UFC Rewind: UFC 112 – Invincible DVD Review
-It was a momentous event on April 10, 2010. The UFC held their first ever open air event and it was held in Abu Dhabi, UAE. The UFC had recently sold 10% of their company to Flash Entertainment, which is owned by the Abu Dhabi government. Despite the card being held in the open air in the Middle East, UFC loaded up the card with not just one but two big title matches. The originally scheduled opponent for Anderson Silva was Vitor Belfort who had to drop out at the last second due to injury. In the 11th hour, UFC wrote-in Demian Maia to challenge Silva for the title instead. Maia despite a quick knockout loss to Nate Marquardt in 2009 was coming off a decision win over Dan Miller. Maia had also submitted another top middleweight contender, Chael Sonnen, who was still recovering from injuries with a fight with Nate Marquardt and couldn’t take the fight. UFC was in an awkward position and made the best possible match-up they could under the circumstances or else Silva wouldn’t have defended the title for a long time.
Disc 2 – PRELIMINARY CARD
Heavyweight Bout: Jon Madsen (4-0) VS. Mostapha Al-turk (6-5)
Madsen defeated Justin Wren at The Ultimate Fighter Season 10 Finale. Al-turk got another shot after his loss to Cro Cop at UFC 99 due to the eye poke he received before getting knocked out. Madsen is also an NCAA champion in wrestling. Madsen is also looking pretty chunky and fat, even as a heavyweight.
Round 1. They keep it standing the entire round. Both get some shots in standing. Near the end of the round Al-Turk hits Madsen with a good inside legkick. Near the end of the round, Madsen tries for an inside legkick but ends up hitting Al-Turk right in the groin. Al-Turk gets a break and back into the fight. Nothing much as the round comes to a close. It was a pretty even round IMHO. Madsen did buckle Al-Turk at one point. But Al-Turk did get in his share of blows and came forward more in the first half of the round. I’ll call it 10-10 even.
Round 2. Madsen switches stances to southpaw but does not throw anything at all. Al-Turk comes forward with some jabs and right hooks. Madsen starts letting his hands go a little more towards the end of the round. Overall, I score this round for Al-turk, 10-9. 20-19 overall.
Round 3. Madsen still fighting southpaw. Madsen starts letting his punches go a little more. Al-turk trades, but Madsen is getting the better of the standup exchanges. With about 10 seconds left, Madsen finishes the takedown and does a little ground and pound as the round ends. 10-9, Madsen, 29-29 overall.
The Winner: The judges score the fight 29-28 for Madsen who gets the victory by unanimous decision. Eh, don’t really care. Madsen is not going to do well in the deeper heavyweight waters. His striking and standup game looks extremely lacking. He does not seem to have a good gas tank or cardio game or is in the best shape.
Lightweight Bout: Paul Kelly (9-2) VS. Matt Veach (11-1)
Kelly lost to Dennis Siver at UFC 105 in November. Veach lost to Frankie Edgar at the TUF 10 Finale in December.
Round 1. Veach quickly gets the takedown and goes for Kelly’s back. Veach gets the hooks and mount from the back and tries for the RNC. Veach gets the RNC but Kelly is able to barely escape and reverses position to the top. Veach from the bottom tries for a kimura and gets it, but Kelly gets out of it. Kelly gets side mount and starts raining down the elbow strikes. Veach is able to get to his feet, but Kelly goes for a guillotine choke. Veach is able to escape, and Kelly starts pummeling Veach with strikes. Based on the damage and striking in the second half of the round, I got to give it to Kelly. A wild first round though and great comeback for Kelly. 10-9, Kelly.
Round 2. Veach gets Kelly’s back again and tries for the RNC again. Kelly gets on his feet and slips out on top again. Kelly starts raining down some haymakers, and Veach’s cut is juicing blood. Referee Herb Dean stops to check on Veach to look at Veach’s cut. Veach says he can continue, and Dean lets Veach go back down into guard. Kelly passes guard and gets a full mount and starts landing some nasty elbow strikes. Kelly is able to easily apply guillotine choke this time and Veach taps. And that is all.
The Winner: Kelly gets the win by submission at 3:41 in Round 2. Veach went for it early, but Kelly recovered and dominated for the rest of the fight. Veach goes 1-2 in the UFC, while Kelly goes 4-2. A very impressive win and performance for Kelly. Kelly thanks his team and the UFC for bringing him back again after his loss.
Welterweight Bout: DaMarques Johnson (13-7) VS. Brad Blackburn (15-10-1)
Johnson evened up his UFC record by beating Edgar Garcia at UFC 107 in December. Blackburn lost his UFC debut to Amir Sadollah at UFC Fight Night 20 in January.
