Earlier this week I finally picked up my UFC Best of 2011 DVD from the library after reserving it back in March and patiently waited for two months for the folks ahead of me in the reserve line to watch. Admittedly I didn't remember much of the original review in the above article before I popped in Disc One that evening.
First things first, my DVD player is a bigass piece of machinery. It's an old JVC three-disc player I've had for almost a decade and it's had its dodgy moments before. I popped in the CD and it almost destroyed it because it was not reading at all. Tried it in a different tray and again it wasn't reading and in fact it wasn't even spinning properly. Finally tried the final tray and it worked without a hitch. It's never done this with any other disc before and because of that I didn't even venture into Disc Two.
With everything all set, here are some observations:
- Two Full Fights. This disc was made for people with ADHD. The only full fights shown were Cain Velasquez vs. Junior Dos Santos and Wanderlei Silva vs. Chris Leben, and that's only because they lasted a combined 1:36. Everything else was just highlights, and not even complete ones either. I seriously cannot believe they edited out the ending to Brock Lesnar vs. Alistair Overeem and stopped after the body kick that knocked Brock down. In reality, the fight ended when Brock was turtled up and Overeem landed a hard right to the body that finished Lesnar. They also did not show the end of the 4th round of Shogun vs. Henderson where Shogun badly hurts Henderson, mounts him, only for Shogun to get reversed. The deep neck crank Dominick Cruz had on Demetrious Johnson wasn't even aired and they went from round 1 all the way to round 5.
- Ass-Backwards table of contents. Why the HELL would you start with the heavyweights and finish with the bantamweights? Seriously, the first fight is Cain/JDS and it ends with Urijah Faber vs. Brian Bowles. I'm no content expert, but it makes way more sense to introduce the best of the year by introducing the new weight classes and ending with the monumental free title fight on FOX in your marquee weight division.
- Dubbing and editing. The UFC really needs to stop doing this because no other sports organization even attempts this retroactive correcting of commentary. Joe Rogan's complaints of the Wanderlei/Cung Le stoppage are not included, Mike Goldberg's hilarious "WANDERLEI SILVA BEATS CHRIS LEBEN" now says "WANDERLEI SILVA BEATEN BY CHRIS LEBEN", and I'm pretty sure some of the Cain/JDS fight pre-knockdown was re-dubbed by Goldberg.
- Disc Two is utterly pointless. Granted, I haven't put in Disc Two and probably never will. This disc is supposed to be exclusively "bonus fights" because they weren't bothered to put in any other interesting bonus material. Every single bonus fight is basically the full fights of the highlights in Disc One. Total dumbassery.
- Way too many quality and key fights/fighters left out. This entire recap was basically about the guys already at the top of their division and then the likes of Tito Ortiz, Wanderlei Silva, and Big Nog. They left out Fitch/Hendricks, Shields/Ellenberger, Jung/Garcia II, Guillard/Dunham, Guillard/Lauzon, didn't even INCLUDE Michael Bisping, and countless others. Phil Davis had no highlights, ditto Dustin Poirier, Renan Barao, Travis Browne, Jim Miller, and I'm just rambling on at this point so let me stop there.
As someone who thinks the UFC has done an excellent job with putting out these DVDs, this is their worst one by far and it smells of a product that was rushed together and hurriedly put to market for the purpose of instant sales. Well if you seriously want to buy this piece of garbage, this is the table of contents for each disc:
Disc One - Highlights
Cain/JDS (full fight)
Wanderlei/Leben (full fight)
Donald Cerrone highlights (with practically no highlights of Nate Diaz's mauling of him)
Intro to Flyweight Tournament
Disc Two - Ten Full "Bonus" Fights
Now note, this is just the DVD because apparently there are more full fights on BluRay, but it's still pretty much a highlights program you're watching. Supposedly they cut out Nate Diaz's double middle-fingers towards Cerrone.
At least it was free for me and I'm thankful my local library system has many UFC DVDs for me to check out. But for your sake, DO NOT BUY THIS AT ALL. It's not worth your time, it's a lazy production, and is a gross misrepresentation of the "Best of" 2011.