Fight blog recap: Mark Hunt battles to a majority draw with 'Bigfoot Silva' in epic war
DEC 06, 2013 6:17p ET
If you missed out on Friday night's UFC Fight Night event from Brisbane, Australia, you missed one of the most wildly entertaining heavyweight fights in the history of the UFC.
Massive knockout artists Mark Hunt and Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva thrilled the ravenous crowd in a five-round slugfest that had more shifts in momentum than the rest of the fights on the card combined, and ended in a fitting majority decision.
After two conservative rounds to start the fight, both of which seemed to go in Silva's favor, the final 15 minutes turned into one of the most entertaining back-and-forth contest of the year. Hunt dominated the action in the middle stanza, and looked to have Silva dead to rights again in the fourth round. Not only did the Brazilian battle back, but he finished the round with his a barrage of his own, blasting away at Hunt as blood rushed down his face.
The final round began with the crowd on their feet and the fighters showing their respect for each other in the center of the cage, but then they got right back to throwing bombs. Each shot that landed caused the recipient to stagger and reset, but both Silva and Hunt managed to hang tough and fight through to the final horn.
While fights ending in a draw usually feels like a letdown, this one was right on – declaring one of these warriors the loser wouldn't have done justice to the performance they put forth in the Octagon.
In the co-main event, former light heavyweight champion Mauricio "Shogun" Rua silenced the retirement talk by dropping James Te Huna with a nasty short left hook early in the opening frame. Looking trim and fresh, the Brazilian superstar caught the Australian with a clean counter, taking the legs out from under Te Huna as Rua's left hand landed flush on the chin. The crowd erupted, Rua celebrated, and the MMA community was left pondering what comes next for the resurgent – if only for one night – former Pride and UFC champion.
We've got your blow-by-blow accounts of all of tonight's action below.
Mark Hunt (9-8) vs. Antonio Silva (18-5)
The heavyweights are joined by Steve Perceval.
Hands high for Silva to start – good call. Switches to southpaw. Back to orthodox. Front kick up the middle misses. Crowd going bonkers for Hunt, who hasn't thrown a real punch yet. Outside leg kick from Silva. Southpaw again for Silva. Hunt comes forward, just misses with the right diving in. Leg kick, right hand from Silva lands. High kick offered by Silva. Two down. Hunt in with the left and a right, Bigfoot covers up, blocks. They both throw, Silva lands the big right, drops Hunt. Swarms, and Hunt gets up, looks OK. Two minutes. Right hand from Hunt blocked. Leg kick for Hunt. 90 seconds. Combo lands for Bigfoot - front kick, right hand. Hunt tries to get inside, misses with the right. Silva into the clinch, Hunt reverses against the fence. Hunt working the body, Bigfoot with a knee, and they break. 20 seconds. Body kick from Silva. Horn!
10-9 Silva – landed the one clean shot that dropped Hunt, which was the biggest moment of the round.
Bigfoot tries the front kick up the middle again. Still switching stances. Hunt presses forward, blocked by Silva. Left hand sneaks through a little for Hunt. Big leg kick from Silva buckles Hunt. Front kick snaps forward to the body. Silva presses forward after Hunt misses, but can't connect, and Hunt is back in the center. Leg kick lands on the lead leg again. Spinning back kick attempt from Bigfoot. Two down. Right to the body from Hunt. High kick attempt from Silva is blocked. Hunt with a kick, Bigfoot tries to catch and counter. Right hand from Hunt backs up Silva. Two minutes. Inside leg kick from Hunt. Right lands on the chin from Hunt, Silva eats it. Big body kick from Hunt makes Silva switch stances. High kick attempt from Silva is blocked. One minute. Hunt trying to get inside, Silva blasts an outside leg kick that hurts Hunt, switches his stance, walking gingerly on the left leg. Horn!
10-9 Silva, 20-18 Silva through Round 2 – more active and that low leg kick was effective throughout the round.
