video review : Dustin Poirier versus Conor McGregor at UFC 264

video review : Dustin Poirier versus Conor McGregor at UFC 264

Ever since this fight, the third and hopefully final in the Dustin Poirier versus Conor McGregor trilogy, was announced, I thought it was a bad idea. McGregor, who’s “won exactly one fight since Barack Obama was president”, didn’t deserve an immediate rematch with the number one title contender. I also figured it would end like the previous one with McGregor getting finished early.

To his credit, he sort of finishes himself by breaking his own leg or ankle after probably fracturing it during the barrage of outside leg kicks he starts the fight with. Still, though I was actually rooting for the fallen Irishman to win this bout and reclaim his former UFC glory, it’s hilariously ironic to see him being rolled out on a stretcher after he predicted that exact scenario for Poirier.

The most poignant moment happens several minutes before when the Notorious one, in terrible pain and grasping onto what’s left of his pride, yells to the officials to make sure this loss comes with the asterisk of being a “doctor stoppage!” He then goes on, in his post-fight interview with Joe Rogan, to throw angry jabs at Poirier and his “little ho” wife like the villain in a superhero comic.

my rating : 4 of 5

2021

video review : UFC 261

video review : UFC 261

Despite Jake Paul, this has got to be one of the best events in the history of The UFC. Every bout on the main card ends early either shockingly or spectacularly. The first two are TKOs in the loosest sense. Anthony Smith continues the trend of leg kick finishes after a doctor steps in to give an injured Jimmy Crute the MMA equivalent of a sobriety test, which he fails. Uriah Hall, in a surreality destined to be a viral sensation, breaks Chris Weidman’s leg the same way he (Weidman) broke Anderson Silva’s.

Jéssica Andrade’s loss to Valentina Shevchenko, a traditional TKO by strikes, serves as a bit of an intermission as its the one fight that ends as expected. Then, just when you think you can breathe again, Rose Namajunas shocks the world by knocking out Weili Zhang with a first-round head kick; the aftermath of which provides the most endearing moment of the night. “I’m the best,” Namajunas chants just before becoming champion and weeping with the belt around her waist. Joe Rogan apparently cries too.

The main event was unwarranted; Jorge Masvidal didn’t deserve another title shot and I figured he’d lose again, even with a full training camp; but Kamaru Usman delivers a surprisingly impressive finish by knocking him out with a punch to the jaw. If you hadn’t been putting respect on Usman’s name up to this point; the crowd boos not only him but also Weili Zhang on their way to The Octagon; it’s about time you start. The Nigerian fighter is on his way to becoming, much like this UFC event, one of the best ever.

my rating : 4 of 5

2021

video review : UFC 260

video review : UFC 260

You know you’ve been hit hard when you have to wait till Bruce Buffer officially announces the results to find-out how long your fight lasted. That’s the situation Khama Worthy finds himself in after getting “caught” by Jamie Mullarkey in the very first round. UFC 260 would, in fact, be a night of finishes if not for Miranda Maverick; I’d love to see this woman fight Maycee Barber; earning a decision victory over Gillian Robertson.

Sean O’Malley is still undefeated (ha) with a relatively easy win over a much smaller Thomas Almeida. The knockout comes in the third, but he could’ve pulled it off in the first if not for his showboating antics. Tyron Woodley lets his hands go fast and early on Vicente Luque, damn-near knocking him out at one point, but Luque hits back. I really wanted Woodley to win here as a fourth consecutive loss probably ends his UFC career.

I didn’t really care who won the main event, but I would’ve bet on Francis Ngannou; the “scariest contender” in the organization. Stipe Miocic, who’s a bit overrated with all the heavyweight “goat” talk during the build-up to this bout, finds that last bit out the hard way. “Out cold”, Joe Rogan declares, though I’m not sure if he’s referring to Stipe’s loss of consciousness or how wrong Ngannou did him by punching him in the face like that.

my rating : 4 of 5

2021

video review : UFC 261

video review : Jan Błachowicz versus Israel Adesanya at UFC 259

video review : Jan Błachowicz versus Israel Adesanya at UFC 259

Even if this were a three-round fight, I’d give Jan Błachowicz a close decision victory. Israel Adesanya seems a little off (slow/hesitant) here, probably because he’s fighting in a higher weight division than normal. The final two rounds, in which Błachowicz takes him down and holds him there till the ends, just reinforces it.

