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411’s UFC Fight Night 118 Report 10.21.17

October 21, 2017 | Posted by Robert Winfree
Darren Till UFC Fight Night 118

Hello everyone and welcome to 411mania’s LIVE coverage of UFC Fight Night 118. I’m Robert Winfree and I’ll be your host for this, relaying all of the action to you just as I see it. This card has been a little weird, there were several fighters that were replaced over the last three weeks and then yesterday they canceled a heavyweight bout between Anthony Hamilton and Adam Wieczorek due to safety concerns after the Lechia Gdansk ultras – extreme and occasionally violent supports of the local football/soccer team – showed up before the weigh ins and demonstrated against Wieczorek who supports a rival team. That honestly might be a first for the UFC, though don’t hold me to that.

Still the main event should be solid as Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone tries to halt a two fight losing streak against the brash and undefeated Darren Till. Also trying to stop a two fight losing streak is Karolina Kowalkiewicz as she takes on the debuting Jodie Esquibel. Beyond that, well Sam Alvey is here but missed weight and for some reason Artem Lobov still has a job with the UFC and is fighting Andre Fili. This is the second time the UFC has held an event in Poland, the previous one was back in August of 2015 when Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic stopped Gabriel Gonzaga in their rematch. Fight Night 118 comes to us from the Ergo Arena in Gdansk, Poland with the duo of John Gooden and Dan Hardy on commentary.

In the regularly scheduled update regarding the rule set being used, the UFC is basically self regulating here and have adopted the new rules so you need both palms or fists on the mat (or a knee) to be considered downed, extending fingers towards your opponent is a foul regardless of contact being made, and scoring language is a little clearer.

Felipe Arantes is moving back up to featherweight after going 2-1 at bantamweight. He hasn’t fought in just about a year and is trying to reestablish himself at featherweight going forward. Josh Emmett is coming off of his first loss, he’s trying to bounce back from that by dropping to featherweight here and assaulting that division. The odds are with Emmett at -315 to +245 for Arantes.

Featherweight Bout: Felipe Arantes (18-8-1 2 NC, 145 lbs.) vs. Josh Emmett (11-0, 145 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Arantes is an inch and a half taller and has three inches of reach on Emmett. They touch gloves to get us going. Both men feinting a little, Emmett circling around the perimeter looking for an angle. Arantes lands a spinning back kick then a left. Emmett lands a right hook that drops Arantes for a second, Arantes on his back and Emmett is debating going into his guard. Emmett landing leg kicks then makes Arantes regain his feet. Emmett with that right hook to the temple again, Arantes is on his back again and this time Emmett follows into half guard. Arantes looks for guard, Emmett stands and makes Arantes get back up. Emmett pushes forward and starts swinging hooks but Arantes defends and Emmett resets. Emmett with another right, I can’t believe Arantes hasn’t adjusted his defense yet, and Arantes is on his back again. Arantes fights back up but still can’t block that right. They brawl a bit, both men get hit and Emmett backs away from the brawl. Emmett with another clubbing right, Arantes is down again but he’s mostly aware he’s just getting clubbed rather than really hurt thus far. Emmett into the guard and is trying to finish, he can’t and Emmett makes him stand back up again. Arantes misses a jumping knee, he doesn’t seem to be hurt but those punches. Emmett is breathing a little heavy, he misses a few punches. Arantes lands a bit of a left. Arantes lands a hopping knee, tries a double leg then tries to pull guard but Emmett avoids both and kills time with leg kicks before passing into crosswise half guard. Arantes tries to set up an inside heel hook as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Emmett

ROUND TWO: They touch gloves again. Arantes lands a front kick to the body and misses a head kick. Emmett misses a lunging right hook. Arantes lands a jab and avoids a counter. Emmett tries a double leg, Arantes blocks it and avoids a right. Arantes blocks a high kick and lands a jab. Emmett jabs the body. Arantes avoids a couple of hooks, Emmett is falling short on his offense now. Arantes is starring to land his jab, Emmett lands a leg kick. Arantes lands a couple of rights, Emmett is really becoming predictable. Arantes blocks a couple of punches, lands a bit of a knee. Arantes lands another knee, Emmett is ducking his head into those shots. Arantes lands a jab. Left hook from Arantes, Emmett still swinging a little wild. Glancing one two lands for Arantes. Emmett tries a double leg against the fence, gets it and tries some punches to steal the round as time expires.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Arantes, 19-18 Emmett overall

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the third round. Emmett comes forward and clips Arantes with a right. Arantes lands a hopping left knee then a right to follow up. Arantes coming forward now, Emmet lands a right to the body but Arantes lands a jab. Emmett comes forward swinging hooks that are mostly blocked. Arantes lands a leg kick. Emmett lands a leg kick. Emmett pushing forward, Arantes doesn’t seem to have enough offense to keep him off. Emmett lands a body kick and a leg kick. Emmett lands a counter right. Emmett misses a couple of rights, lands a left to the body. They get close, both miss hooks then separate. Emmett lands a right and eats a bit of a counter knee. Arantes lands a bit of a jab. Arantes lands a front kick to the body then a leg kick but it’s too little too late. They brawl a little for the last five seconds.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Emmett, 29-27 Emmett overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Josh Emmett via unanimous decision (30-25, 30-26 x2)

I can see a 10-7 first round, not sure he stole the second with that late flurry but hardly criminal. Emmett on the mic, he dedicates the fight to Noah Bentley who he calls the real fighter. He puts over Arantes for being tough and continuing to come after him. Asked what’s next he says he really likes featherweight then asks to be on the upcoming Fresno card because it’s his backyard and anyone can come get him. He thanks Poland and plans on doing some sight seeing with his wife for their anniversary.

