Mixed Martial Arts


Why Robert Whittaker is destined to become one of Australia’s biggest sports sta


10th July 2017

AUSTRALIA is still getting to know Robert Whittaker — the 26-year-old from Sydney who became the first man from these shores to wrap a bit of UFC gold around his waist in Las Vegas on Sunday.

The nature of Whittaker’s victory in his interim middleweight title bout against physical freak Yoel Romero at UFC 213 — coupled with his exemplary three-year body of work since moving to the 185-pound division — has made him a favourite with MMA fans.

But the former sparky — who can forget about his finances for a few years after pocketing half a million Aussie dollars for one day’s work — has more than enough going for him to become one of the country’s biggest sports stars.

He’s clean-cut and classy

Humble origins. Respectful in victory and defeat. Ability to fight through injury. Whittaker ticks every box Australians generally require of their champions.

Hell, he’s even got a southern cross tattoo over his heart if that’s your thing.

He’s not going to excite you with trash talk or make headlines for bad behaviour. And while that may inhibit his pay-per-view potential, it should be an advantage when the corporate world comes knocking.

If the Aussie public is honestly tired of our diva tennis stars it needs to put its money where it’s mouth is and back an athlete who is doing everything right.

He’s as mentally strong as anyone in Australian sport

It’s hard to compare standing toe to toe with a beast like Romero with say, pushing up the steeper climbs in the Tour de France or making a putt to win the US Masters.

But what’s become abundantly clear during Whittaker’s rise to the top is his mental approach to fighting is on par with anyone in the game.

Consider the discipline he maintained to avoid being caught by the creative striking of Uriah Hall. Or the composure he showed to survive an early Derek Brunson storm. Or the dexterity needed to escape “Jacare” Souza on the ground.

But all those performances paled in comparison to what he produced against Romero. After copping a savage kick to the front of an already-injured knee in the opening round, Whittaker was forced to fight another 20 minutes against the most-feared man in the division with limited movement.

After dropping the first two rounds, his margin for error was razor-thin. But he put all that behind him to snatch the third round and then held firm when Romero gave everything in an attempt to win the fight in the fourth. He never looked back. It was inspirational.

He’s only 26 years old

Whittaker joined UFC luminaries like Jon Jones, Jose Aldo and BJ Penn by winning his first strap in his mid-20s.

He needs to knock off undisputed middleweight champion Michael Bisping to cap his rise to the top — but from that point anything is possible.

Producing an extended reign as champion won’t be easy in a division that has treated its belt like a hot potato in recent years. There’s a murderer’s row of potential opponents, including former champions Luke Rockhold, Chris Weidman and the greatest of all-time Anderson Silva, who are all looking for another shot.

But with his best yet to come Whittaker figures to be at the top — or at least very near it — well into next decade.

He’s a complete fighter

The team behind the man known as “The Reaper” — or more recently “Bobby Knuckles” — received well-earned recognition during Sunday’s broadcast.

For the eighth fight in a row, Whittaker came in with a perfect gameplan and executed it to a tee.

His knockout power and submission skills have been evident since the very early days of his career, when his first nine wins all came inside the first round.

But Whittaker has improved with every showing — from the takedown defence Dana White describes as “ridiculous” to the diverse kicking game he used to take Souza’s head off and sap Romero’s energy.

Whittaker always comes prepared, has no obvious weaknesses — and most importantly is bloody exciting to watch. Five of his past seven purses have been topped up by fight of the night or performance of the night bonuses.

He doesn’t have to promote his next fight

Whittaker has already done a lot of the heavy lifting required to establish his career by overcoming two extremely dangerous opponents in Souza and Romero.

 

 

source/read more; http://www.news.com.au/sport/ufc/why-robert-whittaker-is-destined-to-become-one-of-australias-biggest-sports-stars/news-story

Ronda Rousey’s Mom makes a statement after UFC 207 loss to Amanda Nunes

rousey-and-annm

Source:AP

1st Jan 2017

I have this to say about my daughter, Ronda

Like every mother and daughter on the face of the earth, Ronda and I don’t always see eye to eye. However, there is one situation where I am pretty certain.

