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BY BRYAN SHERIDAN
UFC 185 is a stacked event, with two main events, but perhaps the best thing about it is that it’s possible neither of those fights will stand as the best of the night. And nobody knows that better than Johny Hendricks (16-3).
Rather than wait for a rematch with Robbie Lawler, the former UFC welterweight champion was keen to get back in the ring, and his matchup with Matt Brown (19-12) is one he knows could come with some fireworks. Hendricks is the heavy favorite (view odds here at TopBet) but the fighting style of Brown is one he respects could cause him some trouble.
“He’s a taller guy than me, for one, so he’s going to have to get in closer and if he gets in closer he’s going to have to deal with my power,” Hendricks told FOX Sports. “Whenever you look at that you’ve seen what I can do, it turns into a really exciting fight. It could be a clash of wills to see who can win inside.”
Matt Brown is by no means a top-tier marquee fighter at this stage of his career, having 12 losses to his name, including his most recent to current welterweight champion Lawler, but his pedigree is nonetheless there as a fighter who can get into the mix of an exciting fight.
This is all essentially a sidelight for Hendricks, who will get a rematch with Lawler after what was a rare split decision title fight. In fact, if not for Lawler’s run of dominance towards the end of the fight, Hendricks might still be the one enjoying the title of welterweight champion. In the meantime, Hendricks doesn’t want you to forget his name, or that he’ll be back soon enough to contest Lawler in what will be one of the UFC’s biggest events of the year. Read More »
Liam McGeary becomes Bellator MMA’s first British champion at “British Invasion” – Bellator MMA 134 Results
Englishman Liam McGeary (10-0) kept his professional record unblemished, capping off a successful "British Invasion" and claiming the Bellator MMA Light Heavyweight title with a five-round decision win over former champion Emanuel Newton (25-8-1). The contest served as the headlining bout of Friday's "Bellator MMA: British Invasion" event at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn.
McGeary attacked from the start, as he used his lanky frame and incredible grappling to move from submission attempt to submission attempt in entertaining fashion. From triangle choke to kimura to armbar, McGeary was constantly on the move, but Newton showed capable defense and pulled free from each hold. Despite the obvious danger on the ground, Newton continued to take the fight to the floor in the second round, working from his opponent's extremely active guard. Once again, McGeary's submission attempts were relentless, but Newton pulled free from each hold.
The remainder of the fight played out in similar fashion, with Newton able to take the fight to the floor with ease but forced to defend constant grappling attacks from McGeary. Both fighters could make arguments for the win, with Newton enjoying extended stretches in the dominant position. However, McGeary's constant offense set the tone for the action. In the end, judges sided with McGeary, awarding him the win with scores of 48-46, 48-47 and 48-47.
McGeary remains perfect through the first 10 fights of his career. Meanwhile, Newton sees a seven-fight winning streak come to an end. "It was a close fight," Newton said. "I was on the ground. I didn't stop hitting and moving with triangle hits. That guy is so slippery and tough."
In the night's co-feature, light heavyweight contender Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal (15-4) moved up to the heavyweight division and earned an impressive decision win over Cheick Kongo (22-10-2). Facing a massive size differential, Lawal turned to his wrestling base rather than try and trade with the bigger man. The plan worked, as Lawal controlled the action in the clinch and racked up points with takedowns. While the crowd tried to entice Lawal to take a more risky approach, "King Mo" remained disciplined in his approach and cruised to what looked like a clear-cut decision win, though he had to settle for a split result, 30-27, 28-29 and 29-28.
"I don't agree with the split decision at all," Lawal said after the fight. "I won all three rounds. He knows he lost that fight. I got the victory and that's all that matters. Wrestling works and it showed in this fight. "I have a great coaching staff at American Top Team. I could've gone another two rounds. At the end of the third round, I knew he was gassed, so I just walked him off. I hope to get the chance to fight for a title next."
In welterweight action, Brazilian veteran Andre "Chatuba" Santos (37-10) proved himself a game opponent against Paul "Semtex" Daley (36-13-2), but the British slugger ultimately cruised to a decision win.
In typical Daley fashion, he fired heavy punches on the feet, looking for the knockout. However, Santos proved resilient, answering with strikes of his own while also looking to work from the clinch. The action went back and forth for the opening two rounds before Daley took over in the third.
An early Daley knockdown set the tone for the final frame, and Daley worked hard for the finish. Santos, however, simply wouldn't quit, and despite being dominated in the final round, he did survive until the final bell, where Daley was awarded a decision win.
"It feels good to be back in MMA; I was a little rusty," Daley, who had been focusing on his kickboxing career, admitted after the win. "This guy was so tough. I caught him with heavy, wild shots, and normally I would've taken my opponent out in the second or third round, but he didn't quit; he has a ton of heart. It was a great fight."
