny I had no idea who BJ Penn was or what MMA was.

  Once again Blockbuster served me well with my martial arts dosage I needed, and I would stumble across a great discovery. This was my discovery of a DVD of UFC 84 which was a card headlined by BJ Penn defending his belt against Sherk, and also had Lyoto Machida vs Tito Ortiz. That would become the first UFC event that I ever watched. I began with the countdown, the first fight of the prelims, and worked my way up to the main event. I was amazed once I had finished the entire thing. I was in love with the sport of MMA from this point on. I'd go to Blockbuster every single week to pick up a new DVD, and the next one I rented was UFC 80 where Penn demolished Joe Stevenson to win the lightweight world title. Around this time the demo for the first UFC Undisputed video game came out, and as you could image I was all over that. Only two characters were available to play on the demo, Shogun and Liddell. I thought Shogun looked cooler, and I liked playing as him more so he became a favorite of mine at the time.

Training at Pro Karate

  The first event I ever watched live was UFC 112. I wasn't actually there in the crowd live, but it was live on pay per-view. It was a pretty unfortunate event for myself because I saw Penn lose his title, and Anderson Silva put on the performance he did against Maia. Regardless of those outcomes I began to watch each month's pay per-views consistently. I would always watch them at Applebees which is a restaurant, just incase you do not have one of those in your area. Later on I would tune in to them at Buffalo Wild Wings. 2010 was a great year for me to begin seriously following MMA because there were many great fights from Leben vs Akiyama, Lesnar vs Carwin, Anderson Silva vs Chael Sonnen, Lesnar vs Velasquez, Penn vs Hughes 3, GSP vs Koscheck 2 etc.

  Here I am today. Training 5-6 days a week at Grand Rapid Mixed Martial Arts(GRMMA). Well, trying to. Need to get back to being consistent so that I can learn more, provide better quality content to you guys, give you more to read, and open up some big opportunities for myself. The goal is consistency! Consistency. Going to make that my priority. In this first blog you guys have gotten to know me a little bit I hope you guys will click to view future blogs, and most importantly I want all of you reading to grow with me. Through this I will keep you all updated on certain aspects of my life, learn about my philosophy on martial arts, and much more. The odyssey has now begun!


TJ Dillashaw Talks What Brought Him To MMAAA

>> Wednesday, December 14, 2016

  TJ Dillashaw gave Dominick Cruz the most competitive fight of his career earlier this year in January where the bout ended in a controversial split decision. Despite having two title defenses and having one of the most closest title defenses in recent memory, he got no immediate rematch when it seems every other champ who lost their title were receiving even with no title defenses under their belts. Dillashaw felt like the UFC put hype over the sport. In a way yes, but one could argue that Garbrandt's current streak and knockouts are more deserving than Dillashaw avenging his loss to Assuncao.

  Dillashaw has always talked about fighters deserving more money and Sport vs Promotion. Recently he was announced to be a member of the MMAAA alongside legend GSP, Tim Kennedy. Donald Cerrone, some other fighters, and Bjorn Rebney. Dillashaw discusses a bit about what lead him to becoming a part of that,

"Yeah, I would lie if I said it wasn’t. ‘Look, man, I reached out to Dana and I told him that I will do whatever I need to do — because we went an renegotiated my contract — and more important than renegotiating my contract, we didn’t have to because I still had more fights left; I told him I want the title fight. That’s more important than anything in the world. Being known as the champ and best in the world is most important thing to me. I told him I’d do whatever and told him I knew that WME-IMG and CAA are enemies, and if it’s going to help you for me to leave them, then I will be Team Dillashaw, Team UFC, whatever you want me to do. After our meeting, he told me to give him a call and I am leaving him messages telling him this, and I never got a response back, you know what I mean? So, I told him I wanted the title fight, renegotiated my contract and he told me if I’m happy with the contract to call him. I called him the next day to talk about it, and I told him there were things I wanted to do, like bet my purse that I can beat Cruz, I wanted to do anything to get the title fight, create as much drama as I could, because drama is what obviously odes it these days. I didn’t feel like there was any more drama than to put my money on the line. It’s about respect and being the best, not money. I left him messages telling him all this, that I’d leave my management, even though I wouldn’t want to, I would do anything to get the title shot. And he just wouldn’t call me back. And then I eventually find out through social media that Garbrandt was getting it."

