Rankings take shape in Bangor (UFC Fight Night 47 Review)

ufc_fn47The UFC fighter rankings have only been around for a few years but already they have taken over the conversation in the UFC. They represent a solid expectation of where a fighter stands in his or her division. It is a ranking to see who the top 15 fighters in each division are and when fighters look at their next opponent they can see where that fighter ranks and if they can move up with a win. When an unranked fighter gets someone in the top 10 it is a major opportunity for them to move up and achieve the ultimate goal of every fight, a title. The rankings have also provided a set of classifications for fighters as a top 15 fighter essentially refers to fighters in the 15-11 range. These fighters are no necessarily a fight away from a title shot but they are the fighters on the rise, and sometimes the decline, in the division. A top 10 fighter is a fighter that is in the 10-6 rankings and has put together a good amount of impressive wins to make them a good prospect. These top 10 fighters could be one big win away from getting a shot or may need to fire off a few more wins to get the shot. Then there are the top 5 fighters, from 5-1, who at any point could get a win that puts them into a title fight. These top 5 fighters are the fighters in the title conversation and they are where every fighter wants to be, coming into their next fight. Two fighters that were trying to do exactly that would face-off in the main event in Bangor, Maine at UFC Fight Night 47. Ryan Bader and Ovince St. Preux are both top 10 fighters with Bader sitting at #8 and St. Preux sitting at #10. They both were looking for a way to get into that top 5 in the light heavyweight division and a win could have gone a long way to doing that. A win may not have launched either fighter into the top 5 of the division but it could have given them the opportunity to face someone in the top 5 giving them a very important fight. Both fighters got to this point in different ways as Bader has taking a bit more of a winding road than St. Preux. Bader looked very promising at the beginning of his career when he won The Ultimate Fighter 8 and rattled off four straight wins to become one of the top fighters in the division. He struggled to keep it going though and began dropping to a middling fighter without getting a title shot. In his last two fights Bader has been impressive but the talent of fighters he has beaten is not what he was used to after fighting the best of the best. Now he had a chance to take on one of the more promising fighters in the division to move up in the rankings and earn a fight against a top contender to put his name back in the title conversation before he becomes a middling fighter again. His opponent had been fighting for a long time before he entered the UFC in 2013 after piling up an impressive record in Strikeforce. Since then he has risen fast in the light heavyweight division with a four fight win streak to start his UFC career. He takes on a true veteran of the promotion in Bader hoping to continue his rise and earn a spot in the title conversation. The fight put two fighters who love to work with their hands, albeit in different ways, against each other in a fight that many assumed would see a finish. There was no doubt in the fight where either fighter wanted to put the action as from the start Bader looked to take the fight to the mat. St. Preux looked to keep the fight standing. Bader obviously had the advantage on the mat as St. Preux, despite being well-balanced, could not seem to get up or turn things around too easily. Instead it was a display of wrestling and ground and pound that took control of the fight. Despite a short burst in the final round by St. Preux it was not enough to overcome the dominant performance of Bader and his wrestling ability. The win will keep Bader on the rise and if he can keep winning he will likely be in the title conversation soon. Meanwhile the loss for St. Preux is the end of his rise up the rankings as he goes back to the drawing board and looks to get back to winning soon.

