Sengoku 6 Results and Thoughts

Quick Results:

  • Jorge Santiago def. Kazuhiro Nakamura via TKO (strikes) — Round 3, 0:49
  • Satoru Kitaoka def. Kazunori Yokota via unanimous decision
  • Sergey Golyaev def. Takanori Gomi via split decision
  • Muhammed Lawal def. Fabio Silva via TKO (strikes) — Round 3, 0:41
  • Antonio Rogerio Nogueira def. Moise Rimbon via unanimous decision
  • Jorge Masvidal def. Seung Hwan Bang via unanimous decision
  • Joe Doerksen def. Izuru Takeuchi via TKO (punches) — Round 3, 4:13
  • Satoru Kitaoka def. Eiji Mitsuoka via submission (heel hook) — Round 1, 1:16
  • Kazunori Yokota def. Mizuto Hirota via unanimous decision+
  • Kazuhiro Nakamura def. Yuki Sasaki via unanimous decision^
  • Jorge Santiago def. Siyar Bahadurzada via submission (heel hook) — Round 1, 1:10
    • The big winners of the night: Jorge Santiago and Satoru Kitaoka.  They were the grand prix winners
    • The big news may be that Gomi lost a split decision to the Russian, Golyaev. 
    • Kitaoka commented on fighting Gomi or Golyaev:

    I have no need to fight that Russian fighter. If it was me in there tonight, I would have crushed that Russian in seconds. I had a tougher time than Gomi — my two fights tonight and my training for them — so that’s why I said what I said [when I challenged Gomi in the ring]. Anyone have a problem with that?  I do believe that this weight class is comfortable for me. I don’t typically like to show just how hard I train, but from August to October, I had the hardest training of my life. Mitsuoka was tough he was able to sprawl on my takedown initially, and I felt that it gave him confidence, but I was able to feel out the rest of his abilities and end the fight. If I were to fight him 10 times, I would probably win two or three times, because I think he’s that strong. Still, those two or three times would be impressive showings for me.

    • WVR says they still plan to match up Takanori Gomi and Satoru Kitaoka on January 4th for the lightweight title
    • Also, Kazuo Misaki will take on Jorge Santiago for the middleweight title on January 4th. Santiago said:

    I’ve been waiting for Misaki a long time. I fought here against [Yuki]Sasaki the first time and made my way up. I fought twice today and thought I was gonna have a belt, but I didn’t get it — I have to fight again. How long do I have to fight to get the belt? I beat everybody. Come on. Where’s Misaki

    • Muhammed Lawal continued to impress with his win over Fabio Silva
    • Takanori Gomi ought to be out of any discussion about being  a top 3 lightweight in the world.  Overrated!
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    Sengoku 6 Preview and Predictions

    Sengoku 6 will be held November 1st and will feature the conclusions of the middleweight and lightweight grand prixs as well as several additional fights…

    Non-Tournament Bouts:

    Antonio Rogerio Nogueira vs. Rimbon Moisa

    I am a big Nogueira fan (both Nogueiras).  The littler of the Nogueiras is a star in Japan.  He is also widely consdiered one of the best non-UFC light heavyweight fighters.  I would love to see him against consistently tougher competition.  The only place he will find that at 205 lbs is in the UFC.  I do not look for this to be much of a fight as Nogueira is a world class fighter and grappler.  Nogueira has solid wins in his career over guys like Sakuraba, Kazuhiro Nakamura, Alistair Overeem, Guy Mezger, and Dan Henderson.  Most recently, he is coming off of a win at Affliction’s first card over Edwin DeWees.  I predict that Nogueira will land a few hard blows to Moisa and then take him down and win by rear naked choke in round 1. 

