UFC 88: Breakthrough took place this evening at the Phillips Arena in Atlanta, Georgia.
Chuck Liddell looked to earn his shot at the UFC light heavyweight title with a win over undefeated Rashad Evans.
Rich Franklin made his return to light heavyweight in a fight against friend and former training partner Matt Hamill.
Dan Henderson faced off against BJJ expert Rousimar Palhares in an attempt to end his two-fight losing streak inside the Octagon.
Martin Kampmann and Nate Marquardt battled it out to get one step closer to a shot at UFC Middleweight Champ Anderson Silva.
Results and wrap-up after the jump.
- Rashad Evans defeats Chuck Liddell via Knockout in Round Two
- Rich Franklin defeats Matt Hamill via TKO (Liver Shot/Strikes) in Round Three
- Dan Henderson defeats Rousimar Palhares via Unanimous Decision
- Nate Marquardt defeats Martin Kampmann via TKO (Strikes) in Round One
- Dong Hyun Kim defeats Matt Brown via Split Decision
- Kurt Pellegrino defeats Thiago Tavares via Unanimous Decision
- Tim Boetsch defeats Mike Patt via TKO (Strikes) in Round One
- Ryo Chonan defeats Roan Carneiro via Split Decision
- Jason MacDonald defeats Jason MacDonald via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) in Round Two
Matt Brown performed a lot better than I thought he would against Kim. I figured it would be an early night for Brown, which it almost was, but Brown came back strong in the second. It was a close split decision, but I gave it to Kim. The odd judge out? Cecil Peoples, of course. Brown may have lost, but I think he did well enough to get another chance in the Octagon.
Nate Marquardt absolutely demolished Martin Kampmann. I wasn’t expecting it to be that one sided. Marquardt landed a wicked head kick and it was all downhill from there for Kampmann. Not much else to say about that.
Hendo did what he had to do, he got a much needed win. It wasn’t pretty, but it didn’t have to be. He worked his sprawl to near perfection. Palhares got hit with some hard shots and didn’t fold, so he deserves credit for hanging in there and almost ending the fight in the second with the heel hook. Good to see Hendo back on the winning track. I wouldn’t mind seeing him get another shot at Anderson after another win. If Bisping wins at UFC 89, I think Hendo vs Bisping would be a good fight to book for early ’09. Marquardt vs. Hendo would be a good one too.
Surprise, Surprise, Tim Boetsch dropped Mike Patt…whoever that is.
Matt Hamill’s legs are going to be hurting tomorrow. Rich Franklin absolutely picked Hamill apart on the feet. I thought Hamill would have went for the takedown more than he did, but I guess he thought he could hang standing. He obviously thought wrong, but at least he gave Rich a nasty battle scar. Franklin looked good at 205. He was quick, sharp and didn’t look like he lost a step as some thought he might. It’s a long hard road for Franklin, but he’s off to a good start.
HOLY SHIT!!! I literally yelled that 10 times. Wow, who the hell would have thought Rashad Evans would give Chuck Liddell the most brutal knockout of his career? I was cussing Rashad throughout the first round for dancing around, but he more than made up for it in the second. I said in my preview that I would be shocked if Rashad won, and let me tell you, I definitely am. Where does Liddell go from here? More importantly, who’s going to get the title shot against Forrest in December? Rashad? Machida? Rampage? Wandy? There’s a lot of options, but with that KO fresh on people’s minds, I wouldn’t be surprised if they gave it to the still undefeated Evans. Wow!
Submission of the Night: Jason MacDonald
Knockout of the Night: Rashad Evans
Fight of the Night: Kurt Pellegrino and Thiago Tavares ($60k each)
Live Gate & Attendance
Live gate: $2.6 million
(Live gate courtesy of MMAJunkie.com)