UFC on FX 7: Belfort vs. Bisping — Live Results & Commentary


(That awkward moment when one of your most marketable fighters denies the existence of his opponent’s Lord and Savior. Pretty typical face-off stuff, really. / Photo via MMAJunkie.com)

The last time that Vitor Belfort fought in Sao Paulo, this happened. Fourteen years later, those still-lethal fists are the only thing separating Michael Bisping from the middleweight title shot that has stayed maddeningly out of his reach. So will Belfort triumph in front of his countrymen tonight at the Ibirapuera Arena, or will Bisping defy the haters and take what belongs to him?

Elsewhere on the UFC on FX 7 lineup: Gabriel Gonzaga‘s heavyweight comeback faces its first big test in Ben Rothwell, Khabib Nurmagomedov goes for his 19th-straight victory against Thiago Tavares, and TUF Brazil standout Daniel Sarafian will do his best to defend the relentless takedowns of Massive Doucheface.

Round-by-round updates from the “Belfort vs. Bisping” main card broadcast will be available after the jump beginning at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and make the world a little less lonely by tossing your thoughts into the comments section.


(That awkward moment when one of your most marketable fighters denies the existence of his opponent’s Lord and Savior. Pretty typical face-off stuff, really. / Photo via MMAJunkie.com)

The last time that Vitor Belfort fought in Sao Paulo, this happened. Fourteen years later, those still-lethal fists are the only thing separating Michael Bisping from the middleweight title shot that has stayed maddeningly out of his reach. So will Belfort triumph in front of his countrymen tonight at the Ibirapuera Arena, or will Bisping defy the haters and take what belongs to him?

Elsewhere on the UFC on FX 7 lineup: Gabriel Gonzaga‘s heavyweight comeback faces its first big test in Ben Rothwell, Khabib Nurmagomedov goes for his 19th-straight victory against Thiago Tavares, and TUF Brazil standout Daniel Sarafian will do his best to defend the relentless takedowns of Massive Doucheface.

Round-by-round updates from the “Belfort vs. Bisping” main card broadcast will be available after the jump beginning at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and make the world a little less lonely by tossing your thoughts into the comments section.

Preliminary card results:

– Godofredo Castro def. Milton Vieira via split-decision (28-27 x 2, 27-28)

– Ronny Markes def. Andrew Craig via unanimous decision (29-28 x 3)

– Nik Lentz def. Diego Nunes via unanimous decision (30-27 x 2, 30-26)

– Edson Barboza def. Lucas Martins via submission (punches), 2:38 of round 1

– Yuri Alcantara vs. Pedro Nobre resulted in a no contest (Nobre was knocked out by strikes to the back of the head), 2:11 of round 1

– Ildemar Alcantara def. Wagner Prado via submission (kneebar), 2:39 of round 2

– Francisco Trinaldo def. C.J. Keith via submission (arm triangle choke), 1:50 of round 2

And now the main card…

Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Thiago Tavares
As I once wrote, “God help the CagePotato writers who have to type [Nurmagomedov’s] name during liveblogs. (Not it, guys.)” Well, shit. Due to a last-minute withdrawal, I (BG) have to soldier up and make it happen. I’ll be shortening his name to “Nurma,” and I don’t even think Khabib himself would judge me for that.

Round 1: Tavares trying to back Nurma down to the fence, and Nurma brushes him away with a high kick and overhand right. Nurma throws another big wild punch but misses. Tavares lands a straight, but Nurma connects moments later with a sneaky left uppercut that drops Tavares to the canvas. He follows it up with a carpet-bombing of elbows from the top that puts Tavares’s lights out. Aaaaaaand still undefeated…Nurmagomedov def. Tavares via KO, 1:55 of round 1. The UFC production crew realizes that a translated English-to-Russian-to-English post-fight interview wouldn’t be very well-received by the Brazilian crowd, and they wisely skip it.

Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Ben Rothwell

Round 1: Rothwell snaps out a pair of punches, and Gonzaga responds by shooting for a takedown. He gets Rothwell down, but Rothwell makes his way to his feet. Gonzaga sticks onto Rothwell, dragging Big Ben to the mat again despite a very blatant fence grab that Rothwell is warned for. Rothwell’s up again, and down again. Gonzaga with some wall-n-stall. They’re separated. Rothwell misses a jab and Gonzaga clinches up with him, landing a punch as Rothwell shakes out. Rothwell lands a punch. He puts Gonzaga against the fence, and is warned for a knee to the ball-area. They separate and Gonzaga starts finding his range with punches, making Rothwell’s legs go shaky at one point. Rothwell answers. A little jockeying against the fence and the horn sounds. Rothwell goes back to his corner with a cut under his eye. 10-9 Gonzaga.

Round 2: Right straight from Gonzaga lands. They clinch and trade knees. Gonzaga staggers Rothwell with two more rights, looks for a takedown, and grabs an arm-in guillotine when Rothwell tries to sprawl. Gonzaga pulls guard and bears down on the choke. Rothwell taps once, and looks pretty pissed off at himself as the ref ends the fight. Rothwell def. Gonzaga via submission (guillotine choke), 1:01 of round 2.

“Speaking of nice guys, the *infectious* Junior Dos Santos…” Jon Anik says, pointing out Cigano in the crowd, and making subtle reference to the herpes outbreak that ruined his marriage.

Daniel Sarafian vs. CB Dollaway

Round 1: Dollaway dashes in with some awkward looking jabs and Sarafian counters him with ease. Dollaway lands a leg kick. They land hooks simultaneously. Sarafian makes good contact with a charging punch combo. Sarafian lands an overhand right as Dollawya lands a kick to the body. Sarafian lands a straight to the body. Sarafian drops Dollaway, but Dollaway grabs onto Sarafian’s leg and makes his way back to his feet. Sarafian throwing with serious power, and lands a cross/hook combo. Dollaway jabbing. Sarafian again with the overhand right. Dollaway sticks the jab, Sarafian gives one back. He pushes forward with punches. Sarafian goes to the body. Dollaway taunting Sarafian, God knows why. Sarafian attacks at the horn but doesn’t catch Dollaway with anything. 10-9 Sarafian.

Round 2: Sarafian getting loose in the cage, shuckin’ and duckin’. Dollaway lands a long jab. Sarafian throws a spinning kick and misses. They briefly clinch against the fence. Dollaway lands his jab. He scores with a leg kick. Sarafian staggers Dollaway again with his big overhand right. Dollaway with a solid kick to the body. He throws another one, Sarafian catches it and trips Dollaway down, but Dollaway pops back up. Dollaway sticking with those kicks even though Sarafian is onto them by now. Both guys trading punches, Dollaway continuing to work the jab, and Sarafian throwing more big rights. Dollaway catches Sarafian with a big punch coming in, and Sarafian drops to his knees on the mat. Dollaway fires down some shots in an attempt to end the fight before the round ends, but Sarafian is saved by the horn.

Round 3: Dollaway throws a high-kick. Big hook from Sarafian lands, Dollaway swings back to counter and lands. Dollaway reaching forward with that jab. Dollaway lands a kick to the gut, then a short hook. Sarafian lands a big overhand right, Dollaway answers with a big right of his own. Dollway lands again and Sarafian is on his heels. Dollaway takes Sarafian down. Sarafian works to his feet but Dollaway is hugging him around the middle, and converts the takedown. Dollaway on Sarafian’s back. Sarafian rolls, and sweeps a fatigued Dollaway off of him. Now Sarafian is on top. He’s got 90 seconds to steal this round. Dollaway rolls, Sarafian seizes his back and tries to set up a RNC. Dollaway escapes and gets in Sarafian’s guard. Sarafian escapes. Dollaway shoots for a leg and takes a knee to the face. He continues to pursue Sarafian as the round ends. Could be a close decision coming up…
Dollaway def. Sarafian via split-decision (29-28 x 2, 28-29). Even the translator sounds pissed off. The crowd tries to drown out CB’s interview response with boos. Something about landing his takedowns. Oh man. This is kind of brutal. Honestly, if Bisping takes out Belfort next, there could be actual rioting in this building.

Unrelated: I wonder what these bros are up to tonight.

Vitor Belfort vs. Michael Bisping

Round 1: Bisping takes the center of the Octagon. He feels Belfort out with jabs. Belfort throws a front kick. Inside leg kick from Bisping. Belfort throws a left head kick that’s blocked. Belfort long-jumps into Bisping and almost gets punches out of mid-air. Bisping starting to committ with his punches. Belfort misses a reverse kick. Bisping whiffs on a right straight. He comes in again and eats on uppercut. Bisping lands the inside leg kick again. Swing and a miss from Belfort. Belfort lands a body kick. Bisping tapping Belfort with the jab. Bisping tries to call time-out for an eye poke, but changes his mind and goes right back in. Bisping moves in with a punch and spinning kick but doesn’t have the right range. Belfort lands a punch that staggers Bisping, and chases him with punches as the round ends. That might be enough to give Belfort the edge.

Round 2: Low leg kick from Bisping. Belfort scares Bisping off with a fast straight. 1-2 from Belfort. Bisping jabs. A massive left-head kick from Belfort drops Bisping! Belfort lays on some finishing punches from the top and it’s all over.
Belfort def. Bisping via TKO, 1:27 of round 2. Belfort says he’s only there because of God. He thanks his wife, camp, and Brazil, and gives all the glory to Jesus. Then he loses his mind about Chael Sonnen, ordering Dana and Lorenzo to get that clown out of the title fight with Jon Jones. Hey, from your mouth to God’s ears, buddy.

Michael Bisping has no sour grapes in his post-fight interview. “He was the better man…you win some, you lose some, I’m not going away.”

So now what? Weidman vs. Lombard for the next middleweight title shot? I doubt Belfort will be getting another chance any time soon, despite his post-fight pleas.

And now we get a look at Edson Barboza’s execution of Lucas Martins from the prelims. Martins gets kicked in the balls about 30 seconds into the fight, and pops a squat against the cage to recover. Ugh. He’s going back in after about a minute and a half, but you can tell he’s not completely ready. Martins is a game opponent, active with his attacks even if they’re not doing much. He gets a little too wild, though, swinging his punches during a striking blitz and leaving his chin out. Barboza finds it with a left hand, and Martins’s legs go all noodly. Barboza slams down punches as Martins’s head is wedged against the fence, and Martins eventually taps to the onslaught. The fight is stopped at 2:38 of the first frame.

