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Friday Night Throwdown: UFC 83: 'Serra vs. St. Pierre 2' winners and losers and other notes

firday night throwdown
Welcome to the debut of the "Friday Night Throwdown" here on

Every Friday night here on, I’ll wrap up the major weekly MMA news and attempt to digest it all. The Throwdown will also include featured columns, fighter interviews and fight previews of all of the big events in the coming months.

In addition, the Throwdown will have a mailbag edition where I’ll be taking questions from you guys on the last Friday of each month.

Whoot! Now I think I can get on with the debut column!

UFC 83 winners and losers

There have been mixed reviews throughout the MMA world and forums about UFC 83. It was a solid show from top to bottom in my opinion. I would’ve given the show a A-; however, one Kalib Starnes brought it down to a B+.

More on him later.

"Ken Flo" did a good job commentating in the absence of everyone’s favorite commentator, Joe Rogan. He's certainly no Rogan, but his expertise in the fights were spot on and it’s good to hear educated assessments while watching the fights.

Take note, Bill Goldberg.

All I can ask from the UFC is to please stop showing all these damn commercials of the next PPV and upcoming events … GIVE US MORE FIGHTS!

I'd prefer to watch the Damian Maia devastate Ed Herman than another promo for UFC 84. Some of us paid $54.95 to watch the PPV (in HD) and I think we deserve to watch preliminary fights to fill up the time while fighters on the main card get set to enter the Octagon.

The last time they did that was at UFC 80 and man was that one of the best cards of the year. It was worth 55 bucks. Come on Dana, that UFC "On Demand" service is a joke and a couple of my buddies complained of technical difficulties.

Whatever. Now to the losers of UFC 83.


Travis Lutter: Cripes, his cardio is worse than the gas prices at the pump. He couldn’t make weight in the biggest fight of his career and gassed after one round with Rich Franklin. Everyone thought heading into the fight with "Ace" that Lutter would be in great shape and could give Rich trouble. Well turns out everyone was right, but that was until the end of round one. After that he went from having Franklin in an armbar in the first round to not even able to keep his hands up in the second. Back to the preliminaries is where Lutter goes from here.

Matt Serra: Let’s give Serra credit for showing the heart of champion that night. He took a fight with GSP in his hometown of Montreal and showed no fear. But I couldn’t help myself from saying that the first time was a fluke while GSP was delivering devastating knees to the body at the end of the second round. The good news for Serra in all of this is that there is the potential of finally seeing Serra fight Hughes later in the year. One must not forget as well that there could a future in moving down to 155 if he desires. He would have the resume of being a former champion in a higher weight class and could give guys like Penn and Florian some trouble. Serra could be a big lightweight and his overall MMA game has evolved since moving up to 170.

Kalib Starnes: Man, what hasn’t been said already this past week about Kalib Starnes in his fight against Nate Quarry. It’s one thing to run away from a guy like Quarry for three rounds, it’s another thing to do it in your home country. I picked Starnes in our fight predictions to defeat Quarry by the accounts of having better all around skills. I should’ve known better by Starnes’ character as a fighter alone. The perfect example of this was his fight against Kendall Grove during the third season of the Ultimate Fighter -- he literally quit in the middle of the fight with bruised ribs. You just don’t do that, and a bigger man would let the round come to an end then throw in the towel or get pounded vis a vis BJ Penn. Granted, bruised ribs are no joke, but when you’re competing for a UFC contract, you got to leave everything in the Octagon. I’ll give Quarry credit for entertaining everyone but for fans like me who paid a hefty sum to watch fighters give their all, I never want to see him on my TV again.


Rich Franklin: I was tempted to put Rich Franklin on the list of the losers at UFC 83. Why you ask? Because it’s one thing to get a win to get back on track, but it's another thing when the division you are in has a champion who has destroyed you twice in convincing fashion. The bottom line is that even though Franklin is a top five 185 pounder he is limited as long as Anderson Silva is still the champ. Rich is going nowhere near the Spider. The next logical matchup for Franklin is possibly a high profile showdown with one Dan Henderson.

