Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Road to the gold

Former UFC champions and their path back to the top

With his victory this past Saturday over Evan Dunham, Sean Sherk is on the first step back to regaining the UFC Lightweight title, a belt he was stripped of back in 2007 after testing positive for Nandrolone.

While the UFC has been making new stars, Sherk and other former UFC champions are stepping up their game and accumulating, with hopes of one day getting back their title.

Former champions getting title shots

Rashad Evans, a former Light Heavyweight champion, is getting a shot against current champion Mauricio Rua in spring or summer of 2011, according to MMAJunkie.  He had won the opportunity to face Rua after defeating Quinton Jackson, another former light heavyweight champion.

Another ex champion getting a title shot is Vitor Belfort.  Belfort, who won the UFC light heavyweight title in 2004, will be fighting UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva for the title after Chael Sonnen, who was scheduled to face Silva in a rematch, tested positive for performance enhancing drugs.  Sonnen was recently suspended

Belfort had initially won the right to face Silva after defeating Rich Franklin last September, but would have had to put his contendership on the line against Yushi Okami at UFC 122.  He was pulled out of the fight and replaced by Nate Marquardt, with the winner getting a title match against the winner of Belfort vs. Silva.

Hall of Famers and future Hall of Famers eyeing another title

At the heavyweight level, former heavyweight champion and interm heavyweight champion Frank Mir could be on the track back to the heavyweight title after his recent knock out victory over Mirko Filipovic.

Randy Couture, a former heavyweight champion, light heavyweight champion, and UFC Hall of Famer, could be put right back into the title picture.  Since moving back to the light heavyweight division, he has won his last three fights (though his fight with James Toney was classified as heavyweight). 

In an interview with On Portland, Couture said he would fight then light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida if that was what the UFC had wanted.

Matt Hughes, another UFC Hall of Famer could be on the track to a third welterweight title.  He has won his last three fights, all against Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specialists.  He is scheduled to face B.J. Penn at UFC 123 and another win could put up for a title shot.

Tito Ortiz, another former light heavyweight title holder, said in an interview with Joe Rogan that he wants to win another world title.

Former champs who are just not there yet
Some former champions have a potential of getting back to the title picture, but the moment they seem like they are getting ready to get back their title, they end up losing their next fight. 

Franklin, a fomer middleweight champion has won six of his nine last fights since losing the title to Anderson Silva back in 2006.

After his knock out victory over Chuck Liddell, he was asked whether or not he was staying at the middleweight level, or going up to the light heavyweight weight class.  Franklin said it that decision would be up to Dana White and Joe Silva.

The winner of the Machida and Jackson fight at UFC 123 could also be pushed in the right direction to a title shot.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Bader reaches new heights with win over Lil Nog

Ryan Bader, a mixed martial fighter who fights in UFC’s light heavyweight division has faced his hardest opponent at UFC 119, Antonio Rogerio “Minitoro” Nogueira.  Bader defeated Nogueira by unanimous decision.

With the biggest career Bader, who is currently 12-0 in his MMA career, what is next for him after defeating Nogueira.

According to an interview with Fight Line, Bader says that he thinks he is pretty close to a title shot, but he still has a lot to learn.

“Ultimately my goal is to have the belt some day,” Bader said.  “It's up to the UFC who they want to put me against.

Bader was born and raised in Reno.  He was a high school state wrestling champion, and Division 1 wrestler in college.  He made his MMA debut in 2007.  He first showed up in the UFC on the eighth season of The Ultimate Fighter, winning the overall competition.  Since winning The Ultimate Fighter, Bader has earned victories over Keith Jardine and Eric Shafer. 

He currently trains with Power MMA and Fitness.

While a title shot is the ultimate goal for Bader, there are other opponents he will have to go through before getting a title shot.  According to the Bleacher Report, Bader’s next opponent may be Jon Jones, who is also rising in the light heavyweight division.  Jones has earned victories over Brandon Vera and Vladimir Matyushenko. 

Tomas Rios, a Sherdog writer thinks Bader’s next fight should be against Rich Franklin.

Other possible opponents for Bader include Matt Hamill, Tito Ortiz, and maybe even Quinton Jackson.

Whether his next fight is against a legend, or another Ultimate Fighter contestant, Bader knows he has a challenge ahead of him.

Whoever's next, it's going to be a tough fight, no matter what,” Bader said.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Shields to debut at UFC 121

Jake Shields,  former Strikeforce Middleweight champion will make his UFC debut in October against Martin Kampmann at UFC 121: Lesnar vs. Velasquez.  Shields, whose fight record stands at (25-4-1) will be fighting in the welterweight division.

Shields had left Strikeforce during the renegotiation period of his fight contract.  During the period where Shields was a free agent, UFC President Dana White said he would have paid a large sum to take one of Strikeforce’s champions, according to Fighters Only Magazine

In an interview with Fighters Only Magazine, Shields said that he liked the idea of fighting current UFC Welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre and UFC Middleweight champion Anderson Silva.

