The thousands of fans have left the Mandalay Bay Event Center and fighters have returned home to nurse their injuries and plan for their next bouts following a night of solid competitive fights at UFC 137. “Diablo” Nick Diaz (25-8) took the win over “The Prodigy” BJ Penn (16-7-2) in his main event return to the UFC. Cheick Kongo (17-6-2) showed how superior technical abilities are a perfect foil for raw athletic ability when he dismantled “Meathead” Matt Mitrione (5-1). The MMA world witnessed the end of one of the most storied careers in MMA as “Cro Cop” Mirko Filipovic (27-11-2) came out on the losing side of a three-round fire fight with “Big Country” Roy Nelson (16-6). “Big Frog” Jeff Curran (35-14-1) had his UFC return spoiled by WEC stand-out “Young Guns” Scott Jorgensen (12-3) and Hatsu Hioki (22-4-2) broke the curse of JMMA fighters with a solid win over George Roop (12-7-1). With the fights in the books, everyone knows which man recorded the victory in each fight, but that doesn’t necessarily reflect how each man’s career will be affected and for that, MMA Gospel has the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.
The battle for the Bellator Season 5 Heavyweight Tournament finals went out like a bat out of hell with two match-ups lasting a little over a minute combined. Former US Army Boxing Champion “The American Soldier” Eric Prindle (6-1) took on Kentucky native “The Monster” Ron Sparks (5-1). Brazilian “Big Monster” Thiago Santos (6-1) and South African “Goliath” Neil Grove (11-5) met in a replacement bout that took weeks to finalize, but only seconds to conclude. In the main event Welterweight Champion Ben Askren (9-0) faced seasoned IFL veteran and hungry top contender “The Thoroughbred” Jay Hieron (19-5) in a five-round affair that put Askren’s title on the line for the first time.