The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) held an event for the first time this year for as UFC on FOX 6: ‘Johnson vs. Dodson' went down last night (Jan. 26, 2013) in "The Windy City."
Seven of the 11 bouts on the card ended inside the distance while the co-main and main event ended with the judges deciding the winners.
Demetrious Johnson held his place at the top the flyweight division in the main event of the evening, outpointing John Dodson en route to a unanimous decision victory for his first 125-pound title defense.
In a sport like mixed martial arts (MMA), each bout can only have one winner and one loser. Earning a victory inside the world-famous Octagon is the highest of highs while suffering a defeat in front of millions of viewers can be the lowest of lows.
Every competitor who steps foot in the cage is looking for that moment of glory. Some capture it, others don't.
There were several shining stars on the UFC on FOX 6 fight card as well as an equal amount of disappointments. With that said, it's time to name the biggest winner and biggest loser from the event in Chicago.
The biggest winner of the night was Demetrious Johnson. "Mighty Mouse" defended his UFC flyweight championship for the first time against John Dodson in inspirational fashion, coming back from a first and second round where he was dropped a total of three times to win a unanimous decision. It appeared the champion was going to eventually succumb to Dodson's power, but as the fight entered deep waters Johnson began to take over while "The Magician" faded. Most, including this writer, has the fight even going into the fifth round, and fortunately for Johnson, it was the most decisive frame of the contest as he nearly finished his opponent with a relentless attack from the clinch. Johnson is looking more and more like he will be the longtime king of the flyweight division and after his comeback win at UFC on FOX 6 proved he not only has the skills to be champion, but the heart as well.
Glover Teixeira cemented his status as a top-10 light heavyweight with a one-sided decision victory over former UFC light heavyweight champion Quinton Jackson in the co-main event of UFC on FOX 6. The fight was an all-out battle for 15-straight minutes with action in nearly every area imaginable. Teixeira's brilliant striking offense and defense paired with his superb timing on takedown attempts was the difference maker, as he handed "Rampage" a loss in the final fight of his UFC contract. Jackson had his opportunities to score on the feet, but he could never land the big shot to put Teixeira on his heels. With 18 consecutive wins under his belt, look for Teixeira to get another big name in his next fight after the biggest win of his career.
Anthony Pettis made quick work of Donald Cerrone in their lightweight contenders bout, finishing "Cowboy" with a brutal kick to the body that would have made Bas Rutten proud at the 2:35 mark of the opening round while at the same time becoming the first man to ever finish Cerrone with strikes. "Showtime" had his way with Cerrone from the opening bell, throwing the kitchen sink and more at his opponent, even landing the first-ever "Showtime Knee." Considering the body of work Cerrone has put in over the course of his UFC career, the win was by far Pettis' best since joining the UFC and he made it crystal clear that he should be the one to challenge the winner of UFC on FOX 7's lightweight title bout between Benson Henderson and Gilbert Melendez.
In the opening fight of the main card, Ricardo Lamas announced himself as a featherweight contender when he knocked out highly touted prospect Erik Koch in the first round. Lamas pushed his current win-streak to four straight, including wins of Cub Swanson, Hatsu Hioki and Koch. Considering "New Breed" was slated to fight 145-pound champion Jose Aldo on two separate occasions in 2012, it's hard to argue Lamas doesn't deserve a title shot, or at the very least a No. 1 contenders bout after his performance at UFC on FOX 6.
Clay Guida's effort may not have been the most aesthetically pleasing of the evening, but "The Carpenter" got the job done in his featherweight debut against an extremely respectable opponent in Hatsu Hioki. The win may have come in somewhat controversial fashion, but after losing two-straight fights, getting his hand raised was most important for Guida and at the end of the day that's what he accomplished.
Ryan Bader gets a place on the winners list for his 50-second submission win over Vladimir Matyushenko. The win was marquee for Bader on a number of levels. He became the first man to submit Matyushenko, earned the quickest submission win in UFC light heavyweight history and most importantly of all, got back in the winner's circle after an embarrassing knockout loss to Lyoto Machida last August. With 11 UFC fights under now his belt, Bader needs to work on stringing together a number of wins in order to elevate his place in a crowded 205-pound division.
The biggest loser of the night was Quinton Jackson. The former UFC light heavyweight must be applauded for his gutsy effort against Glover Teixeira, but at the end of the day he came out on the losing end, and in the final fight of his current UFC contract, that's not a good thing. "Rampage" has made is very clear he is done with the UFC, and regardless of if he comes back to the organization or not, the fact he has lost three consecutive bouts drops his value significant. To give him credit, there were a number of times where Teixeira had Jackson in some bad spots, but the Tennessee native never quit, always finding a way back to the standing position and giving his all to try and finish the fight. "Rampage" has a great tenure with the UFC, and it's unfortunate he had to go out on a low note.
John Dodson, despite nearly capturing the flyweight title from Demetrious Johnson, was one of the biggest losers from UFC on FOX 6. "The Magician" was up on the scorecards after two rounds due to dropping Johnson three times in the first 10 minutes. Johnson's mistake, though, was not following up and giving "Mighty Mouse" too much time to recover from the big shots. Dodson gave Johnson so much time to recover that he let the champion get into his groove, set the tone of the fight and eventually win the last three rounds for the decision victory. Dodson is still young and will learn from his mistakes, but you can guarantee he will be kicking himself for some time for not putting more effort into securing the finish.
Donald Cerrone was beat down by Anthony Pettis in their lightweight encounter, which puts him on the losers list. "Cowboy" repeatedly asked for a fight with Pettis and talked a lot of trash coming in. For him to offer essentially nothing in the cage when fight time finally came was a bit of a disappointment.
Mike Russow falls into the loser category for failing to deliver in front of his home town crowd when a victory against Shawn Jordan was in his grasps. Russow dominated and nearly finished Jordan in the first round of their heavyweight affair, but completely gassed himself out doing so which allowed Jordan to come back in the second frame and finish the fight. Beyond losing in somewhat humiliating fashion in his home city, Russow has now lost two fights in a row for the first time in his career.
Who was your biggest winner and loser from UFC on FOX 6? Let us know in the comments in the comment section below.