Good afternoon class. I hope you all absorbed as much of Wednesday's class as possible, because today is going to be the same, if not more, information. But don't worry, I know it's Friday, and today's class, Common Knowledge Part 2, will focus on more fun facts. And when I say "focus on more fun facts" I mean, not so much. Hey, no one said the journey would be fun, they just said it would be worth while. As a side note, on Wednesday a few of you asked about the "Legends" question, as I forgot to mention the Gracies and Sakuraba. Well, I was saving it for today. As always, question and answer form.
Question: What are the best academies/ camps?
A: Some academies that were good when MMA first appeared (e.g.: Ken Shamrock's Lions Den) aren't so anymore. Right now the top academies seem to be, in no particular order, Randy Couture's (in Las Vegas), Miletich Fighting Systems (Iowa; Pat Miletich, Tim Sylvia), American Top Team, Chute Boxe (Curitiba, Brazil; Wanderlei Silva, Anderson Silva, Shogun, Ninja), The Pit (Chuck Liddell) and Greg Jackson's Camp in New Mexico (Keith Jardine, Rashad Evans, Diego Sanchez). Other great academies that seem to be on the decline include Brazilian Top Team (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Minotauro Nogueira, Mario Sperry) and Team Punishment (Tito Ortiz).
Also bear in mind that many fighters choose to train with multiple academies.
Question: Which was the longest official MMA match ever?
A: Kazushi Sakuraba versus Royce Gracie, Pride FC Grand Prix 2000. As Sakuraba had already beaten 2 other Gracies (Royler and Renzo), Royce demanded special rules for this tournament fight, to avenge his family's honor: the fight would have rounds but no time limit.
So the fight lasted 90 minutes, until Gracie's corner threw in the towel. This is where Sakuraba got his nickname, the Gracie Hunter.
Question: What's up with many fighters' ears?
A: It's called cauliflower ears, very common in MMA and grappling sports. Many stars such as Randy Couture, BJ Penn and Sakuraba are good examples of this. It is basically a case of dying outer ear skin, due to shock and friction (strikes and/or friction on the mat). It is possible to reverse/fix, but many fighters view it as a badge of honor, or figure they will just get it again, so opt to leave it be.
Question: What is ADCC?
A: ADCC is the biggest annual grappling tournament, where many MMA and non-MMA fighters go to test their pure grappling skills. It is held at Abu Dhabi and no strikes are allowed. Famous past competitors include Jacare, Ricco Rodriguez, Eddie Bravo, Matt Lindland, Vitor Belfort, Genki Sudo, Tito Ortiz, Minotauro.
Question: For their Pride FC fight, Rampage Jackson gave Igor Vovchanchin a note. What was it?
A: As hilarious as it may seem, that note that Rampage gave Igor during their pre-fight staredown was from Rampage's mother, saying something like "Please don't hurt my son". On the other hand, Igor's English is very poor.
Question: What happened to Tra Telligman's chest and Minotauro's back?
A: Both accidents when they were kids. In Telligman's case it was a car accident; Minotauro was run over by a tractor.
Minotauro's injury is actually one of the best ways to tell him apart from his brother, Minotouro.
Question: Who is responsible for deciding UFC matches?
A: As much as there is a tendency to blame Dana White for everything, it is actually Joe Silva who primarily decides the UFC fights. Dana just hypes the s#%t out of them.
Question: Have there been any fake/worked MMA matches?
A: Actually yes. In the beginning of the UFC and PRIDE FC, some fights were "works" or thrown by one of the fighters.
Every Nobuhiko Takada win has been a work, including his infamous win over Mark Coleman.
Works or thrown fights include: Oleg Taktarov vs Anthony Macias (UFC VI), Kazunari vs Dixon (PRIDE FC 1), Kitao vs Jones (PRIDE FC 1) and the Takada fights.
There have also been some older fights between members of the same academy, training partners, that weren't worked, but that were turned into pure grappling fights (e.g: Amar Suloev vs Andrei Semenov, Vitor Belfort vs Joe Charles).
Question: UFC vs PRIDE FC. The debate is over, but which one was the best?
A: The fact that Zuffa bought PRIDE FC doesn't mean, at all, that the UFC was a better organization at the time. In fact, PRIDE FC was highly regarded as the best organization in terms of fighters, promotion and production values. Not to mention the fact that the Japanese market has throngs of hardcore MMA fans.