That’s it, folks. If you’re on the East Coast and you have no taste in comedy, enjoy the new episode of Anger Management.

UFC 155: Dos Santos vs. Velasquez II — Main Card Results & Commentary


(What a crazy year it’s been. Just think, four weeks ago that bald guy in the middle was actually homeless. / Photo courtesy of Esther Lin’s UFC 155 weigh-in set on MMAFighting.com)

UFC 155 might not be as epic as some of the UFC’s previous end-of-year cards (you can blame the injury curse for that), but any time the Heavyweight Championship of the World is at stake, it’s must-see TV.

Tonight, defending champ Junior Dos Santos will try to keep the train a-rollin’ in a rematch with his old pal Cain Velasquez. Meanwhile in the co-main event, lightweights Joe Lauzon and Jim Miller will gobble up as many performance bonuses as they can get their little hands on. Plus, six middleweight contenders — including Tim Boetsch, Alan Belcher, and Chris Leben — will swing their ham-hock fists at each other, in the hopes that the most popular kid in school might notice them. Lotsa luck, ladies.

Running our final liveblog of the year (!) will be none other than Elias Cepeda, who will be updating you with round-by-round results after the jump starting at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and please share your New Year’s resolutions in the comments section.


(What a crazy year it’s been. Just think, four weeks ago that bald guy in the middle was actually homeless. / Photo courtesy of Esther Lin’s UFC 155 weigh-in set on MMAFighting.com)

UFC 155 might not be as epic as some of the UFC’s previous end-of-year cards (you can blame the injury curse for that), but any time the Heavyweight Championship of the World is at stake, it’s must-see TV.

Tonight, defending champ Junior Dos Santos will try to keep the train a-rollin’ in a rematch with his old pal Cain Velasquez. Meanwhile in the co-main event, lightweights Joe Lauzon and Jim Miller will gobble up as many performance bonuses as they can get their little hands on. Plus, six middleweight contenders — including Tim Boetsch, Alan Belcher, and Chris Leben — will swing their ham-hock fists at each other, in the hopes that the most popular kid in school might notice them. Lotsa luck, ladies.

Running our final liveblog of the year (!) will be none other than Elias Cepeda, who will be updating you with round-by-round results after the jump starting at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and please share your New Year’s resolutions in the comments section.

Chris Leben vs. Derek Brunson

Brunson rocking the classic private entrance song on the headphones walk to the cage. Leben using the Red Hot Chili Peppers to get amped as he walks to the UFC Octagon for the twentieth time.

 Rd 1

Brunson leads with left kicks that miss. Leben catches another, tries but fails to get a sweep take down. Brunson counters with his own take down slam.

They work from Leben’s full guard. Brunson stands and tries to pass the guard but is sucked back into the full guard. Leben working an arm bar, Brunson defends. Leben switches to a triangle choke attempt, then another arm bar and Brunson slams his way out of the hold.

Brunson works to the half guard of Leben but the Cat Smasher recovers his full guard. brunson standing and throwing short elbows to the head of Leben. Leben trying to control the wrists and head of Brunson. Brunson stands and passes Leben’s guard, then works into the mount and an arm triangle choke attempt.

Leben rolls and gets a weak half guard back. Brunson lands a big elbow from on top of Leben in his half guard. Minute and a half left. Brunson staying low, trying to keep pressure on Leben. The wrestler begins to get off pot shots again. Leben recomposes to full guard and shoots for an arm bar that is easily defended by Brunson.

Leben is backed up against the cage and tries to stand back up with under a minute left. Leben up to his feet with under thirty seconds left, Brunson briefly takes his back then presses Leben up against the cage. The two separate and the bell ends with them in the center of the ring.

Rd 2

Brunson leads with another high kick. Leben catches it and throws a straight right down the pipe that lands on Brunson’s chin. Brunson wobbled but steadies himself. He shoots in and drives Leben backwards into the fence.

Leben defends the take down attempt well as well as Brunson’s follow up attempts from the double under hooks. Brunson gets tagged on the feet but Brunson shoots in again and scores the take down.

Leben working little hammer shots from the bottom in his full guard. Leben throws up a weak arm bar attempt and Brunson stands up to try striking. Leben cage walks and gets back to his feet. Brunson tries a guillotine choke but Leben easily defends.

Leben lands a big uppercut but Brunson returns fire and stuns Leben with punches of his own. Both men are tired but Leben moves forward. Leben is beginning to score with the round house kick to the leg. Brunson with a one-two punch combination that lands.

Brunson with another straight shot down the pipe to Leben’s head. Leben lands a jab then another leg kick. Brunson closes the distance off of a Leben leg kick and presses Leben backwards against the cage.

Leben frees himself and they are back in the center of the ring. Leben is stalking Brunson and throwing more punches. Brunson looks unsteady on his feet. Leben with another leg kick. Brunson attempts another take down. Leben defends the shot but is working with his back to the cage. Leben circles away from the cage once more and goes back to walking down Brunson. Leben fires a wide looping left hook that misses and the horn sounds.

Rd 3

Brunson lands a glancing lead punch. Brunson lands the double leg take down and presses Leben against the cage. Leben cage walks and returns to his feet. Leben lands another leg kick. Brunson land another big straight punch, shoots for a take down and gets stuffed. Leben throws and misses a big upper cut.

Leben wading in on a tiring Brunson but doesn’t land much. He does land a left that appears to knock mouth guard out. brunson takes Leben down but stands back up after a few moments. Ten seconds left and Leben and Brunson are both swinging big.

The horn sounds and Brunson lets out a celebratory scream instead of accepting a hand shake offer from Leben. Brunson apparently believes that he’s down enough with take downs to win the fight.

Decision time coming up next.

Judges score the fight 29-28 for Derek Burnson. Brunson beats Chris Leben in his UFC debut.

Alan Belcher vs. Yushin Okami II

Belcher is back to avenge his father’s death against former title challenger Yushin Okami. Tough one to call. Belcher insists that Okami is scared of standing and banging with him, bro. Okami says that he’s improved more than Belcher has and that he’ll walk away with another win over the Southern boy.

Rd 1

Belcher’s horrible Johnny Cash tattoo is really distracting from this writer’s play by play blogging, not for nothing. Lots of feinting and big swings from Belcher. Belcher slips and falls after he kicks and Okami lands a jab.

Yushin presses Belcher against the cage, looking for a take down. Okami lands a knee ot the body of Belcher, then tries to land a knee to the head. Belcher doing a good job of defending, then all but asks the ref to separate them. Belcher lands a trip and ends up on top of Okami. He then pulls a guillotine choke and guard on Okami.

The Japanese fighter defends and is inside of Belcher’s guard. Okami presses Belcher against the cage and works for the pass but runs out of real estate as the cage stops him. Okami eventually does pass to side control and looks to have very heavy pressure with his shoudler on Belcher’s neck.

Belcher gets his heels close to his butt and tries to bridge out and escape but Okami’s pressure is too much. Belcher does get to his knees and then tries to get to his feet. Okami locks on a front head lock then transitions to Belcher’s back as the horn sounds.

Rd 2

Okami swings and misses with a big left straight. Okami then presses Belcher against the cage, Belcher lands another take down but then pulls guard working for another failed guillotine attempt. Okami working strikes from on top of Belcher from inside of The Talent’s half guard. Belcher works for a deep half guard sweep but there’s nothing there as Okami’s base is too strong.

Okami now in cross side and the referee makes a malpractice-level decision by standing them up. Horrible. The Nevada State Athletic Commission needs to reconsider the referee’s competence.

Okami quickly brings Belcher back down to the ground, working from on top in half guard again against the cage. Half a minute left with Okami in control from on top on the ground, despite the referee’s attempt to dictate the fight.

The referee stands them up again with twenty seconds left. Okami’s right eye is swollen. the horn sounds.

Rd 3

Okami rushes in looking to clinch right away. Belcher defends and then drops Okami with a big punch following the sage advice of his coach, kick boxing great Duke Roufus. Okami has his legs back under him, stalking Belcher and then rushing him and pressing him against the cage.

For a third time, Belcher gets the better of an Okami take down attempt and lands in mount. Belcher transitions to his back. Okami defends the choke, stands and then frees himself and shoots for another takedown against the cage.

Belcher grabs Okami’s neck and goes for another guillotine choke. Belcher pulls guard and loses the choke. Okami in Belcher’s half guard against the cage with two and a half minutes left. Okami moves to mount but is choosing pressure over being very busy with strikes.

Okami, having established his mount positions, begins to rain down unanswered punches down on Belcher. Belcher turns and gives up his back. Okami gets both hooks in on Belcher, who is face down, and the horn sounds with Okami landing punch after punch from the back.

Decision time coming up.

All three judges score it 30-27 for Okami. Belcher’s four fight win streak is snapped and Okami gets his second straight.

Costa Philippou vs. Tim Boetsch

Rd 1

Few moments of feinting before Boetsch works for a take down. After about thirty seconds of work against the cage, Tim gets the take down. Costa quickly gets back to his feet but Tim stays connected, landing big knees to the body. Costa lands his own and separates.

They are back in teh center of the ring. Tim with a nice rear push kick. Nice inside leg kick from Boetsch. Costa witha left to the body, right to the head, punch combo. Boetsch pushing the pace, lands another leg kick. Tim pushes Costa against the fence but Costa catches Tim with a big upper cut counter.

Tim gets another take down and is inside of Costa’s full guard. Costa controlling Tim’s posture and referee Kim Winslow continues the embarassing pattern of the night with a quick stand up.

Costa takes advantage and lands a nasty body-head punch combo, flush to Tim. Boetsch, unfazed, lands a nasty front kick to the face of Costa. The round ends.

Rd 3

Rogan points out that he has heard Tim’s corner man Matt Hume talking about some injury that the fighter has sustained. As the round begins and Tim shakes out his hand, it appears that he may have broken his hand. Tim lands a big knee to the head of Costa from the clinch.

Tim is cut from an accidental head butt on his forehead. It looks like his right hand is the hurt one. Boetsch looks for and misses a take down. Tim lands another front kick to the body. Tim gets an accidental eye poke.

Jon Anik correctly points out that it has been a rough few minutes for Boetsch. Goodness gracious, ain’t that true.

Boetsch gets right back in with minimal rest time. Tim misses with a front kick. Tim now shooting in with minimal set-up and gets stuffed by Costa. Now Costa is on top from the half guard. Tim continues to bleed. Vosta throwing punches and elbows from on top. Costa throwing more strikes, then stands and walks away at the horn.