Fighting for the first time since a failed bid for the Bellator MMA Light Heavyweight World Title, Linton "The Swarm" Vassell (15-4) scored a second-round TKO over Rameau "The African Assassin" Sokoudjou (16-13). Vassell controlled the action from the start, taking Sokoudjou to the floor and scoring with ground-and-pound blows while hunting out opportunities to end the fight with a submission. That opening would come in the second round.
Again working hard to take the fight to the floor, Vassell refused to give Sokoudjou any room to work, scoring top position and utilizing superior grappling skills. Sokoudjou was unable to get back to his feet, and Vassell eventually unleashed a flurry of strikes that earned the stoppage at the 3:18 mark of the second. "I wanted to finish him in the first round," Vassell said after the win. "He held my arms and stopped me from taking him down. "It feels great representing my country and to come here and fight in front of all the American fans is a great honor."
In the night's first main-card contest, welterweight Brennan "The Irish Bad Boy" Ward (10-3) made quick work of "Courteous" Curtis Millender (7-1), needing just 64 seconds to score a submission win. The two went toe-to-toe on the feet to open, and it appeared Millender was getting the best of the initial exchanges. But after coming up short on a takedown, Ward scored a crisp two-punch combination that sent his opponent to the floor. Ward took advantage of the opening, hopping on his opponent's back and sinking in a rear-naked choke, ending the fight at the 1:37 mark of the first round. "You know me, man," Ward said after the quick win. "I come straight at guys like always."
In bouts shown on Spike TV, around the world on Spike.com, hometown fighters did not disappoint here at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT as Blair Tugman (North Haven), Matt Bessette (Hartford) and Dean Hancock (Danbury) all won their bouts in impressive fashion. Tugman (7-5) started off the night with a dominating performance over Marvin Maldonado (2-4) of Latham, N.Y, scored 30-26, 30-27 twice, all in favor of Tugman.
"Felt great to get another win in Bellator against a tough opponent in Marvin," said Tugman. "I was excited to fight in front of my home crowd. I have a great coach (Andrew Calandrelli) and training partners at Ultimate MMA Training Center in North Haven, CT. And was confident that if I implemented my game plan I would come out with the victory. I'm upset I didn't finish Marvin but he's a tough guy to finish. I hope my dominant performance shows Bellator I am ready for bigger fights.
Bessette (14-6), who was able to break free of Josh Laberge's (9-5) attack by striking him with power punches and stuns to the jaw. "Everything went right tonight, I won," said an ecstatic Bessette." I was able to throw my power shots and did to him what he does to other people. "I got the win, which is the most important thing. Josh [Laberge] gave me an awesome fight and I couldn't be happier."
In a swing bout, Hancock looked poised in his professional debut against Mike Mangan (0-3), despite early jitters. "It felt great coming out of the cage, the first few seconds were like a blur to me," said Hancock. "Once I got my bearings I was able to go to work and do what I do best. It was a huge moment for me.
"I feel like I belong in Bellator, it was great to get my first professional win. I need to just keep moving forward."
New York transplant Neiman Gracie did what Gracie's do best: win via rear naked choke at 2:36 of round 1 over Massachusetts's Bobby Flynn (4-3). With the win, Gracie keeps his unbeaten streak intact at 3-0.
Also from New York, Binghamton's Tamdan McCrory (13-3) scored an armbar victory over Jason Butcher (8-2) at 1:06 of the first frame.
Emergency! Raphael Butler is now 9-1-1 after scoring a guillotine choke victory over Josh Diekmann (15-6) at 1:04 of round 1.
Main Card Results
Liam McGeary def Emanuel Newton by unanimous decision (48-46, 48-47, 48-47) to win Bellator MMA Light Heavyweight title
Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal def. Cheick Kongo by split decision (30-27, 28-29, 29-28)
Paul Daley def. Andre Santos by unanimous decision (29-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Linton Vassell def. Rameau Sokoudjou by TKO (punches) - Round 2, 3:18
Brennan Ward def. Curtis Millender by submission (rear-naked choke) - Round 1, 1:37
Preliminary Card Results
Dean Hancock def. Mike Mangan by submission (rear-naked choke) - Round 1, 1:33
Matt Bessette def. Josh LaBerge by TKO (doctor's stoppage) - Round 2, 5:00
Raphael Butler def. Josh Diekmann by submission (guillotine choke) - Round 1, 1:04
Tamdan McCrory def. Jason Butcher by submission (armbar) - Round 1, 1:06
Neiman Gracie def. Bobby Flynn by submission (rear-naked choke) - Round 1, 2:36
Blair Tugman def. Marvin Maldonado by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27)
Funko had one of the biggest booths at NY Toy Fair this year, and each year they seem to be growing larger and larger. This year, Funko's newest figures from their ReAction line (action figures created in a retro style like the Kenner figures from the '70's and early '80s) were on display, including Breaking Bad, Karate Kid, classic Star Trek, Fifth Element, Tomorrowland, Boondock Saints, Scarface, Taxi Driver, and Big Trouble in Little China.
I was not a huge ReAction fan last year, noting that most of the human figures looked awful while their monsters or aliens looked a lot better. This year, it seems they found a good middle ground to retain that vintage look while making the faces more recognizable, and I am 100% on board for Karate Kid figures!
