UFC Fight For the Troops Results and Reaction

Quick Results:

  • Josh Koscheck defeats Yoshiyuki Yoshida via knockout (Strikes) Round 1
  • Mike Swick defeats Johnathan Goulet via TKO (Strikes) Round 1
  • Steve Cantwell defeats Razak Al-Hassan via TKO (Referee stoppage due to Armbar) Round 1
  • Tim Credeur defeats Nate Loughran via TKO (Referee Stoppage) Round 2
  • Jim Miller defeats Matt Wiman via Unanimous Decision
  • Luigi Fioravanti defeats Brodie Farber via unanimous decision
  • Steve Bruno defeats Johnny Rees via submission (rear naked choke) in round two
  • Ben Saunders defeats Brandon Wolff via technical knockout (strikes) in round one
  • Dale Hartt defeats Corey Hill via technical knockout (leg injury) in round two
  • Justin McCully defeats Eddie Sanchez via unanimous decision

Official Fight of the Night: Jim Miller vs. Matt Wiman

Official Submission of the Night: Steve Cantwell

Official Knockout of the Night: Josh Koscheck

  • Josh Koscheck looked to be in a different league than Yoshiyuki Yoshida.  What a KO!  I hope he isn’t done with the UFC following his AKA troubles.  He showed he is improved and well rounded
  • Mike Swick also impressed in his quick KO of Jonathan Goulet.  He is a serious contender ay 170.
  • Steve Cantwell is known for good Muay Thai and striking, but this submission was sick.  If you didn’t see it check it out.  I think Al-Hassan’s arm is still in the octagon somewhere
  • Jim Miller looked really, really good against a tough Matt Wiman.  I think Miller can contend one day for the title.  Remember, this fight was on very short notice.
  • Tim Credeur has wild looping punches, but he was effective.  He is improving also.
  • Ben Saunders was most impressive.  That was vicious.  Brandon Wolff got dominated.   I have never seen someone eat more knees and have a bigger knot on their head.  Wow.  Saunders impressed me.
  • Prayers go out to Corey Hill who suffered a broken leg in his fight with Dale Hartt.  He had to be taken out in a stretcher.  More on this as news comes in
  • The fight for the troops idea was worthwhile and handled well.  What a classy event that showed the spirit of MMA.  I liked Goldberg’s comments that the UFC is a “sport”, but the soldiers fight real life.  There are no ref’s, tapouts, etc. in battle.  Very true.  Even hardcore fans ought not loose sight of that.  Also, Rogan had some good political thoughts at the end about the “bulls***” of the bailouts of  GM and AIG vs. the worthwhile cause of the intrepid fallen heroes fund. 
  • Overall, a great show with good fights.

This Week In MMA

 ·         UFC Fight Night 16: Fight For the Troops – Wednesday, December 10th

This event is a special bonus for fight fans.  Also, it is a stand up gesture by the UFC.  Say what you want about Dana White and the UFC, but no other fight organizations show the benevolence that the UFC does.  The goal of these fights is to raise money for the Intrepid Fallen heroes Fund.  Click here to find out more or to make donations.  Not only is it a good cause, but there are several good fights.  We will see stars such as Josh Ksocheck, Mike Swick, Matt Wiman, Jim Miller, WEC champ Steve Cantwell, and Luigi Fiorvanti.  Tune in to SPIKE on Wednesday Night to watch this event. 

o   Josh Koscheck vs. Yoshiyuki Yoshida

o   Mike Swick vs. Jonathan Goulet

o   Matt Wiman vs. Jim Miller

o   Steve Cantwell vs. Razak Al-Hussan

o   Liugi Fioravanti vs. Brodie Farber

o   Nate Loughran vs. Tim Credeur

o   Steve Bruno vs. Johnny Rees

o   Eddie Sanchez vs. Justin McCully

o   Ben Saunders vs. Brandon Wolff

o   Corey Hill vs. Dale Hartt

·         Adrenaline MMA 2 – Thursday, December 11

Some good fights on tap here.  The biggest enw may be the return of legend, Pat Miletich against Thomas Denny.  Also in action will be former IFL Heavyweight champ Ben Rothwell, rising Heavyweight star Mike Russow and several other notable fighters. 

