Originally Posted by latineg
EXCELLENT MATCH UP, no doubt, Haggis said it well stating it could go many different ways.
I feel that many fights at the top level are like this. Especially in the heavier divisions, where one strike can significantly alter the course of a fight even if it doesn't lead directly to a stoppage.
If Cigano lands a sweet hook on the button in the first round and Cormier eats it and doesn't get staggered/stopped right there, it can still have a massive effect on him. It can affect his balance and reflexes. It can make him slightly hesitant to pull the trigger or close distance. It can make him disengage from future takedown attempts when Junior punches back at him, instead of powering through anyway.
If Cigano never lands that initial hook and Cormier doesn't feel the power early on, then Cormier may well be a lot more confident and aggressive, may commit more to his attacks, and may then be a lot more successful.
This is something that I think many fans don't really acknowlege. Many fights, you can run them 5 times and not only get different outcomes, but entirely different paths to the different outcomes.
An obvious example is JDS-Cain. Junior landed that punch, scrambled his balance and then immediately laid him out. First round KO in a walkover. Does that mean that Cain was always outclassed and was never going to be competitive? Of course not. All we know is that Cain got tooled - on THAT night. That's not taking anything away from Cigano's win, but it's foolish to assume that Junior can dismantle Cain with ease any time they fight.