Rd 3

Tim tells his coach Matt Hume that he can’t see. Hume asks him if he wants to stop. “Fuck no,” is Tim’s reply. They get things started for the final round.

Tim with another shot from Kansas. He’s shooting from too far away with no set ups because of his hand and his blurred vision, it appears. Tim may have gotten another cut. Boetsch is butt scooting, then forced to stand up. Tim tries another failed take down and is again in half guard with three and a half minutes.

Boetsch is hurt and cannot see. He is back on his feet. Tim shoots in again, gets stuffed and is back in his own half guard. Tim eats some big shots and the ref steps in and calls the fight off.

Costa Philppou gets the win and stops Tim Boetsch’s frate trane run. Both men are impressive in their own ways in this one. Nasty fight. Good fight.

Joe Lauzon vs. Jim Miller

Both men come out swinging hard with punches in spurts. Miller tries to set up a big upper cut but misses. Miller with a hard leg kick and a hard shot to the body of Lauzon. Miller with another hard body knee that hurts Joe.

Miller follows up with punches. Lauzon gets free then eats a high kick. Miller landing big with more punches to the body and head then another big knee. Lauzon lands his own then gets free. Miller with another buckling leg kick.

Miller with nasty dirty boxing and elbows from the clinch. Miller tries a standing arm triangle hold, Joe defends and frees himself. Lauzon is cut badly and referee Yves Lavigne stops the fight for him to be checked out by the doctor. The cut is over the right eye.

The fight continues with two minutes and fifteen seconds left. Miller lands a head kick and now more short punches and elbows from Miller. Lauzon returns fire with an upper cut. Miller with an upper cut. Lauzon lands a big knee to the head of Miller. Miller follows up with another left short cross.

Both men fall after a kick from Miller. Lauzon with a straight jab but he’s bleeding badly. Under a minute left. Miller misses with a big over hand left. Lauzon with a right hand, Miller lands a one, two and another inside leg kick. Miller backs Lauzon up against the cage again. Lauzon returns with a jab. Ten seconds left. Miller lands a body kick. Lauzon ends the round with a flying knee to the body.

Rd 2

Lauzon wants the fight to continue badly. The crowd is going nuts. Round two starts. Miller immediately back on the attack with punches. Lauzon eats them but returns fire. Miller with a double leg take down. Lauzon in butterfly guard. Miller attacking the cuts on Lauzon’s face and head. Lauzon in his closed guard.

Lauzon’s cuts are bleeding badly again. Lauzon working to get to his feet instead of going for submissions. Miller in Lauzon’s half guard now, working to pass with heavy pressure on Lauzon’s neck. Lauzon tries to bridge out but Miller bases out and takes the mount.

Lauzon immediately takes back half guard. Miller postures up and throws a nasty elbow and punch to Lauzon’s head. Lauzon working for a deep half guard sweep but getting stuck under Miller’s base. Miller goes for a D’Arce choke but loses it and Lauzon is on top against the cage!

Lauzon is pressing Miller against the cage. Lavigne stops the fight because Lauzon’s hand tape is loose. They re-start from the same position. Good job by Lavigne.

Miller working his mission control rubber guard position to control Lauzon’s right arm. Lauzon picks Miller up and slams up, steps over Miller’s right leg to pass. Miller gets his right knee up into a half butterfly guard. Lauzon clears it again but Miller fights for it again. Lauzon dives for a heel hook, switches to a knee bar, Miller frees himself but Lauzon goes for a front choke. Time runs out with Miller face down on all fours, defending a front head lock from Lauzon.

Rd 3

Miller kicks out Lauzon’s leg again and drops JLau. Lauzon is right back up on his feet. Nice right punch from Lauzon. Miller looks spent from the beating he put on Lauzon in the first. Miller drops Lauzon with another inside leg kick again.

Lauzon chooses to stay down to try and goad Miller to the ground. Miller backs up and the ref stands them up. Lauzon pressing forward on Miller. Miller huffing and punching but returning fire. Stiff jab from Lauzon. Inside leg kick from Lauzon. Miller presses forward trying to land nasty dirty boxing shots again but Joe pushes him off and lands an inside leg kick. Miller with his own.

Knee to the body from Lauzon. miller backs up Short elbow from Lauzon followed up by a left hand. Miller lands his own, softer, knee to the body. Miller cut under his left eye. Lauzon appears to have another cut over his own left eye as well. miller swinging to the body, the, throws an uppercut to Lauzon’s head. Lauzon covers up. Lauzon parries a jab and lands his own. Minute and ah alf left. both men exhausted from this fight of the night. Lauzon swings big and misses.

Miller presses Lauzon against the fence. Lauzon circles out. Under a minute left. Lauzon with a right hand, Miller with a right hook. Lauzon lands a scissor leg take down, working fora  heel hook with fifteen seconds left. Miller gets up but Lauzon locks in a guillotine choke. Miller is saved by the horn!

Lauzon looks to have stolen the the final two rounds at the end with submission attempts. Decision time coming up.

All three judges score the fight 29-28 for Jim Miller. Amazing fight.

Cain Velasquez vs. Junior Dos Santos II

Dos Santos gets the MGM Grand Garden Arena hyped with his energetic entrance to the Rocky theme.

Rd 1

Cain presses forward early shoots for and gets a single leg take down. Junior gets up and then lands on top. Cain reverses and they are back on their feet. Cain shoots from too far away and gets stuffed. Cain lands a left hook. Cain with a jab. Cain gets hit then Cain returns fire with a punch.

Body jab from Junior leg kick from Cain. Stiff jab from Cain. Cain dives for a single leg, Junior slips away. Cain stuns Junior with a right.

Cain with an over hand right that lands on the chin of Dos Santos. Cain dives for another single leg that gets stopped. Junior lands an over hand right.

Junior with a jab, Cain with two jabs and a knee to the body. Cain with a jab. Cain pressing Junior against the cage. Cain with with a big shot. Cain drops Dos Santos with a right. Cain lands a lot of shots on the downed Dos Santos. Junior to his feet, Cain takes him down, has Dos Santos on his knees against the cage again, raining down punches.

Junior back to his feet. Cain drags him down again. Junior tries to get up, Cain controls him and keeps him down. Junior back up, Cain drags him down again! Cain on the side of Junior, landing punches with seconds left in the round. The hor sounds with Dos Santos rising to his feet, but wobbled.

Rd 2

Cain slams Dos Santos with a double leg take down. He is behind Dos Santos, landing punches, now on top inside of Junior’s half guard. Junior up to his feet but eating big shots. Cain drags him back down with a double leg take down.

Cain on top of a flattened out Dos Santos. Cain doesn’t throw many more shots and Junior gets up but he is out on his feet, wobbling around. Cain backs him against the cage and takes Junior down again. Junior will not give up or give in and tries to stand again but Cain rides him and keeping the pressure on Dos Santos. Junior back up to his feet, presses Cain against the cage, Cain turns around and lands an inside left hand.

Cain hits an inside leg trip and brings Junior down to the ground. Dos Santos in half guard, Cain landing elbows and punches. Junior reverses positions, Cain goes for an arm bar from the bottom, Junior defends, escapes and gets on top. Cain scrambles up immediately and presses Junior against the cage with under a minute to go.

Cain picking Junior apart with punches upon separation, landing right on the chin to Dos Santos. Junior refuses to go down. The horn sounds.

Rd 3

Cain all but smiling as he prepares to get going in the third. Junior’s face is bruised and swollen. Dos Santos lands a big uppercut that hurts Cain. Dos Santos throws a hard body shot. Cain presses Junior against the cage again.

Cain goes for a single leg take down but Junior defends it. Cain going to the body and throwing an uppercut from the clinch. They are back in the center of the ring. Cain throws an over hand right hand and a left hook that lands. Cain pressing Dos santos against the cage again, looking for space in spots to punch. Cain goes for and misses a single leg take down.

Cain gets inside once more with an uppercut. They work in the clinch, hitting the body. On separation, Junior lands his own left body shot. Cain pressing against the cage again. Junior with a big knee to the body. Cain lands three big shots to the chin of Junior as the champ as his hands completely down at his waist.

Cain pressing again against the cage. Junior circles out and presses Cain against the cage. Cain tries to take Junior down but Junior defends and gets back to his feet. With under a minute left, Cain is once more pressing Junior against the cage and landing punches on separation.

Junior lands a big upper cut on Cain and Cain looks wobbled. Cain continues to stalk Junior though and the horn sounds.

Rd 4

Junior lands a stiff left hook after defending a Cain take down. Velasquez presses Dos Santos into the fence after eating a left. Junior circles out and rips a left to the body of Cain. Junior swings big and misses with a right hand. Cain lands a double leg take down but Dos Santos gets back up. Cain lands another flush shot to the chin of Dos Santos but the champ stays up.

Junior presses Cain against the cage and works for a take down. Cain defends and goes for and lands a take down. Dos Santos on his back, trying to get to his feet. Junior gets back up to his feet and Cain presses him agains the cage, landing a nasty left upper cut to the body. Cain now walking down Junior with punches along the cage. Junior with his hands down.

Cain shooting in weakly for take downs now, obviously spent from beating down on Junior and Dos Santos refusing to quit. One minute left and Cain is landing little shots to the head of Junior against the fence. Junior lands a left knee to the body of Cain. Junior lands a big right elbow and then right uppercut to the face of Cain.

Cain shoots for a single leg and Junior expertly defends before landing a stiff jab to the mid section of Cain. The round ends with Cain pressing Junior against the cage.

Rd 5

Cain with a jab a left hook and shoots in for a take down. Junior defends and lets rip another upper cut to the right side of Cain’s body. Junior now looking lighter on his feet as he moves around the cage. Both men are looking for one shot at a time given how fatigued they are. Cain shoots for another single leg take down but Junior defends. Junior swings and misses with a right hand. Cain shoots for and drives on another take down attempt that Junior defends. Cain with a left uppercut to the body and Junior answers with a right uppercut to the head.

Cain pressing the champ against the cage in an over under clinch. With three minutes left they separate and Junior lands another punch. Junior pressing Cain against the cage now. They separate and Cain lands a trip take down in the center of the ring with two and a half minutes left. Cain mounted on Junior briefly before Dos Santos gets to half guard. Cain landing punch after punch, followed with short elbows and then more punches. Junior gets to all fours in an attempt to get to his feet. Junior is up.

