Heather Hardy to Make MMA Debut in MSG

Note: This is a piece I wrote for Champions.

Like Luke Skywalker when he made the decision to become a jedi, professional boxer Heather Hardy is about to a step into a new world – in her case mixed martial arts – with her first professional MMA bout in June.

Hardy, who is from Brooklyn, signed with Bellator MMA and will compete in Madison Square Garden at Bellator 180, June 24. Her opponent is Alice Yauger. Both Bellator and Hardy confirmed both the signing and the fight.

To read the rest of the story, follow the link.

Barb Honchak Should Get an Opportunity to Fight in the UFC

Note: This is a column I wrote for Creators

It’s happening fight fans, the UFC’s women’s flyweight division is underway and the promotion is using the 26th season of “The Ultimate Fighter” as a platform to determine its inaugural champion – something the promotion did when it established its women’s 115-pound weight class. Not surprisingly, there were many familiar faces who participated in the “TUF” tryouts, including former Invicta flyweight champion “Little Warrior” Barb Honchak.

Honchak’s appearance at the tryouts made waves in the MMA world this week because she hasn’t competed in a professional MMA bout since 2014. For some, it was like seeing a former teammate return to practice after a long absence. It also begged the question from “Where has Barb Honchak been all this time?”

To read the rest of the column, follow the link.

Will Ferrara and Cheeseburger vs. The Fraternity

This week on Will Ferrara and Cheeseburger take on The Fraternity. Cheeseburger is alright – but I think the Fraternity have potential.

They’re a bit of a comedy team – and with move names like Keg Stand and Eiffel Tower it’s a little hard to take them serious – but with some character development, they could be vicious heels.

WCPW Pro Wrestling World Cup (1st Round Scottish Qualifier)

I’ve been trying to expand my professional wrestling horizon with videos on Youtube as well as catching up on content on the WWE Network. What Culture Pro Wrestling has been creating a lot of buzz with their promotion and World Cup and it’s exciting.

As you may know, I”m a big fan of tournaments, so this was right up my alley.

What I like about the WCPW World Cup is it reminds me of the K-1 Grand Prix where wrestlers have to win qualifiers in different countries to advance to the finals of the tournament.

These are matches from the first round of the Scottish Qualifier

Joe Coffey vs Liam Thomson

Drew Galloway vs Mark Coffey

BT Gunn vs Lewis Girvan

El Ligero vs Grado

Joe Hendry vs. Kenny Williams

Martin Kirby vs. Travis Banks

Bellator 179: Cheick Kongo Should be Champion – or at Least a Contender

While most of the spotlight on Bellator 179 was on Rory MacDonald submitting Paul Daley in his first foray in the promotion’s cage – and the confrontation between “Semtex” and Michael Page afterwards – the event featured Cheick Kongo picking up another Bellator win.

Kongo, who recently celebrated his 42nd birthday, earned a split-decision against Augusto Sakai, who suffered his first pro career loss in the process. The fighting Frenchman defeated the prospect in what many folks considered an uneventful, tentative bout. Still, a win’s a win.

Nevertheless, Kongo improved to 9-2 in the Bellator cage – the best promotional record of any heavyweight currently on the roster. He came to Bellator in 2013, fresh off his UFC run. While he was billed as an octagon veteran at Kongo has won a heavyweight tournament and challenged for the belt, becoming one of the promotion’s stalwarts in the big man’s weight class.

To read the rest of the story, follow the link.

Crunch Time: To disqualify or not to disqualify? – that is the question

Note: This is my Crunch Time column I wrote for the May 18 issue of the Cheney Free Press.

If a fighter commits a foul — say, an illegal punch, kick or knee — against their opponent, without the intention to do so, should they still be disqualified?

The answer is “yes,” according to most fans who watched last Saturday’s UFC 211 broadcast. During the preliminary portion of the event, the fight between Eddie Alvarez and Dustin Poirier ended in a no contest ruling.

During the second round, Alvarez landed three knees to Poirier’s head. Poirier had his hand on the mat when Alvarez delivered the first knee. Both of Poirier’s legs were on the ground when Alvarez’s second and third blows struck him in the head and couldn’t continue the fight. Referee Herb Dean ruled the fight a “no contest,” after declaring that Alvarez’s illegal knees were unintentional, much to the chagrin of fans who thought he purposely landed the knees and should have been disqualified.

Fans weren’t the only people who not happy with Dean’s ruling. Both commentator Brian Stann and UFC President Dana White felt Alvarez should have been disqualified, as did I. I don’t think Alvarez was trying to cheat to win, and he may have not seen Poirier’s positioning when he landed those knees, but the rules are in place for a reason and he broke them, whether he meant to or not. Look at other sports. Players get called for fouls for breaking the rules, even if they had no intention of doing so.

To read the rest of the column, follow the link.