    Takanori Gomi vs. Sergey Golyaev

    Takanori Gomi has for a long time been considered the best or at least a top 3 lightweight in the world.  However, he has been inactive lately and certainly has not fought tough competition.  Golyaev is not a bad fighter, but he is not in Gomi’s league skill wise.  He has not beaten many top level guys, in fact, he has lsot to the elite guys he has fought such as Joachim Hansen, Rich Clementi and Kurt Pellegrino.  Gomi on the other hand has been in there and won with some of the best in the world.  Gomi dominated in PRIDE boasting wins over guys like Marcus Aurelio, Mitsuhiro Ishida, Hayato Sakurai, Jens Pulver and Tatsuya Kawajiri.  I do not see Gomi losing this fight.  Gomi is rumored to be facing the winner of the lightweight grand prix for the Sengoku lightweight title.  I honestly cannot see Gomi losing to any of the lightweight in this tournament either.  Gomi beat Seung Hwan Bang in his last outing, but looked really unimpressive.  Therefore, I pick Gomi to win by unanimous decision, even though the KO or TKO is likely. 

    Muhammad “King Mo” Lawal vs. Fabio Silva

    Might Mo looked very, very impressive in his MMA debut against a very tough fighter in Travis Wiuff.  Lawal is a solid wrestler who looks to have great ground and pound skills.  He should have no problem in this fight.  He is a star in the making, especially in Japan.  I think that Lawal will be impressive again and will win this fight by way of TKO in round 1.

    Lightweight Semi-Finals

    Satoru Kitaoka vs. Eiji Mitsuoka

    Mitsuoka is coming off of a win over highly touted Rodrigo Damm.  He also has an impressive resume with wins over guys like Joachim Hansen, Samy Schiavo, and Gleison Tibau.  His opponent Satoru Kitaoka has an impressive win list also, boasting wins over guys like Cage Rage Welterweight Champ Paul Daley, WEC welterweight champ Carlos Condit, and UFC fighter Kurt Pellegrino.  This is a tough fight to pick.  I am very tempted to pick Kitaoka because of the wins he has over Condit and Daley, but I am going to pick Mitsuoka by unaimous decision.

     Mizuto Hirota vs. Kazunori Yokota

    Hirota has a big win over Ryan Schultz in his first fight in the tournament.  I expect Hirota to make it to the finals, but I expect him to win by a decision.

    Seung Hwan Bang vs. Jorge Masvidal (Lightweight Reserve Bout)

    Bang lost his last fight to Takanori Gomi.  Masvidal beat Ryan Schultz.  I think in the end Masvidal is too good and will win this one by TKO in round 1.  Keep an eye on Masvidal he could be a replacement and win the tournament though I won’t pick that. 

    Lightweight Finals:

    Hirota/Yokota vs. Mitsuoka/Kitaoka

    If my picks are correct the finals will be Mitsuoka vs. Hirota.  I would pick Mitsuoka to win that fight by decision.

    Middleweight Grand Prix Semi-Finals:

    Yuki Sasaki vs. Kazuhiro Nakamura

    Sasaki is a verteran of MMA who has fought nearly everywehre including the UFC.  However, I think Sasaki is the underdog in this fight.  Nakamura who is a top 25 light heavyweight who has amde a smart drop down to 185.  Following a unsuccessful stint in the UFC Nakamura will try his hand at Sasaki.  I pick Nakamura to win this fight by decision. 

    Jorge Santiago vs. Siyar Bahadurzada

    Santiago is the clear favorite to win this tournament because he is clearly the most talented of the guys in the competition.  He has a solid resume with good wins over good fighters.  He also is a UFC veteran who struggled inside the octagon, but has won his last 5 fights (Logan Clark, Yuki Sasaki, Sean Salmon, Trevor Prangley, and Jeremy Horn).  We have yet to really see what Siyar the Afghan Killer can do.  By the way, his nickname, “The Afghan Killer”, I have to wonder about the meaning of it.  I know he is from Afghanistan, but does the “Afghan Killer” mean that he is a killer of Afghans or that he is an Afghan who is a killer.  That is my deep thought of the day.  Nevertheless, I pick Santiago to win this fight by a submission in round 1.

    Joe Doerksen vs. Izuru Takeuchi (Middleweight Reserve Bout)

    I know that Takeuchi will have home ring advantage, but in the end Doerksen will prove to be too good, especially on the ground.  I pick Doerksen to win by first round submission. 

