Jon Jones – The hype is so real it isn’t even funny. This dude blew through Andre Gusmao, Stephan Bonnar and Jake O’Brien. Next, he dominated Matt Hamill and held him on his back and pummeled him. Brandon Vera was a huge step up for Jones. This fight was to answer the question if Jones could hang with the elites in the world. He not only hung with Brandon Vera he destroyed him. He showed great greco-Roman wrestling, even had a nice throw. He showed good top control. He showed serious ground and pound. Who is next for Jones? A top tier guy, no doubt. Ryan Bader?
Junior Dos Santos – Dos Santos keeps winning. Disagree with me if you want, but I think Dos Santos has the resume for a title shot. He has every bit as good a resume as Carwin and I think at least equal to Cain Velasquez. He has posted wins over Fabricio Werdum, Stefan Struve, Mirko Cro Cop, Gilbert Yvel and now Gabriel Gonzaga. I’d love to see the winner of the Mir vs. Carwin fight take on Cain Velasquez while Dos Santos gets Brock Lesnar in July and then unify the belts after that.
John Howard – I hadn’t been impressed with Howard yet. He has shown that he has serious power. He the ability to end a fight at any moment. He had a good comeback against Hallman. He has moved to the upper echelon of the UFC on the back of a 4-0 record in the UFC. By the way, his wins aren’t against nobodies either (Tamdan McCrory, Chris Wilson and Dennis Hallman). His KO of Roberts was sick. From the ground he knocked him out cold. Next up: Anthony Johnson grudge match.
Brandon Vera – Several broken facial bones is loss enough, but Vera got dominated and that is the real loss. The truth is “the Truth” will never be anything more than a gatekeeper. He can’t beat the best in the division. So, let the comparisons between Jones and Vera cease. Vera still has talent and hopefully he can rebound, but this loss really hurt his career.
Duane Ludwig- It wasn’t the loss to Darren Elkins that was the loss for Ludwig it was the severely broken ankle that was the loss. He will require surgery and will likely be out for a long period of time. Hopefully, the UFC gives him one more chance, but that is not set in stone as he is now 0-2 in his latest stint in the UFC.
Gabriel Gonzaga – Being knocked out by Dos Santos and probably sent out of the top 10 rankings makes UFC on Versus 1 a loss for Gonzaga. On a positive note he has proven to be quite a good stepping stone in the UFC. At least he was for Carwin and now Dos Santos.
- Cheick Kongo and Clay Guida both rebounded nicely with victories over their respective opponents
- Vladimir Matyushenko picked up a lackluster victory over Eliot Marshall
- Brendan Schaub really impressed by KO’ing Chase Gormley quickly
- Jason Brilz looked solid against Eric Schafer
- Mike Pierce dominated UFC newcomer Julio Paulino for a UD victory