It was a busy day at the office for UFC brass Wednesday as they struggled to pick up the peices of UFC 153 after losing both Jose Aldo and Quinton Jackson to injuries. Fixing things up was imperative – not just because we’re all still reeling from the cancellation of UFC 151, but because this would be the second nerfed Brazilian card in a row. Out of all the places the UFC has expanded out into, Brazil has responded the best. The last thing they needed was the injury bug killing their momentum.
So with that in mind, the UFC started to engage in some extremely … creative matchmaking. Rumor has it the original idea was to have Anderson Silva fight Wanderlei Silva and Glover Teixeira vs Stephan Bonnar. For whatever reason, Wand vs Silva fell apart so Stephan Bonnar got bumped up into the main slot. Big Nog was hanging out with Anderson during the whole ordeal and offered up his services as well. He’ll be facing Dave Herman in his first fight since Frank Mir broke his arm backwards last December.
As far as patch up jobs go, it wasn’t a bad fix. You can complain about the quality of his opponent, but it’s hard to get too bitchy when we’ve essentially just gotten a bonus Anderson Silva fight for the year. It’s nowhere near as competitive and relevant as Aldo vs Edgar, but I dare say in the end Rio has a more interesting card than it did when it started out as Aldo vs Koch.
I use the term ‘more interesting’ because ‘better’ is certainly in the eye of the beholder. Stephan Bonnar is the leftfield WTF choice to end all leftfield WTF choices, and that’s saying a lot after we just got served up Jon Jones vs Vitor Belfort. He’s basically a warm body being brought in for an Anderson Silva showcase. But while no one is really expecting him to win, he’s at least tough enough to hang in there and put on a show. Jon Jones pounded on him for 15 minutes and wasn’t able to put him away. So my big hope is we get more than a two minute blitz for our fifty bucks.