411’s TUF 24 Finale Report 12.03.16
Hello everyone and welcome to 411’s LIVE coverage of the finale of The Ultimate Fighter‘s twenty fourth season. I’m Robert Winfree and I’ll be your host for the duration of this event. Boy this has been an odd one, hasn’t it? The general public only found out three days ago who Demetrious Johnson’s opponent would be for the main event, generally continuing the poor promotion of the only flyweight champion in UFC history. On the plus side of things, Demetrious Johnson is fighting so I’m just going to be happy about that. His opponent is Tim Elliott, a man cut from the UFC after going on a three fight losing streak but who has the opportunity to shock the world here and maybe give us a big enough upset to surpass Matt Serra’s victory of Georges St. Pierre. The co-main event is the clash of coaches from this season as the top two contenders at flyweight battle for a possible rematch with Johnson, in the case of Joseph Benavidez this would be his third fight with Johnson while Henry Cejudo wants another shot at the belt as well. The rest of the card is a tad on the lackluster side, though a welterweight clash between Jake Ellenberger and Jorge Masvidal has some potential and Gray Maynard is continuing his campaign at featherweight. Really what we need to be concerned about is Clucky, now that Moana is out and he’s done doing media tours to promote his film debut as Heihei he’s free to return to his normal job of screwing up judges scorecards. Also a brief note on the odds, I can’t find them for the fights tonight so I’ll post them as they become available but my apologies to those following live for not having that information. Also worth noting they’re using the smaller 25 foot Octagon tonight instead of the usual 30 footer. This event comes to the world from the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada with Jon Anik and Brian Stann on commentary.
Josh Stansbury is riding an impressive eight fight winning streak coming into his second UFC fight here. Stansbury won his debut at the finale of TUF 23 and is trying to continue that momentum in a division that’s really starved for top talent. Devin Clark is coming off of the first loss of his professional career, coincidentally that was also his UFC debut, and needs to rebound here with a win as going 0-2 likely gets him cut even in the weak light heavyweight division. The odds here at -115 for each man.
Light Heavyweight Bout: Devin Clark (6-1, 205.5 lbs.) vs. Josh Stansbury (8-2, 204.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Stansbury has two inches of height on Clark but Clark has an inch of reach advantage. Stansbury stalking forward, Clark tries a one two that’s blocked. Stansbury still with forward pressure, Clark ducks a left then gets in on a double leg against the fence. Stansbury defending well so far, Clark bails on the leg attack. They trade knees to the body but Stansbury can’t get his back off of the cage. More knees going back and forth and Stansbury slips free. Clark lands a hard one two but eats a hard counter right then Stansbury lands a leg kick. Clark lands a stepping elbow. Clark lands a lunging left but eats a couple of counters. They both try head kicks that are blocked then Clark hits a double leg into half guard. Clark working short arm punches to the body while controlling Stansbury. Clark lands a right and stands, lands a hard right as Stansbury regains his feet and Clark has him on the cage again. Clark working knees to the thigh. Clark misses a spinning elbow then tries another double leg but Stansbury blocks it with a front head lock and drops for a guillotine choke. Stansbury adjusts to a standing position and pushes Clark into the cage, Stansbury bails on the choke attempt and they both miss a few punches to close the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Clark
ROUND TWO: They both land kicks to start the second, Stansbury showing the jab as he moves forward. Stansbury lands a right then avoids a poor double leg attempt. Stansbury lands a leg kick then blocks a couple of punches. Stansbury pushes into the clinch and gets Clark on the fence. Stansbury gets the rear waist lock and starts looking for trips. Clark breaks the grip and they trade hooks before separating. Clark lands a left as they clinch again. Stansbury again gets Clark on the fence. Stansbury again to the rear waist lock, Clark able to spin into him. Clark lands a couple of knees to the body. Stansbury breaks and lands a couple of good rights. Clark lands a left body kick. Clark lands a bit of a left hook into a right cross. Stansbury working forward, eats a leg kick then a jab. Hard inside leg kick from Clark then a left high kick. Clark reaches for a double leg, Stansbury easily gets his hips back and then pushes Clark into the fence. Clark spins Stansbury and lands a couple of knees to the body then breaks with a flurry of punches. Clark dives back into the clinch and works more knees to the body and thighs. Clark thinks about switching to a double leg, bails on that then lands a bit of a left as the clock runs out.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Clark, 20-18 Clark overall
ROUND THREE: Clark lands a left body kick then a jab. Clark lands a left uppercut then eats a leg kick. They trade against the fence, Clark landed a couple then Stansbury landed a left. Stansbury punches into the clinch and starts looking for a single leg. Clark blocks that initial attempt and gets a double wrist lock position to keep him from securing position. Clark releases the grip, Stansbury lands a good uppercut as they break. Clark responds with a left body kick. Stansbury lands a left hook. Clark lands a body kick and just avoids a combination. Clark tries a double leg, Stansbury defends and gets Clark on the fence. Clark is able to spin Stansbury. Clark working short knees and punches. They trade more short blows then break without incident. Stansbury moving forward now, lands a jab. Clark lands a jab then a right but eats a counter left. They’re splitting jabs back and forth, Clark has a higher volume of offense than Stansbury does. Lefts traded, Clark tries a single leg but Stansbury blocks it but then loses the scramble and Clark has his back as the fight comes to a close.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Clark, 30-27 Clark overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Devin Clark via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27 x2)
I can see Stansbury getting the second, disagree but it’s not wrong. Clark on the mic now, says this is for the people of Sioux Falls, South Dakota who are going through hard times. He thanks his corner, which includes his father, for keeping him going. He says he knew he had to keep pushing for this fight and plans on staying at light heavyweight for the immediate future.
Elvis Mutapcic (15-4-1) has yet to find his first UFC win, his promotional record is 0-1-1 and he’s coming off of a draw with Kevin Casey. That record is pretty bad and Mutapcic desperately needs his first UFC win tonight. Anthony Smith (25-12) is 1-1 in the UFC and coming off of a loss to Cezar Ferreira. That loss snapped an eight fight winning streak but he’s looking to rebound here and get his UFC record above .500. Smith has a slight edge of -130 to the +100 of Mutapcic.
