UFC 117: Silva vs. Sonnen Post-Fight Recap and Analysis

Photo via www.mmaweekly.com

-OK, what is up with Chael Sonnen and tapping? Does he have some irrational fear of losing limbs? Is he always trying to game the system? I don't get it. He clearly tapped in a way so as to cause the most confusion. I sat deathly afraid we were in for some sort of Tapgate 2010. Thank goodness the replay was clear.

-It's amazing that Chael Sonnen still hasn't figured out that whole "submission thing" yet.

-That said, Chael Sonnen put on a fantastic performance. How hurt was Silva in the first round? Did that effect him the rest of the fight? Either way, Sonnen did exactly what he said he was going to do. He went out, took the fight to Anderson Silva, and beat him up. That's the kind of equalizer that world class wrestling brings.

-Why didn't Sonnen ease up in round five though? Chael was well ahead on the scorecards and arguably won a 10-8 or two. He doesn't have to get on his bike necessarily, but why put yourself in a position for Silva to finish the fight? Sit in guard and play defense. If the referee stands you back up, take Silva back down. Rinse and repeat until you have the middleweight title around your waist.

-Now, for Anderson Silva. Stop trying to wrap a guy up and get the referee to stand you up. It never worked for Wanderlei Silva, and it won't work for you. Fighters cannot rely on the referee interfering, especially when the guy on top stays as active as Sonnen.

-For twenty-plus minutes, I thought my epic Silva-GSP superfight articles just lost all their worth. Chael Sonnen walks through Anderson Silva and a fight with St-Pierre loses all its luster. Then Chael Sonnen is Chael Sonnen and those articles are even more relevant! Georges St-Pierre is a smaller, but better Chael Sonnen. You still don't want to see that fight?

Rest of the card after the jump.

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-Can the UFC give Jon Fitch some sort of Second Best Welterweight title? Unless St-Pierre makes the jump up to 185, I'm afraid Fitch will always play second fiddle at 170.

-It's going to be very interesting to see what happens with Thiago Alves. The UFC hasn't been shy about "suggesting" a guy change weight class. If Alves continues to try and fight at welterweight, he's going to be forever haunted by his weight cutting failures. Still, he's short for middleweight and won't enjoy the size advantage that has carried him at welterweight.

-Disappointing finish to the dos Anjos/Guida fight. It looked like Guida was on pace for the typical Guida decision (lose the first round, wrestle away the last two), and then dos Anjos' jaw gives out on him. I'm curious when the break or fracture occurred. Rogan pointed out a punch in the first round, but I'm wondering if it took place during one of the takedowns.

-I thought Matt Hughes looked awful up until the finish. He looked tentative and old. Frankly, he looked like he wanted to be anywhere else but the Octagon. If the left hook knock down wasn't impressive enough, Hughes showed off his very impressive grappling skills. Modified arm triangle from front head lock? Awesome.

-Not sure where Almeida goes from here. Losing to Matt Hughes isn't a career killer, but this is a pretty big setback.

-Roy Nelson decided to invoke the Homer Simpson strategy. Get hit a bunch until your opponent tires out so you can push him over for the win. Unfortunately, this was a three round fight and Dos Santos escaped with a victory.

-"Cigano" looked very good. Was it disappointing he didn't finish? Perhaps, but Roy Nelson is tough. He showed that he can go at a solid pace for three rounds. Still, I don't think JDS has a chance against the big boy wrestlers like Cain Velasquez and Brock Lesnar.

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