Hunt now southpaw, keeping that damaged leg back. Right hand lands for Hunt. Orthodox again. Hunt in on a takedown, Bigfoot gets up. Hunt to his back, Silva grabs the cage to get up. Hunt out front on the cage, and they break. Now Silva ducks looking for the takedown. Hunt reverses off the fence, lands a left in close. Reverse, Hunt slips out. Low kick from Silva to the banged up ankle. Two minutes down. Uppercut from Hunt, right hand follows, Bigfoot eats it. Silva along the cage, Bigfoot wincing a little. Halfway point of the fight. Right hand from Hunt, and Silva doesn't flinch. Another one down the pipe drops Bigfoot. Hunt on top in Silva's guard. Elbows from Hunt standing in Silva's guard. Half guard, Hunt has the right arm pinned between his legs. Short rights from Hunt. 60 seconds. Elbows and right hands from Hunt. 30 seconds. Silva tries to get to his knees, Hunt keeps him pressed down. More punches and elbows to the horn. And the crowd goes wild!
10-8 Hunt, 28-28 through Round 3 – that, my friends, is a dominant round. The right hand crushed him, and then it was half a round of one-sided power shots.
Silva back out working the leg kick, but Hunt still smells blood in the water, presses forward behind hands. Clinched on the fence, Hunt controlling. Hunt backs out, another kick to that damaged leg from Silva. Bigfoot with a right. Hunt defends the takedown attempt, and scores with one of his own. Into closed guard. Right hands from Hunt in close. Silva rolling for an armbar attempt, not there. Elbow in close from Hunt. Three minutes. Silva off-balances Hunt and gets to his feet, circles off the cage. Halfway. Standing elbow from Hunt. Right hand from Silva counters. Another standing elbow, Silva is split open. Silva battling back, Hunt taking heavy shots. Big left from Hunt. And again. Silva lands on top of Hunt on the canvas, now he's dropping elbows. 90 seconds. What a crazy fight! Big shots from Bigfoot on top. Now into mount. One minute. Hunt nearly hips out. Mount again. Hammering shots from above from Bigfoot. Hunt bloodied and battered. Bigfoot pounding away. 15 seconds. These two are exhausted. Horn! Everyone is on their feet!
10-8-Silva, 38, 37 Silva through Round 4 – after battling back from being on bottom, Silva nearly finished and blasted Hunt over the final two minutes.
Crowd is standing – fighters shake hands, and we're off. Both just throwing bombs! Hunt landing the better of it, backing up Silva. Big overhand right shakes the sweat off Silva head. Big left hurts him. Another one. Silva for the takedown, stuffed. Bigfoot staggering. Standing elbow opens up Silva. Left hook lands for Hunt. Again. Again. Right hand. Silva for the takedown, not there. Hunt stalking. Another short elbow. Left hook. Silva is bloodied and battered. Hunt with the elbows, digs to the body. Time called to look at the cut with 2:43 to go.
Lots of blood, but not a bad cut. The fight continues.
Outside leg kick fro Silva. Jab from Hunt. Left hook from Hunt. Right hand. Hunt eats three good, hard shots from Silva. Two minutes. Silva coming forward now. Silv landing in combination against Hunt on the cage. Counter left staggers Silva. Another elbow. Knee from Bigfoot. This is insane! On the cage, one minute left. Hunt reverses on the fence. Knee from the clinch for Bigfoot. Again. 30 seconds. Right from Silva. One from Hunt. 10 seconds. Right from Hunt at the horn, and I'm pretty sure the roof just came off the Brisbane Entertainment Center.
10-9 Hunt, 47-46 Silva overall – Hunt started fast and faded in the final round, and came up short overall on my card, but really, this is just a great big ball of win for the fans. No real losers here.
Official Result: Mark Hunt and Antonio Silva fight to a majority draw. (48-47 Hunt, 47-47, 47-47)
Analysis: What a fight! Honestly, that result feels right. No complaints from me. Normal human beings would have been finished somewhere around the third, but these two behemoths went toe-to-toe for 25 minutes, with the final 15 being pure insanity. Just an amazing fight, and tremendous show of heart from both men.
Mauricio Rua (21-8) vs. James Te Huna (16-5)
John Sharp has the co-main event assignment.
Te Huna takes the center. Rua comes in with a combination, landing the right. Outside leg kick from Rua. Again. Left hand for Te Huna, Rua clinches, lands the right as he circles out. Left hand counter from Te Huna. BOOM! Left hand inside from Rua absolutely flattens Te Huna! Goodnight, Irene!
