(Serra won this exchange but lost the war. Photo by Paul Thatcher.)
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UFC 119 was underwhelming overall but a handful of fights carried the card and had title-picture implications.
In the main event, Frank Mir won what he called “a shitty win,” which in his words, “is better than a shitty loss.” The KO victory moved from #14 to #9 in our Heavyweight Rankings; Cro Cop fell from #18 to #28. With recent losses to current champion Brock Lesnar and former no. 1 contender Shane Carwin, Mir will likely need several strong wins before getting back into the title mix.
In the co-main event Ryan Bader won a yawner over Antonio Rogerio Nogueira but put himself in the conversation for contendership at 205. The win moved Bader from #15 to #7 in FIGHT!’s Light Heavyweight Rankings; “Minotoro” falls from #9 to #17 with the loss.
In one of the better bouts on the card, Chris Lytle out-boxed Matt Serra en route to a decision, moving from #14 to #11 in the Welterweight Rankings and dropping Serra from #19 to #22.
Two lightweight bouts opened the main card and both ended in tough decisions and boos. Sean Sherk took a wrong-headed split decision from Evan Dunham, moving from #23 to #12 in our Lightweight Rankings, while Dunham slips from #12 to #20 with the loss. Melvin Guillard leapt from #27 to #17 with his decision win over Jeremy Stephens, who falls hard from #14 to #32.
On the Spike-televised undercard, CB Dollaway put himself in the title mix at middleweight with a quick submission win over Joe Doersken. Dollaway jumps from #25 to #8 in our Middleweight Rankings while Doerksen gets dumped from #14 to #34. In the other Spike TV fight, hard-hitting prospect Matt Mitrione entered our Heavyweight Rankings at #21 after his win over Joey Beltran, who falls from #35 to #43.
In lightweight undercard action, Waylon Lowe entered our Lightweight Rankings at #87 after defeating unranked Steve Lopez, and Thiago Tavares moves from #78 to #69 after a submission win over unranked Pat Audinwood. At 170#, TJ Grant used aggressive wrestling and submission attempts to secure a decision win over unranked Julio Paulino; Grant moved from #67 to #51 with the win. In the opening fight of the night, unranked Scott McCorkle stunned the MMA world, and probably himself, with a submission win over K-1 and Pride veteran Mark Hunt. Hunt falls from #40 to #64 in the Heavyweight Rankings with the loss.
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