More feedback from UFC 152

Hey Dave & Bryan,
Some quick notes on UFC 152 live.
I gave the show a thumbs up.
Best Fight: Jimy Hettis vs Marcus Brimage with Dunham vs TJ Grant a close 2nd
Worst Fight: Matt Hammill vs Roger Hollett
Best Sub: Vinny Magalhaes
Best KO: Cub Swanson
Undercard was solid with some nice finishes. Hamill's fight stunk the ACC up. Johnson vs Benavidez was a bit of a let down. They were definitely fast but there was not a lot of contact being made. Both seemed like they were fighting not to lose rather than to win other than round 4 where Benavidez had Johnson in the rear naked choke. That fight did not help get the flyweights over in my mind and a good thing that didn't end up as the main event as it would have left the crowd with a bad taste in their mouth and hurt the next visit here. The fans in the crowd did not like this fight.
Jones' antics at the start of the fight trying to get fans to clap along, the one handed cartwheel entrance etc is really helping him turn heel even more.
There were a lot of empty seats. Especially the 200 sections (I would think $225 range) and there were even empty seats in the cheaper seats from what we could see as well as the more expensive seats towards the floor. There were a number of fights in the crowd throughout the card.
The Toronto market, one of UFC's hottest areas has hit the point of over saturation along with a lot of the other markets that they have run. Without adding Jones vs Belfort, it would have been interesting to see how many more seats would have been empty. It was a bit surprising with ticket sales dropping off that there was not more fan friendly stuff around. Usually on weigh-in day there are autograph signings etc and none of that was around this time. You would think that now is the time more than ever you want to have more fighter interaction stuff happening to help with ticket sales and buzz.  Maybe in UFC mind it is only the hard cores that attend, however they are the ones shelling out for the high ticket prices and with an event that didn't sell out in one of their hottest markets, they needed all the help they could get.
As usual, all the Canadians got huge cheers. Probably the biggest pop was for Toronto native Sean "Formerly Pimp Daddy" Pierson who had the building resonating his name at one point. Mitch Gagnon also got a huge roar with his quick submission. Bisping & Belfort were definite crowd favourites. The place would have come unglued if Vitor would have been able to make Jones tap to that armbar. Hats off to Vitor as he lasted a lot longer than most people would have bet on him lasting.
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Looking forward to next weekend's UFC on Fuel card from Nottingham. Jaboin vs Pickett could steal the show and Struve vs Miocic should be a solid main event. Hoping for Hardy to KO Sadollah as am not a Sadollah fan in the slightest.
Have a great day.
Grant Zwarych
Wrestling Observer Index