Cain presses him against the cage again before dropping down for a single leg take down that Junior dedends. Junior lands two more punches and Cain sticks to him like glue.

One minute left. Junior frees himself and throws an uppercut. Cain lands a kick to the head, but with his foot, to the left side of Junior’s head. Cain follows up with punches and presses Junior against the cage. fifteeen seconds left.

The fight ends with Cain pressing Junior against the cage. Cain falls to his knees in the center of the ring in celebration as Junior did one year ago.

Decision time up next.

Cain Velasquez wins a dominant unanimous decision to reclaim the UFC heavyweight title. “This fight was the hardest fight I’ve been through,” the now two-time champ tells Joe Rogan.

“Why are you guys doing that? Why?” Junior asked the crowd as they inexplicably booed him. Dos Santos sounds as if his jaw is broken. Multiple refs and this idiotic crowd dissapointed tonight. Thankfully the fighters, as always, delivered.

Velasquez acknowledged that he’d have to fight Dos Santos again in a rubber match at some point. Dos Santos, though, swollen and beaten, retained his fighting spirit.

“Like you said. I’m going to come back and I’m going to take my belt again,” Dos Santos promised.

Thanks for hanging out with us tonight, guys. Check back with us tomorrow for our UFC 155 Aftermath and post-event coverage.

Elias Cepeda

UFC 155: Dos Santos vs. Velasquez II — FX Prelims Results & Commentary


(I don’t care what they’re arguing about. I’m always going to side with the guy who’s not wearing bikini briefs. / Photo courtesy of Esther Lin’s UFC 155 weigh-in set on MMAFighting.com)

As an appetizer to tonight’s UFC 155 pay-per-view blowout, the UFC has slated four promising preliminary matchups on FX, featuring battle-tested sluggers (Melvin Guillard vs. Jamie Varner, Brad Pickett vs. Eddie Wineland) and streaking rising stars (Erik Perez vs. Byron Bloodworth, Michael Johnson vs. Myles Jury), all looking to close out 2012 with a bang, bro.

Handling the liveblog for this leg of our journey will be Anthony Gannon, who will be jotting down round-by-round results after the jump beginning at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and if you’re watching along with us, shoot us your own thoughts in the comments section.


(I don’t care what they’re arguing about. I’m always going to side with the guy who’s not wearing bikini briefs. / Photo courtesy of Esther Lin’s UFC 155 weigh-in set on MMAFighting.com)

As an appetizer to tonight’s UFC 155 pay-per-view blowout, the UFC has slated four promising preliminary matchups on FX, featuring battle-tested sluggers (Melvin Guillard vs. Jamie Varner, Brad Pickett vs. Eddie Wineland) and streaking rising stars (Erik Perez vs. Byron Bloodworth, Michael Johnson vs. Myles Jury), all looking to close out 2012 with a bang, bro.

Handling the liveblog for this leg of our journey will be Anthony Gannon, who will be jotting down round-by-round results after the jump beginning at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and if you’re watching along with us, shoot us your own thoughts in the comments section.

Sup, Potatoheads! Let’s start this New Year’s show off proper with some kick-ass undercard fights, and a little NYE nostalgia. Seems like just yesterday we were dreaming of partying like it was 1999. Remmeber 99? Gas was like a buck a gallon, Jessica Biel was really starting to fill out as Mary Camden on 7th Heaven, and the government was running budget surpluses.

Here we are about to enter 2013, gas is pushing $4, Jessica Biel just married one of the Backstreet Boys or something like that, and everyone’s taxes are going up. Happy Fuckin’ New Year.

In 1999 my friends and I went to Manhattan for NYE and had a night they make movies about. This year we’ll be in someone’s basement, avoiding the women, playing darts, and talking about mortgage rates and fiscal cliffs.

WTF happened?

This is why I so enjoy this MMA shit though. It gives me a chance to relive my misspent youth without the crap that comes with that: being broke, getting arrested for sticking your bare ass out of car windows, waking up next to women who’re only slightly more attractive than Butterbean, or worse yet, waking up nude in a field beside a South Carolina trailer park with little recollection of the horrific events that led to such a scenario.

But for the next five hours I’m free again, back to that wonderful, carefree existence. During this short mental vacation, my girlfriend is not allowed to harass me with unimportant tasks. She is permitted to sit and watch, and may speak, although phrases like, “Why doesn’t he just kick him in the head?” are banned, the consequences clearly defined and necessarily harsh. I can get piss drunk if I wish, and if I wanna take my ass out, dammit I’ll take my ass out, just in the house with the curtains down. And usually by the co-main event I’m engaged in a bitter struggle for household supremacy with the cat. It begins with a few innocuous leg-kicks and ends with me on the floor after missing one and bashing my shin against something very hard.

But Goddammit I love every minute of the foolishness. So let’s do this shit, and thoroughly enjoy the final event of 2012.

From the Facebook portion of the event:

John Moraga beat Chris Cariaso with a nasty ass hybrid guillotine/d’arce/front headlock choke.

Max Holloway took a split decision over Leonard Garcia.

And the Duffman knocked the shit out of Phil De Fries in the first round.

The FX broadcast kicks off sans Mike Goldberg, and for as much shit as I’ve talked about Goldy over the years, he’s missed. It’s just weird to see Jon Anik standing next to Rogan. He even looks like Rogan a little, just a dorky version. He’s a good commentator though, so I guess I’ll give him a break.

First up is Michael Johnson vs Myles Jury

Since dropping the TUF Finale to Jonathan Brookins a couple years back, Johnson has found some nice success in the Octagon, posting a 4-1 record with his only blemish being a loss to Paul Sass’ inverted heal hook, which was so awesome it gave Rogan a boner so massive rumor has it he ruptured his dorsal vein due to an overflow of blood. Johnson is coming off a sweet KO over Danny Castillo.

Aside from having a cool-ass name we don’t know much about Myles “Fury” Jury. Sure he competed on The Ultimate Fighter, but let’s be honest here, the show isn’t exactly the greatest barometer to measure talent anymore. On a positive note, Jury is 10-0 – all by violent stoppage. On the negative side, not one of those guys has a Wikipedia page, and that shit means something.

Round 1: Johnson opens with a missed leg kick. Jury with a front kick, off mark. Johnson lands a leg kick, then misses a left by a mile. They’re just kind of measuring each other, no one throwing much. Jury lands a takedown, in half guard trying to escape. And he does, but Johnson escapes, now Jury is working for Johnson’s back. He’s got one hook in, and is pounding Johnson in the side of the head. Oh, nice elbow. Johnson is doing absolutely nothing to escape. But now he does, well not escape, but he’s not getting blasted in the dome anymore. Now he’s on his back, Jury is in half guard working for a Kimura. He let it go, and goes back to blasting Johnson. And Jury moves to side control, and now full mount. Now he’s got the back, working for a choke. Johnson saved by the bell. Jury 10-9

Round 2: Jury with a leg kick to start things off. Johnson continues to miss just about everything he throws. Now he lands a decent left. Oh, Jury with a head kick, has little effect on Johnson. Jury with a kick, Johnson counters with a right hook. Jury goes in for a takedown, Johnson backs him up with a shot to the chops. Leg kick by Jury. Answered by Johnson, but jury catches it and scores another takedown. Not good for Johnson. He’s got nothing for jury down there. Jury is in full guard, working some elbows, nothing too devestating. Johnson is just holding on for dear life, not doing much to get up or escape, or anything for that matter. Rogan comments on how the guard is a weak spot in MMA, and Johnson is proof of that. Weak round, but an easy 10-9 for jury.

Round 3: Jury fails on a takedown. Johnson looking to be more aggressive, but Jury ties him up and pushes him against the cage, lands a trip takedown. Nice elbow to the side of the head. Johnson gets to half guard. Jury advances to side control, working some ground and pound. Back to half guard. Big elbow by Jury, and another. Jury is on top just pounding away at Johnson’s head. Johnson looks like he took a lude. Jury still on top working that ground and pound. He’s very active from top position, but isn’t able to do much damage. He is dominating though. The round ends, and easy decision win for Myles Jury.

The judges decision is in and it’s 30-27 across the board. Nice win for Jury.

Melvin “Fuck All That Jiu Jitsu” Guillard vs Jamie “Don’t Call It A Comeback” Varner is next

After a fairly brutal career deviation that saw him get cut from the WEC, then lose to former gay porn star (not that there’s anything wrong with that) Dakota Cochrane, Jamie Varner scored a couple of impressive wins on the regional circuit and was offered a contract by the UFC. He derailed the Edson Barboza hype train by first round ass-whoopin’, then partook in a thrilling battle with Joe Lauzon, and even though he lost due to an ill-conceived takedown, Varner was impressive, and showed that he is not to be taken lightly.

Mel is an interesting case. Long considered one of the most athletically gifted lightweights in the world, he’s always failed to get over that final rung to glory. The unfortunate recipient of three losses in his last four fights, Mel desperately needs a W here. He has the ability to knock any fool out, no doubt, but unlike himself, he’s facing an opponent who doesn’t wither and die when faced with the slightest tad of adversity.

Round 1: Hard leg kick by Mel. Varner missesd a left, eats two more leg kicks. Mel with a jab to the forehead of Varner. Mel is fighting a measured strategy. Varner is trying to figure out how to get inside without getting his head knocked off. Mel with another jab. And another hard leg kick. And another. Varner misses badly with an overhand right. Varner throws a three shot combo, and one looks like it connected pretty well. Mel thwarts a takedown attempt. Varner with a big right, then connected with a good body shot. Then blasts Mel with a good one to the head, takes Mel down but the round ends. Varner finished strong, probably stole the round 10-9

Round 2: Mel opens with a jab, Varner answers with another shot. Varner sticks a takedown, Mel looking to cage walk back up, but Varner is controlling him nicely, lands a few good ones too. Now Mel flips Varner’s ass to the ground. Both are back up. They trade shots. Mel with another leg kick, follows with a high kick that lands. Mel sticks a jab, Varner misses a left, then lands a very nice combo. Mel has his high kick blocked. Varner with another takedown. Mel is back up, and they separate. Mel goes hard to the body. Varner lands a big right. Oh nasty body kick by Mel, eats a serious one to the pills. Mel’s looking pretty miserable down there. He’s okay and they’re ready to go again. Varner charges forward, Mel gets out of the way, and lands a knee to the guts. Jumping knee to end the round for Mel. Tough round to score, I’ll give it to Guillard 10-9

Round 3: Varner shoots, Mel defends. Mel with a hard kick to the body. Varner blocks, but that shit looked liek it hurt. Varner gets the takedown, but Mel is against the cage looking to get up. Varner goes for a Pruvian necktie, but Mel escapes and reverses. He’s on top looking to work some ground and pound. Varner’s shin is bleeding. Yuck. Mel goes to the body, Varner responds with a another takedown. He can’t figure out a way to keep Mel down. And he’s up. Varner ducks a punch and lands a takedown, this time nowhere near the cage. Oh shit, Mel goes for an armbar, and now he’s on top. Wow, a sit out, and now Varner is on top again. He’s got a minute to do some damage. He’s doing nothing. Mel kicks him off and gets up. Mel with a left hook. Varner picks him up and slams Mel backward on his head. Crazy ending. I’ll give that last one to Varner 10-9

The decision is in, and it’s 30-27 (Varner), 30-27 (Guillard), and 30-27 for a bizarre split decision to Jamie Varner.

