UFC 99 has come and gone, leaving everyone with plenty of questions.
The event was a success in the sense that the building didn’t burn down and all fighters made weight for their bouts, but the decision-filled main card failed to propel new contenders as was predicted by so many.
The following talking points have the MMA world buzzing…
Where does Wanderlei go from here?
Silva has had an amazing career in MMA and is truly beloved by fans worldwide, no matter his recent losses. One thing to take into account when looking at Silva’s latest 1-3 run in the UFC is that two of those losses were close decisions, of which both could very well have easily been splits. Wand still possesses speed, power and passion, and I expect him to make an impact in the 185 lbs. division. Even his latest opponent, Rich “Ace” Franklin has said he fully predicts the legendary Brazilian to be a hit at middleweight.
Is the Cain Velasquez hype warranted?
Velasqueze bested the huge Frenchman Kongo and silenced some critics but opened up a new series of doubts as to his power and finishing ability. When I see Cain compete, I see a great wrestler with focus and speed. I also notice his game has yet to flourish into a wide variety of skills which would hopefully in the future include submissions and reliable striking defense. The Mexican-born fighter training out of American Kickboxing Academy will need to keep putting in gym time outside of hammer fists and takedowns if he wishes to continue his meteoric rise.
Did the judges rob Marcus Davis?
As much of a Marcus Davis fan as I am, I cannot rightfully cry “robbery!” in regards to his unanimous decision loss to trash-talking Dan Hardy. Davis won the fight in my eyes, however the judges apparently did not see it that way. Granted, I can see giving the third round to Hardy, however Marcus controlled the majority of the match and should have been given the nod.
Was Mirko’s win legit?
It was clear Mikro “Cro Cop” Filipovic was the superior striker in his bout with Mostapha Al-Turk, however the inadvertent eye poke which the Crotian delivered to Al-Turk should have warranted an immediate time-out for a doctor to step into the Octagon. Dan (ref) once again has dropped the ball by poorly observing the exchanges between fighters inside the cage. Not only does Mostapha now have to file appeal and is left with a questionable loss in the meantime, but Filipovic was not granted the opportunity to solidify his win in as fully legitimate in the fans’ minds.
Will Cheick Kongo ever show a ground game?
We certainly hope so! Clearly I am employing a sense of sarcasm here, but Kongo could have won his UFC 99 fight if he would have broken from clinch situations and kept his distance to pick his power kicks and punches. Tieing up with a top-flight wrestler and setting yourself up for repeated takedowns is not a sound gameplan when you’re supposedly eyeing a title shot.