UFC 101 took place earlier this evening at the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
In the night’s main event, BJ Penn put his lightweight title up for grabs against Kenny Florian.
In the co-main event, Anderson Silva made his second trip up to light heavyweight to fight Forrest Griffin.
Amir Sadollah finally made his first appearance in the Octagon since winning the seventh season of The Ultimate Fighter.
Kendall Grove and Ricardo Almeida faced off in a middleweight bout.
Josh Neer and Kurt Pellegrino met in a lightweight contest.
Results, thoughts, bonuses and live gate (when available) after the jump.
- B.J. Penn defeats Kenny Florian via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) in Round Four
- Anderson Silva defeats Forrest Griffin via Knockout in Round One
- Johny Hendricks defeats Amir Sadollah via TKO (Strikes) in Round One
- Ricardo Almeida defeats Kendall Grove via Unanimous Decision
- Kurt Pellegrino defeats Josh Neer via Unanimous Decision
- Aaron Riley defeats Shane Nelson via Unanimous Decision
- John Howard defeats Tamdan McCrory via Split Decision
- Alessio Sakara defeats Thales Leites via Split Decision
- Matt Riddle defeats Dan Cramer via Unanimous Decision
- George Sotiropoulos defeats George Roop via Submission (Kimura) in Round Two
- Jesse Lennox defeats Danillo Villefort via TKO (Cut) in Round Three
Josh Neer vs. Kurt Pellegrino: Neer-Pellegrino kick off the pay-per-view. First round starts off with a few exchanges until Pellegrino slams Neer and gets top control. Pellegrino stays on top the rest of the ground but was Neer was so active on the bottom, he may have stole the round. The second was more of the same except Pellegrino was able to get Neer’s back in the final minute. Threatened with the choke, but couldn’t finish it. Gave the second to Pellegrino. The third wasn’t much different. Neer was able to escape the bottom in the final thirty seconds, landed some solid elbows, but it just wasn’t enough. Pellegrino grinds out the decision. Not quite the war we were expecting.
Ricardo Almeida vs. Kendall Grove: Ricardo Almeida wanted no part of Kendall Grove’s striking. Every time they were on the feet Almeida would immediately close the distance and work for the takedown. It took him awhile to get the first one, but once he did he didn’t have much trouble getting the rest. Figured if Almeida could get him down, he would find a way to submit him, but Grove defended extremely well and even secured an armbar that nearly finished the fight. It wasn’t enough though, and Almeida earned the decision.
Johny Hendricks vs. Amir Sadollah: There’s going to be a debate about this one. Both fighters came out swinging. Amir connected with a punch and chased Hendricks as he backed up. Amir was a little reckless though and Hendricks stunned him with a shot. He followed it up with a flurry of uppercuts dropping Sadollah and kept swinging until Dan Mirgiolata stopped it. Problem was Amir appeared to be trying to get back to his feet while Hendricks was hitting. Mirgiolata was standing right behind Hendricks so he may not have been in position to see Amir still coherent. He wasn’t intelligently defending himself though, so it’s tough to say if it was really an early stoppage. Personally, I think the ref should have let it go just a bit longer. If he was in a better position to see maybe he would have.
Anderson Silva vs. Forrest Griffin: When it comes to striking, Anderson Silva is on an entirely different planet than everyone else. Anderson stood in front of Forrest and made him look an amateur. He stood right in front of him, hands down, invited Forrest to hit him, he bobbed, he weaved, and Forrest couldn’t even touch him. He even managed to finish the fight with a soft looking right jab as Forrest went after him. Incredible, masterful, pick your adjective. So dominant Forrest immediately sprinted out of the cage and back to the locker room. Too bad they’re friends and won’t fight each other, because I’d love to see Anderson fight Lyoto Machida. That would be something else.
B.J. Penn vs. Kenny Florian: BJ Penn answered all the questions tonight. He was in great shape. He was focused. And he fought like the number one lightweight in the world. Kenny Florian spent the majority of the fight either trying to take BJ down or wear him out. And it didn’t work. Kenny may have controlled Penn against the cage for the majority of the first three rounds, but BJ clearly inflicted the more damaging shots. In the later rounds where we’ve Penn fade before he stayed strong. In the fourth, he was able to get Florian down which turned out to be the beginning of the end. BJ eventually got his back, wore Kenny down, found his opening for the rear-naked choke and sunk it in. Game over.
I honestly expected to see a better performance out of Kenny Florian. He didn’t look at all like the fighter who ran through Joe Stevenson. I don’t know if he was just tight because of the magnitude of the fight, or if it was Penn. Probably a little bit of both. It’s a huge setback for Florian. Not sure where he goes from here, but knowing how Kenny is, I’m sure he’ll pick himself up, get back in the gym, and work on improving his game. As for Penn, as long the UFC keeps their word and Penn doesn’t decide he wants to move back up in weight, we should see him defend his title against Diego Sanchez sometime at the end of the year or beginning of next. It’s going to be a tough mountain to climb for Diego especially if Penn keeps up his training regimen with Mark Marinovich, but should make for a hell of an exciting fight.
Submission of the Night: BJ Penn
Knockout of the Night: Anderson Silva
Fight of the Night: Anderson Silva & Forrest Griffin ($60,000 each)
Live Gate & Attendance
Live gate: $3.55 million (largest in history of Pennsylvania)