Zach Oat of Diamond Select toys gave us the official walkthrough of the DST booth at NY Toy Fair 2015, and had a metric ton of new awesome things to show us. Starting in part one in the video above, take a look at all of the new figures from their "Avengers: Age of Ultron" line, including minimates and Marvel Select action figures, as well as new minimates from the X-Men and more figures in their classic Marvel Select line, including Cable and Carnage! We also get to see some new "Nightmare before Christmas" minimates, figures, and dolls, as well as a chance to see their new Ghostbusters line, which I could not be more excited for.
In part two of this tour, we get to see the latest figures and props from Star Trek, including a new Worf action figure, new Enterprise starship replicas, and new phasers. We also get the latest on minimates from "Aliens" and "Predator" (which we were not allowed to film), and see all of the new items from their new line based on the animated series from "Batman" and "Superman". Finally, a look at some of their new items from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!
Ashley from LEGO gave us the walkthrough of all the latest licensed products that the brick-building company has slated for 2015, and man, is this year a doozy. Starting off with the video above, we get to see the latest LEGO sets from Star Wars, Jurassic World, and The Lego Movie.
In part two, we get to see the latest sets from Marvel and DC Comics, including their Avengers: Age of Ultron line, and get the latest scoop on what is new for their mini-figures this year (hint: it is better than expected). We also see the new Scooby Doo line, as well as what is new for their enormously expanding Minecraft line.
Due to time constraints in the Lego Booth, we were unable to attain much b-roll footage, so we are using stills from another website that was kind enough to allow us to use them in our videos. Photos are courtesy of Molly Jackson from insertgeekhere.blogspot.com.
Continuing our tour of Bandai's "Power Rangers Dino Charge" toyline at NY Toy Fair 2015, we take a look at the zords and action figures from the show.
With the line based around combining with the T-rex zord, triceratops, and stegosaurus (and in the fall using the other two main dinos), the zords all combine with each other to make for a fully customizable megazord with dinozords from the show as well as originally created ones from Bandai. All of them also interact with the Dino Chargers to make for more customization. You can also get the Dino Charge motorcycles that can pull apart and become two separate zords, and also include a five-inch action figure with each one. The biggest zord will be the T-rex zord, which has a chomping bite, lights up, and can growl and stomp around (and also play the MMPR theme song)!
New figures this year from the line include a mash-up style line of figures that can be customized, and will be across the entire galaxy of all 22 seasons of Power Ranger shows, and also includes zords.
The newest series from Power Rangers will be "Power Rangers: Dino Charge", and at NY Toy Fair 2015, Bandai showed off a ton of the new roleplaying items that you can get your hands on. This year, the line is based around the Dino Charger accessory, with over 60 of them encompassing the entire line and also being interchangeable with weapons and zords. The charger also works with their new Dino Charge app to add a new level of interaction with the toys.
The chargers come with various mini-dinozords that can be mixed and matched with each other, and we also get a first look at more of their roleplay gear including masks, morphers, battle gear including a deluxe battle sword and blaster, and a sneak peek at what the Gold Ranger will be using when he makes his debut later this season.
Continuing on the success of Disney's "Big Hero 6" movie, Bandai unveiled some new figures & roleplaying toys based on the hit film. This line includes the Baymax Rocket punch fist and mask, a six-inch Baymax with removable armor and striking action, plushies, and a deluxe flying Baymax with an 18-inch wing span and rocket firing fist. If you liked the movie, you will certainly want one of the many Baymax figures that help bring the animated characters to life.
NECA Toys was impressive as always at NY Toy Fair 2015, unveiling a ton of new prototypes and figures from across their wide line of licenses. Starting with the video above, take a look at some of the great new figures from "Aliens", "Predator", "Robocop VS Terminator", and the gorgeous 18-inch 1/4 scale figures of Christopher Reeves as Superman, Arnold Schwarzenegger as the T-800 from the "Terminator" Series as well as his character from "Commando", Danny Devito as The Penguin from "Batman Returns", and a Batman based on his look in the Arkham Asylum video game. My personal favorite has to be Ripley from Aliens, as well as her in the Power Loader fighting the Queen Alien (sadly, the diorama will not be available for sale, but man was that thing great to look at).
This second video of their booth features all the new kaiju from their continuing "Pacific Rim" line, as well as a preview of their new mini-figures. Plus, a first look at some of their new Godzilla figures, as well as "Heroes of the Storm", "Interstellar", and more from their Cult Classics line of famous movie monsters.
At New York Toy Fair 2015, Bandai unveiled a new line of kids toys that transforms characters from various licenses from an egg into a fully-articulated action figure. The line includes figures from Disney's Toy Story, Cars, and Big Hero 6, as well as an original line of dinosaurs. While these figures are meant for younger kids, you can not deny that the concept is pretty interesting, and the figures themselves look surprisingly amazing once they are fully transformed.