UFC 165 Play By Play – Jon Jones Vs. Alexander Gustafsson

UFC 165 play by playYesterday, I gave my thoughts on how I think the main event of this show goes. In another era, Alexander Gustafsson would be a nightmare opponent for anyone. But more than likely, not for Bones. I do hope that we get a bit of a barn burner though.

As for the semi-main event, Eddie Wineland gets the most recent chance at Renan Barao who is undefeated under the Zuffa banner. While many aren’t too excited about this card, it kickstarts the most insane stretch of big shows the UFC has ever had. The next three months are going to be action packed.

Let’s get to the UFC 165 play by play.

1. Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Pat Healy

The first round was a bit sloppy. Nurmagomedov led with lunging uppercuts, some which landed. Healy kept coming forward, but Nurmagomedov fought well backpedaling. Healy continued in his pursuit like a robot even though he took several shots to the face and had a cut. Nurmagomedov went for two takedowns late that probably cinched the round for him.

Healy had a much better round as Nurmagomedov looked to tire. Both guys couldn’t keep the same pace as the first, but they tried. Nurmagomedov came on late with takedowns and a good shot on the ground to take it in a close one. Continue reading

UFC 145 Play By Play – Rashad Evans Vs. Jon Jones

All the talking is done. It’s fight time.

1. John Alessio vs. Mark Bocek

Bocek got a trip near the cage and Alessio grabbed to cage, but still went down. Bocek was in side control, but then half guard. In Alessio’s full guard, he hit him with some nice elbows. Alessio hasn’t done anything yet. Bocek got Alessio’s back and had him in a body triangle but the round ended.

Alessio landed a nice combination. And then nice jabs. But he was taken down again. Nothing much is happening this round. Not a fantastic way to open up this show.

Bocek got him down and then his back. Alessio doesn’t have much of a chance here unless he gets a knockout. Bocek was workman-like the entire fight, though it wasn’t all that entertaining. He’ll get the unanimous decision.

Winner: Mark Bocek by way of unanimous decision

The scores were 30-27, 29-28, and 30-27.

2. Eddie Yagin vs. Mark Hominick

Strong striking by both guys early on. Hominick looked to be setting up a hook and got lazy. Yagin knocked him down with a straight right and nearly finished him on the ground. Hominick is controlling the standup, but he gets lazy and the smaller Yagin catches him. Fun first round, especially after the boring first fight.

After a nice back and forth, Yagin knocked him down again. He’s got a mouse on the left side of his left eye. His face is all messed up, but he’s doing a lot of damage too. And he’s in great shape to take all the punishment. These guys are pounding the crap out of each other. Yagin is throwing hard, hard punches.

Hominck is loading up on the lead right hand and Yagin is just eating it. He’s going body to head. Yagin can’t hit any kicks yet he’s still throwing them. Same with the spinning back fist. Hominick is the better fighter for sure, but the knockdowns will count in the scoring. He may have to get a 10-8 here to get the draw. Needs a knockdown. Hominick closed strong, but might get hurt by the 10/9 must.

Winner: Eddie Yagin by way of split decision

Both guys aren’t going to look very handsome tomorrow.

3. Michael McDonald vs. Miguel Torres
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UFC 134 – Yushin Okami Vs. Anderson Silva Play By Play

Surprisingly, fans are giving Yushin Okami more of a chance that I would’ve ever thought. Or maybe, they’re just trying to predict the day that Anderson Silva finally falls atop his perch of greatest fighter alive. In a poll I conducted on the Fight Game Blog Facebook page, Silva was clearly winning the poll, but out of 25 votes, 7 thought Okami was going to win. I’ll update the poll if it changes by fight time.

1. Stanislav Nedkov vs. Luiz Cane

Nedkov is just winging punches. Cane is too good of a stand-up fighter to to not take advantage of the sloppiness. Nedkov started off quickly and aggressively, but after being hit solidly a bit, he’s being more patient. And just like that, Nedkov blitzed him. He hit him with an overhand right and then a left and Cane was out on his feet. His legs were wobbly and he was trying to do the stanky leg. Nedkov then connected again and put his lights out. Wow.

Winner: Stanislav Nedkov by way of 1st round TKO.

2. Brendan Schaub vs. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira

Schaub looks a little soft while Big Nog looks a little thicker than usual. Looks like he wanted to have strength for Schaub. Schaub looked like he wanted to test Big Nog early and felt his power and decided to fight more cautiously. He’s trying to land an upper cut. And just like that, Big Nog put his lights out. That’s back to back wows for me.
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UFC 134 Preview – Yushin Okami Vs. Anderson Silva

This is the first show after the huge Fox announcement and who better to main event their latest show than the best fighter in the UFC, Anderson Silva. Silva is facing Yushin Okami, the man who holds the last victory over him, albeit by disqualification. It’s a loss that Silva doesn’t even recognize.

On the undercard is a rematch between Shogun Rua and Forrest Griffin. Griffin beat him in an upset in their first fight, and both guys really have a lot to gain from a victory. Both are former champions who are kind of in limbo in the light heavyweight division. Big Nog faces young tiger Brendan Schaub in Nog’s first fight since the blitzing he received at the hands of now heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez.

The FGB crew has predictions has predictions on all three fights.

