T Nation

UFC Questions

I’m a relatively new fan of MMA, but am learning quickly about this great sport. Most of what I’ve watched has been UFC related, but I’m certainly interested in Pride as well. I do have a few questions, just to bring myself up to speed, that I hoped you guys could answer.

  1. What’s Vitor Belfort’s story? I keep seeing mention of his unfulfilled potential but was unsure if something happened to cause this or it’s simply the result of his own lack of desire? I just watched the UFC Hits DVDs that featured some of his earliest fights, and I must say, he lived up to his legend.

  2. How long has Pride been around in relation to UFC? What are it’s roots?

  3. How does someone in the U.S. view Pride fights, besides purchasing the DVDs? And while we’re on that topic, does anyone recommend certain Pride DVDs for someone wishing to catch up on its recent history?

I’m sure I’ll have more questions, but I’ll just start with these few.

Thanks.

in my area, i can see pride fights on fox sports network

whatever channel that may be for you

I believe that Pride has the better fighters. As of late UFC has to many Red necks beating each other up, they also have the same fights over and over and over, and last but not least their last 2 PPV’s consisted of bringing very old fighters out. These are bad signs. Pride pays their fighter a lot more money, so the better fighters tend to go there. Every Pride event can be seen on PPV here in the USA. As far as DVD’s go I would reccomend buying their 3 volumes of Pride Legacy. Each volume contains 5 DVD’s each DVD with an entire Pride event. I just bought 2 of those at Best Buy. They were on sale for 20 bucks each. So I just purchsed a total of 10 DVD’s for only $40. The 3 volumes are:
Volume 1 : Pride 1-5.
Volume 2 : Pride 6,7,8,9,11. (Don’t ask me why they did not put 10 in this set)
Volume 3 : Pride 12-6.

I think Pride and UFC are making some deals together. This October will be Pride’s first ever event to be held in the US and in November there will be a UFC event featuring 3 Pride fighters.

[quote]leon79 wrote:
I’m a relatively new fan of MMA, but am learning quickly about this great sport. Most of what I’ve watched has been UFC related, but I’m certainly interested in Pride as well. I do have a few questions, just to bring myself up to speed, that I hoped you guys could answer.

  1. What’s Vitor Belfort’s story? I keep seeing mention of his unfulfilled potential but was unsure if something happened to cause this or it’s simply the result of his own lack of desire? I just watched the UFC Hits DVDs that featured some of his earliest fights, and I must say, he lived up to his legend.[/quote]

Vitor Belfort came in and absolutely destroyed people in his first UFC tournament…then he ran in to Randy Couture and got taken to school in UFC 15. His career hasn’t been a complete disappointment, you’ve got to give the guy credit for being a good fighter, he’s just knocked for not becoming great after starting off with so much potential…the guy was only 18 or 19 in that first tourney and just a dominate fighter, I guess he got our expectations too high with those first fights.

Pride actually came about in 97 or 98, a few years after the UFC. Their first card featured the most legendary Gracie, Rickson, fighting a relative can(one of Japan’s “pro” wrestlers, ie-WWE style)

They then managed to steal the UFC’s Heavyweight Champ, Mark Kerr, with a lucrative contract…this has continued to today where the better fighters(in the HW and LHW division) tend to go overseas due to bigger paydays.

Their middleweights are good as well, but I still think Rich Franklin and David Loussieu are still top caliber guys…everyone’s going to bring up Anderson Silva, but as far as strikers go, that guy is a very, very good striker so of course in a strictly stand up fight like he had with Leben he will obliterate lower caliber guys. UFC’s problem in the HW, LHW, and MW divisions are simply that they lack depth, not that there aren’t top guys in there.

[quote]
3. How does someone in the U.S. view Pride fights, besides purchasing the DVDs? And while we’re on that topic, does anyone recommend certain Pride DVDs for someone wishing to catch up on its recent history?

I’m sure I’ll have more questions, but I’ll just start with these few.

Thanks.[/quote]

You can order Pride’s PPVs even here in the US, at least in Hawaii you can…just like you’d order a UFC event. However, there is usually a delay of a half a day or so after the event, so stay away from the MMA forums or you’ll have the fights spoiled for you. Also, there are a lot on youtube and google video.

I have seen several dozen UFC matches over the years, but found Pride on Fox Sports last night - 2 different shows. The Pride action I had seen before was off the internet.

How about one of you knowledgeable guys lay out the difference in rules between the two. Put in K1 rules also.

Great stuff so far guys. I knew I could count on the MMA fans on this site.

I second the request for a list of the rule differences between the two main leagues.

Also, how is Pride able to pay their fighters so much more than UFC? I suppose I’m just used to America having more money to throw around than any other country.

[quote]treco wrote:
I have seen several dozen UFC matches over the years, but found Pride on Fox Sports last night - 2 different shows. The Pride action I had seen before was off the internet.

