One Year Later, The Beastman Returns To The UFC

Marvin “The Beastman” Eastman’s last fight in the UFC was at UFC 67 against then-newcomer Quinton Jackson. Twelve months later, Jackson holds the Light Heavyweight title while Eastman prepares to make his Middleweight debut this Saturday night against Terry Martin. Needless to say, he is in desperate need of a victory.

Following a devasting loss to Travis Lutter at UFC 50, it took Eastman (14-7-1) more than three years to get a another fight with the company. Should he fall short against Martin it might be four strikes and you’re out for the North Las Vegas Detention Center corrections officer (Eastman lost his UFC debut to Vitor Belfort). He will head into Saturday night with one fight left on his current contract and looking to break his “UFC curse.”

The former Calgary Stampeder was actually supposed to make his Middleweight debut at UFC 77 against Damian Maia but was forced to pull out of the bout after electing to undergo eye surgery to fix a tear in his retina last September. That decision came two months following a victory over Rob Kimmons at an IFO event.

The fully-healed Eastman talked to The Park about his fight against Martin, his injury, the reasons behind his move to 185 and his future in the UFC.


Marvin Eastman – 01/31/08

The Rosholt Revolution Will Now Be Televised

When it comes to mixed martial arts, remember the name Jake Rosholt. Why, you ask? Well, first consider his amateur wrestling background:

* Three-time NCAA champion. He won the 184-lbs title in 2003 and 2005 and 197 in 2006.

* Four-time All American at Oklahoma State University

* A Big XII champion

* Three-time state champion in high school

Then, consider the fact that he finished his rookie year a perfect 3-0 after winning two fights via TKO and one by submission. Finally, consider that the 25-year-old Stillwater, OK, native currently trains at Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas. Mix that all together and you have, without a doubt, one of the brightest young Middleweights in MMA.

And here’s some good news: The Team Takedown member will look to continue his winning ways on March 15 in Tulsa, OK, when he faces Chad Jay (7-1) in one of the top matches on Dale Cook’s Extreme Fighting League event. If you can’t make it to Tulsa don’t fret as that card will air live on HDNet.

Rosholt stopped by The Park to talk about his affiliation with Team Takedown, why he entered the world of MMA, his upcoming bout and Brock Lesnar’s chances come Saturday night.


Jake Rosholt – 01/30/08

For Better Or Worse, The Spirit Of Ali-Inoki Lives

When Muhammad Ali and Antonio Inoki met on June 25, 1976 in Tokyo, Japan, to finally settle the wrestler vs. boxer debate they, well, didn’t settle anything. As everyone knows, that match turned out to be a total farce. Not surprisingly, it wasn’t the first time a promoter booked a wrestler vs. boxer match and it certainly won’t be the last. Naturally, every one of these bouts proved to be less exciting than a Great Khali vs. Kane match but, nevertheless, the New York State Wrestling Federation is hoping April 5th will turn out to be a little different.

That night in New Rochelle, NY, the NYSWF will present the latest boxer vs. wrestler matchup when they pit former light middleweight Larry Barnes (44-3-0) against Ring Of Honor star Larry Sweeney. Obviously, the JarryPark faithful have all heard of Sweeney but here is the skinny on Barnes: His biggest claim to fame was a fourth round TKO loss to Felix Trinidad in 1995 and his last fight was on the undercard of Oscar De La Hoya vs. Julio Cesar Chavez in 1998 when he lost to Luis Ramon Campas via TKO in the third round.

Ten years later, he steps back into the ring for the first time to face one of the true rising stars in professional wrestling. I am always intrigued when a promoter takes a gamble and signs a match like this one so I invited NYSWF’s John Miele to talk about how this match came about and what fans can expect come April 5th. An interesting listen.


John Miele – 01/29/08

For more information on this match check out the NYSWF’s official website

Tyson Griffin Is Mr. Fight Of The Night

Forget about the Super Bowl, it’s time to focus our attention on this weekend’s UFC 81 and, needless to say, I am really looking forward to this one.

