Posts Tagged ‘MMA Gym Toronto’

Grant Brothers MMA hosts summer BBQ with Chuck Liddell

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011

When the Iceman cometh to your MMA gym, you know you’ve hit the bigtime.

That must be how the Grant Brothers Boxing and MMA Gym feels these days. In less than two years, the training facility has become one of Canada’s best and brightest. The likes of Gray Maynard, Mark Bocek, Dan Hardy, Roy Nelson and Claude Patrick have stopped by to train and chat. Fighters like Sean Pierson and Wagnney Fabiano train there.

And now, UFC Hall of Famer Chuck Liddell will co-host a summer barbecue this Saturday, August 27 at the gym, located at 4884 Dufferin Street, unit 6 in Toronto, Ontario. The event runs from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Want a free autograph or photo with the former longtime UFC light heavyweight champion? Liddell is available until 7:30 p.m. Then, he’ll hold a press conference at the barbecue to make a major announcement. From 8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., he’ll make himself available for one-on-one interviews on a first-come, first serve basis.

If hanging with Chuck Liddell isn’t your cup of tea (yeah, right), the Grant Brothers summer barbecue has plenty more to offer. Rockstar Energy and GP8 Water will be on hand to provide free drinks and Headrush Clothing will give away free clothing.

Barbecue guests will also get their shot at some cool prizes. Signing up for the gym enters you in a draw for a trip to Las Vegas; entering the GP8 Fitness challenge also qualifies you for prizes.

The fun doesn’t end at 9:00 p.m. For all the UFC fans out there, Grant Brothers MMA will screen UFC 134: Silva versus Okami live and free. The event will feature lots of Brazilians – including Muay Thai legends Anderson Silva and Shogun Rua.

For more  information on the Grant Brothers MMA summer barbecue, call 416-736-7770 or e-mail info@grantbrothersmma.com. You can also inquire at the Grant Brothers front reception.

Anyone looking for a one-on-one interview with Chuck Liddell, Grant Brothers ownership or Headrush clothing can contact Mimi Ngo at 647-267-4692 or e-mail Mimi.ngo@umusic.com.

MMA Training Toronto, North York, Brampton, Etobicoke, Markham, Mississauga, Oshawa, Peel Region, Pickering, Richmond Hill, Scarborough, Thornhill, Vaughan, Woodbridge, York, York Region Ontario Canada.

Pacquiao-Mosley highlights what’s wrong with boxing – and right with MMA

Monday, May 9th, 2011

Did you see the big Manny Pacquiao versus Shane Mosley boxing title fight on Saturday? No? Me neither. Apparently, though, we didn’t miss much. Apparently the fight was predictably lopsided and uninteresting, with the champion Pacquiao dominating for 12 rounds while the challenger Mosley just tried to survive. And, based on everything I’ve read and heard about the fight, it symbolized that boxing may be finally ready to relinquish its combat sport crown to mixed martial arts.

We all knew it was only a matter of time once the UFC started landing major events at the crème-de-la- crème venues like the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Then came The Ultimate Fighter (boxing’s The Contender lasted one season). Now, we’ve got Jon Jones appearing on Jay Leno, Georges St-Pierre in Gatorade commercials and both Randy Couture and Rampage Jackson starring in major Hollywood  releases.

Looking at precisely what Pacquiao-Mosley offered, as CBS’ Gregg Doyel illuminated, it’s easy to see why MMA is truly taking the mantle from boxing now. That title fight featured two combatants well into their 30s – one of whom was long past his prime yet supposedly still fit for a shot against the top pound-for-pound fighter in the world. The UFC still has exceptions like Randy Couture, just like hockey has Mark Recchi and basketball has Tim Duncan; but, for the most part, those sports are dominated by young people at their physical peak.

Because of its political structure and top fighters’ tendency to duck one another (or at least be shielded from one another by promoters), boxing constantly pits past-their-prime stars against each other in “marquee” fights. Even Pacquiao could be past his peak for all we know; he just never gets a tough enough challenge for us to find out.

Not only are boxing cards not necessarily featuring stars at their best anymore, they seem to offer less value. Can you name one other fight on the Pacquiao/Mosley card? UFC 129 in Toronto had two title fights in one night, featured two of the top three pound-for-pound fighters in the world (GSP, Jose Aldo) and also had legend Randy Couture’s final fight. Boxing would never combine big bouts like that; it always splits them up.