Shields’ departure was not without controversy.  Not only did he leave Strikeforce while he was the organization’s middleweight champion, Shields had also engaged in a brawl with Jason “Mayhem” Miller moments after fighting Henderson.  According to Shedog’s website, Sheilds was one of the fighters that was fined and suspended.

Although Shields is gone from Strikeforce, he does have his supporters from the organization.  In an interview with MMA Weekly Gilbert Melendez, Shields training partner and the current Strikeforce Lightweight champion, said he thinks Shields will do well in UFC.

“Of course I wish he was still here with me in Strikeforce,” Melendez said.  “But he’s got to do what he’s got to do and I support him 100 percent.”

Shields’ other  accomplishments include championships the EliteXC Welterweight title, Shooto Middleweight title, and Rumble on the Rock Welterweight tournament winner.  He also has notable wins over Robbie Lawler and Paul Daley

Shields was also featured on the MTV show Bully Beatdown hosted by Miller, and was an assistant coach on the Ultimate Fighter Season 11 for Team Liddell.

If Shields win his debut match against Kappmann, he could be quickly thrown inline for a title shot in the future.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

UFC 119 Predictions

Heavyweight bout: Frank Mir vs. Mirko Filipovic'

Winner:  Filipovic by knock out

In this battle of two heavyweight legends, I am going with Filipvoc ’s striking and devastating kicks over Mir‘s ground game and submission expertise. 

I am not counting Mir out, as he has an advantage over Filipovic’s eagerness to take a fight so soon after his match against Patrick Barry.  Filipovic’s injury could also have a factor into this match.

Light Heavyweight bout: Antônio Rogério Nogueira vs. Ryan Bader

Winner: Bader by decision

Bader is coming into this fight with 11 wins and no losses while Nogueria is currently at 19 wins and three losses.  I am going Bader to go the distance with the younger Nogueria brother and earn the judges’ decision.

Ironically Bader won the Ultimate Fighter season 8 as part of Aontonio Rodrigo Nogueria’s team

Welterweight bout: Matt Serra vs. Chris Lytle

Winner: Serra by decision

Lytle is not only coming into this match with a three fight winning streak, but he also looking to avenge the loss he suffered at Serra’s hands at the Ultimate Fighter 4 finale.  Serra is also coming into this fight with a bit of momentum juice after running Frank Trigg out of the UFC last Feburary. 

Like Trigg, Serra will beat Lytle again, and like their previous bout, it will go to a decision.  This rematch between these two could decide a future contender for a welterweight title. 

Lightweight bout: Sean Sherk vs. Evan Dunham

Winner: Dunham by submission

Dunham is another fighter who is coming into tonight’s event with an undefeated streak  and like Bader, he has a formidable foe in Sherk, a former UFC Lightweight champion. 

While Sherk may be looking to continue his path towards regaining the lightweight title, Dunham will step in the way and throw a wrench in the former champ’s plan in the form of a submission

Lightweight bout: Melvin Guillard vs. Jeremy Stephens

Winner: Guillard by knock out

Guillard has faced problems in the last couple of years, and has seemed to overcome his problems.  Like Stephens he is coming into the fight with a two-fight winning streak. 

This bout will end quick with Guillard getting the knock out.

Undercard bouts

Middleweight bout: C.B. Dollaway vs. Joe Doerksen

Winner: Doerksen by knock out

Heavyweight bout: Matt Mitrione vs. Joey Beltran

Winner: Mitrione by knock out

Lightweight bout: Thiago Tavares vs. Pat Audinwood

Winner: Audinwood by decision

Lightweight bout: Steve Lopez vs. Waylon Lowe

Winner: Lopez by decision

Welterweight bout:  TJ Grant vs. Julio Paulino

Winner: Paulino by knock out

Heavyweight bout: Mark Hunt vs. Sean McCorkle

Winner: McCorkle by knock out

UFC 119 web preview

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Dutch fighter going for Strikeforce gold

Dutch fighter Marloes "Rumina" Coenen will step into the cage once again as she faces undefeated fighter and Strikeforce Welterweight champion Sarah Kaufman.

Coenen, whose record is currently at 17 wins and four losses, is looking to end Kaufman’s undefeated streak and take her championship at Strikeforce: San Jose, which takes place October 9.  Her last fight was against Strikeforce Middleweight Champion Cristane Santos, which ended with Santos winning by TKO in the third round.

Although she had sustained injuries in the fight with Santos, Coenen’s said  in a Strikeforce conference call, she had learned a lot from her loss to Santos.

“I stepped in and I was convinced I could KO her and it didn’t work,” Coenen said.  “Everything has healed and I have proven to myself that I can take a punch, and in a weird way, it feels really good.”

