Pride Returns (UFC on Fuel TV 8 Review)

ufc_on_fuel_tv_8The UFC would head to Japan for the first time in 2013 and the second time in as many years with one main purpose. They would return to Japan to bring back the glory of Japanese MMA when it was at it’ height. The UFC would bring back the Pride Fighting Championship to Japan by bringing back some of the brightest Pride stars. Fighters who made their living fighting in Japan and quickly became adopted sons of the Japanese MMA fans. It was a call back to the history of the UFC and of MMA as Pride would be the fighting league that everyone wanted to be a part of. It was a massive promotion that dwarfed the beginnings of the UFC and it had a large part in the growth of MMA. The Zuffa, owners of the UFC, would purchase Pride in 2007 and would close its doors while bringing the top fighters from Pride into the UFC. The UFC would always be thankful for Pride and what it did for the sport but the UFC would bring the sport that much further and at UFC on Fuel TV 8 would look back to the origins of MMA. They would bring these great Pride fighters back to the country where they made their names. That included one of the biggest names in Pride and in MMA as Wanderlei Silva would return to Japan for the first time since 2006. He was a favorite of the Japanese fans who loved his relentless style and his ability to put on some of the most exciting fights in MMA. Silva is a pure striker who has almost no form when he strikes but that becomes his advantage. Silva comes forward constantly and swings wildly hitting opponents in awkward spots and putting them in trouble quickly. He loves to stand and trade as his pressure puts people in trouble but who had a different sometimes it can put him in trouble as well. Strikers can have success against him as he leaves himself open to the KO in an attempt to put on an exciting fight. This is what his aim was at UFC on Fuel TV 8 as Silva looked to make an exciting return to Japan. His opponent would be Brian Stann who had a slightly different motivation. Stann would come to Japan looking to get back on the winning track and to put a legend on his record. Stann is looking for another title run and one of the best ways to move up the ladder is to beat a legend in an exciting way. That is what Stann was attempting to do against Silva as Stann would go into a hostile environment looking for a finish against a very motivated fighter. The fight would forgo the usual feeling out period as both fighters wanted the same thing. They both came out looking for a quick knockout but neither would back down. The first round would see both fighters get the advantage on the feet with multiple exchanges. Both fighters went all out in the first round as it ended with arguments for either to win that round. Then again it did not seem like the rounds would matter as a knockout was on its way if both fighters continued to fight the same way as the first round. The second round began much the same way except that Silva seemed to be more controlled than the first round. Silva would look to pick his shots instead of swinging wildly like he is known for. The strategy would pay off though as Silva would connect with a big combination that dropped Stann and forced the referee to end the fight. Stann would take the loss and his time at light heavyweight may be finished as he is expected to move to middleweight and attempt a run at the title in the new weight class. Silva took the win and did it in an exciting manner in front of what essentially was a hometown crowd. He will not make a run at the title as he may not return to the octagon or may only have one or two fights left before he retires from the sport.

The Pride fighters were not limited to the main event though as there were a few other former Pride fighters on the card other than Silva. One of these was Mark Hunt who, much like Silva, would return to Japan for the first time since Pride ended. Hunt did not have the legend that followed Silva to the land of the rising sun but he did bring his heavy hands. Hunt had earned his fair share of wins and KOs outside of the UFC and since entering the UFC he has continued that trend. Hunt came back to Japan with a three fight win streak including two KOs and now he would take on a top 10 fighter in the heavyweight division. It was his chance to return to Japan and realize the success that he had when he was a member of Pride. His opponent would be Stefan Struve who was ranked #8 in the heavyweight division and was looking to climb up the rankings to get his title shot. For Hunt this was an opportunity to make his way into the top ten in the heavyweight division as he looks to begin his own title run. The fight would see the much taller Struve use his ground game to get the advantage in the fight but the fight would not stay on the ground. One the feet Struve would not use his range to his advantage coming inside against a very powerful fighter. That would be a big mistake for Struve as Hunt would work in and continue landing massive shots that hurt Struve. Struve would be hit with one too many of these strikes as he would eat a big left hook that sent him down and broke his jaw ending the fight. Hunt would take the win beating a top ten fighter as he moves into the top ten in the heavyweight division while Struve takes the loss and drops out of the top ten but will look to learn from the loss. The night was a successful night for the former Pride fighters with two great wins for two very good Pride fighters acting as the highlights to an otherwise boring night.

 

Fight Bonuses
(Each Bonus worth $50,000)

Knockout of the Night
With no submissions on the night the UFC decided that there was a need for two KO of the Night bonuses the first going to main eventer Wanderlei Silva for his KO of Brian Stann and the second going to Mark Hunt for his KO of Stefan Struve

Fight of the Night
The fights were not overly impressive on the night but one did stand out above all as the main event between Wanderlei Silva and Brian Stann took home the Fight of the Night award for their two round war

 

Fight Results

Main Event:
Wanderlei “The Axe Murderer” Silva def. “All-American” Brian Stann
(KO; Rd. 2)

 

Main Card:
Mark “Super Samoan” Hunt def. Stefan “The Skyscraper” Struve
(KO; Rd. 3)

Diego “The Dream” Sanchez def. “The Fireball Kid” Takanori Gomi
(Split Decision)

Yushin “Thunder” Okami def. Hector “Lightning” Lombard
(Split Decision)

Rani Yahya def. Mizuto “Pugnus” Hirota
(Unanimous Decision)

Dong Hyun “Stun Gun” Kim def. Siyar “The Great” Bahadurzada
(Unanimous Decision)

 

Undercard:
Brad Tavares def. Riki Fukuda
(Unanimous Decision)

Takeya Mizugaki def. Bryan “Kid Lightning” Caraway
(Split Decision)

Kazuki Tokudome def. Cristiano Marcello
(Unanimous Decision)

Alex “Bruce Leeroy” Caceres def. Kyung Ho “Typhoon” Kang
(Split Decision)

Hyun Gyu “The Ace” Lim def. Marcelo “Magrao” Guimaraes
(KO; Rd. 2)

 

Upcoming Events
 

UFC 158: St. Pierre vs. Diaz (Saturday March 16th; 10:00 pm EST)
– Montreal, Quebec (Bell Centre)
Main Event: Georges “Rush” St. Pierre vs. Nick Diaz
Notable: Carlos “The Natural Born Killer” Condit vs. Johny “Bigg Rigg” Hendricks
Notable: Jake “The Juggernaut” Ellenberger vs. Nate “The Great” Marquardt

UFC on Fuel TV 9: Gustafsson vs. Mousasi (Saturday April 6th; 12:00 pm EST)
– Stockholm, Sweden (Ericsson Globe Arena)
Main Event: Alexander “The Mauler” Gustafsson vs. Gegard Mousasi
Notable: Akira Corassani vs. Robbie “Problems” Peralta
Notable: Chris “The Kiss” Sprang vs. Adlan “Borz” Amagov

TUF 17 Finale: Johnson vs. Moraga (Saturday April 13th; 9:00 pm EST)
– Las Vegas, Nevada (Mandalay Bay Events Center)
Main Event: Urijah “The California Kid” Faber vs. Scott “Young Guns” Jorgensen
Notable: TUF 17 Final (Fighters TBD)
Notable: Miesha “Cupcake” Tate vs. Cat Zingano

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

  • Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 163 other followers

%d bloggers like this: