I went to UFC 174 in Vancouver last night, because as most people know I live in the communist Republic of Canuckistan. Tickets were $114 to sit in the nosebleeds and all I can say after watching live is that now I know how the first person who bought a VCR for $5,000 felt. Whoopde-fucking-do.
I'm not going to shit on the live experience too much because I know I'm going to sound like a whiner, but a quick recap:
overpriced shitty food and drinks: check
loudmouthed drunken martards screaming beside your ear: check
music drowning out any chance of post-fight commentary with buddies: check
juice monkeys spilling beer and other shit in your general direction: check
washroom lineups lasting longer than the fights: check
seats so far away you're watching the fight on the jumbotron anyway: check
Oh and my favourite was the guy who was told by security that he couldn't vape in the building, who replied casually, "oh, sorry, I didn't know."
As for the fight card, I think we all agree it ranks as one of the worst in UFC history. There was, however, a girl six rows ahead of me who was twerking (yes, literally) to the music the entire fight. She basically turned on the entire male section of 121, rows 16 and up, bouncing her booty like she was in a fucking nightclub and had just dropped several "Es." It was the only thing keeping everybody awake through four decisions in the main card.
As for the fight card, I shit picked in epic fashion. Epic. I think I got three correct and two of those were split decisions.
The group of people I went to UFC 174 with had a girl and she was late (as girls always are) so we missed the first fight and almost all of the second fight. I caught the third round of Japanese fighter Michinori Tanaka making his North American debut vs veteran Roland Delorme and it looked fairly entertaining. I turned to ask a juice monkey who was winning the fight and he said, "the Chinese guy." This is the kind of shit we're dealing with here, folks.
I know the photos suck by the way. Like I said, I was a mile away from the actual fights.
This was easily fight of the night for me. Johnson came out to huge applause from the home crowd carrying a Mohawk First Nation flag and the deafening roar didn't stop the entire fight. Johnson looked good on the feet in the first but got dropped late. He recovered and won the round but I predicted that chin would get touched again before the fight ended.
It was a back and forth war but you could see the Korean fighter was just a bit tougher and Johnson began to fade a bit. I wasn't really sure who was ahead on the score cards by the third round, but the two met somewhere near the middle of the cage and suddenly Johnson fell down like he'd been shot. The sounds and gasps were much cooler to hear live.
It was nice not to have to listen to Joe Rogan for once, but if I could paraphrase the pothead for a second, "this is the best we've ever seen Jabouin, Mike." He looked amazing out there, dancing and landing combinations, lighting up Mike Easton and then jumping away again while the musclehead hit air.
What nobody expected, I think, was to see Easton dominated on the ground. I know Easton has been heavily overrated in the UFC since making his debut, but it's not fair to take away what a great performance Jabouin put on. After the fight the guy behind me expressed his disappointment that no Canadians have won on the card yet. Sigh.
The next fight was the chick fight and although I'm not going to grade it, I can say it was way more entertaining than the main card. The Canadian was robbed in her split decision because she pretty thoroughly dominated the fight after a rocky first round. But, judges gon' judge. Diego Sanchez, right?
How the mighty TUF scrubs from Brazil have fallen. First it was Cezar Ferreira getting exposed in seconds by Fart Face, and now Daniel Sarafian gets choked out before most of the meatheads were back from their beer runs. Sarafian looked ok, if a little smallish, in the early going, landing a nice one-two combination that seemed to wake the Japanese fighter up.
It worked. Kunimoto took the fight to the ground where Sarafian unwisely gave his back up almost immediately and the Japanese fighter locked in the RNC. Somebody next to me called him a "fucking moron" and for once I agreed with the meathead.
I went down to the throng to get some photos of the first walk-in for the main card. It was a crush of fans and hard to get a good look, but the sound was insane for Ryan Jimmo. The meatheads began chanting "Jim-mo! Jim-mo! Jim-mo" and didn't let up until the brutal finish.
Nobody quite knew what happened to Jimmo when the fight was stopped, until the instant replay showed the shoulder dislocating kimura. Nice work by OSP, who proved he's more than just a decisionator.
I gave the TUF scrub all three rounds. Not sure what fight the judges were watching. Maybe they fell asleep like I almost did. Both guys did the shadow boxing for most of the fight, except when Schaub took Arlovski down and rained some ground and pound.
This was the first of several fights where I turned to my buddy and said, "what the fuck is [Fighter X] doing?" Arlovski showed no sense of urgency, no aggression, no game plan. Not sure what he thought he did to win the fight. I think he clipped Schaub once, but one punch doesn't win a fight. This reminded me of why I thanked Jebus above when Arlovski was cut in 2008. The guy is a fucking snooze.
Anyone know what the fuck Cavalcante was doing out there? Anyone at all? The man was literally standing still waiting for Bader to shoot on him. He had zero aggression most of the fight, initiated no punches, no combinations, and attempted nothing that would surprise Bader in any way, shape, or form. The crowd lustily booed this fight.
Cavalcante woke up in the third, knocked Bader around, had him in some trouble, but then Bader Bader'd his way to the ground where he unleashed what looked to be the sissiest fucking ground and pound the world has ever witnessed. And somehow the judges gave Bader that third round for his slap and tickle. What a retching joke.
I may have been in the nose bleeds but "dat ass" was visible from space. Pretty sure that bald fuck Dana is to the right of her (click on the enlarged photo).
Whoever showed up in Woodley's skin last night was not the dude we saw against Carlos Condit. What the fuck was he doing out there? Anyone? Buehler? Rory MacDonald seems to have this spell he casts over other fighters with huge punching power to stand against the fence and get lit up.
I'm not sure what's worse, the fact Woodley stood there the entire fight, literally fucking stood there and did nothing, or the fact Rory Mac still couldn't finish a fight. We got rid of one GSP, now we have another. The crowd went insane for Rory like he was the second coming of Muhammad Ali, but in reality he stunk up the joint. The fight was numbingly boring and frustrating. I think Woodley attempted one flurry early in the third, gassed immediately, and returned to getting beat up on the fence.
I have a video for a fanboyism and man love Vancouverites showed Rory during the walk-in:
Another fairly dull affair. Nobody wants to see wall and stall at 125 pounds. Not sure what the gameplan was for Russia in this one, other than to press against the cage and get kneed in the face. A few people around me were debating whether Bagautinov won three rounds, which further reinforced my contempt for their MMA knowledge. A cakewalk 50-45 for Johnson.
Frankly, Vancouver got fucking screwed. Shit fights. If you're going to have Rory MacDonald on a card better make sure you also have a Matt Brown or somebody who knows how to finish.
Anyway, my distaste for the fights might also have had to do with my 3 for 11 shitpicking. Not sure. I do know I'll never go to a live event again unless I can actually see the pimples on the asses of the ring girls.