Thursday, May 29, 2014

Another NYFE Hype Video, This One Featuring Fighter Interviews


With a little over a week until showtime, the New York Fight Exchange has kicked the promotional engine into overdrive. Here's co-promoter Tom Sconzo visiting Renzo Gracie's academy in Brooklyn, interviewing a number of fighters - like Ken Sweeney and Matthew Kaplan - who are scheduled to compete on the June 7 NYFE card. Sconzo even gets jiu-jitsu coach/Japanese hipster extreme Diasuke Yamaji on camera.

Definitely check it out.

Throwback Thursday: Affliction's New York Presser


The only things separating a press conference from an actual theater performance are the lack of a script and the thin veil of reality. Take, for instance, the Affliction presser, which was held back in July, 2008, on the downstairs concourse of one of Donald Trump's buildings in Midtown Manhattan, and which featured the likes of Fedor Emelianenko, Tim Sylvia, Ben Rothwell, and all the misguided hopes and dreams of would-be competitors of the UFC. If you were to believe what's said at such gatherings, then Affliction was going to snuff out the flickering flame Dana White held aloft.

Obviously, that ended up not being the case.

You can relive the glory here:

New York State Assembly Speaker Rep: "The Union Issue is Fiction"


It's business as usual in Albany, especially when it comes to politics, money and truth. Case in point: the Assembly's MMA bill. Not that they would come out and admit it, but in an interview with Breitbart Sports for a run-of-the-mill article on the battle for sanctioned MMA in New York, the office of Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver denies that Culinary Union influence is a factor in keeping the MMA bill on ice - which, of course they would.

Here's the relevant quote:
But the office of New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, whom [UFC COO Lawrence] Epstein labels as “very, very much aligned with organized labor,” disputes the notion that a union three time-zones away has influence on the Empire State’s decision to keep out MMA. The powerful speaker has consistently kept similar bills from receiving a vote in the past. “The union issue is fiction,” Michael Whyland, press secretary for Speaker Silver, bluntly tells Breitbart Sports.
Epstein counters with this gem:
“The local union here in Las Vegas has hired a lobbyist in New York,” Epstein notes. “His name is Neal Kwatra. They’re paying him tens of thousands of dollars to lobby on mixed-martial arts in New York. Why would a Las Vegas union be meddling in the internal politics in New York?”
There is less than a month left in the legislative session. Think anything is getting done?