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Related: UFC Fight Night Play-by-Play
12:59 a.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: That rib-crushing knockout of C.B. Dollaway makes Lyoto Machida 2-0 against Arizona’s Power MMA Team. He also knocked out an impatient Ryan Bader in a light heavyweight bout at UFC on Fox 4 in August 2012. Renan Barao should be taking notes, because that’s how you make a case for a title rematch.
12:58 a.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: I did not even get to get in my question in before the fight ended. Are dobermans even tough anymore?
12:57 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: A single left kick to the body in less than a minute puts Dollaway on the mat and Machida flurries on him until Jerin Valel steps in. Wouldn't surprise me if Dollaway has a broken rib or two. That's why Machida should be fighting A-listers all the time.
12:51 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: @tristencritchfield most of the gangs in Orange County dress like that daily and they are all bad asses.
12:49 a.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: He could’ve be an honorary member in another life.
12:48 a.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: Mean Street Posse style, Tristen?
12:42 a.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: I would hope Barao would have to do more then that to get his belt back but you never know. Barao has been taking notes from @TheNotoriousMMA
12:41 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: Alright. Relatively speaking, allowing for another 20 minutes of hype trailers that this Brazilian crowd must be thrilled about at almost 4 a.m., the main event is coming up. Lyoto Machida, we just finished voting on the Sherdog.com year-end awards and I don't want to have to revote on “Upset of the Year,” so don't find a hard-to-imagine way to blow this.
12:37 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: Also, Tristen, that incarnation of Barao loses soundly to Dillashaw or Cruz.
12:37 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: After a very close bout, Barao gets Gagnon's back off a blown headlock throw attempt and gets the Nova Uniao house special, the arm-triangle choke. Very good finish by Barao, but Gagnon looked defeated when he blew the takedown attempt and just gave up mount and the obvious side choke attempt. Still, awesome of Barao to get right to business and close the show.
12:34 a.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: I agree that Gagnon has already exceeded expectations, regardless of the final outcome. Is it safe to say that the Barao we’re seeing tonight would not beat T.J. Dillashaw in a rematch? I think so.
12:33 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: In spite of Barao's generalship, stuffing the takedown and punishing Gagnon for attempting them with his knees, I still have this 19-19 after two rounds. Gagnon really landed a whole slew of punches in that round, especially the left hand. 20-18 Barao scorecards could be feasible, though. Regardless, I think Gagnon has already exceeded people's expectations by actually competing meaningfully.
12:32 a.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: I’m going to give that round to Mitch Gagnon, making this third and final round must-win for both men.
12:32 a.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: I would have preferred to see Gagnon continue to throw punches in the pocket instead of initiating the clinch at the end of the second round. That’s where it seemed like he was having his greatest success.
12:30 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: Gagnon just landed five consecutive left hooks on Barao and got him moving backwards but still couldn't get the takedown. This fight is getting even more competitive, albeit slow at points, during the second round. The Canadian still can't buy a takedown, though, and Barao is still landing good knees.
12:24 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: Gagnon is taking chances and being aggressive, which is great, since upsets against elite fighters don't normally happen by accident and Barao's chin, if anything, has been his Achilles heel at times. But, Barao dropped him with that left hook and is starting to work his leg kicks, clearly taking the first.
12:16 a.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: Fox Sports 1’s telecast messing up moved the needle more than any of the fights tonight. The NFL game is currently in overtime, allowing for more viewers to potentially switch over altogether.
12:11 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: Oh man, it looked like the feed came back for a second and then died again during Buffer's intro. Who has the first Brazilian technology-carrot joke?
12:10 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: Easily my favorite tweet on the sudden UFC Fight Night technical difficulties:
Did something weird just happen?— Dave Meltzer (@davemeltzerWON) December 21, 2014
Meltzer's always a classic. That's why the best maneuver in pro-wrestling is named after him.
12:09 a.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: I NEED A MINUTE TO MYSELF….to catch up on UFC 173. What the hell? Apparently the Fox has temporarily lost the feed from Brazil. So let’s relive Renan Barao’s most agonizing career moment instead.
12:08 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: Oh, is FS1 screwed up? Got these Barao-Dillashaw and Cormier-Henderson promos. It's UFC 173 time! What the hell is going on? It's too late for this. I'm going on Twitter for the laughs.