Official Result: Mauricio Rua defeats James Te Huna by Knockout (Left Hook) at 1:03 of Round 1.
Analysis: Damn – what a nasty left hook in tight! Te Huna just folded up and fell to the canvas. So much for the demise of Shogun Rua. He looks like he's in much better condition here than his recent outings, so maybe he has re-focused his efforts and rededicated himself. Clearly the power is still there. Interesting to see what comes next because it's clearly isn't retirement.
Ryan Bader (15-4) vs. Anthony Perosh (14-7)
John Sharp with the assignment.
Touch of gloves and we're away. Left hand clips Perosh coming in. Right hand from the veteran lands. Body kick from Bader. Clinched, uppercuts from Bader drop Perosh. Blistering shots along the fence, but Perosh survives and gets back to his feet. Another big shot lands for Bader and wobbles Perosh. Bader taking his time, and Perosh lands with a right of his own that looks like it hurt Bader a little. Perosh rushes forward, slips, and Bader capitalizes, elbowing Perosh on the ground along the cage. Left hands from Bader. Elbow over the top. Another. Bader controls the far wrist momentarily. Perosh looking to stand, Bader allows him up, but still in front on the cage. Now they separate. 90 seconds. Jab from Bader. Perosh rushes forward, lands with the left. Again. Bader ducks under and takes Perosh's back momentarily. Drags him to the ground. Elbow from Bader lands hard, opening up Perosh. Bader dives in with a punch a la Shogun Rua. Another short elbow lands hard. Again. Again.
10-9 Bader – dominated the frame from the outset, but didn't really push to finish. That's actually a good thing – shows patience and growing maturity as a fighter.
Bader takes the center, lands the jab. Right hook lands in the clinch. Perosh landing with the right as he rushes forward. Clinched, Bader drags Perosh's legs out from under him, landing in his guard. Bader into side control. Knee to the body. Perosh to his knees, tries to stand, but Bader puts him back down. Elbow lands from Bader. Another in close. And another. Perosh again tries to get to a better position, and Bader stuffs it, lands another elbow. Left hand lands hard for Bader. Halfway point of the round. Lefts from Bader with Perosh pressed up against the cage. Bader doing a good job of dragging Perosh's legs out from under him whenever he tries to stand. Another left lands. Again. Body shot from Bader now. Perosh tries to kick him away, but can't. Another right on the inside from Bader. Elbows to the body, and now to the head. One minute. Another elbow. Another. Bader pins the arm momentarily, lands another elbow to the head. Body shot from Bader. Another dominant frame.
10-9 Bader, 20-18 Bader through Round 2 – he's way out in front and showing great balance with is takedowns and strikes on the ground. Perosh needs a finish here.
Perosh looks to rush forward, Bader lands the left hook backing up. Perosh stumbles, Bader uses it to get into side control. Elbow from the top. Bader controlling on the ground. Elbow to the head. Stiff lefts as Perosh looks to stand. Bader pulls the legs out, moves to side control. Short elbows. Perosh tries to kick off, but Bader passes to side control off it. Short lefts and elbows upstairs for Bader. Halfway done. Bader takes his back standing. Bader trips the legs out, Perosh face-plants, and Bader starts to unload. Perosh back up, and Bader dumps him again. Perosh is a bloody mess. Elbow over the top from Bader. Lunging left from Bader. 60 seconds. Ref tells them to stay busy. Stupid. Another elbow from Bader, and he moves into mount. Perosh escapes quickly, but the elbows keep coming. Now left lands from Bader. And a diving right. Horn!
10-8 Bader, 30-26 Bader overall – poured it on in the third and completely dominated from start to finish. Gutty performance from Perosh, but he was completely overmatched here.
Official Result: Ryan Bader defeats Anthony Perosh by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26).
Analysis: That was the most complete performance we've seen from Bader in some time, maybe ever. Great job of pacing himself, taking advantage of the openings, and using his size and power to control Perosh throughout. This version of Bader is very dangerous, so it will be interesting to see if he can duplicate this effort against a Top 10 opponents in the future.