o   Pat Miletich vs. Thomas Denny

o   Ben Rothwell vs. Chris Guillen

o   Mike Russow vs. Branden Bice

o   LC Davis vs. Billy Kidd

o   Mike Ciesnolevicz vs. Derrick Mehmen

o   Gabe Lemley vs. Dan Loman

o   Ryan McGivern vs. Geno Roderick

o   Pat Curran vs. Ramiro “Junior” Hernandez

o   Jesse Lennox vs. Ryan Williams

·         Mixed Fighting Alliance – Saturday, December 13

This boasts a solid main event between two heavyweight legends in Monson and Rodriquez.  The big news will be the debut of WWE star Bobby Lashley.  The question will be can he do what Lesnar has done? 

o   Jeff Monson vs. Ricco Rodriquez

o   Bobby Lashley vs. Joshua Franklin

o   Ariel Grandulla vs. David Baggett

·         The Ultimate Fighter 8 Finale – Saturday, December 13th                   

I do not know of another TUF finale that I have been so excited about.  This season has all the 16 cast members fighting on this card.  Two exciting finals and two exciting bouts of non TUF cast members in Jason MacDonald vs. Wilson Gouveia and a re-match between Kevin Burns and Anthony Johnson.

o   Ryan Bader vs. Vinny Magalhes

o   Phillipe Nover vs. Efrain Escudero

o   Jason MacDonald vs. Wilson Gouveia

o   Anthony Johnson vs. Kevin Burns

o   Junie Allen Browning vs. Dave Kaplan

o   Krzysztof Soszynski vs. Shane Primm

o   Eliot Marshall vs. Jules Bruchez

o   Kyle Kingsbury vs. Tom Lawlor

o   Shane Nelson vs. George Roop

o   Rolando Delgado vs. John Polakowski

 

 

My UFC Fights for The Troops Preview and Predictions

Josh Koscheck vs. Yoshiyuki Yoshida

Koscheck is the obvious favorite here, but there has been a lot of drama in his life recently. Koscheck is coming off of a loss to Thiago Silva at UFC 90.  Also, there is all the drama that has been going on at AKA.  Koscheck apparently is right in the middle and will not sign the agreement.  Franklin McNeil, on MMA Live, speculated that this could be Koscheck’s last UFC fight win or loose.  I don’t know about that, but I do know he may have some distractions.  That has to affect him.  If it wasn’t for that I would clearly pick Kos to win.  Yoshida may be a good pick for some of our risky betters out there.  Yoshida is a well roudned fighter who looked very good against War Machine in his debut.  Yoshida is a solid judoka with well rounded MMA skills.  Koscheck is a wretler first, but has much improved striking skills.  Which Koscheck will we see?  There is a part of me which wants to pick Yoshida to win this fight, and he very well could, but the safe pick is still Koscheck.  I will pick Koscheck to win by unaimous decision.

Mike Swick vs. Jonathan Goulet

Goulet has looked better lately than he had before.  However, his lasts two wins came over Kuniyoshi Hironaka and Paul Georgieff.  He has a career 4-3 record in the UFC.  Goulet is a decent fighter who can be very aggressive, however Mike Swick is a legit top ten welterweight and could climb higher.  I do not expect Swick to fall of the horse against Goulet.  When it comes down to it I think Swick is better all around and I think he will take this fight by TKO in round 2.

