What were the top stories last week?
This has a chance to be a sleeper fight night card. With so much UFC on TV today, unless you’re the hardest of hardcores, a lot of these shows blend together. But this show that’s exclusively shown on Fight Pass has a chance to stand out a bit from UFC’s B and C shows.
Follow along our Gustafsson Vs. Manuwa play by play. Continue reading
This is the UFC’s first show on the new Fox Sports 1 network. It’s a very important show for them as this show sets the tone for how many people are going to watch programming, countdown shows and the like.
The intro is new as Ving Rhames narrated a slide show piece. It’s UFC Fight Night time.
1. Michael Johnson vs. Joe Lauzon
Excellent round by Johnson. Early, he was just peppering Lauzon, but he starting putting some heat behind them and put Lauzon down more than once. Lauzon is sitting right in the pocket, looking for takedown and getting hammered. Johnson is so focused, the referee warned him for not listening and nearly pushing him off to get at Lauzon.
Lauzon’s standup was much better in the round, but he still ended up taking the worst of the fight standing. Johnson’s power looks to come when he loads up and not necessarily on every punch. Lauzon landed some straight punches, but he couldn’t get the takedown. Johnson secured a takedown late in the round. Continue reading
I made my prediction after Wednesday’s semi-finals episode, and I’m going to stick with it. I think Jonathan Brookins wins by submission, sometime in the 2nd or 3rd round. Johnson’s game seems to have holes in it and while Phan couldn’t stop him, he did hit him a lot and if he was just a larger man, he would’ve won that fight.
The first fight tonight is Leonard Garcia vs. Nam Phan in the first televised UFC featherweight fight.
1. Leonard Garcia vs. Nam Phan
Garcia came out winging it like usual. Phan is the better strategic striker. Though, Garcia threw my favorite combination of the year. He threw a right hand that was between an overhand right and a hook, and immediately followed it up with a right head kick. He missed with both shots, but it was tight. Phan is pretty accurate with his shots and defensively, hasn’t left himself open much.
What a fantastic round. Phan caught him and Garcia fell backwards toward the cage. Garcia played dead, but was winging some wild shots that didn’t land. Phan did something brilliant. Rather than try to put him on his back with punches, he just kicked his legs out from under him and Garcia finally went down. They went to the ground and Phan worked for a possible submission, but Garcia fought him. Garcia needs a TKO to win this one more than likely.
Garcia definitely went for it, but he was very winded. He opened up a cut on Phan, so he did land, but at the end of the round, he was pretty disappointed.
Winner: Leonard Garcia by way of split decision
It looks like two judges gave Garcia the first and third round. I think it was pretty clearly a decision for Phan. It’s not the worst decision I’ve ever seen, but the crowd is reacting pretty strongly and you can’t really blame him. Garcia was surprised and said he’d do it with Phan again.
2. Rick Story vs. Johny Hendericks
Hendricks threw the first punch that landed, a quick left that seemed simply to wake up Story. Save for a late takedown, Story controlled the octagon, and it was probably slightly Story’s advantage on the feet too. I’m not so sure either guy landed many shots, but Story’s combinations were more impressive. I’d give the round slightly to Story.
This is a two-hour episode with a semi-finals fight in both hours.
The first fight is Kyle Watson vs. Jonathan Brookins and GSP won’t coach either guy. They’ll train as a team, but they’ll avoid each other. GSP’s assistant John Dancher thinks this should be the finals. He thinks they’re the most talented guys.
Team Koscheck says now that it’s near the end, they’re not doing much training. Marc Stevens is throwing Koscheck under the bus saying that he didn’t learn much and he’s not the only guy who has felt let down. Stevens is doing his Koscheck impersonation at the house while Koscheck was walking in the house.
Koscheck thinks his team is pointing the finger at the wrong person and need to look in the mirror.
Brookings says it will be a fun fight. He and Kyle know each other well and like each other.
Both teams think Nam Phan is a double agent and talks mess about both sides.
Kyle Watson vs. Jonathan Brookins