And Then It Was Fun Again . . .
With the impending doom of Strikeforce and the hole that it threatens to leave in its' absence, a few nuggets of hope still exist. Tyson Griffin VS. Effrain Escudero . . . Gerald Harris VS. Josh Burkman . . . Miguel Torres VS. Marlon Moraes . . . Anthony Johnson VS. DJ Linderman . . . throw in a good dose of Andrei Arlovski, a dash of Ryan Ford and a pinch of Douglas Lima and you could be on to something. While all of these match ups and stars may not be appearing on the same card, they're all competing this weekend. Even the most casual MMA fan can see that this is not a weekend of fights you'll want to miss out on. Considering the fact that the UFC has repeatedly gutted its' competition through acquisitions and playing a mean game of hard ball, it's surprising that there's even this much talent still floating around out there. The fact that all of these guys are fighting in a 2 day period is nothing short of a miracle.
Bellator is poised to take over and solidify its' #2 standing in the world of mixed martial arts and continues to put together great cards. It's tournament format has been problematic at times, but its recent signing of Babalu Sobral, King Mo Lawal and Paul Daley has assured it's success and drawing power for at least the next couple of years. With a big push from Spike coming in 2013, we can expect to see even bigger and better things from Bjorn Rebneys' baby. Be sure to check out BFC 79 tonight on MTV2.
Ressurection Fighting Alliance has put on 3 phenomenal cards over the last year and has its 4th incarnation coming tonight from the Texas Station in Las Vegas, NV. Ed Soares has done an admirable job at creating cards that are well thought out, well matched up and pertinent to the future of the sport. With the acquisition of Titan, RFA stands to do some great things in the upcoming months and years as it continues to sign high level talent and put on solid shows. With a broadcasting deal with AXS TV, the sky's the limit for RFA.
MMA World Series of Fighting may not have the flashiest name in the game, but they're connected in the right ways and will debut on November 3rd airing live on the NBC Sports Network. A stacked card featuring Andrei Arlovski, Josh Burkman, Miguel Torres and Anthony Johnson should prove to make waves. Ray Sefo has brought in some big names for their inaugural event with some interesting match ups. We're hoping for big things from MMA WSOF and looking forward to their next event.
As a fan of MMA, this weekend has to be one of the most anticipated in recent memory. While UFC cards will always be a staple, weekends like this remind us of why we love this sport. Whether you're rooting for a young up and comer or cheering on an old favorite looking for redemption, supporting smaller promotions is the key to the development of the the sport as a whole.
So get back to your roots . . . invite the homies over, crack open a beer and enjoy a great weekend of MMA.
MJ on MMA