Last Night’s UFC 156 event in Las Vegas, Nevada was headlined by a tough as nails145 lb title fight between Champion Jose Aldo and Challenger Frankie Edgar, however for bettors it may be notable that two relatively big underdogs broke through with wins. In the Heavyweight division Antonio ‘Bigfoot’ Silva took out Alistair Overeem despite being a 4 to 1 underdog, and the Light Heavyweight division saw Rogerio Noguiera outlast Rashad Evans as an over 3 to 1 underdog. Let’s take a look at the bouts and their repercussions.
Alistair Overeem, known to some as ‘The Reem’ can now be called ‘The Reamed’ because Antonio Silva weathered his best offense, which looked deteriorated since his last outing 13 months ago, and took him out in a furious 30 second flurry to open the 3rd round.
Silva was impressive, and UFC President Dana White left open the possibility of matching ‘Bigfoot’ up with Velasquez for the belt. Velasquez annihilated Silva in their first meeting, and would be an overwhelming favorite in any rematch. More intriguing right now for Velasquez would be a trilogy making bout with Junior Dos Santos, or a bout with one of the other top guys in the division, such as perhaps Fabricio Werdum. What we do know is tha tin one fell swoop, Silva added his name to the Velasquez list and removed the name of Overeem.
Noguiera taking out Rashad Evans also led to a handsome payback if you had bet the underdog. It also means UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva next opponent is still up in the air, as a win for Evans would have kept him on the shortlist to fight ‘The Spider’.
UFC President Dana White commented after the fight ‘This is the worst I have ever seen Rashad’. For his part, Noguiera used superior boxing based around good movement and a jab to grind out a methodical win. Though Evans looked back, Noguiera looked in good condition and showed no signs of the deterioration in skills that has been predicted for several bouts now.
With the win, Noguiera has not thrust himself into the immediate title picture, as Light Heavyweight champion Jon Jones is booked and has opponents and potential superfights queueing in front of Noguiera. The winner of Alexander Gustafsson and Gegard Mousasi, Daniel Cormier and possibly Anderson Silva all await Jones after his date with Chael Sonnen this April.
Noguiera could fight the loser of the Gustafsson-Mousasi bout, or potentially rematch Mauricio Rua.
Rashad needs to get his act together, as he is still young and physically talented, however his head seems to be attending the ‘Rampage’ Jackson school of motivation, and that is not a good thing