UFC 118 has arrived and Bleacher Report is live on the scene!
Welcome to B/R's live cageside coverage and results of UFC 118 in Boston, MA, at the TD Garden.
Follow Nick Colon for the tweets and keep it locked here for the live action after each fight happens. Latest updates are first for your lack-of-scrolling pleasure.
Let's do this!
Lightweight Champion Frankie Edgar def. BJ Penn by unanimous decison
All three judges had it 50-45.
Yes fans, Frankie Edgar is "The Answer" after all, dominating Penn over 25 minutes to retain his UFC Lightweight title and shutting up a lot of people that said he couldn't do it.
Penn started off the fight intense but Edgar got a takedown and never stopped. Any time Penn got the slightest bit of momentum, Edgar matched him with high energy and takedowns.
As the fight evolved, Edgar overmatched Penn in striking, making Penn look somewhat flat. Penn - who got huge cheers going in - was booed in the post-fight interview and people were very frustrated at the outcome of a fight they thought was a foregone conclusion.
Edgar grew with confidence as the fight wore on, daring to trade to Penn and getting takedown after takedown. The real standout move of the fight though was a leg sweep Edgar caught Penn with in the 4th round that caught the former champ by complete surprise.
Off to the post-fight presser. See you in a bit.
Poor Frankie Edgar. As he steps into the Octagon, a fight breaks out and everyone gets distracted. The Lightweight Champion is bouncing and full of energy, coming out to Notorious BIG.
Penn is out to his normal Hawaiian music. Fans are standing but are considerably less into this than Couture/Toney. Fans are into Penn pretty big here.
Tom Brady is here tonight as well.
Results after we're done...here we go!
Randy Couture def. James Toney by 1st round submission (3:19) via arm triangle
Insane atmosphere and everything went down exactly as expected. Couture waited and took down Toney with a single leg without even the hint of a swing from Toney.
The rest of the bout was classic Couture ground and pound. Couture just unloaded on punches and the crowd chants just kept getting louder and louder. At one point, the fans were chanting "UFC". I never thought I'd see a home team at a UFC event.
Toney held on with both arms but couldn't do anything. Eventually Couture worked in a side choke and then an arm triangle to which James eventually waved off to. Yes, he waved off...not even a tap. By my count, Toney got one punch in...feebly on the ground.
Toney was wobbly post-fight getting up. The place went insane at the finish. I'm surprised Dana didn't run into the Octagon and hug Randy. At one point, I felt sorry for Toney who looked completely lost.
Both guys shook hands afterward. Couture is king of Boston for the night and seemed super excited post-fight.
No breaks...BJ Penn/Frankie Edgar up next!
EVERYONE is standing for the intros. Toney comes out to some hard hip-hop while Couture is out to Van Halen (I think?) This has that big fight feel.
Buffer is going on and on about Couture's accomplishments. Seems to really be driving home the UFC vs. boxing deal.
Back in a few with the results...here we go!
Demian Maia def. Mario Miranda by unanimous decision
Judges had it 30-27 for Maia.
If you like jiu-jitsu, you'd like this fight. Otherwise, this was entirely skippable.
Maia exhibited superior body control for 15 minutes, attempting rear naked chokes and armbars. However, Miranda was just good enough to work out of them. It didn't help that Maia's punches just don't have the force to deliver any damage while on the ground.
Miranda couldn't stop the takedowns and wasn't good enough in his striking to do any damage up top. Who do you match Maia up with to have a good fight?
The crowd was a bit restless and there was booing throughout. I'm surprised this fight went on 3rd instead of Florian/Maynard. There were a lot of empty seats during the bout.
Boxer Mickey Ward and the Boston Celtics' Glen Davis were shown. Toney/Couture up next.
Gray Maynard def. Kenny Florian by unanimous decision
Two judges had it 30-27 and one had 29-28.
Ladies and gents, we have a new No. 1 155-pound contender.
Maynard did what he needed to do and grinded out a unanimous decision over Florian, who never could get out of the starting blocks.
Maynard scored a takedown in the first to win a tentative round and used effective body control on t he ground in the 2nd and 3rd for the win. Florian just looked out of it, perhaps buckling to the pressure of fighting in his hometown.
There was a small chance for Florian in the 3rd when he was looking to lock on an armbar but he couldn't secure.
Ugh. Can they bring the WEC 155-pounders up yet?
Chuck Liddell and Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker were shown and both got the same pop. Crazy night. Mario Miranda and Demian Maia is up next.
Kenny Florian and Gray Maynard up next. Florian out to a Dropkick Murphys song and the people are into it. Seems a little quieter than Lauzon for some reason.
Nate Diaz def. Marcus Davis by 3rd round submission (anaconda choke) at 4:02
This was the night that Marcus Davis officially got old.
Diaz, quite unpopular with the crowd, dominated the ex-boxer Davis with striking throughout the first and second, opening up a nasty cut above Davis' right eye. The blood looked to bother Davis throughout the fight.
Diaz kept taunting throughout the first, but Davis couldn't match Diaz's speed and made him look really slow. The end came in the 3rd when Diaz got Davis with a takedown and got a side choke (anaconda?) for the tap. Davis was clearly out, but Yves Lavigne made the call a few seconds too late.
Davis was on the deck for a while, but walked out under his own power. Diaz said post-fight that he broke his hand in the 2nd.
Diaz is a great asset for the UFC: an unpopular guy that people like to boo that also wins fights. He continues to get better.
Marcus Davis and Nate Diaz are up. House is about 95% full. Monitors cut off some seats in the upper bowl. Very, very loud so far.
