The last time EliteXC held a show on CBS, I typed in "EliteXC" into the search engine on CBS.com to find out the official name for the event. It returned zero results. Two days before the event and zero results. Well, earlier today I decided to see if CBS had changed things. This time it brought back 2 results, although the first link simply brings up the main page and the second is just the weekend TV listings. Again, this is a terrible sign for EliteXC.
I went ahead and chose the dumbest sounding new show on CBS and did a search for it. "The Mentalist" brings 3,405 hits. EliteXC is about to do their third show on CBS and they are 3,403 hits behind The Mentalist. The Mentalist!!! Why aren't there videos on CBS.com with EliteXC footage? I have always been shocked at how poorly MMA promotions stock their websites with content, but for EliteXC to miss out on a chance to show their product to millions of viewers each day on CBS.com makes me want to scream. Kimbo Slice videos regularly draw thousands of hits a day on Yardbarker. That is a site with no where near the volume CBS.com sees. Exclusive Kimbo content would not only help EliteXC, it would also drive numerous MMA fans to CBS.com, a site they almost never think about visiting. It is missed opportunities like this that have caused EliteXC to be within an eyelash of folding.
(Rear Naked News will have Live Results for EliteXC Heat this Saturday night. The Live Blogs are always a lot of fun. They are different from every other MMA website. You will not only get the play-by-play, you will also get my live and unfiltered take on the event - the fights, announcers, fans, entrances, everything. They end up being epic sized posts when they are finished, but it's always more interesting to follow along with the show.)
Murilo Rua vs Benji Radach
I'm still not quite sure why Rua was passed up for a shot at EliteXC Middleweight Champion Robbie Lawler. Instead Joe Villasenor will face Lawler on November 8. Never mind the beating Rua gave Villasenor a year and a half ago. I guess Villasenor's big win over Phil Baroni impressed the EliteXC brass. Rua was the man Lawler defeated to win the belt, and it's not like the first fight was a cakewalk. A rematch makes sense, but with EliteXC you have to suppress the urge to think logically. It probably boils down to money. Maybe they are worried about Rua winning back the title and asking for more money. Or maybe they are just idiots who have no idea what they are doing. As far as this fight goes, Radach has not fought in nine months and he will be making his debut with EliteXC. It is tough spot for him to succeed. Rua has more experience in big events and better overall fight skills. Like his brother, Mauricio, he can win a fight in numerous ways. I think Rua will be happy to stand with Radach. He will look for an opportunity to take him down following a clean strike. Despite Radach's solid wrestling ability, Rua will get the fight to the mat and work from the top. Do not be surprised if he ditches the offense and looks to tire Radach out in the first round. Conditioning questions have followed Radach around for most of his career. I believe Rua will land a big shot in the 2nd Round, get Radach down, and finish him with a flurry of punches and elbows.
Murila Rua Wins By 2nd Round TKO
Andrei Arlovski vs Roy Nelson
Some are trumpeting this fight like it's Liddell/Couture IV. While I think it will produce some stand-up fireworks, it lacks the drama of seeing Arlovski going toe to toe with another Top Ten Heavyweight. It's too bad Affliction dropped the ball and did not get in touch with Josh Barnett. Nelson should go right at Arlovski and try to bring him out of his comfort zone. If this fight turns into a technical boxing match, Arlovski will pick him apart from the outside. Nelson needs to get inside at times, use dirty boxing, then get out before Arlovski has time to counter. That is a tall order for Nelson. He will need to eat some shots throughout the fight for the good of his offense. It is the only way I see him lasting, other than Arlovski walking into a random haymaker. I think from now on we should call haymakers "widowmakers". It sounds better and the world could use more Barry Windham references. The fight might last longer than most think. Arlovski has sacrificed some power in his punches for better technique. Rather than knocking Nelson out with one punch, he will hurt him over time with the cumulative effects of numerous strikes. I think this one ends early in the 2nd by TKO.
Andrei Arlovski Wins by 2nd Round TKO
Paul Daley vs Jake Shields (Welterweight Champion)
This match-up does not favor Daley at all. His striking, especially Muay Thai, is top notch and on par with any one at 170 lbs or less. The problem he runs into is Jake Shields is bigger, a better wrestler, and knows how to finish fights on the ground. You will know how the fight will turn out in the first two minutes. If Daley's takedown defense deters Shields, he has at least some time to connect on his feet. Shields is on a tear right now, though. Even if Daley gets through the early moments, it will be difficult for him to stay off the mat as he tires in the later rounds. I do not see him pacing himself, either. It will be an all or nothing proposition for Daley in the 1st Round. I think this one will not make it too long. Shields will enforce his will from the start and not let Daley find his range. From there it is only a matter of time before he sinks in a submission and continues his win streak. Hopefully the next time we see him is in January at the Affliction PPV fighting some top talent.
Jake Shields Wins by 1st Round Submission
Kimbo Slice vs Ken Shamrock
How awesome would it be if Shamrock's cornermen bring a sarcophagus into the cage then the lid pops off and out jumps Ken in full Mummy gear? It would be the greatest entrance ever. Even better than Hulk Hogan in his prime. Kimbo would probably forfeit due to awe. I really do not see any other way Shamrock has a chance in this bout. Readers keep emailing me about Shamrock's submission skills. Does any one realize the last time he submitted a fighter was a month before the 9/11 Attacks? Pretty much all of his submissions came in the mid 1990s when most fighters did not bother to train jiu-jitsu skills. This is not to say he is overrated. In his time he was a top fighter, but the sport has evolved exponentially. Even an inexperienced fighter like Kimbo has a better knowledge of submission defense than most of Shamrock's opponents in the 90s. To me Shamrock's stand-up defense, which equates to blocking fists with his head, is more suspect than Kimbo's on the ground. There is also the size issue. Kimbo will have a significant weight advantage. He should be able to power his way out of any trouble to avoid takedowns. Look for this one to end early following 4-5 bombs from Slice. After the fight Shamrock will proclaim Kimbo to be a legit fighter. No one will believe him because he's a 5000 year old Mummy.
Kimbo Slice Wins by 1st Round TKO