411’s UFC 203 Report 9.10.16
Hello everyone and welcome to 411mania’s LIVE coverage of UFC 203. I’m Robert Winfree and I’ll be your host for the evening, calling the action just as I see it. While you’re here I encourage you to check out the Radulich in Broadcasting Network which is home to a bunch of podcasts including the weekly 411 Ground and Pound radio show Sunday’s at 8pm eastern standard time. UFC 203 has wound up being a pretty cursed event, just yesterday an elevator crash forced CB Dollaway out of his scheduled fight. The laundry list of injury/replacement fights for this card is long: In the co-main event former UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum was supposed to fight Ben Rothwell but Rothwell got injured about a month ago and was replaced by Travis Browne, Drew Dober was supposed to fight Erik Koch back at UFC 195 but Koch was injured and when they rescheduled the bout for this event Koch got injured again leading to Dober fighting Jason Gonzalez, Damir Hadzovic and Yusuke Kasuya were scheduled to open up the prelims but visa issues with Hadzovic forced that fight to be moved to UFC Fight Night 97, visa issues forced Mairbek Taisumov out of his fight with Nik Lentz who now fights Michael McBride, and a flyweight fight between Ian McCall and Ray Borg that I was personally looking forward too fell through a couple of days ago when Borg became too ill to compete. Fortunately heavyweight title fight in the main event remains unchanged as newly crowned champion Stipe Miocic goes for his first title defense against former K-1 Grand Prix champion and longtime top heavyweight competitor Alistair Overeem. Also on the main card former WEC featherweight champion and three time UFC bantamweight title challenger Urijah Faber looks to defend his spot against the up and coming Jimmie Rivera and former WWE superstar Phil “CM Punk” Brooks makes his promotional and professional debut against Mickey Gall. Tonight’s event is the UFC’s debut in Cleveland, Ohio and comes from the Quicken Loans Arena with the usual PPV duo of Mike Goldberg and Joe Rogan on commentary.
As a note, the place looks pretty full for just the first fight of the night. Should be a good crowd if the pattern of early crowds holds true.
Yancy Medeiros has an overall UFC record of 3-4 with 1 No Contest but is just 1-2 in his last three and coming off of a loss to Francisco Trinaldo. Tonight Medeiros is trying to get his UFC record back to the .500 mark and is hoping that moving up to welterweight will give his career a much needed shot in the arm. Sean Spencer is 3-4 in the UFC overall, Spencer is on a two fight losing streak and will be trying to defend his position in the division from the welterweight new comer. The odds favor Medeiros to the tune of -135 while Spencer’s comeback is at +105.
Welterweight Bout: Yancy Medeiros (12-4 1 NC, 171 lbs.) vs. Sean Spencer (12-5, 170 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: These two have the same age, height, and reach. Medeiros comes out southpaw. Spencer working the jab early, Medeiros lands a body kick. They both miss power hand punches, Medeiros follows up with a left though. Spencer lands an outside leg kick. Spencer lands a decent right hand when Medeiros bailed on a kick. Spencer lands a right to the body. Medeiros lands a body kick. Spencer has a high kick blocked. Medeiros lands an outside leg kick, Spencer lands a good right. Medeiros just misses a spinning back fist but lands a left body kick. Medeiros catches a leg kick and lands a left, Spencer lands a right. Hard inside leg kick from Spencer. Spencer lands a left and a bit of an overhand right. Medeiros lands another body kick then a high kick that drops Spencer to a knee. Medeiros lands a spinning back kick to the thigh. Spencer lands a knee to the chest. Spencer lands a bit of a right, Medeiros lands another couple of body kicks and they trade blows in close as the round closes.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Medeiros
ROUND TWO: Spencer moving forward this round, Medeiros has an issue with not moving his head much and Spencer might be trying to capitalize on that. Spencer lands a body kick. Medeiros lands a head kick, Spencer drops and Medeiros tris for a guillotine, Spencer tries to scramble but Medeiros floats into back mount and grabs a rear naked choke to force the tap.
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Yancy Medeiros via Submission, rear naked choke, at :49 of Round 2
Mic time for Medeiros now. He says the cut to lightweight was too much but he’s here to stay at welterweight and says he’s hungry. He wishes a happy anniversary to his parents and gives love to Hawaii. He puts over his coaches and reiterates that he’s here.
