Danny Acosta's MMA Articles

September 2012 // Names in the Game
The Flyweight Fortune

After unleashing the flyweight division in March, Dana White will be strapping 10 pounds of gold around the waist of either Joseph Benavidez or Demetrious Johnson at UFC 152 on September 22 in Toronto, Ontario. The heir to the UFC’s inaugural flyweight throne is apparent to both fighters, but you’ll have to forgive them if [...]

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August 2012 // Quick Hits
Behind The Fight

Being the third man the cage is a thankless job. To do well…is to go unnoticed. When fighters struggle for victory and survival, refs must objectively ensure the contest’s integrity while prioritizing participants’ safety. Ref Josh Rosenthal shares with FIGHT! what it takes to be a mediator in MMA’s artful mayhem and the joys of [...]

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June 2012 // Quick Hits
The First Action Hero

After 20 years competing in combat sports, 40-year-old Cung Le is searching for his first Octagon victory against Rich Franklin at UFC 148 on July 7 in Las Vegas. There should be a packed house for Le’s second UFC appearance sold out audiences are something that he’s accustomed to. A short, post-workout drive down the [...]

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June 2011 // Features
Kelli Hutcherson: Surf’s Up!

Motocross, surfing, and MMA all wrapped up in a beautiful blonde? Sign us up please. Laguna Beach is heating up with Strikeforce’s Kelli Hutcherson. Rolling with Metal Mulisha, surfing, MMA…extreme sports girl much? Well, I grew up around motocross, going with my family to the desert and riding. My family did all sorts of fun [...]

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May 2011 // Quick Hits
5 Minutes with Frank Mir

You’re someone who intellectualizes martial arts. What does that do for your game? I think it helps explain it. It makes it easier to improve. When things are explained, it allows me to train for the different variables You are known as a jiu-jitsu guy, however, you began wrestling in high school. Who was your [...]

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April 2011 // Quick Hits
Spring Forward – Corissa Furr

Strikeforce has a brand new ring girl gracing the six sided cage this Spring. Her name is Corissa Furr, and she isn’t afraid to get her feet wet. Word has it that you’re quite the tomboy. Total, total tomboy. My mom would try to hand me a Barbie, I would throw it back at her [...]

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April 2011 // Quick Hits
To Wear The Crown

Stephan Bonnar submits two opponents in less than four minutes (with just 20 minutes between contests) and wins a light heavyweight tournament in Hammond, Indiana, at Ironheart Crown III: Exodus. He says all that his father could talk about was “how awesome this Miguel Torres was.”   It was in Sin City that the “American [...]

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March 2011 // Quick Hits
Ready 2 Rumble – Brittney Palmer

The WEC may have been absorbed by the UFC, but the fighters aren’t the only ones that have made the move to the big stage. Former WEC Ring girl, Brittney Palmer, is re-fueled and ready for prime time MMA.   What’s going on in Brittney Palmer’s world lately?   Coming into the UFC now, my [...]

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March 2011 // Quick Hits
Art For Mixed Martial Art’s Sake

Stephan Bonnar and Forrest Griffin punched and kicked each other’s faces to a pulp for 15 minutes in 2005 to create the Bonnar-Griffin Boom—the explosion of mixed martial arts onto the national sporting landscape. MMA fans remember the fight fondly, but one fan in particular, Tom Scully—a long-time friend of Bonnar—needed a more tangible tribute [...]

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March 2011 // Quick Hits
5 Minutes With Urijah Faber

How are things going for “The California Kid?”   Fantastic. I’m working on a really cool project on the northern, northern coast of Cali about three hours from Sacramento on Highway 1. We’re building our Team Alpha Male retreat. The town has 450 people. Bare necessities. It’s right on the ocean. We’re going to have [...]

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December 2010 // Quick Hits
5 Minutes With Evan Dunham

What did you want to be when you were little?   I always wanted to be a professional athlete. I knew that I couldn’t play basketball, and I was too small for football, but I always wanted to do something with sports. I really lucked out that MMA took off. I always knew in the [...]

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February 2011 // Quick Hits
Formula 1 – Amanda Corey

A dash of this. A pinch of that. If Xyience scientists were looking for the perfect formula, they found it, and her name is Amanda Corey.  You’re five-feet tall, but your personality is so big. Do guys find that intimidating? It’s less intimidating. Working for Xyience, I run into so many different kinds of people, [...]

