UFC 177’s Best Performers: And the Bonus Goes to…

MedeirosUFC 177 was live on Pay Per View last night (August 30, 2014) from Sacramento, CA. It was an eight-fight card that was filled with bad luck, but the event ultimately delivered a solid night of fights, including a fantastic five-fight PPV main card. After the event concluded, UFC awarded $50,000 to two fighters for ‘Performance of the Night’ and two fighters for ‘Fight of the Night’. The lines to wager on these props were available at Several Bookmakerss. TJ Dillashaw earns Performance of the Night (formerly, Knockout of the Night) Joe Soto was scheduled to make his promotional debut against fellow promotional newcomer Anthony Birchak in a short notice match-up that was a late addition to the UFC 177 preliminary card. When Dillashaw’s opponent Renan Barao was taken to the hospital for fainting in his bathtub and hitting his head, he was removed from the fight card and replaced with Soto. Birchak was removed from the card, altogether. Everybody expected Dillashaw to run through Soto, but Soto was very competitive. The fight lasted much longer than anybody expected, as these bantamweights went back-and-forth into the fifth frame, where the Champion landed a beautiful headkick that dropped Soto to the canvas. He immediately followed up with punches and the referee had no choice but to stop the fight then and there, awarding Dillashaw the win and giving him his first successful title defense. Noteworthy T/KOs : – Bethe Correia stopped veteran Shayna Baszler with a heavy volume of unanswered punches against the cage in the second round of action, proceeding to call out Baszler’s teammate and UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey, challenging the Four Horsewoman for her title; a challenge which the champion has since accepted, though Correia will likely need another quality win before she earns a shot at the belt. – Carlos Diego Ferreira defeated Ramsey Nijem via TKO in the second round of action. After a close first round that arguably went to Nijem, the second round saw the former Legacy FC lightweight champion catch an aggressive Nijem coming in with his chin up. Ferreira timed it perfectly; he got out of the way of Nijem’s strike, and then landed a counter to put The Ultimate Fighter season 13 veteran down to the canvas. The Brazilian then followed up with more punches, forcing the referee to step in and call the fight. – Anthony Hamilton defeated South African heavyweight Ruan Potts via ground-and-pound TKO with seconds remaining in the second round of action. Hamilton dominated the entire fight, mostly with his takedowns and ground and pound. He did tremendous damage with his body shots, delivering vicious blows to Potts’ rib cage; and with every punch, making the South African’s body turn black-and-blue right before our very eyes. It was an impressive outing for Hamilton, who picked up his first win inside the Octagon. Yancy Medeiros earns Performance of the Night (formerly, Submission of the Night) Medeiros was scheduled to take on The Ultimate Fighter season 13 veteran Justin Edwards, but an injury forced “Fast Eddy” to withdraw from the bout, leaving the UFC to search for a short notice replacement. Enter: Damon “The Leech” Jackson, who recently captured the Legacy FC featherweight title with a first round submission victory over UFC veteran Leonard Garcia. Jackson took the bout on short notice and one weight class above, as Medeiros is a lightweight. Jackson was certainly the smaller fighter of the two and that may have played a difference, as Medeiros was successfully able to defend his takedown attempts and batter him on the feet. It was an impressive outing for the Hawaiian, as he was getting the better of Jackson on the feet, yet ended up finishing Jackson with Jackson’s own bread and butter; submission via choke. Medeiros caught the former Legacy FC featherweight champion in a guillotine, and when Jackson attempted to defend, he found himself stuck in a very tight reverse bulldog choke; the first ever seen inside the Octagon. Jackson went to sleep immediately after he tapped, and it was the most gruesome, hard-to-watch submission I have seen in the UFC since Mitch Clarke put Al Iaquinta to sleep with a D’arce choke from bottom position at UFC 173, turning him blue in the face as he went out cold. I look forward to seeing both fighters compete again, especially Jackson in his natural weight class of 145-pounds. Noteworthy Submissions : – Chris Wade defeated Cain Carrizosa via technical submission early in the very first round of action. The Californian started off aggressively and was getting the better of Wade on the feet, but that did not last for more than a handful of seconds, as Wade immediately scored a takedown. After a little chess-match on the mat, Wade scored his check-mate when he transitioned into a very tight guillotine that had Carrizosa stuck, unable to defend. After a moment, he thought about tapping, but decided against it and then went to sleep. It was a short notice promotional debut for both 155-pounders, and though Wade came out on top in impressive fashion in this bout, I think both fighters will have a future inside the Octagon. Carlos Diego Ferreira and Ramsey Nijem earn Fight of the Night for having the most entertaining bout on the entire UFC 177 fight card, which only featured eight bouts in total. As previously mentioned; after a close, back-and-forth first round of action that arguably went to Nijem, Ferreira caught Nijem with a counter-punch while he was coming in aggressively. The TUF 13 finalist dropped to the canvas, and the Brazilian followed up with a few more punches before the referee stopped the fight. I think this was a very entertaining bout and one I thought had a great chance of taking home the evening’s ‘Fight of the Night’ honors. Other noteworthy fights: – The aforementioned Dillashaw vs Soto five-round main event title bout. – Tony Ferguson defeated Sacramento’s own Danny Castillo via split decision to a roar of boo’s. The fight ended up going to the judges’ scorecards, and many had thought Castillo had done enough to take the nod, while plenty thought Ferguson deserved it for doing more damage from bottom position in the second round of action, which turned out to be the deciding round for the fight. I personally scored the first two rounds for Ferguson, so I was in full agreement with the judges’ nod. Regardless of the outcome, I think this was an entertaining and very competitive fight that saw both lightweights have their moments.

Written by Gabe Killian

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