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Monday, August 30, 2010

Toney not the only fighter who got his lights turned out

Like many I was eagerly anticipating UFC 118 as the headline matches had great storylines but unfortunately unlike most MMA fights these left something to be desired. Much like a $49.95 PPV boxing match that doesn’t deliver, this was in the same class. Perhaps James “Lightsout” Toney did bring an element of boxing to the ring after all, because he didn’t bring any other skills en route to a microwave fight with Randy Couture who clearly demonstrated why Boxers should stay in the ring and out of the octagon. Although RC was pushing fiddy’ in age he was still the favorite as many thought if he was able to get to Toney’s legs that it would be short work. JT talked way too much Smac even for a boxer, as he had to know he would be a fish out of water if the bout made it to the mat, and within seconds of the first round that’s exactly where they were with JT trying to fend off getting choked out. This is what the MMA fighters have been screaming all along, that some styles should just not mix. You’re taking a discipline that trains its athletes strike, choke, and force your opponent into submission as opposed to being trained to feint, jab, counter, and hold if you get out of position. In MMA if you get caught out of position, you will find yourself tapping out real soon as Toney found out. Don’t get me wrong if the roles were reversed the outcome would have been the opposite because Couture would not have been able to defend the power punches of Toney without the ability to shoot his legs and take him to the ground, but that’s the very point, you’re trying to take a street fighter out into the street where almost anything goes. Perhaps this will send a message to other boxers that are thinking of taking this up as a hobby after their real careers are over. In case you got confused by the sideshow that was the preliminary bout, you missed the passing of the torch as Frankie Edgar dismantled BJ Penn for five consecutive rounds to win a unanimous decision for the second consecutive bout between the two. And don’t feel bad because ESPN and most sports shows did as well as they all began the MMA segment with undercard bout, which was completely missing the point of a World Title Fight. To be honest it’s a shame to see possibly the greatest middleweight this sport has seen burn out so quickly but Penn was never in this fight or the first and it’s time to stop talking about what was and start talking about how Edgar may be the future. Should boxers, football players, or other athlets try to get into MMA? Let us know here and in the MMA chat rooms.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Without Tiger and Phil, PGA creates its own drama on Sunday

To say that the PGA tour is lacking a little excitement right now is an understatement, and the ratings continue to prove that. With Tiger still hunting to find his game and Lefty struggling to stay healthy for 72 holes, the game needs a ‘go to’ guy to fill in into Daddy gets home. With nether of the afore mentioned having an afternoon tee time on Sunday the PGA made due by creating a little drama on their own by calling a 2-stroke penalty on Dustin Johnson on the 18th hole for “grounding his club into a hazard” we could spend a paragraph or two on what that means in English but the long and the short of it is that you simply can’t get a free “lay of the land” with you club, ie; see how firm the bunker is, etc. So a 5 became a 7 and instead of a three player, 3-hole playoff, we had a two. From there Martin Kaymer and Bubba Watson did give us a great sudden death shootout worthy of more notoriety than it received and that’s just my point. You really can’t ask much more from a tournament that we got from the 2010 PGA Championship and it wasn’t good enough to keep the ratings from falling more than double digits. It proves that audiences would still rather watch Tiger, Phil, Ernie, or Vijay than have a new face hoist the trophy at each major. I for one like to know that it’s anyone’s tournament when they tee-off of on Thursday, as it’s a refreshing change from what we’ve seen over the past few years as it only makes news when one of the big two doesn’t win. So, now it seems that the champion is on the canvas and needs to battle to his feet, but to be honest I don’t know if the big cat has it in him to make an Ali-like return to the top. We’ve seen this before with compeer David Duval, Jim Courier in tennis, and even in many individual sports where the player seems to just lose the magic and drop from to upper echelon to obscurity leaving everyone to wonder how it happened. I’m certainly not ready to concede that’s the case with Lefty and Tiger but TW better get a guru swing coach in camp right away and Lefty better hit the meds or Golf may lose all the mo’ it’s been building over the past few years. What do you think about the penalty assest to Johnson? Are we not talking enough about the winners rather than the losers? Would you rather see new faces atop the leader board or the heavyweights doing battle to make history?

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