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UFC 142 Aftermath: Spoiler Alert, Brazilians Outmatch their Opponents *Again*

The People’s Champion, showing Chael Sonnen how it’s done. Props: @CopperHeartCT

With the UFC’s quick return to Rio de Janeiro, the promotion had high expectations to live up to. Their last visit saw a nearly perfect performance from one of the sport’s most dominant champions, a local favorite earning a quick finish, and (most) Brazilian fighters outmatching their foreign opponents on their ways to victory. It was going to be difficult to entertain the local fans the same way that UFC 134 did, yet the UFC’s return to Brazil netted nearly identical results.

Heading into his title defense against Chad Mendes last night, critics were starting to say that Jose Aldo was beginning to coast his way through fights. That the fight finisher fans grew to love in the WEC had been replaced by a fighter content to go through the motions en route to a decision victory. In front of his home country, Aldo made an impressive statement by finishing “Money” Mendes in the first round.

Mendes displayed improved striking, but that means little when facing the lethal limbs of Jose Aldo. To win this fight–or even stay competitive–Mendes needed to put the champion on his back, yet time and time again his best efforts were thwarted. Though Aldo blatantly grabbed the fence to prevent one takedown, a follow-up attempt from the same position seconds later barely took his feet off the ground. Had he been deducted one point- or ten- it’s hard to imagine the fight going any other way. The brilliant takedown defense and impeccable timing he showed throughout the bout were on full display in the closing seconds of round one. Aldo’s transition to the fight ending knee was nothing short of perfection, something only a dominant striker of his caliber could dream of pulling off.

There is very little that can possibly be said about the co-main event at this point. To call it “Win big or go home” for Anthony Johnson would not only be a lazy, clichéd thing to do, but it would also be misleading. “Win big” would imply some type of reward for an impressive victory for Rumble, be it a title shot, an end of the night bonus or even a title eliminator fight against another top tier middleweight. When Anthony Johnson botched his weight cut as recklessly as he did, all of those options were taken off of the table. Replacing them was the best case scenario of adding a “W” to his record that would have an asterisk next to it in the minds of both fans and his employer.

As expected, Johnson was able to use his size advantage to handle Belfort early on. Also as expected, his medical issues that caused him to miss weight were brought on by a last minute weight cut led him to quickly gas out. Once Johnson began lunging at Belfort with desperate takedown attempts, Vitor Belfort was able to quickly take Rumble’s back and sink in the choke. The Phenom won’t be getting a title shot after a victory like that, but he’s earned coveted job security with the UFC. Likewise, an Anthony Johnson themed “And Now he’s Fired” will be published soon, as Dana White all but fired him Vince McMahon style during the post-event press conference.

While there were plenty of questionable decisions made by the referees last night, none were more cringe-worthy than the way Mario Yamasaki handled Prater vs. Silva. There’s really nothing to say about the fight other than “do over”. Silva looked to be en route to an early victory, landed some shots to the back of Prater’s head, kept fighting, as Yamasaki didn’t stop the fight to deduct points, and found himself disqualified when Prater was unable to continue. Unfortunately, a rematch is the only thing that makes sense for either fighter, although the UFC is still giving Silva his win bonus for his performance.

Last time Edson Barboza fought (coincidentally, in Rio), he predictably defeated a handpicked Ross Pearson in a surprisingly close fight. This time around, Barboza thoroughly outgunned Terry Etim on the feet and kept the fight off of the mat on his way to a flawless wheel kick knockout in the third round. The impressive showing from Barboza not only earned him a step up in competition, but also earned him $130,000- $65k for Knockout of the Night and Fight of the Night with Terry Etim. The Submission of the Night honors went to Rousimar Palhares, who predictably added Mike Massenzio’s leg to his collection with a first round heel hook. Paul Harris has now won three straight fights, and should find himself back in the mix at middleweight.

And if there’s one in every crowd, the “one” from last night is Ricardo Funch. Much like Luiz Cane before him, Funch was the only Brazilian to lose to a foreign opponent in Rio de Janeiro, getting knocked out in the first round by Mike Pyle. Pyle improves to 5-3 in the UFC.

Full Results:

Main card
Jose Aldo def. Chad Mendes via first-round KO
Vitor Belfort def. Anthony Johnson via submission (rear-naked choke)
Rousimar Palhares def. Mike Massenzio via submission (heel hook)
Carlo Prater wins via disqualification vs. Erick Silva (illegal head blows)
Edson Barboza def. Terry Etim via third-round KO

Preliminary card
Thiago Tavares def. Sam Stout via unanimous decision
Gabriel Gonzaga def. Ednaldo Oliveira via submission (rear-naked choke)
Yuri Alcantara def. Michihiro Omigawa via unanimous decision
Mike Pyle def. Ricardo Funch via first-round TKO
Felipe Arantes def. Antonio Carvalho via unanimous decision


