The news cycle is ramping up thanks to the impending UFC on FOX 4 event on Saturday. What does that mean? Essentially, just that the UFC apparatus has put all the puzzle pieces in a pile in and around the Staples Center in Los Angeles, and the multitudes of media are flitting about assembling their own portions of the puzzle for mass consumption. Cameras are held aloft at open workouts, microphones are stuck in the face of any fighter of relevance, and there are questions — loads and loads of questions. Here, then, is your morning news roundup, which is pretty much just a bunch of pieces that, when taken together, form an Ansel Adams-esque panorama of inevitable violence.
- You ready for some video? Here's Mauricio "Shogun" Rua at yesterday's open workout. Here's something on Mike Swick. Here's media superstar Ariel Helwani rapping with Lyoto Machida. Here's Helwani with Brandon Vera. Here's Helwani with Shogun. You know, the funny thing about Helwani is that I sometimes see him walking around his neighborhood (we live about 15 minutes away from each other), and he's always got that microphone in hand and he's interviewing everyone — the mailman, passing joggers, homeless people. Everyone. That, folks, is commitment to your work.
- Saturday night will see the introduction of the "ref cam", which is exactly what it sounds like. While this nifty contraption has never before been used in the Octagon, it has been done in other promotions. Want a bit of trivia that you can use to impress your friends? The first time a ref cam was used in MMA was back in 1997, in the Australian UFC. The Australian UFC had absolutely no connection to the real UFC, they were simply a promotion in the Land Down Under that didn't care one bit about observing copyright and trademark laws. Some good fights, though. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu legend Mario Sperry won one of their tournaments.