Mean muggin' before tame fightin'. (Photo: Joe Camporeale-US PRESSWIRE)
Two UFC events in two nights leads to plenty of action to analyze. With some clear winners coming out of UFC on FX 4 and UFC 147 and some very clear losers, there's a lot to talk about. But let's try and limit it to five thoughts on everything that happened.
1) Rich Franklin Is A Hall of Famer - I don't care if you're talking about the UFC Hall of Fame or some sort of "independently run" HOF, Rich Franklin belongs in it. Not so much because he beat an old and faded Wanderlei Silva, but because he's 14-5 on the biggest stage in the sport, held a title that he defended twice and his only career losses have come at the hands of world champions.
It was very interesting to watch him show very little respect for Silva's power yesterday, standing in and getting into firefights a bit more than was advisable and it almost cost him when he was nearly stopped after a classic Silva blitz. Even after that moment, he still stood in the pocket and threw strikes with intention and clearly earned the victory.
2) "Gameplans" are not a problem for MMA, bad gameplans are - In the aftermath of Clay Guida's "performance" against Gray Maynard, Twitter and other media were blowing up with complaints about how gameplans are ruining MMA.
That is an incredibly short-sighted view of things. What Guida did wasn't exactly executing a great gameplan, it was a bad plan that involved very little engaging and a lot of running. Fans should never push for less intelligent fighting and guys entering the cage with a plan of attack. Guida was punished for not engaging with a loss on his record and potentially irreparable damage to his reputation, that's punishment enough to keep others from following his lead.
Oh, and no...this was nothing like Carlos Condit.
3) Fighters know when they're ready for a title shot more than anyone else - Hatsu Hioki's decision to pass up a title shot in favor of one more fight was made because he knew something the rest of us didn't. When he lost his fight at UFC on FX 4, that wasn't proof that he should have taken the title shot when offered, it was proof that he knew he wasn't ready for Jose Aldo. That seems to have proved to be exactly the case.
4) Despite being entertaining, UFC 147 was not a "good card" - There's a tendency to go back after events that are derided before the fact for not being "pay-per-view quality." UFC 147 was not a good card for PPV beforehand, and despite the fact that it had some decent fights, it still wasn't a good PPV card after the fact.
What we really got was a decent fight between Dias and Alcantara that would be on the undercard of any other show, Werdum beat Russow in a result that was as predictable as any old school WWF squash match, a really bad featherweight TUF final, a good middleweight final fight and Franklin vs. Silva in a really good battle. What listed there was worth paying for other than Franklin vs. Silva?
5) Brazilian crowds are great because they're passionate, BUT... - Isn't it kind of weird that we throw a fit about "U.S.A." chants while thinking it's great that Brazilian fans chant things that amount to "Fuck you" and "Go fuck yourself"?
I'd honestly love to see the reaction from people if a crowd in the U.S. chanted the same kind of stuff at a fighter.