Thumbs... slightly north of center. Mostly entertaining card.
Best fight: Johnson-Benavidez
Worst fight: Hamill-Whatsisname
KO: Swanson & Baczynski
Sub: Magalhaes
fb undercard was all fireworks. Noke dropped to WW and nailed Boring WW Grinder #37-B Brennerman at will from outside and dropped him and the ref stepped in, Good stop I thought as Brennerman's head went loose.
Scarecrow Walel Watson tried a Superman punch and jumped right into a left hook and never recovered, local Mitch Gagnon patiently sinking the RNC. So far we got maybe two minutes of fighting.
Seth Backzitski (seriously he looked like a connect the dots) seemed musclebound and slow, getting unexpectedly schooled in standup by Norwegian sub specialist Thoreson, but then knocked him cold with the first punch he actually landed, a counter left hook. This got us up to maybe five, six minutes of fighting for the whole undercard but so far so good.
On the midcard, Marcus Brimage opened by fighting the perfect fight to upset undefeated sub specialist Jimy Hettes via UD, beating him to the punch and not letting him get in grappling range for most of the fight.
Lance Benoist looked incredibly sloppy but I thought salvaged a 28-28 draw with a 10-8 3rd round after dropping local Pierson and nearly finishing him, but the judges went 29-28 UD for the local.
Grant and Dunham staged a three round brawl I would have called a draw on general principles, but again the local Grant got the UD including an inexplicable 30-27 as Dunham clearly won the 3rd round, but you know. 3:15 at the bikeracks fight for those who like that kind of thing, but both these guys are much better than this. Dunno what's happened to Dunham who used to be a technical striker.
Vinny Magalhaes returns after giving M-1 back their title and finishes Igor Pokrajac in the 2nd with a textbook full arm drag and bar in the midcard main. One of the best subs of the year and I don't believe they gave Jones the bonus and not him.
On the top card Cub Swanson continues his roll by quickly demolishing Charles Oliveira with a left hook to the liver followed by an overhand right that collapsed Oliveria in sections like a demolished building. Seen by some as an upset but not me as Swanson has been fighting a higher level of comp. I would really like to see Swanson get a rematch with Aldo at this point.
Hamill makes a return from retirement that nobody but him was interested in and even less so now, plop and schmopping his way to a UD over inept musclebound local Roger Hollett, who makes his UFC debut on the top card of a PPV. They had nerve charging money for this. Hollett is a triple threat---can't box, can't kick and can't wrestle. Maybe they could have a posedown.
Pissbing vs. Stann goes about as expected, Pissbing taking a 29-28 UD. Stann lands one good shot in the 1st but too late to capitalize. I have to laugh at the constant pimping of these two marginal fringe contenders as 'top middleweights' and this as some kind of title eliminator.
I thought Johnson-Benavidez was very good. Back and forth, technical scrap, by far the highest overall skill level of the night. Don't realize how fast Johnson is till you get a guy fast enough to push him. I agreed with the two judges who had it for him. Shame most people seem to have the Rasslin Big Fetish Mindset. Maybe if they announced little guys like that as '205 pounds'.
Props to Vitor for pulling out an arm bar nobody expected from him, but how did he become a LHW contender in 2012, again? *cups ear*. As surprising as it was that that rather than striking was his early burst, it was business as usual in that when his first shot doesn't work, he folds up mentally and goes passive, and his 'offense' from then on was reducing to pulling guard. Both of them said afterwards they heard and felt Jones' arm popping and we learn something else about Jones (as does Jones himself). With the arm hurt, Jones has a much harder time getting rid of Vitor than expected, but once he did what Jackson was telling him to do and passed Vitor's guard, it was over in a heartbeat. Jones is now the all time LHW sub leader with 6, which of all the flood of bullshit 'stats' (Pissbing is the all time MW 'significant strikes' leader? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA)  was the one interesting thing. Still thought Magalhaes' sub was best of the night though. Gonna be hard to avoid drawing the common opponent comparison of Vitor between Jones and Anderson, too...
Crimson Mask

Hi Dave.
I will give the show thumbs in the middle. Overaly I thought there were more good than bad in the show.

Best fight: Jones vs Belfort
Worst fight: Hamill vs Hollett

Hamill vs Hollett was awful and I will not say that its their fault. It is just what you get when you put two 'mid thirties' guys to fight.
Bisping vs Stann was a decision as I was expecting. After this fight I hope Bisping will finally get Anderson. But I presume its far from happening because of all GSP vs Silva plans. Also now we have Anderson fight on UFC 153 which probably kills possibility of making this fight in January or February.
Flyweight title fight was not so sick and fun as i thougt it would be. Kind of dissapointing of the show for me. I dont see this division to become very popular and draw money in near future.
I thougt Jones vs Belfort was very good. The story of the old veteran fighting young talented champion is always great story and it was great here. When Vitor had Jones in armbar I really thought it could be over. I was into the fight, had fun watching it and this is all you can ask for the UFC main event.

I would love to see a rematch between Rua and Jones. I will be fine with Gustafsson as next contender too. And there is also a possibility of Chael vs Jones, so its very exciting time for light heavyweight division.
Vlad Brozhyk from Kiev, Ukraine.

Dave, enjoyed the show give it an overall thumbs up
Best fight - stann v bisping
Worst fight -im trying to be positive tonite
Obviously the jones situation is the talk of the town and i dont think tonite changed anything he beat a 
Very determined vitor tonite who i thought had a plan and it was fairly succesfulcpulling guard and going to the ground.
I watched tonite atca buffal wild wings and it was a very lite crowd which you would think after so much time without a ppv.
I would bet it was only half full by main event time .
Neil bavitz

Thumbs Up
Best Fight:  Dunham vs Grant
Worst Fight:  Hamill vs Hollett
KO:  Swanson
Sub:  Jones
Was what I expected going into it.  FX prelims were great.  Oliviera can't take a punch.  Swanson on the rise.  Keep Hamill off PPV and on FUEL in the future should he return.  Cut Hollett now!  Stann/Bisping was ok.  Stann seemed tentative and lacked killer instinct.  Bisping/Weidman should be the next fight for 185 #1 contender.  Johnson's best UFC performance to date, but is going to take light years to get that belt over.  Arm bar from Vitor was as great of a false finish Ace could book.  Jones/Hendo is what should be next. Good show.

John Brown

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