The second UFC card in as many days lost its headlining fight just hours before the event started. Nunes attracted some kind of sickness and went to the emergency room the morning of the fight. Despite being cleared medically, Nunes pulled herself out of the fight leading to the ever professional burnt snowman Dana White to criticize her publicly stating she would never headline a card again.
Preliminary Card (UFC Fight Pass)
Light Heavyweight – Trevin Giles def. James Bochnovic – KO punches – (RD 2 – 2:54)
Bochnovic jumped over to the UFC from Bellator and got worked in his first fight despite having a big height and reach advantage. In the first round Bochnovic connected with several kicks on the legs and body of Giles. The fighters went into the clinch where Giles scored a takedown. Giles landed some rough ground and pound including grinding his elbow against his face. The fighters got to their feet and Giles landed a huge left elbow which he fainted with a right. In between rounds Giles was so confident and fired up he woo’d to the crowd.
Giles landed a left and then a body shot on a Bochnovic takedown attempt in the second round. The fight went to the ground where Giles attempted a north south choke. After giving up on the submission, Giles landed an elbow and prevented Bochnovic from getting back to his feet. Giles transitions to strong mount, to the back of Bochnovic, to full mount where he finished him off with hard punches. Bochnovic was out cold on the mat for a long time.
Featherweight – Cody Stamann def. Terrion Ware – Decision unanimous – (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Similar to Bochnovic, Ware had a huge reach advantage in his fight but wasn’t able to use it to gain a victory.
Ware landed a few leg kicks in the first round and he ate a left hand and a knee from Stamann. Ware was then brought to the ground, bounced back to his feet and connected with an elbow and some jabs. The fighters went into the clinch and a time stoppage was granted for a nut shot on Stamann. After the stoppage Ware continued to land jabs but was taken to the ground again by Stamann. On the ground Stamann landed a short elbow and ground and pound to end the round which could have gone either way on the score cards.
The second round started with Ware landing a hard shot which Stamann responded with a leg kick and a knee. The two taunted each other before Stamann to the fight to the ground again. They got back up in the clinch where they traded shots. Ware landed knees and then Stamann landed a right in the break. Ware connected with a hard right before taking a front kick, overhand right, and another kick from Stamann. Before the round ended Stamann scored two more takedowns and ended the round the same way he ended the first, with ground and pound. Stamann won the second round.
The two fighters traded blows to start the third before Stamann landed an impressive body kick, hook combo. Ware connected with a body shot and various strikes before blocking a shoot from Stamann and then getting taken down yet again. After eating some ground and pound Ware got back to his feet and was dragged to the ground again. Stamann continued landing ground and pound before they got back to their feet in the clinch. The two fighters started “swangin’ and bangin” out of the clinch and then Stamann got one last takedown and ground and pound to end the fight. Stamann probably won all three rounds but I can see how one judge thought Ware won the first round.
Preliminary Card (FS1)
Welterweight – Belal Muhammed def. Jordan Mein – Decision unanimous – (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Mein won the close first round against Muhammed. He defended a takedown attempt from Muhammed but ate an overhand right. The fighters traded kicks before Muhammed initiated a clinch. Muhammed landed knees and an elbow in the clinch which opened up a huge cut on the face of Mein.
The final two rounds were clearly won by Muhammed. The cut man wasn’t able to close the elbow wound on Mein’s head which caused Anik and Stann to get pretty fired up (I like Stann, he seems to be getting super comfortable and the three man booth with him, Anik, and Rogan has been my favorite so far). Muhammed took Mein into the clinch and scored a takedown. Mein popped back up but Muhammed continued to deal consistent damage. Mein responded with several leg kicks but Muhammed was landing more strikes to the head. Mein whiffed on a takedown and Muhammed brought him back to the clinch. Muhammed scored a takedown and landed ground and pound to end the second.
The cut on Mein from the first round still wasn’t closed up going into the third. Muhammed scored a takedown and eventually took the back of Mein after an awkward scramble. Muhammed connected with some body shots and put Mein in a body triangle. The fighters got back to their feet in the clinch and went down and up again before the fight ended.