All of those who have criticized Ronda for taking a loss so to heart, for not just ‘shrugging it off’ don’t understand that what made Ronda so successful is that she cares DEEPLY about winning to an extent that I don’t believe the average person can wrap his/her head around.

Caring deeply about something and working your hardest to achieve it doesn’t mean you make the right decisions 100% of the time. Wouldn’t it be a nicer world if it did?

Those of you who want to criticize Ronda, I just want to point out a few things. First of all, I know her better than you and she is a smart, kind, talented, generous, hard-working person.

Second, I’d like to list some of her accomplishments, and note that she isn’t yet 30 years old.

  • Junior World Judo Champion
  • Panamerican Games Judo Gold Medalist
  • First American woman in a decade to win a world cup in judo (and then she went on to win several more)
  • U.S. Open Gold Medalist
  • World Judo Championships Silver Medalist
  • Olympic Bronze Medalist
  • U.S. Senior National Champion
  • First UFC World Champion
  • First woman to make a million dollars in martial arts
  • Co-authored sports book of the year – My Fight/ Your Fight
  • Acted in three movies

That’s just a partial list, but let me suggest that someone who has been world level athlete in two sports, written a best seller, acted in movies and made millions of dollars, all before the age of 30 has a pretty darn good track record. On top of that, Ronda has been part of the USADA drug testing since she was 16 years old, never failed a drug test,  always paid her taxes, never been arrested, never been to rehab, has zero divorces, zero DUIs and zero children. While you might think that is to be expected, look how many celebrities (heck, look how many of your neighbors) can say that.

I am very proud of my daughter.

As my other wonderful daughter, Maria, told her ,

“We love you just as much 10 minutes after every fight as we did in the 10 minutes before.”

Edit: Since so many people asked me “What do you mean zero children? Children aren’t a bad thing.” I agree.  I have four. I meant that she did not have children before she was able and willing to raise them. 

 

 

source:http://drannmaria.blogspot.com.au/2016/12/i-have-this-to-say-about-my-daughter.html

 

Ronda Rousey Gets Immediate Rematch After UFC 207

amanda-nune

21st Oct 2016

The UFC women’s bantamweight division gets the main event slot at UFC 207 on December 30, rounding out the year with a monstrous title fight. Returning after a year-long absence will be the pioneer of the division, Ronda Rousey, attempting to win back the belt from Amanda Nunes. After Holly Holm planted Rousey in Australian soil at UFC 193, the belt switched hands again at UFC 196. Miesha Tate choked out Holm in epic fashion this past March 5, but the travelling of the w-135 gold was not done yet.

Facing ‘Cupcake’ in the UFC 200 main event, Nunes brought the belt to Brazilian surroundings with a first round decimation of Tate. Now set to fight arguably the most dominant female fighter ever, certainly in UFC history, ‘The Lioness’ faces a career-defining opponent in ‘Rowdy.’ Although she’s not blasting Rousey with both barrels, Nunes has been frank in her opinion of the former champion.

Immediate Rematch

Recently saying she felt Ronda Rousey was ‘mentally weak,’ Nunes has now changed the tide somewhat. As per MMAJunkie.com, the women’s bantamweight queen says she will grant Rousey an immediate rematch after UFC 207:

“Ronda Rousey has every right to fight for the belt. She was dominant for a long time in this division and also, Ronda was one of the biggest pay-per-views ever sold. There’s no way to even explain it – of course she has the right to fight for the belt. She only lost once, and took some time off to rest. If you look at it on the internet, everyone is waiting for Ronda Rousey to return.