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February 2011 // Quick Hits
5 Minutes With Mike Pyle

I understand you’re an avid outdoorsman. What’s your pleasure?   I love to fly fish. I’m going before I get into my training camp for my fight with Ricardo Almeida in March.   Is fly fishing a ritual for you?   It helps put me in a certain mindset. It’s been a tradition of mine [...]

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November 2010 // Features
No Need To Front

Nick Diaz has the face of a pugilist from another time. In every facial feature there’s a story of his past. The brown eyes are inherently distrusting, and they tell you very quickly how his nose got to be so wide and tenderized. He is a fighter by definition. The notches talk of pain, the [...]

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October 2010 // Quick Hits
October Sunshine

What have you been up to lately?   I’m co-hosting a reality TV show with Joanna Krupa about female fighters. It’s called The Ultimate Women’s Challenge, airing on NBC on September 25. Basically, these girls go through a series of challenges, and at the end of the show, after all the challenges, they’ll be chosen [...]

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October 2010 // Quick Hits
5 Minutes With John Howard

If you got a doctorate, would you be “Dr. Doom?”   Maybe. Actually, to tell you the truth, probably not—Doomsday. Always Doomsday [laughs].   You’re fighting Thiago Alves in Montreal in December.   I think it’s the perfect fight for me because I’m a Muay Thai fighter. To fight another Muay Thai striker—it’s gonna be [...]

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October 2010 // Features
Last Man Standing

“What happened?” asks Jake Shields, sitting on his stool between rounds one and two of the most important fight of his 11-year career. Seconds into round one of his Strikeforce Middleweight Championship defense in April, Shields met Dan Henderson’s destructive right hand, sending him to the mat—hard—live on CBS.   “You looked good at the [...]

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January 2011
5 Minutes With Anthony Pettis

You’re a third-degree black belt in taekwondo. Do you still work those techniques?   I teach taekwondo, so I still review the basics and stuff. I’m working on getting my fourth degree. Eventually, I want to run a taekwondo school. That’s my goal—taekwondo mixed with an MMA gym.   Outside of your camp, what fighters [...]

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September 2010 // Quick Hits
5 Minutes With Dominick Cruz

How did you get the nickname “Dominator?”   I was the smallest guy on my football team, but I would never stop and I’d always get back up.   What’s the last CD you bought?   Eminem’s Recovery.   Where do you keep your WEC title belt?   It’s on my couch underneath a pile [...]

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August 2010 // Quick Hits
Calgary Flame

Mixed martial artist Leah Melnychuk is a competitor in the gym, at the dinner table, and on gaming consoles. Challenge her, and Canada’s finest export might just leave you burned.   Let’s start from the beginning. How did you get involved in MMA?   I watched my very first MMA fights on TV, and I [...]

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August 2010 // Quick Hits
5 Minutes With Tim Kennedy

So, I hear you can curve a bullet. That’s got to be cool.   I think every Special Forces sniper can do it. It’s not like the biggest trick in the world.Environmental forces affect how the bullet moves, whether it’s the temperature or the wind speed. The Coriolis force—the force of the Earth’s rotation—actually affects [...]

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August 2010 // MMA Life
The Expendables is Blockbuster Bottled Lightning

Writer, director, and star Sylvester Stallone has fueled The Expendables with testosterone-loaded heroes Mickey Rourke, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis, Dolph Lundgren, Terry Crews, and Eric Roberts—a dream list of silver screen tough guys of the past, present, and future. With UFC Hall of Famer Randy “The Natural” Couture and WWE Hall [...]

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July 2010 // Quick Hits
5 Minutes With Cung Le

I understand you surf. Catch any big waves lately?   I used to boogie board a lot when I was younger. No time now.   What’s the hardest you’ve ever hit someone?   Arne Soldwedel, in the Shidokan finals. It was in the 7th round and there were two more to go, and I didn’t [...]

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May 2010 // Quick Hits
Sun Devil Shining

Born in Colorado, Aaron “A-Train” Simpson spent his youth in Nebraska with parents, who were both teachers, before relocating to Arizona at 12 years of age. Their emphasis on education molded him into a star student, but his blue-collar blood—both of his granddads were coal miners—kept his wheels greased during the grind of wrestling season. [...]

