MMA Gradebook: Rating Every Fight From UFC on ESPN 6

By Kevin Wilson Oct 20, 2019
If you’re like us and watch an absurd amount of mixed martial arts each week, you probably wish there were some sort of rating system so you’re not forced to sit through a boring fight waiting for something to happen. In order to help, we rate the fights on major cards for your convenience. If you happen to miss an event, check back here for ratings so you can pick and choose which bouts to watch and which to skip.

Fights are ranked on the scale shown below, based on competitiveness, the skill and technique on display, excitement, and the story and drama of the contest. Wherever possible, the fights are described without spoiling the outcomes. Here's the MMA Gradebook for UFC on ESPN 6: Reyes vs. Weidman.

Tanner Boser vs. Daniel Spitz

I’ll say this much: for a heavyweight fight that went the distance -- featuring a fighter making his UFC debut, no less -- this was surprisingly entertaining. The debuting fighter in question, Boser, cruised to a somewhat lopsided unanimous decision win over the 6-foot-7 Spitz, who continues to flash prodigious physical tools even as he fails to put them together in any meaningful way. Check this one out if you want to see a clinic on the effective use of mullets and leg kicks to nullify a fighter with superior reach. [3.0]

Brenden Allen vs. Kevin Holland

One of the most electrifying fights on a night full of them, as current-season Dana White's Contender Series prodigy Allen takes on previous-season prodigy Holland in a middleweight scrap. A chaotic first round where both men had their moments gave way to a much more one-sided second, as Allen elected to bring the fight to the ground, where his superiority was very evident. Watch this fight to see Allen smoothly chain submission attempts on a game but overmatched Holland until the fight-ending choke. [4.0]

Sean Brady vs. Court McGee

McGee’s game is like a pile of rusty nails: not pretty to look at, but unpleasant to deal with and dangerous to the unwary. Here, in a fight against undefeated UFC debutant Brady, McGee showed that he is still a really tough guy to look good against. Brady, for his part, looked like a world-beater after one round, showing off a speed advantage so pronounced that McGee looked like a thawed caveman. However, “Crusher” came on in the second and third rounds, outlanding Brady in both and throwing the outcome of the fight into some doubt. In the end, Brady came away with a deserved unanimous decision, in the type of fight that offered positive takeaways about both fighters. [3.0]

Randy Costa vs. Boston Salmon

Both men were swinging for the finish from the opening bell, so it was only natural that this fight didn’t get out of the first round. Very fun fight and the crowd going crazy for Costa just made it better. [4.0]

Kyle Bochniak vs. Sean Woodson

This was far from the barnburner we have come to expect with a Bochniak fight, but Woodson’s brilliant performance still earns this a high rating. Woodson picked him apart from bell to bell with beautiful counters and his defensive footwork had Bochniak swinging at air all night. The 6-foot-2 Woodson’s length and odd style make him an interesting contender to keep your eyes on. [3.5]

Diana Belbita vs. Molly McCann

McCann was the biggest favorite on the card but this ended up being a fairly close fight. The first two rounds had lots of good exchanges on the feet and on the ground but very little happened in the third. McCann ended up taking home a unanimous decision victory, but Belbita looked much better than expected in her debut. [2.5]

Charles Rosa vs. Manny Bermudez

We cap off the prelims with a highly anticipated bout between two Massachusetts natives. The crowd would make you think this was the best fight of the year but in reality, this was very average. Not much happened before the finish, and even the finish was anticlimactic. [2.0]

Darren Stewart vs. Deron Winn

This was one of my most anticipated fights of the night but neither man gave us a jaw-dropping performance. Winn was very disappointing for someone heralded as Daniel Cormier’s prodigy. He missed weight by over two pounds in spite of being the shortest man in the middleweight division, gassed early and wasn’t able to do anything on the ground while Stewart picked him apart on the feet for three rounds. [2.0]

Gillian Robertson vs. Maycee Barber

Quick finish for Barber, who extends her UFC winning streak to three and her overall career tally to 8-0. Barber has been saying for years that she wants to be the youngest UFC champion ever. Performances like this will get her to that level very soon, but hopefully for her, not too soon. We have a future star in the making with Barber and it would be smart of the UFC to give the 21-year-old favorable opponents until she fully develops as a fighter. [3.0]

Joe Lauzon vs. Jonathan Pearce

The high rating is more about the story behind the fight. Lauzon was fighting in his home state for the first time since 2013 and the young Pearce was talking a lot of trash before the fight. Lauzon ended up embarrassing him in the first round and got to have an amazing and heartwarming moment in front of his home crowd. I wish Lauzon would have retired afterward, since it’s rare a fighter gets a perfect moment like this -- even Chris Lytle, the king of the perfect retirement, had announced beforehand that the Dan Hardy fight was going to be his last -- but if we know anything about MMA fighters, it’s that they never get out at the right time. [4.5]

Greg Hardy vs. Ben Sosoli

Hardy earns his second 1-star rating of his UFC career, as he put on another boring performance for a lackluster win. To make it worse, Hardy used an asthma inhaler between rounds and deservedly got his win overturned; it was officially a no-contest by the time he left the venue. This was a really good card from top to bottom, so don’t waste your time on this fight. [1.0]

Yair Rodriguez vs. Jeremy Stephens

Unbelievable back and forth fight that had a little bit of everything. Rodriguez was clearly ahead the whole fight, but Stephens' unparalleled heart and ability to eat shots and keep coming forward kept me on the edge of my seat. This rematch was exactly what we wanted in the first fight and I’m glad we got it tonight. [4.5]

Dominick Reyes vs. Chris Weidman

Brilliant performance from Reyes, who likely earned himself a title shot with this win. Weidman didn’t look bad at 205 but he came forward with a sloppy right hand which Reyes countered with a step-back left to set up the TKO finish. Since Jon Jones has cleared out the light heavyweight division, don’t be surprised to see Reyes fighting for the title sometime early next year. [3.0]
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