With one of the greatest Fight Nights ever in the books, we can sit back and reflect on what exactly we all witnessed last night. While the main card has received all the attention, there were some pretty amazing things that happened on the prelims that I’m assuming will go under the radar. Let’s take a look at the fights and go over what happened, and compare it to what I THOUGHT would happen.
Alex Garcia def Ben Wall via 1st Rd KO
A great way to start the prelims off is with an explosive knockout. I predicted this one 100% as I knew Garcia’s power and explosiveness would be a clear advantage, and it was. Right form the bat Garcia sensed Wall’s necessity to close the distance, he countered that with big punches and put a quick end to their UFC debuts. 1-0 to start off in my predictions
Krzysztof Jotko def Bruno Santos via Unanimous Decision
Heading into this bout, I figured it wouldn’t be very exciting – I was right about that. Jotko and Santos are two slow-paced fighters who like to utilize the clinch, which is where a lot of this fight was spent. I figured Santos would be the stronger of the two, but that didn’t really show through. Jotko kept his striking crisp and clean, and kept the grappling game competitive enough for him to win on points. Not a great fight, but atleast both of these men had some good cage experience. 1-1 for my predictions.
Justin Scoggins def Richie Vaculik via 1st Rd TKO
What a debut for Justin Scoggins! From the opening bell it appeared Scoggins’ gameplan was to just overwhelm the more superior grappler in Vaculik. A solid striking game and aggressive takedowns mixed with brutal ground and pound, Scoggins sealed the deal on his victorious UFC debut late in the first round. The stoppage was protested, but it was clear Scoggins was just lit with a different kind of fire that Vaculik didn’t see coming. Big surprise here as I figured Vaculik’s grappling game would lead him to a submission victory, I didn’t expect Scoggins to come out with the inferno that he did. I fall to 1-2
Caio Magalhaes def Nick Ring via Unanimous Decision
Finally, another bout that I seemingly predicted thoroughly. Magalhaes spent a little more time brawling it out than I had expected. Among that, Nick Ring’s wrestling game really surprised me as it appeared he would be the one controlling the ground action – atleast in the first round and half of the second. Magalhaes kept aggressive through-out the whole fight on the feet, winging big shots, but it was his transitions on the ground that won the fight for him. His sweep in the second round got him out of a bad spot and ontop, where he won the round. A great performance by Magalhaes as he extends his UFC streak, and ups my prediction record to 2-2.
Takeya Mizugaki def Nam Phan via Unanimous Decision
If the main event of this card wasn’t such a phenomenal bout, this fight for sure would have taken the cake as being fight of the night. Both Mizugaki and Phan clubbed eachother with brutal left hooks, to the body and to the face, for 3 rounds. However, the deciding factor of his fight was Mizugaki’s power. I knew coming in that Mizugaki would probably have the better hands, but I expected PHan to throw more kicks and use more of a jab. Mizugaki didn’t let him do that as he controlled the distance just a little bit better, and did more damage by the end of the fight.
This sums up the small list of prelims. I only managed a 2-3 record for my predictions, so we’ll see if my main card picks were any better.