Basically, whenever a former WWE champion makes his UFC debut it’s cause for excitement in my world. Of course, I am talking about Brock Lesnar versus Frank Mir. That said, I am not expecting a great MMA fight from these two. And while Nogueira-Sylvia and Marquardt-Horn should be fairly entertaining my prediction for fight of the night rests on Tyson Griffin (10-1) vs. Gleison Tibau (15-4).

One can make a case that, win or lose, no fighter had a better 2007 than Xtreme Couture’s Tyson Griffin (10-1). When you consider the fact that all three of his bouts (wins over Clay Guida and Thiago Tavares and, of course, his unbelievable loss to Frankie Edgar) were the best ones on their respective cards you would be foolish to expect anything less against Tibau. The American Top Team Member has won four in a row and is one of the more underrated Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioners in the UFC.

Oh, and in case you were as surprised as I was when you looked at the official card on UFC.com and noticed the Griffin-Tibau tilt would not air live on pay-per-view, fear not as Griffin confirmed his bout would be shown on the main portion of the telecast.

Anyhow, I caught up with Griffin to break down his bout against Tibau, his string of great fights and why he thinks Urijah Faber has no interest in ever fighting him again.


Tyson Griffin – 01/28/08

What’s Eating TNA’s Creative Team?

As I mentioned a couple of days ago, I appeared on Fight Network Radio to talk a little wrasslin’. This time around host John Pollock and I moslty spoke about the mysteries surrounding TNA iMPACT! (including Shark Boy’s “new” gimmick) as well as tonight’s Royal Rumble.

I know the general consensus on the Internet is to bash TNA’s creative so I try to be as positive as I can but, damn, it’s so hard sometimes with this bunch.

I also offered up a pretty good booking idea for the Randy Orton-Jeff Hardy WWE title match. Take a listen – I think you guys might like it.


Fight Network Radio – 01/25/08

Saturday In The Park: Rumble Memories

This is the second Saturday In The Park post and you know what? I kind of dig it…sucka (sorry I had to).

First things first, an update on JarryPark.com. The site is getting some major plastic surgery done to it. The doctors are actually working on the new site as we speak and I think you will love it. The reason behind this decision is because I want the site to move away from the blog look.

Don’t get me wrong, I love blogs and there will still actually be a JP.com blog but it will now just be one of the many different options to look at it. The blog will be a place to discuss last night’s PPV, a fight rumor or anything else that has nothing to do with our bread and butter – the interviews. Those bad boys are still coming (and we have some cool things planned on that front too) but will be featured a little differently. In a few weeks, I think The Park will look like a pretty snazzy combat sports site.

Onto the 2008 WWE Royal Rumble. As I mentioned on yesterday’s Fight Network Radio appearance (audio coming tomorrow), I will be attending the real grand daddy of ’em all tomorrow night at MSG. Yes, the RR is my favorite wrestling pay-per-view simply because it’s always a sure bet.

So, since we specialize in combat sports interviews I thought I would help get everyone excited for this year’s Rumble by presenting the top 3 greatest Royal Rumble promos of all-time. Enjoy!

3. 1990: We begin with a compilation of wrestlers giving their thoughts on the Rumble. Now, why doesn’t WWE produce these kinds of promos anymore? They’re so effective and so damn enjoyable. Plenty of juicy cameos in this one starting with a young Tony Schiavone calling the action next to Jesse Ventura wearing a funky Mickey Mouse sweatshirt. I guess no dress code back then. We transition into classic Savage, Fuji, Roberts, Hart Foundation and Hogan.

2. 2000: This might be the best Rock interview of all-time. Who else would start talking about Crash Holly and Headbanger Mosh before a big match? And it wasn’t in the HHH “allow me to bury ever other guy on the roster” kind of way. It was just sweet and funny – nothing more, nothing less. There’s even a classic Y2J promo at the end for good luck.

1. 1992: Without a doubt, the greatest wrestling promo of all-time. There’s really nothing more that I can say. Watching Flair, Heenan and Hennig doing their thing gave me goosebumps 16 years ago and still does to this day. (Love the added effect of the cameras flashing too).

