It's late...I'm still wired from UFC 124...so what the hell...here's some thoughts from a fan...that will likely be twisted like a pretzel on MMA message boards because I'm 'that wrestling guy.'
I enjoyed the PPV and felt that I got my monies worth. That is and should always be the bottom line of purchasing any PPV. UFC 124 delivered in the Octagon which is where UFC begins and ends.
The Montreal crowd is to be saluted. Their passion helped make the event an 'experience.' Any one can promote an event. Great promoters who match compelling fighters in front of emotionally invested audiences produce 'experiences.'
I would have enjoyed a few more beauty shots of the expansive crowd and certainly would have liked for the house to have been mic'ed better. I wanted to have to strain to hear Goldberg and Rogan and that wasn't the case at least on my cable system.
One of UFC's most viable assets is the unpredictability of the outcomes of their fights which is akin to old school, pro wrestling. Sorry MMA purists but study the history of the 'grunt and grown' entertainment entity. Unpredictability was one of the traits that helped build the biz most of you now say you despise into a global phenomenon.
Thiago Alves redeemed himself by being in shape and putting forth great effort. That's never too much to ask a guy who does what he does for a living. The Pit Bull entertained me and I will want to watch him fight again.
Referee Yves (can't spell his last name and it's late so sue me) sounded like Montreal's Pat Patterson talking to Rene Goulet. Perhaps the three should take a long, car trip for a Montreal reality show. Patterson would drive Yves 'banana.'
Jim Miller had me at CCR. That's Credence Clearwater Revival for you pups out there. Miller is now more relevant and obviously skilled. He's in the hunt for a title now more than ever.
The announcers could provide me more basic, background info on the non stars fighting on the under-card as those guys are likely to be the main eventers of the future. I did find out that Joe Stevenson had four sons just before Joe went to sleep. Quick, sound byte, bio info helps the casual fan invest.
Riddle lost but he has 'something.' Love his fighting spirit and if he can build upon his loss tonight he's got potential.
6'11" Struve is more 'The Mad Stork' (Ted Hendricks...Google it) than the Skyscraper. Struve looks like a pissed off power forward but when he's able to strike he's impressive. I thought "Stork' would lose and I was wrong. He's a young kid who has some charisma and a unique look. Plus, he has an international background which never hurts a company trying to globally grow their brand.
GSP was Rembrandt. His jabs were lethal...essentially toxic. Koscheck's right eye looked like pulled pork (O.K. one BBQ reference...get over it.) St. Pierre had the crowd and the fight in the palm of his hand. He is money both in and out of the ring. GSP is the type of fighter that the UFC is smart in building around because he's never going to embarrass the company and will always represent the sport in a classy way that will attract sponsors, casual fans and impress uninformed politicians.
Koscheck seemed to know early that Saturday night in Montreal wasn't going to be his night and perhaps felt going the distance would be somewhat acceptable against, arguably, UFC's top attraction. Koscheck is a tough kid who marketed this fight well and should earn a nice payday for paying the role of 1997 antagonist Shawn Michaels in Montreal. Someone needs to be the bad guy, in an organic and not over the top way, to assist in selling big time, UFC PPV main events. Koscheck handled that role well and he's to be commended. Koscheck got whipped like a government mule but never quit.
One small point, as much as I enjoy Goldberg and Rogan and am a legit fan of their work, they could have laid out during both GSP and Koscheck's entrances and allowed those of us that paid good money for the PPV the experience of 'feeling' and hearing the packed house of over 23,000. Nothing an announcer can say during those magical moments can replicate what the crazed audience such as filled the Bell Centre did on Saturday night.
What's next for GSP? Or perhaps the most relevant question is when will GSP fight Anderson Silva? That has seemingly become THE fight in UFC and seems ideal for the Rogers Centre in Toronto which is an arena that WWE has sold out for two Wrestlemanias as I recall. With a hot semi main event, I could see St. Pierre vs. Silva doing north of 50,000 fans and massive PPV numbers in the Dome in Toronto. TO is another major league city that would likely completely buy into a major, worldwide attraction coming to their marketplace. If the Toronto city fathers didn't then they don't have their cities best interests at heart. UFC will bring 'new money' to town and 'new money' is critical in today's financial climate.
Ring announcer Bruce Buffer is invaluable to the live, UFC presentation. He's over the top in a positive way and is to UFC what WWE Hall of Famer Howard Finkel was in his ring announcing heyday....only Buffer wears nicer suits. Watching Buffer do his thing live was one of the unexpected highlights of my UFC experience last July in Vegas.
For non UFC fans....Cam Newton winning the Heisman by such a wide margin was not good TV for ESPN. Newton's Dad not coming to NYC for the ceremony was not good TV for ESPN. Plus, comparing Cam Newton to Reggie Bush isn't fair to the Auburn QB until he's proved guilty and he very well may not be the case. We just don't know right now. I suggest that we all let the kid have his moment and if it's discovered that Newton is 'dirty' then he will have to live with his mis-truths.
Business has been really steady here on our website store. The Main Event Mustard is a bona fide hit. 1 gram of sugar, no fat, no cholesterol, 1 gram of carbs in the 12 ounce plastic bottle. It's sweet and spicy and may be the best condiment that you ever tasted.
The Sampler has been our top seller and it's only $14.88 plus the personally autographed JR's Cookbook is selling great as well and it's only $18.88 and that price includes FREE SHIPPING in the USA. We use Federal Express Ground so we need physical addresses with your orders and do not ship to post office boxes. If you order this weekend we are going to endeavor to get your orders shipped on Monday or Tuesday. We sincerely appreciate the support and know that you will love our homemade recipes from our family run business. If you don't, just let me know.
Thanks for so many of you that followed my coverage of UFC 124 on Twitter @JRsBBQ.
Remember that Monday Night Raw emanates from New Orleans this Monday on the USA Network and starts one hour early at 8/7 Central. The three hour special will feature the Slammies. I'm told that Saturday's taping of Tribute to the Troops went splendidly. It's going to be bigger than ever and I'm sure the great folks down in Ft. Hood Texas had a blast. I know that the WWE folks did.