UFC Fight Night 34: An okay debut event in Singapore, but questionable nonetheless

UFC Fight Night 34 Saffiedine punches Lim's swollen face meme

The last Strikeforce champion needed 5 rounds & judges scorecard to beat Korea’s Lim Hyun-Gyu, Singapore’s very own Royston Wee ruins Dave Galera’s perfect record

Sorry for the delay, wasn’t excited with the fight card so I went for a vacation with my family instead. But seriously, after Jake Elleberger’s pullout, there wasn’t a single star fighter on the card. To be honest, I didn’t even find any of these names familiar at first (except for Will Chope ’cause he’s made a name for himself in the scene around the region). Even Bruce Buffer, Stitch and Joe Rogan weren’t there! With only 4 main card bouts and the event held at a smaller capacity arena at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore, this was perhaps just a “test water” event to experiment their market in South East Asia and their new Fight Pass thingy. Apparently over 5,000 didn’t mind paying to watch mostly UFC debutants.

The organising of the event is questionable. One of the fights have had 2 points deducted off a fighter for illegal blows while one more ended early due to disqualification via elbows to the back of the head. And these were main card fighters, I didn’t even watch all of the preliminary bouts, I wonder if anything worse happened? Was there a rules briefing given to the fighters prior to the event like how ONE FC does it? Also, why the hell was Lim Hyun-Gyu given a 5-round main event, and not to mention, against a former Strikeforce Welterweight Champion? His previous fight was a preliminary card bout in UFC 164! I know Tarec Saffiedine was supposed to face Elleberger, who later pulled out due to injury, but couldn’t they find another fighter to replace him instead of Lim? Did they actually think putting a not-very-good Asian in there would definitely engage Asian pride? Fortunately the Korean showed great heart going through all five rounds but man, he was getting killed out there until the last 10 seconds where he finally managed to rock Saffiedine a bit with a combination of hooks before delivering the flying knee that he was trying to do in the entire bout, but it was a bit too late and Saffiedine was announced the winner by unanimous decision.

In spite of all the criticisms of this event and the massive panning on Facebook by the fans, the fights on the main card were pretty good (except for Dutra vs. Kunimoto). Perhaps some of the highest level of MMA Singapore has ever hosted to be witnessed live. Singapore’s very own one and only participant of the night Royston Wee (of Impact MMA gym), too, did not disappoint the home crowd after giving the URCC fighter Dave Galera the first loss in his career.

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Fight of The Night: Tarec Saffiedine vs. Hyun Gyu Lim
Knockout of The Night: Max Holloway
Submission of the Night: Russell Doane


Welterweight: Tarec Saffiedine def. Lim Hyun-Gyu | Decision (unanimous) | 5 rounds
Featherweight: Tatsuya Kawajiri def. Sean Soriano | Technical Submission (rear-naked choke) | R2 0:50
Welterweight: Kiichi Kunimoto def. Luiz Dutra | DQ (illegal elbows) | R1 2:57
Bantamweight: Kyung Ho Kang def. Shunichi Shimizu | Submission (arm-triangle choke) | R3 3:53


Featherweight: Max Holloway def. Will Chope | TKO (punches) | R2 2:27
Lightweight: Katsunori Kikuno def. Quinn Mulhern | Decision (unanimous) | 3 rounds
Bantamweight: Royston Wee def. Dave Galera | Decision (unanimous) | 3 rounds
Lightweight: Mairbek Taisumov def. Tae Hyun Bang | Decision (unanimous) | 3 rounds
Bantamweight: Dustin Kimura def. Jon Delos Reyes | Submission (armbar) | R1 2:13
Bantamweight: Russell Doane def. Leandro Issa | Technical Submission (triangle choke) | R2 4:59

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