Great Fighters emerge in Kansas City
Could it be that the UFC is finally hitting their stride under the new owners, after months of uncertainty and questionable calls?
Ever since the UFC was purchased by WME-IMG the future of the promotion has been in question.
All of a sudden the fight promotion was owned by a massive celebrity agency with little to no experience in the fight game.
They began managing the UFC like they didn’t know as the cards that were put together weren’t great fights or were just circus fights.
That hasn’t necessarily stopped but the string of fights that began with UFC 210 is looking like someone has figured out how to put together amazing cards.
UFC 210 was a card full of good fights and didn’t need a Frankenstein fight to sell tickets as everyone was happy to watch great fighters.
UFC on FOX 24 was another great card full of great fights and although it didn’t involve the biggest names it was a perfect showcase on free TV.
The fighters they featured in the main card count among the best in the promotion although none are the names that sell big pay-pre-views.
To put these fighters on display was great to show the level of talent in the UFC and hopefully, bring more eyes to the promotion.
It was up to the fighters to put on the great fights that fans knew they could and if they showcased their talents new stars could be born.
The first of the great fighters was Ronaldo Souza who is widely considered one of the best, if not the best BJJ practitioner in the UFC.
The 5-time world champion has made life difficult for everyone one the ground as he quickly gained momentum towards the middleweight title.
He was looking to continue that run towards a title shot against Robert Whittaker who is a major star in Australia but has never gotten the same level of hype in the USA.
As the fight began it was clear that Whittaker was protecting himself from the takedown and looking to keep things on the feet where his power was far superior.
It hasn’t been a strategy that has worked against Souza, but Whittaker played it perfectly avoiding the ground game and landing some big shots in the second round.
Those shots added up and eventually, Whittaker took the TKO win in a massive surprise that is sure to launch Whittaker right into the title conversation, and possibly exposing him to more fans.
Next up the UFC put together a fight between two of the top female strawweights in the UFC in Michelle Waterson and Rose Namajunas.
Namajunas represented a young up and coming fighter with one title shot already under her belt while Waterson is the experienced fighter with championships everywhere but the UFC.
This fight was a top contender fight for the strawweight division as the winner would likely be fighting the winner of Joanna Jędrzejczyk and Jéssica Andrade next month.
The second round is where things changed though as Namajunas launched a massive head kick that sent Waterson to the ground.
From there, Namajunas went to work on the ground and eventually sunk in a Rear Naked Choke to get the win and the title shot.
To cap off the night the UFC put a fighter that some consider to be the best in the world against a great up and comer in an attempt to break a record.
Demetrious Johnson is considered the top pound-for-pound fighter in the world and if he could beat Wilson Reis he would earn his 10th title defence.
That would tie him with Anderson Silva for the most title defences in the UFC and would assure his spot among the greatest of all time.
The fight started out as a typical flyweight fight with a fast pace but nobody could really take the advantage.
That was until the second round when Johnson began to take over and took the fight to the ground where he started to use his ground and pound to turn the fight in his favour.
Then in the third that ground and pound paid off as he was on top again while Reis covered up leaving his arm exposed.
Johnson took the arm for the win and earned his 10th straight title defence to tie Silva.
Johnson will likely fight one more time as a Flyweight to break the record but there is not much left for him to do in the division as he has beaten everyone.
Moving up in weight is a possibility as he continues to try to become the greatest fighter ever.
There were plenty of great fighters in Kansas City and some truly showed what they can do in big fights.
It was a great night of fights and for the second weekend in a row the UFC put on interesting and fun cards.
The new owners might just be reaching their stride as more good fights are on the way in a great time to be a UFC fans.