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Even ESPN Thought Rua Was Getting That Belt at UFC 104

Cage Potato reader B.J. sent us this screenshot of ESPN.com shortly after the main event at UFC 104 concluded.  Either they didn’t wait to hear the official decision before writing their headline, or else their overpowering sense of justice simply would not allow them to believe it at first.  I admit that I have some sympathy, because I almost made the same mistake myself when I was writing our liveblog.

In the light of the events of Saturday night, some of you have asked us if we’re going to apologize to "Shogun" Rua for insisting that he had no chance against Lyoto Machida.  Our answer to that is, if we apologized every time we made fight predictions that didn’t pan out, where would we find the time to do anything else, like making fun of fighters’ tattoo choices or ogling ring girls?  Okay, so Rua surprised us.  He very nearly surprised the oddsmakers, too.  He came in with a great gameplan, he stuck to it, and in fair universe he’d be the champ right now.  But as that unanimous decision and the fame of Tila Tequila have both proved, ours is not a fair universe at all.   That’s why the gods of pro fighting invented rematches.


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oc in this bitch- October 26, 2009 at 11:12 pm
like ive been sayin ben and ben really dont know shit about mma they just spout shit out of there mouth like there opinion matters.theyve talked shit and been wrong so many times its a wonder why people including myself still follow this site.ben and ben the most uneducated hosts ive sometimes ever heard.
Monstrosity- October 26, 2009 at 1:28 pm
@831 Son

STFU. If i pay 50 bucks for a UFC with early stoppages and bullshit decisions. Damn right i will bitch about it. What is the point in your bitching of other peoples bitching? What is the point of telling everyone your area code? these are just some of life's questions i guess.

PS. Kill yourself

@GlebJolie

i can't even think of words for your soap box speech but i agree, you should get back to work. I need my coffee.
831 Son- October 26, 2009 at 11:23 am
@ GlebJolie- well fucking said. Stop crying you babies. It is OVER with. Rua didn't dominate Machida, and Machida sure as hell didnt dominate Rua. It wasnt even a good fight regardless of who won. Whatever just look forward to the rematch instead of crying about this stupid shit for the next couple of months. It was a close fight, I agree, Shogun won in my opinion, but oh well! The athletic commisions have screwd up numerous times, but there is no point in crying like fucking pussy bitches all day trying to reverse the decision in your own head. Regardless, I predict Machida winning the rematch in decisive fashion.
One Two- October 26, 2009 at 11:00 am
It wasn't an ass kicking but it was a clear win, I just don't buy the incompetence angle, The whole crowd the announcers, everyone i watched it with, a majority of fans, every MMA website I find it hard to believe it's coincedence the only three retards in the whole MMA community who thought Machida won happen to be the three judges.
steampunk22- October 26, 2009 at 10:17 am
Controversial, yes. I agree that if this was a split decision for Machida, everyone would be a lot less pissed. I think Rua won some rounds, clearly the last two, and arguably landed more powerful shots although with a lot less accuracy.

The popular thing to do right now is to side with Rua, there is going to be a lot of Machida bashing and such. I havent seen this much bandwagon hopping since, well, everytime the Vancouver Canucks play a full season of hockey lol.

Tie goes to the champ I think, as unpopular as it is to say it. Rua did well, better than anyone expected, but it sort of be unsatisfying to have him with the belt over that performance. He looked better than anyone else against Machida thus far, but he wasn't ever close to ending that fight. I think a rematch would have been justified even if Machida legitimately won that fight, this one was too close, with no one doing too much of anything.

^Agree with DangadaDang, the worst part of this will be if Machida wins in less than spectacular fashion, Rua fans are going to shit a brick. I think that Machida will literally have to win this one by Flying Inverted Donkey Punch or people are going to say the belt shouldnt have been his to defend again in the first place.
Jugger- October 26, 2009 at 10:15 am
Shogun was in the drivers seat for all 5 rounds. He just wrote the blueprint on how to beat Machida.

