If there are two things that I've learned from years of UFC fight commentary, they are as follows:
1. Mike Goldberg could be replaced by a soundboard with almost no noticeable difference on the PPV broadcast.
2. Joe Rogan loves leg kicks.
It is the latter observation that I will be writing about today.
If you happened to be watching the Facebook prelims last Saturday, you might have caught a glimpse of the fight between Michael McDonald and Chris Cariaso.
The fight was a close and competitive one that could easily have been scored either way, but what was most obvious to me was that Rogan called a ton of leg kicks by Cariaso, but made a much smaller deal of the right-hand counters landed by McDonald.
This is nothing new.
Forrest Griffin's fight with Rashad Evans comes to mind as good example of a fight where Rogan was quick to give credit for Griffin's leg kicks, but gave almost no credit for hand counters.
Admittedly, Evans deserved to lose the first two rounds of his fight with Forrest, but if you were listening to the commentary without video, you would have thought it was a blowout, which it clearly wasn't.
Another notable example is the first fight between Lyoto Machida and Shogun Rua.
While once again, Rua's kicks played a big factor, the hand counters by Machida went largely uncalled for much of the fight.
In the picture above you'll clearly see Machida clearly landing a strong blow to Rua's chin, but during the fight commentary, it was Rua's body kick that received the Rogan call.
Unfortunately, Mike Goldberg pretty much acts as a Joe Rogan thermometer, so when Rogan isn't calling the counter punches, those punches remain uncalled.
I don't know what it is exactly that makes Rogan so quick to call leg kicks, but trust me, it's apparent.
Perhaps the best example came when Anderson Silva fought James Irvin.
Irvin threw a leg kick and Anderson destroyed him with a killshot to the face.
"Nice leg kick."