    Middleweight Finals:

    Sasaki/Nakamura vs. Santiago/Bahaduzada

    My prediction is that Nakamura and Santiago will square off in the finals.  If both come into the fight injury free then I think Santiago will have an advantage stepping in.  I would say he will have better cardio and that he will win his fight before it gets to a decision.  Therefore I think that the final will consist of Santiago trying to take down the judoka and then submitting him.  Santiago will win the middlweight grand prix and in doing so will earn a shot at Kazuo Misaki for the middleweight title. 

    UFC News: Joe Doerksen vs. Travis Lutter at UFC 91

    It looks like middleweight fighter and Ultimate Fighter 4 winner Travis Lutter will be given a second chance in the UFC.  Lutter is a very talented ground fighter and jiu-jit su specialist, but many have questioned his heart.  He was given a title shot against Anderson Silva and failed to make weight, then he fought Rich Franklin and looked very good, nearly submitting Franklin, but he then gave up and got beta up by Franklin.  That caused his release from the UFC.  He appears to be fighting Joe Doerksen at UFC 91.  Doerksen himself is a solid ground fighter.  Doerksen has fought a lot of guys in the fight world.  This should be a good scrap and a golden opportunity for Travis Lutter.

    UFC Cutting Fighters

    What is taking place?  Who has been cut?  Why have they been cut?  Who should be cut?  Wh shouldn’t be cut? What fighters are on the chopping block? 

    The UFC had over 200 fighters under contract.  Just recently the UFC has decided to start cutting fighters to allow the better fighters to fight more often.  In the recent weeks the UFC has cut Jake O’Brien, David Heath, Din Thomas, Kalib Starnes, Travis Lutter, John Halverson, Soa Palelei, Tommy Speer, and Kuniyoshi Hironaka.  They allowed Cro Cop and Tim Sylvia out of their contracts and have not yet re-signed Arlovski.  They are about to loose Tito Ortiz.  The goal of the UFC brass is to get down to the 150-160 range of contracted fighters.  This means there are more cuts to come.  Many fights on upcoming cards are do or die fights.  Let me sound my opinion…

    • I understand what the UFC is trying to do, and I too want to see the best fight more often
    • The options are either to have more events with more fights on the fight cards or release some fighters
    • If the UFC has 200 fighters under contracts and hold 18 fight events annually with 10 fights per card that means there will be 180 fights, with 360 fighters in action annually.  That means some fighters will only fight once per year.  That doesn’t cut it.  They need 3-4 fights a year to susatain their career.

    With that in mind…

    • I don’t agree with all the cuts that have been made.  For example, Jake O’Brien was undefeated in the UFC, then he looses to Arlovski and he is cut.  He was a top 10-15 UFC heavyweight.  The heavyweight divison is hurting bad now.  That is the worst move of all.  Hironaka just won fight of the night in a loss to Goulet and he was cut.  Din Thomas was a top 15 lightweight and he was cut.  I think Tommy Speer deserved one more chance to prove himself. 
    • I understand cutting Starnes and kind of understand cutting Lutter and Doerksen. 
    • I don’t understand why Dana White will let Sylvia and Cro Cop out of their contacts, but won’t let Couture
    • There are some fighters would could be cut and the UFC will not miss them

    Who is in danger?

    The bottom line is the next few UFC events for many guys will be do or die.  This will make for some exciting fights as no one wants to be fired, but it cannot be a constant issue as we do not want fighters to look over their shoulders because they are bound to lose eventually. So who is in danger?

    UFC 84

    • Christian Wellisch
    • Jason Tan
    • Dong Hyun Kim
    • Jon Koppenhaver
    • Yoshiyuki Yoshida
    • Rousimar Palhares
    • Ivan Salaverry
    • Kazuhiro Nakamura
    • Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou
    • Antonio Mendes

    UFC 85

    • Jess Liaudin
    • Paul Taylor
    • Paul Kelly
    • Roan Carneiro
    • Jason Lambert

    TUF 7 Finale

    • Jeremy Horn
    • Drew McFedries
    • Dustin Hazelett
    • Evan Tanner
    • Kendall Grove

    Nearly half those guys will be cut

    What standard should be used to decide to gets cut.  The problem is some guys are going to lose, should they be cut for one loss?  Here would be my standard…