 Matt Wiman vs. Jim Miller

The original fight was slated to be Wiman vs. Frank Edgar, however last week Edgar was forced to withdraw due to an injury.  Jim Miller is a solid replacement that many feel could really climb into elite status in the UFC.  Miller is a gamer.  He steps in on little notice against a very good opponent in Matt Wiman.  A lot of people forget that Wiman is 4-0 since coming off of The Ultimate Fighter Season 5.  Guys like Maynard, Diaz, and Lauzon have gotten all the attention from that season of TUF, but Wiman is right there with them.  This is a tough fight to pick.  Miller ought to have better wrestling and better jiu jitsu than Wiman.  Whereas Wiman ought to have better striking skills.  When it comes down to it one of the questions would have to be Miller’s cardio in stepping in near last minute.  Will it be a factor?  I see this as a tough fight between two guys climbing the ladder at 155.  In the end I think Miller wins it by decision.  However, watch for the submission and watch Wiman’s hands.

Steve Cantwell vs. Razak Al-Hussan

Cantwell is young and very underrated.  He was not expected to beat Stann in their second fight, but I have to believe that Cantwell got on the radar with his win over Stann.  Cantwell has great striking skills.  Cantwell appears to be fairly versatile as a fighter.  I have a feeling that this fight will stay standing and that Cantwell will win by TKO in round 1.

Nate Loughran vs. Tim Credeur

Nate Loughran is 1-0 in the UFC, with his win coming over Johnny Rees.  Loughran also boasts a 9-0 career record.  However, he is stepping in against a solid veteran in Tim Credeur.  Credeur did very will on the Ultimate Fighter 7, loosing twice in the semi-finals to Jesse Taylor and C.B. Dolloway.  Credeur is best known for his very good ground skills.  Loughran also has some ground skills, 8 of his 9 wins have come by way of submission.  I look for this fight to eventually hit the ground and to become very technical.   I look for Credeur to win by submission in round 2.

Luigi Fiorvanti vs. Brodie Farber

The military fans love Luigi Fiorvanti, the ex-marine.  Fiorvanti is coming off of a disappointing loss to Diego Sanchez.  Farber is also coming off of a heartbreaking loss to Rory Markham.  It appeared Farber was about to finish Markham off when Markham landed a head kick that KO’d Farber is highlight reel fashion.  I think Fraber is a solid fighter.  The loser of this fight very well could be out of the UFC.   I really think that Luigi will come pumped and ready to win for the fans at this one.  That is why I think that Fiorvanti wins this win by TKO in round 2.

Steve Bruno vs. Johnny Rees

Steve Bruno, who trains out of American Top Team is 0-1 in the UFC, with his loss coming to Chris Wilson.  Rees is also 0-1 in the UFC losing his bout to Nate Loughran.  This is another bout of the loser leaves the UFC.  Therefore, I pick Steve Bruno to win by decision.

Eddie Sanchez vs. Justin McCully

Sanchez will want this fight to stay standing.  McCully may just want to stand and trade as well.  If it stays on its feet I really expect Sanchez to pull out a win by KO or TKO and that is what I think will happen. 

Ben Saunders vs. Brandon Wolff

Wolff is a highly regarded fighter.  Saunder is a solid fighter and TUF 6 alum.  These guys could really go at it on Wednesday.  In the end I pick Wolff to win by decision.

Corey Hill vs. Dale Hartt

Corey Hill was expected to be a very good fighter and that is why the UFC has kept him around despite his inexperience.  He has no ground game, but he does have great Muay Thai.  The loser of this fight will be sent packing from the UFC.   I think Hill’s size will be the difference.  Corey Hill by TKO in round 1. 

The WEC Fighters Making Their Move to the UFC…

·         Chael Sonnen – Chael Sonnen is coming off of a win over WEC middleweight champ Paulo Filho, but he never got the official title because Filho failed to make weight.  Sonnen looks very good lately and will certainly challenge for the belt right away.  He could be in consideration for the TUF 9 coaching gig as well alongside Dan Henderson, Rich Franklin, Nate Marquardt and Demian Maia.

