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UFC 124: St-Pierre vs. Koscheck 2

Frank Botch

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AKA get us a buyrate on your own Georges. Struve as co main event? Jim Miller?? Anyway I'm sure GSP/Kos is enough to get a good buyrate but the rest of the card is pretty meh.

Georges St-Pierre (c) vs. Josh Koscheck​


Heavyweight bout: Stefan Struve vs. Sean McCorkle
Lightweight bout: Jim Miller vs. Charles Oliveira
Lightweight bout: Joe Stevenson vs. Mac Danzig
Welterweight bout: Thiago Alves vs. John Howard

Hoping Danzig can get back on track after a pretty bad recent run, admittedly I'm only a fan of his because he's a vegan but still. Thinking he'll drop down in weight either way. Alves/Howard might be cool..yeah only really interested in the main event.
 

Rikidozan

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I half-expected the UFC to book this show as pretty much a one-fight card, on one hand it's far from a stacked card (it's actually lower than usual), but on the other hand it's good to see the company giving a break to low-profile guys like Struve and McCorkle. I know it's beyond an obvious comparison, but Struve seems like the natural successor to Sem Schilt. Only good at MMA.
 

John Hancock

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The usual;

Georges St. Pierre vs. Josh Koscheck
Stefan Struve vs. Sean McCorkle
Jim Miller vs. Charles Oliviera
Joe Stevenson vs. Mac Danzig
Thiago Alves vs. John Howard
 
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I actually think this a thoroughly decent line-up, although Stevenson-Danzig couldn't possibly be less interesting.

Koscheck can win. He'll need the performance of his life, but I've believe for a little while now that if anyone in the division has the fundamental tools to take GSP out of his game, it's Kos. That said, St Pierre has many more ways to win, and his transitioning is far, far superior. The Champ to retain, either by submission in the championship rounds or by decision.

Miller and Howard respectively are those kind of "quiet" contenders- they don't immediately spring to mind as Top 5'ers, but looking at their recent records paints a decent arguement. Oliveira is awesome, whereas Alves desperately needs a convincing win, as he's been treading water since the Hughes fight, which was a long time ago now.

I hope Dan Miller-Joe Doerksen makes air, and that "El Dirte" can catch a long overdue break in the UFC. But- no exaggeration- the real highlight outside the main event for me is Dustin Hazelett's 155lb debut. I may be letting my unabashed fanboyism cloud my judgement here, but I could see "McLovin" sub every top UFC Lightweight I can think of. Go, Dustin!
 

Frank Botch

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Notes from the press conference:

The UFC today held a pre-fight press conference for UFC 124 in Montreal, Canada ahead of Saturday night’s event. In attendance were Dana White, GSP, Josh Koscheck, Stefan Struve and Sean McCorkle.

Check out the keynotes from the conference below.

- Dana White says they will break the attendance record (“over 23,000 fans”) and worldwide gate revenue (“over $5 million”) for Saturday’s show.

- The UFC president says he’s excited about the main event and expects it’ll be a “war” and says people aren’t giving Koscheck enough credit.

- GSP says it’s a special occasion for him to be fighting in front of his home fans, and it gives his friends and family a chance to come and see him compete. Regarding whether that puts more pressure on him he says he fights best when he’s under pressure.

- Sean McCorkle says it’s surreal for him to be up on stage with stars like GSP and Koscheck, and admits he’s just happy to be a part of the event. He then jokes that he’s worried Mark Hunt actually KO’d him in his last fight and that he’s currently in a coma dreaming about this.

- Koscheck believes he has got into GSP’s head with his trash-talking during the TUF show and says that as a result there’s now even more pressure on the champion to beat him.

- Looking back at their first fight Koscheck makes no excuses, saying that GSP came in with a smarter gameplan and won fair and square. He believes he’s a different fighter now though and expects a different outcome on Saturday night.

- Dana confidently states that GSP is the most famous athlete ever to come out of Canada. Later GSP says that Wayne Gretzky was his idol growing up and that he still aspires to be as successful as he was in his chosen sport. He does however concede that worldwide MMA is more popular than ice hockey.