On the other hand the UFC has done a great job business-wise, and the fact remains that "true" MMA fans always watched both organizations, and probably a few others, including DREAM right now.
Question: Which country has the best fighters?
A: There is no definite answer, of course. On the other hand it seems clear that, right now, 4 countries produce the best MMA fighters, in no particular order: USA, Japan, Russia, Brazil.
Question: Rickson Gracie claims to be 400-0. Is this true?
A: Rickson's official MMA record stands at 11-0. Rickson and his website maintain that he is 400-0 if street fights are to be included. This cannot be proven or disproved.
Question: What fighting styles do most people consider useful in MMA?
A: Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Wrestling, Boxing/Kickboxing (particularly Muay Thai), and maybe a style like Judo or Sambo to help round things out.
Question: Longest MMA title reign?
A: Alexandre Franca "Pequeno" Nogueira, Shooto lightweight champion from May 1999 to December 2006. Franca later fought for K-1 HEROs (now DREAM) and more recently WEC.
Question: Most successful title defenses in the UFC?
A: Matt Hughes' 5 consecutive welterweight defenses, during his first WW reign (stopped by BJ Penn). Hughes is regarded as probably the greatest Welterweight of all-time.
Question: Most successful title defenses in PRIDE FC?
A: Wanderlei Silva's 3 middleweight defenses. Note that not all his fights as champion were belt defenses.
Question: What is "ground ‘n pound"?
A: Ground and pound is a term used for fighters who throw down punches or elbows from someone's guard or from the mount. This method of attack was coined by the likes of Mark Coleman.
Quesiton: What is "sprawl ‘n brawl"?
A: Used for when one fighter is stopping a takedown by sprawling and then proceeding to throw punches or shots from his sprawl.
Question: What is "lay ‘n pray"?
A: Lay n' Pray is a term used for someone who's laying in an opponents guard or side control and not being offensive.
Question: How can an MMA fight end?
A: By Knockout (KO), Technical Knockout (TKO), Submission (either by tapout or by technical submission), Disqualification (DQ), judges' decision (DES), towel being thrown in by the corner, No Contest (NC) (e.g.: accidental headbutt or strike to the groin, with the fighter being unable to continue).
Question: Why are there stand-ups in some fights?
A: The referee may decide to stand up fighters if the fight is on the ground and there isn't enough activity. One of the fighters, or even both, may be penalized for that.
Question: Why are fighters moved around, sometimes, when fighting in a ring?
A: Due to rope entanglement or being afraid the competitors will eventually fall out of the ring. They restart the fight on the ground in the middle of the ring to allow for safe competition and actually reset the exact same position for both fighters rather than just having the top guy start in an initial guard or mount position. ***Due to a lack of ropes in the cage, this generally does not happen.
Question: In Japan (PRIDE FC, DREAM, etc) there are one night tournaments. Why not in the UFC?
A: Early UFC events held tournaments, but not present day. This is because the Nevada State Athletic Commission doesn't allow this, enforcing a minimum period of 12 or 20 days between each fighter's bouts.
Question: Which MMA fighters have won Olympic medals?
A: Olympic Silver (Freestyle): Kenny Monday, Townsend Saunders
Olympic Gold (Freestyle): Kevin Jackson, Kenny Monday, Mark Schultz
Olympic Bronze (Greco-Roman): Rulon Gardner
Olympic Silver (Greco-Roman): Matt Lindland
Olympic Gold (Greco-Roman): Rulon Gardner, Karem Ibrahim
Olympic Gold (Judo): Pawel Nastula, Hidehiko Yoshida
Question: Which MMA fighters have won the NCAA championship?
A: Royce Alger (x2), Mark Coleman, Alan Fried, Mark Kerr, Josh Koscheck, Kenny Monday, Kevin Randleman (x2), Mark Schultz (x3), Mike Van Arsdale, Brock Lesnar.
Alright class, that's it for today. Hope all is well inside those little heads of yours. Be sure to do your homework, meaning, watch Saturday's EliteXC card....this may be the last time you get a chance to. There are a couple of decent fights: Shields/Daly and Arlovski/Nelson. Goodbye and have a good weekend.