The UFC might have not expected this one, but the Andre of old arrived and put on a show in front of a jam-packed crowd in Brasilia, Brazil. Antonio Silva was no match for “The Pitbull’s” right hand, and found himself laying on his back staring at the ceiling after the former champ cracked his chin with a thunderous right hand. A Brazilian did pull it out for the crowd in the co main event though, as Gleison Tibau struck quickly, and did just enough to earn the victory over Piotr Hallmann. The rest of the night consisted of some draw dropping knock outs and some bone breaking submissions, read about it down below as the MMA Spotlight guides readers through an epic night in Brazil.
Andrei Arlovski defeats Antonio Silva via KO (Punches) rd. 1 – Andrei Arlovski brought back the “Pitbull” of old tonight, dancing outside the reach of Antonio Silva, and planting his foe with much force we are used to seeing out of Arlovski. The foot work never looked better, the game plan from the start was brilliant; Andrei executed to a tee and the end was result was exactly what he was looking for. The UFC champion made quick work of the top five ranked Silva, and never allowed “Bigfoot” the opportunity to connect with anything of his own. The resurgence of the former champ has been a spectacle to watch, as many watched him triumph outside of the promotion before falling at the hands of the great, Fedor Emelianenko. Afterwards was a downward spiral where Arlovski found himself contemplating retirement, then he joined Greg Jackson’s camp in New Mexico. Ever since the switch, he has only lost one fight, leading to his addition back onto the heavyweight roster in the biggest show of MMA. Now that Arlovski has won two in row since returning, another possible top ten opponent is not out of reach. The continuance of the Pitbull has been inspiring, but the story is far from over.
Gleison Tibau defeats Piotr Hallmann via Split Decision – If this was a 20 second fight for three rounds, Tibau would have swept the judges cards through three. The fast starts earned him two rounds in two of the judge’s eyes, with very little action following. Hallmann was quite tentative in his striking, while deciding to clinch up with Tibau instead of sticking to the outside and landing the numerous body kicks he was throwing at Gleison. The third round Hallmann pressed the action throughout the round, but the end result unfortunately was not in his favor. Notoriously known for being a slow starter, Hallmann must adjust his game plan accordingly his next fight and press his grueling pace earlier in the fight.
Leonardo Santos defeats Efrain Escudero via Unanimous Decision – Santos did exactly what he needed to do in order to beat Escudero, take his shots at getting the fight to the ground, and at least have some sub par striking to set it up. The former “The Ultimate Fighter” winner had moments of his own in the second round, but spent rounds one and three defended multiple positions and submissions coming from Santos. Santos has yet to lose a fight since 2009 and is currently undefeated in the Ultimate Fighting Championship, despite coming to a draw in his last fight.
Santiago Ponzinibbio defeats Wendall Oliveira via TKO (Strikes) rd. 1 – The striker puts on a show and puts down the supposed grappler within minutes of the very first round. It was kind of suspect to not see Oliveira attempt any sort of take down during the exchanges, in the process catching a left hook against the cage that sent him crumbling to the floor. Oliveira briefly argued the stoppage, but it seemed that he was out when caught with Santiago’s second punch after dropping him with the hook. An incredible performance for the debut of Santiago Ponzinibbio, which may earn him some brownie points from the UFC moving forward in his career.
Iuri Alcantara defeats Russell Doane via Unanimous Decision – In one of the more questionable decisions of the night, the seventh ranked Alcantara barely squeaked by a game Russell Doane. For the most part, the fight found itself on the ground, as Doane repeatedly took down the Brazilian, and did his part on keeping them for a decent amount of time each take down. Even with all the time spent on his back, the judges found that Alcantara did just enough to win the fight. Russell Doane must go back to the drawing board and figure out ways to finish opponents, judges have become more stringent on activity when gaining the take down, then points scored on the take down alone.
Jessica Andrade defeats Larissa Pacheco via Submission (Guillotine Choke) rd. 1 – The prediction in the preview article states that Andrade would at least engage the new comer with some inside boxing, she decided to avoid that aspect completely and finish Pacheco on the ground via choke. The two briefly exchanged before Andrade pressed Larissa against the cage, from there it was just a matter of time. The ranked bantamweight women’s fighter dragged Pacheco to the ground, landed vicious ground and pound, then proceeded to find an opening and get her opponent to tap. Impressive performance from Andrade, who will surely be looking for a move up on competition in her next fight. This also puts the first blemish on Pacheco’s record, and also teaches a valuable lesson upon her first appearance in the octagon.
In other notable fights on the UFC prelims; Godofredo Pepey pulls off a brilliant armbar/triangle choke combination to put away Dashon Johnson. While George Sullivan showed off his freakish power in guard, finishing Araujo with a heavy dose of ground and pound punches. For the full results of all the fights on the prelims, please look below for the details.
Godofredo Pepey defeats Dashon Johnson via Submission (Armbar) rd. 1
George Sullivan defeats Igor Araujo via KO (Punches) rd. 2
Francisco Trinaldo defeats Leandro Silva via Unanimous Decision
Sean Spencer defeats Paulo Thiago via Unanimous Decision
Rani Yahya defeats Johnny Bedford via Submission (Kimura) rd. 2
Next weekend the Ultimate Fighting Championship takes off to Tokyo, Japan; as heavyweights will highlight their second card in a row, Mark Hunt will fight Roy “Big Country” Nelson. Myles Jury and “The Fireball Kid” Takanori Gomi square off in the co main event. For all the latest news and analysis leading up to each and every UFC card, make sure to keep tabs on the Guardian Liberty Voice, as we keep everyone up to date in the MMA world.
Commentary by Justin Huffman
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Guardian Liberty Voice sports writer leading the coverage in MMA