Recap of UFC on Versus 6: Cruz vs Johnson
Several weeks ago the UFC returned to Washington for another Versus show and although the show lacked any big "names" of a pay per view card, it featured the first ever live UFC title defense, a 5'11 kick boxer vs 6"11 submission specialist, a brutal referee stoppage and a terrific opener.
With only four fights televised, this was one of the most entertaining shows of the year.
UFC Bantamweight Championship-
Dominick Cruz (1
Demetrious "Mighty Mouse" Johnson (9-
by unanimous decision-
This was my pick for fight of the night as Johnson gave Cruz a run for his money throughout the 25 minutes.
Both men worked a fast pace here with Johnson attempting several takedown's while chasing after Cruz who wisely mixed up takedown's, combo's and kicks to keep Johnson guessing.
Cruz does not have the wrestling credentials of a Randy Couture or Jon Fitch however neither does GSP and both GSP and Cruz have some of the best wrestling in the sport today and Cruz proved that when he took down Johnson with ease when he committed with the takedown.
I had Cruz winning all five rounds as did one of the judges while the other two had Johnson winning one and losing four.
Cruz broke his hand in the fight and it remains to be seen when he will be available to fight again but it's probably a safe bet that the winner of the Urijah Faber/Brian Bowles fight will take him on sometime next year.
Johnson will most likely continue to dominate the bantamweight division until the UFC opens up a 125 lb division sometime next year.
Although the Bantamweight division hasn't been established all that well and there are a lot of fans that hate fights that go the distance, both men held the attention of the crowd and put on a good display of what the division offers.
Stefan "Skyscraper" Struve (2
Pat Barry (6-
to a guillotine choke at 3:22 of the second round-
On paper, this fight was quite the mismatch with Struve at 6'11 taking on the 5'11 Barry.
Barry took some time to find his range and even landed a couple solid punches to Struve's chin in the early stages but Struve was able to take advantage of a clinch situation and wrap his arm around Barry's head to slap on a guillotine choke and then a triangle choke.
To Barry's credit, he fought his hardest to get out of the hold and even landed a powerbomb but Struve made the adjustment after the slam and sunk in the hold further to get the submission victory.
Struve took home an additional $65 000 for submission of the night.
Although Barry had a lot of charisma he really needs to work on his submission defense if he plans on staying in the UFC.
Anthony "Rumble" Johnson (
Charlie "The Spaniard" Brenneman (13-
by tko at 2:49 of the first round-
Brenneman didn't look good in this one and Johnson walked right through him.
Charlie was attempting takedowns and shooting from too far out as Johnson was able to use his sprawl to keep the fight standing where he rocked Charlie with a couple punches and then followed it up with a head kick that sent him crashing to the mat and the referee step in to stop this one.
The stop may have been a little early as Brenneman wasn't knocked out from the kick however, if the fight continued, it would have happened eventually as Charlie never got anything going for him.
A step up in competition should be expected for Johnson in his next fight as the win should see him grouped in with the other top level UFC welterweights.
"Handsome" Matt Wiman (1
Mac Danzig (20-
by unanimous decision-
This was a very competitive and fun fight as both men tried to implement their game plan on the other.
I had Wiman winning the fight at two rounds to one with Danzig taking the first and Wiman the final too but this was a close enough fight that it really could have gone either way which was evident when the results were called for the fight by Bruce Buffer and some of the crowd booed.
Danzig looked pretty good here and was even able to get Wiman to the mat in the second round but Wiman controlled the ground portion of the fight once it went down there and on the feet both men enjoyed some success.
I don't know what the loss does for Danzig who has more losses in the UFC then wins at this point but he did win the fight before this one by knockout and this fight was certainly entertaining so maybe he still has another chance.
The win for Wiman keeps him hovering around the bottom of the top ten UFC lightweights or just a rung or two out of the ranking.
Definitely a great opener and good showing for both men.
