—MAIN CARD (on Fuel TV @ 10:00pm ET)—
Wanderlei Silva vs. Brian Stann: Silva via KO (Punches), Round 2, 4:08
Mark Hunt vs. Stefan Struve: Hunt via TKO (Punches), Round 3, 1:44
Takanori Gomi vs. Diego Sanchez: Sanchez via Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28), Round 3, 5:00
Yushin Okami vs. Hector Lombard: Okami via Split Decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28), Round 3, 5:00
Mizuto Hirota vs. Rani Yahya: Yahya via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28), Round 3, 5:00
Dong Hyun Kim vs. Siyar Bahadurzada: Kim via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27), Round 3, 5:00
The first females of the UFC have already made history and now just one week later, the UFC returns to Saitama, Japan with UFC on Fuel TV 8. Opening duties are bestowed upon the welterweights as “Stun Gun” Dong Hyun Kim (16-2-1) locks up with “The Great” Siyar Bahadurzada (21-4-1). Brazilian Rani Yahya (17-7) will look to prove homefield advantage means nothing when he takes on Japan’s own “Pugnus” Mizuto Hirota (14-5-1). A move up into middleweight contention could be in order for the victor between fourth-ranked “Thunder” Yushin Okami (28-7) and eighth-ranked “Lightning” Hector Lombard (32-3-1). “The Fireball Kid” Takanori Gomi (34-8) will greet “The Dream” Diego Sanchez (23-5) when he makes his return to the lightweight division. In the co-main event, one heavyweight’s rise to glory will come to a screeching halt as “Skyscraper” Stefan Struve (25-5) takes on K-1 veteran “Super Samoan” Mark Hunt (8-7). Closing the night off is a light heavyweight battle between “The All-American” Brian Stann (12-5) and the always popular “The Axe Murderer” Wanderlei Silva (34-12-1). The first half of the main card was given a look in UFC on Fuel TV 8 Main Card Pre-Fight Breakdown: Part I. MMA Gospel will round the card off here with Part II, providing what to look for in each match-up leading up to the main event.
The UFC hits the land of the rising sun again just a week after the historic UFC 157 card to offer fight fans another great night of mixed martial arts action, this time for free on Fuel TV. The eighth installment of the UFC on Fuel TV series is headlined by “The Axe Murderer” Wanderlei Silva (34-12-1) and “All-American” Brian Stann (12-5), while co-main duties fall on heavyweights “Skyscraper” Stefan Struve (25-5) and K-1 star Mark Hunt (8-7). ”The Dream” Diego Sanchez (23-5) and “The Fireball Kid” Takanori Gomi (34-8) will anchor the card in a lightweight contest. The opening fight of the night will see dangerous welterweights “The Great” Siyar Bahadurzada (21-4-1) and “Stun Gun” Dong Hyun Kim (16-2-1). In middleweight action, eighth-ranked ”Shango” Hector Lombard (23-3-1) and current number 4 “Thunder” Yushin Okami (28-7) will continue their quest for 185lbs. gold. Rounding out the bottom half of the card, filling the second slot and filling the second slot is Rani Yahya (17-7) in a featherweight clash with “Pugnus” Mizuto Hirota (14-5-1). Here in Part I of the UFC on Fuel TV 8 pre-fight breakdown, MMA Gospel will delve into the first half of the six-fight card.
The UFC returned to the MGM Grand Garden Arena for the first time in six months to deliver their traditional New Year’s card. This time, the fans were treated to a five-round war of attrition between Cain Velasquez (11-1) and “Cigano” Junior Dos Santos (15-2) for the UFC Heavyweight Championship. Leading up to the main event was the “Fight of the Night”, a bloody three-round battle between elite lightweight grapplers “J-Lau” Joe Lauzon (22-8) and “The Mongoose” Jim Miller (22-4). Unfortunately for both the UFC and the fans, the opening three bouts were nowhere near as exciting. Constantinos Philippou (12-2) scored a third-round TKO over “The Barbarian” Tim Boetsch (16-5) in the anchor fight. “Thunder” Yushin Okami (28-7) used his Judo and wrestling to shut down “The Talent” Alan Belcher (18-7), but he also shut down the audience as the fight dragged on at an abysmally slow pace. “The Crippler” Chris Leben (22-9) returned to the Octagon to face Strikeforce transplant Derek Brunson (10-2) in the opening bout, but his lay-off appeared to have greatly affected him and the combined performance of Brunson and Leben prompted Dana White to apologize for putting the fight on the main card. The main event was good, the anchor was bad, and the opening bout was just ugly, but the fighters themselves and how they fared may be a different story.