Middleweight Bout: Elvis Mutapcic (15-4-1, 185 lbs.) vs. Anthony Smith (25-12, 185.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Smith has five inches of height and four of reach on Mutapcic. Mutapcic moving forward early, Smith circling. Smith lands an inside leg kick. Mutapcic misses a high kick. Smith lands a couple of jabs. Smith lands a leg kick. Mutapcic lands a leg kick that sweeps Smith to the mat and Mutapcic is on top now in the guard of Smith trying to land punches. Mutapcic lands an elbow. Another elbow from Mutapcic, Smith tries to go for an armbar but Mutapcic slams out of it. Smith after a knee bar but Mutapcic spins into half guard and lands some elbows. Smith back to full guard. Mutapcic lands a right elbow. Mutapcic stands and passes to half guard. Smith now sitting on the fence, Mutapcic keeping him grounded. Mutapcic lands a right, Smith tries for a guillotine but Mutapcic gets free and lands an elbow. Mutapcic lands a few short lefts. Mutapcic lands a right to close out the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Mutapcic
ROUND TWO: Mutapcic lands an inside leg kick. Smith lands a couple of hooks. Smith avoids a right. Mutapcic misses some punches then eats a hard knee from Smith. Smith lands a couple of long punches, he’s finding the range here. Smith lands a front kick to the face. Smith lands a front kick to the body. Smith lands a right then a double jab and a body kick. Mutapcic is a little wobbly after that combination. Smith lands an elbow, Mutapcic is bleeding from the left side of his head near the hair line. Smith lands another stepping elbow. Smith lands a straight right. Hard counter right then a left hook from Smith, Mutapcic is getting chewed up. Smith lands a couple of rights. Smith lands another elbow and a knee to the head. Hard left hook then a straight right from Smith. Smith lands a standing elbow that ENDS Mutapcic, but the ref lets him get hit a few more times before stopping it.
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Anthony Smith via TKO, elbow and punches, at 3:27 of Round 2
Smith on the mic now, really good comeback after a poor first round. Smith says he’s been waiting for that fight for years as they came up around the same time in the same location. He says he needs to be more conservative with his energy so he weathered the first round storm then took over. He talks about working those standing elbows during camp, thanks his fans and family and hopes for a bonus with the holidays coming up. He says he wants on the upcoming Houston card as much of his family is from there. That does it for Fight Pass, to Fox Sports 1 for the rest of the night.
Not the highest quality, but here’s the finish for those of you without Fight Pass.
— MMA Roasted (@MMARoasted) December 4, 2016
Kailin Curran is just 1-3 in the UFC and coming off of a loss to Felice Herrig, she’s in pretty dire straits here as a loss would almost certainly mean getting her walking papers. Jamie Moyle has only fought professionally for Invicta FC prior to this fight, but she had a pretty extensive amateur career as well so she’s slightly more experienced than her record lets on. Moyle needs to avoid a losing streak here and get that all important first UFC win. The odds are with Curran to the tune of -130 while Moyle’s comeback is even money at +100
Women’s Strawweight Bout: Kailin Curran (4-3, 116 lbs.) vs. Jamie Moyle (3-1, 115 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Curran has three inches of height on Moyle but their reach is identical. They touch gloves to get things going. Curran flashing the jab quickly but Moyle ducks under one and gets a body lock takedown into the guard of Curran. Moyle working arm punches to the body and head. Curran kicks Moyle off and regains her feet. Curran lands a long right, Moyle misses a couple of hooks. They trade some body kicks then Moyle gets the clinch again and pushes Curran into the fence. Moyle after a single leg, bails on that and they trade knees to the body. Moyle lands a knee to the head. Curran can’t break free. Moyle with knees to the body and thigh, then starts looking for another takedown. Moyle bails on that attempt. Curran reaches for a standing guillotine, Moyle breaks the grip but eats a couple of punches. Curran now has Moyle on the fence and they’re trading knees again. Curran lands an elbow, Moyle to the full Thai clinch then lands a knee to the head as they disengage. Moyle ducks a right and lands a couple of close hooks. Moyle lands a few punches in close quarters. They clinch up again and Moyle has Curran on the fence. Moyle with some lefts then a knee to the body. More knees from Moyle close out the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Moyle
ROUND TWO: Curran again showing the jab while Moyle circles. Moyle lands a right, they clinch and trade knees then break. Moyle lands a leg kick, Curran returns it but Moyle catches it and gets Curran on the fence. Moyle lands a knee to the body then a couple of elbows. Moyle looking for a takedown, Curran able to spin through and work for the rear waist lock. Moyle turns into her and lands a knee to the head before breaking. Curran showing the jab at range, Moyle lands a leg kick. Curran lands a stiff jab. Moyle lands another leg kick but eats a left hook counter. Moyle lands a body kick. Curran lands a right. Curran lands a jab. Moyle lands a right and gets the clinch then pushes Curran into the fence. Moyle in on a double leg and hits an elevated slam into half guard. Moyle had a mouse over her left eye after the first, she’s bleeding now from that takedown I think. The cut is above the eye on the forehead. Curran to full guard but Moyle lands a hard couple of punches as time expires.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Moyle, 20-18 Moyle overall
ROUND THREE: Minor correction, that cut is on the eyebrow of Moyle. Curran showing the jab, Moyle with a right hook to the body then a left to the head. Moyle lands a leg kick. Moyle punches into the clinch and gets Curran on the cage. They trade some knees to the body. Moyle after a takedown, decides on a single leg then switches to a double but Curran sprawls out and lands a knee to the body then retains the clinch. Moyle lands a couple of knees, Curran fires back but Moyle gets Curran back on the fence. Moyle’s clinch game is wearing down Curran. Moyle tries a head and arm throw but fails and Curran winds up on top in the half guard of Moyle. Curran lands a hammer fist but Moyle hits a heel sweep but Curran fires a knee that looked illegal. The ref halts the action to check the cut, the doctor has no issue with the cut. Replay shows the knee was legal, that pause might have been more for the cut. Curran comes out jabbing, lands a long right as well. Moyle lands a right in close. They clinch up again, Moyle has the Thai clinch and lands a couple of knees to the body and head. Curran able to pull out of the clinch. Moyle lands a right then a left. Curran lands a bit of a one two combination. Moyle lands a couple of wide hooks, Curran pushes forward but Moyle gets a body lock and trips Curran down landing in half guard. Moyle lands a couple of lefts. Curran to full guard, Moyle lands a hard series of rights as time expires.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Curran, 29-28 Moyle overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jamie Moyle via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)
I think 30-27 over values the finish of round 3 compared with the greater efficacy of Curran through the body of the round. Moyle on the mic, says she wanted to taste blood tonight but hoped it wouldn’t be her own. She puts over Curran as a tough striker, then denies UFC jitters to close out the interview.
