UFC 137 may not have featured the welterweight title fight that fans were hoping to see, but it was filled with action, especially in the bruising headliner between Nick Diaz and B.J. Penn. The fact that this may very well have been not only Penn's last fight but also the last hurrah of the legendary Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic made this a historic event.
Let's look at the fights:
- Donald Cerrone's annihilation of Dennis Siver was promoted from the preliminaries and re-shown on the pay-per-view. It's easily the best performance on the card as Cerrone, the WEC veteran, continues his run of terrorizing the UFC's lightweight division. Dennis Siver came into the fight riding a four fight win streak but Cerrone made him look like he didn't belong, hurting Siver with headkicks then finishing him on the ground. Cerrone never managed to win the title in the "little" WEC, but he's looking like a contender in the big leagues.
- Scott Jorgensen spoiled Jeff Curran's return to the UFC by outpointing him on the feet and dominating the wrestling aspect of the bout. Curran, a tough veteran who once fought at 155lbs had hoped to make a statement at 135lbs but Jorgensen wasn't having it. Curran showed some spirit, landing combinations and threatening with a guillotine in the second, but it wasn't enough to get past the game Jorgensen.
- George Roop tried to spoil Hatsu Hioki's UFC debut but wasn't quite able to do it. Hioki looked a little lost on his feet against the rangy Roop, but some slick take downs and dominant positional grappling were all he needed to get the win. It's an open question whether or not Hioki will emerge as a contender in the featherweight division but he's managed to notch a win in the UFC.
- Roy Nelson gave Cro Cop a fitting send off in a back-and-forth bout that saw the Croation legend hurt Nelson badly in the second round. Nelson refused to go down though and came back to put Cro Cop on his back and pour on the damage. Nelson went on to finish Cro Cop in the third round with a crushing right hand that he followed up with ground and pound.
- Cheick Kongo vs. Matt Mitrione showed once again that there is a big yawning gap between the upper- and lower-tiers of the UFC's heavyweight division. The outcome was unclear after the first two rounds when Kongo turned it up in the third, taking Mitrione down and busting up his face with ground and pound.
- B.J. Penn looked sharp in the first round against Nick Diaz, repeatedly beating the former Strikeforce champ to the punch and making Diaz miss. Going into round 2, Diaz face showed the marks of a tough first round, but his incredible conditioning won out in the second and third rounds as his volume punching to Penn's body wore down the Hawaiian. Once Penn was tired, Diaz moved upstairs and proceeded to bust up Penn's face. After the bout Penn shocked fans by announcing his retirement and Diaz managed to talk enough smack about champion Georges St. Pierre to earn the next title shot.
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