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UFC 231: Holloway vs Ortega


Who wins and how?   

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The way he mixed stances and just picked off Ortega was pure poetry in motion. I thought Holloway had knackered himself and Oretga was going to pinch it, but round 4... just wow. One of the best performances I've ever seen in MMA. Very few can touch that level of brilliance.

Felt a bit sorry for his kid, though, like!

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Wow, Santos/Manuwa and Holloway/Ortega were two wonderful slices of bread right there.

Never really liked Manuwa. He just comes across like one of those Geezers in the Dave O'Donnell mould, but fuck me, this was so exciting. Just a collective bunch of 'Uhh's' and gasping from the audience. Thiago Santos is a scary man. He's served his time and deserves a crack at the big boys now. Interesting times ahead. 


Max was just unfucking believable. I thought his days at 145 were numbered but he just put on a masterclass here and made it look easy. Stunning stuff. Everything at 155 is so muddied right now, but Max v Tony would be all kinds of fun down the line. 

What does Joanna do next? She's in no women's land for sure. 



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22 minutes ago, Silky Kisser said:

What does Joanna do next? She's in no women's land for sure. 




 I don't really care that much. I regret to say it, but women's MMA just really isn't that good overall when you compare it to the the main event. Joanna was a bit rubbish tonight. No damage done to her opponent. I"m just not that interested in seeing her fight again, sadly. 

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9 hours ago, Supremo said:

I can't even explain how much I want to see Holloway vs. Khabib, now. Sorry Tony.

It was my thought throughout the fight. Oof!

What a main event. Just as it looked like Holloway was taking over, Ortega comes back in that 3rd. The pace Holloway put on in the 4th had me breathing heavy. It's that pace coupled with his insane movement that is such a bugger for anyone - he drowned Aldo with it, and Ortega just couldn't keep up once Holloway decided to end his night early. Ortega is double tough; it's one of those fights where both men come out of it with their stock raised. Still, Holloway v Khabib, please.

I have always been fearful for Joanna against Sheva. Mainly because Sheva is so much bigger/stronger and Joanna, for all her technical ability, has never had much power. Of course, come the fight it was the wrestling that was the big advantage. Joanna is in a weird position now; her legacy as a great in MMA is very much secured, but that's her lost 3 in a row and I don't know she can ever be Joanna Champion again.

Genuinely, given the choice, I think a big slicing elbow on the ground is the last thing I'd want to take. Nelson's was Cro Cop x Cro Cop nasty. Thoroughly deserved too because the cheating involved was some top bastardy.

12/29/18. Shawn Michaels chin etc.

The first round of Manuwa/Santos was up there for the round of the year, then that main event happened. The most "like people button bashing on a video game" fight of all the "like people button bashing on a video game" fights. Manuwa did well to last as long as he did, in truth, and it's to his credit he got back in the fight towards the end of the 1st, but it felt like a matter of time before Santos ended it. Pure brain damage.

I hate to be a hater, but that's two shows where I've felt Paul Felder wouldn't sound out of place on a WWE commentary team. Adds very little good insight and he's annoyingly unfunny when he's trying to banter it up with Rogan.

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Holloway was a master in there last night. A blow away performance. I'm delighted to see he is clearly past what kept him on the shelf this year, because he is something special. With Max, we're watching an all time great at the peak of his powers. Unbelievable heart shown by Ortega in taking all of that punishment, and by Max for taking the damage that he did in the third and then to turn it around and produce one of the most dominant rounds you'll ever see. Men of steel. 

Valentina showed against Joanna that she clearly had the edge against her in the all around game, and physically is able to impose her will more, but having said that, I still gave Joanna the third and fourth rounds. 

What a stunningly gruesome finish by Nelson. I was hoping Oliviera would get the win as I have a soft spot for the madman, but when you seen his head just burst open and half of his body's liquid splat all over the canvas, I was glad it didn't last much longer after that. 

Dawodu looked impressive against a game Bochniak. He'll get a bigger test next time out, but this was a good showcase for him and he put on a display. 

