UFC 89: Bisping v Leben

I was lucky enough to be live at the National Indoor Arena in Birmingham this Saturday for UFC 89. Overall I thought it was a great night of action with almost every fight being action packed.

The main event between England’s own Michael Bisping and fiery Chris Leben was to and fro for 3 rounds with Bisping getting the unanimous decision, and rightly so. Saying afterwards that he was going for the unanimous decision was maybe not the right way to endear himself to fans, where as Leben seemed to get the fans back on side being so humble in defeat and being glad he’d given the fans a great fight.

Fight of the night goes to Chris Lytle v Paul Taylor which was a standup fan’s dream with a maximum of 60 seconds on the ground and the action being furious from the start to the very last second. Taylor lost nothing in defeat and did his home fans proud.

Another English fighter and one for the future, is Dan hardy who beat eccentric Pride veteran Akihiro Gono by split decision in a result that doesn’t really do him justice. A decorated fighter around the world it is nice to see him recognised in the premier MMA organisation in the world.

Brandon Vera’s loss to Keith Jardine only reinforced my belief that his confidence is absent since his return to the UFC. Taking nothing away from an always dangerous Jardine (you don’t beat Liddell and Griffin without considerable skills), but if that had been the Vera of old the fight would have been different, and probably shorter!

Other fights saw Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou overcome by Luis Cane (TKO), Marcus Davis beat England’s Paul Kelly (Submission), Shane Carwin beat Neil Wain (TKO in just 91 seconds), David Bielkheden beat Jess Liaudin (Unanimous Decision), Jim Miller beat David Baron (Submission) and a much more confident Terry Etim beat Sam Stout (Unanimous Decision).

Also debuting at UFC 89 was Ref Mic – a little radio that could be purchased for £10 and meant I could listen to the commentary whilst attending the event live. A great idea which I have since been informed started with motor racing and added much enjoyment to my whole UFC experience.

Next on the UFC calendar is UFC 90 this coming Saturday which sees Patrick Cote look to unseat Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva – good luck Patrick, you’re going to need it!

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