Gleison Tibau was the better fighter when he took on Rafael Dos Anjos Saturday night at UFC 139. As a result, he got the win over his countryman. Still, this is a win that he needs to look at in a bittersweet way.
Anyone who saw this fight saw Tibau unload on Dos Anjos for what seemed like an eternity. Still, Dos Anjos stayed on his feet. Actually, by the time the fight was over, one of the judges felt that Dos Anjos had won.
Quite frankly, that's not something that should have ever happened. Now, I am giving Dos Anjos credit for staying on his feet and actually doing well enough for someone to think that he won. After all, Dos Anjos was completely destroyed for a long time.
When Tibau is in a fight against better opponents, he needs to put them away when he gets ahead. Landing a few good punches and getting ahead on the card won't do it, not that early in the fight anyway.
Better fighters will regroup and either knock Tibau out, get him into a submission hold, or come back on the card and win by points.
When you have an opponent reeling, there is really no good excuse for not putting the fight away right then and there. The fact that Tibau didn't do that does speak well to Dos Anjos' toughness, but also to Tibau's inability to put a match away.
In combat sports, the last thing that you ever want to do is leave your opponent in the match. If you have an opportunity to win it, then you had better do just that and as quickly as possible.
Now, I am not beating on Tibau. He won his match, which is the only thing that really matters in the world of professional fighting, or professional anything.
But winning the way he did leaves a very unsatisfied feeling. He certainly has work to do before his next fight.