As MMA’s 2012 calendar year draws to a close, the UFC returns from its globe-trot to its home in Las Vegas for UFC 155: Dos Santos vs. Velasquez II on December 29. The MGM Grand Garden Arena plays host to a night of thrilling fights including “The Crippler” Chris Leben (22-8) returning to the Octagon against Derek Brunson (9-2). “The Talent” Alan Belcher (18-6) looks to stake his title claim at middleweight against “Thunder” Yushin Okami (27-7). Another surging middleweight, “The Barbarian” Tim Boetsch (16-4), takes on Serra-Longo prospect Constantinos Philippou (11-2). “J-Lau” Joe Lauzon (22-7) looks to keep his win streak alive against the always-tough Jim Miller (21-4). The marquee fight closes out the year perfectly as the UFC Heavyweight Championship is put on the line in a rematch of arguably the two toughest heavyweights on the planet in champ “Cigano” Junior Dos Santos (15-1) and the man from whom he took the title, Cain Velasquez (10-1).
The UFC will return to the combat sports superfight Mecca that is the MGM Grand Garden Arena for its annual New Year’s event, set to take place on December 29. The world’s premier MMA organization has once again scheduled a major title contention for the main event, pitting reigning heavyweight king “Cigano” Junior Dos Santos (15-1) against the man he captured the crown from, Cain Velasquez (10-1). Opening the night’s festivities is a sure-fire crowd pleaser as “The Crippler” Chris Leben (22-8) returns after a year-long suspension to take on Strikeforce transplant Derek Brunson (9-2). Next out “Thunder” Yushin Okami (27-7) will look to build a winning streak by ending the current four-fight run of “The Talent” Alan Belcher (18-6). “The Barbarian” Tim Boetsch (16-4) will collide with another middleweight on a four-bout hot streak, Constantinos Philippou (11-2), and lightweight submission wizards Jim Miller (21-4) and “J-Lau” Joe Lauzon (22-7) will meet in the night’s co-main. Recent history has not been kind to either lightweight and each is eager to put a 1-1 2012 behind them.
The UFC closes out the mixed martial arts action for 2012 on a high note with UFC 155, as heavyweight king “Cigano” Junior Dos Santos (15-1) and Cain Velasquez (10-1) face off one more time to claim the heavyweight title as their own. Co-main event duties are handed to “J-Lau” Joe Lauzon (22-7) and “The Mongoose” Jim Miller (21-4) in a possible “Fight of the Night” candidate. “The Talent” Alan Belcher (18-7) will try to keep his rise in the middleweight division alive as he takes on “Thunder” Yushin Okami (27-7) in a rematch from their organizational debut. Derek Brunson (9-2) makes the jump from Strikeforce to the UFC 185lbs. division with “The Crippler” Chris Leben (22-8) waiting to greet him. In the middle of all the action, “The Barbarian” Tim Boetsch (16-4) takes on short notice Constantinos Philippou (11-2). Each are riding a wave of success so far in the division but once they’re locked in the cage together, only one is guaranteed to see themselves take a step up in the middleweight food chain.
December 19 the UFC closes out its 2012 back at the MGM Grand Garden Arena with UFC 155 live and direct on Pay-Per-View. “The Crippler” Chris Leben (22-8) greets 185lb. Strikeforce transplant Derek Brunson (9-2) in the card’s opener. “The Barbarian” Tim Boetsch (16-4) meets Constantinos Philippou (11-2) in a pivotal match-up for both men. The pace is going to be set to “frantic” and “erratic” in the co-main event when fan favorites and submission artists “J-Lau” Joe Lauzon (22-7) and “The Mongoose” Jim Miller (21-4) collide in a lightweight showdown. In the main event, Cain Velasquez (10-1) will seek redemption as he tries to take the heavyweight title back from the man that took it from him and handed him his first loss: “Cigano” Junior Dos Santos (15-1). Before this tale of revenge gets played, one more rematch is in order when “Thunder” Yushin Okami (27-7) takes on “The Talent” Alan Belcher (18-6) once again. It was Okami who proved triumphant in their debut at UFC 62 in 2006 but with six years passing and experience gained, Belcher is looking to even the score.
