Hello everyone, welcome back to another installment of UFC PPV AfterMMAth.
It seems like anyone with the ability to express themselves spoke of one thing and one thing only these past few weeks – UFC200.
Not that it’s not important mind you. After all, it’s not every day that the number one star and headliner of a milestone PPV calls shenanigans via twitter and throws the whole sport into a whirlwind of speculations. I heard arguments to support Conor on his hissy fit as well as against. That’s a separate discussion though, because one of the side effects of said storm was a big shadow cast over the currently promoted PPV, namely UFC 197. Especially in light of the main event been changed 3 weeks out, introducing Ovince Saint Preux instead of champion Daniel Cormier.
So let’s look at UFC 197, how things transpired and how I did with my predictions.
- Yair Rodriguez Vs. Andre Fili – After this fight, twitter user P4P MMA suggested a fight to be booked next – Rodriguez Vs. Almeida. Sign me up! Nothing bad to say about Fili. It’s just that Yair is such a fun fighter to watch. When Rogan says “unpredictability” a 100 times in his fight, it’s an actual professional analysis. He throws kicks and punches and elbows from unexpected angles yet lands. He moves in a randomly efficient way and…damn that KO… KOTY so far, by far. Right after a week full of talk about Conor here comes Rodriguez to remind us that – you know – there are a whole bunch of other fantastic fighters in the UFC. 1 for 1.
- Robert Whittaker Vs. Rafael Natal – Robert Whittaker seems to be made of that rare material of people who can take about 1500 kicks to the leg, lose his right arm after the second round and still dominate the stand up – completely negating any ground attack from a world-class grappler… you know what I’m talking about. A unicorn… This guy defines “tough as nails“. Another sound striking performance from a guy I wouldn’t be surprised to see in title contention talk in 2017. 2 for 2.
- Anthony Pettis Vs. Edson Barboza – Knowing the Pettis brothers took time to train at Jackson MMA, I expected to see Pettis doing better, yet I did think Barboza could finish with one of his multiple kinds of strikes. That didn’t happen, but Edson did come prepared. Patient, super technical and most importantly – disciplined. He didn’t need a repeat of the Cerrone fight. Not against another good grappler in Showtime. Great execution. 3 for 3.
- Demetrious Johnson Vs. Henry Cejudo – Before this fight, my question was “DJ‘s worst nightmare? Or just another victim?” I’m done even listening to the hype. It seems like Mighty mouse will never lose. This little big man is the most well-rounded fighter since GSP, and that says a bunch. Rogan likes calling him P4P of all time. I think that’s a little stretch (no pun intended), but DJ is simply a phenomenal mixed martial artists. One of a kind. Definitely up there with the GOATS (Anderson, GSP, Jones) Taken down early, got back up to his feet immediately and started landing those little knees. Such a beauty… a real champ. 4 for 4.
- Jon Jones Vs. Ovince Saint Preux – Talk about real champs… The king is back. I won’t call this the fight of the century. We all saw some rust. But it didn’t need to be one. This was definitely a test drive for the real thing. And this is not to discount OSP who, on 3 weeks notice took JBJ to a 5 round fight, touching him a few times and seeming to conserve energy for the most part. Kudos to OSP for taking this fight and for stepping up. Jones jones-ed his way to a win, but we did see some of these spinning attacks and even some solid GnP in the late rounds. The in-ring-practice will do the job and I believe Jones Vs. DC will be another good fight. 5 for 5…
UPDATE: As it turns out, OSP fought the last couple of rounds with a broken arm… Mad respect.
Well well well. A long time since I had a 100% prediction on a main card. That’s always nice, but the key thing is that we had ourselves a solid PPV top to bottom. Two of the P4P best on the card, some phenomenal finishes, young up and comers, sturdy hard hitters. What more can we expect?
Which brings me back to UFC 200.
Now we are one main event short of a really good card. After my initial reservations (mainly due to the less-than-compelling main event), it seems like we’re about to get ourselves a treat. Pending a couple of doctor appointments, it seems like we’re about to get a Jones/Cormier rematch to headline this monumental event. If that is the case, we will have a women’s title, a men’s title, a #1 contender rematch and a few more fun fights. A good card! All we have to hope for is that it will live up to the hype. I’m pretty damn sure it will, but before we go there, we do have a few very interesting events so don’t sleep on any of them.
As usual, feel free to comment, like and share this post.
Until next time,