Round 1. They stand and trade. Blackburn accidentally kicks Johnson in the groin. Johnson gets a break and goes back in. Johnson rocks Blackburn with some strikes and Blackburn tries for a takedown. Johnson stuffs the takedown and tries for a kimura. Blackburn gets Johnson to the ground off a blocked high kick from Johnson. Johnson goes for an armbar and Blackburn escapes. They take it back to standing. Blackburn lands a good right hand before the round ends. I think Johnson had the more effective strikes and submission attempts for the round. 10-9 for Johnson.
Round 2. They do a lot more standing and banging in the round. Blackburn gets a takedown and gets side mount on Johnson. Blackburn transitions into a reverse triangle choke (!) and tries to kimura Johnson’s arm. Blackburn didn’t have it tight enough though and Johnson is able to get out and back to his feet. Blackburn hits another takedown and gets side mount again before the round ends. The submission attempts and takedowns definitely give it to Blackburn, 10-9 for Blackburn and 19-19 even so far.
Round 3. Blackburn gets another takedown on Johnson. Johnson from there is able to do a full sweep into a mount which Johnson is able to transition into full guard. Johnson cuts Blackburn up with some nasty elbow strikes from the top. Blackburn gets up but gets hit again by Johnson. Another kick to the midsection and Blackburn goes down. And the ref stops the fight.
The Winner: Johnson wins by TKO at 2:08 in Round 3 to get the win. Johnson showed some impressive jiu-jitsu and intelligence in getting out of some bad spots which he didn’t do in his fight with James Wilks. Good win for Johnson who goes 2-1 in the UFC. Johnson said when he was on the ground he didn’t want to get a beating for nothing and thanks the UFC and the fans in Abu Dhabi.
Welterweight Bout: Nick Osipczak (5-0) VS. Rick Story (9-3)
Osipczak got UFC wins over Frank Lester and Matt Riddle. Story is coming off wins in the UFC over Brian Foster and Jesse Lennox.
Round 1. Story is able to take Osipczak down and grinds on him. Story gets in some elbow strikes and punches. Story pushes Oscipczak into the corner. Oscipczak tries for some submissions off the back, but Story avoids them. 10-9 for Story.
Round 2. Story takes Oscipczak down early and gets side mount. Oscipczak is able to get back to his feet and it looks like Story is starting to tire. Oscipczak is able to start stuffing the takedowns, but there are a lot of stalemates when both men try the wall and stall and clinch game against the cage. Oscipczak is able to get in some good knees in the clinch. Oscipczak sort of gets a takedown late in the round but both men scramble a bit. I thought the round was pretty close, I’ll call it 10-10. 20-19 so far for Story.
Round 3. Story comes out and is able to apply a closed guard guillotine choke early in the round. Oscipczak is able to get out of and get some strikes from top position. Story continues to look for the takedown which Oscipczak defends for the most part and they continue the pushing and clinch fence game a little bit. Story eventually finds the takedown and gets some ground strikes. Oscipczak gets back to his feet and lands some nice standing knee strikes. The round ends and that’s it. I felt story pushed the action a little bit more in this round and with the takedown and submission attempt felt he gets it. 10-9 for Story. 30-28 overall.
The Winner: Rick Story gets the split decision victory. I can kind of see why it would be split since I can also see why it was sort of close. Rick Story says the heat did have an affect on his performance since he trains where normally it would be cooler. I don’t understand if this was going to be an issue why fighters didn’t figure out a way to train for this and take this into account if fighters go out of there way to train in these crazy high altitudes or buy these fancy hyperbolic chambers. Anyway, this was not the most thrilling match-up.
Light Heavyweight Bout: Alexander Gustafsson (9-0) VS. Phil Davis (6-0)
Gustafsson made a successful UFC debut at UFC 105 with a KO win over Jared Hamman. Phil Davis dominated former WEC light heavyweight champion, Brian Stann, at UFC 109 in Davis’ UFC debut. Davis is a Division 1 NCAA wrestling champion as well.
Round 1. Davis has a very interesting stance. Davis works for the takedown which Gustafsson is able to stuff and they play the clinch game for a bit. Gustafsson reverses the position and works for a takedown against Davis which is a pretty big mistake as Davis works a good sprawl and works for a choke on Gustafsson. Davis gets Gustafsson’s back and gets some side punches in. Davis works in the hooks, but Gustafsson slipped out. Davis works again for the takedown and gets it into half-guard. Davis controls Gustafsson on the ground and works him over and gets an Anaconda Choke. Davis sinks it in and rolls it over. Gustafsson taps and that is all.
