Everyone knows that Pat Barry is never going to be a heavyweight contender, so it’s not like Saturday’s results are all that shocking. A fighter like him will take out a favorite in shocking fashion one night and then drop the ball to an underdog the next. That’s just kinda how he rolls, and how it works in the heavyweight division if you throw caution to the wind and let it all hang out fight after fight. But one thing is for sure – he’s always entertaining inside and outside the cage and that’s enough to guarantee him job security.
In a way that’s good … the fans want more Pat Barry! But at a certain point you have to start worrying about the amount of damage Barry has taken over the course of his career. Getting regularly knocked out in the UFC heavyweight division can’t be good for your brain, and last night’s display wasn’t helped by local ref Jerin Valel’s glacier slow stoppage. Barry ate 17 unanswered shots to the noggin before Valel stepped in and called the fight. This isn’t one of those ‘Pat Barry needs to retire!’ posts, but I’m starting to get a little concerned about all the head trauma he’s taking.
Speaking of head trauma, how about that Roy Nelson. Dana White awarded him a dubious record during the post fight press conference: Most significant strikes absorbed without getting knocked out (437). That’s over his entire UFC career, although I wouldn’t blame you if you misunderstood and thought that’s how many times Stipe Miocic drilled him in the skull. When Roy Nelson wins, he wins big. But when he comes up against someone with the wherewithal to circle away from his big dumb hooks and uppercuts, he hits a brick wall. And then we’re treated to the other side of the Roy Nelson spectacle: watching him get the shit beaten out of him for three rounds.
There were maulings at the hands of Junior Dos Santos and Fabricio Werdum and now Stipe Miocic makes three – this last one being all the more concerning since Miocic was an unranked heavyweight whose last fight was a loss to Stefan freakin’ Struve. There’s no shame in taking a beating from the cream of the heavyweight crop, and perhaps Miocic has finally put everything together and this was his big coming out party. But you can only take the kind of beatings Roy Nelson has taken so many times. Getting knocked out is one of those weird evolutionary survival things that is supposed to keep you from taking way too many blows to the head. By my count, Nelson should have been knocked out at least 6 times last night. I don’t know whether to be impressed by his new UFC record, or kinda horrified.
(just two of many exchanges where Nelson’s head gets used for target practice)