12:06 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: I love the idea of Dollaway getting a big name guy after quietly improving his game, but Machida seems like absolute kryptonite for him. I just can't imagine how Dollaway could pull it off short of rocking Machida and hitting a guillotine or something. More importantly, even with his improved standup, Dollaway is the kinda guy that Machida always puts in the crosshsirs.
12:02 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: It's now Sunday morning in the East, meaning it is officially 3 a.m. local time in Barueri. Mitch Gagnon and Renan Barao aren't even in the cage yet. “The time is now?” More like the time is forever.
12:01 a.m. ET Jordan Breen: He makes pottery and came out to an Architecture in Helsinki track for one of his fights. He's good by me.
11:58 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: “Mr. Durkin” is all toothless smiling after winning 30-27 scorecards, and urging Antonio Carlos Jr. to come out and train at Reign Training Center in So Cal as they embrace. What a charmer.
11:52 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Antonio Carlos Jr. is finding out what Big Ten wrestling is all about. And, wouldn't you believe it, but a Brazilian crowd at 3 a.m. doesn't really seem to care for what Pat Cummins learned on the wrestling mats in State College, Penn.
11:41 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: I'm more pro-leglock than your average dude, but Carlos Jr. repeatedly going for leglocks in long footsie battles with Cummins is a mistake. Cummins biggest issue is often wearing himself out while attacking, and the Brazilian is putting himself in a position where Cummins can work less to stay on top and get free, unabated shots against him. Cummins has to be wary, of course, but “Mr. Durkin” is doing damage on top when he gets the chance to unload.
11:36 p.m. ET Chris Nelson: Really wish they would translate Antonio Carlos Jr.’s nickname, just so we could hear Bruce Buffer call someone “Shoe Face” in the Octagon.
11:35 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: Brian Knapp just went through the event calendar to find the most obscure matchup he could #thetimeisnow #theyareallkillersandmonstersanddestroyers.
11:33 p.m. ET Brian Knapp: C'mon. No love for Sean O'Connell-Matt Van Buren?
11:31 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: I thought all their fights from now on were utilizing “The Time is Now” theme. No matter, it’s Jones-Cormier by a landslide.
11:30 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: You're a goof. Jones-Cormier, please.
11:29 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: Flash poll -- Of the fights the UFC is heavily advertising in its “The Time is Now” campaign, which fight has you the most hyped? I’m rolling with Anderson Silva against Nick Diaz.
11:25 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Magomedov's stoppage at 4:57 of the third round is officially the latest in a UFC three-round fight. I assume it replaces John Howard's last-second smashing of Dennis Hallman in a fight Hallman was winning every second of until Josh Rosenthal stood him up for no reason in the last 30 seconds of the fight. Wee.
11:21 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Great finish for Rashid Magomedov. Not only do you never know what's up on the judges scorecards, it's darn hard to emerge as a lightweight prospect. You need to force people to sit up and take notice with so much talent, and so much dynamic talent more importantly. Keeping the pressure up in round three and then finishing Silverio after he hurt him in business-like fashion with mere seconds left.
11:21 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: Goodness, Rashid Magomedov brought the violence that final minute, silencing the full house in Brazil.
11:13 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: The first round was a near toss-up, but I've got 20-18 after two for Rashid Magomedov. He really started using his kicks well in the second round. Both legs, inside and outside, upstairs, to the body and to the head. He's starting to land his right hand as a result. Still, this fight could be a 19-19 draw on the cards going into the third, so still everything to fight for.
11:06 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: Anthony McGann (Rampage's manager) Rampage and Coker on Monday's Beatdown. It was also interesting Rampage was wearing a Monster hat. I have been hearing rumors about them as well.
11:04 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Lightweights Rashid Magomedov and Elias Silverio getting it popping in a battle of solid prospects. Stann saying that Magomedov's Russian trainer had a visa screw-up and he's been having to adapt. So many weird stories like that leading into UFC debuts, like John Lineker never having left Brazil or fought at flyweight before, and then trying to do both before his UFC debut against Louis Gaudinot.
10:59 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: I know breaking news is fun and we should all high-five and whatever, but can I be the first realist here? How long before “Rampage” just becomes a complete pain in the UFC's ass again and starts complaining about being mistreated?
