Some people posted that TUF:Brazil was the best TUF cast since TUF 5 (Diaz, Maynard, Gamburyan, Lauzon, Miller, Wiman... heck even Rob Emerson didn't suck for a while). I just didn't see it last night. I saw a lot of aggression in the early fights, but it seemed wild and unrefined. It is that kind of wildness that get's picked apart by a technical striker, or planted repeatedly by a powerful wrestler. It will be interesting to see if this group can live up to the hype, but a non-TUF Brazilian Hacran Dias was the best new UFC fighter I saw last night, so right now I'm not holding my breath. There is a chance that the celebrity these guys received was too much too soon.
Rich Franklin might be my favorite fighter of all time... I know he isn't the best fighter of all time, but he always shows up in shape, puts on a great show, and is well spoken at the end. UFC needs to make Rich Franklin v Michael Bisping. Rich wants to make one more run at a title, and if Anderson Silva should retire, then Rich is going to be right in the mix. In the meantime, a fight with Bisping is the biggest fight for both men, and the winner comes out much closer to the top.
In a perfect world Fabricio Werdum would be fighting Daniel Cormier next to determine a number 1 contender after Cain Velasquez... but we live in a world where Zuffa has come up very short at maximizing the potential of the Strikeforce acquisition.
I'm less of a Clay Guida fan after watching the Dana White video blog that he posted from after UFC on FX4. Guida had the whole fight to engage with Gray Maynard, and he danced around to the point where he got a warning for not engaging (It has been a long time since I've seen that in UFC)... then while both fighters were getting checked out by the commission and docs in the back, Guida wanted to bitch and moan, and then try to get in Gray's face... what a joke.
There is no chance Gray is getting a title fight next, or even a fourth Edgar fight... I'd love to see him in with Donald Cerrone next.
Hatsu Hioki made a big time mistake by turning down a title shot. I think that he took Ricardo Lamas lightly, and paid for it. It will be a long road back to the top for Hioki, as the Featherweight division is getting more crowded by the card... I'm not talking about the TUF:Brazil cast... I am talking about Harcan Dias.
Zorobabel Moreira is a beast. He is 29, but seems to be starting to come into his own in MMA. This is one of those times I want to see non-Zuffa organizations work together (Because if UFC can't have him, then we at least want to see the best fights we can). If Moreira could enter the next Bellator Lightweight tournament it would be awesome. I really wish he could pass go... and step right into a fight with Michael Chandler right now... I'm not sure he wins, but it would be entertaining.
Roger Huerta has entered the "Phil Baroni" "Sokoudjou" "Ken Shamrock" phase of his career. He is a name where he can use his status as a UFC veteran to get fights, but the skills that once made him a top 20 guy are gone. It isn't going to matter how much he trains in Thailand, or where-ever, his body has racked up some wicked miles and beatings. He is now destine to run the circuit of up and coming promotions, and regional scene just being used for his diminishing name value.
The Bellator Light-Heavyweights are still a sorry group. I did not see a single thing on Friday night that makes me think that any of these guys is going to make King Mo break a sweat when he shows up. I think Bellator would have been smarter to fold the division then to put the resources into improving their deeper divisions like BW, FW, LW, and WW.
Brett Rogers made his return to a serious organization... yawn... He fought a guy who was tiny compared to him, and I was not very impressed by a single thing that Rogers did. It will be interesting to see how he does in the Bellator tourney... but Cole Konrad will probably take his lunch money, if he gets that far.
All my MMA related thoughts can be found Here