    • Exciting fighter.  This earned Koppenhaver and Rollins a chance and may give them one more fight.  You can lose well.  The UFC wants exciting fighters.  The lack of excitment got Starnes cut.  Dana has always said he would reward exciting fights.  This could keep a guy like Terry Etim or Paul Taylor around even if they loose.  I would can boring fighters who refuse to engage.
    • Popular fighter.  I would not cut a more popular fighter because they could be a draw.  They need to look at the fan base before cutting.  That could save a guy like Kendall Grove or Jeremy Horn.
    • Ranked fighter.  I would not cut a top 20 fighter in the world.  That should save Sokodjou and Nakamura. 
    • Experienced figher.  You give the MMA vets an extra shot.  That again would spare Jeremy Horn even with a loss
    • Classy Figher.  MMA needs good ambassadors.  I would keep around classy guys and emphasize character if I was looking to sign people.  That has worked in other sports.  Many teams won’t trade for, sign or draft a troubled athelete even if they are talented because they are a liability.  MMA needs to target young people and if they want credibility they need to have class act guys in a controversial sport.  Punk fighters should be booted before classy guys. 
    • Potential fighter.  Shane Carwin is highly touted it he loses he needs to stay.  Brock Lesnar was in the same boat as was Velasquez.  If they are highly touted you give them a chance and let them prove themselves. 
    • Not All Losses Are Equal.  You cannot fault a guy for fighting good competition.  Imagine if Sokoudjou losses to Nakamura, there is chatter that he would be cut.  He would have lost to two quality guys in Machida and Nakamura.  I don’t expect him to lose, but he is universally ranked in the top ten in the world.  Dan Henderson has lost 2 in a row in the UFC.  Some say Wanderlai could even be in trouble, but you cannot can him for losses to Liddell and Jardine.  My opinion you keep some guys no matter what.  If Henderson fights Rich Franklin next he could easily lose that making him 0-3 in the UFC.  My tohughts would be give him a second tier guy to prove he is worth it.  If he loses then cut him, the same with Wanderlai and Sokodjou.  They did that with Cro Cop. 
    • Adequate opportunity.  I think if the UFC signs someone and gives them a fight you give them a chance to win.  Guys like Carwin, Wain, Palhares, Carneiro may lose their first fight.  Give them one more chance.  You want to develop talent and not ruin it.
    • Winability.  Like my new word?  It means do they have the skills to win?  I think UFC fighters need to be able to have a winning record.  There is no need for guys that will just get beat

    The bottom line is cuts need to be made, but only cut those who have no heart and cannot compete at that level.  That is why using the Zuffa owned WEC as a farm system is a great idea.  Send the guys that need to improve down to WEC and bring the best of the WEC into the big leagues.

     

    UFC 83 Thoughts and Comments

    Georges St. Pierre when focused and determined is bad news for any welterweight.  That is bad news for Jon Fitch.  St. Pierre proved that the Serra knockout was a fluke.  Perhaps it showed that Matt Serra is good, but not that good.  I look forward to the Serra vs. Hughes fight.  Again, wow GSP is great when he wants to be.

    Rich Franklin looked pretty good and is a class act.  He is what MMA is all about.  Rich can hang with most middleweights and win, this is his dilemna.  He can beat anyone in that divison except Anderon Silva.  Rich showed great talent escaping an arm bar and picking apart Lutter.

    Travis Lutter, a jiu jitsu great has no cardio.  How in the world can you step into the octagon, get paid as a career to fight, and get tired after one round.  There is no excuse for that.  In my opinion Lutter can submit anyone, but he is not able to hang with strikers.  If he wants to fight in the UFC he needs to improve.

    Michael Bisping looked great at middleweight, but come on he wasn’t fighting a top ten guy or even a top 20 guy at middleweight.  He looked like he was in great shape and he did great.  I’d like to see Bisping fight a top 15 type guys maybe Leben, Cote, or Almeida.

    Nate Quarry looked fantastic.  If this indicates what he will be he will be dangerous.  Perhaps Quarry could fight Bisping.  He will get a top ten type guy now.  He looked fresh though, but he fought Starnes.