Erik Perez vs Byron Bloodworth is next

In his first fight outside the south-eastern MMA scene, Bloodworth was decimated by Mike Easton after missing weight by three pounds. So not only did he get his ass whooped, but he had to pay the guy who provided said whooping 20% of his earnings, which considering his meager purse of $4000 amounted to $800. Then he was forced from a second fight due to injury. Bloodworth hasn’t fought in over a year, and earned  only $3200 in that time (from fighting anyway). By comparison, the official poverty line for a single person in America is a little over $11,000 a year. So this pitiable bastard earned about $8000 less than the poorest person you know. DAYUM! For that alone I have to root for him to not only win, but get the Fight of the Night, Submission of the Night, Knockout of the Night, and “locker room” bonuses. What, it’s possible.

However, not probable. Bloodworth is facing Erik Perez, who earned a verbal submission victory in his UFC debut, and a 0:17 knockout in his encore. Yep, it’s safe to say this guy is a stone cold killer.

But never underestimate a guy who’s fighting to avoid literal starvation. Hey, it worked for Pat Barry when he was living on ketchup and rice. I know what you’re thinking. Ketchup aint cheap, right, how the hell can Bloodworth afford ketchup? Damn straight it aint cheap, especially any brand that isn’t spelled ‘catsup,’ but Burger King was foolish enough years back to provide those do-it-yourself dispensers. All you gotta do is roll in there to take a piss, and when no one’s looking squirt a bunch of that crimson gold into the baggy you found on the street. And shit, you can even use the free soap provided by a BK bathroom to wash that jammy out. See, who says fast food restaurants are public health hazards/slave mills that provide no public worth whatsoever? Then you got ketchup and rice for the week, and that’s some good livin’.

Round 1: Byron opens with a huge overhand right. Perez ties him up against the cage, Byron reverses, and now Perez reverses, delivering some body shots. Perez with a knee. And another one that drops Byron, damn! Perez descends, and is on top pounding away, but Byron is surviving, and he establishes guard. Perez goes to the head, then to the body, now he’s dropping elbows. Byron defending well. Perez working that body nicely with punches and elbows. Now he’s dropping them to the head. Perez is relentless. He just landed a good one, Byron turns to his side, and Perez finishes him. This kid is a killer, man.

The official decison is in, and it’s a TKO at 03:50 of round one. That’s three fights in the UFC for Perez, three first round stoppages. Not bad. Perez has that stupid mask on for his interview, and so does his entire corner.

Brad Pickett and Eddie Wineland are up

Serious tussle here. Don’t let the stupid hat fool you, Pickett is an animal. His only UFC loss was to Renan Barao, and there aint no shame in that game. Barao has forgotten more about dispensing pain that you or I will ever know. Pickett likes to bang it out, but he’s got a pretty underrated submission game as well. And to hell with you if you missed my Lethal Weapon reference.

Wineland is also a savage. He followed up two tough UFC opening losses to Urijah Faber and Joseph Benavidez with a spectacular knockout of Scott Jorgensen. Let’s see what he’s got here.

Round 1: Pickett with a leg kick to start. Wineland responds in kind. Pickett charges in with a left hook. Wineland misses a big uppercut, but then lands a good right, and another. Pickett responds with a right of his own. Rogan comments that Wineland is doing everything they tell you not to do in a boxing class. But then he drops Pickett. He’s up though, and looks okay. Wineland goes to the body, Pickett misses a hook. Wineland is throwing bombs. Aint gotta have much technique if one of those lands. Damn, he drops Pickett again, twice, but he’s back up. Pickett shoots, fails. Pickett with a left, then a leg kick. Wineland throws a few, good head movement by Pickett. He needs a little more of that. Wineland lands two more than stun Pickett, then he goes to the body. Pickett jumps forward with a big Rocky type hook, missed badly. The round ends, gotta say 10-9 for Wineland

Round 2: Wineland tags Pickett with a left, Pickett answers with a good shot of his own. Wineland tags him again, and again with a left hook. Pickett with a leg kick, he’s having a hard time finding Wineland’s face. But he goes to the body, nice. Wineland with a jab, blocks Pickett’s counter right. Huge exchange, both just skim the other. Good left hook by Wineland. And a short right. Non stop kickboxing match and the fans are booing. Big hook by Pickett, and Wineland is bleeding from his eye. Wineland lands a nice straight right to close out the round. 10-9 Wineland

Round 3: Pickett with a jab, then a knee that maybe brushes Wineland’s gut. Pickett is charging forward, Wineland moving very well, getting out of the way of mostly everything. Oh nice one two combo from Wineland. Pickett lands a very solid right, doesn’t seem to faze Wineland much. Nice leg kick by Pickett. Wineland lands like three jabs in a row. And a jab by Pickett. Wineland lands a solid right, then misses a left. Pickett misses an uppercut, then sticks a low kick. They trade straight shots. Oh hard to the body by Pickett, then whiffs a big left. Wineland to the body. Pickett staying aggressive, but Wineland is countering him nicely. The bell sounds, and this one goes to Eddie Wineland.

The decision is in, and it’s 30-27 (Wineland), 29-28 (Pickett), and 30-27 for Wineland.

That’s it for me, folks. Let the tomfoolery commence. Thanks for chillin’, and stick around for the main card.

The Ultimate Fighter 16 Finale — Main Card Results & Commentary


(Mitrione refused to undergo VADA drug-testing. Nelson refused to shampoo the crabs out of his beard. / Photo courtesy of CombatLifestyle. For more photos from this set, click here.)

It doesn’t matter if you haven’t watched a single episode of The Ultimate Fighter this season. (Spoiler alert: You haven’t). Tonight’s TUF 16 Finale on FX is still one of the greatest free cards of the year, partly because there aren’t any TUF also-rans mucking it up.

Instead, we’ve got two heavyweight slugfests (Roy Nelson vs. injury fill-in Matt Mitrione and Pat Barry vs. Shane Del Rosario), a lightweight battle that will likely end up in a brutal stoppage (Melvin Guillard vs. Jamie Varner), a pair of featherweight contenders trying to bounce back from submission losses (Dustin Poirier vs. Jonathan Brookins), and a TUF 16 welterweight final featuring a man so dehumanized by his time in captivity that at this point he’s nothing more than a vessel for unspeakable acts of violence.

Taking us through the play-by-play this evening is Level 8 Liveblog Wizard Anthony Gannon, who will be updating us with main card results after the jump beginning at 9 p.m. ET. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and please, please, please, leave us some comments in the comments section.


(Mitrione refused to undergo VADA drug-testing. Nelson refused to shampoo the crabs out of his beard. / Photo courtesy of CombatLifestyle. For more photos from this set, click here.)

It doesn’t matter if you haven’t watched a single episode of The Ultimate Fighter this season. (Spoiler alert: You haven’t). Tonight’s TUF 16 Finale on FX is still one of the greatest free cards of the year, partly because there aren’t any TUF also-rans mucking it up.

Instead, we’ve got two heavyweight slugfests (Roy Nelson vs. injury fill-in Matt Mitrione and Pat Barry vs. Shane Del Rosario), a lightweight battle that will likely end up in a brutal stoppage (Melvin Guillard vs. Jamie Varner), a pair of featherweight contenders trying to bounce back from submission losses (Dustin Poirier vs. Jonathan Brookins), and a TUF 16 welterweight final featuring a man so dehumanized by his time in captivity that at this point he’s nothing more than a vessel for unspeakable acts of violence.

Taking us through the play-by-play this evening is Level 8 Liveblog Wizard Anthony Gannon, who will be updating us with main card results after the jump beginning at 9 p.m. ET. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and please, please, please, leave us some comments in the comments section.

A’ight CP Nation, let’s get this shit going. I don’t know about you, but I’m in need of some serious tusslin.’ One more crappy season of The Ultimate Fighter in the books. One more six figure contract, whateverthefuck that even means anymore. One more searing disappointment. And one more deflated hard-on by actually buying Dana White’s “This is the craziest season ever” bullshit. The show has become so excruciating it’s almost embarrassing to admit watching it, kinda like admitting you cried at the end of The Notebook, not me, but ya know, some of you bitch-asses probably did. Well, at least this season we got to see Julian Lane wig out and give us a line that quickly became more famous than he’ll ever be, “Let me bang, bro.”

Here are the preliminary results:

Tim Elliot beat Jared Papazian by unanimous decision, and by the looks of the scores it was a pretty severe beating, 30-25 (twice) and 30-26.

Mike Rio beat John Cofer by third round armbar.

Hugo Viana beat Reuben Duran by first round knockout.

TJ Waldburger beat Nick Catone by second round triangle. Thankfully I missed this cause it’s on the suck-ass FUEL channel no one gets.

Rustan Khabilov beat Vinc Pinchel by first round KO (suplex and punches). A KO suplex slam, on FUEL, mother fucker!

Johnny Bedford beat Marcos Vinicius by second round KO. Probably the best undercard ever…on FUEL.

Mike Pyle beat James Head by first round TKO. Greeaaaaaat!

Joe Rogan informs us that the Jamie Varner/Melvin Guillard fight was scratched due to Varner throwing up backstage, possibly the result of a difficult weight cut. And that’s just great cause that was the best fight on the card.

