Horvitz & Levy successfully represented David Carpinello and Punch Drunk Gamer, Inc. on appeal in this defamation case arising out of the world of mixed martial arts fighting (MMA). Carpinello is the founder of Punch Drunk Gamer, a blog devoted to MMA. Punch Drunk Gamer published an interview with prominent MMA fighter Tito Ortiz, who made comments in the interview about why he believed Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, another prominent MMA fighter, had severed his relationship with trainer John Ibarra after losing a title fight. Ortiz said that Jackson had fired Ibarra because Ibarra had improperly charged him for training. Ibarra brought claims for defamation and other related torts against Carpinello, Punch Drunk Gamer, Ortiz, and other media defendants who re-published the interview. The trial court granted Carpinello’s and Punch Drunk Gamer’s special motion to strike the lawsuit under code of Civil Procedure section 425.16 (the anti-SLAPP statute). The California Court of Appeal (Second Appellate District, Division Five) affirmed, holding that Ibarra failed to establish a likelihood of prevailing on the merits because he failed to show that Carpinello or Punch Drunk Gamer published Ortiz’s comments with actual malice, a requirement for a defamation claim brought by a public figure.