UFC on FX 7 Superlatives: Best and Worst from the Entire Fight Card
Vitor Belfort may not have earned a title shot with his knockout win over Michael Bisping at UFC on FX 7, but he did take a big step in the right direction toward a rematch with middleweight champion Anderson Silva or light heavyweight titleholder Jon Jones.
Conversely, Bisping once again fell just short of an opportunity to fight for the belt for the first time in his UFC career. It will be back to the drawing board for the Englishman, who has now lost two of his past three fights.
Outside of the middleweight main event, there were several other memorable moments from UFC on FX 7. Let's take a look at the best and worst from the entire fight card.
Fighter of the Event: Vitor Belfort
Competing against one of the most skilled opponents on the entire fight card, Vitor Belfort won more decisively than almost anyone at UFC on FX 7.
By beating Michael Bisping with a second-round stoppage, Belfort proved he's still an elite middleweight in his first appearance at 185 pounds in more than 12 months.
There's a good chance Belfort is now one more big win away from earning a rematch with Anderson Silva.
Fight of the Event: C.B. Dollaway vs. Daniel Sarafian
C.B. Dollaway was criticized heavily for his lackluster win over Jason Miller in May, so he responded with a Fight of the Night performance against Daniel Sarafian on Saturday.
Although his wrestling made the difference on the scorecards, Dollaway was willing to stand with Sarafian for a significant amount of time and took some uncharacteristic risks while grappling with his opponent.
Sarafian also did his part to make the fight exciting, staying in it until the end with a reversal and late flurry of punches that nearly led to a stunning come-from-behind stoppage.
Knockout of the Event: Vitor Belfort
Considering his past results, many believed Vitor Belfort would need to work inside and finish Michael Bisping in the opening round.
With a knockdown from a head kick to finish the first round and second head kick that led to a second-round stoppage, Belfort proved that he's dangerous from anywhere at any time.
After knocking Bisping to the ground with his left shin, Belfort finished his opponent with a number of brutal hammer fists.
Submission of the Event: Ildemar Alcantara
On a fight card that saw four submission finishes, Ildemar Alcantara's knee bar against Wagner Prado stood out.
Working off of his back, Alcantara took advantage of an opening left by Prado to dive on a leg-lock attempt. After toying around with different holds, Alcantara finally transitioned to a knee bar and forced his fellow Brazilian to tap.
Beatdown of the Event: Francisco Trinaldo
In the opening bout of UFC on FX 7, Francisco Trinaldo manhandled C.J. Keith.
The Brazilian took Keith to the ground in each of the first two rounds before locking up an arm triangle that brought an end to the fight.
In his first three Octagon appearances, Trinaldo has shown that he can compete with highly ranked lightweights even if he lacks the talent to become a serious contender right now.
Upset of the Event: Ildemar Alcantara
Ildemar Alcantara accepted his fight with Wagner Prado on short notice and moved from middleweight to light heavyweight to do so. On top of that, Alcantara was dealing with the nerves associated with fighting inside the Octagon for the first time.
Still, the brother of UFC veteran Yuri Alcantara was able to overcome adversity and pick up a win over Prado in his UFC debut.
Comeback Win of the Event: Ildemar Alcantara
While Ildemar Alcantara's performance at UFC on FX 7 was impressive, it was also far from flawless.
Alcantara was out-landed by Wagner Prado in the first round and found himself on his back early in the second frame.
However, a come-from-behind submission erased all of that and gave Alcantara a win in his first UFC showing.
Breakthrough Fighter of the Event: Nik Lentz
It might not have made for the most entertaining fight, but Nik Lentz's wrestling pushed him toward the top of the featherweight division with a win over Diego Nunes.
Lentz was able to take Nunes to the ground repeatedly and maintained control of his opponent throughout the contest.
The former lightweight made a strong 145-pound debut against Eiji Mitsuoka, but this win over Nunes has made him a serious contender in the featherweight division.
Comeback Fighter of the Event: Vitor Belfort
With losses to light heavyweight champion Jon Jones and middleweight champion Anderson Silva, Vitor Belfort was without a clear path forward heading into his UFC on FX 7 fight with Michael Bisping.
By knocking out Bisping in such devastating fashion, Belfort has shown he can still be a threat to win the middleweight title. He may need another win or two to get a shot at the belt, but Belfort is once again headed in the right direction.
Rookie of the Event: Ildemar Alcantara
Competing outside his natural weight division on short notice, Ildemar Alcantara's UFC debut did not come under ideal circumstances.
Still, Alcantara was the only UFC newcomer to pick up a win at UFC on FX 7 with his submission win over Wagner Prado.
Quote of the Event: Vitor Belfort
Following his win over Michael Bisping in the UFC on FX 7 main event, Vitor Belfort took aim at light heavyweight champion Jon Jones and his upcoming opponent, Chael Sonnen.
Jones and Sonnen just finished coaching The Ultimate Fighter and are scheduled to compete in April, but Belfort wants Sonnen's spot in that championship bout.
"Dana (White), Lorenzo (Fertitta), take (Chael Sonnen) out," Belfort said. "Let me fight Jon Jones. I need that rematch. Get that clown away. Go home."
Robbery of the Event: Yuri Alcantara vs. Pedro Nobre
Yuri Alcantara left no doubt in anyone's mind that he was a better fighter than Pedro Nobre on Saturday.
However, Alcantara was not awarded a victory for his performance, as referee Dan Miragliotta declared the bout a no-contest due to accidental strikes to the back of Nobre's head.
Replays showed Alcantara only landed one illegal elbow, and the fight was stopped due to follow-up punches that appeared to legally land on Nobre's ear.