Jonathan Brookins vs Dustin Poirier is up first.

If you’ve never seen Fightville, shame on you. It’s always on On-Demand and features Dustin “I Desperately Need a New Nickname” “The Diamond” Poirier as he makes his way through the southern Louisiana MMA scene, which is an interesting local circuit to say the least. And you should feel twice as shamed if you’ve never visited that region of America. You can drive for hours without seeing a single human being, and when you finally do see that human being it may very well be some old-ass scary lady selling gumbo outside her shanty. And for $1 a bowl, no you do not get to ask what’s in it, but trust me the possum and squirrel down thar is dang tasty. Anyway, although he’s coming off a pretty brutal submission loss to the Korean Zombie, Poirier is a fighter to watch out for. He’s a nasty striker who is now at ATT to try and tighten up his grappling.

Brookins is a guy who wishes he won The Ultimate Fighter five years ago when TUF winners were coddled and given respectable billing against winnable opponents (see – Michael Bisping). Instead, Brookins is the new breed of TUF “champion,” who just two years and three fights into his UFC tenure is in danger of falling into the pit of obscurity because he’s been paired against guys like Erik Koch and Charles Oliveira. That being said, Brookins’ strength lies in his scrappiness. He likes to clinch, wrestle, make his fights ugly, and rock creepy braids. Hey, that’s just how they roll down in Fraggle Rock.

Round 1: Here we go. They trade leg kicks. Brook with a body shot. Swarms on him, busting him up. Damn, a bunch of shots, a knee, all kinds of hurt. Dustin grabs a hold of Brookins and pushes him into the cage. He seems recovered. Brookins with another big shot. Dustin with an elbow. Dustin charges in, does no damage but pushes Brookins into the cage, Brookins reverses, and they seperate. Brookins with a right, Dustin answers with a nice hook to the chops. Nice knee by Dustin. Body shot by Dustin. Uppercut by Dustin. Brookins has his chin up as usual, and Dustin clips it, rocks him, but he’s okay. Dustin lands another uppercut in the clinch, and now he’s going for a d’arce choke, and he gets the tap! That was sweet.

The official announcement is the d’arce choke at 4:15 of round 1.

Arianny and Britney are looking lovely tonight, as usual. I’d like to eat Arianny’s liver with some black-eyed peas and a nice Colt-45. For Britney, I’m thinking of the tongue with haricot verts and a fine asti spumante.

Vinc Pichel vs Rustam Khaboliv from the undercard is up next, and even though we already know the result so what, it’s a damn suplex knockout so let’s do this shit.

Round 1: Rustam shoots for a takedown, Vinc defending, but goes down eventually. Working some ground and pound from half guard. Vinc gets up, and gets LAUNCHED! He’s up again, and he gets tossed again, brutal! Rustam lauches him yet again, and commences to pound the side of Vinc’s head until the ref steps in. He was done from the suplex, the shots were just cherries on top. Awesome performance!

Thank God they showed that fight. We haven’t seen a guy get launched like that since Nate Diaz made his ill-advised move to welterweight and got bounced around by Rory McDonald.

Pat Barry and Shane del Rosario are up next.

How can you not love Pat Barry? The man is proof-positive of how far an interesting personality can take you. Sporting a 4-5 UFC record is usually not the makings of a securely employed man. However, being a kill-or-be-killed type (of nine UFC fights only one has gone to a decision) can negate a less-than-stellar record, and being a character doubles down on that. Add to that equation that beside a hard-ass leg kick, Barry is a kickboxer who doesn’t seem to be all that good at it, and we have the makings of a marketing genius here.

Del Rosario is another guy who has an impressive striking background, although he’s someone who can back that up with some cred – Rosario is actually the first American to win the WBC Muay Thai heavyweight title.

Neither of these guys is winning grappling tournaments either, although Rosario can tap a fool, at least a non-grappling fool such as Lavar Johnson, whereas Barry couldn’t despite being in side control, mount, and having Johnson in an armlock. What does that mean? This one has all the makings of a barn-burner.

Hmm, a Bellator on Spike commercial during UFC on FX, interesting. Guess bitter rivals can all get along when dollars are exchanged.

Round 1: It’s on. Shane opens hard to the body with a kick, Barry responds with a thumping leg kick. They clinch, and Shane delivers a couple knees. And a couple to the thigh up against the cage. Those don’t look fun. Shane tries for a takedown, Barry defends. Shane has Barry against the cage, knees him to the ribs again. And again. Shane fires one o the side of the head, then sends a knee to the gut. Barry finally escapes the position. Barry with a jab, then a leg kick. Shane shoots in again, Barry defending, but gets it and takes Barry’s back. He’s got a hook in, and going for the choke. He let it go, but Shane is still on Barry’s back. Now he’s going after an arm, now an omoplata. Jesus this is insane. Now he’s trying to take Barry’s back again, but falls off and ends up on the bottom. The round ends with Barry hugging Shane in side control. 10-9 Shane

Round 2: Shane opens with a jab, misses an uppercut. Barry rocks the shit out of him with a hook, then swarms in and knocks Shane the fuck out! Nice.

Damn, Barry cracked him with like five solid hooks, and when the doc tried to grab his arm, he jerked it away like, “Got awff me, son!” That was smooth.

The official decision is in, and it’s a KO at 0:26 of round 2.

Barry is teary-eyed, damn talking about the Connecticut shooting and hugging his kids. He hugs Rogan. Touching scene.

Cool, Mike “King Mullet” Pyle vs James “Sloppy” Head is up next.

And the Southern Comfort commercial with the fat dude walking down the beach could be the best thing ever.

Round 1: They touch and it’s a go. Head with a left hook, misses. Head charges in with a shot, and a few knees. Pyle delivers a knee of his own. They seperate. Pyle with a jab to the chest. Head forces the clinch, and throwing body shots. Pyle with a nasty knee, knocks Head down, then finishes him off. Very sweet, and the mullet makes it that much more badass.

Pyle thinks this win should put him into the Top 10. Not so sure about that, but three straight KOs is a nice run.

Colton Smith vs Mike “Metro” Ricci is up next.

Colton Smith is a lifelong wrestler and an Army Ranger. He will grab a leg and hold onto said leg for however long it takes to get the takedown, could be 30 seconds, could be four minutes and 59 seconds. That’s just how the dude rolls.

Mike Ricci is MMA’s first legitimate metrosexual (not that there’s anything wrong with that). He likes to shop, sip vino from the proper glass, vilify those he considers beneath him, and beat dudes up. And he absolutely despises when his friends change their hairstyles and fail to inform him. Hey, that’s just his thang.

I kinda like that Ricci doesn’t fit the typical mold. Sure, I consider him an arrogant prick too, but it’s nice to have a guy in the finals who, aside from a couple tats, doesn’t so easily fit into the sterotypical fighter package.

Damn, Colton’s old lady is fine. He’s kind of a fucked up looking dude. Pays to be a badass.

Has anyone else noticed how much Tristar guys love wearing tights? What’s up with that? Is that a Canadian thing?

Round 1: D White’s favorite ref is in charge, and it’s time to get it on. Colton ducks a high kick and shoots for a leg, Ricci defends. He’s got Ricci against the cage, working a body lock. Ricci goes down, looking to cage walk back up, and does. Colton’s got his back though, and drags him down. Ricci up, but Colton is all over him. He’s got a hook in, looking for the other. He takes Ricci down, gets the other hook in, looking for a choke. He’s softening Ricci up with head shots. They’re playing wrist control here. That’s a sucky position to be in for Ricci. Ah shit, he loses the position, and Ricci is up. Kick by Colton misses. Ricci throws a punch, Colton wraps him up again. He’s got underhooks, and takes Ricci down again. 10-9 for Colton.

Round 2: Ricci opens with a kick, but takes a nut shot. Ricci looks to the ref for help, but he aint having it, Colton attacks. Mazaghatti gives D White yet another reason to hate him. Colton takes Ricci down, working some ground and pound. Colton is trying to sneak those hooks in again. He’s got em, and going for a choke, but Ricci escapes out the back door. Colton takes his ass down again, and he’s dominating Ricci. Colton just smashed Ricci in the back of the head, has his hooks in again. He’s working that arm under the chin, but can’t get it. He’s sticking to Ricci like a glue trap, just relentless. Going for that choke again, but it looks like Ricci will survive the round. Round ends with Colton peppering Ricci’s mug with patty cake shots. 10-9 for Colton.

Round 3: Ricci with a body kick, but staying true to form, Colton takes him down, working that choke again. Ricci just cannot get anything going here, Colton is all over him, has his back, hooks in, just dominating him. Colton moves to mount, Ricci gives up his back again, working some shots to the side of Ricci’s head. Ricci should try something drastic, like an indian burn or a titty twister, shit something. Ricci tries to turn into Colton, but that aint happening. Ricci is either very good at defending chokes or Colton is very bad at applying them because he’s had Ricci’s back for the majority of the fight. Oh, Ricci reverses the position, has Colton’s back! Going for an armbar, holy shit! But no, Colton escapes, and that is a wrap. 10-9 for Colton and the clear victory.

The official decision is 30-27 (twice) and 30-26 for Colton Smith, the latest Ultimate Fighter, yada, yada, yada. Although he does get a Hog out of it, so that’s sweet. Colton pays mad respect to Ricci, to the troops, and to the good lord.

And the main event is next, Roy Nelson vs Matt Mitrione

It’s good to be a heavyweight. Not only do they generally make more money, but most of them don’t have to worry about cutting weight. Mitrione rolled out to the scales and didn’t even bother taking his jeans off, mocking the lighter weight fighters who had to starve themselves, swallow laxatives, and erase years from their lives by spending excessive time in the sauna.

Nelson took part in the clowning by willingly taking his shirt off, even though he didn’t have to, allowing his fabulous double DDs to freely flop around. And by sporting 17 pounds of lice-infested beard, yet still coming in 13 pounds under the limit.

Mitrione has moved his training camp down to the Blackzilians, even though he’s neither black nor zilian. And he rolls out to “Simple Man.” Respect!

“Big Country” rolls out to “We Will Rock You” with that fucked up beard and Pretorian gear out de ass.

Chris Lytle is in Mitrione’s corner. Let us all bow to Maximus.

