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Fedor Emelianenko Looks Primed for Strikeforce Heavyweight Tournament

Fedor Emelianenko is one of the most talented fighters in MMA regardless of weight class. The 34-year-old Urkainian last fought in June when he suffered his first true loss, tapping out a minute into his fight with Fabricio Werdum after getting caught in an armbar. As skilled as Fedor is, one knock against him is that he hasn’t always entered the ring in the best shape possible. The crafty Russian generally has some pudge around his belly for his bouts, but it hasn’t slowed him down. Coming off his first real loss though, Fedor isn’t messing around.

LBS contributor Alan Hull passed along some pics of Fedor who is trying out some new training methods and the guy looks great (no homo). Check it out:

He’s working with Ernesto Hoost’s team including Gegard Moussasi to try and mix it up with new coaches and practice partners. The change in regimen should serve him well in the eight-man tournament; after Big Foot, the winner of Alistair Overeem/Werdum awaits. Oh yeah, Josh Barnett, Sergei Kharitonov, Andrei Arlovski, and Brett Rogers are on the other half of the draw. The UFC usually gets all the pub in the MMA world, but Strikeforce’s heavyweight tournament blows away anything they have planned in the near future.

Chael Sonnen Pleads Guilty to Money Laundering, Fined, Put on Probation

Many MMA fans will undoubtedly be satisfied upon learning the news that good old Chael Sonnen pleaded guilty to charges of money laundering. Sonnen, who battled Anderson Silva for five rounds before losing by submission late and then later tested positive for using performance enhancers, has more embarrassment to endure. In addition to the current suspension he’s serving from fighting, Sonnen also has been fined and placed on probation for his plea.

Sonnen was actually running for the Oregon House of Representatives but dropped out because of a legal issue, and now we know all about it. Sonnen, who doubles as a makeshift real estate agent when he’s not pissing fans and fighters off, arranged a sale where buyers would be funneled $65,000 from the title company under the guise of plumbing problems.

So in addition to being unable to cover up a urine trail, we now know that Sonnen is incapable of covering up a paper trail. Suspended and on probation seems to be the perfect combination for the kid.

Kazushi Sakuraba Has Ear Torn Off in Loss to Marius Zaromskis

In wrestling and MMA, it’s quite common to see fighters with cauliflower ear. Their hearing devices get ripped to shreds and disfigured from all the years of pushing, pulling, and strain placed on the vital appendage. Heck, we’ve even seen someone’s potato dumpling get torn off during a fight, Evander Holyfield-style (check the pics!). The same thing happened at K-1 Dynamite!! on New Year’s Eve in Japan. Kazushi Sakuraba’s ear was torn off during his loss to Marius Zaromskis, resulting in the fight being stopped. Check out this gnarly pic courtesy of God Bless the Ring via Bloody Elbow:

The ear opened up about a minute into the fight, and then left hands from the southpaw Zaromskis hurt it more. The ear completely tore off when Sakuraba shot in on Zaromskis’ leg, looking for a takedown. The referee immediately put Sakuraba back into his corner and the fight was waved off. That was truly gross, and here’s another look from MMA Fighting.

Alistair Overeem Destroyed Todd Duffee in 18 Seconds (Video)

Alistair Overeem and Todd Duffee was one of the big attractions at K-1 Dynamite!! in Japan just before New Year’s Day. Fans may have been satisfied with the one-way ass-kicking, but the downside is the whole event didn’t last longer than a virgin in the sack. Overeem showed off his kickboxing skills, peppering Duffee with some serious knees. Duffee showed off the glass chin we saw in the Mike Russow fight. Enough of me, here’s the 18 seconds of infamy, aka the Alistair Overeem-Todd Duffee fight video courtesy of Bloody Elbow:

Though the fight ended so early it was a disappointment, hearing the announcer’s line that Reem has more muscles than a seafood platter made it all worthwhile. That’s quality right there.

Todd Duffee vs. Mike Russow Made Over in Mortal Kombat Style

Before UFC evacuee Todd Duffee fights Alisteroid Overeem on New Year’s Day in Japan, we must remind you about his most recent experience in the ring. The man who holds one of the fastest UFC knockouts ever was the victim of one of the greatest comebacks in MMA. Duffee was famously destroying Mike Russow before getting knocked out by two out-of-nowhere punches. Now, thanks to LBS contributor Alan Hull who shared with us this video from Bloody Elbow, that famous fight has been memorialized in Mortal Kombat form. Greatest video ever:

It doesn’t get much better than that. How about Brock Lesnar as Goro? Come to think of it, there is a strong resemblance there.

Georges St. Pierre Destroys Josh Koscheck, Gives Him a Margarito Eye

If there was any doubt why Georges St. Pierre is often ranked as the top pound-for-pound fighter in MMA, it should have been erased after his performance Saturday night at UFC 124. GSP thoroughly dominated Josh Koscheck through five rounds in front of his home fans in Montreal, winning 50-45 on all three cards. In fact, St. Pierre hasn’t lost a round since 2007 when Koscheck won one against him in their previous fight.

St. Pierre did not accomplish his goal of finishing Koscheck but he came darn close. St. Pierre’s boxing skills were on display as he peppered Koscheck’s face with a variety of jabs and hooks. He appeared to have vastly improving his punching thanks to work with famous boxing trainer Freddie Roach, and he nearly achieved a stop due to the swelling and bruising around Koscheck’s eye. In fact, Koscheck came out looking like Antonio Margarito, the opponent of another Freddie Roach fighter. Take a look at his eye:

You know that had to make the fans pleased. Maybe it’s the reason the one-sided affair was voted Fight of the Night by the fans.

B.J. Penn Shows Off the Prodigy Skills in Win Over Matt Hughes

After losing his last two fights to Frankie Edgar, B.J. Penn got back in the winning business Saturday night at UFC 123. Penn beat the crap out of Matt Hughes, knocking the 37-year-old Hall of Famer out in 21 seconds. The KO win earned Penn the UFC 123 knockout of the night bonus and it was extremely well deserved.

Penn connected with a right-left combination shortly after touching gloves, then followed with a left to the face. He caught a kick by Hughes and hit Matt in the face. Seconds after the UFC graphic was telling home viewers which fighter was which (Penn in the black shorts, Hughes the chump in the camo), Penn moved in on Hughes and dropped the veteran. B.J. quickly pounced, jumping on Hughes with several punches to the face before the fight was stopped. It was the second-fastest knockout of Penn’s career.

B.J. is an enigmatic fighter because he can look as brilliant as he did, finishing Matt Hughes in 21 seconds, but he can go a full fight without doing much damage against a guy like Frankie Edgar. He completes the trilogy with Hughes going 2-1 against Matt and is now set for a matchup with Jon Fitch at UFC 127 in Australia.

Photo Credit: Esther Lin/FanHouse