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The Potato Index: UFC 96 Aftermath

(You look sleepy, Gabe.  Maybe time to grab a quick nap?  Photo courtesy of

Who’s up and who’s down?  The Potato Index is here to tell you with our post-event wrap-up of arbitrary numerical rankings. 

“Rampage” Jackson +121

He won a fight he was supposed to win, even if it took him 2 2/3 rounds longer than many thought it would.  Jackson said he needed the work, and he looked good from start to finish.  But will he still be glad he went through rounds when he has to get back in the gym and prepare for Rashad Evans in two weeks?

Keith Jardine -15

“The Dean of Mean” fought hard and, if nothing else, proved his chin isn’t so suspect after all.  The guy has a lot of heart and he’ll fight anyone (except his Jackson camp buddies).  There’s always a place in the UFC for someone like that.

Shane Carwin +154

Didn’t we tell you this guy was a beast?  Gonzaga broke his nose in the opening seconds and it barely slowed Carwin down.  The knockout blow didn’t even seem like it had all his power behind it, but it didn’t matter.  Another first-round KO, and this time against a notable opponent.  This guy is headed for big things.

Gabriel Gonzaga -78

He’s quickly becoming the guy who can give hell to the lower-tier fighters and absolutely no one else.  He needs a victory over someone who matters, and fast.

Matt Brown +83

Somehow he managed to seem both vicious and merciful in his bizarre fight with Pete Sell.  Brown doesn’t want to keep beating on you, but he will if Yves Lavigne makes him.

Pete Sell -32

You can’t say he’s a quitter.  You also can’t say that performance helped him any.  Just be glad Lavigne’s indecision didn’t get him seriously injured.

Matt Hamill +90

He can outwrestle most good strikers and now looks like he can outstrike good wrestlers.  We’re almost ready to believe that his loss to Rich Franklin really was friendship-related.  Almost.

Mark Munoz -48

Welcome to the UFC.  Now keep your hands up.

Gray Maynard +97

You don’t have to like him, but at least admit that “The Bully” is no joke.  He turned into a boxer and battered a very tough opponent like it was an easy sparring session.  Still doesn’t finish fights, but doesn’t lose them either.

Jim Miller -40

No one looked as surprised as Miller when it became clear that Maynard wanted to keep it standing.  Surprise soon turned to dismay, then to swollen and bloody.  Looks like it’s back to Fight Nights.

Kendall Grove +53

It’s always nice to win a must-win, and in definitive fashion.  It will keep him hanging around, but for how long?

Jason Day -51

A willingness to fight anyone, anytime is nice, but not if you don’t win some of them.  

Tamdan McCrory +42

How can you not like “The Barn Cat”?  He needed that win, even if he didn’t get the entrance music he wanted, and he just seems so damn likable.  Hope he’s around for a long time.

Brandon Vera +45

Looked like shades of his old self as he leg-kicked the hell out of Patt.  Can he do it against someone who matters?  His next fight should answer that.  Maybe it will even be on the main card.

Referees -189

Yves Lavigne is usually better than that, so we’re willing to believe it was just an off night.  That Rick Fike character has earned no such leeway.  Aren’t we at the point where we can demand qualified, experienced professionals no matter where the event is?

Main Event Musical Chairs -137

After announcing Mir/Lesnar prematurely, the UFC plays dumb until they’re forced to admit it’s off and then asks Rampage to fight for the third time in four months or else they’ll give it to Machida.  Now we’re determining title fights by asking who can get ready on short notice?  Bad idea.

Cagepotato Comments

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Floridiot- March 10, 2009 at 12:03 pm
mahahahahahah i love u produce, your writings are keeping me very entertained while i am at work pretending to work
WUWU- March 10, 2009 at 9:08 am
One time I was playing at the ol' slot machines, and I put fifty cents in, and BOOM I won 11 dollars. Is that luck? I don't think so. I put the money in and wanted to win, therefore it was all skill. It's what I wanted to do
Cap'n- March 10, 2009 at 8:10 am
Did you know that some species of mammals breast-feed their young well into adolescence? The lesson here is some people (candadianproduce) should make their post and GTFO, stop hanging around like a one night stand that stays for breakfast.
mma-pro- March 9, 2009 at 7:00 pm
so carwin got lucky 11 times in a row in the 1st round?
Brandon- March 9, 2009 at 6:02 pm
Okay fucko, I see most of you are using the:
"Matt Serra, 'it wasnt lucky!!' defense"

What Matt Serra says here is
"I tried to hit him and I did, therefore it wasn't lucky."
"If you try to hit a punching bag, and you hit it, was that a lucky punch?"

I see what hes saying. Apparently if you have the intent to do something and you do it it's not luck.

So, by the same logic... last week I was in the gym and I threw a basketball across half court and happened to make it in the basket. But i suppose that wasn't luck, because I was TRYING to throw it in the basket. Right?
Jburg- March 9, 2009 at 3:43 pm
To all you guys claiming Carwin got a "lucky punch." Take some time to think more about this sport. Why do you think a fighter wins a fight?

Is it because one fighter is better than the other? Because one fighter made a big mistake? Because one fighter fought better than the other on a particular night?

I think any of these are legitimate ways to win a fight. And I think Carwin won because he capitalized on a big mistake on Gonzaga's part.

When someone wins by submission is it because they got lucky or because the other fighter made a mistake? Are all submissions lucky? Are all one-punch knockouts lucky, or do they happen because one fighter made a mistake and left himself wide open? Carwin's win was not lucky, he took advantage of Gonzaga leaving himself open and won the fight.