Machida's Karate has big holes in it and Shogun found them. Machida's heavy reliance on straight punches proved to be his undoing. He refused to get close enough to throw anything other than a straight punch. Shogun figured this out. Props to him.

Around the third round I told my buddy that Shogun better start doing something convincing because a razor thin decision usually goes to the champ. They don't usually give the belt away on a close one (Forrest vs. Rampage, not withstanding).

It's a bummer, but it is what it is. Dana has promised rematches before that have never materialized. Remember the travesty that was Bisping vs. Hamill?
DangadaDang- October 26, 2009 at 9:58 am
I'm really starting to notice the similarities between all these Shogun nuthuggers and parents who scream at referees during high school basketball games thinking they will somehow change the outcome of things, and I say this as an unbiased fan of the sport. I guess the worst part about it is after the rematch if Machida wins well have to hear this same shit all over again
GetUpAndKill- October 26, 2009 at 9:39 am
Machida wins the rematch if he learns how to defend Shogun's leg strikes...thats it, thats all he has to do.
GlebJolie- October 26, 2009 at 9:36 am
I'm sick of you whining crybabies. I've got so many complaints regarding the run-up to this fight, your predictions and the result that I don't know where to start.

1. Your weird schoolboy obsession with his urinotherapy. You're like a buncha 3rd graders that just discovered a "naked lady" book. It's unknown to you and taboo because it isn't part of our culture. That doesn't mean you need to ridicule someone who has real reasons for doing it. You did and you couldn't get it out of your heads. Your attempt at debunking the practice was laughable. The funniest aspect of this situation is people who feel they need to copy the behavior of champions. When you learned that Lyoto drinks his morning urine and is unbeaten, these people resented the notion that they might have to start copying that. Idiots.

2. Mauricio Rua was always a threat. He never was as bad as the oddsmakers painted him, though the odds were based almost entirely on his performance in the UFC and didn't take into account his performance record in Japan. So he fought another young fighter who knows what he's doing. He was able to take him to the limit of his abilities and even scare him. The thing is, I was there, and what I noticed was that Shogun spent most of his time chopping at Machida's legs and trunk and rarely managed to connect with his head. I saw Machida do more that could have ended the fight, and he did it more often. Shogun's strategy was a long, drawn-out, hacking approach and he was only able to begin looking for a killing shot in the last rounds. Even then he was unable to do much. If you call that a legitimate upset, you're deluding yourself. In fact, you're probably too tied up in the fact that you lost a bet than that a guy you really wanted to win didn't finish the job. Suddenly everyone's a big fan of Rua because he got the closest to vanquishing the evil piss drinker. Double idiots.

Shit, I need to get back to work, but consider growing up before you start calling for people's heads - particularly judges. You don't always have to agree with the mob - which in this case included Dana White. Does anybody else think he's starting to look like Curly Howard?
UFC is now the best- October 26, 2009 at 9:35 am
This is like the 3rd time ESPN has messed up the winners of a UFC event. ESPN also had it scrolling across the bottom that Rua had beaten Machida by decision. I was super pissed because I was waiting for my download to finish so I could witness this for myself. Then when I watched the fight, I was thinking to myself, someone has actually beaten Machida... Then Bruce Buffer says Machida won. I was blown away, and had to go back to ESPN's website to confirm, and yes, ESPN messed up (again). I also experienced this exact situation when Bowles beat Torres at WEC 42. ESPN needs to go at this MMA thing for real, or just stop before too many people notice. Could you imagine the outburst, if ESPN had reported that Tampa Bay beat New England 35-7 on Sunday in London? They need to realize that MMA is here for good and put some peeps on it that know what the fuck is going on. It is getting ridiculous.