Paul Sass (1
Michael "The Menace" Johnson (9-
to a heel hook at 3:00 of the first round
Mike "The Hulk" Easton (1
Byron Bloodworth (6-2) by tko at 4:52 of the second round
Yves "Thugjitsu Master" Edwards (4
Rafaello "Tractor" Oliveira (14-
by tko at 2:44 of the second round
T.J. Grant (1
Shane Roller (10-
to an arm bar at 2:12 of the third round
Josh "The Dentist" Neer (3
Keith "The Polish Connection" Wisniewski (28-1
by doctor's stoppage at 5:00 of the second round
Walel "The Gazel" Watson (
Joseph Sandoval (6-
by tko at 1:17 of the first round
Review of UFC 136: Edgar vs Maynard 3
Following a strong Versus card from the previous week, the UFC somehow found a way to out-do themselves at UFC 136: Edgar vs Maynard 3
UFC Lightweight Title Fight-
Frank "The Answer" Edgar (1
Gray "The Bully" Maynard
at of the fourth round-
Early on, this fight was looking like a mirror image of their previous encounter as Gray hurt Edgar with a punch in the first round and had him sprawling all over the place.
Gray decided against rushing at Edgar and try to put him away as that same strategy saw him get gassed last time but due to not attempting to finish, he ended up letting the fight slip out of his hands when Edgar recovered and came back to win the next two rounds.
Edgar found his rhythm and hands in the fourth round and returned the favor from earlier when he blasted Gray with a punch to the chin and some follow up punches on the mat until the referee stopped a defenseless Gray from taking anymore punishment.
Great performance for Edgar here who continues to show the heart that makes him a champion and a never quit mentality.
It remains to be seen what Edgar will do next as he has hinted at dropping to featherweight for a superfight with Jose Aldo if a title fight with Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez doesn't happen.
UFC Featherweight Title Fight-
Jose Aldo (
Kenny "Ken Flo" Florian (14-
by unanimous decision-
Ken Flo was never able to get much going in this one as Aldo contolled the stand up with leg kicks and combinations with his hands.
Florian worked hard throughout the fight to get Aldo to the mat but unfortunately was unable to get him down which had to have deflated Florian. Ken Flo seemed to hint at retirement following the loss while Aldo seems unsure if he wants to continue at featherweight or pack on more muscle in favor of moving to lightweight, regardless of which division is chosen by him, he should remain a top level champion/challenger.
Chael Sonnen (2
Brian Stann (11-
to an arm triangle at 3:51 of the second round-
Very one sided fight here with Stann being unable to escape the takedowns and top control of Chael.
Chael came out expressionless and focused, knowing a win put him in line for a rematch with Anderson Silva.
As tough of a challenge as Stann is, he looked lost in this one and was never given the opportunity to get anything going.
Post fight, Chael cut the greatest UFC promo of all time, challenging Anderson Silva to a fight at the Super Bowl show early next year in a fight where Chael is willing to put up his UFC career and Anderson his career at middleweight.
Although the rumor was that Chael needed another win or two before being given another shot at Anderson, with a promo like that and no clear number one contenders, it's probably a safe bet that he gets another opportunity at claiming UFC gold in 2012.
am Phan (1
Leonard "Bad Boy" Garcia (15-
by unanimous decision-
This was an awesome fight and Pham finally picked up the victory over Garcia depsite being robbed of a decision in their first encounter late last year.
Both men threw bombs throughout the fight with neither looking to take this one to the mat.
Garcia was able to hurt Pham in the third round with a punch but other than that, Pham's technical boxing was too much for Garcia's reckless style.
Post fight, Joe Rogan asked both men if trhey'd be willing to face off a third time to which Pham said no and Garcia yes.
Both men were awarded an additional $70 000 for fight of the night.
Joe "J-Lau" Lauzon (2
Melvin "The Young Assassin" Guillard (29-
to a rear naked choke at 0:47 of the first round-
Melvin came out aggressive connecting on a couple punches early but began showboating like he was Anderson Silva only for Lauzon to clip Guillard with a jab that dropped him.
Lauzon pounced when given
the opportunity and sunk in a rear naked choke which forced Guillard to tap out.
The fight was fought in Guillard's backyard and he came out with a ton of confidence which may have led to the downfall here as Guillard was looking past a tough challenge like Lauzon.
