UFC 143 Post Fight Review
By Robert Nash
Welcome back Fabricio Werdum
Werdum returned to the UFC last night in style, when he defeated Roy Nelson via unanimous decision after a dominating performance. The Brazilian’s key to victory was undoubtedly his footwork and much improved striking.
It looked as though it was going to be a short ending for Nelson at first when Werdum took his back early in the first round and looked to apply a rear naked choke, but Nelson being no stranger to the ground used his technique to get out of the position and back to his feet. In the second round, we saw a much improved Werdum apply the Muai Thai clench and delivered several knees landing on the jaw of ‘Big Country’, shots that would have knocked most heavyweights unconscious.
But Nelson known for having one of, if not the best chin in mma was not going to go down easily and kept pressing forward looking to unload his overhand right, and in the third round he did. But it was not meant to be, as Werdum recovered quickly and stayed on the outside landing all sorts of kicks and punches, leaving Nelson in a bloody mess by the end.
‘Big Country’ showed great heart and determination but was no match for the technical Brazilian who looked outstanding and put on the best performance of his career in the UFC. The knees he landed were some of the best seen in the octagon and mirrored the style of pound for pound for pound best fighter in the world Anderson Silva.
Not even current champion Junior Dos Santos was able to do that much damage to nelson. Werdum has proven he is one of the elite fighters in the division and is moving towards title contention. He said it at best “just wait until the next fight”.
Condit Becomes New Interim Champion and Pushes Diaz into Retirement
A huge victory for the ‘Natural Born Killer’ as he defeated Nick Diaz by unanimous decision after a hard fought battle to become the new interim welterweight champion of the world. The victory earns Condit the right to face current welterweight champion George St. Pierre some time in November to unify the belts.
Condit had clearly done his homework on Diaz and played a very smart fight in making sure not to get pushed up against the cage to avoid the brutal boxing combinations of Diaz.
The bout lasted twenty five minutes in what was a real close fight. As predicted neither fighter for the most part had any intention of taking the fight to the ground. In the first round it was a kickboxing match with both fighters taking time to feel each other out.
The second was all Diaz where he managed to unload his trademark boxing combinations connecting with hooks to the body and face from all angles, and began to taunt his opponent, which clearly seemed to bother Condit as he got noticeably stiff with his striking and was warned by his corner not to fall for it. Just when it looked as though Condit was of no real threat to the bad boy from Stockton, he began to loosen out and find his rhythm in the third round, landing several strikes and connected with a beautiful head kick.
In the fourth round a visibly frustrated Diaz continued to push the pace but was unable to land any significant strikes as Condit continued to circle to the centre of the octagon preventing Diaz from playing his game. The fifth and final round saw all Condit in control once again landing kicks to the legs and body, until the last minute of the round when much to the surprise of the crowd Diaz managed to take Condit down and wrap him in a body triangle and attempt an arm bar, but the submission was fended off.
After the fight, a visibly upset Diaz although congratulating the new champion shocked UFC fans when he announced a possible retirement from the sport claiming he won the fight and said “That aint right... I don’t need this s**t”.
Nevertheless it didn’t take away from the fact that Condit is a newly crowned champion and will now face off against St Pierre in what will be his toughest challenge yet.