Another one went down in the history books tonight, fans and friends. Tonight the UFC presented UFC 129: “St. Pierre vs. Shields” in front of 55,000 screaming Canadians. With all twelve fights being available through some form or another, UFC fans in attendance and around the world were treated to a night of fantastic action, and by far the best MMA event of the year. Without hyperbole, UFC 129 should go down as the greatest UFC event of all time, one of (if not the) greatest MMA event of all time, and one of the most important events in UFC and MMA history. Here are the full results as well as some early commentary on UFC 129: “St. Pierre vs. Shields”.
Pablo Garza defeats Yves Jabouin by Submission (Flying Triangle) at 4:31 of Round 1. John Makdessi defeats Kyle Watson by KO (Spinning Backfist) at 1:27 of Round 3. Jason MacDonald defeats Ryan Jensen by Submission (Triangle Choke) at 1:37 of Round 1. Ivan Menjivar defeats Charlie Valencia by TKO (Strikes) at 1:30 of Round 1. Claude Patrick defeats Daniel Roberts by Unanimous Decision.
Jake Ellenberger defeats Sean Pierson by KO (Strikes) at 2:42 of Round 1. Rory MacDonald defeats Nate Diaz by Unanimous Decision. Ben Henderson defeats Mark Bocek by Unanimous Decision. Vladimir Matyushenko defeats Jason Brilz by KO (Strikes) at 0:20 of Round 1. Lyoto Machida defeats Randy Couture by KO (Front Kick) at 1:05 of Round 2. Jose Aldo defeats Mark Hominick by Unanimous Decision. Georges St. Pierre defeats Jake Shields by Unanimous Decision.
When it comes to the “UFC on Prelims LIVE” specials, both on Facebook and Spike TV, all I can really say is “Wow”. From the moment the first fight aired on Facebook (about five minutes late, mind you), we had non-stop fireworks and several amazing finishes. You know you’re in for something special when the first fight is a non-stop war that ends with a Flying Triangle submission.
From there, things got even better. John Makdessi nailed a fantastic spinning backfist to KO Kyle Watson after three very intense rounds of action. Then, Jason MacDonald triumphantly returned to the UFC after a serious injury and proceeded to put on a ground clinic before choking out Ryan Jensen. But that was only three of the four finishes we got to see on the Facebook stream of “UFC Prelims LIVE”. To top it all off, Ivan Menjivar heinously broke Charlie Valencia’s nose with a brutal elbow before finishing him.
And in the main event of the Facebook broadcast, Claude Patrick and Daniel Roberts had a pretty entertaining three-round scrap. As if that wasn’t good enough, we had a great finish from Jake Ellenberger and a landmark performance from Sean Pierson, who completely outclassed and outright schooled Nate Diaz. Pierson is definitely one of the can’t-miss prospects of the division.
Overall, this was by far the best “UFC Prelims LIVE” special I’ve ever seen. It’ll take me a few days to come to an official conclusion, but right now I can say that “Prelims LIVE” blasted ahead of the competition in the race to crown my next “dark horse favorite” and replacement to the WEC. I think I’ll be tied up with UFC 129 post-event coverage for the next several days, but sometime next week I may just officially declare “UFC Prelims LIVE” my new dark horse favorite. Stay tuned.
I was very, very, very happy that Ben Henderson defeated Mark Bocek. I think Henderson did more than enough to win all three rounds, and to be honest, I was very displeased with Mark Bocek utilizing lay and pray tactics. Henderson was clearly the better striker, by miles, and his flexibility and ever-improving ground game all but neutralized Mark Bocek. Part of me was worried that Bocek would have been gifted a decision, and that part of me was already planning a mini-tirade, but all is well now that “Smooth” has picked up his first win in the UFC.
Sometimes it’s true that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks… but Vladimir Matyushenko’s old bag of tricks seems to be doing him just fine. Matyushenko has arguably never looked more impressive in the UFC, and I think this is the start of a pretty interesting comeback. With this win, “The Janitor” has now won five out of his last six, and is currently riding high with back-to-back stoppages. So where does he go from here? I don’t know for sure, but I do know that Matyushenko just put a whole lot of Light Heavyweight fighters on notice with his fantastic KO’ing of Jason Brilz.
Does it really get any better than a leaping Front Face Kick KO? That was Lyoto Machida at his best, and I think this fight set up the comeback I’ve been waiting for. Lyoto Machida is back, ladies and gentlemen, and I can’t wait to see what’s next for him. When it comes to Randy Couture, there’s not too much I could say that I haven’t already said before. Randy is one of the most humble, most genuine, most amazing persons in the history of the UFC, as well as one of the greatest fighters in MMA history. I hate to see him go, but I completely understand his decision to do so. Randy Couture… I’m going to miss watching you fight. I’m going to miss you a whole hell of a lot.
What a fantastic co-main event, a fight that truly displayed the tremendous heart and skill of both Jose Aldo and Mark Hominick. To be completely and bluntly honest, I would have only been slightly upset if Mark Hominick had pulled off the surprise upset. Hominick has now asserted himself as one of the best Featherweight fighters in the world, and Jose Aldo now has a giant target on his back since his aura of invincibility has taken a big hit. I can’t wait to see what’s next for Jose Aldo, and I wish nothing but the best for Mark Hominick.
And in the main event, Georges St. Pierre once again proved why he’s the Pound-for-Pound best fighter in the world. Jake Shields is arguably the toughest test GSP has ever faced, and if he’s not, he’s definitely one of the toughest. But just like so many of his other fights, GSP spent the majority of this fight utterly outclassing his opponent. There’s nothing left for GSP at Welterweight… it’s time for a super-fight with Anderson Silva.
Overall, I honestly can’t think of a better UFC event. I can’t think of an event that had more outstanding matches, more dramatic finishes, more amazing submissions, more highlight-reel KO’s. From the absolute bottom to the tip of the top, just about every fight not only lived up to my expectations, but exceeded them. This was a night I don’t think I’ll be forgetting for a long, long, long time. Perhaps it’s just the adrenaline talking right now, but I honestly think UFC 129 could go down as the greatest UFC event of all time.
But that’s just what I thought, fans and friends. What about you? Any thoughts on this card?