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UFC 175 blog: Weidman wins in Fight of the Year; Rousey rolls in Rout of the Year

Uriah Hall doesn’t let broken toe slow him against Thiago Santos

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Sam Morris

Chris Weidman raises his arms after defending his middleweight title against Lyoto Machida with a unanimous decision at UFC 175 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center Saturday, July 5, 2014.

Updated Saturday, July 5, 2014 | 9:55 p.m.

UFC 175: Weigh-Ins

World Middleweight Champion Chris Weidman points to the heavens during the UFC 175 weigh ins at the Mandalay Bay Resort on Friday, July 4, 2014. Launch slideshow »

Note: Full results from the preliminary card available at the bottom of the page.

Still dazed, Chris Weidman stood in the center of the octagon at the Mandalay Bay Events Center and tried to compute the previous 25 minutes he had spent with Lyoto Machida.

Weidman knew he had won and retained his middleweight title. If the championship belt strapped around his waist and American flag draped over his shoulders weren’t enough, he had heard the official scores of 49-45, 49-46 and 48-47 granting him a unanimous decision.

But he had forgotten how he reached the moment. When asked if Machida ever hurt him, Weidman answered in his typically quick-delivering New York drawl.

“Probably,” he answered. “I can’t remember.”

It was no wonder why, as Weidman and Machida had just warred in a likely Fight of the Year where each fighter had more than one instance of clocking the other. The last two rounds were particularly brutal on Weidman when Machida bounced back from an early deficit to attack with his striking.

Weidman looked near-finished at the start of the fifth round, but found some reserve within him to land a late takedown of Machida and hurt the challenger on the feet.

“I was just in the moment,” Weidman said.

There was barely a moment to be had in the fight before. Ronda Rousey proved the best female fighter in the world once again by knocking out Alexis Davis in a staggering 16 seconds.

Rousey staggered Davis on the feet, then judo-threw to the ground where the challenger lost consciousness.

“I followed up with the short shots on the ground but it was over well before that,” Rousey said.

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Referee Yves Lavigne steps in to stop Ronda Rousey as she pounds Alexis Davis during their fight at UFC 175 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center Saturday, July 5, 2014.

Rousey’s finish helped UFC 175 shape up as possibly the shortest main card in history before Weidman vs. Machida. Tragedy also assisted.

Stefan Struve, who had battled back from a rare heart disorder over the last year, fainted in the locker room before his heavyweight fight against Matt Mitrione. Reports indicate Struve is fine, but on-site medical staff would not clear him to fight after the issue.

A former Weidman victim, Uriah Hall, broke his toe early in a middleweight fight with Thiago Santos but still won by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28).

Controversy opened the pay-per-view when bantamweight Russell Doane took an inexplicable split decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29) over Marcus Brimage, who seemed to out-perform his competition. The fight, however, was forgettable overall.

It was the direct opposite of the main event.

“Chris Weidman is a true champion,” Machida said. “He deserves the title. I will come back stronger.”

Stay tuned to lasvegassun.com for more out of UFC 175 later and scroll below to find live coverage from throughout the night.

Live Blog #UFC175 pay-per-view live blog
 

Pre-main card

His belt-holding contemporaries included Brock Lesnar and B.J. Penn.

The UFC was a year away from ever airing on network television, staging five-round non-title fights and witnessing the debut of Chris Weidman. Yes, it was a different era the last time Lyoto Machida possessed a championship in the UFC.

The former light heavyweight champion failed once to get his title back, but now attempts to win an all-new one in the main event of UFC 175 tonight at the Mandalay Bay Events Center.

Machida challenges Weidman for the middleweight championship five years after he karate-kicked his way into the record books in a different weight class.

“The Dragon” has a chance to join Penn and Randy Couture as only the third fighter to ever win a title in the world’s premier mixed martial arts organization in two different weight classes.

He’s yet to lose at his smaller weight, beating stiff challenges in Gegard Mousasi and Mark Munoz to earn the shot at Weidman. Many believe he has what it takes to beat the man who defeated training partner Anderson Silva twice last year.

Machida is less than a 2-to-1 underdog. The other title at risk tonight might be in safer hands according to the odds and pundits.

Ronda Rousey is a massive favorite to defeat Alexis Davis in the fourth women’s bantamweight championship bout to ever take place in the UFC. With a black-belt jiu-jitsu, Davis would seem better equipped to fight off Rousey’s armbar than any previous opponent.

But Rousey has grown in all areas of fighting, making her appear more unbeatable than ever.

Together, Weidman and Rousey are a combined 20-0 in mixed martial arts.

They’re the main attractions, but the three other main card bouts feature promising matchups. Heavyweights Stefan Struve and Matt Mitrione will exchange big blows right before the two heavyweight title fights.

The opening fight is between bantamweights Marcus Brimage and Russell Doane. Middleweights Uriah Hall and Thiago Santos help bridge the gap from the undercard to the headliners.

Stay tuned to lasvegassun.com for round-by-round updates of all the fights on the main card and look below for full preliminary results.

Urijah Faber submitted Alex Caceres at 1:09 of the third round in their bantamweight bout. Caceres had his moments in the striking exchanges, but Faber won whenever the fighters closed the distance until eventually finding a rear-naked choke.

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Kenny Robertson tries to get an arm bar on Ildemar Alcantara during their fight at UFC 175 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center Saturday, July 5, 2014 Robertson won by unanimous decision.

Ildemar Alcantara and Kenny Robertson were supposed to clash in a pick'em bout, but their welterweight meeting looked anything but evenly-matched. Robertson routed Alcantara by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-26).

Wrestling was the difference in a middleweight bout between Chris Camozzi and Bruno Santos. Unable to stop takedowns throughout the second and third rounds, Camozzi fell via split decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29) to Santos despite hurting the Brazilian with strikes in the first round.

It looked as if bantamweight newcomer Rob Font pressed a destruct button on George Roop. Font landed an overhand right to Roop's temple for a knockout at 2:19 of the first round.

Luke Zachrich handled Guilherme Vasconcelos by unanimous decision in a middleweight bout, winning nine out of a possible 10 rounds on the judges' scorecards.

Kevin Casey knocked out Bubba Bush 1:01 into the first round of their middleweight bout with elbows.

Case Keefer can be reached at 948-2790 or [email protected]. Follow Case on Twitter at twitter.com/casekeefer.

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