UFC 156 Aldo vs. Edgar Full Card Recap
By: Daniel Kendrick
Joseph Benavidez def. Ian McCall via unanimous decision
Joseph Benavidez did what he does with diverse striking, busy footwork, & constant pressure to outpoint “Uncle Creepy” Ian McCall en route to a unanimous decision victory to kick off 2013’s first UFC Pay Per View and put himself right back into contention for “Mighty Mouse” Johnson’s 125 lb. title strap. McCall was game as always, but against Benavidez, who makes you earn it every second of the fight, it just wasn’t quite enough. With the win, Benavidez moves to 17-3-0 while “Uncle Creepy” falls to 11-4-1.
Demian Maia def. Jon Fitch via unanimous decision
Highly decorated submission grappling ruled the matchup against highly decorated wrestling as Demian Maia remained unbeaten in the welterweight division by owning former title challenger, Jon Fitch by basically beating him at his own game. Being as that Fitch’s M.O. is to use a smothering ground attack, it proved to be a bad style matchup against quite possibly the most decorated submission grappler to grace the Octagon. Maia moves another step toward his shot at division kingpin, Georges St. Pierre and improves to 18-4-0 with Fitch dropping to 27-5-1 and 1 no contest.
Antonio Silva def. Alistair Overeem via 3rd round KO/TKO stoppage :25
In the upset of the night, “Big Foot” Silva turned the tables and taught Alistair Overeem what happens when you show your opponent’s arsenal no respect by stopping him with 25 seconds left to go in the fight. Overeem basically won the first 2 rounds handily, but continued to carry his hands low with his chin proudly hanging high. With the fight winding down in the final round, “Big Foot” put another upset victory notch on his belt alongside Fedor Emelianenko by stunning Overeem with a big right hand and moving in for the kill with a series of power shots that all found their mark and called for referee, Herb Dean, to step in and save the former K-1 Grand Prix champion from further abuse. With the big win, Silva brings his record to 18-4-0. Overeem takes a step back from the title shot most considered him a shoo-in for after tonight and falls to 36-12-1.
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira def. Rashad Evans via unanimous decision
In the co-main event, “Minotoro” pulled off what most are considering to be something of an upset victory. The average concensus was the “Suga” Rashad would take advantage of Lil’ Nog’s generally lax takedown defense, but the former UFC Light Heavyweight champion just couldn’t seem to get off or find a rhythm instead opting to stand with the former Pan American boxing medalist. Nogueira used his crisp boxing to stifle Evans’ attempts to get something going throughout the fight and though the fight wasn’t what could be considered a crowd pleaser and definitely showed areas of much needed improvement for the 2 veterans, it was a convincing victory for the younger of the Nogueira twins. After tonight’s solid triumph of the former champion, Nogueira’s record improves to 21-5-0 with Evans dropping to 22-3-1.
UFC Featherweight Championship
Jose Aldo, Jr. def. Frankie Edgar via unanimous decision
The night punctuated with Jose Aldo remaining unbeaten in the Octagon and retaining his title in what turned out to be a war of attrition with former lightweight champion, Frankie Edgar. If you know Edgar’s blood and guts history, that’s really not surprising, but then again, we’re talking about a top pound-for-pound candidate here with Aldo. In the early going, Aldo followed his general pattern by finding his range and getting down his opponent’s timing, sticking straight, hard punches, and chopping at his adversary’s base with those Ernesto Hoost-esque leg kicks. After the second round, it looked like the leg kicks would stop Edgar’s movement and immobilize him as it did when Urijah Faber tried taking the title back from the champion. However, as has been proven over and over, Edgar’s heart and stamina began to kick into high gear as the fight moved into the 3rd and championship rounds.
Edgar picked up the pace and started making the champion work harder, not to mention Aldo isn’t nearly as accustomed to his fights going into the late rounds. Arguably, Edgar took the third round and, by the opinions of many, also captured the 4th and 5th rounds. Unfortunately for Edgar, meaningful damage was heavily in favor of the champion (surprise, surprise) and the judges saw it all in favor of Aldo so along with his title, Aldo adds another victory and raises his outstanding record to 22-1-0 with Edgar coming up short in his 3rd consecutive title challenge and falling to 14-4-1.
Francisco Rivera def. Edwin Figueroa via 2nd round KO/TKO stoppage 4:20
Dustin Kimura def. Chico Camus via 3rd round submission 1:50
Isaac Vallie-Flagg def. Yves Edwards via split decision
Bobby Green def. Jacob Volkmann via 3rd round submission 4:25
Tyron Woodley def. Jay Hieron via 1st round KO/TKO stoppage :36
Evan Dunham def. Gleison Tibau via split decision
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