Lina Lansberg is coming off of her first UFC win when she defeated Lucie Pudilova, she’s trying to get her first UFC winning streak up and running. Aspen Ladd is making her UFC debut here, she’s undefeated though with all of those fights coming in Invicta and trying to make a good first impression to UFC fans. Ladd is the favorite here at -265 to +215 on Lansberg.

Women’s Bantamweight Bout: Aspen Ladd (5-0, 136 lbs.) vs. Lina Lansberg (7-2, 134 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Lansbberg is thirteen years older and an inch taller while Ladd has half an inch of reach on her. Ladd coming forward jabbing, Lansberg lands a right and they clinch up. Ladd has Lansberg on the fence and they’re jockeying for position. Ladd lands a few knees to the body, Lansberg lands one of her own. Lansberg spins Ladd and lands a couple of knees to the thigh. Knees to the body from Lansberg. Ladd trying to spin free but Lansberg has good head position to keep her pinned. Ladd lands a knee to the body but she needs to fight for head position if she wants to get free. Ladd is able to spin Lansberg and they resume trading knees to the body. Lansberg turns Ladd, lands a left elbow. More knees to the body from Lansberg. More knees from Lansberg, and the ref separates them. Ladd coming forward and lands a body kick. They trade jabs then clinch again, both women land knees before they get to the fence. Lansberg lands an elbow, Ladd lands a left as they break. Lansberg pushes back into the clinch as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Lansberg

ROUND TWO: Ladd back to jabbing and walking forward, Lansberg trying to circle. They trade some jabs, Ladd ducks a right and hits a double leg then passes to half guard. Ladd trying to set up a pass into mount, she’s landing a few short lefts as well. Ladd gets to full mount and lands a left elbow. Lansberg gets quarter guard back, Ladd lands an elbow but Lansberg forces half guard. Ladd into mount with punches again and is looking to flurry, she unloads until the ref stops the action. Lansberg is a little miffed by the stoppage, might have been a touch early but better early than late.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Aspen Ladd via TKO, punches, at 2:33 of Round 2

Nice debut for Ladd, who’s still very young but has some upside. Ladd on the mic, says she feels good and thanks the crowd for their support. She says the first round was a learning experience and her coaches reminded her of the game plan between rounds, she notes that she felt good in the second while she thought Lansberg was gassing. She says she’s ready for anyone next.

Here’s the finish, a little early but I have no real issue with it as Lansberg didn’t seem to be really improving her position. Judge for yourself, solid top game from Ladd.

Salim Touahri is making his UFC debut and brings a five fight winning streak with him. Touahri took this fight on short notice when Jim Wallhead pulled out of this fight and he’s trying to make the most of the opportunity. Warlley Alves had a good UFC run going at one point, he’s the only man thus far to beat Colby Covington, but he’s hit a two fight losing streak and hasn’t fought since November of last year. Alves needs a win to revitalize his career and avoid the dreaded three fight losing streak.

Welterweight Bout: Warlley Alves (10-2, 171 lbs.) vs. Salim Touahri (10-1, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: And for some reason my notation for this round died. There was a lot of clinch work, Alves hit a couple of takedowns, Touahri gassed a bit towards the end of the round. Apologies for this one.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Alves

ROUND TWO: Touahri trying to stay mobile, he’s jabbing at the body. Alves lands a leg kick. Left body kick from Alves then a leg kick. Touahri pushing forward now, avoids a wild right. Alves lands a right, Touahri lands a counter left and they clinch up. Touahri has Alves on the fence, Alves is cut under the right eyebrow from that left. They separate without incident. Touahri coming forward again, he lands a glancing right uppercut but eats a counter left body kick. Touahri lands a bit of a counter left. Alves lands a heavy spinning back kick to the body. Touahri lands a stiff jab. Alves lands a couple of inside leg kicks. They clinch again, Alves has Touahri on the fence and the round ends in that position.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Touahri but could go either way, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves and hug briefly to start the third. Touahri coming forward, Alves working the lead leg kicking game to keep Touahri at bay. Alves blocks an overhand right. Alves tries to counter a jab to the body with a body kick but this one hits the groin of Touahri so we’ve got time for him to recover. Touahri sitting on the fence and breathing pretty hard. Touahri back up to his feet, that’s a good sign. He’s good to continue and they touch gloves on the restart. Alves with a lunging body kick and Touahri lands a bit of a left. Alves lands a leg kick. The crowd gets loud, commentary informs me that Conor McGregor has just entered the arena prompting this response. Touahri lands a left hook then a right to the body. Alves lands a bit of a left head kick. Alves pushes for a single leg against the fence, switches to a double leg and gets Touahri down. Touahri looking to wall walk, Alves into the ride position as he does so. They end the round with a failed trip attempt from Alves.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Alves, 29-28 Alves overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Warrley Alves via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28 x2)

That’s about right, no interview for Alves though.

