Posts Tagged ‘Vladimir Matyushenko’

Andre Fili posturing up for a big right hand, as Enoch Wilson defends in guard!

Andre Fili at Tachi Palace v Enoch Wilson. Photo By: John Walsh

 

By: Jonathan M King The Clinch Report

Andre Fili vs. Max Holloway

Max Holloway is a real tough dude, but unfortunately for him he is running into a juggernaut in Andre Fili. Fili should have no problem out working Holloway, utilizing his superior reach, and dynamic arsenal of strikes. However Fili has yet to prove his game on the ground, which is where Holloway will try to capitalize. Fili should be able to keep the fight upright, utilizing his length. Look for him to get more comfortable as the fight wears on. Winner: Fili via UD

Yancy Medeiros vs. Jim Miller Filling in on short notice is difficult enough, but to do so against 155 lbs stalwart Jim Miller takes testicular fortitude. In Miller,  Medeiros; who stepped in for injured Bobby Green will face his toughest test yet in the world of MMA. Miller has been “The Guy” in the 155 lbs division who decides wether you’re worth a shot or not, for a long time, and will be for the near future. Miller will rely on his experience to sink in a slick submission. Winner: Miller via Submission

Tim Boetsch vs. Luke Rockhold Tim Boetsch is a grinder with elusive power. He is basically Vladimir Matyushenko with Wanderlei-esque knockout power. In the clinch his uppercuts starches chins, and his ground game is pretty powerful as well. Luke Rockhold however is going to be way too much of an athlete for Boetsch. Rockhold’s striking prowess, natural athletic ability, and solid grappling will neutralize Boetsch where he is at his best, frustrating him. The fight could end in merciful TKO, but it will probably be an ugly one sided decision, simply because Boetsch is one tough dude! Winner: Luke Rockhold via UD

Phil Davis vs. Anthony Johnson Anthony ‘Rumble’ Johnson is back in the UFC following his successful run in The World Series of Fighting at Heavyweight. Now back at 205 lbs, and back with the UFC, ‘Rumbles’ first fight is no small task. In fact, Johnson will have to rely on his heavy hands to test the previously uncracked chin of Phil Davis. Davis is one of the sports most accomplished wrestlers, and more importantly he is probably the most successful at adapting a pure wrestling style into one that is effective in MMA. His long reach and trunk-like base make shooting for a takedown, a very punishing experience. Johnson will have to somehow get inside and maintain his feet if he expects to win. However Davis is looking to make a statement in the division, and looking to do so at ‘Rumble’s’ expense. Winner: Phil Davis via Submission

Jon Jones* vs. Glover Teixeira For Light heavyweight title (*current champion)

Jon Jones is one of most talented fighters to ever set foot in the cage. His only official career blemish came because of a questionable DQ loss to Matt Hamill. And since defeating Mauricio ‘Shogun’ Rua in March of 2011, the title has remained on Jones waist. However, in his last fight Alexander Gustafsson was able to beat Jones to the punch, in most cases, leaving the champion battered after five rounds. Jones was able to escape with a narrow decision, however his facade as an unbeatable fighter had been torn away. In steps Brazilian slugger Glover Teixeira. Teixera hasn’t lost a fight since Pope John Paul held the Vatican’s title. However, in the UFC hs wins come over Ryan Bader, James Te Huna, Quinton Jackson, Fabio Maldonado, and Kyle Kingsbury. A nice collection of wins, but none except Jackson were ever title contenders, and he was long removed from that status when he fought Teixeira. Jones, on the other hand has fought everyone, and defeated them! Chael Sonnen, Vitor Belfort, Maurico Rua, Rashad Evans, Lyoto Machida, as well as Jackson and the aforementioned Gustafsson. Experience favors the champion, but fortune favors the bold, and Glover Teixeira is more than ready for this fight.

Winner: Glover Teixeira via TKO 

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Blagoi Ivanov

 

By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

 

Bellator MMA’s roster of fighters is a diverse group of young talent, coupled with a few older lions who are looking for to either return to form, win a world title, or too  prove to themselves that they can still mix it up with the best. Three fighters that we will focus on tonight are Blagoi Ivanov, Karo Parisyan, and Vladimir Matyushenko.

On the Cusp of Immortality

Two years ago, Blagoi Ivanov was at the start of a very promising Bellator MMA career. He came to the company on the heels of defeating MMA Legend Fedor Emelianenko in the World Sambo Championships. Everything was going according to plan. Until armed thugs confronted Ivanov and a group of friends in his homeland of Bulgaria, at a nightclub. During the melee, Ivanov was stabbed under the armpit with a 12 inch blade. The wound pierced his heart, and lungs. Emergency surgery was performed to save the young fighters life, but then infections set in. Ivanov was placed into a medically induced coma, where he lay near death for over 80 days, in the dark.

