UFC 275 could be potentially called a classic card
After it was all said and done UFC 275 could be described in one word “classic.” The card in itself made history being the first Southeast Asia pay-per-view event by Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Every fight from top to bottom lived up to the billing. If I had my say Dana White should give every fighter on the card a fight of the night bonus. The main event between new champion Jiri Prochazka and Glover Teixera was a fight out of the old Rocky movies.
In the main event former champion Glover Texiera came into the octagon as the oldest champion in the UFC at 42 years old. His challenger was upincomer striker Jiri Prochazka who was making his third UFC appearance. The fight was a brutal blood bath - and could likely be a Fight of the Year candidate. Both men showed incredible heart and strong chins for a solid five rounds. However, it was Czech Prochazka who choked the former champ out with 4min 32sec into the fifth round to become a UFC champion for the first time.
It was a stunning turn of events because had Texiera held off 30 more seconds he would have won the fight by decision. Judge Ben Cartlidge had Teixeira 39-37, while Clemens Werner had Teixeira, 38-37. Mike Bell had it 38-38. The veteran grappler fought the fight of his life but he lost steam in the final two rounds after taking a tremendous amount of punishment.Texiera made one grappling mistake and the young contender capitalized on it. After the fight for some reason Prochazka apologized to the fans for a lazy performance. In reality this fight may be one of the greatest title fights in UFC history. “I never thought, and that’s why it’s good not to think in a fight,” Prochazka said when asked if he ever imagined winning by submission. “I am sorry. I will show a better performance. Sorry for that. I’ll be better next time.”
The co-main event was just as exciting as reining champion Valentina Shevchenko fought the toughest opponent of her career in Brazilian contender Talia Santos. The champion was able to break Ronda Rousey’s record for the most successful title defenses in women’s history. The challenger Santos controlled the first three rounds. It looked like she was destined for an upset than an accidental clash of heads caused serious swelling to her eye and the champion Shevchenko capitalized on the injury. The champion was able to win in a split decision. However, for the UFC a star was born in Talia Santos. Fans cheered for her and gave her a resounding standing ovation with many of them feeling as if she won the fight. A rematch could be in order.
The other fight on this card that had fans in a frenzy was the rematch between Welli Zhang and Joanna Jedrzejczyk. The last time these two fought it was a thrilling five round title fight. In tonight’s bout, the two picked up where they left off. Zhang landed an incredible spinning back fist that floored the former champion. After the fight Zhang called out champion Carla Esparza and Jedrzejczyk left her gloves in the center of the ring as a sign of retirement from a 20 year long hall of fame career.
UFC 276 had everything! Exciting fights, Hall of fame caliber fights and an all-time great knock out, it was certainly a card that will live in the minds of MMA fans.