UFC 175, headlined by Chris Weidman versus Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida, went down last Saturday in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay events center. Man was it a good one, actually good is an understatement. UFC 175 was filled with epic moments, reaffirming some fighters places at the top while giving other fighters a chance to show what they are truly made of, even if that means literally. And while some fighters put on a beautiful display of skill and technique other martial artists seemed unprepared for the moment and in more extreme cases, unprepared to even make it out of the locker room. So without further or do, here is UFC 175, the good, the bad and the ugly.
There are so many good things to talk about when it comes to UFC 175 but let’s start with the middleweight champion Chris Weidman and his bout against The Dragon. Weidman built his name off of beating arguably the best fighter to ever exist, twice. Yet it seems as if Weidman still needed to prove himself at the top. Saturday night was his chance to do so, taking on his toughest opponent yet in Lyoto Machida. No one ever seems able to figure out Machida’s style in the cage yet Weidman showed why he is the champ, taking the fight to Machida for four out of the five rounds landing strong kicks, being resilient with his take downs and forcing Machida to fight a fight he is not very accustomed to. Now props to Machida who after being dominated for three rounds, found a way to push the tempo in the fourth round and bring it to the champ, making it an exciting fight all the way to the final bell but in the end Weidman’s All-American wrestling on fourth of July weekend proved to be too much for the challenger.
Also too much for the challenger is Ronda Rousey and her amazingly quick finish of Alexis Davis. You know a fighter is scary when you can visibly recognize the improvements in their game each time they step inside the octagon. I know we have all heard the cliché that a fighter is getting better with each fight but Ronda truly is, and that’s scary to think an undefeated fighter who almost never goes out the first round is actually getting better. From being a judo master, to a jui jitsu practitioner to now knocking girls out like a golden gloves boxer, girls can’t just be scared of Rousey’s armbars anymore because this chick is lethal in more ways than one.
Since we’re talking about lethal, the Urijah’s both put on a show on Saturday. One showing he’s still go it while the other showing what he’s got. Urijah Faber was delegated to the prelims fight card on Fox Sports 1, more because he’s a big name that will attract an audience than him falling off, and put on a performance against super tough Alex Caceres submitting Caceres with a rear naked choke in the third round. Later that night on the main card Urijah Hall took on fellow knock out artist Tiago Santos. Hall proved his toughness should never be questioned after breaking his toe in the first found and still bringing the fight to Santos earning a unanimous victory.
There’s a couple things I feel bad about with UFC 175 and one is Alexis Davis. I knew that Rousey was the better fighter coming into that fight but in my heart of hearts I truly believed Davis was going to give her some trouble. At least more trouble than being a punching bag for 16 seconds before trying to single leg Yves Lavigne to the canvas. I’ve watched the highlights of that fight more times than I can count and it hurts more and more each time I watch it. I don’t know if it was the bright lights and big stage but Davis was not ready for that moment and for a fighter who always is ready for war she looked like a deer in head lights on Saturday.
The other bad story from UFC 175 is Stephen Struve. Now this is sort of a double edge sword here because Struve, who was set to fight Matt Mitrione, had a fainting spell minutes before walking out of the locker room and the fight had to be cancelled because of Struve’s preexisting heart condition. But if he managed to make it out of the locker room and had that same issue inside of the cage, the UFC could have had a much bigger problem on their hands. So Struve’s fainting spell happening inside the locker room may have been a blessing in disguise.
Ok, remember how I mentioned how some fighters showed what they are made of? Yeah, that’s Urijah Hall, who I mentioned broke his toe in the first round. I saw so many close ups of that toe that I could tell you what bones were sticking out and the ligaments they connect to. It was nasty, but props to Hall who fought three rounds with a toe about to fall off. That’s truly beast mode.