I didn’t think this would be a post in and of itself. I actually wrote some new haiku I wanted to share today, but at the same time, I wanted to share my reaction to the outcomes of Saturday’s co-main events on the UFC 196 fight card in Las Vegas. Needless to say, the two things did not mix.
MMA at the top of the post loomed awkwardly over the haiku; leaving it there might have led you to expect my haiku to be about MMA (which, actually, might be a fun challenge for future haiku).
MMA after the haiku made the post look like two separate posts, which it basically was. So I separated them. UFC 196 today, Haiku 4 on Friday!
Really, though, I just wanted to briefly share my reaction to the co-main events at UFC 196.
(Starting with the women because this fight was my primary focus.)
You would think that a long-time Holly Holm fan would’ve been disappointed by Holm’s loss. I would have totally expected that of myself, too, so I was astonished to be thrilled – actually jubilant – for Miesha when she choked out Holly and won the belt!
My reaction didn’t surprise Callaghan, because he felt the same way.
It makes sense that I felt the way I did, though. A fan of Tate’s as well as Holm’s, I’d been happy for Tate when it was announced that she would challenge Holm for the title, especially considering how down and frustrated Tate had been when the shot against Rousey was given to Holm. Tate is talented, and she’s worked hard. She’s done her time in the octagon and more than earned that belt. In my mind, she was overdue for that belt.
(Aside: We didn’t go out to watch the fights. We stayed in and binge-watched the new season of House of Cards as I was trying to heal my vocal cords, which once again crapped out on me over the weekend. Yep – woke up on Saturday morning, no voice! You can BET I didn’t get anywhere near that fight card as I was making efforts to resist trying to talk. Later that night I jumped on Twitter to find the fight results.)
From what I’ve gathered online, the Holm-Tate fight unfolded into the extraordinary battle I was expecting. Holm and Tate are extraordinary combat athletes. With their opposite strengths, the two fought an intensely tactical fight that very nearly went the distance, right there distinguishing the match from previous bouts in the UFC’s women’s bantamweight division.
I’m pleased for Tate, and I’m not worried about Holm. Holm is a relatively fresh face in the UFC. She’s just getting started!
It’s thrilling to watch the UFC’s female ranks evolve… and evolving, they still are. Women have only fought in the UFC for four years. Thanks to Rousey storming the scene with her sensational wins, women caught the MMA world’s attention and staked out a claim of recognition and ownership in the sport for themselves. And thanks to Holm shaking things up with her upset win against Rousey, the women’s bantamweight division got a whole lot more competitive, unpredictable, and intriguing. It’s all played out beautifully, and I’m looking forward to what the future will bring! From here, starting with Tate taking the belt from Holm, anything goes.
I have much less to say about this fight since I don’t follow the men nearly as much as I follow the women. I can say, though, that the outcome of the McGregor-Diaz bout DID genuinely surprise me, mainly because Diaz took the fight with two weeks’ notice. He had a mere two weeks to prepare before getting into the octagon with McGregor after McGregor’s original opponent, Rafael Dos Anjos, pulled out with a broken foot! SURPRISE: Diaz, as everyone knows, choked out McGregor.
Summary: The two underdogs choked out the champs on Saturday night. The UFC 196 show in Las Vegas delivered unexpected outcomes… and I love a show when you can’t guess the ending.