UFC 246 AfterMMAth (Quick And Painful)
Imagine, if you will, there was a UFC Pay-per-view event this passing weekend. Imagine it featured 5 bouts and that all your picks, save 1, were wrong. Imagine said event featured a main fight between one of your all time absolute favorite fighter, who lost. badly. Well, thankfully, there was no MMA action this weekend, and I have no picks to recap, no wounds to lick. Oh, what is it you say? there actually WAS all that? and here I thought it was just a nightmare. As you will see below, I acknowledged that these picks were heavily mixed with wishes, so take that as intended.
Let's jump right to my picks. Then, we'll chat about this, that and the other.
For your reference, my picks:
One of three fights I willed, rather than picked. I chose to discount some of Diego's work against physically strong opponents, and focus on his losses to the likes of Poirier and Dariush. Thing is, while these were a few years ago, and since, Ferreira seems to have improved, Pettis continues to show inconsistency. Ferreira powered his way to submission.
0 for 1
In the promo before this fight, Ode Osbourne tried his hand at prediction and said that in 5 years, people will remember that Conor fought on the same card as him... It was a funny little piece of cockiness, and I told friends that this just might earn him a KO loss within the first round. I wasn't too far on this one. Kelleher came in calm, did what he needed to do, took the submission when it was presented and won. Experience and poise normally go far in winning fights, and this should be a pretty good lesson for the prospect, Ode.
1 for 2
How did I look at this fight? How does one look at Oleinik's fights? I ask myself "Will Aleksei be able to submit his opponent, or lose?". I thought Maurice, being so long and strong, would be able to at least keep Oleinik far enough to keep the fight on the feet, and get the W. But Oleinik was able to close the distance and take him down, repeatedly. Kudos to Greene for surviving the first serious submission attempt, but he wasn't able to stay away and eventually succumbed to the arm bar.
1 for 3
Another wish/pick. I like Holly. Always have. I just think we've probabaly seen the best she has to offer by now, and at this age and stage of her career, perhaps it's time for someone in her prime, to take the W. I know Rocky is a tough lady, and I had the confidence that she could do it, IF she could close distance. The trick was, every time she did, Holly was waiting with a bear hug. Her physical strength, and the fact she won all the underhook wars, allowed her to maintain the positions, and kind of cruise to victory.
1 for 4
I never pick against Cowboy, even when I know I really should (if I want the "points"). But I'm a Cowboy-fanboy, so I cannot physcally do it. What is there to say about this fight? It wasn't much of one, as Donald wasn't able to mount anything offensive at all, in these miserable 40 seconds.
1 for 5
Honestly, the only thing that was new, is the fact that I can't find a single bullet for this section. No new contenders, definitely no new champion, nothing.
We were all very excited for UFC246 and for a very good reason. Conor is back, he came back to fight one of the most popular fighters of all time.
Upon further reflection, we really didn't have much else to be excited about... definitely not main card related. We did have some fun fights in the prelims, but here was an event that was based on a single bout. .
I'm sure it did great numbers, and I'm sure the accountants are smiling, but... what will we remember from UFC246? We will remember Conor beating Cowboy in 40 seconds, achieving... a return to the discussion. Not to downplay this aspect, but we've waited weeks upon boring weeks for an even that was very thin.
Scheduling was also problematic. I like Holly Holm, and appreciate her ability to shut down opponents. But the UFC match makers should know that her fights are more often than not, not the most exciting. So why co-main event? Is Pettis not a big enough name to warrant this status? In which case, the action would've ramped up towards the climax. Oleinik and Greene could have easily been relegated to the prelims, for say... Yusuff Vs. Fili. I mean... come on.
Conor was respectful to Cowboy throughout the lead-up for their fight. He spoke, for the most part, calmly and coherently. The second he got on the mic after the fight, we could tell that Conor is back (with a 1.5 Liter bottle) and with him, the circus.
Conor is good for business, and conor in good form is good for the sport. The eyeballs will be glued, and that is just swell. I am hoping that he stays active in the cage, and less so on the outside. If Conor can stay out of trouble, and remain focused, we're in for some real treats. Brace yourselves.
The next fight that makes sense is the one everyone wants... Conor/Masvidal. After that? I dare say Ferguson, whether he upsets Khabib or not. I honestly don't see Conor beating Khabib, so why not collect all those dollars of the table in another fight we all want to watch?
But what if he loses to Masvidal? To be honest, I think he does. But that doesn't change the fact that the match up with Tony is a tasty dish for all involved. Money, excitement, mixed martial arts discussion, fandom. A win win win win etc.
Well. This was UFC246. Let's look at
Performance of the night:
Conor doing what Conor does:
Drew Dober staying calm, sleeping Haqparast:
Fight of the night:Andre Fili Vs Sodiq Yusuff: