UFC 140 was in my mind one of the most memorable fight cards in UFC history. 11 out of 12 fights were exciting and the Frank Mir - Nogueira fight had historical significance. As with ever MMA event there are winners and there are losers. Let's take a look at who had the best and worst performances on the night. I'll have additional thoughts as well regarding some fights after the jump.
Jon Jones - Really the most obvious choice. Jones is having a career year and has firmly established himself as the top light heavyweight in the world. After the fights, Dana White thought out loud regarding who could possibly beat his champion. The choke was slick and seeing Machida crumpled up unconscious was an eerie sight. Jones will be the champion until he's too big for the weight class. Heavyweights have been put on notice.
Frank Mir - Being the first man to knock Nogueira out is a huge accomplishment. Being the first man to submit Nogueira was unheard of. Tonight Frank Mir became that man. In order to make the Brazilian tap, Mir was forced to break Nogueira's arm with a kimura. Huge win and could open up a huge opportunity soon.
Chan Sung Jung - Officially tied for fasted knockout in UFC history. The win will obviously propel Jung up the featherweight rankings. Maybe a fight with Hatsu Hioki or Michihiro Omigawa? Both have divisional relevance. Jung is still instinctual but he just showed he has real power in his hands.
Small UFC Bantamweights - Dana White official announced the flyweight division at the post-fight press conference. There will be a four man tournament to crown a champion. This means that the small guys in the division can fight at their natural weight class. Huge night for the little guys.
Dana White - He needed a night like tonight after the week he's had. Losing GSP for a year is terrible news. Having your light heavyweight champion retain his belt definitely makes it easier.
Losers and other thoughts after the jump...
SBN coverage of UFC 140: Jones vs. Machida
Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira - You claimed to be back following your win over Brendan Schaub at UFC 134. Tonight he looked slow on the ground and not too agile on the feet. At one point in his career Nog would never have gotten injured from a kimura. Last night he got his arm broken.
Tito Ortiz - There was talk that this would be his last fight. Following the loss to Rogerio Nogueira, he said he wanted his last fight contracted fight. He's now campaigning for a fight with Forrest Griffin to conclude the rivalry. My issue is that this is the third time Ortiz has been dropped following a knee to the body. He can't fight anymore.
John Makdessi - He entered the fight as the next big lightweight prospect in the UFC. Dennis Hallman exposed Makdessi's lack of grappling knowledge riding from mount to back control. He needs to strongly consider dropping to featherweight since's severely outsized at lightweight.
The Bantamweight divisision - Two of the four participants for the flyweight tournament are former bantamweight contenders in Demetrious Johnson and Joseph Benavidez. Bantamweight already lacks depth. With a some of the division cutting to 125, what does that say about future match ups at 135?
- Lyoto Machida looked great in the first round. He was landing on Jones and was the first man to ever expose any sort of weakness the champ may have. That elbow was the fight changer as it was the first strike that has ever made Machida quit. He's not a huge loser tonight because he still had the performance in the first round.
- Goldberg and Rogan were very much off their games tonight. They often ignored full sequences of fights to discuss inane topics. I understand that the UFC is winding down after a rough year but these guys need to be at the top of their game every night.
- I'm pretty bummed that neither Rogan or Goldberg made any comment about Frank Shamrock, who was working Brian Ebersole's corner. We joke about the UFC's ability to ignore the past but tonight was a great moment to reference a MMA legend and instead Shamrock was ignored.
- Mark Hominick needed a win. Not just to get back in the W column but also to get his life back under control. He lost his best friend earlier this year when it was announced that Shawn Tompkins had passed away. Hopefully UFC brass take their time with the Machine, he's got the popularity to make a different in the Canadian market.
- Brittney Palmer's gonna be in Playboy, y'all.