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July 2010 // Quick Hits
Lone Star Special

So how’d you get into modeling?   I’ve only been it doing it since November. In October, I was backpacking and couch surfing in California for the whole month. Robert Donahue, a fashion photographer in L.A, ran into me at a coffee shop and started bugging me to model because he was trying to shoot [...]

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June 2010 // Quick Hits
5 Minutes With Gilbert Melendez

How’s life after pitching a shutout against DREAM Lightweight Champion Shinya Aoki on CBS?   Life is good. In the MMA world, life is good. I made it to the top three, gaining some respect and also being able to voice my opinion a little bit more. I’m feeling on top of the world right [...]

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April 2010 // Quick Hits
Aly Veneno

Born Alison Garcia, this poisonous triple threat of brains, beauty, and badass is dangerous in the best ways possible —careful, her charm will leave you snake bitten.   Where did you grow up and where are you now?   Kind of a long story, but I was born in Rome, Italy. I grew up in [...]

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June 2010 // Quick Hits
True Blue Jersey Boy

Kurt Pellegrino’s order comes up number one at Wawa’s sandwich shop. He looks over at his wife Melissa—his high school sweetheart and mother of his daughter Priscilla—and says, “If it would have been number two, I would have walked away.”   At 21 years old, Pellegrino, a natural 155 pounds, bloated up to 206 pounds, [...]

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June 2010 // Quick Hits
Buckeye Beauty

Homegrown Ohio State Buckeye Stacie Askins finally puts to rest the Ohio State vs.University of Michigan supremacy debate: The verdict? Buckeyes win by a landslide.   Many fans and fighters got to meet you at the FIGHT! booth in Columbus, Ohio, at The Arnold Sports Festival for WEC 47. How’d you like that experience?   [...]

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April 2010 // Features
From California Kid to King of California

Urijah Faber is a natural born world-shaker.   The former World Extreme Cage fighting Featherweight Champion catches sun on a bushy downtown Sacramento street, sitting on a wood stool in front of the epicenter of his empire—Ultimate Fitness gym. His real-life Entourage passes by with friendly reminders as he hangs out before his next training [...]

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May 2010 // MMA Life
THQ’s UFC Undisputed Defends Its Title In 2010

It’s a sunny Southern California day in Agoura Hills, but forget about fun in the sun. The real fun is inside THQ’s office, huddled around a flat screen TV to see if UFC Undisputed 2010 can live up to the name it built in 2009.   Being undisputed is all about how you defend your [...]

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July 2010 // MMA Life
Putting The Art in MMA

The Coppola Art Exchange showcased Danzig’s photography and George’s drawings at “Reflection,” an event that blended Southern California’s upscale art scene with its passion for mixed martial arts.   “More and more educated people are fighting and more and more educated people are fans,” said Danzig. “It’s just something I think will be normal in [...]

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May 2010 // MMA Life
Big Screen Badass: Danny Trejo with a Vengeance

The Mexican-American actor from Los Angeles, California, is known for his tough guy roles in more than 180 films, but off screen Trejo may be tougher than the characters he plays.   “At about 15 years old, I got hit in the mouth with a [car] jack and didn’t break any teeth or get knocked [...]

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March 2010 // Quick Hits
The Big Dog Barks

When the name “Renzo Gracie” is spoken, it resonates gameness—the innate burn to fight anyone at anytime. That’s why when Renzo’s first black belt, Ricardo Almeida, walked away from mixed martial arts as one of the world’s best middleweights at 24 years old, the fight world was shocked a natural fighter like Almeida could trade [...]

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February 2010 // Quick Hits
Vision Quest

Growing up in blue-collar West Linn, Oregon, Chael Sonnen may not have had the red and yellow flare or colorful slogans, but he sees a parallel between himself and his childhood hero Hulk Hogan. “I see myself as the good guy of the sport,” says the 32-year-old former U.S. Olympic wrestling alternate. “You’ll find 20 [...]

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February 2010 // Quick Hits
Inside Answers to The Fighter’s Mind

Sam Sheridan’s 2007 book, A Fighter’s Heart: One Man’s Journey Through the World of Fighting, is required reading for all MMA fans. His 2010 follow-up, The Fighter’s Mind: Inside the Mental Game, is another mustread as the Harvard graduate unearths the various mindsets of the world’s best combat athletes. Sheridan never gets bogged down in [...]

