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To the sites whoring for Rio Heroes

I just thought I’d point out that Rio Heroes has bought out pretty much every blog there is out there. Yesterday I noticed MMAJunkie shilling for the no holds barred company, and today I noticed Five Ounces of Pain linking it with an affiliation code. Now I’ll let things slide a bit with the MMAJunkie guys … for all we know, that site is actually written by robots with no morals or scruples whatsoever. They’ve never pretended to be for or against anything, so I can’t really accuse them of being hypocrites.

On the other hand, Five Ounces of Pain is a very human site that’s just as much commentary as it is reporting. Prior to selling out, the site featured two very negative articles on the promotion. One of those articles even had the gall to call out Sherdog for carrying Rio Heroes banners since Sherdog was associated with ESPN.

Now maybe I’m missing something here, but isn’t Five Ounces of Pain run by one Sam Caplan, a man who’s a regular contributer for CBS Sportsline, head writer for MMA company ProElite, and a member of the would-be sanctioning body WAMMA? That sure seems like a lot of connections to organizations that shouldn’t want to be associated with this dangerous fight promotion. Well, I guess you can take ProElite off the list of people who care because they’re selling ads to Rio Heroes too. But what can you expect from a company that books neo-Nazi fighters for their shows?

Hey, on a personal level I don’t really give a shit about Rio Heroes. It’s pretty terrible with fighters less skilled than you see on IFL and HDNet cards. What I have an issue with is the apparent two-faced position everyone takes: “MMA is safe, we’re all working hard to bring it to the mainstream, blah blah blah blah blah. But we aren’t above taking money and whoring for a company that is the absolute antithesis of what modern MMA is supposed to represent. ”

How can you pretend to be a positive representative for the sport of MMA when you’re encouraging people to support a glorified streetfight? When some Brazilian gutter rat gets crippled or put into a coma, are you all just going to take the banners down quietly and pretend you never promoted this shit?

Rio Heroes embodies everything MMA has worked so hard and long to move away from. By helping Rio Heroes make money, you’re helping set up an environment where there will be more companies holding more insanely unsafe fights. But what’s that??? Laos Heroes will pay 100 bucks to put up banners promoting their 8-boy slave tournament? Fucking sweet. Then never mind the fact that you’re whoring your site and sullying MMA’s reputation. Just sign up and do it. Who the fuck cares.

  • Adam

    Wow, ouch. There’s some shots for ya.

  • Beau

    MMA Sites: “Rio Heroes is god damn disgrace to the sport, it made fuckin Wanderlei cry, its human cockfighting and its gonna set back MMA years and justify all the people who say it should be outlawed”

    Rio Heroes: “Yo baby, how about I slip a benjamin in you g-string and you slap some banners on yo page and dont talk bad about us anymore”

    MMA Sites: “100 dollars, and I dont even have to suck your cock, this is amazing of course I’ll do it”

  • Xavier

    Incoming Sam Craplin whine-fest in 4, 3, 2, 1…

    The MMA Blogosphere is filled with abject crap. A guy who puts grapes on his junk is pretty much the only beacon of non-hypocrisy so far. C’mon.

  • Higgz

    Dammit Fightlinker, you’d better train seriously and kick Sam Craplan’s ass!!!!

  • Mobb Deep


  • Adam




  • Luke Thomas

    Bloody Elbow doesn’t run ads for R.H. and never will.

  • Matt

    Ryan, I know we are an awesome site but you don’t have to write about us and link to us everyday. However, we do appreciate the traffic. It helps us increase our rate card and become even bigger “sellouts”.

  • Tommy

    Hey Linker you said you watched Mayweather/Hatton 24/7 right? Did you happen to notice them training on UFC matts and I believe it was Hatton training at UFC headquarters?

  • Accomando

    I’m glad you brought this up.

  • Accomando

    A lesson on how to Shill for rioheroes….

    “… is an entertainment website that showcases Vale Tudo fighting in its purest form. Broadcasting live from a steel cage in the heart of Brazil, RioHeroes fighters compete without gloves, rounds, or time limits in no-holds barred action. The league embraces the highest levels of honor and integrity common among all Vale Tudo masters…”

    “Purest” “honor” “integrity”

    Damn, sounds legit to me, quit complaining.

