UFC 123 “Rampage vs. Machida” is currently underway at The Palace of Auburn Hills in Detroit, Michigan.
In the main event, light heavyweights Rampage Jackson and Lyoto Machida both look to get back on the winning track.
Matt Hughes and BJ Penn meet in a rubber match in the co-main event.
George Sotiropoulos and Joe Lauzon meet in a lightweight showdown that could have title implications.
Phil Davis looks to continue his winning streak against Tim Boetsch.
Gerald Harris takes on Maiquel Falcao in a middleweight bout.
Results, thoughts, bonuses and live gate (when available) after the jump.
- Quinton “Rampage” Jackson defeats Lyoto Machida via Split Decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
- B.J. Penn defeats Matt Hughes via Knockout in Round One
- Maiquel Falcao defeats Gerald Harris via Unanimous Decision (29-27. 29-28, 29-28)
- Phil Davis defeats Tim Boetsch via Submission (Kimura) in Round Two
- George Sotiropoulos defeats Joe Lauzon via Submission (Kimura) in Round Two
- Brian Foster defeats Matt Brown via Submission (Guillotine Choke) in Round Two
- Mark Munoz defeats Aaron Simpson via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Dennis Hallman defeats Karo Parisyan via TKO (Strikes) in Round One
- Paul Kelly defeats T.J. O’Brien via TKO (Strikes) in Round Two
- Edson Barboza defeats Mike Lullo via TKO (Leg Kicks) in Round Three
- Nik Lentz defeats Tyson Griffin via Split Decision (29-28, 27-30, 29-28)
Recap & Thoughts
Joe Lauzon vs. George Sotiropoulos: George Sotiropoulos and Joe Lauzon came out swinging but the fight ultimately ended up on the ground where both fighters excel. The first round was close, but it didn’t even matter because Sotiropoulos turned on the heat in the second and submitted Lauzon with a kimura. Big win for Sotiropoulos that should put him somewhere in the lightweight title picture.
Phil Davis vs. Tim Boetsch: Another strong performance from Phil Davis. We normally see Davis shoot in on his opponents pretty quick but he opted to stand and trade with Boetsch for the opening minutes of the fight. He held his own, but it wasn’t long before he grabbed double underhooks and put Boetsch on his back. Davis searched for a submission, but didn’t get it until the second round when he put Boetsch in a kimura, pinned his arm behind his back and forced him to tap. Jon Jones gets all the hype as the rising star of the division, but Davis is one to keep your eye on too.
Gerald Harris vs. Maiquel Falcao: Interesting fight between Gerald Harris and Maiquel Falcao. It started off slow, but picked up at the end of the first when Falcao knocked Harris down and sunk in a tight rear-naked choke as the final seconds of the round ticked down. It looked like Harris should have tapped, but he didn’t and made it to the final horn. Problem was Falcao refused to let go and Dan Miragliotta had to jump in and pull him off. Nothing was done about it, and Falcao picked up right where he left off. He tagged Harris early in the round and put him in another RNC. He couldn’t finish but it was enough to take the round. Harris needed a big comeback in the third to pull out the victory, but didn’t bring enough heat and dropped the unanimous decision to Falcao.
B.J. Penn vs. Matt Hughes: Wow. I figured BJ Penn would beat Matt Hughes tonight, but I didn’t think it would happen so quick. Penn dropped Hughes in the opening moments of the fight with a right hand and followed it up with a flurry of unanswered punches that bounced Hughes head off the mat. Hughes didn’t even attempt to defend and the ref stepped in and stopped it 21 short seconds into the fight. It was the rebound fight BJ needed but with Penn’s history with Frankie Edgar and GSP, it’s going to be hard to justify thrusting him back into the title picture in either division. It will be very interesting to see what kind of fights the UFC gives Penn from here.
Quinton “Rampage” Jackson vs. Lyoto Machida: Another event, another controversial decision. Rampage Jackson and Lyoto Machida fought a close fight, but when the final horn blew it felt like Machida had won with a strong showing in the third round. Machida caught Rampage with a nice combination halfway through the third and took him down. He stayed in top postition and eventually worked to an armbar attempt. Rampage recognized what was coming and positioned himself to slam Machida. Rampage went for it but the moment Machida left the ground he let go and landed back on his feet. There was another exchange as the fight ended, but Machida clearly won the round. All he needed was one of the first two rounds to win. Unfortunately for him, only one of the judges gave him a second round and Rampage picked up the split decision. The crowd booed and Rampage was shocked. He said Machida whooped his ass and should have won the fight. He offered an immediate rematch.
To me, this fight was another example of why the 10-point must system fails in MMA. Even if Rampage did enough to squeak out the first two rounds, it didn’t trump the damage Machida inflicted in the third round and shouldn’t have been enough to win him the fight. Of course with the 10-point must system two close rounds are worth more than one decisive round.
Submission of the Night: Phil Davis
Knockout of the Night: BJ Penn
Fight of the Night: Joe Lauzon & George Sotiropoulos
Live Gate & Attendance
Live gate: $2.1 million
Bonus and gate info via MMA Junkie