UFC 229’s Mental Component

 

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This is not an op on any press conference, or how one guy got the reaction or didn’t give the expected reaction to the opponent. It’s not about a casual fan base with casual writers and editors throwing up softball question or by comparison hard-hitting pieces that dissect every syllable uttered. This isn’t about the fans this is about the two individuals on fight night when that pin hits steel and there’s no escaping the cruel honesty of the cage you can’t hide in there and all your intentions come to the surface.

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Mental games have existed since the first trash-talking session that ever escalated to a fight. Nothing that is being done is new or unheard of are lines being crossed, but of course one might say because all is fair in love and war. WAR is what both men want but they want the battlefield to exist how they see it, a practice or rather an expose in projecting what you see or expect to see in mind’s eye into reality. Khabib wants to beat and punish Conor while Conor wants to “take his head clean off”. This shows me what both mean are prepared for, one has a long intense detailed energy consuming game plan, while the other sees a start fast end it fast through complex traps and a shocking stopping ability. One wants to force the other to quit while one wants to take the choice away. Mentality dictates training and preparation.

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How will the words and statements and I guess objects thrown impact the emotions going into hose seconds after the pin is dropped in that cage door? Will the insults cause anger or will both men be calm and focused engaging at optimal levels. Why do I stress anger well it may be something that people should carry over from Mayweather before trying to adopt and jab or counter 2 pull 2 methodologies done incorrectly but I digress and move onto the actual point. My point is Mayweather never attaches an emotion to the task of fighting he is calm and indifferent in the exchange, simply because his promotion is subtle digs at his opponent while propping himself up like Muhammed Ali. What drives Conor promo is a more vicious attack of what his opponents hold most dear causing intense frustration coupled with the knowledge that retaliation before the fight ends poorly for them. Meanwhile, Conor now has the media and a large fanbase of supporters spewing the same sentiments constantly while he now promos his skill. The complete opposite is Khabib was a self indulgence for the sake of promo means very little to him all he will voice are observations and facts, there is no fat in the discussion. Where Conor and Mayweather will take digs at the opponents Khabib just challenges them to do what every other opponent couldn’t do, not unlike the later years of Mayweather’s promo 40 some odd have tried and 40 some odd have failed. Now they could be no further apart from each other however the question becomes he meets the challenge how will the frustration fuel one side how will the self-aggrandizing fuel the other?

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Big Dogs Don’t Attack Buses

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This was beyond childish, I cant see what Conor and his crew were thinking if this is retaliation for Khabib slapping Artem handle that with the said individual, besides that’s some Russian on Russian business. So what happened the gif above explains it, as reported on Twitter and through the MMA news train, the Mac Life production squad stormed the Barclays in Brooklyn as the fighters doing media bordered the busses back to the fighter’s hotel. Apparently, Micheal Chiesa has multiple gashes on his face so he won’t be cleared to fight obviously so that main card fight is out, Rose is pissed because she almost got hit by glass and an object so Danas on a mission to come her down to keep her on the card because without her this thing doesn’t sell like it would before. The videos show Conor was a very active participant fleeing the scene and attacking the bus. I don’t get what this would do other than keep your name in the press, but his name is already in the press its the second or third question all combat sports athletes get from BJJ to Boxing. Was this retaliation for the Artem Khabib thing, well then take the fight at 155 that was on the table. I’m just confused because this has never happened like this before now granted Pride FC was a madhouse at best this type of nonsense never happened in the wild west days so there a feather in the cap, the biggest shit show since UFC 200. If you wont to fight sign the damn bout agreement end of discussion, you don’t go to NY and disrespect the Barclays and then try to run away like this was some heist film. If this was some old skool gym war stuff I say we have Conor fight Till but that’s just me lol.