- Dana shrugs off the notion that Koscheck may need extra security when he walks into a hostile arena on Saturday given his bad boy image. White says that MMA fans aren’t like that, and though they might shout and boo him they won’t attack him physically.

- “I plan on pissing off 23,000 people by knocking out Georges St.Pierre,” admits Koscheck, saying that he’s happy to be “the bad guy” if that’s what it takes to make money and be successful.

- “Koscheck is a dick, lets face it, but he’s not a bad guy,” Dana says bluntly. Koscheck then replies, “I’m a *****, not a dick.

- GSP denies he’s a boring fighter, saying sometimes there is a thin line between finishing a fight or not, pointing out that if he had managed to complete his first round submission attempt on Dan Hardy then nobody would be criticizing him. He notes that in two of his decision victories against Jon Fitch and Thiago Alves he knocked them both down during the stand-up exchanges.

He also points out that people discount the talent of fighters like Dan Hardy – “It’s not tomato cans I’m fighting,” and goes on to praise that Brit’s submission defense and says people should have focused on that more.

- Stefan Struve says he’s never fought a guy who trash talks as much as Sean McCorkle, and doesn’t like it but that he tries to just ignore it and focus on his training.

Struve then talks about his weight, saying that he wants to get up to 280-290lbs as his career progresses. He says he’s doing the weight gain gradually and doing it the right way and is happy with his progress in that regard [he mentioned in a recent interview that he's gained 10lbs in preparation for this fight.]

- Struve says he’s seen 4 or 5 of McCorkle’s fights on YouTube. He feels that he’s better than him on both the feet and the mat and adds that in Holland he fights with Kickboxers who are McCorkle’s size, so that shouldn’t be a problem.

- McCorkle says he’s not going to apologize for being funny and witty. He’s not concerned by people suggesting he’s not good enough to be fighting Struve and says that regardless of the outcome he’ll still be better looking.

- GSP admits that his goal is to be the greatest, that he’s aiming to be “the best of the best.” He says that if he beats Koscheck on Saturday then that’ll be the end of it as far as he’s concerned as he’ll have defeated him twice and he won’t be interested in fighting him again. He warns that if Koscheck loses then he will have to spend a very long time working his way back to the top.

- The fighters then did some face-offs for the cameras. Struve appeared to tower over McCorkle despite the fact he’s listed as 6ft 7″. Meanwhile Koscheck appeared very determined in his staredown with GSP.
http://www.fightofthenight.com/news/ufc-124-pre-fight-press-conference-notes/

Kos looked scared/nervous to me, GSP looked pretty intense though.
 
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John Hancock

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Koscheck been looking really, really nervous in all his interviews since arriving in Montrael. It makes me sad, he's ruining his d*ck-heel image by acting like a real human being.
 

Frank Botch

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MONTREAL - Georges St-Pierre made weight Friday, promising "the bully will get bullied" at UFC 124.

The 29-year-old welterweight champion from Montreal, who weighed in at 170 pounds, was referring to brash challenger Josh Koscheck.

The 33-year-old from Fresno, Calif., was greeted by a resounding chorus of boos when he emerged from behind a curtain at one end of the Bell Centre.

Koscheck (17-4) smiled and saluted the crowd as he made his way to the scales, where he weighed 169 in advance of Saturday's mixed martial arts showdown.

Then came St-Pierre, who bounded up the stairs to loud cheers.

The Canadian wasted little time on the scales, moving immediately over to the side of the stage to pose with Koscheck. St-Pierre stuck one fist in Koscheck's face, while the challenger raised both hands in a traditionally fighting stance.

Words were exchanged privately between the two.

"It is crazy," St-Pierre said afterwards on stage of the reception. "And tomorrow I guarantee you the bully will get bullied."

That drew a huge roar.

St-Pierre, who rarely lets his cool public facade drop, was uncharacteristically blunt on his bad intentions at UFC 124.