Round 1: Herb Dean is the man, and it’s on. Matt opens to the body. Then a high kick, blocked by Nelson. And another. And another. Roy bull rushes him into the cage, working for a takedown. Matt reverses, and delivers a knee. Matt lands an elbow on the seperation, then lands a right hook. Oh, body kick by Matt. Roy firing back, lands a couple decent shots. They trade jabs. Nelson with a huge uppercut, and descends on Mitrione, scoring the TKO. Jesus!

It was an uppercut, then a left/right combo to knock Mitrione on his ass, then a few academic shots on the ground. Very impressive performance.

Roy Nelson with a TKO at 2:38 of the first round.

Eleven fights: only two decisions, with three submissions and six knockouts. I’d say Dana White has a pretty solid boner right about now.

That’s a wrap, later taters.

 

UFC on FX: Sotiropoulos vs. Pearson — Main Card Results & Commentary


(Yeesh. That thing never gets easier to look at, does it. / Image via MMAJunkie)

Also known as the TUF: The Smashes Finale, tonight’s UFC card is coming to you live from the Gold Coast, and will feature the season’s lightweight and welterweight finals. (Remember, these are the Brits and Aussies. The “Let Me Bang, Bro” cast gets its big send-off tomorrow in Vegas.)

If you happened to read our brutally honest breakdown of the fights, you know that there’s not much on the line this evening outside of those lovely glass trophies. But at the very least, the lead-off fight between Hector Lombard and Rousimar Palhares should be memorable. Unless it isn’t, which is also possible.

Our own Matt Kaplan will be throwin’ down round-by-round results from the FX main card, beginning at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and if you’re watching along with us, please throw your own bullshit into the comments section.


(Yeesh. That thing never gets easier to look at, does it. / Image via MMAJunkie)

Also known as the TUF: The Smashes Finale, tonight’s UFC card is coming to you live from the Gold Coast, and will feature the season’s lightweight and welterweight finals. (Remember, these are the Brits and Aussies. The “Let Me Bang, Bro” cast gets its big send-off tomorrow in Vegas.)

If you happened to read our brutally honest breakdown of the fights, you know that there’s not much on the line this evening outside of those lovely glass trophies. But at the very least, the lead-off fight between Hector Lombard and Rousimar Palhares should be memorable. Unless it isn’t, which is also possible.

Our own Matt Kaplan will be throwin’ down round-by-round results from the FX main card, beginning at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and if you’re watching along with us, please throw your own bullshit into the comments section.

Please stand by…

Hey now. Mk here. Before we get to the liveblog, I just want to say how glad I am that these fights are on tonight. I have two little kids, so the more I hear/see/learn about the school shooting in Connecticut, the more furious/helpless/nervous I become. Once again, MMA is a welcomed respite – for a few hours, at least – and I’m sure I’m not the only one here at CP whose thoughts and prayers are with the families whose lives were forever changed today.

Now let’s get ready to watch some guys fight. Who ya got?

And the fighting robots can only mean one thing: “It’s time!” So cheezy.

Anik and Florian are once again behind the mic, kinda dressed alike too.

Hector Lombard vs. Rousimar Palhares

Rd. 1) We’ve got two short, stumpy thumpers going right here. I’m excited for this one. Lombard takes the center of the cage and opens with some kicks and punches, and Palhares accepts the invitation. Lombard misses a wild, leaping hook. Palhares is kicking low…and again…and is dropped by a Lombard right. Palhares circles away to his right and is being stalked by Lombard, who’s looking for a big left.Lombard connects with a big left and Palhares is down. Lombard is in his guard. Lombard is up and lets Palhares up. Lombard is peppering Palhares with big punches against the fence. Palhares is down again. More monster shots. He’s out. Lombard wins it with strikes (Rd. 1. 3:38). Damn, that was a nasty left from Lombard when Palhares was against the fence.

Lombard calls out Bisping in the post-fight interview. I’m down for that.

(That Southern Comfort commercial with the fat dude in the speedo is unreal.)

Colin Fletcher vs. Norman Parke

Rd 1) Joe Martinez is silky on the mic, as usual, and we’re off. Parke wades in with an overhand left and clinches Fletch before pressing him against the cage. He takes down Fletcher, who gets right back up and stuffs another takedown attempt. Woops, Parke trips him down again and is in Fletcher’s half guard, up against the cage. Fletcher is working for a kimura but Parke defends it without issue. Parke is still in half guard and can’t seem to pass. Big elbow from Parke to Fletcher’s face. Parke is in north-south position but passes to half. Fletcher spins out for a second – a scramble – and now it’s Fletcher with side control. He drops a few punches before the horn.

Rd 2)  Both men land some early low kicks. Again Parke throws the overhand left, clinches, and moves Fletcher to the fence. And there’s the takedown. Is Fletcher going for a heel hook? Nope. Parke is in side control again. Park is going for a one-armed guillotine, but Fletcher escapes. Parke now has Fletcher mounted, takes his back, but Fletcher escapes and is up on his feet. Parke lands a big left to the side of the head of Fletcher. Knee from Fletcher. Fletcher is throwing plenty of low kicks, but Parke lands some heavy punch combinations. Parke seems to be throwing with much more conviction – and power. Parke gets a takedown just before the round ends.

Rd 3) Kicks to the legs from Fletcher, punches to the head from Parke. Fletcher is swinging upstairs, but no luck. Parke ducks and counters. Solid left from Parke; Fletcher counters with a kick. Fletcher’s left eye is bleeding. Fletcher lands two punches on the jaw, but Parke counters with a left hook. Fletcher lands a left hook to the body. And a knee to the body. Parke has slowed a bit, it seems, and Fletcher is fighting as he should with a minute left. Parke hits two quick takedowns and has Fletcher’s back. Fletcher is up, and the fight ends with Parke pressing Fletcher against the cage. Norman Parke takes the unanimous decision and is the Smashes lightweight winner. Mazel tov on the new contract, Stormin.

The FX show The Americans looks like it could be pretty cool, no?

Robert Whittaker vs. Bradley Scott

Rd 1) Jeers for Scott. Cheers for Whittaker. Both men sample some kicks and punch combinations before Scott presses Whittaker against the fence. Whittaker knees as Scott presses. The crowd is anxious. Whittaker spins away and throws a big, glancing left hook. And another that lands clean on the nose of Scott. Nice right from Whittaker. Scott fires a right down the middle. Whittaker kicks hard at the lead leg and just misses with the right. Whittaker charges in with punches, drops Scott, but Scott is up, and both men are toe to toe. Scott presses forward against the cage. Whittaker is off the cage and counters a Scott right with three hard shots. Knee to the body from Scott, and a big Whittaker left hook lands at the horn.

Rd 2) Both men are firing punches early, and Scott again wants to press against the fence. Whittaker ain’t having it, though. A lead left uppercut and a follow-up right land for Whittaker. Whittaker kicks Scott in the junk, so we’re taking a breather. And we’re back. Scott lands a kick to the body. Some good dirty boxing from both men. Scott trips Whittaker and has the Aussie’s back. Scott is landing some short punches and knees. Scott has two hooks in and is dropping punches. Whittaker nearly sneaks out the back door. Yup, he’s out. Scott is pressing and Whittaker is bloodied. Whittaker lands a good left hook; Scott moves Whittaker against the cage once more. The round ends with Scott and Whittaker trading heavy leather.

Rd 3) Big left hook just misses for Whittaker. Whittaker is looking to turn the lights out with these punches. Scott moves in with punches, but Whittaker counters with hard combos. Whittaker is turning it up with nasty elbows. Scott lands a counter hook. Nasty elbow from Whittaker, followed by a 2 and a 3. Whittaker is getting the better of these exchanges. Scott jabs, Whittaker pounds. Whittaker attacks with a left uppercut that snaps back the head of Scott. Here’s a barrage of punches from Whittaker, and the crowd loves it. Hooks from Scott, elbows and straight punches from Whittaker. Great fight. Close, too. The judges award the unanimous decision victory to local boy Robert Whittaker, your new Smashes welterweight winner.

George Sotiropoulos vs. Ross Pearson

Rd 1) There will be no touching of the gloves in this one. Pearson fires some lead left hooks; Sotiropoulos slips and misses with he counter right. Pearson hits the kick to the inside of the lead leg. Big right form Pearson. Sotiropoulos is wobbly. Damn. Sotiropoulos pushes Pearson against the fence and is looking for a takedown. Knee from Sotiropoulos. both men trade rights. Pearson is landing hard punches and Sotiropoulos backs him off for a second with a close-range knee. A Pearson leg kick puts down Sotiropoulos, who gets right back up. Pearson might be smelling the big KO. Sotiropoulos is keeping his hands up as Pearson fires away. Sotiropoulos grabs a double, drags down Pearson, but Pearson gets back up. Uh oh. Sotiropoulos has Pearson’s back as Pearson is standing beside the fence. Pearson bucks Sotiropoulos off, but Sotiropoulos regains bach control as the round ends.

Rd 2) Sotiropoulos seems to have recovered. Pearson kicks low; Sotiropoulos counters with a straight right. High kick from Sotiropoulos. Body shot from Pearson. Pearson is winding up for the big one, it seems. Both men trade jabs. Sotiropoulos is finding his distance with the left jab. Another high kick from Sotiropoulos. Pearson lands a hard body shot with the right hand. Sotiropoulos counters, but a Pearson left hook drops Sotiropoulos. Sotiropoulos is wobbled again. Pearson’s left hook is getting through. Pearson slips after a left kick, but regains his footing. Another big Pearson left hits before the round ends.

Rd 3) A left hook from Pearson drops Sotiropoulos right away. Sotiropoulos gets up, but Pearson is hammering away. A straight left and a clobbering right hands drops Sotiropoulos, and the ref calls it off after Pearson lands one more right hand to a downed Sotiropoulos. Wow. Big power from Ross the boss. Ross Pearson wins via TKO at 41 seconds into the third.

Not a bad night of fights, CP. See you next time. Mk.

 

UFC on FOX: Henderson vs. Diaz — Main Card Results & Commentary


(Sometimes I look at Nate Diaz and think, “y’know, there’s a guy who probably hasn’t heard the Good News about Jesus Christ.” / Photo via CombatLifestyle. For more photos from this set, click here.)

Old legends and young lions. Guys with angel wings on their backs and guys with middle fingers in your face. Hot-headed blood lickers, and reasonable folks who understand the health risks of such behavior. It’s UFC on FOX 5 — a card so good that you don’t even need lazy storylines to sell it.