-Keep your head on straight

Garry Tonon

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Garry Tonons is the hope of the BJJ based grappler or the newest glitch in the matrix I’m hoping for both folks both. Garry is a phenom grappler if you don’t know please do yourself a favour and watch the link here ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJv01Wz3-L8 ). This was a master class in beginning striking levels you can cross compare Garry and Kron and you see how vast and calm Garry translated the similarities from how to move explosively and evasive with footwork from grappling. Now what Garry showed was sharp basics his straight punches were true and straight his timing for the hook was based on the GSP level change for the reaction and then strike. Evade to create space than close space faster than the opponent can react with 2 or 3 option don’t overload yourself overload their mind. The matrix that is MMA should be scrambling because the performance Garry put on is a roadmap to the needed level of striking you need to translate to MMA, not just footwork or touching shots but power and set up punches and kicks that you expect to see from your standard striker at any of the big Teams like ATT.

 

What I consider the basics, his hands are up he V Steps and mirrors to cut off the exist and cut off the ring. His jab was TRUE AS MATH, the kicks where chambered on the initial steps, patients was evident from the jump. Switch stepping to look at the angles and force a change from distance and not in the pocket where he can be hit, knee up foot flat to check kicks hands up elbow down to guard against small gloves not just an open palm to catch a fist which never works (SMALL GLOVES FOLKS THIS IS VALE TUDO). Lastly timing power, Garry has taken more grappling shots than most humans on this earth he knows how to explode and he translates that into a straight punch A to B is the quickest path and he set it up with a jab like a JOCK. This is very simple but its hard if you don’t have patients in the fire, people grappler or beginner whatever they lose their mind in the cage and the game plan and training goes out the door. Through Garry’s years of high level grappling experience against the killers at Renzos (Danaher DEATH SQUAD!!!) he stays calm under the most exhausting and fierce circumstances which makes MMA just a normal day in a somewhat different lane. I’m happy OneFC made this pick up and I can’t wait to see the growth to come.  

Humanities Forge

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Humanities forge is Martial Arts, that may or may not be an esoteric statement to some, however, that idea is still challenged by a large majority of people sighting that idea as toxic and masculine. To that I say, Mackenzie Dern and Holly Holm, like Frankie Edgar and heart you can find people as centred and kind but you will not find anyone kinder. Let us just nip this now, martial arts are not in themselves masculine or feminine it’s a study in optimizing your human existence. Much like Rogans quote about martial arts being the vehicle for developing your human potential which is very true. What I’m expressing is the journey that martial arts buts you on is one in which you can do nothing more difficult over your lifetime other than war or fighting fires. The physical part is where the masculine gets injected by people just looking from the outside, why because that is all surface. Martial Arts in itself is a full body exercise that has been tried and tested forever and with steady results. You’re forging your body now that sound crude but its very artistic, a Katana is a beautiful piece of metal work as well as the deadliest eastern blade type of all time. The path is the path and its non-discriminant on background nor gender or self-identification. Why state that well because the martial arts path or teaching is simple these things work and you can test it and figure that out fast does keeping your hands up in the pocket work well test it with your hands down and get hit in the face experiment done. There is a built-in immediate testing phase in martial arts. A punch, kick, choke, and endurance only gets better with work and there is no distinction other than speed and power when comparing in gender and from there within weight and height (ie Cyborg and Rose or Mighty Mouse and Francis).

 

Now, what’s the forging process that’s the simple process that is very difficult double negative I know, it’s a simple process that beginners make difficult, why? The forging begins when you walk in the door for the first time, then the heat starts under increased stress that is actually minimal but seen as very intense when compared to how easy regular life is today. The stressor is the shock you system gets put in on those initial first days. However after you tough it out a couple of times it gets very easy and you wonder why you were complaining only 2 days ago. Next is the levels at which you progress things get more detailed and the learning builds and builds like anything else. The impurities are constantly getting burned off and reformed when new tactics and understanding of techniques are introduced and built on. The blade or armour etc is never really finished it’s constantly being worked on the smelting and forming will eventually be done but the polishing and sharpening are never done. The journey is for perfection which bleeds over into how you live your life outside of martial arts. Knowing that you will always be the farthest thing from perfect is the endless wheel we run on because you dream and reach high and if you come up short you still lept.  

