UFC 58 "USA vs Canada"
Two main events- Rich "Ace" Franklin defends his title against top Middleweight contender and Canadian powerhouse David
"The Crow" Loiseau, while top Welterweight contender and Canadian phenom George "Rush" St. Pierre fights to earn another shot
at the belt, as he takes on "The Prodigy" B.J. Penn in his long-awaited return to The Octagon.
Penn's last appearance in The Octagon won him the Welterweight Championship title against current Champ Matt Hughes.
Due to contractual complications, The Prodigy had to immediately forfeit the belt, allowing Hughes another shot to win back
and carry the title ever since.
Penn has been quite busy over the past few years, competing in the far east and solidifying his reputation as a dominant
force in the Welterweight division, and quite possibly, the best fighter in MMA, pound for pound.
Along with some other great match-ups, this proved to be very good fight night. Unfortunately, New Mexico favorite &
Ultimate Fighter Season 1 Champ Diago Sanchez was unable to fight due to an illness he had been suffering during training.
No replacement fighter was available. His bout was cancelled and replaced with some alternate fighters. We wish Sanchez
a speedy recovery, and look forward to seeing him continue to ground & pound his way up the ranks.
"Ace" vs "The Crow"
These are 2 highly trained, skilled, & talented fighters, each well-respected around the world. The anticipation
leading up to this fight was extremely intense. There wasn't a single viewer who could stay seated, and that goes for the
home audience as well!
It was a bloody mess! For 5 strait rounds, Rich "Ace" Franklin demonstrated why you should think twice before challenging
the UFC's Middleweight World Champ. Even though David "The Crow" Loiseau has been the top Middleweight contender for quite
a while now (winning his past 4 bouts by K.O!), fans could barely recognize the Canadian Kick-Boxer after the continuous beating
he'd suffered at the hands (& feet) of the Champ. "Ace" completely dominated the fight from the start (landing numerous
take-downs in each round), despite the fact the he considers it his worst performance yet. "I couldn't keep it from going
to a [Ref's] decision. I don't consider it a dominant victory!" said the Champ after the fight. It should also be noted
that Franklin wound up breaking both his left hand & foot early in the fight! What a worrier!
Despite his best efforts, Loiseau was never able to mount any
kind of successful offense. Franklin just kept pushing forward with intelligent combinations from all angles. He's definitely
a clever fighter with a big bag of tricks. He stays on the outside reining in with unexpected flurries, and doesn't stand
still long enough to become a target. He was able to take Louasso out of his game, virtually disarming him, never giving
him a chance to unleash those deadly elbows of his. It was obvious that the Champ had done his homework on the French-Canadian,
who himself, had had trained harder than ever for this bout. We definitely haven't seen the last of "The Crow". He's a tremendous
athlete, and a still a top contender in the Middleweight weight class.
Full-contact, brutal hand-to-hand combat, and Championship challenges aside, Rich Franklin & David Loiseau consider
each other to be great friends, and can't say enough positive things about one-another as a fighter, and as a human. These
two individuals raise the quality of the game, by far!
*Editorial Note* I never dreamed that Franklin would be able to run right through Loiseau as easy as he did. That's
not a shot against "The Crow". I was just really impressed with "Ace". I new he was a solid fighter, but he demonstrated
skills & heart that had not been tested in any of his previous fights. Now, being a fellow south-paw from Cincinnati,
you would think that the Champ would have been my favorite. Oddly enough, I didn't even take those elements into consideration.
I guess I was never convinced that Franklin even deserved his bout against Ken Shamrock, earning him his shot for the title
against the then-Champ Even Tanner. Suffice to say, Rich "Ace" Franklin proved himself beyond a doubt. He truly is the undisputed
UFC Middleweight Champion of the world. His injuries will keep him in rehab for the next 6 months. That should be just enough
time for any new top contenders to prove themselves worthy of a title challenge. Do I hear any takers?
"Rush" vs "The Prodigy"
Review coming soon!
UFC 57 "Liddell vs Couture III"
"The Ice Man" Chuck Liddell defends his Light Heavyweight Championship belt against
Randy "The Natural" Couture for the second time, making it the third time these 2 champs have met in The Octagon.
