Friday, 10 February 2012

UFC: The Year So Far

Article first published as UFC: The Year So Far at Technorati

It has been a busy year so far, with an event a week since UFC 142: Aldo vs Mendes.  Now we have a small amount of time to look back at the highlights.

via prommanow
UFC 142
The first UFC event of 2012 took place in mid January, with Jose Aldo facing the unbeaten Chad Mendes.  Aldo ended Mendes' night with a brutal knee, but more memorable was his escape from the cage and into the crowd to celebrate with his fellow Brazilians.  On that same card, Anthony Johnson ended his UFC career by failing spectacularly to make the weight cut to 185 pounds, even though this represented a move up in weight classes.  He was summarily dismissed by Vitor Belfort and subsequently released by the UFC.

via fightnetwork
UFC on FX 1
Six days later, Melvin Guillard and Jim Miller headlined the UFC first UFC on FX event.  In the main event, Guillard reminded everyone that he is a dynamic striker with little or no submission defense.  Miller reminded us that he has a granite chin and slick transitions as he recovered from being heavily rocked, took Guillard's back in a scramble and sunk in a rear naked choke.  It was later announced that Miller will meet Nate Diaz at UFC on Fox 3, probably for a shot at the Lightweight Title.  The card was also notable for Pat Barry's spectacular knockout of Christian Morecraft and even more impressive, he managed to escape a few submission attempts.

via mmainterplay
UFC on Fox 2
On January 28th, Rashad Evans fought Phil Davis for the right to face Jon Jones later this year.  As many expected her would, Rashad dominated Phil Davis in every aspect of the fight.  The co-main event was perhaps more anticipated and was certainly more talked about as Chael Sonnen fought Micheal Bisping for a shot at Anderson Silva's Middleweight Title.  The first two rounds were razor thin with the Brit surprising many with his ability to get to his feet after takedowns and control Sonnen against the cage.  The third saw Sonnen dominate position on the ground.  Sonnen won the match by a controversial decision and the internet exploded with debate.  In reality, it was a close fight and a decision in either direction would not have been unfair.

via fightnetwork

UFC 143
The controversy peaked at UFC 143: Diaz vs Condit, where the Interim Welterweight Title was on the line. From one perspective, Condit spent the fight cleverly eluding Diaz with his movement and footwork and landing significant blows and slick combinations.  From the other, Diaz pressed the action, chasing Condit around the cage and landing plenty of significant shots in the process.  The judges went with the former and Condit is now the interim title holder.  Diaz later tested positive for marijuana and stands to be fined and suspended.

What have I missed?  Hit the comments section with your highlights of the year so far.

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