UFC 107 was the first card in a while to feature a title fight and with that came some solid hype. Fortunately for the fans the fights lived up to the hype.
Sure, not all the fights were barn burners, but that said, all the fights offered some notable insight into the future of a few of the UFC's weight classes.
The Main Card Quick Take
Stefan Struve def. Paul Buentello via Majority Decision
This fight ended up as many expected. Struve was a better grapple and was able to dominate the fight on the ground. He opened the fight with a solid exchange of strikes before taking the fight to the ground.
The thing that made this fight interesting was that Struve could not finish within the first round and his cardio suffered there after. Struve lost the second round and won the third against a gassed Buentello.
Struve looked thicker than in previous fights and had a nice mix of striking and ground game. As he grows into his 6'11" frame he could become a force in the heavyweight division. I don't anticipate him challenging for a title, but he will be an interesting test for rising fighters.
Kenny Florian def. Clay Guida via submission (rear-naked choke)
Wow! Kenny was on fire again!
He may have had a terrible fight against BJ Penn, but Kenny was back in full effect tonight. Kenny spent one and a half rounds dominating Clay Guida with his stand up and his wrestling before finally dropping him with a hard shot an taking his back to finish the deal.
Yeah, you heard me right. Florian's wrestling was a major factor. He was able to avoid most take downs and was also able to take Guida down on multiple occasions. Wow!
It looks like training with Zahabi and GSP has done Florian some good. If this wasn't an aberration, Florian's new found solid wrestling coupled width the rest of his skill set solidifies him as the second best lightweight in the UFC.
Yay for a consolation prize!
Guida on the other hand is sent back to "gatekeeper" where he belongs.
Jon Fitch def. Mike Pierce via unanimous decision
This fight was expected to be a unanimous decision victory for Jon Fitch. Surprise, surprise... It was! Fitch pulled out another unanimous decision win and again, it was in less than impressive fashion.
Fitch, for the second time in a row, clearly lost a round in his fight. He also was able to turn the fight around and pull out a victory.
Good for him, bad for fight fans.
Fitch is one of the least entertaining "name" fighters in the UFC. He wins, but he has rattled of a bunch of wins in unimpressive fashion. It would seem Fitch can't even finish a guy he should beat.
Fitch said it himself, "Pierce has a bright future" this is probably true. Fitch on the other hand may have peaked. He has been training stand up for a while now and has shown little improvement (despite Rogan's comments to the contrary). Sure he trough more knees, but he didn't decisively win the stand up.
Pierce looks promising.
Fitch will win a bunch more fights, but he probably won't win a title and I wouldn't hold my breath for him to develop into a more well rounded striker.
Frank Mir def. Cheick Kongo via submission (guillotine choke)
This was another "Wow!" Mir was favored to win this fight and most thought it would over quick once it hit the ground. Majority rules. They were right, the crazy thing about this fight was how it got to the ground.
Mir dropped Kongo with with a solid shot and pounced to apply the choke. It was no surprise the Mir won by submission, but Mir dropping Kongo was the highlight of the night. Great job Mir!
Mir looks better than ever and will streak back to title contention.
Kongo will remain ranked around 10-15 and will be a gate keeper from here on out.
B.J. Penn def. Diego Sanchez via TKO (cut)
There have been many fights that ended by "TKO cut". Some of them have been questionable, this one was a formality. Coming into this fight, the scouting report said, Penn has better boxing and unparalleled take down defense.
Penn was also favored in the ground game, but was not as much of a factor. The actual fight was true to form. Penn dominated the stand up and could not be taken down. At this point, the ground game was a non factor.
Sanchez tried his best, but his best wasn't good enough.
I can't think of any more compelling match ups at lightweight for BJ Penn. Sure, Gray Maynard and Frankie Edgar have better wrestling than Sanchez, but even Matt Hughes struggled to take Penn down. I have no idea where they go from here outside of another one sided Penn victory.
All in all, a fun night of fights. If you missed it, that sucks.
Hopefully my recap was useful. Have a great night everyone. It is bed time for me.