Heavy Hands

Connor and Phil sit down to discuss Usman vs Masvidal and the other two title fights set for UFC 251.

  • So it's Masvidal vs Usman, in the end, only now on short notice. Can Masvidal force Usman back, or is he doomed to broken against the fence?
  • Max Holloway approaches his rematch with Alexander Volkanovski with the attitude of a man who has just dreamed his own death. We hate it.
  • Connor finally lets Jose Aldo go, just in time to realize that he might actually beat Petr Yan
Direct download: 324_ufc_251.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 4:17pm EDT

Connor and Phil are joined once again by the scourge of the British Isles, Kyle McLachlan, to discuss Hooker vs Poirier and some great matchups we never got to see.

  • Dustin Poirier is not shot, but also, Dan Hooker is not bad
  • Sean Woodson is still good, don't listen to Kyle. I'm not crying
  • Mike Perry. That is all.
  • We chat about some legendary fantasy matchups: Aldo vs Cejudo (???), Aldo vs Pettis, Fedor vs Lesnar, GSP vs Silva
Direct download: 323_Guess_Whos_Back.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 2:58pm EDT

A short discussion of how exactly we expect Poirier to destroy Hooker, and then Connor tenderly consoles his dear friend Phil, who was wrong.

  • Dan Hooker thinks fighters who retire on the stool are marshmallows, which is a position no one asked him to take before stepping into the cage with Dustin Poirier
  • Mike Perry vs concrete
  • Phil has first nice, big cry in a long time. There, there. Josh Emmett can't hurt you.
  • and more!
Direct download: 322_phil_loves_josh_emmett_now.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 12:53pm EDT

Connor and Phil break down the upcoming card, which is QUITE strong, and review Eye vs Calvillo, which was QUITE BAD.

  • Alexander Volkov is among the most skilled heavyweights in the world, and that doesn't look like it will be enough
  • Phil's hatred for Josh Emmett reaches unprecedented heights as he contemplates the possibility of Shane Burgos getting aboslutely deaded 
  • Jessica Eye is incapable of change
  • plus our breakdown of the very exciting Fili vs Jourdain and more
Direct download: 321_BeyBlaydes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:26pm EDT

Connor and Phil preview the surprisingly interesting Eye vs Calvillo card, and mourn two great perennial contenders who will contend no more.

  • Jessica Eye is going to win by being just big enough not to lose the only kind of fight she knows how to have
  • Can Ray Borg build on the boxing he showed against Ricky Simon? Is Charles Jourdain a problem for Andre Fili?
  • Felicia Spencer's terrible corner, and the maturity of Amanda Nunes
  • Assuncao and Formiga... we love you both. RIP
  • Aljamain Sterling shocks the world, prompting the UFC to knuckle down on putting together Yan vs Aldo for the vacant title
Direct download: 320_death_of_a_craftsman.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 4:06pm EDT

Tommy Elliott (@Muay_Khaoboy) of the Fight Site joins Connor and Phil to break down the big matchups of UFC 250.

  • Does Felicia Spencer have like... any chance? Any shot at all?
  • Raphael Assuncao seems tailor-made to beat Cody Garbrandt, but has he gotten too old for the former champ?
  • We are all confused, frightened, and excited by whatever may happen in Aljamain Sterling vs Cory Sandhagen. 
  • plus, the slow demise of Tyron Woodley, and more
Direct download: 319_The_Vile_Carlyle.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 3:21pm EDT

Connor and Phil have no idea what is going to happen between Tyron Woodley and Gilbert Burns. It's a weird fight. In fact, the whole card is kind of weird, but not uninteresting. 

  • Gilbert Burns has the grit to emulate Nate Marquardt, but does he have the technique, or the chin?
  • Ivanov vs Sakai is a weird fight by heavyweight standards, which is to say that it might look sort of like a normal fight
  • Mackenzie Dern gets a bounceback
  • Katlyn Chookagian seeks to revenge herself on the sinister Shevchenko family
  • ...and more
Direct download: 318_Does_Woodley_get_Burned.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 9:37pm EDT

Connor and Phil talk about heavyweights, and then it's on to more uplifting matters, like robberies.