Pat Barry (8-6) vs. Soa Palelei (19-3)
Steve Perceval shares the cage with these heavyweights.
Touch gloves and we're started. Left hook and a takedown attempt from Palelei. Barry defends, spins out. Leg kick misses, left high kick misses as well from Barry. Knee from Barry as Palelei came in, and he completes the takedown. Kimura attempt from Barry off bottom. Barry straightens it out, but loses it. Palelei in half guard, working the body. Palelei moves to mount and starts unloading. Palelei landing monster shots, and it's over!
Official Result: Soa Palelei defeats Pat Barry by TKO (Strikes) at 2:09 of Round 1.
Analysis: Great showing from Palelei, making up for his rough outing last time. Completed the takedown, moved to mount, trapping Barry's right arm, and pounded out the finish quickly. On the flip side, that could be the end of Barry's UFC run as he falls to 2-5 in his last seven bouts.
Dylan Andrews (8-4) vs. Clint Hester (17-4)
These Team Jones representatives are joined inside the cage by "Captain Stand Up," Cameron Quinn.
Inside leg kick from Hester. Right hand from Hester lands hard. Left to the body. Left hand from Andrews lands. Knee inside from Hester, who moves well for a big man; quick too. Left hook from Andrews touches the chin. Body lock takedown from Andrews, into half guard. Andrews looking to posture up, Hester keeping him tied up. Two down. Andrews working to pass, now tries to trap the arm. Apparently Quinn lets Australians work on the ground. Weird.
Two minutes left. Hester tries to stand, Andrews goes for the guillotine, and Hester escapes, ending up on top. 90 seconds. Elbow misses from Hester. One minute. Short elbow from top for Hester. Andrews back to his feet off the underhook, briefly gets another takedown, but Hester back up. Another takedown from Andrews with 20 seconds left. Side control for Andrews to close.
10-9 Andrews – not a lot of action after the opening 90 seconds, so the takedown battle decides it.
Inside leg kick from Hester to starts. Outside for Andrews. Big swing from Hester, Andrews ducks under. Two outside leg kicks from Andrews. Left hand misses for Andrews. Counter left lands off a Hester miss. Power takedown into half hard for Hester. Already a warning from Quinn. Another. Last chance mentioned this time. Hester postures up, lands the elbow. Follows with a short elbow. Body and head from Hester. Now a series of lefts. Halfway home. Andrews ties him up momentarily. Elbow from above for Hester. Call to work from Quinn. Tells them to improve. Andrews inching around to the back. He's bleeding from above his eye. Hester turns, buries two right as Andrews stands. Once minute. Right hand for Andrews. Front kick knocks Hester down, but he's back up. 30 seconds. Just a lot of staring at each other to close.
10-9 Hester, 19-19 through Round 2 – dominant frame for Hester, and Andrews looks both hurt and exhausted. That said, he was down 0-2 to Papy Abedi last time, and then came out and blasted him. Third round decides it.
This one is done – Andrews has a dislocated shoulder as a result of an overhand right that glanced off Hester's shoulder awkwardly.
Official Result: Clint Hester defeats Dylan Andrews by Technical Knockout (Injury) at 5:00 of Round 2.
Analysis: Tough ending for Andrews, but he's in obvious pain. Good performance from Hester, who continues to show potential. He's rough around the edges right now, and needs to harness his obvious athleticism and power – if he does, watch out.
Julie Kedzie (16-12) vs. Bethe Correia (6-0)
Steve Perceval shares the cage with the ladies. He gets booed. That's funny.
Body kick from Kedzie. Overhand right just misses, as does Correia's counter. Left hook lands for Correia. Body kick from Kedzie connects. Side kick lands. Kedzie looking for the hook as Correia comes forward. Outside leg kick for Correia. Left hooks from each land hard. Correia looks like she's finding her rhythm and range a little more here. Spinning back fist misses from Kedzie on the end of a body kick. Correia closes the distances, puts Kedzie on the cage. The veteran works free. Two minutes left. Body shot, left hook to the head from Correia. Another left hook lands stiff. Body-head lefts follow. High kick from Kedzie, but it's blocked. Right for Kedzie lands clean. Outside leg kick from Correia with force. She closes the distance, puts Kedzie on the cage. Knee from Kedzie upstairs. One minute. Right on the break just misses for Correia. 30 seconds. High kick from Correia misses, slips, but back up. In on the single with 10 seconds. Kedzie defends, lands soft lefts as the horn goes.
