, Port Arthur, Texas


August 3, 2013

David Estrada column: Lawler's stock should be on rise

PORT ARTHUR —     The eighth installment of UFC on Fox was held last Saturday night before a packed Seattle KeyArena crowd. From it came the continuing accession of a longtime veteran, a boo-worthy performance by two contenders, and a new player in the talk of best pound-for-pound fighter in the world.

    Longtime MMA fans will remember the brash, young "Ruthless" Robbie Lawler from his UFC beginnings in 2002. Few fighters were more intense than the then 20-year-old Miletich Fighting Systems product which made him a crowd-pleasing favorite. Success was fleeting for Lawler, however, as he lost two UFC bouts in 2004 and left the promotion.

    Lawler later fought for promotions such as Pride and got national exposure fighting on EliteXC and Strikeforce events aired on CBS and Showtime. After nine years away from the UFC he returned this year more mature, but no less intense.

    RRL knocked out welterweight stalwart Josh Koshcheck in February at

UFC 157 and was a natural choice for the UFC on Fox event for his

attention-getting fighting style. Lawler took out his opponent, Bobby Voelker,

with a left high kick to the pleasure of Fox executives.

    If Lawler continues his winning ways, he could continue to be featured on

nationally televised events and perhaps be a contender again like he was nearly a decade ago.

    The co-main event of UFC on Fox 8 was arguably more highly anticipated by fans than the main event. Rory MacDonald and Jake Ellenberger were both near the top rung of the UFC welterweight ladder and their matchup on Saturday would surely have a ripple effect on the division.

    The bout will go down in the books as one of the most non-eventful co-main events ever. Ellenberger's forte has been victory by early round knockout and he had shown a propensity to gas out in later rounds. MacDonald has been a technician of a fighter without the explosiveness of a guy like Ellenberger.

    Well, a fight never really transpired during this bout. Ellenberger paced

himself and never initiated the onslaught of an attack he's been known for.

Rory MacDonald essentially just countered and landed jabs in a ho-hum bout that had the crowd booing.

    MacDonald won the bout by decision but didn't win any new fans.

    The UFC flyweight champion, Demetrious "Mighty Mouse" Johnson, was placed in the main event in front of his hometown Seattle fans. He defended his belt against relative unknown flyweight John Moraga.

    Mighty Mouse Johnson put on a virtuoso performance with a complete display of movement, elusiveness, ground defense, and offense. He was clearly winning every single round of his bout but didn't stop pressing on in the fifth and final round. Johnson went for a kimura submission on Moraga and beautifully transitioned to an armbar forcing Moraga to verbally submit.

    The two-time defending UFC flyweight champion is now rightfully being discussed with the likes of Georges St. Pierre, Anderson "The Spider" Silva, and Jon "Bones" Jones as the best pound-for-pound fighter on the planet. One could argue he is the most versatile fighter in the UFC and definitely a model of what young mixed martial artists should aspire to be like.

    David Estrada Jr. is a Mixed Martial Arts columnist for the Port Arthur News. He can be e-mailed at


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  • Bassmaster Elites are coming back

    The Bassmaster Elite Series returns to Southeast Texas in March 2015 to fish out of Orange.
    The announcement was made last week, ahead of Bassmaster’s official tournament schedule announcement and the buzz is already strong in Southeast Texas and beyond.
    I was in Orlando, Fla. attending the ICAST (fishing trade) show and talked with a number of top anglers including Kevin VanDam, Mike Iaconelli and Shaw Grigsby who said it was no surprise they would return considering the massive turnout for the weigh-ins and that the area welcomed them in a very special way.
    It’s far too early to speculate anything like who the top contenders will be or how the fishing will be but there are some things to keep in mind and to look for over the next few months and into the event itself.
    • Prefishing-There is a pre-fishing cutoff that usually extends to right before the Bassmaster Classic and I fully expect most of the anglers in the Elites to come back and prefish.
    Last go-round probably 2/3 of the field fished the area but this time I expect that to be just about everyone. Many of the anglers that did not pre-fish told me they expected to have a lot of water to fish but the sheer volume and diversity was almost overwhelming.
    Beginning probably in the early fall we will see many anglers fishing local waters to get a better idea on how to approach the area.
    • East to West Runs-The Elite anglers fished far and wide but I expect even more running next go-round. After launching from the Simmons Drive Boat Ramp in Orange angler Bill Lowen ran down the Intracoastal, across Galveston Bay and fished in the Clear Lake area and placed in the top 12. The more adventurous anglers will try super long runs, in my opinion, even longer than last time to try and score on big fish. The Intracoastal Canal system makes that possible.
    • Sabine River -Very few of the anglers actually fished in the Sabine River despite the event being called the “Sabine River Challenge”. I think that will change with more anglers running as far north as they can to find pockets of fish that receive little pressure and perhaps a four or five-pounder to push them over the top.
    • Bigger Turnout-Last year some 34,000 people attended the event which set a Bassmaster record for an Elite event.
     It was broken a couple of weeks later in New York but I fully expect the 2015 tournament to draw 40,000 plus. The reason they are coming back is not for the stellar fishing because while we have lots of bass, everyone knows our fishery cannot compare to Toledo Bend for example.
    The support from the public however was amazing and that is what is bringing the top anglers on the planet to fish our area.
    We will have the very best coverage of the event beginning now and leading up to it with exclusive interviews with all of the top pros with not only their thoughts on the big event but with unique tips on how you can catch more fish.
    It’s an exciting time and I look forward to bringing you special coverage on a special event.
    (To contact Chester Moore, e-mail him at You can hear him on “Moore Outdoors” Fridays from 6-7 p.m. on Newstalk AM 560 KLVI or online at or watch him on “God’ Outdoors with Chester Moore” Saturdays at 10 a.m. on

    July 23, 2014

  • Mid County knocked out of tournament

    The Mid County 16-18 Babe Ruth squad’s run to the World Series is over.

    July 22, 2014

  • West golf notepad: West duo claims title in Texas Father-Son

    July 22, 2014

  • Mid County sets up championship series with Tri County

    The Southwest Regional Babe Ruth championship series is set and yes the hometown Mid County squad will be there to play.

    July 21, 2014

  • MC Babe Ruth goes 2-0

    First things first, give Clint Landry and the rest of the officials credit for making the Southwest Regional Babe Ruth tournament possible this weekend at Nederland High School.

    July 19, 2014

  • Up the odds for solid bank fishing

    There are certain limitations to fishing without a boat.

    July 19, 2014

  • Derek Williams, Summer Money League light up the lanes at Max Bowl

    Thursday nights Summer Money League produced some very impressive scores.

    July 19, 2014

  • West column: Pacers hiring Pat Knight didn't help Lamar

    July 19, 2014

  • Babe Ruth.jpg Mid County Babe Ruth set to host Southwest Regional

    The Mid County Babe Ruth 18U team is once again knocking on the World Series door. Mid County will host the Southwest Regional at Nederland High School starting today. Mid County’s first game of the tournament is slated for 7 p.m. Friday against Pine Bluff, Ark. Thursday was a special day for Mid County Babe Ruth as two locals, Jimmy Collins (shown speaking) and Skip Hopkins (back left) were inducated intot he Southwest Regional Babe Ruth Hall of Fame. Both Hopkins and Collins have been involved in Babe Ruth for over 40 consecutive years either as player, coach or board member. There are nine teams in the tournament with the winner headed to Washington state for the World Series.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • West golf notepad: Eleven-year-old Henry scores ace in YMBL tourney

    July 15, 2014

From the Fieldhouse blog