If you think keeping up with all the MMA events held by the UFC, Bellator, WSOF, Invicta FC, One FC, and others, can prove too much to follow, try keeping up with mixed martial arts related news. To help those that don't want to spend their hours perusing the web, here's a roundup of the stories that most MMA media sites seemed to have missed
From Neil Davidson of the Canadian Press. Olympic bobsled champion Kaillie Humphries tried her hand at mixed martial arts when she trained with Rory McDonold, Francis Carmont, and Firas Zihabi as part of a Quebec City mall opening. How soon until we see bobsed techniques introduced to the Octagon?
From Shannon J Owens of the Orlando Sentinel. Mixed martial arts is proving a to be a growing pasttime for Central Florida children. At least the training in it is, since actualy fighting in the sport is prohibited until they're 18. According to the Kimbo-Killer, Seth Petruzelli, not only is MMA training great exercise it actually helps in the battle against bullying.
From Shawn Ramsey of FOX Sports Southwest. While we shouldn't expect a sudden wave of NFL players leaving their sport to try their hand at mixed martial arts, it seems more-and-more players and teams, with the Texans being the latest, are adding MMA workouts to their programs. Will have to wait until next season to see if J.J. Watt starts using Jon Jone's shoulder crank to force fumbles.
From Ernie Clark of the Bangor Daily News. A profile of Jarrod and Jeremy Tyler, brothers and amateur MMA fighters from Winterport, Maine.
From the Ronan Farrow Daily on MSNBC. A video report filed from Dagestan that seems to be intent on making specious links between Dagestan's combat sports culture and the Boston Bombing suspects actions.
From Andrea Crossan of PRI's The World. Another piece, this time an audio report, that uses the Tsarnaev brothers' crimes as a launching point to look at Dagestan MMA scene, without decending into hysteria. Rising UFC star Khabib Nurmagomedov is the primary focus.
From Tom Hallman Jr of The Oregonian. The premise, a 6 foot 4, 205 pounds middle aged and out of shape male reporter tries his hand in the cage against 5 foot 4 women's MMA fighter Glena avila. The result is more one sided than Fedor vs Zuluzinho and as exciting as UFC 9's main event.
From Christopher R. Weingarten of Rolling Stone. Eminem, his manager Paul Rosenberg, and the members of Slaughterhouse announced the formation of Total Slaughter, a competitive rap battle league that they apparently have modeled after the UFC. A quote: "What we look at this opportunity as, is a way to do for battle rapping what UFC did for MMA." Waiting to see if they take a "no co-promoting" stance.
Some important April dates in MMA history:
April 6 was the 99th anniversary of George Bothner and Katsukuma Higashi wrestling versus jiu-jiutsu match at Madison Square Garden. April 6 is also the 17th anniversary of Marvin Hagler versus Sugar Ray Leonard.
On April 9. 2005 the Finale for the 1st season of The Ultimate Fighter was held. While it was headlined by Ken Shamrock versus Rich Franklin and Diego Sanchez would be crowned the very first Ultimate Fighter, the fight between Forrest Griffin and Stephen Bonnar not only stole the show, it's also often credited with launching the UFC to success.
On April 14, 2000, at UFC 25 Tito Ortiz defeated Wanderlei Silva to win the vacant UFC middleweight (200 pound) title. The division would later be renamed light heavyweight.
On April 15, 1985 Thomas "Hitman" Hearns and "Marvelous" Marvin Hagler fought in "The War"
On April 16, 2005, after the first season of The Ultimate Fighter Chuck Liddell avenged his previous loss to Randy Couture and became the UFC light heavyweight champion at UFC 52. On that same card Mat Hughes mounted one of the greatest comebacks in MMA history to defeat Frank Trigg and retain his belt.
On April 17, 2010, Strikeforce: Nashville was held. Strikeforce champion Gilbert Melendez defeated Dream champ Shinya Aoki, "King" Mo Lawal captured the light heavyweight belt from Gegard Mousasi, and, in a major upset, Jake Shields successfully defended his title against Dan Henderson. After the main event a brawl broke out between Gracie Jiu-Jitsu and Jason "Mayhem" Miller. CBS would end up dropping MMA and Jake Shields would drop the belt when he left to sign with the UFC as a free agent.
On April 19, 2008, Georges St-Pierre defeated Matt Serra to recapture the belt at UFC 83. It was the first UFC event in Canada, the fastest sell-out in UFC history, and set the North American MMA attendance record at that time
On April 21, 2007 Gabriel Gonzaga upset Mirko Crop Cop via head kick.
On April 25, 2004 at "PRIDE Elimination" Mauro Renallo went nuts when Kevin Randleman scored the upset by knocking out Mirko Cro Cop in the opening round of Pride Heavyweight Grand Prix.
On April 29, 1999 Nobuhiko Takada "defeats" Mark Coleman in a fight that was surely fixed at PRIDE 5.
And finally, some tweets from Showtime Sports executive Stephen Espinoza calling into question Dana White's boxing fandom.