With 13 total fights on the card, UFC Fight Night 40 felt like a PPV length card, spanning from 6:30 pm EST all the way to 1 AM. The 26 fighters on the card certainly made it worth the while to tune in and watch, this was a night of underdogs, if you go by the betting lines. A total of 8 underdogs emerged victorious–just one shy of the all-time UFC record of 9 (according to FightMetric).
Third Star – Kyoji Horiguchi
The protege of Japanese legend Kid Yamamoto, former Shooto 132 lb champion made his flyweight debut against Darrell Montague. Now fighting at a weight class more suiting to his size and frame, Horiguchi showed cased one again his incredible speed, movement, and accurate powerful strikes as he was able to land blow after blow on Montague over 3 rounds. At one point in the 2nd round, Horiguchi had hurt Montague multiple times, forcing “The Mongoose” to stumble back to his corner at the end of the round.
Horiguchi took the unanimous decision to improve his win streak to 7 overall and now 2-0 in the UFC. At just 23 years old, he has showcased a mature striking game with a karate background, that can make him a contender in the division, with the help of some fine tuning to his takedown defense.
Second Star — Johnny Eduardo
Coming into this fight, the biggest underdog on the card at 7-to-1, the Brazilian Johnny Eduardo upset the #4 ranked bantamweight and former title contender Eddie Wineland in devastating fashion. In just his 3rd fight in the UFC, Eduardo engaged in a cautious stand up fight against Wineland, both fighters feeling each other out in the early stages, throwing a lot of feints and movement. In the final minute, Eduardo landed a right hook that rocked Wineland and quickly capitalized by landing a second right hook that put Wineland down and out.
Previously unranked, Johnny Eduardo now catapults himself up the rankings and puts himself into potential title contention with this victory. One of the biggest upsets in UFC history when it comes to the betting odds.
First Star — Matt Brown
Certainly no question as to who came out shining bright like a star at the end of the evening, Cincinnati’s own Matt Brown put on a spectacular performance in front of his hometown fans. When it looked like the fight may have been stopped early in the first round after Erick Silva dropped him with a kick to the body, but Brown fought back. He made it a worthy fight of the year candidate, and certainly a round of the year in the first, when he came back to actually win the round after being dropped and nearly submitted. Not only did he win the round, he took the momentum and ran away with it from there, battering Erick Silva over the next two rounds before defeating him via TKO in the 3rd.
The gutsy performance earned Matt Brown two bonuses, totaling $100K, and praise from UFC President Dana White, proclaiming that Cincinnati has now passed from Rich Franklin’s town, to Matt Brown’s town. Brown had won his 7th consecutive fight, the longest winning streak in the welterweight division, and all he wants now is a title fight against the champion Johny Hendricks.