UFC 98: Analysis and Review
UFC 98: Analysis and Review
Last night's UFC 98 was, for the most part, lackluster. There wasn't anybody really worth watching besides Lyoto Machida and Rashad Evans.
We all knew that if Serra didn't KO or Submit Hughes, Hughes would win out the decision, and he did. The Edgar and sherk fight was slightly above mediocre with Edgar edging out Sherk by decision. Sonnnan and Miller was also blaaaaaaaaaaaaah with Sonnan putting Miller down with a decision. McFedries defeats Foupa-Pokam by 1st round TKO. Which was a nice change of pace from the rest of the card that wasn't the Main Event.
People say that Machida received the title shot because Quinton Jackson had to have surgery, and yes that had a little to do with it. But the biggest reason why Machida got the shot was because of his manager, Ed Soares, and his great relationship with the UFC. As we all know it's all about the politics. His win with Thiago meant title shot.
Machida/Evans was a wetdream for all the striking technicians in the world. And all 10 of them were masturbating furiously as we all sat on the edge of our seats waiting for one of them to make a move.
The second that round 1 started I alreayd knew Machida would have it. He had the center of the ring, he kept Rashad on the inside of his lead leg, he was waiting. Evans, who I think is one of the best when it comes to luring his opponents, got beat at his own game. It started with everyone on the edge of their seats and it wasn't until about halfway through the round, Machida actually was agressive and shot out a roundhouse to Evans. This is really important to note. There aren't very many 205'ers that can actually kick and Machida is really good at it. Evans has great boxing and amazing wrestling, but when he can't get past the outside to clinching range, it pretty much makes his skills unusable. The first round ended with Evans taking some strong surgical shots from Machida, knocked a little off his game and starting to worry about how to solve the puzzle of Machida.
While everyone in the UFC is playing the game like checkers, fighters like Machida and Evans are playing chess. If you don't like that, seriously find a new sport to nutride and purchase stickers and t-shirts for.
In total I think that there was no more than maybe 25 shots taken by both sides. Machida landed a good majority of his strikes. Despite his countering style, Machida was able to throw Evans off by keeping the pacing, commanding the distance and using his superhuman timing to throw whatever gameplan Evans had out the door.
The second round was Machida just finishing what needed to be done in the first round. Machida showed us he could be the aggressor, landing a sharp left straight that broke the timing of Evans and literally took him down to one knee. Machida went in straight for the kill and landed 6 consecutive hooks to Evan's incredibly strong jaw to finally topple the former Champion.
To my count, Evans made contact all of 3 times in total. If all of Machida's matches have said anything, it's that the revolving door of the Light heavyweight belt has stopped. Machida will hold the title for several more bouts for a long time.
"I'm Dizzy," Rashad said prolifically after the match. I think we all are. Aside from the 15 people who are really technically advanced enough to understand the sheer genius and brilliance of Machida, it'll be a while until someone finds the crack in Machida's Gi.
Joe Rogan said it best (and I love/hate him for it, because every mouth breather just regurgitates everything Rogan says. It annoys the hell out of me.) with, "Welcome to the Machida Era."
I welcome the new light heavyweight overlord.
"Karate is Back." says Machida.*
Your brother in christ,
*Look out for the upcoming article on why Machida is wrong.