UFC Fight Night Santos v Teixeira: 5 Takeaways
I was wrong yesterday - Clemson and Notre Dame turned out to be a good game. Maybe from now on if I start publicly calling out college football games they will start to deliver. Here's one for next week: Wisconsin @ Michigan is going to suck, Michigan is going to start fast only to seriously disappoint after the first quarter.
I know I am a UFC Stan but last night was another solid card. From the gore of Brahimaj's ear splitting in half, to the highlight knockouts of Chikadze and Giles, to the main event which had its back and forth moments, the card delivered throughout the night. Here are my takeaways from last night.
1. Yan Xiaonan needs to push for a title shot
Women's MMA is so hard to judge sometimes because like the early days of men's MMA, there are a ton of have-nots and very few haves. While I don't consider Cláudia Gadelha to be in the have category, she walked into this fight as the number 5 ranked Strawweight in the world. With such a high ranking, it would only make sense for Yan to fight Weili Zhang, Rose Namajunas, or Joanna Jedrzejczyk next. All 3 of these women are fairly even in skill level meaning that if she is going to lose to 1 of them, she will probably lose to all 3. This is why she needs to strike while her stock is up and push for a title shot coming off of this impressive win because fighting the champion is not that different from fighting a top 2 contender. Whether she gets it or not, a matchup against any of the women mentioned earlier will more than like be a Fight of the Year candidate.
2. One does not simply rebound from a Jon Jones loss
I swear Jon Jones specializes in the dark arts and curses men's careers. Thiago Santos had 2 chances to put that fight away but couldn't do it. Is it possible that Teixeira has the greatest chin in the game? Maybe. Or is it possible that Jones has some Pokemon like ability where if you touch him your HP goes down 50 points? We will never know but for the sake of argument its 100% the second option.
3. Garagorri will be out of the UFC within 2 fights if he doesn't learn how to stop a takedown
This applies to any fighter really. Garagorri is a terrific striker, but these divisions are loaded with BJJ blackbelts and guys who have been wrestling since they could walk. In a lot of other divisions a fighter like Garagorri could sit on the outside and pick fights with strikers while he develops a ground game but unfortunately he fights at Featherweight, a deep division that is only getting deeper. The UFC has no need to wait on fighters to develop at Featherweight because the influx of talent gets better by the month.
4. Arlovski is not done yet
Probably the most boring fight of the night but Arlovski appeared to be in control the whole time. I do fully agree with Trevor Wittman's analysis during the fight. Arlovski is 41 and still looks sharp, its time to start taking risks if he wants to move up the ladder.
5. Keep an eye on Raoni Barcelos
Barcelos looked absolutely incredible last night. He is unranked in a deep division but he looks like he will make a run in the next year or so.
Bonus - We need to Alexandr Romanov's signature submission to the "Fat Guy Choke"
They are calling this a "Forearm Choke" on Sherdog but I think that's so basic. There is no way a guy in any other weight class can consistently pull this move off at a high level like Romanov can. For those who didn't see it, Romanov takes his forearm, puts it across his opponent's neck and presses his 260+ pound body into the choke. I am starting a petition now to rename this.