This has to be the biggest win of Lauzon's career and in my opinion slides him into the top ten of the UFC's lightweight division.
Anthony "Showtime" Pettis (1
Jeremy "Lil Heathen" Stephens (20-
by split decision
Demian Maia (1
Jorge Santiago (23-
by unanimous decision
Stipe Miocic (
Joey "Mexicutioner" Beltran (13-
by unanimous decision
Darren Elkins (1
Tie Quan "The Mongolian Wolf" Zhang (13-
by unanimous decision
Aaron "A- Train" Simpson (1
Eric "Ravishing Red" Schafer (12-
by unanmious decision
Mike Massenzio (1
Steve "The Robot" Cantwell (7-
by unanimous deccision
Penn vs Diaz
This Saturday the UFC hosts one of their biggest shows of the year and a card that's pretty much stacked top to bottom even with the cancellation of the main event between GSP and Carlos Condit due to a GSP injury.
Let's take a look at UFC 137.
"The Prodigy" BJ Penn (16-7-2)
vs Nick Diaz (25-7)-
Originally Nick Diaz was to challenge GSP in the main event but due to being an asshole and not showing up to press conferences, Diaz was pulled from the main event and switched with Carlos Condit.
Diaz is a good striker with a fantastic Jui Jitsu game while BJ has the same set of tools.
Penn is one of the best lightweights in the world who seems content with finishing up his career in the welterweight division.
Although a former UFC welterweight champion, Penn has enjoyed more success at lightweight even though he's been
in fights against top level opponents such as Matt Hughes and Jon Fitch.
Penn packs a more powerful punch than Diaz and has legitimate knockout power while Diaz usually has a significant reach advantage and will in this one as well.
If this fight goes to the ground I see us getting a stalemate with neither man blowing the other one away.
If Diaz wants to win this one he's going to have to stay on the outside of Penn's striking range and use his jab to keep Penn at a distance.
If this one hits the ground then we could easily see a Jui Jitsu clinic but I think Penn's wrestling is good enough to keep the fight on the feet where he lands the more powerful blows to take the fight on the judges scorecard.
Penn has had problems with his cardio for the majority of his career and should start strong and take at least the first two rounds while Diaz's cardio has always been
and could capitalize on a gassed BJ.
Prediction: Penn by decision
Roy "Big Country" Nelson (15-6) vs Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic
Both men are in need of a win here and its a safe bet that whoever loses gets the boot from the UFC.
Cro Cop is a shell of his former self and never really made the
transition from Pride fighting to the UFC, losing his last two fights by knockout at the hands of Brendan Schaub and Frank Mir.
Cro Cop's chin seems to be damaged as of late and a hard hitter such as Nelson has the ability to break it even more.
Nelson is a big heavyweight, weighing in regularly at the 265 pounds with a
terrific ground game to go along with his girth.
enjoy a significant advantage on the ground while Cro Cop has the edge on the feet but not by much.
Cro Cop can definitely win this fight if he avoids the clinch and takedowns of Nelson and utilizes his kicks to wear down the cardio questioned Nelson but Nelson's got a great chin and shouldn't be easy to finish.
I like Nelson's chances of winning here as he should be able to find the sweet spot on Cro Cop's chin or even dominate and finish Cro Cop on the mat.
This could either be one hell of a fight or a real boring, safely fought contest with Nelson focusing on winning the fight and staying employed by the UFC instead of leaving the fans happy and slugging for the fences.
Prediction: Nelson by knockout
Cheick Kongo (15-6-2) vs Matt Mitrione (4-0)
I've never been all that impressed with Mitrione until his last fight, a contest he won against Christian Morecraft but the guy has made serious progress since working on his overall game.
a future UFC heavyweight champion?
God no, but he is certainly a guy that can give lower
opponents a run for their money and a good
in the division.
Cheick Kongo is easily the biggest challenge
has faced in his career and his stand up and wrestling on paper is worlds better then Matt's.