The Winner: Davis gets the win by submission at 4:55 of Round 1. This was an impressive showcase win for Davis and shows that he has some multiple dimensions besides the wrestling as he showed some good ground and pound, grappling, and submission skills here. Davis says he will have a better performance next time and he has some room for improvement. After the fight, Davis talked about having a match in the Octagon with Chandella Powell. I think Davis has a crush on her.
Disc 1 – MAIN CARD
-A video montage on Abu Dhabi as the host city for the UFC.
-The traditional gladiator opening, black and white interview segments, and “BRING THE PAIN” music video montage.
Middleweight Bout: Kendall Grove (11-6, 1NC) VS. Mark Muñoz (8-1)
Grove submitted Jake Rosholt out of the UFC at UFC 106. Muñoz beat Ryan Jensen at UFC 108.
Round 1. Munoz works the takedown against Grove and tries some ground and pound. Grove is able to stand back up, but Grove gets in some big hooking punches. Munoz shoots for the takedown and Grove straight drops him from a punch. Munoz recovers and desperately ducks and grabs a leg and holds on for dear life. Grove does the Shining Wizard (!) and sprawls over Munoz. Grove lands some wicked punches to the side of the head and it looks like the fight could’ve almost been stopped there. Munoz continues to work for the takedown which Grove defends. The referee eventually calls for a break and they are back to standing. Munoz goes for the takedown again and Grove sprawls and tries for an Anaconda Choke but he’s not able to hold it on. Another takedown attempt and Grove turns it into a guillotine choke. Grove rolls it over, but Munoz is able to defend and get out of it. Grove tries it again but Munoz still escapes. Munoz gets back to his feet and avoids Grove as the round ends. The knockdown, strikes, and sub attempts definitely give the round to Grove. But Munoz showed in impressive toughness in surviving that round. 10-9, Grove.
Round 2. They bang and Munoz goes down again. Grove tries like a reverse triangle which Munoz defends. Grove tries to transition to an armbar but Munoz slips out. Munoz is able to get top position now and works some powerful ground and pound through Grove’s guard. Munoz doesn’t let up and continues landing some massive power ground and pound shots. Grove turns over and turtles up and that is all.
The Winner: Muñoz gets the TKO at 2:50 in Round 2. That was an impressive comeback for Muñoz after that first round. Muñoz seems to be adjusting quite well in the UFC now in the middleweight division. This was a fun fight. Muñoz says he was in trouble in the first round but he has the will to survive in the cage.
Lightweight Bout: Terry Etim (14-2) VS. Rafael Dos Anjos (13-4)
Etim is riding a 4 fight win streak in the UFC. Dos Anjos has won his last two fights in the promotion.
Round 1. Dos Anjos shoots for the takedown but gets caught in a guillotine. Dos Anjos fights through it but Etim does not let go and burns his arms out. Dos Anjos escapes and starts landing some knees to the midsection. The referee warns Dos Anjos and calls for a restart when he says Dos Anjos knees are hitting the spine. Dos Anjos puts the pressure on Etim and tries for a rolling heel hook. Etim stays out of it and gets top position and avoids Dos Anjos’ sub attempts. The round ends. I’ll call it 10-9 for the sub attempt and ground control for Etim.
Round 2. They exchange strikes standing up. Dos Anjos catches a side kick from Etim and takes him to the ground straight into side control. Dos Anjos grinds on Etim and lands some elbow shows and then transitions to full mount. Etim tries for a kimura and can’t get it but falls back into an armbar and Etim taps.
The Winner: Dos Anjos wins by submission at 4:30 in Round 2. This was a great and impressive win for Dos Anjos showing a more than competent BJJ game here. Etim looked good at first, but he made a bad mistake by holding on to the guillotine choke way too long and gassed out his body. No post-fight interview for Dos Anjos.
Welterweight Bout: Matt Hughes (43-7) VS. Renzo Gracie (13-6)
Gracie’s last fight was a DQ win over Frank Shamrock at EliteXC in 2007 due to illegal knees. Matt Hughes finally defeated Matt Serra at UFC 98 in May 2009. Unfortunately we do not get Hughes’ entrance of “A Country Boy Can Survive” in Abu Dhabi.
Round 1. A lot of feinting to start. Gracie gets some strikes in. Hughes gets control by clinching Gracie against the cage. Hughes starts working Gracie with leg kicks. Close round, but I’ll give it to Hughes for the clinch work and leg kicks. 10-9, Hughes.