Feel free to try to prove me wrong.
FinACot- March 9, 2009 at 3:27 pm
CanadianProduces life stock -250

enough posts already

-Carwin rules
mexican arm bar- March 9, 2009 at 3:19 pm
i wouldnt say it was a lucky punch . but ill just say " i am not impressed with his performance"... a lot of holes in his game but he is 11-0. and what the hell i get off work and theres like 2 pages of shit to look at...
WUWU- March 9, 2009 at 2:23 pm
Carwin was lucky. Luckily he fought a guy with a glass jaw.

Props to him for keeping his wits about him after getting pummeled by Gabe, but lets be realistic here. Any other heavyweight would have knocked out Gonzaga with that punch, the guy has no chin. Other than that one punch (yeah, yeah that's all you need) he was getting dominated.
Anonymous- March 9, 2009 at 1:19 pm
A punch lands or doesn't there's no luck in that just talent!

greg- March 9, 2009 at 1:19 pm
Umm, Matt brown looked great so he should be higher and same with Brandon vera
Not First- March 9, 2009 at 1:07 pm
Carwin vs. Lesnar!!
CanadianProduce- March 9, 2009 at 1:03 pm
A "lucky punch" is thrown out there with a hopeful target. When you throw and aim at a noggin like Gonzagas there is no luck to it. It has to be powerful and brutal!!!

Carwin is the hero of the week. Get over it haters.
Goog- March 9, 2009 at 12:38 pm
Let's put it this way... he's lucky that one landed.

Some of you guys talk like every punch is deliberate, perfect, and effective. How about the notion that they're on the defense at the same time, throw alot of punches in the general direction of the head, and a few of them connect.... if they're not blocked or obstructed by the other three hands also flying in the same small area. If a punch can be that dialed in, why would they bother throwing more than one? They throw as fast and hard as they can. Some graze, some connect, some hit the shoulder... whatever. But you can't say that in the middle of Shane Carwin getting his ass kicked that he just simply decided to stand up and say "I'm tired of getting hit in the face. I'm ending it right now with THIS punch. He started swinging back and got through. And he's lucky he did before getting pummeled any more.

Now I know this is the wrong example because of the Lesnar haters, but it's a perfect example of the difference: Lesnar coming out and knocking Heath Herring back in time with the first shot was not lucky. He wasn't fighting off an attack. He wasn't on the defense. It was a first strike, perfectly placed. Nothing lucky about it. If he'd been getting beat down and thrown that during a flurry, it would have been considered lucky by most people here.
Anonymous- March 9, 2009 at 12:37 pm
Carwin got lucky??? Took a haymaker, on his back, stood up and a clean, crisp right to the chin...

Takes more than luck to stand up with Gonzaga in your guard.
drummer- March 9, 2009 at 12:28 pm
So Koschecks loss a few weeks ago was not luck either, correct?
Ken Shamrock- March 9, 2009 at 12:24 pm
It's so obvious. He got punched by a punch.
Dr.- March 9, 2009 at 12:10 pm
And it doesn't matter if you were doing all the right things before you got knocked out. That KO means you fucked up and the other fighter got the better of you and your chin. It's not like hockey where you get a point if you tie before OT or SO. An 'L' still means you didn't win.

Not all punches instantly daze or KO someone. It's the good ones.
Dr.- March 9, 2009 at 12:05 pm
So this "lucky punch" bullshit... Are you serious?

Was he throwing a kick and landed with a fist instead? Was closing his eyes and throwing blindly? Was he aiming for the body and somehow hit the head?

He threw a punch, the punch landed on the target. The target leads to a stunned opponent. He finished. Sure sounds like luck to me.

Would you use that same logic against Rampage's KO on Chuck or Silva? Or Gonzaga's head kick on Cro-Cop? I guess The Hammer's head kick was lucky too?
The Irish Wolfhound- March 9, 2009 at 11:59 am
That is a load of shit for rampage, the dude needs a breather, specially since Rashad isn't a joke. Machida deserves a shot, but not this way.
Bootylam!- March 9, 2009 at 11:47 am
How the fuck did Carwin get lucky? (That's it, that got me posting) Did Gonzaga trip and fall? Did he go blind? Carwin got nailed by a punch that would have absolutely dropped 95% of fighters and then took another one. That's lucky? Carwin didn't let GG finish him (when he TOTALLY should have), got up, and connected, which I'm sure is part of his training. It's not luck, it's called being able to take a punch. You could almost see GG's thought bubble going "WTF?!?!?" Then he got overconfident and got dropped. (By a punch not near as hard as the one Carwin got hit with.) So please someone calmly and logically explain what is luck about that.
Criminally Negligent - March 9, 2009 at 11:45 am
Part of the problem with the officiating is that the UFC lets the local commission's referees do the undercard fights. It's done partially as a "thank you" for deciding to regulate the sport, especially in states that have regulated it more recently. It's kind of a necessary evil and about the only way for the newer refs to get experience doing big time fights. That being said, some of the mistakes are inexcusable.
Shane Carwin- March 9, 2009 at 11:44 am
Suck it, you doubting bitches
Tony- March 9, 2009 at 11:33 am
I gotta shit.
Goog- March 9, 2009 at 11:31 am
I agree with the consensus that Carwin was lucky after being rolled around. I wouldn't call it impressive. He snuck a punch in and it worked. And so it goes in the heavyweight division. Win or lose, I still like Gonzaga for whatever reason. He just always seems to have a very real chance of knocking someone into next month.