Rich Franklin vs Vitor Belfort - via MMA Junkie
UFC 103 took place at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas. The night saw a massive thirteen-fight card with SpikeTV airing three of the night’s preliminary fights (though SpikeTV was only scheduled to air two fights). The night’s co-main event and main event changed the dynamics of their weight classes and many questions became answered.
Vitor Belfort made a dynamic return the octagon; needing only three minutes to knock out former middleweight champion Rich Franklin. The win marked Belfort’s fifth in a row, and third knockout in a row. While the fight was at a catch-weight of 195lbs, Dana White insisted that Belfort is ready for a title shot against Anderson Silva.
In the co-main event, Junior Dos Santos proved he was a contender in the ever-improving heavyweight division. The fight marked the first time Dos Santos had been outside of the first round and he proved that he could go the distance with dangerous strikers. Many fans were confused when Cro Cop covered his eye and waved off Dos Santos, thinking that he was calling for a time out. But when Dan Miragliotta awarded the victory to Dos Santos, the fans erupted.
Martin Kampmann probably wishes he were able to fight his original opponent Mike Swick instead of Paul Daley. Daley and Kampmann traded punches and Kampmann seemed to get the better end at first. But Daley persisted and pushed back. Daley rocked Kampmann and then unloaded a flurry of punches forcing the referee to stop the fight while both fighters were standing. The fans did not like this, but Kampmann was out on his feet and it was a just stoppage.
Josh Koscheck welcomed Frank Trigg back to the UFC with a big right hand that floored Trigg. Koscheck hit Trigg with two more punches and was declared the winner at 1:25 of the first round.
Tyson Griffin finally broke his decision streak by earning the technical knockout victory over Hermes Franca. Griffin stunned Franca with a straight right and followed up with a barrage punches forcing the referee to stop the fight.
Efrain Escudero was able to neutralize Cole Miller’s reach advantage by closing the gap and connecting with a combo that sent Miller to the ground. Escudero quickly followed Miller to the ground and hit him with three good shots before the action was halted.
In a very unexpected finish, Thomas Drwal submitted Drew McFedries with a rear naked choke. Both fighters are known for their heavy hands and showed their toughness through the first round. In the second round Drwal hit McFedries with a left hand and then pushed him to the mat. Drwal capitalized on his dominant position and took McFedries’s back and locked in the rear naked choke.
Jim Miller earned a TKO victory over Steve Lopez after Lopez dislocated his own shoulder while punching Miller. While not the finish that Miller would have liked, he was in control through out the fight.
Nik Lentz defeated Rafaello Oliveira by unanimous decision. The fight was a back and forth battle with Lentz winning the second and third rounds to get the victory.
Brian Foster and Rick Story stood toe-to-toe and battered each other with punches. Foster landed a straight shot that broke Foster’s nose, but Foster continued to push forward. In the second round Story continued his assault and took Foster down and quickly submitted him with an arm triangle.
Elliot Marshall and Jason Brilz were too evenly matched to have a good fight. Both fighters were able to negate the other’s attacks and the fight could have gone to either fighter. The final decision was for Marshall by scores of 30-27, 27-30, and 30-28.
Vladimir Matyushenko won his return bout to the cage over UFC newcomer Igor Pokrajac. Both fighters known for their counter striking ability, waited for the other to take action and capitalize upon their own strengths. Unfortunately neither wanted to fall prey to their opponent and there were many moments without action.
Rafael Dos Anjos defeated Rob Emerson in the night’s first fight. Both fighters kept the pace of the action up through out the three-round fight. Dos Anjos was able to use leg kicks to get the fight to the ground where he worked a solid ground game over Emerson to earn the unanimous decision victory.
- Vitor Belfort def. Rich Franklin via TKO (strikes) – Round 1, 3:02
- Junior Dos Santos def. Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic via submission (verbal) – Round 3, 2:00
- Paul Daley def. Martin Kampmann via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 2:31
- Josh Koscheck def. Frank Trigg via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 1:25
- Tyson Griffin def. Hermes Franca via knockout (punches) – Round 2, 3:26
- Efrain Escudero def. Cole Miller via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 3:36
- Tomasz Drwal def. Drew McFedries via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 1:03
- Jim Miller def. Steve Lopez via TKO (injury) – Round 2, 0:48
- Nick Lentz def. Rafaello Oliveira via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
- Rick Story def. Brian Foster via submission (arm-triangle choke) – Round 2, 1:09
- Eliot Marshall def. Jason Brilz via split decision (30-28, 27-30, 30-27)
- Vladimir Matyushenko def. Igor Pokrajac via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Rafael Dos Anjos def. Rob Emerson via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)