The Aftermath – UFC 137 And UFC 138

I know I’m late to the game in getting these up, but I wanted to share the feedback from the past two UFC events before UFC 139.

Here’s what the FGB crew thought about UFC 137:

Thumbs In The Middle
Best Fight: BJ Penn vs. Nick Diaz
Worst Fight: Cheick Kongo vs. Matt Mitrione

The only thing that kept this show’s head above water was a spectacular main event, but what a main event it was. For two and a half hour’s we got a mixture of the average and the dull, but by the end of Diaz/Penn that was all forgotten about. Their three round war more than redeemed any undercard shortcomings.

There is now at least one welterweight title fight out there worth watching and that’s a major bonus moving forward. Diaz perhaps has the skill set required to ask some fresh questions of St. Pierre. This is the bout the division has been craving.

If this is to be the final farewell for both Penn or Crocop (and I think it should be), they can each leave with their head held high – huge efforts turned in by both guys on their last night even in defeat.

Penn is still certainly capable of competing in either of the divisions he once reigned, but I don’t see him being the type to just make up the numbers. Having been usurped by Edgar at 155 and now falling short of the 170 elite; he will likely see this as the right time for him to move on to other pursuits.

For Crocop, it’s more a case of diminishing options. At this point (should he carry on), he would be reduced to fighting at a prelim level and he’s getting paid way too much for that to make financial sense. He gave as good an account of himself as anyone could have realistically hoped for against Nelson, but Mirko has been a spent force for a long time. The truth is the real Crocop never once showed up in UFC – not even a glimpse – he perished with PRIDE in 07.

Thumbs In The Middle
Best Fight: BJ Penn vs. Nick Diaz
Worst Fight: Cheick Kongo vs. Matt Mitrione

Pretty much echo Duan on everything. Main event saved an otherwise lackluster show. Disappointed Hioki didn’t deliver a better performance, but I’ll give him time to adjust.

Diaz/GSP is a mouth-watering prospect. Nick is so damn crazy though, I wouldn’t be surprised if he self-destructed leasing up to that.

And here’s what we thought about UFC 138:

Thumbs Leaning Up
Best Fight: Chris Leben vs. Mark Munoz
Worst Fight: Anthony Perosh vs. Cyril Diabaté

A really fast paced show, nothing drawn out or dull, and every bout a decent one. The lack of star power and marquee matches really hurt this card because based on action alone, it was one of the better UFC events in recent memory. It’s just that when a show lacks an obvious draw, it requires something that bit special to really resonate, and it didn’t quite have that.

The welterweight division is crying out for some new faces and Che Mills is definitely a welcome addition. The manner in which he tore Cope to shreds made him an instant threat to every other 170 pounder. It was great to see Terry Etim back to his best after a very difficult year. Anthony Perosh may have a future at light heavyweight, while Renan Barao is capable of causing some problems at bantam.

Leben brought his usual tenacity and bulldog courage, but I couldn’t help but feel he was his own worst enemy in this one. Much like Alfredo Angulo on HBO a few hours later, Leben emptied the tank in round one swinging full-blooded shots to dead air. All Munoz had to do was wait for his opening after that because it was always going to come.

There’s no reason to sugarcoat it; this is not a show anybody will remember. There was nothing of enough relevance to make you go back and watch it if you missed out first time around. But for those who did catch it on Saturday night, well…They got a pretty fun three hours worth of fighting.

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