Dong Hyun Kim has had two really fun fights in the UFC, his last one with Polo Reyes was utter insanity, but he’s lost both of them putting his back against the wall here. Regardless of how exciting your fights are going 0-3 in your first three UFC fights is pretty dismal and Kim is likely fighting for his job here. Brendan O’Reilly isn’t quite that bad off at 1-2 but is also coming off of a loss and needs to rebound as well. O’Reilly is making his lightweight debut here, his prior fights were at welterweight, making a win even more important given just how stacked the lightweight division is. Despite the 0-2 record the odds are with Kim at -145 while O’Reilly’s comeback is at +130.
Lightweight Bout: “Maestro” Dong Hyun Kim (13-8-3, 155.5 lbs.) vs. Brendan O’Reilly (6-2 1 NC, 155 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Kim has four inches of height but just an inch and a half of reach. Touch of gloves to get things going, Kim fighting southpaw. Kim lands an outside leg kick. Kim lands a couple of lefts and they clinch up. Kim has O’Reilly on the fence and is looking for a takedown. Kim lands a couple of lefts. O’Reilly lands a right and gets Kim on the fence. O’Reilly lands an elbow. Kim able to spin O’Reilly into the cage. Kim with some knees to the thigh then catches a knee and takes O’Reilly down landing in side control. Kim lands a couple of lefts while O’Reilly shrimps to half guard. More lefts from Kim, who passes back to side control. Kim lands a left then steps over towards the back while O’Reilly wall walks. Kim in the rear waist lock, lands some knees including one that might have been illegal. Kim tosses O’Reilly down and gets the back, that knee from before was definitely illegal according to commentary. Kim lands some rights, gets to full mount when O’Reilly tried to turn into him. O’Reilly immediately gives his back up again and tries to scramble, Kim lands some hard blows but O’Reilly is able to spin around to full guard. Kim lands a hard left. Kim passes to half guard. Kim lands a few short lefts as the round ends.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Kim, arguable 10-8
ROUND TWO: O’Reilly lands a leg kick to get the round going. O’Reilly misses a right and Kim easily gets the body lock takedown into the guard of O’Reilly. Kim passes to half guard and starts working the left hand. Kim trying to set up an arm triangle, passes to side control and lands a knee to the body. O’Reilly bucks off of the fence and gets on top, he tries to get the back but Kim turns into him and is back on top. Kim passes to half guard and works lefts to the body and head. Kim working on passing to side control, O’Reilly blocks that and tries a kimura from the bottom. O’Reilly has the double wrist lock but Kim just passes to side control then full mount. Kim has the back now and flattens him out. O’Reilly trying to move, he’s able to get Kim on a hip and scramble to his feet but he’s still in the clinch. O’Reilly with some weak knees to the thigh then lands a heavy elbow that Kim just eats. O’Reilly lands another elbow and an uppercut. Kim lands a knee to the body. O’Reilly lands another elbow and the round ends in the clinch.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Kim, 20-18 Kim overall
ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the last round. O’Reilly lands a left hook, they clinch then O’Reilly lands a spinning elbow. Kim pushes into the clinch and has O’Reilly on the cage. O’Reilly tries a trip, can’t get Kim down but does get him on the fence. They trade knees to the body, Kim spins him into the fence and starts looking for a takedown. O’Reilly lands a knee and spins Kim. O’Reilly lands an elbow then another. O’Reilly lands another elbow along with some knees to the thigh. Another left elbow from O’Reilly. Kim ducks a spinning elbow and gets O’Reilly on the fence. Kim ducks for a takedown, O’Reilly defending so far. Kim bails on that attempt. The ref separates them after they stall out. They clinch again, Kim pushes O’Reilly into the fence. Kim slings O’Reilly to the mat and gets the back while O’Reilly tries to stand. Kim has the back, switches to the mount with ease. O’Reilly able to kick off of the fence and reverse into the guard of Kim. Kim immediately to the fence and wall walks but O’Reilly sucks his legs out from under him as time expires.
SCORECARD: 10-9 O’Reilly, 29-28 Kim overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Dong Hyun Kim via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
And Kim finally gets the first UFC win. No interview for him though.
Rob Font is coming off of his first UFC loss when he was out worked by John Lineker, but Lineker has proven himself a top contender so Font can still rebound here and begin moving up the ranks at bantamweight. Font was supposed to fight Alejandro Perez here, but Perez withdrew from the bout and now a competitor from this season of TUF will jump up to bantamweight and step in. Matt Schnell won his first fight on this season of TUF before being beaten by eventual winner Tim Elliot. Schnell is on a six fight winning streak coming into his UFC debut here and looks to make a good first impression to the UFC audience. The odds favor Font at -270 to Schnell’s +210 comeback
Bantamweight Bout: Rob Font (12-2, 135.5 lbs.) vs. Matt Schnell (9-2, 135.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: These two are the same height but Font has an inch and a half of reach advantage. Touch of gloves to get things going. Schnell ducks a jab and lands a right. Schnell showing the jab, lands a leg kick. Font lands a leg kick. Schnell avoids an uppercut but Font gets a double leg takedown. Schnell threatens with a guillotine but Font is able to get free and settle into the guard of Schnell. Schnell lands some punches, Font stands and Schnell rolls to his knees and Font gets the ride position. Font pulls Schnell down into north/south position. Font has a double wrist lock, winds up using that to get the back and start looking for the choke. Font has a body triangle to keep Schnell locked down. Schnell defending well, Font bails on the body triangle and Schnell scrambles to his feet. Schnell lands a couple of punches and a leg kick. Schnell lands a hard counter combination. Font lands a sharp jab. Font lands a front kick to the face that rocks Schnell, Font tries to close and flurry but Schnell fires back hard and Font backs off. Schnell lands a short left hook then a leg kick. Font catches Schnell ducking with a knee to the head, Schnell down and Font is on top landing punches. Schnell tries to roll for a knee bar but Font smothers him from the ride position, flattens him out and knocks him out cold with punches on the ground.
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Rob Font via TKO, knee and punches, at 3:47 of Round 1
The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Font for his work this evening. Schnell took a couple extra punches before the stoppage, good to see he’s OK. Font on the mic now, thanks Schnell for taking the fight on one week’s notice and says Schnell has a bright future. He thanks his corner for talking him through the fight and puts over Schnell again. Asked what’s next Font says ice cream in the back then more training.
Here’s the knee that dropped Schnell, the finish wasn’t far behind.
— #TUFFinale (@ufc) December 4, 2016
Gray Maynard just broke a four fight losing streak when he dropped to featherweight but he’s still an abysmal 2-5 in his last seven and while being 1-0 at featherweight is a good thing he must keep that momentum going here if he wants to become relevant in the division. Ryan Hall won the 22nd season of TUF and brings a four fight winning streak into this fight. Hall’s win over Artem Lobov wasn’t exactly inspiring but a win over a former title challenger like Gray Maynard would certainly give Hall some positive momentum for his career. The odds are with Hall by at -130 while a Maynard win pays out at +100.
