UFC 173 is a bit of a slept on show. With all marketing building toward the huge UFC 175, the next two main PPV shows as well as the other shows before July aren’t going to receive the lion’s share of the build-up. And while UFC 173 doesn’t look like a barn burner on paper, it does feature a top 3 pound-for-pound fighter, an up and coming light heavyweight on a rampage, an all-time great, and a really solid welterweight matchup.
We posted our preview yesterday in case you missed it.
Follow along our UFC 173 live coverage.
Alex Goff, contributor and friend of the website will add his commentary from time to time.
1. James Krause Vs Jamie Varner
At some point Varner’s knee buckled and he fought the entire round on one leg. It was hard to watch and Varner has Vince McMahon sized grapefruits. Krause used his length and also leg kicks to cripple Varner. Varner knew it would be stopped after the first round so he tried to swing for the fences and did land a few. Thankfully, it was stopped by the doctor.
Goff was calling for the stoppage after Varner’s knee went out the first time. He said it was criminal for the referee to let Varner continue on one leg.
Winner: James Krause by way of 1st round TKO
Sounds like it wasn’t a knee, but instead a broken ankle.
2. Francisco Rivera VS Takeya Mizugaki
This was a great first round. They came out swinging and Rivera blinked first. Mizugaki caught him with a right hand that wobbled him and they went to the ground, which gave Rivera time to catch his breath. Rivera took him down twice so he’s still game.
The second round was interesting to score. Rivera owned a good part it on the ground, but Mizugaki worked a rear naked choke at the end. I’d give it to Rivera myself.
Mizugaki knocked him down again and that will win him the round. He was on top of him but they were stood up. They went toe-to-toe to end the round. It was a really fun fight. I have Mizugaki winning.
Winner: Takeya Mizugaki by way of unanimous decision
The scores were 29-28, 30-27, and 30-27.
3. Jake Ellenberger Vs Robbie Lawler
Lawler is using his head kick in addition to his boxing. He landed two of them early. Ellenberger was able to go to the body. Lawler’s round.
Lawler’s making Ellenberger pay with knees when he gets close to try takedowns. Ellenberger got his first takedown, but Lawler reversed it. Ellenberger took him down again, but he was quickly up. Lawler’s punches mean more than Ellenberger’s takedowns. Goff thinks the story of the fight is the large difference in punches landed by Lawler.
Ellenberger went toe-to-toe to start the round and was actually doing well until he got tired. And then Lawler took over. He was using his jab effectively and seemingly setting up some big shots. He landed a jab that Ellenberger didn’t like at all and Lawler followed up with a knee. It was soon stopped.
Winner: Robbie Lawler by way of 3rd round TKO
Goff thinks Cormier vs Henderson is going to be downright criminal.
4. Dan Henderson Vs Daniel Cormier
Cormier gave Henderson a Rock Bottom when Henderson tried to wrestle. Lots of grappling in the round and Cormier was dominant. Easy round for him.
Fight went to the ground quickly and Cornier made Henderson look like an old man. Henderson got up when the round ended and was dejected.
Cormier landed a couple right hands that Henderson was slow to react to. And then he shot in and threw him down like a backdrop. Henderson got up and Cormier grabbed him from his shoulders and pulled him down again. Cormier got Henderson’s back and Henderson rolled over on his stomach. The referee had to stop it as Henderson didn’t tap, but he was out.
Winner: Daniel Cormier by way of 3rd round submission
Cormier called out Jon Jones.
5. TJ Dillashaw Vs Renan Barao
TJ Dillashaw just took a 10-8 round from Renan Barao. He did his best Dominick Cruz impersonation with a herky jerky style where punches were coming at different angles. That set up a huge right hand which nearly put Barao out. Barao instinctively went for submissions on the ground, but I’m not sure he knew where he was.
Dillashaw’s first round was no joke. He continues to torment Barao with the unconventional Cruz-like style. Barao landed some nice shots, but Dillashaw kept moving forward and landed two huge lead rights.
If you gave TJ the first 10-8, Barao would have to win the last three rounds for a draw. Welp, TJ is now up four points on my card with two rounds left. He’s fought an amazing fight so far and he nearly had him out again. Barao are some nasty right hands.
Dillashaw is beating the will out of Barao. I’m not sure how Barao is able to take all the punches he’s been. Dillashaw has been masterful, leading and winning every exchange.
And he did it. It started with a head kick and then he landed a left and right that put Barao down. He followed him to the ground and stopped him.
Winner: TJ Dillashaw by way of 5th round TKO