This fight is, perhaps, the exact reason stats do not tell the tale of a closely contested fight.
A case can be made for both Cruz and Faber winning their UFC 132 main event bout. It was a back and forth, give and take battle that both men had their moments in.
The round-by-round striking statistics show Cruz out-landed Faber in nearly every category, every time. Again, that's why the stats cannot be completely relied upon.
"The California Kid" knocked "The Dominator" down no less than three times throughout the fight, yet one judge seemed to believe it didn't matter. When power goes head on with volume, the high number of strikes will apparently win every time.
This is something fighters are definitely going to have to start adapting to, especially the smaller guys.
Grappling and performance ratings after the jump. Thanks to the fine folks at Fight Metric for the stats and pics.
Really not much to go on here.
Essentially, the grappling was a wash. Both fighters earned takedowns but the points were scored in the ensuing scrambles, of which it appeared, at least to me, Faber was getting the better of.
Ultimately, it didn't matter.
Finally, the performance rating:
In a fight as close as this, it's difficult to argue too strongly for either side.
My scorecard read 48-47 Faber. Perhaps the most interesting thing about this fight, and a tribute to exactly how close it was, is that any scorecard is defensible.
Literally, no matter what your card read, there can be a legitimate defense for it.
UFC President Dana White was in no hurry to book these two for a rubber match but he also didn't dismiss it outright. Somewhere down the road they may meet again and maybe then some clarity will come to one of the better feuds in the early stages of the lower weight classes in the world's largest organization.
What say you, Maniacs? Want to see it again?