·         Jake Rosholt – Rosholt won his WEC debut against Nissen Osterneck, but he looked very vulnerable standing.  Rosholt will certainly get a shot in the UFC and many think Rosholt could be a champ some day.  He is training now out of Xtreme Couture, so his striking should improve.  I would say it won’t be long and he will have his first opponent in the octagon.

·         Nissen Osterneck – This is somewhat of a surprise, but it is being reported that despite losing his WEC debut to Rosholt that Osterneck will get a chance in the UFC.  His loss to Rosholt was his first professional loss, but he did look pretty good in that fight. 

Light Heavyweight

·         Steve Cantwell – Cantwell will be the first WEC fighter to make the move over.  He is the champ.  A rubber match was slated for him and Brian Stann, but Stann withdrew due to injury.  Cantwell will make his UFC debut against Razak Al-Hussan at UFC Fight Night 17: Fight For the Troops on December 10th. “The Robot” is a very young fighter with great striking and kickboxing and is sure to improve.

·         Brian Stann – Stann made a move to Team Jackson and sustained an injury, but he should be recovered soon and may have an opponent sooner than later.  We still could see Cantwell vs. Stann III if Cantwell wins next week.

·         Steve Steinbeiss – Steinbeiss is coming off of a split decision loss to Carmello Marrero at WEC 36, but it is being reported he will fight in the UFC anyways.  

·         Mark Munoz – He fights December 3rd in the WEC and then is expected to make his move to the UFC.  He is a solid prospect who may be competitive in the UFC. 

Note: Paulo Filho has been dropped from his Zuffa contract and will not make the move to the UFC.  Also, I am note sure what the contract status is of Carmello Marrero.  It looks like Doug Marshall will not be with Zuffa.  Danillo Vilefort looks to be dropping to 170 lbs. 

 

 

 

 

Breaking Down the UFC Light Heavyweight Division

The Champion: Forrest Griffin

The Top Contender: Rashad Evans

The Next Tier:

·         Wanderlei Silva

·         Quinton “Rampage” Jackson

·         Lyoto Machida

·         Thiago Silva

·         Rich Franklin

·         Dan Henderson

·         Keith Jardine

·         Mauricio “Shogun” Rua

·         Chuck Liddell

·         Luis Arthur Cane

·         Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou

 

On the Rise: 

·         Luis Arthur Cane

 

Other Notables:

·         Brandon Vera

·         Mat Hamill

·         Stephan Bonnar

·         Jon Jones

·         Tim Boetsch

·         Steve Cantwell

·         Brian Stann

·         James Irvin

·         Eric Schafer

 

Scheduled Fights:

·         Steve Cantwell vs. Razak Al-Hussan at UFC Fight Night 16 on December 10

·         Forrest Griffin vs. Rashad Evans @ UFC 92 on December 28 (For Title)

·         Quinton Jackson vs. Wanderlei Silva @ UFC 92 on December 28

·         Matt Hamill vs. Reese Andy @ UFC 92 on December 28

·         Rich Franklin vs. Dan Henderson @ UFC 93 on January

·         Mauricio “Shogun” Rua vs. Mark Coleman @ UFC 93 on January 17

·         Andre Gusmao vs. Antonio Mendes @ UFC 93 on January 17

·         Ivan Serati vs. Tomasz Drwal @ UFC 93 on January 17

·         Jon Jones vs. Stephan Bonnar @ UFC 93 on January 17

·         Lyoto Machida vs. Thiago Silva @ UFC 94 on January 31

 

Match Ups I’d Like to See:

·         Luis Cane vs. Keith Jardine

·         Brandon Vera vs. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou

 

Other Thoughts:

·         There are rumors of a Anderson Silva vs. Chuck Liddell match up at UFC 95

·         There are a lot of light heavyweight contenders and the match ups are being set.  The winner of Wanderlei vs. Rampage should get the next title shot, although the winner of Lyoto Machida and Thiago Silva should be considered as well. 

