It was a weekend of super fights, upsets and frustration in MMA.
UFC 184 took the pay-per-view waves by storm and Ronda Rousey needed only 14 seconds to dispatch Cat Zingano and extend her unbeaten record to 11-0. From the outset Zingano proved that one wrong move is one too many as she went for a flying knee that Rousey quickly read as a Judo throw opportunity. That throw quickly led to a ridiculous Rousey signature arm bar, demonstrating another reason why she is quickly becoming the all time best female MMA fighter. To top it all off, Ronda made $130,000 for the bout (inclusive of a $65,000 win bonus).
UFC 184 also featured the return of Josh Koscheck who faced Jake Ellenberger in a battle of the three fight losing streaks. Ellenberger cemented his stay in the UFC with a submission via north-south choke in round 2. Also, Roan “Jucao” Carneiro, who had torn up the smaller promotions, returned to the UFC to give Mark Munoz his third consecutive loss via a spectacular rear naked choke in the first round.
On Friday night Bellator 134, dubbed “The British” Invasion, took over the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Connecticut where a barn burner, a title upset and a lay and pray festival dominated the card. Emanuel Newton lost both his Bellator Light Heavyweight belt and 3 year unbeaten streak to British fighter Liam McGeary, crowning the first ever English MMA champion for the promotion.
Muhammad “King Mo” Lawal stepped up in weight and competition, facing tough-as-nails Frenchman Cheick Kongo at heavyweight. In the Superfight, which we discussed last week, Lawal won a unanimous decision via out wrestling Kongo, much to the chagrin of the booing fans in the arena. And Paul Daley returned to the States after 3 years to face a game Andre Santos, who gave the English slugger everything he had. Daley got the ‘W’ via unanimous decision but not without a late charge from Santos who seemed to be on the verge of being done a few minutes earlier.
Last, Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino, who some feel is the only true threat to the dominance of Ronda Rousey, successfully defended her Featherweight belt in all women’s promotion, Invicta FC. It took the champ only 46 seconds to destroy Charmain Tweet via TKO in the first round at Invicta FC 11. The clamor for a showdown between the dangerous Cyborg and the dominant Rousey has never been louder and since Invicta FC is partnered with Zuffa, LLC, the parent company of the Ultimate Fighting Championships, that is not impossible to imagine.