Cris Cyborg is the GOAT move on

Let me just start by saying I hate bullies I’ve been 5’4 basically all my life and hated it then and hate it to this day, I have to address it when it takes place in the community of martial arts where the idea of bullying is a weakness and a response to inflicted pain on the bully versus the recipient of that pain. More specifically what this whole thing is about is when you decide to praise someone, while on the same hand saying that they did this and that which is not okay and may have attributed to their win. However, when you don’t do that for other people your stance becomes exposed for what it is at its core, an underhanded comment.

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Okay so the other day I posted an Instagram highlight video of Cris Cyborgs recent win and some asshole decides to post that the Dana White and the UFC need to get rid of Cris ( while calling her a man) due to her failed a test in 2012 insisting that’s she’s still on gear. Of course, I deleted the comment and will do so every time because I have no need for it in my life. My biggest issue is simple and basically, none of the people coming after Cris are testing her, nor do they have a degree or a history in endocrinology. Cyborg failed a drug test, yes she did fail one test in 2012, and since then she has invited in-depth testing from USADA and VADA called out Dana and Ronda and everyone else saying either test me or stop bring up my name for your promotional needs allah Mayweather. The issue isn’t the bringing up of the test due to the history, just be consistent with everyone that popped. Give a name when talking about the subject in the negative versus the nostalgic moments of the Pride and early UFC discussions, because nobody thinks young Vitor, Coleman or the great one Bob Sapp was anything but PEDS. My issue is that you can’t praise and adore the performance of Overreem, Vitor, Rothwell, Barnett, Henderson, Chael, Sheilds, Gilbert, etc. who all do damage to their opponent’s pre and post serving their punishment. If you praise these individuals without saying they failed a drug test every 5 seconds what’s the difference in what Cris did and what they did?

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Why this piece also hit a nerve for me is because I’ve followed Cris’s journey from Thailand to LA from Jason Perillo, Kru Daeng, and Boyd Clarke. She puts in ridiculous amounts of work to get down to 140 and has gone through that upper threshold to develop better skills in each area by taking the challenge in facing a Muay Thai world better in Muay Thai as well as straight BJJ comps and developing a more throughout a complete striking game. That UFC 222 performance didn’t just happen that stuff wasn’t just power which is a misnomer at best. It was because of speed and technical ability she is strong but strength means nothing when striking power is concerned that only matters when you’re trying to blitzkrieg someone. What Cyborg did was more like a young Aldo or the proto Nova fighter more so then old Chute Boxe Wandi striking and bite down and let the leather fly. This idea that because she’s tested positive, shes big means she’s more dangerous is using the idea that once a cheater always a cheater which is crazy. Why, because women fighting Cris have fought at 152 and 155 as a boxer and kickboxer. However, if the weight is made and she tested clean the arguments stop there because there is nothing more to be discussed after someone signs that bout agreement.

The real discussion that should be at the top of the list is this weird torture idea of making her make 135 or 140 if she fights in the UFC. Lockhart could get her down but why torture her like that you brought her in at 140 145 is already established, why continue to kill the women. We saw in the lead up how she makes the weight while still being a mom and significant other and keeping a smile throughout the process, cut the shit what’s the real purpose of cutting her down is out to diminish her or what. When you are trying to move away from hard weight cuts in the sport to literally force and single out a fighter who fights in already established weight class at 145 which like Rogan said has been around since Strikeforce seeing how Meisha Tate was the 145 lb Strikeforce champion. Explain to me how that makes sense they are looking to add more weight classes for the women’s divisions at 125 but they won’t add a 145 while knowing that adding more weight classes doesn’t hurt anything because if you build it they will come from everywhere. Look at 115 Joanna and Claudia from to opposite ends of the world and are already build up to a massive fight. Just because Cyborgs a bigger threat now doesn’t exclude her from participating because of what happened once in her past the past is exactly that if you have changed your ways and moved forward, she has done that and deserves the chance just like everyone else that got popped and returned afterwards in her case its years after now and the same one mistake is being brought up to incriminate her for something that has occurred since 2012. In my heart of hearts I can’t understand why Robin would do that when he’s never done that to other fighters and any time has come close to this it was all comical references to horse meat of TRT days or Pride days as nostalgia, now it just seems like bullying.