    I considered Starnes a decent fighter.  Now I think he is not so much.  I can handle loosing.  I can handle a guy getting submitted or KO’s.  I can handle a guy getting KO’s bad or quickly, but running is ridiculous.  If I was Dana I would can Starnes right now.  He may have punched his ticket out of the UFC.  By the way Nate Quarry making fun of Starnes, doing the running man and the Screech was stinkin’ hilarious.  It made that fight worth watching.  How much do you want to bet Starnes’ leg isn’t hurting him as bad as his pride is?

    Mac Danzig looked great.  After a little bit of a tough round 1 Mac came out and showed his experience and versatility.  He ought to get a tough level competitor now.  I’d like to see a Nate Diaz vs. Mac Danzig fight.  Mac will go far in the lightweight divison.  He did great against a good ground fighter. 

    Didn’t see the undercard fights, but looks like MacDonald will stay near the 3-9 range in the middleweight divison.  Goultet earned fight of the night with a great fight and show of heart.  That Maia submission was sick, I wouldn’t want to fight him, he is here to stay and he climbed my rankings.  Jason Day impressed Dana White and may have earned a chance to hang around the UFC.  UFC 83 may have been a coronation of Cain Velasquez as the next great heavyweight, but time will tell.  I hear he looked real good.  Rich Clementi keep winning and climbing the rankings slowly.  If I was Dana White or Joe Silva Kalib Starnes, Charles McCarthy, and Travis Lutter would be done with their UFC careers.  Can them and sign someone who will fight. 

    If any of my readers paid attention, they will see how great I did at picking these fights.  I was 10 of 11.  I missed the Maia vs. Herman fight and I nearly picked Maia.  This is not to brag because i usually am slighlty better than 60% or so.  At least for once I picked a card accuratley.  Can’t wait till UFC 84!

    UFC News: Gomi, TUF 7, UFC 83

    Takanori Gomi Deal Falls Through                                                                                                                                                            It has been reported that a dead between the UFC and Takanori Gomi has fallen through.  Apparently, the deal was close to being signed because Frank Edgar was offered a fight with him.  I think that would have been a great fight, but I think Gomi should have stepped right in for a title shot.  I still think he should get the winner of the Penn/Sherk fight as a unification title bout.  I hope that the deal works out because Gomi is worth the investment.  There are only maybe 20 fighters worldwide that I believe should be catered to when negotiating contracts and Gomi is one of those guys.  I hope this deal works out

    TUF 7

    tuf7.jpg

    I have compiled a list of the TUF 7 fighters here. It looks like another good season.  I am not sure if any of these guys are run away favorites.  Apparently the Brazillian “Jacare” is not on the show.  We are still awaiting news as to when the finale will be and when Griffin and Jackson will fight.  It is looking like a June event. 

     Also, it seems that one of the new twists to TUF is that the show will feature 32 cast members rather than the typical 16.  Right off the bat there will be 16 fights with the winners earning a spot in the house.  I think there is a good and bad to this move.  The good is that some of the weaker fighters will be off the show right away.  However, they could match to of the best fighters off with each other and one of the top 2 or 3 could not even make the house.  I will be interested to see how they pair off the fights for the first round. 

    UFC 83 to be  April 19

    It has been reported before that UFC 82 would be March 1 and UFC 83 would be March 8, which never made sense.  It seems that UFC 83 will actually be April 19, 2008 in Montreal Canada.  Headlining the card of course will be the title bout between Georges St. Pierre and Matt Serra.  It seems the previously rumored bouts from UFC 83 are being moved.  The Alexander/Irvin fight was moved to UFC Fight Night 13 and Bisping’s middleweight debut may happen at UFC 83 in Montreal, but may be delayed until the June London card.  Also rumored to be on this card is Mac Danzig vs. Mark Bocek, the return of “Shogun”, Rich Franklin vs. Travis Lutter, Jason MacDonald vs. Joe Doerksen and Keith Jardine, possibly to take on Shogun or even a re-match with Liddell.  Stay tuned to my “Upcoming Events” section which I regularly update.

    UFC Fighter Rankings

    Where do fighters rank in the UFC?  I’ve seen all sorts of thoughts on rankings, so I will chime in and give my rankings, which of course are the best and most accurate.  I am using a few guidelines.