  • Mike David (Euthyphro)

    Hatton trained at the UFC hq, which has a full gym in the basement. He brought his team there for his Vegas training over the last 2 weeks, while Mayweather owns a gym in vegas that he uses for his fight preparation.

  • Tommy

    Thanks for the info Mike. I found it funny that they we’re able to get their name in boxings promotion though.

  • Birdman


  • Sean Dwyer

    For a bunch of mma fans you guys sound like such pussies!!!!

  • Nate

    Bravo. I agree FightLinker.

  • Accomando

    Hey man, we calls it likes we sees it, a shill is a shill. Its about the hypocricy of it all.

  • jd

    I’m watching the live stream now. Calling the production value a piece of crap would be too much of a compliment.

    One amateur camera. Thats it. For the past 10 minutes, it’s been filming just some dudes leaning up against a cage.

    It started playing ACDC back in black in the arena. I’m sure the Brazilians love it.

  • Big D D

    oh look it’s adam and matt running to sam’s defense.. that’s cute. i also agree with higgz comment #5…train seriously…please

  • Accomando

    “…Ryan, I know we are an awesome site but you don’t have to write about us and link to us everyday. However, we do appreciate the traffic. It helps us increase our rate card and become even bigger “sellouts”…”

    A shill, and he’s snooty too.

    It ain’t like you guys don’t ever link to linker, so shat-up.

  • Matt

    Just wanted to clear a few things up, then you won’t hear anymore from me:
    Adam and I aren’t running to Sam’s defense, its our site too. In fact Sam, prob doesn’t even know this is happening b/c he’s in LA taping the next episode of Inside MMA.
    It may have been hypocritical of us to give bad reviews of Rio then accept adv from them. However I’ll let a few guys on a message board call me a hypocrite all day as long as I can put a few more presents under the tree for my kids thanks to Rio.
    Yes we do link to Linker. We like this site a lot. Its one of the most original and humorous blogs MMA related or otherwise. It does though seem like Ryan has been focusing on 5 Oz more than usual lately, which also is fine b/c traffic is traffic.

  • Archivist

    They may want to invest less in publicity and more on productions means.
    I kinda watched their free webcast a week or two ago and this was public access channel live from some church basement. Also, i just wanted to friggin napalm the presentator/ref dude. The world needs less Nacho Vidal on meth impersonnators, not more.

  • Vale Nada

    “traffic is traffic”??? Haha, classic.

  • Accomando

    “…However I’ll let a few guys on a message board call me a hypocrite all day as long as I can put a few more presents under the tree for my kids…”

    Its like the prostitute saying….

    “…I’ll blow 30 guys more a night just to give the kids 2 more presents, be damned what the health department says…”

    You know the old leftist thought though…

    “…A capitalist would sell the rope to the person who is going to hang him…”

    Just know this, once Rioheroes makes the news for all the wrong reasons and it’s end result is directly linked to the over-saturation of Ad runnings on all of the MMA websites and 5oz of pain goes down with the rest and only linker remains; well, I just hope your kids like that ‘tickle me Elmo’ you bought them, cause you sold you soul man, sold your soul.

  • Ason

    This is all much ado about NOTHING.
    So what no gloves, no rounds.

    What exactly is so bad you all think is gonna happen?

  • umm

    Funny, the guys over at fiveounces criticize other bloggers and journalists possibly more than any other MMA site out there, but they come to the comment section and whine when the first time someone targets them.

  • nem0

    “We didn’t start watching MMA for the family values it holds. We started watching it because we like to watch people get punched in the face.”

    Speak for yourself. I started watching because I used to train in martial arts and wrestling, and it’s a sport I actually understand. The bloodshed and violence is not what got me hooked. Not that I’m going to bitch about it, because it’s a sport where the focus is, you know, fucking the other guy up until he can’t fight anymore, but still.

    The hypocrisy at 5oz is kind of amusing/sad. I can see the point in trying to maximize revenue, but to go from lambasting the entire organization to slapping their flashy banners on the exact same website makes me wonder what kind of incentives Rio Heroes offered. Must’ve been something totally sweet.

