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UFC 165 review

September 24, 2013

This past Saturday night in Toronto, Canada saw one of the best Light Heavyweight bouts of all time take place. It may seem rude to skip to the end, but the 5-round championship bout between Jon ‘Bones’ Jones and Sweden’s Alexander Gustafsson was an absolute cracker. The challenger brought the fight to the Jones in a big way, and forced the champion to go the distance over a gruelling 25 minutes. Personally, I think Gustafsson was unlucky to not be awarded the win as I had him down for the first three rounds. True, he was barely in it towards the end and Jones inflicted some brutal damage in the last two rounds (check that spinning back elbow to the forehead), but I think the Swede could have pulled off the upset of the decade with his performance. Will we get a rematch between these two before Glover Teixeira gets a crack at the title? I sure hope so because one thing is for sure – Jones entered the ring in a Nike t-shirt that said ‘Not Quite Human’ but after 5 rounds with ‘The Mauler’ he hobbled out of the Octagon looking all too human indeed.

Elsewhere on the card, the co-headline Bantamweight event between Renan Barao and Eddie Wineland proved that anyone on the receiving end of a kick from Jose Aldo’s training partner better watch out. Eddie Wineland has incredible punching power and took the first round but unfortunately he had no response for the interim champion's spinning back kick in the second. It was a deserved winner of the knockout of the night bonus and will definitely feature in the Brazilian’s highlight reel for years to come.

Two friends and former Ultimate Fighter cast mates Brendan Schaub and Matt Mitrione went head to head in a Heavyweight bout. Following a back and forth Twitter war preceding the fight, the atmosphere was charged as these two headed in to the cage. To be honest, I expected these two lunks to just duke it out on their feet so I was quite surprised when Schaub took the fight to the floor and picked up the submission victory.

Elsewhere, Montreal’s Francis Carmont secured the most boring victory of the night and managed to spend 12 of the 15 minutes in top position on Costa Philippou in their Middleweight fight. It was a bit of a snooze-fest to be honest with neither the commentators nor the crowd seeming that entertained. The opening fight was a more entertaining affair with young Russian prospect Khabib Nurmagomedov claiming a unanimous decision win over lightweight veteran Pat Healy. Bar the Carmont fight, this was one of the most enjoyable PPVs I’ve watched since I started this blog. Next up is another UFC Fight Night from Brazil which I doubt will come close to this in terms of excitement and entertainment.

by SeanM