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Wrapping up the UFC Live: Kongo vs. Barry Main Card

It was a great event on Sunday night, but what to make of all these crazy KOs and kimuras?  Let’s take a look at what transpired at UFC Live: Kongo vs. Barry (UFC on Versus 4) and figure out who needs improvement and where these fighters are headed.

Cheick Kongo vs. Pat Barry:

What needs to be said about this fight other than “WOW”?  A measured kickboxing bout became a whirlwind of near knockouts that saw both men hit the canvas within ten seconds.  It was Pat Barrys looping shot that hit Kongo and started the rollercoaster ride, but in the end Kongo landed a looping right and uppercut of his own, finishing Barry in spectacular fashion.

Kongo got the KO, but didn’t exactly look great doing it.  Barry had a tremendous disadvantage in height and reach, and yet Kongo gave these away by not controlling range as he should.  Kongo has also shown a real weakness to looping punches, as Barry landed the same shot Mir floored him with several fights ago.  As for Barry, he looked great in the early going and seems to have fixed his lack of a killer instinct, although this fight could be a major setback in that regard.  Kongo got the win, and a fight with Shane Carwin or Joey Beltran makes sense as he moves his way back up the ladder.  For Barry, a tune-up against a UFC newcomer, or perhaps a bout with Aaron Rosa makes sense.

Charlie Brenneman vs Rick Story:

A lose-lose fight for Story turned into a mega payday for bettors, as the unheralded Charlie Brenneman came in with a plan to wrestle and executed perfectly.  Story looked to be the stronger of the two and managed to show off a bit of slick bottom game grappling, but Brenneman’s natural athletic ability and years of wrestling experience proved to be too much for the young Story.

Story has shown he has issues against the stronger and more aggressive wrestlers of the division, and while his bottom game is improving, he’ll need to work on his pressure attack and ability to sweep from bottom.  Brenneman is still green in MMA, but his composure and wrestling ability are proving to be a huge boon for him thus far.  Story faces a set-back, but is still a popular new fighter.  A fight with the loser of Condit vs. Kim would make for a compelling fight either way it pans out.  For Brenneman, his lack of air time in his UFC career hurts him in his ability to advance.  A fight with Anthony Johnson gives both fighters that camera time they need to move forward in the division.

Matt Brown vs. John Howard:

A fight that showed the best of both fighters, Matt Brown’s relentless attack and underrated grappling meshed well with Howard’s purely explosive style, both standing and on the mat.  While both men had stunning moments, Brown held his ground better in exchanges and managed to find the top position in scrambles, taking the decision in a tough fight.

Matt Brown isn’t going to crack the top of the division, but makes an awesome mid-tier fight, as does John Howard.  Howard vs. Sean Pierson or Matt Riddle would make for a great bout, while I’d like to see Matt Brown get someone that’ll play on the feet with him.  A fight with Nate Diaz would be pure entertainment if he stays at Welterweight, but I’d settle for Dan Hardy.

Matt Mitrione vs. Christian Morecraft:

Not much to say here, as Mitrione showed continued improvement against an overmatched opponent in Morecraft.  It was a matter of measured punching and just enough takedown defense to make Morecraft tired before Mitrione could put together enough punches to end this once and for all.

Mitrione is still improving, and I’d like to see him in a fight that will allow him to develop without being too much for him.  I think a bout with Roy Nelson or the winner of Schaub vs. Big Nog would make for a competitive match-up that would stay mostly in safe territory for Mitrione.  For Morecraft, the minor leagues are his next destination.  A suspect chin and heart won’t see him make it back into the UFC anytime soon, but he could possibly do some damage in the indie promotions again.

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Tags: Charlie Brenneman, Cheick Kongo, Christian Morecraft, John Howard, Matt Brown, Matt Mitrione, MMA, Pat Barry, Rick Story, UFC, UFC Live Kongo vs Barry, UFC on Versus

Category: Exclusive, MMA, Opinion, UFC

Mike Hammersmith (Staff Writer)

About the Author ()

I'm a 20+ year veteran of martial arts and a fan of MMA since UFC 1, when my world was thrown on its head by the budding sport. I'm obsessive in the pursuit of martial abilities and have competed across the country in everything from Vale Tudo to archery to Scottish broadsword. Once my body broke down, I picked up a pen and went in the direction of writing. I specialize in betting advice, predictions, and I'm a walking encyclopedia of MMA trivia. I own a cafe in Exeter, NH called Hammersmith Sandwich Company and write out of my office between customers.

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