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After soundly defeating Matte Kessler on Saturday night, Joe Calzaghe and his manager threw down the gauntlet and challenged Bernard Hopkins to a fight. Not knowing a lot about boxing past the fact that it’s generally fucked up, I doubted we’d get to see this fight any time soon. But it looks like Hopkins is willing and eager to fight as well:

“He said after the fight that he would fight me anywhere, even in my backyard, but I’m not asking him to come to Philadelphia,” Hopkins said. “I wouldn’t ask him to come to anywhere but Yankee Stadium. Hopefully for boxing, and for our legacy, it will happen.”

Hopkins is keenly aware of the storied boxing history of the fabled building that will close in 2008. Legends Sugar Ray Robinson, Joe Louis and Muhammad Ali, among others, all fought at Yankee Stadium, and Hopkins wants to be part of a final fight there.

“How great would it be,” Hopkins said. “This is a big fight. What a great promotion. The Brits will come. They got a direct flight from there to New York City. So am I interested in the fight? Absolutely. Do I feel I can give him his first loss? Yes. Can I neutralize the best weapon my opponent has and use it against him? Yes. His best weapon is that he throws a lot of punches. I know how to adjust to any style out there.”

This sounds pretty damned good. Is it just me or has boxing finally gotten it’s head out of it’s ass and started showing some damned good fights. With the help of Mayweather/De La Hoya, their PPV revenues have hit a new record, and that’s without several other big PPV fights over the course of the next two months.

As I’ve said before, I’m not a huge boxing fan. But if the quality and quantity of main events stays up like this, I might have to change my stance on the sport.

Holy shit! We’ve recorded an epic Low Blow which clocks in at 90 fucking minutes! That’s right! It’s a FightOpinion length expedition the likes of which we’ve never recorded before. As we promised, this episode is all about the fucking mailbag, except for the first ten minutes which is devoted to two girls and one cup.

33 questions were asked and 33 questions were answered. You can download the show here, or stream it using our handy dandy talkshoe applet. For those of you into that kinky shit, we’re also available on the iTunes.

So the big news over the weekend was that Fedor released a statement saying he wanted to fight on NYE in Japan. The statement was full of really gay engrish rhetoric like “Your wishes come true when you ask for it come New Year’s Eve” and left most people in America scratching their heads. But hey … this wasn’t really for us. This release was for the Japanese.

Open letters saying you want to fight generally don’t work that well, even if you are one of the top fighters on the planet. But in Japan, you’d be surprised at how they get sucked into this kind of shit. I’ll bet you a couple million yen ($4 worth to be exact) everyone in the Japanese fight industry is lactating over Fedor’s message. At this exact moment red faced execs are bowing at eachother and shouting for a “GREAT DECLARATION FOR FEDOR’S MAGIC WISH”.

Zach Arnold says the old Dream Stage guys are trying to put together a show by backpacking it in the same arena as their super retardo HUSTLE NYE show. So that’s one possibility, I suppose. K1 is always a possibility although rumor has it Fedor’s ‘wish’ comes with a pricetag that makes it financially unaffordable. Apparently K1 only likes to burn one huge pile of cash a year, and this year that pile was the US Dynamite show.

If this was anyone other than the Japanese, I would say there’s no way in fucking hell Fedor will be fighting on NYE. But the Japanese are weirdos, and god knows if there’s honor or spirits or destiny involved, anything is possible.

Sean Salmon wrote his latest entry for MMAJunkie, which included this entertaining bit:

I have heard the comments that I am a sucker for a good submission. I wish I could argue the point, but I can’t. That is the reputation that I have shown for myself. However, I want to ask all those that have been writing me off for the Mayhem fight — and now will now write me off for the Hallman fight — to at least admit that it is possible for me to have improved in that area, as I have spent a majority of my time training stand-up and jiu-jitsu.

I gotta hand it to Sean Salmon … rather than half the meatheads out there who’d get pissed when you tell them an aspect of their game sucks, he just says “Yes, I deserve that reputation. But I’m working on it!”

And hey … I don’t doubt you’ve been working on your sub skills. But it’s not you being bad but rather Jason Miller being good … very good. He’s taken out guys who have worked for years on their submission game. Honestly, I dunno if crane kicks and wrestling will be enough!

As mentioned before, I was out drinking on Saturday but I did manage to set my VCR properly to tape the IFL semi-finals. All in all, it wasn’t too shabby but it could have been better. Here’s a breakdown of my random thoughts on the show:

Kenny Rice is a wanker. I don’t know why every promotion thinks they need a smarmy announcer with ‘the voice’. Fuck ‘the voice’. I know I don’t get invited on nobody’s stupid MMA podcasts because I sound like a 14 year old boy going through a painful puberty. Plus I tend to say ‘cock’ too much. But I’m more entertaining than most other people out there. And most announcers out there are way better than Kenny despite not having ‘the voice’. Fuck ‘the voice’.

The show’s production values reminded me of an episode of American Gladiators. Overall they did a good job of stuffing two fights into one hour … I was thinking since they both went to a decision they might not catch the decision for the second bout. The graphics looked 80’s and I have no idea why they thought it was a good idea to try and squeeze the IFL logo into that tiny rectangle ticker up at the top. And why the fuck was it up top???? Tickers go downstairs, dummies.

They did a terrible job of pointing out that this was a live show. Past Kenny Rice saying “Live from Chicago” after every commercial break, there was nary a sign that this was a live show. If I was running this shit, the word ‘LIVE!!!’ would have been on the screen for the entire show, blinking and changing colors and occasionally inducing epileptic fits.

Palaszewski vs. Horodecki : I’m sure the IFL was wishing for a Bonnar-Griffin style match and this came inches from becoming that kind of bout. The first round went to Horodecki and then Palaszewski came back and pounded on Horodecki in the second. The third is where this fight failed to deliver, as both fighters seemed to have blown their loads. Palaszewski was pissed he didn’t win the decision, but he didn’t do anything to earn it in the third. Overall it was a great match but the last round was a letdown.

Schoenauer vs Matyushenko : Someone get Schoenauer some fucking sprawl lessons. Like most wresters do, Matyushenko reverted to his bread and butter the second Schoenauer started to get the best of him on the feet. A good corner could have destroyed Matyushenko’s tactics easily, but there was no change between rounds two and three. Schoenauer gave this bout away, with Matyushenko lay n’ praying to a win. The last two minutes were practically painful to watch as Matyushenko killed the time pushing Schoenauer into the ropes and holding him.

Overall, I give the night a tentative thumbs up. If the IFL does more live shows, I’ll watch them. But please for God’s sake – do two hours next time!

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