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By Rich Hansen, MMATorch Columnist
Tonight is a historic night for the UFC as tonight's UFC on FX: Guillard vs. Miller show will be the first show to air in its entirety on the Fox family of networks. MMA Torch will be providing live coerage of tonight's broadcast which emanates from Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. Since most people don't have Fuel TV in their homes, please join us tonight for live coverage.
- Jay Glazer and Stephan Bonnar open the broadcast and breakdown the top fights that will be airing on Fuel. Bonnar is an interesting mix of top-notch analysis and by the book cliche.
FIGHT ONE: JOSEPH SANDOVAL VS. NICK DENIS
- Denis fights out of Tri-Star in Montreal, and has a Master's degree in Biochemistry. Sandoval has the biggest red mohawk ever. Denis has a 2 inch reach advantage, and is 1/2 inch taller.
ROUND ONE: Josh Rosenthal is your referee. I'm already digging Anik. Denis comes out swinging fists and it's over just that quick. Big elbow to the temple from a one armed Thai clinch. Unbelievable finish for Denis. That couldn't have been more than 20 seconds.
WINNER: Nick Denis by KO at 0:22 of Round One.
STAR RATING: (**+) It was all action, and a KO that you'll remember for a long time.
FIGHT TWO: DANIEL PINEDA VS. PAT SCHILLING
- The Fuel TV promos for Fuel TV during the commercial breaks take up more time than the commercials. That probably isn't a good thing. Pineda is a KO artist. Schilling was selling video games at Best Buy 3 weeks ago. Same weight and reach for both fighters, though Schilling is one inch taller.
ROUND ONE: Mario Yamasaki is your referee. Schilling eats a leg kick after missing on one of his own, then eats a left hand. and a leg kick. Pineda comes forward, gets a bodylock, takedown, and the mount. Schilling is holding on for dear life. Schilling rolls, gives up his back, and Pineda is softening him up looking for the rear naked choke. Yamasaki is the ref, so Pineda had better be careful. Pineda gets under Schilling's chin and Schilling submits to the rear naked choke.
WINNER: Daniel Pineda by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 1:37 of Round One.
STAR RATING: (**+) I set the precedent with the first fight. Fast finishes get **+, I guess. It wasn't as memorable as the first fight, though.
- Jon Anik and Kenny Florian are the best duo in the sport, or at least in the UFC if you're fans of Wheelock and Smith. It's nice to NOT hear someone scream, "OOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHH!!!" after every knockdown. It's nice to not hear someone (not naming names here) yell, "He's out Mike. He's out!" while he's clearly not out. And don't get me started on, "IT'S ALL OVER!"
- Two quick fights means we're back to Glazer and Bonnar to kill 15 or 20 minutes. Ariel Helwani will do backstage interviews with the winners, which is actually kind of cool.
FIGHT THREE: FABRICIO CAMOES VS. TOMMY HAYDEN
- Hayden was 10 years old when Pineda fought Anderson Silva in 1997. I feel old. Hayden wants to keep this on his feet. Camoes is an inch taller, but gives up a half inch in reach.
ROUND ONE: The referee for this fight is Josh Rosenthal. Anik identifies ring girls by first and last name. Good for him. Hayden is a southpaw. Hayden catches Camoes with a jab as Camoes shot in. Not much during the first minute of the fight. Hayden gets Camoes down and tries to get his back. Camoes has his arm, so Hayden has to stall to defend against the kimura. He escaped, and we're back to standing. Camoes with a big knee, but got planted. Hayden backed out of the guard, and back to standing again. Camoes ducked under a head kick and grabbed Hayden's plant leg, but Hayden reversed and wound up on top in half guard at the halfway point. Camoes has an omoplata, but Hayden stands up. While backing out, Camoes grabbed his heel and plantred Hayden. Camoes is on top now, and lands a big hammerfist too. Hayden gave up his back, and Camoes has both hooks in now. Camoes is trying to soften him up. Camoes has the choke in, he has Hayden stretched out, and after a fake tap, Hayden taps for real. Hayden was almost out before tapping for real.
WINNER: Fabricio Camoes by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 4:03 of Round One.
STAR RATING: (***-) Camoes looked great once this got to the mat. Fantastic sweeps, and some cagy BJJ from the veteran Camoes.
- First 3 fights were finished 65 minutes into the 180 minute broadcast. Lots of filler tonight. I'd rather hae quick fights and filler than 6 dull decisions and the potential of running long.
FIGHT FOUR: CHARLIE BRENNEMAN VS. DANIEL ROBERTS
- Wrestler vs. wrestler coming next. Brenneman is the better wrestler, Roberts has the BJJ advantage. Same height and weight, but Roberts has a four inch reach advantage.
