Hidey ho, how are all you cigarettes doing on this fine Sunday morn? No doubt Vitor is getting a little injection of his favourite Christian vampire... and that's not a euphemism for testosterone, but it sure could be. No, it looks like the power of Christ compelled him to win again last night. Well, that, and a few needles to the arm didn't hurt, eh? What?
Sure, Vitor is a 36-year-old man fighting in a 19-year-old man's body, but let's not lose focus of the real issue here. Smoking marijuana is for the devil, kids. If you smoke that shit you're going to turn into a degenerate cheater like Pat Healy, and take well-deserved fight bonuses away from bundles of sticks like Bryan Caraway. I hope you've all learned a very valuable lesson here, or three:
1. The power of Christ compels you. That dude is picking favourites and if you think he isn't then explain how the Leafs blew a 3-goal lead in game 7 of the Stanley Cup playoffs. I didn't fucking think so.
2. The power of juicing compels you more. Why be 36 when you can be 19? It's a pretty fucking clear choice here and one I think can all agree is necessary. After all, they call it "testosterone replacement therapy." It's got the word therapy in it and therapy is good.
3. If you smoke marijuana you're literally in league with the devil. Even one nanogram of metabolized Tetrahydrocannabinol is enough to give you an unfair advantage over other fighters. And the last thing anybody wants is an unfair advantage in this sport, which as pure as the driven snow in Mexico.
Card's report card: I'm not trying to be a dick (because that shit comes naturally) but I wasn't wowed. This was a bunch of Brazilian guys beating up mismatches on a card aimed at penetrating deeper into the Brazilian market. The UFC is nothing if not ravenously greedy. I mean, the only real name in contention here was Vitor Belfort. B-
My predictions: 9 for 13. Apparently a 69% winning percentage aint shit with big swinging dicks in the money pool, but I was satisfied. After all, the only fights I really got wrong were based on the flawed judging of MMA and needle boy in the main event.
Fight of the Night: Lucas Martins and Jeremy Larsen
Knockout of the Night: I guess you got to give it to Vitor Belfort, which I understand he's going to donate to the Brazilian National Association for Dirty Fucking Cheaters
Submission of the Night: Francisco Trinaldo
Biggest Upset: Again, I guess Cockhold losing in 2 minutes was a surprise
Worst judge's decision: All of them. MMA judging is brutal.
Most boring fight: Flabby-o Maldonado versus Roger Hollett
Beatdown of the night: Nobody
[DISCLAIMER NOTE - All UFC images in this post were sourced from Facebook.com/UFC and are the intellectual property of Zuffa LLC]
* * *
Lightweight : Lucas Martins (B) versus Jeremy Larsen (B-)
Prediction: Martins via TKO2
Result: Martins via TKO3
This fight deserved the bonus that the UFC handed out as it was every bit the stereotypical bangfest people love to see. Although that probably had more to do with the fact that Lucas Martins kept getting tagged as he waded in to battle Larsen. At one point it looked like Martins had been decapitated but somehow kept his head attached and continued to fight.
Martins has one hell of chin because he got hit with some bricks and wouldn't go down. He was on the stanky leg a few times but I don't think I've seen many fighters able to recover so quickly from being rocked. I mean, there's Matt Grice and now this guy. Mario Yamasaki seemed like he wanted to step in several times but Martins' eyes always cleared up and he kept going.
Larsen outperformed his reputation because he seemed to be winning the fight heading into the third. But then he basically ran forward to attack and met a counterpunch that knocked him out. Fortunately Mario Yamasaki was there to finish Larsen off with a beautiful kick to the back of his head.
* * *
The only thing that makes midgets weighing 125 pounds watchable is that they're supposed to bang, bro. I mean, my fucking 11-year-old is 112 pounds and he's not even pudgy. If you can't lift a 125-pound object off you, then you may as well become Fallon Fox.
Jussier Formiga showed off his "world class" lay and pray last night, hugging Cariaso for the first two rounds. Under the unified rules of this stupid sport, guys who lay on other guys for two rounds is far more important than the round in which the other guy gets his stupid ugly face smashed in.
But although the judging in MMA is stupid and doesn't make sense, Cariaso did himself no favours by allowing a 125-pound man to lie between his legs for the first 10 minutes. I think this is the first Fitching I've ever seen at such a light weight class. As for Cariaso, I don't understand how a dude who was 13-3 can drop a weight class and get worse.
Winner: It's obvious, innit? John Lineker, one fight up.
