Sunday, December 9, 2018

UFC 231: Holloway & Ortega & Polaris 8 Wrap-Up

Holloway brought a Nick Diaz reminiscent game plan to land 5-9 punch combinations on Ortega. I knew when I watched the Inside the Octagon breakdown and revealed Ortega's takedown success is 14%, that Ortega was in for a long night. I didn't bet any cash because as a rule I don't bet on fights with someone coming off a year long layoff (plus those still undetermined heavy weight cut concussion symptoms et cetera). Gunnar fell victim to that year long layoff rust and nearly paid the price for it against Oliveira. Holloway busted up Ortega who stayed game and was still dangerous when the fight was stopped, but with that eye swollen shut and Holloway's success switching to south paw very real unavoidable punishment of the unnecessary variety lay in wait in a 5th round.

Shevchenko faded a bit over the last 3 rounds but banked at least 4 rounds and busted up Joanna with varied strikes and takedowns from the standing clinch. Hopefully, women's MMA has advanced far enough that we'll soon see them stop using various sundry head-arm takedowns. That will be when we know that women's MMA is advancing to the modern age.

Gunanr Nelson' picked a serious comeback fight that puts him right back after that starching by Ponzinibbio and a year plus away from the sport due to injury. Without the ring rust, I think he would've finished Cowboy from the back first round, but instead he had to weather some real punishment, get Cowboy to the mat, and then punish him with precision to get him to expose the back. Those laser like elbows were exactly the amount needed to force Oliveira to give up his back and he was tapping before the choke was even in.

Manuwa has fallen victim to the "I'm gonna call out pro boxers" curse and then proceed to lose by violent KO in most of my next fights (Santos last night, Oezdemir), and a tough loss to Jan Blachowicz.

Eye picked up a tough, close win over Chookagian. The card seemed to mercifully fly by as a quick night of fights. I was at a holiday party for work so that probably helped.

Polaris 8

Bessa and Lillius elicited boos from the crowd by forcing spectators to watch a Gi 50/50 battle. I guess they've forgotten about Gi matches and ACB and how no one in their right mind wants to watch that bull*&^$. Way to bring the non-heat as the one Gi match people probably tuned in to see due to its proximity to the main card.

Strauss and Ishii was as boring as I expected with Ishii unable to pass guard, and Strauss having a tough time forcing opportunities from bottom as the smaller man.

Imanari vs Ryan exchanged leg locks which was exciting to watch 2 leg locking styles and generations do battle. Ryan eventually used a leg lock exchange to get to the back which I had considered a likely scenare. Imanari fended off several choke attempts and wisely avoided having a hand trapped, but also failed to address the crook of the elbow/choking arm with thumb posts and as he went to peel off the secondary hand it was far too late.

Munch beat Lachlan Giles by way of 4,345 failed guard pass attempts I guess. It's hard to recall that many nonstop guard pass attempts that still largely barely advance in another match in recent memory. Lachlan had one nice leg entanglement but Munch's usual knee in the middle/slice  non-commital guard passing style and head down, ass up posture prevented most meaningful exchanges.

Vagner utilized sharper transitions to put Benson in trouble. Benson went for a toe hold that gave up the back against a standing Vagner (sigh) and would escape but that proved a bad omen as with barely a minute left, Vagner got the short choke palm to palm grip with the body triangle side lock in the mat to strap Benson's hips.

Much more exciting in spots than some previous installments when even the NoGi matches would all go to a dubious decision.

I felt like most of the match Keenan did most of the work and was forcing Craig to untie knows and traps rather than actually implement any meaningful guard passing. Keenan seemed to fade down the stretch (also what makes me suspect he's actually not on steroids unlike the other obvious caricatures with whom he trains out on the west coast.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Stuart Cooper Films - The Craig Jones Story

Hung out with Craig back when this place Juice-Ology was open around the corner from Renzo's and a bunch of us would eat there between morning and noon class. How he comes across in interviews is the same as how he is in real life. Refreshing.

Polaris Prologue Episode 3

EBI 18 - Women’s Brackets 

Left hand side of the bracket, I expect Pati Fontes to make it through to the final. Right hand side, it'll be interesting to see if Lila pulls off a submission against Danielle Kelly. I don't see why Nina Navid won't get past Fiona, then face the winner of whoever wins between Kelly and Smadja-Cruz. My pick to win the whole thing is Pati Fontes.