:: UFC 68: The Uprising - Preview by Stephen Quadros
UFC 60 Review by Stephen Quadros
UFC 68: “The
March 3rd, 2007
By Stephen Quadros, “The
“The Uprising?” But…oh
wait…I get it! The era of the non-sequitur is upon us! It is now official, MMA
event titles do not have to reflect on or represent anything that is on the
show. This actually frees an organization up quite a bit and allows unlimited
“creativity” when monikering it’s products. I truly look forward to UFC 97
“Here’s Johnny,” UFC 98 “Dazed And Confused,” UFC 99 “Return Of The Living Dead”
and of course UFC 100 “Vapors. Good stuff…
Picking a winner…
Honestly, in sports, especially MMA, one can never be 100% accurate of whom will
be victorious over another. But there are certain realities that can become
telling factors: age, injuries (both old and new), beatings previously absorbed
and of course the “reason” for the match in the first place.
|Tim Sylvia (Champion)
||UFC® Heavyweight Title Match
UFC heavyweight champion Tim “The Maine-iac” Sylvia takes a lot of
criticism from fans because he gets conservative inside the Octagon® on
occasion. I feel Tim is one of the greatest fighters in his division and
he has improved drastically since his first bout on pay per view. Yet
people still give him little respect, which is, at least in part, a
But Randy “The Natural” Couture has never really felt the wrath of those
who indirectly pay his salary (the fans)…until now. The nagging
multitude of questions surrounding Sylvia/Couture all revolve around the
word WHY? Why is Randy coming out of retirement after less than a year
on the couch? Why does he think that he can move directly into a title
fight, in the larger division, when the last time he was ‘up there’ he
got smashed, not once, but twice (both Ricco Rodriguez and Josh Barnett
stopped Couture in 2002)? And why is Randy getting an automatic chance
to dethrone Tim, instead of Cro Cop or Brandon Vera who have earned it
with WINS in their recent bouts?
To me Randy Couture is an icon, the highest-ranking historic UFC
champion. But he is also human. And in that humanity comes the frailty
of temptation. Tito Ortiz, Ken Shamrock and Chuck Liddell all recently
saw huge surges in their fight purses and it surely must have peeved
“The Natural” more than a little, knowing they had beaten him in the
‘cash in’ department. The ultimate® downfall of this spiral is that
earnings will always go up and fighters will eventually be forced not
take the bait to return, usually by doctors or commissions who refuse to
allow an aging fighter to risk their health for that one last big
payday. History shows us that when fighters make comebacks based on
greenbacks they always regret it (Muhammed Ali, Larry Holmes, Mike
But is it only about money? What could possibly be the other motivation?
Pressure from the promoters because they ran out of cash cow main
events? Who knows?
Couture is pushing 44 years old and all the wishful thinking, George
Foreman analogies/comparisons can just take a hike. I don’t want to see
the guy (Couture) get hurt. And Tim Sylvia has the power to do just
Sylvia’s motivation? Big Tim is probably feeling a tiny bit slighted by
the audacity that people would consider that Couture should be given an
immediate shot at his belt after he suffered a knockout in his last
fight almost a year ago. And of course The Natural, whether on his own
or by “encouragement” from the promoters, has been critical of Tim’s
recent extended staredowns/fights. Who could blame him?
Randy is not even ranked as a heavyweight and hasn’t been for years. And
he was stopped in his last fight by Chuck (Liddell) at a lower weight
division. So how does that qualify him to step directly into a title
shot? Simple, he’s known to the public (a.k.a. “famous”) for his role on
a “reality” TV show (The Ultimate Fighter).
Now imagine if the NFL, MLB, NBA, World Cup or Wimbledon selected
competitors for their finals based on popularity first and current
athletic achievement second. It wouldn’t be long before these events
lost credibility and suffered a slump similar to what boxing is
currently going through. Playing the “celebrity card” in sports does
create quick surges in positive cash flow. But it also sets up scenarios
to where people will ask questions down the road about the legitimacy of
the sports title, supposedly representing the best in the world, and
what path one follows to covet it.
But on the same token, forgetting HOW people “qualify” for title shots
in big MMA shows, Tim is also probably pretty darn happy that he will
get a payday for fighting Randy instead of, say Cro Cop or Antonio
Silva. He has to know that a scrap with the aging American will be much
easier than the latter mentioned international pair.
Randy is going to get knocked out plain and simple. Then what?
Jason is a competitive, but winnable match
for former middleweight champion Rich “Ace” Franklin. Rich needs to shine
here to give the UFC what they desperately want,; a rematch® with champion
Style-wise, Matt Hughes is a
horrible match for Chris “Lights Out” Lytle. Chris will not be able to
stop the takedown. Hughes will win, most likely by TKO from a cut
(elbows on the ground) in round two.
A tough match for both guys.
My gut says “Babalu” (Sobral) by submission.
Someone is going to get KO’d
in this one. The winner will be whoever connects first. Ah yes, brain
damage as entertainment…
"The Fight Professor", has worked as a host and play-by-play commentator for
some of the world's greatest fight organizations including: PRIDE, K-1 and Inoki
Bom Ba Ye. He currently balances his activities between acting, working as a
analyst/color commentator for the International Fight League (IFL) on Fox Sports
Net, choreographing fight scenes for feature films and playing drums for the
band, Sacred Cowboys. Visit Mr. Quadros on the world wide web at:
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