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Pride FC 28: High Octane

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In the year 648 B.C.E The 33rd Olympic games took place, these games featured a new event introduced by the Greeks called Pankration. Pankration was a combination of two Greek words meaning All Powers. Pankration was considered the ultimate combat sport of Ancient Greece. The sport was brutal and in many ways lethal, broken limbs and death were not uncommon in fact If there was no winner by sunset, each combatant could in turn take a full-force swing at the opponent who was not allowed to dodge from the position chosen by the striking adversary.Pankration was not only a combat sport but rather, it was actually used in the training of Greek soldiers, and in the future was taken to India by Alexander the Great. After the sport was introduced it became known as the ancient ancestor of martial arts.

Meanwhile in Asia a popular form of war combat was being used, it was called Muay Thai. Muay Thai was said to be a derivative of the Pradal Serey fighting style, popularized by the Khmer people in Cambodia Pradal Serey meant free fighting and according to documents it is believed to be adapted by the invading Thai armies and then brought back to the country in the 13th century. There it became known as Muay Thai. Muay Thai was actually called Lerdit in its military style. Muay Thai was popular and became known as the national sport of Thailand.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is an extension of Kodokan Judo (Ju-Jitsu). It arrived in Brazil when Mitsuyo Maedo came to Brazil with the hopes of establishing Japanese Colonies in the country. It was then developed further by the Gracie Family during the mid 20th century.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is an extension of Kodokan Judo. First brought to Brazil by Mitsuyo Maeda, a Japanese prizefighter in 1910. It began when an influential businessman named Gastao Gracie helped him to get his roots set in Brazil. In return for his help Maeda taught judo to his son Carlos who then taught it to his brothers including Helio Gracie. Further studying the sports and developing it The brothers originated the art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

These martial arts and other martial arts were passed down throughout the ages and then further developed and combined with wrestling and other forms of combat to form a new sport combining all aspects entitled, Mixed Martial Arts.

The sport of Mixed Martial Arts spread to the world thanks mostly in part of the Gracie’s and there numerous fights in Brazil which featured fighting different styles of fighters including Wrestlers, Judo, Kick boxing, Boxers, and other practitioners. The sport continued to grow in popularity throughout the years and eventually spread to mainstream America which is where i now begin.

Many of you reading this are familiar with the popular American based fighting company called the Ultimate Fighting Championships (UFC.) The Ufc over the years has become a phenomena in the country with its popular pay-per view events, reality show and now regular broadcasting specials on Spike Tv. The Ufc has became basically to Muay Thai in America as the World Wrestling Federation is in its following.

However, and many of you will agree the World Wrestling Federation has become a soap opera and the country has sought out a new forum for the popular sport based solely on wrestling and not charisma.

In this case we look at MMA, in America the major outlet for the sport is the UFC. However there is much better out there that the world has known all about however many of us do not know about. So i went looking and on my quest i found the worlds largest Mixed Martial Arts company, popular throughout the Globe, it is called PrideFc.

PrideFc is a subsidiary of Dream stage entertainment. The company is a more pure form of the sport with fighters from all over the worlds continents fighting to see who is the most skilled Mixed Martial Arts fighter in the world. The company unlike does not base its self off of Reality television and Hollywood Celebrity appearances, rather it spreads itself off the skill level of its fighters and the reality of the sport itself. PrideFc offers the world a no gimmick approach to the sport of Mixed Martial Arts, hosted by professionals who actually know the history of the sport and the precursors that led it to where it is today. The fans appreciate this and in fact the Pride company lives up to its name as the worlds largest MMA company not by lies but by facts, the company has drawn over 50,000 audience members in numerous fights and actually 90,000 fans at an event co-hosted by Pride and K-1 in 2002.

Interested in the sport I contacted Turi Altavella, a vice president of production at Dream Stage Entertainment who then offered to show me more about the company and its fighters, he sent me three dvds including, High Octane (Pride 28) Bushido 5 and Bad to the Bone. In this article I will be reviewing High Octane (Pride 28).

