Its been a few days since WEC 29, so now is the time to evaluate what was learned about our heros.
Brock Larson– He suffered a disappointing loss and you could see his anguish after the fight. He should tapped, but did not give in and possibly took a serious injury to that elbow. When he recovers he’ll be a better fighter. He was imposing himself on Condit until he got caught in the armbar. Larson is a good fighter and this loss should not diminish his value, in my opinion. Hopefully the elbow will be good to go soon.
Carlos Condit– Another impressive fight from Condit. He was obvisiouly overmatched by Larson’s strength but adapted well and dealt with the pressure perfectly. Condit showed that he’s a dangerous fighter from his back, with good sub attempts and some dangerous strikes too. It will take a very good fighter to beat him, most likely a crisp puncher that can punch his way in close.
Paulo Filho– Filho beat a good veteran fighter while coming back of a considerable layoff. Filho’s vaunted ground game was shut down by Doerkson. Both guys looked slow in my eyes. Filho could have some real trouble with a quick and technically sound puncher. He is open to straight shots and his punching was sloppy. For a highly ranked fighter, his stand up is very suspect.
Joe Doerksen– Seem slowed, but defended TD’s well against the BJJ king. Doerksen still should be able to handle guys at his level and below, but will struggle against the top rung guys-particularly strikers that defend takedowns. A qwik, young guy with some power should really give him fits.
Jeff Curran– Showed he can handle a guy he should beat. Curran looks like he will struggle against the top tier guys. He’s got a well rounded game.
Stephan Ledbetter– Young fighter had a good showing against a solid vet in Curran. He’s tough and has some ability. He was unable to mount much of an attack against Curran and should do much better if he gets matched up against someone closer to his current ability. Could pull of an upset against the type of fighter that throws “caution to the wind.”
Tiki Ghosn– Early loss is hard to learn much from. Was Tiki terrible or his opponent very good? I will lean towards Avena being good. Ghosn came forward, where he ran into trouble and did not deal with it well. His defense needs to improve when he runs into adversity.
Blas Avena– looked impressive. He was quick and powerful, once he got the advantage he was all over Ghosn. Avena has the look of a quicker more aggressive Okami. Watch his progress, he needs another fight in three months.
Jamie Varner– very impressive against a solid fighter. Varner is strong on the ground and capable standing. He definitely moves up off this performance, which reminded me a little of Sherk.
Sherron Leggett– Ran into an awesome looking Worm, but don’t throw him under the bus yet. He was resilient and managed some effective attacks against Varner, who might be near the top of this divison right now. Leggett need to work on his jui-jitsu, but he will be back winning fights soon. I don’t see him being overmatched by anyone.