Mariusz Pudzianowski's Blogs
Tomasz Marciniak Joins Press Row
By: Jordan Breen
Every Wednesday, Administrative Editor Jordan Breen welcomes a member of the mixed martial arts media into “Press Row” on the Sherdog.com blog. This week, Breen is joined by Sherdog.com contributor and MMARocks.pl editor Tomasz Marciniak.Read more
Breen and Marciniak take a look at the current state and role that “freakshow” fights play in the international MMA landscape, keying in on forthcoming bouts between notorious Polish kickboxer Marcin Najman and viral video sensation-slash-bodybuilder Robert Burneika at MMA Attack 2, as well as former “World’s Strongest Man” Mariusz Pudianowski’s scheduled bout with Bob Sapp at KSW 19. The two discuss these two particular bouts, their reception in Poland, why exactly Poland seems to revel in “freakshows” and what it means for its MMA community.
The two also discuss the role and potential upsides of this kind of matchmaking in emerging MMA markets, Bob Sapp’s retirement tour, Robert Burneika’s positively bizarre backstory, Indonesian MMA and even the infamous Andrei Arlovski-Justin Eilers headliner at UFC 53.
Quick Quote: Sylvia Says Pudzianowski Was Not Strong
By: Sherdog.com Staff
Tim Sylvia, speaking Monday on the Sherdog Radio Network’s Savage Dog Show on whether Mariusz Pudzianowski was strong: “Not at all. I’ve faced guys in the gym that were stronger than him. I’m not saying any of the guys I faced can out-bench-press him or pull a car faster than he can or throw keg barrels around like he can, because none of us can, but that’s not what we train for. We train to go against other human beings that are punching you, kicking you, kneeing you or trying to out-position you with their hips. I knew the strength was not going to come into play just because I knew it was MMA. It’s totally different when someone’s trying to grab you and you’re punching them in the face and kneeing them in the body.” Read more
World’s Reddest Man
By: Jake Rossen
It’s easy to root for Mariusz Pudzianowski when the opposition is Tim Sylvia, an apathetic former UFC champion who now ambles into a cage north of 300 pounds and refers to himself as a “legend” without a hint of irony.
Despite the goodwill of the crowd, Pudzianowski’s appeal as an X factor in MMA came to a gruesome end Friday when Sylvia made quick and honest work of him during Moosin’s first pay-per-view venture. Pudzianowski cannot box, cannot wrestle, and cannot tolerate the acidic build-up of clinching in a fight: he literally turned fuchsia as his body began to revolt at the request for a new kind of physical effort. Tapping in the second round was less about Sylvia’s rubbery strikes than his complete lack of oxygen. Had this fight been held in Colorado, he may have actually exploded.
There are people who gave Pudzianowski a chance in MMA: “he’s so strong,” they said. And he is, but not in a way that holds any real meaning for the sport. A seasoned kickboxer will strike with more impact because they know how. As an added bonus, they won’t look sunburned after two minutes of effort. While much has been made of Pudzianowski’s power, I maintain that most professionals would rather suffer his attack than Pedro Rizzo’s.
If Pudzianowski’s status as a sideshow had been more carefully protected, promoters probably could have milked him for a few more bouts. (Pudziankowski vs. Gary Goodridge, Ken Shamrock, Herschel Walker -- it’s a long list.) After three fights, it should be a dead issue. I’m surprised it took this long. Read more
Poll: Sylvia vs. Pudzianowski
By: Mike Fridley
The map below displays regional data for the current poll. Refresh (F5) to update:
Red Ink: Sylvia/Pudzianowski
By: Jake Rossen
File Photo: Sherdog.com
While it has never been easy to be a Tim Sylvia fan -- the tall, smug fighter is neither an underdog nor ring dynamite -- the past year has been especially troublesome. Since the former UFC heavyweight champion defected from that promotion in 2008 to pursue a big money deal with Affliction, he has endured two losses in three fights. One of them was forgivable (the loss to King Fedor) and one was not (a viral video KO at the elderly hands of pro boxer Ray Mercer).
