Note:Reed’s book ‘Fightnomics’ is available now on Amazon (in Kindle and paperback versions), featuring 336 pages of statistical analysis on UFC fighters and the “hidden science” behind their fights. If you’ve been a fan of his Databomb columns, pick up a copy today. A full description of the book is at the end of this post.
While cranking through some statistical analysis of fighters competing at next weekend’s UFC 168 event, I came across a few tidbits that fit the character limit for tweetability. Tweet ‘em all you want, I’ll make more.
• Anderson Silva has the highest Knockdown Rate of any fighter at #UFC168. 16% of his landed power head strikes cause a knockdown.
• In terms of Knockdown Rate, #UFC168 fighters Robert Peralta (14%) and Travis Browne (12%) are also way above average.
• Tibau vs Johnson at #UFC168 will be a rare Southpaw vs Southpaw matchup, or what I call a “Cyclone fight” due to the clockwise spin.
• Mostly likely to attempt takedowns at #UFC168 is Ronda Rousey who attempts 4 TDs per 5 min. round. Not that her rounds ever last that long.
• The most active standup striker at #UFC168 is Dennis Siver, who outworks his opponents by 59% in volume while standing.
• Hardest fighter to hit at #UFC168 is Anderson Silva, who avoids 82% of all head strikes thrown at him. Still, Weidman may only need one.
• Highest takedown defense at #UFC168 are Weidman & Browne, both 100%. Neither have been taken down despite each facing 7 attempts.
(Turn down your speakers, then skip to the 3:50 mark for the KO. Props to Lucas Lutkus for the find.)
Although he might not sport that impressive of a record, Brazilian striker Claudiere Freitas is a goddamn nightmare when given a little space to fire off some kicks. Just take his fight with Lucas Mascena at last weekend’s Talent MMA Circuit 4 event, for instance, which ended two minutes into the first round via a spinning heel kick that had Mascena planking like it was 2011. (Author’s note: NERD!)
The best part? Mascena attempted a spinning hook kick of his own not ten seconds before Freitas used his face to demonstrate how one is properly done. That’s what we here in the States call “learning something the hard way” — a phrase that is typically followed by “Fuck this shit I’ll have Johnson in accounting explain it with a PowerPoint tomorrow.” The even more better part? It turns out that this wasn’t even Freitas’ first KO victory to come by way of that technique. Join us after the jump to see what we mean…
Surreal. That’s a pretty apt description of most Anderson Silva fights, for better or worse. Dodging Forrest Griffin’s strikes like he was in the Matrix, standing on the cage against Stephan Bonnar, front-kicking Vitor Belfort in the face? Surreal. Dancing around Thales Leites and shouting “where’s your jiu-jitsu now, playboy?” at Demian Maia? Surreal.
But those pale in comparison to what happened last night. What happened last night, when Silva lost for the first time in seventeen fights because he pushed the envelope too far, was the definition of surreal. For the sake of trying to comprehend what happened, let’s recapitulate for a moment. The first round saw Chris Weidman, the new middleweight kingpin of the UFC, take Silva down. Faced with the area in which he was most vulnerable, Silva deftly rolled with what ground and pound Weidman offered and defended any submission attempts before getting back to his feet. The rest of the round was spent taunting Weidman and stuffing any attempts at taking the fight to the ground. At the end of the round, Silva inexplicably hugged Weidman before returning to his corner.
When the second round began, Silva was in complete control, mocking Weidman’s attempts to hurt him. It was a performance unlike any other. But Silva strayed too far to the edge; caught with his chin up in the middle of a Weidman combination, he was felled by a left hook. His eyes rolled back; he was out before he hit the ground, where Weidman followed with a salvo of ground and pound that was merely a formality. Somehow, Silva had lost his title even more than Weidman had won it.
They’ve smushed chins. They’ve mushed lips. But tonight at UFC 162 in Las Vegas, Anderson Silva and Chris Weidman will let their fists do the love-making, and the only bodily fluids being exchanged will be BLOOD. [Ed. note: Look, I'm doing my best here.] Whether the Brazilian G.O.A.T. makes his 11th middleweight title defense, or the “All-American” lives up to his Rocky-esque underdog hype, I think we’re in for a hell of a battle.
Handling our liveblog for the “Silva vs. Weidman” main card is Alex Giardini, who will be slingin’ live results after the jump beginning at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for the latest updates, and feel free to mouth off in the comments section.
Are Chris Weidman‘s chances for an upset as good as everybody seems to think they are? Is Tim Kennedy better at talking than he is at fighting? Does UFC 162 feature the most stacked Facebook prelims in the history of curtain-jerking? And Dave Herman‘s getting fired, right? Read on as CagePotato founding editor Ben Goldstein and staff writer Jared Jones debate these topics — and so much more — and be sure to come back tomorrow night for our “Silva vs. Weidman” liveblog, beginning with the FX prelims at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT.
Chris Weidman has become the fashionable pick for an upset against Anderson Silva. You don’t actually believe he’ll pull it off, do you? I mean, you’re not a moron, right?
JJ: Now,I may be a moron, but there is one thing I am not, sir, and that, sir, is a moron.
If we were to have this debate immediately after Weidman had finished knocking Mark Munoz into an ice cream cake-induced depression, I would have told you that Anderson Silva was a dead man walking. “Weidman brings the kind of grappling prowess that, like Chael P. Sonnen before him, will all but completely suffocate Andy’s offense,” I would say whilst smoking a corncob pipe and farting into a wine glass, “And his striking, while clearly not on Silva’s level, has improved enough to keep the soon-to-be former champ hesitant in those rare moments when he won’t be fighting off his back.” I would have mocked you for daring to claim otherwise, then had security escort you out of my chalet bungalow when you inevitably lost your cool like a common miscreant.
BG: I feel like this wave of Weidman-support isn’t so much based on realistic analysis of the matchup, so much as fans’ natural desire to see some change after seven years of having the same champion dominating the competition, and other UFC fighters’ totally understandable self-interest in having that dominant champion go away for a while. It’s wishful thinking, basically.
The good news is, Weidman has a long career still ahead of him. Three years from now, Anderson Silva might be retired, and Chris Weidman will still be beating up top contenders. He’ll have his moment. Saturday night will not be that moment.
Tim Kennedy seems to talk a lot for a guy without many significant wins. Will Roger Gracie silence him for once, or will Kennedy finally live up to his own hype?
- Frankie Edgar vs. Charles Oliveira: Following his unsuccessful title challenge against Jose Aldo — which gave Edgar his third decision loss in a row — “The Answer” returns to the featherweight division to face dangerous grappler Charles Oliveira. Though Oliveira hasn’t competed since his knockout loss to Cub Swanson at UFC 152, his two previous fights resulted in submission victories over Jonathan Brookins and Eric Wisely. It’s a logical rebound fight for Edgar, and a huge opportunity for Oliveira.
- Cub Swanson vs. Dennis Siver: Speaking of Swanson, the Jackson’s MMA product is red-hot lately, with four straight victories in the UFC (three by KO/TKO). Fresh off his recent decision win over Dustin Poirier, Swanson will try to add to his streak against the hard-striking Dennis Siver, who is 2-0 since dropping to featherweight, with decision wins over Diego Nunes and Nam Phan.
(And to think, if Joe had done the same thing to Andy Dick, the world might have been spared the AIDS epidemic.)
Do you remember the first time you came across that video of Joe Rogan teaching Georges St. Pierre the art of the spinning back kick? If so, you probably recall watching Rogan obliterate those heavy bags and quietly pondering to yourself, “My God, how many lives Rogan has claimed with that kick in the past?” And while we can’t attest to the exact number of trophy skulls lining the walls of Rogan’s humble abode, we can now confirm that there is at least one, which has likely been converted into a bubbler in the time since.
A video of Rogan in his Taekwondo heyday has been rounding MMA blogs for the past few days now, so in order to help distract you from the realization that your favorite sport is an absolute joke, we’ve thrown it after the jump. It is approximately 20 seconds long, features one strike, and may or may not cause you to shit your pants out of empathy for the poor bastard whose intestines are utterly annihilated with little more than a swivel of Rogan’s hips.
(The best part about having palm trees tattooed across your waistline, you ask? Endless cocoNUT jokes.)
A bit of mixed news for fans of the featherweight division, as word just broke that Dennis Siver has been forced to withdraw from his UFC on FUEL 7 bout with Cub Swanson for undisclosed reasons. The good news: stepping in for Siver will be Dustin Poirier, an exciting slugger who has picked up end of the night bonuses in two out of his last three contests. Although Poirier doesn’t exactly match the ridiculous offensive output of Siver, you can bet the ranch that this fight will net another bonus for at least one of these gentlemen when all is said and done.
The problem started on Saturday after a usual day of training, Yagin’s manager, Jason House, told MMAWeekly.com on Tuesday.
“He came home after practice, had a headache, started to vomit whatever liquids he drank and then decided to go to the ER the next day,” said House, adding that nothing out of the ordinary had occurred in training. Yagin hadn’t been knocked out or suffered from any particularly hard blows or anything of the sort.