Arianny’s Views From The Best Seat In The House

Remember the last time we featured an interview with UFC Octagon Girl Arianny Celeste? Well, her presence generated the most amount of traffic to Jarry Park…EVER. Seriously, it did. Kurt Angle, Bas Rutten, DDP, GSP – they should all bow down to the queen of the Octagon.

It didn’t take me long to figure out that we should start featuring Arianny a hell of a lot more around these parts so we have “signed” her to stop by The Park after every big UFC event to offer her unique views from the best seat in the house.

This was a particularly busy week for young Arianny as she worked UFC 80 in Newcastle over the weekend and then Wednesday’s UFC Fight Night 12 at the Palms in Las Vegas. We talked about her travels as well her thoughts on:

* The Penn-Stevenson blood bath

* Sean Sherk’s promo after the main event

* The lackluster Burkman-Swick fight at UFN 12

* Why she was eating snacks during Pellegrino-Crane fight

* Her budding singing career

* What special sign she will flash to the Park faithful at UFC 81

We’re just trying to recreate the old high school days when the neighborhood park seemed to be the cool place to go after class.


Arianny Celeste – 01/25/08

Back On Fight Network Radio Later Today

Just wanted to let everyone know that I will be appearing on the great Fight Network Radio later today. We’ll mainly be discussing last night’s episode of TNA Impact and this Sunday’s WWE Royal Rumble.

I am sure most of the Jarry Park faithful have already heard the program but, if not, tune into Sirius Channel 186 at 3 p.m. EST or log onto hardcoresportsradio.com to listen via the Internet. It’s everything The Park aspires to be someday.

If you want to get really pumped up for the show check out some of my past appearances on FNR here and here.

The Fall And Rise Of Ed Herman…By: Ed Herman

Leading up to The Ultimate Fighter 3, all the hype seemed to surround a fighter from Vancouver, WA, named Ed Herman (left). He would eventually make it to the finals of the show only to lose to Maui’s Kendall Grove but, as we all know, both men were rewarded with a guaranteed UFC contract for their great fight. It seemed as though Grove and Herman were well on their way to UFC stardom.

At first, Grove held up his end of the bargain but Herman surely didn’t. Grove won his next two fights while Herman followed his loss to the Hawaiian with another to Jason MacDonald.

Then, a funny thing happened: Herman regained his confidence and reeled off three victories in a row – most recently at UFC 78 against Joe Doerksen. Meanwhile, the once-dominant Grove is still gathering himself after a bitter loss to Jorge Rivera at UFC 80 – his second in a row. It’s kind of like a TUF 3 bizarro world nowadays.

Up next for Herman is a meeting with BJJ wiz and Abu Dhabi Combat Club vet, Demian Maia. A tough test indeed.

It was initially reported that Herman-Maia would take place at UFC 83 in London but that event has since been scrapped. So, I caught up with the Team Quest member to talk about when and where the fight will go down, his recent wining streak, the fall of Kendall Grove and so much more.


Ed Herman – 01/24/08

UFC 80 Review, UFN 12 Preview, Arlovoski’s Future & More

The oh-so knowledgeable Jesse Holland of MMAMania.com stopped by JarryPark to help sort out the influx of UFC news from the last few days. No shortage of interesting topics to discuss but here are some of the ones we touched on:

* BJ Penn’s victory over Joe Stevenson

* What to expect from a Penn-Sherk matchup

* The way the Sherk situation was handled on the UFC 80 telecast

* Fabricio Werdum’s place in the Heavyweight division

* The rise and fall of Kendall Grove

* Mike Swick vs. Josh Burkman, Patrick Côté vs. Drew McFedries and the rest of the UFC Fight Night 12 card

* Andrei Arolovski, Mirko Cro Cop and Evan Tanner’s UFC future

A great tuneup for tonight’s Spike telecast and always a pleasure to welcome an astute MMA blogger like Jesse to The Park. Enjoy.


Jesse Holland – 01/23/08