Featherweight Bout: Ryan Hall (5-1, 145 lbs.) vs. Gray Maynard (12-5-1 1 NC, 145.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Hall has an inch of height and half an inch of reach on Maynard. Touch of gloves to get things going, Hall fighting southpaw. Hall using lead leg side kicks to the thigh, tries an Imanari Roll, Maynard avoids it. Hall tries again, Maynard just makes him stand back up. Maynard lands a bit of a right. Hall lands a side kick to the body. Maynard slips on a body kick but regains his feet before Hall can get position. Maynard misses a couple of hooks, Hall drops in on a leg lock attack. Maynard tries to spin but Hall sweeps off of the attempt, Maynard able to stand out of the guard of Hall after taking an up kick to the chest. Hall misses a hook kick. Maynard misses a right, Hall tries a double leg and they wind up in a weird position I’ve not seen before. They scramble, Hall tries to pull guard but Maynard again makes him stand back up. Hall working more lead leg kicks. Body kick lands for Hall then a right hook. Maynard blocks a high kick. Maynard lands a right. Hall lands another body kick. Maynard misses a right. Maynard is cut around the left eye, not bad but it does seem to be under the eyebrow which bears watching. Hall lands another couple of body kicks, he’s staying all the way out. Hall tries another roll, Maynard is avoiding them easily. Hall landing some decent kicks to the body though. Hall just misses a high kick then lands a side kick to the thigh as the round ends.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Hall
ROUND TWO: They touch gloves for the second round. Hall working lead leg body kicks. Maynard misses a couple of right hooks. Hall lands a hook kick flush, Maynard just eats it but that landed. Hall working side kicks to the body now. Hall lands another hook kick. Maynard eats a left and avoids an Imanari Roll. Maynard lands a bit of a right. Hall lands a couple of side kicks to the body. Hall lands a leg kick. Hall tries another Imanari Roll when Maynard closed distance but Maynard pulled free quickly. Maynard can’t get anything going, Hall lands another hook kick to the face. Maynard misses a right. Maynard lands a bit of a high kick, Hall lands a high kick of his own. Maynard lands a bit of a right then blocks a high kick. Hall lands a body kick. Hall again with the hook kick. Hall tries the Imanari Roll that fails. Hall misses a few kicks. Hall lands one more side kick to the body as the round ends.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Hall, 20-18 Hall overall
ROUND THREE: Hall flops early into guard, Maynard tries some leg kicks before Hall gets up. Hall lands another hook kick to the face, then another. Hall to his butt again, Maynard backing away and the ref resets them. Hall on another Imanari Roll, that one got closer but Maynard landed an illegal kick to the face that the ref either didn’t see or ignored and they wind up standing again. Hall lands a bit of a high kick. Hall lands a lead leg high kick then tries an Imanari Roll that fails. Hall still working kicks, Maynard is befuddled and praying for a lucky right to land. Hall lands a front kick to the body then a hook kick to the face. Hall lands a side kick to the body. Hall lands another hook kick, Maynard takes him down off of it but quickly stands out of the guard and makes Hall stand. Hall tries an Imanari Roll, lands an up kick actually, then Maynard makes him stand. Hall lands a hook kick to the face one final time before the clock expires.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Hall, 30-27 Hall overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Ryan Hall via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27 x2)
Well, that sucked. Hall does get an interview though, the crowd is vocally booing and has been basically the whole fight. Hall says he fought effectively, landed more on the feet and Maynard ran away to defend his ground game. He says Maynard probably could have fought in his guard effectively but that’s not what happened. He puts over his coaches for getting him to this point. That’s it for the preliminary fights, still on Fox Sports 1 for the main card though.
Brandon Moreno also competed on this season of TUF but made his UFC debut earlier this year when he stepped in against Louis Smolka on short notice and submitted him, scoring one of the more substantial upsets of the year along the way. Moreny is looking to prove that wasn’t a fluke by extending his impressive nine fight winning streak and move up from his current ranking. Ryan Benoit has been trading wins and losses while going 2-2 in the UFC but he’s coming off of a win over Fredy Serrano and trying to get his first UFC winning streak going, and hopefully crack the top fifteen by knocking off the twelfth ranked contender. The odds are with Moreno at -140 while Benoit is a +130 underdog.
Flyweight Bout: Ryan Benoit (9-4, 125.5 lbs.) vs. #12 Brandon Moreno (12-3, 126 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Moreno has two inches of height and an inch and a half of reach on Benoit. And my TV just died for a bit, thanks Comcast. I’m back about halfway through the second as Moreno hits a double leg that Jon Anik tells me is his second of the fight. Benoit scrambles up, Moreno takes him down again. Benoit back up again, Moreno pushes him into the fence from the rear waist lock and starts kneeing the thigh. Moreno working knees to the thigh, Benoit able to spin free and separate. Moreno lands a bit of a one two combination. Moreno tries an inside leg kick that hits the cup so we’ve got time for Benoit to recover. Benoit walks it off quickly and we’re back to fighting. Moreno lands a bit of a left after missing a high kick. Moreno misses an uppercut. Moreno doing a good job of fighting long and making Benoit miss. Benoit lands a heavy body kick then a right. Moreno engages in a brawl for a bit. Moreno lands an inside leg kick. Benoit lands a left but Moreno avoids the follow up and lands a combination to close the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Moreno based on what I saw
ROUND TWO: Benoit charges for a double leg that stalls out on the fence. Moreno lands a couple of knees to the body then Benoit lands a right as they break. Moreno lands a looping right. They both land lefts. Moreno slips a left and lands a counter combination. They both miss punches. Moreno lands a bit of a combination. Moreno lands a left uppercut then a right. Benoit lands a right. Benoit lands a counter left that drops Moreno for a second, Moreno back up and throwing. Benoit lands a left hook. Benoit is finding the counters much better this round. Moreno hits an elevated double leg and gets Benoit down. Benoit has full guard, Moreno lands an elbow and starts looking to pass. Moreno landing lefts, he’s also trying to trap one of Benoit’s wrists to keep him from defending. Benoit gets the arm free but is still stuck flat on his back. Benoit able to kick Moreno off and regain his feet but Moreno is right in on another double leg and takes Benoit down again, this time landing in half guard. Moreno lands some elbows to the body and a couple of punches before the round ends.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Benoit, 19-19 overall
ROUND THREE: Moreno circling to start this round. Benoit showing the jab and trying to get Moreno on the fence. Moreno misses a high kick. Benoit lands a right hook. Moreno grabs a single leg attempt and gets Benoit on the cage. Benoit fighting to remain upright. Moreno can’t control the body though and Benoit is able to slip free. Moreno misses a wheel kick. Moreno lands a bit of a one two. Moreno lands a stiff one two combination. Benoit misses a right badly but lands a follow up right to the body. Moreno lands a clear right hand, Benoit might be wobbled. Moreno slips on a flying knee, Moreno’s left ankle might be compromised after that wheel kick. Moreno lands a couple of left kicks to the leg then one to the head. Moreno lands a counter right. Benoit backing up, Moreno stalking forward. Benoit blocks a left high kick. Moreno lands a counter left hook. Moreno lands a body kick. Moreno in on a double leg, slips to the back standing and lands some knees to the thigh. Benoit able to spin free but eats a couple of punches. Benoit lands a left hook. Moreno lands a left. Moreno lands a right in close as the final blow of the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Moreno, 29-28 Moreno overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Brandon Moreno via split decision (28-29, 29-28 x2)
Can’t complain too much as I missed half of the first round. Moreno on the mic now, he’s quite happy. He puts over Benoit as tough and durable as well as heavy handed, he talks about his game plan which focused on movement and takedowns but Benoit had good takedown defense. He says the win over Smolka was magical, this one is different because he had a full training camp and thanks the crowd for their support. He says he’s happy for his future, then tries to talk to Dana White who apparently isn’t ringside, then speaks some Spanish for his fans back in Mexico. We get a translation of that, he called out a top ten opponent for his next fight then thanks Vegas for their support, and says that he’s just like other Mexican’s in America working his butt off for an honest living.