Artem Lobov is coming off of a loss to Cub Swanson, his overall UFC record is 2-3, and he’s trying to avoid his second UFC losing streak. Lobov is in a somewhat precarious position, his friendship with Conor McGregor keeps him relatively safe but if his professional record dips to the .500 mark he’s in danger of becoming known as just a McGregor tag along. Andre Fili has been trading wins and losses while going 4-4 in the UFC, if he wants to move up in the rankings rather than continue to tread water he needs to win here and avoid the first losing streak of his professional career. Fili is the slight favorite at -185 to +150 on Lobov.

Featherweight Bout: Andre Fili (16-5, 145 lbs.) vs. Artem Lobov (14-13-1 1 NC, 145 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Fili is two inches taller and has a whopping nine inches of reach on Lobov. Lobov opens southpaw but will likely switch as the fight goes on. They trade punches quickly, Fili also working body kicks. Fili lands another body kick. Lobov walking forward, avoids a jab and lands a left. Fili lands an inside leg kick. Lobov might already be bleeding over the left eye. Fili circling, trying to work the jab. Fili lands a jab. Lobov lands a left to the body after taking a leg kick. Fili lands a bit of an overhand right. They trade body kicks, Lobov is bleeding from the nose as well now. Fili lands a stiff jab. Another jab from Fili lands. Lobov lands a body kick. Some leg kicks go back and forth then they both miss some punches. Lobov misses a right, Fili lands an inside leg kick. Lobov lands a body kick then a straight left. Fili responds with a combination. Lobov walking forward still, Fili lands a body kick then a left hook. Lobov lands a leg kick, Fili lands a head kick that FLOORS Lobov. Fili on top landing punches, Lobov able to force back to his feet and separate. Lobov blocks a head kick as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Fili, arguable 10-8 after that head kick

ROUND TWO: Fili opens up with some lefts, he’s circling and lands a body kick. They trade body kicks, Lobov lands a leg kick as well. Fili lands an inside leg kick then an outside one. Fili lands a couple of jabs and takes a leg kick. Lobov goes orthodox, they both miss rights then Fili lands a left hook. Lobov starting to switch his stance now, Fili lands a leg kick. Fili lands a right after slipping jab. Fili lands a body kick, Lobov lands a bit of a right. Lobov lands a bit of a left to the body, Fili lands a straight right. Lobov lands a glancing uppercut. Fili working his jab again, tries a double leg that Lobov stuffs. Fili lands a jab, circles then lands a right. Lobov badly misses a spinning attack. Lobov lands a body kick. Lobov lands a right. They trade lefts, Lobov landed better. Fili hits a double leg into the guard of Lobov. We get a quick time as the ref orders McGregor back to his seat as he’s become a nuisance at cage side. Fili lands a couple of short blows before Lobov forces back to his feet and they clinch. Lobov tries a takedown, nothing doing and they break. Lobov misses a left as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Fili but closer, 20-18 Fili overall

ROUND THREE: Fili misses a jab and they trade leg kicks. Fili lands a jab while circling. Lobov lands a leg kick. Fili lands a left hook. Fili hits a double leg off of a leg kick and lands in the guard of Lobov. Fili passes to half guard. Fili with some body shots, Lobov rolls for a leg lock, nothing doing but they regain their feet. They trade punches and Fili hits another double leg into guard. Fili after an arm triangle from guard, I wonder if his squeeze is enough to finish it from this position. Lobov gets his arm free. Fili avoids a leg lock and regains his feet. Fili quickly hits another double leg into guard, Lobov is getting frustrated at his own inadequacy, I mean at Fili’s tactics. Fili to half guard, lands a couple of rights. Lobov after the leg again, Fili free and they’re standing. Fili lands a jab, gets a body lock and takes Lobov down again this time into half guard. Lobov able to regain guard but Fili hits him a few times. Lobov postures for the crowd, Fili lands an elbow. Fili stands, lands a couple of leg kicks, lets Lobov up and the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Fili, 30-27 Fili overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Andre Fili via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

About as expected. Fili on the mic now. He jokes that the fight was charged because McGregor was cage side in a ten thousand dollar suit talking to him, he puts McGregor over and says that a rising tide raises all ships. He says he worked really hard to get here and says the whole fight camp he saw news of shootings, bombings, natural disasters and such. He says we need to treat each other like human beings, that the only race that matters is the human race and we need to care about each other and the planet more.

Here’s the head kick from the first, Lobov’s defense is severely lacking.

