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UFC 73 Live Blog: Ortiz-Evans, Silva-Marquardt, Sherk-Franca, More

This is the UFC 73 live blog, where we'll provide round-by-round results from all of tonight's fights.

The pay-per-view broadcast begins at 10 p.m. ET, and the fights will get underway shortly after that. In the meantime, you can check out our UFC 73 Preview, read about how UFC is big in Brazil, find out about the trash talk and tough talk between TIto Ortiz and Rashad Evans, and look through all our UFC coverage.

The fights are underway. Full round-by-round coverage is after the jump; refresh often for updates. Refresh this page often for live updates.
Rodrigo Nogueira vs. Heath Herring:
Both men have entered the Octagon. Anderson Silva is in Nogueira's corner. Shouldn't he be, you know, concentrating on his own fight?
Round 1: We are underway. Nogueira gets the early takedown. But Herring does an outstanding job of staying alive and getting back to his feet, where he'd prefer to be. They exchange strikes at the 3:40 mark. For a solid minutes, we've got nothing but a boxing match, and the crowd is booing -- they came to see MMA. Nogueira landed a stiff left hand as they stay on their feet. Nogueira lands a good knee. There's blood on both fighters, but I think it has all come from Herring. Unbelievable!! Herring lands a monstrous kick and repeatedly drills Nogueira on the ground. The first round ends with Nogueira wobbling around the Octagon. Herring for some reason allowed Nogueira to get up after pummeling him on the ground. Overall I have to give this round to Herring 10-9, even though Nogueira dominated about 85 percent of the round.
Round 2: Herring is taking his time at the start of the round, which is a mistake. He tries a high kick but Nogueira is ready for it. In the first minute, Herring didn't do much, allowing Nogueira to recover. Now Nogueira has Herring on the ground. Nogueira has taken control of this fight. But Herring reverses. They're back on their feet, and the pace has slowed. Nogueira gets a takedown at the end of the round, and that's enough to give him the round, 10-9. The third round will decide the fight.
Round 3: A brief exchange of punches followed by a Herring leg kick starts the round. Herring is making nice use of the leg kick, which for my money is the most underrated move in MMA. Now they're on the ground, where Nogueira has the advantage. Herring did a nice job getting out of what looked like a very perilous situation. They're back on their feet, with Herring throwing a wild right hand as he stands. Herring wants to land another left high kick like he did in the first round. A close third round, I'll give it -- and the fight -- to Nogueira. But if the judges disagree, I won't object. A very good start to the evening.
Nogueira wins by Unanimous Decision

UFC lightweight champion Sean Sherk vs. Hermes Franca:
Franca enters the Octagon looking like he's in outstanding shape. Ditto for Sherk. These guys are packing as much muscle as you can possibly get on a 155-pound body.
Round 1: We are underway. Sherk looked like he was about to submit just 30 seconds in when Franca got him in a choke, but Sherk fought his way out. Sherk has the position advantage now but hasn't done anything with it. This has been almost entirely on the ground, with Sherk on top for most of it. A fairly uneventful first round, with Sherk the 10-9 winner on my scorecard.
Round 2: Franca lands a great knee early. Again, almost the entire round is on the ground, although this time Franca has had better position than he had in Round 1. The crowd is booing a bit at the wrestling tactics, but it has been a well-fought bout. This has been a better round for Franca, and that knee at the beginning was so destructive that I'll give him the round, 10-9.
Round 3: Franca misses an uppercut, and Sherk takes him to the ground. As the announcers are pointing out, Sherk has such great strength that he's always going to dominate the wrestling aspect of a 155-pound fight. The crowd is getting restless, though, because wrestling isn't as exciting as striking or kicking. I thought Sherk was going to get an arm submission, but Franca snatched his arm away. Franca simply can't get to his feet; Sherk forces him to the ground every time. I'll give it to Sherk, 10-9.
Round 4: Franca starts with a knee but Sherk takes him to the ground yet again. It's the same way Round 2 started. Franca has managed to get to his feet briefly, but it's just not working. Franca lands another knee while they're on their feet, but it always ends up on the ground with Sherk on top. Sherk wins the round, 10-9, and Franca will definitely need a knockout or submission.
Round 5: Sherk lands a tough leg kick early. Franca did land a nice kick when he was on his back and Sherk was on his feet, and I'm impressed with Franca's willingness to keep coming, but with three minutes left, it's hard to picture Franca managing to win this thing. Franca looked for a brief moment like he might be able to lock up Sherk's knee, but Sherk is too slippery. I give the round to Sherk, and I'll be shocked if he doesn't win by unanimous decision.
Sean Sherk beats Hermes Franca by Unanimous Decision

Tito Ortiz vs. Rashad Evans:
Ortiz-Evans is next, but first we have to get through all the silly hype about the bad blood between the two of them. The fighters have now entered the Octagon. This should be a good one.
Round 1: Ortiz gets things started with a head kick, followed by a takedown. Evans seemed fine, though, and he got back up and landed some punches. The referee stopped the fight to rinse out Evans' mouthpiece. Evans has been hesitant but Ortiz hasn't done much, either. Ortiz landed what Joe Rogan referred to as a "knee to the balls." The ref didn't do anything. Ortiz definitely wins the round, 10-9.
Round 2: Ortiz tried a head kick early but didn't do any damage. Ortiz looks like he feels much more comfortable in there, and Evans is really having trouble with him. Ortiz does have a big cut on his right eye, but that's the only damage Evans has done, and it came on a fairly innocuous punch. Ortiz had a point deducted for grabbing the fence. At the very end he almost submitted Evans with the guillotine, but Evans managed to hang on and get saved by the bell. I'd probably score the round for Ortiz, which makes it officially a 9-9 round with the point deduction.
Round 3: Evans threw a right hand to get started and then landed a left hook. They're on the ground, against the fence, and both men look a little worn out. After a long standing clinch, the referee broke them up with two minutes to go in the fight. Evans lands a good combination. Evans gets a great takedown in the final seconds, and I may give round 3 to Evans, which would make the fight a draw. We'll see what the judges say.
Tito Ortiz and Rashad Evans fight to a unanimous 28-28 draw

Main Event: UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva vs. Nate Marquardt:
Marquardt enters the Octagon to "Eye of the Tiger." C'mon, people. Could we try to be a little more original? Silva enters the Octagon to a song that sounds pretty cool, but is in a language I don't understand.
Round 1: Nice leg kick to get things started for Marquardt. Silva lands a right hand, then Marquardt caught Silva's kick. They're now on the ground. The fans are getting a bit restless, as it has been more a tactical fight than an action-packed fight in the first half of the first round. With the fighters on their feet, Silva lands a solid left hand. Then they go to the ground and Silva lands a couple of big right hands. It's over! Silva knocks out Marquardt!

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