Junior dos Santos
Heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez, trying to defend his belt for the first time. Antonio Silva, who just finished knocking out former K-1 standout Alistair Overeem. You had an actual former K-1 standout in Mark Hunt, the big engine that could. And you had Junior dos Santos, the best boxer in the UFC.
That's not too bad. Know what I mean? And it didn't end there. Combined, the 10 main card fighters can lay claim to nearly 80 striking-related stoppage victories among them.
So there had to be a letdown, right? There had to be a catch. It couldn't actually be as exciting in three dimensions as the paperwork might have us believe.
But that's why they fight the fights. Here's a ranking of each fight from best to worst, as well as recaps of the action. Keep those hands up.
Division: Light heavyweight
Result: Glover Teixeira defeated James Te-Huna by submission, 2:38 of Round 1
Teixeira made short work of Te-Huna on Saturday. The work was too short, in my opinion. Te-Huna has to build some kind of ground game. That's five of his six losses by submission now.
Result: Donald Cerrone defeated K.J. Noons by unanimous decision
It wasn't that this was a bad fight. It's just that Noons was just not good enough to give Cerrone a major challenge. So Cerrone took what he was given, which was just about everything.
He pounded Noons on the feet, took him down at will and sliced him to ribbons with elbows. A violent and impressive win for Cerrone, but not the world's most competitive scrap.
Result: Cain Velasquez defeated Antonio Silva by TKO, 1:21 of Round 1
Silva was upset by the stoppage immediately after the fight, but it sure looked good to me. Silva bulled in for the big right hand and Velasquez had time to put a left-right combination on his face while the arm was in motion. It was almost like an optical illusion.
Anyway, a good fight for as long as it lasted and the first successful Velasquez title defense. Methinks it will be first of several.
Result: T.J. Grant defeated Gray Maynard by TKO, 2:07 of Round 1
At the UFC 160 post-fight press conference, UFC president Dana White confirmed that Grant would indeed get the next shot at Benson Henderson. To me, that's the right call and it's not especially close.
Grant dismantled Maynard with power and precision. It was a thorough, quick, efficient beating, and on a night that featured five knockouts, Grant walked away with the Knockout of the Night bonus. That's saying just a little something.
Result: Junior dos Santos defeated Mark Hunt by KO, 4:18 of Round 3
Dos Santos stayed just clear enough of Hunt's lethal right hand, while landing plenty of bad news of his own.
But forget all that fight breakdown stuff. Junior dos Santos landed a freaking spinning wheel kick to knock out Mark Hunt. Just keep reading that sentence until it sinks in. I'll be reading for a while.