That’s our only Fight Pass fight tonight after all those fights fell out, now to Fox Sports 1 for the rest of the prelims. Here’s the head kick that led to the scramble that ended in a rear naked choke.
— #UFC203 (@ufc) September 10, 2016
This fight started out as Drew Dober vs. Erik Koch and was set to take place at UFC 195, then Koch got injured and the fight was rescheduled for this event, Koch got injured again and now Dober faces a UFC newcomer. Drew Dober is 2-3 with 1 No Contest in the UFC but is coming off of a win over Scott Holtzman and will be looking to get his first ever UFC winning streak going with a win here. Jason Gonzalez is making his UFC debut tonight but is riding an impressive six fight winning streak, and he’ll be looking to keep that going here by getting the all important first UFC win. The UFC veteran Dober is the favorite at -165 while Gonzalez’s odds are +135.
Welterweight Bout: Drew Dober (16-7 1 NC, 155 lbs.) vs. Jason Gonzalez (10-2, 156 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Gonzalez has six inches of height and four of reach on Dober. Touch of gloves to get things going. Gonzalez flashing the jab early, Dober lands an overhand left. Both men are fighting southpaw, Dober lands a leg kick. Dober trying to jab in close and land an overhand, Gonzalez lands a couple of jabs and Dober shoots a double leg that stalls out on the fence. They trade in the clinch, Gonzalez exited the clinch with a heavy knee to the body. Dober lands a leg kick. Dober tries an inside leg kick that goes into the groin of Gonzalez so we’ve got time for him to recover. Gonzalez takes a minute but he’s good to continue and we’re back to fighting. Gonzalez pumping the jab, Dober counters with a wicked left, he flurries back into the fence and keeps unloading on Gonzalez until Gonzalez falls over unconscious.
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Drew Dober via TKO, punches, at 1:45 of Round 1
The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Dober for his contributions to the evenings proceedings. Dober gets an interview next. He puts over his team mates and coaches for improving him on a daily basis. He talks us through the finish, critiques his technique on the finish a little bit, but can’t wait to get back into the cage.
Here’s that finish in case you missed it.
— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) September 11, 2016
This fight was supposed to be Nik Lentz taking on Mairbek Taisumov but Taisumov had visa issues so now Lentz takes on a late notice replacement. Lentz has been with the UFC since 2009 and while he’s 2-2 in his last four he’s 1-0 since returning to lightweight and will be looking to continue that streak here. Michael McBride took this fight on short notice and subsequently missed weight, but he’s riding a four fight winning streak and a win here would be a massive one as Lentz is easily the biggest name and best fighter he’s taken on so far. Lentz is a massive favorite at -450 while the degenerate gamblers will be loving the +325 comeback on McBride.
Lightweight Bout: Nik Lentz (26-7-2 1 NC, 156 lbs.) vs. Michael McBride (8-1, 158 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: McBride has five inches of height and seven of reach on Lentz. Circling from Lentz to start, he lands a body kick. McBride lands a leg kick but eats a hard overhand right counter. Lentz lands another right, gets the clinch and tries to drop for a guillotine that McBride spins out of. McBride lands a body kick, they scramble again and Lentz hits a german suplex but McBride back up and Lentz lands a knee to the body then trips him down again. Lentz in the ride position now, McBride back up but Lentz is riding and wearing on him. McBride tries to roll under for a knee bar but Lentz easily spins out of danger and gets to half guard. Lentz lands a couple of short elbows. Lentz trying to set up an arm triangle, McBride to his knees and Lentz back into the ride position and landing lefts to the head. Lentz into the front head lock and thinks about dropping for a guillotine that McBride avoids but Lentz still on top in the ride position. Lentz working towards a crucifix position, McBride is holding one of Lentz’s ankles. Lentz gets that leg free and returns to the ride position. Lentz working punches to the head, McBride trying elbows from his knees. McBride tries to stand, he’s still holding a leg, but Lentz riding him and gets to half guard. Lentz is really in 3/4 mount and landing elbows. McBride gives up his back, Lentz has both hooks in but only ten seconds to work. Lentz lands a few more blows to close the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Lentz
ROUND TWO: Lentz lands an inside leg kick but misses the follow up right. McBride lands a body kick, Lentz swinging wide and using just arm punches as he moves forward. Lentz lands a body kick, McBride caught Lentz with something that I missed and McBride tries to get the back but Lentz back up quickly. McBride misses a couple of uppercuts but gets a low single leg takedown but Lentz is working for a guillotine from the bottom. Lentz uses that threat to get top position and is in half guard. McBride grabs a double wrist lock as he rolls to his knees and Lentz gets his back and goes for the choke. McBride rolls out of it and Lentz is on top in half guard again. Lentz to mount looking for an arm triangle choke, McBride rolls to his knees again and Lentz settles for the ride position. McBride back up, Lentz drags him down again. Lentz just smothering McBride and goes for the arm triangle choke again. McBride doing a good job of getting to a hip to release that pressure but he can’t get out from under Lentz. Lentz in half guard after a brief scramble and lands a couple of elbows. Lentz gets the back with both hooks in and lands some lefts while McBride is on his knees. More blows from Lentz, McBride is flattened out and Lentz just punches him in the head until the ref stops the fight.