Although her fight with Kaufman is at a lower weight class, Coenen said that dropping weight will not be an issue.  She said her trainers are working with her to drop the weight.

“I have two experts who are coaching me and have created a diet plan, and are telling me when to eat, how to eat and when to take vitamins and I will be on weight,” Coenen said.

Born and raised in the Netherlands, Coenen started training in martial arts at the age of 14.  She trained with Shooto Holland under trainer and mixed martial arts veteran Martijn de Jong, according to her website.  Coenen won her first amateur bout in 20 seconds and debuted professionally in 2000, against Yuuki Kondo.  The fight ended with Coenen winning by submission two and a half minutes into the first round.

Some of Coenen’s accomplishments include winning the 2000 ReMix World Cup and earning victories  in different MMA promotions around the world. 

Since debuting in Strikeforce, Coenen has one half of her fights.  She avenged her loss against Roxanne Modaeffri, who previously beat her in the K-GRACE tournament finals.

Coenen currently trains with Team Golden Glory.  In addition to fighting, Coenen is wanting to study in Communications Sciences in Amsterdam.

Coenen, who is known for her striking and ground game, said her training regiment is the same, while only a small percentage is dedicated to her sparring with someone at Kaufman‘s size.

We have a special wrestling coach, and we work on wrestling techniques, and I train with a lot of guys who are smaller,” Coenen said.

Coenen also said that while she is expecting every possible scenario, she thinks the majority of the fight will be a standup and striking game.

“Sarah is a striker and I like to dish out as well,“ Coenen said. 

In the same conference call, Kaufman said that while Coenen is moving down from 145 lbs to 135 lbs, her training has not been any different.

“It doesn’t matter who they fought before, and where they just came from and I though Marloes looked really good in the fight with Cyborg,” Kaufman said.  “My training has been just as intense and I am expecting just as tough of a fight as I’ve ever had.”

Whether or not she defeats Kaufman, Coenen is scheduled to compete at the Ultimate Glory 12 event seven days after Strikeforce: San Jose. 


Transcript of Strikeforce conference call

Strikeforce: San Jose preview

Team Golden Glory

Friday, September 17, 2010

Pride and kickboxing star to debut at UFC 119

Pride fighting veteran Mark Hunt will make his UFC debut against undefeated Sean McCorkle at UFC 119: Mir vs. CroCop.

Hunt, who is known for his raw power, his striking ability, and a tough chin debuted in Pride back in 2004.  According to his Pride FC profile, the 36-year-old Hunt was raised in Auckland New Zeland, growing up in a large family.

While he has spent a long time in martial arts, Hunt never actually intended to be a fighter.  According to his Pride profile, Hunt was involved at an altercation at a night club.  It was there he got the attentions of the bouncers who convinced him to train.

While Hunt is considered a star in MMA, he could also be seen as the underdog in his fight with McCorkle.  He has lost his last five fights, his most recent was back in May, against Gerard Mousasi at the Super Hulks Grand Prix tournament for the DREAM fighting promotion.

Hunt’s fighting record is at five wins and six losses.  Although his lossesexceeds his wins, Hunt has wins over fighters such as Wanderlei Silva and Mirko “CroCop” Filipovic.

In addition to his MMA career, Hunt is an accomplished kick boxer, with 30 wins and 13 losses.  His accolades in the kick boxing world include winning the 2001 K-1 World Grand Prix champion.

To prepare for his fight against McCorkle, Hunt has been training with American Top Team, who is known for training such fighters as Bobby Lashley, Cole Miller, and Thiago Silva.

American Top Team posted on their site: We were honored he has chosen to train with us in preparation for his upcoming bout against undefeated fighter Sean McCorkle.

McCorckle, who currently holds a record of nine wins and zero losses, was surprised to be fighting Hunt, who he considers a legend.  In an interview with ProMMANow, McCorkle said fighting Hunt in front of his hometown will be the strangest feeling in the world.

“I was kind of hoping it would be someone I don‘t like,” McCorkle said. 

While McCorkle will have the distraction of fighting in front of his hometown, Hunt will have a lot to prove in his UFC debut.  If he loses this one, this may be his only match in the UFC and one of the last chances he has to put his MMA career back on track.


Mark Hunt's Pride profile

UFC 119 preview

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Miss Falfaren at the golf course

Miss Falfaren and the Golf Course


The elf Ireniana Falfaren was carrying her bag of golf clubs as she arrived at the third hole, much to the amusement of her friend Melissa Tarrsburough. Falfaren cursed as she was already behind her halfling companion by three strokes.

Melissa smiled as she placed her ball on the tee.  She looked into the distance and spotted the yellow flag that designated the hole.  “Halflings have a distinct advantage over golf as we were the ones who invented it.”

Falfaren also looked into the distance.  Her elven eyesight that could see into the distance, gave her a clearer vision of the hole.  “You also have an advantage because you have spent many years playing this game.”

