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!
    Advertisements

    Evaluating Affliction

    One of the questions that I keep thinking about is whether or not Affliction in here to stay and whether or not they will compete with the UFC.  No one disagrees that UFC is the standard of MMA right now, but Affliction is making up ground quickly.  It has been a tell tale sign of a slight change that Affliction has signed so many guys lately including many of the stars from the now defunt IFL, which was bought by the parent company of the UFC, Zuffa.  Affliction has signed Champs Roy Nelson and Vladimir Matyushenko.  They have signed lightweight star Chris Horodecki and are rumored to have welterweight champ Jay Hieron.  Affliction is cleaning up the free agents and doing better in that regard than even the UFC as of late.  So, what is there to judge a promotion…

    1. Fighter Talent – Fight promotions are fight promotions.  There are other factors that come into play, but primarily if a promotion does not have top level talent they will not stay relevant.

    2. Show Quality –  While good fighters is essential, the promotion must put on a good show.  They must entertain fans.  This includes exciting fights, good commentators and a solid show production.  Promotions have to build shows people will come to or buy.

    3.  Solid Managment –  Managment is important to a fight promotion, not just anyone can do it.  A promotion may suceed or fail based ont he business savvy of the fight promoter or president.  The PR, fighter pay, contracts, TV deals, etc. all come into play here.

    With that said, let’s see how Affliction is doing…

    1. Fighter Talent…

    There is a lot of hype around Affliction’s fighter talent.  Here is who I can think of off hand that they have and will use on their cards

    • Fedor Emelianenko
    • Andrei Arlovski
    • Josh Barnett
    • Tim Sylvia
    • Ben Rothwell
    • Roy Nelson
    • Pedro Rizzo
    • Paul Buentello
    • Aleksander Emelianenko
    • Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
    • Tito Ortiz
    • Vladimir Matyushenko
    • Renato “Babalu” Sobral
    • Mike Whitehead
    • Edwin DeWees
    • Vernon White
    • Vitor Belfort
    • Matt Lindland
    • Jay Hieron
    • Mike Pyle
    • J.J. Ambrose
    • Chris Horodecki

    I went to HDNet’s Rankings to see how many Affliction Fighters were ranked in the top 100 pound for pound or top in their divisons  here is the results.

    (Pound for Pound Rank, Divison Rank)

  • Fedor Emelianenko (2, 1)
  • Andrei Arlovski (25, 4)
  • Josh Barnett (27, 5)
  • Tim Sylvia (55, 7)
  • Ben Rothwell (81, 12)
  • Roy Nelson (84, 13)
  • Pedro Rizzo (NR, 19)
  • Paul Buentello (NR, NR)
  • Aleksander Emelianenko (76, 10)
  • Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (85, 13)
  • Tito Ortiz (87, 15)
  • Vladimir Matyushenko (66, 12)
  • Renato “Babalu” Sobral (92, 16)
  • Mike Whitehead (NR, NR)
  • Edwin DeWees (NR, NR)
  • Vernon White (NR, NR)
  • Vitor Belfort (NR, NR) – Unfairly I’d admit
  • Matt Lindland (22, 5)
  • Jay Hieron (59, 11)
  • Mike Pyle (NR, NR)
  • J.J. Ambrose (NR, NR)
  • Chris Horodecki (NR, NR)
  • Put this into perspective, out of the top 100 the promotions faires like this in pound for pound top 100 fighters…

    • UFC -39
    • Affliction – 13
    • DREAM -12
    • WEC – 10
    • EliteXC – 10
    • Strikeforce – 5
    • World Victory Road – 3

    The point is that Affliction’s talent is overrated. 

    • They are right about the level of DREAM talent wise
    • They are no where near the talent level of the UFC
    • 10 of the Affliction guys that appeared on the rankings list have fought in the UFC before.  Some have been sucessful.  There are several former UFC champs (Sylvia, Barnett, Rizzo, Ortiz and Arlovski), however most of them did no better than fair in the UFC (see Matyushenko, Hieron, et. al)
    • Most of the top Affliction guys are in the second half of their careers and are past their prime.  They still have fight left in them, don’t get me wrong, but not for the long haul
    • What happens if two or three of those gusy get injured?  Affliction is hanging their hat on Fedor, Barnett, Arlovski and Ortiz.  They cannot keep putting everyone on every card, they will run out of match-ups.
    • To their credit, they can put on good fights.  The talent isn’t bad.  Their guys can fight exciting fighter, but they have exciting fights at tough man competitions. They need to sign younger talent and more talent.

    Show Quality…

    • I cannot judge them solely on their sole show.  Affliction needs to improve their show quality as far as commentating, interviews and production is concerned
    • Also, I thought with the exception of the last 3 fights the card wasn’t what it was billed to be
    • They are nowhere near the UFC level as far as enjoyability to watch

    Solid Managment:

    • The UFC with Dana White and the Fertitas is still the managment standard.  I have problems with the UFC and Dana White’s managing style.  I don’t like his constant expletives, I don’t like the way he trashes other promotions, I don’t like the stubborness he exhibits with signing guys like Lindland and Barnett, and even Fedor.  However, Dana is crafty.  Atencio is no Dana White.  Watch his video below where he can’t remember Josh Barnett’s name and he is the main event for the second show. 
    • Affliction does have the deep pocketed Donald Trump behind them which helps.  Trump is a business guiness, but he doesn’t neccessarily know MMA.  The money helps thought he same way it helped having Lorezon and Frank in the UFC early days when they lost tons of money.

