Happy Saturday folks! Are you sick of hearing all the BS analysts talk about the NFL Draft? Yea me too. Lets get to some MMA coverage on this fine Friday. Now, of course there are no fights on to watch, yes im depressed dont ask me. I wanted to compile another top 5 list. I chose to do shocking upsets, it took me a while to narrow it down. Watched a lot of different fights. Upsets are my favorite part about MMA. It is SO SO possible that no one thinks of it almost. Like the casual fan never thought Ronda Rousey could lose or Anderson Silva, etc. One mistake can cost you a fight, one punch, kick, one move on the ground can be the difference between winning and losing and it all happens so fast. So lets get to it. Number 1….
- Matt Serra KOs Georges St-Pierre-UFC 69 (nice)-Welterweight Championship
This was simply massive. I’ll be honest i didnt initally put this at 1, but after doing some more digging, it seemed to me that this had the most staying power in terms of ripple effect and coverage. It was a complete and total upset when it comes down to it, most MMA experts and pundits didnt really even give Matt Serra a fighting chance. lol. Georges St-Pierre is, without a doubt, the greatest welterweight in history. Depending on how you view others, he may be the greatest MMA fighter ever. His record clocks in at an outstanding 26-2. Matt Hughes had the luck of catching St-Pierre in his eighth professional fight, well before his best. But the second loss? No one saw it coming. Absolutely no one, except for those close to Serra maybe.
By UFC 69, GSP was 13-1. Matt Serra, on the other hand, split his last six fights and fought four of those at lightweight. He gave up height, reach and speed and the only reason he got the fight was because he won the TUF 2 tournament. At welterweight, GSP dwarfed him almost in a comically funny way. Serra was at a serious disadvantage in height, reach, agility and talent. Plus, he’d only finished one opponent in the UFC and that was five years prior. There was seemingly no way for him to come out with a W.
So three minutes into the fight, as you can clearly see above, Serra stepped in for a right hand and GSP lowered his guard, He caught the champion behind the ear and Serra swarmed him. His short reach let him pump out right hand after right hand all of which landed and hurt GSP. Just 30 seconds after the miracle punch, a right caught GSP squarely on the chin and the rest is history. What a scene, chaos really. Watch the video i attached, its only 5 mins and completely worth the result.
2. Holly Holm KOs Ronda Rousey (UFC 193)-Bantamweight Championship
I actually originally had this number 1. However, looking back on it and doing some digging, alot of experts and pundits actually said this fight couldve been a tough matchup for Ronda and that it was definitely in the cards for an upset caliber moment. The contrasting styles of Holly’s superb boxing and of course Rondas ridiculous Judo and ground game. It turns out Ronda wasnt ready for this level of fighting. She got her ass WHOOPED in a sold out stadium in Australia and it ended with a brutal KO head kick from Holly.
While Holly actually would have had a chance to shatter that record of biggest underdog odds in her upset win over Ronda but late-market action pushed her price from a peak of +1250 down to just +525 at fight time. Pretty wild. Ronda was the biggest star in the fight game and one of the biggest stars in the whole world coming into this fight. It was crazy. The build up, the fight, the reaction, all of it. It was perfect. It created a star in Holly Holm and burned out a star in Ronda Rousey.
3. Michael Bisping KOs Luke Rockhold (UFC 199)-Middleweight Championship
This easily could have been number 1 for me as well. This upset is all about the background story. Michael Bisping took this fight in 17 days notice after Chris Weidman had to pull out of his rematch with Rockhold due to injury. Bisping had lost to Rockhold by 2nd round submission just 18 months earlier and Rockhold had been on an absolute tear at a 15-2 record and his first title defense in the UFC. There was no one on this planet that thought Michael Bisping had a chance.
Rockhold was the best middleweight on earth and Bisping was an OG veteran of the UFC that had never gotten a title shot getting off his couch 17 days earlier. It was a poetic ending for Bisping, the first ever British UFC world champ. Bisping’s left hook caught him on the chin perfectly. Rockhold never recovered and went to sleep seconds later. It wasn’t a lucky punch; Bisping was aiming for that sort of collision whenever he threw his left over the top. But it was the best and most important punch he’d landed in his entire career, and from that moment on, the celebration commenced.
4. Rose Namajunas KOs Joanna Jedrejczyk-UFC 217-Strawweight Championship
THUG ROSE! THUG ROSE! THUG ROSE! My favorite womens fighter ever, and i think easily one of the top 3 calls by Daniel Cormier and the commentary team ever. This was AMAZING. No on thought Rose could do this, maybeee a decision or submission maybe but knocking out the baddest women on the planet at the time??? It didnt even seem possible. Joanna was 14-0, on her 6th title defense and oh yea she is a multi time muay Thai champion as well. Rose was 6-3, yes she was 6-3 and got a title shot.
The fact she got a title shot with a 6-3 record and splitting her last two revealed the lack of depth at women’s strawweight. Joanna Jedrzejczyk was a multiple-time world champion kickboxer and undefeated. With all due respect to the strawweights of the time, Joanna looked like an actual championship caliber fighter in a division full of good athletes with rudimentary skills. Then…a star was born. Her left hook dropped Joanna in the fight’s opening action. As though to silence anyone doubting it as a fluke, Rose stepped in deep with another left which this time put Joanna down for good, and from there, it was chaos, the crowd, cormier going nuts, it was a perfect ending for an underdog story. THUG ROSE!
5. TJ Dillashaw KOs Renan Barao-UFC 173-Bantamweight Championship
Now this was straight up savagery by an all time great talent in Tj Dillashaw. Daillashaw gets the award for the most improbable upset, based on his closing odds of +710 against then-champion Barao. Barao was 32-1 and on a 30 fight win streak. Dillashaw was a young stud at 10-2 but didnt get the respect he deserved. Dillashaw morphed into an unbelievable striker. He faked, dodged and countered Barao’s increasingly panicked haymakers. Instead of attacking him head-on, he constantly shifted stances and sidestepped to find angles. If Barao’s defense was a colander, Dillashaw’s fists and shins was a steady stream of water. In the 5th round Dillashaw capitlized on an epic head kick and knocked out the dominant champion as chaos ensued and his dream was realized.
Thats it folks. In 2 weeks time, we will have a super card in Flordia. May 9th, UFC 249. STAY TUNED PEOPLE. THIS IS GOING TO BE SO FUCKING AMAZING.
STAY SAFE, LOVE EVERYONE, AND HAVE A GREAT WEEKEND.