The halfling whistled as she brought back her longnose club, then hit the ball.  Both she and Falfaren stared in astonishment as the ball a few feet away from the hole.

“Years of experience indeed,” Melissa said as she began to walk towards her ball.

Falfaren sighed as she placed the ball on tee.  Both she and her partner had been recommended Barebones golf course by Captain Nestor Rogers.  Although she had never played golf, Falfaren would not pass up a chance to get out of Mauertain and try a new sport.

The elf let out a cough the moment her club hit the ball.  She cursed as she watched it soar into the air and land in a sand bed that was close to a group of pinewood trees.

Falfaren rolled her eyes as picked up her bag and walked towards the sand bed.  Melissa, who noticed where her friend’s ball had landed, walked over.  “Ireni, it happens to everyone.”

Falfaren muttered another elven curse as she stepped into the sand bed.  As she was reaching for her ball, she felt her foot hit something hard and stiff.

She quickly brushed away the sand, revealing a decomposing body of a female gnome.  “Melissa, I think we may need to postpone our game for another day.”

The halfling stared at the body while Falfaren looked over the oval shaped bruises and dents on the victim’s face and arms.  “The bruises, do you think she may have beaten to death?”

Falfaren ran her fingers through the victim’s auburn hair.  She felt a lump at around the center.  “My dear Melissa, I think we need to go back to the clubhouse.”


Falfaren and Melissa walked into the clubhouse, carrying their bags.  The owner, a stout dwarf named Hartlin Ironspear stood at a wooden counter, surrounded by displays of golf clubs and paintings of friends playing golf.  “Well ladies that was quick.  Either you set a new record for completing the course , or you quit halfway through your game.”

“Actually, we came across a problem on the course-” Falfaren began before the dwarf held up his hands and pointed to the oak sign that read No Refunds.

Melissa shook her head.  “Actually Mr. Hartlin, we have to speak with you about something.  Earlier today, was there a young gnome maiden who came to the course?  Or perhaps earlier this week?”

Hartlin scratched his beard, his voice tense.  “Yes, her name is Agigale Wolfenshot.  She usually comes in to practice.  Did you end up crossing paths with her?”

Falfaren titled her head.  “Not exactly, we actually came across her body at the sand bed on the third hole.  It looks like she was beat to death.”

The dwarf was silent.  The elf looked at some of the cherrywood clubs on display at the window when she asked.  “I take it you were close with her.”

Hartlin shrugged.  “Not very well, but I know that she was a fierce competitor.  Agigale never liked it when anyone game into her game.  I admit that it is a bit heartbreaking because she wanted to win the tournament.”

Falfaren and Melissa looked at each other as they both asked,” What tournament?”

Harlin looked at a sword that was displayed on the wall.  “To commemorates my six month anniversary of opening the course, I am holding a tournament.  You see, the tournament will be taking place on the same that that the Battle of Barebones took place hundreds of years ago.”

Falfaren raised an eyebrow.  “The Battle of Barebones was a conflict between dwarves and ogres, or something like that?”

Melissa shook her head.  “Actually, it was a conflict between the two merchants that settled in this region.  Apparently there was dispute about payment and shares of treasure the merchants had found in a nearby dragon’s cave.”

Hartlin nodded as a beardless, muscular dwarf walked in.  Behind him was a tall, male elf and a human woman wearing a red dress.

“Corin, what is this about?” asked the owner of the golf course.

Corin let out a breath.  “I tried to keep them from coming up here Uncle Hartlin, but they insisted.”

Falfaren and Melissa stood back as the male elf stepped forward and said.  “This course is unsanitary.  You have gophers running around, digging holes.”

“And pixies coming from the forest, causing trouble.  Look what they did to my arm,” added the woman, showing her wrist that was covered in scratches. 

Hartlin shook his head.  “Lord and Lady Winddelver, you have my deepest apologies.”

The elf addressed as Lord Windelver looked at Falfaren and Melissa.  “I am sure these young ladies have also found this course to be atrocious.”

Melissa shrugged her shoulders.  “Other than the dead body we found, I would say this course is adequate.”

Both Lord and Lady Windelver looked at each other.  Mrs. Windelver said,” A body, this is worse situation than we previously thought.”

Lord Windelver nodded and looked at Harlin.  “Mark our word, this course will be shut down.”

“But you can’t, not before the tournament,” Harlin objected as the couple was walking out of the club house.

Lady Windelver looked back at the dwarf. “If we have our way, there will be no tournament.”

Harlin sighed walked to his office as Corin went to the back of the counter.  “This course has been open only for six months, and now it is going to be shut down.”

Falfaren kept her attention focused on the door.  “Who was that?”

Corin leaned close to the elf and the halfling.  “That was Zelawin Windelver and his wife Gretta.  They are artifact collectors who come here to play.  Whenever they have a problem, or just want information about the course, they come to me, although they have not been able to give me a moment’s peace for the last two days.”

