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411’s UFC Fight Night 142 Report 12.01.18

December 2, 2018 | Posted by Robert Winfree
Junior Dos Santos UFC

Hello everyone and welcome to 411mania’s LIVE coverage of UFC Fight Night 142. I’m Robert Winfree and I’ll be your host for the evening, relaying all of the action to you good people just as I see it. After the interminable TUF finale last night hopefully this card delivers the metaphorical good. If you’re interested in the results of that card you can check out my report HERE. If not, I’m not in a position to pass judgement when it comes to you not caring about TUF anymore.

Tonight however the UFC is bringing a card filled with heavyweight and light heavyweight fights when they return to Australia. In the main event rising contender Tai Tuivasa takes on the old lion and former champion Junior dos Santos. We’ve also go the sad state of affairs that is a Mauricio “Shogun” Rua fight in 2018 as the UFC set up another passing of the torch moment between him and Tyson Pedro. Combat sports veteran and legend Mark Hunt will have his final UFC fight (allegedly) on this card against another young up and coming heavyweight in the form of Justin Willis.

UFC Fight Night 142 comes to the world from the Adelaide Entertainment Centre in Adelaide, Australia. On commentary we have Jon Gooden alongside Dan Hardy. As for the rules we’ll be under the new rules, so you need both palms or fists flat on the mat to be considered downed (or a knee of course), extending fingers towards your opponent is a foul regardless of contact being made, and the language around scoring is clearer and more encouraging of 10-8’s. We also have the use of replay for fight ending sequences but once used the fight cannot be restarted.

Alex Gorgees is undefeated and making his UFC debut here, he’s hoping to remain perfect and leave a positive impression to the UFC audience. Also making his UFC debut is Damir Ismagulov who’s riding an eleven fight winning streak, he’s also looking to make a positive first impression to the UFC audience. Ismagulov is also, for random purposes, the first UFC fighter from Kazakhastan if my memory hasn’t let me down. The odds are with Ismagulov at a high -500 while the +375 comeback on Gorgees has to tempt those who bet long shots.

Lightweight Bout: Alex Gorgees (7-0, 156 lbs.) vs. Damir Ismagulov (16-2, 155 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Gorgees has three inches of height and reach on Ismagulov. They touch gloves to get things going. Both men feinting a bit, Ismagulov lands a jab to the body then a leg kick. They trade rights, Ismagulov landed better of the two. More jabs to the body from Ismagulov, then a stepping right. Gorgees looks like he’s doing a half assed Diaz impression. Ismagulov gets a body lock to the fence then hits an inside trip into half guard. Gorgees is trying to tie up Ismagulov and prevent offense from landing. Ismagulov lands an elbow, Gorgees back up but still in the clinch and Ismagulov lands a knee then hits a single leg takedown. Body work from Ismagulov, Gorgees back up but Ismagulov is back on a single leg and then switches to a double leg against the fence. Gorgees lands a couple of elbows and Ismagulov moves to a chest to chest position. Ismagulov lands some knees to the thigh then they break without incident. Body kick from Ismagulov then Gorgees avoids a takedown attempt. Bit of a right from Ismagulov is the last blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Ismagulov

ROUND TWO: They touch gloves for the second round. Ismagulov lands a right and a left hook to follow up. Body kick from Ismagulov then he reaches for a single leg that Gorgees is able to avoid. Body kick from Ismagulov then he gets a single leg into butterfly guard. Quick pass to half guard from Ismagulov and he lands a few short elbows. Gorgees is mostly defensive here, looking more to stall than be proactive. Ismagulov is landing elbows to the body and occasional hammer fists. Gorgees is motioning to the ref, waste of time as Ismagulov is working. Stiff right from Ismagulov lets him land a few follow ups. The theatrics of Gorgees get the ref to encourage Ismagulov to work, Ismagulov obliges by hitting Gorgees a few more times. Gorgees hip escapes and pushes Ismagulov to a standing position, Ismagulov punches him as he returns to half guard. Consistent work from Ismagulov here in top position this round, and the round will end in that position.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Ismagulov, 20-17 Ismagulov overall

ROUND THREE: A final touch of gloves for these two. Ismagulov lands a spinning back kick then misses an ugly Showtime kick. Spinning back fist from Ismagulov lands. Both men posture a bit, then Ismagulov lands a right and a left to counter a leg kick. Double leg from Ismagulov is successful and Gorgees gets full guard. Ismagulov punches Gorgees as he regains his feet then is after another takedown that he bails on to land a spinning elbow. Another clinch now from Ismagulov, he gets a body lock and is keeping Gorgees on the cage. Gorgees is able to spinf ree this time but Ismagulov gets a trip from a body lock into half guard in the middle of the cage. A few rights land for Ismagulov, he’s trying to open up passing opportunities with them. Gorgees gets to a hip but can’t maintain that position and Ismagulov gets his shoulders back to the mat. Ismagulov is landing short rights and hammer fists. Elbow from Ismagulov lands, he’s still looking for a bit of a pass but doesn’t want to lose the position doing so and that’s making him more cautious about how he’s looking to pass. Gorgees’ only hope here seems to be petitioning the ref. Ismagulov lands a right and stands, lands a right then the ref makes Gorgees stand back up. Right from Ismagulov lands then Gorgees blocks a double leg and they clinch. They trade knees to the body in the clinch as time runs out.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Ismagulov, borderline 10-8 again, 30-26 Ismagulov overall

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

Total wipe out for Ismagulov who gets an interview, he mentions the constant change of opponents for this fight and thanks everyone for taking that fight, thanks the UFC for the bout but thinks his future is at featherweight. Asked who he’d like to fight in that division he doesn’t care.