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Nik Lentz via TKO, punches, at 4:17 of Round 2
Mic time for Lentz after that smothering performance. He says that McBride is super awkward and very different from the guy he was training for, dedicates the fight to God and his wife and unborn daughter. He says he couldn’t watch tape on McBride before the fight and he knew it would be awkward in the cage but is happy to win.
Here’s the finishing sequence from that fight.
— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) September 11, 2016
Caio Magalhaes is 4-2 in the UFC but is coming off of a loss to Josh Samman that was over a year ago. He’s trying to avoid the first losing streak of his professional career here and get a win over the biggest name he’s faced thus far. Brad Tavares had a five fight winning streak in the UFC at one point, but he’s just 1-3 in his last four fights and is coming off of a first round knockout loss to Robert Whittaker that took place over a year ago and he’s looking to avoid another two fight losing streak here. Tavares is the favorite at -200 while Magalhaes pays out at +160.
Middleweight Bout: Caio Magalhaes (9-2, 185.5 lbs.) vs. Brad Tavares (13-4, 186 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Tavares has an inch of reach on Magalhaes but they’re the same height. Touch of gloves to get things going. Magalhaes lands a left body kick then misses a leg kick. Tavares lands a good leg kick. Both men playing on the outside so far, mostly kicks or jabs that fall short. Magalhaes misses a couple of left kicks. Tavares misses a leg kick. Magalhaes checks a leg kick. Magalhaes grabs a single leg and spins Tavares down, Tavares back up but Magalhaes holds the leg and pushes him into the fence. Magalhaes tries to transition to a double leg, Tavares defends that and starts fighting for an underhook. Tavares able to push Magalhaes off of him and separate. Tavares lands a bit of a left, both guys still struggling with the range. They both miss rights and Magalhaes gets the clinch on the cage. Tavares able to spin him around though and work knees to the thigh. Magalhaes lands a knee to the body and spins Tavares against the fence. They trade some knees from the clinch but neither man can break free. More knees to the body from both men and the round ends with Magalhaes holding Tavares on the fence.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Magalhaes
ROUND TWO: They both land to the body in close to get the second round. Magalhaes lands a bit of a right after Tavares misses a knee. Magalhaes lands an inside leg kick. They both land jabs but miss follow up hooks. They clinch again, Magalhaes gets Tavares on the fence. They jockey for position a bit then Tavares gets double under hooks and gets Magalhaes on the cage. Tavares lands a couple of knees to the thigh then they break. Tavares lands a leg kick. Magalhaes lands a heavy left body kick. Magalhaes misses an overhand right badly. They both miss rights, Magalhaes circling around Tavares at this point. Magalhaes lands a hard leg kick. Tavares lands a bit of a counter right. They clinch on a takedown attempt from Magalhaes, Magalhaes has Tavares on the fence but Tavares has an arm around the head threatening with a guillotine choke. Magalhaes breaks that grip and spins Tavares down, Tavares back up immediately and works knees to the body to close the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Tavares, 19-19 overall
ROUND THREE: Touch of gloves for the last round. Magalhaes lands a left body kick. Tavares lands a bit of a left but misses the follow up right. Tavares misses a wheel kick. Tavares hits an inside leg kick. Tavares gets the clinch again and has Magalhaes on the fence. Magalhaes gets Tavares on the fence and they trade some knees while jockeying for position. Magalhaes jumps for a guillotine choke, Tavares standing over him and is able to yank his head out. Magalhaes back up immediately though and they resume trading knees to the thigh. They separate with a left from Tavares. Tavares misses a leg kick. Tavares lands a good right, just misses a flying knee as well. Tavares blocks a double leg attempt and lands a right. Tavares lands a bit of a leg kick. They trade in close, Tavares lands a left body kick. Tavares ducks a right and lands a good left hook. Magalhaes lands a bit of a right. Magalhaes lands a good left hook. Tavares lands a bit of a right then avoids a takedown attempt. They trade inside leg kicks but Tavares is starting to pull away from Magalhaes. Tavares lands a left body kick. Magalhaes lands a right and a left, Tavares lands a knee and they both land hooks in close as time expires.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Tavares, 29-28 Tavares overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Brad Tavares via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 30-27)
I can see Magalhaes taking the third, it was a competitive round and I can also see Tavares taking the first. No interview for the winner this time, which is fair as the fight wasn’t great.