Melissa examined a couple of the clubs.  “It seemed the woman mentioned a pixie.  Who would she be talking about?”

Corin tapped his fingers on the table.  “Tormie is one of the pixies who live in the forests that surround the golf course.  He and his people have a tendency of pestering us and our customers.”

Falfaren tipped her fedora as she looked at Melissa.  “The crime scene, then we should see if we can talk to this pixie.”


Falfaren examined the bruises on the body and brushed some of the sand away while Melissa was looking around the trees that were four feet away from the sand bed.  The halfling glanced at some notches that were scratched into the tree’s bark.  She looked at the next tree and noticed the same type of notches.  “I wonder if the pixies who lived in the forest made some of these, just like on the Windelver woman’s arm.  Have you found anything?”

Falfaren traced her finger over the gnome’s forehead.  “This feels like it was caved in, like someone hit her several times in the same spot.”

Melissa jumped into the sand bed and looked at the corpse.  She stared at the arms, and saw two of the bruises had jagged indents in the center.  “These could have been caused a club.”

Falfaren looked at the bruises.  “But where is this club?.  It is possible that the killer could have beaten Agigale with her own club and could have taken it.”

“Or hidden it somewhere,” added Melissa.  She took another look at the tree and noticed a small and slender winged man sitting on a tree branch. 

Melissa approached the man while Falfaren stood behind her.  “Who are you and how long have you been there?”

Falfaren smiled and answered,” It is obvious that this Tormie.  Unfortunately sir, but you are trespassing on an investigation.”

The pixie straightened his spiky blue hair and said.  “Excuse me, but you are the ones who seem to be trespassing.  These trees are the property of my ancestors.”

“And this golf course is the property of Harlin,” Falfaren argued before approaching the pixie with her putting iron.

The pixie held up his hands to try and calm the elf.  “ Listen, my name is Tormie Wingspinner and I am the chief of the pixies who live in this forest.”

Falfaren pointed to the body.  “I see, and Chief Tormie, you would not know anything about the death of Miss Agigale, would you?”

The pixie flew over to the sand bed and looked into it.  “Not really, but I do know something about the life of Miss Agigale.  She was not the easiest person to get along with on the course.  She hated it whenever someone would interfere with her game.”

Melissa looked at the pixie and asked,” And how you know this?”

Tormie paused for a moment, then answered,” I watch things and hear things from the trees.  On more than one occasion, this gnome would shout out loud whenever someone was moving too slow.  The last time she argued with someone, they had to call Corin over.”

“And do you know Gretta Windelver?”  questioned Falfaren.

Tormie let out a snort.  “Of course I know that one.  that old hag and her husband are always walking around like they own the course.  They are not even good golfers, always hitting the balls into the forest.”

“She accused you of attacking her.”

Tormie flew right next to Falfaren.  “Is that what she told you?  Did she mention that she came at me with her grass driver.  I could only fight back with my longnose driver.   If you excuse me ladies, I have to see to my people.  Perhaps you both should watch yourselves.”

As the pixie flew away, Melissa turned to Falfaren.  “Windelver did not attacking him.”

Falfaren nodded and watched the pixie disappear into the forest.  “He also said that he fought back with his club, not his hands.”

Just as they were about to lreturn to Agigale’s body, they saw Corin approaching them.  The dwarf had a somber look on his face.  “Ladies, I just found another body at the ninth hole.”


Falfaren and Melissa spent two hours around the dead body of a slender half-orc that was six inches away from the ninth hole.  The elf found similar bruises on the body while Melissa noticed small claw marks near the nasal and eye cavity. 

“Do you think it is the same person who did this?” asked Corin.

Falfaren shrugged as she followed Melissa around the hole.  “Who did you say this man was?”

“He was William Bloodclaw, one of the golfers who had sent us a letter saying he was going to enter the tournament.”

Falfaren raised an eyebrow.  “How widely known was this tournament?”

Corin shrugged.  “Harlin announced it three weeks ago.  He sent letters to several inns around the region. “William was the third to arrive and officially sign up for the tournament.”

The elf smiled.” I take it the Windelvers were the first two to sign up.”

As Corin nodded, Melissa let out a shout as she reached into the hole and pulled out what appeared to be a metal tee.  “I think we may have found something.”

The halfling brought it over to the dwarf.  “It appears to be a small metal tee.  Corin, do you sell these at the shop?”

The dwarf shook his head.  “No, but I do recognize the tiny lightning bolt on the top.  This is something that belonged to the Thunderspear orc tribes from the west, possibly a dart.”

Both Falfaren and Melissa looked at the dwarf before he added,” Before I came to work for Harlin, I was a member of the Lore Seekers.”

Melissa pointed her finger at the dwarf.  “I have heard of them.  They travel the world looking for historical artifacts. 