10-9 Correia – power beats speed on my card. Correia landed the more power strikes, as Kedzie was content to stay outside.
Inside leg kick to start for Kedzie. Left hook for Correia on the counter. Just missed with it again. Body kick from Kedzie. Outside leg kick from Correia, caught. Kedzie counters down the pipe. Left lands for Correia as Kedzie comes forward. Spinning back fists miss from each women. Left from Kedzie lands. Teep kick follows. Correia closes distance, gets under hooks along the cage. Knee from Kedzie. break into space. Two minutes. Right hand from Correia as she moves forward into the clinch. Knees to the thigh. Elbow from Kedzie as Correia stomps her feet. Back in space. 90 seconds. Spinning back kick form Kedzie lands. Left hook from Kedzie and Greg Jackson goes nuts in the corner. Left hook from Correia lands, but not much on it. Correia in on a double, stuffed, but backs Kedzie into the cage. Stomps. Short right from Kedzie. Jackson overreacting to everything Kedzie does. Horn!
10-9 Kedzie, 19-19 through Round 2 – the veteran was the more active of the two throughout the frame. While there isn't a ton of power from either, Kedzie landed more.
Right from Kedzie, countered hard from Correia. Right hand from Kedzie down the middle. Left hooks body-head from Correia coming forward. High kick misses from Kedzie. Left to the body and head from Correia, head might have missed. Kedzie blocks a left hook. Left hook from Correia again. Jackson continuing his running commentary from the corner. Body kick from Kedzie is caught, takedown completed off it from Correia, walks her back to the cage on the canvas. Kedzie looking to get up. Two minutes left. Kedzie trying to stand, Correia looking to take her back. Kedzie turns, gets up, and they're into the center. 90 seconds. Overhand right misses from Correia. Kick from Kedzie lands. 60 seconds. Outside leg kick from Correia. Hook from Correia. Kedzie forward behind a combination. 30 seconds. Left hook from Correia again. Side kick from Kedzie, Correia pressing forward, Kedzie returns fire through the horn.
10-9 Correia, 29-29 Correia on my card – took this round with the takedown and landing more heavy strikes throughout the final five minutes. Will be interesting to see if Jackson's pro-Kedzie shouting impacts the decision.
Official Result: Bethe Correia defeats Julie Kedzie by Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28).
Analysis: Solid fight overall, and Correia was the deserving winner, landing the heavier blows throughout, and dictating the terms and tempo. She showed solid striking, and mixed in the takedowns nicely as well. Kedzie just seems too hesitant – content to counter, but lacking the power to do so effectively. Will be interesting to see if she survives on the roster following a second consecutive loss.
Takeya Mizugaki (18-7-2) vs. Nam Phan (18-11)
John Sharp is your referee. He also likes standing people up quickly and asking them to work as soon as they hit the ground.
Jab-hook combo misses for Mizugaki to start. Phan looks good at this weight, physically. Left hook lands for Mizugaki. Again, this time no the end of a combination. Quickly becoming a Nam Phan-type fight with both guys throwing from the pocket. Body shots from each. Mizugaki with the left hook again, Phan landing on the counter. Takedown along the cage for Mizugaki. Phan trying to work up, Mizugaki with heavy rights as Phan gets up. Right hand down the pipe lands. Mizugaki landing 2-1 at least in every exchange. Another takedown attempt from Mizugaki, completes it. Phan looking for the switch. More rights as Phan stands. 90 seconds. Right hand lands for Mizugaki. And again. Digging body shot hurt Phan. Left hook upstairs connects. Another hard body shot from Mizugaki, and the left again as well. Body shot followed by a right hand just before the bell. Great round for Mizugaki.
10-9 Mizugaki – dominated the striking throughout, working body and head nicely. Add in two takedowns and this was an easy one to score.
