The UFC has been putting on more fights than ever in 2014. While the uptick in events has had its drawbacks, MMA fans have been treated to a bunch of great fights.
Following UFC Fight Night 43 and UFC Fight Night 44 on Saturday, the 2014 MMA schedule is half-completed. Before we look forward to a strong finish to the calendar, now is a good time to look back at some of the brightest moments from the past six months.
Yeah, there have been some duds. However, most fights have delivered and kept us more
Tim B. puts on his matchmaking hat and takes a look at who the main card fighters from both weekend events should meet in their next bouts.
These double-event weekends are a killer. I didn't even have to do any event coverage and I still feel exhausted from so many fights. While the New Zealand event had some good action, the San Antonio show felt like it took three days and even a fun main event couldn't save it. Nonetheless, the results of both shows did open up some good matchmaking opportuni more
Kelvin Gastelum, the former TUF champion who's been steadily improving and proving doubters wrong since he hit the FX airwaves in 2013, returned to action on Saturday night in San Antonio.
After a lazily contested first round—that came after he missed weight, no less—Gastelum got hot in the final 10 minutes and pulled away from Nico Musoke for a decision win. It was a strong finish for the youngster, but one that left him in limbo between the Top 10 and the rest of the division.
With both that a more
Well, Jeremy Stephens didn't beat Cub Swanson at UFC Fight Night 44, but he sure kept things interesting until the very end. The hard-swinging featherweight couldn't quite snag Swanson but still managed to wound him a couple times.
Still, while Stephens was a mid-tier lightweight for most of his career, he remains one of the best fighters at 145 pounds. That offers him plenty of options and plenty of opportunities for high-profile, exciting fights.
Which fighters in particular make the most sens more
On paper, Cub Swanson's technical brilliance was supposed to carry him to victory over the tavern parking lot champion, Jeremy Stephens. While it was a nail-biter to the very end, Swanson showed that he is undeniably and unmistakably the best striker in the featherweight division.
Now, of course, the question becomes what's next for him?
The Jackson-Winkeljohn product has long been trapped in an awkward spot in the division, with losses to Ricardo Lamas, Chad Mendes and Jose Aldo. Wins are wins, more
At UFC Fight Night 43, Jared Rosholt faced off against Soa Palelei in a heavyweight fight in the co-main event. After three rounds, Rosholt was declared the winner by unanimous decision—30-27 on all scorecards.
Rosholt has now won seven in a row, including three in a row in the UFC. His overall record for his career is 11-1, with the lone loss coming from Derrick Lewis, who was successful in his recent UFC debut.
Palelei had been ranked No. 14 going into this fight, and a win over a ranked oppon more
In the main event of UFC Fight Night 43, former Strikeforce welterweight champion Nate Marquardt squared off against James Te-Huna in the latter's home country of New Zealand.
In the first round, Marquardt had the back of Te-Huna, and from there he rolled forward and sunk in an armbar, forcing Te-Huna to submit.
Te-Huna has now lost three in a row, all in the first round. It's unlikely that he'll be cut, considering he is one of only a few UFC fighters from Australia or New Zealand, but he is go more
Nate Marquardt might not be a title contender again, but you know what? A win has to feel good for him after two years of futility. More importantly, at least for now, his job is safe.
After a 1-3 run at 170 pounds, Marquardt beat James Te-Huna in his return to middleweight. It was a surprisingly lopsided win for the former King of Pancrase (oh, and Strikeforce welterweight champ, I suppose), where he showcased the explosive grappling and solid striking that once made him a top-10 middleweight.
The co-main event of UFC Fight Night 43 in New Zealand saw a pair of the big boys collide, as Oceania's own Soa Palelei took on Jared Rosholt. It was a battle that was expected to be a grueling match, and it lived up to the expectations.
The bout was a grinding affair. Rosholt was able to use superior wrestling and sneaky striking to completely outhustle Palelei to a clear unanimous decision. Some fans may not have been the most pleased with the bout, but it was a great tactical win for the Amer more