Mizuto Hirota is on a two fight losing streak including falling short in his return to lightweight earlier this year against Ross Pearson. Hirota is trying to avoid the dreaded three fight losing streak. Christos Giagos lost his UFC debut when he was bested by Charles Oliveira, he’s hoping to bounce back from that with a win over a respected veteran in Hirota. Giagos is your -380 favorite against a +290 payout for Hirota.

Lightweight Bout: Christos Giagos (15-7, 155 lbs.) vs. Mizuto Hirota (18-9-2, 156 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Giagos is three inches taller and has four inches of reach on Hirota. Hirota coming forward early while Giagos flashes the jab and looks to circle. Giagos misses a few hooks and slips off balancing himself for a moment. There are the “woo’s”, dammit Australia you just had to avoid doing that. Body kick from Giagos, then a couple of rights that wobble Hirota. Hirota gets his back on the fence and looks to fire back but Giagos is looking to tee off on him. Low single leg takedown from Giagos and he’s got Hirota into a seated position on the fence. Hirota is looking to wall walk but Giagos is stripping the posts and gets him onto his back against the fence which allows him to land offense. Giagos lands punches as Hirota gets up and they separate. Bit of a right from Hirota, Giagos gets a double leg but Hirota is after a guillotine now. Hirota adjusts his grip and it tightens up but Giagos is able to get his head free and settle into the guard of HIrota. Giagos lands a few lefts to the body and short elbows. Hirota kicks Giagos up then kicks him in the face and is able to regain his feet. That was a nice up kick from Hirota, bit of a right from Hirota will bring the round to a close.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Giagos, nearly 10-8

ROUND TWO: Giagos flashing the lead hand again but looks the more fatigued party. Hirota is pushing forward but struggling with the range so far and Giagos dives under a right right a double leg that is successful. More of an active guard from Hirota this time around, Giagos lands punches and elbows and passes for a moment but Hirota recovers guard. Elbows to the chest from Giagos. Giagos is trying to keep a work rate that’ll let him maintain top position, Hirota looking to wall walk now and he’s back up but still in the clinch. Kind of a sloppy high crotch from Giagos but it works and he’s back on top. Nothing terribly impressive but Giagos is keeping up enough work to keep the position and Hirota isn’t able to get free. Hirota shrimps to his knees, Giagos to a front headlock and lands a knee as Hirota gets up and free. A couple of knees land for Hirota then a left hook close out the round.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Giagos, 20-17 Giagos overall

ROUND THREE: Hirota needs a finish in the worst way, he lands a bit of a right but eats a counter left. Right to the body from Hirota lands. Giagos after a takedown against the fence, Hirota reverses the knee tap attempt though and gets on top in side control. Short elbows from Hirota, Giagos is looking to push off of the cage and does so and gets on top. Hirota scrambles back up immediately but Giagos hits a double leg. Now Hirota is looking to wall walk, he’s on his knees but Giagos keeps sucking his legs and hips back away from the fence. Hirota lands a few elbows while looking to regain his feet, he’s back up but still in the clinch. Knee to the body from Hirota and he sprawls away from a double leg then lands a couple of punches before Giagos dives into the clinch again. Hirota is turning things up, Giagos is fading looking for takedowns. Giagos dives into a rear waist lock position and is clearly running the clock at this point. Hirota gets a head lock and moves to the back with both hooks in. Punches from Hirota, he knows he needs the finish but there’s only ten seconds left so Giagos will just hold on until time runs down.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Hirota, 29-27 Giagos overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Christos Giagos via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-27, 30-28)

That 30-28 is odd, not sure which round was 10-10. Mic time for Giagos who thanks all of his relatives who came out for this fight and says Hirota was tougher than he expected. He mentions Hirota coming back stronger after getting clipped in the first and puts over his strength and conditioning coach for getting him ready and promises to keep on training.

That’s it for Fight Pass, to Fox Sports 1 for the rest of the prelims.

Elias Garcia lost his UFC debut earlier this year, now he’s after that all important first UFC win. Kai Kara-France is making his UFC debut here on the back of a five fight winning streak, he’s hoping for an impressive win in front of essentially his home crowd. The odds are with Kara-France at -350 against +270 for Garcia.

Flyweight Bout: Kai Kara-France (17-7 1 NC, 126 lbs.) vs. Elias Garcia (6-1, 124.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Garcia is five inches taller but only has three inches of reach on Kara-France. They touch gloves to get us going, Garcia tries a single leg but has to settle for a roll under for a heel hook, Kara-France smothers the attempt then escapes a kneebar and gets on top in half butterfly guard. Full guard now for Garcia and he’s trying to work his guard up the body, then goes to a body triangle from the bottom and Kara-France elbows him for it. Garcia is switching his guard from a body triangle to open, to feet on hips and Kara-France decides to stand out of it and reset on the feet. Right from Kara-France lands. Body kick from Kara-France, Garcia isn’t moving well and Kara-France is landing on him at distance. Left lands for Garcia but he might have gassed himself a bit. There’s a left from Garcia that sits Kara-France down but he’s back up and throwing back, we’ve got a fight for sure at this point. Kara-France lands a right, Garcia slips and Kara-France lands punches while going into his guard again. Elbows from Kara-France as Garcia gets a body triangle then bails on it. Garcia climbs his guard up again but Kara-France gets free and lands punches then gets the ride position. More punches then Kara-France gets the back with both hooks in. Kara-France is after the choke but Garcia is hand fighting and defending so far. Garcia gets the hooks free, Kara-France switches to top position and lands more punches as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Kara-France