·         We are waiting for the debut of rumored UFC signee Glover Teixeira who has been having visa troubles in Brazil. 

·         The UFC could sign former EliteXC light heavyweight Rafael Feijao, which would be a big time contender.

·         The UFC has a clear monopoly on the light heavyweight division.  There are only a few fighters worth a  dime in this division not in the UFC (Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, Vladimir Matyushenko, Ricardo Arona, Tito Ortiz, and Renato “Babalu” Sobral)

·         I looks like two solid light heavyweights have dropped to middleweight in Goran Reljic and Wilson Gouveia

·         The Ultimate Fighter 8 which featured light heavyweights is sure to place a few good fighters in the divison, but it will take time for them to climb the ladder.  Watch out for guys like Ryan Bader, Vinny Magalhes, Kryztof Soszynski, and Eliot Marshall.

·         It is somewhat possible to see Randy Couture take a few fights at light heavyweight and also to see Anderson Silva fight at 205 more often in 2009

 

MMABlog’s Light Heavyweight MMA Rankings

 

Here are my 205’ers.  The UFC clearly has the deepest and best pool of 205 lb fighters.  I only see a couple of non-UFC fighters being top 25 material. 

Rank

Name

Organization

Next Fight

1

Forrest Griffin

UFC

Evans (#6), 12/27

2

Quinton Jackson

UFC

W. Silva (#4) 12/27

3

Lyoto Machida

UFC

T. Silva (#10) 1/31

4

Wanderlei Silva

UFC

Jackson (#2) 12/27

5

Mauricio “Shogun” Rua

UFC

Coleman (NR), 1/17

6

Rashad Evans

UFC

Griffin (#1), 12/27

7

Dan Henderson

UFC

Franklin (#12), 1/17

8

Keith Jardine

UFC

 

9

Chuck Liddell

UFC

 

10

Thiago Silva

UFC

Machida (#3), 1/31

11

Antonio Rogerio Nogueira

Affliction

Moisa (NR), 11/3

12

Rich Franklin

UFC

Henderson (#7), 1/17

13

Brandon Vera

UFC

 

14

Vladimir Matyushenko

Affliction

 

15

Luiz Cane

UFC

 

16

Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou

UFC

 

17

Ricardo Arona

 

 

18

Renato “Babalu” Sobral

Affliction

Southworth (NR), 11/21

19

Matt Hamill

UFC

Andy (NR), 12/27

20

Tito Ortiz

 

 

21

Rafael Feijao

EliteXC?

 

22

Steve Cantwell

UFC

Al-Hussan (NR), 12/10

23

Stephan Bonnar

UFC

Jones (NR), 1/31

24

James Irvin

UFC

 

25

Brian Stann

UFC

 

Also considered: Jon Jones, Tim Boetsch, Bobby Southworth, Mark Coleman (Didn’t include him because he hasn’t fought again.  He probably is top 25 material)

UFC News: Steve Cantwell vs. Razak Al-Hussan at UFC Fight Night 16

First the WEC decided to close its 185 and 205 lb divisons and fold them into Zuffa owned UFC.  Then, the UFC announced a December Fight for the Troops event.  Then we learned, that a rubber match between Steve Cantwell and Brian Stann would take place at that event.  Following that we learned that Brian Stann was forced to withdraw due to a foot injury.  It now appears the UFC has his replacement in Iowa based fighter Razak Al-Hussan. 

Cantwell will make his UFC debut just about a week after his 22nd birthday.  Cantwell is the reigning WEC light heavyweight champion and should be a solid addition to the stacked UFC divison.  I do not know what to expect from Cantwell in the UFC, but I expect that he will be a good prospect.  He is very young and the UFC should hang on to him.  His opponent was initially scheduled to fight Andre Gusmao at UFC 87, but withdrew due to a chest injury.