To enjoy more exposure in Strikeforce or in Japan, Sylvia will have to turn the punchline title over to Mariusz Pudzianowski, the no-necked strongman champion who is pursuing an improbable career in MMA. In two fights, Pudzianowski has displayed skill on the level of a very large, very powerful child throwing a tantrum. If he had an iota of wrestling ability, his physical pressure would be a nightmare. But as a fighter, he relies solely on explosive movements and basic brute force; as a novelty act, he falls somewhere in between Primo Carnera and the Green Power Ranger.
This is all high risk for very little reward. Sylvia beating Pudzianowski is an unremarkable chapter in the story of his career. Not beating him would probably be the end of it.
What It Means: For Sylvia, an opportunity to display a restored commitment to conditioning; for Pudzianowski, preserving his value as a carnival attraction.
Might Look Like: A complete mess.
Wild Card: Pudzianowski just fought two weeks ago. While beginners can maintain a busy fight schedule, they’re usually much younger. And better. And not facing former champions.
Who Wins: Unless Sylvia has completely checked out, Pudzianowski will get a boxing lesson similar to the jab-fest suffered by equally squat-framed Jeff Monson back in 2006. Sylvia by TKO. Read more
World’s Most Optimistic Man
By: Jake Rossen
If “World’s Strongest Man” Mariusz Pudzianowski had grown up on a wrestling mat, he might be on to something. Instead, the melon-biceped Pudzianowski is counting on some contrite striking and pick-up grappling to become a contender. And according to Pudzianowski himself on LowKick.com, a possible threat to Fedor Emelianenko.
"I love the idea of starting my United States experience from Tim Sylvia,” he said. “He is a serious opponent and I prepare to prove everyone that I am the real deal in mixed martial arts. In two years from now, I would love to fight Fedor Emelianenko. He will rip my head off if we fight today, but in two years it could be a different story.”
OK. Look. Pudzianowski is a ball of muscle fiber. You might not get him in an armbar. His cardiovascular conditioning is impressive in the strongman competitions, which resembles MMA in its interval bursts of all-out effort. Being a fantastic athlete can never hurt.
But there are miles and miles of separation between the muscles required to launch a beer keg in the air and the muscular memory that comes from wrestling, grappling, and striking for decades at a stretch. This may not come into play against a lumbering Sylvia, but if Pudzianowski decides to test himself against someone whose body is adapted to fighting, it’s not going to matter that he can drag a propeller plane behind him. Wrestling strong isn’t gym strong isn’t Strongman strong. If you’re playing any game but your own, you’ve got problems. Read more
The Big Pudzianowski: Polish Strongman Mulling Emelianenko
By: Jake Rossen
MiddleEasy.com got their hands on a rough translation of a Polish newspaper report: while some key details could be getting mangled in the imported text, there appears to be some notion that James Bond-esque super-group M-1 Global has made advances toward no-necked strongman Mariusz Pudzianowski.
“The Russians would like to download to yourself ‘Pudziana’ in April,” reads one interpretation. Who could resist such an offer?
Billed as the World’s Strongest Man, “Pudziana” throttled an outmatched Marcin Najman last Friday in Poland, landing a series of ugly, awkward punches and kicks until the referee peeled him off. It was more wild-animal attack than fight, but it apparently impressed M-1 enough to float Aleksander Emelianenko as a possible opponent.
I expect Pudzianowski has handlers to rebuff these kinds of advances, but if not, he’s about to become the latest in a long line of ill-qualified attractions that prefer money to common sense. There have been massively powerful individuals -- Mark Kerr, Tom Erikson -- who were able to marry actual skills with their horsepower -- and still got beat. If you’re constructing a fighter, are you really going to sacrifice years of grappling ability to add a few hundred pounds to his deadlift?
Pudzianowski is a novelty act. If he’s treated like one, more power to him. If he’s treated like a fight athlete, his protein shakes are going to have to go through a wired jaw. Read more