ROUND TWO: Kara-France comes out aggressive again, Garcia misses some strikes. They clash on leg kicks then Garcia lands a left. One two from Garcia lands. Garcia is wobbled after eating a couple of punches from Kara-France. Kara-France avoids some punches and lands counters, Garcia tries to force a takedown then pulls guard to get a triangle position, it’s pretty tight and he rolls to lock it up. Kara-France tries to slam free, Garcia switches to spiderweb position looking for an armbar but Kara-France hitch hiker escapes and is on top in half guard landing elbows. More elbows from Kara-France now a barrage of rights to the head. Garcia is kind of stuck against the fence and Kara-France is landing punches. Kara-France avoids a leg lock attempt and resumes smashing Garcia from top position. More offense from Kara-France, Garcia is breaking under the pressure, now Garcia is holding a single leg attempt and Kara-France looks to spin to the back and doe so. Kara-France lands offense from the ride position as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Kara-France, 20-17 Kara-France overall

ROUND THREE: Garcia eats some punches then hits a low single leg, Kara-France escapes quickly and forces the stand up. Inside leg kick from Kara-France, and another one. Left hook lands for Kara-France and he’s walking Garcia down. Kara-France lands a right then Garcia lands a body kick. Another right from Kara-France, then another floors Garcia and he follows him down to the mat. Garcia tries to wrap up a leg but has no control over the body and Kara-France makes him stand back up. Counter right from Kara-France lands, Garcia is swinging sloppy and eats another right. Kara-France lands a right to the body, Garcia dives for an ankle pick but Kara-France gets free and hits him as he was hanging out on his knees. Flurry from Kara-France on the mat from the ride position, now he’s got both hooks in. Kara-France is fishing for the choke but loses one hook and is in danger of being reversed. Garcia gets on top as Kara-France slips off but Kara-France reverses him and lands more punches. Garcia is hanging on for dear life, Kara-France hits him more from top position but wont find the clean flurry necessary to prompt the stoppage before time runs out.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Kara-France, 30-25 Kara-France overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Kai Kara-France via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-25 x2)

Shame we’re losing that division, it’s prone to action packed fights like this. Garcia could have avoided the 10-8 in the second with that tight triangle attempt and armbar transition I guess. Mic time for Kara-France, he plays with the crowd and wants to take over. He feels he’s a veteran and loves to overcome adversity like he did in the first, then says he couldn’t have asked for a better debut fight, thanks his family for coming out to support him. He puts over his team and predicts they’ll be taking over soon.

Keita Nakamura has been trading wins and losses since returning to the UFC in 2015, he’s likely hoping that pattern holds as he’s coming off of a loss and looking to avoid the first losing streak of his second UFC run. Salim Touahri was bested in his UFC debut by Warlley Alves, now he’s trying to avoid his first ever losing streak. Nakamura is a slight -175 favorite against a +145 payout for Touahri.

Welterweight Bout: Keita Nakamura (33-9-2 1 NC, 171 lbs.) vs. Salim Touahri (10-2, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Nakamura has an inch of height and reach on Touahri. They touch gloves, Nakamura fighting southpaw. Forward pressure from Nakamura, Touahri is circling. Bit of a right from Nakamura, Touahri lands a right to the body. Inside leg kick from Touahri. Touahri lands a right to the body in close quarters. Straight left lands for Nakamura. They split some jabs, both guys still aren’t really comfortable just yet. Touahri lands a right to the body. Touahri tries a knee tap that Nakamura is able to block. Knee to the body from Touahri in close. Nakamura lands a left. Both men miss some punches as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Touahri

ROUND TWO: Nakamura misses a high kick to get the round going. They clinch and Touahri lands a knee the Nakamura lands a right hook on the break. Nakamura lands a right hook that off balances Touahri and he lands knees then pushes into the clinch, this time Touahri gets chest to chest and looks to buy recover time. Knees from Touahri to the body as he’s got Nakamura on the fence. Elbows go back and forth as they break. Nakamura lands an inside leg kick and they trade some jabs. Touahri is doing a lot of backing up here instead of circling, and Nakamura lands a body kick. Nakamura lands a jab. Another right hook lands for Nakamura then a body kick. Touahri lands a right to the body. Touahri lands another right to the body then he lands a few hooks in close. Nakamura is still pressing forward but Touahri has his wits about him and lands a left hook. body kick from Nakamura. Nakamura lands a left as the last blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Nakamura, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Bit of a left form Nakamura. Nakamura lands a bit of a high kick, Touahri is the one coming forward now. Single leg from Nakamura but Touahri limp legs out of it. Inside leg kick from Nakamura lands. They trade rights but Nakamura landed better. Touahri blocks a takedown attempt and lands an elbow. Nakamura lands the inside leg kick again and a couple of jabs behind it. Touahri keeps reaching for the left hook and Nakamura seems to have a read on it. Both men miss power hand punches. Nakamura lands a left. Touahri blocks a high kick. The jab from Nakamura is starting to work, Touahri lands a right to the body. They just get a clinch and trade knees as the round ends.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Keita Nakamura via split decision (30-27, 28-29, 29-28)

Well that was a waste of time. No interview for Nakamura.

Wilson Reis has lost his last three fights in a row and is in a bad spot seeing as the division is likely going away, meaning a loss almost certainly earns him his walking papers. Ben Nguyen has gone 2-2 in his last four fights but is coming off of a loss and needs a win to avoid his first UFC losing streak. The odds are with Nguyen at -150 while Reis’ chances sit at +120.

