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March MMAdness: Day 18, The Elite Eight!

UFC 248 Adesanya v Romero Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

The weekend is coming to a close and so is March MMAdness, but that doesn’t mean things can’t still heat up.

Day 1 Results | Day 2 Results | Day 3 Results | Day 4 Results | Day 5 Results| Day 6 Results | Day 7 Results | Day 8 Results | Day 9 Results | Day 10 Results | Day 11 Results | Day 12 Results | Day 13 Results | Day 14 Results | Day 15 Results | Day 16 Results
Day 17 Results:

  • Robbie Lawler vs. Rory MacDonald 2 (#1) defeats Robbie Lawler vs. Carlos Condit (#9) with 86 percent of Maniac votes
  • Frankie Edgar vs. Gray Maynard 2 (#5) defeats Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson 1 (#4) with 53 percent of Maniac votes

Yet another crushing victory for Lawler vs. MacDonald 1 and a minor upset for Edgar vs. Maynard 2 sets up half of our Final Four.


Match 3: Forrest Griffin vs. Stephan Bonnar 1 (#2) vs. Zhang Weili vs. Joanna Jedrzejczyk (#10)

VS.

UFC 248 Adesanya v Romero Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Forrest Griffin vs. Stephan Bonnar lived up to its lofty expectations with a 200-vote victory over No. 63-seeded Junior dos Santos vs. Stipe Miocic 1, then turned aside a strong challenge from another absolute slugfest in No. 31-ranked Dustin Poirier vs. Justin Gaethje. Even one of the greatest Middleweight title fights of all time couldn’t stop its roll as No. 15 Robert Whittaker vs. Yoel Romero 2 fell in the Sweet 16.

Meanwhile, a 154-vote margin carried Zhang Weili vs. Joanna Jedrzejczyk past No. 55-ranked Georges St-Pierre vs. B.J. Penn 1 in the opening round, setting up another triple-digit win against No. 23-seeded Matt Hughes vs. Frank Trigg 2 its next time out. A titanic effort from the titanic No. 7’s Mark Hunt vs. Bigfoot Silva 1 got to within 25 votes, but still failed to halt WMMA’s sole bracket representative.

Grit, reckless abandon, the power of nostalgia, and an inextricable place in UFC history on one side. Technique, competitiveness, gruesome facial deformation (see it), and recency on the other. Both are one-of-a-kind slugfests with their own unique charms, but one of ‘em has to go.

Poll

Who wins Match 3?

This poll is closed

  • 54%
    Forrest Griffin vs. Stephan Bonnar
    (152 votes)
  • 45%
    Zhang Weili vs. Joanna Jedrzejczyk
    (127 votes)
279 votes total Vote Now

Match 4: Dan Henderson vs. Shogun Rua 1 (#3) vs. Leonard Garcia vs. Chan Sung Jung 1 (#27)

VS.

While No. 1-seeded Robbie Lawler vs. Rory MacDonald 2 has been the patron saint of one-sided maulings this tournament, Shogun Rua vs. Dan Henderson 1 was similarly untouchable in its wins over No. 62’s Tony Ferguson vs. Lando Vannata and No. 30-ranked Wanderlei Silva vs. Brian Stann, locking up more than 80 percent of the vote each time. Then, No. 19-ranked Eddie Alvarez vs. Justin Gaethje only managed to drag that down to 66 percent, shipping the No. 3 seed into the Elite Eight with a head of steam.

Comfortably beating No. 38-ranked Tony Ferguson vs. Edson Barboza pitted Leonard Garcia vs. Chan Sung Jung 1 against the greatest title fight comeback in MMA history, No. 6-ranked Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen 1. World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) trumped Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) with a 56 percent /44 percent nail-biter, then did the same to end No. 43-seeded Cheick Kongo vs. Pat Barry’s underdog run and become the sole seed ranked less than 10 to reach the Elite Eight.

Reckless disregard for personal well-being gave us two genuinely incredible brawls. Between the momentum swings, near-finishes, and Shogun’s late heroics make the No. 3 seed a mighty tough opponent, but unwavering persistence in the face of overwhelming punishment is Leonard Garcia’s and Chan Sung Jung’s calling card. Let’s see if they can make it work again.

Poll

Who wins Match 4?

This poll is closed

  • 78%
    Dan Henderson vs. Shogun Rua 1
    (211 votes)
  • 21%
    Leonard Garcia vs. Chan Sung Jung 1
    (58 votes)
269 votes total Vote Now

Also, to reiterate, spread the word, share socially ... do whatever grassroots / viral “Get Out The Vote” campaign needed to ensure your favorite fights advance to the next round. Complaining in the comments section about seeding and whatnot will not impact the results and will just make you look like an unappreciative dick.

Same time tomorrow, Maniacs.

Be sure to also check out our March MMAdness archive — which includes the entire bracket — to catch up on the tournament right here.