Sam Alvey missed weight for this bout, but he’s been on a good run going 5-1 in his last six bouts and is coming off of a win over former light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans. Alvey is trying to move up the ranks and if he loses in addition to missing weight he’ll fall from favor despite taking this fight on short notice. Ramazan Emeev brings a four fight winning streak into his UFC debut, he’s the most recent M-1 middleweight champion, and a win over a relatively well known fighter like Alvey would be a big way to announce his arrival in the UFC. The odds are with the newcomer Emeev at -165 to +135 for Alvey.

Middleweight Bout: Sam Alvey (31-9 1 NC, 189 lbs.) vs. Ramazan Emeev (15-3, 185 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Alvey is three inches taller but Emeev has half an inch of reach on him. Alvey fighting southpaw. Emeev coming forward early, lands an inside leg kick. Emeev lands a right and clinches, he’s after a takedown but Alvey posts and stays upright. Emeev lands a right elbow as they separate. Alvey checks an inside leg kick. Emeev lands a jab. Alvey avoids a right and they clinch again, Alvey lands a knee to the head as Emeev is backing up. Emeev lands a right and can’t quite secure a clinch. Alvey lands a low leg kick. EMeev lands a right then a left. Emeev lands a right and gets the clinch again. Alvey lands a right elbow. Emeev after a single leg, goes very low to get it and has Alvey on his seat. Emeev lands a left as Alvey gets up and lands a combination to follow up. Alvey wobbled, Emeev has a head kick blocked. Emeev lands a right, Alvey is backing up as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Emeev

ROUND TWO: Emeev stalking forward again. Alvey lands a bit of a leg kick. They clinch up, Emeev after that low single again, Alvey avoids it and blocks a left as he regains his feet and separates. Emeev lands a right. Emeev lands a combination, Alvey seems really stalled out. Alvey has a combination blocked and avoids an overhand right. Lots of staring at the moment. Emeev lands a combination and Alvey blocks a takedown attempt. We get time and the ref warns them both for timidity then restarts them. Emeev coming forward now, lands a bit of a right and tries a double leg against the fence. Emeev switches to a single leg, Alvey holding a guillotine attempt to dissuade him and he’s able to spin free. They trade some leg kicks, Emeev still moving forward. Emeev lands a body kick, they clinch and trade some short blows as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Emeev, 20-18 Emeev overall

ROUND THREE: Alvey opens with a leg kick. Emeev lands a jab, tries a double leg that Alvey blocks against the fence. They’re clinched again, Alvey fighting for a Thai clinch and they trade then Emeev tries a single leg. Alvey is defending again, Emeev lands to the body. They separate without incident. Emeev lands a right to the body. Emeev fakes a right, tries a single leg again but can’t finish it. They separate without incident. Emeev is in much better shape and is lighter on his feet. Emeev punches into the clinch again, Alvey circles free. Emeev lands a right in close. Alvey lands a right uppercut. Emeev lands an inside leg kick. Emeev after a double leg, settles for the clinch. Alvey lands a knee as they break. Emeev lands a left hook. Alvey lands a right, Emeev gets the back standing and looks to sweep the legs. Alvey turns into him, they trade some punches and elbows as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Emeev, 30-27 Emeev overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Ramazan Emeev via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

Underwhelming from both guys, unfortunately between the short notice and style matchup we just got a snooze fest. Hopefully Emeev shows more his next time out.

Damian Stasiak is 2-2 in the UFC and is coming off of a loss to Pedro Munhoz. Stasiak is trying to get back on the winning side of things in his home country. Brian Kelleher is coming off of a loss that snapped a seven fight winning streak, he shocked a lot of people with his submission win over Iuri Alcantara and needs to win here to avoid a UFC losing streak and potentially being labeled a one hit wonder. The odds closed as a pick ’em, -115 for each man.

Bantamweight Bout: Brian Kelleher (17-8, 135 lbs.) vs. Damian Stasiak (10-4, 134 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Kelleher is an inch taller but Stasiak has four inches of reach on him. They touch gloves to get going. They trade some leg kicks, Stasiak landed better. Stasiak lands a bit of a left uppercut. Stasiak lands a bit of a right. Kelleher pressing forward, Stasiak lands a spinning back kick to the body, Kelleher is hurt from that. Stasiak pushes forward and lands a few punches then tries a single leg. Kelleher defends against the fence and they separate. Stasiak lands a low leg kick. They both miss uppercuts and Kelleher gets the clinch. Kelleher lands a bit of an elbow. Kelleher lands an elbow as they break, Stasiak lands a bit of a back kick to the body again. Kelleher misses a head kick, Stasiak has a spinning back fist blocked. Stasiak with the spinning back kick to the body again. Kelleher lands an elbow and avoids a single leg attempt. Stasiak gets a single leg this time, Kelleher sets for a guillotine and rolls to a hip with it. Stasiak defending so far but Kelleher transitions to mount, Stasiak to half guard quickly. Kelleher lands a couple of rights. Stasiak has butterfly hooks now, he’s keeping Kelleher honest and Kelleher stands then lands a couple of leg kicks. Kelleher lands an elbow after going back to the mat. They trade a few punches on the mat, Kelleher stands and lands a leg kick to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Kelleher but could see an argument for Stasiak

