Last night, Affliction wasted no time in hyping an eventual showdown between Fedor Emelianenko and Randy Couture.
Following the main event of ‘Banned’ – where the hard-hitting Russian dismantled former UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia in 36 seconds – the two fighters came face-to-face in the ring.
It’s the type of fight that makes MMA fans drool, but will it ever be more than just a fantasy? After all, Chuck Liddell and Wanderlei Silva had a similar encounter at UFC 61 but the fight was eventually scrapped. The two finally fought a year and half later at UFC 79, but only after Silva was on the UFC payroll.
While being interviewed by (Big) John McCarthy, Couture admitted that he still has to sort out his legal troubles with the UFC. It’s hard to say if and when that will ever happen, but at least there’s a possibility MMA fans will finally get to see him fight Emelianenko.
In the meantime, the newly-crowned WAMMA heavyweight champion has two other top-10 calibre opponents to face in Josh Barnett and Andrei Arlovski. Though these matches aren’t nearly as high profile as a bout with Couture, they’re dream matches in their own right.
After only one show, Affliction already has a deep heavyweight division.
ARLOVSKI IS BACK
Last night, Andrei Arlovski dismantled a very dangerous opponent in Ben Rothwell. It was the best we’ve seen him look since he held the UFC heavyweight championship. He was vicious and aggressive, with no signs whatsoever of being gun-shy.
Early in the third round Arlovski unloaded with a series of vicious punches that dropped Rothwell – ending any doubt ‘The Pitbull’ has lost his bite.
BARNETT GETS PAYBACK
At UFC 30 Pedro Rizzo delivered a nasty knockout punch to Josh Barnett – the only KO loss in his career. At ‘Affliction: Banned’ the tables were turned.
Early in the second round ‘The Babyface Assassin’ connected with a hard left that sent Rizzo into dreamland. For Barnett, there couldn’t have had a better ending without scripting it.
NO MORE MEGADETH, PLEASE
Though Affliction managed to put on a successful debut show, they should focus more on fights and less on washed-up metal bands. That time could have been better spent showing Terry Martin vs. Vitor Belfort to the pay-per-view audience.