Jessica Eye is still ranked in the top ten of the women’s bantamweight division despite being on a three fight losing streak with an overall UFC record of 1-4 with 1 No Contest. Eye is desperately trying to remain relevant and avoid a four fight losing streak that could cost her not only her spot in the top fifteen but with the promotion at large. Bethe Correia is also on a losing streak, though her’s is just two, but she needs to break that streak here if she wants to get back to another shot at the title. The odds are close but favor Eye at -155 to the +125 of Correia.
Women’s Bantamweight Bout: #11 Bethe Correia (9-2, 135 lbs.) vs. #10 Jessica Eye (11-5 1 NC, 135 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Eye has an inch of height and two of reach on Correia. Circling to start, Eye flashing the jab. Eye lands a right. Eye backing Correia towards the fence, they both miss rights. Correia lands a left hook. Correia slips a right, Eye lands a leg kick. Correia lands a leg kick. Another leg kick from Correia lands. Correia lands a right. They both land rights. Correia slips a right and lands a jab. Eye lands a bit of a right. Correia again slips a right and lands a counter left. Correia lands a body kick. They clinch after Eye misses some punches and Eye pulls free without incident. They clinch again and Correia gets Eye on the fence. Correia with some knees to the body. Correia lands a left hook as they separate. Eye has a left high kick blocked to close the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Correia
ROUND TWO: Eye circling to start the second round. Eye lands a leg kick. Another leg kick from Eye lands. Correia lands an inside leg kick. They both miss jabs, Correia lands a combination in close. They both land rights, Eye landed a little better. They both miss rights again. Correia lands a left hook in close after slipping a right. Eye slips an overhand right. Correia lands a leg kick and a jab. Another jab from Correia lands, Correia bleeding from the bridge of the nose. Eye cut a little under the right eye, Correia lands a leg kick. Eye lands a bit of an uppercut. Eye lands a right as they both flurry in close quarters. Correia lands a jab. Eye slips a right and lands a counter right of her own. They split rights again and Eye lands a couple of left body kicks. Eye lands a jab, Correia lands a jab and misses a takedown attempt. Both women are wearing the damage from this fight. Correia misses badly on an overhand right. Eye lands a bit of a right after blocking a takedown as the last blow of the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Eye, 19-19 overall
ROUND THREE: Correia comes out quickly this round, looking to close distance. Both women land jabs. They trade leg kicks. Eye flashing the jab this round, not landing just measuring. Correia lands an inside leg kick. They both land in close, Eye might have landed the better punches. Correia lands a hard right. Correia lands a jab. Eye jabs the body. Eye lands a bit of a right, eats an inside leg kick. They both miss rights then land follow up lefts. Correia lands a leg kick. Correia lands another overhand right. Lots of circling from Eye, Correia lands a left hook. Correia lands a bit of a right but eats a leg kick. They clinch again, Correia has Eye on the fence and starts throwing knees to the body and thigh. They trade more blows in the clinch to close the fight.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Correia, 29-28 Correia overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Bethe Correia via split decision (28-29, 29-28 x2)
Close fight, I can see arguments for either woman. Correia on the mic now as Cleveland loudly boos the decision as Eye fights out of Cleveland. She says she was looking forward to getting the win and says that while Eye is tough she feels the pitbull is back. Asked about how close the decision was she says the fight was hers and she feels she won and that Eye was running the entire time. The crowd boos again as the interview ends. Partisan crowds always make for a great atmosphere.
