(pic via Esther Lin’s TUF 14 Finale gallery at MMA Fighting)
Things were looking pretty decent for Jason ‘Mayhem’ Miller in his fight with Michael Bisping right up until he ran out of gas. Extra unfortunate for Jason: this happened after just one round. From there Bisping abused Miller like a secret basement sex daughter until the ref mercifully stepped in and stopped things near the end of the third. It was a huge disappointment for Mayhem fans and fans of seeing Michael Bisping get his.
While the coach’s fight was a pretty straight forward ass whupping, there was some controversy in other fights. John Dodson’s TKO of TJ Dillashaw looked pretty brutal in full speed when it happened but upon video review showed Dillashaw scrambling for a leg as soon as he hit the ground. It’s the kind of thing 9 refs out of 10 would have stopped, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t still an early stoppage. Not to say I’m not content with John Dodson as the bantamweight TUF winner or anything.
I’m also pleased with Diego Brandao winning the 145 bracket. Anyone that wants to sacrifice their mental faculties and bodily health so they can emulate Wanderlei Silva is aight by me. Also, I’ve got a fever and the only cure is more Sandstorm being used in fighter walk-ins. Brandao and Dennis Bermudez let er rip in a back and forth fight that ended with Diego escaping a bad spot off his back and locking up a armbar that borked up his opponent’s arm. Does this mean he can finally go home to Brazil and buy his momma that house?
Tony Ferguson vs Yves Edwards was looking like it was gonna be a standup war and did it ever live up to expectations. Round 1 of that fight was one of the best rounds of the year. Every time it looked like Ferguson was about to put Edwards away, Edwards would come back with a headkick or three. Round 2 and 3 were close enough to cause Edwards fans to rageface when he lost 30-27, 30-27, and 29-28, but I think the right guy probably won. Don’t hold me to that until I rewatch it without beer goggles. They fuck up my quantitative abilities and lower my standards to the point where I start liking douchebags like Tony Ferguson.
As usual, there’s some guys on TUF who are competing above their best weight. You’ll probably see some of the wheat that was separated from tonight’s chaff drop down to a more natural class. Good for the featherweights, but what about those poor bantamweights with nowhere to go? John Dodson is someone who should be at flyweight, ditto with Louis Gaudinot. I feel extra bad for Louis because he just got ragdolled as a result. Johnny4Jesus Bedford hit him with everything but the kitchen sink, eventually convincing the ref to stop things with some brutal knees and soccer kicks to the body. In that way the first fight and the third had some deja-vu like similarities.
As a small finishing side note, anyone else notice how the refs seemed a lot more underfoot than usual? No, it wasn’t because the lighter weight classes were so much faster (although that probably didn’t help either). The cage used for fights at the Palms is smaller than the PPV cage, which gives you that nice intimate feeling when you’ve got two people and an overweight government official bouncing around the inside.