The Tuesday Throwback: UFC 50: The War Of 04′
By Ross Markey
October 22nd, 2004, Tito Ortiz meets short-notice replacement Patrick Cote in a quick draw light heavyweight clash to headline UFC 50: The War Of 04′.
Cote was originally scheduled to make an appearance on the preliminary card, until Guy Mezger was rushed to hospital with stroke-like symptoms, allowing Cote to make his promotional bow in a main event clash with the former light heavyweight champion Ortiz.
Despite losing a then three round main event via unanimous decision, Cote would go on to make waves in the middleweight division, competing for the world championship against Anderson Silva just four year’s later.
In out co-headliner, one-time 185 kingpin Rich Franklin secured the third win of an incredible eight fight streak against Jorge Rivera via an armbar victory in the final frame.
Franklin, who now acts as vice-president for ONE Championship, would successfully defend the throne twice before a loss to the previously mentioned Silva, with wins coming against Nate Quarry and talented striker David Loiseau. In our only title fight of the night, in some questionable placement considering the cards of the modern era, welterweight greats Matt Hughes and Georges St-Pierre met for the first time.
With a single second remaining in the first round, Hughes managed to scramble and lock up an armbar to successfully lodge a title defense and hand Canadian icon St-Pierre his first loss.
Over the next three years, Hughes and GSP would meet in a rematch and subsequent rubber-match, with St-Pierre claiming supremacy with a head kick stoppage followed by an armbar of his own.
St-Pierre would go on successfully defend the 170 pound championship on nine separate occasions, before a hiatus in 2013. ‘Rush’ would return to active-competition in 2017 this time at middleweight, where he became a two-division UFC champion with a rear-naked choke over then division best Michael ‘The Count’ Bisping.
Two-time UFC welterweight title chaser Frank Trigg would make inroads to gold once again, extending his win streak to two, with a convincing second round knockout of Renato Verrisimo after a similarly one sided beating of Dennis Hallman.
Trigg who has since become a highly-respected mixed-martial-arts referee, failed to claim Octagon gold but holds notable career wins over Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu player Jean Jacques Machado, and in 2011, stopped recent UFC Copenhagen big-hitter John Phillips.
In our main card opener, the late Evan Tanner earned a middleweight title challenge against David Terrell with a first round triangle finish of future welterweight title holder, ‘Ruthless’ Robbie Lawler. Tanner, who claimed the 185 pound championship in 2005, unfortunately passed away in 2008 due to heat exposure during an excursion in the desert near South California.
A meeting of middleweights Ivan Salaverry and Tony Fryklund took featured preliminary honors, as Ontario native and all-rounder Salaverry scored an opening round triangle triumph.
The well-travelled Marvin Eastman dropped a second round knockout loss to Travis Lutter in our opening bout of the night, Lutter subsequently earned a middleweight title challenge with his successful run on The Ultimate Fighter: The Comeback installment, with weight-cutting woes forcing a non-title three round meeting with Anderson Silva, with ‘The Spider’ locking up a second round triangle.