* * *
Flyweight : John Lineker (A) versus Azamat Gashimov (C)
Prediction: Lineker via UD
Result: Lineker via TKO2
Now this is what the Flyweight division is supposed to be. Fast and furious fights with mad scrambles and punches you can barely see. Lineker, unlike Cariaso, has looked great since dropping 10 pounds and going 2-0 at this weight class. He has some of the best boxing in the division outside of Joseph Benavidez, John Dodson, and Demetrious Johnson.
There's not much you can say about Gashimov except that he managed to survive several knockdowns before Yamasaki finally jumped in. Given the depth of the 125 pool being about as shallow as Dana White's soul, he'll probably stick around for one more fight.
Winner: Jussier Formiga
* * *
This went pretty much exactly as I thought it would. Hollett took Flabby-oh down in the first round, gassing himself out in the process. Flabby worked the body in the second round, taking the spirit out of Roger as well as his wind. Then Flabby worked him over in the third and made him quit. If Maldonado had an ounce of cardio he could have pushed for a finish.
The frustrating thing about Maldonado is that he all the tools to be a good journeyman in the UFC, but he doesn't want to push himself. He has a granite chin, crisp boxing, and an iron will. But he's also slow as fuck and has the urgency of a three-toed sloth. When Hollett was clinching with him, Maldonado looked exasperated and held his arms up in the air like, WTF do I do?
YOU KNOCK HIM OUT, FUCKTARD. You take Roger by the scruff of the neck, turn him against the cage, and beat the unholy piss out of him. You don't stop until his face is a bloody hole and the referee is pulling you off. That's how you stop that situation in particular.
Winner: I feel like Flabby-oh could work hard and get down to 185 pounds where his power and size would be an advantage. But he doesn't seem to want it bad enough. He'd rather get beat up by bigger guys at 205, which is probably shortening both his career and his life. So, barring a drop to 185 where he belongs, I don't know who to recommend. I feel like most guys above Roger Hollett will hurt him badly.
* * *
This fight was a bit quick and difficult to remember. It seems like Santos was out of his depth, like a lot of guys who were thrown to the wolves last night, and didn't last long. I do remember thinking the ref jumped in faster than a mother hearing her baby sneeze. But that's the modern UFC. Two unanswered shots equals stoppage.
It's nice to see "Al Contra" get back into his winning ways after some serious bullshit against Pedro Nobre and being dominated on the ground by Hacran Dias. But although Alcantara has won his last two fights convincingly, he's also beaten up two nobodies. This is a far cry from his KO of Ricardo Lamas way back at WEC 53.
Winner: He could face Takeya Mizugaki, who is a good top 10 gatekeeper.That would be the biggest test as to whether dropping to 135 was a good idea.
* * *
Thiago may have won, but who the fuck did he beat? An upjumped lightweight who arguably handled Thiago all night and landed the bigger and more important shots. Getting into the win column again is nice but having this much trouble against a guy without a Wikipedia page is a big problem.
Prazeres is a strong little bastard and muscled around Thiago for much of the first round. But by the second and third rounds it was clear he wasn't going to be able to take Thiago down and win some points there. In fact, Prazeres is one of those weird muscly Brazilians who fights more like a wrestler than a Jiu-Jitsu guy. Despite having the opportunity to take back control several times he just waited out the position, sometimes getting reversed in the process.
If I'm a decision-maker at Zuffa right now, I'd encourage Prazeres to drop down to his natural weight class and enjoy some success. I'd also encourage Thiago to keep his day job because he's not beating anyone else at 170 pounds.
* * *
Tibau is one of those weird muscly Brazilians who actually has some sick Jits. He showed that last night by choking out John Cholish after rocking him with a big left hand. Tibau is a lot to handle for most guys at 155 because he's freakishly large, freakishly strong and doesn't seem to get tired for a man who cuts down from somewhere north of 185.
I heard Cholish retired from MMA after the fight, which is probably a good idea. This was another mismatch on the card, handing him a gatekeeper like Tibau after dropping a fight to a mediocre fighter like Danny Castillo. Just another win to keep the Brazilian bozos in the crowd happy.
Winner: Where does the gatekeeper sit right now? Hard to say. Perhaps it's less relevant to find out where he ranks and better to keep feeding him guys trying to crack the top 10-15. Guys like Ross Pearson.
* * *
Lightweight : Francisco Trinaldo (A) versus Mike Rio (C-)
Prediction: Trinaldo via TKO1
Result: Trinaldo via SUB1
Souza, please. Trinaldo's submission was the real SOTN, choking out Mike Rio from the half guard ON THE WRONG SIDE. Despite competing at 185 pounds in TUF Brazil, Trinaldo overcame a rocky return to 155 against Gleison Tibau with back-to-back arm-triangle submission wins.
