Bellator 187 and UFC Fight Night 120 were both this past weekend. Let’s get to the rundown.
GOOD/UGLY- Charlie Ward stops John Redmond
The fight itself was fine, with both Ward and Redmond having success with their striking. Ward ended things right at the end of the first round with a huge left hook. That’s the GOOD. The UGLY comes from Conor McGregor jumping into the cage and when security and the ref tried to remove him, he tried to attack the ref. I like McGregor, but you can’t have that. I don’t know how much of his recent behavior is pre-planned, but the cynic in me says a lot. It’s a way to keep your name in the news and make yourself Must-See TV. It works, but you still don’t want too much of it.
GOOD- Kevin Ferguson Jr. submits Fred Freeman
Ferguson got Freeman to the ground and looked for his opportunity. He got it when Freeman gave up his back and Ferguson locked in a tight rear-naked choke. Good win for Ferguson.
GOOD- Sinead Kavanagh stops Maria Casanova
Kavanagh dropped Casanova with a big right, jumped on her, and forced the ref stoppage in about thirty seconds. Good win for Kavanagh.
GOOD- A.J. McKee submits Brian Moore
McKee is the exciting up-and-comer but he had to work hard for this win. Moore used experience and good strategy and technique to push McKee. He cut open McKee, who had to fight through the adversity. He did, and ended up getting the submission win early in the third round. This will make McKee a better fighter. Moore showed great tenacity and did well in this short notice fight. Good win for McKee.
UFC Fight Night 120
GOOD- Clay Guida stops Joe Lauzon
Guida dropped Lauzon with a big uppercut and jumped on him and started landing punches. The ref didn’t stop it so he started throwing elbows which forced the stoppage. Big win from Guida and a late stoppage from the ref.
GOOD- Raphael Assuncao stops Matthew Lopez
Lopez missed weight so this was a catchweight fight. Lopez did pretty well in the first round, but Assuncao came back in the second round. In the third round, he caught Lopez flush with a big right hand for the knockout. Big win for Assuncao, who called for a third fight against the new UFC Bantamweight Champion T.J. Dillashaw. I don’t think that’ll happen, but it’s good for him to at least float that out there. He certainly deserves consideration, that’s for sure.
GOOD- Cezar Ferreira vs. Nate Marquardt
Ferreira won by split decision and this was a close fight. I agree with the decision, but I guess I could possibly see someone leaning Marquardt. Maybe I missed something and if I rewatched the fight I would think Marquardt, but it felt to me watching live that Ferreira took two of the three rounds.
GOOD- Junior Albini vs. Andrei Arlovski
I’m probably being generous here, but this fight was fine. Both guys were trying mostly, this was just kind of dull. Arlovski won the decision and continues his career, as he was likely to retire if he had lost.
GOOD/GREAT- Matt Brown stops Diego Sanchez
This was about as fiery as you would expect, with Sanchez pushing the action and Brown happy to do the same. The finish came about halfway through the first round as Brown caught a Sanchez kick, pushed him back to the cage and then crushed Sanchez with a tremendous elbow. That was so nasty. Sanchez crumpled immediately. I saw some people on Twitter say it looked like a video game glitch where a character rag dolls, and that’s a pretty apt description. Brown has talked about this being his last fight. If it is, he goes out with a great highlight-reel finish.
GREAT- Dustin Poirier stops Anthony Pettis
These guys fought like hell for about three and a half rounds. The blood was flowing and there were several near-finish moments. Striking dominated the first round, with the second having a lot of great grappling work. This was also when the blood really started getting nuts. Blood always adds some drama, but even if it wasn’t there, this fight would still have been awesome. In the third round, Pettis tapped as Poirier was moving to mount, he had some sort of rib injury.
After the big win, Poirier laid out what’s next. He said he’s fighting the winner of the Justin Gaethje vs. Eddie Alvarez winner, and then says he wants a title shot after that. That would be really awesome, I would love for this to be what happens. We’ll see what the UFC decides to do, but there’s a good chance they go this route. Big win for Poirier.
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NOW CHECK OUT HYDEN’S PREVIOUS TAKE: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly from Bellator 186 and UFC 217