UFC 184 Results: The Real Winners and Losers from Rousey vs. Zingano Fight Card
The women's bantamweight champion finished via armbar, and this time it only took 14 seconds. That's right, 14 seconds.
UFC newcomer Holly Holm put in a workmanlike performance against the ever-tough Raquel Pennington to get her first win. Jake Ellenberger submitted Josh Koscheck to put himself back in the win column. All in all, it was a solid night of fights for the UFC's final February fight card.
We know who technically won and lost the fights, but who are the real winners and losers from UFC 184?
This is not just a slide for the UFC, but it's also a little Invicta FC. This fight weekend was a good showing for the Mexican MMA fighters.
On Friday, two of the most promising female MMA prospects showed their skill at Invicta FC 11.
Irene Aldana won her fight quickly with a rear-naked choke, and her teammate, Alex Grasso, put on a great fight against Mizuki Inoue later in the night. Those two women, in the bantamweight and strawweight divisions, respectively, are future UFC fighters.
We could see both later this year at UFC 188 in Mexico City.
In the opening UFC 184 bout, Masio Fullen took a decision win against Alex Torres in a fun, competitive fight. Fullen was a member of Team Mexico on The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America.
Other fighters with Hispanic roots fought and did well this weekend, but these three all fight out of the country. They are showing that the MMA scene is growing in an important combat-sports region. Their performances are illustrating a bright future for the sport.
Loser: James Krause
James Krause entered UFC 184 with the prospect label.
The two UFC losses on his record were to Top 15 level talent in Bobby Green and Jorge Masvidal. The skills he showed in those fights led pundits to believe he had the raw ability to be a force in the division.
All of that talk will be put on halt.
Krause did not look good on Saturday. Valmir Lazaro was able to stifle him and took the decision win.
This was supposed to be a showcase fight and coming-out party for Krause, but Lazaro derailed all of that talk. Krause has now lost back-to-back fights, and more importantly, he loses a lot of goodwill he had previously earned with fun fights against quality lightweights.
Winner: Tim Means
Very quietly Tim Means returned to the UFC a revitalized fighter at 170 pounds. He continued his ascent in Los Angeles.
Means has nasty muay thai. Dhiego Lima now knows this firsthand.
Means pelted Lima with punches, kicks, knees and elbows en route to a first-round stoppage. He brutalized the Brazilian in the cage. This is the type of performance that gets you bonus money and elevates you to bigger fights in the division.
Damon Martin of Fox Sports sees exciting fights on the horizon for Means: "Tim Means looking good at 170. He's got some fun fights ahead of him if opponents decide to stand and strike."
Means' performance was an early bright spot on the fight card. The Dirty Bird gained some notoriety with a dominant, vicious outing.
Winner: Roman Salazar
Yes, his fight was ruled a no-contest, but hear me out.
For a long time, many pundits and fans have called for more fighter safety. We have called for fighters, referees and corners to err on the side of caution. And we finally got a little bit of that, thanks to Roman Salazar.
Salazar took a finger to the eye, and he could not see out of it. Instead of lying to John McCarthy, saying that he could see, he answered honestly. The fight was called. The crowd booed. Some on social media got a bit snarky with that decision, but it was the correct call.
What does Salazar have to gain by fighting with only one functioning eye? Nothing. It is much smarter to answer honestly and not risk further injury to your eye. I, for one, will credit Salazar for making the right call for his career.
Would he have won? Maybe not, but he definitely would have been at a major disadvantage fighting a power puncher like Norifumi Yamamoto and only being able to see out of one eye.
Winner: Roan Carneiro
Roan Carneiro was away from the UFC for more than six years. In his first stint, the talented jiu-jitsu fighter went 2-3 in the organization and then was let go.
After going 7-1 on the regional circuit, he got the call to take on No. 13-ranked contender Mark Munoz. He was a heavy underdog, but it didn't matter. He got a rear-naked choke early in the fight and choked Munoz unconscious.
That was an impressive way to return to the UFC.
Carneiro's swift and decisive victory instantly puts him on the map. He stated after the fight he will return to 170 unless he gets a Top 10 opponent. The UFC will be able to throw him in the cage against some of the best in the world and use Carneiro as a quality gatekeeper. Carneiro can use those matchups to prove whether or not he is a contender.
Time will tell where he stands, but the UFC has a valuable fighter on its roster.
Losers: Mark Munoz, Jerin Valel
First, let's focus on Mark Munoz.
This was a bad loss. His recent outings against the elite showed that he was past his prime. This looked to be a good matchup for him on paper. It wasn't. This was a bad loss that gives the UFC very few options. Munoz's career, in the UFC at least, may be coming to an end.
