UFC 103's preliminary card might have been loaded with slow decisions, but the Spike TV teaser matches and the PPV card was loaded with fireworks. Vitor Belfort, Junior Dos Santos and Josh Koscheck all pushed their way up the UFC contender ranks.
Vitor Belfort def Rich Franklin via TKO (strikes) R1, 3:02- Vitor Belfort looked fast and precise as he picked apart Rich Franklin for the TKO victory. Belfort landed what looked to be a glancing blow, but threw punch after punch as Franklin hit the canvas. With Franklin turtled up, the ref had to call the fight.
With the victory, Vitor Belfort has pushed his name directly to the top of the challengers to Anderson Silva. An ecstatic Belfort thanked Jesus before saying he missed the "UFC vibe" and that he would fight anyone Dana White and Joe Silva put in front of him.
*MMA Blaster readers choose Franklin incorrectly 20-25
(Vitor Belfort pictured)
Junior Dos Santos def Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic via sub (verbal) R3, 2:00- Dos Santos pushed his name up the heavyweight ladder as he picked up a huge win against MMA legend Mirko Cro Cop. In the beginning of the fight, Dos Santos did his best work in the clinch utilizing his dirty boxing. After a big knee and a couple punches found their mark Cro Cop had no choice but to verbally submit.
Paul Daley def Martin Kampmann via TKO (punches) R1, 2:31- Daley rocked Kampmann early and often, blasting him with devastating hooks. After taking a nasty combination that had Kampmann stunned the ref called the fight. While Kampmann was still standing, the stoppage was justified as he couldn't defend himself.
Josh Koscheck def Frank Trigg via TKO (punches) R1, 1:25- Koscheck worked through Frank Trigg with ease in this fight, pushing him back in contention at 170 pounds. A big right handed landed flush, knocking Trigg to the canvas. Once he was there, Koscheck threw punches until the ref jumped in to save Trigg.
Tyson Griffin def Hermes Franca via KO (punches) R2, 3:26- Tyson Griffin looked like the stronger fighter, utilizing his strength and boxing to win this fight. In the second, a ruthless display of ground and pound by Tyson Griffin ended Franca's night.
(Tyson Griffin pictured)
Efrain Escudero def Cole Miller via TKO (punches) R1, 3:36- After a feeling out process for the first two minutes, TUF 8 LW champ Efrain Escudero landed a big 1-2 punch combination sending Miller to the mat. Escudero put together more punches before the ref saved Miller from more punishment.
Tomasz Drwal def Drew McFedries via submission (RNC) R2, 1:03- In the first, both fighters were content throwing punches on standing. Near the end of the round, Drwal laid down some serious punishment on McFedries before attempting a submission. With McFedries looking a little dazed to start the second, Drwal landed a big left hand and followed McFedries to the ground before he got his back and locked in the fight ending rear naked choke.
Jim Miller def Steve Lopez via TKO (injury) R2, 0:48
Nick Lentz def Rafaello Oliveira via unanimous dec
Eliot Marshall def Jason Brilz via split dec
Vladimir Matyushenko def Igor Pokrajac via unanimous dec
Rafael Dos Anjos def Rob Emerson via unanimous dec
Rick Story def Brian Foster via submission (arm-triangle) R2, 1:09
*Story wins Submission of the Night bonus. Each fighter wins Fight of the Night bonus.