No one expected much from UFC 122. The second European card in less than a month, it was headlined by a middleweight contender's match and lost it's biggest star, Vitor Belfort, when he got called up to fight for the title. This was the UFC's second German event and in contrast to their Deutschland debut, it got much less hysterical press coverage. Of course that's partly because German regulators have blocked MMA content from being shown on German TV.
Even for a card that people didn't expect much from, it was a dud. Here's Matt Bishop tearing UFC 122 a new one:
This was a lame duck event in every sense of the phrase heading in, more so than any event I can recall.
Cards can look good on paper and not deliver and vice versa. Unfortunately for all MMA fans, this card was not only bad on paper, but in the Octagon as well. The fight to be watching Saturday night was Pacquiao's epic beating of Margarito, not the embarrassment that was UFC 122, where, of the five main card fights, only one had any level of excitement (Dennis Siver's handling of Andre Winner). This was a card mainly devoid of any merit whatsoever.
Josh Gross piles on:
This was the worst main card lineup of the year for Zuffa. Hands down. The fights weren't dramatic. Outside of the main event, the bill featured mostly mid-tier professionals. It was also snake bitten, as Alessio Sakara fell sick backstage and his fight with Jorge Rivera had to be cancelled.
It just wasn't a fun card, and I like watching Yushin Okami fight. Hopefully the WEC merger will quickly pay dividends in the form of phatter UFC cards.
I'll let Mike Fagan sum it up:
Even adjusting for its free status, I hope the assimilation of the WEC eliminates UFC events of this caliber. Marquardt vs. Okami is a legitimate B-show main event, though lacking in any sort of drawing power. Zuffa stuffed the undercard with a smattering of irrelevant bouts though. I understand there are other incentives at play for these overseas shows, but I'm not sure treating the German crowd to a glorified MFC show is going to ingratiate the sport to a new market. The fact that the show didn't suffer at all when it lost its co-main event is quite telling.