My review of UFC on FX 7: Belfort vs. Bisping, which featured some poor cardio and Belfort being awesome.
Vitor Belfort def. Michael Bisping: Sometimes I feel bad for Bisping. He’s a talented guy, he just can’t get over the hump because every top level fighter is a bad match-up for him since he doesn’t do one thing great, he just does everything well. Also, he’s completely clueless defensively. Against traditional fighters, he always circles into their power hand. Against Belfort, a southpaw, he decided that it would be a good idea to duck his head into Belfort’s power hand. If Belfort decided to throw an uppercut, he could’ve easily ended Bisping’s night. Instead he threw a head kick. The first one rocked Bisping late on the first, but he was saved by the bell. The second one ended his night early in the second, giving Belfort the win. In a straight boxing match, Bisping wasn’t doing so bad. Too bad for him that you’re allowed to kick in MMA. The best part of the main event though was Belfort’s post-speech where he went all Lex Luger and stumbled through an epic rant that included forgetting Chael Sonnen’s name, calling him a clown, calling out Jon Jones, and then saying him vs. Jones would be “champion vs. champion.” I have no clue what he was talking about, but it was awesome. I’m totally behind this trend of calling out Jones even though you’re not in his weight class. It makes absolutely no sense, but it’s fantastic. At this point, I’m not sure Jones will ever fight an actual light heavyweight again. He’ll just keep fighting blown up middleweights or drained heavyweights until he decides to move to heavyweight, where he’ll then fight blown up light heavyweights and drained super heavyweights. Belfort should actually focus on middleweight because he might be the second best guy in the division and is much more likely to earn another title shot at middleweight, especially if Dana realizes that Belfort vs. Anderson 2 in Brazil will make him a ton of money. Bisping will continue to get big fights, especially in England, but his title hopes are all but done unless the UFC protects him and runs out of contenders.
CB Dollaway def. Daniel Sarafian: I don’t care what anyone says, this fight sucked. Sarafian had his moments in the first round with some flurries, but Dollaway showed a solid chin and survival skills. The second round was really bad as neither guy did anything until Dollaway hurt Sarafian in the final 30 seconds. In the third round, some of the worst grappling ever took place as Dollaway got a takedown but was swept by a completely exhausted Sarafian. Then they traded sweeps until the fight mercifully ended. If this was a heavyweight fight, everyone would’ve talked about how bad this fight was and how shitty their cardio was, but because they’re middleweights, some people actually thought the weak grappling and sloppy striking made for a good fight. Maybe I just expect more out of a UFC co-main event, but I probably shouldn’t, especially given the competitors. Dollaway ended up winning the decision after trying really hard to give the fight away by not wrestling for the first two rounds and then becoming so tired that he got swept from half guard. Neither guy is going anywhere in the middleweight division and I hope to never see them again.
Gabriel Gonzaga def. Ben Rothwell: This was heavyweight action at it’s best. Gonzaga tried for some sloppy takedowns, they traded sloppy looking punches, and then they both got really tired. The ending of this fight was classic as Rothwell ate a right hand, tried to sprawl on a takedown, slipped forward, and then got caught in a guillotine. That’s what happens when you’re exhausted and clumsy. Gonzaga is now 2-0 since his UFC return and has realized that his chin sucks and he’s better on the ground than pretty much every mediocre heavyweight. He’s not going to challenge for the title against and he’ll get smoked by any top guy, but he’s a solid gatekeeper. It’s always nice seeing Rothwell lose as well.
Khabib Nurmagomedov def. Thiago Tavares: Samer Kadi’s cousin looks to be pretty legit. Nurmagomedov landed a quick uppercut early that dropped Tavares and then brutalized him with elbows on the ground before the referee stopped the fight about 20 strikes too late. Nurmagomedov is undefeated, has put on a couple of exciting fights in the UFC, and has some charisma as well, which could lead to a big fight the next time we see him. I’d like to see him against Josh Thomson or Jorge Masvidal before I’m ready to declare him a step above others in a stacked lightweight division, but so far he’s looked pretty impressive. As for Tavares, his inconsistencies continue and will likely always continue.