An extremely busy June was kicked off last weekend with the finale of yet another season of The Ultimate Fighter. This time, we saw supposed arch villain Tony Ferguson take on apparent paragon of justice Ramsey Nijem for the prestigious (heh) title of The Ultimate Fighter. Although everyone in the UFC is an “ultimate fighter”, so…oh, whatever.
More thoughts on Pettis vs. Guida
I used the Pettis-Guida fight as an example for my outlook on how aggression and control should be scored in fights earlier this week, but besides the scoring of the second round, there’s a lot else to consider regarding this fight.
On the whole, I thought it was a very good fight. As I said in my last column, I was pleased with Guida’s effort outside of the first few minutes of the second round, which gave off a distinct “stalling” vibe. In the first and third, Guida worked hard and did what he could on the mat, though it’s hard to do a lot when you have Pettis underneath you keeping you stifled and throwing sub attempts at you.
I do like Guida as a fighter and I’m pleased that he’s working towards a title shot. He seems like one of those fighters who truly has gotten where he is primarily through hard work, and he also seems to be a genuinely good guy. His standup has surely been improving lately and he held his own nicely in that regard against Pettis. I also think his wrestling has improved tremendously since his early UFC fights, which should help him as he continues to climb the ladder.
Pettis will be fine. He’s a young fighter and proved his heart and ability in this one. Guida’s just a very hard guy to submit and doesn’t provide a lot of big weaknesses to exploit. In retrospect, Guida represents one of the worst possible style matchups for Pettis in the division.
Kingsbury fights through injury to win
Kyle Kingsbury’s left eye was clearly injured in the final round of his fight with Fabio Maldonado; the injury turned out to be a broken eye orbital. Add to that the body shots which Kingsbury admits hurt him (on Sherdog’s “Savage Dog Show”), and it was a rough night for the former TUF 8 castmember.
Should he have won the fight? Ehhh…you know, you have to give the judges a little leeway here because even while watching with a monitor, it is really hard to see in real time whether a lot of those clinch knees were actually landing. Those were unquestionably Kingsbury’s brightest moments, apart from his takedowns here and there.
At the same time, Maldonado should feel a little raw because his body shots and the right hand that busted Kingsbury up did more damage than any other blows in the fight for either fighter. One thing’s for sure: Kingsbury’s a very tough s.o.b.
Something that bewildered me as I watched the fight was that Maldonado did not exploit the eye injury by throwing any right hooks or overhand rights in the closing minutes of the fight. The right handed punch I do recall him throwing was a straight right as he was leaning to his left which didn’t even target that side of Kingsbury’s face. With such an obvious limitation to your opponent’s vision, why would you not exploit the weakness and try for a fight-ending strike to that side?
–I wonder what MMA fans hated more: seeing the not-so-popular Ed Herman (who somehow had kept his job while losing 3 of 4 prior to Saturday night) dispatch Tim Credeur or witnessing the destruction of Ramsey Nijem by the hated Tony Ferguson? Probably Ferguson, since his transgressions are fresh in fans’ minds and Herman was more disliked for just rubbing people the wrong way than anything else.
–I just about cried “foul” regarding the quick stoppage in the George Roop-Josh Grispi fight that ended when Grispi took a good shot to the body and went down against the cage…that is, until I remembered that Grispi wasn’t doing anything of note and had lost all three rounds, anyway. Still, it’s dangerous to set the precedent that if you go down to a body shot and turn away even for an instant, the fight’s over. Many fighters could recover from such a shot, and they at least deserve the right to try, don’t they?
I don’t want to see fighters get hurt unnecessarily, but I also don’t want MMA to become a sport where going down after a strike immediately halts the fight.
Tags: Anthony Pettis, Clay Guida, Ed Herman, Fabio Maldonado, George Roop, Josh Grispi, Kyle Kingsbury, Ramsey Nijem, The Ultimate Fighter, The Ultimate Fighter 13, The Ultimate Fighter 13 Finale, Tim Credeur, Tony Ferguson