Sara McMann just broke a two fight losing streak by beating Jessica Eye but is still in danger of becoming a non-factor in the division. McMann needs an emphatic win here to remind everyone why she got a title shot in the past and get them excited about her possibly doing so again. Alexis Davis hasn’t fought since she submitted Sarah Kaufman in April of 2015 due to her pregnancy but is looking to continue winning here. Davis is also a former title challenger in need of a win to generate potential interest in her getting back to the highest level of the sport. Davis is the +130 underdog here after her layoff to the -160 favorite McMann.
Women’s Bantamweight Bout: Alexis Davis (17-6, 134.75 lbs.) vs. #7 Sara McMann (9-3, 135.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: These two are the same height but Davis has two inches of reach on McMann. Circling to start from both women, McMann lands a one two combination. They trade rights in close. McMann lands a right to the body. McMann lands a right in close, then she and Davis trade in close. Hard combination from McMann lands, that was roughly three punches that landed flush. McMann lands a couple of body shots then gets a double leg into the guard of Davis. Davis trying to set up a triangle choke, lands a couple of elbows from a high guard position. McMann bleeding from the head after those elbows, not bad though. McMann lands an elbow. Davis trying for the high guard again, McMann lands an elbow then a punch. McMann lands a hard couple of blows. McMann lands an elbow. McMann passes to half guard and lands a series of lefts. Davis back to full guard, she’s trying to get a triangle choke again. Davis throwing elbows, McMann not worried about the choke and Davis lands some more elbows as the round ends.
SCORECARD: 10-9 McMann
ROUND TWO: Davis showing the jab, lands a right. McMann lands a left to the body then a right. Leg kick from McMann. Davis lands a leg kick, they clinch up and McMann lands a hip toss into 50/50 guard. McMann pushes into top position, Davis trying to go under for a leg lock but McMann is flattening her out. McMann into half guard. Davis to a hip, McMann lands some lefts to the head. McMann setting up an arm triangle, she’s got the arm in position but is still caught in half guard. McMann trying to pass and gets to side control on the dangerous side. Davis trying to defend but McMann has enough of a squeeze going to turn Davis’ face red and force the submission.
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Sara McMann via Submission, arm triangle choke, at 2:52 of Round 2
McMann on the mic now, says Davis hits really hard and that something was wrong with the left side of her face and that inspired the grappling approach in the second but was prepared to go the distance. She puts over Davis’ submission game but says she just got a quick enough squeeze despite Davis doing everything right. She wants a title fight next, she points out that Davis finished Amanda Nunes not all that long ago, and says she was ready for a dog fight but is happy to get the submission.
Here’s a pic from immediately after the tap, as the caption notes that’s how you know a choke was tight.
— Josh Sánchez (@jnsanchez) December 4, 2016
Ion Cutelaba is 1-1 in the UFC and while he lost to rising prospect Misha Cirkunov he’s coming off of a win over Jonathan Wilson. Cutelaba will be trying to keep that momentum going here and prove himself a prospect worth watching at light heavyweight. Jared Cannonier is 1-1 in the UFC with both of those fights taking place at heavyweight. Cannonier is trying his luck in an even more talent starved division here at light heavyweight and looking to make an immediate impact at the expense of Cutelaba. Cannonier is the +185 underdog while Cutelaba’s favored status landed at -235.
