Hello there, had enough yet? Didn’t think so.
First thing’s first, let’s put you in perspective. UFC scheduled 3 events in 3 consecutive nights and at this time, after 2 of them, I’m summarizing my predictions as well as give a few of my thoughts about the fights.
Oh, hold on please… It seems like I totally messed up the prediction post. I honestly don’t know how it came to be that fights from the prelims showed up as main card and visa versa… but you know what? I will take that in stride, just like Mr. Tony Ferguson (more on that later) and count my apparent blessings…
NOW We Roll:
Joby Sanchez Vs Geane Herrera
What a fun fight that was. Bombs launched, exchanged, momentum shifted once or twice. In the end, the revolutionary put a stop to Joby via a second round TKO. Woo Hoo. 1 for 1 in my prediction for the night.
Gabriel Gonzaga Vs. Konstantin Erokhin
After a fun night came one of the slowest, most sluggish and mainly – tentative HW fights in history, no less. For 2.5 rounds, they mostly circled, threw some shadow boxing punches and Gonzaga went for a late TD on both first rounds. In the third, Gonzaga decided to try the TD earlier and easily scored it – which only begged the question – Why? Why for the love of GSP haven’t you done that way earlier in the fight?… Oh well. If there ever was a boring decision victory, Gonzaga nailed it. On the bright side – 2 for 2!
Tatsuya Kawajiri Vs. Jason Knight
The commentators kept telling us how good Knight is, but I think we discovered a little hole in his game. Yes, TD defense is not his strong suit. Then again, it’s Kawajiri. Not the most exciting fight ever, but it worked. Also on the prediction side. 3 for 3.
Ryan LaFlare Vs. Mike Pierce
It was nice to see Pierce back with the UFC. I think he deserves another chance. Not everyone wins a belt, but Pierce is not a pushover either. Unfortunately for him, he met LaFlare who’s size and reach were just a little too much for him to solve. Mike did tag him a couple of times and all I can say is good luck for both these guys. 4 for 4.
Joe Lauzon Vs. Evan Dunham
When you have Joe Lauzon in a fight you know 2 things with the utmost certainty. One – There will be blood. Most likely Joe’s. Two – It will absolutely never be a disappointing fight. Check and Check. However, what we saw last night was a new and improved Evan Dunham. What a beautiful display of striking. Combination after combination, clinch work, distance, you name it – he nailed it. It seemed like he completely messed up Joe’s game plan and for the most part, with no answer. Great fight. I’m dropping the first prediction here… 4 for 5.
Tony Ferguson Vs. Edson Barboza
My personal main event of the evening. Ladies and gentlemen, I’ve learned my lesson. See, I picked against El Cucuy twice in the past and failed on both counts. No more. I won’t say much about the fight. Find it. Watch it. Instead, let me riddle you this – what happens if you give a guy skills on every facet of the game, striking, grappling, TD defense and then add a granite chin, a no quit mental attitude and a big gas tank to boot? Yeah, you have no choice but to call him El Cucuy. Ferguson is without a doubt – the best TUF winner ever. I see a title fight within 18 months. 5 for 6.
Frankie Edgar Vs. Chad Mendes
Frankie Edgar will forever be the most underrated, most disrespected, unappreciated phenomenon. It seems like it doesn’t matter who this guy beat or what he accomplishes, forever I will hear the same things about him. This is the guy who beat Hall of famer BJ Penn twice – while being half his size – and destroyed Gray Maynard. This is the fighter who gave Aldo his toughest title defense (at least until tonight), and if you consider the considerable size advantage Conor has, a case can be made that tonight’s main event won’t even contradict the above statement. Frankie Edgar, folks, is one of the best mixed martial artists ever. If he’d have been denied a shot at the FW title now, I think we could have closed up shop and call this boxing… Luckily, even Dana had only one answer. The right answer! more than that. Regardless of the result in the UFC194 main event, If Conor goes up to LW before facing Frankie, I will forever doubt his ability to beat him. This fight has to happen. 6 for 7 on my predictions tonight!
As the night progressed (with the exception of the weird TUF final) the fights improved and we finished strong with a shocking KO.
And on the prediction side? A resounding win! 6 for 7. I did have a good run of 100% nights, but none of them were based on a 7 fight night.
Hope you get some rest because… tonight’s the night! Aldo, McGregor, Weidman, Rockhold… and it goes on…
So, Don’t blink!