Nate Diaz – Sure I picked Nate Diaz to defeat Jim Miller in the main event of UFC on FOX 3 so the result comes as no surprise but the way in which he did so was both unexpected and impressive. Before Saturday night Miller had only 3 losses, all by decision and to three of the lightweight divisions best including current UFC champ Ben Henderson and former champ Frankie Edgar, thus this fight expected to be a back and forth battle for all 5 rounds. Well obviously Diaz had other plans as he had his way with Miller on the feet both at distance and in the clinch. However it was Diaz’ bread and butter that finished the bout as Miller shot in for a takedown only to be caught in a guillotine. The choke wasn’t secure initially but after a quick adjustment Diaz had it locked on forcing Miller to tap out in the second round. With the win UFC President Dana White said Diaz will be next in line for a title shot at 155 pounds and with the momentum he has at the moment whomever he faces is in for a tough test.
Floyd Mayweather vs Miguel Cotto - No, Floyd Mayweathers victory over Miguel Cotto may not win any awards for fight of the year but it was still an entertaining bout at the highest level of the sport. Whether it be because as Mayweather said after the fight about wanting to entertain the fans or not the contest was at times more competitive than I anticipated, particularly in the middle rounds where Cotto was able to land more punches on Mayweather than we’d seen awhile. The momentum appeared to be turning in Cottos favor until the 9th round when Floyd reestablished himself and close strong, sweeping the championship rounds. Mayweather actually hurt Cotto in the 12th round but was content to cruise to a decision rather than look for a finish. After 12 rounds Floyd would be awarded a unanimous decision in a bout that had that big fight feel and energy throughout.
Roland Delorme vs Nick Denis - There’s an old adage that says “Words can’t do it justice.”, and I certainly think that applies to the fight between Roland Delorme and Nick Denis on the UFC on FOX 3 preliminaries. Denis hurt Delorme early and looked to be on the verge of stopping him but to Delormes credit he was able to survive the tough spot while landing a few solid counter punches against his hard charging opponent. Late in the round Delorme hurt Denis standing before taking the fight to the ground. With a mere 10 seconds or less in the opening frame Delorme sunk a rear naked choke on Denis who tapped out with 1 second left on the clock. It was as fun of a fight as you can see that goes only round and showed exactly why I’m a fan of the sport.
Michael Chandler - Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandlers first fight since winning the title didn’t last long as he stopped veteran Akihiro Gono with strikes just 56 seconds into their bout. That Chandler won comes as no surprise as he was an overwhelming favorite heading into the nontitle defense but the ease in which he dispatched of Gono was relatively impressive. Chandler is unbeaten in ten fights and if he continues to improve it’s difficult to envision anyone in Bellators 155 pound division dethroning the champ.
Marco Huck vs Ola Afolabi - I usually only write about fights I’ve seen and unfortunately I missed Marco Hucks defense against Ola Afolabi but heard from enough reputable sources that it was a great bout with plenty of back and forth action. The contest ended in a draw which speaks to the competitiveness of it and will hopefully lead to a rematch. One I will be sure not to miss.
Damian Grabowski vs Dave Huckaba - Fortunately there wasn’t alot of “bad” things to write about in the combat sports world this weekend, leave it up to the heavyweights to provide us with one exception. Much like it’s boxing bretheren, heavyweight MMA is often hit or miss, unfortunately when it comes to Bellators heavyweight fights it’s usually the latter. This was evidenced once again at Bellator 67 as Damian Grabowski won a lackluster decision over Dave Huckaba. To make matters worse Bellators cageside announcers kept saying beforehand how exciting the bout would be which certainly did not end up being the case. Fans and media have debated whether or not Bellator would be better off without a heavyweight division, fights like these are an example of why such a discussion even exists.
Demetrius Andrade vs Rudy Cisneros – It was just one week ago when I was giving ESPN2 Friday Night Fights due credit for a good show in a season that’s been mostly devoid of them. Well that didn’t last long. I was already wary when I saw rather than the usual Friday slot ESPN2s boxing would be broadcast on Saturday at the same time as the Floyd Mayweather vs Miguel Cotto pay-per-view. My skepticism increased when I realized Demetrius Andrade was in the sole scheduled bout. It’s not that Andrade is a bad fighter, it’s just that his opposition thus far has been underwhelming, to be generous. That was the case once again as Andrade took on Rudy Cisneros who was coming in off a knockout loss. To the surprise of perhaps nobody other than Cisneros and his camp Andrade won by first round KO in devastating fashion. The combination Andrade put Cisneros down with was visually stunning but Rudys reaction afterwards was the exact opposite. Cisneros was slow to regain his faculties and would be carted out on a stretcher as a precautionary measure. I understand beating veterans and journeymen is part of developing a prospect but not only is Andrade gaining little from such mismatches other than padding his record, he and moreso those allowing such bouts to take place, including ESPN, are putting his overmatched opponents at risk.
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