Light Heavyweight Bout: Jared Cannonier (8-1, 204 lbs.) vs. Ion Cutelaba (12-2 1 NC, 205.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Cutelaba has two inches of height on Cannonier but Cannonier has two and a half inches of reach on him. Touch of gloves to get us going. Cutelaba showing the jab, Cannonier lands a leg kick. Cutelaba lands a combination pushing forward, Cannonier circling and lands a right. They split jabs, Cannonier lands a body kick. Cannonier lands a right. Cutelaba lands a left then a heavy series of knees to the body and they clinch. Cannonier lands a knee to the body and they break. Cannonier lands a left but Cutelaba lands a counter left then a hard body shot before they clinch up. Cannonier lands a knee to the body. Cutelaba hits a hip toss and lands in half guard. Cannonier quickly to full guard. Cutelaba lands a couple of rights. Cutelaba lands another right. Cannonier trying to stand, Cutelaba pushes him back over. Cutelaba passes to half guard, Cannonier back to full guard. Cutelaba lands a couple of rights, Cannonier lands a right off of his back. Cutelaba lands a right but Cannonier sweeps him and they scramble back to their feet. Cutelaba lands an inside leg kick, Cannonier responds with a jab. They clinch up again, Cutelaba hits a lateral drop and lands in mount but Cannonier quickly hip escapes to half guard. Cutelaba stands then comes down with a right. Cannonier kicks him off then just avoids a high kick as he regains his feet. Cutelaba lands an inside leg kick. They stare the last ten seconds away.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Cutelaba
ROUND TWO: Touch of gloves for the second round. They both land hard punches, Cannonier landed a good right hook. Cannonier lands a one two combination. Cannonier lands a body kick but Cutelaba hits a double leg takedown. Cannonier to a knee, Cutelaba into the ride position and landing rights. Cannonier back up but still in the clinch. Cannonier gets Cutelaba on the fence, Cutelaba hits a trip and lands on top. Cutelaba lands a right, he’s standing and holding an ankle to set up his punching pass. Cannonier escapes to his feet but they’re still in the clinch. Cutelaba has Cannonier on the cage, Cannonier spins free and lands a hard couple of punches. Hard one two from Cannonier lands. Cutelaba eats another right but hits a double leg takedown. Cutelaba posturing up, lands a left. Cutelaba lands a right. Cutelaba lands a right, Cannonier to his feet but still in the clinch. Cannonier has Cutelaba on the fence, Cannonier gets to the rear waist lock, tries a German suplex but can’t get it, they scramble and Cutelaba winds up on bottom. Cannonier in half guard, lands a couple of lefts. Cannonier lands an elbow. Cannonier lands to the body then head as the round closes.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Cannonier, 19-19 overall
ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the last round. Cutelaba lands an inside leg kick. Cutelaba lands a glancing right then they trade lefts. Cannonier lands a left body kick then a leg kick. Cannonier lands a leg kick. They trade lefts, Cannonier doing a good job of rolling with punches and slipping them. Cutelaba lands a double leg but Cannonier is back up immediately and lands a right as they break. Cutelaba lands a right. Cutelaba lands a right to the body then a left hook. Cannonier lands a right, Cutelaba lands an elbow and they clinh up. Cannonier lands an uppercut then a right as they break. Cutelaba lands a right. Cannonier slips a right and lands a counter right. Both guys throwing a little sloppy now, Cannonier lands an uppercut. Cannonier eats an elbow but lands a hard counter right. Cannonier lands a one two and Cutelaba gets the clinch. Cannonier lands a knee then a right and breaks but Cutelaba dives on a double leg. Cannonier back up but still in the clinch and he gets Cutelaba on the cage. Cannonier lands a couple of rights to the body then on to the head as they break. Cannonier walking forward hands down, Cutelaba lands a left but Cannonier doesn’t care. His hands are at his side and he’s slipping blows. Cannonier lands a left. They trade lefts, Cannonier lands a counter right. Cannonier lands an uppercut and a left in close as time expires.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Cannonier, 29-28 Cannonier overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jared Cannonier via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
Well, not exactly a technical masterpiece but it was engaging at least. Cannonier on the mic now. He puts over Cutelaba for welcoming him to light heavyweight, he says he’s happy not for winning but because God showed him mercy and love. He gives glory to God. He says midway through the first round he thought it was going to be over but Cutelaba is a tough S.O.B who proved himself impervious to damage but he proved he belongs in this division. He says his wife really made this weight cut possible and says that he might be able to make 185 if his wife can put up with his complaining during the cut.
Here’s the footage of Cannonier walking forward, hands down, ready to swing to the finish.
— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) December 4, 2016
Jake Ellenberger just broke a two fight losing streak by beating Matt Brown but he’s still just 2-5 in his last seven fights. Ellenberger needs a win here, it would be his first winning streak in over three years, to prove he’s finally turned that corner and remind us all of when he was thought of as a possible title contender. Jorge Masvidal is 2-2 in his last four fights but coming off of a win over Ross Pearson and also looking to build a winning streak. Masvidal needs this win if he’s going to make a run in the welterweight division. The odds are with Masvidal at -230 while Ellenberger’s +180 underdog status is a pretty tempting value bet.
Welterweight Bout: #15 Jake Ellenberger (31-11, 170.5 lbs.) vs. Jorge Masvidal (30-11, 171 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Masvidal has two inches of height and two and a half of reach on Ellenberger. Masvidal circling a bit, both guys feinting early. Masvidal lands a leg kick then just misses a high kick. Ellenberger lands a left body kick but Masvidal catches it and lands some body shots. Ellenberger lands a couple of hooks but Masvidal just waves him on. Masvidal lands a left then a left body kick. Masvidal digs a left to the body, Ellenberger is hurt to the body. Masvidal swarming him with knees and punches. Ellenberger is still in it but man he got hurt. Masvidal in the clinch now and they trade elbows then break. Masvidal lands a leg kick. Ellenberger lands a right. Ellenberger is bleeding a little from the bridge of the nose. Masvidal lands a jab. Ellenberger lands another left body kick but Masvidal catches it and lands a couple of punches before Ellenberger gets his leg back. Hard leg kick from Masvidal. Masvidal lands another leg kick, eats a couple of counters though. Masvidal lands a right then a body kick but eats a counter left. Masvidal lands another leg kick then hits a wheel kick. Body kick from Masvidal lands. Ellenberger slips and catches his toes in the cage, the ref calls a time, Masvidal thinks he won, minor confusion here. The ref consults with the commission ringside, he was trying to get a time for an equipment malfunction but this doesn’t qualify for that criteria.
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jorge Masvidal via TKO, stuck foot and punches, at 4:05 of Round 1
The First Round Finish Club is happy to welcome Mr. Masvidal to our ranks, we’re happy to take first round finishes wherever we can get them. Masvidal on the mic now, he says he’s still here and still pretty and was ready to keep going. He thanks his coaches and the fans. He says a lot of guys say they’ll fight anyone at anytime but no one wants him, he says he’s hoping Donald Cerrone wins and wants to fight him on the Super Bowl card as he’s one of the guys who’ll actually fight anyone.
Ellenberger gets an interview, says the situation was just weird but his foot is a little jacked.
Here’s that finish, real shame they couldn’t just restart based on an equipment malfunction because that was turning out to be cracking.
— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) December 4, 2016
Henry Cejudo is coming off of his first professional loss when he was run over in his title fight with Demetrious Johnson. Cejudo needs a win here if he ever wants to get back to title contention, and the reality is that a win over Joseph Benavidez could get him there sooner rather than later. Joseph Benavidez has only lost to Dominick Cruz and Demetrious Johnson and has a five fight winning streak going coming into this fight. Unfortunately for Benavidez he’s lost to Johnson twice, the second time via violent first round knockout, and needs this win if he’s ever going to make a case for a third fight for the title. The odds are with Benavidez at -200 to the +160 on Cejudo.