When he awoke, he was a shell of his former self. The once strapping heavyweight was closer to a welterweight in size, and walking and breathing became his new hurdles. His career was effectively over as a fighter, however someone forgot to tell him. He spoke with Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebeney and promised that he would return. After one year of intense training, Ivanov began to put on the weight he slept off, and slowly but surely began regaining his facilities.

Since his return, Ivanov appeared to not have missed a step. He has remained undefeated. His latest win at Bellator 116 over former UFC fighter Lavar Johnson, came via a slick Americana late in the first round that forced ‘Big’ to tap. The win has earned Ivanov a place in the Heavyweight Tournament Finals where he will face former Title holder Alexander Volkov for a shot at the World Title. In two years Ivanov has been in places not many have gone before. He keeps defying the odds at every turn, he is a champion in life, and soon may have the belt to match.

Return to Form

From 2002-2008 Karo Parisyan was one of the worlds top welterweight fighters. He was fighting all over the world, and was on the verge of a title shot. During this run, the young judoka was considered one of the sports most talented fighters. With wins over Nick Diaz, Josh Burkman, Ryo Chonan, Former Champion Matt Serra, and Chris Lytle, Parisyan seemed set to have a long successful career. Then the wheels fell off!

Parisyan spoke with us before his fight with Rick Hawn, and told us how his life spun out of control. Substances that initially were designed to heal the nagging injuries a fighter must deal with, became part of his every-day routine. He was cut from the UFC, and seemed to be another case of wasted talent.

Like a real champion, Parisyan woke up one day and realized what he was losing. He sought help and slowly began to find himself again. He also started to feel that fire in his belly, that once labeled him ‘The Heat’. Taking some fights on the regional circuit may be difficult for a fighter who once fought at the top, however it was that same humility that led Parisyan back into the light.

After a few fights with mixed results, ‘The Heat’ began to churn into an inferno again. With his weight in check, and his problems in his rear view mirror, Parisyan was given a second chance with Bellator. His first fight against Rick Hawn was a difficult task, however Parisyan attacked from the opening bell. His hands looked up to speed, his movement was working and then he got caught. Hawn won the fight but it was obvious to everyone in attendance that Parisyan was on his way back.

His next fight was equally difficult. At Bellator 116 Parisyan was paired with AKA’s Ron Kesslar who is coming off a big win over War Machine. On paper the match pitted judoka v wrestler. However its was Parisyan’s hands that made the difference. late in the second round, Parisyan dropped Kesslar with a series of punches and was able to finish with impressive ground and pound.

The win solidified Parisyan’s chances for being selected in the next welterweight tournament. Parisyan, at one time could have been one of the best in the world. In fact he was one of the best. However real champions are not made they are built. In Parisyan’s case he is rebuilt. This version, the 2.0 version is much more humble and intelligent. Like the phoenix before him, ‘The Heat’ has risen from the fire and the future looks very bright!

Farewell to A Legend

Vladimir Matyushenko has fought everywhere, and in every major organization. ‘The Janitor’ has long been one of the top light heavyweight fighters in the world. The former IFL Champion, fought in the UFC, Bellator, IFL, IFC, and Affliction and many other organizations around the world. With a record of  27-8, Matyushenko has shared the cage with a ‘who’s who’ of the MMA elite.

At Bellator 116, Matyushenko lost to Joey Beltran via North South choke late in the 3rd round. The legend left his gloves in the cage signifying his retirement. Like a wrestler leaving his shoes on the mat, ‘The Janitor’ said goodbye to the world of fighting but will remain relevant in MMA as one of the best wrestling coaches alive. Vladimir is living the American dream. He came to this country speaking only the language of a wrestler, now he is revered as legend. Matyushenko will continue as the head wrestling coach at Dynamix MMA in Santa Monica where he will be an amazing influence on all fighters young and old for many years to come.

DSC_5291

By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

Can you remember the last time 45 minutes made a difference? What could you do in less than an hour, that would matter on a grand scale? When it comes to children, 45 minutes can make a lifetime of difference. For a child who has spent his life in constant pain, 45 minutes can inspire a smile. For his parents, that relief although temporary, is priceless!

Houston Alexander is a 41 year old Mixed Martial Artist, known to the masses for his tenure with the UFC, where he fought the likes of Keith Jardine, Kimbo Slice, Thiago Silva, Alessio Sakara and James Irvin. Alexander is known for his devastating punching power, his lighting fast hands, and his ominous demeanor.

Donny Caffey Jr, is a young gladiator from Babylon NY. I know his family well, both his uncle and his father are physical specimens, and were always gifted athletes. Donny, however is tougher than both of them. Without getting into too much detail, Donny has lived most of his young life in pain due to chronic hip ailment that has required multiple surgeries. Living in constant agony, Donny has approached this adversity, like the fighters he watches. He takes his lumps, has small victories, and always keeps moving forward.

