UFC on Versus 3 Results: The Real Winners and Losers
We may have just witnessed a potential fight of the year at the KFC Yum! Center, as Martin Kampmann and Diego Sanchez went toe to toe in a gritty three-round war of attrition.
Also, Mark Munoz further displayed his improvement as a mixed martial artist by knocking out C.B. Dollaway in less than one minute.
So without hesitation, I present you with the real winners and losers of the main card of UFC on Versus 3.
The Winners: Brian Bowles
Brian Bowles looked spectacular in his UFC debut last night against Damacio Page after a yearlong layoff.
After going straight at it for a few minutes, Bowles got his opponent to the ground and landed heavy leather, which opened the opportunity for a guillotine choke. Bowles grabbed Page's neck and choked him unconscious at 3:30 of the very first round.
Strangely, in their fight in 2008, Bowles won via the same method and at the same time that he did last night.
The Winners: Chris Weidman
Taking on a seasoned veteran such as Alessio Sakara on two weeks' notice is a tough challenge for anyone. However, imagine taking on this fight on short notice with only five professional fights under your belt. That is exactly what last night's winner Chris Weidman did.
Despite a promising opening round from Sakara, Weidman was able to take the Italian down and beat him to a bloody mess during the following rounds.
Before the fight, Weidman was touted as one of the top prospects at 185 lbs., and he certainly proved it last night.
The Winners: Mark Munoz
Mark Munoz and C.B. Dollaway are two of the best wrestlers in the UFC middleweight division, and on paper this looked to be a fairly even matchup. The fact of the matter was that it wasn't.
Although getting a takedown early in the fight, Dollaway couldn't keep the match on the ground. Instead, Munoz popped back up to his feet and produced a great knockout with his improved striking. Although the stoppage was debated by some, I have to agree that it was completely justified.
Ever since his loss to top-ranked Yushin Okami, in which Munoz could not get the takedown and was out-struck by the Japanese middleweight, "The Filipino Wrecking Machine" has shown very good improvement in his stand-up game and his overall repertoire as a mixed martial artist.
The Losers: Domacio Page
Page's hopes of winning the rematch against Bowles and making his way toward a title shot were absolutely crushed last night.
After being taken down, Domacio was blasted with a barrage of hard shots before succumbing to a tight guillotine choke.
The Losers: Alessio Sakara
Although he had some good success on his feet last night, Alessio Sakara was taken down and battered by hot prospect Chris Weidman.
Despite the loss, I think that Sakara will continue to put on exciting fights for the fans.
The Losers: C.B. Dollaway
In what was forecast to be a war between two of the 185-lb. division's best wrestlers, Mark Munoz destroyed C.B. Dollaway with a stunning KO.
However, the knockout was not without controversy, as the crowd booed in displeasure towards what they believed was a premature stoppage.
Premature or not, once the referee calls a fight, that fight is over. In my opinion, Dollaway is a very well-rounded fighter, and he will be able to come back from this loss.
The Biggest Winner: Diego Sanchez
From one controversy to the next, Diego Sanchez took a highly contentious unanimous decision against world-ranked Dane Martin "The Hitman" Kampmann.
After a horrid first round in which he was dropped, Diego used his ferocious intensity and indomitable spirit to rally in Rounds 2 and 3 to win the fight.
If you looked at each fighter after the fight was over, you probably would have thought that Kampmann won by a mile. Sanchez's face was swollen, bloody and battered, yet this just goes to show what a warrior Diego is and how much punishment he can take.
With his recent wins being over solid opponents, Diego is on his way to becoming a contender in the welterweight division.
The Biggest Loser: Martin Kampmann
Although he lost the decision, I thought Kampmann had won the fight. Don't get me wrong—both fighters put on a great performance, but I think Diego's flurries were overvalued by the judges.
In my opinion, I think that Kampmann has what it takes to be a top contender. He's got great striking and great grappling. However, if there's one thing that he does not have, it's a great fight IQ. This was evident against powerful striker Paul Daley and outstanding jiu-jitsu artist Jake Shields.
He tried to beat both of those fighters at their own game, and it has cost him. In my opinion, his stock has fallen quite considerably after being beaten by Sanchez, who isn't currently ranked in the top 10 list of his division.
Overall, I think that if Kampmann wants to be a title contender, he has to improve his decision-making during fights.