    Here is the point folks…Affliction is a solid upstart company.  They may be around for a while, but before we jump ont he bandwagon and label them peers to the UFC and competitors to the UFC let them get through a few shows first.  Let’s see how much money they lose after 3 events.  Let’s see how many fights they can do after 3 card.  They could compete, but as for now it is the UFC and then everyone else.  Zuffa is sitting pretty in the MMA world.  They are the big leagues, everything else is just the minors.  Affliction, EliteXC and DREAM are in the same boat and in a year from now at least one of them will be non-existent.

    Who Benefited Most From PRIDE’s Collapse?

    When PRIDE fell they were clearly the biggest competitors with the UFC, having many of MMA’s top guys.  They had some big time stars. Then PRIDE got into trouble and was bought by Zuffa.  So who benefited the most from PRIDE’s deminse?  There was a mad scramble to sign those guys who were now unemployed. I have been critical of the UFC’s ability to sign top PRIDE guys like Fedor, Gomi, Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, Arona, Kang, Mousasi, Melendez, etc. However, it looks like the UFC has done great due to PRIDE’s fall.  I ranked the PRIDE guys at the time of their collapse in order of who I would want to sign and the UFC benefited from it.  Now, the guys they have signed haven;t had huge success, but they are popular and will win eventually.  Can you imagine the UFC heavyweight divison without the influx of Nogueira, Werdum, and Herring???  The light heavyweight divison also was greatly boosted with the signings of Shogun, Wanderlei, Dan Henderson, Nakamura, and Sokoudjou.  UFC just struggles to get the lightweights. UFC signed 13 of those guys I listed and they have faired well, this doesn’t even include other guys who came in before the fall of PRIDE like “Rampage” Jackson.  Out of those guys you have some stars now in the UFC, some guys that can draw a crowd and one of them owns the belt (Nogueira).  DREAM and Affliction seemed to clean up what UFC couldn’t sign.  DREAM picked up the ligtweights, signing 8 of those PRIDE guys.  Affliction has a few signings.  So while I am critical of the UFC, let us give Dana and the UFC brass some credit for signing many of the top PRIDE guys.  I still would like to see the best of the best in one place, but it won’t happen, so this puts things into perspective and the UFC did good and benefited the most from PRIDE’s fall.

     

    Name

    Fight Organization Signed With

    Fedor Emelianenko

    Affliction

    Wanderlei Silva

    UFC

    Mauricio “Shogun” Rua

    UFC

    Mirko Cro Cop

    UFC (DREAM)

    Takanori Gomi

    World Victory Road

    Dan Henderson

    UFC

    Josh Barnett

    Affliction

    Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira

    UFC

    Paulo Filho

    WEC

    Antonio Rogerio Nogueira

    HCF

    Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou

    UFC

    Ricardo Arona

     

    Gilbert Melendez

    Strikeforce

    Fabricio Werdum

    UFC

    Gegard Mousasi

    DREAM

    Denis Kang

    DREAM

    Aleksander Emelianenko

    Affliction

    Marcus Aurelio

    UFC

    Akihiro Gono

    UFC

    Kauo Misaki

    DREAM

    Ricardo Almeida

    UFC

    Heath Herring

    UFC

    Joachim Hansen

    DREAM

    Ryo Chonan

    UFC

    Kazuhiro Nakamura

    UFC

    Tatsuya Kawajiri

    DREAM

    Mitsuhiro Ishida

    DREAM

    Alistair Overeem

    Strikeforce

    Kevin Randleman

     

    Phil Baroni

    EliteXC

    Hayato “Mach” Sakurai

    DREAM

    Murilio Bustamante

     

    Murilo “Ninja” Rua

    EliteXC

    Fighting Organizations Rankings

    I have ranked the organizations before, but here is the updated rankings of who has the best product.

    1. UFC – Still the best of the best.  Has more ranked fighters by far.  Has the most recognizable names in the likes of Chuck Liddell, Forrest Griffin, Shogun, Wanderlei Silva, Rampage Jackson, Anderson Silva, Rich Franklin, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Georges St. Pierre, Matt Hughes and B.J. Penn.

    2. Affliction – By far the best competitive heavyweight divison with Fedor, Tim Sylvia, Aleksander Emelianenko, Josh Barnett, Ben Rothwell, Pedro Rizzo and maybe Arlovski.  Not to mention Lindland, Whitehead and Babalu. 

    3. WEC –  The WEC has some star power, but is in the UFC’s shadow majorly.  The growing featherweight divison will help them as will the bantamweight with star Miguel Torres.  Guys like Condit, Stann, Filho and Faber give WEC the name recognition.  WEC still seems to be the minor league UFC.  Their success will not come with the bigger fighters, but with lightweights, featherweights and bantamweights. 

    4. EliteXC –  Their CBS deal will help them.  Kimbo can be a star.  They do great partnering with other promotions like Strikeforce and allowing guys to fight in DREAM. 

    5. DREAM – DREAM 1-3 have been solid with solid fighters especially lightweights and middleweights. Has guys like Aoki and Ishida as well as Caol Uno and Kwajiri. Has other guys fight for them like Alvarez, Gilbert Melendez, JZ Calvancante, Diaz, Cro Cop, Jason Mayhem Miller, Manhoef, Denis Kang, Mark Hunt, Jacare, Kid Yamamoto, Sakurai and Hansen. 

    6. Strikeforce – They have a few good fighters which helps them greatly.  They have Thomson, Le and Melendez

    7. World Victory Road –  They don’t have an American appeal, but they do have Gomi and some other solid Japanese fighters.  Also they have Kazuo Misaki, Kevin Randlemen, Jeff Monson, and Nick Thompson