Knowing he was coming off yet another surgery, we asked the fighters at Bellator 99 to sign the fight card for him. Anything to inspire a smile. Everyone was more than eager to do so, Main Event winner Patricio Pitbull signed a glove, however Houston Alexander had other plans.

“Look man, Autographs are nice, but what do you say we give Donny a call!” Said Alexander. “Calling Donny, that is how we can make a difference!”Alexander, knows better than most about making a difference, being a single father of six children, he has learned to juggle his primary obligations with his training regimen.

With that we exchanged information, and I contacted Donny’s family.

True to his word Houston Alexander made that phone call. For 45 minutes the two spoke. What they spoke about exactly, matters, but its not important to anyone but Donny and Houston. Even his father seemed surprised. ” I don’t know what he said, but right now my son is on his crutches, punching the speed bag!” Don Caffey Sr said.

Houston Alexander may be known for his I.Q. changing right hand, but he is defined by his actions outside of the cage. In a world of questionable role models, Alexander sets the bar petty high. Mr Alexander is a Father first, and an ambassador of good will, that also happens to knock people out!

Authors Note: Thank you to Houston Alexander and his management team for organizing the call. Also, Thank you to Anthony Mazzuca and Bjorn Rebney for allowing us access to the extremely generous Bellator MMA Fighters. Any other fighters wishing to send Donny best wishes can email us at news@theclinchreport.com

 

 

By Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

Bellator 99 delivered some key opportunities for featherweights in the opening round of the tournament. First up, Justin Wilcox survived an early and dynamic battering from Akop Stepanyan, only to secure a submission victory. Wilcox, who took the fight on just 7 days notice, could barely stand after Stepanyan dismantled his lead leg with snapping kicks. However, he could not finish him.

Late in the second round, Wilcox was able to bring Stepanyan down and once he did, the transition to the back and subsequent choke, was lightning fast. Stepanyan did his best to escape, but eventually went to sleep after refusing to tap. With the win Wilcox moves on to the next round where he will face ‘Baby’ Joe Taimanglo.

Taimanglo was able to secure his spot in the next round with a win over Andrew Fisher. Utilizing excellent movement, Taimanglo was able to close the distance well, effectively neutralizing Fisher’s reach advantage. At times the fight lacked action, but that was because both fighters were utilizing their game plans. Fisher flurried late in the third round, but it wasn’t enough to sway the judges.

Also fighting in the opening round of the featherweight tournament were two of the promotions youngest prospects. Former #1 155 lbs prospect Fabricio Guerreiro was able to out point a very dynamic Desmond Green. Guerreiro was able to control the pace of the fight, and aside from a few take downs from Green clearly won the fight.

With the win Guerreiro now is faced with the daunting task of going up against Patricio Pitbull in the next round. Pitbull needed just 1:19 to move on, after he blasted Diego Nunes with an incredible hook to the ear that dropped the former UFC standout. Follow up punches removed all doubt.

Also on the card, Vladimir Matyushenko utilized an effective striking game plan to keep heavy handed Houston Alexander at bay for most of the fight. When Alexander did land, ‘The Janitor’ smothered him with a combination of dominating wrestling and grappling skills. Both fighters refuse to look or act their age (41) and the result was one hell of a fight.

With the win, Matyushenko should be on a short list of names for the next 205 lbs tournament.

More pictures will be added later today!

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Pitbull v Nunes

Pitbull v Nunes

By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

Bellator MMA has once again invaded the Pechanga Casino, in Temecula California. Today all of the fighters were set to make weight, and aside from a few that were slightly off, all seemed to be ready to go. The main event between Diego Nunes and Patricio Pitbull was probably the most intense stare down of the day. Once Patricio confirmed his weight, he walked past Jimmy Smith’s interview attempt and immediately began an intense stare. Nunes, refused to budge. After a long, and fierce confrontation both fighters respectfully walked away. ‘Pitbull’ went on to tell Jimmy Smith, that tomorrow ‘Nunes was going into the cage with a Pitbull, and he’s going to get bit!” (through his translator)

Also featured on the main card is an excellent battle of contrasting styles from two veterans of the sport. Vladimir Matyushenko makes his promotional debut against fellow UFC veteran Houston Alexander. Matyushenko has become known in the sport by his well earned moniker ‘The Janitor’, for his grinding wrestling based style that has compiled the elder statesmen a record of 26-6 in his career.

Alexander is also making his debut, but that is where the similarities end. Houston Alexander is known for one thing, knocking people out. With a record of 15-9, Alexander is attempting to live up to the high expectations that once ranked him as a rising star in the sport. After being cut from the UFC, Alexander’s record had been quite streaky, however if he is able to extend his current two-fight win streak, a future spot in Bellator’s light heavyweight tournament may be what ‘The Assassin’ has his sites set upon.

 

Make sure you you tune in on Spike TV 8PM Eastern 5PM Pacific with the preliminaries airing on SpikeTV.com

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