UFC 56 "Full Force"
The run-down of the night- Beginning the Pay-Per-View event was Jeremy Horn vs
Trevor Prangley. Jeremy Horn, fresh off his loss to Chuck Liddell, dropped from Light Heavyweight to Middleweight to take
on the tough Trevor Prangley. Despite being on the bottom nearly the whole time, Horn managed to pull off a controversial
the bill was George St Pierre vs Sean Sherk. Once again, demonstrating his unbelievable natural abilities & true heart,
the French Canadian George St Pierre pulled out an impressive victory after Referee Dean Herb stopped bout at 2:53 of the
second round, due to a flurry of unanswered ground & pound bombs to the bloody face of the Minnesota native. Immediately
after the fight, announcer Joe Rogan finds the Frenchman on his knees in the center of The Octogon begging & pleading
the UFC for another Championship Title fight against the current champ. As if Matt Hughes doesn't have enough trouble on his
Then came the Hughes/ Riggs bout. This was supposed to be a 5 round Championship
fight, but was downgraded to a 3 round no-title bout due to Riggs not being able to make weight. I'm still not sure how it
worked out that way, but Joe "Diesel" Riggs was 1 pound away from making perfect weight, but couldn't safely continue dropping
weight for the Championship match. Instead of calling off the bout, the 2 worriers decided to continue with the match-up,
but without Hughes putting his belt on the line. Not that it mattered, as the champ made light work of the hard-hitting Riggs
by tapping him out at 3:28 of the first round by kimura. After stepping in to replace Kyro Paresian due to injury, this was
supposed to be Joe "Diesel" Riggs' 1st title challenge. He will be back!
The main event of the evening was
Rich "Ace" Franklin vs Nate "The Rock" Quarry in the Middleweight Championship bout. After loosing his opportunity to show
off (& advance) his skills in TUF season 1 due to injury during training, Nate Quarry quickly worked his way up the rankings
to challenge current champ Rich Franklin for the Middleweight Championship belt. Some may say that "The Rock" still has yet
to prove himself as championship material, and his efforts that night may back up that theory. Though Quarry is a very tuff
& talented fighter, he just couldn't defend himself against the proven skills & punching power of Franklin, who delivered
2 knock-down punches early in the 1st round. Quarry received a broken nose from the first bomb, but was able to recover. The
second bomb knocked out the novice challenger before he hit the floor. Rich "Ace" Franklin defends his belt once again!
Major announcements were made by UFC President Dana White midway through the event. The headlining card is already set for
UFC 57, taking place February 4th, 2006 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. The re-match that everyone knew was coming... Chuck
"The Ice Man" Liddell will defend his Light Heavyweight Championship belt against Randy "The Natural" Couture. This will be
the 3rd time these two worriers have met in The Octagon. The first two times, Randy was wearing the championship belt. Chuck
was able to catch "the Natural" with a hard knock-out punch that won him the belt the last time they met. This 3-match should
reveal, once and for all, who is the true undisputed Light Heavyweight Champion of the the world. This 5 round championship
bout promises to be an all-out war. Randy & I just happened to be getting our Press Passes at the same time, and I was
able to get a couple of words with the former champ. He says that he will be doing some special high-elevation training in
preparation to win back the belt. He seems very focused, and is determined to redeem himself against the Ice Man. The rest
of the card has not yet been announced, but in addition to the Light Heavyweight Championship Belt being on the line, current
Heavyweight Champ Ivan Arlovsky will defend his belt against former Heavyweight Champ Frank Mir. This fight has been speculated
about for years. Frank Mir finally makes his triumphant to The Octagon after a 2-year long recovery from a motorcycle injury
that forced the champ to relinquish the belt. An amazing line-up, so far. Stay tuned for more details as they develop.
for TUF Season 3 were announced, and promise to pull in some serious ratings. This next season will welcome former Super Fight
Champ & UFC Hall-A-Famer, "The world's most dangerous man" Ken Shamrock as coach of one the next TUF teams. And as if
that wasn't enough, opposite the former champ as coach of the other TUF team will be the always outspoken, ever-popular UFC
legend Tito Ortiz! Dana White has previously gone on record stating his dislike for Tito Ortiz, and that he is not good for
the sport. I'm not sure what got the UFC President to consider this line-up, but like him or not, Tito Ortiz is a top contender,
a very strong and tough worrier with the charisma of a movie star, and a real crowd-puller. Everyone wants to see this
Also announced that night was the triumphant return to the Welterweight division
of former Champ B.J. Penn. This guy represents current Welterweight Champ Matt Hughes' only professional loss. I just happened
to be checking out of the hotel at the same time Hughes was, and caught a few words with the champ. He is definitely worried
about Penn's return to The Octagon, but takes all challengers just a serious as the next. A strategy clearly displayed against
previous challenger Joe "Diesel" Riggs...
UFC 51 - The fight card & results
MAIN EVENT (Non-title) Light Heavyweight Bout
TITO ORTIZ vs VITOR BELFORT
Tito wins by decision.
***Click on link below for fight pictures and post-fight audio from Tito***
Interim Heavyweight Championship Bout
TIM SILVIA vs ANDREI ARSLOVSKI
wins by submission (ankle lock)
Middleweight Championship Bout
EVAN TANNER vs DAVID TERRELL
Evan (finally) wins the title by submission
EILERS vs PAUL BUENTELLO
Paul wins by K.O.
PETE SELL vs (NEW YORK BADASS) PHIL BARONI
Pete wins by decision
JAMES IRVIN vs MIKE KYLE
Mike wins by K.O.
LOISEAU vs GIDEON RAY
David wins by T.K.O. (Gideon could not continue after 1st round due to a huge open head wound!)
PARISYAN vs CHRIS LYTLE
NICK DIAZ vs DREW FICKETT