    • This is strictly UFC, not including fighters not yet signed in UFC from Pride.  For example, Fedor would be on or near the top of the Heavyweight rankings, but he is yet to sign so he is not included
    • This is based not on popularity or even record, but purely on who I perceive to be the best fighters
    • I am putting the title holders at number one in each weight class, even though they might not be the best in that class, for example, I would not have Matt Serra as the best fighter in his class, but he is the belt holder.
    • Some fighters are rising quickly and others are falling quickly (i.e. Tito and Cro Cop)

    HEAVYWEIGHTS

    1. Randy “The Natural” Couture

    2. Andrei “The Pitbull” Arlovski

    3. Gabriel Gonzaga

    4. Cheick Kongo

    5. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira

    6. Tim Sylvia

    7. Mirko “Cro Cop”

    8. Brandon Vera

    9. Frank Mir

    10. Jeff Monson 

    11. Heath Herring

    12. Fabricio Werdum

    13. Assuerio Silva

    (Note: Fedor, Josh Barnett, and even Aleksander Emelianko may have made the list had they signed. )

    LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHTS

    1. Quinton “Rampage” Jackson

    2. Mauricio “Shogun” Rua

    3. Dan Henderson

    4. Chuck “The Iceman” Liddell

    5. Wandelai Silva

    6. Rashad Evans

    7. Houston Alexander

    8. Tito Ortiz

    9. Keith “The Dean of Mean” Jardine

    10. Forrest Griffin

    11. Rogerio “Minotoro” Nogueira

    12. Matt “The Hammer” Hamill

    13. Micael Bisping

    14. Ryoto Machida

    15. Jason Lambert

    16. Stephan Bonnar

    17. Renato “Babalu” Sorbal

    18. Wilson Gouveia

    19. Marvin Eastman

    (Note: I put Hamill above Bisping because I believe he beat Bisping in their fight.  Even though Bisping got the win, Hammil looked better.)

    MIDDLEWEIGHT:

    1. Anderson Silva

    2. Rich Franklin

    3. Yushim Okami

    4. Terry Martin

    5. Nate Marquardt

    6. Dan Henderson

    7. Jason MacDonald

    8. Patrick Cote 

    9. Kalib Starnes

    10. Chris Leben

    11. Martin Kampmann

    12. Thales Leites

    13. Ivan Salaverry

    14. Nate “Rock” Quarry

    15. Evan Tanner

    16. Kendall Grove

    17. Ed Herman

    18. Travis Lutter

    19. Dean Lister

    20. Alessio Sakara

    WELTERWEIGHT:

    1. Matt Serra

    2. Georges St. Pierre

    3. Matt Hughes

    4. Diego Sanchez

    5. Karo Parisyan

    6. Josh Koschek

    7. Jon Fitch

    8. B.J. Penn

    9. Marcus Davis

    10. Mike Swick

    11. Thiago Alves

    12. Josh Burkman

    13. Luigi Fioravanti

    14. Nick Diaz

    15. Chris Lytle

    16. Edilberto “Crocota” de Oliveira

    17. Jonathan Goulet

    LIGHTWEIGHT:

    1.  Sean Sherk

    2. B.J. Penn

    3. Joe “Daddy” Stevenson

    4. Roger Huerta

    5. Kenny Florian

    6. Hermes Franca

    7. Nick Diaz

    8. Joe Lauzon

    9.  Din Thomas

    10. Marcus Davis

    11. Clay Guida

    12. Spencer Fisher

    13. Frank Edgar

    14. Melvin Guillard

    15. Drew Fickett

    16. Kurt Pellegrino

    17. Terry Etim

    18. Tyson Griffin

    19. Marcus Aurelio

    20. Sam Stout

    21. Tiago Tavares

    22. Nate Diaz

    (Note: I listed to 22 because there are so many quality fighters and the last 12-15 of these guys are not far from one another in ranking,  Some rankings have my number 19 Marcus Aurelio much higher, but come on, whose he gonna bump down?)

     Let the disputing begin.  I’d love to hear comments.  Perhaps I left someone off included someone I shouldn’t have.  Perhaps I have someone overrated or another underrated.  Let me know what you think.