Best match: Werdum vs Velasquez
Worst match: Torres vs Hill
Thumbs up. Torres vs Hill was about as exciting as watching Super Invader vs Todd Champion. Rodriguez vs Rosa was a good fight. Rodriguez looked sharp and is someone to watch. In no way was this a split decision, it was pretty clear Rodriguez won 29-28. Gastelum vs Marquardt was a good showing for Gastelum and a sad one for Marquardt. It's time for Marquardt to hang it up. Melendez vs Alvarez was okay, but did not live up to expectations. Not even close. Velasquez vs Werdum was a lot of fun. It's funny because to me it looked like both fighters were fighting in slow motion a lot of the fight, but the shots were still effective. I was thrillled to see Werdum win in decisive fashion
Thumbs in the middle. Maybe a little up from the top fights. Their spottiest card in awhile. Altitude got to everybody, even the locals.
Best fight: Werdum-Cain, HM to Alvarez-Melendez, Rodriguez-Rosa
Worst fight: Pendred-Montaño, Torres-Hill
Best performance: Werdum, HM to Alvarez, Rodriguez, Escudero, Williams, Benitez
Worst performance: Montaño
KO: none (!)
Sub: Werdum, HM to Williams, Escudero
Gabriel Benitez looking like a different fighter batters Clay Collard but cannot finish him. Altitude definitely had an effect and Collard trains in Utah. Could easily have been wider than 30-27 but of course isn't. Cathal Pendred takes a 29-28 UD stinker over Augusto Montaño, who is warned for timidity after the 1st and seemed the more gassed of the two.
Johnny Case paintjobs Francisco Trevino in another stinker. Case seemed well on the way to an impressive win when he ate an eyepoke in the 1st but dominated even afterward. 30-27 only possible score. Patrick Williams blows Alejandro Perez away, immediately knocking him down and snatching Guillotine and putting him to sleep. 23s. Grudging applause. Almost the same fight as Erfrain Escudero footsweeps Drew Dober and snatches Guillotine and Dover resists but has to tap. 54s. Close fight between Henry Cejudo and Chico Camus. Camus stuffed every TD till the last few seconds and he just gave that one up as there were feet of daylight, and that may have been the margin but it's a UD with one 29-28.
Tecia Torres mostly drubs Angela Hill in another stinker. Same scoring as last fight.
In by far best fight of the night so far Yair Rodriguez comes out at the bell doing matrix stuff and landing it and dominates the first two. Charles Rosa refuses to quit and dominates the 3rd. Gotta be 29-28 Rodriguez. One judge goes the other way. Great fight. Rodriguez pukes on his promo, fortunately off camera.
Kelvin Gastelum is fat but much too quick for quickly aging Nate Marquardt and does pretty much what he wants and it's stopped by the corner after the 2nd. Maybe lucky for Gastelum because he looked to be gassing from hitting him. Gastelum really belongs at 170 but he's just too lazy. Nate should retire.
Eddie Alvarez looks tiny against Gil Melendez like he did against Cerrone. He should drop to 45. Gil busts Eddie up in the 1st. Eddie makes his own eye shut when he blows his nose after the round. But Eddie refuses to quit and takes the 2nd and 3rd. Eddie had the bigger gas tank. Both busted up at the end. 29-28 Eddie by me. One judge goes the other way. Right decision. This is the Alvarez we're used to seeing.
Cain Velasquez and Fabricio Werdum both come out bombing in the 1st. A lot of clinch work. Cain is cut. Cain gets 2 flash TDs, Fabricio 1. Cain wants no part of ground. Very close round. Cain MIGHT have edged it but Fabricio holding his own standing. The pace is going to kill somebody. In the 2nd Cain landing LKs but he looks the more gassed. Cain picks it up but Fabricio blasts back. Cain is rocked. Cain goes back to the LKs. Cain busier but Fabricio landing the harder shots. Fabricio nearly gets a standing cravat. Cain rocked again. Less and less on his strikes. Cain in trouble. He drops. Bounces up. Cain saved by the bell. Fabricio 10-8. Cain a mess in the corner. Fabricio barely breathing hard. The doctor is in. Gets Cain a little extra rest. They want Cain to take him down in the 3rd and he does. Kicks the legs a little and Fabricio up. Cain lands a HK. Fabricio snags a standing Guillotine. Lets go and lands knees. Misses a HK. Cain shoots right into a Guillotine and quickly taps. Cain clearly way off form from the long layoff and insufficient time training at altitude but full credit to Werdum who takes him to school and unifies the HW title.
Thumbs Up. PPV portion only. The undercard was all good. Alvarez vs Melendez was great, as expected. And then the main event. In the biggest irony of all, a foreigner beat a mexican in Mexico because of the altitude. Being a long time football/soccer fan I know all about outsiders falling short when they get to Mexico City because they can't keep up with the "thin" air while the local team overachieves. But this was at another level because it was the opposite result. Plus, Cain's main atribute was the cardio. It's pretty much incredible that no one on Cain's team thought of that aspect.
Leonardo II Mendez
San Sebastian, PR
Overall: Thumbs Down
Best Fight: Yair Rodriguez vs. Charles Rosa
Worst Fight: Tecia Torres vs. Angela Hill
If the UFC went back to Mexico City in 100 years it would be too soon. The altitude was SUCH a huge factor in the quality of fights. Way more than Denver ever has been. There's got to be other arenas in Mexico that aren't at such high altitude.
Tecia Torres def Angela Hill
Just a lay-and-pray fest. Awful. I get the strategy considering how tiring it must have been to fight, but come on.
Yair Rodriguez def Charles Rosa
Great fight. It slowed down after awhile due to altitude. Yair fights like a star, and he speaks both Spanish and English which is a huge plus for the UFC. Yair was AWESOME in the first round and I'd love to see what this guy could do closer to sea level.
Kelvin Gastelum def Nate Marquardt
Proud of Nate's corner for ending it when they did. More corners should do that and save their fighter's future health. In retrospect Nate should have never taken this fight in Mexico City. I hope he's okay.
Eddie Alvarez def Gilbert Melendez
There's no doubt in my mind that Gilbert wins this fight if it was in California or Vegas. Instead he loses to a one eyed man after completely gassing out in the second. After this fight I decided I'm never watching another show that's booked in Mexico City.
Fabricio Werdum def Cain Velasquez
Mr. Cardio himself loses due to cardio. Another fight I think the other guy would have won if it was closer to sea level. Werdum showed a hell of chin as he took some heavy jabs, hooks, and uppercuts over and over from Cain and seemed unphased. Cain looked like he was about to pass out from exhaustion in the second round and had trouble even getting the water bottle to his mouth in between rounds. Yet still I think Cain would have won this had it not been in Mexico City. Cain was showing he was still the most skilled heavyweight in the world until he totally gassed out. I'm not taking the win away from Werdum though, it's Cain's fault for not making the sacrifice and training in Mexico like Werdum did. Werdum is already 37 but seems to suddenly be in his prime. We'll see how long that lasts. I expect Cain to return to the championship soon, if he can ever stay healthy.
Best Match - Velasquez vs Werdum
Worst Match - Alvarez vs Melendez
Never thought I'd ever see Cain tap - WOW! Loved Yair Rodriguez's performance. Melendez/Alvarez was such a let down. El Niño got beat by a guy who couldn't see out of his eyes. It felt like three rounds of shadow boxing. What Joe Rogan said was right - when there is such a huge grudge - there is an intense fear of failure that makes everyone tentative.