Posted on: September 7, 2008 12:13 am
Edited on: September 7, 2008 10:05 am
The main event pits Chuck Liddell against the undefeated Rashad Evans. If Liddell wins this one, his next fight is probably going to be a blockbuster.
Round 1: Evans is throwing jabs and Liddell is pressing forward. Liddell tags him with a right. They continue circling. Evans with an overhand. Evans with a body kick. He follows with a left hand. Evans is sticking and moving, landing a jab. Evans is also switching his stance frequently. Liddell connected with an overhand. Evans throws another kick. Liddell corners Evans and throws an uppercut but Evans gets out of harm's way. The round ends with Liddell cut on his right cheekbone. I give the round to Liddell 10-9 based on aggressiveness.
Round 2: They exchange blows, with Evans landing several nice punches. Evans catches Liddell with a pair of left-right combinations. He's got some fast hands. Huge right hand by Evans knocks Chuck Liddell out cold. Wow. That was absolutely unexpected.
Liddell was throwing an uppercut at the same time, and Evans just leveled him.
Winner: Rashad Evans defeats Chuck Liddell via KO at 1:51 of Round 2.
Evans said after the fight that he avoided wrestling Liddell because he feared that could spell his doom.
"The strategy was going straight for the horns," Evans said. "I could take him down all day (but) that's the way to get knocked out (and) that's a way to get tired."
If you want to make a name for yourself at light heavyweight in the UFC, knocking out Chuck Liddell like that is the way to do it. Incredible stuff.
Posted on: September 6, 2008 11:38 pm
Edited on: September 7, 2008 12:05 am
Here we go: Rich "Ace" Franklin returns to light heavyweight and faces Matt Hamill.
Round 1: They circle to start, both looking to strike. Hamill with a leg kick setting up a jab. Franklin answers with leg kicks. Very little activity as they're both being cautious. Franklin is working inside leg kicks and body shots. Franklin is cut near his right eye. With a minute left, Franklin throws a combo and Hamill shoots for the takedown. Franklin goes for an armbar and Hamill avoids it, but the attempt gives Franklin an opening to get back to his feet as the round ends. Very close round, which I'd give to Franklin due to getting the better of the standup, since Hamill waited a long time to attempt a takedown and couldn't do anything with it once he got it.
Round 2: Franklin throws a leg kick and Hamill catches it, but Franklin pulls it away. Franklin with a nice combo. Referee Mario Yamasaki stops the fight to examine Franklin's cut, which isn't bleeding too bad at tme moment, but is in a potentially bad spot. The fight resumes and Franklin works the inside leg kicks even more. Franklin catches Hamill in the groin and the fight is stopped again to allow Hamill to recover, which he does quickly. They clinch against the fence and trade knees to the body. They separate and Franklin works more punch and kick combos. Franklin isn't landing any crushing blows, but he's consistently picking Hamill apart with these strikes and he's landing a good percentage of them. Hamill catches Franklin's leg on a leg kick but can't hold onto it, as Franklin shakes it away and throws more strikes. Franklin with a flying knee and the round ends. 10-9 Franklin (20-18 through Round 2), as the steady striking attack is starting to take a toll on Hamill.
Round 3: Franklin with a knee and Hamill answers with a combo. Franklin connects with a hard body kick that puts Hamill on the mat. He's in big trouble, as he immediately covers up and eats a couple of punches before the referee waves it off.
Winner: Rich Franklin defeats Matt Hamill via TKO due to strikes at 39 seconds of Round 3.
"I always walk around with a black eye anyway, so this isn't much worse," Franklin said about the cut near his eye.
Posted on: September 6, 2008 10:56 pm
Edited on: September 6, 2008 11:20 pm
Here comes former PRIDE double weight class champion Dan Henderson, as he fights submission master Rousimar Palhares. Henderson needs to break a two-loss skid (though losing to Quinton Jackson and Anderson Silva back to back isn't exactly something to be embarrassed about).
Round 1: Palhares shoots for a takedown and Henderson sprawls and clocks him with a right hand square on the chin. Palhares goes to his back briefly but Henderson lets him up. Palhares throws a head kick, which Hendo blocks. Palhares connects with a body kick and misses with a wheel kick. Henderson with a right hand to the jaw. Palhares throws a combination and Henderson answers with authority, putting Palhares on his back, but not out. He lets him up again. Henderson is clearly not interested in taking this to the mat, and for good reason. Palhares throws a punch to set up a takedown. Henderson tries to roll through and ends up on the bottom with Palhares in half guard. Palhares was working on a kneebar as the horn sounded to end the round. I score it 10-9 Henderson for doing the most damage striking and for effectively stuffing Palhares' offense until the end of the round.
Round 2: Palhares takes down Henderson with a high slam. Henderson closes guard and throws some elbows. Palhares slaps on a kneebar and Henderson has to fight his way out of it. They're back to their feet. Henderson stuffs a takedown and ends up on top in Palhares' guard. Henderson seems unwilling to commit to any offense from the top because Palhares is actively looking for a sweep or another leg submission. The fighters are stood back up due to inactivity. Henderson connects with a right jab. They trade high kick attempts as the round ends. 10-9 Palhares due to the slam takedown and the kneebar, so I've got this fight even at 19-19 heading into Round 3.
