These past few UFC events have been very hard on me to the point where I've begun to question how much of a hardcore fan I really am. Looking back on this latest UFN Brazil card, I feel like I got sucked into a blackhole watching the prelims and now feel like I could've been doing something better with my time. Prior to UFC 169, I've always been gung ho to watch every single fight on a card. Now I just don't think I can do it anymore. I would like to give my thoughts on the card though.
The main reason why I tuned into the prelims was because I wanted to see what was up with these Russian prospects making their debuts. Thanks to Khabib and Rustam et al, I've been very high on seeing these Russians just destroy dudes. It's very entertaining and almost feels like it replaces that void Fedor left behind with pure Russian violence. Anyway, the first two fights were ok, but nothing to write home about. I'd like to see them fight again to get a better opinion, but the Tumenov-Alcantara was the more interesting fight. Things started off pretty good with Tumenov dropping Alcantara and proceeding to beat the crap out of him. I wish the fight could've stayed that way, but Tumenov suffered a pretty bad cut and appeared to have tired quite a bit. I will say that I thought it was impressive how at the end of the round Alcantara's body language said "I got this guy." After that it was all Alcantara.
Being so high on Russians, I'm kinda sick of the latest Brazilian fighters in the UFC. I'm really getting tired of this wild and sloppy fighting style most of them seem to employ. I feel like there's been a sharp drop-off in talent levels for Brazilians. Thinking about it, I think this might have something to do with the emergence of TUF Brazil. It's probably not a coincidence. The only new Brazilian fighter in the UFC that has remotely impressed me is Elias Silverio. The rest are no better than tomato cans in my opinion.
Back on track, I was a big Sengoku fan back in the day and remember Blanco, but not for the best of reasons. The only fight I remember of him was when he eked out a decision against some Japanese dude. I don't even think he had much of an offensive output and the fight bored me to tears. I also don't really like Arantes as well. He strikes me as a fighter who is well-rounded, but is not great at anything and his fights tend to go to decisions. He just doesn't have the offensive arsenal to really threaten a finish. I think the only way I'd enjoy a fight of his is if he got the crap beaten out of him. So this way the fight that started the chain of boredom.
I've never liked Wilson Reis as a fighter. He's almost a one-dimensional grappler who can only use his grappling to get a submission against totally undermatched opponents or against someone slightly better, stall to a decision. The only time I've enjoyed a fight of his is when Patricio Pitbull absolutely smashed him. That was a beautiful KO. Against Yuri, all I saw from him was stalling to not get the crap beaten out of him. In the second round Yuri dropped him and proceeded to pound him out. Things were looking good and I hoped a finish would come, but Reis managed to somehow stall the situation. I really wish Yuri could've gotten the (t)ko. That would've made the fight so much better.
My opinion of Trinaldo changed for the worse when I saw him him gas against Piotyr Hallmann and get submitted. Watching this fight, he looked like a typical Brazilian to me; wild and sloppy. Winging power punches to no particular effect ala Leonard Garcia. That said Ronson was the better technical striker, but I just don't think he had the power to compete with Trinaldo, who just seemed to overpower him on the feet for those first two rounds. Then he basically gassed in the third, but Ronson wasn't really able to take advantage.
Perhaps the worst fight of the night was Damm-Jorge. As I was watching, this was the fight that made me question my dedication as a fan and as to why I was watching this boring crap. I'd like to forget the fight ever happened, but it was so terrible I don't think I will ever be able to.
Last up on the prelims was another terrible fight mostly of the once again typical wild and sloppy Brazilian fighting style of Marcello. Fight started to improve when Proctor proceeded to beat the piss out of him, but a finish never materialized and the fight remained pretty terrible overall.
Finally the main card with Oliveira and Ogle. I've been really impressed with Ogle in his last few fights, but Oiveira's grappling was just too much for his grinding style. It was ok fight, but I stopped being high on Oliveira after I witnessed him break ala Vitor Belfort multiple times. I'd love to see Chad Mendes absolutely destroy him. That would be fun to watch.
Andrade and Musoke was a pretty bad fight. This fight had one of those wtf moments when Andrade dropped Musoke with a wild right and instead of launching a skull crushing fist ala Hendo and Stun Gun, he raises his arms in victory. After the first round he gases and Musoke takes over with his technical skills. Typical Brazilian once again. Not fun to watch at all.
I really needed some big time violence with Erick Silva's fight and it delivered in typical Silva fashion. People like to complain about mismatches, especially in Bellator, but I think you need a mismatch every now and then to satisfy the violence quota. Mismatches are better than competitive fights that end in a so-so decision. Anyhow, this fight didn't save the card, but it helped redeem it a tiny bit.
I've begun to dread to Carmont and at the same time really love Jacare. It was ok fight all said and the fact that Jacare had a hurt arm most likely had an impact on the outcome of the fight. He just didn't look as good as usually does. Everyone deserves an off night every now and then especially if they're injured.
I really, really enjoyed the main event. Machida looked awesome and quite possibly the best he's ever looked overall. He landed quite a few of what I would consider knockout blows, but Mousasi has one hell of a chin. Speaking of Mousasi, he reminds me of Pat Curran a bit. He seemed content to stay the course for most of the fight while Machida continually outstruck him. As the later rounds approached, he didn't appear to have a sense of urgency to get the finish, which is what he needed. Sure, maybe he landed a good punch or two, but nothing to turn the tide of the fight. Then again, I'm not sure Mousasi could have beaten that Machida anyway. I'd really like to see Weidman fight Machida next after he smashes Vitor.
Despite these decidedly meh past two events, I'm still looking forward to UFC 170. At the very least, I'm super excited to see Ronda Rousey kick some serious ass. I will be watching the prelims on FS1 because there are some fighters I want to see, but defintely in the future I don't think I can stomach anymore prelim fights from the UFN cards.