10:55 p.m. ET TJ De Santis: That Rampage re-introduction video could have been shot before he even signed with Bellator. I wouldn't be surprised if they already have them made up for everyone under contract.
10:49 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: For all of his hype, Erick Silva’s victory list looks like this: Luis Ramos, Charlie Brenneman, Jason High, Takenori Sato and now, Mike Rhodes. Not exactly a murderer’s row. He is supposed to spend some time training at Jackson-Wink MMA next year. It will be interesting to see how that changes his approach.
10:47 p.m. ET Chris Nelson: @jordanbreen: You mean "proving Buffer will read whatever is on the card in front of him, Ron Burgundy style."
10:45 p.m. ET Brian Knapp: Not a good night for former Resurrection Fighting Alliance champions. First, Collier and now Rhodes.
10:44 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Official time of Erick Silva's complete schooling of Mike Rhodes is actually 75 seconds. I was just off by one! Also, Bruce Buffer calls it a “katagatame choke,” proving the Brother Buffer know how to regionally tailor their product regardless of country.
10:42 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: I always feel so warm and fuzzy when Mario Yamasaki flashes me a heart while I'm getting my fix of violence.
10:43 p.m. ET Chris Nelson: Erick "Occam's Razor" Silva handles that biz.
10:41 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Well, a lot could go wrong for Mike Rhodes. I said Erick Silva in less than two minutes, looks like it took him about 76 seconds or something. Takedown, side control, looked at the pass to mount but jumped right to the other side and finished the arm-triangle choke. Complete schooling by Erick Silva.
10:41 p.m. ET TJ De Santis: Nice win for Roger Huerta! Oh, Erik Silva, sorry.
10:40 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: Well, fortunately Mr. Yamasaki didn’t play a role in the outcome. I’m a little disappointed Rhodes didn’t last a little longer, though.
10:39 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Oh, man. Tristen's gotta be moist here. Mario Yamasaki reffing an Erick Silva bout in Brazil. What could ever go wrong?
10:37 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: I'm with you entirely, Tristen. Rhodes got into the UFC a little quicker than you'd like cause he beat Alan Jouban in RFA, but he's got tons of upside. If he can take this into the second half of the fight and dominate from the outside, he could make magic happen. That said, Silva could just blitz him in two minutes here, too.
10:36 p.m. ET Brian Knapp: Patrick Wyman picked Rhodes, if I remember correctly.
10:35 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: I’ve seen a few people calling another Erick Silva walkover against Mike Rhodes tonight, but I don’t necessarily see this as a replay of the Takenori Sato bout. Rhodes may be 0-2 in the UFC, but he comes from a solid camp [Roufusport] and had some steam behind him as a prospect when he debuted. Don’t get me wrong, I still expect Silva to win, but I wouldn’t be shocked if Rhodes makes things at least somewhat interesting.
10:32p.m. ET TJ De Santis: Why is it that the UFC is shoving this "The time is now" saying? Am I missing the magic of this phrase?
10:33 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Did I just hear “there's no timeouts” in MMA, guys? I know one Bitcoin and fighters' rights advocate who begs to differ:
10:31 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: Good call by the referee, There are no timeouts in MMA. Right? Well unless you are sitting on a stool.
10:26 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: No.
Fight is over! eye poke. wow— UFCONFOX (@UFCONFOX) December 21, 2014
10:27 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: I know of a few Gracies that just got pissed off by that stoppage. #prideneverdies
10:26 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: Antonio dos Santos Jr. dislocates his finger blocking a punch, stops the fight himself, pops it back into place and loses via TKO. It’s a shame because that was shaping up to be a pretty entertaining fight.
10:23 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: Nice first round you could hear the shots by both guys landing.
10:22 p.m. ET TJ De Santis: For my money, Hendrix did it best.
10:20 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: It's a mortal lock that Dana thinks that the Red Hot Pepper Men wrote “Higher Ground” instead of Stevie Wonder, right?
10:19 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: As exciting as this first-round has been, I’m dreading what this fight could devolve into if it goes the full three. 10:18 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Meanwhile, in the Octagon, Daniel Sarafian and Antonio dos Santos Jr. are paying tribute to this unfolding “Rampage” Jackson drama by throwin' dem bungalows. Both guys have eaten leather here, but Sarafian could be playing with fire given the fact he should have a real advantage on the ground.