That’s it for the prelims, the time honored tradition of UFC President Dana White and Joe Rogan yelling into the camera to sell the PPV is honored, and we’ll be on PPV for the rest of the night.
Jessica Andrade is 2-2 in her last four fights but is 1-0 since dropping from bantamweight to strawweight, if she can extend that streak here she’ll be very close to a title shot in her new weight class. Joanne Calderwood is 3-1 in the UFC and on a two fight winning streak, she’s in a similar position to Andrade in that a win here could get her very close to a title shot in a relatively open strawweight division. The former bantamweight Andrade is favored here at -145 to the +115 for Calderwood.
Women’s Strawweight Bout: ##6 Jessica Andrade (14-5, 115.5 lbs.) vs. #7 Joanne Calderwood (116 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Calderwood has four inches of height and three and a half of reach on Andrade. Calderwood flashes a couple of left kicks, she’s keeping range. Andrade bulls forward and lands a couple of hooks to the body. Andrade gets the clinch and they trade body shots then Andrade lands an uppercut as they break. Andrade lands a right to the body and a left to the head. They clinch again, Andrade lands a knee to the body and switches to a single leg and gets Calderwood down. Calderwood is bleeding from a small cut around her right eye. Calderwood wall walks to her feet, Andrade hits a bit elevated slam and lands in side control. Correction, that cut is on the eye of Andrade not Calderwood. Andrade lands some blows, Calderwood fights to get back to guard and closes it up. Andrade passes to half guard and lands some more rights to the body and head. Calderwood staying active, Andrade passes to side control. Calderwood lands an elbow from the bottom, she’s aiming for that cut on Andrade’s left eye. Andrade with some body shots and hammer fists to the head. Andrade lands some more punches to the face of Calderwood. Calderwood trying to regain guard but Andrade is passing and punishing her. Calderwood to half guard and tries a sweep but Andrade blocks it. Calderwood to her knees, Andrade grabs a guillotine and drops to her guard for it. Calderwood tries to break free but that’s a tight choke and Calderwood taps out.
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jessica Andrade via Submission, guillotine choke, at 4:38 of Round 1
The First Round Finish Club thanks Mrs. Andrade for her work this evening. Mic time for Andrade now. She puts over her coaches and her team for putting her in this position and says that while she listens to them she gets wins like this. She puts over Calderwood as being tough and forcing her to adjust her game to be on the mat to close the interview, though I think she called out the champion and that wasn’t translated.
Urijah Faber has been a top competitor in both the featherweight and bantamweight divisions for many many years and while he’s just 2-2 in his last four fights those losses are to Frankie Edgar at featherweight and a title fight with bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz and he’s looking to rebound from that defeat here and prove that he’s not yet started to decline as a top fighter. Jimmie Rivera is on a massive eighteen fight winning streak and is 3-0 in the UFC, if he can unseat the former standard bearer for the lighter weight classes he’ll have the biggest win of his career and be set up for an even bigger fight next time. Rivera is actually favored to do just that at -170 while Faber’s odds stand at +145.
Bantamweight Bout: #2 Urijah Faber (33-9, 136 lbs.) vs. #12 Jimmie Rivera (19-1, 135.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Faber is two inches taller but Rivera has an inch and a half of reach on him, the biggest difference is age wher Faber is ten years older. Both men feinting the jab early while they circle. Rivera lands a hard straight right. Rivera blocks a takedown attempt and lands an uppercut. Rivera lands an inside leg kick. Rivera lands another right then a left to the body. Rivera seems content to bait out Faber and counter him. Rivera lands a leg kick then an inside leg kick. Rivera misses a couple of hooks, they clinch and break without incident. Rivera lands another counter right, that punch is working for him so far. Rivera lands a bit of a jab. Rivera just misses a left hook. Faber misses a jab. Faber misses a combination. Rivera lands a left hook. Faber lands a jab. Rivera avoids a high kick and lands a leg kick. Rivera lands another leg kick. They trade some lead hand punches to close the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Rivera
