Tag Archives: John McCarthy

FNU Combat Sports Show: Holm vs. Cyborg Recap, Stephenson v. Ho Choi Preview, Can UFC Boxing Work: Look Ahead to 2018

This FNU Combat Sports Show covers a wide range of important topics and events. We recap Holly Holm’s brutal battle with Cris Justino at UFC 219 and look forward to a great Fight Night 124 card on the 14th.

We report on Mike Tyson’s new Pot Ranch in California, Big John McCarthy Joining the Bellator Analyst Crew, Vinny Paz getting wrapped up in assault charges, and Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor 2 chances.

Tony discusses the upcoming boxing schedule and we also get off topic and talk some football and basketball. Tony even updates us on the Canelo vs. GGG rematch negotiations.


Listen here:





LOS ANGELES – Bellator is pleased to announce that it has come to an agreement with John McCarthy to serve as color commentator during broadcasts on the soon-to-launch Paramount Network, which kicks off with Bellator 192 on Saturday, January 20.


“With the addition of ‘Big’ John to our broadcast team, we have put together the premier group of MMA commentators ahead of our Jan. 20 debut on the Paramount Network,” Bellator President Scott Coker said. “With John and Chael providing analysis, you’re getting two people who have spent more time in the cage than they have spent with a headset on, and that will translate to a positive viewing experience for Bellator fans.”


Over the past 20 years, “Big” John McCarthy has set the bar when it comes to officiating in MMA, a sport where he has overseen countless fights promoted by Bellator and other promotions all over the world, serving as the referee for some of the biggest bouts in the history of the sport. A former Los Angeles Police Officer, and a Self-Defense Instructor at the Los Angeles Police Academy, McCarthy is also the founder of “C.O.M.M.A.N.D.,” a program that trains and certifies hopeful MMA referees and judges. McCarthy’s regulatory work is equally as impressive, as he was a key figure in the writing of the sport’s Unified Rules, which are recognized by the ABC and athletic commissions all across North America.


Along with his broadcasting duties, the man behind the catchphrase “Let’s get it on!” will also provide a unique level of first-hand insight to the plethora of original content produced by Bellator’s digital team.


“I first want to say how grateful I am for the opportunity I have been given to work with the incredible team Bellator has assembled. It is always so hard to leave something you love, but I have always wanted to step away based on my terms rather than someone else’s. My goals are to work as hard as I can to meet the expectations everyone will have for me and to hopefully someday exceed them.” McCarthy said. “I cannot think of anyone I would rather be working with than Scott Coker. Scott has always been a person I admire because of his honesty, loyalty and love for the martial arts. I want to thank everyone from Bellator and Viacom for the trust you are bestowing upon me to keep the commentating of Bellator MMA at the highest levels of the sport.”


In addition, Chael Sonnen has signed an extension to remain a part of select Bellator broadcasts, breaking down all the action alongside Bellator announcers Mike Goldberg and Mauro Ranallo.


Chael Sonnen spent a majority of his 44-fight career with the UFC and WEC, a run that saw him defeat former middleweight champion Michael Bisping, and compete against the likes of Jon Jones, Anderson Silva (twice), Rashad Evans, “Shogun” Rua, Demian Maia and Brian Stann. In addition to his in-ring action, the West Linn, Ore. native has mastered the art of being in front of the camera, having done broadcast work for both ESPN and Fox Sports. Following a three-year hiatus from active MMA competition, Sonnen returned to the cage against Tito Ortiz at Bellator 170 in January and then went on to defeat Wanderlei Silva during the main event of Bellator: NYC.


Bellator and the soon-to-launch Paramount Network open 2018 with a bang when Bellator 192: Lima vs. MacDonald emanates from The Forum in California on Jan. 20. Anchored by a welterweight world title fight featuring Douglas Lima defending his championship against Rory MacDonald, the blockbuster event also will see the aforementioned Chael Sonnen compete against “Rampage” Jackson in the opening contest of 2018’s Bellator Heavyweight World Grand Prix.




WHAT:                      Bellator 170 Fan Fest

WHERE:                   Dave & Buster’s at The Promenade at Howard Hughes Center

                                    6081 Center Dr.

Los Angeles, CA 90045


WHEN:                      Thursday, January 19

8:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m.


WHO:                         Royce Gracie

                                    Kazushi Sakuraba

Wanderlei Silva

                                    King Mo

                                    John McCarthy

                                    Matt Mitrione


Royce Gracie

The name Gracie is synonymous with MMA, and that is largely in part to Royce Gracie, a man who is considered to have invented the sport as we know it today.  The winner of the first several UFC events, Gracie would dismantle multiple opponents in a single night, many of whom were much larger than him.  For many years there was no answer for the Gracie Jiu-Jitsu technique that he brought into a fight.  Today, it’s hard to find an MMA fighter who hasn’t trained in the art of Brazilian jiu-jitsu that his father invented. In February of 2016, Gracie headlined “Bellator 149,” an event that shattered company viewership records that remain intact to this day.


Kazushi Sakuraba

With an incredible resume highlighted by wins over four members of the legendary Gracie family, including Royler, Renzo, Ryan, and Royce Gracie, Sakuraba has inherited the nickname “The Gracie Hunter.” The Japanese mixed martial artist is especially remembered for his first clash with Royce, a ninety-minute marathon that ended in a TKO (corner stoppage) victory for Sakuraba nearly 17 years ago. Gracie would later avenge his loss, earning a unanimous decision win over Sakuraba at “K-1 Dynamite USA!!” inside the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Now, almost a decade later, the two legends meet again and Bellator MMA is giving you the chance to be there when it happens!


Matt Mitrione

Matt Mitrione originally took his talents to the football gridiron, signing as an undrafted free agent with the New York Giants in 2002. After brief stints with the San Francisco 49ers and Minnesota Vikings, Mitrione entered the MMA cage and hasn’t looked back since. The 14-time UFC veteran began his professional career with victories in his first five fights, four of which came by way of knockout. Known as one of the top finishers in the sport, the 37-year-old Indianapolis native recently finished his run with his former employer, making the decision to test free agency. Mitrione will now look to duplicate the success that he found throughout his career, when he meets Fedor Emelianenko in San Jose this February.


Wanderlei Silva

Former UFC superstar Wanderlei Silva will also be in attendance on January 20, as “The Axe Murderer” prepares for his Bellator MMA debut in the highly anticipated year of 2017. The man who has consistently called him out since joining the Scott Coker-led promotion, Chael Sonnen, will be competing in the main event of ‘Bellator 170’ just one day after the “Fan Fest.” A 48-fight veteran, Silva joined the Bellator MMA fray following an illustrious career with UFC, sifting through middleweight powerhouses Cung Le, Brian Stann, and current division champion Michael Bisping. With 25 of his 35 career victories coming by way of knockout, the 40-year-old Brazilian hotshot is eager to make his presence felt inside the Bellator MMA cage. Join us for ‘Bellator 170’ “Fan Fest” in Los Angeles and meet the legend himself before he makes his promotional debut.


King Mo

“King Mo” has been a mainstay with Bellator MMA since 2013, fighting everyone both the light heavyweight and heavyweight division has to offer. This will be Lawal’s second appearance at Bellator MMA’s “Fan Fest” event, giving fans another opportunity to meet the explosive striker outside of the cage. After his recent main event victory over Satoshi Ishii, “Mo” now sets his sights on other “Moneyweight” bouts to satiate his thirst.


John McCarthy

Known to many as “Big” John McCarthy, the longtime MMA referee will turn his attention to Bellator MMA’s “Fan Fest” and call the shots at a fun-filled day with some of the greatest fans the sport has to offer. McCarthy has officiated a number of memorable bouts promoted by Bellator MMA, the UFC and others, becoming one of the most notorious referees in the history of the sport.


FIGHT INFO:           Bellator 170: Ortiz vs. Sonnen takes place on Saturday, January 21 from the Forum in Los Angeles and will air live and free on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. The highly anticipated undercard streams live on Bellator.com and the Bellator Mobile App beginning at 6:50 p.m. ET/3:50 p.m. PT.


Tickets for the event start at $36 and are on sale now at Bellator.com, as well as Ticketmaster.com.


The epic main card is headlined by a legendary light heavyweight clash that pits superstars Tito Ortiz (18-12-1) against Chael Sonnen (28-14-1). In addition, a welterweight co-main event featuring Paul Daley (38-14-2) against Brennan Ward (14-4) and a middleweight bout between Ralek Gracie (3-0) and Hisaki Kato (7-2) will also be featured on the Spike-televised main card. Lastly, a featherweight contest pitting Georgi Karakhanyan (26-6-1) against Emmanuel Sanchez(13-3) and a recently-announced lightweight battle featuring Derek Campos (17-6) and Derek Anderson (14-2, 1 NC) wrap up Bellator MMA’s first main card of the new year.


