Following in suit wth UFC 116, UFC 117 comes complete with another epic championship showdown of the ages.
UFC are brilliant at promoting their top tier fights, some fighters possess the gift-of-the-gab to promote themselves, helping propel their careers into the stratosphere. Chael Sonnen, Anderson Silva’s challenger for his middleweight crown is one of those fitting into that category.
Sonnen is a talker who can back it up, check out the Countdown show (disc 2) to witness his ‘promo’ highlights plus all the build-up and comments from defending champ Silva. This bonus feature shows some great footage of Sonnen’s college wrestling career and what makes him the MMA contender he is today.
Heading over to disc 1, how did the plot pan out for the 185-pounders title tilt? Value for money is delivered, we are given a near full 25 minutes of championship calibre competition.
Like Lesnar’s title defence against Carwin we see a similar story, but told over more rounds. Silva is on the back-foot often defending against Sonnen’s superb wrestling throughout the majority of the match-up, making a last minute comeback snatching a round 5 tap-out win.
If Anderson didn’t pull out the triangle-choke victory, Chael would have clearly taken it on points. A gripping must see title defence.
UFC 117 DVD isn’t marketed as USA v Brazil, interestingly the supporting cast of bouts featured on disc 1 are all between those 2 nations. A great theme Dana White and co opted not to use, instead pushing the focus on Silva v Sonnen.
First off a personal favourite fighter steps in the cage – Roy ‘Big’ Country Nelson, stepping up to battle Junior Dos Santos. Lack of success here for Nelson, but an awesome performance from the Brazilian striker.
Welterweight legend Matt Hughes is featured, versus Renzo Gracie student Ricardo Almeida, who hoped for revenge for his trainer’s loss. Hughes puts on a clinic putting the BJJ practitioner to sleep in a choke.
Ultimate Warrior minus the war paint Clay Guida next in the octagon, again it’s another USA v Brazil skirmish, battling Rafael Dos Anjos. Strange Guida’s cage entrance is omitted, it’s part of the hype and excitement of a live bout. Not the most entertaining scrap but a win for Guida due to Dos Anjos injured jaw.
Welterweight contenders collide next – American wrestler John Fitch against Brazilian Muay Thai fighter Thiago Alves. The bout is a decider at another shot for Georges ‘Rush’ St Pierre’s belt. So a lot at stake. Due to Alves struggling to reach 170lbs this fight lacks a little in the entertainment stakes plus Alves doesn’t match well with American wrestler Fitch. Ugly to watch but Fitch gets the job done.
UFC & FightDVD are reliable as ever for bonus material, this 2 disc release includes many extras – prelims, weigh-ins, interviews plus behind the scenes footage. Interviews and behind the scenes are fun for some great moments from Big Country – Nelson.
UFC 117 Silva vs. Sonnen is out now on DVD, available direct from www.fightdvd.co.uk and all good retailers.
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UFC DVD review by Duane Farr