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UFC 168 Main Card Recap: Oh, What a Night!

Niala Samnarine

By Niala Samnarine

January 2, 2014

MMA fans rejoiced as UFC 168 did not disappoint! In one of the most anticipated MMA events of the year, the UFC faithful, and first time fans alike, got one of the most exciting events of the year.

Touted as the biggest rematch of the year, this co-main event fight card featured two championship matches with both champions and contenders entering to prove why they are the best. Combined with an impressive undercard and preliminary fights, this was an exciting night full of career-solidifying wins for some and heartbreaking losses for others.

UFC 168 Main Card

Chris Weidman def. Anderson Silva, TKO (Round 2, 1:16)

The Men’s Middleweight Championship title defense by Chris Weidman was both impressive and memorable.

Weidman Silva

ROUND 1: Very quickly into the fight Weidman was able to get the takedown which Silva stood up out of. Weidman and Silva remained in the clinch and traded knees until Weidman dropped Silva with a punch. Weidman maintained position on top and rained punches and elbows on Silva. While Silva survived the pounding, Weidman won the round 10-8

ROUND 2: Just as fans were beginning to wonder if Silva would use his legs he threw a leg kick which Weidman expertly checked causing Silva to break his leg.

For anyone watching, Silva’s injury was one of the most gruesome injuries the sport has seen and his recovery will be a topic of conversation for many months to come. Just as memorable was Weidman’s impressive championship defense, he made it clear pre-fight that he wanted to validate his claim over the championship and in two rounds he was able to accomplish that.

Ronda Rousey def. Miesha Tate, Submission (Round 3, 0:58)

This Fight of the Night and Submission of the Night match was, for many, the highlight of the evening. In the longest fight of the night, months of trash talking and emotional interviews came to a head. These women battled it out for three rounds, here's how it went down:

Rousey Tate

ROUND 1: This competitive first round started off with a few punches in the center of the Octagon. Rousey pulled Tate down who was able to get up, but was quickly met with a knee. The fighters go down again and trade position with each woman attempting a triangle choke. Rousey attempted an armbar, but Tate was able to avoid it. Rousey won the round 10-9 but Tate made history as she’s the first competitor to get out of a first round with Rousey.

ROUND 2: Tate came out swinging to start this round but Rousey was able to get her down. Tate connected with several upkicks and was able to get back up. Tate then looked for the takedown but Rousey was able to flip Tate and take top position. Tate landed a left hook and took some punches on her way up. Rousey then executed a beautiful Harai Goshi (a hip throw used in Judo) and looked for the armbar. She was able to get it but not extend at the right angle, so instead opted for the triangle choke but Tate was able to hang on. Rousey won the round 10-8.

ROUND 3: Rousey was able to pull Tate down from the clinch. Once on top Rousey immediately began to set up the armbar and ultimately got the tapout.

This amazing match saw these two fighters battle it out. For Tate, she was able to hang on for three rounds with the champion but it wasn’t enough as Rousey remained undefeated and used the armbar once again to win the fight. (After the match Tate tried to offer her hand to Rousey who declined and walked away from her inciting boos from the crowd).

Travis Browne def. Josh Barnett, Knockout (Round 1, 1:00)

One of the more intense finishes of the night saw Travis Browne knockout Josh Barnett in this heavyweight fight to win the match and Knockout of the Night bonus.

ROUND 1: Browne started with two hooks to Barnett; Barnett clinched then looked for the takedown but was unable to get it. He then moved in and was met with a knee; Browne was able to move in and rain down several hard elbows, ending the match with a Barnett KO.

In a decisive victory over Barnett, Browne looked to solidify himself as the #1 contender for the heavyweight championship.

Jim Miller def. Fabricio Camoes, Submission (Round 1, 3:42)

This speedy lightweight matchup saw Jim Miller submit Fabricio Camoes in the first round.

ROUND 1: Both fighters were able to land punches, throwing off combinations, then midway through the round they took it to the ground. Miller was able to get Camoes on his back, then Camoes was able to reverse the position but Miller locked in the armbar from his back and got the tapout.

This exciting matchup allowed Miller to show his chops and will help him secure higher ranked fighters in future UFC events.

Dustin Poirier def. Diego Brandao, TKO (Round 1, 4:54)

The first fight of the UFC 168’s Main Card thrilled as, Dustin “The Diamond” Poirier defeated Diego Brandao. There was a bit of tension because of the weigh-in the day before. Brandao missed weight badly and Poirier was not quiet about how he felt about it.

Poirier Brandao

ROUND 1: Both fighters exchanged strikes early on—Brandao’s style of power punching up against Poirier’s more precise strikes. Later in the round Brandao managed to get Poirier on the ground, but he popped up immediately after and trapped Brandao along the fence. Poirier was then able to get off a series of punches both to Brandao’s body and then his head leading to the TKO decision by the referee.

Early on in the night this fight was able to get the crowd excited. It was the first fight of three consecutive fights to end in a first round victory and featured high energy and lots of action!

Fox Sports 1 Prelims

  • Uriah Hall def. Chris Leben, TKO (Round 1, 5:00)
  • Michael Johnson def. Gleison Tibau, Knockout (Round 2, 1:32)
  • Dennis Siver def. Manny Gamburyan, Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • John Howard def. Siyar Bahadurzada, Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Online Prelims

  • Robbie Peralta def. Estevan Payan, TKO (Round 3, 0:12)
  • William Macario def. Bobby Voelker, Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

The preliminary fights included three knockouts and three UDs. For fans at the MGM Grand Garden Arena to witness UFC 168, the matchups helped showcase some new talent and get the heavily Brazilian fan segment into the action right away!

Don’t Miss UFC 169

UFC events just keep getting better and better, as was evident with the latest Main Card performance at UFC 168. Many people regretted missing the trip to Vegas to witness history; and while we can’t go back in time, we can help fix the future!

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What was your favorite fight of the night? Who would’ve won your vote for Knockout, Submission and Fight of the Night?

 

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