Michael Bisping: This fight was almost a given for Bisping but he did what he was supposed to do in defeating Charles McCarthy. In a division that isn’t as deep as the light heavyweight division, the 185-pound class is the perfect division in which Bisping can excel. He’s not ready for the Dan Henderson or Anderson Silvas of the world, but a couple of solid wins could get him in line for a title shot in a year or two. He'll fight Chris Leben at UFC 85, which revealed first, and it’s going to be a slugfest from beginning to end.

Georges St-Pierre: Of course, GSP was the biggest winner of UFC 83 in the way he thoroughly dominated Serra from the opening bell. This was the GSP we all thought would destroy Serra in the first fight 12 months ago. The GSP that ripped through the welterweight division en route to his first welterweight title. It’s a scary thought for anyone at 170 who thinks that GSP is a mental midget. Remember this though: it’s one thing to be champion and it’s sure as hell harder to stay champion. Everyone thought that GSP would rule the welterweight division for years to come until Serra came along. I think this second go around for GSP will go much more smoothly. Next up for GSP is obviously Jon Fitch, the man who’s as hot as anyone in the UFC right now. It’s a tough fight but a fight GSP should win … key word is "should."

Other MMA news and notes of the week

Chuck Liddell out, James Irvin in at UFC 85 to face Rashad Evans: With a torn hamstring suffered during training, the "Iceman" was forced to pull out of his fight with Rashad "Boogie Nights" Evans at UFC 85.

Irvin is penciled in to fight Evans after his eight second knockout over Houston Alexander at the last UFC Fight Night. It’s a solid matchup but not quite the fight Rashad needs right now. Rashad blew his chance to enter the upper echelon of the light heavyweight division by going to a draw with Tito Ortiz at UFC 73. A win over Liddell would have boosted his stock in the division overnight and put him, more than likely, next in line for a title shot.

Irvin is no pushover of course, but the fact remains that he’s a gatekeeper in this division. I have been telling people for years now that a move to middleweight would benefit Irvin. If he continues to fight in this division, he’s only going to be a gatekeeper where he could be a contender if he moved to 185. In the end, Evans will dance around Irvin until he takes him down and pounds out the decision win.

If there is any winner in all of this, it’s Liddell in the end. Why? Because if it can be fully healed by say September; there’s a guy name Shogun who could be healthy by then as well. The original main event of UFC 85 was to be Liddell-Rua, but now there’s a good chance it could take place in the fall. Liddell benefits from this greatly because if were to get by Rua in September and Rampage defeats Griffin in July, you can put money in the bank that we’ll see Rampage-Liddell III in December.

But then again … shouldn’t Keith Jardine be the next man to fight for the title if he gets by Wanderlei Silva?

WEC 34 is loaded: If you’re not a fan of the WEC yet, be sure to watch the next WEC card on June 1. It’s the biggest card in the young promotion’s history. Besides the main event of Jens Pulver and Urijah Faber, you have the debut of ‘Pequeno’ Noguiera to the return of Jeff Curran and Rob McCullough. Oh yeah, and the one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the sport, Miguel Torres, will also be in action. This card is star-studded and will answer a lot of questions for guys like Faber and McCullough.

Bad DREAMS: Sucks to be a fighter in the DREAM promotion after news that the promotion no longer has a television deal in Japan. This hurts because the closest thing to PRIDE was DREAM and they couldn’t even survive one event in terms of viewers. The biggest rating during the whole telecast was when Mirko Cro Cop fought and after that the ratings plummeted from there. The organization in Japan that benefits from this is World Victory Road, who have former PRIDE stars Josh Barnett and Takanori Gomi.

The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) looks the same: This season of TUF is really no different from past seasons once the whole win or go home portion of the show ended. The only thing that keeps me watching is Rampage and what he says. It’s a damn shame that the UFC has failed to market him after he defeated Liddell. Sure, he’s being marketed now with the show, but it’s been a long time coming. With aging stars like Liddell, Ortiz and even Couture, the UFC needs to showcase the future in guys like Rampage and GSP.

Wrap Up

That’s all I got this week in the debut column of the Throwdown.

If you have any questions that needs to be answered, don’t be afraid to e-mail me at Your comments would be greatly appreciated and I want to hear from you guys soon!

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