Flyweight Bout: #10 Ben Nguyen (18-7, 125.5 lbs.) vs. #8 Wilson Reis (22-9, 125.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Nguyen is an inch taller but they have identical reaches. Reis fighting southpaw, Nguyen doing stance switching. Both men feinting a lot, looking for a read on the other. Reis catches a kick and gets a single leg that hits the fence. Nguyen is defending well so far but Reis gets him down with a double leg against the fence. Nguyen is sitting on the fence but Reis keeps pulling him away from the cage to remove the option of wall walking. There’s the wall walk from Nguyen but he’s still in the clinch and Reis has a body lock. Knees towards the head from Reis, and knees to the body now. Nguyen is able to spin Reis and get out of the clinch. Body kick from Reis lands. Nguyen lands a body kick of his own. Reis lands a right hook but Nguyen lands a counter left. Straight right and a left land for Nguyen, he turned Reis nicely as Reis was coming forward. Some leg kicks from Nguyen, he’s finding places to score while Reis is finding entries. Double leg attempt from Reis and he’s got Nguyen onto his seat against the fence. Reis gets the ride position as Nguyen gets upright and Reis is looking for a mat return. There’s a single leg from Reis and he’ll end the round holding Nguyen against the fence.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Nguyen

ROUND TWO: Reis comes out hooking and clips Gnuyen with a right hook. Now a double leg from Reis against the fence, he gets on hook in on the back and is after the choke immediately. The fact that Reis only gets one hook in allows Nguyen to use the fence to keep him from getting both hooks in as he stands back up. Nguyen gets free from a clinch but Reis is kicking at him at distance. Nguyen lands a couple of counters then eats a leg kick. Reis pushes Nguyen into the fence with a clinch then starts looking for a takedown. Nguyen is able to avoid the single leg and get free then lands a one two. It looks like Nguyen has a feel for the timing of Reis now and is landing his counters. Reis lands a left and tries another takedown, they start scrambling on the fence but Nguyen defends the attempts and forces a break. The aggression of Reis is putting Nguyen out of sorts, and he’s after another clinch takedown on the fence now. Reis gets the double leg against the fence but Nguyen is trying to wall walk quickly. This time Reis is stripping the posting limbs of Nguyen to keep him down. Nguyen is able to force his way up and lands an elbow from the clinch. They break without incident and Reis misses a high kick. They trade some punches as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Reis, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Nguyen slips some punches and lands a right hook. Reis is landing to the body trying to close distance and Nguyen misses an elbow. Leg kick from Reis then more body shots, he’s in the best shape he’s been in in several fights if he can keep this work rate up. Inside leg kicks from Reis but he’s missing the hooks now. Nguyen misses head shots but lands to the body before Reis shoots a double leg and gets Nguyen to the fence. Reis switches his takedown and gets Nguyen down against the fence. Nguyen is bleeding from the mouth rather badly but wall walks anyway and Reis drops for a single leg this time. Reis is still coming forward looking to engage and Nguyen isn’t there with his counters this time. Nguyen avoids a rush but again misses the counter hook. Reis lands a punch and gets a double leg against the fence but Nguyen sweeps him and they wind up standing again. Body shots from Reis in close then a right hook. Both men miss lefts as time runs all the way down.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Wilson Reis via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

There’s an argument for Reis in the first, I just didn’t find him all that effective with his grappling and though Nguyen did enough better striking to warrant the round. No interview for Reis though.

Yushin Okami has gone 1-1 since returning to the UFC and is coming off of a win at welterweight, he’s hoping to build a winning streak in that division and score his first UFC winning streak since 2012. Aleksei Kunchenko is undefeated as a professional and had a successful UFC debut earlier this year when he bested Thiago Alves, he’s trying to take out yet another veteran and former title challenger here. Kunchenko is your -330 favorite while the veteran Okami would pay out at +250.

Welterweight Bout: Aleksei Kunchenko (19-0, 170 lbs.) vs. Yushin Okami (35-11, 170 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Okami is four inches taller and has five inches of reach on Kunchenko. Touch of gloves to get us going. Bit of a leg kick from Okami. Both men landing leg kicks, just probing mostly so far. Okami is after a takedown but Kunchenko sprawls and lands a bunch of body shots before Okami disengages. Bit of a right from Kunchenko. Kunchenko lands a right on the chin but Okami moves away before anything comes of it. Those leg kicks from Kunchenko keep coming and there’s some damage on the leg of Okami but he’s not limping yet. Bit of a right from Okami then he gets a clinch on the fence. Kunchenko looking to clinch break quickly, he lands body shots to try and force movement from Okami. They stall out and the ref separates them rather quickly. Kunchenko with a few more inside and outside leg kicks. body kick from Kunchenko is the last blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Kunchenko

ROUND TWO: They touch gloves again. Both men flashing the lead hand, Okami tries a takedown but Kunchenko blocks it and lands a knee to the body as they break. Another right from Kunchenko as Okami is trying to get a takedown and winds up holding a single leg. Kunchenko forces the break and is coming forward and lands a right. Okami is backing up now, Kunchenko clips him with a right after landing a left to the body. More rights from Kunchenko land. Body kick from Kunchenko, Okami might be a little hurt to the body. Okami tries a double leg but Kunchenko defends and they wind up clinched on the cage. Kunchenko lands a knee to the body as they break. More forward pressure from Kunchenko, he lands a right and avoids a single leg attempt but Okami is holding on desperately. They wind up on the fence again and Kunchenko lands knees to the body while blocking takedown attempts. Okami separates without incident and Kunchenko is back to pressuring him. Body kick from Okami and Kunchenko easily avoids a takedown attempt. Okami is actually on his back and eats a few leg kicks before the ref makes him stand back up. Kunchenko lands a body kick in close, he’s breaking Okami down methodically then avoids a takedown attempt and lands more punches as Okami is on his knees. Okami flops to his back and Kunchenko makes him stand back up. A couple of rights land for Kunchenko then a left drops Okami to his butt just as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Kunchenko, might be 10-8, 20-18 Kunchenko overall

