Sherdog.com Preview: UFC 59 “Reality Check” Part I

Introduction

Apr 11, 2006
The Ultimate Fighting Championship finally conquers California. It took several years to get the legislation passed but when the lights go down and that Octagon glows hot with action inside the Arrowhead Pond of Anaheim it will all seem worth it.

The fight card is pretty solid, too. There are plenty of bouts across the divisional board, but the highlights feature a potential light heavyweight slugfest between Terry Martin (Pictures) and Jason Lambert (Pictures) and a heavyweight bout showcasing 2005 Abu Dhabi tournament competitors Jeff Monson (Pictures) and Marcio Cruz (Pictures).

Saturday’s action includes a double headliner that everyone has waited to see. Tito Ortiz (Pictures) returns to the Octagon just miles from his hometown, and thankfully he wasn’t fed a sacrificial lamb to appease his fans. In his biggest fight since becoming The Ultimate Fighter contract winner, five-year MMA veteran Forrest Griffin (Pictures) faces Tito Ortiz (Pictures).

The heavyweight title is also on the line. Tim Sylvia (Pictures) worked his way back into title contention for the belt he once owned. The revolving door of champions has stopped and Andrei Arlovski (Pictures), whether it was pre-title, interim title or legitimate title, has ruled the UFC since knocking out Ian Freeman (Pictures) in November 2002. Saturday’s title fight will be a rematch of a fight in which Arlovski submitted Sylvia with an ankle lock.

The entire card breaks down as follows:

Evan Tanner (Pictures) squares off against Ruas Vale Tudo fighter Justin Levens (Pictures).

Thiago Alves from the American Top Team battles Derrick Noble of the Silverbacks Vale Tudo team.

Jason Lambert (Pictures) of the North County Fight Club throws down with Chicago Fitness Center fighter Terry Martin (Pictures).

Hayastan Dojo grappler Karo Parisyan (Pictures) tangles with Minnesota Martial Arts fighter Nick Thompson (Pictures).

Cesar Gracie (Pictures) fighter David Terrell (Pictures) confronts Scott Smith of the Capital City Fighting Alliance.

American Top Team/Olympia fighter Jeff Monson (Pictures) squares off against jiu-jitsu fighter Marcio Cruz (Pictures) from Gracie Barra.

Nick Diaz (Pictures) of Cesar Gracie (Pictures)’s camp and Sean Sherk (Pictures) from Minnesota Martial Arts take to the cage.

Forrest Griffin (Pictures) faces “Huntington Beach Bad Boy” Tito Ortiz (Pictures).

And in the main event, Miletich Fighting Systems athlete Tim Sylvia (Pictures) meets Belarusian grappler and current UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski (Pictures) for the title.
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