The world’s most elite MMA organization stopped in the Sunshine State of Florida to settle unfinished flyweight tournament business between “Mighty Mouse” Demetrious Johnson (15-2-1) and “Uncle Creepy” Ian McCall (11-3-1). UFC on FX 3 kicked off the night with Eddie Wineland’s (19-8-1) KO of “Young Guns” Scott Jorgensen (13-6). “The Dentist” Josh Neer (33-11-1) faced the first loss of his most recent UFC stint as “Quicksand” Mike Pyle (23-8-1) put him away in short order. Ultra talented prospect “Indio” Erick Silva (14-2) continued to impress by shutting down the high pressure wrestling game of “The Spaniard” Charlie Brenneman (15-4) en route to a first-round submission victory and in the main event, “Uncle Creepy” came up short over three rounds.
Eddie Wineland vs. Scott Jorgensen: The opening bout of the main card was a case study in the egotism that plagues many high-level wrestlers in MMA. Many high-level wrestlers score big knockouts because their takedown skills allow them to get away with grievous mistakes on the feet. Then they decide that they are expert kickboxers and end up getting destroyed because they forget to wrestle between punches. Scott Jorgensen is a multiple time PAC-10 wrestler who faced a man with a terrible record against skilled positional ground fighters. He went for four takedowns the entire fight, only one of which wasn’t grappling against the fence. For the rest of the fight, he was fed a steady diet of straight punches. The instant Wineland began out-landing him, Jorgensen should have reverted to his wrestling base and pursued takedowns repeatedly. The proof is found in the fact that during the one brief instance “Young Guns” managed to get on top, he opened a colossal cut over Wineland’s eye. Instead, he chose to go back to boxing the boxer and paid the price at 4:10 of the second frame when Wineland put him away. Hopefully the $40,000 “Fight of the Night” bonus will help ease the sting of Jorgensen’s loss.
Mike Pyle vs. Josh Neer: The third fight in Josh Neer’s third run in the UFC lasted just 4:56. Unfortunately Neer is no longer unbeaten in his third attempt. It’s difficult to tell if Neer simply doesn’t have the skill to be successful at the UFC level or if Mike Pyle was simply on fire last night, but the net result was Pyle earning a “Knockout of the Night” bonus after controlling the entire bout. Pyle opened with a shoot directly to side control, proceeded to shrug off submission attempts, then made Neer pay for being overly aggressive when the match returned to the feet. It was Pyle’s night – he did everything right, and Neer had no answer.
Erick Silva vs. Charlie Brenneman: It was good to see that the unfortunate foolishness on the part of Mario Yamasaki in Erick Silva’s last bout had no detrimental effect on the young Brazilian’s exciting tendency towards unrelenting aggression. From the first bell, Silva was blasting “The Spaniard” with combinations of heavy blows every time the wrestling specialist went for a takedown. When the fight hit the mat, Silva was grabbing at any limb he could until he could force the stand-up. Brenneman, for his part, seemed to shrug off the punishing blows he ate every time he charged in for a takedown. Then, like any truly talented fighter, the Brazilian blue-chipper adapted to devastating effect. He saw that he wasn’t getting the damage he needed by blasting Brenneman on the way in, so he changed tactics and sprawled “The Spaniard’s” next double-leg attempt. From there, “Indio” promptly spun to Brenneman’s back, ran the legs, and choked out the wrestler. The “Submission of the Night” winner elevated himself from blue-chip to serious contender in the welterweight division and should find himself across from one of the 170lbs. elite in his next UFC appearance.
Demetrious Johnson vs. Ian McCall: The main event was the only main card bout that saw the judges and it was every bit as action packed as their first meeting. The two flyweight kingpins battled on a fairly even playing field for the first two rounds with flashes of brilliance from both men, but an overall theme of “Mighty Mouse” tipping the scales in his favor with superior athleticism and footwork. By the third round, Johnson’s pace and physical advantages began to take their toll and “Uncle Creepy” began to peter out, clearly losing the final frame. The bout proved that there was no fluke from McCall in the first fight and that he is undoubtedly a UFC caliber talent with a very bright future in the 125lbs. division, but “Mighty Mouse” was the better man and will fight for the title in the near future.
Click here for the full list of UFC on FX 3: Johnson vs. McCall results.