Thanks KP for starting this thread.
I think they need to play the Fedor card carefully to get the most out of the event, because it has the potential to be the biggest thing to happen to the sport.Brock's progression has been very good and his fight preparation has been very calculated and efficient. As his trainer Greg Nelson said, it's about learning to fight in MMA and not about doing jujitsu for jujitsu's sake.
What impresed me most in his most recent outings was how well he execucted. He now looks like a guy who had a plan and could remain focussed on making it happen no matter what. I think there are other guys in the division who can test him in different ways without really challenging him.
Guys like Carwin, Velasquez and Werdum all offer him something different and would be good guys to feed him over the next few months while he gets more experience under his belt before they finally do bring Fedor over. I see more harm potential in exposing him too early to Fedor. Good to see him calm down and apologise in the pot match presser for some of his antics too. He didn't have to and Dana couldn't have made him do it if he didn't want to.
As for Frank Mir I think he let the Nog fight get to his head and some of the stuff he spouted pre match was ridiculously disrespectful to Lesnar and am not shocked that Brock responded in kind afterwards. Re his previous fight, Nog had a horrific staph infection right before that fight, and he's also sharply declining...those guys who have iron chins who have been in all of those wars in PRIDE and whatnot end up waking up one day as a shot fighter. I should clarify - I don't know if Nog is "shot" per se, but he's not what he was and I don't think Mir knocking him out (in a weakened state because of the infection to boot) made him legitimate in any way, shape or form. Think he'll fade away pretty quickly imo.
Nothing more needs to be said about GSP imo, guy owns the division and along with King Lyoto is the most loveable character in the sport for mine. Fair play to Thiago for showing the heart he did, didn't expect his ground game to hold up against Georges. If GSP moves up a division he'll need a lot of time, I mean a year's worth of time to seriously be ready for a guy like the Spider. Stylistically he has all the tools to test him though, it's about getting the size and all that it entails before jumping in. Can't wait to see more Demain Maia in the future, slowly becoming one of my favourites, I truly believe this guys is legit.
I actually gave the first round to Belcher and the last two to Akiyama. Thought his takedowns and the one somewhat of a knockdown were the most significant moments of the last two rounds, thought he was the one showing more intent to try and move forward to win the rounds and some of his counter punches were brutal to boot. Hitting the leg kicks wasn't enough for me to give Belcher a second round, although the Superman punch off the cage was awesome. Thought Rogan and Goldie's homerific protestations were dire tbbh. Would like to sit next to them with the fight on and see one explain to me how in the world that was anywhere near a robbery. Could've gone either way based on what criteria you use to score a round and I would've been fine with either. Yoshi looked a tiny 185 though, wondering whether he can be more suited to the Welters down the line.
Think Steph Bonnar is done as well, saw the Bones destruction too and the guy is always improving. He has a lot of tricks but I think that he needs to tighten up a lot if he wants to be a contender, especially in that division. Still, he has so much time on his side. Most top guys would've been nowhere near where he was at that age. Is a great talent.
Heh @ Bisping, chuffed for Hendo. Don't think much more needs to be said. Wonderful event, one which garnered huge mainstream attention in the states and it delivered on every criteria.