  • Of all the ways Walt Harris vs Alistair Overeem could have gone, we got both of them. And it was sad.
  • Angela Hill--ROBBED
  • Edson Barboza--ROBBED?
  • Chito Vera--probably not robbed, it was really close. In fact they were all pretty close.
  • Eryk Anders vs Krzysztof Jotko reassures us that the earth is healing, and that there will always be a middleweight division
Direct download: 317_Competitive_Fights_and_Tragic_Ends.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 9:15pm EDT

Connor and Phil lavish terrified praise on the newest version of Justin Gaethje, lest the next one come and find us.

  • Was Tony Ferguson finally shot, or did Trevor Wittman build the perfect machine to destroy him?
  • Henry Cejudo, the greatest combat athlete of all time, greater even than legendary pankratist Arrhichion, who paid for victory with his life, finally seems to know what he's doing, and then retires
  • How does Alistair Overeem beat Walt Harris? other than taking him down, obviously
  • Edson Barboza at featherweight.
  • Chito vs Yadong. Chito vs Yadong. CHITO VS YADONG.
Direct download: 316_JG-1000.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:58pm EDT

Connor and Phil talk UFC 249, and it's such a relief to have another UFC event to discuss, that thinking of Tony Ferguson hardly even makes them cry.

  • Tony Ferguson finally gets his shot... at oblivion. Justin Gaethje might not win, but if he does, it'll be the saddest end to a legendary win streak in history
  • Dominick Cruz would've been an easy pick over Henry Cejudo in his prime, so what's stopping him now? other than age, inactivity, and fourteen new debilitating injuries
  • Calvin Kattar vs Jeremy Stephens. Hell yeah
Direct download: 315_Numbered_Event_of_the_Beast.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 6:45am EDT

Another commentary episode for your quarantined asses. This time, Connor and Phil watch the title-winning performances of three of the UFC's most unique champions. 

  • The dawn of the Machida Era (and the birth of Shad face)
  • Ben Henderson blows up Frankie Edgar's nose with his mind
  • Dominick Cruz does bad technique in a good way, and who the hell is Brian Bowles
Direct download: 314_Weird_Kings.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 6:06pm EDT

Connor and Phil survey the blasted landscape of three of the UFC's strongest weight classes, and decide a new champion for each.

Coronavirus comes for all men, and UFC champions are no exception. Now that Henry Cejudo, Khabib Nurmagomedov, and Kamaru Usman have all taken terribly ill, we seed each champ's respective division with eight top contenders, and let them fight for the vacant throne. 

Let's hope the new kings disinfect the thing before sitting down.

Direct download: 313_Corona_Clash_2020.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 2:19pm EDT

Jordan Breen joins the show to watch the breakout moments of some MMA legends.

  • Khabib Nurmagomedov's UFC debut: awful, horrible, hideous striking--but obvious talent
  • Jose Aldo vs Alexandre Franca Nogueira: technique, speed, power--Jose Aldo's WEC debut clearly indicated how great his potential was
  • Jordan Breen talks about whatever Jordan Breen wants to talk about
Direct download: 312_Breakout_Fights_feat._Jordan_Breen.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 6:33pm EDT

Connor and Phil preview a couple of tenuous UFC 249 matchups and talk about some of MMA history's more underrated technicians (and action fighters).

  • What does Niko Price have to do differently to knock Vicente Luque out?
  • Chito Vera's much bigger than Ray Borg, but will that matter once Borg starts wrestling?
  • Chris Lytle, Martin Kampmann, Kazuo Misaki, and Mark Hominick--underrated technicians, all-time great action fighters
Direct download: 311_underrated_action_fighters.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 4:04pm EDT

Connor and Phil cover some of the biggest turning points in MMA history. This week, we're commentating three fights that led the way forward in our still-young sport. 

  • Mark Coleman vs Maurice Smith: the dawn of sprawl-and-brawl
  • Chuck Liddell vs Rampage Jackson: anti-grappling meets superior striking
  • Fedor Emelianenko vs Big Nog: BJJ gets absolutely smashed by the MMA ground game

 

Direct download: 310_MMA_Impressed_Us.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 2:41pm EDT

Man who go first do good. Man who go second do BAD. Unless...?

The Fight Site's Danny Martin joins us to discuss. 

  • Why are pressure, aggression, and volume so important in MMA?
  • Is good, systematic striking defense really possible in this sport?
  • How can a fighter seize the initiative without throwing the first punch?
  • And more!
Direct download: 309_Initiative_feat._Danny_Martin.mp3
Category:Technique Breakdown -- posted at: 1:58am EDT

The last UFC event for who-knows-how-long was full of superb grappling, and we brought in the Fight Site's Ben Kohn to help us break it all down.

  • Said Chucky Olives to the Motown Phenom: "We are not so different, you and I."
  • Maia and Yahya: does MMA put a hard ceiling on positional BJJ?
  • The extremely light heavyweight grappling of Nikita Krylov
  • and more! 
Direct download: 308_Brasilia_with_Ben.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 7:31pm EDT

Connor and Phil recap the excellent and the disappointing from UFC 248, and look forward to a STACKED fight night card.

  • The main event may have hurt both fighters' stock, but it was still a fascinating glimpse into the galaxy brains of Israel Adesanya and Yoel Romero
  • Thank GOD for the strawweights
  • Is the Tristar version of Kevin Lee aggressive enough to bully Charles Oliveira? 
  • Does Nikita Krylov beat Johnny Walker simply by having a good chin?
  • and more!
Direct download: 307_Strawweight_Saviors.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 11:38am EDT

Connor and Phil break down the two title fights set for UFC 248, and look back at Deiveson Figuereido's (almost) championship win.

  • Will Israel Adesanya carry an early lead down the stretch, or is Yoel's uncanny ability to lose until he wins enough to give us a Pereira-esque KO?
  • Zhang Weili is an athlete on par with Valentina Shevchenko, but a far shallower technician. So, will Joanna Jedrzejczyk win the last three rounds, or only the last two?
  • Joe B's heartbreaking defeat, and the seven minutes of brilliant action that preceded it
Direct download: 306_ufc_248.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 4:31pm EDT

Fight Site godfather and boxing historian Kyle McLachlan joins the show this week, not only to break down Tyson Fury's incredible win over Deontay Wilder, but to preview one of our most anticipated UFC fights of the year.

  • Joe Benavidez is probably the best to never win a belt, but Deiveson Figueiredo is the future of the division--is Joe B too old for destiny?
  • How did Tyson Fury dominate Deontay Wilder so thoroughly?
  • Did Paul Felder and Dan Hooker lift one another up, headfirst right into their shared ceiling?
Direct download: 305_Fury-Wilder_feat_Kyle_MacLachlan.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:52am EDT

Heavy Hands is back with a particularly ramble-y episode, in which we look forward to Paul Felder vs Dan Hooker, and try not to think too deeply about Diego Sanchez.

  • Can Paul Felder's gritty wear Dan Hooker down, or will he get shot to pieces at range?
  • Jimmy Crute vs Michael Oleksiejczuk, a light heavyweight matchup which is simultaneously very dumb and very intriguing
  • Jan of Rivia avenges another defeat
  • Diego Sanchez funny! And sad. Very FUNNY, though hahahaha! but sad

 

Direct download: 304_Felder_vs_Hooker.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 2:58pm EDT

This week on Heavy Hands we are very pleased to be joined by Tom Elliott (@Muay_Khaoboy), who made an excellent study of Jon Jones in his Elements of Dominance series. And while we planned to talk about lots more, we ended up spending (more than) an hour and a half just talking about Jones vs Reyes and the results of UFC 247.

