Mixed Martial Thoughts – UFC 136 and Why Frankie Edgar is the #3 Lightweight

ufc_136 main event

By now you’ve already heard the buzz about UFC 136 being one of the “best” UFC cards of all time.    It seemed like every MMA website was rushing to put up polls in hopes of readers voting for UFC 136 to be number 1.  Although I agree that it was one of the most entertaining cards from top to bottom; I will not say it was the best ever.  So what card do I think was the best UFC card of all time?  I’d like to think that it hasn’t happened yet and will continue to watch all future events in hopes that they top this one.

Frankie Edgar was unbelievable in his performance against Gray Maynard.  Maynard was able to rock him in the first round and it looked as if he was finally going to put Frankie out; Frankie had other plans.  Edgar was able to recover and become the first man to knockout “The Bully”.  Frankie’s head movement and striking is as good as any guy who competes in the 155 division, but I thoroughly disagree with Dana White, who at the press conference, labeled Frankie as the #2 pound for pound fighter in the world.

Edgar has been impressive in the lightweight division and I remember his debut fight against Tyson Griffin as if it were yesterday.  I didn’t expect him to beat Tyson yet he went the distance and was able to get the judge’s decision.  Since then he has improved all around and beaten BJ Penn two times, but he is not the best Lightweight in the world.  Let’s be honest people, Gray Maynard is a wrestler first, not a striker.  He has developed his striking over the years but is far from being considered an elite striker.  Of Maynard’s 10 wins, 8 of them are by decisions, he grinds guys out.  If he had employed the same strategy that he used in their first fight, he wins.

If Frankie Edgar was caught by the same strikes that Gray landed in their second and third fight, by Gilbert Melendez or Eddie Alvarez, he would be put to sleep.  Both Melendez and Alvarez are to be feared for their striking and submission game.  I am a firm believer that if you put Frankie in the cage with either of those men, he does not walk out with the belt.  Gilbert is top dog and when he comes over to the UFC, he should get the title shot.

Until that happens, Frankie continues to be the man and I have a feeling it’ll be a matter of time before we see Jose Aldo and Frankie square off.  If there’s a guy that can beat Aldo, it is Frankie at 145.

I called it last week when I said Kenny would come up short and he did.  I have said it before and I will say it again, Kenny has to stop it with the GSP strategy.  What made Kenny “I finish fights” Florian an exciting fighter, was that he would go in there and mix things up with striking and submissions.  I don’t want to see Kenny pressing a guy against the cage.  Let’s hope he brings Mark Dellagrotte back into his camp and as critical as I have been of Kenflo, there isn’t a classier guy in defeat than Mr. Florian.  I’d like to see him win a title before he calls it quits.

Chael Sonnen…..best mic work I have ever seen.  That includes any WWE promos I’ve ever watched.

He came out and dominated Brian Stann and shut his critic’s right up, and then he went and cut the best post fight promo ever. I have no reason to doubt he will walk away with Anderson’s belt the next time they square off.  Win or lose, Chael Sonnen is smiling all the way to the bank.  He has already sold out and event that hasn’t even been scheduled it.  Pure Genius.

Bellator has another great card the same night UFC 136 was happening.  Ben Saunders and Douglas Lima both advanced to the finals of the welterweight tournament.  Give Bellator credit for not budging and not moving their time slot, as they did in previous seasons.  As a fan, I truly hope these guys become the number 2 promotion in the world.

Until next time, stay focused and support the sport

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