Right hand and then a right overhand land for Mizugaki to start. Up against the cage, Mizugaki with two good hooks upstairs. Big left hook in close staggers Phan, and Mizugaki is swarming. Left to the body, hooks to the dome, but Phan finds a way to weather and circle out. Body shot for Phan on the counter. Left hook short lands for Mizugaki again. Two minutes gone. Phan still throwing, but not landing much inside. Mizugaki hitting the counter left hook, but not as much pop on it as before. Right hand lands solid for Mizigaki, but Phan still coming forward. Standing kimura attempt from Phan as Mizugaki takes his back along the cage. Mizugaki completes the takedown. Phan up quickly. Jab lands for Phan. Left to the head and body for Phan. Mizugaki slowed considerably. 30 seconds. Phan starting to open up a little, landing his own left hook. 1-2 from Mizugaki scores. Right down the middle for Mizugaki at the horn.
10-9 Mizugaki, 20-18 overall through Round 2 – nearly finished and earned the round, but Phan is the fresher of the two and was coming on at the close of the frame.
Phan takes the center, and they trade landed hooks. Left hook up top for Phan. One to the body for Mizugaki. Phan looking for combinations, landing much more here than in the first. Mizugaki in on the takedown, Phan with the kimura attempt to defend. Back in space. Left hand from Phan hurts Mizugaki, who shoots right away. Right hand from Mizugaki lands, but Phan still staying busy, working another left hook. Another one to the body from Phan. Mindway point and Mizugaki blasts a left hand. Uppercut lands from Mizugaki. These two are throwing the same combos, landing with the same punches – it's awesome. Nice flurry from Mizugaki, landing with the left hand twice. And one from Phan. A right from Mizugaki. 90 seconds. Two in close land for Phan, but he needs to turn it up, just as he coaches are shouting. Sprawl from Phan as Mizugaki comes in for the takedown. Lefts for each man. Another left from Phan. 30 seconds. Left hand counter from Mizugaki staggers Phan. The crowd cheers at the 10 second mark and roars at the finish. Fun fight!
10-9 Mizugaki, 30-27 Mizugaki overall – third was close and could really go either way, but Mizugaki landed with more power throughout.
Official Result: Takeya Mizugaki defeats Nam Phan by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-28).
Analysis: This one is the Fight of the Night right now. Mizugaki tired as the fight went on, but he was very active and accurate through the first half of the contest, and hung in there as Phan started to find his rhythm later in the fight. That's four straight for Mizugaki, who has likely earned a step up in competition with another gritty, entertaining win here.
Caio Magalhaes (8-1) vs. Nick Ring (13-2)
Cameron Quinn is the third man in the cage with these middleweights.
Southpaw for Ring, as always. Spinning backfist attempt from Magalhaes misses. Ring with his hands low. Body kick from Magalhaes. Headkick from Ring, outside leg kick follows. Right hand for Magalhaes. Eye poke complaint from Magalhaes and Quinn calls time. Doctor in to take a look. He's fine. We're back.
Ring pawing with the jab. Outside leg kicks from Magalhaes with power. High kick from Ring, blocked. Into the clinch, knees inside from Ring, returned by Magalhaes. Inside leg kick from the Brazilian. In on the takedown, sprawl from Ring, and back to his feet. Driven into the cage, Ring defending, and turns Magalhaes into the fence. Right from Magalhaes lands. Thai clinch from Ring, landing knees to the body and upstairs. Elbows inside as well. Ring in on a single, Magalhaes holds onto the cage blatantly to defend. Ring finishes once he lets go. Quinn tells them to work 10 seconds after they hit the canvas. Weird. Half guard for Ring, Magalhaes spins for a heel hook. Ring defends perfectly, moving to side control. Magalhaes stands, lands two knees to the body from the clinch. Right hand lands from Magalhaes. 30 seconds. Takedown for Ring, but Magalhaes gets out and up fairly quickly. Horn!
10-9 Ring – his work in the Thai clinch and the takedowns (even if brief) win the frame handily.
Magalhaes out quickly, halfway across the cage before Quinn says start. Inside leg kick from Magalhaes. Body kick follows. Left hook lands as Ring tries to capitalize on a Magalhaes slip. Cross lands for Ring. Now a left down the middle. Good sprawl from Ring on the takedown attempt. Magalhaes back to his feet, Ring works for the takedown, completes as Magalhaes goes fro the front headlock. Crucifix for Ring, working on a straight armbar. Short elbows from Ring on top. Now punches, but Magalhaes reverses, and ends up in Ring's guard. Another "Let's work" from Quinn after 10 seconds. Ugh.