I unfortunately couldn't get to view the craziness that I gather Manuwa Vs Santos turned out to be. I couldn't find the fight anywhere. I'm not surprised it ended the way it did though, brutally and violently. Despite coming up from 185, I thought Santos at the weigh in looked the bigger man. I'll have to catch it on fight pass on Tuesday. 

Rakic and Dhiegio Lima both scored fantastic finishes on the undercard, Lima with the walk off 1 shot KO, looked the happiest man on earth getting the win and Rakic weathered an intense storm as well as several clearly illegal knees to get the win, so it was well deserved following those. 

Add me to the 'Paul Felder's commentary doesn't do anything for me' group. I wasn't impressed with it on this show, and to be honest, Dominick Cruz hasn't really been my cup of tea these last few times either. 

For the big shows, Anik and Rogan along woth DC/Hardy followed by Gooden or Fitzgerald paired with with Smith and Hardy for the smaller shows is the way to go I feel. I wouldn't have Rogan and Smith on the same show though. 

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Only just got to watch this. Fuck, what a show. 

Holloway vs Ortega was ridiculous. Well worth the wait and definitely lived up to the high expectations I had going in. Holloway’s a beast. He just wasn’t going to be denied here. When Ortega really put it on him in the 3rd I thought ‘here we go’ then Max went up another gear and came out like a man possessed in the 4th. This fight actually reminded me of Jones vs Gustafsson 1 a bit. You had the great champ being really tested and having to dig deep and you had the gutsy challenger leaving it all out there but coming up short. But like Jones-Gus, both men came out with their stock raised.

Ortega will come again. He’s young, it was his first loss and he’s got the type of attitude where I don’t think this will break him. I think he’ll come back better in 2019 and if Holloway sticks around at 145, I can see a rematch sooner rather than later. But surely a move to 155 is not too far away for Max now. Who is there left to beat at 145? He’s done it all really. Aside from Frankie Edgar, which is a great fight, he’s beat everyone else of note at featherweight already. Either as champion or on the climb. The best fights out there are all at 155. Holloway vs Khabib, Holloway vs Ferguson, Holloway vs McGregor 2, Holloway vs Poirier 2, Holloway vs Lee, Holloway vs Gaethje, Holloway vs Cerrone, it goes on and on and on. Brilliant fights.

But yeah. This was an amazing fight. Maybe FOTY. Not sure I’d have it nailed on as #1 above Poirier vs Gaethje but it might be. I’d have to watch both again. Incredible stuff though. 

Enjoyed Shevchenko vs Jedrzejczyk but it went about how I expected. Gutted for Joanna but Shevchenko is a monster at 125. She wasn’t too far off becoming champ at 135. Two mega competitive fights with Amanda Nunes and she’s still the only woman Nunes couldn’t finish. At 125 though, it really feels like she’s getting the best out of herself and fulfilling her potential. She would’ve been the champ months ago if the Montano fight happened. I’m sure of that. But I didn’t think Joanna was bad here. I had her winning 2 rounds, she was just in with a Shevchenko who’s really firing on all cylinders right now. I don’t think anyone’s beating her at 125 for a good while. Who’s in the division who’s better equipped than Joanna Jedrzejczyk? Shevchenko might have that belt a while. 

4 hours ago, ColinBollocks said:

Joanna is in a weird position now; her legacy as a great in MMA is very much secured, but that's her lost 3 in a row

Jedrzejczyk beat Tecia Torres after the two losses to Rose. But I get your overall point. She’s in a funny spot now. Don’t have a clue what’s next. This is why I wasn’t a fan of rushing straight into the immediate rematch with Rose. She deserved a rematch for being such a dominant champion. It wasn’t a question of that. But I don’t think she gave herself time to make the necessary adjustments or go back and really work out why the first fight went how it did and what she could change. I understand why she wanted the rematch ASAP but I think rushing into rematches favours the fighter who won the first time more often than not. Now she’s in a spot where she’s frozen out of two title pictures because she’s 0-2 to Rose at 115 and now she’s lost to Shevchenko at 125. What’s she going to do, hit the cake and try 135? There’s nowhere to go. Shame because she’s way too good a fighter to be stuck in limbo. She needs Rose to lose the title sharpish. 