10:18 p.m. ET TJ De Santis: Breen, Survivor is only second to the Chili Pepper's cover of "Higher Ground" per Dana White.
10:15 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Everybody play this track simultaneously during the main event and let's see if anything happens. I predict Lyoto finally debuts a fatality.
10:14 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Tristen, I'd say “Eye of the Tiger” is one of the most popular Brazilian MMA walk out jams, up there with “Come With Me” by Diddy and Jimmy Page, “Yeah” by Usher (for whatever reason), “Standstorm” by Darude, and that hilarious “Mortal Kombat” techno mix from the first movie. MOOOOOORTAL KOOOOMBAT!!!
10:14 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: It says volumes about Daniel Sarafian and his underachieving ways post-TUF that he's facing a one-dimensional striker without a lot of MMA experience, coming in on short notice, and he's only -155 on a lot of books. You just can't trust this guy. I'm still reeling from Kiichi Kunimoto absolutely tooling him.
10:13 p.m. ET TJ De Santis: The music industry might be dead. But bands like Survior will be rich forever for just one song that will never, ever, go away.
10:11 p.m. ET TJ De Santis: Did they forget to go to commerical? Why are we seeing an enterance? I can't handle unexpected content!
10:04 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: From the always fantastic MMADecisions.com, which like me, is a Halifax, Nova Scotia product:
With his dissent in the Means victory, Tony Weeks ties Chris Lee and Sal D'Amato for the most UFC split-decision dissents (4) in 2014.— MMADecisions.com (@MMADecisions) December 21, 2014
Weeks is almost always awful on the scorecards. D'Amato is bad, but his treachery is mostly so profound because the UFC loves him so much and gives him so many international assignments. However, Lee is generally a solid judge, and his dissents this year include Jason Saggo over Paul Felder, Jingliang Li over Nordine Taleb and Jessica Eye over Alexis Davis, which are all highly defensible. Just goes to show that not all dissenters are created equal.
9:54 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: When I was writing that mocking eulogy for Igor Pokrajac's bizarre UFC run, I thought maybe I was misremembering his fight with Maldonado, since I was in the crowd with Greg Savage, in the true “cheap seats” days, watching dudes in Ovechkin jerseys get trashed on $12 beers. But then, this, courtesy of FightMetric senior boffin Michael Carroll:
@jordanbreen Had a -57 sig. strike differential vs. Maldonado and still won the decision. Greatest deficit for dec. winner ever. Stud.— Michael Carroll (@MJCflipdascript) December 21, 2014
Gonna miss ya, Iggy.
9:52 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Turd alert guys. The judging data is in from the undercard, and the goofball who gave Marcio Alexandre Jr. the first two rounds against Tim Means is... American MMA and boxing staple Tony Weeks! People always talk about “hometown” judging in Brazil, but there's so few Brazilian judges used. Most wack decisions are non-Brazilians, as I've pointed out liberally. Of course, Fernando Amaral, an actual Brazilian judge, gave Means rounds one and two. MMA, you guys.
9:50 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Never rock Lugz, I'm way above. This mic is like Golden Gloves versus Spark Plug.
9:50 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: Seeing that old Lugz logo on the side of Lyoto Machida’s gi is a sad reminder that sponsors as we know them in the UFC are gone forever.
9:45 p.m. ET TJ De Santis: Just because you spoiled the UFC announcement doesn't mean you'll spoil my night with lackluster humor.
9:45 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: In honor of TJ showing up I'm going to go put on a sweater.
9:43 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: It’s nice to know UFC President Dana White still watches, even when he is on vacation.
Horrible stoppage!!! @ufconfoxsports1— Dana White (@danawhite) December 21, 2014
9:42 p.m. ET TJ De Santis: I'm officially here now. The party can now begin.
9:40 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Left hook-right hook series put a lunging, swinging Pokrajac on the mat and “Pezao” pounces for the finish. Pokrajac was about to get finished off regardless, but it figures that Fernando Yamasaki would stop the fight when Pokrajac is trying to turn and face Lima while covering his head, which is the definition of an “intelligent defense” in that sorta situation. Lima wouldn't have stopped punching and Pokrajac probably would've been finished regardless, but let those two decide that. That said, that'll be it for Igor Pokrajac in the UFC. Pour a little liquor out, guys.
