What fans lacked in close matches, they gained in early knockouts and impressive showings by great competitors. This is not always pleasing for fans, but it is obvious there is some separation between the top fighters and the rest of each weight class.
On a night where a number of people stood out, these were the most impressive performances of the event.
It was not surprising that Jon Jones was able to retain his light heavyweight championship in the match against Chael Sonnen. Still, the manner in which he accomplished that feat was quite impressive.
The champ badly broke his toe in the early stages of the fight, but he toughed it out and stayed aggressive. He was able to get his opponent in a vulnerable position and hit him with a barrage of punches and elbows until the fight was stopped.
This was Jones' fifth title defense, with four of those wins coming by either submission or TKO. It is a truly dominant run that puts him in rare company as one of the best in the world.
Meanwhile, Sonnen recently battled Anderson Silva in a rematch of one of the best fights of 2010. While the rematch was not as good, it's clear that the veteran is capable of competing at a high level.
However, Jones embarrassed Sonnen in this one and showed why it will be a long time until he gives up his title.
Although Roy Nelson might not have the look of a UFC fighter, he has been pretty impressive over the past year.
On Saturday, the heavyweight did not waste any time getting to work and was able to destroy Cheick Kongo with a first-round knockout. The third-to-last match of the night was the shortest on the card, as it ended in 2:03.
This was the third straight first-round knockout for Nelson, who clearly knows what he is doing with his fists. His strong hits are too much for his opponents to withstand, and recently, they have been almost impossible to defend.
After a poor stretch of three losses in four matches, Nelson is quickly moving up the ranks as one of the top competitors in his weight class.
The match against Jim Miller almost went to decision, but Pat Healy did his best to make sure it was kept out of the judges' hands.
At the 4:02 mark in the third period, the light heavyweight earned a submission with a rear-naked choke in one of the best finishes of the night.
While Miller had been up and down in recent matches, Healy's win is still an impressive one. He had won six in a row in Strikeforce heading into this battle, and this showing at the sport's highest level is one that should cause people to take notice.
Obviously, he is a long way away from reaching the level of Jones and others in the division, but the 29-year-old fighter is on his way up after a long career in MMA.
|Jon Jones def. Chael Sonnen||TKO||1||4:33|
|Michael Bisping def. Alan Belcher||Technical Decision||3||4:29|
|Roy Nelson def. Cheick Kongo||KO||1||2:03|
|Phil Davis def. Vinny Magalhaes||Unanimous Decision||3||5:00|
|Pat Healy def. Jim Miller||Submission||3||4:02|
|Rustam Khabilov def. Yancy Medeiros||TKO||1||2:32|
|Ovince St. Preux def. Gian Villante||Technical Decision||3||0:33|
|Sara McMann def. Sheila Gaff||TKO||1||4:06|
|Bryan Caraway def. Johnny Bedford||Submission||3||4:44|
|Cody McKenzie def. Leonard Garcia||Unanimous Decision||3||5:00|
|Steven Siler def. Kurt Holobaugh||Unanimous Decision||3||5:00|
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