The MMA Memorabilia Collectors Community
This was one of the better MMA events I have seen in recent months. A number of fighters impressed the hell out of me, there were some stellar performances and several great fights.
Jacob Volkmann def Antonio McKee via Split Decision
After talking himself and his abilities into the stratosphere, Antonio McKee did little to substantiate all the talk with his performance. He loses his UFC debut and makes no real statement that would lead us to believe that he will make any waves in the division. Let's curb the talking for a while...no one will be listening anyway.
Daniel Roberts def Greg Soto via Kimura (3:45) Round 1
Roberts showed that he still has a ways to go in terms of his competence in the stand-up game, but he also proved once again that if you go to the ground with him, you will likely be submitted. Roberts has won his last 3 fights and is currently 3-1 in the UFC.
Diego Nunes def Mike Thomas Brown via Split Decision
In a fight that many believed should have been on the main card, former WEC Featherweight Champ Mike Brown took part in a stunner of a fight against Diego Nunes. This was a back and forth battle and Nunes earned the nod from the judges, taking a split decision that received a mixed response from the crowd. Brown has dropped 3 of his last 5 fights and will have some work to do in order to establish himself in the UFC as he had in the WEC.
Brad Tavares def Phil Baroni via TKO (4:20) Round 1
Baroni and his followers on Twitter created a ton of noise in the ear of Dana White to get his fight televised. Dana obliged. Would Baroni be able to deliver in the octagon? He looked to be in tremendous shape and started off fairly well, but would not be the one who made this fight worthy of being televised. Tavares catches him with a big right and cracks him with a few more very solid shots as Baroni falls to the canvas against the cage. Great showing by Brad Tavares, who is now 7-0 in his MMA career and 2-0 in the UFC.
Dustin Poirier def Josh Grispi via Unanimous Decision
This is one that I did not see coming. Grispi was supposed to be fighting Jose Aldo for the featherweight title, but faces Poirier due to an injury sustained by Aldo. Grispi is a very talented fighter and more people were actually giving him a shot against Aldo than many of the others he has vanquished in his WEC run. Watching this fight, however, you would not gather this if you were watching Grispi fight for the first time. Much of the fight consisted of Poirier throwing bombs while Grispi backed into the cage and covered up. It was a dominant showing by Poirier and I do not see Grispi getting the title shot when Aldo is back and ready for action.
Jeremy Stephens def Marcus Davis via KO (2:33) Round 3
Marcus Davis looks good at 155 and fights a very smart and technical fight against Jeremy Stephens, who is known as a monster slugger in the lightweight division. This is a heart breaker for Davis fans, as he is controlling the fight, even having wobbled Stephens badly in the first round, which we do not see often, only to be knocked unconscious halfway through the third round... He got caught, plain and simple, and there's not much more you can say about this one.
Clay Guida def Takanori Gomi via Guillotine Choke (4:27) Round 2
With Gomi coming off of his big KO over Tyson Griffin in August, many were hoping to see the Gomi that ruled PRIDE's lightweight division for several years. Although Gomi appeared to be in much better shape than he was in for the Florian fight, Guida did what most of us expected him to do. He outworked Gomi. Making the performance even more impressive, he stops Gomi in the second and secures himself more big-name fights in the near future.
Dong Hyun Kim def Nate Diaz via Unanimous Decision
In brief, Kim is there with Diaz in the in-fight shit-talking department, controls most of the action and wins a well-deserved decision. Diaz looks puzzled by the decision, but this is not one worth arguing... Good performance by Dong Hyun Kim.
Thiago Silva def Brandon Vera via Unanimous Decision
Silva embarrassed Brandon Vera in this fight, plain and simple. He controlled all aspects of the bout and even when Vera came out and unloaded a barrage of strikes in the 2nd round, he was unable to put even a scratch on Silva. The 3rd round saw Silva take Vera's back repeatedly, while ruining Vera's nose and playing the bongos on Vera's back. I am fairly certain that we will be reading about Brandon Vera's release from the UFC tomorrow. Thiago Silva seems to be improving in all aspects of his game and put on a hell of a performance tonight.
Brian Stann def Chris Leben via TKO (3:37) Round 1
Brian Stann is one of the fighters who most impressed during this outstanding night of fights. We have recently seen Chris Leben surging in the middleweight division. We have seen this before. What we have not seen since he fought Anderson Silva, however, is someone destroying him on the feet - and that is precisely what Brian Stann did to him tonight. Stann looked great with his stand-up and put it to Leben. Awesome performance and a very big statement is made.
Frankie Edgar vs. Gray Maynard DRAW - 5 Rounds
Frankie Edgar impressed the hell out of a lot of people in this fight. Gray Maynard did what BJ Penn was not able to do in 10 rounds of fighting: he "found" Frankie Edgar, and he did so in a HUGE way during the first round of this fight. It did not look like Edgar would make it out of the round and I am simply amazed that he did. What was even more amazing was the way he came back in remaining rounds, avoiding almost all of Gray's takedown attempts, slamming Maynard to the mat and taking him down a number of times over the course of the fight. Maynard landed shots intermittently after his onslaught in the 1st, but was not able to slow Frankie down for too long during rounds 2 through 5. Maynard thought he won the fight, obviously, but it would be difficult to say that he BEAT the champ. Edgar came back and took 3 rounds, in my opinion, leading to the draw after the big 10-8 round for Maynard in the first. It's bittersweet for both fighters, as either suffers a loss while nothing is accomplished and the championship picture is no clearer than it was heading into the fight. What was certain, however, is that Frankie Edgar had evolved more than Gray Maynard had since their first fight. Gray was not able to control Frankie like he had when they first met in the cage back in 2008. The two will have to do it all again - and I believe that this should happen before Anthony Pettis gets a shot at Frankie.
What were your impressions of this event? We would love to hear from you.