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Canada bound: to make a run for the border for UFC 83

When Mania got in touch with me about a week ago, our conversation went something like this:

Mania: What are you doing the weekend of April 19?

Me: Watching UFC 83, of course. Why?

Mania: How would you like to ride the Ultimate Fight Train from Toronto to Montreal (with bottomless beers), attend UFC 83 live, attend the official TapouT afterparty, stay at a fancy hotel and hang out with Forrest Griffin and Patrick Cote all weekend long?

Me: Um ... you had me at "fight train."

So there you have it: A quick glimpse into how important decisions are made in this crazy MMA world we all live in.

I'm heading to Toronto on Friday morning as a guest of our Canadian connection, Director of Media Relations for and's own, Sean McManus. Guess you can chalk it up to the perks of being involved with such a fantastic Web site as the one you're currently reading.

All props go to Mania for being the stand-up guy that he is in providing this truly unique opportunity.

The catch? You guys will have to put up with posts and diatribes from me all weekend long, most likely on the following subjects:

  1. How it feels to be picked up from the airport by the UFC's #1 Light Heavyweight Contender Forrest Griffin.
  2. While cornering (literally) on rails on a Canadian fight train, which tastes better, the King of American beers, Budweiser, or Canada's own Molson?
  3. Who knows how to party UFC-style better, the Yanks or the Canucks?
  4. Which crowd was more insane: Columbus, Ohio's during UFC 68 when Randy Couture came out of retirement to take Tim Sylvia's Heavyweight title, or Montreal, Quebec's during UFC 83: "Serra vs. St. Pierre II"?

The Ultimate Fight Train is sponsored by MMA Fight Gear Canada in association with VIA Rail, Fight! Magazine, TapouT,,, The Score, The Toronto Sun and a host of other sponsors.

UFC 83 takes place at the Bell Centre this Saturday, April 19. As most of you already know, it sold out faster than any event in UFC history. Canadian fans = hardcore.

In addition to the highly anticipated welterweight title bout, UFC 83's fight card has a ton of middleweight action, as well as several other intriguing matchups. The color commentators will be Mike Goldberg and the UFC's top lightweight contender, Kenny Florian.

The official TapouT afterparty is hosted by Forrest Griffin and Mask, Skyskrape and Punk Ass (aka, the TapouT clothing crew).

As if the timing could get any more strange, just last week I found out that I'm about 1/8 Canadian. No wonder I'm quite fond of Canada's national animal, the beaver.

Looking forward to seeing all you crazy Canadian fans this weekend! Now let's hear from you.

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