UFC 148 Results: 10 Memorable Moments from Silva vs. Sonnen 2 in Las Vegas
The biggest fight in MMA history finally arrived on Saturday night, as Chael Sonnen challenged Anderson Silva for the UFC middleweight championship at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Though the main event certainly stole the show, there were also some great moments in the preliminary fights as well as the main card on pay-per-view.
The UFC just continues to get better and better, and Silva vs. Sonnen 2 proved that beyond a shadow of a doubt.
Here are the most memorable moments from UFC 148: Silva vs. Sonnen 2.
A Gruesome Eye Poke
LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 7: (L-R) Costa Philippou punches Riki Fukuda during their middleweight bout at UFC 148 inside MGM Grand Garden Arena on July 7, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
The undercard fights for UFC 148 weren’t the best we have ever seen, but they did give us a couple moments that were fairly memorable.
For people who love MMA yet are shamefully queasy, the gruesome eye-poke that Riki Fukuda delivered to Costa Philippou brought us to our knees.
It took place in the third round of a fairly entertaining fight, and for a moment it appeared as if it would be the end of the bout.
Fortunately, Philippou was able to continue and finish the fight, which he won by unanimous decision.
The Young Assassin Avoids Disaster
LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 7: Melvin Guillard (top) punches Fabricio Camoes during their lightweight bout at UFC 148 inside MGM Grand Garden Arena on July 7, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Though he wasn’t fighting on the main card on Saturday night, UFC lightweight Melvin Guillard still found himself in a somewhat high-profile fight against Fabricio Camoes in the "main event" of the preliminary fights on FX.
Guillard fought through some struggles early in the bout, as he found himself mounted at one point and took some damage.
Some crazy strikes from Camoes left open a few opportunities for Guillard, which he nearly finished with. He eventually wrapped up the unanimous decision by controlling the fight with his ground-and-pound.
The win was an important one for Guillard, as a loss to a non-high profile fighter could’ve been devastating for his career.
Money Is a Finisher
LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 7: (R-L) Chad Mendes punches Cody McKenzie during their featherweight bout at UFC 148 inside MGM Grand Garden Arena on July 7, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
UFC featherweight Chad Mendes has been criticized by many for not being much of a finisher, but "Money" was on tonight. Mendes wasted no time in knocking out TUF alumni Cody McKenzie in the first round of their main-card bout.
McKenzie threw a body kick that Mendes caught before he landed a perfectly-placed punch to the body. That shot put McKenzie down to the mat, where Mendes would finish things off with a few hammer-fists.
Mendes might not be in title contention again quite yet, but with more performances like this, he certainly could be sooner rather than later.
Maia’s Successful Debut at 170 Pounds
LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 7: Demian Maia (top) punches Dong Hyun Kim during their welterweight bout at UFC 148 inside MGM Grand Garden Arena on July 7, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Former middleweight contender Demian Maia had his chance at Anderson Silva in the past, but his inability to really challenge the champion likely led to his decision to make the drop to welterweight at UFC 148.
That drop might have been the best decision he ever made.
Maia used impressive technique to battle Kim to the ground, driving his body and neck into the mat and cage in the process. The move was all that was needed, as Kim apparently sustained an injury during the takedown.
The debut for Maia at 170 lbs was very successful, and it will be interesting to see where he goes from here.
Cung Le’s First UFC Win
LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 6: Cung Le makes weight during the UFC 148 Weigh In at the Mandalay Bay Events Center on July 6, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Forty-year old martial arts legend Cung Le always said that one of his biggest goals was to get a win in the UFC. After an unsuccessful debut against Wanderlei Silva, Le finally got off the schneid against Patrick Cote at UFC 148.
It wasn’t Le’s best performance and he didn’t get the knockout like he has done in every one of his victories before this, but the important thing is that he got the win against a quality opponent.
"I was going to do a backflip, but I didn’t have any energy," Le said in the cage on pay-per-view immediately after the win. "He has such a hard head, I hurt my foot on it."
Tito Ortiz’s Entrance
Robert Laberge/Getty Images
Hours after being inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame, Tito Ortiz made his final walk to the cage. It was a special one and a noticeably emotional one for the "Huntington Beach Bad Boy," even though he was wearing a metallic gladiator mask.
"Mosh" by Eminem blared through the arena speakers in the MGM Grand Garden Arena as the fans gave an emphatic "pop" for the man who helped carry the sport during some of its darkest days.
Tito Ortiz’s Final Fight
Jul. 7, 2012; Las Vegas, NV, USA; UFC fighter Forrest Griffin (right) punches Tito Ortiz during a light heavyweight bout in UFC 148 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE
After making an epic entrance to the cage for his final fight, it was finally time for Ortiz to have his swan song in the Octagon in front of thousands in attendance and millions watching at home.
Ortiz rocked Griffin twice during the three-round fight and also took him down multiple times, but it was Griffin’s pace and non-stop pressure that eventually cost Ortiz the fight on the judges’ scorecards.
Griffin out-struck Ortiz almost three-to-one and won a unanimous decision, 29-28.
The two men were awarded with the Fight of the Night bonus. In the end, it was a great performance for Ortiz in his final fight despite the fact that he didn’t win.
Forrest Griffin Leaves the Cage After the Fight
LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 7: (L-R) Forrest Griffin kicks Tito Ortiz during their light heavyweight bout at UFC 148 inside MGM Grand Garden Arena on July 7, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Forrest Griffin is a weird guy. We all know that, the UFC knows it, Griffin himself knows it.
But some of the things he does in the cage and particularly after fights are just...on a different level of "weird."
Immediately following the fight against Ortiz, Griffin practically ran out of the cage and toward the locker room. This caused UFC president Dana White to literally chase him down. The camera went back to the cage and focused on Ortiz, so it was tough to see exactly what the interaction was between White and Griffin, but Griffin did eventually get back in the cage.
Then he was announced as the winner, and proceeded to steal the microphone from Joe Rogan and interview Tito Ortiz himself.
What a bizarre guy.
Another Controversial Ending
Jul. 7, 2012; Las Vegas, NV, USA; UFC fighter Anderson Silva (top) punches Chael Sonnen during a middleweight bout in UFC 148 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE
After all of the hype about Chael Sonnen following the first Silva fight, Chael finally had a chance to prove himself as the greatest middleweight on the planet on Saturday night.
Unfortunately, another controversial ending may bring more questions.
After Sonnen missed a spinning backfist and ended up on his back, Silva threw what appeared to be a very obvious knee to the face. The finish then came when Silva landed a series of punches before referee Yves Lavigne stopped the bout.
All of that came after Silva had very clearly grabbed Sonnen’s shorts on numerous occasions.
UFC president Dana White and Sonnen later told reporters that they didn’t believe the knee was illegal, but the controversy will still remain.
Anderson and Chael Bury the Hatchet
LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 6: UFC President Dana White separates Anderson Silva (L) and Chael Sonnen (R) during the UFC 148 Weigh In at the Mandalay Bay Events Center on July 6, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
It was the most hyped fight in the history of mixed martial arts with what appeared to be some very intense feelings between the two competitors.
The intensity of the fight more than lived up to the hype, but it was what happened after the fight that was more shocking than anything. Rather than rub in the win, a victorious Anderson Silva stood in the center of the cage and talked up his rival, even asking the Brazilian fans to cheer for him.
Apparently, even after this kind of rivalry, there is still room for sportsmanship.