Magalhaes trying to land strikes, Ring defending well, keeping Magalhaes at bay. 90 seconds. Body-head from Magalhaes. Another short right lands. Ring elevates him momentarily, but can't get free. Magalhaes grinding from top, landing short shots in close. Ring looking for options from the bottom, staying active, defending well.
10-9 Ring, 20-18 Ring through Round 2 – Magalhaes ended up on top, but Ring's time with the crucifix was still the dominant, more damaging period of the round. Doubt the judges agree with me though.
Ring looks like the fresher of the two to start the final round. Quinn urges them to fight again. Outside leg kick for Magalhaes. Steps into a right hand behind a leg kick. Ring counters with the left cross. Inside leg kick for Magalhaes, Ring throws the left again. Inside leg kick for Ring off-balances Magalhaes momentarily. Right hand from the Brazilian. Two hooks land for Magalhaes. Ring looked for the shot, ends up on his back with Magalhaes in his guard. Two down, three to go. Magalhaes gets flat, pressuring from top, and Quinn is in to stand the almost right away. UGH!
Ring with the shot, sprawl from Magalhaes. Ring still working to complete, but Magalhaes stands, lands a knee inside. Ring still working for the single, but it's costing him valuable time in this round. 90 seconds. Magalhaes working to the body. Quinn stops them and stands them again. Brutal. One minutes. Ring shoots again, sprawled. Crowd boos. Magalhaes to the body. Ring trying to complete out the back door, can't. Quinn calls for action. Guy is killing me. Magalhaes working to the body and head from the side. Horn blows. Fight done. Close decision ahead.
10-9 Magalhaes, 29-28 Ring for me – easy frame for the Brazilian, but Ring edged him in the first two on my scorecard. Likely to be the other way with the judges though.
Official Result: Caio Magalhaes defeats Nick Ring by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28).
Analysis: The biggest take away from that fight was that referee Cameron Quinn hates ground fighting. Man. Two quick, unnecessary stand-ups that could have altered the final frame if Ring wasn't exhausted. Not a lot to talk about on either side here – standard performance for both men, and nothing that changed their place in the pecking order. Moving on...
Richie Vaculik (9-1) vs. Justin Scoggins (7-0)
The debuting flyweights are joined in the cage by Steve Perceval.
Touch of gloves and we're underway. Southpaw for Scoggins. Side kick from Scoggins, who comes from a karate background. Uppercut lands for the American. Knee to the body in the clinch from Scoggins, and he hits the takedown. Vaculik looking to get his back on the cage, Scoggins keeping him pinned on the ground. Vas stands, Scoggins drops for another takedown. Vas slips out, Scoggins drops him with a right hook. Back on the ground in half guard, Scoggins opening up with strikes. Scoggins looks to advance to mount, Vas denies. Vas stands, but Scoggins is still all over him, pressing him into the cage, keeping him pinned. Elbow in the clinch from Scoggins. Another takedown for Scoggins. Half guard. Scoggins moves to mount with a little more than a minute to go. Vas bucks, and escapes back to half guard. Vas rolls and gives up his back, Scoggins flattens him out, and start unloading. Perceval with a warning to fight back, Scoggins keeps pouring it on, and this one is over. Vaculik complains, the crowd boos, but this one is done.
Official Result: Justin Scoggins defeats Richie Vaculik by TKO (Strikes) at 4:43
Analysis: Great performance from Scoggins, who runs his record to 8-0 with a very strong showing in his first UFC appearance. The second-youngest fighter on the UFC roster, the American Top Team talent appears to have a bright future in the flyweight ranks. I get Vaculik not wanting it stopped, but he took a bunch of unanswered shots, and wasn't showing a lot from bottom. Want to keep fighting? Keep defending and keep moving.
Krzysztof Jotko (13-0) vs. Bruno Santos (13-0)
The unbeaten middleweights are joined in the cage by John Sharp.