"(I'm) motivated but I'm going to fight smart," he added. "He tried to put me off track. That's what he wants, I'm not going to do it and I'm going to kick his ass tomorrow. I look for the knockout."

St-Pierre has talked of being bullied growing up, so his choice of words seemed to indicate his powerful motivation for the fight.

Koscheck seemed unfazed by the reception.

"Thanks for the great welcome," he said afterwards. "I plan on putting on a hell of a show tomorrow night.

"The talk is over ... Thanks for coming out, thanks for the boos, we'll see you tomorrow night when I put Georges St-Pierre to sleep," he added.

Heavyweight Sean (Big Sexy) McCorkle added some colour to the weigh-in by arriving in a red wig, which the six-foot-seven American removed before getting on the scales.

Toronto welterweight Sean Pierson opted for wraparound sunglasses.

All the fighters made weight, with six-foot-one Dustin Hazelett looking a gaunt 155 pounds for his debut at lightweight.
It's on dudes, GSP trash talking and sprinting all over the place.



And still shakes hands.
 

John Hancock

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GSP looks and sounds p*ssed as hell. The only reason he shock Koscheck's hand is because he wants to be the international poster boy for sportsmanship in MMA.

I'm actually going to buy this PPV. Ooooooh.
 

Frank Botch

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This will be the first UFC in a few months I stay up till 6am for, hopefully it's one of those cards that don't look great on paper but turn out awesome.

Couple more notes:

The only moment of drama in weigh-ins surrounded Thiago Alves. The welterweight has had issues making the division's limit in the past, and was told by UFC president Dana White that he was on his last chance. But under new strength and conditioning coach Mike Dolce, he seemed loose and relaxed, flashing a thumb's up after he made 171 pounds for his fight with John Howard.

The Montreal crowd was in a festive mood all day waiting for St. Pierre. At one point during a question-and-answer session with UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez, one fan proposed to his girlfriend. She said yes. At another point, the collected group of thousands sang "Happy Birthday" to a boy that will turn eight years old tomorrow.
Damn Canadians and their overall happiness.
 

DC

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I saw the little pre-hype vignette showing GSP and Koscheck running through people and then ripping their faces off the wall until they put up each a picture of each other.

That was pretty sweet.
 

Frank Botch

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Predictions:

Georges St. Pierre vs. Josh Koscheck
Stoppage, second or third.

Stefan Struve vs. Sean McCorkle
Jim Miller vs. Charles Oliviera

Joe Stevenson vs. Mac Danzig
Mac is choking this dude out.

Thiago Alves vs. John Howard

UFC.com are streaming the prelims because of some video game deal on spike, like DF i'm looking forward to Dustin's fight.

Mark Bocek vs. Dustin Hazelett

Joe Doerksen vs. Dan Miller

Also:

Dana White will offer a $100,000 bonus to be split between the two fighters who participate in tonight's Fight of the Night. And for the first time ever, he's letting the fans choose it.

Starting at 10 pm ET/7 pm PT, fans around the world can vote at www.UFCVote.com via computer, iPhone/iPad or Android phone -- you can change your mind throughout the night, but only your final vote will be counted.

At the end of the broadcast, votes will be tallied and Dana will announce the winning bout at the Post Fight Press Conference, which can be viewed live at UFCLive.com.
UFC.com
 
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John Hancock

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According to the official UFC Facebook, the fans are actually going to get the final say in who gets the Fight of the Night honors/bonuses. Nice touch.
 

Frank Botch

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I agree it's a good move, people are saying that GSP will win no matter what but I really doubt that.

Also it appears I'm the only person on the interweb calling a Danzig win.

Great quote from McCorkle: “Personally I can’t believe it’s not the main event. Who wants to see the two best welterweights in the world fight for a title, when you can watch two heavyweights trying to avoid “gatekeeper” status?
 
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Frank Botch

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Well there goes Dustin, way to embarrass me bro, awesome triangle by Bocek though.

Struve does NOT like McCorkle's face. But will McCorkle prove to be too good looking for Struve? Great hype there...
 
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