I’m a male aged 18 to 34, I watched UFC 129, and I don’t know a single peer who didn’t watch UFC 129. I didn’t see Pacquiao-Mosley and I haven’t yet met someone who has seen it. Is the battle over? Has MMA officially won?

MMA Gym Toronto, North York, Brampton, Etobicoke, Markham, Mississauga, Oshawa, Peel Region, Pickering, Richmond Hill, Scarborough, Thornhill, Vaughan, Woodbridge, York, York Region Ontario Canada.

Just how big is MMA today?

Friday, December 24th, 2010

If you like hockey, you’re well aware of what Sidney Crosby has done this year. He led the NHL in goals, scored the Olympic-winning goal in overtime and currently has a 23-game point streak going.

Baseball fan? Then you have to be impressed with Joey Votto. He became the third Canadian ever to win Major League Baseball’s MVP award this year.

Yet neither of these gentlemen was named Rogers Sportsnet’s Canadian Athlete of the Year this week. The award went to Georges St-Pierre, arguably the top pound-for-pound fighter in mixed martial arts, for the third straight year.

The honour is very telling. St-Pierre won both his fights in 2010 by decision. It’s not like this was his most impressive year. So the fact that he still got the award shows that it was a reflection of his sheer popularity, not just his skill.

Is there still a debate as to MMA’s popularity versus boxing anymore? I’m not sure it’s even close. A few years ago, the notion was that boxing, the older sport, still had a larger fan base, but I seriously doubt that’s still true. Manny Pacquiao’s last fight in November got 1,150,000 pay-per-view buys. Brock Lesnar versus Shane Carwin got 1,160,000 buys.

Only the PPV numbers are close; MMA may actually dominate boxing in popularity everywhere else now. Aside from Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather, how many pro boxers can the average North American recognize on the street? Compare that to Brock Lesnar, GSP, Randy Couture, Anderson Silva, Chuck Liddell, Rampage Jackson and so on.

How many pro boxers appear in Gatorade and Under Armour ads? St-Pierre does. How many boxers starred in major Hollywood movie releases this year? Randy Couture (The Expendables) and Rampage Jackson (The A-Team) did. Factor in The Ultimate Fighter’s success and even Strikeforce’s free events on CBS and it seems to me that the debate may be over.

Am I missing something, or has MMA officially KO’d boxing as the most popular combat sport on Earth?

MMA Gym Toronto, North York, Brampton, Etobicoke, Markham, Mississauga, Oshawa, Peel Region, Pickering, Richmond Hill, Scarborough, Thornhill, Vaughan, Woodbridge, York, York Region Ontario Canada.

Evaluating the job losses after UFC 113

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

To cut or not to cut? That was the question weighing on Dana White as he watched Paul Daley and Kimbo Slice battle at UFC 113.

Or so I thought. Turned out it was an easy decision for the UFC commissioner, who had officially released both fighters from the MMA promotion before the night was up.

So did he make the right choices? First off, let’s look at Daley. After Josh Koscheck’s wrestling completely smothered him in a frustrating (and admittedly lackluster) bout, Daley did one of the dirtiest things I’ve seen in the sport; he tapped Koscheck on the shoulder and cracked him with a sucker punch after the final bell.

Sure, Daley was probably mad about the possible “phantom” illegal knee Koscheck tried unsuccessfully to sell during the bout. But there’s no excuse for what he did. He essentially assaulted Koscheck and Dana white absolutely made the right move to boot Daley immediately.

But what about White’s decision to fire Kimbo Slice? His cited reason was “ineffectiveness.” Watching Kimbo get utterly dominated by Matt Mitrione last night (in boxing, grappling, pretty much anywhere the fight went), I can understand to an extent why White lost patience with him. But did he pull the plug too quickly?

It’s not like Slice is even on a losing streak after Saturday night; he won his previous bout against Houston Alexander. Pretty rare to see guys cut from the UFC after one loss. If I were White, I would’ve given Kimbo one more shot. Maybe bust him back to the preliminary card and give him a slugger like Mostapha Al Turk?

My conclusion: the Daley cut is justified, the Slice cut is not.

By Matt Larkin
Guest Writer

MMA Gym Toronto, North York, Brampton, Etobicoke, Markham, Mississauga, Oshawa, Peel Region, Pickering, Richmond Hill, Scarborough, Thornhill, Vaughan, Woodbridge, York, York Region Ontario Canada.

How Far can MMA go with Dana White?