  • What to make of this current version of Jon Jones? What isn't working, and what still impresses the hell out of us?
  • Dominick Reyes obviously had the tools to beat Jones--but what could he do better next time?
  • How many dully predictable wins will it take for Phil to stop haunting Valentina Shevchenko's Instagram comments?
  • Get well soon, Derrick Lewis! and Ilir Latifi's future at heavyweight
  • Has Mirsad Bektic Phil Davis'd himself?
Direct download: 303_REYES_REX_feat._Tom_Elliott.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 7:55pm EDT

This week on Heavy Hands, we're figuring Dominick Reyes' chances against the light heavyweight GOAT, and saying a prayer so that Katlyn Chookagian's soul might find peace in the afterlife.

  • Is Dominick Reyes as good as the light heavyweight champion, Thiago Santos?
  • The question is not whether Katlyn Chookagian loses, but whether she looks more like Holm or Carmouche in the effort
  • Is Dan Ige scrappy enough to take Mirsad Bektic out of his comfort zone?
  • Derrick Lewis betrayed us by becoming Actually Good, but he's still probably gonna win
Direct download: 302_Jones_vs_Reyes_and_NOTHIING_ELSE.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 6:45pm EDT

We've got a bit of a grab bag for you on this week's episode of Heavy Hands, what with so little of interest happening last weekend in Raleigh, and UFC 247 still a week away (and looking remarkably thin, at that). 

  • Rafael Dos Anjos was supposed to blow Michael Chiesa out of the water. He should have. What happened?
  • Three years ago Junior Dos Santos would have given Curtis Blaydes serious problems. Is he officially over the hill?
  • What good are pound-for-pound rankings?
  • In particular, what good are pound-for-pound rankings when they include the likes of Jessica Eye and Katlyn Chookagian?
  • Kamaru Usman: his chances of putting together a legendary reign, and the challengers most likely to stop him
Direct download: 301_RIP_RDA__JDS.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 6:59pm EDT

The vaping scooter gang takeover continues, as the Fight Site's Srirarm Muralidaran joins us to break down last week's fights, and (surprise) next week's fights, too. It's a good one, folks!

  • Conor McGregor did the thing he was always going to do to Donald Cerrone, who reacted in the way he always has
  • Holly Holm and Raquel Pennington conspired to put on a fight even more boring than their first one
  • Carlos Diego Ferreira surprised us, not by beating Anthony Pettis, but by using his best Nate Diaz impression to do it
  • How awesome is Roxanne Modafferi?
  • Is JDS a secret poison matchup for Curtis Blaydes?
  • Would it be funnier for RDA to finish Michael Chiesa with body shots, or leg kicks? 
Direct download: 300_UFC_246_feat_Sriram_Muralidaran.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 11:54am EDT

The UFC is back after a three-week hiatus, and so is Conor McGregor, though his own break was both longer and significantly more full of sexual assault allegations. MMA, folks! Our topics this week:

  • McGregor's gonna knock Cerrone out in round one--but what if HE DOESN'T?!
  • Does Claudia Gadelha have the physicality to stop Alexa Grasso overwhelming her down the stretch?
  • Carlos Diego Ferreira's long-overdue opportunity to break out
  • Drew Dober makes for a great foil, but does he actually have a shot at beating Nasrat Haqparast?
Direct download: 299_UFC_PR.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 4:36pm EDT

Connor and Phil claw their ways out of bed to compare Bellator champs to UFC champs. Then they die.

Direct download: 298_flu_edition.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:33pm EDT

Billy Crystal and Phil Mackenzie join forces once again to celebrate another absurd(ly technical) year in the world of MMA. 

That's right: here we are, once again, giving out Handies. And you're about to listen to it. Who had the best knockout of 2019? The best gameplan? What about the best gameplan that didn't actually work? Will Cody Garbrandt hold onto the coveted Worst Brain Thinking Award for the second year in the row? Who will take home the Patrick Wyman Memorial Award for Explosive Muscularity, and how could it not be Yoel Romero and Paulo Costa?

All of these burning questions answered, with only the slightest chance that you will experience a burning sensation in the bathroom. What better way to kick off 2020?

Direct download: 297_HANDIES.mp3
Category:UFC -- posted at: 10:58am EDT

1