HYDEN BLOG: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly from Bellator 144 and UFC Fight Night 76

By Frank Hyden, MMATorch Contributor

Bellator 144 and UFC Fight Night 76 both took place this past weekend. Let’s get right to it.

Bellator 144

GOOD: Michael Page stops Charlie Ontiveros

Page took the fight to the ground and ended things with some sick elbows. Ontiveros had his jaw broken in brutal fashion. Yikes. A good win for Page as he continues to build momentum.


GOOD: Goiti Yamauchi submits Isao Kobayashi

This was a little slow-paced at times, but Yamauchi worked for the finish, and got it in the third round. Very nice showing from Yamauchi. The fight was solid, but the win was very good. Yamauchi employed his gameplan exactly and picked up the win.


GOOD: Brennan Ward stops Dennis Olson

Olson tried to keep things on the ground, but Ward was eventually able to get back to the feet, and he dropped Olson with a left/right combo and the unleashed a big flurry on the ground to force the stoppage. Big win for Ward.


GOOD/GREAT: Rafael Carvalho stops Brandon Halsey

Halsey damn near had Carvalho with an arm triangle, and it’s crazy that Carvalho survived early in that first round. Then, in the second round, Carvalho blasted Halsey with the liver kick from hell and ended things. That was about as pinpoint accurate as you can get on a kick. It was placed beautifully. With the win, Carvalho becomes the new Bellator Middleweight Champion. Huge win for Carvalho, and two tremendous moments for him during this fight.


UFC Fight Night 76

GOOD: Neil Seery submits Jon Delos Reyes

Both guys kept up a quick pace throughout this fight, and there was plenty of action. Seery was controlling things more often than not, and he ended up taking advantage of an opportunity when Delos Reyes went for a takedown. Seery grabbed a guillotine and cinched it tight, forcing the tap. Good win for Seery.


GREAT: Nicolas Dalby vs. Darren Till

This was a fantastic fight, and greatly entertaining. Till took the first two rounds, but Dalby came roaring back in the third with a great performance to force a majority draw. Two of the judges ruled it even while the third gave Till two rounds to one. Just a great fight. The striking was fast and furious. It got sloppy a bit in a few stretches, but given the effort put forth by both guys you would expect that a little. This was just a really fun, action-packed fight that delivered huge.


BAD: Norman Parke vs. Rezi Madadi

This wasn’t good at all. It looks even worse coming after that Dalby-Till fight. This was just dull. It had a lot of that fake-action going on, where they were doing a lot of stuff that isn’t going to amount to anything. It’s like when a guy paws out a weak jab when he’s five feet away from the guy. You’re just trying to make yourself seem active. Or when a guy pumps his arms while still slowly strolling through a crosswalk. You’re still moving slow as hell, you’re just trying to fake me into thinking you’re actually moving and doing more than you actually are. That was this fight. Parke won the decision, for whatever that’s worth.


GOOD: Louis Smolka submits Patrick Holohan

Holohan controlled the first round, though Smolka certainly had some good moments of his own. These guys battled back and forth throughout the round, but Holohan probably got the nod there. In the second round, though, Smolka pulled away, and started getting the advantage with his striking and submissions. Holohan took Smolka down, but Smolka worked for several submission attempts, landed hard elbows, and just started punishing Holohan. Smolka’s defense was also on display here as well, as Holohan had him trapped a few times but couldn’t put him away. After this win, Smolka asked for a higher-ranked opponent and he should get one. Let’s see what he’s got. It’ll certainly be interesting to see how he does against a top-10 opponent or so.

Comments and suggestions can be emailed to me at hydenfrank@gmail.com and you can follow me on Twitter at @hydenfrank

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