  • Tim

    Great job fightlinker, you gotta call ‘em like you see ‘em.

  • Evan

    I’d just like to throw in that while Sam Caplan and his 5oz. team are valued pioneering journalists for the still natal mixed martial arts community, if they as a team wish to continue augmenting their own legitimacy as “serious” analysts then responsibility is a trait that should be exhibited in their work at all times possible. While you, Fightlinker, take a different approach to breaking down news stories (comedic, obviously), at least there is a certain stance of consistency and a straightforwardness, something I as a reader and those at least similar minded, knowingly cherish.

  • jjdnb

    This site rules. Lets cement that by you beating Sam’s ass.
    Please please please, train hard and beat his ass into oblivion!


    I like 5 oz. but I could not agree more with this. This whole “who gives a fuck about the well being of the sport as long as it benifits me” attitude is what has more or less ruined all sports.

    Here I thought it was only the athletes who are selling out.

  • Michael

    Wow, the Matt thing is a highlight. While I agree with the original post it’s great to see this Matt guy just admit he’s a whore and with no journalistic integrity.

    Know what else puts presents under the tree? A real job.

  • steve24

    Fightlinker: I heard you on a recent interview with Jerry Park talking about Sam Caplan selling out because he decided to write for Elite. But then you said you couldn’t blame him because you would have done the same thing.
    So my question is, if Rio Hero’s contacted you and offered you money to put a banner on your site for a few days, would you do it?

    Anyways, I’m not taking sides. I love 5oz. and Linker. Those 2 sites and Junkie are pretty much the only MMA sites I check anymore these days. Everybody else just copies and paste. I feel like I’m reading the same shit over and over. Keep up the good work.

  • Higgz

    …more like 5 Ounces of DOUCHE!!!

  • MacDaddy

    Ooooh snap! Looks like the fightlinker vs Sam Caplan fight just turned into a bare knuckles vale tudo match, with no rounds and headbutts, fishhooking and especially groin strikes!!!

  • koolpaw

    RioHeroes is too strange, seems a lot of supporters of it has been posting “great event” “fighters were showing respect to each others” on mmajunkie, but no one is mentioning any fighters` name.

    Sounds like all fighters of RioHeroes are “someone in brazil”. if the event and fights were such great, why they dont talk about good fighters and their skills or each fight?

  • Leland Roling

    RioHeroes is seriously not that horrible. I will say that FightLinker brings up a great point though. Writing articles against RioHeroes, and then accepting their advertising. Very odd.

  • Jersey Tomato


    I must say you really exposed the lads at 5 ounces. What they have done is akin to complaining about the drug dealers on the street corner one day and then the next day agreeing to be their lookout in exchange for a piece of the action. Rio Heroes is a garbage promotion, plain and simple. This sport is mourning one of its own this week and here you have MMA websites whoring out unsanctioned, underground fights?!?! Have the fighters for Rio Heroes received pre-fight medical exams? When did they last compete? Are they examined after they get their faces smashed in due to head butts??? No one knows or even cares.

    It is downright shameful.

  • fightlinker

    steve24: there’s only a few things we won’t sell out for … the US army, rio heroes, events with neo-nazis, and events with Mike Kyle. The list slowly grows. But for now that’s about it for now

  • jaydog

    I like this blog and 5oz both. I’m not too interested in Rio Heros, but it’s clear that their product is on the rise (from gutter to back-alley, perhaps). The production is a mess and the conditions seem dangerous. But, the fights that I caught this evening weren’t so offensive. Sure, the announcer and ref were both obnoxious and the whole thing looked like it evolved out of the FightClub movie, but I’m hoping that the increased focus brings reform to Rio Heros, just as the UFC underwent changes (possibly too many). Anyhow, I’m assuming that the 5oz guys saw the Rio Heros deal as an inevitable concession. Promotions have money to spend and semi-pro blogs need to pay their staff from time to time. I recognize the hypocrisy, but I also see that 5oz will continue to criticize various promotions from various angles without censorship. Rio Heros probably invites the controversy, because it elevates the profile of their product. Whatever. It’s the fight game, not choir practice. (however, I did like the leftist slogan earlier about the capitalist selling the rope that he’ll be hung with – a little dramatic, but potentially true).

