Remember back in the day when the UFC would put together an uninspired card for its overseas division and we here in the States would get to watch that half-assed effort for free on SpikeTV? Yeah, those were good times. Unfortunately, this weekend’s installment of our favorite Octagon-flavored promotion is both suckilicious and very not free – the worst combination possible for an ardent fight fan, a fan who would ordinarily be thrilled to see Jon Fitch relentlessly lay on someone for three full rounds if it cost nothing, but when a hefty pay-per-view fee is thrust into the equation, gets sad and bitter. So let’s break down Saturday night’s UFC 127, and harp on the many reasons why spending that 45 bucks on a few good jigsaw puzzles and three 40-ounce bottles of Colt 45 malt liquor would be wiser.
- BJ Penn vs. Jon Fitch – Whether he’s winning or losing, ex-champ BJ Penn is usually pretty exciting. Unfortunately, when the words “pretty” and “exciting” are used in the same sentence as the words “Jon Fitch”, all polygraph machines within a hundred mile radius glow red hot and kill their masters. Seriously, Fitch is what you’d get if you spliced the DNA of a Purdue University wrestler with the DNA of an Ambien pill. Blankets watch his fights for tips on how to be soothing and comfortable. Sorry, Penn, but this man is going to try his best to get on top of you and whisper “I-love-you-I-love-you-I-love-you” prison-style into your ear, and there’s likely nothing you’ll be able to do about it.
- George Sotiropoulos vs. Dennis Siver – Good old George Sotiropoulos has been on a bit of a tear lately, bouncing back nicely after completely crapping the bed in TUF 6. But Dennis Siver? Really? Watching Siver fight is like watching a toddler slowly learn how to walk. I mean, it’s cool and all that Germany’s best fighter is finally getting the hang of “this MMA thing”, but shelling out dough to watch a non-scrub wax a scrub… Yeah, not so much.
- Chris Lytle vs. Brian Ebersole – As “grizzled old fighters who’ve turned to standing and banging in their twilight years in an effort to retain fans” go, Chris Lytle has done well for himself. It’s too bad his original high-end opponent Carlos Condit got injured, though, as his replacement – Brian Ebersole – is nowhere near as compelling. Ebersole is to today’s scene what Travis Fulton was to the pre-Zuffa MMA world, i.e., a warm body that will fight anyone. And hey, that’s cool if you’re a backwater promoter scrambling at the last minute to get someone to fight in your main event and the guy with his hand stuck in the vending machine backstage hears your pleas and says “yes” on the condition that you’ll help him get his hand out, but it’s not so cool when it’s for a pay-per-view card.
- Michael Bisping vs. Jorge Rivera – There’s actually nothing wrong with this match-up. Michael Bisping and Jorge Rivera will likely just blast each other in the face with skill and aggression until someone drops, making this the only worthwhile bout on the card.
- Kyle Noke vs. Chris Camozzi – A pairing between two TUF 11 washouts? Folks, this is clear and convincing evidence that matchmaker Joe Silva hates us.
(*Note: Ah what the heck, I probably will pay for this card. You know, brand loyalty and all that.)