UFC 33 – Victory in Vegas
UFC 33: Victory in Vegas was a mixed martial arts event held by the Ultimate Fighting Championship at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada on September 28, 2001. The event was seen live on pay per view in the United States, and later released on home video.
The card was headlined by three title bouts, Tito Ortiz vs. Vladimir Matyushenko for the Light Heavyweight Title (Vitor Belfort was unable to fight due to arm injury while training), Dave Menne vs Gil Castillo for the new Middleweight Title and Jens Pulver vs Dennis Hallman for the Lightweight Title.
UFC 33 was the first mixed martial arts event sanctioned by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, under the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts, which was first established by the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board in 2000.
UFC 33 was considered a disaster by many, failing to captivate the new pay-per-view audience due to the large number of decisions on the card – UFC 33 was in fact the first event where all main event fights went to a decision. The Ortiz-Matyushenko and Pulver-Hallman fights in particular have been judged the two most uneventful five-round title fights in UFC history by some metrics. Additionally, the broadcast ran over and cut out early on many cable systems (in the middle of the Ortiz-Matyushenko fight). After this event, the UFC reduced the number of live fights to five and never again scheduled three title matches on a UFC card until UFC 200 one of those title fights didn’t happen when Jon Jones was pulled from his bout but the UFC put three title fights on a card again at UFC 205.
During the post fight press conference for UFC 111, in response to questions about a perceived boring fight between Georges St-Pierre and Dan Hardy, UFC president Dana White commented that “UFC 33 is the only one I can remember where every fight sucked.”
Years later at the UFC 149 post-fight press conference, after a similarly lackluster card, Dana White quipped, “It felt like I was at UFC 33 again”.
In 2013 following UFC on Fox 6 post-fight press conference, Dana White once again referenced UFC 33 as “The worst show we’ve ever had”.
|Light Heavyweight||Tito Ortiz (c)||def.||Vladimir Matyushenko||Decision (unanimous) (50–43, 50–44, 50–44)||5||5:00||[a]|
|Lightweight||Jens Pulver (c)||def.||Dennis Hallman||Decision (unanimous) (49–47, 48–47, 48–47)||5||5:00||[b]|
|Middleweight||Dave Menne||def.||Gil Castillo||Decision (unanimous) (49–43, 49–44, 49–45)||5||5:00||[c]|
|Light Heavyweight||Chuck Liddell||def.||Murilo Bustamante||Decision (unanimous) (29–28, 29–27, 29–27)||3||5:00|
|Welterweight||Matt Serra||def.||Yves Edwards||Decision (majority) (30–26, 30–27, 29–29)||3||5:00|
|Welterweight||Jutaro Nakao||def.||Tony DeSouza||KO (punch)||2||0:15|
|Middleweight||Ricardo Almeida||def.||Eugene Jackson||Submission (triangle choke)||1||4:06|
|Lightweight||Din Thomas||def.||Fabiano Iha||Decision (unanimous) (29–28, 29–27, 29–28)||3||5:00|