It was an up and down night of action at UFC Fight Night in Goiania, Brazil. The bad fights were BAD but the good fights were good-to-great, so it created an uneven flow to the card. Thankfully, the main event and co-main event delivered the entertainment from start to finish, and Carlos Condit and Charles Oliveira emerged victorious over their respective opponents.
Tim Burke oh so graciously volunteered to do play-by-play, results, analysis, AND the preliminary card live-tweeting last night, so it's only fair that I return to my Fights to Make post so that everyone stops confusing him for me when we write this. As this is a minor show I'm only focusing on the main card winners, although I will add two preliminary card winners to the fold based on their notoriety.
Carlos Condit. Oh how I've missed the guaranteed fun that comes out of Carlos Condit fights. He started slowly against Thiago Alves but once he got going, it's just written-in-blood poetry in motion. I'm all for him fighting Matt Brown if he beats Tim Means at UFC 189. Alternatively, if he doesn't want to wait over a month to find out the result, let's do Condit vs. Demian Maia in what would be a fascinating clash of styles.
Charles Oliveira. I've had my doubts about Oliveira, and to an extent I still do, but what an absolute thriller he had with Nik Lentz last night. It was back-and-forth the whole way and just when it looked like Oliveira was soon to regret his missed chance to finish in the 1st round, he damn near decapitated Lentz with his early 3rd round guillotine. No denying his top 10 status any longer, and I really hope he gets Max Holloway next in what would be a very entertaining fight.
Alex Oliveira. Not a bad day's work when you can show up on 12 days notice and easily submit a true veteran of the sport like K.J. Noons. He's a huge fighter at lightweight and he still looked big at welterweight, but I suspect he'll stay at lightweight in the long-term. So with that in mind, I'd like to see him vs. Jon Tuck next.
Francimar Barroso. Do I have to? Pre-groin punt (which should've merited a point deduction) and post-groin punt were equal parts terrible and I have no desire to see him or Jimmo compete again. Uhhh ... Anthony Perosh? I know he's coming off a violent loss, but Barroso just had the type of fight where even in a win, you shouldn't necessarily be booked against another winner.
Francisco Trinaldo. Did he deserve the win over Norman Parke? Does it really matter? That certainly wasn't a fight worth remembering, which is the standard for Norman Parke fights. He'll populate the Brazilian shows or prelims of non-Brazilian shows for the rest of his career. Taking a wild stab at it, he fights the winner of next week's Chris Wade/Christos Giagos bout.
Darren Till. Those were some ultra-violent elbows from guard he used to finish Wendell Oliveira. Bonus points for fluently speaking Portuguese (he does live and train in Brazil) in the post-fight interview. He remains undefeated but obviously on the lower end of the stacked welterweight division, so I see him facing Nordine Taleb.
Preliminary card bonus choices:
Jussier Formiga. That's three wins in a row for Formiga and by simply having not yet faced Demetrious Johnson, he is in prime position for a title shot. The problem is he's lost to the three people ranked above him - Dodson, Benavidez, and McCall (who he honestly should be ranked above come Monday). Dodson and Benavidez have both lost to the champion, and however controversial Dodson's win over Zach Makovsky may be, he probably has a slightly better case for a title shot. If the UFC chooses Johnson vs. Dodson 2, then I think Formiga fights Henry Cejudo for the next title shot, assuming Cejudo beats Chico Camus at UFC 188.
Mirsad Bektic. Former Bloody Elbow staffer Patrick Wyman listed Bektic as his #1 prospect in 2014 and so far Bektic has performed to expectation. He is surely going to be a future contender at featherweight and at just 24 years old I expect him to be a force for a long time. If the UFC is content to give him another non-ranked fighter I suggest Diego Brandao. Otherwise, I fully support fast-tracking him right into the likes of ranked, tough gatekeepers such as Darren Elkins or Clay Guida.