ROUND TWO: Kelleher coming forward quickly, Stasiak lands a leg kick then a front kick to the body. Kelleher lands a leg kick and they trade some punches. Leg kicks go back and forth, Stasiak landing to the calf. Stasiak hits a double leg after they trade, Kelleher looking to wall walk quickly. Stasiak holding the legs, he’s bleeding from the bridge of the nose I think. Kelleher looking to wall walk, he’s on a knee and back up and they separate. Kelleher lands a right, eats a spinning back kick to the body. Stasiak misses a wheel kick. Stasiak’s nose is definitely a mess. They trade lefts, these two clearly came to fight. Stasiak grabs a single leg, Kelleher lands a hopping knee while defending and he uses a front head lock to snap Stasiak down then spin to the ride position. Stasiak tries to take the back, no hooks though and Stasiak spins free and regains his feet. Stasiak lands a right to the body. Kelleher misses a spinning back fist and they clinch, Kelleher gets free and lands a couple of knees. Kelleher’s pace and pressure and wearing on Stasiak. Stasiak catches a body kick, tries a single leg but Kelleher blocks with a guillotine attempt and rolls to top position, he’s trying to take the back now. One hook in for Kelleher, Stasiak on a knee looking to regain his feet. Kelleher lands a right as they break, they trade again. Kelleher lands another knee in close as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Kelleher, 20-18 Kelleher overall

ROUND THREE: Stasiak opens up with a low leg kick. Kelleher coming forward and landing, they trade leg kicks and Kelleher lands a jab then sprawls on a single leg attempt. Kelleher lands a right, Stasiak lands a couple of counters. Kelleher lands a knee to the head, Stasiak after a single leg but Kelleher is able to scramble to half guard on top. Kelleher reaches for a guillotine in transition, loses position, Stasiak has the back standing now. Kelleher turns into him and they separate. Stasiak misses a spinning back fist. They trade front kicks to the body, clinch and Kelleher gets a trip takedown. Stasiak to the fence, he’s on a knee and Kelleher has a rear waist lock as they stand. Stasiak spins free and lands a couple of punches. Stasiak with another back kick to the body and they trade punches. More punches go back and forth, Kelleher just has more energy at this point. Kelleher lands a right then a left that drops STasiak. Stasiak after a single leg, Kelleher standing and landing rights until the ref has seen enough.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Brian Kelleher via TKO, punches, at 3:39 of Round 3

The Final Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Kelleher for his work this morning. Kelleher on the mic now, he says he felt the body kicks but he wouldn’t be slowed down by it. He says he wants to stay in the UFC for a long time and he had to come back after the loss and wants a top fifteen guy after this. He says he hit Stasiak with some hard knees but Stasiak wouldn’t go away and he gets the crowd to cheer for Stasiak again.

Here’s the finish, this is why you should always keep your hands up when separating. Kelleher was throwing that right frequently and fatigue got Stasiak to drop his hands trying to get free and the follow up left was on the money.

Marcin Held is in a really bad spot, he’s 0-3 in the UFC officially (Clucky influenced his loss to Joe Lauzon), and is coming off of a brutal knockout loss. Held is being given a final chance to get his first UFC win, this time in his home country and one has to imagine if he goes 0-4 he’ll find his way back to Bellator sooner rather than later. Nasrat Haqparast is making his UFC debut on short notice on the back of an eight fight winning streak and on short notice. He has the chance to get the biggest win of his career while making a memorable first impression. The odds are with Held at -400 while Haqparast’s comeback is at +300

Lightweight Bout: Nasrat Haqparast (8-1, 155 lbs.) vs. Marcin Held (22-7, 156 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Haqqparast is an inch taller and has half an inch of reach on Held. Haqparast fighting southpaw. They touch gloves and start trading jabs. Haqparast slips on a high kick but regains his feet quickly. Held circling, Haqparast pressuring forward. Haqparast lands a straight left. They trade some lefts, Held is slipping the majority of the power of Haqparast. Haqparast lands a superman punch, Held lands a right hook. Haqparast lands a left to the body. Held lands a right uppercut in close. They trade some inside leg kicks. Haqparast lands a counter left, Held is wobbled. Held tries a takedown, Haqparast defending against the fence. Held really after this takedown but Haqparast is defending so far. Haqparast just wont go down, Held is trying everything and finally gets the hands together and turns the corner to finish a double leg into the guard of Haqparast. Held trying to sneak offense through but he’s struggling with the posture control of Haqparast. Held lands a couple of really short elbows as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Haqparast

