MMA Monday – 22.07.13 – Jones vs. Gustafsson Poster, Cage Warriors, UFC Press Tour & Invicta TV

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It’s too hot. Lets get on with it.

Jones – Gustafsson

The promo poster for the upcoming Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson title fight has been released and it’s a little bit awesome.
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I’ve seen some smart bastards having a go that the reach thing is being overplayed and Jones still has an eight inch reach advantage over Alex.

True, but when you remember that reach is measured fingertip to fingertip and that Jones is broader than Gustafsson, that eight inches becomes about three inches in practical terms.

Throw in that Alex is a striker first, has quick foot movement and that Jones is a wrestler by calling who rarely utilises his full reach, given that his preferred striking assault is with his elbows…

The point is, this is the first time that Jones will fight for the title against a genuine light heavyweight, unencumbered by injury, in the prime of his career and who hasn’t recently made massive changes to his training camp.

This is the real thing.

Cage Warriors = Awesome

My weekend MMA fix was provided by Cage Warriors 57 and I have to say I was impressed by the calibre of the card and the sheer scale and professionalism of the production – even more so than usual.

The Cage Warriors cage and setup looked perfectly at home in the expanses of the Echo arena, which bodes well for the future when such larger, modern venues will surely become the norm.

The fact that several main card matches featured enforced late replacements can happen to any promotion but when one of them goes and beats his much more acclaimed opponent and the other busts his ranked foe open and earns a FOTN bonus, you know this company is connected, organised and their matchmaker is a person of genuine skill and insight.

Nothing shows quality like raising your game while simultaneously reacting to a crisis and making it look like just another day at the office. Good work lads.

Oh, and it’s not as if they’re happy to rest in their laurels and return to London or Dublin for their next show, no.

It’s in Russia. You know, where the UFC have been talking about going for years but never seem to get round to it.

That’s ambition and vision, right there.

UFC on Tour

The UFC have embarked on a promotional tour for their upcoming batch of pay overviews with the champions and challengers fighting at UFC 165, 166, 167 and 168 – a hefty cast comprising Cain Velasquez, Junior dos Santos, Jon Jones, Alexander Gustafsson, Georges St-Pierre, Johny Hendricks, Ronda Rousey and Miesha Tate – along with a ramped up PR crew on a whirlwind tour of five countries in five days.

Hitting both coasts of the USA, Canada, Sweden, the UK and Brazil with such a heavyweight (figuratively speaking) cast to promote what is probably the most amazing run of booked title matches in history (knock on wood) is a great move that will bring more attention to the sport and really showcases the personalities of some of the promotion’s top stars.

This counts extra for challengers who have yet to wear gold like Hendricks and Gustafsson and allows them the chance to raise their profile and value, no matter what happens when the cage door closes.

I just had a thought. If what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, and what happens on Tour, stays on Tour… do the UFC even actually exist?

Invicta Reality Show

Invicta FC have announced that they are going to be embarking on a reality TV show which showcases the abilities and personalities of their fighters in a way that is apparently going to be wholly different from the Ultimate Fighter/Fight Master dynamic that has become

I’m a wee bit torn on this, because reality TV is so very prone to being tacky, ruining reputations rather than making them and how much room is the for MMA-based reality TV?

Still, Invicta haven’t really put a step wrong yet and if there is one organisation which is going to place it’s athletes credibility and long term prospects over a few ‘shocking’ clips from the cast lodging, then it’s them.

Stay tuned for more interviews, previews of this weekend’s UFC on FOX card and whatever else crosses my mind…

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