Davis out first to 'Jump Around' by House of Pain. People love it...even the ring girls whom Alex Karalexis is trying to impress with his form of dancing. Diaz out to 2Pac. East Coast vs. West Coast!
Back in a few minutes...
We got the Teenage Wasteland open. Ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooh man. Marcus Davis and Nate Diaz up first to kick off the PPV.
Joe Lauzon def. Gabe Ruediger by 1st round submission (armbar) at 2:01
Good lord, did it get loud in here.
Massachusetts guy Lauzon dominated Ruediger, getting several takedowns and the crowd was going ballistic. He started laying in shots on the ground, eventually got another takedown after a stand-up and just seamlessly transitioned into an armbar for the tap.
Ruediger didn't bother shaking hands afterward. Kinda weak.
"Shipping Up To Boston" by the Dropkick Murphys is now playing. It's a freaking party in here.
Kenny Florian? The floor is yours.
Nate Diaz vs. Marcus Davis up next, so we're off for 20 minutes.
Joe Lauzon and Gabe Ruediger is up next. Crowd shown video of top guys walking in and Couture/Penn heavily cheered while Toney/Edgar loudly booed.
Lauzon is the first local guy of the night coming out. Both guys are getting intros and Ruediger is getting killed here. Out in headphones to block some of the noise out?
Lauzon out to 'Move' by Thousand Foot Krutch. I'm a New England guy and got some goosebumps here.
Back in a few with the results, y'all.
Nik Lentz def. Andre Winner by unanimous decision
Two judges had it 30-27 while another had it 29-28.
Bland fight to open up the Spike show. Lentz was content to grind Winner up against the cage and try for takedowns, while Winner couldn't do anything to get free. He wanted to bang and Winner did not.
In the 3rd round, Winner opened up the round with throwing kicks and punches but Lentz didn't want any part and it was back to the floor. Bleh. Considering what we've seen so far, people here HATED this fight.
Rashad Evans and Tito Ortiz came out at varying points over the last 15 minutes and are in a competition for best dressed.
SI's Chris Mannix and ESPN/Boston globe Bob Ryan in the house. I am really wondering what Ryan is thinking.
Nik Lentz and Andre Winner up first but get no intros, ala old school WWF jobbers. (Yes, I know it's WWE.)
Dan Miller def. John Salter via 2nd round submission (1:53) with an anaconda choke
Both guys were content to stand and bang in the 1st round, but Salter got two takedowns to win the round. Miller kept up the attack in the 2nd round and stuffed a Salter takedown, working into a side choke that Salter tapped to.
Miller let out a loud yell afterward as he really, really needed that win. Crowd popped huge for the finish and he got the first Rogan interview which people went crazy for.
We have a quick break until the Spike show starts at 9 pm.
Dan Miller out to CCR (or John Fogerty) while John Salter comes out Thirty Seconds to Mars.
Greg Soto def. Nick Osipczak by unanimous decision (three 29-28 scores)
Fans popped for Soto coming out as he's fired up. Osipczak came to some cool British rap.
Really great fight. Soto just wore him down with punches and knees as the fight wore on, even with a nasty cut above his left eye. People loved it. I had it 29-27 Soto as the 3rd round was dominant.
1st round: Osip with hard right kick that buckled Soto followed by some hard shots. Soto worked for the takedown and got it. Osip with hard elbows from the bottom as Soto takes him down. Osip seems fine to trade but so is soto, who got cut and is bleeding from his left eye. That's a tough round to judge. 10-9 Osip.
2nd round: Osip staggers him with punch and knees. Fight goes to the ground and Soto has his back and crowd is going nuts. People chanting USA. Osip teased an armbar and people went nuts. Soto nearly full mounted and dropping shots. Both guys are wearing as the round goes on. 10-9 Soto
3rd round: Soto got a takedown and people popped. Soto is laying in knees to the side while in side control and is doing everything to finish.Osip looks gassed. Soto gets his back...head and arm triangle......Osip does theok. Osip in a bad way...knees to ribs...ground and pound...Osip surviving but no doing anything..punches to side of head...crowd wanted a finish but popped huge at the end. 10-8 Soto.
USA chants at the end. Unreal.
Mike Pierce def. Amilcar Alves via submission (kimura) at 3:11 of the 3rd round
This fight was extremely boring and was saved in the 3rd round. Early on, it was simply Pierce taking Alves down and staying active enough to win the rounds, nothing more or less. The biggest pops of the fight were the kimura and the entrances of Shaquille O'Neal and Clay Guida.
No, they're not sitting together.
The 3rd round started with Double-A throwing kicks, but Pierce got the takedown and kept working for the kimura on Alves' right arm. Eventually, he clamped it in enough to get a tap. The crowd loved the finish as everything up to this point was pretty bland.
Alves looked overmatched, but Pierce isn't a striker and couldn't do much else than grapple and control.
Alves out first to something with very, very loud bass while Pierce is out to a hip hop song. Is there a rule that everyone must wear flat brims hats? This trend is ridiculous.
First in-stand fight of the evening. Apparently, a guy took a swing and tumbled down down the stairs in the upper level and almost flew off the balcony. Oh boy.
Nothing yet. Still holding. Arena is nearing half full. C'mon Boston...where are ya?
Joe Rogan is walking in so we're getting close. Interesting mix of media tonight with lots of print guys, especially old school boxing writer Ron Borges as part of the Herald's core of writers.
Arena is very sparse right now. Surprising for a first-time crowed, but we'll see what happens in 30 minutes.
Nick and I are three rows back in press row, about 20 feet from the cage. No chance of blood spatter on us unless someone gets hit really, really hard.
Scott Jorgensen, Jorge Rivera and Bart Palaszewski are in the row behind us.