ROUND THREE: Touch of gloves for the final round. Okami blocks a high kick, Kunchenko lands a right to the body. Left high kick from Kunchenko lands then a leg kick. Kunchenko lands a right that drops Okami to a knee and he’s looking to finish. Okami dives for a clinch and gets the body lock to buy himself time to recover. Now Okami tries to elevate the body lock but Kunchenko stays upright. Kunchenko lands a few elbows as they break then avoids a guard pull attempt from Okami. Now Kunchenko avoids a guard pull and lands punches from the ride position then stands over him and lands leg kicks as Okami is on his back. The ref makes Okami stand back up after he took those leg kicks. Kunchenko blocks a takedown attempt and lands body to head punches before Okami gets out of the pocket. Another blocked takedown attempt and Okami flops to his back. Okami is pretty tired, Kunchenko lands a couple of rights then a one two that land clean. Left high kick from Kunchenko and a leg kick. Kunchenko misses a high kick then a wheel kick but lands a follow up right, Okami dives for a single leg and eats punches as time runs down.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Kunchenko, 30-26 Kunchenko overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Aleksei Kunchenko via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-26 x2)

Not sure how Kunchenko didn’t get a 10-8 unanimously in the third, Okami did very little and Kunchenko won the round by the required margin. No interview for Kunchenko.

That does it for preliminary action but we’re still on Fox Sports 1 for the main card.

Paul Craig is coming off what is likely the comeback of the year when he scored a literal last second submission win that drew his UFC record to 2-2, now he’s trying to get his first UFC winning streak up and running. Jim Crute is making his UFC debut off of a win on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series, but he’s also undefeated overall and looking to make a good first impression to the wider UFC audience. Crute is your favorite at -275 against +215 for Craig.

Light Heavyweight Bout: Paul Craig (10-2, 206 lbs.) vs. Jim Crute (8-0, 205 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Craig is an inch and a half taller and has two inches of reach on Crute. Crute is also 9 years younger, though that matters less at these heavier weight classes. Craig has a wheel kick blocked but Crute is coming forward. Body kick from Craig. Craig is after a double leg and gets Crute down into guard. Crute goes for a hip bump sweep but Craig spreads his base out and passes to half guard. Rights from Craig then Crute bridges and explodes into a reversal so now he’s on top in half guard. Craig nearly gets guard back but Crute makes him stand back up. Crute off balances himself and Craig nearly grabs a triangle in transition. Crute avoids that sub and gets to full mount then locks up n arm triangle choke and moves to side control. Craig is trying to defend, the fence is helping him and Crute bails to get half guard on top position and control Craig. Crute lands a few punches then gets free and makes Craig stand back up. They trade lefts then Craig lands a spinning back kick to the body. Craig tries a takedown, countered by Crute who’s on top in side control now. Crute is after the kimura as Craig gets half guard back so Crute lands hammer fists. Elbow from Craig will be the last blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Crute

ROUND TWO: Craig opens with a body kick then lands a right. Double leg from Craig and he’s in the closed guard of Crute now. Crute is trying to angle off of the fence but Craig is punching him and getting him stuffed against the fence. Craig passes to half guard and lands a few short rights while securing top position. Crute gets full guard back and Craig puts his head back on the cage. Punches from Craig, they scramble a bit and wind up back on the feet at distance. Crute sprawls away from a double leg and moves to the ride position and lands a few punches. Craig tries a granby roll, Crute blocks that but Craig gets a double leg basically from his knees and has Crute down again. Craig has Crute pressed into the fence again but he’s not working a whole lot just yet. Now Craig rights from top position and body shots. Crute is trying to angle for an armbar, Craig avoids that but Crute sweeps him with a butterfly hook and they’re back up again. Another double leg attempt from Craig but Crute muscles him over and lands on top in half guard. Crute tries a kimura, gets swept and Craig ends the round on top.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Craig, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Crute lands a right and Craig lands a body kick. Left hook from Craig lands then the tries a single leg but winds up pulling guard. Crute gets half guard very quickly. Another kimura attempt from Crute but doesn’t get much going before Craig gets his arm back. Now Crute is into full mount again and looking for an arm triangle again. Craig has quarter guard and is likely safe from the choke, they’re flush on the fence as well and that’ll hinder the motion of Crute. Crute gets his legs free and turns them away from the fence and increases the squeeze. Craig is trying to get half guard back as Crute is increasing the squeeze but he’s got his body up and is letting Craig have breathing room because of it. Crute goes to full mount and bails on the choke after that sequence. Half guard for Craig now but he’s not doing much with the position. Crute lands punches that allow him to get full mount again. Three’s little posture control for Craig and Crute postures up and lands punches. Crute grabs the kimura again, Craig gets half guard but it’s loose and has no control so Crute cranks it behind his back and forces the submission.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jimmy Crute via Submission, kimura, at 4:51 of Round 3

The Final Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Crute for his work this evening. That’s our first finish of the evening, so hooray for that I suppose. Crute gets an interview, he plays with the crowd a bit and says he’s been dreaming of this moment for ten years and isn’t going anywhere. He talks us through the finish and says he’s not afraid to fight fire with fire. He says he definitely had some nerves and that nothing compares to the experience of walking to the Octagon.