Middleweight – Thiago Santos def. Gerald Meerschaert – TKO punches – (RD 2 – 2:04)
This was a bloody and brutal fight. Meerschaert scored two takedowns early and opened up a cut on the forehead of Santos. Blood was pouring everywhere as Santos was on top of Meerschaert landing hard ground and pound. A time stoppage was granted for an eye poke on Meerschaert before the fight went to the ground and back up. Santos landed a left as the fighters got back to their feet. Meerschaert connected with an overhand left as the fighters traded blows to end the round.
Santos unloaded on Meerschaert in the second round. He was close to getting a TKO but Meerschaert hung on to continue eating hard ground and pound. The fighters went back and forth from the clinch to the ground before Santos earned the TKO through rough ground and pound.
Welterweight – Chad Laprise def. Brian Camozzi – TKO punches – (RD 3 – 1:27)
Laprise showed his dominance early landing an overhand right in the first round against Camozzi. Laprise was effective landing many counter shots. Laprise also slowly wore down the lead leg of Camozzi with consistent leg kicks. Camozzi landed a few shots of his own but was taken to the ground in the final 20 seconds of the first round. The takedown was impressive as Laprise caught a kick from Camozzi and while still holding onto his leg, Laprise kicked out the other leg of Camozzi.
I thought Camozzi responded well by winning the second round. Camozzi ate some hard body shots, but he landed several kicks and jabs going into the third with one round a piece (I clearly didn’t take great notes on this fight).
In the third round Laprise weakened Camozzi with a liver shot. Camozzi fell backwards to the fence, ate a knee, and took ground and pound until the TKO. Liver shots are crazy.
Heavyweight – Oleksiy Oliynyk def. Travis Browne – Submission rear-naked choke – (RD 2 – 3:44)
Oliynyk “the boa constrictor” has one of the most fitting nicknames. The dude is crazy skilled on the ground. He last fight in the UFC was a meaningless prelim fight, but he had the MMA talking with the rare Ezekiel choke that he successfully used while mounted on his back. He used those skills to defeat Browne, whose career has reached a low point.
Browne looked good early connecting with hard leg kicks. His kicks were so powerful that his own shin began bleeding. In the clinch Brown used his long legs and height to land brutal knees. Browne landed more shots and dropped Oliynyk after stunning him. Oliynyk got back to his feet and started throwing kill shots to buy recovery time. One of these shots landed and Browne fell to the mat. Browne got back to his feet and after breaking free from a clinch, got clipped again. He went back into the clinch to recover and landed more knees to the body of Oliynyk. Browne was taken to the ground, gave up his back, and was flattened out by the boa constrictor. With just a few seconds left in the round Oliynyk wasn’t under the neck but he went for the rear naked any way crushing the face of Browne.
The fighters traded body shots in the second round. Browne scored a takedown and got in full mount but wasn’t able to finish the tired Oliynyk. After getting back to their feet, Oliynyk took Browne to the ground, took his back, landed hard to watch ground and pound, wrapped legs around his body preventing him from getting good breathes, and crushed his face for the rear naked. That is about as brutal as a rear naked choke gets.
Main Card (PPV)
Bantamweight – Rob Font def. Douglas Silva de. Andrade – Submission guillotine choke – (RD 2 – 4:36)
The only finish on the main card was in the first bantamweight fight that was an early prelim fight promoted to the main card after Nunes pulled out.
In the first round Andrade landed a leg kick and scored a takedown. As the fighters got back to their feet Font attempted a guillotine choke. After breaking out of the clinch Font landed an upper cut and a knee. Time was stopped for an eye poke on Andrade. After the stoppage Andrade landed a left, and Font responded with a knee to the body and a knee to the head. Font connected with another knee and took Andrade to the ground and attempted a guillotine as the round ended.
Font continued landing more strikes in the second round, finding a home for his knee a lot. Font rocked Andrade with an overhand right and unloaded on him up against the cage. Font took Andrade to the ground and got his head in a guillotine choke as they feel to the ground. Andrade couldn’t get out of the tight choke and tapped.
Lightweight – Anthony Pettis def. Jim Miller – Decision unanimous – (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Pettis is really good. He is too big to fight at featherweight, but he is a tad under powered to fight at lightweight. Too bad there isn’t a 150 division as he would be dominate. His is skilled enough to compete and beat bigger lightweights and this unanimous decision victory over Jim Miller is proof of that.
