UFC 159 had a mix of bizarre moments and brutal finishes. As always, some used the platform to further their MMA careers, while others failed to deliver on the big stage.
Here are the biggest winners and losers from UFC 159:
1. Jon Jones
Most educated MMA fans expected Jones to emerge victorious against Chael Sonnen at UFC 159, but few expected it to be so easy. Instead of using his range, Jones decided to overwhelm Chael with his wrestling, manhandling the Portland native with ease. With Jones’ dominant performance against Chael (who managed to keep Anderson Silva grounded for the majority of their UFC 117 encounter), the demand for a super-fight against “The Spider” will only intensify, as it’s rather clear the 25 year-old could pose serious problems for the Brazilian.
2. Roy Nelson
“Big Country” took another step up the heavyweight rankings with his knockout victory against Cheick Kongo at UFC 159. The victory should be enough to score him a fight against a top heavyweight — most likely the winner of the Mark Hunt vs. Junior dos Santos bout or Daniel Cormier.
3. Pat Healy
Healy looked awesome at UFC 159, displaying his well-rounded skills against the always tough Jim Miller. With the win, the Strikeforce invasion continues, as another import instantly establishes himself as one of the top lightweights in the UFC.
Notable mentions: Sara McMann and Phil Davis.
1. Chael Sonnen
With his UFC 159 loss to Jones, Sonnen’s record in title fights under the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s banner drops to 0-3. As entertaining as Sonnen can be at times, it’s unlikely that he’ll be able to talk his way into any more title shots. Retirement is probably his best option at this point, as he acknowledged during his post-fight interview with Joe Rogan.
2. Jim Miller
Miller built up a lot of momentum with his entertaining UFC 155 war against Joe Lauzon, but it’s back to the drawing board for the New Jersey native — who loses for the second straight time in his home state. Jim will now have to try to climb his way back to the top of the UFC’s lightweight division which has been infused with serious competitors from Strikeforce. The journey back to contention won’t be easy.
3. Leonard Garcia
Garcia looked awful at UFC 159, getting outclassed by Cody McKenzie on the ground. To make things worse, Cody also got the better of the striking exchanges during the final round — when Garcia was finally able to keep the fight standing for an extended period. It was an embarrassing loss for Garcia who went in as the favorite, and it very well might lead to his dismissal from the UFC.
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