Here’s the finish. Craig gets half guard but never controls the posture or direction of Crute so when Crute gets the kimura locked up he can just lean both of their body weight onto the shoulder and force the tap.

Suman Mokhtarian is undefeated and making his UFC debut here, he’s hoping to get a boost from the local crowd and score an impressive first UFC win. Sodiq Yusuff is also making his UFC debut and is another winner from the Contender Series looking to make a splash in the UFC. The odds favor Yusuff to the tune of -600 while Mokhtarian’s +425 payout has to tempt a few degenerate gamblers out there.

Featherweight Bout: Suman Mokhtarian (8-0, 145 lbs.) vs. Sodiq Yusuff (7-1, 145 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Yusuff is an inch taller while Mokhtarian has an inch of reach on him. They punch in close and Yusuff lands uppercuts in the clinch before Mokhtarian gets a clinch on the fence. Some knees to the thigh from Yusuff after he spins Mokhtarian into the fence. Now they trade knees to the body while jockeying for position. Yusuff pulls free. Leg kick from Mokhtarian and Yusuff counters with hard punches. Hard right then a left from Yusuff and he’s got Mokhtarian hurt. Yusuff backs Mokhtarian into the fence and swings heavy punches to the body and head then forces the standing TKO stoppage. Mokhtarian immediately protests but he didn’t respond to the ref telling him to defend himself besides just covering up and being stationary.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Sadiq Yusuff via TKO, punches at 2:14 of, Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Yusuff for his work this evening. After further review I can understand the protest from Mokhtarian, he was blocking a lot of those punches but he also made no effort to get away from the fence and that is a bad look. Yusuff gets an interview and says that was a fifty thousand dollar performance. He says that he’s “blacksplosive” and dedicates the win to his big brother who passed away a week ago. He got emotional talking about that and says he does this for his people and promises to build this house, I assume in reference to Nigerian MMA. Asked again about the emotions he talks about shutting down the emotion, speaks some I think Igbo to his people back in Nigeria. Asked about the finish he says everyone in the arena heard the power in those shots and the ref is supposed to look out for the fighters and felt he did the right thing.

Here’s the finish so you can decide for yourself if it was early or not. I think it was swift but better early than late.

Jake Matthews hasn’t lost in the UFC since returning to welterweight and is riding a three fight winning streak, he’s looking to extend that to four in a row here and earn a shot at some bigger name for his next bout. Tony Martin is similarly hoping to build himself up with a win here, he’s won his last two fights and just scored his first finish via strikes in the UFC so he’s looking to build on that momentum here. Matthews is your -135 favorite to a +105 comeback on Martin.

Welterweight Bout: Tony Martin (14-4, 170 lbs.) vs. Jake Matthews (14-3, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Martin has half an inch of height and reach on Matthews. They touch gloves to get us going. Both men feinting to get us going, just gauging each other. Bit of a right from Matthews. Martin is pressing forward but Matthews is lunging at him when he gets near the fence. They trade rights of roughly equal value. Solid leg kick from Martin. Left to the body from Matthews and a leg kick of his own. Matthews avoids a head kick but misses the follow up. Right to the body from Matthews. Martin lands another calf kick, Matthews responds with a left hook. Another left from Matthews lands then a right. Both men land rights and things are heating up then Matthews cracks Martin with a punch and drops him then jumps for a guillotine choke. They scramble a bit and Martin is on top but still in danger from the guillotine of Matthews. Martin gets his head free and passes to half guard. Matthews hits a head and arm sweep and is on top in the guard of Martin now, fun grappling from these two. Martin starts fishing for a kimura, Matthews punches him as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Matthews

ROUND TWO: Both guys still light on their feet, Martin lands a calf kick. Martin is moving forward but he’s being mindful of distance. Bit of a right from Matthews. Matthews clips Martin with a right, then lands another one and tries a flying front kick because why not. Martin lands a right of his own now. Body kick from Matthews then a bit of a left hook. Martin lands a one two and avoids the counters. Matthews is relying too much on that right hand now, it’s becoming predictable and Martin is reading it. Calf kick from Martin, and another one. The calf of Matthews is visibly red and getting darker. Matthews lands a right. Martin lands the calf kick again. They get close and trade to the body then Martin lands a right as they break. Martin lands in close and they both miss winging rights as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Martin, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Martin opens up with a calf kick, this time Matthews returns it. Another calf kick from Martin and Matthews slips on a takedown attempt and Martin jumps to his back then switches to an anaconda choke and sits back for it and puts Matthews to sleep with it.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Tony Martin via Technical Submission, anaconda choke, at 1:19 of Round 3

The Final Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Martin for his work this evening. Mic time for Martin, Matthews limps out of the cage after all those leg kicks but Martin shares some words with him before taking the interview. He says he suffered through a thirty hour flight and fought a monster in Matthews then petitions for a 165 pound class and hopes the division could be built around him and guys like Matthews who came up from lightweight and are smashing guys. He talks about switching his first name from Tony to Rocco in terms of conversation to close the interview.

Here’s the finish. This is really slick transition from Martin, he fakes taking the back to grab a collegiate ride position I’ve seen Ben Askren call “the assassin” which transitions very nicely into that anaconda choke. That’s a specific move a few guys have been using lately and it’s a really hard one to deal with.

Mark Hunt is one of the more fan friendly and recognizable heavyweights in the world but he’s just 1-3 in his last four fights and is on a two fight losing streak right now. This is the last fight on Hunt’s UFC contract and he wants to exit the promotion with a win in Australia. Justin Willis is hoping to spoil that feel good story, he’s on a seven fight winning streak and hasn’t lost in the UFC and a win over Hunt would be the highest profile of his career. Willis is a slight -145 favorite while Hunt would payout at +115.