ROUND TWO: Haqparast has some swelling around his right eye, one of those jabs from the first did it. Haqparast misses a left. They trade straight punches. Haqparast lands an inside leg kick. Haqparast lands a left that drops Held, he makes Held stand back up after seeing that he was trying to get guard. We’ve got time as some string came loose on Haqparast’s shorts. Held tries a double leg, Haqparast blocks it and lands a couple of lefts. Held misses a wheel kick and can’t hit a double leg. Haqparast lands a left to the body, he’s pressuring forward and gets the clinch. Held tries to jump guard, Haqparast pulls free and makes him engage on the feet. Held still looks a little off balance, Haqparast into the clinch and lands to the body before separating. Held tries a double leg, can’t get it and Haqparast hits a throw but Held dives on a leg lock attempt. Haqparast defends, Held tries to get the back and winds up on top in north-south position. Held to side control now. Held into half guard, might be trying to stall out so he can regain his air and win the round. Haqparast tries to scramble, and is able to get full guard back. Held lands a hammer fist. Haqparast tries to kick Held off but Held dives back into guard. Held can’t get much going, he lands a bit of an elbow as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Haqparast as I don’t think Held overcame getting dropped, 20-18 Haqparast overall

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves to start the third. Haqparast lands a left, Held quickly hits a double leg into the guard. Held uses a can opener to then drop back for a leg but Haqparast defends and Held hustles back to top position. Another leg lock attempt from Held, Haqparast gets his leg free but Held scrambles to top position again. Held passes to half guard and tries to set up a kimura. Haqparast gets his arm free, Held passes to side control then looks to mount but Haqparast gets half guard. Held scrambles for an armbar as Haqparast tries to escape. Haqparast gets the arm free and regains his feet. Held lands a left, and eats a left then jumps guard from a clinch position. Haqparast lands a couple of lefts then stands free. Held is really wobbled, his legs are nearly shot. Haqparast sprawls on a takedown attempt. Haqparast lands an uppercut. Hopping knee from Haqparast and they clinch again. They separate without incident. Haqparast lands a left then a right, Held tries to grapple but Haqparast avoids it. They brawl a little as time runs down.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Held, 29-28 Haqparast overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Marci Held via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

OK, I’m calling BS on 30-27 as Haqparast at least got the first. Clucky must have felt bad about the Lauzon fight. Held says there are many more wins to come, he says Haqparast was better than he expected him to be but he wasn’t going to stop. He wanted the submission but is just happy to get the win, he thanks the crowd and expresses gratitude to be fighting in Poland again.

That’s it for preliminary action, though we’ll still be on Fight Pass for the main card.

Oskar Piechota has never lost professionally and is making his UFC debut here, and I’m sure you all know that you only get one chance to make a first impression. Jonathan Wilson is on a two fight losing streak, he’s hoping a drop to middleweight will breathe some life into his career and that he can start making good on the potential others have seen in him. The odds are with the newcomer Piechota at -205 against +165 for Wilson.

Middleweight Bout: Oskar Piechota (9-0-1, 185 lbs.) vs. Jonathan Wilson (7-2, 186 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Wilson is two inches taller while Piechota has an inch of reach on him. Wilson fighting southpaw, and they touch gloves to get us going. Piechota circling early, Wilson probing with a jab. Wilson lands a body kick. Piechota misses a couple of kicks. Wilson has a high kick blocked. Piechota lands a body kick, both guys doing a lot of probing and feeling out thus far. Piechota lands a bit of a left hook. Wilson blocks a head kick. They clinch up, Piechota gets a trip, gets the back and gets the backpack position with a body triangle as Wilson is standing. Piechota after the choke, he’s around the chin but not under it yet. Piechota lands some rights softening up Wilson for the choke attempt. Piechota drags Wilson to the mat and is after the choke again. Wilson maintaining two on one hand position. Piechota gives up the triangle to induce some movement and gets the hooks back when Wilson does move. Piechota after the choke again, he’s palm to palm but can’t really get the choke before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Piechota, not sure Wilson won any of that round

ROUND TWO: Piechota circling to start, Wilson showing the jab. Wilson slips on a leg kick and just blocks a high kick as he regains his feet. Piechota lands a front kick to the body. Piechota lands a right to the body and avoids some counters. Wilson lands a bit of a right and eats a counter right. Piechota lands a bit of a right. Piechota lands a jab. Straight right from Piechota, Wilson tries to throw back but Piechota isn’t engaging in a brawl. Wilson lands a leg kick. Piechota with another right. Wilson slips on a head kick, Piechota can’t quite capitalize though. Wilson eats a right to the body and lands a counter right. Piechota drops Wilson with a right with about three seconds left and he can’t finish before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Piechota, 20-17 Piechota overall

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the last round. Piechota lands a bit of a right. Piechota lands a bit of a left hook. Piechota lands a right to the body and a glancing left uppercut. Wilson blocks a high kick. Piechota lands a left uppercut. Wilson lands a counter right after taking a body shot. Piechota tries a double leg, drives to the cage and gets a trip takedown. Piechota into mount quickly, Wilson on a hip but Piechota gets his back and is riding him from back mount to full mount. Piechota lands some body shots and postures up again. Piechota lands some shots to the head while moving from mount to back mount. Piechota after an arm triangle choke, he can’t control the chest of Wilson though and Wilson gets to a hip and Piechota is back to mounting him. Short elbows from Piechota who’s after an armbar now. Wilson pressuring forward but Piechota gets a triangle choke, rolls to the armbar but Wilson hangs on for the final two seconds.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Piechota, 30-25 Piechota overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Oskar Piechota via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

Impressive grappling from Piechota. Kind of surprised by the lack of 10-8’s given how ineffective Wilson’s offense was. Piechota on the mic now, he says hi to everybody and that fighting for his home is awesome. He says he gassed a little going for the finish in the first round but felt pretty good. He says Wilson’s defense on the mat surprised him a bit but he controlled him and felt good. He promises to prepare better for next time. He speaks some Polish for the crowd, thanking them for their support.