ROUND TWO: Rivera moving forward, avoids a high kick and lands a leg kick. Rivera lands a right to the body. Faber jabs the body. Faber with an inside leg kick to the groin of Rivera, we’ve got time for him to recover. Rivera is good to continue after a moment and we’re back to fighting. Rivera lands a stiff counter left. They both land lefts then Faber avoids a leg kick. Faber lands a left body kick. Rivera lands a jab. Rivera fades a kick and lands a couple of counter punches. Rivera lands a hard leg kick and Faber drops to a knee for a moment. Rivera lands another right. Rivera catches a kick and lands a right. Hard leg kick from Rivera, Faber switching to southpaw now, that left leg is damaged. Rivera with another leg kick. Rivera with another leg kick, Faber visibly limping a bit now. Rivera lands a straight right. In a phrase I don’t usually type out, Faber is getting out classed here. Rivera lands a right to the body and misses a left to the head. Rivera lands an inside leg kick then an outside leg kick. Another leg kick from Rivera. Rivera misses a spinning back fist but lands a left hook. Faber misses a jab to close the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Rivera, 20-18 Rivera overall
ROUND THREE: Faber was limping between rounds, comes out orthodox though. They both miss rights. Faber lands a left body kick. Rivera lands a leg kick. Faber slips a couple of hooks. Rivera lands another leg kick. Rivera with a right to the body and a left to the head. Rivera with another counter hook that lands. Hard leg kick from Rivera drops Faber to a knee momentarily. Inside leg kick from Rivera lands. We get time as Faber accidentally poked Rivera in the eye. Rivera gets some time to recover as the doc comes in to check on his eye. Rivera is good to continue and the doctor has no issues with that. Faber misses a kick and eats a couple of rights then another leg kick from Rivera. Rivera ducks a right and lands a right to the body. Faber lands a bit of a jab. Rivera lands another leg kick. Rivera lands a bit of a left high kick. Faber lands a right and avoids a counter. They clinch up, Rivera tosses Faber aside and they separate. Rivera lands a left body kick. Rivera lands a hard leg kick. Rivera lands a right and a left behind it. Faber lands a left, Rivera lands a left to the body. They both miss rights but Rivera lands a left. Rivera pushes forward with lefts to the body and head to close the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Rivera, 30-27 Rivera overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jimmie Rivera via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)
That’s the first time Faber has ever lost a three round fight, and the first losing streak of his professional career. Mic time for Rivera. He puts over Faber as a legend and can’t believe he won. He says Faber inspired him to get into fighting, he says he was feeling great in the third before the eye poke and he can’t see out of his right eye which was why he slowed down so much. He says he still can’t see out of that eye but he wanted to finish the fight and wants to be the best. He thanks his family and Cleveland. He says he was surprised by Faber’s strategy and apologizes for the third round after that eye poke. He says he knew Faber was hurt to the leg and doesn’t check leg kicks so he took advantage of that. He thanks the fans and his mom to close the interview.
Phil “CM Punk” Brooks is making his professional MMA debut here in the UFC, he’s better known for his long career in professional wrestling but that celebrity status afforded him the opportunity here to get his first ever professional win. Mickey Gall is 2-0 as a professional fighter and was placed in this spot by virtue of calling out Brooks on Dana White: Lookin’ for a Fight and being green enough to warrant a spot against a professional debutante. The odds heavily favor Gall at -450 with the comeback on Brooks being a hefty +350.
Welterweight Bout: Phil “CM Punk” Brooks (0-0, 170 lbs.) vs. Mickey Gall (2-0, 170.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: These two are the same height but Gall has an inch of reach on Brooks. Brooks is a full thirteen years older than Gall, the biggest difference statistically between them. Gall hits a quick double leg and gets Brooks down against the fence. Brooks has full guard but Gall postures up and lands several rights and a left elbow. Gall passes to side control easily. Gall passes to mount and lands several punches. Brooks gives up the back, Gall has both hooks in. Gall lands some rights and looks for the choke. Brooks defends but Gall flattens him out and lands more punches. Gall after the choke, he’s got the grip but Brooks breaks it. Gall still after the choke, gets it and Brooks has to tap out.
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Mickey Gall via Submission, rear naked choke, at 2:14 of Round 1
The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Gall for his work this evening. That was incredibly one sided. Mic time for Gall now. He says this has been a crazy experience but it’s been fun. He says we as a people hate too much and we’ll all be dead in 100 years so we need more love in the world. He says he was happy to take this experience and that he’s not a gimmick he isn’t going anywhere. He says he wants Sage Northcutt next and wants to punch the highlights out of his hair. He closes by saying he doesn’t want to be protected he wants war.