Corin nodded.  “Yes, but that was another lifetime ago for me.”

Falfaren looked around and said,” We may have to convince Harlin to close the course for a day or two.  Just enough to give us the time we need to solve the murders.”

The dwarf shrugged. “I can talk to Harlin, but he is pretty stubborn.  He wants to make sure the players get as much practice before the tournament.”

Falfaren looked at the body.  “That is admirable, but if more bodies keep appearing there will be no competitors left for the tournament.”

The dwarf sighed and walked away, before muttering to himself.


At sunset, Falfaren and Melissa were approached by Harlin at the clubhouse.  “Corin told me what you both had in mind.  If closing the course for a night means these murders will be solved, then I will go along with it.”

Falfaren smiled and patted Harlin’s shoulder.  “You will not regret this Harlin. 

“If it helps, you can look around here.  Just let me know if you find anything,” the owner said before walking out of the door.  Melissa quietly walked behind the counter while Falfaren examined some of the putting cleeks.  “Do you think the club could here?”

Falfaren shook her head as she examined a set of steel irons that were on display in the shop’s window.  “Nothing I found seems to match the bruises we found on the bodies, though I think I may have to purchase a set of clubs before we are done.”

The halfling smirked as she opened a drawer and placed a stack of papers on the counter.  “Sadly Ireniana, you will need more than the right set of clubs before you are able to beat me.”

“But having the right set does help.”

Melissa flipped through the papers until she noticed a crudely drawn map in the middle of the stack.  “That it does, but look what I found.”

As she placed the map on the table, Melissa and Falfaren looked over the map.  The elf traced her finger around several black dots on the map.  “This resembles the golf course, except it has no boundaries of where the holes, the sand beds, or the lakes are at.”

Falfaren looked at the note and shook her head, remembering the receipt Harlin had written them that morning.  “It is not Harlin’s handwriting.”

Melissa looked at her friend.  “Could it be Corin’s map?”

The elf looked at the map once more, noticing two areas outlined in red ink.  “There are a couple of areas that are marked.  One of them is near where William’s body was found.  The other appears to be on the path to the eleventh hole.”

Melissa put the map back in the drawer.  “Then it is off to the eleventh hole, after some supper of course.”


Falfaren and Melissa arrived at the hole just as the sun was going down.  The elf was the first to find small wooden steaks planted into the ground.  “What could these be for?”

Melissa walked six steps away from Falfaren and found a bent steak in the grass.  “Whoever planted these markers here was looking for something.”

Falfaren nodded and grabbed the steak closest to her foot.  As soon as she pulled it from the ground, a surge of electricity went up her arm and tossed it to the ground.  “Whoever put these in the ground does not want them to be found.”

Falfaren walked towards her friend, but stopped as she felt a sharp tip penetrate through her coat and into her left shoulder.  She bit her lip as she pulled the arrow shaft from her shoulder.  “Someone knows we are here.”

Melissa reached onto her belt and pulled her dagger.  She looked to Falfaren, who was holding her putter like a sword.  When she noticed the halfling’s confused look, Falfaren rolled her eyes.  “It can be used as a weapon.”

The elf turned to her left, barely avoiding the arrow that zipped past her head.  Once the arrow hit a nearby tree, she noticed a figure dressed in black hiding in the bushes.  “Six feet in front of me Melissa.”

The halfling looked past Falfaren and saw the shooter.  She tossed the dagger towards the figure, who screamed as the dagger went through their hand.  The stranger pulled the dagger from their hand, tossed it and their bow to the ground, then began running into the forest.”

Melissa ran towards the bushes to retrieve her dagger.  “Should we follow them?”

Falfaren shook her head as Melissa approached her, carrying both weapons.  “My dear Melissa, I think we best get back to the club house.  I think we have one of the murder weapons.”

Melissa raised an eyebrow.  “The bow?”

The elf showed her the wavy tip of the arrow that had struck her.  “This arrow tip is what made the indent inside of the bruises on both William and Agigale.”

“Then we should get to the club house.  Maybe Corin would know something about how these arrows were made.”


When Melissa and Falfaren arrived at the club house, they found a perky blond haired halfling standing behind the counter, cleaning one of the clubs.  When she noticed the elf and the other halfling, she shook her head.  “Can I help you ladies?”

Falfaren waved her hand.  “We are looking for Harlin.  Who might you be?”

“I am Tara and I work the evening shift for Mr. Harlin.  He left an hour ago, but he still may be wandering the course.”

The elf looked at her friend, then back at Tara.  “You say he may be wandering around the course?”

Tara nodded as she placed the club aside.  “Mr. Harlin likes to walk around the course and inspect it before he goes home.”

Falfaren was about to ask another question when Harlin walked through the door.  The elf noticed the way he wiped his face with his sleeve.  “What is wrong Harlin?”

