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UFC 189 – KO analysis

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UFC 189 might possibly have been the greatest MMA event in history. From brutal striking, picture perfect technique and knock ‘em down, drag ‘em out wars,  last Saturday’s event will be talked about for years and remembered for even longer. So, having such a memorable event with some simply sensational finishes, its only just we take a look at some of the best finishes of the night.

Here is my KO analysis for UFC 189.

 

Lawler def. MacDonald via KO round 5

There isnt a lot technically to take away from this finish, being it was a simple straight left to the nose that put MacDonald away, but what we can take from it is the importance of targeting your strikes. Lawler knew Rory’s nose was damaged through a prolonged assault in the previous 4 rounds and he also knew he probably needed a finish to win the fight. Putting these two facts together, Robbie knew the best bet to win was to target MacDonald’s injuries and that’s what gave him the finish, landing a huge punch right on the broken nose of Rory forcing him to crumble to the mat and the fight to be called.

Being able to target your opponent in different locations is a must have skill at the highest level of the game as it gives you more chance to leave lasting damage to your opponent that could help you in future rounds and also as shown with Lawler vs. MacDonald, it is a great way to localise damage to a specific body part of your opponent and turn what seem rather average strikes to fight ending shots.

 

McGregor def. Mendes via KO round 2

Funnily enough, this fight finish was brought about by Mendes as much as it was by McGregor. After the first few striking exchanges where Mendes felt the stomach churning body shots and exceptionally diverse striking arsenal of his foe, it was pretty obvious to everyone that Chad would have a very difficult time beating Conor on their feet. Mendes’ counter to this was obvious from the get-go and that was to take McGregor down early, take him down hard and keep him down.

Chad followed his game plan well, scoring numerous hard takedowns in the fight that used a lot  energy to not only complete the takedown, but to hold McGregor on the mat to minimalize the time the men spent on the feet. This played right into McGregor’s hands as Conor did not use half as much  energy off his back as Mendes did on top, and offered nothing in the way of a  sweep or submission threat, but rather he bided his time and got back to his feet when the opportunity came.

After rinse and repeating this many times, Chad was gassed and the final flurry on the feet was too much for Mendes to withstand. Mixing together exhaustion caused by wrestling and constant a body attack from Connor and the obvious power McGregor has in his striking shown in the fight ending flurry is a recipe for disaster for any fighter. Being able to intelligently defend yourself when gassed is hard enough, but when a man is throwing with the strength of McGregor it’s no wonder Mendes was forced to turtle up and the fight was called.

 

 

Almeida def. Pickett via KO round 2

Is Thomas Almeida a future world champion? We have no idea yet, but is he one of the most exciting young mma prospects with highlight reel KO ability? Check and check.

Despite a rocky start for Almeida, he was able to finish this fight early in the second round with a gorgeous flying knee KO of Brad Pickett. If this knockout seemed familiar, it’s probably because it was the same scissoring knee variant that Jose Aldo used to KO Cub Swanson at WEC 41. The scissoring action of faking the right knee then coming up with the left in mid-air is a great technique for catching your opponent off guard and landing one of the hardest strikes you can land in MMA and it worked perfectly for Almeida on Saturday night. Moments before the fight ending knee, Brad Pickett threw his own flying knee which was easily evaded by Almeida. As Thomas threw his knee, Pickett assumed it was the same technique he himself has just tried and only saw the right knee of Almeida coming up short and reacted instantly by trying to grab Almeida’s raised leg for an easy takedown, playing straight into the trap of the scissor knee. As Brad did this, Almeida’s left knee followed the right and landed on the totally unprotected chin of Pickett putting him flat backed on the canvas with his arms laid out above his head. Pickett regained consciousness almost immediately, but the fight had already been called off and rightly so.

Purists always say to focus on the basics, but this fight ending shot showed just how effective flashy techniques can be. Pickett was maybe a bit too eager to rush in with the counter takedown, but you cannot really fault brad too much in this finish. He was simply caught in the wrong place at the wrong time by a phenomenal technique.

 

 

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Interviews

Exclusive: Derek Brunson: “Anderson was definitely a little lubed up”

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Derek Brunson fought Anderson Silva back in February of this year, at UFC 208. Brunson would go on to lose the fight by controversial unanimous decision. However, the controversies didn’t stop at the questionable decision, Brunson also claims Silva was greasing during the fight. The Wilmington, North Carolina native, posted about it on Twitter a few days ago:

Speaking with MMA Latest, Brunson explained why he believes Silva was greasing during the fight. “Anderson was definitely a little lubed up. Every time I grabbed him he was just slipping out of everything, and his takedown defense was really good that night. I was definitely curious to know why he was very slippery, which I definitely think he had some kind of substance on his body. He knows I’m a wrestler obviously, he’s an old, savvy veteran, so he was definitely trying to play all the rules and be very strategic, and make it harder for a wrestler to grab him.”

Brunson is set to face Lyoto Machida come October 28, when asked about whether he was worried about Machida greasing, considering Gegard Mousasi accused him of doing so in their fight, Brunson admitted he wasn’t too worried.

Well I’m not too worried, but like I said, I put it out there because I know they’re friends and I know, obviously, that’s kind of what the guys do when they know they’re fighting a wrestler. They want to lube their body up really good to make it hard to grab hold, Anderson did a great job defending my takedowns. It’s because he was all greased up so he was able to stop a lot of them. When I grab guys in the clinch, it’s very tough for them to get away and I’m pretty good with my Greco takedown. He was pretty much pulling through my clinch when I had a tight grip on him and if you have some kind of substance on your body it’s easy to pull them.”

Neither Silva nor his management have commented on the greasing allegations. Anderson Silva makes his return against Kelvin Gastelum later this year, in China. While Brunson makes his return to the Octagon on October 28th, in Brazil, where he looks to add Lyoto Machida’s name to his impressive list of victories.

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Announcement

Ovince Saint Preux Steps in to Face Corey Anderson at UFC 217

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UFC 217 just got even more interesting. Earlier this week, Patrick Cummins pulled out of his light heavyweight matchup with Corey Anderson due to a Staph infection. Corey “Overtime” Anderson was not happy with his opponents decision, even calling out his opponent on Instagram asking how Cummins could, “call it quits so far from fight night”.

The UFC left Anderson on the card, and he found an opponent through the magic of Twitter. Ovince Saint Preux tweeted out directly to Anderson stating:

It didn’t take long for Anderson to respond agreeing to the fight, tagging Mick Maynard and Dana White in his response.

Only a few short hours later, the fight announcement came from the official UFC twitter account.

 

This top 10 Light Heavyweight matchup should add to an already amazing card coming in November at Madison Square Garden. Saint Preux is coming off of back to back wins both due to the very rare von flue choke, he finds himself ranked #7th in the latest edition of the 205-pound rankings. Corey “Overtime” Anderson is 4-2 in his last 6 fights, but is coming off a brutal first round knockout loss to Jimi Manuwa in March.

With such a exciting fight added to this card, what do you see happening November 4th?  Will Corey Anderson bounce back and look to jump into the top 5 of the rankings, or will Ovince Saint Preux go for a third straight von flue choke? Let us know.

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Announcement

*Watch* Bellator 185 Weigh in: Live Stream, Results

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Watch the live weigh-ins for Bellator 185 here.

Gegard Mousasi takes on Alexander Slemenko live this Friday night October 20th at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville CT. This is the first appearance for Mousasi in the Bellator cage as he looks to secure a title shot with a win over the very tough former Bellator champion Slemenko. Joining these men of the main card will be a pair of welterweights as Neiman Gracie from the famous Gracie BJJ family takes on Zak Bucia in the co-main event.

Full Weigh-in Results: (Updated in real time)

Main Card:

Gegard Mousasi (185) vs. Alexander Shlemenko (186)
Neiman Gracie (170.5) vs. Zak Bucia (170)
Heather Hardy (126) vs. Kristina Williams (126)
Ryan Quinn (155.5) vs. Marcus Surin (155)
Ana Julaton (125.5) vs. Lisa Blaine (122)

Preliminary Card:

Jordan Young (200) vs. Alec Hooben (194)
Costello van Steenis (185) vs. Steve Skrzat (186)
Vinicius de Jesus (170) vs. Joaquin Buckley (171)
John Beneduce (154.5) vs. Dean Hancock (155)
Timothy Wheeler (144) vs. Pete Rogers (144)
Don Shainis (150) vs. Matthew Denning (149)
Frank Sforza (149) vs. Vovka Clay (150)
Kevin Carrier (156) vs. Jose Antonio Perez (153)
John Lopez (126) vs. Billy Giovanella (125)

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