When Joanne Calderwood stepped out into the octagon I was officially deaf.
If you thought the noise for Conor McGregor in London on Friday night was loud, Scotland were close to loosening the screws on the roof of the SSE Hydro on Sunday.
Scottish fans have a fierce-some reparation and they lived up to it – going ballistic for every one of their home fighters.
It was a night of knockouts, shocks and Gunnar Nelson being put to sleep after just 80 seconds.
There were many takeaways from the night, one being, will the UFC be returning to Scotland after seeing most of the local stars fall to defeat?
Crossroads for Calderwood
The main attraction for Scottish fans was ‘Jojo’ Calderwood.
She was coming into the Cynthia Calvillo fight off a loss and a botched weight cut.
Two pounds over the strawweight limit is not a good look and Calderwood looked dreadful at the early weigh-in on Saturday.
But, the Hydro was buzzing for their queen and she came out to an insane reception and fought in a cauldron designed to big her up and intimidate Calvillo.
Calderwood’s recent record
LOSS vs Jessica Andrade – Submission (R1)
WIN vs Valerie Letourneau (flyweight) – TKO (R3)
CANCELLED BOUT vs Paige VanZant – Calderwood knee injury
CANCELLED BOUT vs Bec Rawlings – Rawlings Injury
Calvillo seemed to break Calderwood’s nose in the second and almost submitted her three times.
Calderwood will be bitterly disappointed – she was still hoping the judges would give it to her when the decision was read out.
She clashed with Calvillo before the result announcement and her anger translated into the crowd when they abused the winner as she left the octagon.
Now Calderwood has a decision, surely she cannot stay at strawweight?
For no other reason other than she can’t make the weight anymore. She has managed 116 just once since July 2015.
The flyweight division is set to launch during the new Ultimate Fighter Series, Calderwood said she wants to move up before.
It is not like Calderwood has been stunned in her last two fights thought, she fought Jessica Andrade who would then go on to fight for the title and Calvillo is maybe one bout off her own championship showdown.
The 30-year-old certainly has much more to give in the octagon and in a new gym, moving up seems to be the perfect tonic to kick starting her career again.
Scotland lives up it’s bill
It wasn’t the night the Scottish fighters were dreaming of.
Three out of four of them were beaten, two stopped, with only UFC newcomer Danny Henry pulling off a win.
Calderwood was disappointed in her co-main event while Stevie Ray was throughly dispatched by a rejuvenated Paul Felder.
The invaders were the victors on Sunday night, but it should mean little to the fans and the UFC.
The Hydro sold out, the place was rocking and Scotland delivered.
It was a mad house just over two years ago when the Scottish fighters reigned supreme.
Scots at UFC Glasgow 2015 vs 2017
Calderwood WIN vs Cortney Casey – UD
Ray WIN vs Leonardo Mafra – TKO (R1)
Rob Whiteford WIN vs Paul Redmond – TKO (R1)(Punches, R1)
Calderwood LOSS vs Calvillo – UD
Ray LOSS vs Felder – TKO (Punches, R1)
Craig LOSS vs Rountree TKO (R1)
Henry WIN vs Seymour – UD
The energy of the night was not dampened despite the results and all in all, there were some good fights accompanied by a ferocious atmosphere.
Boxes ticked for the UFC and surely they will be back sooner rather than later.
Anything can happen in MMA
I had never seen anything like Galore Bofando’s knockout.
The Englishman was basically in hostile territory with much of the crowd supporting the Irishman, Charlie Ward.
And then a simple, if messy, hip toss shocked the entire media desk and the Glasgow spectators.
Ward landed straight on his temple and was out cold.
A bizzarre knockout unlike anything I had seen and definitely nothing Ward or his world class SBG team could have planned for.
MMA is an unpredictable game. We saw Ponzinibbio take just 80 seconds to stop Nelson.
The strange end to Ward’s night is the perfect example of why MMA is such a fascinating and crowd pleasing sport.
No matter the fighter, the occasion or the shot – anything can happen in the cage.
Seery’s sage advice
Neil Seery has been around the octagon one or two times.
The Irishman called it a day in Glasgow and although he went out on a loss, Seery took all the class out of the cage with him that helped make him an Irish MMA legend.
Part of the first Irish group to go pro, Seery had plenty of warnings to issue to new fighters.
Mainly: Know where your future lies after the fighting is done.
UFC Glasgow Results
Ponzinibbio def. Nelson – TKO (Punches, R1)
Calvillo def. Calderwood – UD
Felder def. Ray – TKO (Elbows, R1)
Marshman def. Janes – UD
Rountree def. Craig – TKO (Punches, R1)
Willis def. Mulheron – UD
Roberts def. Nash – TKO (Punch, R2)
Pantoja def. Seery – Rear-naker choke (R3)
Bofando def. Ward – KO (Slam, R1)
Henry def. Teymur – UD
Johns def. Morales – UD
Smith def. Lemos – TKO (Punches, R2)
Seery admitted his biggest battle was ahead of him and he did not want to be that veteran getting embarrassed and knocked out in the cage.
So many fighters simply cannot let go, even more see no future for them after MMA.
It’s an art leaving when the race is run and the tank has emptied. Seery seems to have just got his departure time right.
But, he leaves with uncertainty weighing on his shoulders, he admitted he is not sure what he will do now.
Does he start coaching? Commenting? What is life after fighting?
Intelligent and measure, his comments should be headed by younger fighters.
There’s life after fighting – discovering that life is a whole other fight.