Jul 7, 2008

My Comments on the Forrest Griffin - Quentin "Rampage" Jackson Bout (UFC 86)

Let me start off by saying to the people who were booing the decision:

Get off the now-defunct PRIDE bandwagon.

Maybe I'll go ahead and email Forrest, with a message reading:

"Hey Forrest, would you mind going out there and apologizing for RNC-ing a very gassed Shogun? I think it would make your victory over Rampage easier to swallow for the PRIDE diehards.

Punch Kick Choke"

Now, let me back up a second. The bout was scored 48-46, 48-46, and 49-46, due to 1 10-8 scored in the second round. While yes, Forrest clearly won that round, 10-8 is nearly unheard of in the UFC, and it wasn't THAT much of a domination to warrant an 8 on Jackson's part. (Though he didn't mount an offense of any kind that round)

There. There's my one concession to the Rampage fanboys.

Don't get me wrong- I rooted for him against Henderson, and I was screaming for a good slam by him in this fight, which was unfortunately (from an MMA fan's viewpoint) defended by Griffin. It's just that Griffin won, and the people who are running around yelling "foul" are pissing me off to the point where I want to slap on a triangle on the next person who tries to tell me about some kind of "Dana White-masterminded TUF-legitimizing conspiracy."

Let me explain what happened in this fight to the best of my ability, and why Rampage lost, piece by piece-

-Leg Kicks were the death of Rampage
A brawler/wrestler who like to throw leather's weakest point is his lead leg. Take away the leg, take away the power, consistency, and frequency of his attacks, which is exactly what Griffin did, very early.

-Rampage did not do "More Damage"
Forrest cuts easily and got cut. He was not exactly any more banged up than Rampage, and just because Jackson throws his body more into his punches, does not make Forrest's punches "pitty-pat" like some other mis-informed bloggers have said. In fact, while Rampage's occasional trades with Griffin were damn exciting, and looked painful, a lot of shots were taken on the arm, which a lot of people seemed to have missed (yes, even fightmetrics).

-Griffin's ground game has gotten incredibly slick
With that Triangle-Slam Defense-Omoplata Attempt in the fourth, combined with the fact that he neutralized Jackson's usually pretty sound GNP, I think that this fight legitimizes my opinion that Forrest's Jits is actually fairly good. From what I've heard, he taps BJJ black belts on a consistant basis now in No-Gi and MMA, and I believe he holds a win in NAGA or Abu Dhabi against Roberto Traven, a former ADCC absolute champion.

Plus, in his entire career, Jackson has only gone up against 5 opponents with a good ground game (of which 4 were middleweights, not LHW) - He got subbed by Sakuraba, almost got triangled by Arona before that highlight-reel slam, and almost got subbed by both Lindland and Busta. While Forrest is primarily a Sprawl-and-Brawl fighter, he went ahead and developed his skills, and I believe that Rampage severely underestimated that and ended up getting surprised.

-Jackson seemed fat as hell on TUF and during the fight.
While I know for a fact that Rampage's training has been stepped up since time past, when he spent more time partying than training, he still seemed 0verweight. On the other hand, Forrest is a well-known cardio machine, and looked as jacked as ever.

Well, that was my assessment. If you want to bitch and moan about it, leave a comment :)


yjl003 said...

though im a huge fan of pride fighters(only because i think the rules were better and their shows were a LOT better) i have to agree that forrest griffin took this fight. he was dominating for the most part. he definitely stepped up his game, and i guess rampage really did underestimate that. those leg kicks really did some damage and helped in the points area, and though rampage didnt go down easy, his few exchanges didnt match up to how much forrest was bringing. i look forward to a 2nd match with these 2. also, i noticed that rampage did seem a bit overweight, but it didnt seem to affect him too much, he didn't look like he was gassing or anything. maybe if he was slimmer he wouldve been alot quicker, which couldve changed the outcome of the fight, who knows. anyways keep up the good stuff punchkickchoke

Anonymous said...

I am not bitching! I just want a rematch. And a rampage at the top of his game!! but forrest is the man.

Erik M said...

didn't know he tapped BJJ blackbelts. But doesn't the quality of the black belt depend on where you got it from?

Punch Kick Choke said...

That would be true, but BJJ thus far has a pretty good track record of only awarding black belts to people who have mastered the art with proven sparring records- with the exception of a few celebrities and people who only get private lessons, I have yet to see a BJJ black that couldn't handle himself very well, something that can't be said for most MAs.

That being said, I don't think Griffin spars in Gi grappling, which probably evens out the match a little better.

Also, as I've said, the win in a grappling-only match in NAGA over Roberto Traven alone makes his jits pretty legit imho.

Punch Kick Choke said...

"I am not bitching! I just want a rematch. And a rampage at the top of his game!! but forrest is the man."

And I'm sure they will- probably sometime after Liddell/Griffin and Jackson/Wanderlei III or maybe even possibly (Jackson//Griffin)/Machida.

Punch Kick Choke said...

i noticed that rampage did seem a bit overweight

My other theory is that Jackson thought that it would be a mistake to lose any more weight against a guy who walks around a natural LHW, and decided that gaining more muscle and cutting the fat would be too much of a hassle to stay at that weight.

Am I being serious? Who knows?!