Eager to see the quality of sport Pride offers i immediately inserted the video and after that I never left the screen for anything at all even though I had the luxury of pausing at any point. I was infatuated with the sport and I had no idea that it could be so incredible. I confess I based my knowledge of the sport off of what was shown to me by the media and Spike TV. If your expecting anything like the Ufc your in for a shock, because this company hands down makes competitors look like amatures.

High Octane features a card of nine televised fights including the main event for the PrideFc Middleweight championship of the world, the Undefeated in over four years Wanderlei Silva versus Memphis Tenn. product Quinton Jackson. Here is the complete card listing:

Ricardo Arona versus Sergey Ignatov
Heath Herring versus Hirotaka Yokoi
Dan Henderson versus Kazuhiro Nakamura
Mark Hunt versus Daniel Bobish
Allistar Overeem versus Hiromitsu Kanehar
Aleksander Emelianenko versus James Thompson
Mirko Cro Cop versus Josh Barnett
Wanderlei Silva (PrideFc middleweight champion of the world) versus Quinton Jackson.

The commentators for the event were former champion Bras Rutten and Mauro Romallo, it took place at the Sitama Super Arena in Japan on Halloween Night 2004, and the attendance was 25,000 people.

The first thing that i noticed upon watching this dvd was the crystal clear quality of the cameras and the audio. The production value for the event was absolutely above par in every sense of the word. The event starts off with the introduction by Bras Rutten and Mauro Romallo and we immediately start off the nights fights!

The first fight of the evening saw Heath Herring of USA (26 years old, 6’4 237 pounds, with a Pride record of 11-5.) fighting Hitotaka Yokoi of Japan (26 years old, 5’11 224 pounds, with a Pride record of 1-1 in Pride. Though it was the first fight of the evening it left an astonished look on my face. My brain pretty much overloaded with the incredible explosive fighting action that i had just witnessed. The fight immediately showed me that i wasn’t in Kansas anymore (reference to the dull world of the UFC.) moves that normally wouldn’t even occur at another company were being used in this fight and it made the fights 100% better and more fun to watch for all fight fans. The fight lasted only two minutes however the two minutes changed my outlook on the sport of MMA forever.

Some of the immediate differences that i witnessed from the UFC was that instead of an Octagonal cage the fights took place in an 18 foot white ring, much like a boxing ring. The announcers for the fights were knowledgeable and called the action instead of inside jokes. The rounds were comprised of one ten minute round followed by consecutive rounds two and three with the length of five minutes in length. Also, one of my favorites was the if the fight got to close to the ropes the fight was brought back to the middle of the ring in the same position as the fight was stopped, be it on the ground it started on the ground. The referees did not decide the fight, rather the fighters attacked each other head on and the action was immediate. Legal moves that i had never seen before such as Soccer kicks to the head, and heel strikes were allowed. Also an interesting addition was the use of Yellow cards for fouls much like soccer, the yellow cards would add up and eventually lead to the disqualification of the offender.

Moving along to the second fight, we saw Ricardo Arona of Brazil (26 years old, 5’11 227 pounds with a pride record of 3-1) versus Russia’s Sergey Ignatev (33 years old, 5’9 220 pounds in his pride debut.) This fight featured total domination by Ricardo Arona featuring ground and pound and stand up fighting. The match eventually ended eight minutes and thirty seven seconds into the first round with Ignatev tapping via rear naked choke. This was a very entertaining fight and at this point of the dvd i couldn’t see how the company could keep up the frantic pace that they set with these first two matches, however as i continued to watch they did.

The item that so far stood out to me while watching this dvd is the fact that there is rarely any stoppages, the fighters don’t throw a quick jab and then run around the ring avoiding the opponent, this is PRIDE and that is exactly what they show. They show these extremely knowledgeable Japanese fans in attendance respect by giving it there all and risking there well-being with each punch. The offense is actual offense and not stop and go. It absolutely is the best part about the company, the total nonstop action exhibited in each match. There is not a dull moment in the entire pay per view.

