Thursday, March 8, 2018

UFC 81: Brock Lesnar Debuts

Brock Lesnar (Photo:

UFC 81: Breaking Point – Las Vegas, Nev. – Mandalay Bay Events Center – Feb. 2, 2008

Brock Lesnar debuted in the Octagon at UFC 81, losing to Frank Mir in 90 seconds on Super Bowl weekend.

The former NCAA and WWE champion lost a point for striking Mir in the back of the head before tapping out to a kneebar.

Lesnar’s debut drew 600,000 pay-per-view buys, and he would later capture the UFC heavyweight championship. This gave Lesnar even more credibility when he went back to the WWE.

Antonio Rodrigo Noguiera captured the UFC interim heavyweight title by defeating Tim Sylvia with a guillotine choke in Round 3.  Big Nog became the first man to hold heavyweight titles in PRIDE and UFC.

UFC Fight Night 12: Slim Margin of Victory

Mike Swick (Photo:

UFC Fight Night 12 – Las Vegas, Nev. – The Pearl at The Palms – Jan. 23, 2008

Mike Swick debuted in the welterweight division by narrowly defeating Josh Burkman in the main event of UFC Fight Night 12.

Swick improved to 11-2 with a majority decision victory in the battle of The Ultimate Fighter alumni. Two judges scored the fight 29-28 for Swick, while the other called it 29-29.

In the middleweight co-main event, Patrick “The Predator” Cote beat Drew McFedries by TKO at the 1:44 mark. Cote’s third straight win moved him closer to a title shot against Anderson Silva.

Monday, March 5, 2018

UFC 80: The Double-Champion Club

BJ Penn (Photo:

UFC 80: Rapid Fire – Newcastle, England – Metro Radio Arena – Jan. 19, 2008

BJ Penn became the second fighter to win titles in two weight classes at UFC 80.

“The Prodigy” beat TUF 2 winner Joe Stevenson win the UFC lightweight title, which Sean “The Muscle Shark” Sherk lost due a steroid-related suspension.

Penn, a former welterweight champion, joined Randy Couture as champs of two weight classes.

In the heavyweight co-main event, Fabricio Werdum beat Gabriel Gonzaga by TKO in Round 2.

“The Irish Hand Grenade” Marcus Davis won his 11th fight in a row, knocking out Jess Liaudin of France in 64 seconds.

UFC 79: Wheel of Welterweights

Georges St. Pierre (Photo:

UFC 79: Nemesis – Dec. 29, 2007 – Las Vegas, Nev. – Mandalay Bay Events Center

Georges St. Pierre moved closer to regaining his welterweight crown at UFC 79.

GSP won the interim welterweight title when Matt Hughes verbally submitted to an armbar with six seconds left in Round 2.

Hughes had been scheduled to challenge Matt Serra for the welterweight title in the TUF 6 coaches’ fight. However, Serra dropped out due to injury.

GSP’s win put him in a position to recapture the title he lost to Serra in a huge upset at UFC 69.

Chuck Liddell won a unanimous decision over Wanderlei Silva in the main event, which was billed as “a battle years in the making.” Silva’s status as one of PRIDE’s top stars made this bout a dream match.

In a heavyweight battle, Eddie Sanchez beat Soa “The Hulk” Palelei by TKO in Round 3. 

Friday, February 23, 2018

TUF 6 Finale: Viva El Matador!

Mac Danzig (Photo:

TUF 6 finale – Las Vegas, Nev. – Palms Casino Resort – Dec. 8, 2007

“El Matador” Roger Huerta beat Clay Guida in the main event of The Ultimate Fighter Season 6 finale.

The lightweights battled to culminate a night of all-welterweight action. Guida dominated the first two rounds.

However, Huerta improved his record to 20-1-1 by forcing Guida to submit to a rear naked choke in Round 3.

Cleveland native Mac Danzig won the TUF 6 welterweight tournament, using a rear-naked choke to beat Tom Speer.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

UFC 78: The 100th Show

Michael Bisping (Photo:

UFC 78: Validation – Newark, N.J. – Prudential Center – Nov. 17, 2007

Rashad “Suga” Evans beat Michael Bisping by the narrowest of margins in the main event of UFC’s 100th show, UFC 78.

The fight was billed as the first-ever battle of The Ultimate Fighter winners. Bisping won the Season 3 light heavyweight tournament, while Evans was the Season 2 heavyweight winner.

Two of the judges saw the bout 29-28 for Evans, while the other judge had the same score in Bisping’s favor.