So what has this bullying really revealed, just that there’s a double standard and showed that perception isn’t the reality. Something I will leave with everyone is don’t be loud and wrong, because condemning someone’s passed based on a past mistake is casting a stone through a canon at a glass house, when you yourself have struggled throughout your life with mistakes which everyone is guilty of.

 

-Later everyone and congrats to Cris Cyborg

First Steps

 

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Mackenzie Dern is in the UFC so now what, well hopefully the UFC doesn’t Paige Vanzant her. I really just mean that her progression is the most important thing her because exposure is just easier on the women’s side because of the more recent advent of female fighting in MMA. Dern has a grass root following from BJJ that translates over to MMA along with the UFC vehicle that will post and re-post on social media platforms and then from there she will most likely explode.

 

I  would hate to see her next couple of fights lead her into a bout against a Cat, Sara, or anyone else in the top 10 for that matter. My two cents from looking at the push kind of destroying some prospects is that Dern fight another prospect like herself with 2 or 0 fights in the UFC and then we start her work at the number 15 ranked fighter before we even discuss the top 10 of the division. I take a cautious approach because much like Paige at straw-weight she was on the fast track after her wins although the fights were close and her skills weren’t there and we found that out versus Rose who smashed Paige. For Dern, that path is there if she chokes or women handles her competition and get fast-tracked to the top 10 she could meet a rude awakening in similar fashion against a far more experienced and skilled MMA fighter in a Cat or Sara. So slow and steady position over submission build the skills correctly before we take over the world ya know. So that’s that Dern is high on my list for prospects that could be champ and to be super honest she could win at 135 lbs and 125 lbs no question at all.

 

-Later

Roar Like a Lioness, Punch Like a Cyborg

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So Cris is the best…..

Who thought otherwise

No clue maybe some Ronda stans

That’s obvious

No doubt

Can she improve, Chael says she has gaps

Obviously, perfection is the goal but it can never be reached spiral theory

So Chaels wrong

No, he’s being hyperbolic, Chael has huge hole’s as well Cris has room to grow still which makes her more scary look how she’s grown so far

So what’s next for her

She said what she wants Amanda’s next on the chopping block super fight or give her that Aussie and then Amanda Lioness vs Cyborg

Hmmmmmm……

 

So this was the dialogue of a conversation I have had today, Cris is still complete overall as a fighter so don’t fall down that idea hole. The best example of her skills set is more align with Aldos versus the actual comparison to Wanderlei Silva versus the sexist comparison (cough cough look at her know). Like Aldo her ground game is solid like super solid like IBJJF high roller solid, that being said if these chicks can’t stand with her why change the game if your winning. I stress the Aldo point because nobody was standing with Aldo and pre cardio issue there was no taking him down and for sure no submitting him. The cardio question for Cris has been answered she has five round lungs and trains so much harder than everyone else from a volume standpoint and within that is the grappling.

 

Now in the cage where does Cris go, I guess for me it’s a more methodical pace from the jump. Less explosion out the gate or acceleration out the gate I think using her phenomenal jab that she goes back to but then stops using it. Sift out the stuff that isn’t working and increase the volume of the useful young Jose Aldo to Older Jose Aldo did that exact thing when he got to his prime. So I say she could jab more through less body or midsection kicks while increasing more rear leg, leg kicks lastly from a footwork standpoint to avoid the reaction clinch that only stalls her out. Footwork, v-step off the linear straight line stepping back versus just working off a movement with no change of direction. Grappling wise keep doing what she’s doing and if these women can’t take her down then bless her and keep working on the progression she and her coaches have her on.  

-Later