I thought Adesanya would win this, but I also thought it was a bad idea to risk his undefeated streak for the Polish powerhouse. Doing it and potentially becoming double champ for Jon Jones would’ve made a lot more sense. Now that epic showdown, one of the most anticipated in UFC history, seems a lot less competitive.

my rating : 3 of 5

2021

video review : Amanda Nunes versus Megan Anderson at UFC 259

video review : Amanda Nunes versus Megan Anderson at UFC 259

There’s a video of Megan Anderson looking like the walking dead when she first arrived at the Apex arena; not in a sinister Undertaker kind of way but the way a death row inmate might look on the last day of her stay. The method of execution? A one-woman firing squad.

“Amanda hits so damn hard,” Joe Rogan observes; Daniel Cormier also provides funny commentary; as the purported WMMA “goat”; I still don’t know if I’d put her above Cris Cyborg; goes on to win her easiest fight yet. Ronda Rousey at least landed a punch before her pummeling.

my rating : 4 of 5

2021

video review : Maycee Barber versus Alexa Grasso at UFC 258

video review : Maycee Barber versus Alexa Grasso at UFC 258

This is the UFC 258 bout I anticipated the most and it doesn’t disappoint. I was rooting for Alexa Grasso but would’ve bet on Maycee Barber, partly because of her confidence. She said she’d become the youngest champ in The UFC, but apparently predicting The Future isn’t one of her skill sets.

She wins Round 3; Joe Rogan commends her for that comeback effort; and a 5-rounder might’ve went her way, but Alexa Grasso takes the first two. I like watching her (Grasso) fight; she’s so cute and reserved; and she seems to be getting better. Who would’ve thought she’d dominate on the ground?

my rating : 4 of 5

2021

video review : Dan Hooker versus Michael Chandler at UFC 257

video review : Dan Hooker versus Michael Chandler at UFC 257

I’d say Bellator fighter Michael Chandler couldn’t have hoped for a better UFC debut, but perhaps it wasn’t a matter of hope. He seemed confident in not only getting an impressive victory here but going on to become UFC Champ and he’s already accomplished the first goal.

All it takes is a fake right followed by a sneaky left (punch) to the face to drop The Hangman just halfway into the very first round. The only solid strike a backfooted Dan Hooker, who hints at retirement by throwing his gloves down after the bout, manages is a low calf kick.

my rating : 3 of 5

2021

video review : Khabib Nurmagomedov versus Justin Gaethje at UFC 254

video review : Khabib Nurmagomedov versus Justin Gaethje at UFC 254

“Number one pound-for-pound fighter in the world”? My reply to such a bombastic claim is probably not; there are a lot of unknown fighters in the world; but it seems Khabib Nurmagomedov is currently the best pound-for-pound fighter in The UFC. He’s also one of the best ever, which makes news of his retirement; he announces it in his post-fight interview after an emotional salute to his father; that much more impactful.

I thought Justin Gaethje’s chances of winning this bout were being overhyped by MMA fans, but he does even worse than I guessed. That’s not so much a criticism of his skills; he does manage to land a few of his “patented” leg kicks, which Nurmagomedov doesn’t have much of an answer for; but how long he lasts. At not even two full rounds, it’s the champion’s quickest victory since pummeling Thiago Tavares back in 2013.

my rating : 4 of 5

2020

video review : Israel Adesanya versus Paulo Costa at UFC 253

video review : Israel Adesanya versus Paulo Costa at UFC 253

It seems Israel Adesanya is fulfilling his own prophecy by becoming one of the greatest UFC champions of all time. He has to acquire a lot more wins to reach the level of Anderson Silva and Jon Jones; two fighters his style comes across as a combination of, also my two favorite fighters; but he’s on his way.

“I wanna make him my bitch,” The Last Stylebender said of Paulo Costa in a promo interview and that’s exactly what he does. He bruises his body with vicious leg kicks, bruises his ego with a second round knockout and simulates prison rape via dry humps right there in the center of The Octagon.

my rating : 4 of 5

2020

video review : Dominick Reyes versus Jan Błachowicz at UFC 253

video review : Dominick Reyes versus Jan Błachowicz at UFC 253

It doesn’t really make sense that Jan Błachowicz calls out Jon Jones after this fight, which is a title bout only because Jones decided to vacate the Light Heavyweight belt to compete in the Heavyweight division, but his victory is damn impressive. He’s able to do to Dominick Reyes what the former champion couldn’t, knocking him down and out in just the second round. “Polish power” indeed.

my rating : 4 of 5

2020