With the UFC churning out events at a rapid pace, the opportunities to sit back and reflect on an individual fight card or performance are very limited. That brings us here, to the introduction of MMAjunkie’s “Three Stars.”

The concept is relatively simple. An independent, unbiased viewer – that’s me! – selects the three top performers from an event. The first star goes to my most impressive performer from the event, the second star to the second, and so forth. The three stars are judged on their effectiveness and overall impact, whether it comes in winning or losing fashion.

Still following? Good, because here are the “three stars” from this past Saturday’s “UFC 168: Weidman vs. Silva II” pay-per-view event.

Third Star – Chris Weidman

chris-weidman-ufc-168As much as UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman (11-0 MMA, 7-0 UFC) will insist he trained the kick-checking technique that led to Anderson Silva’s (33-6 MMA, 16-2 UFC) gruesomely broken leg (watch Weidman vs. Silva highlights), there are always going to be questions surrounding the nature of how the fight ended.

Weidman has taken the unique situation in stride. And while there’s no doubt he did train to avoid taking damage from Silva’s kicks, not even the champion could have predicted one of the great muay Thai strikers in MMA history would snap his leg on a kick he’s thrown countless times.

Nevertheless, Weidman appeared sharp up until the freak accident, and he very well could have been on his way to another form of stoppage had the title fight continued.

While fans will always wonder what would have happened had the brutal injury not occurred, the fact remains Weidman holds two wins over Silva in less than a year. No one can ever take that from him.

Second Star – Travis Browne

travis-browne-ufc-168Prior to UFC 168, Travis Browne (16-1-1 MMA, 7-1-1 UFC) wasn’t viewed as much more a next opponent in Josh Barnett’s (33-7 MMA, 5-2 UFC) quest toward regaining the UFC heavyweight championship.

Someone forgot to tell the Hawaiian that, though. Browne knocked Barnett out cold with the help of some devastating elbow strikes just 60 seconds into the main-card bout.

Browne arguably has been one of the UFC’s more underrated heavyweights, but with just one loss in nine UFC appearances, “Hapa” has earned some much-deserved respect.

Browne represents a new generation of the weight class, and proved why on Saturday night by becoming the first fighter since 2001 to stop “The Warmaster” with strikes. It was a near flawless performance from the 31-year-old, who has now won three straight fights by first-round knockout.

Moreover, it won’t take long for Browne to reap the benefits of his efforts. In his next bout, targeted for early 2014, he fights Fabricio Werdum for a chance to challenge divisional kingpin Cain Velasquez for the title.

First Star – Ronda Rousey

ronda-rousey-miesha-tate-ufc-168UFC 168’s main event and Silva’s broken leg grabbed most of the headlines, but the co-main event proved a show-stealer and is receiving appropriate praise for the spectacular fight it was.

UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey (8-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) may have expected to submit Miesha Tate (14-5 MMA, 0-2 UFC) for a second time, but few envisioned the challenger giving her trouble and dragging “Rowdy” into the third round (watch Rousey vs. Tate highlights).

Even though Tate was clearly overmatched and ended up being tossed around the cage like a ragdoll for much of the fight, “Cupcake” did her best to win from start to finish.

Rousey displayed some added elements to her game in terms of striking and grappling, which, despite the armbar finish, helped prove to her naysayers that the Olympian is more than a one-trick pony.

As an extra feather in her cap, Rousey continued to make women’s MMA history by becoming the first female fight to receive two fight-night bonuses worth an extra $150,000.

Whether it’s her in-cage performance, shunning of Tate post-fight, carefree attitude about fan reaction, or the fact it was announced she’ll compete again within two months, it’s difficult to talk about UFC 168 without Rousey being a big part of the discussion.

For complete coverage of UFC 168, stay tuned to the UFC Events section of the site.

view original article >>

Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Video: Watch riveting welterweight debut for UFC Fight Night 79's Benson Henderson

  • 8 days ago

Ahead of UFC Fight Night 79 and his headliner against Jorge Masvidal on Nov. 28, check out Benson Henderson’s welterweight debut against Brandon Thatch earlier this year at UFC Fight Night 60. Filed read news >>

Josh Koscheck Headlines Bellator 148 Against Matt Secor

  • 8 days ago

The highly anticipated Bellator MMA debut of Josh Koscheck (17-10) will take place in his home town of Fresno, Calif. on January 29 at Bellator 148: Koscheck vs. Secor. read news >>

UFC 193 preview: A closer look at Ronda Rousey's career statistics

  • 14 days ago

Ronda Rousey’s pro debut came less than five years ago, but the 28-year-old has already taken the sport by storm – both in and out of the octagon.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC, Videos read news >>

Video: 'UFC 193 Embedded: Ronda Rousey vs. Holly Holm' full episode

  • 16 days ago

Did you miss the debut of “UFC Embedded: Rousey vs. Holm,” or just want to watch it again? Check out the full episode inside. Filed under: News, UFC, Videos read news >>

UFC Fight Night 77's Jimmie Rivera is a teacher first, fighter second

  • 18 days ago

Jimmie Rivera is on a 16-fight winning streak and made his UFC debut with a sub-90 second knockout win att UFC Fight Night 72. You might expect that fighting is his overwhelming passion with that lev read news >>

Episode No. 7 recap: 'The Ultimate Fighter 22: Team McGregor vs. Team Faber'

  • 20 days ago

Check out a recap of episode No. 7 of “The Ultimate Fighter 22,” the latest installment of the UFC’s long-running reality series, this time featuring coaches Conor McGregor and Urijah Faber.Filed und read news >>

All-American Logan Storley Has Eyes on RFA Championship, but Not Rushing Things

  • 22 days ago

NCAA All-American wrestler Logan Storley made his MMA debut in August, but already has some lofty goals, including an RFA title run. read news >>

Oscar De La Hoya says he's discussed a Ronda Rousey boxing debut

  • 24 days ago

Boxing magazine “The Ring” recently released their January cover featuring Ronda Rousey and asking if she could conquer boxing as she has done with MMA. Oscar De La Hoya would like to be a part of th read news >>

Video: Part 1 of 'Road To Bellator 145: With A Vengeance,' featuring 'Pitbull,' Straus

  • 25 days ago

Did you miss the debut of Part 1 of “Road To Bellator 145: With A Vengeance,” or just want to watch it again? Check out the full first episode. Filed under: Bellator, News, Videos read news >>

TUF LATAM 2 - Episode 10 Recap

  • 27 days ago

It was teammate versus teammate on the latest installment of The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America, as Team Escudero got put directly in the crosshairs with the semifinal round matchup between Horacio read news >>