Tuesday, 28 June 2011

UFC Kongo vs Barry on ESPN - TV Review

It was another night of main event changes as the Ultimate Fighting Championship presented their fourth show on Versus, shown live in the early hours of this past Monday morning on ESPN here in Britain.

The broadcast began in the heavyweight division as Matt Mitrione faced Christian Morecraft.

Old Meat Head put in another great performance in his blossoming MMA career. From the outset his striking looked top notch as he rocked Morecraft a couple of times with big lefts.

Morecraft had some success in the second with his take downs, but when the referee stood the fighters up because of inactivity Mitrione went to work with the combinations, sending Morecraft crashing with a three punch combo. Mitrione didn’t follow him down, the referee stopping the fight to give him the knockout win.

Then it was down to the welterweight division as John Howard took on Matt Brown.

This was a pretty even three round affair. Both fighters put in some good work at times, with Howard’s leg kicks and his take downs in the first round looking particularly effective.

Brown was more than able to keep up with him, with some good take down defence and ground work of his own.

All three judges scored in favour of Brown.

The welterweight action continued with Ricky Story taking on Charlie Brenneman.

The fight that was meant to be the main event (you should know the story by now) saw Brenneman putting on a good display of ground fighting in the first two rounds, continually frustrating Story with his superior work rate.

Story’s best moments came in the third, where he finally managed to take control on the ground with a leg triangle. But Brenneman regained control towards the end of the fight.

It was too little too late for Story though, with all three judges giving the fight to Brenneman.

The new main event saw Cheick Kongo taking on Pat Barry in the heavyweight division.

This battle of the kick boxers proved to be an explosive affair. Both fighters tested the waters early on with a series of kicks. But when Barry connected with a big right it looked all over.

Barry went in for the kill, and at one point it looked like the referee was going to stop the fight, but when he saw that Kongo was trying for a take down he let the action continue.

Seconds later it was over. Kongo got to his feet and connected with a right uppercut that sent Barry crashing. A brief moment of ground and pound followed before the referee stopped the fight to give Kongo the incredible knockout win.

In conclusion - despite all of the changes this proved to be a top notch show with four good fights, from the excellent ground fighting display of Charlie Brenneman and Rick Story to the explosive striking of Pat Barry and Cheick Kongo.

So in all this show gets the thumbs up, a perfect appetiser for this weekend’s big event.