  TJ Dillashaw should stay vocal about a title shot just to keep his name out there a bit despite that not being the route he wants to take necessarily and challenge John Lineker who is riding a 6 fight win streak. That could possibly headline a fight night card, and if it did that would favor Dillashaw due to it being a five rounder. Lineker's power is always a factor however so Dillashaw would need to stay sharp with his ringcraft, put both speed and movement to great use together, and to not lose composure. A dangerous thing here though is that Dillashaw has shown on multiple occasions that he does have a willingness to trade with an opponent for brief moments and eat some due to a confidence in his chin, but Dillashaw may not want to do that against Lineker or else that'll be the second John to knock him out. Avenging a loss to John Dodson may not be too bad though, but I believe that would still leave Lineker ahead of him in line for a title shot even if he does beat Dodson impressively. On a quick note Lineker is a tailor made match up for Cruz in almost every way. My advice to Dillashaw against Dodson would be to stay primarily in one stance, but I'm confident that Dillashaw lights him up on the feet. Too bad we will not see him settle the grudge with Faber.

  Probably a dumb idea to many, but imagine if Dillashaw became a free agent for a bit. He could do 1-2 fight deal with a couple different promotions. Take on one of the best fighters outside of the UFC Marlon Moraes, then Bellator's Eduardo Dantas, and ONE's Bibiano Fernandes. Once that is all done assuming he wins come back to the UFC and attempt to negotiate a good contract because those would all be wins of great value.

Dillashaw wants this feeling again that's for sure.


Georges St-Pierre: I Am A Free Agent

>> Tuesday, October 18, 2016

  Canadian athlete superstar and arguably the greatest Mixed Martial Artist of all time Georges St-Pierre just announced earlier today on the MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani that his lawyer managed to get his contract with the UFC terminated. He debuted in the promotion 12 years ago, and has only fought outside of the promotion one time since. The Octagon legend and TriStar standout has been out of action since late 2013 where he won a controversial decision over Johny Hendricks. There has been talk of him coming back to fight against Robbie Lawler, Tyron Woodley, Michael Bisping, and even Anderson Silva. Now it looks like none of that will happen after he said today,

"Right now, I'm a free agent. You hear it right, I'm a free agent. My lawyer terminated the contract with the UFC."

  Now the former champion does still have options. There are some interesting fights in the bigger promotions outside of the UFC. Let's explore these options...

  First one is Bellator! Bellator has been seeking to pick up any higher level fighters or popular figures from the UFC. Their best signings from the promotion have been Phil Davis, Benson
Andrey Koreshkov
Henderson, and most recently Rory MacDonald who were all near the top of their divisions at the point of signing. Bellator is a promotion that can afford him, but it will cost them a lot of money. On top of that he will be able to represent his sponsor Under Armour inside of their cage. Plus the promotion holds their events on free television which would be a plus in a sense. Giving many the opportunity to tune in to the legend at no cost!
  Now he does have a few options for top guys that he can fight there. These options are current champion Andrey Koreshkov, Douglas Lima, Paul Daley, and Benson Henderson who did indirectly ask for a fight with him after defeating Jorge Masvidal in what was his final Octagon appearance. He likely would not fight fellow teammate Rory MacDonald who is still awaiting for his Bellator debut to be announced. GSP could possibly pursue a fight at Middleweight, and so could Rory to be honest as both have recently expressed an interest taking their next fights at 185 pounds possibly. At 185 the talent in Bellator is scarce, but they do have a few dangerous fighters there though. Dangerous for Georges though? If does fight again, and outside of the UFC this is the most likely promotion that it will occur under.

Ben Askren
  There is ONE Championship, but they have a few issues. "ONE" is that they are losing a lot of money despite how big they claim that they are getting according to some sources. Two is that they can barely afford to pay their top guys to fight more than once a year. Ever notice that from the fighters that they pay the most? Most fighters in the promotion make roughly $1000to fight. Then their current Welterweight Champion and former Bellator tournament winner and Champion Ben Askren is their highest paid at $50,000 to fight with a win bonus equal to that for a total of $100,000, and then he has his sponsors. Then on top of that Asken gets paid by Evolve MMA to be an athlete under them, but in reality he only does the last two-three weeks of his camp there, and that is really about it beside the occasional seminar that he may conduct there. That is actually the truth for a few of the athletes who supposedly "train" at Evolve. Back on topic though the only good fight for him there is Ben Askren who I believe can only challenge GSP in the grappling aspect, but in the striking I see it being a clear win for the Montreal native. Askren has gone on record before though to say he did want to 'beat up' St-Pierre. They could possibly put him in there with Luis "Sapo" Santos who is a dangerous man himself. That's about it for close to elite fighters at 170 pounds for them. Between the incredible lack of depth and likely inability to afford him it doesn't seem too likely that we will see Georges in ONE on a Singapore fight card.

  World Series of Fighting may have some of the better talent as far as welterweights go outside of the UFC. They have two men who GSP has defeated in the past Jon Fitch and Jake Shields. There is Rousimar Palhares who has been suspended due to his unsportsmanlike conduct inside of the cage, but has fought this by taking fights outside of the promotion against his contract with with the promotion. To the delight of many fans Palhares has 0-2 since his suspension with both losses coming via first round KO within the first minute and half or shorter into the fights. Fitch and Shields are probably not very appealing matchups that fans would be too interested in watching again. As stated before St-Pierre could possibly seek a middleweight fight, and who better than two weight champion David Branch who is a solid talent. I am unsure of their ability to afford him however, but I am not confident in it.

