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Shooting From The Hip: UFC 104 Edition

cecilWill the UFC say sayonara to Yushin Okami? As difficult as that may be to comprehend by many of the avid followers of the sport; It’s a lot more likely than many may think. Word around the campfire was that the loss to Chael Sonnen was the last one on Okami’s preexisting UFC contract. As much success Yushin has had inside the UFC’s middleweight division, the unsolvable problem with Okami has continued to be his absolute lack of marketability. It seems very probable that Okami may have just given the UFC the excuse to lose the liability that they have been looking for.

I don’t know, maybe the CSAC could have gotten out of Pat Barry’s face for a second after the biggest win of his career. I mean the guy’s completely overjoyed with his knockout performance, full on crying, and there’s some athletic commission guy so wrapped up in what he’s doing that he’s overlooking the emotions Pat is going through. I understand it’s important to get the winner over to the neutral corner to make sure the loser is in good health, but lets try chilling out just a little bit on forcing the fighters to cut their celebrations short. Either way I thought it was hilarious when Pat ended up hugging some random athletic commissioner he had probably never seen before in his life.

Ryan Bader just dove into the deep end of the UFC talent pool with his most recent victory over Red Schafer. Undefeated with three consecutive wins in the UFC, with his most recent win coming over a guy on a two fight win streak leave Bader in a position where there’s no room to take a step backwards. His dynamic wrestling base combined with C4 in his fists are going to make Bader a handful for whoever he draws next. I’d personally love to see a fight between “Darth” and Tito Ortiz sometime in the future.

Anthony Johnson’s post knockout celebration was overkill at it’s finest. I don’t know, but maybe mugging some poor Japanese guy that you outweigh by 20 or 30 pounds could justify a case for being humble following a victory just this once. AJ celebrated like he had just crushed Georges St-Pierre in the fight of his life, and I found it to be completely disrespectful to his opponent, and us, the fans.

Cain Velasquez and Ben Rothwell both got robbed by Steve Mazagatti on Saturday night. Velasquez was robbed of the highlight reel, decisive finish he had trained so hard for, and Big Ben was robbed of the opportunity to suffer a legitimate defeat. There’s no question about it, Rothwell was getting his lunch money taken from him in a major way. He was looking like he was going to need some oxygen and an IV in the corner after round one. The fight was going to end badly for Rothwell one way or the other, but he deserved to suffer his defeat like a man. Ben trained his butt off for that fight and for it to be stopped the way it was is inexcusable.

UFC President Dana White’s words following the UFC 104 press conference were, “You know what I think of [Steve] Mazagatti. I don’t think that guy should be allowed to watch MMA, let alone referee it.”

I was really happy to see Velasquez working the elbows in this fight, but lets zero in on that rear-naked choke. In Cain’s last bout with Kongo he must have had his back for 5-10 minutes of the bout, yet never really committed to a good old fashioned RNC. It happened again in the bout with Rothwell, but it didn’t really matter. My main point being that Velasquez’ top notch wrestling is going to put him in a position where he can take his opponent’s back more and more in the future. A solid rear-naked would enable him to seal the deal much quicker while taking minimal damage to both his fists and elbows. Lets face it, punching someone 50-100 times every fight out can’t be good for your hands.

For the record, I had the Machida/Rua fight 50-45 in Shogun’s favor. A complete travesty of justice in my opinion. The rematch couldn’t happen soon enough for my taste.

Cecil Peoples is single handily trying to turn our sport into boxing, and we can’t let it happen. Someone please, demote this man. Cecil recently had this to say, “The way I saw it, Lyoto was landing the more cleaner and damaging strikes throughout the fight”. Well I’m sorry Cecil, but the way you saw it sucked.

Pictured: Cecil Peoples

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