Brendan Schaub vs. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira

Duan: Schaub by 3rd round TKO
Alan: Nogueira by 2nd round submission
JP: Schaub by 2nd round TKO
Stevie J: Schaub by 1st round TKO
Cactus Jim: Nogueira by 2nd round submission
GG: Schaub by 2nd round TKO

Duan says:

This is really a test of how far Nog has fallen. If he can’t win at this level there really is little point in him fighting on. He’s done everything he could have done in the sport and for me at least, the time has come for him to bow out. I don’t really believe Schaub is a great fighter, so it will be kind of sad if he is to go out on this note, but I think that’s what is going to happen. Physically, I just don’t think it’s there anymore.

Alan says:

I give Schaub a good bit more credit than Duan. He has a lot going for him – he is really athletic, he’s big, he’s young and he trains at one of the better camps in the sport. He has shown improvement in every fight and at his stage, that’s probably the most important thing. He’s far from the finished article though and gives up a big edge in experience to Nog. The experience factor, and what should be a partisan crowd, are the two biggest things Big Nog has in his favour in this fight and I actually think they might be enough to see him through. He has to be real careful on the feet as Schaub has shown good power, and Nog has a dodgy chin at this point. I think he’ll be careful enough to stay out of trouble and use his guile to get Schaub in a bad position on the ground.

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The Aftermath – UFC 128

UFC 128 was built around one man, and one man only; Jon Jones. Fortunately for the UFC, Jones won, and won big. It was quite a risk building the entire show around him, including putting together a SpikeTV special for him that aired just days before the show. It seemed a bit odd considering Shogun Rua was their champion and he was being dwarfed in the media by Jones, including being a huge underdog with the books in Vegas.

Here’s what we thought of the UFC 128:

Thumbs In The Middle
Best Fight: Jon Jones vs. Shogun Rua
Worst Fight: Dan Miller vs. Nate Marquardt

A dull show with a newsworthy main event.

Nothing on the undercard really warrants being talked about, so let’s skip straight to what matters. This was a fantastic win for Jon Jones, but people have got wrapped up in hysteria following the show. This is still a really young guy with a lot left to learn. Everybody is going on like he’s the second coming of Muhammad Ali. No pressure kid! It’s absolutely ridiculous.

To bring sanity back to proceedings, let’s recap what I have been saying for the last twelve plus months.
1. The UFC Light heavyweight division is a far cry from what it was in the Liddell glory days.
2. The title belt has been bouncing around like it was booked by Vince Russo.
3. Shogun looked like a champion against precisly one opponent, Lyoto Machida, who he matched up well against. Last weekend he looked a lot more like the guy who was stopped by Forrest Griffin and gassed out after two minutes against a 300 year old Mark Coleman.

Now, I’m not saying that Jones can’t be THAT guy for UFC, but let’s not get too ahead of ourselves just yet. Give him some time to grow into the role of champion first.

UFC’s presentation style is beyond annoying at this point. They have made every single aspect of the show cliche. I’m sick of feeling like I’m watching a three hour long commercial. Look, I don’t care who sponsors Bruce Buffer’s hair, Joe Rogan’s beard or Dana White’s watch. Stop trying to squeeze every miserable penny imaginable. There will still be profit enough.

Thumbs In The Middle Leaning Up
Best Fight: Kamal Shalorous vs. Jim Miller (no real standout FOTN type matcheson the main broadcast, but this was my favourite)
Worst Fight: Dan Miller vs. Nate Marquardt (not too bad a fight at all, but probably the most boring on the card)

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UFC 128 – Jon Jones Vs. Shogun Rua Play By Play

If you missed our preview to the show, check it out. Most of us have Jon Jones becoming the new light heavyweight champion, though there are two of us (including me) think Shogun is going to successfully defend his championship. But we all think Urijah Faber gets the win he needs for a possible title shot at Dominick Cruz.

1. Brendan Schaub vs. Mirko Cro Cop

Schaub got a takedown, but it was Cro Cop doing more damage early from the bottom by scoring with an up kick and also kicking at right below the knees. But then Schaub timed it right, got on top of Cro Cop and started landing vicious shots from the top. Cro Cop got back up. They worked each other against the cage for the rest of the round. It was Schaub’s round.

The fight is starting to get heated. Schaub got another takedown and was throwing bombs from the top. Cro Cop argued a punch in the back of the head, but Herb Dean said Cro Cop turned his head. Schaub had one point down and Cro Cop hit him with an up kick and Dean warned him. In the clinch, they traded short elbow (Cro Cop) and inside knees (Schaub). Cro Cop isn’t able to get the distance to throw any kicks. Schaub got a point taken away for a punch to the back of the head. Tough round to score, and I’d probably go Schaub in a tight one, but the point deduction makes it a 9-9.

A Cro Cop short elbow caused Schaub’s nose to start bleeding in the second round. Schaub scored a takedown after getting kicked in the plums and Cro Cop was able to kick him off, but he was immediately taken down again. Cro Cop needs a strong finish to get a draw. Cro Cop was looking good striking, but he was ready to throw a kick and Schaub threw a quick, counter right hand to the side of Cro Cop’s head and Cro Cop went out. He hit the mat awkwardly and head first.

Winner: Brendan Schaub by way of 3rd round TKO

2. Dan Miller vs. Nate Marquardt

Miller got an early takedown and also tried to lock in a guillotine. Marquardt switched to the top position and the referee stood them up. Marquardt got a huge takedown to end the round.
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