Heavyweight Bout: #10 Mark Hunt (13-13-1 1 NC, 264 lbs.) vs. #15 Justin Willis (7-1, 263.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Willis is three inches taller and has six inches of reach on Hunt, he’s also thirteen years younger. Southpaw for Willis, Hunt showing the lead hand as they circle each other. Inside leg kick from Hunt lands. Both men miss power hand punches. Willis lands an inside leg kick. There’s a cut on the shin of Hunt from a kick he landed, he’s got a bunch of scar tissue on that leg so it’s not likely to be a big issue. Body kick from Hunt and Willis lands a counter left. Another inside leg kick then a body kick from Hunt. I think Hunt’s thrown more kicks this round than the majority of his UFC run. Hunt lands a right to the body. Patient stuff from both guys so far, neither wants to make the first mistake. Right from Hunt lands. Willis lands a front kick to the body. Hunt lands another body kick. Willis lands a jab. Hunt falls short with a right, another jab from Willis will be the last blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Hunt

ROUND TWO: Willis lands a jab to start the second round. Inside leg kick from Willis. Another inside leg kick from Willis. Hunt lands a right to the body, he seems content to just walk Willis down until he finds a shot he likes. Willis lands a jab. Another jab from Willis and he circles away from the fence. Hunt lands a right to the body. Straight left from Willis lands. That lead hand from Willis has come up tremendously from his last fight, he’s landing clean jabs consistently. Hunt is following too much and not cutting Willis off, Willis is moving well and jabbing Hunt up. There’s an inside leg kick from Hunt. Hunt lands a right to the body. Willis back to jabbing but Hunt’s rolling with them now and taking much of the sting out of them. More jabs from Willis and he avoids a left hook as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Willis, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Willis back to jabbing as the last round starts. Hunt lands a body kick but he’s still following Willis around rather than cutting him off. Right hook lands for Willis and Hunt lands a right to the body. Willis lands a head kick, Hunt just eats it. More jabs from Willis and the left side of Hunt’s face is bruising visibly. Hunt misses a right but lands a bit of a left hook. Willis sticking with the stick and move game plan and it’s working quite well. Uppercut and a right hook from Willis, he’s picking Hunt apart and avoiding the counters. The movement of Willis is really giving Hunt all kinds of problems and he’s not switching to address it. Willis is intelligently running the clock, he’s still scoring and avoiding the offense of Hunt while also not putting himself in danger. bit of a left from Willis and they stare the last seconds away.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Willis, possible 10-8 based on numerical supremacy, 29-28 Willis overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Justin Willis via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Willis wont accept the interview and gives the mic to Hunt to say his farewell. Hunt thanks the fans, apologizes for the performance then thanks the UFC on behalf of his family and hopes to see them all somewhere else.

Israel Adesanya joins the broadcast position to hype his upcoming fight with Anderson Silva. He says he’s in the Matrix right now and this will be a big part of his story going forward. He says he knows Silva better than Silva knows himself in some ways, he’s ready for this fight. Adesanya says he’s the right guy to bring out the best in Silva and feels Silva’s been bored lately, then jokes that his preparation for the fight is mostly shadow boxing. He says this fight might not bring out his best but it is going to bring out the best he can do right now and says that this means more than winning the title, but does still plan on taking the belt from the champ. To close he calls his 2018 epic.

Mauricio “Shogun” Rua is a former light heavyweight champion in the UFC and one of the best light heavyweights ever, but he’s looked every bit the aging veteran lately. Despite how he’s looked Rua just had a three fight winning streak snapped when he was violently stopped by Anthony Smith, now he’s hoping to rebound from that and avoid another losing streak. Tyson Pedro has been hit and miss in the UFC evidenced by his loss to Ovince Saint-Preux in his last fight, he had a couple of opportunities to win that impressively but let the fight get away from him. Now Pedro is trying to take out a true legend of the sport and score the biggest win of his career. Pedro is a big -500 favorite to a +350 comeback on Rua.

Light Heavyweight Bout: #14 Tyson Pedro (7-2, 205 lbs.) vs. #13 Mauricio “Shogun” Rua (25-11, 206 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Pedro is two inches taller, has three inches of reach on Rua, and is a full ten years younger. There’s a real passing of the guard narrative the UFC is pushing tonight. They touch gloves to get us going. Pedro is feinting with the lead hand and circling around the outside. One two from Pedro off balances Rua but he gets over eager and walks into a right hand then they clinch up. Pedro forces a break from the clinch and lands a right but eats a couple of counters. Rua lands an inside leg kick. Pedro lands a few juabs after they traded one twos. There’s damage above the left eye of Pedro and Rua’s nose is red and might be swelling. Front kick ot the face and a right from Pedro land then an uppercut and knees have Rua wobbled and backing up. Uppercuts from Pedro and he tees off along the fence, Rua loses his balance and Pedro takes him down but Rua is back up in the clinch. Pedro lands a knee to the body and they break. Shocked Pedro went for that takedown, the same mistake he made against Ovince Saint Preux in his last fight. They trade punches and Pedro gets Rua on the fence and they start trading in close. Pedro avoids a takedown attempt and they remain in the clinch. Pedro dives on a kimura roll but Rua blocks it and ends the round on top in side control.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Pedro