Miller was aggressive early in the first round throwing leg kicks which caused Pettis to stumble back a bit. Pettis threw a flashy flying knee and landed a body kick. Miller continued with his relentless leg kicks as Pettis landed more varied strikes. Pettis rocked Miller with a knee and threw a flurry of punches as Miller was pinned against the cage. Pettis landed a combo, a spinning back fist, a body switch kick, and a counter left before the round was over. Miller snuck in a body kick to end the round.
Miller caught a kick of Pettis and kicked out his other leg to get a takedown in the second round. Pettis attempted a triangle submission and opened up a huge bloody wound on Miller with an up kick. Miller took the back of Pettis but lost top position in a scramble. Pettis transitioned from side control to his back before they got back to their feet. Pettis scored a takedown before the round ended.
Miller landed many leg kicks in the third round. Pettis defended a takedown attempt which led to a clinch. Miller landed an elbow in the clinch and in the break. The pace of the third round was slower but Pettis continued to land more shots and fought through a nut shot without a stoppage.
Heavyweight – Curtis Blaydes def. Daniel Omielanczuk – Decision unanimous – (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
This is one of the worst fights I have seen in a long time. It completely killed the vibe of the card which never fully recovered. All three rounds were the same. Blaydes drove Omielanczuk into the clinch, couldn’t take him down, break, rinse and repeat. The ref got on Blaydes for knees hit the groin of Omielanczuk throughout the fight. Blaydes won every round, but it was far from an impressive performance. He had one game plan and never deviated from it. Things got more interesting in the third as the fighters got clipped and the fight finally went to the ground, but who cares. This fight sucked.
Heavyweight – Alistair Overeem def. Fabricio Werdum – Decision majority – (28-28, 29-28, 29-28)
So is throwing a head kick right as the round starts Werdum thing now? Every round in this fight with Overeem started that way. This fight wasn’t great but anything is better than the Blaydes performance in the fight before.
In the first round the fighters went into a long uneventful clinch. Werdum fell but popped back to his feet and landed a body kick. Overeem landed a few rights and defended a takedown attempt from Werdum.
Overeem scored a takedown in the second and they got back to their feet. Werdum landed a right hand before getting clipped by an upper cut and knee from Overeem. The fight went to the ground after the exchange and they got back to their feet. Werdum landed body kick and was clipped again with a body kick and a right. Werdum did not show a lot of movement as he appeared to be standing still much of the time.
Werdum clipped Overeem with a knee which took him to the ground. They got back to their feet and Werdum connected with more strikes. Overeem who didn’t appear to be fully recovered was slammed to the mat by Werdum (Overeem illegal grabbed the cage to attempt to stay upright). Werdum lands ground and pound and kept Overeem on the ground until the end of the fight. This was a close fight and probably could have gone either way. Werdum was pissed with the outcome of the decision but he didn’t look great and could have stolen the decision if he was more aggressive in either the first or second round.
Middleweight – Robert Whittaker def. Yoel Romero – Decision unanimous – (48-47, 48-47, 48-47)
Interim title fights are dumb. Why are they handing out belts for the number one contenders? This interim (just take the belt from Bisping) fight was the final event on a disappointing main card.
This fight went the distance and only the first two rounds were interesting. Romero fucked up the knee of Whittaker early in the first round but never attacked it much after injuring it. Whittaker was clearly hurting as he winced and stumbled a bit, but Romero never capitalized on the injury. In between rounds Whittaker could be heard telling his corner that his “knee is fucked!”
Romero probably won the first two rounds, but he had zero energy left for the final three. Whittaker won the last three round just by being in better shape (or much younger) and landing more shots. He didn’t do anything remarkable, he was consistent and gritted his teeth through a knee injury. I was disappointed in Romero and it appeared that he was looking passed Whittaker to a title shot with Bisping as he stared Bisping down and talked trash from the Octagon. Bisping ripped a Cuban flag in half and threw it in the ring.
After Whittaker won and was given his fake belt, Bisping entered the ring with his belt and talked trash towards Whittaker. Bisping threw his belt on the ground and walked away which made no sense. Whittaker played it cool and asked Bisping if he could keep the belt. I really don’t like Bisping. Whittaker would have rather fought him, but Bisping was out due to injury. So if he is the reason that the real championship fight didn’t happen, why is Bisping talking trash? Oh yea it’s because the drama is all a sham and not genuine.