9:40 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: This is the part of the night where Rampage should come into the Octagon and call out a punch-drunk Igor Pokrajac.
9:36 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Fernando Yamasaki, more affectionately known as “Wario,” is back in the spot to referee this potential splatterfest. Even though he's likely to win and probably by knockout, “Pezao” Lima at +375 is always gonna scare me given his dedication and motivation issues in the past. Then again, this is his home state. He should be pumped up.
9:34 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Igor Pokrajac about to get a rough return to the UFC against Brazilian hitter Marcos Rogerio de Lima. As Brian mentioned, Pokrajac hasn't won a fight in 949 days, but not just that! He is also coming off of a 406-day layoff due to injury. Buckle up, Duke Igor.
9:33 p.m. ET Brian Knapp: Igor Pokrajac hasn't won a fight in 949 days. Cro Cop's coattails are something else.
9:30 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: So what matchups do we want to see Quinton Jackson involved in before he hangs up the gloves? I’m going with Tyrone Spong.
9:26 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: The same type of people who order lobster at Golden Corral are the ones who would buy a ham sandwich from Burger King.
9:25 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Carneiro probably wishes he waited til this fight to propose to his girlfriend. No offense to Wallid Ismail, but I'd rather acquire a fiancee in the Octagon than in Jungle Fight. Then again, I'd rather propose marriage after having actually earned a decision, but it didn't stop Benson Henderson.
9:23 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: Does anyone really go to Burger King and order a ham sandwich?
9:18 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: “Moicano” killing it so far in his debut. The first round, he used an array of kicks to touch Niinimaki, and now, he's putting clean right hands on him with regularity. One thing I will say, however, is that despite his surprisingly high calibre and well-roundedness for a prospect, Carneiro is not a home run hitter, so if he keeps styling on the Finn like this, it'll probably be for 15 minutes.
9:10 p.m. ET Chris Nelson: "Osiris Maia" always makes me think of ODB. RIP.
8:58 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Renato Carneiro about to make his short-notice UFC debut against Tom Niinimaki. Despite Niinimaki being a tough guy who hasn't got to show his best stuff in the UFC, I think he might end up in a bad place here. “Moicano” is a supremely gifted prospect who was showing significant promise back in 2011. Him going to law school and so on put his MMA career on the backburner for a minute, but he's a big featherweight with well-rounded skills. I'm darn stoked for this.
8:50 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: 30-27 Hacran Dias on my scorecard. Elkins competed in each round, but Dias' savvy takedown game and strong top offense should get him in the nod. Could see Elkins' late surge in the third getting him a scorecard, but who knows? It's Brazil! Bring on the 30-27 Elkins scorecards, in one of those Lyoto Machida-Phil Davis “Let's rip off the Brazilian guy!” deals.
8:50 p.m. ET Chris Nelson: Dias looks good but he's gonna get killed by Anderson Silva, IMO.
8:37 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Dias levitates out of an Elkins single attempt, takes him down easily, now cutting through his guard. Great stuff from the Brazilian so far, who is finally coming into his own after racking up a massive record early in his career. Also, I know he didn't mean it this way, but Brian Stann's “Elkins is going to try a triangle... he's going to miss” comment killed me.
8:35 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Darren Elkins-Hacran Dias will be officiated by Jerin Valel. Great to see the UFC giving Canada's best MMA referee more international work. I truly think he's one of the best refs in the world. Will never forget his judicious permission of violence at the WEC 49 card in Edmonton.
8:33 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Is Jose Aldo's big iced out Jesus piece chain a subtle dig at Anthony Pettis? If they ever meet in a pound-for-pound, historical superfight, it should be lucha de apuesta, chain versus chain.
8:33 p.m. ET Chris Nelson: Sure hope the Brazilian fans didn’t use up all their boos on Tim Means, because here comes Darren Elkins.
8:20 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Better than the baby sailor outfit that Shinya Aoki and Masakazu Imanari got him.
8:20 p.m. ET Chris Nelson: Ulka looks sad. I'm gonna send him a Hot Topic gift card for Christmas so he can buy some new Manic Panic.
