The 411 MMA Top 10 11.12.12: Top 10 Bloodiest Fights
Hey there gentle readers, I am Alex Rella and this is the MMA Top Ten. This week we will be looking at the ten bloodiest fights. But first,
Thoughts from last week and other random stuff:
• I was unable to post a column last week due to Hurricane Sandy. I apologize to those who were looking forward to it but I was without internet and my phone and power were on and off throughout the week. I hope you all did alright with the storm, unfortunately I know some people that lost everything. I encourage everyone to donate time or supplies to help those in need.
• Who else woke up early to watch UFC on Fuel yesterday morning? It was alright overall. Rich Franklin got knocked out in the main event as my favorite fighters continue to lose in 2012.
• UFC 154 is coming up this weekend and I still don’t know who I’m picking in the GSP-Condit fight. And I’m actually looking forward to more of the prelim fights than the main card.
Back to this week’s list
This week’s list is pretty straight forward, it’s the ten bloodiest fights. It was suggested by a reader awhile ago and I completely forgot about it but here it is. I tried to pick top fights from a few different organizations but don’t get mad at me if I left out something bloody from Super Fight League or Shark Fights. There have been plenty of good bloody fights over the years and here are the ones I selected.
• A bunch of Forrest Griffin fights- he gets busted open a lot. The most notable ones would be the first fights with Bonnar and Shogun.
• Couture vs Gonzaga UFC 74- Couture’s last title defense was a pretty good fight in which he cut Gonzaga open pretty early and it affected his sight for the remainder of the fight.
• Liddell vs Jardine UFC 76- a fun fast paced brawl where Jardine got bloodied up and somehow pulled off a huge upset.
This is bloody fight had two of my favorite fighters going for the UFC lightweight championship. The UFC decided to bring back their lightweight title in 2006. The first UFC lightweight title fight since 2003 happened at UFC 64 with Kenny Florian taking on Sean Sherk. This was Florian’s first title shot and Sherk’s second after unsuccessfully challenging Matt Hughes for the welterweight title. Florian busted Sherk open early on in the fight with an elbow. By the end of the fight Sherk, Florian, and the octagon were all covered in Sherk’s blood. Ironically Sherk’s blood got in Florian’s eyes more than his own. Sherk controlled Florian for the five rounds but it was still a fun fight. Some have criticized Florian saying he tried to win fights just by cutting his opponents but I think that’s unfair. The guy just has really sharp elbows.
Robbie Lawler isn’t a great fighter but I’ve always enjoyed watching him fight. The peak of his career was when Lawler was the EliteXC middleweight champion. Lawler defended his title against Scott Smith in June 2008 but unfortunately the fight was prematurely stopped due to a thumb in the eye. The rematch happened two months later. Smith hit Lawler with some good elbows in the first round which opened up a big gash on the top of his head. Lawler came out aggressive in the second and even busted up Smith with some ground and pound. Lawler won by TKO and there was even some blood on Mauro Ranallo’s lap.
Two of the best welterweights to never hold the title met at UFC 86. This pay per view is most known for Forrest Griffin beating Rampage for the light heavyweight title but it had some other pretty good fights on it and Koscheck vs Lytle didn’t disappoint. Lights Out Lytle was known for always going all out and Koscheck isn’t boring either. Koscheck won by unanimous decision and used his ground and pound style to cut Lytle’s face in several spots. Even Koscheck’s bleached blonde hair was red by the end of the fight. You may recognize the picture of Lytle at the end of my column every week.
The Skyscraper took on the Menace at UFC 99: The Comeback. Many were billing this as a loser leaves the UFC fight as both fighters had just lost their debut fights inside the octagon. Struve had well over a foot on Mjocnic coming into this fight Despite the height advantage, Mjocnic took Struve’s back in the first round and busted him open with some hammer fists. The doctor almost stopped the fight as Struve was bleeding profusely but luckily for him it went to a second round. Struve came out covered in his own blood and was able to take Mjocnic’s back this time to finish it with a rear naked choke.
This is Joe Stevenson’s first appearance on this list but his other is much memorable and not as pleasant for him. Stevenson won the TUF season 2 at welterweight but he decided to drop back down to lightweight after his first loss in the UFC. The first round was pretty exciting but unfortunately it was stopped after the second round because Stevenson opened up a really deep cut in Edwards’ forehead. In only a couple of seconds there was a pool of blood on the mat. The doctors tried to patch him up and he finished the round but it was too much. The gash was so deep that you could have probably seen Edwards’ skull at that point.
And a fight from Bellator makes an appearance this week. In Season 1 of the Bellator Middleweight Tournament, Hector Lombard took on Jared Hess in the finals. This crowned their first middleweight champion and it was a good start for Lombard’s title reign. Hess did better against Lombard than most fighters in Bellator but of course it wasn’t good enough. The fight would end up getting stopped in the fourth round as Hess had multiple cuts and his face was covered in blood.
The all heavyweight card definitely delivered earlier this year. Cain Velasquez was originally supposed to face Frank Mir and Antonio Silva was supposed to take on Roy Nelson. But there some injuries and some suspensions that moved the card around and we got this fight instead. This was Velasquez’s first fight since losing the title and he was looking to get a rematch with Dos Santos. Cain immediately tossed Bigfoot to the ground and then just mauled him. Silva got busted with an elbow and bled out like crazy. They paused the fight so the doctor could wipe away some of the blood but it would have been understandable if they stopped it then. The fight restarted and Velasquez went back to wrecking him. Velasquez won by TKO in the first round to earn his rematch for the heavyweight title next month at UFC 155.
This was when BJ Penn was really putting out the best performances of his career. BJ Penn took on Diego Sanchez in his third and final UFC lightweight title defense. The fight went into the fifth round but Sanchez got completely destroyed along the way. Penn negated all of Sanchez’s offense and just picked him apart throughout the fight. Penn connected with a high kick that busted Sanchez up above his left eye. The doctor stopped the fight in the fifth round.
BJ Penn returned to the lightweight division in 2007 and took on Joe Stevenson for the vacant UFC lightweight championship at UFC 80. Seconds into the round Penn knocked down Stevenson with a right hand. Then it took one elbow that wasn’t even that powerful to cut Stevenson near his hairline. Stevenson’s face was soaked in blood by the end of the round. They tried to patch him back together in between rounds but it didn’t work too well. Stevenson realized that the fight met get stopped soon so he fought much more aggressively. Understandable but he lost by rear naked choke anyway. Penn licked the blood of his gloves to celebrate while Stevenson cried.
Pride had some of the most brutal fights ever, so of course a Pride fight would have the top spot on this list. This one took place during Pride’s 2005 Middleweight Grand Prix. Kazushi Sakuraba took on Ricardo Arona in the quarterfinals. Arona did a great job of defending the Gracie Hunter’s takedowns and following them up with some vicious knees. First Sakuraba’s ear started to bleed and soon after the rest of his face became a bloody mess. The fight was stopped in round 2 and Arona would then go on to reach the finals of the Grand Prix.
• So let me know how you guys would rank them or maybe I left a fight out that you thought should be in the top 10.
• As always, let me know if there are any topics or fighters you would like to see ranked in the future.
• Next week I’ll be ranking GSP’s top ten fights.
Try not to die til next week.