Touch of gloves and we're off. Santos takes the center, Jotko feinting and loose on the outside, fighting southpaw. Kick form Jotko, returned by Santos. Santos cutting off the cage, keeping Jotko on the fence, stalking. Outside leg kick for Santos, left hand return from Jotko. Santos in for the takedown along the fence, Jotko defending. Two down. Right hand in close from Santos. Santos looks for the trip, but Jotko ends up on to in half guard. Santos shrimps in and stands, still looking for the takedown. Knee up top tried by Jotko. Takedown in the clinch by Santos, but Jotko back up. Back and forth here in the clinch. 90 seconds. Santos attempts the trip, can't hit. Momentary takedown for Santos, right hand lands as Jotko stands. One minute. Another very brief takedown, followed by a body shot from Santos as Jotko stands. Sharp breaks them off the cage. Santos pressing forward again at the horn.
10-9 Santos – not a lot of action, but he was the one controlling the action and dictating where the fight took place.
Jotko coming forward to start the second. Call for action from Sharp. Santos misses with a big swing. Outside leg kick for Jotko. Santos walking him down now, but Jotko fires off two punches to back him off. Counter right lands for Jotko. Another call to work from Sharp. Santos in on a takedown, clinched along the cage. Jotko defending well. Inside knee to the body from Jotko, who reverses Santos onto the cage. Santos muscles off, and they split. Halfway home. Another "Let's go, guys!" from Sharp. Left hand lands for Jotko, returned by Santos. Big right hand from Santos and he follows it into the clinch. Short lefts from Jotko as he defends the takedown. Santos pressuring, but can't complete. One minute. Jotko turns off, reversing Santos. 30 seconds. Knee inside from Jotko. Short left. Another left drops Santos at the 10-second mark. Santos up, but Jotko stole the frame with that final 20 seconds of offence.
10-9 Jotko, 19-19 through Round 2 – this is a close fight with very little offence, so Jotko dropping Santos late steals the frame, and evens things up at one round each.
This one is for all the marbles – at least it should be.
Jotko looks comfortable and loose to start there third, bouncing on his feet, coming forward. Right hand from Santos lands. Another right lands for Santos, but not a lot of power on them as Jotko is keeping distance well. Left hand from Jotko coming forward. Short right hook counter for Jotko as Santos comes forward. Clinched, Jotko turned into the cage, Santos with the takedown into half guard. No into guard. Two down, three to go. "Stay busy" call from Sharp. Jotko throwing little shots from the bottom, Santos trying to advance, but having little success. Now he's through to side control, and takes Jotko's back. Reversed from Jotko, who lands in Santos' guard. Elbow over the top from Jotko. 90 seconds. Left hand lands. Again. Santos with the closed guard, offering little. Jotko alternating lefts and right – not a lot on them, but they're glancing and adding up. Elbow in close. Santos looking for an arm triangle choke from his back with a closed guard. Jotko breaks free, throws the elbow, and the horn sounds.
10-9 Jotko, 29-28 Jotko overall – each guy spend about 90 seconds on top, but Jotko was the one that did work. As much as Santos transitioned, he lost the position right away, and Jotko went on the offensive. Close fight.
Official Result: Krzysztof Jotko defeats Bruno Santos by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27).
Analysis: The best move of the fight was Jotko windmill celebration after the decision was announced. He was the more active striker of the two, and did a pretty good job of nullifying Santos' takedown attempts. He appears to have some striking abilities, so you can chalk this one up – at least in part – to jitters.
Alex Garcia (10-1) vs. Ben Wall (7-0-1)
Cameron Quinn is the referee here in the opener.
Wall takes the center, and eats a short left coming forward. Front kick up the middle misses. Uppercut lands for Garcia. Wall shoots, Garcia avoids. Right hand lands hard for Garcia, followed by a monster uppercut, and Wall is done. WOW! Quite the debut!
Official Result: Alex Garcia defeats Ben Wall by Knockout (Uppercut) at 0:43 of Round 1.
Analysis: This ranks right up there with one of the best debuts of the year, and is very indicative of the power and potential Garcia possesses. He found his range with the very first punch - an early left hook - and proceeded to completely dominate Wall in this very quick contest. While there is plenty of talent in the welterweight division, Garcia is one to watch going forward.