Round 2. Hughes and Gracie start trading a little more. Hughes continues to work the leg kicks against Gracie. Gracie looks like he opens up a small cut on Hughes’ forehead. Hughes attempts a takedown, but Gracie blocks it and keeps it standing. Hughes pushes forward with some strikes against the cage as the round ends. Pretty close, but Hughes was a little more aggressive with his strikes and seems to be setting the pace. 10-9 round for Hughes. 20-18 so far.
Round 3. Hughes gets more aggressive with the striking and continues to work the leg kicks. The leg kicks start taking their toll and Gracie’s leg is buckling. Gracie starts going down from the leg kicks and has trouble standing up. Hughes does not let up with the leg kicks. Gracie gets up and Hughes unloads with his punches and Gracie goes down and that is it.
The Winner: Hughes wins by TKO at 4:40 in Round 3. Hughes wins his 16th fight in the UFC and becomes the *NEW* Gracie Hunter. This was not really an impressive fight, but it’s nice to see the Gracie and Pride marks cry like babies and Hughes prove that he’s the best of all time. Hughes talks a bit about his strategy and tells his family he loves them and will be home soon. Gracie says coming back to fight Hughes was not an easy task and that he will be back.
UFC Lightweight Championship Bout: BJ Penn © (15-5) VS. Frankie Edgar (11-1)
BJ Penn after losing to GSP for the welterweight title, Penn had two incredible title defenses against Kenny Florian and Diego Sanchez. Edgar is on a 3 fight win streak in the UFC including a win over the former champion, Sean Sherk. BJ Penn looks a little sickly during his entrance and he looks to have some heavy bags under his eyes.
Round 1. Edgar employs a strategy of stick and move. Penn lands the bigger and more powerful strikes. BJ Penn employs his jab. Edgar goes in for a takedown but Penn works in his punches. BJ Penn lands some combos and shoves Edgar aside before the round ends. 10-9 for Penn who lands the bigger and more powerful shots.
Round 2. Penn got a small cut under his left eye. Edgar continues his constant movement. Penn’s left hand and jab seems to constantly find its way to Edgar’s face. Edgar is able to get a quick single leg takedown on Penn, but Penn quickly stands up. They trade a little bit as the round comes to a close. I still give it 10-9, Penn. Edgar is moving a lot, but Penn just appears to be landing the bigger, cleaner shots. 20-18 so far.
Round 3. Another close round. Edgar’s strategy seems to be working a little bit more. He does land a kick to the body. Edgar seems to start landing his strikes a bit more, but Penn is still landing as well. I think it was close again, but I’ll give this one to Edgar just because it seemed he started to land more 10-9 Edgar and 29-28 so far.
Round 4. Penn’s corner tells him to take the fight to the ground. Penn starts working his punches a little more forward now. Penn stuffs Edgar’s takedown attempt and punches him off. Edgar is coming in and out for a lot of exchanges, but more of Penn’s punches seem to be landing home. 10-9 Penn. Edgar is clearly using a decent strategy for Penn, but just because he keeps moving in and out and trying to counterstrike doesn’t mean he’s winning every exchange. 39-37 so far.
Round 5. Edgar shoots for a takedown and gets BJ Penn on the ground and keeps him there for a couple seconds. Penn gets up. They keep it standing. Edgar keeps working his strategy. They start letting it go a little more as the round ends. 10-9 for Edgar since he seemed to get some better strikes this round and got a more legitimate takedown which judges over score anyway. I score the fight 48-47 for BJ Penn.
The Winner: The judges scores are announced 50-45, 48-47, and 49-46 for Frankie Edgar who wins the UFC Lightweight Title by unanimous decision in one of the biggest upsets in MMA of all time. Penn gets his first loss at lightweight since 2002. OK, honestly I can see why Edgar would get the decision. Some of those rounds were close. Edgar used a good strategy and game-plan even though I think Penn really won over it. Edgar didn’t ever get pummeled or smashed by Penn. Penn just seemed a little off and not fighting like his old self. There were reports that Penn was sick or injured going in but Penn made no excuses. The worst part of all this is though is the 50-45 score by Judge Doug Crosby which was a little ridiculous. I think what was bad about it was after the fight, Crosby felt it prudent to go on the Underground Forums on troll the fans about the score and joke around about scoring the fight 50-45. An internet message board troll should not be an MMA judge. Edgar says he probably is a 145-er because the title belt doesn’t fit him.