Round 3: An exchange ends with Palhares hitting a knee to the head, but no major damage done. Henderson working the jab again. He sprawls to easily avoid a takedown. Palhares is getting more shy about the takedown attempts and Henderson is waiting for him to do it so he can counter-attack, so the action is slowing down. Henderson with fists, but doesn't connect with much. Palhares goes for a takedown and Henderson spins right out of it. Henderson throws a looping punch and Palhares pounces on his leg for a kneebar attempt, but Henderson slips out. Henderson lands a punch and Palhares tries to bait him to the mat by rolling onto his back, so Henderson smashes him with a big punch on the ground as the round ends. There was so little activity in that last round that Henderson's defense and that last couple of strikes may have earned him the win. I give the round to Henderson 10-9, and the fight to Henderson 29-28.
Winner: Dan Henderson defeats Rousimar Palhares via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28) after three rounds.
"This opponent was just as tough as any I have faced in here," Henderson said.
Henderson acknowledged that he was trying not to let the fight stay on the mat for long.
"I knew he was damn good on the ground. I didn't want to mess around with him down there."
Posted on: September 6, 2008 10:45 pm
Edited on: September 6, 2008 10:50 pm
Up next is Martin Kampmann vs. Nate Marquardt. This one should be good. I wonder if Marquardt will use another tombstone piledriver this time.
Round 1: Marquart hits a head kick that buckles Kampmann's knees. He pushes Kampmann against the cage, just picking him apart with a relentless flurry of fists. Kampmann begins to cover up and just can't seem to fight out of the predicament, and the fight is stopped.
Winner: Nate Marquardt defeats Martin Kampmann via TKO due to strikes at 1:22 of Round 1.
A dominating performance by Marquardt, and Kampmann is no pushover.
Posted on: September 6, 2008 10:13 pm
Edited on: September 6, 2008 10:37 pm
We're kicking off the main card with Dong Hyun Kim vs. Matt Brown.
Round 1: The both try for a Muay Thai clinch early on and wind up wrestling each other to the ground. Kim winds up with back control and keeps it as Brown stands to his feet. Kim puts in both hooks and clings to Brown's back. He sinks in a standing rear naked choke, but Brown turns his chin enough to get out of danger. Brown fights out of the back control and puts Kim on the mat briefly, but they eventually stand again. Brown is throwing kicks, Kim is throwing leather. Brown stuffs a takedown attempt by Kim. Kim tries another takedown but Brown lands on top of him and tries a choke, which turns into a side headlock as Kim struggles out of it. Brown stands and finishes the round bent over with Kim clinging to his back and trying for an armbar. I'd give the round to Kim 10-9 based on the early back control and RNC attempt, but it's a close one.
Round 2: After an early exchange Brown clinches Kim for a series of solid knees to the head. Brown stuffs another takedown and puts Kim on his backside against the cage. He unloads with some strikes. Kim fights back to his feet briefly, but a sweep attempt backfires and he's right back where he started. Kim uses a high guard to position for a triangle but Brown pops out of it easily. Brown unloads with ground and pound, standing over top of Kim. Kim fights back to his feet again. Brown with another knee. Brown's getting the better of the striking now, connecting with his hands while Kim whiffs. Takedown by Brown. Kim traps the leg but eats a series of elbows to the head as the round ends. Easy 10-9 for Brown, so I've got this fight at 19-19 at this point. Kim looks weary, so he may need a hail mary if he's going to win this in Round 3.
Round 3: Brown looks incredibly confident at this point. Too bad he forgot his mouthpiece, as the ref stops the fight briefly so he can put it in. Brown misses a Superman punch and Kim takes him down. Kim has side control. He plants a knee on Brown's stomach, but fails to control his own body weight and Brown throws Kim off balance to sweep. They're standing again as Brown starts working the knees to the body. Kim uses the double underhooks for a takedown and Brown lands in guard. Brown also works elbows from the bottom. Kim responds with elbows of his own and opens a cut under Brown's eye. The round ends, and I think I'd give it to Kim by a hair due to more damage inflicted, so although Brown dominated Round 2, I would actually score the fight 29-28 for Kim. We'll see how the actual judges rule it.
Winner: Dong Hyun Kim defeats Matt Brown via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28) after three rounds.
The crowd boos the decision since overall, Brown seemed to get the better of the fight. But that's the thing about MMA's scoring system. Each round is judged on its own merits. Kim did just enough in Rounds 1 and 3 to squeak out the victory, despite Round 2 being so lop-sided in favor of Brown.
Posted on: September 6, 2008 9:55 pm
Edited on: September 6, 2008 9:56 pm
The UFC 88 main card is set to begin momentarily. Here are the quickie undercard results:
We'll be back in a few with round-by-round coverage of the main card bouts.
Posted on: September 6, 2008 11:54 am
Every fighter made weight for UFC 88 tonight. CBSSports.com will have a live round-by-round blog of the event beginning around 9:30 p.m. ET, so please check it out.
There was a late change in the card on Friday as the UFC announced Karo Parisyan vs. Yoshiyuki Yoshida was off the show, with the stated reason being a back injury to Parisyan. The show will proceed as a nine-fight card. Matt Brown vs. Dong Hyun Kim has been moved to the main broadcast to fill the void left by the scrapped fight.
Official weigh-in results:
Rashad Evans (205) vs. Chuck Liddell (204)
Matt Hamill (205) vs. Rich Franklin (204.5)
Dan Henderson (185) vs. Rousimar Palhares (184.5)
Nate Marquardt (185) vs. Martin Kampmann (184.5)
Matt Brown (170) vs. Dong Hyun Kim (170)
Thiago Tavares (155) vs. Kurt Pellegrino (156)
Tim Boetsch (205.25) vs. Michael Patt (205.25)
Jason Lambert (185) vs. Jason MacDonald (185)
Ryo Chonan (170) vs. Roan Carneiro (170)