This leads us into the next match. Fight number three for the evening which features Alexandre Emelianenko of Russia (23 years old, 6’5 264 with a 2 and 1 record in Pride) versus the highly touted tough guy from England James Thompson (25 years old 6’4 264lbs and he made his pride debut.)The referee brings the combatants to the middle of the ring to explain the rules and the stair down is like a total reverse on both ends, Thompson is completely focused and gives a stair down which may be one of the most intense moments on the entire dvd bare none.

The fighters are then instructed back to there corners to wait for the bell to begin which literally is like declaring war. The fighters both wait like pit bulls being held by chains, to be released and they literally lunge at each other Thompson is intense he is jumping at the bit waiting to get a taste of Emelianenko, Emelianenko is calm and he sits back waiting for a mistake for Thomas and he doesn’t have to wait long, though Thompson comes running at Emelianenko he lands one punch then he loses his footing and falls, this gives Emelianenko the time to recover from the punch and throw one of his own, the fight is over with one punch leading to a knockout from Alexandre Emelianenko in only twelve seconds into the first round.

The fight was amazing and it was a classic case of the tortoise and the hair, the tortoise sat back and waited while the hair jumped at the bit trying to defeat the world in as short a time as possible. He made the fatal mistake and his opponent capitalized on it. Amazing fight just for the pure intensity the match brings. Fight of the evening at this point though it was short. You could feel the adrenaline and testosterone pouring out of Thompson’s skin.

This is also one of the major factors that assisted in so quick a time I felt so strongly about PrideFc, the matches don’t end by judges decision all the time like some other companies, rather the endings are varied and not by design, it is just the courage and ferociousness of the fighters. You never know what you are going to get with Pride matches. The fighters don’t hold back, they unleash hell upon thy enemies and hope they trained hard enough to equal there rival. They are given a prolonged ten minute round right off the bat to try and vanquish there rival, however if that is not enough they get two more rounds of five, this has to eliminate going to the judges score card, which is definitely what the people want to see!

The next fight featured Alistair “The Demolition Man” Overeem of Holland (24 years old, 6’6 205 with a pride record of 3 wins 1 loss.) versus Hiromitsu “The smiling killer” Kanehara of Japan (34 years old 5’10 200 pounds with a pride record of 0 wins with 2 losses) This fight was probably the most boring fight on the card because the two combatants were under matched. Overeems reach was long he is 5’5 and the lowly small frame of the Japanese fighter Kanehara left not much to his advantage. The fight went for a long time due mostly to the tremendous amount of heart that Kanehara showed the 20,000 plus crowd at the Satima Super Dome. The fight could have been over within the first few minutes however The Smiling Killer battled on but to no avail, Alistair “The Demolition Man” Overeem defeated Kanehara by Medical stoppage due to a deep cut issued by knee strikes to the face. Overeem wins the fight with only minutes into round two.

Though as i said this fight was a complete mismatch the offense shown by Overeem was worth the watch. He exhibited moves that i have never seen before except in movies like Ong-Bok the big man does jumping knee strikes and is just amazingly lengthy. Height isn’t an option which may be one downfall to the fighting, however it is quite infrequent.

The next fight was the Battle of the big men, it featured Mark Hunt of New Zealand (30 years old 5’10 275 pounds with a Pride record of 0 wins and 1 loss.) versus Danny “The Bull” Bobbish of the United States. ( 34 years old 6’1 335 pounds with a pride record of 0 and 2) The fight was the epitome of the word giant match. These two big framed men came out swinging heavily, Bobbish exhibiting an incredibly amount of stamina taking over the match of a man who he was the underdog in. Bobbish dominated most of the striking and ground work, however as time wore on you could see Bobbish tiring and thus opening a window for Mark Hunt. Hunt was down and out and it looked like it was totally over, however that wouldn’t last the men stand up and within seconds Hunt eliminates Bobbish by Knock out. With six minutes and thirty one seconds of the first round.

