Josh Koscheck’s plan to fight every lunar phase or whatever didn’t work out so well for him. He was able to stay relatively competitive with Thiago Alves and KO Yoshiyuki Yoshida, but lighting struck in a bottle for UFC newb Paulo Thiago. This was the birth of a star, right? Or similar to Yves Edwards vs. Mark Hominick? A guy brought in to build up a future contender shows he has some skills? NO.
Paulo Thiago showed no skills on Saturday. He didn’t even show us the singular form of the word “skills” either; the fight took place completely on the feet and he got handled. Fightmetric doesn’t have any numbers up but it’s safe to say the Kos to Paulo punch ratio was about 84 to 2. Low and behold, one of those was what won Thiago the fight. It also put $40k in his pocket and ruined the Welterweight rankings. We fans should charge him that just for screwing everything up. Now we’ll have to put up with MMA Weekly ranking him above GSP and Jake Rossen saying Koscheck needs to retire.
The whole thing was inconsequential in reality. Once Thiago’s fifteen minutes of fame are up he’ll have left no mark in the division. You won’t find a soul who thinks Paulo is a contender because of this fight. Not even on Sherdog. This was a freak victory and he’s too garbage-y to KO anyone else. Our hermano Brent “THE BRICK” Brookhouse over at Bloody Elbow wrote a “How not to punch by Josh Koscheck” piece pointing out all the small technical flaws that led to the ending. But what about the “How not to punch by Paulo Thiago”? The guy threw his uppercut with his eyes closed, which caused him to completely miss the fact that Kos was already facing in a completely different direction by the time he landed it. Hail Mary plays don’t always work even though this one did. It’s kind of like the lottery: just because he won once doesn’t mean he’ll do it again, no matter how many tickets / fights he gets.
The worst part of the whole thing was the stoppage. It was absolutely feminine. Everyone who thinks it was good needs to change their bookmark from Fightlinker to Ponylinker and get off the MMA team. Some people have it right: a fight isn’t over if there’s a knock down. Someone got floored, big deal. Of the top of my head I can name a bunch of fights where guys got leveled so bad their head hit the ground and they still won the fight:
- Nog vs. Herring III
- Franklin vs. Tanner II
- Marcus Davis vs. Paul Taylor
- Don Frye vs. James Thompson
- Sherk vs. Franca
- Misaki vs. Akiyama
- Hughes vs. Trigg II
- Tanner vs. Baroni I
Also, please kindly shut up if you try using a boxing analogy. Two extra punches on the ground with 4 oz gloves don’t belong in the same breath with 60+ against the ropes with 10 oz gloves over sweat-hardened glue. Koscheck is a competitor at the most elite level of a sport. This wasn’t two nobodies nowhere stupid enough to need saving from themselves. Marc Goddard isn’t some hero for stepping in. He won’t get a Christmas card from Josh saying “Thank you for saving my life lol :)”. It was a bad stoppage that cost a guy his status. Everyone lets referees have too much leeway. “I felt-” is giving these guys an excuse to make bad decisions. That has to stop now. Kos was ready to continue fighting and people are still trying to justify it.
We found out Paulo Thiago was on a one fight deal last month. I wouldn’t be surprised if Joe Silva said “thanks, but no thanks” to re-signing him. He got beat up but landed 1.5 effective punches; there’s nothing about that which deserves a UFC contract. Let Strikeforce find out if he’s ready for the big leagues without wasting our time and sending a division into chaos. The UFC better have learned a lesson from this.