This page contains affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, we may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Learn more
Length: 294 mins
Emanating from the Rose Garden in Portland Oregon UFC 102 was another successful debut in a new market and another largely entertaining show capped off by a main event that claimed the top spot on some people’s fight of the year cards. Perhaps most importantly what the show proved was that Randy Couture and main event opponent Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira are still relevant, still entertaining and still capable of competing at a high level.
- Randy Couture vs. Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira
- Keith Jardine vs. Thiago Silva
- Chris Leben vs. Jake Rosholt
- Nate Marquardt vs. Demian Maia
- Brandon Vera vs. Krzysztof Soszynski
- Ed Herman vs. Aaron Simpson
- Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Chris Tuchscherer
- Justin McCully vs. Mike Russow
- Tim Hague vs. Todd Duffee
- Nick Catone vs. Mark Muñoz
- Marcus Aurelio vs. Evan Dunham
- UFC 102 Countdown
- UFC 102 Behind The Scenes
- UFC 102 Weigh In
The live show got off to an unremarkable start with an uneventful straight decision win for Brandon Vera over Krzysztof Soszynski. Vera showed that he was quicker on the feet and able to control things in the clinch and on the ground. However he showed little instinct to finish the fight and the most unanimous decision rendered en masse was to be thankful when the final bell sounded.
The show certainly picked up speed with the next contest, a fight that on most shows would have claimed fastest knock out honours. This fight also proved once again that a well rounded game in modern day mixed martial arts is absolutely essential. Nate Marquardt beat Demian Maia via one punch knock out in just 21 seconds. Realistically the fight was over far too quickly to draw and concrete conclusions about the futures of either fighter, but what it did show was that all the submission and jiu-jitsu wonderment in the world is no answer to a straight right hand to the jaw.
Local favourite and Ultimate Fighter journeyman Chris Leben was unable to convert the massive crowd support he received into a victory as he eventually succumbed to an arm triangle choke early into the third round.
Another quick and violent knock out victory would follow as Thiago Silva beat glass jaw Keith Jardine in 95 seconds after connecting with a left hook and then finishing him conclusively with a couple of follow up punches to the downed Jardine.
Couture entered the main event as a solid fan favourite and that he remained by the bout’s conclusion; however Nogueira was so impressive in his unanimous decision victory that there was no excuse to boo him by the fight’s conclusion. The fight got off to an explosive start with both trading punches. Couture was the one to drop and ‘Big Nog’ quickly followed up with a tight D’arce choke the really looked to be the finish. However Randy somehow survived and escaped much to the delight of the now rabid crowd. There was more solid trading of blows as the horn sounded to end an enthralling first round. The second round started with more of the same exciting punching exchanges, punctuated this time with Nog securing a standing guillotine that Couture was able to escape and fall into a dominant position. However the Brazilian ground wizard was soon able to show his superiority here and ended another round with little doubt as to who was ahead on the judges score cards. After being dropped again early in the third Randy showed great guts and determination to actually finish the fight in the dominant position as he fired a series of hard punches and elbows from the top. As the final horn sounded there was little doubt that Nogueira had done more than enough to win the fight. However there was even less doubt that Couture had hung in there throughout and more than held his own against the best Nogueira yet to appear inside the Octagon. Only one judge gave the last round to Randy, with a straight sweep for Nogueira being the common thought. However this was a fight so good one could argue that both fighters came out of it as winners.
Prelim highlights included what should stand as the fastest knock out ever as Todd Duffee beat Tim Hague in just seven seconds after a series of super fast punches that garnered him a superstar like reaction from the very impressed capacity crowd. Gabriel Gonzaga beating Chris Tutscherer was also a sight to see after a lethal errant leg kick made testicle soup out of poor Tutscherer who when he eventually recovered was pounded unmercifully into the cage until it was finally stopped. Another unfortunate under card accident did befall to Ed Herman who blew out his knee at the end of the first round against Aaron Simpson, after Herman showed real guts to attempt to continue it was stopped at the start of the second.
Overall this was an entertaining show with some explosive fights and an awesome main event. Well worth checking out.
Point: 8 / 10