(Above: "Remember, remember, the fourth of December, the Gunpowder Treason and plot. I know of no reason why the Gunpowder Treason should ever be forgot, brah."
Below: You know what to do, honey. / Photos courtesy of UFC.com)
Welcome, fight fans, to the first leg of a liveblog double-header on CagePotato.com. The TUF 12 Finale gets rolling on Spike at 9 p.m. ET, with Team GSP lightweight finalists Jonathan Brookins and Michael Johnson battling for the highly coveted glassware, Stephan Bonnar trying to build a winning streak against Igor Pokrajac, and Demian Maia tangling with rangy TUF 3 winner Kendall Grove. Plus, five other TUF 12 vets will do their best to hang on to their UFC contracts, including Nam Phan, who clashes with hardy slugger Leonard Garcia in the UFC’s first-ever televised 145-pound feature. (Yes, the UFC has featherweights now!)
Round-by-round results await you after the jump; refresh the page every few minutes to get all the latest. Please toss in your two cents in the comments section, and don’t forget to check in at our viewing party at PlayPhilo.com for a chance to win a UFC: Ultimate 100 Greatest Fights DVD set.
And away we go.
Nam Phan vs. Leonard Garcia
A historic moment for the UFC, formally introducing the 145′ers. And given the way these guys bang, this could be a great way to kick off the night.
Round 1: Garcia throws the hard straight right. Phan lands a few clean shots in an exchange. Garcia fires a straight and a leg kick. Garcia lands the hook. Long 1-2 from Garcia. Body kick from Phan, but Garcia gives one right back. Garcia throws jab/cross/hook, then lands a body kick. Phan comes back with a hard punch combo. Wide hooks from Garcia. Then a jab. Phan goes to the body.Garcia tries a flying knee but gets checked. Garcia tries a backfist. Leg kick and punches from Phan. Garcia fires back before Phan gets momentum together. Phan jabs. Phan jabs to the body. Garcia’s punches are as wild and off-balance as usual. Leg kick Phan, and Garcia returns. Phan with two body shots, a hook to the head and a kick. Garcia returns a kick of his own. Phan goes for the head kick, Garcia to the leg. Nice body shot from Phan.Phan lands a nice left on the jaw of Garcia. They punch to the bell. Phan’s landing cleaner, but Garcia is trying to remain the aggressor. "Caaaaalm dooooown," Greg Jackson advises Garcia.
Round 2: Garcia grinning to start the round. He’s in his element. Both guys trade jabs.Garcia with a hard body shot then a straight and a body kick. Phan pushes forward with jabs. Garcia with a leg kick. Phan lands a left. Garcia wobbles back after getting punched; he might be tiring. Phan lands an uppercut in an exhange. Garcia actually shoots, trying to get the fight to the ground. He latches onto Phan against the fence, but Phan escapes. Phan lands his left hook to the body. 1-2/body-hook from Phan, who then swarms forward with an assault of punches before dropping Garcia with a side kick. Phan pours on the abuse from the top. Then, he transitions to Garcia’s back when Bad Boy rolls, looking for the choke. Garcia rolls again, Phan stays on him, looking to control Garcia’s arms and look for the choke. Garcia throws a punch at Phan behind his head. Garcia wriggles out of the position, but Phan stays on top of him to the bell. Huge round for Phan.
Round 3: Garcia attacking with punches and kicks. He shoots and gets Phan to the mat. Phan is cut open on his forehead, and covered in blood. Phan escapes, takes a knee, and lands some strikes of his own. Garcia with a body kick and jab. Garcia shoots and Phan sprawls. Garcia is warned for the second time for shorts holding. Phan gets up and lands a big body shot. Garcia is wobbling, gassed. He throws a body kick and gets punched back. Phan with a left hook to the dome. And another. A hook and body shot from Phan. Garcia with a pair of body kicks. He starts throwing huge looping haymakers. Phan responds with a short uppercut. They clinch against the cage. Phan separates, and lands another uppercut. Then a fast body shot/hook combo. Garcia swings like a drunk man. Finally, the bell. I’d give it to Phan, but Garcia’s gotten lucky before…
Amy Fischer, the Long Island Lolita, just won some sort of Dave and Busters contest, according to Frankie Edgar. Good for her.
