It's a good thing this was a free card because it was seriously unimpressive. Outside of the awesome performance put in by Carlos Condit, I was left feeling rather underwhelmed. I won't complain too much because it was free, but it certainly wasn't anything memorable. In we go.
Michael Bisping proved once again that he is a good but not great fighter. Make no mistake, his performance tonight was a dominant one, if only based on the stats. But he was doing some of the things that have got him nearly decapitated in the past. Like repeatedly circling to his left. Remember what happened when he did that against Dan Henderson? It almost happened again tonight. In fact, it seemed like Akiyama's entire gameplan centered around landing that big overhand right. He actually did, with the first punch of the fight, but wasn't able to capitalize on it. He also takes a punch about as well as Brock Lesnar. Too soon? What I mean is, when he gets hit, he lets it completely take him off his game. He's easy to plan for, despite what Akiyama did tonight, and that makes him extremely beatable. He's now calling out Wanderlei Silva in hopes of a rematch. He fights the way he did tonight and he'll lose again. I'd love to see it though.
Yoshihiro Akiyama. I just don't know what to say. I'm not of the mind that he should drop to 170, like so many others seem to be. I'm just not sure he has what it takes to win in the UFC. Alan Belcher, Chris Leben and Bisping aren't exactly the cream of the crop. Maybe it's time to give him a fight against a lesser opponent to see if he can't get his confidence up. The walkout music though? Money. Can't help but think of Will Ferrell, though.
- The one guy that we were counting on to get a knockout on this card, ended up getting knocked out. Dan Hardy couldn't have been more pumped for this fight and the crowd couldn't have been any more behind him. But he got beaten at his own game by Carlos Condit, a guy known for getting into sloppy brawls. The Greg Jackson product looked crisp in his striking and that monster left hook he landed was one of the best punches I've seen in a while. Hardy was throwing that same left hook but Condit hit him harder. Awesome performance and he's already got his sights set on the winner of the Jake Shields vs Martin Kampmann fight. That may be wishful thinking but he deserves a top ranked opponent next. If they go through with giving Shields a shot if he beats Kampmann, maybe a guy like Jon Fitch?
John Hathaway didn't look anything like the big prospect that soundly defeated Diego Sanchez back at UFC 114. He looked like another British prospect that needs to work on his wrestling. Mike Pyle was able to take him down when he wanted to and impose his will on him. 170 pounds is a shark tank full of smothering wrestlers so this might be as far as the once promising young fighter will get. Pyle is a journeyman and he was able to completely take him out of his game. Impressive performance from the Xtreme Couture product and it's back to the drawing board for the young Hathaway.
- Is it just me or does Cheick Kongo knee every fighter in the balls? Seems like that happens a lot. Combine that with the fact that he wouldn't let go of Travis Browne's shorts, even after having a point deducted because of it, and I'm coming just short of calling him a dirty fighter. And for supposedly having so much more technique than Browne, he sure was getting caught a lot. Now if Browne could just find a boxing coach that could teach him how to set up his punches, he could be a dangerous heavyweight. His combination of size and speed, to go along with that nasty power, could give a lot of guys a lot of trouble. He just needs someone to harness it.
- Here is all you need to know about the James Wilks vs Claude Patrick fight. They aired it live but once they saw how bad it was, they decided to take it off the Spike tape delayed broadcast and replaced it with the Cyrille Diabate vs Alexander Gustafsson fight. Which was the right call. Patrick put in a great performance but not one that translates well to TV. Gustafsson on the other hand, looked incredible in submitting Diabate. He should get plenty of love going forward.
- Dana White told fans on his Twitter to complain to ESPN for rolling spoilers across the bottom of the screen on their ticker on ABC during college football games and on their channel. He actually told his 1.2 million followers to complain to ESPN. Whether it's a good thing or not, White has a great deal of influence on people. I wouldn't be surprised in the slightest if quite a few of his followers actually took his advice and sent in some form of complaint. I'm not sure what could have been going through his head when he tweeted this. Does he not want them to cover the UFC? How dare they report news, either. That's just unacceptable. While I think the spoiler thing is nice if fans get consideration, it shouldn't be a be all end all kind of thing. Fans know when events are. If they want to see them when they air live, there are plenty of ways of doing so. Maybe White needs to get with Spike about airing the fights live, when they actually happen. That would solve this whole mess.
Now that UFC 120 is officially in the books, we can look forward to next weekend. UFC 121: Lesnar vs Velasquez is nearly upon us and I can't wait. We'll be right back here on Cageside Seats with plenty of coverage.