While the event was better than many of my fellow fight fans at Duffy's thought it was, I wasn't impressed by UFC 149. The only good fight was Riddle vs. Clements. Faber vs. Barao was decent, but didn't blow me away. Ebersole vs. Head had a couple of fun moments, like Ebersole's thumbs up while he was in the guillotine and his capoeira-style kick, but again, it was average. Here are my views on each fight.
Riddle vs. Clements: Hands down the best fight of the night. Riddle dominated most of the match and brought an exciting end to it by countering Clements' spinning backfist with an arm-triangle. I am definitely a Riddle believer now.
Ebersole vs. Head: I think this should have been a unanimous decision instead of a split decision, since Ebersole never had the upper hand in this bout. He simply survived. However, that is really a nitpick.
Kongo vs. Jordan: I am a Cheick Kongo fan, but he really failed to impress in this bout. He said in the promo that he wanted to prove that he was a contender, not a gatekeeper. Well, it's kind of hard to be a contender if you are so gassed after three rounds that you can't pick yourself up off the canvas. That being said, I do admire him for being man enough to keep going after taking what appeared to be a very deliberate elbow to the groin.
Lombard vs. Boetsch: I never thought that I would see two grapplers who were afraid to grapple. Lombard did manage a takedown in the last round, so I thought the decision should have gone to him. That being said, Boetsch was the main aggressor during the bout, even though his attacks were shrugged off like bee stings. In light of that, I understand why the judges ruled in favor of him, even though I don't agree with it. At any rate, it was the most disappointing bout of the night.
Faber vs. Barao: I was highly impressed by Barao, who used leg kicks to keep the shorter Faber at bay. That being said, I don't think Faber played to his strengths in this fight. Yeah, he landed a couple of hard shots, but his grappling will always be better than his stand-up. He should have used a game plan which involved taking Barao down and either going for the submission or ground-and-pound. He relied too much on his strength and speed and not enough on strategy, costing him what will likely be his last title shot.
On a side note, is it really necessary to hug your opponent DURING the match?! Can't it wait until afterwards? I think Riddle, Clements, Faber, and Barao briefly forgot that the whole point of fighting is to defeat your opponent, not to love them to death. There is plenty of time for bromances after the bell rings. After all, this is UFC, not the Hugs Not Drugs Club. At any rate, while the event wasn't completely terrible, it was still the worst UFC Pay-Per-View that I have seen so far.