UFC Strikeforce

Author looking to interview amateur and pro fighters for upcoming MMA book titled Unlocking the Cage.

Why does a fighter fight?

It’s a question that has probably been considered from the first time two warriors squared off with their fists up.

Fighters -- both professional and amateur, male and female -- are being sought to answer this question, in their own words, from their own experiences, for possible inclusion in the forthcoming book, Unlocking the Cage.

Former pro fighter-turned-author Mark Tullius is planning three nationwide tours in the spring and summer to interview fighters for the book, which delves into what motivates someone to step into a steel cage, ready to dish out a healthy dose of punches, kicks, take downs and submissions.

“I’m trying to get at who they are as fighters and people, to find out what makes them get in there and do it,” he said. “We’ll only go as deep as people want, but I hope that people will be honest.”

Tullius, 39, a Brown University grad, began fighting in the dark ages of the sport -- back when it was known as No Holds Barred -- and trained with such MMA superstars as Bas Rutten, Marco Ruas, and Frank Mir. Tullius, who went 3-5 as a heavyweight, journeyed to Mexico and Hawaii to fight, and even fought in a warehouse in California, where Tito Ortiz and Ricco Rodriguez were also on the card.

Now a professional writer and a father, Tullius often has looked back on his days as a fighter and wondered what made him step into the cage, “because it’s not something that normal people do,” he said. “Stepping into a cage and risking bodily harm for little or no money, that’s a serious risk.”

Fighters will be asked to fill out a survey and may also be interviewed. The interviews will be taped and some will be shown on Tullius’ blog at marktullius.com. Interviewed fighters may also submit a highlight reel that can be used on the blog and e-book. In addition, on each of Tullius’ three regional trips to conduct interviews, he will be giving away one Body Action System Deluxe by Bas Rutten, a kickboxing workout system. A fourth BAS will be given away to a randomly-selected fighter who has completed the written survey.

Those who are interested can contact Tullius at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , and tell him how you would like to be included: written survey, filmed one-on-one interview, or a phone interview, and/or if Tullius can visit your academy to train and conduct interviews.

We all knew it was just a matter of time before undefeated New Jersey fighter Tom DeBlass hit the big time. Tom will make his UFC debut on April 14 on the UFC on Fuel 2 show, which takes place in Sweden.  His opponent is Cyrille Diabate, who was originally scheduled to fight Jorgen Kruth.  Kruth had to drop out of the fight, however, which opened the door for DeBlass to make his UFC debut--on just 1 week's notice.

Tom is definitely deserving of this shot, and I believe he'll make the most of it.  He's got a four fight deal with the UFC, and Diabate makes a great first opponent.  Cyrille is a striker, and will have his hands full against Tom, who is a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu under Ricardo Almeida.  DeBlass also hits very hard--he trains with boxing coach Mark Henry--and is an excellent wrestlter, so I expect him to take the fight wherever  he wants it.

DeBlass is 7-0, with all of his fights taking place at Lou Neglia's Ring of Combat.  His last fight, a stunning 41 second submission victory over tough Randy Smith, took place last February.  Tom now joins a long list of ROC fighters who have gone on to the UFC, including former UFC champions Matt Serra and Frankie Edgar.

Hopefully, he eventually be the third UFC champion to emerge from the ROC.  He's got all the tools and the right attitude, so the sky is the limit for Tom DeBlass.

Follow Tom Deblass on Twitter for updates from the man himself:


Time to get serious, people!  And I mean Dead Serious!  Dead Serious MMA returns to the Rahway Rec Center this Saturday, April 7.  The card is stacked and as of right now, we've got 15 fights scheduled, including a 154 pound title tilt featuring Chris Sladky vs. Mark Cugliari.  The last Dead Serious show was a sell out, so get your tickets ASAP by clicking on the poster above or hitting the Dead Serious MMA website.

I will once again be doing my thing in the cage, and will also be sitting in at the GoFightLive commentary booth.  My partner for this show in none other than my MMA coach Anthony Sansonetti.  He will wow you with his knowledge, believe me.  It's going to be a great show.

Check out the complete card after the jump.  See you at the show!


There is only one thing worse than being put in the "friend zone" by a hot chick, and that's being put in the friend zone in a very public way.  Which is exactly what happened to a drunk Dana White last night.  Dana was apparently drowning his sorrows over the main event of UFC 146 falling apart, and he wanted the world to know how wasted he was. He posted this rather pathetic pic of himself (above) clinging to Olivia Munn's bosom, and said that he's "dr#*¥ and don't give a Fu@# :)"

So far so good, right?  Well, here's where it gets really sad.  After seeing the pic, Olivia commented on it via her own Twitter.  She said:  "dude, this pic makes it look like I'm breast-feeding you. Its misleading, I admit... Ur my big brother & I love you."

Ouch! That's gotta hurt.

