As usual, I was not lucky enough to watch the fights live.
I got pretty close though, I was at a friend's apartment, and one of the people who was there said he would put down money for the PPV. I immediately took out twenty dollars in hope that others would follow, but the people who payed rent decided they didn't really want to watch it.
So, when I woke up this morning, the first thing I did, was check myvideofight.com, and holy balls, is all I could say.
The first fight I watched was Griffin Vs. Evans. Aside from the fact that it was a title bout, I wasn't entirely too excited about this one. I loved watching Evans knock out Liddell, and I very much liked Girffin taking the title from Jackson, but these two aren't in my top ten of guys I like to watch, so there wasn't much there for me.
The thing that set this match off for me, was the discussions I'd been having about it with a guy I know. I mentioned to him that I was picking Evans to win, and he countered with something along the line of "What are you talking about? You can't stop Griffin, It'll go the distance, with Griffin holding on."
So not only did I get the pick right, but I also called third round TKO, in the second minute. That's 43 bonus points for my fantasy picks, and a whole bucket full of bragging rights.
Then I watched the Silva vs Jackson fight, and again, holy balls. After Jackson getting knocked out so badly both times in Pride, I figured that he would to to escape the clinch, and that it would be a slug-fest ending with a Sliva win by split decision.
Jackson winning by knock out, via a hook, tells me one thing: This guy is not what MMA is all about. He beats Liddell with a right hook, Silva with a left hook, but can't seem to get it done in a full on fight. I liked Rampage in Pride but I'd be fine not seeing him in the Octagon ever again. He and Silva should go at it a fourth time back in Japan.
How does one BJJ black belt beat another BJJ black Belt? He out boxes him.
Mir vs. Nougueira was what this card was all about for me. I'm a big fan of BJJ, and Frank Mir is one of my top five favorite fighters. The only thing that could have made this fight better, was having it end the way I predicted. I know Mir knocked out Sims, but he's not known as a striker, so to see him come out and land punch after punch, and kick after kick, was no where in my foresight.
The fight did end up on the ground for a minute, but it was a foot race. Mir was putting together some awesome combos, and with great accuracy too.
Nog landed about five total strikes, and maybe only attempted one or two more. Minotauro just didn't seem to have it together from the opening bell. With this loss, I hope Nogueira retires with his legacy, and doesn't try a not-likely comeback.
Mir, however, is going to steam-roll over current heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar, and reclaim the belt.
I've always liked Mir's subtle "I'm here" or "I'm back" post win celebrations, but watching him call out Lesnar for his belt, was awesome. Anyone who knows what the heavyweight division of the UFC is all about, is already breaking down this match in their head. Frank Mir vs. Brock Lesnar2 in July 2009.
The only other fights available for me to watch were Dollaway Vs. Massenzio, and Kongo vs. Al Turk. Both fights, while not star studded, where quite exciting anyway. Dollaway gets a nice first round TKO to boost his ego before probably fading into a brutal loss, and then a smaller promotion.
Kongo also did a nice job in his match. A knee to the balls stopped the fight for a minute, and Kongo came back and showed that he knew male anatomy as well, before knocking Al Turk to the ground, and relentlessly trying to turn his head into oatmeal. Kongo probably beat the UFC logo off of the knuckles on his glove. After tonight, Kongo should fight Gabriel Gonzaga, and the winner of that fight should face the winner of Mir vs. Lesnar two.
All in all, it was a good card, I got many correct picks with the exception of Silva-Jackson, and Evensen-Barry. I had Yushin Okami by unanimous decision, and Hardonk by second round TKO. Dana White and Joe Silva did one hell of a job putting this card together, an absoultely great way to end the year.
I just had the pleasure of watching the Evensen-Barry fight, and again, balls all around. It looked sort of like a Tae Kwon Do match at some point, lots of beautiful high kicks. The ground work also had potentialmto turn interesting, but if you payed attention to the slow motion replay, you're almost glad that it ended standing up. I'm sure Evensen, Corey Hill, and Patrick Cote are in bed having drinks watching football today.