ROUND TWO: Both men have damage to the face and head. Rua lands a bit of an overhand right. They clinch up and Rua has a body lock. Rua slips all the way around to the back with a rear waist lock and trips Pedro down landing in half guard. Pedro is fishing for a kimura again, he likes that too much or doesn’t know a better technique to use. Rua avoids the kimura sweep and moves to side control. Some short rights land for Rua but he’s not landing much for having a dominant position. Neither man is doing a whole lot and the ref isn’t likely to stand them up from full side control. Rua gets a mounted crucifix but they’re against the fence and he can’t do much with it. Pedro back to his feet but Rua still has a rear waist lock and drags Pedro back to his knees. Rua spins Pedro down and starts landing punches from the ride position as Pedro tries to get up again. Now Rua winds up back in side control as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-8, I don’t think Pedro landed anything, 19-18 Rua overall

ROUND THREE: Rua coming forward again, both guys looking fatigued. Rua lands a right that off balance Pedro, his rear leg gave out on him and Rua just unloads from half guard until the ref stops it. Correction it was an ankle injury, his right ankle gave out on him in the second round at some point.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Mauricio “Shogun” Rua via TKO, punches, at :43 of Round 3

The Final Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Rua for his work this evening. Ankle or knee, one of those on the right leg of Pedro is done though I’m not sure what caused it. Rua’s face is a mess but he’s here to talk, he thanks God for helping him along in his career, thanks his team and his family for the motivation, gives love to his family as well. He puts over Pedro and says he was motivated and wants to keep fighting for the fans. Asked what he needs to do for a title shot he says one more win, given the state of the division he’s probably not all that wrong.

They showed where the knee injury happened, Rua kicked the left leg of Pedro from a rear waist lock and when that leg went out from under him Pedro’s right knee tweaked and gave out almost immediately.

Junior dos Santos is a former heavyweight champion but has been trading wins and losses since 2012 and has looked the aging and shop worn veteran lately. Dos Santos is coming off of a win though, it was a dreadful fight but he did win, and looking for his first winning streak since 2012. Tai Tuivasa is undefeated including three wins in the UFC, he’s coming off of a win over Andrei Arlovski and if he can take out another former champion here he could easily make a case for some top five opposition next time out. The odds are with dos Santos at -160 to a +130 payout for Tuivasa.

Heavyweight Bout: #7 Junior Dos Santos (19-5, 255 lbs.) vs. #11 Tai Tuivasa (8-0, 262 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Dos Santos has two inches of height and reach on Tuivasa. They touch gloves to get us going. Tuivasa misses a leg kick then misses a rush. Dos Santos lands a right to the body. Bit of a right from Tuivasa but he’s getting a little reckless with his posture and attacks. Dos Santos working the jab, Tuivasa lands a leg kick. Body kick from dos Santos and Tuivasa responds with a right. Body kick from dos Santos. They wind up clinched, then break without much happening. Spinning back kick to the body from dos Santos then he wings a right that mostly misses. Tuivasa misses another leg kick, he’s not setting those up at all just kind of throwing them out there. They trade hooks but dos Santos landed the better right hook and they clinch up. Tuivasa lands an elbow as they break apart. Dos Santos misses a wheel kick. They slip as they both miss offense in close. Bit of a leg kick from dos Santos. Right uppercut from dos Santos lands but Tuivasa eats it and lands a right of his own. Hard leg kick from Tuivasa takes the leg out from dos Santos and they clinch up. Body work from Tuivasa and dos Santos is limping on that lead leg. Right from Tuivasa lands and they clinch again as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Tuivasa

ROUND TWO: They touch gloves for the second round. Dos Santos is still a little hesitant on that lead leg. Tuivasa is coming forward and just misses a few punches. They clinch and break a few times but nothing comes of it. Tuivasa is just resetting looking to land a big right. Leg kick from Tuivasa is checked and dos Santos lands a leg kick of his own. Both men are swinging rights, dos Santos lands a right hook as Tuivasa was looking to exit with his hands down and drops him. Dos Santos follows him down into side control and starts landing hammer fists and short elbows. Dos Santos into full mount and looks to tee off, Tuivasa throws back but dos Santos just keeps punching and the ref waves this off much to the consternation of Tuivasa.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Junior dos Santos via TKO, punches, at 2:30 of Round 2

Much needed win for dos Santos if he was going to maintain his position in the division. Mic time for dos Santos, he plays witht the crowd who boo him then he puts over Tuivasa as tougher than he expected and says he’s still feeling the leg kick. he says he’s got knockout power and can finish anyone, asked who’s next he says anyone is welcome but would like a rematch with Alistair Overeem.

Mic time for Tuivasa as well now, who says he got rocked and puts over dos Santos but he just got rocked while following his game plan which happens in the sport. He says this happens but it’s only up from here then calls out Justin Willis. To close he puts over his coaches and says he came ready but promises to be back.

Alright everyone, that wraps up UFC Fight Night 142. Not a good night for the local fighters, and only one of the young up and coming guys took out the veteran in those bouts. On the plus side, the top three fights didn’t suck so I’m calling that a win. We’ll be reviewing this card as well as yesterday’s TUF finale Sunday on the 411 Ground and Pound Radio Show, plus we’ll be looking ahead to next week. Next Saturday is UFC 231, with about as good a main and co-main event as you can ask for. Featherweight champion Max Holloway fights undefeated number one contender Brian Ortega and Valentina Shevchenko takes on Joanna Jedrzejczyk for the vacant women’s flyweight title.

I’ll be back for that event next Saturday and I hope you’ll all join me for it. Until then, thank you again for reading my work. I know just how many places can provide this content and I’m humbled that you choose mine. Stay safe out there and keep checking 411mania for all of your pop culture needs.