  If I were Georges I would go around signing big money-one fight deals and go to each promotion to take on the champion of each to add some more value towards my resume. Take a fight or two at middleweight as well, and retire. Definitely interesting to see where this entire thing leads to. Georges on the phone with Helwani sounded very unsure of his future. He wanted to fight, but did admit that the idea isn't as appealing anymore with the whole situation. Give him time to settle down and explore his options. I see Georges attempting to stay away from media for a bit until he can give us solid information. Even if he does not step into the cage or ring again I still respect him for what he has done in this sport. He elevated it to a new level meanwhile remaining a respectable individual that inspired many to be like him or to tune in.


Jose Aldo Says Dana Offered Him 'Bigger Slice' of Cake To Oppose Union

Jose Aldo has always openly supported the ideas of a union for the fighters, and for fighters to receive higher pay before these ideas became widespread among both other fighters and the fans themselves. The young Brazilian MMA legend has also had somewhat of a rocky relationship with the UFC due to him speaking up for such things, and at other times things against the promotion itself. Now after requesting a release from his contract so that he may retire and pursue other endeavors due to the promotion gearing itself towards entertainment rather than sport or martial arts, and claiming that he is willing to take the promotion to court Aldo is opening up more and more about Dana White behind the scenes.

  In a recent interview he has come out to say Dana offered him more money to oppose a union for fighters,

"Not only now that I’m the one being affected, but I always talked about it and defended better things for Brazilian athletes. In a conversation, Dana himself came and told me not to take anyone’s sides because the cake would be split the same for everyone, but I could get a bigger slice if I stayed quiet."

  Aldo is the 'Peoples Champ'. He never shows up to fights injured so that he can put on a good performance for the fans, respectful as he believes that is a big part of what martial arts is about, and despite being offered more money he would rather speak out for the benefit of everyone than remain tight lipped for his own benefit. Aldo is undoubtedly one of the pound for pound greats, and if that cannot be seen then you are either blind or likely new to MMA. He went undefeated for a 10 year period, and in that 10 year period Scarface he racked up 19 wins, 2 championship belts, 1 interim championship belt, and a combined(WEC/UFC) 9  consecutive title defenses. Respect to him for taking on all comers, and always top opposition. Unfortunately he fell in 13 seconds in one of the biggest Pay Per View events ever in the sport's history, and with a lot of new eyes viewing him for the first time on such a monumental event that does not do well for his image. Best of luck to Aldo in his future.


Cody Garbrandt: Cruz Trying To Steal My Thunder

>> Wednesday, August 17, 2016

  Cody Garbrandt has skyrocketed in terms of his popularity since he defeated Thomas Almeida back in late May. He has the look, the exciting style, the technical skill, the finishes, and the gift of gab. He has two men on his radar now, and fans want to see him take on both. One is former teammate and former UFC Bantamweight Champion TJ Dillashaw and UFC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz. Fans loved his last fight, and have been demanding he receive a title shot since. Garbrandt however is currently scheduled to fight Dominick Cruz this upcoming weekend on the UFC 202 fight card against Takeya Mizugaki, and if "No Love" performs both well and gets the win he will likely get the title shot. That seems pretty clear to me because the UFC just scheduled John Lineker who is on a 5 fight win streak against dangerous John Dodson, and Dillashaw still has yet to have anything announced.

  Garbrandt believes that Cruz has everything to lose however,

"In his defense, he goes and fights me, he loses everything," Garbrandt said Monday at a media lunch here. "He loses the legacy he built as the bantamweight champion. He's beaten every bantamweight. He's beaten every Alpha Male that he's fought. But I'm a different Alpha Male than he has faced."

  Garbrandt believes that when he watched Cruz for the first time against Faber back in June that he saw everything that he needed to see,

"When he throws punches, his chin is exposed. His head is out of the lane and I'l be able to find that very accurately. That's all I needed to see was just the one fight live and it gave me the confidence to know that I will knock him out."

The rising Team Alpha Male star believes that Cruz is only mentioning his name to steal his spotlight so that he can remain a star in the division however,

"He's talking about fighting me. Another thing is, he's saying I'm riding Urijah Faber's coattails. But really, Dominick is riding my coattails. I'm the one that's in the media, getting talked about the most. So he wants to jump in there and try to steal my thunder."

Later on the Bantamweight contender stated that his plans are to defeat Mizugaki, get a title shot, defeat Cruz, defend his title against TJ Dillashaw who he claims he knocked out in practice back at Team Alpha Male, and then to defend the belt a second time against John Lineker. How does Cody Garbrandt stack up against Dominick Cruz and TJ Dillashaw in your eyes?


