Tune in at 9:00 AM ET for coverage of UFC Macao: Franklin vs. Le. Jason Buccheri will be liveblogging for your enjoyment.
Good morning Score and UFC faithful! This is a UFC event only for the hardcore - there's nothing like getting up for a 9am throw-down live from Macao, China. I'll be live blogging for your enjoyment, please join in with your thoughts, comments and predictions. I'll post anything that is relevant to the discussion.
Tom DeBlass (7-1) vs. Riki Fukuda (18-6)
John Lineker (19-6) vs. Yasuhiro Urushitani (19-5-6)
Jon Tuck (6-0) vs. Tiequan Zhang (15-3)
Alex Caceres (7-5) vs. Motonobu Tezuka (19-4)
Mac Danzig (21-9-1) vs. Takanori Gomi (33-8, 1 NC)
Dong Hyun Kim (15-2-1, 1 NC) vs. Paulo Thiago (14-4)
Stanislav Nedkov (12-0) vs. Thiago Silva (14-3, 1 NC)
Rich Franklin (29-6, 1 NC) vs. Cung Le (8-2)
This card underwent some last minute changes Thursday night (Friday AM in Macao) as Hyun Gyu Lim was pulled from the card after being declared “medically unfit” prior to weigh-ins. It appears that there is no replacement for Lim. Daudi will get another fight soon.
At first glance this may not appear to be a stacked card, but when you take a closer look there are definitely some really interesting bouts here. Franklin has proven that he belongs in the main event and Cung Le definitely puts on an exciting show.
The Thiago Silva and Stanislav Nedkov fight has really peaked my interest. Silva was once as fierce a striker as we've ever seen in the UFC, so it will be interesting to see if he can regain his from against an opponent in Nedkov, who may be somewhat inexperienced, but is nonetheless dangerous.
The Dong Hyun Kim and Paulo Thiago fight is another one to keep an eye out for. Kim is a very good all round fighter and has been enjoyable to watch in the past, and Thiago pretty much has very little wiggle room left if he wants to stay in the UFC.
Regardless of the bout, there is nothing like the UFC - it is the most vicious and unpredictable sport out there, where anything can change from one moment to the next. There definitely isn't anything like waking up to a good UFC card on Saturday morning! Get your espresso brewing, we're about to get started here!
Takeya was a long time favorite in the WEC where he fought the likes of Urijah Faber. He'll be in tough against Hogland who is a submission specialist that lands 70% of his take downs.
Bruce Buffer is introducing the competitors. We're 1 min away from the first UFC event in China!
We're underway! And Mizugaki took an eye poke in the first exchange. But the fight hasnt been stopped. They're both exchanging in the middle of the octagon.
Hougland had Mizugaki against the fence, before Mizugaki reversed the moment and took Hougland down.
Houghland almost reversed it himself into an arm lock, but he ended up eating a few heavy overhand rights.
Mizugaki is landing some big shots. Hougland is trying to regain control. Hes in full GUARD.
The crowd is OOing and Awiing as Mizugaki is raining down right to the side of Houglands head
Hougland has worked his way into a head and arm choke as Mizugaki missed with a punch.
10 second left in the round
The bell has gone. Given that Mizugaki was landing some serious shots from the mount, it looks like Hougland was able to limit the damage. He's a little pink-red in colour, but he hasnt been cut. The first round definitely goes to Mizugaki.
Round 2 has begun. Mizugaki lands a good shot to the liver of Hougland to start off the round. He's also stuffed a few take down attempts by Hougland.
Mizugaki landed another nice take-down and is once again pushing Hougland's head into the cage.
Mizugaki has transition to Hougland's back. But they're both starting to look tired, as they both just slip back into full guard with Mizugaki on top.
The ref is threatening to break them up. And he does. Both are on their feet in the center of the octagon.
Mizugaki lands a nice left that forces Hougland to lounge desperately. That move results in the preferred position for this fight. Miuzgaki on top, Hougland avoiding huge blows.
The round is over and it goes yet again to Mizugaki. Hougland is going to have to submit his Miugaki if he's going to win this fight.
The third and final round is underway. It starts with Hougland throwing a wild, aimless kick, that just comes up empty.
What a flurry. Mizugaki hits Hougland with a big left before being taken down. They're both up and back into full guard with Mizugaki on top .
Hougland's mouth is wide open. He's taken elbows and doesn't look like he has a chance in hell here with 2 min left in the final round.
The ref has stood both fighters up.
Hougland keeps diving for Mizugaki's legs and he keeps getting stuffed. Mizugaki has finally landed a a square punch that has opned Hougland up.
The horn goes and both fighters embrace is a bloody mess. The doctor is out to clean up Hougland.
There's nothing like a good pool of blood to start off your weekend!
The Winner by unanimous decision: Takeya Mizugaki!
This was no surprise. Mizugaki just laid a beating on Hougland. The Japanese fighter has been driven to tears has he lets his victory sink in.
The crowd has had a good response so far. They were definitely noticeable in that first fight.
Tale of the Tape:
Jon ‘The Super Saiyan” Tuck (6-0)
Strengths: well rounded
Tiequan ‘The Wolf” Zhang (15-3)
Strengths: heart and submissions
This is one of the fight's im really looking forward to. Tuck is 6-0 and has not let one of his fights go the distance. Whereas Zhang is an experienced fighter that is considered one of the pioneers of MMA in China.
@AJ, I can see how many people are tuned in. When there are few, I just slow down the pace a little. However, I've yet to not see anyone here with me. Thanks for asking though. You feeling a bit lonely this morning? UFCers may not be the worlds earliest risers.
We're about to get started here for our second bout of the night - er i mean morning ;)
@pryski I wouldnt argue with that, except that this is the hometown boy. He should be really ready for this one.