8:20 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: Good thing the Issa vs Sasaki fight ended in a finish my phone and twitter were going so crazy I would have scored that fight like a real judge because I missed most of the action.
8:20 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: The UFC is desperate for star power, but Jackson seems to be at a point now where it's looking like a killer against middling opposition or looking uninspired against elite fighters taking the game seriously. The UFC can't hide him in too many ways, unless he's gonna fight heavyweights. I'd be into that.
8:18 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: I think the most pertinent question right now during this MMA arms race is this: Is “Rampage” a bigger loss for Bellator than it is an acquisition for the UFC? I mean, light heavyweight is lacking in depth, but Jackson didn’t even deserve to beat “King Mo.”
8:16 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Meanwhile, while the MMA community comes to grips with Quinton Jackson's imminent return to the Octagon, Leandro Issa just turned in the best performance of his career as a +400 underdog, dominating Yuta Sasaki with both improved standup and a dominant top game. Great choke escape, right into full mount for Issa, then a gruesome rear-naked-choke-slash-neck-crank to finish. Legit upset and a sassy performance.
I have confirmed from sources that @Rampage4real has signed by the UFC.— Sherdog (@TheSherdoggy) December 21, 2014
8:15 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: Winner winner chicken dinner!!!!
8:14 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: It's 8:14 p.m. in the East, and Jon Anik says that during the main card, they're gonna have a big ol' announcement and we need to tune in to see it. Why can't folks just tune into Sherdog.com, or Jeff Sherwood's Twitter account?
8:09 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Leandro Issa looks fantastic through round one, landing hard leg kicks and controlling Sasaki on top. Also managed to avoid those wacky situations where “Ulka” dives on your back out of nowhere. However, cardio has been an issue for Issa in the past, so the next 10 minutes or less should be pretty darn formative.
8:09 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Leandro Issa looks fantastic through round one, landing hard leg kicks and controlling Sasaki on top. Also managed to avoid those wacky situations where “Ulka” dives on your back out of nowhere. However, cardio has been an issue for Issa in the past, so the next 10 minutes or less should be pretty darn formative.
8:10 p.m. ET Mike Fridley: Sounds like my first sexual encounter, Jordan.
8:04 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Time for Japanese grappling prodigy “Ulka” Yuta Sasaki to try to teach a lesson about grappling to a guy who already has a BJJ black belt in Leandro Issa. Sasaki is an awkward fighter, incredibly tall and spindly for 135 pounds and is an incredibly dynamic, finish-oriented grappler. Can take your back and choke you out in a heartbeat, as he did with Roland Delorme in his UFC debut in barely a minute.
8:05 p.m. ET Brian Knapp: Yuta Sasaki rocking the Hobbit hair.
8:02 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: We were talking about the UFC competing with the NFL earlier, but did anyone realize the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl is on right now? Air Force vs. Western Michigan. Who wants to bet against a game featuring a service academy against a directional school outdrawing some Jungle Fight prelims?
7:58 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: I really hope Nick Diaz gives a more inspired performance against Anderson Silva than his brother did against Rafael dos Anjos.
7:52 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: I wanted to give round 2 to Means but its so hard to give a guy who got knocked down and taken down the round so I punted and called it a 10-10 round.
7:52 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Buhaha, 29-28 Alexandre scorecard. I love how any time there's a fight like this, people in the MMA Twitterverse are still terrified. “30-27 Means, but we're in Brazil!” This is why. It's even scarier knowing that most of the time there's only one or two Brazilian judges, and most of the awful Brazilian UFC event decisions have been authored by non-Brazilians. I'm excited to see who this turd judge was.
7:50 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Even though he arguably won by knockout in round two, Tim Means is about to win a decision, barring any insane judging screwjobbery here. It's 30-27 Means on my card. If Alexandre wants to really embody his avatar Lyoto, he needs to beef up the defense. His face looks like he was robbed by a gang of thugs with bricks.
7:50 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: Dammit Tristen, that Carlo Prater reference reminded me of Titan Fighting Championship 32 again. I cannot get it out of my head.
7:48 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: Speaking of instant replay, whatever happened to this? After the Erick Silva-Carlo Prater debacle, Marc Ratner said, "Recently, Zuffa has decided to implement the use of instant replay at all international events that are self-regulated and to encourage all regulators to consider the feasibility and effectiveness of instant replay in the sport of MMA. While instant replay would not have reversed the call in the Silva-Prater bout, we believe that it could be valuable to referees and the sport in the future."