How about one of you knowledgeable guys lay out the difference in rules between the two. Put in K1 rules also.
[/quote]

The UFC allows elbows, Pride does not.
Pride allows stomps and four point knees and knees to a downed opponent, the UFC does not.
The UFC is in a cage.
Pride is in a ring.
The UFC consists of five, five minute rounds.
Pride consists of one ten minute round followed by two five minute rounds.
The judging criteria is also different.
The UFC judges by round.
Pride takes the whole fight into account, irregardless of rounds.
Pride judges also take into how strongly you finish a fight. If the fight becomes a ground war, submission attempts are taken into account whether you are in the bottom position or in an opponent’s guard.
Actually you can look up the offficial rules for both. It would get too long to explain everything.

Thanks otoko. What is 4 point knee?

Due to Japan’s martial spirit and history(at least IMO), fighting is a much bigger draw there than it is here. Sure, UFC will sell out some events, but Pride regularly has sell-outs, and these are at places like the Tokyo DOme and Saitama arena, which are much bigger venues than what the UFC could fill.

Because it is a bigger draw, obviously that leads to endorsements and that leads to a bigger pot of money to spend. People will also mention how Pride takes better care of their fighters, but I don’t know about that. I can tell you that fighters in Japan are treated like gods, and from what I hear they get mobbed worse than our baseball or football players do.

[quote]slimjim wrote:
leon79 wrote:
I’m a relatively new fan of MMA, but am learning quickly about this great sport. Most of what I’ve watched has been UFC related, but I’m certainly interested in Pride as well. I do have a few questions, just to bring myself up to speed, that I hoped you guys could answer.

  1. What’s Vitor Belfort’s story? I keep seeing mention of his unfulfilled potential but was unsure if something happened to cause this or it’s simply the result of his own lack of desire? I just watched the UFC Hits DVDs that featured some of his earliest fights, and I must say, he lived up to his legend.

Vitor Belfort came in and absolutely destroyed people in his first UFC tournament…then he ran in to Randy Couture and got taken to school in UFC 15. His career hasn’t been a complete disappointment, you’ve got to give the guy credit for being a good fighter, he’s just knocked for not becoming great after starting off with so much potential…the guy was only 18 or 19 in that first tourney and just a dominate fighter, I guess he got our expectations too high with those first fights.

  1. How long has Pride been around in relation to UFC? What are it’s roots?

Pride actually came about in 97 or 98, a few years after the UFC. Their first card featured the most legendary Gracie, Rickson, fighting a relative can(one of Japan’s “pro” wrestlers, ie-WWE style)

They then managed to steal the UFC’s Heavyweight Champ, Mark Kerr, with a lucrative contract…this has continued to today where the better fighters(in the HW and LHW division) tend to go overseas due to bigger paydays.

Their middleweights are good as well, but I still think Rich Franklin and David Loussieu are still top caliber guys…everyone’s going to bring up Anderson Silva, but as far as strikers go, that guy is a very, very good striker so of course in a strictly stand up fight like he had with Leben he will obliterate lower caliber guys. UFC’s problem in the HW, LHW, and MW divisions are simply that they lack depth, not that there aren’t top guys in there.

  1. How does someone in the U.S. view Pride fights, besides purchasing the DVDs? And while we’re on that topic, does anyone recommend certain Pride DVDs for someone wishing to catch up on its recent history?

I’m sure I’ll have more questions, but I’ll just start with these few.

Thanks.

You can order Pride’s PPVs even here in the US, at least in Hawaii you can…just like you’d order a UFC event. However, there is usually a delay of a half a day or so after the event, so stay away from the MMA forums or you’ll have the fights spoiled for you. Also, there are a lot on youtube and google video.[/quote]

Pretty good response. As far as Vitor goes, he’s really just had a lot of bad luck. After his sister was kidnapped and never found, he started suffering from depression, withdrawal, and a plain lack of motivation to train. This is why in a few of his previous fights, he has looked out of shape, gassed early, etc… Also, he appears to have bad luck with some judges, but I suppose it is his own fault by letting it get to the scorecards.

[quote]leon79 wrote:
Also, how is Pride able to pay their fighters so much more than UFC? I suppose I’m just used to America having more money to throw around than any other country.[/quote]

Because MMA is a mainstream sport on Japan. Schoolgirls know who is Genki Sudo or Fedor Emelianenko (really).

MMA in USA is starting to get recognition among the general population thanks to the TV show, “The Ultimate Fighter.” Eventually UFC will start paying like PrideFC.

Early days of the Vitor Belfort story.

BJJ prodigy with strength and boxing ability comes to the UFC and annihilates competition with much fanfare.

Faces Randolph Couture not too long after with much greater muscle mass (hmmmm, anabolics aren’t too hard to come by in Brazil). Gasses (hmmmm) and gets beaten badly.

