The end of two Legendary Careers

UFC 137 saw three fights be made for their main event after Nick Diaz flaked on two press conferences without telling anyone and Georges St. Pierre suffered an injury during training. After the smoke cleared the main event would feature Nick Diaz who received his main event after all and BJ Penn who was looking to make one more run at the championship. The respect was there before the fight as Diaz had said he looked up to Penn before he became a fighter. During the weigh-in the fighters seemed to lose that respect after Diaz bumped heads with Penn and both fighters were separated. This is the environment that both fighters went into with Diaz looking to prove he belongs in the UFC and Penn looking to make a run at the title one last time. The fight started with both fighters coming out swinging as Penn landed the majority of the first exchange. Then Diaz put Penn against the cage and tried dirty boxing him but The Prodigy was able to escape. Penn then scored a takedown and stayed on the top position. While in the guard Diaz was able to land punches from the bottom position but did not do much. The fighters stood up again with Diaz putting Penn against the fence briefly but BJ escaped again. The round ended with Penn seemingly taking the round thanks to his takedown and his strikes. The second round started out much the same as both fighters came out and exchanged punches. Diaz began to taunt trying to get Penn to take a wild swing out of anger but Penn refused to fall into the trap. Diaz taunted but he also began working his way back into the fight as he started to turn the fight around. After a failed Penn takedown Diaz was able to land some big knees and began unloading on The Prodigy. Diaz backed Penn to the fence and began swinging wildly landed a lot of his punches. At the end of the round Penn was in trouble as Diaz caught him with a big left hand that seemed to put Penn very close to a KO. Penn barely survived the round as Diaz took the round on the scorecards with his damage he inflicted on Penn. The third round saw a continuation of round 2 with Penn looking for the takedown and looking to get some punches off. Diaz did not let Penn get back into the fight and landed a number of very good punches. Penn walked around in round three almost completely out of it as Diaz took the round again. The fight finished with Diaz taking the unanimous win after he was able to hurt Penn in the last two rounds. The interviews after the fight ended up getting most of the focus with two shocking sound bites from both fighters. Nick Diaz is known as a bad boy in the MMA world and he was at it again after the fight when he called out Georges St. Pierre and claimed that he thought that GSP was faking an injury because he was scared, although he was not supposed to fight Diaz since they changed the fight. As a result of this comment Georges St. Pierre was apparently furious, which is unusual for the stoic champion, and because of this Carlos Condit stepped down from his title shot to allow GSP and Diaz to fight for the title in February. After Diaz called out GSP the microphone went to Penn who surprised everyone by announcing his retirement. Penn claimed that he wanted to do better than that performance and that he didn’t want to come home looking like he did with his two children at home. Penn was a legend in the UFC and having his career end the way it did was not the most fitting but we will no longer see The Prodigy fighting in the UFC as he will now most likely move back to Hawaii and train new fighters with his many years of experience.

Penn was not the only legend to fight at UFC 137 as former K-1 and Pride Champion Mirko Cro Cop took on Roy “Big Country” Nelson. Cro Cop had announced that this fight would be his last in the UFC as he would leave the fight game and return to his job as a member of parliament in the Czech Republic. Meanwhile Nelson is not getting any younger with his own list of accomplishments before he came into the UFC through TUF. The fight opened up with both men making sure they made no mistakes as they tested out the striking game. With the feeling out process done Nelson took down Cro Cop and began to ground and pound him. They stood up and began exchanging again with Cro Cop landing a big uppercut that sent the crowd in an uproar. The second round started with Nelson rocking Cro Cop but Mirko recovering to unload on Nelson as he threw everything at Nelson trying to end the fight. Nelson did not let it phase him too much though as he recovered and even avoided a signature head kick by Cro Cop. The third round Nelson came back to give the damage back to Cro Cop. Nelson landed a strong right hand that staggered Cro Cop and Nelson finished it from there landed a number of big strikes then forcing Cro Cop to the ground where Nelson finished the fight with ground and pound. After the fight Nelson tried to make his own future saying “I’m getting too old for this sh#%” essentially saying that he wants a title shot before he gets too old to fight. Nelson is in the conversation but the lack of title fights in the UFC has caused a bit of a back log that may force Nelson to wait. Meanwhile Cro Cop will no longer fight in the UFC after announcing his retirement before the fight. Cro Cop never matched his success in Pride with his stint in the UFC ending with a 4-6 record. His influence is always there though with kick boxers everywhere moving into the UFC thanks in large part because of Cro Cop’s success in the world of MMA.

The bonuses for UFC 137 totaled $75,000 to each fighter that impressed in their fights and the way they finished the fights. The “Submission of the Night” went to the only submission on the night by Donald Cerrone for his rear naked choke win over Dennis Siver in the live prelims. The “Knockout of the Night” went to Bart Palaszewski for his first round KO of Tyson Griffin. Finally the “Fight of the Night” went to the main event as Nick Diaz and BJ Penn slugged it out all three rounds earning Penn a bonus paycheck in his last fight in the UFC.

 

Full Results:

Nick Diaz def. “The Prodigy” BJ Penn

(Unanimous Decision)

 

Cheick Kongo def. Matt Mitrione

(Unanimous Decision)

 

Roy “Big Country” Nelson def. Mirko Cro Cop

(TKO; Rd. 3)

 

Scott “Young Guns” Jorgensen def. Jeff “Big Frog” Curran

(Unanimous Decision)

 

Hatsu Hioki def. George Roop

(Split Decision)

 

Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone def. Dennis Siver

(Submission; Rear Naked Choke, Rd. 1)

 

Bart “Bartimus” Palaszewski def. Tyson Griffin

(KO; Rd. 1)

 

Brandon “The Truth” Vera def. Eliot “The Fire” Marshall

(Unanimous Decision)

 

Ramsey Nijem def. “Danny Boy” Danny Downes

(Unanimous Decision)

 

Francis “Limitless” Carmont def. Chris Camozzi

(Unanimous Decision)

 

Clifford Starks def. Dustin Jacoby

(Unanimous Decision)

 

Upcoming Events:

 

UFC 138: Leben vs. Munoz (November 5th; 8:00 pm)

– Free on Sportsnet/Spike TV

– Birmingham, England (LG Arena)

– Main Event: Chris “The Crippler” Leben vs. Mark “The Filipino Wrecking Machine” Munoz

– Notable: Brad “One Punch” Pickett vs. Renan Barao

 

UFC on FOX: Velasquez vs. Dos Santos (November 12th; 9:00 pm)

– Free Live on Sportsnet/FOX Sports

– Anaheim, California (Honda Center)

– Main Event: Cain Velasquez vs. Junior “Cigano” Dos Santos [Heavyweight Title]

– Notable: Clay “The Carpenter” Guida vs. Ben “Smooth” Henderson

 

UFC 139:  Shogun vs. Henderson (November 19th; 9:00 pm)

– San Jose, California (HP Pavilion)

– Main Event: Mauricio “Shogun” Rua vs. Dan “Hendo” Henderson

– Notable: Wanderlei “The Axe Murderer” Silva vs. Cung Lee

– Notable: “The California Kid” Urijah Faber vs. Brian Bowles

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