Brooks gets an interview despite the loss. He says in life you go big or go home and this was a big mountain to climb and while he didn’t get to the top he’s not going anywhere. He says he’ll be back, this was the most fun he’s ever had and the second best night of his life besides getting married. He says life is about reaching for your goals, that if anyone tells you you can’t do something to ignore them but believe in yourself and while that sounds funny or preachy coming from a guy who just got beat up this is the time of his life and he believes that.
Fabricio Werdum is the former UFC heavyweight champion and was supposed to fight Ben Rothwell here but Rothwell got injured and was replaced by Travis Browne. This is a rematch from a 2014 fight when Werdum won via unanimous decision. Werdum is coming off of a knockout loss that cost him the title and his chance to possibly claim the title of best heavyweight of all time, he needs to bounce back from that loss with a win here if he wants to get another crack at the title he used to hold. Travis Browne is 2-3 in his last five fights and coming off of a first round TKO loss to Cain Velasquez, if he can avenge that prior loss here and get a win over the former champion he’ll be as close to a title shot as he’s been since that first loss to Werdum while a loss likely ends his time at the top of the division. The odds makers favor Werdum at -225 to the +175 for Browne.
Heavyweight Bout: #6 Travis Browne (18-4-1, 241 lbs.) vs. #1 Fabricio Werdum (20-6-1, 239.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: Browne has three inches of height and two of reach on Werdum. Werdum lands a flying side kick to the face to start things off. Browne recovered but that was a heck of a visual. Werdum misses a low single leg attempt. Werdum pushes forward and lands a couple of punches. Werdum lands a right and a left body kick. Leg kick from Werdum. Werdum misses a cartwheel kick. Werdum lands an inside leg kick. Some confusion as Browne had an issue with his glove and Werdum hit him just before the ref called time. No, it’s not equipment related Browne injured a finger and the doctor is in to check on it and says they can continue. Werdum lands a left body kick then a right. Werdum with another body kick after failing to pull guard. Werdum lands a left and a right then gets the clinch on the fence. Werdum with some knees to the thigh and short rights to the head. Browne spins out of the clinch after eating more rights. Browne lands a left to the body. Werdum lands a wheel kick to the body. Browne lands a bit of a left. Browne lands a counter left. Werdum hits an inside leg kick, Browne lands a right. Werdum lands a body kick, Browne trips him but wont get into the ground game with him. Werdum lands a couple of leg kicks. Hard right drops Browne and Werdum is on top now. Werdum with rights from half guard. Browne to his knees and Werdum has both hooks in looking for the choke. Werdum goes for a neck crank, Browne defends. Werdum lands more punches while Browne turtles up. Browne survives until the end of the round.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Werdum, borderline 10-8
ROUND TWO: Circling to start the second round. Browne lands a left then eats a leg kick. Werdum has a wheel kick blocked then he slips and Browne makes him stand back up. Werdum lands a jab. Stiff one two combination from Werdum. Werdum lands an inside leg kick. Left body kick from Werdum lands. Werdum with a front kick to the body. Browne lands a front kick to the body but eats a right and a left body kick. Browne lands a left and Werdum lands a left body kick. Werdum lands a left to the body, Browne returns it. Werdum with another inside leg kick. Werdum lands a jab. Werdum with more body and leg kicks. Browne trying to get his jab working, Werdum avoids them but Browne lands a leg kick. Werdum tries another front clip kick that misses and the round ends.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Werdum, 20-18 Werdum overall
ROUND THREE: Werdum lands a left and a left body kick. Werdum lands a bit of a right. Werdum with a right to the body. Hard body kick from Werdum and a right hand to follow it up. Browne lands a leg kick. Werdum lands an inside leg kick then an outside leg kick. Stiff right from Werdum lands. Werdum tries for a single leg, Browne gets his leg free. Browne is biting on every feint from Werdum, his head is not in this fight. Werdum lands a right and a left. They trade inside leg kicks, Werdum lands another one then a combination of punches. Browne misses an uppercut. Browne lands a bit of a right then tries a left high kick that’s blocked. Browne lands a right. Werdum tries a leg scissor take down that misses. Werdum lands a right. Werdum lands a leg kick and a jab. Even commentary is burying Browne at this point. Werdum misses a flying knee. Werdum lands a left body kick as time expires.