7:47 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Alexandre might have a karate master dad and might be a solid MMA striker, but there's a reason why he's only just nicknamed “Lyoto” at this point. Machida doesn't put himself into too many bad spots, whereas Alexandre can't avoid the left hand and clinch knees from Means, and when he circles away, he circles right into Means' body kicks. Means is just breaking him down, even though the Brazilian is still throwing back.
7:45 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: You want to advance MMA/UFC implement instant replays.
7:45 p.m. ET Brian Knapp: MMA would be so much better with knees on the ground.
7:44 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: Is it safe to say that Alexandre just narrowly avoided getting burned in a game of just the (finger)tip?
7:44 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Excuse me, Nelson. I believe you mean the Chael Sonnen Memorial Award for the Toughest Backne on the Planet.
7:44 p.m. ET Chris Nelson: Is too late to get Alexandre in there for Backne of the Year?
7:42 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: After multiple slo-mo replays, the knee is clearly clean. Awful that Alexandre got a break there. I know the company has a lot of fish to fry right now, but the UFC really need to be proactive in lobbying for this rule to be changed given how often it crops up and engenders situations where fighters are trying to undermine the system and get fouled intentionally.
7:42 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: Home field advantage? Get your damn hand of the mat and get up or make those legal and we will have no issues.
7:41 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: Just noticed that Means yelled for instant replay. Glad to see “The Dirty Bird” only got a warning, but it appears that Alexandre benefited greatly from the break.
strong>7:39 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Tim Means hits Alexandre with a dodgy knee. It looks like the Brazilian still might have had a microscopic atom of one fingertip down, but he was lifting his hand anyway and clearly played up the “foul” only reacting when he realized that it could've been a foul. Another reminder of why the downed opponent rule needs to change. Boo.
7:36 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: 10-9 Means for me in the opening round, but he's leaving much to be desired strategically. He's landing those hard lefts, but he's still fighting in a way that lets Alexandre have the only real chance he has to win. Also, he crushed him to the body, why hasn't he gone back? Means is a veteran, these are the things he has to draw on against young, inspired karate champs.
7:34 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: Those left hands from Tim Means are mean.
7:32 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: I’m just wondering if even those six names would have an impact on those watching the NFL. Unless they are all fighting each other, at the same time, inside a cage … Wait.
7:31 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: Honestly, it barely felt like there was an event going on this weekend. Dana White is off surfing on some tropical island, and the rest of the world is already looking ahead to Jones-Cormier.
7:31 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: Ummm, You're Dana White and I take it you are not fighting that night. Anderson, Rousey, GSP, McGregor. Sorry I was one off. Oh wait CM Punk. I was right.
7:30 p.m. ET Mike Fridley: Speaking of the Niners, as a Buckeye fan, let’s hope Jim Harbaugh’s “moral victories” stay in the NFL. I do not want that scUMbag recruiting in Ohio from that state up north.
7:28 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Speaking of Lyoto, it's time for his numero uno fanboy, Marcio Alexandre Jr., to try to navigate deep waters in his first post-TUF Brazil bout against rugged veteran and hardened man Tim Means. Buckle up, karate man.
7:28 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: That’s the one blessing in disguise about the Niners being out of playing contention: I don’t feel like I’m missing as much as I would if they had something more at stake. That said, I would still check in on the game to see if Colin Kaepernick could author some kind of late season moral victory.
7:26 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Hey, Tristen, you're a Niners fan. If you weren't being paid to watch Lyoto Machida catch Clarence Byron Dolla Dolla Bill Y'all out of the air with chopsticks, would you watch this card, or your Niners trudging toward the end to a disappointing season?
7:27 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: Who are those six Mr. Sherwood?
7:26 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: *Dana White voice* THIS CARD ISN’T FOR YOU. THIS IS THE FASTEST GROWING SPORT IN THE WORLD, INCLUDING BRAZIL. IF YOU DON’T LIKE IT, DON’T WATCH IT.
7:25 p.m. ET Jeff Sherwood: If none of the 6 stars the UFC has is not on the card NFL will kill the UFC, especially this time of the season.