Another thing that i like about Pride is showcased in this match, they match fights people want to see. In other organizations we only see the flavor of the week whether it is the Middleweights and Lightweights or the occasional heavyweight bout. PrideFc showcases it all, and it is the best of the best. The two big men were swinging for the stars and they made it totally entertaining while not worrying about there image which other mma companies have the habit to do. PrideFc has balls. Plain and simple.

The next bout was between Hollywood Dan Henderson of the United States (34 years old, 5’11 weighing 195 pounds with a pride record of 5 and 3.) versus Kazuhiro Nakamura of Japan (25 years old, 5’10 210 pounds and Pride record of 4 wins 2 losses.) The fight starts off with both fighters firing on all cylinders and landing even amounts of strikes and kicks. Both the fighters are extremely fast paced however in one minute and fifteen seconds into the first round Nakamura gets hurt by a knee strike to the shoulder which ultimately led to it being dislocated; medical stoppage. Henderson wins!

The pride fighting championships keep a well trained medical staff and other officials at ringside to handle any situation which may arise, and anytime a fighter is perceived as being in trouble they are ready to jump in and take control. In this case they do and they obviously know that the fighter cannot compete so they do not chance it, they take him right back to the medical ward. The commentators explain what may have happened to the viewers and are very in depth and offer a ton of insight into injuries such as this occurring in the MMA world.

The ring crew does there job and it is time for the next fight, “The Baby Face Assassin” Josh Barnett former UFC Heavyweight Champion of the World from the United States (26 years old, 6’4 261 and is making his pride debut.) Versus Pride favorite Croatian Mirko Flipovic “Cro-Cop” (30 years old 6’2 228 with a record of 9-9-2 in PrideFc. Obviously you see there was a weight advantage for Barnett in this one as Mirko waived the weight. Both men clash in the middle of the ring at the sound of the bell, Cro-Cop misses a roundhouse kick and lands on the ground, Barnett mounts and immediately stars to tap out as forty-six seconds into the fight Barnett suffers a collarbone injury. Dissatisfied with the fight Cro-Cop gets on the microphone and announces to Barnett and the 25k strong in attendance that any time Barnett wants it he can have a rematch. Both men shake hands and the announcers prepare us for Wanderlei “The Axe Murderer” Silva versus Quinton “Rampage” Jackson. They hype the bout and provide us with some details to the fight.

The production crew made a video which showcases the previous bout the two fighters had at 2003’s middleweight tournament which saw the best in the middleweight division from throughout the world compete in one night to crown the undisputed champion.

Advancing throughout the night Silva actually fought Japans Hidhiki Yoshida in a hard fought and extremely entertaining fight via decision. While on the other hand Quinton Jackson fought current Ufc Middleweight champion Chuck “The Iceman” Lidell forcing Lidells camp to throw in the towel thus advancing Jackson. In the same night the two men would fight for the title, Silva fought Jackson for the first time to determain the worlds best middleweight fighter and it didn’t take long to prove Silva was on top as he knocked out Jackson via knee strikes in just six minutes into the fight. Crowning him champion.

Both men are shown offering there thoughts about the fight and the announcers take over at ringside preparing the audience and viewers for what they are about to witness. With that the music of Quinton “Rampage” Jackson plays and the two men enter the ring through a very theatrical entrance. Both men make there ways to the corner and both national anthems are then played as the announcers further prepare us for the bought. The music is over and its time to get to business, the match is then announced, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson of Memphis Tenn. (26 years old 6’1 weighing 205 pounds with a Pride record of 9 and 3) versus the Pride Middleweight Champion of the World, Wenderlei “The Axe Murderer” Silva. ( 28 years old 5’11 205 pounds with a Pride Record of 18-0-1) The man who had been undefeated in over four years.

