UFC 126 results didn't turn out so well for Japanese star
I love it when athletes call their shots. May be why I loved Muhammad Ali so much as a kid.
If they back their talk up, it's impressive. If they look like a fool, it gives me something to laugh about it, not to mention good writing material. Win-win all the way around in my book.
So when I read last week that this newcomer was saying he would win either Fight of The Night or Knockout of The Night, my ears perked up. Was this some kid I overlooked from The Ultimate Fighter maybe? Did I not look at his record? No, no. This was Japanese sensation "Kid" Yamamoto, who was making his UFC debut.
The Kid got humbled, though, as Demetrious Johnson scored a unanimous decision victory in their preliminary bout at UFC 126 on Saturday in Las Vegas. Judges scored the fight 29-28, 30-27 and 30-27 for Johnson.
I went look around to see what The Kid had to say about his poor showing and stumbled across something pretty amazing. The popularity of MMA has brought about a plethora of websites covering the sport, and according to one writer, it seems our boy was a headcase entering the fight. The reason will stun you. A crazy girlfriend, issues with the law, a poor training camp?
Nope. Apparently, The Kid's dog died right before the fight.
(I'm not trying to be insensitive. I've loved dogs since I was a kid. I just think that may be one of the wildest theories I've ever heard and am curious if this was published in a Japanese newspaper. I'd also love to hear The Kid try and tell Dana White this was bothering him. Don't think it would go over well.)
Enough about dogs...
What I am curious about is whether The Kid has become the latest victim of the UFC hype machine, which can chew up and spit out promising fighters.
I saw it happen last month with Josh Grispi (14-1), who lost a shocking unanimous decision to Dustin Poirier (8-1). Grispi was being touted as a potential title challenger to champ Jose Aldo entering the fight with Poirier, who was a late replacement.
I've got a feeling he is. With this fight, Yamamoto has now lost three of his last four matches. Before Saturday's bout, he admitted he doesn't have time to waste. He is getting older, and knows his window of success in the United States is limited.
"I don?t live in the past. I forget everything," Yamamoto told ifight365.com. "I want to go to the top. I want the belt. That?s it."
Unless The Kid can back up his talk, that's all titles will ever be. Just talk.