COMMENTARY | “My Two Armbars” is a play on the phrase “my two cents”. It is my opinion and commentary on latest MMA happenings and news.
Jan 04, 2014 – UFC Fight Night Saffiedine vs. Lim Live on UFC Fight Pass
The first event of 2014 brought the introduction of watching live cards on streaming service, UFC Fight Pass. Already with mixed results, the jury is still out on whether UFC Fight Pass will be a long term success, but it demonstrated Dana White and the Fertitta brothers ‘ interest to explore other revenue channels and content distribution. The highlight of the event was the five round duel between Saffiedine and Lim. Lim showed heart and warrior spirit, enduring 25 minutes of punishment from Saffiedine.
Jan 15, 2014 – UFC Fight Night Rockhold vs. Philippou on FOX Sports 1 For the second event of 2014, I was curious to see Luke Rockhold back in the cage and how he would respond after a devastating knockout by Vitor Belfort in his last fight. Rockhold did not disappoint and regained much of his hype by making quick work of the 10th ranked Costa Philippou. I will be anxious to see Rockhold back soon as he solidifies himself as a contender and potential title run in 2014.
Jan 25, 2014 – UFC Saturday Henderson vs. Thomson on FOX
I was really excited to see Ben Henderson back in the cage after losing the title to Anthony Pettis. The card showcased strong performances by Stipe Miocic and Donald Cerrone, but I thought Alex Caceres and Sergio Pettis stole the show on the undercard. The younger Pettis came into the fight with a wave of hype. It was a back and forth battle; however in the end, the experience of Caceres was enough for him to pull out the victory over Pettis.
Feb 01, 2014 – UFC 169 Barao vs. Faber on Pay-Per-View
Anytime there are two champions on the same card, it is a must see for me. For the first PPV of 2014, two things were quite clear. Jose Aldo and Renan Barao are remarkable fighters and will be champions for a long time. The other was the inability of the smaller Brazilian champs to breakthrough to mainstream popularity. Even with two championship belts on the line, the preliminary PPV numbers were very low. The crowd at my local bar is usually a close indicator of how many PPV buys, and my bar was empty.
Feb 15, 2014 – UFC Fight Night Machida vs. Mousasi on FOX Sports 1
This event featured a revised post fight bonus plan. Instead of Submission and Knockout of the Night, they were replaced by Performance of the Night awards, while keeping Fight of the Night bonuses. Continuing on his path to a title shot, Lyoto Machida outpointed Gegard Mousasi for a unanimous win. Machida remains one of the most fascinating UFC fighters and it will be interesting to see how Chris Weidman deals with his speed, accuracy, and elusiveness.
Feb 22, 2014 – UFC 170 Rousey vs. McMann on Pay-Per-View
It is curious to see the evolution of women’s MMA and development of Rowdy Ronda Rousey. When she talks, people listen. When she fights, people watch. For the first time in her career, she stopped her opponent with something other than an armbar, showing her advancement in mixed martial arts. Additionally, she has polarized the fans with her behavior on the Ultimate Fighter, post fight antics with Miesha Tate, and seemingly arrogant conduct. From a fan’s perspective, I am on the Rousey bandwagon and think she is great for MMA. She has brought new viewership and sponsors to the sport.
Mar 01, 2014 – UFC Fight Night Kim vs. Hathaway UFC Fight Pass
Two words. Spinning elbow! The Stun Gun, Dong Hyun Kim tried all night to land a spinning elbow, and finally landed it in the 3rd round. It was beautiful and vicious and an early candidate for knockout of the year.
Mar 08, 2014 – UFC Fight Night Gustafsson vs. Manuwa UFC Fight Pass
All eyes were on #1 ranked Alexander Gustafsson as he faced the powerful Jimi Manuwa. Gustafsson, one win away from getting another title shot, accomplished what he needed to do against Manuwa. He put Manuwa down with knees and punches to earn the TKO victory.
Mar 15, 2014 – UFC 171 Hendricks vs. Lawler Live on Pay-Per-View
UFC 171 was the most intriguing card of 2014. It would define the 170 lbs division. After the fights concluded, we learned that Johny Hendricks rules, Robbie Lawler has plenty of heart, Tyron Woodley is closing in on a title shot and Hector Lombard is not far behind. We will have to wait and see if Georges St-Pierre returns and challenges the new champion.