UFC 128: The Aftermath

Posted: March 22, 2011 in Marketing, PR, Strikeforce, UFC

I really need to stop  making predictions… or start predicting the opposite of what I want  as I seem to always come up short.  Jon “Bones” Jones shocked me (apparently not the world) by defeating Mauricio “Shogun” Rua in a dominating fashion to become the youngest light heavyweight champion in UFC history.  This is no small feat and certainly something that should be applauded.  I honestly thought the aggression of Shogun and experience would tear through Jones and set him up for a journey back to the top similar to GSP when he first lost to Matt Hughes at UFC 50 “The War of ’04”.  Instead, Jones came in and made a clear statement that he was ready for the grand stage after only a few short years of training and a few weeks of training for Shogun specifically

Given I’m a few days behind in my writing, I’ll keep this Aftermath post a bit shorter than usual and hit you with the big take-aways I had from this PPV

  • Let’s put an end to the “Insert Name here Era” Statements. We welcomed “The Machida Era” and then watched it close to the “Shogun Era.”  Let’s not pronounce the Jones era.  Not yet anyway.  If we look at the LHW division, we haven’t had a dominant and defending champion since Chuck Liddell. That was an era.
  • Strikeforce is indeed part of the UFC Family.  If you watched carefully then you saw that Dana White lived up to his word and has begun cross promotion.  Diaz vs. Daley was displayed as part of the upcoming line up of events Zuffa was pushing during the PPV.  Let’s be clear: White doesn’t care much for Diaz or Daley and they still were given a full push.  Anyone that had concerns of whether Zuffa would live up to its marketing promise can now breath.
  • Let’s end the “Super-fight” mentality and appreciate the sport for what it is. Before this fight all we heard was talk of a super-fight of GSP and Anderson Silva.  As soon the world saw Jones rise to champion, the cries for Silva vs. Jones erupted.  Stop. Please stop.  As uttered above, Jones still needs to defend his title before he can even be considered taking on any fighters from outside his division.  MMA is a sport where anyone can be defeated on a given night.  As such, we should appreciate the skills and talents within divisions and not look for circus style fights that will only dilute the sport and weaken the fan base by bringing in people who don’t understand martial arts.  I for one, don’t need a resurgence of the “human cock-fighting” crowd.
  • Dana White finally broke the “We won’t fight” stance. For years White has had his hands full with top fights he couldn’t bill because fighters would not break camp and step into the cage against each other.  AKA has been the biggest voice in this battle with Jackson’s camp right behind it.   Coach Jackson has noted multiple times in interviews if his fighters were pitted against each other he would not corner either.  I actually have an appreciate for all sides in this debate.  In camp you are training partners and friends, helping each other strengthen skills.  However, to White’s point – when the cage door closes it is not a team sport. It is very much a 1:1 game.  Leading up to Saturday night’s title fight, Jon Jones made it very clear if Rashad Evans was the top contender, he’d still fight him.  When Evans stepped into the cage post fight to accept, it was a done deal.  Evans has since left the Jackson camp and has already begun his trash talking war….but we’ll save that for another post.

What was your big take-away from this weekend’s PPV?

  1. Ryan says:

    The event was a real eye-opener as far as how far Jones’ fight IQ has progressed in such a short time. Who fights crime and dismantles dangerous men with ease? Used to be just Batman but now it’s also Jon “Bones” Jones.

    As for Jones vs. Evans – Rashad is still the crybaby he always was and I hope that he gets embarrassed by Jones even worse than Machida embarrassed him. The only one I feel badly for is Greg Jackson who seems sincere in being emotionally torn in this scenario.

  2. […] is considered by many to be one of the pound for pound “greats” and, someone who won his title from “Shogun” Rua on short notice due to Rashad Evan’s knee injury.  When a similar opportunity arrived, it would […]

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