“Today, the UFC has women’s MMA because Rousey managed to change (UFC President) Dana White’s mind and put it in the UFC. I think she has the right to fight for the belt – not only once, but twice. I’ll beat her and give her a rematch right after that if she wants.”

Taking Advantage

Although Nunes clearly acknowledges the influence her opponent has on the sport, the Brazilian also points out multiple holes in Rousey’s game. ‘The Lioness’ feels that the longer the fight goes on, the more she’ll be able to take advantages of the mistakes Rousey will make:

“Ronda has all the holes,” Nunes said. “In her striking, in her ground game, and even her timing. The longer the fight goes, she loses her timing – and that’s where I grow. Every time she loses a position that she gets countered, through time her level drops. So all of this – I’m going to take advantage of that. I’m going to take advantage of all of her mistakes and try to finish the fight as soon as possible.”

Referring to Nunes’ previous comments on an immediate rematch, Cris Cyborg and Julianna Peña will likely be very upset if this happens. ‘The Venezuelan Vixen’ stated she’s considering leaving the UFC over the decision to give Rousey an immediate title shot. After years of feuding with ‘Rowdy,’ Cyborg was typically furious when the UFC 207 main event was announced. Showing many similarities to the situation with Conor McGregor vs. Eddie Alvarez, and the fallout with ‘The Eagle’ and Jose Aldo, is this a sure sign of things to come?

Perhaps this trend is just temporary, if not, get ready for a crazy year in 2017.

 

 

source:http://www.lowkickmma.com/UFC/amanda-nunes-ronda-rousey-gets-immediate-rematch-after-ufc-207/

UFC 205 tickets on sale this week, and $1,506 gets you cageside

conor-mcgre

28th Sept 2016

Tickets are on sale this week for UFC 205, the promotion’s long-awaited debut at New York’s Madison Square Garden, and the lineup is stacked.

“UFC 205: Alvarez vs. McGregor” takes place Nov. 12. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass.

In the headliner, UFC lightweight champ Eddie Alvarez (28-4 MMA, 3-1 UFC) puts his belt on the line against UFC featherweight champ Conor McGregor (20-3 MMA, 8-1 UFC). While McGregor looks to become the first man in UFC history to simultaneously hold two titles, the bout is just one of three championship fight slated for the UFC 205 lineup.

Welterweight titleholder Tyron Woodley (16-3 MMA, 6-2 UFC) meets Stephen Thompson (13-1 MMA, 8-1 UFC), and strawweight champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk (12-0 MMA, 6-0 UFC) faces Polish countrymate Karolina Kowalkiewicz (10-0 MMA, 3-0 UFC).

Tickets for the event start at $106, and they go on sale to the general public on Friday at 10 a.m. ET at Ticketmaster.com. However, pre-sale periods are available. UFC Fight Club members can buy tickets on Wednesday at 9 a.m. ET, and UFC.com e-newsletter subscribers can purchase their seats on Thursday at 9 a.m. ET.

Cageside seats run $1,506, though additional fees will be applied at checkout.

The latest UFC 205 card includes:

  • Champ Eddie Alvarez vs. Champ Conor McGregor – for lightweight title
  • Champ Tyron Woodley vs. Stephen Thompson – for welterweight title
  • Champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk vs. Karolina Kowalkiewicz – for strawweight title
  • Yoel Romero vs. Chris Weidman
  • Donald Cerrone vs. Kelvin Gastelum
  • Michael Johnson vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov
  • Raquel Pennington vs. Miesha Tate
  • Frankie Edgar vs. Jeremy Stephens
  • Rashad Evans vs. Tim Kennedy
  • Tim Boetsch vs. Rafael Natal
  • Thiago Alves vs. Jim Miller
  • Lyman Good vs. Belal Muhammad
  • Liz Carmouche vs. Katlyn Chookagian

 

source: http://mmajunkie.com/2016/09/ufc-205-tickets-on-sale-this-week-and-1506-gets-you-cageside-for-conor-mcgregors-bid-at-history