Posted on: December 13, 2009 12:04 am
Edited on: December 14, 2009 10:09 am
The lightweight title is on the line as champ BJ Penn defends against Diego "Nightmare" Sanchez.
Fellow UFC 155-pounder Nate Diaz just Twittered: "Diego Sanches (sic) is a f***in' weirdo..."
Round 1: Crowd is chanting for BJ. Sanchez moves in quickly with punches and Penn rocks him with a right hand that puts him on the canvas. Penn pounces on him with fists. Sanchez was out briefly but regained his senses, and is now on the bottom in the north-south position. Somehow, Sanchez scrambles back to his feet. They square off and Penn is being very patient. Sanchez rushes in with a knee that misses, while Penn counters with an uppercut that appears to stun Sanchez. Sanchez grapples Penn against the fence for a few seconds before they separate. Sanchez throws a head kick that gets blocked. Punch-kick combo by Sanchez misses. Sanchez throws hands, Penn dodges them and lands a countering jab. Sanchez shoots in for a takedown and can't complete it. Knee attempt by Sanchez misses. Penn staggers Sanchez with another countering right hand before the round ends. I'd call that a 10-8 round for Penn. Sanchez is in big trouble.
Round 2: Sanchez looks worried now. Sanchez comes forward and eats a jab. Sanchez misses an overhand right and shoots for a single leg takedown. They end up against the fence as Penn fights off the attempt. Sanchez with a quick left that Penn dodges and counters. Penn is so far ahead of Sanchez in terms of technical boxing ability and quickness of his hands. Body kick by Sanchez. Penn with a right. Sanchez throws a four-punch combo and only ends up landing a body shot. Sanchez misses on a left head kick and Penn tenderizes him with a fast sequence of fists. Penn with a straight right and a left. Sanchez lands a left-right combo. Sanchez shoots for a takedown. Penn throws body punches while defending the shot. The round ends, and it's 10-9 Penn.
Round 3: Sanchez misses a boxing combo and a head kick attempt is blocked by Penn. Sanchez shoots for a takedown and Penn stuffs it. Sanchez is getting a lot more tentative, and since Penn knows he'll catch him on a counter, he's just biding his time. Sanchez shoots for another takedown. Penn takes a plomb and throws a knee and a short elbow. Sanchez with a combo, but he only lands a leg kick at the end of it. Sanchez fights for a takedown but Penn just won't have it. End of the round. 10-9 Penn.
Round 4: Sanchez missed a head kick. Penn misses an uppercut. Sanchez uses a leg kick to set up a takedown attempt, but gets stuffed again. Penn with a nice straight right hand, followed by a left. Sanchez grapples Penn to the fence and they both land clean punches on the break. Penn with a pair of rights, which Sanchez dodges. Sanchez shoots in for a single leg. Penn hammers at him with punches while stuffing the shot. Sanchez throws a lunging right hand that misses, and eats a counterpunch. Single leg attempt by Sanchez. That Sanchez feels his best chance is to take a jiu-jitsu wizard like Penn to the mat is a testament to how well-rounded Penn really is. Penn lands a knee and a short right. Sanchez misses another lunging right and eats a soft counterpunch as the round ends. 10-9 Penn.
Round 5: Penn is very fired up for the final round, while Sanchez has a badly busted lip and a corner that keeps telling him to take Penn down. Head kick by Sanchez is blocked. Sanchez with a single leg attempt and the crowd jeers him loudly. Penn is reaching in for a switch reversal. Sanchez avoids that, but still can't finish the takedown. Penn connects with a head kick and a series of hard uppercuts. Sanchez ties him up with a takedown attempt, and gets stuffed. Sanchez's face is pouring blood after another couple of fists from Penn. Referee Herb Dean calls for the doctor to check the cut, and it's all over. That, my friends, is a dominating win by a truly elite fighter.
Winner: BJ Penn defeats Diego Sanchez via TKO due to a cut stoppage at 2:37 of Round 5 to retain his lightweight title.
Sanchez looks like he got hit by a bus.
Posted on: December 12, 2009 11:38 pm
Edited on: December 12, 2009 11:50 pm
Moving right along to the semi-main event, as Frank Mir tries to bounce back from his loss to Brock Lesnar by taking on Cheick Kongo.
Kongo stood with his back to Mir at the weigh-ins, refusing to do the traditional photo-op staredown. Kongo thinks Mir doesn't respect him and talks too much trash, which indeed seems to be the case. Mir also weighed in very close to the 265-pound limit, having added lots of muscle since the Lesnar loss.
Round 1: They don't touch gloves. This is personal for Kongo. Kongo rifles Mir in the jaw with a straight right. Mir catches Kongo with a big left that drops him. Mir tries to follow him down with strikes, but Kongo grabs a leg and tries to stand. Mir slaps on a guillotine choke. Kongo fights it for a while, but has to tap out. That was fast. Kongo is actually out cold, but he did manage to tap out right before he passed out.
