MMARated.com: “I Will Eat Ninja Sushi For Dinner”

Phil Baroni Waxes Poetic On Rua, Shamrock, Hose And Others

I was going to write some nice little intro on how Phil Baroni is gearing up for his fight against Murilo “Ninja” Rua on CBS but I think it would be wise to just get into our interview. Let me just quickly say that I have never conducted an interview quite like this one…and that’s a good thing. And away we go:

Ariel Helwani: How did it feel to get back in the ring after a long layoff?
Phil Baroni: I felt like shit after about four minutes. I was out of shape (and) I didn’t train for seven months. (It’s) nobody’s fault but my own. Oh well, I made a mistake. Fuck it, I’ll take it out on Ninja. Poor Ninja.

Ariel Helwani: Were you happy with your performance against Hose?
Phil Baroni: What the fuck do you think? Was I happy with my performance against Hose? What are you retarded?

Ariel Helwani: There has been talk of a rematch in the works…does that interest you?
Phil Baroni: Fuck yeah it does. I’ll fight anybody anytime, especially that guy. No hard feelings, Kala (Hose) is a nice kid. But I owe him an ass-kicking. And that Icon belt ain’t too shabby. Fuck, I love Hawaii…sign me up.

Ariel Helwani: You’re next fight is against Murilo Ninja Rua on CBS. Did you ever think, when you started out in this sport, that you would get a chance to fight on a network like CBS?
Phil Baroni: No, nobody did. Not the fighters anyway. Back then you weren’t fighting to become rich or famous. You did it because you loved it. You wanted to compete (and) prove yourself.

Ariel Helwani: Who’s the better fighter Hose or Rua?
Phil Baroni: Come on man, who do you think? Rua. Ask Rampage or Henderson who’s better. Those guys won questionable split decisions against Rua. Rua has fought the best in the biggest shows and held his own. Hose is a tough kid but he still has a lot to prove. He needs to rematch me and show his fans and the world he is for real. Its my job not to let that happen. There are too fucking many tough middleweights already (ha ha). We don’t need anymore.

Ariel Helwani: Who would you like to fight after the Rua fight?
Phil Baroni: Man, I already told you, I’ll fight anybody. Anderson Silva because he is considered the man and that’s what I want to be.

Ariel Helwani: What did you think of Frank Shamrock’s performance against Cung Le?
Phil Baroni: I think he won the first round. I think he hurt Cung in the third (round). Watching the fight I kept thinking to myself: “how the fuck did I lose to that guy.” I’m so much better than him.

READ THE REST OF THIS INTERVIEW AT MMARATED.COM

MMARATED.COM: An Inside Look At WAMMA

WAMMA’s President And Executive VP Discuss The Future Of The Sport

(FULL DISCLOSURE: I HAVE RECENTLY ACCEPTED A POSITION AS ONE OF THE POLLSTERS ON WAMMA’S RANKING COMMITTEE.)

The World Alliance of Mixed Martial Arts was founded in November 2007. But, really now, what are they all about? What are they trying to accomplish?

Many MMA fans have asked these questions in the last five months and now its time to seek some answers.

So, MMARated Radio invited WAMMA’s President and CEO, David Szady, and its COO and Executive Vice President, Michael B. Lynch, to talk about WAMMA’s goals and what they have accomplished thus far. We even found out about an MMA legend that is now on board with WAMMA (hint: he’s quite the Natural).

Some other talking points:

* What was the impetus behind WAMMA
* What kind of reception have they received thus far
* Is the UFC on board?
* What kind of discussions have they had with Zuffa?
* Why should the UFC work with WAMMA?
* Is there really a need for an organization such as WAMMA?
* What are WAMMA’s goals?
* What have they been able to accomplish thus far
* Which big name fighter is now affiliated with WAMMA
* How will they help protect the health and safety of the fighters
* What kind of uniformity will they look to bring to the sport.

All that and, trust me, much more. A very interesting interview.

LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW HERE

MMARated.com: Heath Herring Wants Another Crack At Minotauro

“The Texas Crazy Horse” Weighs In On The UFC’s Heavyweight Landscape

It’s a great time to be a heavyweight in the UFC as that particular division is as wide open as ever. Randy Couture? Gone. Tim Sylvia? Gone. Mirko Cro Cop? Gone. Andrei Arlovski? Maybe gone. Fedor Emelianenko? No Chance. Josh Barnett? You must be kidding.

So, that pretty much leaves champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and everyone else fighting for second place. One of those fighters is Heath Herring, however, he’s already lost to Minotauro three times, most recently in July at UFC 73. Nevertheless, should “The Texas Crazy Horse” continue to build on his most recent victory against Cheick Kongo at UFC 82, one has to wonder if he’ll receive a fourth crack at Nogueira. Herring certainly hopes so.

MMARated Radio spoke to Herring about the topic of facing Nogueira again and much more:

* His victory over Kongo

* His thoughts on his UFC career thus far

* Is he happy in the UFC?

* How many fights are left on his contract?

* Should he receive a fourth shot against Minotauro?

* The infamous Yoshihiro Nakao kissing incident

* Does he regret it?

* His thoughts on Spike using the kiss footage to sell his UFC debut

All that and much more from a very candid Herring.

MMARated.com: Catching Up On Some MMA Storylines

Sam Caplan discusses YAMMA, ShoXC, Fedor’s Future and More

yamma.pngMMARated Radio featured an interview with one of the best writers on the MMA beat, Sam Caplan of fiveouncesofpain.com and CBSSports.com. Caplan and I discussed a whole host of MMA topics ranging from YAMMA Pit Fighting’s debut show this weekend to Fedor’s future:

* Is there any reason to watch YAMMA?

* What is YAMMA’s plan for the future?

* Was the Suganuma-Hamman ShoXC fight stopped too soon?

* Marveling at the beauty that was Baszler-Tamai

* Elite XC’s identity crisis

* What does the IFL need to do to get noticed?

* Will they survive 2008?

* Where will Fedor fight next?

* Is there any chance of him ever signing with the UFC?

LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW AT MMARATED.COM

MMARated.com: Chris Horodecki V. 2.0

The IFL’s lightweight star looks to get back to his winning ways tonight

The mark of a true fighter (and champion for that matter) is how they respond to adversity. All’s well when the wins are piling up but once that fighter suffers his first devastating loss just how will he respond? That’s the question that looms over the Chris Horodecki-Nate Lamotte fight on tonight’s IFL card. With all due respect to Lamotte, this one’s all about the Canadian kid.

We all thought it would be a foregone conclusion that Horodecki would be crowned the IFL lightweight champion following his bout against Ryan Schultz in the IFL World Grand Prix Finals, however, in one of the biggest upsets of the year, Schultz shocked the MMA world when he defeated Horodecki in the first round. So, it’s back to the drawing board for the Team Tompkins member. Tonight we found out what he is truly made of.

MMA Rated Radio spoke to Chris about a bunch of topics:

* Is he over the loss to Schultz

* What went wrong?

* Has he studied the tape?

* How he dealt with the first professional loss of his young career

* What he will look to do differently in this fight

* His thoughts on Nate Lamotte

* His contract situation with the IFL

* Is he interested in ever fighting for another promotion?

LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW AT MMARATED.COM 

MMARated.com: Meet One Of MMA’s Mosted Wanted Fighters

Jim Miller talks about his IFL debut and being courted by the UFC

Jim Miller last fought on March 7th. Since then, he was rumored to be fighting on last night’s Ultimate Fight Night show against Marcus Aurelio while also rumored to be making his International Fight League debut. Obviously, the IFL won out as Miller will be fighting on tomorrow night’s card against the very dangerous Bart “Bartimus” Palaszewski. MMARated Radio caught up with Miller just 24 hours before his bout to talk about a whole host of subjects:

* Why he didn’t end up fighting on UFN 13

* Is he happy fighting in the IFL after all

* His contract situation with the IFL

* Does he still hope to someday fight in the UFC

* His thoughts on Bart Palaszewski

* What we can expect from him tomorrow night

* How soon he would like a shot at the IFL lightweight title

LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW AT MMARATED.COM

MMARated.com: Cung Le Reflects On Saturday Night

Strikeforce’s new middleweight king talks about his win over Frank Shamrock

img_8357-le-vs-shamrock-01.jpgYou’ll have to forgive Cung Le if he sounds a little tired during our interview. It’s tough being the new king of San Jose especially after earning that moniker following a grueling three round war against the likes of Frank Shamrock. Le impressed the entire MMA world this past Saturday night when he dominated Shamrock for fifteen minutes and eventually captured the Strikeforce middleweight crown after Shamrock broke his right forearm and was unable to continue fighting.

I had the pleasure of speaking to Le just days after the victory and among the topics we spoke about included:

* Has the reality of beating Frank Shamrock finally sunk in?

* Did he expect the fight to unfold as it did

* His thoughts on Frank Shamrock’s trash-talking tactics before and during the fight

* His game plan going into the bout

* Whether he knew he had broken Shamrock’s arm

* His thoughts on the end of the third round

* When he would like to fight next

* His current contract situation with Strikeforce

LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW AT MMARATED.COM

MMARated.com: From The Skating Ramp To The Cage

Mike Budnik talks about the transition from inline skating to fighting

Never heard of Mike Budnik? Well, obviously you aren’t a fan of inline skating and don’t have an eye for up-and-coming MMA talent. The former pro skater and X games veteran recently made the jump to MMA and, boy, was that a good decision as he is currently 6-0 and on the verge of debuting for a major promotion. If you’re curious to know where he will be fighting next just check out our exclusive interview with him.

Some of the topics we discussed were:
* Why he chose to make the switch to MMA

* Comparing inline skating to MMA

* How nervous he was during his first fight

* Starting over in a new sport

* His amazing knockout of Kenny Giddens

* Fighting on a live HDNet Fights telecast

* Which MAJOR promotion has he just signed with

* Which fighter he would like to face next

Check out the interview at MMARated.com.

Rampage Jackson Makes Me Work Hard

The UFC’s Light Heavyweight champ talks TUF 7 & more

Quinton “Rampage” Jackson is probably being pulled in 800 different directions nowadays. He is arguably the most marketable MMA fighter around and he is also about to star on the seventh season of The Ultimate Fighter on Spike TV (season premiere is on 4/2 @ 10 pm).

Nevertheless, he was kind enough to take a couple minutes out of his busy press tour this afternoon to talk to Jarry Park. I was hoping to get the happy-go-lucky Rampage but instead I got the to-the-point Rampage.

Some of the topics we discussed included:

* Why he agreed to do the show

* His upcoming bout against Forrest Griffin

* Whether Chuck Liddell deserves a third crack at him

* John Cena stealing his chain gimmick

And these are some of the topics he didn’t want to talk about:

* The Nike commercial he is rumored to be starring in

* Whether or not his trainer Juanito Ibarra would appear on TUF 7

* Any TUF 7 specifics

* Elliott Spitzer’s love life.

Oh well, worth a shot…


Quinton Jackson – 03/26/08

Around The World Of Boxing With Large

A look back at an exciting few weeks in boxing

Been out of the boxing loop lately? Don’t fear because Large and I seemingly covered it all this week.

First, we talked a little Mayweather-WWE. Large watched this week’s episode of RAW so I was curious as to what he thought about the product considering this was the first time he watched wrestling in something like ten years.

We then transitioned into Pacquiao-Marquez II and whether they should fight for a third time. Large brought up some minor controversy brewing following the affair as well.

Later, we spoke about David Haye’s entrance into the Heavyweight division, Andy Lee on Friday Night Fights, Ricky Hatton’s future, Casamayor-Katsidis, Cotto-Gomez and, finally, a little Hopkins-Calzaghe.

Consider this the cliff notes version of the last few weeks in boxing.


Large – 03/21/08