We’ll have live play by play of UFC 102. I’ll refresh the site after every round.
Though we don’t have a ton of votes in our poll, Randy Couture was the heavy favorite. Not too many people are giving Big Nog a shot.
It looks like we’re opening up with Brandon Vera vs. Krzysztof Soszynski. I hope Vera doesn’t wear those short tight shorts.
1. Brandon Vera vs. Krzysztof Soszynski
Vera’s shorts are short, but he’s not smuggling bananas thankfully.
Soszynski came out early and aggressive until Vera hit him with a body kick. Vera kept him at bay for the rest of the round, with the exception of when they clinched, but Soszynski wasn’t able to stay inside. Vera wins the round with some pinpoint kicks.
Vera controlled the second round too. Soszynski is trying to push Vera but Vera’s being very careful, and whenever Soszynski tries to get in close, Vera’s slippery. Boring fight, but it’s at Vera’s pace and his pace is slow and methodical these days.
Vera picked it up just a little bit and it was his most impressive round. He took Soszynski down and pounded on him a bit. Good performance by Vera in a very methodical kind of way.
UFC 96 didn’t seem like a strong card on paper, but it pretty much delivered. If you ordered this show with precaution, I think you were ok with your purchase.
The FGB brethren, plus Stevie J from Angry Marks, gave their opinions on the card as a whole.
Show overall rating: Thumbs Up
Best Fight: Rampage Jackson vs. Keith Jardine
Worst Fight: Brandon Vera vs. Mike Patt
This was a fun, if scary, UFC show. There were a load of horrific knockouts and one controversial late stoppage that showed the “controlled frenzy” that is mixed martial arts. I stand by my prediction that somebody will die during an MMA fight sometime in 2009. I know it’s not a good thing, but there has been a recent increase since late last year of terrifying knockouts, coupled with relatively bad refereeing, topped off by the bigger, stronger, and more athletic MMA fighters compared to ten years ago, and its really made me worried about the lives of some of these guys. That said, the knockouts were tremendous! Rampage looked kind of bland against Jardine, but he himself said he got overtrained, and if he takes the May fight with Evans, I predict he will be destroyed.
Still – the stare down at the end was completely out of something that would happen in high school. When I was a kid I saw hordes of those types of shit-talking staredowns but the majority of the time, the guys couldn’t back it. Rampage and Rashad can. Black on Black crime baby!
I wasn’t able to see this show live so this is delayed play by play.
1. Gray Maynard vs. Jim Miller
Miller was trying for the takedown and in doing so took some uppercuts which bloodied his nose. Miller is landing with some leg kicks, but Maynard is getting the better of the battle with the hands.
Miller was doing a better job early in the round, but Maynard was busting him up later in the round. Miller’s face looks bad with a cut over his left eye.
Even though the crowd is a bit restless, this is a pretty good fight. Maynard’s hands look really good, though I don’t like how he keeps himself open after throwing his right hand. He’s got good movement, but he doesn’t cover up quickly enough after throwing his right. A good counter puncher is going to catch him. Maynard took Miller down and Miller tried a submission, but Maynard slipped out of it. Being that he was down, you would’ve thought Miller would be more aggressive, but I just think he didn’t want to be hit anymore.
Winner: Gray Maynard by way of unanimous decision
2. Matt Hamill vs. Mark Munoz
Munoz didn’t seem very comfortable with Hamill’s reach and just looked off balanced on his feet. He’d switch from righty to lefty and instead of trying to block Hamill’s punches, he’d try to duck out of them and get hit. Later in the first, Hamill threw a high kick and Munoz ducked right into it. He was knocked out from the kick, but on his way to falling down, his head hit his knee. Then Hamill got three more punches in. Munoz was unconscious.
Winner: Matt Hammil by way of 1st round TKO
Frank Mir says that he wants to push the Lesnar fight to July 11th because of a knee injury. That’s fine and Dandy if I didn’t just buy a ticket to UFC 98. It looks like Rashad Evans vs. either Rampage or Lyoto Machida will replace that fight. Let’s just say that it’s not a great trade-off. Continue reading
Welcome to Columbus, Ohio and the UFC 96 weigh-ins! We kick things off with one last commercial for Rampage v. Jardine and Carwin v. Gonzaga this Saturday night. Mike Goldberg welcomes everybody to the Nationwide Arena but if history has taught me anything it’s that as often as not these things are not where Goldberg SAYS they air – the weigh-ins seem to take place somewhere other than the actual fight venue in a lot of cases. Rogan is “fucking” excited as the weigh-ins get underway.
* Shane Nelson v. Aaron Riley
Nelson is first up to the scale with a 12-3 fight record. Nelson weighs in at 155 even. Riley’s on his way up now. Riley weighs in at 155 too. Quick handshake and posedown between the two men as Rogan reminds us this is the first fight of the night.
I think there are definitely some really strong matches on UFC 96. However, from a big match standpoint, there are two matches that stand out from the pack and have definite bearings on title fights down the line. The first is obviously the main event. Rampage needs a win to get a title shot and Jardine can get back into title contention with an upset special. The second is a fight that will send one guy shooting up the heavyweight rankings. Shane Carwin can prove that he’s for real with a victory over the dangerous Gabriel Gonzaga. Or Gonzaga can get back to where he was before losing to Randy Couture.