UFC Middleweight Championship Bout: Anderson Silva (25-4) VS. Demian Maia (12-1)
This is Silva’s sixth title defense in the UFC. Silva and Maia do a ceremonial bow and shake hands before the fight. Why Silva acts like a sportsman before and after the fight and pretends like what he does during the fight doesn’t happen is beyond me.
Round 1. Maia stands in the middle of the cage and feints and doesn’t really do anything. Silva stalks Maia for a little while and throws a leg kick that spins Maia a little. Silva then starts clowning around and kneeling on the ground. Silva continues to dance around and gets a right hand in Maia’s face. Maia tries to pull guard which doesn’t work. Silva goes in and gets a big high knee strike which sends Maia down. Maia butt scoots and eventually gets a standup. Silva stands and puts his hands down in front of Maia. Maia doesn’t really react. Silva starts playing air guitar and pushes forward on Maia as the round comes to a close. 10-9 for Silva. Silva already displaying a complete lack of sportsmanship and class.
Round 2. Silva continues to clown around and goad Maia. Maia doesn’t bite. Maia tries going for Silva’s leg, but Silva slips out of his attempts. Silva starts getting mad and starts taunting Maia for not fighting, but then Silva is ignoring what he is doing. If Silva is pissed then why is he refusing to go after and strike Maia? Silva continues to taunt and curse at Maia and starts throwing some more leg kicks but refuses to go in for the finish or even try to stop Maia. 10-9 again for Silva since he landed the most effective strikes. 20-18 overall.
Round 3. Maia is now busted open. Silva continues to clown around but does go after Maia a little bit. Maia actually throws a punch and lands a body kick in this round. Maia tries shooting in a couple times but Silva slips out and doesn’t really do anything else. Silva continues his clown act as the round ends. 10-10 for Silva’s clown act mess and Maia at least attempting to try things while Silva is not really trying. 30-28 so far.
Round 4. Silva’s moronic clown act appears to have tired Silva out as Silva decides to just run around and not really do anything. Maia tries to push the action but Silva continues to run around. The referee tries to encourage them to fight. Doesn’t happen. The crowd starts chanting for Maia. And then for GSP. Maia holds his hands up in the air asking for Silva to fight. Silva reacts and does the same thing. 10-9 for Maia who seemed to be pushing the action. 39-39 in the round while Silva clowned and ran around and basically refused to fight anymore.
Round 5. Maia actually goes after and tries to engage with Silva and starts landing some punches. Maia shoots low again, but Silva stays away and Maia punches up on Silva from his knees. Silva continues to pretty much avoid fighting and engaging Maia but makes his ridiculous faces. Maia grabs a hold of Silva’s leg and tries for a submission, but Silva once again slips out. Silva continues to showboat dance and around and starts running doing his best Kalib Starnes impression. The referee finally calls timeout and tells Silva to knock it off and start fighting. No point deduction for refusal to fight and timidity. He should’ve done that like two rounds ago. It’s too late however as Silva continues the clown act until the round ends. I score the round 10-8 for Maia who actually tried to fight in the round and landed the more effective strikes. Silva displayed classless and offensive showboating, unwillingness to engage, and timidity. I deduct one point from Silva for his performance and refusal to actually fight or pretty much do anything. I score the fight 49-48 for Demian Maia.
The Winner: Silva to prove what a complete utter idiot and liar he is bows and shows “respect” toward Maia after the fight despite his despicable performance and being angry at Maia’s apparent lack of respect or whatever before the fight. Whatever, Anderson Silva might be one of the best in the world, but he’s a liar. Maia never disrespected Silva. The only one being disrespectful is Anderson Silva. In trying to explain his despicable, disgraceful, and classless performance Silva actually apologizes at first and says he didn’t know what got into him and he was surprised by some of Maia’s punches. He also says he should’ve been more humble. Silva would go back on all these words later in the evening. Silva gets booed out of the building and cements his status as pretty much the #1 villain and heel champion in MMA. Silva now has the record for most consecutive successful title defenses in the UFC at 6 surpassing Matt Hughes. For all the crap people would say against Hughes, Hughes is a true champion and he would not pull the garbage during a fight that Silva did.
-Some video highlights of the event close the show.
DVD BONUS FEATURES
The 411: Honestly, all things considered this was not a terrible show. Had the Penn/Edgar title fight been last I do not think it would've left as bad of a taste in people's mouths as it did. There were a few good fights. Edgar used a great gameplan against one of the best world class lightweight fighters of all time when everyone thought BJ Penn was absolutely unbeatable.
|Final Score: 7.0 [ Good ] legend|