Garcia def. Phan via split decision: 29-28 Garcia, 30-27 Phan, 29-28 Garcia. The crowd immediately howls in disgust, then starts chanting "Bullshit!" Garcia admits he scored the fight the way they did, and offers Phan an immediate rematch. Jesus. "Asian brother can’t get no love," says Phan. "I think I beat him all three rounds," Phan says, and Rogan agrees. "I don’t think it means anything as far as the people in this room," Joe adds. The shitheaded judges just love Leonard Garcia, for some reason.
Johny Hendricks vs. Rick Story
Round 1: Story on the attack early with punches, bulling Hendricks against the cage. Story shoots for a single, Hendricks escapes and Story slugs him with hooks to the body. Some heckler actually says "Sweep the leg Johnny," then "Put him in a body bag Johnny." Hard leg kick from Story. They clinch, and Story gets in some shots to the body. Hendricks answers back with punches when they break. Story fires a savage punch combo, and Hendricks has to retreat. Leg kick Rick. Story catches a leg kick from Hendricks, but Hendricks pulls out. Hendricks scores a takedown from clinch. Story gets up at the bell, but he should have clinched it already.
Round 2: Hendricks lands a 1-2, and Story comes back jackhammer-punching. Story gets it to the mat and goes to Hendricks’s back. Hendricks escapes and sets up a guillotine, but Story gets out. Knee from Hendricks in the clinch. Story gets an arm around the neck, but Hendricks escapes. Joe Rogan goes on a rant about the horrible judging. "It’s gross…you *should* be able to leave it in the hands of the judges." He chews out the athletic commission until Story gets a takedown and he has to start calling the fight again. Hendricks back up. Story with some knees to Hendricks’s ass. Hendricks escapes and they slug out to finish the round.
Round 3: Hendricks bulls forward and gets Story to the mat. Story pulls up and snatches a guillotine. Hendricks defends and grabs onto Story’s leg. They stand. Story sets up a kimura standing, Hendricks drags the fight back to the mat. Stalemate against the fence, with Hendricks trying to control Story’s legs. Story pops up, then botches some sort of guard pull and Hendricks gets on top. But only briefly. Story gets to his feet and they’re back to hanging onto each other against the cage. Again, Hendricks gets Story down briefly. Story with elbows to the body when he regains his footing. Hendricks is content to grab on until the round ends. He’d better hope he wins this fight, because that’s the kind of finish that doesn’t guarantee future employment with the UFC.
Rick Story def. Johny Hendricks via unanimous decision (29-28 x 3). That’s five straight wins for Story, but it wasn’t the kind of fight that’ll be remembered.
After a satellite interview with GSP and Josh Koscheck is aborted due to snowed-out audio, we see the Cody McKenzie/Aaron Wilkinson fight from the prelims. McKenzie bum-rushes and takes Wilkinson down. McKenzie looking for his guillotine, but Wilkinson escapes to his feet. Wilkinson stands and McKenzie tries his guillotine again, from a flying position. Wilkinson pulls out, and McKenzie resets on the mat. McKenzie gets on top of Wilkinson and wraps his arm across English’s jaw. That’s all she wrote. McKenzie lands the McKenzitine, and didn’t even need to get his arm under Aaron’s chin. What did you expect? McKenzie def. Wilkinson via submission (guillotine-ish choke) 2:03 of round 1. Joe Rogan raves about how ridiculous it is for McKenzie to keep tapping guys with that move. "Thanks Joe," McKenzie deadpans. He’ll show you how he does it, but you’ll have to pay him. Now that he’s back to his single-minded gameplan, let’s see how far this crazy kid can get.
