Rich Franklin File Photo: Sherdog.com
Even with a catastrophic oil spill off America’s Gulf Coast, the global stock market took steps in the right direction over the past week, and many fighters from UFC 115 followed suit in Vancouver. Let’s dive in to take a look at whose stock notably went up and those that held or lost ground Saturday.
Rich Franklin: Are you kidding me? Franklin scored a knockout finish of Chuck Liddell after suffering what appears to be a broken arm earlier in the duel. Talk about guts and determination when mentioning this man’s name at the water cooler on Monday. Franklin is now 6-1 in the UFC at 205 pounds, and prime for another big fight with high stakes. Lyoto Machida, Quinton Jackson or the winner of Jon Jones-Vladimir Matyushenko would make an ideal foil if he chooses to stay at 205.
Mirko Filipovic: Who knew “Cro Cop” had so much heart? I wrote him off after taking a beating in the first round, but the legend bucked his own history of faltering under pressure to score a huge win with some vintage Pride-esque violence. The Croatian striker went to the floor to capture round two and then poured it on in round three with his underrated boxing and tenacity. He may be his own worst enemy, but if Cro Cop can put a few wins together to build confidence, watch out world.
Carlos Condit: Down two rounds and catching an earful from trainer Greg Jackson before the third frame was set to start, Condit pulled himself together to demolish Rory MacDonald on the feet and floor to nab a controversial stoppage with just seven seconds remaining in the contest. The New Mexico native seized the moment and found a way to rally for an unlikely victory with his back against the wall. Condit is as mentally tough as they come, and he’s skilled enough to give any upper-level welterweight fits.
Martin Kampmann: Paulo Thiago was touted as the contender, but it was Kampmann that showed he was a superior fighter in every aspect of the game at UFC 115. From horn to horn, the Dane was quicker to the punch and clearly on another level in the ground battles. I, for one, would like to see Kampmann rematch Condit to see who steps forward in their title dreams.
Evan Dunham: Don’t let the spit decision fool you. Dunham controlled Tyson Griffin from the opening bell and cruised to what should have been a unanimous decision with 30-27s across the board. Dunham is poised for a run in the lightweight division, and he will likely get to face a title-contending opponent in his next bout.
Claude Patrick: The UFC newcomer made a statement in his UFC debut against Ricardo Funch, finishing the Team Link fighter with a second-round guillotine. Patrick is now 12-1, with his lone defeat coming against fellow UFC vet Drew McFedries nearly eight years ago.
Mario Miranda: Steamrolled David Loiseau to earn his first UFC win. The 10-1 fighter showed that he belongs against a tough veteran with a wealth of experience.
Ben Rothwell and Gilbert Yvel: Simply lackluster, ladies and gentlemen.
James Wilks: Bounced back from a tough loss to Matt Brown with a workman-like unanimous decision against Peter Sobotta. The “TUF 9” winner has the ground game to catch anyone, but he’ll need to improve his standup if he plans on advancing from his placement as a mid-tier welterweight.
Tyson Griffin: Why is Griffin not featured in the “Stock Down” section, you ask? Because the Randy Couture-trained lightweight was never in danger of being finished, despite being placed in perilous positions in each round. Griffin is a gamer that will learn from the tough defeat and become a better fighter from the experience.
Rory MacDonald: What a class act this man is. He was seven seconds away from a draw at the worst, but he called a stoppage by Kevin Dornan fair and warranted just minutes following the incident. Class aside, MacDonald is a 20-year-old blue-chip prospect that gave a highly respected former champion all he could handle.
Chuck Liddell: Chuck, you’re a legend, former champion and a UFC hall of famer. You have nothing else to prove. Walk away and don’t look back.
Yves Lavigne: We’re all well aware of how hard it is to make split-second decisions with a fighter’s safety at question, but Lavigne goofed up the Matt Wiman-Mac Danzig fight something serious. Let’s hope there’s an immediate rematch to wash the bad taste out of our mouths.
Patrick Barry: Barry showed his true value in the first frame with a punishing right-hook knockdown, but as the fight wore on, his cardio and grappling weaknesses were exposed. As embarrassing as the defeat is, I still feel that if Barry can get his gas tank and ground game up to par, he could be a threat to the best in the division.
David Loiseau: With three straight losses in the promotion, why the heck was he invited back? Now with four consecutive defeats in the Octagon, it’s time for “The Crow” to fly back to the local circuit.
Ricardo Funch: Off to an 0-2 start in the big leagues.
Peter Sobotta: Also has dug himself a deep hole with an 0-2 UFC record.