7:25 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Well, if you're really looking to watch something brutal happen, look at what Mark Sanchez is doing to Eagles fans' feelings right now. Maybe the UFC will get an influx of viewership as angry, raging Philly and South Jersey folk look for an outlet after the Redskins finish this.
7:24 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: Speaking of football, it’s not everyday that the UFC is running an event opposite the NFL. While the two games on the docket aren’t exactly barnburners, nor is this Barueri card. How much of an impact does America’s favorite form of organized violence impact people watching the UFC?
7:22 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: I'm just thankful that a fight where a fighter scored a dramatic and brutal buzzer-beater knockout after being held down for a round with Fernando Yamasaki as the referee happened cleanly. I feel like in most instances, “Wario” Yamasaki would've stood them up to let Miranda kick that field goal.
7:19 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: There has to be something horrible about losing a fight at the 4:59 mark of a round, especially when you were dominating on the ground for the previous four minutes.
7:17 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Since we're winding down the year in Brazil, this probably warrants mentioning somewhere: the UFC heads to Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil for the first time on Feb. 22. Since southern Brazil has a strong MMA community and it's a more affluent area, it's rumored they've already sold half the tickets for the Gigantinho Arena, which holds just under 15,000 typically. And that was before they announced the Rashad Evans-Glover Teixeira fight that will headline it. They snatched them up with no idea what the card was going to be, which is nice for the UFC.
7:10 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Jake Collier's got good volume striking for a big guy and serviceable wrestling. I think he can potentially run Miranda out of gas, as a lot of aggressive strikers can. That's how Fabio Maldonado beat Miranda both times earlier in their careers. Collier's way more well-rounded than Miranda, just needs to dodge heavy power shots.
7:09 p.m. ET Tristen Critchfield: I have to say I’m quite pleased that tonight marks the debut of the Fight Pass prelims on Apple TV, a move that was teased as being “in the works” ever since the digital streaming network was officially unveiled last December. That, and the combination of Jon Anik and Brian Stann in the booth makes me happy to start the night.
7:08 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: For what it’s worth, a quick check of the weather in Barueri, Sao Paulo, Brazil shows that it’s 82 degrees presently. Seems quite cool by Brazilian standards.
7:05 p.m. ET Brian Knapp: Give us a scouting report on Mr. Collier, Jordan.
7:02 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Actually, C.J., going back to this being the second UFC card in Barueri, this card will probably be an upgrade from the first they got. The first card had some fun spots -- Raphael Assuncao getting his breakout win over T.J. Dillashaw even if I think he lost, Rousimar Palhares getting cut by heel hooking Mike Pierce too long -- the card was pretty dry. And that's even considering the fact I think Jake Shields and Demian Maia had a way-more-exciting-than-you'd-expect 25-minute grappling match.
6:59 p.m. ET C.J. Tuttle: After being subjected to Titan Fighting Championship 32 last night, I am ready to wipe that bad taste out of my mouth with UFC Fight Night “Machida vs. Dollaway.” Regardless how tonight’s card turns out, I think it’s safe to say anything will be a significant upgrade.
6:55 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Despite joking about it off the bat, I actually think that this card has some potential hidden fun. There's some potential prospects here and a whole crop of Brazilian fighters being asked to sink or swim. Outside of the co-features, which as mentioned, are basically tune-up fights for former champions, there's a lot of real competitive matchmaking here. Not entirely sure it makes for a fun or exciting card, but we'll at least get some questions about up-and-coming fighters and potentially put two excellent fighters in position for more prestigious fights.
6:50 p.m. ET Jordan Breen: Welcome to the 46th and final UFC card of the year 2014. Naturally, the only way to cap off such an intense year of MMA action is with former UFC champions Lyoto Machida and Renan Barao facing C.B. Dollaway and Mitch Gagnon respectively, inside the Jose Correa Gymnasium in Barueri, Sao Paulo, Brazil. But, regardless of whether or not this card is headlined by a pair of tune-up fights, it is the UFC's second trip to the venue, returning after the Demian Maia-Jake Shields card in October of last year.
4:15 p.m. ET Mike Fridley: Sherdog.com's UFC Fight Night rapid reaction will kickoff Saturday at approximately 7 p.m. ET.