The UFC hit The Patriot Center in Fairfax , Virginia last night for a card that was headlined by 23-year old Louisiana native Dustin “The Diamond” Poirer and Korean Top Team standout Chan Sung Jung, aka “The Korean Zombie”.
Brazilian Rafael dos Anjos faced Iranian wrestler Kamal Shalorus in a Lightweight bout on the Facebook preliminary card, and dos Anjos looked simply amazing in this fight. He rocked Shalorus with a head kick, and quickly locked in a rear naked choke to finish the bout. Rafael dos Anjos is really coming in to his own — his standup has really improved in recent fights, and his ground game has always been his strong suit. I hope he will be matched up with Takanori Gomi next, so he can really test his new and improved standup.
Cody McKenzie faced off with high-level wrestler Marcus LeVessur in a lightweight scrap. Now I have to admit I have been a huge Cody McKenzie fan since I watched him tap out Josh Koscheck’s number one pick on The Ultimate Fighter, Marc Stevens. Since then, Cody has had mixed results, losing to Nam Phan, Yves Edwards, and Vagner Rocha, but picking up a win against Aaron Wilkinson. I was fully expecting McKenzie to lose, but his training with Throwdown and the Cesar Gracie Fight team paid off, as he managed to secure his patented “McKenzitine”.
Kickboxing specialist Donald Cerrone took on the brawler Jeremy Stephens in a lightweight bout, and after his quest for a perfect 2011 was spoiled by Nate Diaz, “The Cowboy” was out to prove that he is still a contender at 155 lbs. Donald answered all the questions by picking apart a game Stephens with technical striking, and even had time for some showboating. I hope and pray the UFC matches Cerrone up with Muay Thai phenom Edson Barboza if he gets the win against Jamie Varner at UFC 146; Cerrone vs. Barboza has fight of the year written all over it.
Dustin Porier vs. “The Korean Zombie” lived up to all expectations. The pair engaged in a high-paced fight which included all facets of MMA, from kicks and punches to high level grappling; this fight had it all! Chan Sung Jung snatched victory in the 4th round with a beautifully set up D’arce choke, and to top his night off, UFC president Dana White announced after the fight that Jung had won both Fight of the Night and Submission of the Night awards, and that he thought “The Korean Zombie” should be next to fight Jose Aldo for the featherweight crown.
Tonight’s main card left a lot to be desired. It lacked star power and quality fights, and if it wasn’t for the main event, the whole card would have been very forgettable! It might just be me, but does it really annoy anyone else when the crowd shouts “USA USA USA” non-stop during fights? I know everyone is excited, but it just sounds plan stupid. Although I suppose that being an Irishman, I can’t really say anything, because at every sporting event or concert the Irish crowd chants “OLE OLE OLE” throughout.
I think the UFC really needs to reevaluate how they market on FUEL. This card lacked star power, and was placed on a Tuesday night. I can’t imagine the viewership figures for this show will be too amazing, but at least it will give The Korean Zombie and Poirer some extra notoriety, which they both have earned.