Everyone knows what went down regarding UFC 143. I'm not going to talk about the main event, or the matchups that might happen in the wake of it. I want to talk about the things coming out of the show that I personally found interesting...but the rest of the MMA community must simply disagree. Regardless, I think these points deserve a little more attention.
1. The new UFC opening was AWESOME! - That was a very interesting thing they did, snapping footage and clips from noteworthy fights and compositing them into an entirely new background. It was essentially retroactive blue-screen work, for those who know a thing or two about movies.
All in all, the music and overall look and feel of the new opening was quite slick...I liked it and it's a huge improvement over the gladiator rubbing dirt on his hands while the outdated choir plays in the background.
2. Stephen Thompson - Yes, it's never cool to overhype any prospect, but 28 year old(I think he's 28) Stephen Thompson isn't really a full blown rookie or a run of the mill prospect when it comes to comebat sports in general. He had a long amateur and professional kickboxing career preceding his MMA debut.
But the most compelling thing about him is that he is 100% utterly and completely undefeated. He is not just unbeaten in MMA, he went 57-0 between ammy and pro kickboxing(I believe the breakdown is 37 wins as an amateur and 20 wins as a professional)...I mean, to have that many fights and to have never slipped up, been caught, had an off night, or been screwed by judges...it's pretty crazy. To be a young guy, that's a hell of an aura to have.
3. Renan Barao - His performance on Saturday may have been more measured and clinical against the always game Jorgensen, but he was still Barao's highest ranked opponent to date. But more importantly, the Baron is making history with every win. For starters, he has the longest current undefeated streak of any active MMA fighter with 28 wins(Hector Lombard is a close second on a 25 fight unbeaten streak). On top of that, at 25, he already has the 4th longest winning streak in ALL of MMA history.
His current unbeaten streak is longer than Fedor's was(he past him on Saturday)...and with one more win, he'll be tied for the 3rd longest unbeaten streak of all time. This guy could retire right now and he would still have a place in the history books for a while...because lets face it, this type of winning streak is rare.
Other things that caught my attention included the fact that Starks was not trucked by Herman at all...even though almost everyone thought he would be. He more than held his own. Max Holloway was also a very game opponent, and at 20 years old, he's got a bright future. I think Pierce deserved the decision and I hope he can put a good streak together following this.
I don't think it was fair to go from a warning for the first groin shot to taking 2 points away after the next groin shot. That seemed excessive. Just toshing this out there, but I'd like to see Werdum vs Mir in a #1 contender match to ensure that one of them will lose their next fight...I'm not a fan of either guy.
Well...that is all.