Friday, May 7th, 2010

I was perusing MMA news today and found quite an interesting nugget. Time magazine released its Most Influential People for 2010 and Mr. Dana White cracked the list. Not only was it surprising to see him recognized by mainstream media, the amazing part was that reader voting placed him above President Obama and Lady Gaga in his power to influence.

Quite the compliment. While it’s a bit much to put White above the leader of the free world (come on!), it’s not too surprising to see White acknowledged as an influential person. After all, he’s an expert at getting not just the UFC, but all of mixed martial arts noticed.

Ten years ago, MMA was written off as barbaric, glorified WWE wrestling or, as the worst expression goes, “human cockfighting.” Now, we’re seeing more and more states and provinces sanction it, we’re seeing it break into mainstream network television (CBS) and it’s receiving the same type of respect as combat sports like boxing.

Though not always directly, Dana White is largely responsible for what MMA is today. The face of the UFC changed when the Fertittas made him the face of their company and his work on building The Ultimate Fighter hugely impacted MMA’s popularity.

Despite White’s accomplishments, however, I wonder how much longer he can take the sport before it’s time to hand over the reins to a new figurehead.

It may seem crazy for me to make such a suggestion; why oust White when MMA is exploding? Well, sooner or later, the UFC will exhaust its ability to grow amidst its young, male-dominated, niche audience (I call it the Spike TV demographic). Eventually, the UFC and other promotions will want to see MMA viewed as a truly honourable and “clean” sport – the kind that could become an Olympic event.

To me, White is too rough around the edges to usher MMA to that next echelon a few years down the road. He’s a true fan and does a great job promoting MMA, but he’s no gentleman. He’s crass, dropping F-bombs in almost every interview, and he even got himself into hot water by making slurs against homosexuals.

If anyone believes the UFC can keep growing with that type of commissioner, let me ask, when was the last time you heard a swear word or slur against a minority from NHL commissioner Gary Bettman? NFL commissioner Roger Goodell? NBA commissioner David stern?

That’s what I thought.

Dana White has accomplished a lot and his influence is undeniable, but he can’t take MMA much further unless he cleans up his own image and learns some manners.

By Matt Larkin
Guest Writer

MMA Gym Toronto, North York, Brampton, Etobicoke, Markham, Mississauga, Oshawa, Peel Region, Pickering, Richmond Hill, Scarborough, Thornhill, Vaughan, Woodbridge, York, York Region Ontario Canada.

Who was the mma fighter of the decade?

Monday, January 11th, 2010

We’re into mid-January, meaning we’re almost past the “New Year” phase during which pundits reflect on the past year or years and pass judgment. Almost. Before we fully say goodbye to the 2000s, let’s pick the fighter of the decade.

In mixed martial arts, two criteria stand above all: dominance and longevity. With that in mind, let’s proceed.

Was it Minotauro Nogueira, Mirko Cro Cop or Wanderlei Silva? No. All three dominated the PRIDE circuit in the first half of the decade but all three have been shadows of their former selves since arriving in the UFC, though I’m still holding out hope for Big Nog.

How about Chuck Liddell? The Iceman makes a solid case, as he was arguably the most feared puncher in the sport from 2004-2007, but he stumbled badly in the last few years and seems over the hill.

Lightweight master BJ Penn gets some votes. He’s been around long enough and, if not for his repeated failures at welterweight, could’ve been the choice. But we can’t ignore his struggles at 170 pounds.

Georges St-Pierre and Anderson Silva are excellent picks and I don’t fault anyone who votes for them. They’re both absolutely dominant fighters who could retire as legends today and have made mockeries of their weight classes.

But my vote goes to Fedor Emelianenko. Say what you want about him ducking opponents of late but there was no more dominant fighter this decade. He took down legends of the heavyweight division – Nogueira, Cro Cop, Mark Coleman – systematically. He finished the decade with an amazing 27-1 (1 NC) record. Best of all, Fedor stands for everything mixed martial arts should be. He’s a perfect hybrid of striking and grappling, combining heavy-handed boxing with sambo and judo. He’s an honourable, modest man who takes every opponent seriously and goes about his business with a stoic demeanour.

The next decade will belong to someone else – St-Pierre? Machida? Jon Jones? – but Fedor is the best mma fighter of the last 10 years.

By Matt Larkin
Guest Writer

MMA Gym Toronto,  North York, Brampton, Etobicoke, Markham, Mississauga, Oshawa, Peel Region, Pickering, Richmond Hill, Scarborough, Thornhill, Vaughan, Woodbridge, York, York Region Ontario Canada.