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January 2010 // Quick Hits
“Patience, Young Headhunter”

Not everyone can live up to Paul “The Headhunter” Buentello’s nickname. A young fighter asks the power-punching former UFC heavyweight title challenger if he would mind him adopting “The Headhunter” nickname. “Sure,” as the wise 36-year-old Buentello says, “but it’s a hard name to live by. You’ve got to stand and bang.” That’s how Buentello’s [...]

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November 2009 // Features
“Judge, Jury … Executive”

“NO, KILL IT,” HARRIS SAYS. The light turns off — killed. Harris sits under the chandelier house lights at Body English after the WEC 42 weigh-ins. He rests his right ankle over his left knee. His fine suit cuts no corners, and his full head of gray hair is youthfully combed back. It has been [...]

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October 2009 // Quick Hits
[Minowa] Man On The Moon

“Big in Japan” is an American fad phrase that connotes cult status in the East. Ikuhisa Minowa is big in Japan, and he doesn’t need a novelty T-shirt to prove it. “The Punk” is a Japanese professional wrestler who happens to be a 13-year veteran of mixed martial arts. But make no mistake — Minowa [...]

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September 2009 // Quick Hits
Hiroyuki Takaya Fulfilling a Dream?

Hiroyuki Takaya didn’t earn a nickname like “Streetfight Bancho” for nothing. “Bancho” is a rather cryptic reference to a Japanese ghost tale, where a Samurai is haunted by the unrequited lover he murdered. But what it all means for Takaya is that his hard-nosed style has the lethal edge of a street fight that can [...]

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October 2009 // Names in the Game
The Top 10 Knockouts You’ve Never Seen

For every one of Chuck Liddell’s and Mirko Crocop’s main-event knockouts, there are 10 standout mid-card knockouts like Matt Hamill’s decapitating head kick of Mark Munoz at UFC 96. And for every 10 of those, there are 100 knockouts that may never see the light of day. From Japan to England to middle America, knockouts [...]

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August 2009 // Quick Hits
Made Of Iron

Hatsu Hioki’s mat destruction of American Top Team’s Chris Manuel in Sengoku’s Featherweight grand prix was vintage Hioki as much as it was an emphatic statement: Leg trip, mount, and bring the pain. Armbar to topside triangle choke, bear down on opponent with all 143 pounds while constricting blood to the brain. And since he [...]

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August 2009 // Quick Hits
K-1

When the Gracie family ditched a traditional ring for a Hollywood-style arena dubbed “The Octagon” in 1993, a revolution called K-1 occurred. Kazuyoshi Ishii’s involvement in full-contact karate shifted from katas to killer instinct when he organized K-1’s first card for a sellout crowd of 10,000 in Japan in 1993. K-1 takes its name from [...]

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July 2009 // Quick Hits
Mach Speed

Former UFC Heavyweight champion Josh Barnett describes Hayato Sakurai, 33, as “mean as a badger.” Sakurai, Barnett warns, “doesn’t forget.” He’s a vengeful fighter in training, even worse in a fight. Sakurai started judo at 13 years old. Power and emotion then guided “Mach” (pronounced ma-ha) to a shot-out-of-the-cannon start to mixed martial arts in [...]

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May 2009 // MMA Life
Ultimate Undisputed

While most were busy doubling down inside the Mandalay Bay Casino or enjoying legal open containers in the TapouT infested streets, one peculiar vehicle rolled into the Mandalay Bay parking lot in Las Vegas. American video game developer and publisher THQ populated the high-end tech truck with their best and brightest. While they were there [...]

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August 2008 // Quick Hits
From One Vet To Another

A bouncing castle, a face painting booth, and a hot barbeque – it’s Frank Shamrock’s kind of day. Wearing the smile he made famous during Pancrase battles, the former UFC champion is at Moffett Field, just outside his hometown of San Jose, for something a little more serious than the airy day suggests. Shamrock is [...]

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July 2008 // Quick Hits
The Mad Science of Matchmaking

Every fi ght organization has a brain trust when it comes to putting on a show. In mixed martial arts, promoters often appear as the face of the organization – the creator or destroyer of all things good in the sport. But matchmakers are the ones cooking up the cards that electrify or disappoint crowds. [...]

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