I see Kongo fighting smart and refusing to exchange punches with Mitrione, instead he would have better luck looking for the takedown and mixing it up on the feet with kicks, something Mitrione doesn't utilize all t
Kongo should be able to push the pace in this one and test
breaking point and walk away the winner after taking Matt
at will and pummeling him while there until the referee calls a stop to this one.
If I'm betting money on this one I'm putting a couple bucks on
as he's a
here that may actually pull off the upset.
Prediction: Kongo by tko
Hatsu Hioki (24-4-2) vs George Roop (12-7-1)
Roop presents a good challenge to any featherweight he faces with his explosive striking, never quit attitude and lengthy limbs.
As difficult of a challenge as someone with those advantages is, Hioki is a submission specialist who should be able to use Roop's
long limbs to his advantage and latch on to something to take out Roop.
This fight can really go either way but I think the smart bet is on Hioki winning his UFC debut.
Prediction: Hioki by decision
Scott Jorgensen (12-4) vs Jeff "Big Frog" Curran (33-13-1)
Curran's a submission guy with some underrated striking while Jorgensen's got some good wrestling and aggressive striking.
The rumor on this fight is that Curran requested Jorgensen as his first opponent in the UFC since returning to the promotion.
Why anyone would want to challenge someone the likes of Jorgensen is beyond me and Jorgenson should have enough sub and takedown defense to keep this one standing where he out points and puts a hurt on Curran.
Prediction: Jorgensen by decision
Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone
vs Dennis Siver (18-7)
This fight right here could go one of three ways.
Cerrone could go in there, get the fight on the mat and submit Siver quickly, could stand and bang with Siver and take his chances with the judges or lastly, Siver could blast Cerrone with punches and finish him in impressive fashion.
Cerrone comes from Team Jackson, one of the best camps for creating winning
and has a big edge on Siver when it comes to standing however, Cerrone has continuously evolving stand up skills and has been more content with standing and trading in his most recent outings.
Cerrone should be looking to dump Siver on his back and look for a submission while down there but Siver's takedown defense is terrific and it's going to be a struggle for him to do it unless he gets it from the clinch.
Siver has been on a roll as of late winning his last two fights against George Sotiropolous and Matt Wiman.
Siver packs a mean spinning back fist and back kick but should be reluctant to try either as it would leave Cerrone open for a takedown which wont bode well for Siver as most of his losses come in the way of submission.
Cerrone has had slow starts in the past and if he does in this one he may find himself in trouble but I think Cerrone wins a closely contested decision here.
Prediction: Cerrone by submission
Tyson Griffin (15-5) vs Bart Palaszewski (35-14)-
It's a safe bet that the loser of this one may get the boot from Zuffa.
On paper, both men are equally matched but I believe Griffin may have found a career re-emergence since dropping to featherwieight in his last outing, a victory over Manny Gamburyan.
I think Griffin has the edge both standing and on the feet but Bart's no easy oponent and not someone to take a bunch of risks while in the cage with.
I see Griffin holing down Bart and riding out a decision, somethinh Griffin does well.
Prediction: Griffin by decision
Dustin Jacoby (6-0) vs Clifford Starks (7-0)- Prediction: Jacoby by tko
Brandon "The Truth" Vera (11-5) vs Eliot "The Fire" Marshall (10-3)
- Prediction: Vera by decision
Francis "Limitless" Carmont
Carmony by decision
Daniel "Danny Boy" Downes (8-2) vs Ramsey Nijem (4-2)
Nijem by decision
Preview of UFC 138: Leben vs Munoz
Everyone enjoys a free UFC show however on paper this may be the weakest UFC numbered card of the year.
As is often the case with shows such as this, "on paper" means very little and styles make fights.
s have a look at the match ups taking place from
"The Crippler" Chris Leben (26-7) vs "The Phillippine Wrecking Machine" Mark Munoz (11-2)
Both of these men are in the top ten of UFC middleweights and although neither man tend to be involved in boring fights, this is a pretty crappy main event.
Munoz is a well credentialed wrestler with devastating ground and pound but has not looked all that great on the feet in fights with Kendall Grove and Demian Maia, two men who got the better of the exchanges with Munoz although neither is known for their punching power.