On the Bellator.com-streamed preliminary card, female flyweights Rebecca Ruth (6-2) and Colleen Schneider (10-7) will join the promotional debuts of LA’s own Kevin Casey (9-5-1, 2 NC) and heavyweight knockout artist Jack May (8-3). Also featured on the undercard is the anticipated return of Chinzo Machida (4-2), Henry Corrales (12-3), Guilherme “Bomba” (8-3), and Cody Bollinger (19-6).



New Episodes Every Friday


Los Angeles, CA – Iconic MMA referee ‘Big’ John McCarthy and Bellator play-by-play commentator Sean Wheelock have joined forces with Ignotainment Media Networkto bring fans the Let’s Get It On MMA podcast, which debuts on Friday, March 6. New episodes will be available weekly, every Friday on iTunes, on the Stitcher app for Android, and at Ignotainment.com.


Let’s Get It On is audiences’ best chance to delve deeper into the heart and intricacies of mixed martial arts and combat sports, more than any other podcast. The series will draw from McCarthy’s extensive experience in MMA and boxing officiating, alongside Wheelock’s immense resume of commentating MMA, boxing and sports events worldwide. Together, McCarthy and Wheelock will discuss the latest issues, answer fan questions, interview big-name guests, and debate the hottest topics from their unique perspective in and around the world of fighting.

“I’m thrilled to be co-hosting this weekly podcast with John McCarthy. John is a close friend, as well as someone who I hold in the highest regard for his lifelong contributions to MMA,” said Wheelock.

As one of the most legendary and recognizable personalities in combat sports, and perhaps the best-known referee in any sport, John McCarthy’s reputation speaks for itself. He’s been involved in MMA since it hit the shores of North America in 1993, with UFC 1. He was a key figure in writing the sport’s Unified Rules, which are recognized by the Association of Boxing & MMA Commissions (ABC) and athletic commissions across North America. He’s judged and refereed thousands of matches worldwide in his near 25 years in MMA, and is the founder/head instructor for the Certification of Officials for MMA National Development (C.O.M.M.A.N.D.), the toughest and most complete training course for MMA judges and referees.

“I am so stoked to be talking about what’s happening in the combative sports industry and the everyday subjects that affect all of us,” noted McCarthy. “On top of that, being able to work with a true pro like Sean Wheelock makes this a perfect fit.”

One of the best-known American voices in both MMA and soccer, Wheelock’s broadcasting work has taken him to over 25 countries. He holds the distinction of being the only person to serve as a play-by-play commentator for the FIFA World Cup, the Super Bowl (three times for the BBC), U.S. Open tennis, and world championship fights in mixed martial arts. He is the play-by-play commentator for Bellator MMA on Spike TV, and previously commentated for Pride FC, Affliction and the M-1 Challenge. Additionally, Wheelock has worked as a professional boxing referee since he was 24 years old, and still holds an active license through the Kansas Athletic Commission.

New episodes of Let’s Get It On can be downloaded beginning every Friday via iTunes and the Stitcher app for Android.

For more info on the podcast and its hosts, visit the website www.letsgetitonpodcast.com and its social media pages:

Facebook:  http://facebook.com/letsgetitonpodcast

Twitter:     http://twitter.com/podcastmma or @podcastmma

Strap in, because two of the most objective voices in MMA are about to speak their minds.


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For media inquiries, contact Jay Tan at jtan@TanDynasty.com and (213) 618-0332.


For show sponsorship and advertising, contact Kris Lakin at

klakin@ignotainment.com and (618) 402-1442.

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ABOUT Ignotainment Media Network (www.ignotainment.com): Ignotainment Media Network is a digital podcast network created to keep pace with the rapidly growing market for on-demand entertainment. With a lineup ranging from sports talk to pop culture to mixed martial arts, we offer some of the most diverse and engaging programing online. Ignotainment’s current lineup includes Let’s Get It On, with ‘Big’ John McCarthy & Sean Wheelock, a weekly podcast that provides listeners with an inside look into the world of MMA & combat sports; Ochoman: Behind the 8 Ball, a tri-weekly roundtable show about sports and culture, hosted by one of American’s top sports betting prognosticators; The Whiskey Philosopher, a series that celebrates the introspective moments and harmonious banter that one can get only while sipping and appreciating a great whiskey; and Youth Baseball Talk, the most popular youth baseball podcast on the internet, which showcases Jim Cromer as he interviews the most engaging managers, coaches, and trainers in the sport.