Happy New Year! Not a better way to cap off the first day of 2011 with a little fighting, right? UFC 125: Edgar vs. Maynard II is taking place right now in Las Vegas, NV. The main event (as you can gather) is a rematch between Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard for the UFC Lightweight Championship. Maynard won the first fight between these men but the stakes are a little higher and Edgar is looking to validate himself as the elite LW in the UFC today. Currently the “dark fights” on the non-televised portion are taking place before the live special on ION TV, which will be blogged tonight. I will not cover the PPV broadcast but I will post any GIFworthy action for
instant site traffic your viewing pleasure.
The fights are:
Josh Grispi vs. Dustin Poirier (145 lbs)
Marcus Davis vs. Jeremy Stephens (155 lbs)
Phil Baroni vs. Brad Tavares (185 lbs)
Grispi was going to fight Jose Aldo for the UFC Featherweight Title but Aldo pulled out due to injury. Dustin Poirier will look to pull off a stunning upset and wreck the UFC’s matchmaking plans. Marcus Davis is moving to lightweight for the first time in his career, but he’s 38, has looked poor in his last 3 fights and Jeremy Stephens hits hard. I smell a KO. Phil Baroni vs. Brad Tavares….whatever. Baroni needs to win to stay in the UFC and Tavares is fodder from The Ultimate Fighter Season 11. Join me after the jump.
Phil Baroni vs. Brad Tavares
ROUND 1 – ION TV had a movie on instead of the fights. I got angry but they switched in time. Leg kick by Tavares. And again. And a 3rd time. Baroni is doing nothing and the crowd boos. But a big left hand rocks Tavares and he goes down. Now he goes for the front choke, loses it but goes into half guard. Huge shot by Baroni nearly ended the fight. Tavares is pinned against the cage. Now a guillotine attempt by Baroni but he doesn’t have it locked in. Tavares off the mark on a head kick as they stand up again. Tavares has his takedown stuffed. Baroni is probably gassed already. But he’ll get a breather because Tavares got kneed in the balls. Head kick staggers Baroni. Right hand and a knee. Two punch combination. Baroni is down and hurt! More shots on the ground and Josh Rosenthal ends the fight. Brad Tavares def. Phil Baroni via TKO (strikes) at 4:20 in Round 1.
Josh Grispi vs. Dustin Poirier
ROUND 1 – Ironic that Grispi is an overwhelming favorite considering his nickname is “The Fluke”. Both men trading and mixing up their striking well. Leg kick by Poirier. Poirier’s stand-up looks good and he tags Grispi with a left. Grispi jumps into guard. That’s interesting. He jumps off and now they clinch. Good knees by both men. Poirier looks impressive. Grispi is hurt and tries the takedown. He gets it, winds up on the bottom and they go back up. Jose Aldo would murder Josh Grispi. Good thing they didn’t do this title fight. RIGHT HAND BY POIRIER! GRISPI IS ROCKED!!!! And another!! Grispi tries a takedown but it’s poor. Sort of a stalemate on the ground in the last 40 seconds of the round. Grispi is trying to get the armbar but loses control. All Dustin Poirier in round 1. 10-9 Poirier.
ROUND 2 – Poirier slams his knee to Grispi’s body and Grispi shoots. Grispi is now against the cage. Hype train is derailed.Good elbow in the clinch. Grispi is hurt. Any time he gets hurt he tries the takedown. Grispi goes get the takedown into side control but he’s reversed. Grispi looks for the guillotine and now Poirier has to worry about a triangle. Poirier passes guard, lands some ground-and-pound and the referee stands them up. Brutal knees in the clinch by Poirier. Grispi is taking loads of punishment. Grispi is tired and Poirier winds up in his guard. 1:30 left in the round. Grispi throws a triangle up but Poirier slams him, lands more shots and they stand back up. HUGE leg kick stings Grispi. Another knee in the clinch. And more. Elbows tag Grispi and the round ends. 10-8 Poirier.
ROUND 3 – Front kick by Poirier. Decent right hand by Grispi but there’s got to be nothing left. Back in the Muay Thai clinch. Poirier continues to batter him with knees. Poirier is having none of Grispi’s sub attempts. Knees. Knees. Knees. This is an ass whooping. Knees again. Grispi gets Poirier down and Grispi has top position. Grispi is trying to advance to side control but he can’t. 90 seconds left in the fight. Now he gets to side control with 40 seconds left. Poirier gets it back to full guard and that should be game over. 10-9 Poirier. Wow. 30-26 Poirier and a very impressive performance that will certainly lighten a lot of wallets. Dustin Poirier def. Josh Grispi via unanimous decision (30-27 across the board).
Marcus Davis vs. Jeremy Stephens
ROUND 1 – I got to admit, Davis looks ripped at 155. Knees to the body by Stephens. Davis whiffs on a combo but is flicking the jab out. Good leg kick to Davis’ thigh. Stephens is going for a takedown. Uhhhh did I just type that? Well I missed what happened but Davis has top position and Stephens is throwing punches off his back. Stephens stands back up. This isn’t the fight I expected. Good straight left by Davis. Minute left in the round. DAVIS HURTS STEPHENS WITH A LEFT! And he clinches for reasons I cannot comprehend. Stephens was badly rocked and still might be. Round ends and Davis wins it. 10-9 Davis.
ROUND 2 – Stephens swings with a horrible uppercut. Stephens tried a flying knee (I think) but Davis caught him with a punch. Good right by Stephens. Davis is setting up the left and now he throws it and it glances Stephens, who just missed with a right. Spinning backfist attempt by Stephens does nothing. Stephens is going for a takedown but Davis won’t let him. How many upsets are we going to have tonight? Marcus gets him down. Stephens looks for a kimura but Davis hops into side control so the leverage is gone. He has half guard now but his kimura might not be tight. I can’t see from the TV angle. Davis landing body punches and the sub is gone. Stephens is on his back and throws some elbows and several are landing. Tight round but I give it to Davis. 20-18 Davis.
ROUND 3 – Stephens is pushing the pace because he’s losing the fight. He’s not really landing much and I don’t see how he can win this beyond a miracle shot. Feeble takedown is pushed aside. Big left hand catches Stephens on the jaw. Jeremy is throwing with reckless abandon but he’s getting a lot of air and not enough of Marcus. Good left by Davis. OH MY GOD THE MIRACLE SHOT HAS HAPPENED!!!!!!!!!! A HUGE RIGHT HAND TO THE JAW AND DAVIS IS OUT!!!!! THAT IS INCREDIBLE!!!! Jeremy Stephens def. Marcus Davis via KO (punch) at 2:33 of round 3.
That was fun. I’m off to watch the PPV. Results will come later through GIFs.
Diego Nunes def. Mike Brown by split decision
Jacob Volkmann def. Antonio McKee by split decision
Daniel Roberts def. Greg Soto by submission (kimura) R1