The two men square off in the center of the ring waiting for the bell, Silva is renowned for his stare down as it is truly the very definition of intense, he literally burns a hole into the heart of his opponent. The bell is then rung and hell is unleashed. Jackson takes control early launching an exchange of knees and punches. Its a slow start seemingly and Silva then unloads ea barrage of punches and knees with great power. Both men then land big shots and Silva steps up delivering High Knees to the face of Jackson. Jackson is cut and the ref takes him to his corner to get it checked out, they fix it and then the fight is restarted back in the position they left it, on the ground. Jackson lands some hits as he is mounted however Silva then applies his half guard. Silva is busy underneath though and then gets up delivering heel strikes and a few punches. Both men get a yellow card and restart, after some exchanges Jackson applies a triangle choke. The two separate and land some hits both ways to end the first round.

This fight is a complete showcase of all styles of MMA, everything is in this fight, striking, ground and pound, submissions, and Muay Thai kicks.

The second round starts, and Jackson is on the ground, Silva controls as they restart in the center of the ring on the ground. Silva continues to control the fight he lands some stomps and strong soccer kicks to the head of Jackson. With two minutes and thirty seconds remaining in 2nd round both men exchange Muay Thai kicks and Jackson lands a right Silva then responds back with a huge right, and it is over! Wanderlei Silva ends the fight by Knockout to Quinton Jackson, Silva wins and remains undefeated in 4 years and he is then announced as the new and undisputed Middleweight Champion of the World!

This match was unlike any title fight that i had ever seen before! The combatants gave it there all and left nothing in the tanks. Both men are absolutely studs and gave each other a hard fought battle. Anyone who likes a good fight and can appreciate it, this is your dream match. So much heart and dedication attributed to a title. The title I’m referring to isn’t made of gold or a check or trophy, rather it is the title they are all under, the title of Pride.

The entire pay per view was incredible and showcases the best that MMA has to offer when its truly about the sport and not how to network. This showcase of talent was not just about money or trophies it was about pride and the fighters all have a tremendous amount of it to compete in such grueling combat. My hats off to these fights for they have shown me a whole new world in Mixed Martial Arts. I was actually embarrassed looking back that i had actually thought UFC was the best fighting style I had ever seen.

This wasn’t just a dvd, rather it was a life changing experience for myself a fight fan. I will watch this dvd over and over again because it was just simply that damn good.

The Bottom Line: Everybody needs to get this DVD. For those who like the UFC and follow it frequently, nay i say to you. Go out and immediately buy these Dvd’s and witness first hand what Mixed Martial Arts is in its purist form: Pride. The only downside to this dvd was the lack of extras videos, however on the other hand the dvd featured many special features including The Rules, The Press Book, and the complete fight card and the profiles of the fighters. So basically there really is no down point and for that i say ORDER NOW!

Fight Card

Pride Middleweight Championship Match
Wanderlei Silva (Brazil) vs. Quinton Jackson (USA)
Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic vs. Josh Barnett (USA)
Aleksander Emelianenko (Russia) vs. James Thompson (England)
Alistair Overeem (Holland) vs. Hiromitsu Kanehara (Japan)
Mark Hunt (New Zealand) vs. Daniel Bobish (USA)
Dan Henderson (USA) vs. Kazuhiro Nakamura (Japan)
Heath Herring (USA) vs. Hirotaka Yokoi (Japan)
Ricardo Arona (Brazil) vs. Sergey Ignatov (Russia)
Mu Bae Choi (Korea) vs. Soa Palalei (Australia)

Special Features

Bonus Match: Choi vs. Palalei
Video Feature: Silva vs. Jackson
Photo Galleries
PRIDE FC Rules
Detailed Fighter Bios
Fight Glossary
Event Program Cover
Event Poster
Easter Eggs

Release Date:

  • 11/15/2005

Company:

  • Pride Fighting Championships

Distributor:

  • Dreamstage Entertainment

Cast:

  • Wanderlei Silva & Quinton Jackson

Reviewer:

  • Kevin Dank

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