Flyweight Bout: #1 Joseph Benavidez (24-4, 125.5 lbs.) vs. #2 Henry Cejudo (10-1, 125.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: These two are the same height while Benavidez has an inch of reach on Cejudo. Benavidez circling to start, tries a front kick up the middle that misses. Cejudo misses an inside leg kick. They both land rights. Benavidez eats a left then lands a right. Cejudo gets close and rocks Benavidez with a left but Benavidez gets up quickly. Benavidez lands a leg kick then a right. Cejudo lands a heavy body kick. Cejudo has a left high kick blocked. Cejudo tries an inside leg kick that hits the groin, Benavidez gets time to recover. Benavidez has been switching his stance frequently. Benavidez is good to continue and we’re back to fighting. They trade again, these two are throwing heat. They get close and trade again, Cejudo lands a left hook. Cejudo lands a couple of middle kicks. Cejudo tries another inside leg kick that hits the groin and Benavidez gets time again. This was as much Benavidez moving forward as it was Cejudo throwing the kick. The ref does take a point from Cejudo though, to the boos of the crowd. We’re back to fighting. Cejudo pushing forward, both men throwing hooks. Benavidez lands a body kick but Cejudo is working knees when they get close as Benavidez is exiting. Cejudo lands a bit of a right, they clinch and Cejudo gets a trip. Benavidez quickly scrambles back to his feet. Cejudo lands a straight right, Benavidez lands a leg kick. Knee to the chest from Benavidez lands. Benavidez lands a high kick, Cejudo doesn’t care. Cejudo lands a head kick. Benavidez blocks a takedown and avoids a right. Cejudo lands a couple of body kicks. Benavidez lands a high kick but again Cejudo doesn’t care. Cejudo lands a bit of a right. Benavidez lands a low leg kick to close the round.
SCORECARD: 9-9 DRAW after the point deduction to Cejudo
ROUND TWO: Benavidez slips trying a front kick and eats two hard rights. Benavidez lands a leg kick but eats a counter right. Cejudo lands a knee, Benavidez misses a wheel kick. Cejudo lands a body shot. Cejudo digs a right to the body. Benavidez lands a one two combination. Cejudo lands a body kick. Benavidez misses a wheel kick. Cejudo still stalking forward, lands a left then a right. They trade, Cejudo lands a good knee to the head. They both land left hooks, Cejudo lands a follow up right though. Benavidez lands a body kick, Cejudo returns it. Benavidez lands a stiff right hand. Benavidez misses a couple of punches. Cejudo lands a bit of a right. Hard leg kick from Cejudo lands. Cejudo counters a leg kick with a right. Cejudo lands a body kick, this is a pretty wild fight. Cejudo whacks Benavidez with a left that stumbles him. Benavidez has a combination blocked. Cejudo pushing forward with kicks. Cejudo lands a left hook, Benavidez responds with a straight left. Body kick from Cejudo, Benavidez lands one then they trade leg kicks. Benavidez lands a right but eats a leg kick. They clash with hooks then Cejudo lands a body kick to close the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Cejudo, 19-18 Cejudo overall
ROUND THREE: Cejudo lands a straight right then a body kick. Benavidez misses a high kick. Cejudo lands an inside leg kick then a left hook. Benavidez lands a combination then avoids the counter left. Cejudo hits a single leg, Benavidez back up but still in the clinch and Cejudo lands a right as they break. Benavidez lands a bit of a left hook, Cejudo with a body kick. Cejudo lands a left hook in close after a right to the body. Cejudo lands a body kick then misses a high kick. Benavidez lands a body kick. Cejudo tries another single leg, Benavidez avoids this one. They’re both digging body shots now. Cejudo lands a right after eating a knee. Cejudo eats another knee but lands the counter right. Body kick from Cejudo. Benavidez lands a right to the body. Cejudo lands another body kick. Benavidez slips a couple of punches and lands a left. Benavidez lands a left. Cejudo again to the body with a kick then lands a hook. Benavidez lands a good left hook. They both land to the body again. Cejudo lands a body kick but Benavidez is starting to make him miss. Benavidez lands a body to head combination but Cejudo lands a body kick. Cejudo lands a left hook to the body. Both guys breathing hard, Cejudo lands a knee to the body. Cejudo misses a left after eating an uppercut. Cejudo looking for hooks in close, lands a good left as he eats a right. Benavidez lands a right. We get a wild exchange of punches to close out the round. Awesome fight.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Benavidez, 28-28 DRAW overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Joseph Benavidez via split decision (27-29, 30-26, 29-27)
Can’t stand that 30-26, he got dropped. Benavidez on the mic, says that was fun and the point deduction didn’t matter as he still won and puts over Cejudo as tough and athletic. He says he knew he’d just get better as the fight went on and he was willing to go two more and asks the crowd to respect the fighters, they’ve been booing that decision. Still a split reaction, the crowd do not like that result and event Brian Stann says that 30-26 was bogus.
Seriously though, what in the world was that?
Despite the stupid score card that was awesome. Here’s some highlights.
— #TUFFinale (@ufc) December 4, 2016
— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) December 4, 2016
Tim Elliot (13-6-1) starts his second UFC stint here, he was cut on the back of a three fight losing streak in February of 2015, but has won his last three fights and won this season of TUF to earn a shot at the UFC flyweight title. Suffice it to say a win here would be the biggest of Elliot’s career and give him the most coveted prize in MMA, UFC gold. Demetrious Johnson (24-2-1) is the only flyweight champion in UFC history, he’s on a ten fight winning streak and has eight consecutive title defenses all done while proving himself the pound for pound best fighter in the sport. A win here would bring Johnson into a tie for second place in terms of most consecutive title defenses with Georges St. Pierre and just one away from drawing even with Anderson Silva. For Johnson a loss would be devastating to the legacy he’s carving for himself while a win gets him closer to breaking records we thought untouchable. Johnson is a heavy favorite at -900 to the potentially massive +550 payout on an Elliott upset.