Jan Blachowicz has gone just 2-4 in the UFC and is on his second two fight losing streak, Blachowicz needs to get back on the winning side of things because even the depleted light heavyweight division doesn’t need someone with both a two and three fight losing streak in his last six fights. Devin Clark is on a two fight winning streak and is undefeated at light heavyweight, he’s trying to earn a shot at a higher level of competition with a win here. The odds are with Clark at -165 to +135 for Blachowicz.

Light Heavyweight Bout: Jan Blachowicz (19-7, 204 lbs.) vs. Devin Clark (8-1, 205 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Blachowicz is two inches taller and has three inches of reach on Clark. They touch gloves to get us started. Clark tries a side kick to the face, misses and then goes for a double leg that stalls on the fence. Blachowicz spins Clark. Blachowicz lands a few body shots and they trade knees. The ref separates them and we’re at distance. Blachowicz lands a right uppercut after Clark misses some punches. Clark lands a leg kick. Left body kick from Blachowicz. Clark lands a leg kick. Clark bulling forward but he’s not finding the target too often. Blachowciz lands another left body kick. Blachowicz lands a left to the body and they clinch up. Blachowicz has Clark on the fence and is working knees. Clark lands a right as they break that definitely landed. Blachowciz lands a left body kick again. Clark lands an overhand right. Another left body kick from Blachowicz. Blachowicz lands an inside leg kick to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Blachowicz

ROUND TWO: Clark comes out quickly and they both miss some offense. Blachowicz again with that left body kick, a second one and Clark is visibly hurt by those. They both miss punches, Blachowicz lands a left body kick. Clark tries a double leg, Blahcowicz sprawls, spins and hits a double leg of his own to get on top. Blachowicz in half guard. Blachowicz lands a few short blows and is looking to pass. Clark able to scramble back up, we get time though as Clark took a finger to the eye in that scramble. Clark basically waves it off and we’re back to fighting. Clark bulls forward, Blachowicz grabs a standing rear naked choke without hooks in and Clark gives it up.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jan Blachowicz via Submission, rear naked choke, at 3:02 of Round 2

Blachowicz on the mic now. He opens with Polish then does his own translation, says the fight was amazing and he loves the crowd. He jokes that maybe his striking wasn’t so good today, Clark’s ribs would disagree, but his wrestling was great and he grabbed the choke when Clark left his neck open. He says he’s going to be helping a teammate who’s got a fight coming up in a few weeks in the UFC and thanks the crowd yet again.

That wasn’t really a rear naked choke but I’m not sure what else to call that, lovely opportunistic grab by Blachowicz when Clark didn’t protect his neck.

Karolina Kowalkiewicz is on a two fight losing streak, despite that she retains a top five ranking as those losses were to champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk and top contender Claudia Gadelha. Kowalkiewicz needs a win here though, a three fight losing streak could see her drop out of title contention for quite some time. Jodie Esquibel is coming off of a win over DeAnna Bennett in Invicta, in fact her only loss at strawweight was to Alexa Grasso, and if she can unseat a top contender in her UFC debut she’ll likely find herself in the top rankings and near to title contention. The odds are with Kowalkiewicz at -550 while Esquibeil’s comeback sits at +375.

Strawweight Bout: Jodie Esquibel (6-2, 114 lbs.) vs. #3 Karolina Kowalkiewicz (10-2, 115 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height and have the same reach. They touch gloves to get us going. Esquibel lands a front kick to the body, Kowalkiewicz is walking forward. Kowalkiewicz lands a bit of a left body kick. Esquibel working front kicks to keep distance, she lands a short left hook as well. Kowalkiewicz is coming forward, she lands a bit of a right. Kowalkiewicz has the better feel for range, Esquibel is flailing a bit. Esquibel lands a right to the body. Kowalkiewicz lands a bit of a right then a body kick. Esquibel lands a right. Kowalkiewicz lands a bit of a head kick and a flurry not too far behind it. Esquibel lands a bit of a right then a leg kick. Kowalkiewicz lands a left knee to the head. Esquibel lands a bit of a right. They trade rights, Kowalkiewicz is just undeterred by anything Esquibel is doing. Kowalkiewicz lands a bit of a right. They trade rights as the last exchange of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Kowalkiewicz