Demian Maia vs. Kendall Grove
Grove vows to "put my fist in his face, and do work, son." Grove has six inches in height, and seven inches in reach.
Round 1: It starts out as a boxing match. Maia flies in with an overhand left. Maia throws the straight, and Kendall dashes forward with a set of punches. And again. Maia shoots for a leg and gets Grove to the mat. Grove escapes to his feet, and Maia latches onto his back. Maia with knees to Grove’s leg. Grove gets out of choke-danger, but Maia puts Grove on his back again. Maia in half-guard. Maia transitions to mount, then starts throwing punches when Grove flips to his side. Grove explodes off his back and nearly escapes, but Maia scrambles back to half guard. Maia with punches from the top. Grove somersaults to escape the pressure, and Maia goes to Grove’s back. Grove flips to his back and Maia finishes the round in half-guard. Easy 10-9 for Maia.
Round 2: Grove sneaks in a jab. Maia throws a left. Maia shoots for a leg and almost gets soccer kicked in the face. Grove lands a right that drops Maia, but Maia bounces back up. Grove lands an uppercut. Maia lands a takedown and goes into half-guard, slugging Grove in the ribs from the top. Maia gets in some shots to Grove’s head. Grove sweeps, briefly threatens a leg lock, then gets to his feet. Maia clamps onto his leg and scores yet another takedown. Maia trying to pass guard, but Grove defends. Grove kicks Maia off, and upkicks. Maia is undeterred, diving back in and taking Grove’s back. Maia looking for the choke. Grove stays out of danger, so Maia switches to punches to Grove’s head as the round ends.
Round 3: Maia lands a counter right. Grove with two long rights that land. Maia with a short hook. Maia jacks Grove with a left straight. Grove returns a hook. Maia shoots, Grove dodges. Maia with a right hook. Maia pushing forward with more punches and a leg kick. Maia shoots for a leg and they clinch against the fence. Grove tries a jumping knee. Maia is glued onto Grove. Grove sprawling out to avoid being taken down again. Grove throws a few punches down at Maia as the fight ends. Should be an easy decision for the Brazilian.
Demian Maia def. Kendall Grove via unanimous decision (29-28 x 3). No time for an interview, we’re kicking back to GSP and Kos. GSP is training to face an army of men, so one guy will not defeat him. And fighting a wrestler is his speciality. "Georges, I got news for you, I’m not just a wrestler anymore, I’m a well-rounded fighter." GSP says when he beats Koscheck again, that’ll be the end of it — he won’t fight Koscheck again, and it’ll be onto the next chapter of his career. On Montreal, Josh says "Enemy territory? They love me up there. They love me everywhere…everbody loves Kos."
Stephan Bonnar vs. Igor Pokrajac
Round 1: Bonnar comes out all herky-jerky and gets punched in the face a few times. But he gets Pokrajac to the mat and takes his back. His position isn’t secure, and Pokrajac shakes him off and stands. Pokrajac lands an elbow on the way out. Hard punches from Pokrajac. Bonnar clinches, grabs a guillotine, and falls to the mat with it. It looks close, but Pokrajac spins out and escapes. Bonnar eats an upkick while trying to get back on top of Pokrajac. Bonnar scrambles to side control. Bonnar with elbows to Pokrajac’s ribs. Pokrajac rolls to his knees. Bonnar on his back, kneeing to the body and punching to the head. Bonnar lets Pokrajac up and fires a head kick as the round ends.
Round 2: Pokrajac charges forward with punches but gets countered. Pokrajac stays on the attacks, landing a punch combo before Bonnar clinches up with him. Pokrajac gets in a knee, and Bonnar responds with about five of his own.Bonnar flips Pokrajac to the mat and lands in side control. Bonnar with some punches to Pokrajac’s head. Pokrajac is warned for kneeing Bonnar in the head on the ground. Pokrajac rolls and Bonnar tries to take Pkrajac’s back, but loses it. Pokrajac escapes and tries some punches, but Bonnar clinches up again and goes back to the knees. Pokrajac gets in a knee. They trade elbows. They slug it out on the separation, with Bonnar getting tagged hard and backpedaling. Back to clinching on the fence. Elbow and punches from Bonnar. There’s the horn. Close, gritty fight.