The dwarf walked towards Falfaren and Melissa.  “Thank goodness I found you both here.  It is Corin.  I found his body near the sand bed where you found Agigale.”

Falfaren looked at Harlin.  “You found Corin’s body?”

The dwarf nodded.  “It was full of arrows and scratches.  And the bastard just left him there.”

Tara was speechless at the dwarf’s words.  The elf looked at Melissa and said.  “We have to go look at this.  Harlin, you come with us.”

Harlin nodded, then looked at Tara.  “You best protect yourself.  The killers may be around here.”

“I have the dog Mr. Harlin.  You best help Corin.”

That said, the dwarf followed Melissa and Falfaren out the door.


Falfaren and Melissa stared at Corin’s body while Harlin stood back, armed with two long-nose woods.  Melissa was the first to notice the four arrows stuck in the dwarf’s back.  Harlin turned around and noticed a group of six golfers watching Falfaren and Melissa look around Corin’s body.  “Ladies, we have some company.”

The elf tipped her fedora and glanced at the crowd.  “I heard them arrive Harlin.  It is no use hiding it any longer.  We will have to tell them of the dead bodies.”

Before Harlin could address the crowd, whispers filled the air.  Harlin held his hands up, hoping to calm his customers.  “Please folks, we only found these bodies today.”

Gretta Windelver emerged from the ground.  “So we have more dead bodies, do we?  Well Harlin, it seems you will have to shut down this abomination of a course after all.”

This brought shouts and cursing from the rest of the crowd.  As they began to quiet, Falfaren looked at Gretta and said,” It is convient for you to be here, but I do not see your husband.”

The woman sneered at the elf.  “Zelawin is taking care of some business.”

Falfaren smirked as Lord Windelver came through the crowd and stepped next to his wife.  She glanced at the bandage he wore on his right hand and her eyes widened.  “ Lady Windelver, I can tell you that there are three victims, but you know .  The first two bodies have bruises However, they appeared to also have small puncture wounds where the bruises cover them.  Yet Corin’s body displays several puncture wounds.”

Melissa walked over to the Windelvers.  “May I have your clubs please?”

Zelawin reached into his bag and handed the halfling two of his clubs.  Melissa glanced at them and looked at Falfaren.  Lord Windelver smiled as  the halfling stared at them.  “As you can see, these clubs are clean.”

The halfling tossed one of the clubs to her partner.  Falfaren looked them over and shook her head.  “These were not the clubs you had in the clubhouse this morning.”

“They are back at the club house being cleaned,” Melissa realized.  “Tara mentioned that a woman came in and insisted they be cleaned.”

Gretta went back and forth between the halfling and the elf.  “Yes I brought them to the clubhouse.  What about the pixie?  He could have done this.”

Falfaren swung the golf club as it were a sword.  “We spoke to Tormie and he said he attacked you with his club, not his hands.”

Harlin stared at the husband and wife.  “You both have been trying to shut this course and tournament down, and yet you say you care about the tournament.”

Falfaren shook her head.  “They care about the course, but only because is supposedly hides treasure from the Battle of Bare Bones. “

Zelawin stared accusingly at the elf.  “How would I known about some treasure? ”

Falfaren said.  “When you first arrived here,  Corin told you about it.  You and your wife could not stop leaving him alone, asking him for information.”

Harlin looked at Falfaren and Melissa.  “That may explain Corin’s death, but what about Agigale and William?”

Falfaren set the club on the ground as if it were a cane.  “They killed Agigale because she stumbled upon them digging up part of the course.  Tormie told us about an argument Agigale had with someone at the third hole.  That someone was you, and  during the struggle, she scratched your arm up.  When you saw Tormie, you attacked him with your own club.“

Melissa pointed to Gretta’s arms.  “You said that Tormie attacked you, but those scratches are too big and too few in number for a pixie’s fingers.  After you killed her, Zelawin brought her body back to the sand bed and shot her several times to make sure she was dead.  And then you ran to the club house tried to accuse the pixies of attacking you.”

One of the golfers stepped forward and asked,” What about William?”

Falfaren looked at Zelawin and showed the pin she had found.  “William must have caught Zelawin or Gretta digging.  But rather than attack him, you persuaded him to play a round with you.  You spoke of the history of a tribe of orcs, let him hold the dart.  After he sank his ball into the hole and reached to pick it up, you struck him in the head your club only this time you did it with a wood..  Then you finished him the same way you finished Agigale.  You dropped the tee in the hole and left it with William’s ball.”

Zelawin turned and looked at the crowd.  “Arrow heads, and golf clubs as weapons? Where is your proof?  Anyone could have these shot these victims from a tree.”

Melissa pulled out an arrow from her coat and showed it.  “The tip of this arrow is jagged, like the holes in the bodies.  This is also the same kind of arrow you used to attack us just a few hours ago.”

“That is until Melissa threw her dagger into your arm, or do you have another reason for the bandage on your arm Lord Windelver?”