PRIDE star Ryo Chonan made an unsuccessful UFC debut, losing by unanimous decision to Karo Parisyan.

UFC 77: Redemption Denied

Brandon Vera (Photo:

UFC 77: Hostile Territory – Cincinnati, Ohio – U.S. Bank Arena – Oct. 20, 2007

Hometown support in Cincinnati wasn’t enough to get Rich Franklin past Anderson Silva in a middleweight title match at UFC 77.

Franklin was looking to avenge his loss to “The Spider” at UFC 64, but Silva scored another TKO victory, this one happening early in Round 2 after a series of knee strikes.

In the co-main event, two-time UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia handed Brandon “The Truth” Vera his first loss by unanimous decision.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

UFC 76: Night of No Knockouts

Keith Jardine (Photo:

UFC 76: Knockout – Anaheim, Calif. – Honda Center – Sept. 22, 2007

Keith Jardine scored a huge upset over Chuck Liddell in the main event of UFC 76.

Filling in for Liddell’s original opponent, Wanderlei Silva, “The Dean of Mean” scored a split decision over the legendary Liddell.

UFC 76 was subtitled “Knockout,” so of course, there were no knockouts on the show.

UFC Fight Night 11: Substitute Winner

Kenny Florian (Photo:

UFC Fight Night 11 – Thomas vs. Florian – Las Vegas, Nev. – The Pearl at the Palms - Sept. 19, 2007

Kenny Florian subbed into the main event on UFC Fight Night 11 and beat Din Thomas with a rear naked choke in 4 minutes, 31 seconds.

Florian took the place of Spencer Fisher, who reportedly had to drop out due to a staph infection.

This show was the lead-in to the season premiere of The Ultimate Fighter Season 6.

Monday, February 19, 2018

UFC 75: Golden PRIDE

Rampage Jackson (Photo:

UFC 75: Champion vs. Champion – London – O2 Arena – Sept. 8. 2007

Rampage Jackson beat Dan Henderson in a UFC vs. PRIDE title unification bout at UFC 75.

Jackson won by unanimous decision to unify Henderson’s PRIDE middleweight title with his own UFC light heavyweight title.

This was UFC’s third major show in the United Kingdom in 2007 after previous events in Manchester and Belfast. 

Thursday, January 25, 2018

UFC 74: Aged to Perfection

Randy Couture (Photo:

UFC 74: Respect – Las Vegas, Nev.  – Mandalay Bay Events Center – Aug. 25, 2007

Randy Couture added to his legend by retaining the UFC heavyweight title against Gabriel Gonzaga at UFC 74.

Gonzaga had earned a title shot with a stunning upset over Mirko Cro Cop at UFC 70.

However, the 44-year-old Couture turned back the challenge by dominating the first two rounds and winning by TKO in Round 3.

Georges St. Pierre bounced back from the loss of his welterweight title by beating Josh Koscheck by unanimous decision.

UFC 73: Don't Grab the Fence

Tito Ortiz (Photo:

UFC 73: Stacked – Sacramento, Calif. – ARCO Arena – July 7, 2007

Judges’ decisions can be controversial, so it’s safe to say that Tito Ortiz and Rashad Evans had the most evenly scored fight in history of the Octagon at UFC 73.

All three judges called the bout a 28-28 draw. If Ortiz hadn’t been docked a point for grabbing the fence, he would have won by unanimous decision.

Fans had to wait four years for the rematch, as Evans beat Ortiz at UFC 133 by TKO in Round 2.

Anderson Silva retained the middleweight title in the main event of UFC 73 with a TKO win over Nate Marquardt at the 4:50 mark. Silva pounded the challenger with a series of rights to earn the stoppage.

Monday, January 15, 2018

The Ultimate Fighter 5 Finale: Nate Diaz Wins

Nate Diaz (Photo

The Ultimate Fighter 5 Finale – Las Vegas, Nev. – The Pearl at the Palms – June 23, 2007

Nate Diaz won The Ultimate Fighter Season 5’s lightweight tournament, beating Manny Gamburyan.

Diaz won in the second round when Gamburyan was unable to continue due to a dislocated shoulder.

The season consisted entirely of lightweights, with former lightweight champions Jens Pulver and BJ Penn serving as coaches.

In the main event coaches’ fight, Penn forced Pulver to submit to a rear naked choke in Round 2. Penn avenged the first loss of his career to Pulver at UFC 35 five years earlier.