Interview With Flyweight Prospect Shawn Mack!

>> Thursday, July 28, 2016

  Shawn Mack is an exciting Flyweight prospect from Michigan. He currently fights out of the gym Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts(GRMMA) under great coach Johnny Grigware. Shawn has a record of 5-2 with all 5 of his wins coming in the first round round, and both of his losses coming by decision. He is currently ranked #2 at Flyweight in his state, and #21 at Flyweight in the Midwest. Let's take the time to get to know Shawn!

MMA Repz: So tell us a little bit about your hobbies, favorite music or artists, favorite types of movies etc.
Coach Grigware in the red

Shawn Mack: "My favorite hobbies are playing basketball &/or eating out. Music I have no favorites I listen to almost anything but I’m old school so I still jam to music from the 90’s. Movies I love action, a good thriller, and suspense or horror movie."

MMA Repz: So how did you get into MMA?

Shawn Mack: "My son was doing Tae Kwon Do and boxing and mentioned something about MMA. I was playing in a Sunday football league (SFL) and wanted to stay in shape, so Nikki “T-Money” Duncan was working out at the YMCA and seen they were offering MMA classes which sparked our interest. Nikki mentioned if we’re going to do it (MMA) we should find a gym that specializes in MMA and not the once a week thing at Y. She found GRMMA we went in and they treated us like family so that’s pretty much how it started. I never thought or intended to even compete but here I am today lol. I guess we can thank Mark Malone (GRMMA) because he had signed me up for my first amateur fight."

MMA Repz: What was the first fight that you remember watching?

Shawn Mack: "I don’t remember"

MMA Repz: Who would you consider your favorite fighter to watch and why?

Shawn Mack: "I’m a Louis “Sapo” Santos fan, I’m drawn to his style because the dude's vicious."

MMA Repz: Who do you believe is the best P4P fighter on this planet today?

Shawn Mack: "I would have to go with DJ (Demetrious Johnson)"

MMA Repz: How would you describe your style?

Shawn Mack: "Unstoppable lol, but no I’m a striker at heart and I’d describe it as unorthodox and it’s a lot people haven’t got to see yet!"

MMA Repz: You have proven yourself to be excellent both on the feet and on the mat. but where would you consider yourself the strongest at?

Shawn Mack: "I feel I’m a well-rounded fighter, I really like to stand and strike but no one will strike with me so I have to rely on my ground/submission skills for the most part. So, to answer your question I feel my striking is my strongest."

MMA Repz: So you have a loss on your record and that is to Canadian fighter Malcolm Gordon. How did it feel to lose for the first time?

Shawn Mack: "It doesn’t bother me at all or should I say that much, I know in this sport anyone can lose at any time. Plus, I know I’m a better fighter than Malcolm he just stuck to a good game plan and I was lazy."

MMA Repz: Do you want a rematch with Malcolm Gordon? Anything you would like to say to him?

Shawn Mack: "Of course, I would LOVE a rematch. No, there’s nothing I have to say to him except I wish him the best in his upcoming/future bouts, unless it’s me."

MMA Repz: Everybody seems to know you as this rising Flyweight talent from the state, but you are also ranked at #8 at Bantamweight in Michigan. Are you interested in testing yourself against the other top Bantamweights in Michigan such as Vince Murdock, Mike Fernandez, or even #1 ranked Cody Stamann?

Shawn Mack: "As I’ve stated before I could care less about the rankings, but if those bouts make sense at the time then I wouldn’t mind. I would have to bulk up though because I only walk at 138-140lbs."

MMA Repz: Which weight class do you feel better at Flyweight or Bantamweight?

Shawn Mack: "I’m a flyweight, but I probably would end up moving up if it gets difficult on finding fights, but I would definitely need to bulk up."

MMA Repz: How close do you believe you are to getting picked up by bigger promotions such as World Series of Fighting, Bellator, or even the UFC?

Shawn Mack: "I think I’m a fight or two away after fight scheduled June 11th, I just have to compete elsewhere not just in Michigan."
*This fight has passed. Shawn lost a close and competitive fight unfortunately

MMA Repz: Anything you would like to say to the fans, anybody you want to call out, or any shout outs you would like to do?

Shawn Mack: "Yes, I would like to give huge shout outs to my sponsors: Urban’s Tattoo, Detroit Mma Tv and SFCL and to my gym/fight team GRMMA/M.O.D. Elite. My family and friends of course! and to the fans for your continued support! And for anyone that enters the cage with me 'WELCOME 2 HELL'"

Shawn has a fight coming up on August 27 against Jonathan Walker at the Delta Plex in Grand Rapids, MI on the Knockout Promotions 50 Fight card. If you are able to come and support Shawn that night!

Go like his fan page at



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