Over the past few days, numerous bouts have been announced for upcoming UFC fight cards. One of those announced bouts is a rematch from The Ultimate Fighter 12 Finale between Nam Phan (16-8) and Leonard “Bad Boy” Garcia (15-6-1). The much-anticipated rematch will happen at UFC Fight Night 24 on March 26, live from the Key Arena in Seattle Washington.
After their first fight in the beginning of December, fans all across the internet, as well as in the arena, felt that Nam Phan was robbed of a decision. For two rounds, or three depending on who you ask, Phan kept pressure on Garcia and was constantly attacking. Phan even put Garcia to the ground with takedowns and knocked him to the ground with a flurry of body shots. The only thing Garcia did, in most people’s eyes, was throw punches that missed their target more often than not. However, in the eyes of two out of the three judges, Garcia was doing enough to earn him the nod.
Immediately after the reading of the decision, Phan and his camp were in complete shock. In fact, even some of Garcia’s camp members couldn’t believe what they had just heard. At that moment, it seemed that Leonard Garcia was the only one inside The Octagon that believed he won that fight. Coincidentally, in his post-fight interview with Joe Rogan, Garcia immediately said he would love a rematch with Nam Phan.
As the night went on and more fights took place, the fans seemed to have moved on from the Garcia/Nam fight for the time being. However, in the back Phan sat in disbelief when Dana White passed by and told him, “You got fucking robbed, man. You got robbed. I’m going to make sure that you get your show bonus and your win bonus. You definitely earned it, bro.”
With the constant criticism of MMA judging lately, both Nam and Leonard have to know that they don’t want this second fight to go the distance. Garcia himself has garnered some criticism of his own for the way he “steals” fights by making it appear that he is out-striking his opponents simply by throwing more punches, even though they may not all connect.
Will history repeat itself?
Can Nam Phan avenge his wrongful loss?
UFN 24 will be headlined by a light heavyweight bout between Tito Ortiz and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, which could possibly be the last time fans see the Huntington beach bad boy in the octagon.