The fifth installment of UFC on Versus has come to a close and with it, a night filled with “Fight of the Night”-worthy match-ups. The main card’s opening bout showcased a striking clinic when world-class level Muay Thai boxer met a hungry up-and-comer. One of the biggest stars of the WEC stepped in on short notice to take on one of the sport’s fastest rising stars. The co-main event saw a battle where one fighter fought to prove his place within the organization’s ranks and the other sought his long awaited shot at a title. A true ambassador of the sport made his final appearance in the Octagon when he was pitted against a former contender longing to return to his winning ways. Now that all is said and done, here is a recap of the main card from this past Sunday night along with possible match-ups that could be seen for each winner sooner rather than later.
So, here it is. Monday. I sit down to write a “Spilled Bag of Fights”. Black coffee, Black Sabbath and my pup by my side. Deep breath. Man, what a roller coaster of a weekend for MMA… for me at least.
First off, I’d be remiss if I didn’t pay condolences to coach Shawn Tompkins. I didn’t know him personally but he’s obviously had a great impact on his students and the sport and his death comes way too young. Sad for his friends, family, and MMA.
Let’s start with Friday when I was unexpectedly given a ticket to Strikeforce Challengers: Gurgel vs. Duarte. When I showed up I was surprised to be sitting next to MMA Valor’s own Dylan Horner. I also went to UFC 125: Edgar vs. Maynard with him. For some reason whenever I sit next to Dylan there’s a drunken moron yelling really dumb shit. Last time it was the guy who was yelling “Flip ‘em over!”, “Don’t take that bullshit!” and insisting that Asians can fly and that Clay Guida looks like Dog the Bounty Hunter. This time it was a guy who looked like John Denver with a mustache. He looked like he stepped out of his time machine from 1978 and sat down in front of us. Some of his gems included: “Kick ‘em in the balls!”, “You hit like a girl!” and as soon as the fight went to the ground, “C’mon ref, Stand ‘em up!” and “Kick ‘em in the head!”. Clearly, this gentleman that people in our section dubbed “Shaggy” had a less-than-educated understanding of the rules of mixed martial arts.
The UFC’s maiden voyage into the Badger State may have been its most exciting card of the year as “Lights Out” Chris Lytle (31-18-5) ended his career on a high note by winning both “Fight of the Night” and “Submission of the Night” honors against “The Outlaw” Dan Hardy (23-10). The card was certainly the best free offering the organization has put forth in quite some time and rivaled many of its Pay-Per-View events with two hard hitting wars between “Smooth” Ben Henderson (13-2) and “The Mongoose” Jim Miller (20-3) and Amir Sadollah (5-3) and “Bang” Duane Ludwig (21-11) as well as a brutal TKO for the more blood thirsty of fans, courtesy of “Cowboy” Donald Cerrone (15-4) in his win over Charles Oliveira (14-2). While the fans clearly came out as the big winners in Milwaukee, not everyone came out ahead and here with the stock report at the market’s close is The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.