Important Announcement To the MMA Community

Brian Oswald@@briancoswaldMMA Editor July 31, 2009

Greetings to the MMA Community!

As your Community Leader, I want to update you on some exciting developments within the MMA community that will provide you—as a hardcore fan and passionate writer—with some great opportunities. You'll see that Bleacher Report is committed to continually rolling out new programs to further bolster the strength of the existing community.


New MMA Categories

Check this out! If you have not already noticed, we are expanding MMA's home on B/R, and have included new links to category pages for each of the different organizations at the top of the page. Currently there are categories for UFC, WEC, and Strikeforce.

The team here is thrilled to see the explosion of MMA and it felt the increasing need to add these sections. In fact, we have even extended our reach to include pages for Japanese and Regional MMA.

The engineers are working hard to make room for links to those two sections on the main page. In the meantime, go to the "People" link on the main page and once there, you will see the appropriate links to the DREAM and Regional MMA pages.

The creation of these new categories will ensure every organization is properly represented in terms of content and commentary. It also was done to establish a network of ambassadors who can reach out to the respective organizations to develop working relationships. 

And most importantly, don't forget to tag! It's important to tag your article appropriately so it ends up in the right sub-category so all those interested can enjoy reading it. If you have any questions about this, send a message to the respective community leader.


New Community Leaders 

New leaders take charge! With the sudden increase of MMA content and its growing popularity, we are happy to announce that we’ve added 10 new Community Leaders to serve these new communities. These leaders will serve to build up the networks, and keep pertinent information updated and posted for each organization. 

Tap into the MMA news source—sign up for each organization and reach out to the Community Leaders to develop relationships with them. They are a great resource for collaboration on any article you’re writing, can provide constructive feedback, and help you post an article that will generate the most interest. 

Since the leaders have direct access to their respective organizations, opportunities will arise for writers on the site to interview fighters from those organizations. Want to learn more about what it takes to interview fighters and get a behind the scenes look at MMA? 

Contact me and I can help you facilitate this fun and exciting process! Just send me a private message on Bleacher Report or email me directly at

The stronger the individual communities, the better we can represent the respective MMA organizations. The continued expansion and credibility of the MMA community is contingent upon the success of the organizations. As we all begin to take on more responsibility, we together, will see the community grow and flourish.

And now, introducing your new leaders:

• UFC: Derek Bolender—Derek has been writing on Bleacher Report for a year and has become quite accomplished. His articles have been featured across the Web on sites like,,, as well as popular MMA blog sites. He has also covered numerous live events and interviewed some of the finest in the sport including Georges St. Pierre, Anderson Silva, and Rich Franklin.

• UFC: Mitch Ciccarelli—Mitch displays a great passion for all things MMA and his writing has appeared at and He is currently a staff writer for His specialties include Top-10 based articles, fighter interviews, fight breakdowns, and event recaps. He has also been syndicated to

• WEC: Nate Lawson—Nate has shown a particular passion for the WEC, and in doing so, has developed a great working relationship with the organization. He has interviewed WEC General Manager Reed Harris, along with fighters Mike Brown, Donald Cerrone, and Benson Henderson. Nate is a staff writer for Inside Fights and has been syndicated to both and

• WEC: Jessy Morris—Like Derek, Jessy has been with Bleacher Report for about a year and has come a long way in that time. Jessy is one of several Canadian MMA writers in the community and brings the fervent passion that fans in Canada are known for. Jessy has also been syndicated to both and

• Strikeforce: Derek Wizzle—Derek is a sportswriter from the San Francisco Bay Area and runs his popular sports blog, "D Wizzle's World". Derek has a great working relationship with Strikeforce. He has covered live events in the past and will continue to do so to provide the best Strikeforce content available.

• Strikeforce: Mike Leanza—Mike has been on Bleacher Report for almost a year and has shown both his love and commitment for MMA in that time through his writing. Mike is known for writing opinionated feature articles and recently has committed to covering everything Strikeforce. Mike has recently signed on to write for He has also been syndicated to

• Japanese MMA: Sean Smith—Sean is another one of our Canadian writers and has been writing on Bleacher Report for over a year.  Sean has a passion for Japanese MMA and has spent many a night staying up till 6 A.M. to finish watching a fight card from Japan. He has written for Inside Fights,, and has been syndicated to Fox Sports.