On the menu tonight: Benson Henderson looks for his second lightweight title defense against Nate Diaz, Alexander Gustafsson makes his case for #1 light-heavyweigght contendership against Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, and BJ Penn will go to the death — or pretty damn close — against Rory MacDonald. Plus, a MySpace grudge-match nearly eight years in the making!

Running our “Henderson vs. Diaz” liveblog is New Jersey Martial Arts Hall of Fame inductee Jim Genia (congrats Jim!), who will be throwin’ down live results from the FOX main card after the jump beginning at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and toss your own thoughts and observations in the comments section.


(Sometimes I look at Nate Diaz and think, “y’know, there’s a guy who probably hasn’t heard the Good News about Jesus Christ.” / Photo via CombatLifestyle. For more photos from this set, click here.)

Old legends and young lions. Guys with angel wings on their backs and guys with middle fingers in your face. Hot-headed blood lickers, and reasonable folks who understand the health risks of such behavior. It’s UFC on FOX 5 — a card so good that you don’t even need lazy storylines to sell it.

On the menu tonight: Benson Henderson looks for his second lightweight title defense against Nate Diaz, Alexander Gustafsson makes his case for #1 light-heavyweigght contendership against Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, and BJ Penn will go to the death — or pretty damn close — against Rory MacDonald. Plus, a MySpace grudge-match nearly eight years in the making!

Running our “Henderson vs. Diaz” liveblog is New Jersey Martial Arts Hall of Fame inductee Jim Genia (congrats Jim!), who will be throwin’ down live results from the FOX main card after the jump beginning at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and toss your own thoughts and observations in the comments section.

What up, spuds. ‘Tis I, Jim Genia.  Here are the results from the undercard:

-Yves Edwards def. Jeremy Stephens via KO (Punches) at 1:55, Round 1

-Raphael Assuncao def. Mike Easton via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

-Ramsey Nijem def. Joe Proctor via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)

-Daron Cruickshank def. Henry Martinez via KO (Kick) at 2:57, Round 2

-Abel Trujillo def. Marcus LeVesseur via TKO (Knees) at 3:56, Round 2

-Dennis Siver def. Nam Phan via Unanimous Decision (30-26, 30-25, 30-24)

-Scott Jorgensen def. John Albert via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 4:59, Round 1

And now, the main card, which is probably the best selection of fights Zuffa has ever given to FOX for airing for free.

First up, Matt Brown vs. Mike Swick:

You know and love Swick from his time on the seminal TUF season and the years of beatings both given and received in the Octagon.  You know Brown for pretty much the same thing, although his coming out party was at TUF 7.  We’ve seen them bang in impressive fashion, but Father Time has got to be taking his toll these grizzled dudes, so the question is: who’s still got enough grit left to pull out the win?

Round 1: After about 30 seconds of feeling each other out, Swick and Brown begin taking turns lunging in and winging punches.  Neither really connects though, so Brown grabs one of his opponent’s legs and dumps him on the canvas, and works into side-control.  From there Brown slips on a tight-as-hell D’Arce choke.  Swick is stuck defending the technique while in Brown’s guard.  He guts his way out of it, but not long after Brown has him in an even tighter triangle choke.  Somehow, some way, Swick survives, and with 3o seconds left they get back to their feet and pepper each other with short punches and knees from the clinch. Ding, end of round.

Round 2: Brown comes out and starts Muay Thai-ing the crap out of Swick, which is weird because doesn’t Swick live in Thailand or something?  Anyway, what can Brown do for you? I dunno, but for Swick it’s elbows and knees and some smothering clinch-work.  Swick seems to fade fast, and while he’s walking backwards, Brown tags him with a left hook on the chin and a right hand in the grill, and Swick is out and probably dreaming of a better Pad Thai than you and I will ever know.

Matt Brown def. Mike Swick via KO (Punches) at 2:31, Round 2

Next, BJ Penn vs. Rory MacDonald:

What more can I say about Penn that hasn’t been said?  The man’s a legend, he’s accomplished more in the sport than most can ever dream of, and when he bleeds, he bleeds grape-flavored Hawaiian Punch.  MacDonald is supposedly one of the next big things, but screw that. BJ, dispatch this clown.

Round 1: Penn comes straight across the cage and goes for a takedown.  MacDonald shrugs it off, and from his upper-body control, it becomes apparent that his size and height advantage is going to make it hard for Penn to move him around.  They two create some space, and for the next two minutes MacDonald uses his reach to land some low kicks, a high-kick to the head that the former lightweight- and welterweight champ shrugs off, some jabs and elbows.  Penn gets some good licks in, but it’s almost all MacDonald, and the young upstart wobbles the Hawaiian with an elbow with about 45 seconds left in the round.  They make it to the bell, but yeesh, Penn is getting hurt.

Round 2: MacDonald stalks Penn into the cage, and with jabs and kicks, begins to have his way with him.  Penn doesn’t circle, doesn’t really move his head, and aside from a right hand here and there, he’s a sitting duck.  MacDonald cracks him to the body with a kick at the midway mark of the round, and Penn nearly crumbles, staying upright only to eat more painful body blows.  With 38 seconds in the frame MacDonald grabs Penn and dumps him onto the canvas, and he feeds him short punches until the bell.

Round 3: Penn comes close with a single-leg takedown right out of the gate, but MacDonald gets out of it and tries to hug him to death against the cage.  Referee Herb Dean seperates them, and MacDonald resumes hurting Penn with strikes from the outside.  With all the confidence in the world, MacDonald shuffles his feet and throws question-mark kicks, Superman punches and just about anything else he wants, and all Penn can do is walk around and take it.  And then the bell sounds and it’s all over, and I go to my room and cry.

Rory MacDonald def. BJ Penn via Unanimous Decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-27)

Next, Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Alexander Gustafsson:

Shogun was, at one time, one of the best in the world.  Now he’s a walking pile of barely connected bones, ligaments and aged muscles.  Will the big Swede striker be the one to finally make the Brazilian collapse into a heaps of twisted flesh in the cage?

Round 1: Apparently Shogun watched Penn’s fight on the monitor backstage and said “I ain’t going out like that.”  Within the first 30 seconds of the bout Gustafsson sends him to the canvas on his butt, but Shogun swivels into a heelhook attempt that the Swede has to seriously work to get out of – and when he does, the former PRIDE and UFC champ almost takes his back and manages to land a sweet knee to the chops when they’re against the fence.  They make some space and throw strikes, with Shogun opting to cover up, eat whatever his opponent throws so he can wade in and land something himself.  It’s a dangerous ploy, and he winds up bleeding from his nose – but still very much in the game – by the time the round ends.

Round 2: Winging overhand rights and lefts, Shogun re-establishes himself as a threat to the taller fighter.  Gustafsson almost hip tosses him two minutes in, but a flubbed takedown attempt soon after has Shogun on his back regardless.  They work back to their feet and Gustafsson nails two takedowns and bangs his foe up with some ground and pound, and when Shogun stands the taller fighter just blasts him, wobbling him with knees and punches.  The bell sounds with Shogun that much worse for wear.

Round 3: Gustafsson resumes dinging Shogun up, and when Shogun fights back with more overhand rights, the Swede takes him down and tries to work him over there.  They get back to their feet and the dance continues, with Shogun trying to land that big money shot and Gustafsson alternating between strikes from outside and successful takedowns.  About midway through the round Gustafsson lands a shot to Shogun’s liver, which turns the Brazilian into the Walking Dead while Gustafsson lands whatever he wants.  A front kick to the face, jabs, and takedowns – Gustafsson does it all, and time expires with Shogun on the bottom and fighting like maybe he should have retired a year and a half ago.

Alexander Gustafsson def. Mauricio “Shogun” Rua via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)

Next, Benson Henderson vs. Nate Diaz:

Henderson won the UFC lightweight title by narrowly defeating Frankie Edgar, and reiterated his claim to the belt by defeating Edgar in another close fight and razor-thin decision.  Diaz ain’t about that life, though.  Diaz will beat you up in the parking lot, kiss your girl and smoke your pot, and there’s nothing you can do about it so you might as well start packing your bong now, son.  Ahem.

Round 1: Henderson wastes no time throwing kicks to Diaz’s legs, and Diaz wastes no time taunting him and tying him up against the cage.  They trade knees while jockeying for advantage, and this goes on for about two minutes.  Diaz makes some distance and lands an elbow, and Henderson manages two takedowns and some hard ground and pound.  The fine upstanding citizen from Stockton gets back to his feet, but he remains open to leg-kicks, and Bendo drops him with one.  Diaz is up again, and the round expires with the two pressed up against the cage.

Round 2: The champ muscles the challenger to the mat about 30 seconds into the round, and when Diaz rises, he throws a kick to the head that Diaz barely blocks.  They wrestle a bit on the feet, and when they seperate the two trade some strikes and it almost seems like the TUF winner is starting to find his boxing groove.  But no, Henderson resumes kicking the crap out of his leg, than drops him with a knuckle sandwich and pounds on him.  Diaz survives, gets vertical and scores with a sweet judo throw, but Henderson scrambles back up and continues his dominance.

Round 3: Henderson opens up with another leg-kick, Diaz answers back with some of his bread and butter punches, and at a minute in the champ hits a takedown and drops bombs. Back on their feet and then another takedown, and it’s clear Diaz’s guard is ill-equipped to deal with the heat Henderson brings from above.  Diaz rolls and works into a leglock attempt that morphs into a toehold.  Henderson expertly escapes, fends off another heelhook attempt, and when they stand once more Bendo drops Diaz with a right hand.  With time running out, Henderson lands an axe-kick to Diaz’s body, and then the bell sounds.

Round 4: Henderson gets a takedown against the fence about 35 seconds into the round, batters Diaz whenever Diaz turtles, and repeats the whole process when they get back up.  The Cesar Gracie black belt has maybe one half-ass kimura attempt and heelhook attempt, but that’s it, and you have to wonder if Diaz should maybe consider moving down to 145 pounds.

Round 5: They’re up against the cage early, and with 3:30 left on the clock Henderson hoists Diaz up and slams him like a pimp shaking down one of his hookers.  Diaz scores with one hip throw, but the champ scrambles to safety, and other than that one brief moment of brilliance, the challenger is nothing more than a grappling dummy that curses a lot.  And then time runs out and it’s all over.

Benson Henderson def. Nick Diaz via Unanimous Decision (50-43, 50-45, 50-45)

That’s all she wrote, folks. Peace out.