Even though tonight's main event was Jamie Varner defending his lightweight title against undefeated Donald Cerrone, I was just as excited to see the re-match between featherweights Urijah Faber & Jens Pulver. . .
First up was a featherweight bout between Jose Aldo & Rolando Perez. Perez trains under Brandon Vera and this was his debut fight in the WEC. However, having seen how fast Aldo is, my money was on him, and that's a good thing as Aldo won by a TKO victory! [in the 1st round, Aldo caught Perez with a knee, directly to the chin, stunning Perez - he then was all over him, until the ref stopped the fight.
Next up was a welterweight bout between Danillo Villefort & Mike Campbell - this was Campbell's debut fight in the WEC [coming in with an undefeated record] and he looked impressive enough for me to choose him as the victor [even though he is shorter than Villefort and Villefort has like a 6 inch reach advantage!]
Campbell started off great, definitely holding his own against Villefort, but Villefort was a submission madman, going for submissions every chance he could! [once, he even went for a triangle while Campbell was standing!] There were a lot of flips and roll-overs, until Villefort ended up taking Campbell's back. Villefort then started, basically, slapping the sides of Campbell's head, and in a horrible ref stoppage, the ref called the fight because Campbell seemed to not be defending himself [the hits were nothing more than little slaps - no damage being done whatsoever!] I hate bad stoppages! I feel that Campbell was robbed on this one - he should have been given more of a chance to get out of the predicament that he was in. . .
Next was a bantamweight bout between Scott Jorgensen & Frank Gomez. I had never seen either of these fighters fight before and I decided to go with Jorgensen. Good thing too, as 1 minute and 9 seconds into the 1st round, Jorgensen caught Gomez in an upside down rear naked choke [a deep guillotine] making Gomez tap out!
Then came the re-match between featherweights Urijah Faber & Jens Pulver
[if you remember, the last time these two guys fought, Pulver lost by a unanimous decision - and that was a fight for the belt/title]
This time, it's wasn't a title fight [Faber lost his belt to Mike Brown] but it may as well have been, from the crowd's energy. . .
Now, I like both of these guys, [Faber's my second favorite WEC fighter and I've always liked Pulver, ever since he was in the UFC] yet being a fight between the two, I still had to choose - I expected Faber to win, but I was hoping for Pulver - just because [I can't remember the last time Pulver won a fight] :-(
Alas, Pulver lost again [but he's still not giving up - he will be back again!]
1 minute and 34 seconds into the 1st round, Faber caught Pulver with a vicious left-hand to Pulver's body - I'm not sure what happened, but right away you could tell that Pulver was hurting - Faber took advantage of Pulver's hesitancy, threw a couple more hits, and then caught Pulver in a guillotine, causing Pulver to tap out.
The main event of the evening was lightweight champion Jamie Varner - defending his title, for the second time - this time against the undefeated Donald Cerrone.
The 1st round was great, with Varner catching Cerrone with 2 hard hits, right in a row - a hard right, then a hard left - then Varner took Cerrone down, raining blows, definitely dominating the 1st round - but with about 20 seconds left in the 1st round, Cerrone came back, attacking Varner, for a strong finish to the round.
Round 2 was back & forth, with the round ending with Varner in a triangle choke by Cerrone!
Rounds 3 & 4 were pretty much the same - blows being exchanged, etc.
Then came the 5th and final round. . .
Midway through the 5th round, Varner was down, on the mat, getting back up, when Cerrone threw a hard knee grazing Varner's head. [this is an illegal move, being that Varner was not yet completely off the ground] that aside, Varner is waving his arms around, and the ref comes in to look at Varner, and then comes back saying the fight is stopped due to Varner being unable to continue [Varner claims that he couldn't see] *this is a title fight, with only minutes left to go! [I say, give the guy time - 5 minutes at least, and then see if he can continue!]
Being that this was a title fight that was stopped due to an unintentional foul, the judges decided to go ahead and score all 5 rounds, to declare a winner - winning by split-decision was Jamie Varner - still the Lightweight Champion!
So, anyone out there with thoughts on this fight?
[did Varner wuss out, thinking that he may end up losing?]
Let me hear your thoughts. . .
The next big WEC event is going to be on March 1st, with two title fights [Brown vs Garcia for the Featherweight title and Condit vs Larson for the Welterweight title]
and don't forget this coming Saturday [the 31st] UFC 94: the re-match between BJ Penn & George St. Pierre for the Welterweight belt ~ this is a fight that I cannot wait to see!!
[and just so that you hear it here 1st - I predict BJ Penn as the victor!] :-)