Leben is best known as a "gamer" who takes any fight offered to him and tends to do best against wrestlers.
As great as Munoz's wrestling is, Leben has always excelled against those types and I don't see Munoz being any different.
Munoz's ground and pound is some of the best in the business but it doesn't translate to his striking on the feet, an area he needs to be competitive in or it's lights out.
I don't see Leben being able to finish Munoz as he's not an easy guy to stop but he will most likely hurt him in a couple exchanges throughout.
I expect Leben to win this one and keep himself in middleweight title contention with the victory.
Prediction: Leben by decision
Thiago "Pitbull" Alves (18-8) vs Papy "Makambo" Abedi (8-0)
I know nothing of Abedi other than that he favors knocking out his opponents instead of submitting them, something his opponent sticks with as well.
Alves was once considered a top level welterweight and even challenged GSP for his title years ago however Alves hasn't looked as great lately as he has in the past and this is a fight he absolutely needs to win to stay relevant.
I see the UFC bringing in Abedi as cannon fodder for Alves and little more than that.
Alves by tko
Terry Etim (14-3) vs Edward "Falo" Faaloto (2-2)
Easy win here for Etim as Faaloto is far below the
of a UFC fighter and Etim has always been considered a good young prospect.
Etim has been inactive for quite some time and his opponent has been chosen wisely as a tune-up fight.
Etim's long limbs have proved to be a problem for quite a few opponents and Faaloto should be no different.
Etim takes this fight any way he pleases in spectacular fashion.
Prediction: Etim by tko
Anthony Njokuani (13-5) vs "Relentless" Paul Taylor (11-6-1)
This should be a pretty fan friendly fight as I don't think either man is capable of fighting a boring fight.
Njokuani is an entertaining striker who uses lots of knees and kicks to break the will of his opponents while Taylor has the
Taylor's been in there with mid pack level fighters like Sam Stout and Marcus Davis while Njokuani is coming off his first UFC victory over Andre Winner in a fun fight.
There's a lot of pressure on Taylor here as this fight is pretty much a must win for him as well as added pressure of fighting in his hometown.
Taylor has good enough wrestling to get Njokuani to the mat but keeping him there will be a struggle as Njokuani has quick hip movement and should return the fight to the feet quickly.
Njokuani should be able to keep the pressure on Taylor and wear him out with body kicks and leg kicks that stop his ability to shoot in for the takedown.
I'm sure Anthony can finish Taylor but a one sided 15 minute
is most likely in the cards.
Prediction: Njokuani by decision
Brad "One Punch" Pickett (20-5) vs. Renan Barao (26-1)
Barao by decision
Vaughan Lee (11-6-1) vs Chris "Kamikaze" Cariaso (11-3)
Cariaso by submission
Michihiro Omigawa (12-10-1) vs Jason "Shotgun" Young (8-4)
Omigawa by decision
Phillip De Fries (7-0) vs
Rob Broughton (15-6-1)
De Fries by decision
Che Mills (13-4) vs Chris "C-Murder" Cope (5-1)
- Prediction: Mills by decision
Cyrille "Snake" Diabate (17-7-1) vs Anthony "Hippo" Perosh (11-6)
- Prediction: Diabate by decision
