01/12/2011

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ROUNDTABLE: Is the immediate rematch between Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard the correct move following their UFC 125 split draw? Hansen, Hyden, Hobaugh, Williams and Penick Is the immediate rematch between Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard the correct move following their UFC 125 split draw? RICH HANSEN, MMATORCH COLUMNIST I'm a die-hard Pettis guy, but after 24 hours of feeling that Maynard needed to be behind Pettis in line for the next shot, I've reversed course (grudgingly) and have become convinced that the better option is to see an immediate rematch between Edgar and Maynard. To be honest, there are no bad choices here. Either you capitalize on the momentum that Pettis built up with his amazing performance against Ben Henderson, or you capitalize on the momentum that Maynard built up in the Edgar fight. Of course the flip-side is that someone's going to have to wait and feel screwed, and their momentum will stagnate as a result. But here's the (cynical) viewpoint that I haven't seen discussed anywhere in the aftermath of UFC 125? Before right now, when's the last time more than 42 people wanted to pay money to watch Gray Maynard fight? Hell, on free tv, when's the last time? Right now, at this very moment, Gray Maynard is marketable, but only against Frankie Edgar for the Lightweight Title. Anthony Pettis will remain hot, Gray Maynard will not. Make the Maynard fight. FRANK HYDEN, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR It's hard to argue against a rematch after a split draw. I only hope that they put the fight together as quickly as they can. This rematch needs to happen as soon as possible. They've both been training for the other anyhow, so the only concern should be when they're healthy enough to fight again. They also need to have the rematch as soon as possible to not leave Anthony Pettis hanging in the breeze for too long. ERIC HOBAUGH, MMATORCH SPECIALIST YES! Without a doubt, this is the right decision. The best way to capitalize on this amazing fight is to go with an immediate rematch. For me, this is one of my favorite all time fights. The rematch should be an amazing fight as well. The immediate rematch is what is best for Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard, the UFC and the sport. When I heard the initial reports that there would not be a rematch I was disappointed to say the least. The Anthony Pettis fight did not make any sense because of the draw. I am surprised that Dana White and Joe Silva made the correct decision and made it reasonably quickly. I can not wait for the rematch. ALEX WILLIAMS, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR Yes. I'm looking forward to Anthony Pettis receiving his title shot, but it wouldn't be fair to Gray Maynard to have anything but an immediate rematch between Maynard and Frankie Edgar. JAMIE PENICK, MMATORCH EDITOR-IN-CHIEF For as much as I was looking forward to a potential Anthony Pettis vs. Frankie Edgar fight, the rematch is absolutely the way to go. Maynard nearly had Edgar finished off in the first round, and plain and simple he didn't LOSE the fight. He...
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BELLATOR NEWS: Undefeated Judo Olympian Rick Hawn Confirmed for Bellator Season 4 Welterweight Tournament By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief Bellator has confirmed the second participant for their season four welterweight tournament, as undefeated Judo Olympian Rick Hawn joins Dan Hornbuckle in the eight man field. The 9-0 judoka made one appearance for Bellator during season three, and made quite an impression with a slick no-gi shoulder throw, a judo move not often seen pulled off in the cage, followed by punches to LeVon Maynard to finish the fight in the first round. His other notable victory in MMA came last July, when he defeated former UFC veteran Shonie Carter. "Rick was incredibly impressive in his first fight with Bellator, and is a perfect fit for our Welterweight Tournament," said Bellator Chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney in today's release. "This tournament is shaping up to be one of our most competitive and talent-rich yet and I can't wait to see who will be facing Ben Askren for our World Championship after all is said and done." For Hawn, who has competed in Judo for much of his life at a national and world class level, including a ninth place finish for Team USA at the 2004 Olympic Games, the tournament format will be nothing new, and it's something he's looking forward to. "I'm definitely used to the tournament format due to my background in Judo," said Hawn. "I've been competing in Judo competitions for many years with a very similar structure, so I'm definitely used to it, and I'm looking forward to doing it again." Should Hawn get past the field, he'd earn a shot at Bellator Welterweight Champion Ben Askren, an Olympic competitor himself. Hawn looks forward to the potentially historic bout between former Olympians. "I'm looking forward to possibly getting the chance to fight Ben [Askren] for the championship," Hawn said. "He's an Olympian, an incredible athlete, and the next time we see him I'm sure he's going to have improved tremendously. I think a fight between us would be a great clash of styles and I don't think two true Olympians have ever fought in the history of MMA." Penick's Analysis: Hawn's Bellator debut was extremely exciting, and his record is impressive. But this tournament will likely represent a big step up in competition and experienced competitors overall, so this will be a huge test for him. At 34, he's not one of the young guns in the tournament, but he's got a world class skill level in one discipline and has acclimated himself well to the cage thus far. He could do some damage in this field, and he'll likely be a lot of fun to watch. Source: http://www.mmatorch.com/artman2/publish/Bellator/article_8067.shtml Jake Shields Josh Koscheck Martin Kampmann

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