clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

UFC 198: Werdum vs. Miocic post-fight results and analysis

New, comments

Mookie Alexander analyzes and recaps all of the action that took place at UFC 198 in Curitiba, Brazil, including the shocking end to Fabricio Werdum vs. Stipe Miocic, which saw the reigning champion dethroned with one huge punch by Miocic.

Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports

UFC 198 is in the books, and on a pretty entertaining night in which Brazilians racked up the victories against non-Brazilians for almost the entire show, Stipe Miocic spoiled Curitiba's special night by putting Fabricio Werdum to sleep with a big right hand as Werdum recklessly waded forward, looking to exchange big shots. Werdum hasn't been put out cold since Junior dos Santos made his ears wiggle in 2008, and that Werdum wasn't nearly as good as the one who won the UFC title last year.

This completes a phenomenal run of performances for Miocic, whose real eye-opening performance (at least for me) was how well he fought against Junior dos Santos. It ended in a decision loss, but that really demonstrated the improvements he'd made as a striker since losing to Stefan Struve in 2012. Since then, he's finished Mark Hunt, Andrei Arlovski, and now Fabricio Werdum. As Stipe said, Cleveland finally has a champion, and he's got the accolades now. Presumably he's fighting Alistair Overeem next, and that's a hell of a contest right there.

It's a crushing loss for Werdum, who had the nation supporting him in his first defense of the title, but he's no different than every other former UFC heavyweight champion. For reasons that only apply to heavyweight and lightweight, it's extremely hard to be a dominant champion in this division. The high of beating Cain Velasquez in Mexico has been followed up with the low of a crushing KO blow in Brazil.

Bloody Elbow alum and Bleacher Report writer Patrick Wyman discussed the aging faces of Brazilian MMA (Werdum is one of them, by the way). Tonight's loss leaves Brazil with just one UFC champion, and it's Rafael dos Anjos, who has fought just once in Brazil since 2009. He fights Eddie Alvarez on July 7th, and if he wins that, Khabib Nurmagomedov is presumably next.

More thoughts on tonight's show:

Main Card

  • Fun Fact: There were 45,000 fans in attendance and it was a RECORD SETTING crowd in Curitiba, Brazil. Mike Goldberg said that about 45,000 times and it was doing my head in.
  • Brian Stann is a national treasure and my favorite analyst in the sport. His attention to detail and well-researched analysis of fighter tendencies, from headliners to Fight Pass unknowns, is outstanding. I don't know how much longer Joe Rogan will be around as lead analyst, but if he ever calls it a career after his contract is up, Stann needs to be #1.
  • Ronaldo Souza got Vitor Belfort down and then pummeled his face until he was a bloody mess. What a performance by Jacare, who gets a huge bounce-back win after the close loss to the currently suspended Yoel Romero. If he's not getting a title shot next, then he's at least on the cusp of getting one. Meanwhile, Belfort's contending days are officially o-v-e-r.
  • Cris Cyborg ripped Leslie Smith apart, as we all expected. She did not call out Ronda Rousey during the post-fight interview, which was a big disappointing. I'm just happy that Cyborg got to fight in the UFC in front of her hometown fans, and she gave them a spectacular showing. Kudos to Smith for even accepting the bout, but prospects were bleak for her from the get-go. And despite her protests, the stoppage was justified.
  • On one hand, Shogun Rua getting the nod over Corey Anderson on the scorecards looks to be a bad decision. On the other hand, Anderson pretty much does the bare minimum to try and win fights, and it'll be a win some/lose some trade-off no matter where the fight takes place. Light heavyweight makes for miserable viewing, especially knowing the lack of up-and-coming LHWs who have actually overtaken Shogun and Lil' Nog in the top 10.
  • Bryan Barberena is a prospect killer. Beating Sage Northcutt on short notice is good, but beating Warlley Alves in Brazil? Even better. Fully deserved the win, and he's shown that he's an incredibly durable fighter who is at least a dangerous gatekeeper at 170 lbs. He was the first fighter to beat a Brazilian on tonight's card, and I'm sold on Barberena as a fighter I'll watch night in and night out.

Preliminary Card (FS1)

  • Demian Maia made Matt Brown his personal grappling plaything for 14:31 of the fight, right up until he choked him out. Believe it or not, this is the first time Brown has been submitted since he lost to Seth Baczynski at UFC 139 in November 2011. Maia's performances at welterweight have been phenomenal, and I think he has a strong case for a title shot.
  • Matt Brown double-flipped the Brazilian fans yesterday, and this happened during his walkout. FS1 didn't bother to air the apparent punches Brown threw back at the fans. Really out-of-order by fans to be attacking fighters, although I suppose they got the last laugh.
  • Thiago Santos tore apart Nate Marquardt, who has been stopped in 4 of his last 6 losses. No reason for Marquardt to still be in the UFC, and I wonder if he'll hang up the gloves after suffering yet another brutal stoppage loss.
  • Francisco Trinaldo vs. Yancy Medeiros is one of the nuttiest, most entertaining fights of 2016. Medeiros absorbed a preposterous amount of punishment in rounds 1 and 3, but somehow didn't get KO'd. At the end of round 2, Medeiros nearly knocked Trinaldo out with a left hook and a right hand. Medeiros being unable to actually stand properly in the 3rd was honestly grounds for a stoppage by Dan Miragliotta, but he predictably kept it going. Yancy had practically NOTHING left and was as out on his feet as Cummins was for the Lil' Nog stoppage. In the end, Trinaldo picked up his 6th straight win in the UFC, and the judge who scored round 3 "just" a 10-9 is completely incompetent.
  • John Lineker turned in a complete performance against Rob Font, winning a clear unanimous decision. He used leg kicks, body shots, head shots, takedowns, ground-and-pound, and everything else he felt like doing. John Lineker is my hero.

Preliminary Card (Fight Pass)

  • I said that Antonio Rogerio Nogueira vs. Patrick Cummins would be sad. I was wrong. I'm wrong a lot. Cummins' propensity to get punched in the face, combined with not getting any takedowns on Nogueira, led to him getting knocked silly all over the place. Big win for Lil' Nog on an emotionally charged evening in Brazil, and Cummins has been knocked out for the 4th time in 3 years as a UFC fighter. That's not good.
  • Luan Chagas faded after a strong 1st round, but his domination of Sergio Moraes in the opening 5 minutes earned him a 10-8 on one scorecard, and we were treated to a split draw between the two welterweights. Not sure I can get behind a 29-28 Chagas card, but the outcome of a draw seems more than fair to me. Good stuff from Chagas on short notice, and big props to Moraes for surviving the head kick that knocked him down in the opener.
  • Renato Moicano got things going with a split decision win over Zubaira Tukhugov, whose offense is 50% wild, off-target punches, and 50% stagnation. Worth nothing that Tukhugov said he got hit in the groin in the 1st and 2nd round, but referee Eduardo Herdy ignored Tukhugov's self-timeouts and implored him to continue fighting. We never got a replay of either possible groin shot.