Gunnar vs Cowboy was a total bloodbath. Christ! Maybe the bloodiest fight since Cain vs Bigfoot 1 years ago. 

Santos vs Manuwa was exactly what you’d expect. There was no other type of fight to be had with these two. Loved every second of it. Santos is a guy that isn’t likely to make any waves in the title picture at 205, there’s a big gap in levels between him and the top 3 in the division. But I honestly think he beats a lot of guys beneath that top tier. He’s a great addition and really adds strength to the weightclass. Not sure he’s staying at 205 full time though. Sure I read him saying he’s going back to 185. I like him at either weight. 

The FS1 prelims didn’t do a great deal for me. Not bad but nothing mind blowing. I had Theodorou vs Anders scored to Anders myself. Ansaroff beating Gadelha was a mild surprise. Gadelha is really slipping lately. She hasn’t looked good for a while. Hard to believe she was almost neck and neck with Jedrzejczyk when they fought just 2 years ago. 

Aleksandar Rakic again was a highlight on the prelims but buried jerking the curtain down on Fight Pass. Clark wasn’t playing either, Rakic had to show some toughness but he came through and got the finish. Hopefully now he’s got his first UFC stoppage he’ll get a higher billing next time. He’s got the tools to be a real player at 205 to me. 

3 hours ago, WeeAl said:

Add me to the 'Paul Felder's commentary doesn't do anything for me' group.

Is there still room for a little ‘un on that bandwagon? 

I like Felder but I find him very dull as a commentator. I was actually a bit taken aback that he was doing this show because he’s just B-show Paul to me. I expect a Cormier or Cruz on the PPVs. It’d be like settling down for a WWF PPV in the early 90s and being met with the sight of Johnny Polo on colour when they had Bobby Heenan available. Worst of all, they had Rashad Evans and Tyron Woodley doing the FOX analysis. Either of which would’ve been a vast improvement on Felder. I’d have had Rashad with Anik and Rogan and shoved Felder in the studio with Woodley. 

Agreed on Cruz as well. I really liked him for a bit but his voice just irritates me now. He’s better than Felder, he does actually offer very good analysis, it’s just his delivery and tone is as dry as a Ryvita and cardboard sandwich. The final nail for me with Cruz was the Khabib vs McGregor fight where he was chatting all manner of shite as we covered and the time. Apparently McGregor was letting Khabib smash his head in to tire him out, see. 

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Shevchenko was just a bit too strong Joanna, the striking was equal I would say but Shevchenko clearly was the better grappler.

Holloway was amazing, first two rounds he looked amazing, the third Ortega nearly caught him but to have that know how that your finishing the guy in the next round and doing it was insane, that pressure he put on him in the Fourth most would have looked to get out, but Ortega showed heart but he was done and the ref rightly called it off. Him going to 155 would be great, so many top fights, 2 rematches, Conor & Poirer  who both beat him, Khabib, if Conor & Khabib get long suspensions then him Vs Tony Ferguson would be great, hell even Nate Diaz would be a fantastic fight, one where I don't see a Diaz having a cardio advantage, that he usually has. Dana said it is trending well, he's not Conor, or even GSP but I think his fun, slightly punchy charisma can make him a bigger star, he'll playfully talk smack but like Rocky he just seems like a guy you want to get behind. I was worried when I seen his kid there though as I still remember Coleman bringing his kids to the Fedor fight and they watched their dad get butchered and I think Coleman had to explain that Fedor wasn't some bad guy who beat up their dad, he was just an athlete doing his job.

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Not wanting to piss on anyone's chips here, but I'm not entirely sure that Max's striking would be quite so effective against a bigger opponent. Nate Diaz striking at 155lbs looks fantastic when he's on his game, but when he jumped up it wasn't so effective. Everyone was banging on about McG's "big left hand" and he managed the square root of fuck all against Khabib.

At 155lbs I'd favour Khabib to walk through most of Holloway's striking and get him to the floor for a relatively comfortable decision win.

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