BTW, I had it Shogun 49-48, or a TIE. It was so close, and we all know that the TIE goes to the runner (or the champ, in this case, unless your name is Rampage)

Holla! Overall I enjoyed UFC 104.
LoneWolf- October 26, 2009 at 9:33 am
yep im still not surprised Machida got his ass kicked for pretty much 5 rounds. Now lets see if he can do it again, hopefully he does and then we might get to see Anderson Silva take on Shogun.....now that would be a fight!
two_black_eyes- October 26, 2009 at 9:29 am
it was a close fight. i watched it a few times. the best i can figure is the judges were giving machida the rounds based on the little flurrys he was throwing but they werent landing. shogun controled the majority of the fight, landed the harder shots, and did the most damage. i had shogun winning the fight but it was close. a few of those rounds could have gone either way, unfortunatly they all went machidas way. Knock him out next time Rua!
NinJay- October 26, 2009 at 9:27 am
Damn you OBI, you made me lol with the gogo comment.

@One Two

Yeah it's the judges job but what the whole "don't let it go to the judges" means is that as a fighter you never know how they are going to score it. So it's in your best interest to finish the fight before the time runs out. That way your win or loss is in your hands, not somebody else's.
Smitty- October 26, 2009 at 9:02 am
@ Jugger
Nice dude.
Smitty- October 26, 2009 at 9:00 am
You can always tell who doesn't know shit about the sport in the comment section. For anyone to say this wasn't a close fight, is just ridiculous. I'm like you OBI, right at the end of the last round, I predicted a draw as the outcome.
Come on One Two, I know you've been posting here for a while, and you usually make a little sense at least.
Old_Bald_and_Irish- October 26, 2009 at 8:57 am
ESPN also initially reported that Lesnar gogoplated Mir at UFC 1000.
Diggler- October 26, 2009 at 8:49 am
Dude ESPN has done this at least 2 times before. They have no idea what the fuck they are doing down there. They also initially reported that Franklin KO'd Belfort @ 103.
El Famous Burrito- October 26, 2009 at 8:47 am
Cecil Peoples also thought The Bucs beat The Patriots, 17-0.
SiDeBuRnZ- October 26, 2009 at 8:41 am
OMG I had no idea Tila Tequila was from Singapore!!!

REPRESENT!!!!
(however badly...)
robthom- October 26, 2009 at 8:40 am
It seems like its almost always one problem or another when they run a show in CA. I wish they would at least keep the big shows out of that area.
One Two- October 26, 2009 at 8:31 am
personally i don't get the don't let it go to the judges why not its their job? everyone else knew he won. and it wasn't a close fight. I wouldn't give a single round to machida maybe the third because of that little flurry the judges don't have slo mo so they couldn't see machida didn't actually land anything.
Old_Bald_and_Irish- October 26, 2009 at 8:27 am
By the way, hats off to Rua.

I, for one, thought that he was gonna get his butt handed to him.

Personally, I was shocked that it got outta the first round.

Is the old Rua of PrideFC back?

...I can only hope so.

Now, if only the UFC would allow stomps, Rua would have won that match...
danomite- October 26, 2009 at 8:25 am
He didn't surprise me. I put money on him and these judges fucked me out of my winnings.
Old_Bald_and_Irish- October 26, 2009 at 8:25 am
@ "One Two",

What are you talkin' about?

Cheating and corruption? You've been listening to BJ Penn's and Rampage's revisionist history too much lately.

The judges saw it a different way. It was a close fight. It probably should have been a tie. But I don't think any "corruption" was involved.

The same addage holds true: Don't let the fight go to the judges.
Daoulas- October 26, 2009 at 8:24 am
ONE TWO:

I dunno how blatant it is. Maybe the judges were looking at ring control and punches more. Shogun "beat" machida yes as far as the 5 rounds of judging. if you were to put the whole fight as one big fight i would probably say machida won. Machida FOR SURE won at least 2 rounds. If this was a slit decision everyone wouldnt be crying as hard
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