  • Luke

    Well, Sam’s a bright guy, so I’d like to hear what he has to say if he has any opinion on the matter.

  • Luke

    Come to think of it, I’m not so sure there’s anything nefarious going on here.

    The negatives posts about Rio Heroes were written by Adam Morgan, not Sam Caplan. It’s Sam’s blog (or at least his responsibility) but I don’t think Sam requires a shared editorial outlook. Writers are permitted to speak their mind even if it means going against Sam. Ergo, accepting the ad from Rio Heroes isn’t a conflict at all.

    Personally I’d rather spend the 7 o’clock hour training than watching a product that can charitably be described as sub-par. But that’s me. Everyone is entitled to their viewpoint and I have appreciation for the nuanced stance.

  • Wu Tang

    Ouch… Just Ouch… I am laos, that was a cheap shot…Fuck… Shanx Linker, hope Sashquash and your buddies goes gold mining in the yukon territory, and gets whaled by the hungry starving eskimos.. hmmm, they Love to eat whales, after they seen that last picture of you, i wouldnt blame them.

    As for the Rio stuff, MMA is virtually a gone world down there, where the history is vivid of MMA of its past and its origins. They are just marketing to generate some interests, yet it maycome off as a bad angle, you have to reliaze those brazilians would do anything to have their culture and heritiage recongize. Mass Marketing their clip of guys getting hurt, slamming on fenses and being all bloodied up for a world via on the internet is not how their forefathers has thought their beloved sport would end up, but there are NO CARLSON GRACIE, NO HELLIO GRACIE and NO Valdemar Santana. They are trying to live up to their vale tudofathers, yet they are massing it to the wrong market, while those who are successful in vale tudo are leaving their country of origin to fight and make good money, which is the reason why their sport isnt as good as 30 years ago (Wanderlei Silva prime example leaving for UFC and Pride while having a good vale tudo career). Ok where was i going? Oww yea, they are trying to market vale tudo to a new world, rather than just Brazil, yet they should have done a better job than ‘streaming’ it through the internet.

  • Xavier

    Sam Craplan would suck any MMA promoters cock for twenty bucks and an interview. I called him out before and he got all uber-defensive and whiny because he just doesn’t get it. He’s not a journalist, yet he gets all snitty as if he is one. He’s a glorified blogger who will sell out to anyone.

    Hell, his own blogger stablemates confirm it here. It’s good that he’s in L.A. right now because the baby girl whinefest explosion that will occur when he sees this would probably level a few villages.

    I’ll say it again, because it’s fuckin’ true: No “journalist” should receive income, advertisement income or otherwise, from companies in the primary field they “cover.” No real journalist would. Craplan isn’t a real journalist, he’s just another fucking shill… ten times worse than guys like Kevin Iole.

  • Accomando

    “…steve24: there’s only a few things we won’t sell out for … the US army…”

    Only true hardcore Canadians join the US army.

  • TINO


    Just wanted to clear a few things up, then you won’t hear anymore from me:
    Adam and I aren’t running to Sam’s defense, its our site too. In fact Sam, prob doesn’t even know this is happening b/c he’s in LA taping the next episode of Inside MMA.”
    Good points Matt. Before I got ot that comment I was thinking that you can’t blame Sam. It appears to me that 5oz. has pretty much been handed off. A majority of Sam’s posts that I see are snippets and then links to his Pro Elite blog. I have noticed a lot of things with 5oz. that didn’t happen when Sam was a one man show…and that is because there are basically different people doing different things now. I hold no ill will against 5oz and it’s still one of my favorites, although different than it once was.

    As far as RIO…I had the “free pass” about a month ago to one of their shows online and never used it because I watched an older video at the site and it was shit. If I want to see that type of fighting just won’t break the kids up at the school I work at. I agree it sets MMA back but it is it’s own thing. Not for me. The MMA sites promoting it do need to pick which side of that fence they want to be on.