Zelawin sneered before pulling up his sleeve.  “I bruised my hand while hitting the driving range just before sunset.”

Falfaren walked over and looked at the bandage, finding no sign of blood.  She looked up at Zelawin, who smiled wickedly.

Gretta looked at Falfaren and sneered.  “As you can see Miss Falfaren, my husband could not have attacked you.”

Before Falfaren or Melissa could say anything, Tara came running up, holding a black and a light brown longnose club.  “Lady Windelver, I have your clubs.”

Gretta and Zelawin reached out to the blond halfling, only for Melissa to run past them and snatch the longnose clubs from Tara.  She tossed them to Falfaren, who pointed to two dents on the smooth side of the darker longnose club.  “Interesting, how did these dents get here?  You knew if the tournament was shut down, you would be able to dig through the course all you want.”

The husband and wife were speechless.  Just as they were about to walk away, they were grabbed by two large humans.  One of them leaned close and said,” William was a friend of mine.  If you are guilty, you are both going to pay for this.”

Harlin sighed as he watched the crowd surround the Windelvers.  “I will have to call the authorities to pick them up before the crowd tears them apart.”

Falfaren held up her hand.  “I will make sure no harm comes to them for the moment.  Well Melissa.  It looks like the tournament is going to happen after all.”


Two days later, Falfaren and Melissa watched from the sidelines as Harlin concluded his opening speech for the tournament.  When the dwarf spotted them and walked over.  “Ladies, I am grateful for what you have done.”

Falfaren shrugged and pointed to the white banner and read it.  “The First Corin Idolspar Memorial Tournament.”

“It was nice for you to name it after him,” Melissa added.

Harlin smiled as he brought over a large keg.  “Drink up ladies.  After all, I paid a pretty copper to host this tournament.”

Falfaren nodded as the dwarf handed her a glass.  “Opening and maintaining a golf course must cost you a lot of money.”

Harlin paused for a moment, then looked at the women.  “It did at first, but I make enough from the course fees to keep it open.  Also, when I first came here several years ago, I came across a cache of buried treasure and when I obtained it all, I opened up this place.  If you excuse me, I a tournament to run.”

Both Falfaren and Melissa watched the dwarf as he walked over and spoke with some of the spectators.  Falfaren looked to her friend.  “Shall we watch this tournament Melissa?”

The halfling nodded as she grabbed a glass.  “I think that would be a grand idea Ireniana.  After all, you might learn something after watching these competitors.”

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Teacher and former student collide at UFC 121

Tito Ortiz will be returning to the octagon at UFC in October at UFC 121.  However this fight may be different for the Hunington Beach Bad Boy as he squares off against Matt Hamill, who was once his student.

Both Hamill and Ortiz have strong wrestling backgrounds, but Hamill is also known for his power, winning most of his fights by TKO.

Hamil had first entered UFC during The Ultimate Fighter: Team Shamrock vs. Team Ortiz.  He was not only a member of Team Ortiz, but he was also Ortiz‘s first pick. 

Hamill had to leave the competition in the middle of the show, but he did end up fighting at the season finale, defeating fellow Ultimate Fighter alumni Jesse Forbes by TKO in the first round.

Since the Ultimate Fighter, Hamill has won seven of his nine last fights, earning victories over such fighters as Keith Jardine, Seth Petruzelli, and Mark Munoz. 

It was also after the The Ultimate Fighter that Hamill continued to train with Ortiz at Team Punishment, a martial arts operated by Ortiz.

While Ortiz is known for trash talking and employing psychological warfare with his opponents (such as Ken Shamrock, Chuck Liddell, and even UFC President Dana White), his attitude seems to have changed with this fight. 

Although he told Joe Rogan in an interview, that this fight is not personal to him and just business, Ortiz has yet to employ any intimidation techniques towards Hamill.  He also said that Hamill has since left Team Punishment. 

However, there is still time before the fight and Ortiz is known for his weight in and press conference shenanigans. 

Ortiz is also coming off of surgery from multiple injuries as well as a split decision loss to Forrest Griffin back in November.  He was scheduled to face Chuck Liddell at UFC 115, but had to withdraw from the fight due to injury.

The Ortiz and Hamill fight has the makings of a classic confrontation between master and former student. 

Ortiz is looking to get his fight career back on track, and a win over Hamill could propel him in the right direction.

While Ortiz has voiced his intentions of earning another world championship, a victory over his former sensei may earn Hamill a future title shot, or at least another name to his MMA credentials.

In addition to Hamill and Ortiz, UFC 121 will also feature the debut of former Strikeforce Middleweight champion Jake Shields, former Strikeforce Middleweight Champion and EliteXC Welterweight Champion, as well Brock Lesnar versues Cain Velasquez for the UFC heavyweight title.

To check out the rest of the UFC 121 card, follow the link below.

UFC 121 preview