Trinaldo is one of the most dangerous fighters at 155 to come out of Brazil. He's incredibly strong, as demonstrated in his close fight against Tibau, has power on the feet, and quick submissions. There is much to be said about his chances at this weight class. But he does need a better opponent next.
As for Mike Rio, I can't be too hard on the kid. He's beaten nobody of significance in his entire career, losing to Efrain Escudero (who isn't even in the UFC), and barely squeaked by his own TUF graduate John Cofer. If anything, he did better against Trinaldo than I expected.
* * *
If Nik Lentz won, it was by the breadth of a single genital hair. This fight was as close as it gets in MMA. The first round could have gone either way. Personally, I would have called it a 10-10 round. The second round was clearly Lentz, as he layed and prayed his way to advantage. But Dias took it to Lentz in the third and clearly won the round. 29-28 Lentz? 29-28 Dias? Or 29-29?
Either way, you'd have to have serious brain damage to think this loss means anything to Hacran Dias, who remains one of the best prospects at 145. As for Nik Lentz, his smothering style is effective, until he meets somebody who has a better one. Chad Mendes and Clay Guida would be a huge challenge.
Winner: I think I just said it above.
* * *
Don't bring Jiu-Jitsu cardio to an MMA fight. That's basically the takeaway from this fight. It's clear that Zeferino is a powerful grappler, able to toss around Natal like a small child in the first. But after gassing out quickly, Natal took over in the second and third, and handed him a beating that could easily have been stopped late.
Can I just say something for a second? How does Jon Anik and Kenny Florian get "SOPPO" from "Sapao"? Could they butcher the Portuguese language any worse than they did last night? It's like calling the city Paris as "PAIR-ASS" or Moscow as "MOOSE-COW." Sounds moronic.
Anyway, just because Zeferino beat Natal in a grappling match doesn't mean it's going to help him in an MMA match. The Brazilian Samurai might want to get on a treadmill more often.
Winner: I'd enjoy seeing him grind it out against the Filthy One.
* * *
Lightweight : Evan Dunham (B) versus Rafael dos Anjos (B-)
Prediction: RDA via UD
Result: RDA via UD
Was this a robbery? Meh, not really. I sort of thought Dunham won two rounds, but then again I wasn't paying too much attention. It wasn't a great fight, that's for sure. But to quote Dana "Fucking" White: "Never leave it in the hands of the incompetent, retarded, untrained, useless, pea-brained judges."
In situations like this, it's sometimes helpful to use FightMetric, which backs up the fact it was a razor thin match.
If anything, this kind of shows the judges got it right. A first round for RDA, a tossup in the second, and a strong finish for Dunham. It's certainly not Leonard Garcia over here.
Winner: RDA didn't look too hot against a guy who's probably not even close to the top 10. They could throw him against another dude who didn't really win his last fight either, in Diego Sanchez.
* * *
Another mismatch. Not that I think Costa Philippou would have done any better. Ronaldo Souza is arguably one of the top 185ers in the world and fighting Chris Camozzi, an upjumped TUF scrub, wasn't exactly a test.
There are a ton of guys at this weight class who won't be able to get up once they go to the ground with Souza. Only a freakishly strong, like Luke Rockhold, really have a chance. Ironically, you've got to think Souza has done better than Rockhold in entering the UFC. Rockhold just got knocked to the back of the line, while Souza can swoop in after Vitor gets knocked out by Anderson Silva again.
* * *
Middleweight : Vitor Belfort (A+) versus Luke Rockhold (F)
Prediction: Rockhold via DEC
Result: Belfort via TKO1
I don't really know what the fuck Rockgold was doing out there. I guess he was pulling a Michael Bisping. Standing there in fear and awe of Vitor, hoping not to get knocked out. Which is what happened. Rockhold should have been clinching with Vitor from the get-go, and not stopping until he got him down. Jesus fuck, even fat lardass Anthony Johnson did better.
This is a huge fall from grace for Luke Rockhold, who was seen as a legitimate contender at 185. Now, he's been dropped from contention, and his future is in serious doubt. The only good news is that perhaps he'll come back down to earth after talking a lot of bullshit from over in Strikeforce.
As for Belfort, I guess he's fighting Silva again, if the champ doesn't retire first. But this successful resurgence of his career really throws into question the whole ethics of cheating and testosterone. I mean, the reason a 36-year-old doesn't have the testosterone levels of a 22-year-old is because he's not a 22-year-old. Pretty fucking simple, innit?
Winner: I say Vitor's next fight should be with his conscience.