Sunday, February 25, 2007

Second Pride U.S. Pay-Per-View Sees Major Upsets


By Art Shimko

-- Whether rumors of Pride going under or this most recent show being the last one loom throughout internet message boards and news sites one thing is certain and concrete, the fact that last night's Pride 33 show in Las Vegas was a historic and exciting one.
The big news were the four upsets taking place on the company's second event on U.S. soil, and for one that didn't have as equally a huge buzz as its first State side show late last year The Second Coming surely delivered with excitement and high quality fights.
Even bigger news was Dan Henderson defeating Wanderlai Silva [making his U.S. fighting debut] to become the new Middleweight champion as well as being the Welterweight champion when he hit Silva with a spinning back fist and followed up with a left hook that took Silva down and it was over. An amazing finish to a great night of fighting, what was interesting of note is that the noteworthy upsets of the evening happened back to back as prior to the main event Nick Diaz and Lightweight champ Takanori Gomi had what Josh Barnett called on last night's commentary a "slobberknocker". This fight was AWESOME. This is one reason alone to get the replay, both men beat the hell out of each other swinging and landing punches while the crowd was going nuts, it was a great moment to experience. Diaz looked like he was thrown into a wall face first, just blood and cuts near his eyes, it was nasty looking but he was a trooper and in the end beat Gomi via Gogoplata [a modified version of the more common triangle choke] in round two.
Alistair Overeem seemed to have the advantage early on in his fight against Mauricio “Shogun” Rua landing punching combos and taking Rua down a few times, in the end it was Rua who became victorious as he went diving with a right punch to Overeem's chin and some more punches to end the fight.
Sergey Kharitonov beat Michael Russow via armbar submission in 3:46 of the first round, afterwards Russow was protesting to the referee but replays showed him obviously tapping out.
Hayato Sakurai KO'ed Mac Danzig in another great fight with Sakurai beating down Danzig with low kicks followed by hip toss takedowns, ouch. Danzig hung in there only to meet a devastating overhand right punch that put him out.
Sokoudjou knocked out Antonio Rogerio Nogueira with a left hook in only 23 seconds of the first round, yes this was one of those upsets mentioned earlier.
James Lee, a last-minute replacement for Kazuhiro Nakamura [out with a knee injury], defeated Travis Wiuff in 39 seconds of the first round. Lee began striking away landing a right that took Wiuff down, Lee followed up with a guillotine choke on the ground with Wiuff tapping out. Afterwards Lee said he had “48 hours notice and had to cut nearly 20 pounds in about 13 to 14 hours to make weight.” Talk about an upset, quite the historic night.
Frank Trigg was dominant scoring a unanimous 30-27 from the judges with his fight against Kazuo Misak as he took Misak to the mat many times and held his own on his feet as well.
Joachim Hansen defeated Jason Ireland via armbar in round 3, Hansen was in control most of the fight but Ireland was certainly no slouch and showed some control in the second round. Referee Steve Mazzagatti had to stop the fight as Ireland wasn't tapping out to Hansen's armbar after a certain amount of time.
This was a great show and I do recommend the replay, and what's funny is that I ordered this at the last minute not really thinking about it previously. It was worth the $40 to me, and says more than even the last UFC PPV I saw. Pride returns to Las Vegas on 4/28.

Dan Henderson def. Wanderlei Silva by KO at 2:08, Round 3
Nick Diaz def. Takanori Gomi by Gogoplata at 1:46, Round 2
Mauricio “Shogun” Rua def. Alistair Overeem by KO at 3:37, Round 1
Sergei Kharitonov def. Mike Russow by Armbar at 3:46, Round 1
Hayato Sakurai def. Mac Danzig by KO at 4:01, Round 2
Sokoudjou def. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira by KO at 0:23, Round 1
James Lee def. Travis Wiuff by Guillotine Choke at 0:39, Round 1
Frank Trigg def. Kazuo Misaki by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Joachim Hansen def. Jason Ireland by Armbar at 2:33, Round 3
Note to webmasters/reporters: When recapping news or referencing commentary from this site please include a link to as opposed to "Strong Style Shimko", "From The Mean Filipine Blog" or derivatives. Thank you!

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