After hard fought battles in front of the boss man, Joby Sanchez and Benito Lopez both earned their UFC contracts last night in the seventh installment of the Contender Series. The addition of Joby will add to the talent pool jockeying for position under Flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson, while Team Alpha Male member Benito Lopez joins the ranks of the UFC Bantamweight division ruled by his teammate Cody “No Love” Garbrandt.
As we all know I love the contender series. I think this is the most pure form of competition that allows fighters an option to compete to enter the UFC without having to endure the bullshit drama of a Big Brother reality TV show experience. I think that it’s amazing that this opportunity revolves solely around a contestant’s ability to fight. With that being said some of the fights turn out to be stinkers. Anton Berzin vs. Kennedy Nzechukwu was a stinker. After showing an inability to capitalize on dominate positions in the first round Berzin faded quickly. By round three, Berzin was completely unable to competently defend himself or even work any form of an offensive game plan. He leaned against the fence, shot for a lazy take downs, and even needed to be told by the ref to stand after taking a seat out of exhaustion. It was bad. So, how did Kennedy Nzechukwu capitalize on the situation? He didn’t. He resulted to peppering combos at Berzin with no real intent on putting the fight away. In my opinion this was a fight where both fighters deserved to lose, but the one with more volume thrown won. Berzin being a -310 favorite in this fight was way off and I bought into the hype, bad bet on my part but we live to see another day.