  • Accomando

    “…Sam Craplan would suck any MMA promoters cock for twenty bucks and an interview…”

    Xavier, how did your hate-fest with Caplan actually start?

    I’ve seen Caplan even jab back at you; admittedly, not nearly as vicious as you lambast him, but never the less, a jab.

  • Jersey Tomato

    I hear that Xavier is lobbying hard to turn the Harkness-Caplan thrown-down into a tag team match.

    The reported plan is for Ryan to stun Sam with an illegal kick to the groin and – while the referee is cautioning him for the illegal strike – Xavier will slip into the cage (behind the ref’s back, of course) and slam a folding chair on top of Caplan’s head.

    I can’t wait to watch this one on youtube…

  • DJH

    “this dangerous fight promotion”
    “crippled or put into a coma”
    “insanely unsafe fights”
    None of this is at all connected with reality. This is less honest than running ads.

  • Drehog

    Wow, thoughtful analysis that is spot-on from Fightlinker. Who’d have thought it?

    Great Job

  • marshal

    I wonder why “UFC” wants to get it’s name out of all these website URLs?

  • Dizzle

    Ryan you talk alot of shit over the internet…You’re such a pansy you wont even fight Sam over at 5 oz. in a amateur fight. So before you just go out and talk shit about everyone and their mother…u should probably back it up.

  • MadCaster

    I never heard of this Rio Hero’s thing until now on this site.

    It’s not too bad to honest guys. Just think the owners of this site for getting rio heros name out there like this. I can’t believe you guys are running their banners for free on here. Kinda cool if you ask me.


  • fightlinker

    Dizzle, are you on drugs?


    Dizzle- What the fuck does anything Ryan said in the original post have to do with fighting Sam Caplan? Since when do you have to fight somebody to be able to have an opinion on them?

  • Dizzle

    I have a problem with all this trash talking about all these other sites out there. You know I lose respect for this site when you are being hypocrtical about what other sites are doing. But look at what your doing here….your advertising for Rio Heros right now by posting an article about it.

    If you don’t like what they are doing then why write about it so every viewer on this site can go check it out?

    I understand there is opinion on this site and every other blog site on the market…but this site does so much trash talking it’s not even funny. You bash other blog sites out there and it’s disrespectful and unprofessional in my opinion.

    Five Ounces even has you guys on their list of friends…and then you bash them. Why? It just seems a little disrespectful to me.

  • fightlinker

    Normally I don’t ‘defend’ myself because I’m a firm beleiver that people should be allowed to express their opinions no matter what they are. Hell, that’s what this site is about, so I’m not about to attack anyone for doing the same. But just to respond:

    1) Sam and I are going to fight … so that’s me ‘backin’ it up

    2) There’s a pretty big difference between talking about something and advertising something. I have no trouble talking about Rio Heroes, saying shit like “Rio Heroes sucks balls” and “Rio Heroes is setting back the sport”. If you take that as an equal action as TAKING MONEY FROM THEM TO ADVERTISE IT TO YOUR READERSHIP, then you can have fun on your planet!

    In the end, everyone’s allowed to do whatever they wanna do. If other sites want to make money off Rio Heroes, they can go ahead. And if I want to point out that they’re setting back the sport by supporting this shit, then that’s my yummy pierogi too :-)

  • Accomando

    “…If you don’t like what they are doing then why write about it so every viewer on this site can go check it out?…”

    To expose them, cite your sources, you know, good journalism.

    “…your advertising for Rio Heros right now…”

    No money from them = no shill

    “…It just seems a little disrespectful to me…”

    I would guess that’s the point of the post.


    Right… So FL should refrain from critisizing anybody who “has them on their list of friends”. Nothing wrong with being biased.

    People saying Rio Heroes isn’t dangerous is ridiculous. MMA in general is inherently dangerous even with all the precautions and regulations that promotions such as UFC take. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that taking away the rules and regulations makes it more dangerous.

  • fightlinker

    Oh, forgot to add this: We wouldn’t take the piss on 5oz. so much if we didn’t just expect better from them ;-)

  • marshal

    “Normally I don’t ‘defend’ myself”
    Should be an easy fight for Sam.

  • fightlinker

    A good defense is a good offense, mah man