Welcome to the first edition of ”All 5 Rounds”, where you can get caught up on some of the stories that matter most from the world of MMA and more specifically, the UFC. Of course, there’s quite a few stories and headlines that fight fans would consider important or critical to the landscape of the world’s fastest growing sport and this weekly column will attempt to cover as many of them as possible. So, if you’ve been slacking but still think of yourself as a fight fan who’s always in the know, or just someone who needs to appear that way in order to have a realistic shot at a date with Ronda Rousey, enjoy.
Werdum Submits The Legend
This past weekend’s UFC on Fuel TV 10 from Brazil featured two of the heavyweight division’s most formidable submission specialists in Fabricio Werdum and UFC legend, Minotauro Nogueira. While both are considered among the division’s elite, it was third-ranked, heavyweight contender Fabricio Werdum who went home the winner. Officially winning the bout by ”ref stoppage”, Werdum put the future Hall of Famer in an arm-bar during the second round and while Nogueira once again showed the heart to keep fighting, the referee put an end to the contest before he was forced to tap out. Next up for Werdum? Most likely a fight against anyone in the division’s top five fighters. Best case scenario, Werdum gets the loser of Velasquez-dos Santos #3.
Evans-Henderson A Must Win For Both Fighters
The UFC 161 main event this weekend, features a pair of former champions who desperately need a win if they hope to keep themselves relevant within the division’s title conversation. Rashad Evans [22-3-1], is scheduled to face Dan Henderson [29-9-0] and while both fighters were unsuccessful in their last outings, a win on Saturday could very well mean the start of a new path to a title fight. Unfortunately for both Evans and Henderson, that path will directly lead to a rematch with Lyoto Machida, a fighter that has already defeated the two light heavyweights. While Evans is in danger of losing his third straight fight which often results in the release of that fighter from the UFC, it isn’t likely to happen to the former Michigan State Spartan due to his overall popularity within the sport.
Rampage Jackson Joins Bellator and TNA
Quinton ”Rampage” Jackson [32-11] has found a new home in the world of MMA and has signed on to compete for the Bellator promotion in the 205 pound division. The former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, has also been signed by TNA wrestling and recently made his first appearence on the show as a professional wrestler, joining fellow light heavyweight, ”King Mo” Lawal who also performs/competes with the two companies, both of which are financially backed by ”Spike TV”. After losing three straight fights in the UFC, Jackson left the promotion and claimed that he was unfairly treated by the company after losing his belt to Forrest Griffin. We can expect to see Jackson competing for the Bellator Light Heavyweight Championship in the future and a fight that involves King Mo could also be in the cards.
Nelson Looks For Path To a Title Shot
Heavyweight Roy Nelson [20-7-0], will take on the hard-hitting Stipe Miocic [9-1-0] at this weekend’s UFC 161 in Winnepeg, Manitoba, and will need a convincing win if he hopes to break into the division’s top two or three title contenders. Having won three straight and four of his last five trips to the octagon, Nelson just can’t seem to win when it matters most and may be destined to fight it out among the rest of the heavyweights outside the top five. A huge opportunity for Miocic, a win would send the dangerous striker a few more steps up the ladder in the increasingly talented heavyweight division. Despite a knockout win over Cheick Kongo at UFC 159, Nelson remains 0-3 against the top ten heavyweights and a growing feud with UFC President Dana White hasn’t done anything to help ”Big Country” on his path to an unlikely title shot.
UFC On Fuel TV 10 Sets Record
Last Saturday’s card featured quite a few UFC fighters who were mostly unknown to the casual fight fan and by the end of the evening that hadn’t changed much at all. Besides the main event which was won courtesy of a Fabricio Werdum arm-bar, the card did include some very talented grapplers and jiu jitsu practitioners that resulted in a new record for submissions during a UFC-Zuffa event. A total of eight fights were won by way of submission on Saturday and many of those lesser known fighters were able to showcase their ground games in a country that took the development of grappling and jiu jitsu to another level.