I'll be starting as soon as the show starts on Versus. Don't post any undercard results.
Televised Fight Card:
Steve Cantwell Vs. Tim McKenzie
Hard to get too excited about this fight. The WEC Lt Heavies are not a talent-packed bunch. McKenzie talks some decent prefight smack: "I'm going to walk through you and take my pride home, and yours." He he. McKenzie's hair is looking really naff. Mc with a hard leg kick and a decent punch combo. More inside leg kicks from Mc. Cantwell replies with a head kick that connects and a push to the cage. Cantwell gets a trip take down, lands a nasty eblow from the guard. Lets McKenzie up and then puts a beat down on him -- another head kick and knees to the face! But McKenzie survives and is defending on the ground. But Cantwell passes guard to side control to mount to Mc's back. Damn. Cantwell is teaching a clinic here. Win by rear naked choke. I'm impressed with Cantwell -- he certainly made me eat my pick and fought a very good fight. Good technique standing, good take down and very nice BJJ work on the ground. Cantwell wants to avenge his flash KO loss to Brian Stann and to do it for the WEC belt. We'll see if he gets that chance.
Now they're pushing the Pulver/Faber fight on June 1. Looking forward to that. Pulver is pretty coherent talking about the fight. Promises a well-rounded attack on Faber.
Ed Ratcliff Vs. Marcus Hicks
Here comes the fight I've been waiting for. Two very promising undefeated lightweights. I picked Ratcliff because I'm a mark for the TMA (traditional martial artists) fighters who make it work in MMA but honestly I think Hicks has a great chance. Huge reach advantage for 9mm. Rafcliff is circling away Hicks nails him with an overhand left! Hicks locks in a guillotinge. Ratcliff gets out. Hicks lands a mean uppercut. Ratcliff escapes a 2nd guillotine. Hicks is drilling him with hard shots. Can Ratcliff survive? Damn, so much for that, Hicks sinks in the third guillotine for the tap. Why o why do I keep picking with my heart instead of my brain?? Jamie Varner better watch out, Hicks is a very dangerous man in the WEC lightweight division.
Richard Crunkilton Vs. Sergio Gomez
Some excellent smack talk from Gomez: "Crunkilton is overrated." Ouch. We'll see what he says after the fight. This one is prerecorded so let's root for a barn-burner. Crunk gets a single leg, Gomez clings to 1/2 guard. Crunk lands elbow from the top, still trapped in 1/2 guard. Gomez gets back to his feet. Crunkilton landed a nice standing elbow against the fence. Opens a cut on Gomez. Going for a single leg, trips Gomez to the ground. Crunk in side control. Going for a d'arce choke. Mir says "it's in". Gomez is wiggling. and escapes! Gomez landing shots standing. Knees and punches. Several rights land for Gomez. Good fight! Crunk gets another single leg against the fence, pulls the leg way up high and slams Gomez down. Gomez almost gets up but Crunk puts him down, then Gomez back to his feet! They're tussling against the cage, both fighters are bloody and hurting. Gomez doing some mean dirty boxing inside. Crunk lands a punch/kick combo but Gomez catches a kick and land several punches, now Crunk gets another takedown and goes for another D'arce as the bell rings. Great round! I'd score it 10-9 for Crunkilton.
Good exchanges to open round 2, Gomez is landing punches but Crunkilton gets a double leg takes down. Gomez fights back to his feet only to get SLAMMED! Now Crunkilton is landing elbows from Gomez' 1/2 guard. Great exchanges on the ground as my fucking browser locked up. Crunkilton almost had a kneebar in, Gomez reversed and got top position. Crunkilton went for another D'arce but Gomez escapes. Now Crunkilton is working from top in 1/2 guard. Blood on the mat. Back to full guard. Gomez is wriggling and fighting but Crunk passes his guard and is landing shots from the top as the bell rings. I did not do justice to that excellent round of ground fighting. Crunkilton won 10-9 but Gomez did great to survive the onslaught.
