WEC 48 took place earlier this evening at the ARCO Arena in Sacramento, California.
In the night’s main event, Jose Aldo put his WEC featherweight title on the line against Urijah Faber.
In the co-main event, champ Ben Henderson met Donald Cerrone in a rematch for the WEC lightweight title.
Mike Brown faced off against Manny Gamburyan in a featherweight bout.
Anthony Njokuani took on Shane Roller in a lightweight match-up.
Antonio Banuelos and Scott Jorgensen met in a bantamweight fight.
Results, thoughts, bonuses and live gate (when available) after the jump.
- Jose Aldo defeats Urijah Faber via Unanimous Decision (49-45, 49-45, 50-45)
- Benson Henderson defeats Donald Cerrone via Submission (Guillotine Choke) in Round One
- Manny Gamburyan defeats Mike Brown via Knockout in Round One
- Shane Roller defeats Anthony Njokuani via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) in Round One
- Scott Jorgensen defeats Antonio Banuelos via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Leonard Garcia defeats Chan Sung Jung via Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
- Anthony Pettis defeats Alex Karalexis via Submission (Triangle Choke) in Round Two
- Brad Pickett defeats Demetrious Johnson via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
- Chad Mendes defeats Anthony Morrison via Submission (Guillotine Choke) in Round One
- Takeya Mizugaki defeats Rani Yahya via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 30-27, 29-28)
- Tyler Toner defeats Brandon Visher via TKO (Elbows) in Round One
Thoughts & Recap
Antonio Banuelos vs. Scott Jorgensen: Antonio Banuelos and Scott Jorgensen kicked off the first-ever WEC pay-per-view with a bang. Banuelos pulled ahead early dropping Jorgensen with a left hook right on the button in the first round. Even though Jorgensen was clearly rocked for a second or two Banuelos wasn’t able to finish him. It was a missed opportunity because Jorgensen turned the tide in the second round. Jorgensen started picking Banuelos apart on the feet and never looked back. Banuelos fought like a warrior to the final bell, but it wasn’t enough to win rounds two or three.
Anthony Njokuani vs. Shane Roller: Shane Roller wanted no part of Anthony Njokuani on the feet. He immediately shot in and secured the takedown. Roller dominated from there. It took him a minute or so, but he was able to transition to Njokuani’s back and lock in the rear-naked choke for the win.
Special appearance alert: Jake Shields was in the house. Grinning from ear-to-ear, Dana White pointed at Jake and mouthed, “He’s mine.” It was pretty obvious who he was talking to and it wasn’t you or me. Image via Cagewriter
Mike Brown vs. Manny Gamburyan: Manny Gamburyan made a big statement tonight. During an early exchange Gamburyan caught Mike Brown on the chin with a clean right hook. A few punches later it was over. Gamburyan made it clear he wants a title shot. After tonight’s performance, he just might get one. If nothing else, he’ll be in the mix.
Benson Henderson vs. Donald Cerrone: No fight of the night from Henderson and Cerrone tonight. Maybe submission of the night, but not FOTN. It was quick. During an early scramble, Cerrone left his neck out a little too far. Henderson grabbed it and sunk in the quick guillotine choke for the win.
Jose Aldo vs. Urijah Faber: Urijah Faber has the heart of a lion, but tonight, it might have taken an actual lion to beat Jose Aldo. For the first four rounds, Aldo was spectacular. Not only did he land devastating body shots with ease, he destroyed Urijah’s left leg with leg kick after leg kick after leg kick. By the time the third and fourth rounds rolled around Aldo was sweeping Faber off his feet with nearly every kick he threw. The few times it did go to the ground Aldo dominated there too. In fact, the fourth round ended with Aldo on top of Faber in the crucifix position popping him unanswered punches and elbows Nelson-Kimbo style. If you can criticize Aldo for anything, it was his reluctance to attack and finish Faber off in the fifth. I don’t know whether he was playing it safe or just having mercy on Faber, but he didn’t do much of anything in the final round. That was pretty much the only knock on the whole show. It ended in rather anti-climatic fashion. I’ll tell you what though, that Jose Aldo is something special, and there’s only a few guys I would say that about in this sport.
Pay-per-view impressions: Yes, WEC 48 Aldo vs. Faber was the best MMA event of the past three weeks (and probably even the best of the year thus far). It took away the bad taste that Anderson Silva and the Strikeforce show left in our mouths. The Aldo-Faber fight absolutely had that big pay-per-view main event feel. They are worth paying for. That said, I have no clue what Zuffa is doing with this thing. The only WEC logo I saw the entire night was on some kid’s shirt in the crowd. Hell, I wouldn’t be surprised if they blurred it out in the replays Affliction-style. I get why they didn’t use it in their marketing, but if they’re really trying to build the WEC brand why erase it from the show altogether? The people who are watching already paid. Instead, it came off as a confused UFC event in a blue “Octagon.” That’s not to say that the presentation was poor, just that it was a UFC-style production wrapped in generic packaging. The average UFC fan who saw it had to confused by what they were watching. The show completely lacked any sort of identity (just like boxing) which makes me wonder why they just don’t fold the WEC into the UFC if the WEC brand isn’t even worth promoting. It would be great for the fans and great for the fighters. Maybe not so great for Zuffa, but I’m sure they’d survive with only one extremely lucrative promotion under their wing.
For whatever reason though, that doesn’t seem to be the plan. Dana White says he has one, but I guess we’ll just have to wait and see what it is, because right now it’s a complete mystery to me.
Knockout of the Night: Manny Gamburyan
Submission of the Night: Ben Henderson
Fight of the Night: Leonard Garcia & Chan Sung Jung
Bonus info via MMA Junkie
Live Gate & Attendance
Live gate: $792,640
Gate info via MMA Weekly