Goes to Japan, fights a pathetic fight against Kazushi Sakuraba. Supposedly breaks his hand but offers no offense and is content to bum scoot for half an hour.

Fights some extremely boring fights, where his is content to lay and pray for decisions, complete polar opposite of the Phenom that exploded onto the UFC stage. See his fights against Gilbert Yvel and Pride’s red-haired step child Matsui.

God Bless Wikipedia for saving me some typing. Here’s some good reads about the “Big 3”

UFC: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultimate_Fighting_Championship

Pride: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pride_fc

K-1: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K-1

UFC and Pride both have PPV shows, available pretty much everywhere. UFC has old fights, Ultimate Fight Nights (basically lower billed UFC cards), and it’s reality show on SpikeTV. Pride has hour long shows highlighting some fights on FSN, check local listings. K-1? You’re pretty much out of fucking luck in the USA. The fights ARE on PPV, but two months after they happen. K-1 has become a pretty big freak show as of late, and IMHO isn’t really worth watching anymore. K-1 MAX (lightweight K-1), however, is the best kick boxing on the planet. HERO’s, K-1’s MMA promotion, is starting to grow well and has some good fighters and legends like Heath Herring, Kid Yamamoto, Sakuraba, and Royce Gracie (fighting cans). If you can find a 10th Anniversary K-1 Box Set, buy it. The older K-1 fights from the mid 90’s to about 2002 are fucking awesome. Peter Aerts, Ray Sefo, Ernesto Hoost, Cro Cop, Francisco Filho, LeBanner, and on and on, basically the best strikers on the planet.

I don’t have any UFC DVD’s, though I usually watch every PPV. Perhaps some UFC guys can help you there, but I suggest the early UFC’s which are awesome to see because of the style versus stlye match ups. Pride DVD’s I have in plenty. I highly recomend any of the Pride Legacy sets, as mentioned above. Buy some newer fights too, though, so you can really see how far MMA has come. Shockwave 2004 and Critical Countdown 2005 are pretty good ones that are out. Basically any of the tournament fights are golden (Total Elimination, Critical Countdown, and Final Conflict plus a year designate these).

I generally prefer Pride, and don’t make it a secret. I came into MMA from Boxing and with the mindset that the Heavyweight division is the “Glory Division”. Pride blows UFC out of the water in the heavyweights, and generally has more depth across the board. As mentioned above, there are top fighters in the UFC that could beat top Pride guys, but not as many as the other way around. I also like the tournament format, which Pride and K-1 still do but UFC doesn’t. Pride is currently running a Welterweight (Bushido) Tournament (183 pounds), the next round is next month and it will be shown for free on FSN (first time ever). They are also running an “Openweight Tournament”, the semi-finals and final match occur on the same night when that event occurs in September.

Because I have insomnia, here’s some highlights of my favorite fighters, Fedor Emelianenko and Mirko Cro Cop.

Fedor: http://youtube.com/w/Fedor-Emelianenko-Highlight-by-Leyamaguth?v=Egs-MGPFUf4&search=fedor

Mirko: http://www.maxior.pl/?p=index&id=19688&17

As a sidenote: MMA forums generally blow, don’t expect much form them but utter idiocy. Some good sites for MMA news:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-9129056556125404864

Hope this works : Crocop Vs. Fedor

Much better then the UFC heavyweight match
we all we suffered through this past weekend.
I do like the UFC though so settle down haters.

the most important difference between pride and UFC (besides quality of fighters) is that i find the judging criteria in pride to be much better than in UFC. UFC is scored like boxing. pride is scored so that the fighter who does the most damage or comes closest to finishing his opponent is declared the winner(over the totality of the fight, the rounds are simply to give fighters breaks)

This week Fox Sports has a 4 hour PRIDE marathon, so check your local listings.

Here in NYC they had it on Monday evening.

[quote]Determined wrote:
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-9129056556125404864

Hope this works : Crocop Vs. Fedor

Much better then the UFC heavyweight match
we all we suffered through this past weekend.
I do like the UFC though so settle down haters.[/quote]

mma.tv is the best forum

As far as why the UFC does not pay their fighter as much, I don’t think it’s because they don’t make enough money.
Look at these numbers.
When Mayorga fought De La Hoya (boxing)
the PPV was $50 and they had about 900,000 buys. The 2 fighters were guaranteed about $18 million.
UFC 60 (the one with Royce Gracie)
the PPV was $40 and they had about 800,000 (that is about $32 million)
There were more than 10 fighters in that card. If you added the money paid to all of the fighters together it all added up to less than $1 million. This is pretty fucked up.

I have a question about the UFC’s weight divisions:

Are they mandated by the NVSAC or some other regulatory commision?

They are governed by the NVSAC, which many seem to forget when they start arguing the state of UFC today(IE weight classes, rounds gloves, doc. stopage, intelligently defending oneself etc etc.)