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Post TUF 17 Finale Thoughts

Well, we saw how volatile the sport of MMA is last night. Uriah Hall came into the fight with Kelvin Gastelum as a 3:1 favorite and probably one of the must hyped TUF contestants in a long time. Gastelum was able to hold his own on the feet and hit the takedowns he needed to pull off the upset. Gastelum was easily forgotten this season because of the hype behind Hall but at age 21 he proves to be an intriguing prospect. He hasn’t faced any top competition before coming to the house but he was able to smartly defeat Hall in his UFC debut. He is a purple belt at 10th Planet Jiu Jitsue and he is very active on the ground. Last night he was constantly looking to set up submissions and pass guard. His bread and butter going forward is going to be his grappling game. Hall is still in the mix as an interesting prospect and might have needed a wake-up call like this to get him focused. Hall got some offense going in the second round but he truly gave a way the first with his cockyness. It was clear Hall didn’t respect Gastelum’s striking or takedowns as as a result he was beaten by Gastelum.

Urijah Faber may still have one run left in him at the Bantamweight division. He still has some popularity with the casual fan which is always going to work in his favor. With the future of Cruz’s belt in flux, Faber may find himself in a favorable position once again if he can rattle off a few wins. Jorgensen is the classic case of a guy who is good but not great. Every time he has faced truly elite fighters he has faltered. Jorgensen isn’t exactly old but at age 30, he has had many chances to break through and has failed to do so. You have to think that he has peaked as a fighter and he’s just never going to make it into that top echelon of Bantamweights.

Cat Zingano looked impressive but also a little shaky at times. She essentially stopped moving in the midst that leg-lock attempt in the second round and maybe that was a case of octagon jitters. A more experienced fighter would have worked harder to get out of the submission but she kind of just froze. On the other hand, her grappling was impressive and once she got Miesha Tate down midway through the second round, she was able to beat her down. Tate could not get to her feet in either the second or third rounds and struggled to defend herself against Zingano’s punches. I think the stoppage by Kim Winslow was fine because of the overall accumulation of damage. Tate hadn’t really made effort to defend herself over the course of a minute or so. We’re going to miss out on the potential drama of Ronda Rousey and Tate coaching against each other but Rousey always seems to find a way to create pre-fight drama.

Gabriel Gonzaga took some hard shots and has had questions about his chin for a while. It might be time for him to decide whether or not he wants to retire once more. On the other hand, we didn’t necessarily learn anything new about Travis Browne. Hopefully he can get back in the cage soon and continue developing as a fighter because the fight was so short.

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Fight Cards

Bellator 163: McGeary vs. Davis

Event Date: November 4, 2016
Broadcast: Spike

UFC Fight Night 98: Dos Anjos vs. Ferguson

Event Date: November 5, 2016
Broadcast: TBD

Bellator 164: Koreshkov vs. Lima

Event Date: November 11, 2016
Broadcast: Spike Sports

UFC 205: Alvarez vs. McGregor

Event Date: November 12, 2016
Broadcast: Pay-per-view, Fox Sports 1, UFC Fight Pass

Bellator 165: Chandler Vs. Henderson

Event Date: November 19, 2016
Broadcast: Spike TV

UFC Fight Night 99: Mousasi vs. Hall 2

Event Date: November 19, 2016
Broadcast: TBD