Michael Carroll of FightMetric has this stunning stat: "Mark Munoz has landed three strikes in his last three fights."
Now, on to the egregious refereeing from Jerin Valel.
What was he thinking?
He stared at Munoz's unconscious body and let Carneiro keep the choke on. He didn't step in until way too late. That is incredibly dangerous and just an atrocious job in the cage. The California commission needs to reprimand him.
I am not sure what can be done, but that was bad. More seminars are in his future. That was scary.
Winners: California State Athletic Commission
It was announced during the broadcast that, for the first time in the California State Athletic Commission's (CSAC) history, the entire slate of fighters would be both urine- and blood-tested.
There would be no random testing Saturday. Each fighter will do both.
The urine tests were done pre-fight, and the blood tests are to be administered post-fight.
After the UFC's strong stance on testing earlier this month, the CSAC came forward with its own stronger stance. This is great news for the sport's integrity. When the test results are released, it will be interesting to see who, if anyone, fails.
This is the kind of step forward that will hopefully push other states to increase their testing. Kudos to the CSAC.
Winner: Tony Ferguson
The evolution of Tony Ferguson continues, and it would be a shame not to see him in the Top 15 of the lightweight rankings when they come out on Monday.
Ferguson is now 8-1 in the UFC with five straight wins.
As Dave Doyle of MMAFighting.com says, "And there's Tony Ferguson's signature win. No more questioning whether this guy's legit."
Ferguson has the third longest active win streak in the division. He got there by stunning Gleison Tibau with a big punch behind the ear and staying on him. He kept the pressure on, got the rear-naked choke and finished. It was another beautiful performance from a quality fighter.
Only big things await Ferguson, and it is time the UFC gives him a Top 10 fight.
Ferguson is the real deal.
Winner: Alan Jouban
The model continues to make waves in MMA, and he continues the streak of winners at UFC 184.
Alan Jouban and Richard Walsh exchanged some early blows, but it was more or less a feeling-out process. Jouban then landed a beautiful elbow that clearly rocked Walsh. Jouban started to pour it on, and with another clean strike or two, referee John McCarthy stepped in to save Walsh.
It was not an early stoppage. Jouban hurt Walsh badly, and McCarthy rescued him.
Jouban is a highly marketable fighter with his looks and exciting fighting style, and this victory pushes him further up the ladder.
It is smart to temper expectations in regard to Jouban. He is still growing as a fighter and is not one of the elite. But his fighting style will make him a welcome addition to any card. I can't wait to see him compete again in the near future.
He gave a quality performance.
Losers: Josh Koscheck, Jerin Valel
The fight started nicely for Josh Koscheck in his return to the UFC, but after an exchange that rocked him, he fell into a shell.
Koscheck never was the same after that exchange. His striking was not as crisp, his striking defense was poor, and his wrestling didn't work. It was late in the second when Jake Ellenberger locked in a devastating choke that forced him to tap.
This should be the end of the road for Koscheck.
Meanwhile, referee Jerin Valel returned to action as well. And he let Koscheck tap a couple of times before he felt the need to stop the fight. He is absolutely the worst referee we have seen in the UFC in a long time. Koshceck was foaming at the mouth (NSFW content).
"Foaming at the mouth? You're fine, according to Jerin Valel," tweeted Sherdog.com's Freddie DeFreitas.
Mr. Valel, you are terrible at your job.
Loser: Holly Holm's Title-Fight Hype
There has always been some chirping about Holly Holm since she debuted in MMA. Her impressive boxing credentials made her an instant commodity. UFC 184 sent the stock crashing to the floor.
Holm won a clear-cut decision in everyone's minds, except one of the judges, but she did nothing to look the part of a legitimate challenger to Ronda Rousey.
Any and all title talk needs to cease immediately.
Holm is in development. She is adding tools to her game, and it will be a gradual process. Now is just not the time to start making waves about her title aspirations. She has a lot more work to do.
Winner: Ronda Rousey
She just gets better and better. Fourteen seconds. It was over.
I initially wanted to say the losers are the rest of the division, but I cannot take anything away from Rousey's performance. It was so spectacular that you have to say she is a winner. This is the type of fight that builds an aura around a fighter.
Cat Zingano came out and tried to put pressure on Rousey with a flying knee. Rousey and Zingano then got into a scramble, and before Zingano could blink, she was in tremendous pain. Rousey laced up an arm and made her tap.
This kind of performance only adds to Rousey's legend.
She is the most dominant champion in MMA history, and she now owns the record for fastest submission in modern UFC history. She is a phenom. A once-in-a-lifetime athlete. Incredible. She is rewriting history in front of our eyes.