ROUND ONE: Herb Dean is the third man in the cage. Or, he will be once Buffer and the cameramen and the commission members leave the cage. OK, NOW he's the third man in the cage. No touch of gloves. Roberts lands a flurry of punches early, but Brenneman plants him with a double and gets side control. Roberts has Brenneman's neck controlled, so Brenneman has to be a little cautious here. Brenneman in half guard now. Brenneman escapes and gets side control, to a crucifix! Roberts can't escape, and is eating a lot of fists to the top of his skullt and to his right ear. Brenneman gave up the crucifix, and has side mount now.. Brenneman gets back to half guard, with 2:30 left int he round. Back to side control again, with his chest pressed tightly against Roberts' chest. He keeps trying to get full mount, and isn't getting there. knees to the ribs by Brenneman, and short elbows as well. 1 minute remaining. Brenneman postured up a little, but wound up in full guard, up against the cage. Roberts has an underhook and is trying to get to his feet, but eats knees to the back of the thigh and gets taken down again. 10-9 Brenneman
ROUND TWO: Roberts flicks a few jabs and lands a high kick. Brenneman choots and gets the fight to the mat, but Roberts is grabbing for the guillotine. Once he gives it up Brenneman will have half-guard. Yep. It's never good when you sacrifice takedown defense in lieu of futile guillotine attempts. Brenneman in side control now. Landing right hands to Roberts' left ear. Another crucifux, and more big rights to Roberts' ear. Roberts rolls a little, so Brenneman switches to elbows. Hip escape by Roberts, and Brenneman is in Roberts' guard now. Well defended, but he ate some decent shots. Herb Dean tells the two men who are working to work. Twice now. And he stands them up with 90 seconds left. I hate that. Brenneman follows up a right hands with a takedown attempt. He gets him down, but in a bad position and is eating elbows to the head. Roberts is working the kimura. Switching to a straight armbar, and Roberts swept and took Brenneman's back with 30 seconds left. Roberts lost the far hook but he's going for a mounted inverted triangle. The round ends. 10-9 Brenneman
ROUND THREE: Roberts leads with a straight right and shoots. Body lock, and takedown by Brenneman. He understands leverage. Side control, and short punches to the ear. Sound familiar? knees to the body, as well, which prompts Herb Dean to whine about working while Brenneman is throwing those knees. I can't stand it. More knees from side control by Brenneman. Roberts is getting battered with fists to the head, and when he defends that he eats knees to the ribs. So Herb tells Brenneman to work twice more. Just because it isn't thrilling doesn't mean they aren't working their asses off, and I wish Herb Dean had respect for fighters. another command to work as Roberts WORKED out of side control and gets Brenneman in his guard. Another WORK, and he stands them up a half second later. Roberts shoots, stuffed, and Brenneman is looking to take the back of a turtled Roberts. Full guard for Brenneman. It was a weak shot from distance by Roberts, with no strike attempts to set it up. Let's WORK. Let's WORK. I thought referees respected fighters. I guess not. 30 seconds left. Dull round, but Brenneman is working his tail feathers off. Roberts is working for a kimura again, he has it, from his back. Brenneman is on top in side control, with his arm WAY in the air as the horn blows. 10-9 Brenneman
WINNER: Charlie Brenneman by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28) The refs got it exactly right.
STAR RATING: (**-) Don't confuse my ripping of Herb Dean with me thinking it was an exciting fight. It wasn't. But Brenneman was being nagged while in side control, while having a crucifix, and while working to get mount. Herb Dean was just awful, per usual.
FIGHT FIVE: KAMAL SHALORUS VS. KHABIB NURMAGOMEDOV
- Nurmagomedov is yet another undefeated prospect making their UFC debut tonight. Expect to see a lot more unknowns with padded records in the months to come. Shalorus came out to 'I Won't Back Down' by Johnny Cash, who is fricking HUGE in Iran. Don't believe me? Go there and ask around. Nurmagomedov has a 2 inch reach advantagem and two inches of height. Nurmagomedov is 16 years younger than Shalorus. Buffer sorta got Nurmagomedov's name right. I think.
ROUND ONE: Mario Yamasaki is the referee. Nurmagomedov has never been in the United States before coming to Nashville, and has never fought inside of a cage. 30 seconds before anyone throws a strike. Shalorus lands a left, shoots, but Nurmagomedov sprawls. Shalorus throws a wild haymaker, misses. Shalorus has been switching stances frequently. Nice left hook by Shalorus. Nurmagomedov has bad footwork, Shalorus has no head movement, and neither guy is landing anything. Herb Dean would stop the fight and make them go TO the mat. Shalorus' head literally does not move, like Joan Cusack's character in Gross Pointe Blank. Shalorus shoots, gets stuffed, and as he backs off he gets knocked flat by a BIG left uppercut with 2 minutes left. Nurmagomedov with ground and pound, shalorus just trying to hang on. Shalorus seems to have survived, but he's on his back with Nurmagomedov on top in side control. Shalorus gives up his back, rolls again, and Nurmagomedov winds up inside the guard of Shalorus, and now side control. Nurmagomedov is smooth with the transitions. Back to the feet, and both guys are breathing hard. Nurmagomedov has Shalorus' back against the cage. They trade bombs as the round ends. 10-9 Nurmagomedov. It was fun, but awful technique standing by both fighters.
ROUND TWO: Nurmagomedov ducks under a wild right, and gets a single leg up against the cage. Shalorus is so predictable. Wild right hooks if he's fighting orthodox, head kick when he's in a southpaw stance. Nothing of note on the canvas yet. Nurmagomedov tried for side mount, but gets stuck in half guard. 2 minutes in, not a ton of action, and Yamasaki stands them up. That standup was fine. Shalorus comes straight forward, his head still in Joan Cusack's cervical collar. Nurmagomedov shoots a single from distance and gets the takedown anyways. Side control in the middle of the cage, in the middle of the round. Shalorus at -125 made me so happy. Oh well. Yamasaki warns Nurmagomedov about grabbing the shorts. Nurmagomedov is trying hard to escape full guard, and he gets out. Looked for a D'Arce choke but gave it up right away and dives back into the guard with a minute left. Another standup by Yamasaki. Nurmagomedov with a wild right hook. Neither guy has ever heard of combinations, apparently. Shalorus hasn't heard of lateral movement, either. 10-9 Nurmagomedov
ROUND THREE: Twice between rounds Shalorus asked what round it was. His corner made it clear he's down 20-18, at least. My picture froze on me for 2 minutes, and when it came back, Shalorus was tapping to a rear naked choke. Could be worse, could have Comcast...
WINNER: Khabib Nurmagomedov by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 2:08 of Round 3.
STAR RATING: (*+) this was a bad fight through two rounds, which is about all I was able to see. Shalorus is stiff as a board on his feet and is nowhere near UFC caliber. That he got out wrestled by Nurmagomedov pretty much guarantees that his future is grim.
FIGHT SIX: JORGE RIVERA VS. ERIC "RED" SCHAFER"
- I will be openly rooting for Red tonight, as we're both in the Milwaukee area. Journalistic integrity be damned, right? Red came out to How You Like Me Now, by The Heavy. That's a winner, right there. For those who don't know, this will be River's last fight. He's had a solid career, and is to be respected.
ROUND ONE: Herb Dean is the referee. Red has a 3 inch reach advantage here. Red eats a soft hook and shoots. nothing comes of it. Red shoots again, gets Rivera to the cage, gets up, and then planted with a bodylock trip takedown. Rivera in side control, trying for full mount but stuck in half guard. Red has side mount from this half-guard. Rivera trying hard to power to his feet, and he succeeds. Well done there with the sweep. Red has him up against the cage and is pressing hard. Grabs a single leg and gets another takedown. Red's working for position, going back and forth between side control and half guard. 2 minutes left in the 1st round. Red's throwing short elbows to keep Rivera thinking. Rivera has an underhook and is looking to sweep. Red postures up and is landing big shots. Chest to chest again. Crowd is getting a little restless. Rivera keeps sitting up, Red keeps grabbing Rivera's neck, and Rivera falls back down. Rivera reverses, and gets on top with 15 seconds left. Mission guard to an omoplata from Red as the round ends. 10-9 Schafer
ROUND TWO: Red parries a couple of wild punches from Rivera and shoots, gets stuffed, but has a single up against the cage. Rivera escapes, and is on top. Red is bleeding. Schafer's getting beat up here, hte difference in power is evident here. Red's turtling against the cage, eating haymakers. Herb Dean is constantly telling Red to fight back, and he's seen enough. It was one punch to the nose of Schafer that completely turned the tide.
WINNER: Jorge Rivera by TKO at 1:31 of Round 2.
STAR RATING: (**) Unremarkable fight. nice to see Rivera go out with a win, but I hate to see a Milwaukee guy get pounded like that.
- So that's it. Stay with MMA Torch for Jamie's continuing coverage of tonight's FX main card.
Follow Rich Hansen on Twitter @MMATorchRich if you feel like reading tweets about things. And stuff. Lots of tweets about stuff, too.
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