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Nine reasons why you should watch the MMA Awards telecast

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Chael Sonnen arrives at the 2013 Fighters Only World Mixed Martial Arts Awards at The Joint in the Hard Rock Hotel on Friday, Jan. 11, 2013.
Photo: Brian Jones/Las Vegas News Bureau

If you weren’t at The Joint at the Hard Rock last Friday night for the Fighter Only World Mixed Martial Awards, you missed one hilarious red carpet and taping. Fortunately, MMA fans can catch the condensed version of the awards on the telecast Sunday, January 20 on Fox Sports.

Hosting again were the beautiful Molly Qerim of the CBS Sports Network and the bombastic Chael Sonnen. Here are just some of the reasons not to miss this year’s show.

1. If you haven’t shelled out yet to see Absinthe (and you really should), catch the show’s roller skating duo, Sven Rauhe and Roma Hervida, in their dizzying act. Sonnen mentioned on the red carpet that “Absinthe is the best show I have ever seen and that includes film, Broadway, even films I’ve been in.” Also, Vegas-based rock band Otherwise opens the show with a powerful rendition of their hit song “Soldiers.”

2. Coco Austin, star of Peepshow, walked the red carpet and reveled her enthusiasm and charming ignorance for the sport. “I’m presenting Promotion of the Year but I don’t really know what that means. I’m just going to go with the flow and hope I can read the teleprompter!” She said when she watches fights at home with husband Ice-T, he’s her “little educator,” trying to teach her more about MMA. She also referred to Las Vegas fighter Roy Nelson as “the truck driver dude,” which is reason enough to love her and her take on fighters.

2013 MMA Awards at The Joint

3. Armbar enthusiast Ronda Rousey needs to take a cue from Coco and go with the flow. When she took to the podium to present an award, she announced she wasn’t going to read the joke on the teleprompter because her name had been spelled with an “h” and she was pissed. Somebody should have caught the typo, but I happen to have it on good authority from the show’s head writer that the joke she chose not to do was going to kill.

4. Fifty Shades of Gracie. The skit’s name pretty much says it all. The MMA Awards are known for their hilarious skits involving some of the sport’s top personalities and this year’s are the cream of the crop. Get ready for some deep belly laughs.

5. Sonnen may be the butt of many jokes but he sure can deliver them. On the red carpet, he proclaimed, “I don’t talk smack. I talk FACTS.” Love him or hate him, he is definitely entertaining and an excellent host.

6. Jerry Springer keeps finding ways to stay relevant. On the carpet, he said, “I’m presenting Fight of the Year, which really was our show last Thursday.”

7. Springer seemed a bit of a stretch for a presenter despite his fight-fueled show, but Sisqo seemed even more out of place, until he explained himself on the red carpet. When the “Thong Song” singer was asked how he felt about the skimpy outfits some fighters opt to wear, he said, “Sometimes it’s a little much on the eyes. On a related note, I’m presenting Ring Girl of the Year, so it kind of works with the whole ‘thong tha thong thong thong’ thing.” And yes, he broke into song at that point.

Fighter Frank Mir walks the carpet at the World Mixed Martial Arts Awards, Jan. 11, 2013.

Fighter Frank Mir walks the carpet at the World Mixed Martial Arts Awards, Jan. 11, 2013.

8. As per usual, Frank Mir is a class act. The local fighter has seen his share of ups and downs in the past few years, but said, “I’m back into taking care of myself. I was reminded of my fitness level this year. My wife is on board with helping me with my diet and I’m feeling healthy.” He went on to say that he hopes in the coming year the UFC will work on its scoring system because, “As a fan, I see a need for a different scoring system. Sometimes when I’m watching with my wife we’ll watch a fight and score it one way and then be really surprised when the judges’ numbers are different. Maybe it could be something more like wrestling where people know the definite points.”

9. Tito Ortiz and Jenna Jameson got naked on the 215. No really, the fighter and his former porn star girlfriend changed for the awards show in their car on the way over. Ortiz said, “I pulled over on the 215 near McCarran Airport and took off all my clothes and put my tux on. She got dressed in the car first and then I did.” Jameson chimed in, “It was a [Rolls Royce] Phantom, so it was big. Thank God there were no paparazzi around.”

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