Correction: On the replay from a different camera angle, we see that Kongo didn't tap. The tapping motion his arm made was caused by referee Herb Dean grabbing his wrist and shaking it to confirm that he was unconscious.
Winner: Frank Mir defeats Cheick Kongo via submission to a guillotine choke at 1:12 of Round 1.
Posted on: December 12, 2009 11:10 pm
Edited on: December 12, 2009 11:32 pm
Next up is Jon Fitch vs. Mike Pierce at welterweight.
Fitch has won 18 of his last 19 fights, and the only loss was a 25-minute war with Georges St. Pierre. Pierce is making his UFC debut after winning six straight bouts outside of the promotion.
Round 1: Fitch misses a head kick. Fitch lands a right hand and catches Pierce's leg on a kick. Fitch tries to muscle him down to the mat, and succeeds. fitch takes his back and gets both hooks in. Pierce is trying to stand with Fitch hanging on his back, to escape out the back door by throwing Fitch forward. Not happening. Fitch is beating Pierce up with uppercuts while on his back. Pierce is on his knees now. Fitch is landing short three-punch combos every few seconds. Pierce finally gets free of the hooks and stands up, taking Fitch down. Nice recovery from a tough spot by Pierce. Fitch foregoes pulling guard to escape back to his feet. Referee Mario Yamasaki separates them after a brief peroid of inactivity against the fence. Left hook by Fitch. Inside leg kick by Pierce. Both guys land shots in an exchange of fists. Fitch shoots for a takedown with 10 seconds left, but since everybody does that now, Pierce saw it coming and sprawled. 10-9 Fitch.
Round 2: Fitch lands a straight right on a counterpunch. Pierce shoots, but they end up against the cage. Nothing happens there, so they separate. Fitch is bleeding near the left eye. Fitch catches Pierce's leg on a kick attempt and takes him down again, but he can't get back control this time. Pierce is back up, throwing fists from close range. Fitch throws a Muay Thai knee that Pierce avoids. Fitch with a pair of light jabs. Pierce with a more powerful punch combo that connects. Knee to the body by Fitch. Outside leg kick by Fitch. Fitch grapples Pierce to the mat and throws knees to the body. Pierce gets back to his feet. Fitch comes alive and tries to land a bunch of strikes in the last few seconds. 10-9 Fitch.
Round 3: The crowd is relatively dead for this fight. Pierce is throwing hands but isn't landing much of note. He grapples Fitch against the fence but Fitch gets the better of it with knees to the body. Fitch throws hands as Pierce moves in for another takedown, but they end up against the fence again. Body punch combo by Pierce. Pierce connects with a pair of nice left hooks. His problem is that he needs to finish Fitch to win at this point, and Fitch is very hard to finish. Fitch is making Pierce chase him down and throwing countering punches when he gets close. Fitch with a takedown. He uses an ankle pick to try to take Pierce's back again but Pierce escapes. Straight left-leg kick combo by Pierce connects. Knee to the head from Fitch and a jab connect.Pierce tags Fitch on the chin with a left hand that makes his knees buckle. Fitch is wobbly, but Pierce can't put him away. 10-9 Pierce, and I give the bout 29-28 to Fitch.
Winner: Jon Fitch defeats Mike Pierce via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28) after three rounds.
Posted on: December 12, 2009 10:45 pm
Edited on: December 12, 2009 11:00 pm
Up next is a really interesting lightweight bout: Clay Guida vs. Kenny Florian.
Round 1: Guida pushes forward and Florian circles. Straight fist by Guida. Uppercut by Guida. Florian throws a head kick, which gets blocked, and Florian slips to his back. Guida tries to start some ground and pound from within Florian's guard. Florian pushes him off with his feet and they're standing again. One-two combo by Florian. They're both throwing, but they're too far out of range to land. Guida ducks a punch and misses on a counter. Outside leg kick by Guida. Jab by Florian. Florian with a right, Guida counters with an uppercut. Another nice uppercut by Guida. Guida shoots for a single leg takedown and Florian sprawls well. Guida attempts to throw Florian and winds up on his back with Florian in side control. Guida escapes to his feet. Florian with a high-angle slam takedown and a few fists for good measure. Guida's back to his feet. Elbow by Florian and Guida is cut, to the point where ref Mario Yamasaki stops the fight to check the cut. Florian's elbows will slice a guy up in short order. The fight resumes with 15 seconds left in the round. Neither lands anything significant before the horn, and it's probably 10-9 Florian based on damage, in an otherwise close round.
Round 2: Guida hyper-actively moves forward looking to close the distance. Florian tags him repeatedly with jabs as he lurks into range. Guida shoots for a single leg and Florian sprawls again to thwart it. Guida's bleeding a lot. Guida lands some fists. Florian looks more confident now, throwing more punches and using better head movement. Florian nails Guida with a left-right combo square on the jaw. The right hand drops Guida to the canvas. Florian throws an uppercut to a downed Guida, then sinks in a rear naked choke for the submission.
Winner: Kenny Florian defeats Clay Guida via submission to a rear naked choke at 2:19 of Round 2.
