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UFC 125 Frankie Edgar vs. Gray Maynard

Wow! What a fight!

Even though it’s been several days since the UFC championship fight between Gray Maynard and Frankie Edgar, I find myself  thinking about it often. It has to be the amazing fact that Edgar came back from a brutal smashing in the first round –he was knocked down 3 times!–and was able to turn the fight around to the point that I thought he had done enough to win it.

In the first round he took a savage beating inside the octagon but after making a few small adjustments between rounds, Frankie began to get much less. As Maynard began to slow noticeably –probably due to the massive amount of energy he used in trying to finish Edgar throughout the 1st round–  as time went on, Frankie scored often with striking combinations. He also finished several explosive take downs including one that resembled a pro-wrestling power bomb. I’m pretty sure I was fist pumping the air after that one!

The main adjustment he made was a simple yet often underused striking concept. He started to move his head off the line of fire often –especially after throwing his own punching combos– causing Maynard to miss a huge percentage of his striking attacks. A good thing, because there’s no way that he would have been able to handle much any punishment from Maynard. Gray was hitting super hard that night and clearly would have finished Edgar early on, had he been able to continue to land his strikes cleanly.

Last night I filmed a video breaking down the way I  apply several of the techniques Frankie Edgar used so successfully to keep his head from being Gray’s punching bag, in rounds two, three, four and five.

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Categories : Discussion, Reviews, UFC
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What a fight and what a great performance by Chael Sonnen in his UFC title fight with Anderson Silva!

He dominated the entire fight from start to finish, scoring some nice take downs, landing some brutal ground and dropping Anderson with strikes from the feet; the only problem is that after it was all said and done it was his opponent that retained the championship title not him. All because of a triangle choke. The same choke Sonnen had done so well in avoiding throughout the first twenty-three minutes of the five 5- minute round title bout.

Crazy stuff like that happens in MMA and I think that’s what makes it the greatest combat sport in the world, but I really hope Chael wins the belt at some point in the future because he really deserved it on Saturday night. He backed up all of his talk –and there was a lot of it!– by walking the walking and taking the fight to Silva all night long.

Congrats to Anderson on pulling out  the “W” but that result was a huge a downer for me.

You guys thinking instant rematch or looking for Silva to fight someone else?

Categories : Reviews, UFC
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Unfortunately I missed watching the live showing of UFC 116 (Lesnar vs. Carwin) last night but I did get a chance to sit down today and watch the main event fight that everyone including myself was so excited about.

Wow! What a fight! Brock showed us something that we weren’t yet sure that he had: Warrior spirit!

Taking an absolute beating in the first round that would have finished most, Brock managed to weather the storm –more like a friggin hurricane!– against a fighter that nobody had lasted more than one round with in the past.

I also thought he did a great job of keeping his hands up in a pretty solid fighting stance throughout the fight and displayed some great ground control when he finally got the take down that he was desperately searching for. Once Carwin hit the ground, he seemed way too exhausted to avoid the obvious arm triangle that Brock was slowly crunching him into. It’s been said that there is an escape to every technique but I beg to differ. Put yourself in a Brock Lesnar mammoth arm triangle and you’ll have two choices: Tap out or go to sleep!

Lesnar has the size, strength and wrestling technique to win fights but that would only take him so far. The fact that he has the fighting spirit to push through adversity and triumph will keep him a champion for a very long time.

Any new Brock Lesnar fans out there?

Categories : Reviews, UFC
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UFC 114 After Thoughts

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Last nights UFC 114 card was great at moments but lacked action many times throughout the night. I had picked Ramape to win the main event but Rashad did a great job of fighting from afar, scoring a bunch of solid take downs and a few strikes which enabled him to win by decision.

Anything is possible in this sport and the bout between Todd Duffee and Mike Russow was shocking evidence of that. Russow absorbed so much punishment in the beginning of that fight that I instantly began cheering for him to pull out the win. I thought that if he scored a take down on Duffee we might be able to see a stronger part of his game.

With a pretty weak striking game and the extra pounds he was carrying around his midsection seeming to slow him down more and more as time went on, I truly believed that completing a take down was his only hope. Luckily I was wrong. The solid right hand he landed scored him a great knockout to give him the “Rocky Balboa” style come back victory. I loved it!

Diego Sanchez was out sized in his battle last night against John Hathaway. Hathaway’s strong take down defense and capable striking made things even worse for Sanchez. Diego has beaten a lot of great fighters at welterweight but with the sport evolving like it is and fighters becoming more and more well rounded, I think his frame may be too small for the 170 lbs. division.

Another great moment was when Melvin Guillard threw and landed that killer knee strike. Ouch! What was impressive about that was that he didn’t hesitate. During a situation where many fighters would have solely tried to defend the takedown, Guillard fired off his knee strike in the midst of his defensive motions. Well done.

I truly believe if the UFC made their cage a little bit smaller we’d see more action, more solid hits, an increased pace and overall better fights. A cage with a 32 foot diameter give fighters too much opportunity to stay out of punching range, run around and run out the clock.

How’d did you like the fights?

Categories : Reviews, UFC
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I thought it was a pretty good night of fights even though it was a rough night for our Canadian scrappers. Here’s a few of my quick thoughts about the card

Shogun showed some great aggression and confidence in his win over Machida. Congrats to him.

Daley’s cheap shot definitely pissed me off! He had all fight to try and catch Koscheck with his striking and then resorts to that type of crap at the end after getting dominated on the ground throughout all the rounds.  Listening to the replay, I think Koscheck said something after the final bell to him that may have got him mad. I’d be interested in hearing what that was. Still no reason to take a shot at him after the fight’s over.

I liked the Stephens/Stout fight a lot. Stephens should some good power and explosiveness. Stout displayed some good cardio and combos.

Man, I was hoping Kimbo would win but he seems to be a little behind the game in terms of technical skill which I think is a major reason he was getting so tired out there.

That’s about it, I’d love to hear what you guys thought about it so throw up a comment and let me know.

    Now for the pick’em contest…

    Nobody picked all 11 winners correctly but contestant Dustin got 9 out of 11. Pretty damn impressive. I’ll be giving him the free video workshop prize for getting the most right. Congrats Dustin! I’ll be emailing you tomorrow.

    Categories : Reviews, UFC
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    I was a bit late tuning in to the UFC Fights last night but I did manage to catch the Jon Jones vs. Brandon Vera bout along with the match before it that Dos Santos won.

    In the main event bout I thought Jones did a great job of setting up some nice takedowns by punching before each time he shot in. He also, much to the delight of myself and the crowd, pulled off some really cool throws. I’m really looking forward to seeing him fight some more.

    The fight between Gonzaga and Dos Santos wasn’t overly exciting but the quick and explosive knockout by John Howard over his opponent Daniel Roberts balanced things out in terms of entertainment value.

    How did the first two fights on the card go down? Anything exciting happen?

    Categories : Reviews, UFC
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