Round 3: Pokrajac has been docked a point for his illegal knees on the ground in the second round, which elicits another annoyed rant from Rogan. Bonnar takes Pokrajac down and starts pouring down abuse. Bonnar working for full mount, but the cage is getting in the way. Bonnar landing some brutal shots to Pokrajac’s body from the top. Bonnar skips to side control. Pokrajac rolls to his knees. Bonnar tries to get the back, and Pokrajac busts out and almost snatches an arm. Bonnar goes back on top and throws down some elbows. Bonnar gets in side control and starts slugging Pokrajac. With seconds to go in the round, Mazzagatti stops the fight and docks Bonnar a point for shots to the back of the head. The clock runs out while he’s separating them, and that’s pretty much the end of the fight.
Bonnar def. Pokrajac via unanimous decision (29-26 x 3). Bonnar does his weird fist-holding pose, but there’s no time for an interview…
Jonathan Brookins vs. Michael Johnson
Round 1: Johnson starts with a jab, then lands a couple more punches in a combo. Johnson with a hard overhand left. Brookins shoots and gets defended. He shoots again for a single and pushes Johnson against the fence. Johnson spins out and escapes. Nice 1-2 from Johnson. He lands the left again. Johnson lands a nasty left and Brookins drops to his knees. Johnson swarms with punches, but Brookins gets up. Johnson lands another big shot, rocking Brookins backwards, then some hard knees and punches in the clinch. Johnson takes Brookins to the mat. Brookins gets up and gets bombed out on once again. They clinch. Johnson with some knees to Brookins’s legs. Leg kick Johnson. Brookins tries to catch it, but loses his grip on Johnson. Brookins lands a left. Johnson shoots in, Brookins stops it and clinches. Knee from Brookins. Johnson with a 1-2. The round ends. It was getting damn close to a 10-8 for a while there…
Round 2: Johnson with a straight. Brookins clinches and trips Johnson to the mat in a scramble, then lays on some hard blows from the top. Brookins in half-guard. Elbow from Brookins. And a couple more. Brookins gets some space and lands some punches. Brookins attacks with more elbows to the temple from half guard. And even more elbows from Brookins. Punches from Brookins as Johnson tries to kick him off. Johnson works his way to his feet, but Brookins is clamped onto his leg. Johnson throws some elbows of his own into Brookins’s face. Brookins slams Johnson to the mat and goes back to elbowing. Brookins looks for a kimura, but time’s going to run out. Brookins evens the score in round 2.
Round 3: Johnson lands a pair of punches before Brookins comes in to grab his leg again. He muscles Johnson down to the mat. Johnson is using the fence to support himself as Brookins tries to flatten him out. Johnson tries an elbow to Brookins’s head. Brookins gets mount, with Johnson pressed into the fence. Johnson reverses it and stands, attacking with punches. Brookins slugs back, grabs on, and barely pulls off his patented lateral drop. Brookins in side control. He returns to the elbows. Brookins with a punch. Johnson responds with an elbow off his back. Johnson tries to kick him off, but Brookins stays on and pounds him a couple more times to the end of the fight.
Johnathan Brookins def. Michael Johnson via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-27). Brookins is the winner of TUF 12, and gets his weird-ass trophy. "Typical Michael Johnson, beating up on people," Brookins says of his shaky first round. But he couldn’t get his ass kicked with his family watching in the front row. He knows he has a lot of improvement to do, and asks the fans to stay with him in his journey and watch him improve. He thanks about 20 people in 8 seconds and it’s time for the douchebags at home to watch MANSWERS!!! Anyway, five decisions on the main card (boooo), but it had its moments. Your thoughts?