Posted on: December 12, 2009 10:12 pm
Edited on: December 12, 2009 10:40 pm
We're starting off with heavyweights as veteran Paul "The Headhunter" Buentello makes his return to the UFC, fighting relative newcomer Stefan Struve.
Struve is a legit 6-foot-11, which creates not only a reach advantage, but an awkward situation on the ground when his opponents are trying for (or trying to defend against) submissions.
Round 1: Struve with a head kick, which gets blocked. Struve with another kick. Buentello closes the distance and catches Struve's knee on a body kick attempt, forcing him against the fence. Struve reverses Buentello to the fence and lands a nice uppercut. Struve muscles Buentello to the mat and mounts him. Buentello rolls to his stomach and Struve locks on a body triangle. Struve is working for a rear naked choke. He abandons that for a few seconds to hammer on Buentello's head with a series of fists. Buentello's on his knees, but Struve is still pounding on him while holding him in the body triangle from the back. Struve gets the rear naked choke finally, but it's not completely sinked in, so Buentello's fighting it. He breaks the choke, but he's still caught in the body triangle, making it hard for him to do much but defend.Struve tries for the rear naked again with about a minute left, but he can't sink it in. Struve lets go of the body triangle and Buentello rolls out, ending the round throwing fists from inside Struve's guard. 10-9 Struve.
Round 2: Let's see who's more gassed from that extended body triangle. Struve fakes a head kick. Buentello connects with a right to the jaw. Struve goes down to his back but Buentello doesn't take the bait, and lets him up. They wind up dirty boxing against the fence. Struve tries to jump guard but he just slides off of Buentello. Struve goes for a heel hook, but Buentello avoids it. They're standing again. Struve misses a kick and Buentello connects on a body punch. Struve ties him up. Buentello with a nice uppercut from close range. Struve lands one of his own, but with far less power behind it. Buentello flattens Struve with a straight right as Struve jumps into a kick attempt, sending him to the mat. He lets him up and starts beating him up with fists again. Buentello takes a Muay Thai plomb but doesn't use it. Struve staggers Buentello with a nice short strike. Both guys swing for the fences in an exchange that gets the crowd cheering. Struve starts peppering Buentello with nice, if somewhat weak, fists. Buentello answers, and another hockey fight breaks out. Neither guy can finish it before Round 2 ends. Fun round, which I score 10-9 for Buentello.
Round 3: The start of the round is delayed when Struve points out to ref Dan Miragliotta that part of his tooth is stuck in his mouthpiece. They pry it out and give the mouthpiece back to Struve. Outside leg kicks by Struve. Head kick by Struve is blocked, but Buentello's not checking the leg kicks. Left hook by Struve, and they tie up on the fence. Buentello looks very tired now. Dirty boxing by Buentello, short elbows by Struve, and they separate. Struve isn't using his reach advantage as much as you'd think, allowing Buentello to close the distance with regularity. Someone should tell that guy how big he is. Buentello with a jab, Struve answers with an outside leg kick. Pair of straight lefts by Buentello connect, as Struve keeps chopping away with those leg kicks. Buentello catches the leg on a kick attempt and lands a jab. Struve falls, but it's more of a slip than anything. They both swing for the fences with 10 seconds remaining. I give the final round to Struve, 10-9, and the fight to Struve 29-28. Let's see what the actual judges think.
Winner: Stefan Struve defeats Paul Buentello via majority decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-28) after three rounds.
So one of the judges must have scored one round for Buentello, one for Struve, and one as a tie. It might be another interesting night for judging, folks. Stay tuned.
Useless trivia: This is only the 15th fight in UFC history to be decided via majority decision.
Posted on: December 12, 2009 9:46 pm
Here are the quickie results from tonight's UFC 107 undercard bouts in Memphis:
Back in a few minutes with round-by-round blogging of the UFC 107 main card.
Posted on: December 11, 2009 5:04 pm
Edited on: December 11, 2009 5:25 pm
I'll be doing a round-by-round live blog of Saturday's UFC 107, headlined by a UFC lightweight title defense pitting champ BJ Penn vs. Diego "Nightmare" Sanchez. The blog will begin shortly before 10 p.m. ET for Saturday's event, which emanates from the FedEx Forum in Memphis, Tenn.
Everyone made weight for the show. There are some very interesting fights on the main card:
BJ Penn vs. Diego Sanchez (UFC lightweight title bout)
Frank Mir vs. Cheick Kongo (265)
Jon Fitch vs. Mike Pierce (170)
Kenny Florian vs. Clay Guida (155)
Paul Buentello vs. Stefan Struve (265)
Alan Belcher vs. Wilson Gouveia (195 catchweight bout)
Matt Wiman vs. Shane Nelson (155)
Johny Hendricks vs. Ricardo Funch (170)
Rousimar Palhares vs. Lucio Linhares (185)
DaMarques Johnson vs. Edgar Garcia (170)
Kevin Burns vs. T.J. Grant (170)
Be sure to check back on Saturday at roughly 9:45 p.m. ET for the start of our UFC 107 live blog.