Flyweight Title Bout: (c) Demetrious Johnson (24-2-1, 124.5 lbs.) vs. Tim Elliott (13-6-1, 125 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Elliott has four inches of height on Johnson but they have the same reach. Both guys switch stance frequently. Johnson lands an inside leg kick. Elliott misses some hooks then lands a front kick to the chest. Johnson hits a quick double leg into the guard of Elliott. Johnson passes, tries for an armbar but winds up on bottom after a scramble by Elliott. Elliott in half guard holding a front head lock. Johnson gets free, rolls to his knees, Elliott sits back for a guillotine choke that’s pretty tight. Johnson trying to get out, rolls and Elliott switches to a d’arce choke. Johnson gives the thumbs up but Elliott is working on tightening that up. Johnson working to escape, Elliott bails on the attempt and we’re back up and Johnson lands a head kick then some punches. Elliott on a single leg, Johnson setting up a guillotine of his own from the front head lock. Johnson trying to spin to the back, can’t quite get all the way but is controlling from that front head lock. Elliott back up, they trade as they disengage. Elliott already breathing hard, Johnson lands a couple of lefts. They get close and trade again. Johnson lands a knee, Elliott landing hard to the body and lands a left as they break. Elliott grabs a single leg and gets Johnson down in half guard. Johnson to a hip as the round ends.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Elliott
ROUND TWO: Circling to start, Elliott working lead leg kicks. Johnson lands a leg kick, then another. Elliott misses a hook. Johnson lands another leg kick then a couple of punches. Johnson lands a body kick. Elliott lands a bit of a windmill left. Johnson ducks a combination and gets a double leg, Elliott holding the neck though. Johnson passes to the safe side in side control and gets his head free. Johnson gets the back, no hooks though. Johnson after the choke, no hooks and has to settle for side control. Johnson lands a couple of elbows. Johnson after the kimura, he’s got the double wrist lock and Elliott quickly scrambles to get his arm free. Johnson still in side control looking for the crucifix. He’s got the mounted crucifix and lands a few lefts before Elliott gets his arm free. Elliott to half guard but Johnson is after the double wrist lock again. Johnson has the double wrist lock, bails to land some elbows. Johnson lands a right, gets the back briefly but Elliott to his knees. Johnson to full guard and passes quickly. Elliott to his knees, Johnson in the ride but Elliott is back up and Johnson has the rear waist lock. Johnson lands some rights and a knee to the head. Elliott gets a takedown off of that knee landing in half guard. The round ends in that position.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Johnson, 19-19 overall
ROUND THREE: Johnson lands a leg kick then avoids a couple of kick counters. Johnson lands another leg kick. Inside leg kick from Johnson lands. Johnson lands a right and gets close, Elliott tries a takedown but gives up the crucifix. Johnson has the back now, no hooks and Elliott scrambles out of the choke. Elliott after a single leg, Johnson has a guillotine though and uses it to try and sweep. Elliott still on top but Johnson back up, tripped down but Johnson is on a single leg eating punches then gets a double leg. Johnson in half guard looking for head and arm control. Johnson lands an elbow then another. Johnson lands some rights and a knee to the body. More rights from Johnson, they’re short but they’re landing flush. Elliott tries to get to guard, Johnson doesn’t let him. Elliott to full guard, tries a triangle but Johnson blocks that easily and keeps him on his back. Johnson looking to pass again, and does into side control. Johnson lands a couple of elbows. Johnson lands a left as Elliott regains guard. Johnson lands a right then a left. The round ends on the mat there.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Johnson, 29-28 Johnson overall
ROUND FOUR: Touch of gloves for the fourth round. Johnson just misses a head kick then lands a leg kick. Johnson lands an inside leg kick. Elliott misses a couple of hooks. Johnson lands a left then tries a double leg and gets Elliott down right into half guard. Elliott does have half guard and gets to his knees but eats punches and gives up the back. Johnson into side control now. Elliott to his knees, Johnson in the ride and now after the choke. Johnson riding Elliott, Elliott back up and Johnson drags him back down and gets the arm under the chin and has the hooks in. Elliott hand fighting, Johnson bails on that and gets north/south position. Johnson to side control, now the mounted crucifix and lands a series of rights. Elliott to the empty half but Johnson has the arm trapped and is punching the head. Elliott fights hard to get that arm free but Johnson is still in side control. Elliott to a hip, Johnson pulls him back flat. Johnson lands to the body. Johnson lands a knee to the body. Johnson lands an elbow to the body and looks for the kimura. Johnson has a the arm isolated, steps over the head and looks to crank the arm. Johnson has it cranked, spins for the armbar, Elliott avoids that and regains his feet holding a single leg atttempt but Johnson avoids that. Elliott misses a spinning back kick then a cartwheel kick as the round ends.
SCORECARD: 10-8 Johnson, 39-36 Johnson overall
ROUND FIVE: Touch of gloves for the last round. Elliott doing a pretty decent Dominick Cruz impression, Johnson lands a body kick then Elliott blocks a takedown attempt. Elliott after a double leg and gets Johnson down in half guard. Johnson to a hip looking for a sweep, he gets to his knees and gets a single leg then top position. Elliott to his knees, Johnson has the front head lock position though. Johnson spins to the back and pulls him back flat then gets side control. Elliott has this weird lock down going to defend himself. Johnson steps over the head and breaks the lock down. Elliott to full guard, nicely done there. Johnson lands an elbow then stands and passes to side control. Elliott back to half guard but Johnson is smothering him. Johnson has far side wrist control and lands an elbow. Johnson lands another elbow and is after that arm. Elliott gets that arm free but is still stuck. Elliott rolls to his knees and tries for a kimura roll into an armbar, Johnson spins and counters with his own armbar, misses the grip and then uses a front head lock to push Elliott over onto his back. Johnson passes to half guard again. Johnson after the kimura again, he wont finish it before the final bell though.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Johnson, 49-45 Johnson overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER and STILL UFC Flyweight Champion – Demetrious Johnson via unanimous decision (49-45, 49-46 x2)
Credit to Elliott, he came to fight but it wasn’t quite enough. That’s nine title defenses and eleven wins in a row for Might Mouse, Anderson Silva is right around the corner. Mic time for the champ, he puts over his sponsors and his twitch strea, which is pretty great if you’re into that, then puts over Elliott as a scrappy muskrat he had to neutralize. He talks about being patient through the first round and knew he’d take over as the fight went on. He puts over his coaches and again thanks Tim Elliott.
Tim Elliott gets an interview as well. He says he’s just a guy who loves to fight and loves his daughter and is happy to be here. He says he can compete with anyone and if it was a fight to the death he’d beat everyone. Asked if this was the toughest fight for Johnson he says he doesn’t know because Johnson is the best in the world but it was an honor to share the cage with him.
Here’s the kimura attempt from the fourth round.
— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) December 4, 2016
And here’s the final scramble and minute or so of the fight.
Nothing but respect.
— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) December 4, 2016
Alright everyone, thanks for being here. Those last two fights delivered big time, made up for the slow middle portion of the card. Thank you all for being here and reading, be that live or after the fact. I’ll be back next week for a double header, not on the same day at least. Friday I’ll cover Fight Night 102, the Fight Pass exclusive card headlined by Derick Lewis and Shamil Abdurakhimov, then UFC 206 on Saturday. I’ll be reviewing all of this card and previewing both of those at a special start time of 7pm eastern standard time on the 411 Ground and Pound Radio Show which takes live callers at (323) 657-0901. I hope you’ll all come back for both of those events, until next time keep checking 411mania for all of your pop culture needs.