SCORECARD: 10-9 Werdum, 30-27 Werdum overall
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Fabricio Werdum via unanimous decision (29-27, 29-28, 30-27)
They gave Browne the third or something? Disagree with that. Mic time for Werdum now. We had some kind of altercation after the fight, I missed what exactly happened there but it looks like cornermen got into it. Werdum gets asked about the first round issues, he says he think Browne broke his finger but was going to fight anyway and puts over Browne as good then notes that he’s beaten him twice now. He talks us through the timing of that first round issue, the crowd is unhappy with everything involved with this fight though. He talks about his friend who lost a son to a drunk driver and asks for people not to drink and drive, dedicates the win to the police in Rio who dealt with the Olympics, then closes by speaking Portuguese saying he’ll get his title back and speaks a little Croatian for those Croatian’s in attendance.
The only interesting thing from that fight was the flying side kick, so here it is if you’ve never seen a heavyweight try that technique.
— #UFC203 (@ufc) September 11, 2016
Alistair Overeem has been around the top of the heavyweight division for a long time now, but tonight he’s got a chance to capture the UFC heavyweight title. Overeem brings a four fight winning streak with him here, and if he can take that title he’ll cement himself as an all time top heavyweight and get the biggest prize of his MMA career. Stipe Miocic just took the UFC heavyweight title from Fabricio Werdum, he’s got a three fight winning streak going as well and will be looking to extend that here. Getting the title is difficult, but defending that title is even more difficult and Miocic needs a win here to begin carving out his legacy as the champion of the UFC’s heavyweight division. The odds moved to a pick ’em with -110 for both men.
UFC Heavyweight Title Bout: (c) Stipe Miocic (15-2, 246 lbs.) vs. #3 Alistair Overeem (41-14 1 NC, 248.5 lbs.)
ROUND ONE: These two have identical height and reach. Overeem will switch his stance frequently, and they touch gloves to get things going. Overeem circling, Miocic intelligently moving forward. Miocic misses a couple of lefts and a right. Overeem lands a hard left body kick from the southpaw stance. Overeem ducks a high kick from Miocic, lands a right that drops Miocic and grabs a guillotine choke. Moicic escapes and they separate on the feet. Overeem back to circling, looking to snipe from distance. Miocic lands a right and left in close, Overeem lands a left body kick and a right. These two are starting to engage. Miocic lands a right. Another right from Miocic lands. Overeem against the fence now, Miocic lands a left to the body. They clinch briefly and Overeem lands a knee to the body. Overeem with another body kick and a left that hurts Miocic. Overeem misses a wild left. Miocic lands a left hook. Overeem lands a left then a front kick to the body. Miocic lands a body kick. Miocic lands a quick combination in close. Overeem lands a side kick to the thigh but Miocic catches it and takes him down landing in his guard. Miocic landing blows, a few rights to the jaw put Overeem out cold!
OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER and STILL UFC Heavyweight Champion – Stipe Miocic via KO, punches, at 4:27 of Round 1
The First Round Finish Club thank Mr. Miocic for his work this evening. Miocic on the mic, got a huge reaction as he played with the crowd before the interview starts. He says Overeem kicked harder than he thought he would, he says he didn’t get hurt but did get knocked down by that punch. He says he didn’t think Overeem wanted to engage with him in close, which makes sense as Overeem is one of the best, but he has no plans on giving up the belt any time soon. He talks us through the finish, says his mindset was in shutting Overeem’s lights out and closes by engaging the crowd again.
Overeem on the mic now. He puts over Miocic then says he felt Miocic tap on that guillotine choke but the ref didn’t see it. Well that wont cause controversy at all. He says he’s bummed by the result but will be back on the drawing board. We get a replay of the guillotine sequence, I don’t see a phantom tap but Overeem insists he felt it. We replay it again, and I can see where he might have felt a tap on his wrist but it clearly wasn’t a submission. He thanks Cleveland for the hospitality and says he only has great things to say about the city to close the interview.
That will wrap up UFC 203, thank you to everyone for stopping by and following along. This event will be reviewed this Sunday at 8pm eastern standard time on the 411 Ground and Pound radio show, which will also preview UFC Fight Night 94: Poirier vs. Johnson. The show takes live callers at (323) 657-0901 if you’ve got a question or comment you’d like addressed on the air. I’ll be back next week for Fight Night 94, I hope you’ll come back. Until then everyone thanks again for reading and keep checking 411mania for all of your pop culture needs.