UFC 139 Results: Where Does UFC 139 Rank Among 2011's UFC Events?

Matthew HemphillCorrespondent IINovember 21, 2011

By the time the year is over, the UFC will have put on 27 events. Over 10 of them have been free, with one more in the works before the end of 2011.

It's quite a jump from the amount that the UFC was able to put on even five years ago.

The hype and energy surrounding UFC 139 is at its peak right now, so it seems like the best event in a long time, but is it?

Looking back through the year, there have been some incredible fight cards.

UFC 125 had the incredible fight between Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard that ended in a draw, with Brian Stann knocking Chris Leben out on the undercard.

UFC 126 saw Anderson Silva knock out Vitor Belfort with an incredible kick, and Forrest Griffin and Rich Franklin put on a great fight, with Jon Jones also submitting Ryan Bader.

UFC 132 saw Urijah Faber and Dominick Cruz put on a great fight, with Leben knocking out Wanderlei Silva and Tito Ortiz crushing Ryan Bader and then submitting him.

There was even UFC 136, which saw Frankie Edgar come from behind to knock out Gray Maynard, Joe Lauzon submit Melvin Guillard after battering him around the cage, Chael Sonnen brilliantly locking on a triangle choke on Brian Stann, Leonard Garcia and Nam Phan put on a war and Jose Aldo pick apart Kenny Florian.

The list seems a bit short and it probably is.  There could still be more events added to those that could be contender for event of the year.

HOLLYWOOD, CA - SEPTEMBER 20:  (L-R) UFC Fighters Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos square off for the cameras during the UFC on Fox: Velasquez v Dos Santos - Press Conference at W Hollywood on September 20, 2011 in Hollywood, California.  (Photo by Vi
Victor Decolongon/Getty Images

However, UFC 139 had something that none of them did: It had the feeling of being a PRIDE, WEC and Strikeforce event.  It was held in the same building that Strikeforce had long put its fights in, and it was topped with fighters from all three promotions.

It didn't feel like the standard UFC event, and it showed.  It felt like there were new faces to watch and new matchups to experience.

It felt like a truly global event.

It also had a little bit of everything: come-from-behind victories, exciting finishes, technical wars and slugfests.  It felt like there was something for every type of MMA fan out there.

It could be argued that UFC 139 was the second biggest event all year round. The first was a lock before it even happened.

Even with all of the great, history-making fights that were on the card tonight, the card still had one thing going against it that will put it at No. 2 this year.

It was on pay-per-view.

The UFC on Fox event was the first UFC event on network television, and in doing so, it instantly became the biggest event of the year.  Almost every group of media was on it, and even the most casual of fans knew the fight was happening.

That is something that UFC 139 failed to do, even with all it brought to the table.

The fights themselves were some of the best all year and certainly were more exciting than Junior Dos Santos' 64 second demolition of Cain Velasquez.

But they didn't appear on free TV and captivate all of America.

So, even though it was close, much like the Henderson-Rua fight, one event had to win. And UFC 139 came in second. At least for now.  There are still two more pay-per-views this year.

Who knows what might happen next.