The Ultimate Fighting Championship’s first “live” broadcast on Versus will take place in Broomfield, Colo., on March 21, and in the main event is a highly anticipated light heavyweight match up between Jon “Bones” Jones (9-1 MMA, 3-1 UFC) and Brandon “The Truth” Vera (11-4, 7-4 UFC)
Vera, although a fan favorite is undoubtedly the underdog here, and if we dare put our emotions aside for a second and take a closer look at this upcoming cage fight from a honest perspective, we can see why.
Vera, in his last outing at UFC 105, was handed a gift from the UFC in the form of 47-year-old UFC pioneer Randy Couture.
Couture, with all due respect, is an aging warrior with diminished skills, and although his fans and his mind tell him he is still able to compete at the top level, the truth is that he is barely able to ” hang in there ” against such well worn travel horses as Mark Coleman, and Minotauro Nogueira.
Therfore, it is this writer’s opinion that the UFC was literally sending Vera a message: ” this is your time son, go out and make a statement to the fans, and to the UFC by knocking out the old and bringing in the new.
” Put out to pasture this aging stud and past trail blazer, and you—the young Thoroughbred, can move on to the challenge the lead horses down the stretch.”
” If not, you will suddenly find yourself on a downward spiral, facing the young guns of the division who—with one shot KO power, see you only as an obstruction on their ravenous path towards title contention.”
A knockout of Couture would have been the “order of the day”—and Vera’s only true route to victory.
Yet instead, the “never say die” elder statesman exposed the younger Vera for exactly what he is—a mid-level fighter, with his biggest claim to fame being a win over a—post-motorcycle accident, and still halfway incapacitated Frank Mir
Vera was unable to deliver anything worthy of top contender-ship in a fight where he so desperately needed to. Vera lost a close decision, and now must face an even tougher test.
The hungry young “Bones” Jones has been on a “hurricane” like tear.
Smashing his way through game, tough, UFC opposition such as Chicago Golden Gloves boxing champion, and Gracie trained jujitsu fighter Stephan Bonner, who he used as as virtual “human punching bag” throughout most of the fight.
And Matt Hamill—who Jones had mounted and was brutally hammering from the top, but lost by disqualification due to a minor technicality in the UFC rule book which states—in essence—that striking vertically with elbows on a 12 to 6 angle to the top of the head of a downed opponent is dis-allowed.
Hamill was said to be a great young up and coming fighter, but he looked terribly out matched and was losing every second of every round in this one-sided fight.
So now Vera once again finds himself in an extremely precarious position, and as in the fight with Couture he has another rare window of opportunity here.
An upset win over the skyrocketing Jones would virtually erase any previous discrepancies on his record.
“The Truth” Vera is honestly the “long shot” and the “dark horse” here.
Yet anything can happen in a fight at any time, even the last few seconds.
So if Vera fights intelligently, by that I mean kicks, jabs, and lateral movement, he will have the ever-present, “puncher’s chance ” and could make liars of us all.
Good luck to both fighters.