Friday, February 15, 2019

Countdown to Kron UFC Debut Part 4: Recent MMA Fights

A solid analysis/recap of his two most recent MMA bouts which were both against seasoned MMA veteran fighters.

Interesting to recap that Kron utilized guard pulls, nuanced close guard, to eventually finish his opponents. I'm not gonna lie, I'm concerned about his ability to nullify wrestling as he moves up the upper echelon of UFC fighters. We've seen time and again guys who looked amazing over in Japan come and get punished on bottom by far less competent wrestlers than you'd expect.
I'm rooting for Kron as I love seeing the grappling get gotten to early in the match rather than sloppy kickboxing matches that go on ad nauseum, so we'll see.

Reminds me of watching Neiman's fights in Bellator with a truly solid mix of stand-up, clinch/dirty boxing, takedowns, and submission hunting leading to a finish.

Polaris Announced Jake Shields VS Rafael Lovato Jr. for March 15th

BJJ Scout's BJJ Digest:

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Combat JiuJitsu Fight Night Bracket: Barnett vs Simoes, Casey vs Blank

Friday, February 22nd: 

Bellator Double Header and Kron's UFC Arrival

I kinda just wished Bellator folded these two cards together because Friday night is basically just worth tuning in for Mitrione (coming off get wrestled-f*cked by Bader) facing the always dangerous but also incredibly hit or miss Kharitonov. Must see TV because I find both guys normally fun to watch.
Dantas is lower down on the card and that's frankly about it.

I've been watching LFA friday nights when there's no Bellator on, and the rest of this card feels like an LFA card. Not a read, but just a fact.
Saturday, we get a follow-up Bellator card with an MVP vs Daley fight, that I honestly don't know will be fireworks. I've seen both guys put on atrocious fights are talking a big gay and hyping it up, and both guys have fought laughably boring "stand-up" affairs with little to no risk taking at times. I think, predictably, MVP's length will give Daley trouble, and a frustrated Daley can put on laughable performances at times. Saturday night we get snoozer 3/4 of the time these days Kongo vs Minakov which I'm interested to see if Kongo can force him into this over/under clinch along the fence and throw knees for 3 1/2 minutes of each round gameplan.
CroCop faces Big Country who's already throwing shade his way for being a known steroid cheat (never served his UFC suspension) and hasn't been tested in 11 previous fights.
Ah, joy.

Sunday, we get a semi-early ESPN card, which part of me may be rethinking my disdain for moving to ESPN because with this streaming service, anything that gets it on before those 10pm start times is welcome.

The real story is not Velasquez finally returning to face a very dangerous puncher off a lay off (he did that and lost his belt to Cigano, but rather the entrance of Kron Gracie into the UFC. I'm a fan of both Kron and Neiman's grappling skills for MMA as they both hunt for the finish, use old school get to the clinch, get to the mat, and work to finish JiuJitsu. I am curious how Kron will do with 5 min rounds (as opposed to how much better he looked with the 10 min first round format in Japan. He's fought 5 min rounds before, but he's also not faced the cage. We've seen guys come over like Aoki and others struggle with the cage. I have no doubt Kron has prepared in a cage with the scrap pack, and in all honesty, any time a grappling centric style is on display, I'm happy, but we've seen plenty of guys not translate it as effectively with the common denominator wrestling pedigree of the UFC. Hoping for an awesome fight. I can see Caceres fighting an ugly disengaging fight with a lot of probing kicks and the like and Kron plodding around trying to clinch from standing and Caceres taking 2 rounds. I hoooooope I'm wrong AF.

Felder vs James Vick: Felder should hand Vick another stoppage loss. Coming off a stoppage loss to Gaethje (a ton of guys have) and now facing a more measured approach from Felder who likes to fall in love with his Thai styling mid fight and admire his work and finesse will give Vick more of a chance to stay in this fight, but Felder overall has fought the stiffer competition with a win over Oliveira, though interestingly, Felder lost to Trinaldo and Vick beat him. Fun fact. 
With Vick picking up wins over solid guys but faltering when facing guys like Gaethje & Dariush.

Barbarena vs Luque, Fili vs Jury, Rivera vs Sterling, Lentz vs Holtzman, Barao vs someone who's 1-3 in his 4 UFC fights.

A bunch of fun scraps, unfortunately, a lot of these ESPN cards starting out stylistically look like sloppy kickboxing match-ups (even that Australia card last weekend). So, we'll see. What's a grappler laid up from ACL/Meniscus surgery to do?

Big Country Points out CroCop looking awfully spry for 44 and coming off knee surgery

ACL/Meniscus Surgery Once Again (Here We Go Again)

I'm having ACL & Meniscus surgery again (on the other knee). This will balance the knee universe in which I reside and have both my knees matching.

A little over 6 1/2 years ago I had ACL & Meniscus surgery. All told my timeline went something like this:

A large, stocky white belt basically sat directly into the side of my knee/collapsed his entire body weight into it and sat and it felt like the hands of God reached down and began to tear my leg apart like it was a Thanksgiving turkey leg. I literally blacked out from the pain. Whenever I came out of that blackout, I was on the mat however many moments later in excruciating pain as I suspect my knee was separated as well. and had to fit back into place once the muscles stopped panicking.

For my previous knee injury described above, I had the Patellar tendon bone graft (my own as there have been instances of rejection of a cadaver graft and possible cases where the graft was weakened by the sterilization and storage fluids) and the Patellar Tendon graft as it is still seen as the best long-term, return to stability/strength, and high end sports performance option. I have had zero problems with this knee since. I read literally every publication I could find, every review online, every blog post, literally EVERYTHING I could find on the topic before arriving at this decision. I wanted the long term, best viable result and strongest knee possible. More PT and time on the front end to hopefully increase the likelihood of a long-term knee for competition.

A couple days after surgery, I got on my crutches, went down to the gym in my apartment building and did some curls with dumbbells. True story. At about 3 months I was doing some semi-live-ish training with a few, very, very select training partners (as seen above). At 6 months the same. I competed in Judo again at 10 months. I took my PT seriously, and though I was back competing at 10 months, I went into matches with certain positions and areas where I would concede position and lose rather than force and risk injury. I don't know that I will follow exactly that return to action time table.

There's the moment, in the small, sterile, white, bright room....the surgeon (I found a sport-specific Orthopaedic surgeon) looks at you and asks what your goals are for your life both short-term, sport-specific, and long-term athletic endeavors if any.

It was a short conversation as I told him I wanted the graft with the lowest fail rate and the best long term prognosis for returning to high end sports performance. He was on board as well, so it's another Patellar tendon bone graft.

I had forgotten I had these short clips of me moving around live from way back when. So, here they are, for those of you who stumble across this page and end up having ACL/Meniscus surgery. There's hope.