DVD Review : UFC 123 : Rampage vs MachidaJanuary 20, 2011
Reviewed by Steven Wilson of MainEventRadio.com
When looking at the main card of UFC 123, you could say that this was an event that featured both the fast rising prospects of the UFC, as well as the established big names who were looking to get their careers back on the world title track.
Headlined by a pair of former light heavyweight champions in Quinten “Rampage” Jackson and Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida as well as the third and final chapter of the BJ Penn/Matt Hughes trilogy, UFC had the potential for yet another strong event in what was a very successful year of 2010 for the UFC.
The opening matchup of the night Australian George Sotiropoulous up against Joe Lauzon. Sotiropoulos survived an early onslaught from Lauzon to eventually take the fight to the ground and prove why he is one of the better grapplers in the UFC as he would eventually grapple his way to a submission victory over Lauzon in the second round via Kimura.
In the second bout of the main event card, the undefeated “Mr Wonderful” Phil Davis submitted Tim Boetsch with a never before seen one arm kimura in the second round. Davis moved to 8-0 with the win and could be a major player in the years to come in the light heavyweight division.
The third fight featured the debut of Maiquel Falco against Gerald Hurricane Harris. The story of this fight was Falco showing the UFC fans that he has what it takes to hang in the octagon as he beat down Harris for the first two rounds and then went into cruise control through the third round to earn an easy victory. I may not of liked the fact that the third round was boring as hell, but I understand the strategy of ensuring your victory without risk.
The co main event of the evening featuring BJ Penn and Matt Hughes did not last long. This was the rubber match between the two men, and was an extremely important fight for BJ Penn as he came off of back to back losses to Frankie Edgar, the second of which he was dominated for 5 straight rounds. This fight however was Penn’s rebound, as easily walked away with the bragging rights finishing Matt Huges 21 seconds into the fight. You could see before the fight even started that Penn meant business as he intensely marched to the cage and came out swinging and swinging hard for that matter as Hughes had no idea what knocked him out, admitting after the match that it was so hard that he thought it was a kick or knee that caught him.
The main event between Rampage and Machida was a fight that went the distance and delievered a somewhat interesting decision. The first two rounds of the fight were nearly identical as both men felt eachother out. Machida proved why he is one of the most elusive fighters out there as he stuck to his circling away and picking his shots while Rampage stalked Machida endlessly. The first two rounds were hard to score but an edge could be given to Rampage. Realizing this Machida entered the third round with some urgency and it paid off as he rocked Rampage with a flurry of shots and nearly finished the former PRIDE star. Rampage survived and the judges delivered a split decision of 29-28 in favour of Rampage Jackson, who in defeat admitted that Machida beat him up real bad in the third and deserved the win, and even went as far as to offer him an immediate rematch. It was a entertaining main event and personally I think the right man got the win.
As Is the case with every major UFC DVD release, this is a 2 disc set featuring hours of bonus materials. The entire unaired undercard is on the second disc along with the usual bonus feature suspects such as the Countdown to UFC 123 special, the Weigh in show and UFC.com promos.
Also featured in the bonus materials is the 30 minute behind the scenes featurette contains a look at the team of coaches behind a fighter and how they help the fighters they work for. Kenny Florian’s perspective for the BJ Penn/Matt Hughes match and Ryan Bader’s perspective for the Rampage/Machida main event. The featurette wraps up with a look at the different fighting styles of the UFC fighters.
I highly enjoyed UFC 123 on DVD, it may not of been one of those stacked cards, but it was a good night of fights and as always a DVD chock full of quality bonuses. The main event is good fodder for a debate with your friends on the scoring and whether or not you’d like to see a rematch one day, and overall should make a nice addition to your UFC DVD collection.