• Japanese MMA: Aki—Aki is currently a writer for Inside Fights and Scrapp! Fight Magazine. Fluent in Japanese, he looks to keep his finger on the pulse of the Japanese MMA scene and translate the wealth of information at his disposal into meaningful coverage on B/R. Aki has been syndicated to both and

• Regional MMA: Nick Colon—Nick has been covering MMA with Bleacher Report for a year and also covers MMA for his college newspaper. Nick has shown a particular interest in Regional MMA, covering shows like WCF in Massachusetts. Nick has also developed a good working relationship with Bellator and plans to cover their future live events.

• Regional MMA: Jaime Moreno—Like his regional MMA counterpart, Jaime has been covering MMA on Bleacher Report for about a year. Jaime is known for his Preview and Predictions articles that are done for every major MMA event, but he also has a strong passion for Regional MMA. Jaime has covered Bellator’s recent fight card in Texas and plans to cover future regional shows in the state of Texas.


Ever dream of having your work published for the entire world to see? 

Well now is the perfect time to have your articles reach a whole new audience. The recent success of Bleacher Report has attracted the attention of major media outlets, and we currently have content partnerships in place with and   
Writers such as Derek Bolender, Mike Leanza, Nate Lawson, Mitch Ciccarelli, and Jessy Morris have had their articles syndicated and published on these very outlets. And the opportunity is now available to those passionate about pursuing it.  

Every B/R writer has the opportunity of having their MMA articles syndicated if they craft thoughtful, top-notch articles. How is that achieved? These organizations are looking for "bigger picture" stories that are insightful and unique.

Look beyond a traditional fight recap, and focus on providing perspective about a future event, trends on the industry as a whole, or what the implications of a specific event (e.g.,. UFC 100) could mean for future events and the future of the organization.  

A few tips to help you along the way:

• Don’t just report the news, make sense of it.
• Be creative. Be funny. Be opinionated.
• Content partners turn to B/R because the writers are passionate and knowledgeable about MMA and your content should reflect that.

This is a great way to build your name within the industry and to be classified as a first rate writer. To learn more, contact me directly at; also contact the other writers who have been syndicated to get their perspective.


Media Credentials 

The explosion of the MMA Community on Bleacher Report has also generated amazing opportunities unlike any other community on the site.

Select writers who display the know-how and drive will have the opportunity to secure media credentials to cover live events. Derek Bolender and I have both had the opportunity to attend two such events—Strikeforce in St. Louis and UFC 100. And I can say that it was an amazing experience. 

It is hard to put into words how covering an event as a member of the media changes your point of view on the sport. Getting credentialed to cover live events will be a selective process based on a number of factors, but anyone is eligible to submit an application. 

One factor that will determine credentialing, will be location. The closer in proximity you are to an event, the better it will work in your favor. And do not just consider major events! 

Regional opportunities are a great way to gain experience, experience which can position you better to cover larger events in the future. Talk to your Regional MMA community leaders to learn more about the work they are doing with local promotions and how to become involved. 


Bleacher Report's Fastest Growing Community!

Can you believe it? We're the fastest growing community on the B/R Web site. Which makes sense since MMA is the fastest growing sport. And as the sport and the community grow, it will expand both the role and opportunities for writers who make the most of it. 

While Bleacher Report will always be based on the point of view and know-how of the hardcore sports fan/writer—that’s you—the viewpoint and knowledge of the B/R writer is rapidly evolving through the power of our burgeoning brand name. 

The experience of the fan-writer is at the heart of everything Bleacher Report does. We believe that there is unlimited potential for you, if you are committed to being a part of a team that is dedicated to your success. 

So please reach out to me, reach out to the new community leaders, and start on the road to creating the experience and success you want to have.


    Winners and Losers from London

    MMA logo

    Winners and Losers from London

    Jonathan Snowden
    via Bleacher Report

    Floyd Says He Will Apply for MMA License

    MMA logo

    Floyd Says He Will Apply for MMA License

    Tyler Conway
    via Bleacher Report

    Fighter Face-plants, Knocks Himself Out

    MMA logo

    Fighter Face-plants, Knocks Himself Out

    Nathan McCarter
    via Bleacher Report

    Werdum KO'd by Alexander Volkov

    MMA logo

    Werdum KO'd by Alexander Volkov

    Alex Ballentine
    via Bleacher Report