In part one we discussed how some pairs of fighters keep coming back for more. Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard were named the power couple aka Brangelina of the UFC(However, the name Grankie, or Ednard is more fitting).
Fighters don't come back to mess around, though. According to fightmetric.com,Matt Hughes has won three out of six rematches, finishing all three. Dominic Cruz has won both of his do-overs. Anderson Silva has had two rematches in the UFC, devastating both men in the second round. Edgar is a rematch beast, having fought three epic rematches since April 2010, with one more on the way. With that draw, though, he is two out of three.
Overall, the top two re-runners are undoubtedly Chuck Liddell and Georges St-Pierre. The Iceman Liddell has won five out of six rematches while his lone kryptonite was Rampage Jackson. St.-Pierre has won five of five. But how do you weigh the two?
Liddell KO'd or TKO'd Jeremy Horn, Renato Sobral, Randy Couture (twice), and Tito Ortiz in rematches. St.-Pierre KO'd or TKO'd Matt Hughes, BJ Penn, Matt Serra, subbed Hughes, and won in a decision over Josh Koscheck.
Let me take you back. The venue was the Oracle Arena, the date was Aug. 7, 2010, and the event was UFC 117. After months of trash talking an invincible champion, to the point that MMA media had serious arguments over whether or not he was playing a character or just plain delusional, Chael Sonnen was about to fight Anderson Silva for the UFC middleweight title.
Watching Chael walk to the octagon, it was hard not to remember the months leading up to the fight. It was hard not to study his face, trying to catch some hint, some read, that might tell us if he really believed the crazy things he had been saying. Did he really believe, for instance, that he was going to beat Silva into retirement? If he did, I assure you, he was the only one. The UFC has never seen a champion as dominant as Silva, so the idea that a man only a year or so removed from being a fringe contender would beat him seemed, bluntly, insane.
Rematches are great. Ignore the idea that it's going to be the same fight you saw last year and ignore the notion that the UFC has gone a little rematch crazy, especially in the lightweight division.
A rematch is double the drama, double the suspense, and double the fun. How else can a fighter erase a loss in the eyes of fight fans, and essentially win two fights at the same time. Rubber matches are like triple points!
Running it back with a fighter you've already faced has it's own set of challenges. If you're a renowned MMA strategist like Frankie Edgar or Georges St-Pierre, you've learned from your experiences and you know your enemy. However, if you have the MMA IQ of, say, Tito Ortiz or Ken Shamrock, then your opponents have probably learned far more about you.
The midway point of 2012's calendar year has come, which means it is time to recognize the top fighter, knockout and submission of the UFC year to this point.
Fighter of the Half-Year: Martin Kampmann
Danish fighter Martin "The Hitman" Kampmann has earned victories over two top-10 welterweights in Thiago Alves and Jake Ellenberger thus far. The 30-year-old is also on a three-fight winning streak for the first time in over four years.
The victories alone aren't what earn Kampmann the spot as "Fighter of the Half-Year"; it is the fashion in which those victories occurred that makes him stand out from the rest of the group.
Saturday was a good night for Jiu Jitsu tattoos and emotional Brazilians. However, it was a night of horror for testicles.
Striking to the groin. Though technically legal in the very first UFC, this was one of the first actions officially outlawed en route to today's Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts. The low blow is synonymous with unacceptable activity.
And yet, it is probably the most common foul called in the UFC. The fights of 147 underscored that ubiquity. I counted at least seven stoppages for groin strikes in five different fights. As with most nut shots at the professional level, all were deemed accidental with no point deductions. Still, the frequency makes you wonder...