UFC Vegas 13 was a great card, filled with great fights. Today, I tell you the 5 main takeaways we can grab from the events that unfolded. Let’s jump right in!
Warning, the takeaway ahead contains graphic imagery; not for the squeamish. If you wish to avoid seeing an ear almost completely separated from the head, skip to takeaway number 4 and avert your eyes…
5. You Can’t “Play” Fighting
Although a gruesome photo and injury, I thought it was pertinent to the overall story of the event. Ramiz Brahimaj is his name. Sadly, this isn’t even the worse thing that’s happened to him. Before the ear, it was a brain tumor. Doctors were thankfully able to operate and remove it, but still, this guy can’t catch a break!
It was the third round of a welterweight bout between Max “Pain” Griffin and the previously mentioned Ramiz Brahimaj. “Pain” was up two rounds to nil on two of the judges’ cards. Up against the cage in a clinch; Griffin hit Ramiz with a combo that included a particularly vicious elbow that is believed to have caused the injury. As soon as the ref noticed, he stopped the fight, and the doctors swarmed in.
This just goes to show folks, you don’t “play” fighting. This is a life or death sport. One wayward shot, one accident; one misstep, and you could be going home on a stretcher. We should honestly take a moment, and just be grateful we are gifted with such brave martial artists that put it all on the line to make a living and entertain the masses.
4. Elkins Ends the Skid
For Darren Elkins, it was make or break for him tonight. On a 4 fight losing streak that started with a 2018 loss to Alexander Volkanovski, you could say Elkins was having a bit of a rough patch in his career.
His fight against Garagorri wasn’t to be no piece of cake either. Absorbing a ton of damage, Darren’s gameplan was obviously to grind Eduardo out against the cage and on the floor. He was successful in this attempt. Garagorri was definitely getting the better of the standup exchanges, but you could tell the smothering grappling of Elkins was too much. Slowly, the speed and energy of Eduardo was depleting.
By round 3, “The Damage” was able to take the back, and slip in the choke. Squeezing the life out of that 4 fight losing streak, and killing it once and for all. See, he was setting a trend. This was to be the night of the aged vets getting it done.
3. Giga Chikadze impresses!
Check it out, this takeaways easy. We got a damn killer waiting in the wings of the 145 pound division. In my humble opinion, anyways.
See, here are some facts. This guys got 8 first-round finishes, with 4 wins in 2020 alone. He closed at a -900 favorite, and while that’s extreme; boy did they get it right. Giga Chikadze is coming folks, and the top guys at FW need to watch out.
While his UFC career has seen decisions so far, I’m just impressed with his style in general. I’m definitely buying into the hype train, but boy you’d really have to be blind to not see all that potential. Here are some more facts; his first two victories in the UFC were split decisions. Improving a little, his next two fights were unanimous decisions. Now, he’s progressed even more with this impressive TKO victory over Jamey Simmons early in rd. 1 (3:51).
You could say “Oh, judges and scorecards are so subjective that your point doesn’t mean anything,” but to me, that shows a trend that he’s winning his fights more decisively every time. After his win over Simmons, Giga called out Jeremy Stephens, who appeared to accept the fight on social media.
Looks like we could possibly see a 5th fight out of Giga this year, and I can’t wait.
2. Chinese Invasion of the Strawweight Rankings
First, there was Weili Zhang. The Chinese women who stormed her way to the title, and snatched it from the beast named Jessica Andrade by force. Finishing her via KO/TKO. Now, we’ve got Yan Xiaonan, who funny enough; was actually the first Chinese women signed by the UFC.
At 13-1, she’s got a record fit for a champion. She’s got wins over Angela Hill, Karolina Kowalkiewicz, and now Claudia Gadhela. In this performance, we witness the Chinese prospect out-strike the longtime vet, in an impressive performance. Much like Chikadze, this a contender who’s coming for that top spot. The strawweight division needs to be on notice.
Also, as a fan, it’s amazing to see China play a bigger role in MMA. It’s a flourishing market, aided by a P.I the UFC built there. We’ve got our first Chinese champion, and ironically; one of the biggest Chinese prospects is in the same division. While I’m just buying into another hype train (it’s so hard not to!), we could likely be seeing a Chinese on Chinese title fight soon!
1. Age Don’t Matter! (Sometimes) / Give Glover a Title Shot!
So, I’d just like to point out what a gruesome yet beautiful sport we have. During this awesome event, we saw one of the worst injuries ever to transpire in the UFC; while also witnessing surging prospects continuing to surge, and cherished veterans proving that age is just a number!
In our co-main, we witnessed Andrei Arlovski display a chin that ate a lot of shots in his fight against Canadian heavyweight up and comer Travis Boser. Overall out-striking the man, Arlovski looked good. In my opinion, I actually thought he was quicker the Travis on occasion. For a man that’s been fighting for so long; I’m also impressed with his agility. Andrei’s kicks are still dangerous, and they’re not slow by any means. Arlovski would win by unanimous decision, setting the stage for another aged vet to continue the trend.
In his classic style, Glover took some real nasty shots from “The Sledgehammer” Thiago Santos, but his authoritative take downs were unstoppable. See, there’s a takedown called the double leg, and Glover’s got a great one. Landing 4 of 7 officially, he kept Thiago on the ground and just beat the tar out of him.
Saved by the bell in rd. 2 from a RNC (rear naked choke) Thiago would open up rd. 3 by flooring Glover. Literally. Anyways, surviving, Teixeira would get “The Sledgehammer” to the ground and lock in another RNC. This time, with enough time left for the finish. This just goes to show folks, that age old adage “Age is just a number” really has some truth to it. I think Dana summed up the situation the best; “every time I count him (Glover) out, he always proves me wrong…”
Not only did Dana count the aged vet out, but I did as well. I really thought Thiago wouldn’t be held down the way he was. I believed his power would make the difference and he would finish Glover by KO/TKO. Boy, was I wrong. All I’ve gotta say: can someone get this man a title shot, please?!
Also, be sure to check out the Overtime Heroics Forums page to join in on the discussion!