Sunday, June 12, 2011

UFC 131: How we fared

In a first, Kyle and I agreed on all the choices for last night's fights, so all I can do is report how we collectively did--and where we made smaller calls correctly.

As always, we'll start with the undercard fights, which I didn't get to see but Kyle did, thanks to the UFC putting them on Facebook and YouTube.

Darren Elkins vs. Michihiro Omigawa

I can't comment on this fight other than to say that from what I've read it sounds like quite a battle. In the end, Elkins won a decision--and started Kyle and me at 0-1.

Aaron Rosa vs. Joey Beltran

We both chose Rosa via decision in an ugly war. We got the ugly war, with color commentator Joe Rogan correctly observing that at times these guys were human rock 'em, sock 'em robots. In the end, though, The Mexicutioner wore down Rosa and hit him with enough ground-and-pound shots that the ref stopped the fight. Beltran's TKO victory gave us a dismal 0-2 start.

Dustin Poirier vs. Jason Young

Another fight I didn't see, but one we called right. Poirier ground out a decision, which makes Kyle more right than I was, because I expected a TKO. Still, we don't grade at that fine a level, so we both notch one correct call and move to 1-2.

Nick Ring vs. James Head

Though I also didn't get to see this match, from what I read it sounds like we were completely wrong about it. The descriptions have Ring as largely dominating the fight, aside from going wobbly for a bit in round one, until he slapped on a rear naked choke in the third round. We move to a pitiful 1-3.

Krzysztof Soszynski vs. Mike Massenzio

We both expected Soszynski to win against an over-matched Massenzio, and that is indeed what happened. What's surprising, though, is that Massenzio lasted all three rounds and lost the decision. Even though he lost, the fact that he took the fight on six days notice and put on a pure-gut show might earn him a chance at another UFC fight. Might.

In any case, we inch closer to .500 as we move to 2-3.

From here on, I did get to watch the fights, the first two on Spike TV, and the remaining five on the PPV event.

Chris Weidman vs. Jesse Bongfeldt

We both called for Weidman to dominate, and dominate he did, ultimately winning just before the first round ended with a standing guillotine choke. Bongfeldt gave it his best, and he even hurt Weidman briefly, but he was out of his league.

We're now 3-3!

Yves Edwards vs. Sam Stout

What we got right: Stout won.

Each of us, though, assumed the fight would last multiple rounds, and it did not. Instead, after Edwards connected with a nice hit to Stout's head, Stout counter-punched and knocked out Edwards in textbook fashion. When Rogan was interviewing Stout, Edwards was still on the ground.

We move to 4-3, finally more correct calls than misses!

Donald Cerrone vs. Vagner Rocha

Vagner Rocha proved he was a very tough man and absorbed a lot of punishment, but he was never in this PPV opener. Cerrone dominated him for three rounds and won--with the unanimous decision I predicted. After the fight, Cerrone criticized himself for playing it safe and fighting not to lose, a somewhat accurate comment that is sure to displease both his coach, Greg Jackson, and UFC President Dana White. Still, he notched the victory, and we hit 5-3.

Demian Maia vs. Mark Munoz

For most of the first round, I was sure we were going to lose this one, because Demian Maia's striking looked the best I've ever seen it. Maia controlled that round, and Munoz looked shocked at how well Maia was doing.

The rest of the fight was Munoz's, and he won the decision victory. We were at 6-3, and I was feeling good about the rest of our calls.

Jon Olav Einemo vs. Dave Herman

So much for that feeling. I don't know what Einemo was doing with the Golden Glory team, but he sure wasn't learning to defend against knee strikes. Einemo's much vaunted submission skills also weren't much in evidence, because when he took down Herman, Herman escaped fairly easily. Meanwhile, Einemo was gassing, and Herman was smiling. Before round two ended, Herman had the TKO victory, and we dropped to 6-4.

Kenny Florian vs. Diego Nunes

Florian looked good, real good, and the weight cut did not seem to affect his stamina at all. Though he punished Nunes, he could never finish the guy. Still, his performance was enough for him to win the decision and take us to 7-4.

Though I expect Florian will now get the title shot he wants, I'm not at all certain he can take Jose Aldo. It is, though, a fight I very much want to see.

Junior dos Santos vs. Shane Carwin

With less than a minute to go in the first round, after having hit Shane Carwin over and over and over with powerful pistoning fists, with Carwin turtled on the ground, his face a bloody mess, Junior dos Santos looked at referee Herb Dean and clearly hoped the man would stop the fight. Dean did not, and in defense of his decision it did appear that Carwin was making token attempts to defend himself.

For the next two rounds, Carwin occasionally would get in a punch, but basically dos Santos danced around and hit him with jab after jab after jab. I got the sense that dos Santos didn't really want to hurt Carwin any more.

Carwin showed tremendous heart, but he was never in this fight. Junior dos Santos will next face Cain Velasquez for the UFC Heavyweight title in another fight I want to see.

Kyle and I finish a respectable but not inspired 8-4. I'd love one day to call every fight correctly, but this was not that day.

No comments:


Blog Archive