Before Bader earned his win and will likely move up to tougher competition two lightweights were trying to find some traction on the outskirts of the rankings. Ross Pearson and Gray Maynard had both seen their fair share of success and yet both came into UFC Fight Night 47 sitting near the bottom or out of the rankings. Gray Maynard had been a title contender when he had a very good series against Frankie Edgar for the championship. Since then he has not been able to recapture his dominance and has fallen to the #12 ranking in the division. Meanwhile Pearson had been rising up at the start of his career but some questionable decisions have put him out of the rankings all together. Both fighters were looking to simply take the win and improve their standing in the extremely competitive lightweight division. There were plenty excited about this fight with two strikers facing off with plenty to lose making them go all out to get the win. The fight did not disappoint as both fighters went out looking to get the advantage quickly. Despite the fact that both fighters were experience on the feet Maynard began trying to take the fight to the ground where he was far more experienced than Pearson. Maynard saw the fight go to the ground multiple times but could never keep it there with Pearson getting up quickly. Pearson clearly wanted the fight on the feet and despite a few good shots he could never get a big shot landed. Finally, in the second round, Pearson broke through with his striking hurting Maynard with a big right hand. From there he attack and put Maynard down to take the win with a big TKO. It was a bad loss for Maynard who continued to struggle to get back to his former self as his career continues to decline with a chance that he drops off of the rankings after this fight. Meanwhile Pearson took the win in one of the biggest of his career. Taking out a former title contender is a big deal despite Maynard’s recent struggles and the win will likely move him into the top 15 of the division where he hopes to continue building after recently struggling. It was another finish on a night full of finishes in the main card and one that once again will have plenty of impact on the UFC rankings.

Fight Bonuses

Performance of the Night
After a round of taking the punishment from Brad Tavares home town hero Tim Boetsch made an amazing comeback to earn the knockout in the second round and in the process earn a Performance of the Night bonus

Performance of the Night
It wasn’t long before Thiago Tavares looked like he was out on his feet against Robbie Peralta but that didn’t stop him from earning the Rear Naked Choke win and a Performance of the Night bonus

Fight of the Night
It was built as a potential fight of the night candidate and it didn’t disappoint as Seth Baczynski and Alan Jouban put on a great fight despite the fact that it didn’t last too long with Jouban taking the first round KO


Fight Results

Main Event:
Ryan “Darth” Bader def. Ovince “OSP” St. Preux
(Unanimous Decision)

Main Card:
Ross “The Real Deal” Pearson def. Gray “The Bully” Maynard
(TKO; Rd. 2)

Tim “The Barbarian” Boetsch def. Brad Tavares
(KO; Rd. 2)

Alan “Brahma” Jouban def. Seth “Polish Pistola” Baczynski
(KO; Rd. 1)

Shawn “The Savage” Jordan def. Jack “The Outlaw” May
(TKO; Rd. 3)

Thiago Tavares def. Robbie “Problems” Peralta
(Submission; Rear Naked Choke, Rd. 1)

Jussier “Formiga” da Silva def. Zack “Fun Size” Makovsky
(Unanimous Decision)

Sara McMann def. Lauren Murphy
(Split Decision)

Tom “Kong” Watson def. “Smilin” Sam Alvey
(Unanimous Decision)

Frankie Saenz def. Nolan Ticman
(Unanimous Decision)


Upcoming Events
UFC Fight Night 48: Le vs. Bisping (Saturday August 23rd; 6:30 am ET)
Macau, China (CotaiArena)
Main Event: Cung Le vs. Michael “The Count” Bisping
Notable: Tyron “The Chosen One” Woodley vs. Dong “Stung Gun” Hyun Kim
Notable: Jianping Yang vs. Guangyou “Smasher” Ning [TIF China Featherweight Title]

UFC Fight Night 49: Henderson vs. do Anjos (Saturday August 23rd; 10:00 pm ET)
Tulsa, Oklahoma (BOK Center)
Main Event: “Smooth” Benson Henderson vs. Rafael dos Anjos
Notable: Mike “Quicksand” Pyle vs. Jordan “Young Gun” Mein
Notable: Thales Leites vs. Francis “Limitless” Carmont

UFC 177: Dillashaw vs. Barão II (Saturday August 30th; 10:00 pm ET)
Las Vegas, Nevada (MGM Grand Garden Arena)
Main Event: TJ Dillashaw vs. Renan “The Baron” Barão [Bantamweight Title]
Notable: Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson vs. Chris “Kamikaze” Cariaso
Notable: Bethe “Pitbull” Correia vs. Shayna “Queen of Spades” Baszler

One Response to “Rankings take shape in Bangor (UFC Fight Night 47 Review)”
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