Cagepotato Comments

Showing 1-25 of comments

Sort by : Show hidden comments January 16, 2012 at 7:22 pm
GSP who?
jfjjfjff- January 16, 2012 at 4:53 pm
i realize i'm a bit late to this but surprised nobody pointed out... you don't put "spoiler alert" and then a spoiler in the same line, especially not a headline.
ArmFarmer- January 16, 2012 at 6:32 am
You guys spelled Paul Harris wrong in your article. "Palhares"? That just sounds silly...
Todd M- January 15, 2012 at 8:36 pm
^ I think it did stop the takedown but Mendes got the takedown again after Aldo was warned about grabbing the fence, and he sprang right back up like a cat. The fence grab is worth comment but I really don't think it muddies Aldo's win, the fight continued and Jose finished it from an akward position, he is a real talent that kid.
RwilsonR- January 15, 2012 at 7:51 pm
@ Flaneritz - agreed... to a point. It seemed like the writing was on the wall with that fight regardless, but it is a shame that any questions have to be there with Aldo's win because of a fence grab. I really wish it hadn't been there, and it very clearly stopped a takedown. I don't think it would have changed the eventual outcome, but it certainly dirties up the win.
It is kinda like Fedor's rope grab against Lindland. Nobody seriously thought that Lindland was gonna win that fight easily had he gotten that takedown, but it didn't stop a bunch of idiots using it to argue for two years against Fedor being legit number one HW (much better arguments to be made) or people constantly saying Lindland was the only challenge for Anderson Silva. It took Lindland being on the receiving end of several brutal KOs to finally drop the issue. Seems crazy now, but back then...
fatbellyfrank- January 15, 2012 at 6:46 pm
@Skeletor, any chance of Roast Beef, tomato and Horseradish on wholemeal?? thanks buddy
fatbellyfrank- January 15, 2012 at 6:44 pm
@ Myklehoey, so ya want to spark up the comments section, well, howz about.......I got nothing, howya goin mate, great Card yesterday, some stunning finishes, great fights, only real observation is Arrianny needs to hit the gym, upper thighs getting a bit chubby. Peace and love to my CP brothers
Flaneritz- January 15, 2012 at 6:16 pm
If you watch the Belfort fight again you will see him lock down Rumbles arms. Rumble was not able to make a ny space at all so the ref took notice and stood them up.The bogus move of the night was Aldo grabbing the fence. He should have been put on the mat for a restart at the least. If Mendez got that slam(it was obv. coming) he would not have been standing to get KO'd
rngeorgeh- January 15, 2012 at 3:13 pm
Thanks for the info. I thought it was somethin' like that but wasn't sure.
frndlylion- January 15, 2012 at 12:39 pm
I thought it looked like rumble was stalling although to be fair, I have seen people laid on top of for MUCH longer and not be stood up. If your on top you should be active and improving your position.
I agree with HandsofGold there may have been some bias. I'm not complaining though, I was rooting for Belfort.
Get Off Me- January 15, 2012 at 12:26 pm
3yrs I've been saying they need to create a standup rule.
What Dan did to Rumble was not correct when compared to what we generally see in mma, but it's nice to see people are talking about this more and more as I believe the audience had a more exciting fight by not being subjected to a 200 pounder laying on top of a 185 punder for 3 rds. I still say 60 consecutive seconds inside full guard= stand up.
Conversely if the majority of fighters had TDD like Barboza and Aldo we would not have to worry about looking at lay n pray issues.
BARBOZA, KO of the YEAR 2012 locked up in January.
skeletor- January 15, 2012 at 12:04 pm
I'm about to make some sandwiches, anybody else want one?
ccman- January 15, 2012 at 12:02 pm
@myk, minus Johnson's fat ass, there was not a single polorizkng fighter on the card, coupled with foreign cards ade always stacked favorably for the hosting country, not much to debate or get all huffy about. Hence the zero build up heading in.
JudgeHolden- January 15, 2012 at 12:01 pm
Does anyone have a transcription or video link to Dana's comments about firing Anthony Johnson during the post-fight conference? I tried to watch it last night, but lost all interest after about 20 minutes of portuguese/
myklhoey- January 15, 2012 at 11:55 am
this has to be the most pieceable respectable hippie hugging chat iv eva read on CP, im a lill scared.
@skeator, you danga luva.
@hatarade, duhh man go watch ice fishin or somethin, geek you woodnt no a kimora from a kimbo,
ok that mite get the ball rollin
SethF- January 15, 2012 at 11:53 am
We've been calling him "Paul Harris" in so many articles that its become a running gag.
ccman- January 15, 2012 at 11:49 am
@rng I assumed it was pahlares after a weird autocorrect and decided not to join the typo Nazis and look to attack typos as obvious proof of my superiority.
MediumRare- January 15, 2012 at 11:49 am
@rngeorgeh: he's the one with retard strength
rngeorgeh- January 15, 2012 at 11:44 am
Who's Paul Harris?
MrBlondeSL- January 15, 2012 at 11:40 am
I think Dan's been reading CP and he knows we want standups if they can't advance their position quickly.
ccman- January 15, 2012 at 11:39 am
@ hater I'm not sure video review would have fixed last night. I counted 3 back of the head hits, guy next to swore by 6. Though if I read the rule right it only takes 1.
Anyone have a clearer definition of the rule?
skeletor- January 15, 2012 at 11:33 am
I thought they were justified as well but just suprised as to how quickly they happened. DW probably told him to make sure that lay n pray Shit didn't happen.
I think that an immediately disqualification should have to hqppen after a video replay at least.
haterade- January 15, 2012 at 11:27 am
i would agree with that, and the fact that all the independent commissions have their own agenda is a fair point. I just believe that with the technology available, its foolish to not use it. Especially when half of these guy's paychecks are involved
ccman- January 15, 2012 at 11:20 am
@hater, I'm not sure you can put the same qualification to bones/hammill. Those were blatent 12-6 elbows.
and the honest inverse is now were counting on commissions who are notoriously corrupt and have a history or thinking themselves infallable, nevermind lazy, actually doing the right thing. Plus any fighter who appeals something like last night would be BLASTED. I prefer ref making call and commission having right to overturn.
KarmaAteMyCat- January 15, 2012 at 11:18 am
Those stand ups were a bit fast even rogan said so.