Gian Villante Surprises and Disappointments is a column featured on MMAOddsbreaker.com after every UFC event, highlighting three fighters who had surprising performances and three fighters who disappointed. Here were the three biggest surprises and the three biggest disappointments from UFC On FOX 15. Surprises Max Holloway — I figured Max Holloway vs. Cub Swanson would be a close fight, but I didn’t expect it to be a blowout, and that’s exactly what it was. Holloway outrstruck Swanson for the first two rounds and was headed to a decision win, but in the third round found a way to submit the veteran with a guillotine choke. Holloway has now won six fights in a row in the UFC featherweight division and should get a top-five opponent for his next bout. Gian Villante — Gian Villante is a guy who I’ve never been sold on, but I gained a lot of respect for him after his destruction of Corey Anderson. Villante showed some lethal leg kicks in this fight and with just a minute left, found an opening in Anderson’s defence, clipped his opponent’s temple, and knocked him out. It was a beautiful finish by Villante, and the win will earn him a few more fights in the UFC, at least. Tim Means — Tim Means is a guy who gets little respect from the betting public, but after his amazing performance against George Sullivan, that probably won’t be the case anymore. Means badly outstruck Sullivan during the fight and even outwrestled him, and in the last round showed how bad he wanted a finish as he achieved a beautiful arm-triangle choke submission. Means is a very complete fighter, and at 170lbs he could be a dark horse contender if he keeps improving his game. Disappointments Lyoto Machida — I know Lyoto Machida had a tough matchup against Luke Rockhold, but I was expecting a more competitive fight than what we saw. Instead, Machida had the worst performance of his middleweight career — and the second worst of his UFC career behind the second Shogun Rua fight — as he was beat up by Rockhold in the first round and then submitted in the second round. Machida is still a great fighter, but after this showing it’s clear his days as a legitimate title contender are over. Corey Anderson — I really had high hopes for Corey Anderson after he won the Ultimate Fighter, but he let me down against Gian Villante. Anderson refused to check leg kicks throughout the fight and the damage started to add up, and with limited movement he was a sitting duck out there as the fight went into the later rounds. He was probably going to lose the decision anyways, but getting knocked out in the last minute by Villante was really tough to see, and it makes me question how high Anderson’s ceiling is now, because if you can’t beat a guy like Villante, perhaps you’re not the future contender everyone thought. Eddie Gordon — Eddie Gordon won the Ultimate Fighter, but after losing to Chris Dempsey by split decision in a Fight Pass prelim, it’s clear he’s not as good as anyone originally thought. I thought Gordon won the fight, but it was close enough that the judges could screw it up, and sure enough they did. Regardless of the decision, Gordon looked terrible in this fight, and he’ll be lucky if he gets one more UFC bout.


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