ROUND TWO: Kowalkieiwcz back to fighting long, she’s using a right uppercut as Esquibel is ducking at the waist a bit when trying to angle off. Esquibel lands a bit of a right, Kowalkiewicz lands a right and a couple of knees towards the head. Kowalkiewicz landing at distance. Kowalkiewicz lands a right, Esquibel is really struggling with the pressure. Kowalkiewicz lands some knees from a Thai clinch, she’s got Esquibel reeling and lands more knees before Esquibel is able to settle the clinch and escape. Kowalkiewicz lands the knee again, and a high kick, Esquibel is getting drowned by the pressure and output. They wind up clinched, Esquibel lands a couple of knees to the body before Kowalkiewicz lands an elbow. They break without incident. Esquibel lands a bit of a right. Kowalkiewicz walking forward, she trips Esquibel up and gets the back then goes for an armbar. Esquibel stacks Kowalkiewicz and rides out the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Kowalkiewicz, arguable 10-8 really, 20-18 Kowalkiewicz overall

ROUND THREE: Esquibel landed an elbow during that final bit on the mat that opened up Kowalkiewicz around the right temple. They touch gloves for the last round. Esquibel trying the right and left again but Kowalkiewicvz is countering with knees or uppercuts and methodically walking her down. Esquibel lands a leg kick but eats a couple of punches. Esquibel lands a jab. Kowalkiewicz lands a right and avoids a takedown attempt. Esquibel is bleeding from the nose. Kowalkiewicz lands a bit of a head kick. Right uppercut and some knees from Kowalkiewicz. Esquibel is still trying but she’s really struggling to find consistent offense. Kowalkiewicz landing on the end of her punches, lands a combination. Kowalkiewicz lands a knee to the body. Esquibel lands a right but eats a combination for her trouble. Looping right from Esquibel lands. Kowalkiewicz lands a couple of knees. Kowalkiewicz lands in the clinch, she’s still just overwhelming Esquibel. Kowalkiewicz with a combiation of knees and elbows in close. Esquibel lands a bit of a right as time runs down.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Kowalkiewicz, 30-27 Kowalkiewicz overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Karolina Kowalkiewicz via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

Kowalkiewicz on the mic now, she opens with Polish saying that she’s deeply emotional and thanks the crowd for coming out. She says this has been an emotional week for her, she won her first MMA fight in this city and wanted to get this win. She doesn’t think much about her two defeats and considers them learning experiences. She doesn’t choose opponents and will fight whoever the UFC wants, she says Jessica Andrade claimed she wouldn’t fight her which she denies and is happy to fight Andrade if she’s healthy and free.

Donald Cerrone (32-9 1 NC) is one of the more prolific fighters in the UFC, he’s fought for the UFC lightweight title in the past and has looked pretty good since moving up to welterweight. Cerrone is on a two fight losing streak though and needs to get back on the winning track if he wants to reinsert himself into the title picture. Darren Till (15-0-1) is undefeated with only a draw to blemish his record. Till is looking to prove that he’s ready to step up and fight the elite members of the division and make good on what he’s said about himself. The odds are close but lean towards Cerrone at -160 to a +130 comeback on Till.

Welterweight Bout: #6 Donald Cerrone (32-9 1 NC, 170 lbs.) vs. Darren Till (15-0-1, 170 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Cerrone is an inch taller while Till has an inch and a half of reach on him, Cerrone is also a full ten years older than Till. Till fighting southpaw, and they touch gloves to get things going. Till coming forward, both men showing the jab early. Cerrone ducks a left and tries a single leg that Till is able to get free of. Cerrone ducks a left. Till lands a bit of a left. Till lands a straight left. Cerrone ducks under and hits a double leg, Till quickly wall walks but Cerrone still has the clinch. Cerrone lands a knee to the body, Till pulls free. Till lands a glancing left. Till lands a jab. Cerrone lands an inside leg kick. Cerrone lands another leg kick. Till lands a left to the body. Cerrone lands a body kick. Till lands a left, he’s sniping well. Cerrone takes a jab and lands a right to the body. Cerrone working leg kicks, inside and outside, now a body kick. Till lands a stiff one two that wobbles Cerrone. Till gets close and starts flurrying, Cerrone drops to his knees and the ref stops it.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Darren Till via TKO, punches, at 4:20 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Till for his work this afternoon. Till on the mic after that one. He says he believes he’s the best fighter alive. He says this was basically what he expected, says he’s basically a light heavyweight fighting at welterweight and once he knew he’d caught Cerrone he knew it was over. He thanks Cerrone for the opportunity, he says he grew up watching Cerrone fight as a fan. Asked who or what is next, he calls out Mike Perry who’s cage side, Perry up on the outside of the cage and they yell at each other. He says he and Perry were matched to fight previously and he really wants that despite Perry being matched up with Santiago Ponzinibbio.

Here’s the finish, that one two from Till was accurate and straight and Cerrone has struggled with fighters who control the inside space for striking (see the Masvidal fight for another example). Till follows up that one two with a left elbow that really freezes Cerrone mentally and he swarms for the finish.

Alright everyone, that does it for UFC Fight Night 118. Tomorrow at 8pm eastern standard time the 411 Ground and Pound Radio Show will review this event and preview next week’s Fight Night 119 which includes Derek Brunson vs. Lyoto Machida and Demian Maia vs. Colby Covington. I’ll be back for that event next Saturday, I hope you’ll be here to follow along or read after the fact. Until then thank you all for reading, stay safe out there and keep checking 411mania for all of your pop culture needs.