Two things are troubling about this incident, the public humiliation of being friend-zoned by a hottie notwithstanding. One is that Dana is married with children, and it's pretty disrespectful of him to be proudly posting a pic of him burying his drunken red face into Munn's chest.  The other is that White is supposed to be a recovering alcoholic.  In an ESPN article, since removed from the Internet but archived by MMAPayout, Dana's penchant for booze and food was addressed:

"A few months ago, Rolling Stone sent a reporter to spend time with White, and got the full Dana-White-in- Vegas treatment. He’s been very candid about his alcohol troubles and going sober 15 years ago, but he’s also been candid about flopping off the wagon now and then. And Rolling Stone caught him in the midst of a four-month bender of drinking and over-eating.

“'I was a real slob,” White says.'"

Dana, here's a newsflash for you: You still are a real slob. Get help.

According to the NSAC, Alistair Overeem has been cycling something a bit stronger than horse meat.  The UFC number 1 heavyweight contender has just tested positive for an increased T/E ratio, which means that his testosterone levels were higher than what the body normally produces.  This pretty much scuttles the planed Junior Dos Santos vs. Overeem fight that was scheduled for next month.  Before Overeem can fight, he needs to go before the commission in Nevada.

The official notice for the failed test came from NSAC's Keith Kizer:

"The following athletes were tested on March 27:  Alistair Overeem, Junior dos Santos, Frank Mir, Cain Velasquez, Roy Nelson and Antonio Silva.  All test results were negative, except Mr. Overeem tested positive for an increased T/E ratio (> 10).  Mr. Overeem will need to appear before the Commission if he seeks licensure"

Dana White, on a conference call said that he is "beyond pissed" about the results.

This is yet another blow for the UFC, and another black eye for the sport of mixed martial arts.  I'll have more on the failed test and what it means for the UFC in the near future.


In this video, you'll see Rashad Evans refusing to sign a picture for a fan. Although you can't see the pic in question, it's pretty obvious that the fan was bringing a copy of the infamous pic of Rashad getting knocked out by Lyoto Machida.  It was a super douchebaggy move for the fan to ask Evans to sign that, and when Rashad refused and then refused to take a picture with the fan, the fan's face registered just how bad he'd been clowned.

Fighters put their lives on the line to entertain us, and they deserve respect.  Rashad showed great restraint in not bitchslapping the bitch who presented that pic to sign.  I guess the fan  wanted to be an Internet hero, but all he did was clown himself.  Good work, Rashad!

Dana White recently made some disparaging remarks about soccer, calling it a sport that requires very little talent.  The comments, which were basically Dana attention-whoring, caused an uproar and many fans expressed how idiotic the UFC president seems every time he opens his mouth.  White's anti-soccer tirade caught the attention of soccer star Jimmy Conrad, who released a video challenging Dana to a soccer match.  This probably made Dana quiver in delight, because once again the focus is on him.  He'll probably respond to this challenge in the near future, and I will post what he says on here.

What's so dumb about this whole thing is that Dana should be the last guy to disparage other sports.  The UFC got a lot of bad press when Brock Lesnar came over from the WWE, and despite never having fought MMA in his life, needed just three fights before challenging for and winning the UFC heavyweight title.  The same comments Dana made about soccer were made about the UFC then, but Dana didn't find it quite so amusing.

Here's Conrad's challenge video:


(Dana White: Soccer sucks yuh yuh)

When the Jon Jones vs. Rashad Evans fight was made, Greg Jackson hinted that he might sit the fight out and watch it from the sidelines. This was because of his long relationship with Evans, who left the camp after Jones became part of Team Jackson.  Despite Jackson's statements, I always believed he'd be in Jones's corner for the fight, and now he says that he will indeed corner the UFC LHW champion, but that it won't be fun.

Jackson explained his decision to corner Jones on The MMA Hour, where he said:

"I felt I had kind of a duty to the team.What I mean by that is Jon Jones is on the team, Rashad has left the team and has made it pretty clear he’s not coming back. My personal feeling, if I wanted to be a little selfish, I would say, 'I don’t want to deal with any of it. I don’t want to be there at all.' But it has to mean something to be on a team. It has to mean something, and I felt I had a duty to do that, because Jon’s on the team, so it’s my responsibility to corner him. Even though it’s a really hard decision, I decided to go with it."

He went on to say that cornering Jones against a guy he "loves" is a tough thing to do:

"It’s not fun," he said of the situation. "I wouldn’t call it weird, it’s just not fun. I love Jon to death, but I love Rashad, too. And so it’s not a position I enjoy at all. It’s not something I like, but it something I think I have to do."

Jackson is a great strategist, so whether he corners Jones or not, you can bet that Bones will have a gameplan designed around what Jackson knows about Evans.  Still, this fight is likely to be Jones's toughest test yet.  Evans knows things about Jones from training with him, so this fight should be a doozy.


New interview with Chuck Liddell in which he talks about who he thinks will win the big Jon Jones vs. Rashad Evans fight.  He also talks about how retired life is treating him, the state of MMA judging and his respect for referees.  Good stuff from the legendary Iceman.


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