Exchange kicks to start round 3. Gomez wading in with punches. Crunkilton shoots for a double and gets Gomez down. Gomez goes for a kimura and then a guillotine, Crunkilton escapes and is landing elbows. What a war. These guys are fighting great. Dean stands them up. Crunk lands a quikc leg kick but Gome is landing much harder shots but again Crunkilton forces the fight to the ground against the cage. Gomez has done everything but sprawl in this fight. They spend the final minute and a half fighting for position against the cage, Gomez spending almost all of that time on his back. Another 10-9 for Crunkilton. The judges give Rich Crunkilton the UD. Interesting that Gene Lebell scored it 30-26 and another judge had it at 29-28. Grappler, striker bias?
Uriah is pushing the Pulver fight. He's competing with Jens to see who can ride the other guy's jock the most. We'll see how much heat this generates. Someone needs to do these guys a favor and stir the shit. Good sportsmanship won't make their fight the breakout fight the WEC needs.
Chael Sonnen Vs. Bryan Baker
Here comes Sonnen/Baker. Baker is making a game effort to have a dramatic entrance in the tiny Hard Rock arena. Lol. Not exactly Genki Sudo style. Baker seems very confident going in. Sonnen seems calm. Mazzagatti is rocking a smoov upper lip. Hope we don't end up missing the 'stache. Damn, Sonnen gets a quick double leg for a slam. Landing knees to the shoulder from sidemount. Baker holding on, looking for a restart. Sonnen gets mount, still in Baker's locked arms. Sonnen breaks the hold, gets a front headlock, 3/4 nelson, goes for a d'arce choke.Baker fights to his feet! Now they're trading blows standing, Sonnen gets another double, Baker fighting back to his feet. SUPLEX! Baker going for a reverse triangle (thanks Frank Mir!) Sonnen is landing shots from the top. Baker gets full guard but is taking punches. Baker making sloppy armbar attempt. Sonnen is groundNpounding from inside the guard. Loud thumping punches! Baker is hanging tough. 10-8 round for Sonnen. Complete domination.
Sonnen opens round 2 with another quick takedown and continues the groundNpound. Baker is pretty much out of his league here. He's going for armbars and triangles but he's not setting it up. Sonnen continues to batter Baker. Baker beginning to bleed. Sonnen has him stacked up, passing guard. Sonnen looking for a kimura but not very well. Back to the elbows. Another 10-8 round for Sonnen.
For some reason Baker opens with a kick, Sonnen catches it and gets the takedown. Sonnen in the crucifix. Beating and working for a kimura. Elbows to the head. Sonnen is no Matt Hughes, but still very dominant from the top. Baker goes for a kneebar but nothing there. Two minutes left as Baker reestablishes guard. Baker fighting for an armbar but Sonnen fights out of it and passes guard. Sonnen really battering the younger fighter as the time runs out. Baker shows great heart to survive this battering. Sonnen with another 10-8 round. Easy 30-27 fight for Sonnen. Next stop, the WEC belt. Judges agree, UD for Sonnen. Two of them scored it 30-25.
Doug Marshall Vs. Brian Stann
I'm not stoked about this fight. Two underskilled brawlers flailing wildly and someone scoring a quick KO. Not my thing. I lilke my mayhem with some skillz on top. Team Quest in Stann's corner. Stann dwarfs Marshall. No eye contact in the staredown. Sonnen with a solid leg kick and some good punches. Marshall with a sloppy straight kick. Stann with a left jab. Marshall trying to get a thai plum. Stann is staying too close. Marshall landing some decent hooks but then Stann KTFO's him! Just as expected. I hope the yahoos were amused. Good night, I've got diapers to change. Looking forward to one of Brookhouse's post-mortems of the bad boxing on display here.
Update [2008-3-27 9:9:6 by Nick Thomas]: BloodyElbow.com Staff Predictions 2008
Michael goes 7 for 7 and takes the lead:
Luke Thomas - 51/81 - 63%
Kid Nate - 45/67 - 67%
Brent Brookhouse - 44/66 - 67%
Michael Rome - 45/61 - 74%
Nick Thomas - 43/61 - 71%