John Macguire (16-3) vs Justin Edwards (7-1)- Prediction: Edwards by decisions
UFC Fox Fight Night 1- November 12th, 2011
UFC Heavyweight Championship-
Cain Velasquez (9-0) vs Junior Dos Santos (13-1)
Ben Henderson (14-2) vs Clay "The Carpenter" Guida (29-11)
Norifumi "Kid" Yamamoto (18-4) vs Darren "BC" Uyenoyama (6-3)
Ricardo Lamas (10-2) vs Cub Swanson (15-4)
Dustin "The Diamond" Poirier (10-1) vs Pablo "Scarecrow" Garza (11-1)
Mike Pierce (12-4) vs Paul "The Gentleman" Bradley (18-3)
DaMarques "Darkness" Johnson (12-9) vs Clay "Heavy Metal" Harvison (9-3)
Robert "Problems" Peralta (15-3) vs Mackens "Mack da Menace" Semerzier (6-3)
Matt Lucas (14-2) vs Aaron Rosa (16-4)
Cole Escovedo (17-8) vs Alex "Bruce Leroy" Cacares (5-4)
from San Jose, California- November 19th, 2011
Mauricio "Shogun" Rua (20-5) vs Dan Henderson (28-8)
"The California Kid" Urijah Faber (25-4) vs Brian Bowles (10-1)
Cung Le (7-1) vs Wanderlei "The Axe Murderer" Silva (31-11-1)
Chris Weidman (6-0) vs "Filthy" Tom Lawlor (7-3)
Rafael Dos Anjos (15-5) vs Gleison Tibau (23-7)
Martin "The Hitman" Kampmann (17-5) vs Rick "The Horror" Story (13-4)
Ryan "Darth" Bader (12-2) vs Jason "The Hitman" Brilz (18-4-1)
Kyle Kingsbury (11-2) vs "American Psycho" Stephan Bonnar (13-7)
Matt "The Immortal" Brown (12-10) vs Seth Baczynski (14-6)
Miguel Torres (39-4) vs Nick Pace (6-2)
Danny "Last Call" Castillo (11-4) vs Shamar Bailey (12-4)
Michael "Mayday" Mcdonald (13-1) vs Johnny Eduardo (25-9)
TUF 14 Finale from Las Vegas, Nevada- December 3rd, 2011
Jason "Mayhem" Miller (24-7) vs Michael "The Count" Bisping (21-3)
Yves "Thugjitsu Master" Edwards (41-17-1) vs Tony "El Cucuy" Ferguson (12-2)
UFC 140 from Toronto, Ontario, Canada- December 10th, 2011
UFC Light Heavyweight Championship-
Jon "Bones" Jones (13-1) vs Lyoto "The Dragon" Machida (17-2)
Frank Mir (15-5) vs Antonio Rodrigo "Minotauro" Nogeira (33-6-1)
"The Huntington Beach Bad Boy" Tito Ortiz (16-9-1) vs Antonio Rogerio "Minotoro" Nogueira (19-5)
Rory "Ares" MacDonald (12-1) vs Brian "Bad Boy" Ebersole (48-14-1)
Mark "The Machine" Hominick (20-9) vs "The Korean Zombie" Chang Sung Jung (11-3)
John "The Bull" Makdessi (9-0) vs Dennis "Superman" Hallman (50-14-2)
Nik "The Carnie" Lentz (21-3-2) vs Mark Bocek (9-4)
"The Polish Experiment" Krzysztof Soszynski (26-11-1) vs Igor Pokrajac (23-8)
Mitch Clarke (9-0) vs John Cholish (7-1)
Claude "The Prince" Patrick (14-1) vs Rich "The Raging Bull" Attonito (10-4)
Yves "Tiger" Jabouin vs Walel "The Gazel" Watson (8-2)
Strikeforce- December 17th, 2011
Gilbert Melendez (19-2) vs Jorge Masvidal (22-6)
Strikeforce Women's Featherweight- Cristiane "Cyborg" Santos (10-1) vs Hiroko Yamanaka (12-1)
KJ Noons (10-4) vs Billy Evangelista (11-1)
Ovince St. Preulx (11-4) vs Gegard Mousassi (31-3-2)
UFC 141 from Las Vegas, Nevada- December 30th, 2011
Brock Lesnar (5-2) vs "The Demolition Man" Alistair Overeem (35-11)
Jake Ellenberger (26-5) vs Diego Sanchez (23-4)
Jon Fitch (23-3-1) vs Johnny Hendricks (11-1)
Alexander "The Mauler" Gustafsson (12-1) vs "The Janitor" Vladimir Matyushenko (26-5)
Dong-Hyun "Stun Gun" Kim (14-1-1) vs Sean Pierson (11-5)
That's all for this week everyone but come back in a couple weeks for a recap on UFC 137 and 138 plus a breakdown of UFC on Fox 1.