The UFC returns to its home base at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on December 29 for the annual New Years card. UFC 155 will feature a rematch for the UFC Heavyweight Championship between “Cigano” Junior dos Santos (15-1) and Cain Velasquez (10-1). Also on the slate, Jim Miller (21-4) pits his submission skills against those of “J-Lau” Joe Lauzon (22-7). “The Barbarian” Tim Boetsch (16-4) will continue his rise up the middleweight ranks against the always dangerous Constantinos Philippou (11-2) with each man’s four-fight streak on the line. “Thunder” Yushin Okami (27-7) will do battle with another middleweight who has had his title hopes derailed by a few key losses, “The Talent” Alan Belcher (18-6). Opening the card is a middleweight bout between another pair of middleweights who have found themselves in an interesting sort of career limbo. Out of the cage legal screw-ups have set “The Crippler” Chris Leben’s (22-8) career back almost as much as his recent losses. Derek Brunson (9-2) came into MMA strong with a 9-0 start before a bad career decision completely derailed his hype train before he rolled into a loss against the former Strikeforce Middleweight Champion. Each man needs to right the ship at the other’s expense.
The Zuffa brass must be very pleased with the showings at UFC 150. Following an electrifying UFC on FOX card and featuring a rematch of one of the most exciting title fights in UFC history, UFC 150 had a lot to live up to and it seems to have done so with ease. The card opened with a striking war between “Blessed” Max Holloway (6-1) and “The American Kid” Justin Lawrence (4-1). The TUF alum started strong but much like in his losing effort in the reality show, his stamina became an issue and Holloway put him away late in the bout. “Thunder” Yushin Okami (27-7) returned to his roots by dragging hot prospect Buddy Roberts (12-3) to the mat and pummeling him with ground-and-pound until the referee saved him. Jake Shields (28-6-1) fought his fight against an over-matched “Short Fuse” Ed Herman (20-9) in a grueling ground battle. The Shields/Herman fight may have slowed things down, but it may have been good for fans to have a reprieve in their excitement prior to the 76-second affair between “Cowboy” Donald Cerrone (19-4) and “The Young Assassin” Melvin Guillard (30-11-2). The fight was brief, but it delivered in a huge way as is evidenced by Cerrone’s matching $60,000 “Fight of the Night” and “Knockout of the Night” checks. The main event was every bit as even as “Smooth” Ben Henderson (17-2) and “The Answer” Frankie Edgar’s (14-3-1) first bout. The champion and former champion went toe-to-toe for five rounds with Henderson retaining the title. The fans and the UFC came out as big winners at UFC 150, but the just like the bouts in the cage, there are always losers too.
—MAIN CARD (on Pay-Per-View @ 10:00pm ET)—
Ben Henderson vs. Frankie Edgar: Henderson via Split Decision (46-49, 48-47, 48-47), Round 5, 5:00
Donald Cerrone vs. Melvin Guillard: Cerrone via KO (Head Kick and Punch), Round 1, 1:16
Jake Shields vs. Ed Herman: Shields via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27), Round 3, 5:00
Yushin Okami vs. Buddy Roberts: Okami via TKO (Strikes), Round 2, 3:05
Justin Lawrence vs. Max Holloway: Holloway via TKO (Punches), Round 2, 4:49
This evening the UFC will return to the city where the world’s premier mixed martial arts promotion was born, the city where Royce Gracie (14-2) won the very first Ultimate Fighting Championship in November of 1993, Denver, Colorado. The Mile High City will host UFC 150 and 214 fight cards later they continue to bring some of the best fights to their birth city, with the highly anticipated rematch between current UFC Lightweight Champion “Smooth” Benson Henderson (15 -2) and “The Answer” Frankie Edgar (14-2) as Henderson looks to defend his title for the first time against the man he took the belt from. The co-main event of the evening sees dangerous striker “Cowboy” Donald Cerrone (18-4) go to war with another man who is known for his knockout power, “The Young Assassin” Melvin Guillard (47-11) in a lightweight fight that is already a frontrunner for “Fight of the Night”. In the 185lbs. division, former Strikeforce Middleweight Champion Jake Shields (27-6) will battle it out with “Short Fuse” Ed Herman (20-7) where spectators will most likely see Shields’ Jiu-jitsu going against Herman’s wrestling skills. Also in the middleweight division, “Thunder” Yushin Okami (27-7) will take on Buddy Roberts (12-2) as both look to move their way up the middleweight ladder. Former 155er “The American Kid” Justin Lawrence (4-0) of The Ultimate Fighter: Live will make his featherweight debut against “Blessed” Max Holloway (5-1) in the card’s opening bout. Before the main card takes the stage, FOX network FX once again boasts a stellar UFC preliminary card, including a fighter making his promotional debut in Denver, much like Royce Gracie did 19 years ago, “King” Chico Camus (11-3).