UFC 105 took place earlier today at the MEN Arena in Manchester, England.
In the night’s main event, Randy Couture returned to the light heavyweight division to take on Brandon Vera.
Dan Hardy and Mike Swick fought for a potential welterweight title shot against Georges St. Pierre.
Michael Bisping looked to rebound from his humbling defeat at the hand of Dan Henderson in a middleweight match-up against Denis Kang.
James Wilks looked to get his first victory since winning season 9 of The Ultimate Fighter against TUF 7 veteran Matt Brown.
The other TUF 9 champ, Ross Pearson took on Aaron Riley in a lightweight contest.
Results, thoughts, bonuses and live gate (when available) after the jump.
- Randy Couture defeats Brandon Vera via Unanimous Decision
- Dan Hardy defeats Mike Swick via Unanimous Decision
- Michael Bisping defeats Denis Kang via TKO (Strikes) in Round Two
- Matt Brown defeats James Wilks via TKO (Strikes) in Round Two
- Ross Pearson defeats Aaron Riley via TKO (Cut) in Round Two
- John Hathaway defeats Paul Taylor via Unanimous Decision
- Terry Etim defeats Shannon Gugerty via Submission (Guillotine Choke) in Round Two
- Nick Osipczak defeats Matthew Riddle via TKO (Punches) in Round Three
- Dennis Siver defeats Paul Kelly via TKO (Strikes) in Round Two
- Alexander Gustafsson defeats Jared Hamman via TKO (Strikes) in Round One
- Andre Winner defeats Roli Delgado via Knockout in Round One
Ross Pearson vs. Aaron Riley: Ross Pearson turns in a very impressive performance in his first official UFC since winning TUF 9. He picked apart Aaron Riley for one and a half rounds. Riley didn’t seem to have any answer for anything, especially the Muay Thai clinch Pearson used to launch the fight-ending flying knee that cut Riley’s brow wide open.
Matt Brown vs. James Wilks: James Wilks won’t follow in his fellow TUF 9 champion’s footsteps. Wilks started the fight out well, controlling Brown in the first round. That all came unraveled in the second though when Brown landed a devastating flying knee. It looked like Wilks was done, but he showed a lot of heart and kept going as Brown beat him up for the rest of the round. Wilks tried to pull off a big comeback win in the third with a kimura attempt, but Brown escaped, got full mount and pounded him out. Brown rolls on.
Andre Winner vs. Roli Delgado: Is it me or does it look like Roli Delgado would break in half if you hit him hard enough? Yeah, well that’s pretty much what Andre Winner did tonight when he landed a thunderous overhand right putting Delgado’s lights out. The two shots at the end were completely unnecessary but it sure was pretty.
Michael Bisping vs. Denis Kang: Wow, Michael Bisping got dropped in the first and played defense off his back for the rest of the round, but boy did he come out strong in the second. Instead of fight a battle Bisping was losing on the feet, he went for the takedown, got it and proceeded to beat the hell out of Denis Kang. Kang was able to get back to his feet on two occasions but he was so out of it, Bisping had no problem getting him back down and eventually finishing him there. Huge rebound win for Michael Bisping in front of his hometown crowd, and boy they went crazy for him.
Dan Hardy vs. Mike Swick: It wasn’t quite fight of the night material but it was pretty good. Dan Hardy rocked Mike Swick several times throughout the fight, but could never capitalize and finish it. Instead he tied Swick up against the fence and allowed him to recover each time. Hardy got tagged a few times himself, but he shook it off while Swick was cleary hurt each time Hardy landed clean on him. Lucky for Hardy, not finishing the fight didn’t come back to bite him like it has for other fighters. The judges awarded him the decision, and he’ll get the title shot against GSP sometime in the first half of 2010.
Randy Couture vs. Brandon Vera: So Couture-Vera didn’t turn out to be as exciting as we hoped it would. That was large in part due to Brandon Vera’s defensive wrestling in the clinch against the fence. It became clear in the opening moments that Randy didn’t want to stand and trade with Vera. Vera tageed him early and Randy immediately tied him up and put Vera against the fence. This was a recurring trend throughout the fight, but Randy wasn’t able to do much to Vera besides control him. Randy tried to take him down multiple times but Vera neutralized him. In fact, Vera was the only one to secure a takedown late in the third. I thought it was a close fight, but I was definitely surprised to hear the judges award the decision to Randy. He may have controlled the majority of the action in the clinch, but Vera landed devastating body shots, one of which was a knee to the solar plexus that sent Randy falling to the mat holding his chest in the second. Vera also tagged him multiple times in the third and clearly inflicted the most damage of the fight which is why I gave Vera rounds two and three. I don’t think Vera was “robbed” per se, but I definitely think the decision was questionable.
Randy Couture lives to fight another day, but his inability to take damage is becoming the theme of this latest run in his career. His wrestling will keep him in fights, but his stand-up has clearly become a liability. I’m sure the UFC will put him on the fast track to a title shot, but I really don’t see him capturing gold again.
Submission of the Night: Terry Etim
Knockout of the Night: Denis Siver
Fight of the Night: Michael Bisping & Denis Kang ($40k each)
Live Gate & Attendance
Live gate: $2+ million
Attendance and bonus info via MMA Junkie