UFC Chile Notes, Analysis From Sean Ross Sapp

MMA

Claudio Pulles shocks Felipe Silva in R3 with a kneebar

  • Silva almost connects big with a wheel kick, which I can appreciate. He couldn't lock on the triangle, and almost gave up his neck on the scramble. 
  • Puelles was working for submissions, specifically the kneebar (into a heel hook) throughout the fight. He pulled guard in this fight, which I've seen more this year than the last few combined.
  • Puelles wasn't afraid to throw strikes, including an overhand and a head kick. 
  • Puelles looked hurt, and really got walloped in the ground and pound. Really, the ref could have stopped it. He got hurt in round three too. Puelles DIVES for a kneebar and somehow gets it. Incredible.
  • That was a necessity.
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Frankie Saenz topples Henry Briones via UD

  • Briones was lucky to get this fight after losing three in a row, and didn't do much better this time out. His fourth straight loss. 
  • Saenz picks up his second win in a row after dropping three in a row. 
  • Saenz won on the feet, on the ground, in the clinch, and did everything better except counter. 
  • Both of these guys are 37! Kind of impressive that Saenz has retained so much of his athleticism. 

Enrique Barozla decides Brandon Davis unanimously

  • Barzola quickly jumped to Davis' back, and it's a place that Davis finds himself in a lot. He doesn't hand fight much.
  • Barzola is able to counter with really wild, wide hooks, even though Davis pressured and landed cleaner strikes.
  • Davis is just not a strong grappler, especially defensively. He has big issues with the body lock. He gets slammed, taken down, over and over. At least he fended off the submission attempts.

Gabriel Benitez SLAMS the doody out of Humberto Bandenay R1 TKO

  • Benitez cracks Humberto out of the gate and got locked in an armbar.
  • Benitez slammed his way out, which was risk vs. reward. KO. He could have slammed himself in even deeper.
  • Three wins in Benitez's last four fights.

Poliana Botelho R.I.P's Syuri Kondo R1 TKO

  • Kondo is a really versatile girl in that she can pro wrestle, kickbox and compete in MMA.
  • Doesn't do much for her though. Liver kick and a crushing punch to the head. That's it. 
  • Botelho is one I'm looking for in this 115 pound division.

Alexandre Pantoja beats on Brandon Moreno via UD

  • Pantoja seemed like he was here to prove a point. He finished Moreno on TUF just under two years ago, but just had his first UFC loss.
  • Alexandre has really stepped up his counter game. Moreno would land a backfist, but Pantoja would go to town in return.
  • Moreno hasn't improved as a striker the way that he needs to for where he put himself in the division so quickly. 
  •  I had this as a 30-26 Pantoja.

Michel Prazeres split decisions Zak Cummings

  • I was not in love with this fight. I thought Prazeres was smart. He really picked the best places and went full force when he hopped in. He saved his energy well, and that's helped him last longer in his MMA career. 
  • Cummings headbutted Prazeres a couple of times wading in.
  • If holding onto the fence prevents a takedown, that's a point, or the position. Should be anyway. 

Vicente Luque badooooom's Chad Laprise, R1 KO

  • This was really bad, but had an "OMG" ending. 
  • Luque has won six of seven, Laprise has ended his three fight winning streak, which were all finishes. 

Andrea Lee is less green than Veronica Macedo, UD

  • Lee lands some great knees. 
  • You should be able to stomp to the body in MMA. Why not?
  • Macedo gets really aggressive and it pays off briefly, but Lee outgrapples her.
  • Lee's ground and pound elbows were disgusting.
  • Some athletic, low level grappling here. Macedo needs a better camp. 
  • No urgency from Macedo in R3, and she needs a finish. 

Guido Cannetti outlasts Rivas

  • Rivas is the only Chilean on the show, which does beg the question about future gates here, but this crowd seems pretty wild at least.
  • Rivas seems like hasn't been here before, even though he's been fighting in UFC since 2014. He's just had some pretty crazy hurdles and gaps in his career. He keeps touching gloves and shit.
  • Cannetti grapples Diego and controls Rivas, but almost falls victim to a guillotine.
  • Rivas scores some good knees against the cage, but for some reason takes Guido down. Odd decision from Rivas. Wasted his shot.

Dom Reyes sends Jared Cannonier into the spiked pit, R1 TKO

  • The opposite stances are causing a lot of power shots and a lot of body kicks. Reyes manages a huge left counter uppercut that drops Cannonier. A teep and another left uppercut finish it off.
  • Dom Reyes is one to watch out for in a light heavyweight division that could be wide open in a year, or in a few months. Cormier is challenging for the heavyweight title, Shogun is old, Jones is suspended, and who knows how everything else will hash out. 

Tatiana Suarez World Classes Alexa Grasso, R1 Sub

  • Wanna see a correct head and arm throw? Watch Suarez or Ronda Rousey, and almost no other women that have competed in the UFC. 
  • Suarez pretty quickly drags Grasso down, takes her back and taps her out. She has special wrestling ability, especially in this division. It's going to be a skill set that helps buy herself some more time to catch up in other areas. 
  • Suarez moves to 3-0 in the UFC, 6-0 if you include TUF. Her wins over Grasso, Aldrich, Jackson and Pereira are nice, too. 

Kamaru Usman stifled Demian Maia, UD

  • I was really interested in seeing how the grappling battles would go down between these two. Defensively Usman initially did well, and pretty quickly found himself practically put into an abdominal stretch.
  • If this were in pro wrestling, it'd be called a boring rest hold, it's been on for over a minute in this fight and it's really exciting. 
  • The ref stops the action, which is super weird. It's kind of a stalemate position, but the ref did it as soon as Maia started attacking, which I found weird. 
  • Usman is really putting himself out there on these power strike attempts, but shrugs off every takedown attempt.
  • I love Usman using the front headlock and working it around.
  • At 31, it's Usman's time to put it all on the line. Tonight he had to fight this way. He's 8-0 in the UFC now. 
  • Maia has lost three fights in a row for the first time in his career.
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