Before UFC 209 started, the UFC announced that it’s UFC ON FOX 24 card scheduled for APRIL 15th in Kansas City just got its main and co main events. In the co main; RONALDO “JACARE” SOUZA will be taking on ROBERT WHITAKER. The main event has WILSON REIS fighting flyweight champion DEMETRIOUS “MIGHTY MOUSE” JOHNSON.
Then the “festivities” of the night started. In the now 2 fight early prelims; ALBERT “THE WARRIOR” MORALES; who got into MMA watching TUF while he was in prison, ruined the UFC debut of ANDRE “THE ASIAN SENSATION” SOUKHAMTHATH and also stopped his 3 fight win streak by a split decision. Then TYSON PEDRO improved to 6-0, defeating 9-0 PAUL “JEWBEAR” CRAIG via TKO from elbow strikes 4:10 into the 1st round..
The FS1 prelims: MARK “THE HAND OF GOD” GODBEER ruined the UFC debut of DANIEL SPITZ; who was on a 5 fight win streak, by winning a unanimous decision. 11-0 “COOL HAND” LUKE SANDERS was getting the far better of 15th ranked bantamweight IURI “MARAJO” ALCANTARA ; including cutting him open with a flurry of rights. Later a knee strike landed flush on Iuri as he was down and referee MARC GODDARD then took a point away from Luke. That was when Alcantara “turned on”; and attempted to no avail a leg lock. Luke got control up against the cage when in a scramble Iuri finally got solid control of Luke’s leg and cinched in a knee bar where Sanders had to tap out at 3:13 of round 2. Number 13 ranked featherweight 11-0 MIRSAD BEKTIC was a huge favorite to beat number 14 ranked 22-5 DARREN “THE DAMAGE” ELKINS, who was on a 3 fight win streak. He was able to gain top control against THE DAMAGE, and did some too; opening up a cut above his right eye with some elbows although he was in half guard. Elkins looked for guillotines; unsuccessfully, with Bektic getting better of the exchanges. Referee CHRIS TOGNONI had to call for a time out as Elkins landed a kick to Mirsad’s groin. Once action restarted he landed a stiff combo, and finally was able to take it back down to the mat and took side control. As they stood back up against the cage the bloodied Darren finally connected with a hook and head kick that dropped Mirsad. He then jumped on him with right hands for the KO finish 3:19 of round three. In the bout that was originally scheduled for BROOKLYN at UFC 208; MARCIN “TYBUR” TYBURA 14-2 fought LUIS “KLB” HENRIQUE. Both guys traded take downs back and forth for most of the fight with Henrique landing some punches and Tybur landing front kicks. Marcin was able to get out of some trouble against the cage and landed a left above Luis’s left eye that cut him. As Marcin was able to get top control and land some shots referee HERB DEAN, jumped in to stop it with 14 seconds left in the fight.
Moving to the main card; 8th ranked heavyweight MARK HUNT, who presently is suing the UFC, was taking on #3 ALISTAIR OVEREEM. Super Samoan’s last time in the cage was beaten by BROCK LESNAR at UFC 200 continued to be very outspoken against steroid users, and even called Overeem a “dirty cheater” when they crossed paths in the hotel lobby. He also said he felt “pressured by the UFC” into taking this fight. The last time these 2 locked horns was in 2008 with Alistair winning by submission. Alistair opened up this time being accurately efficient landing kicks, knees, and punches. They eventually opened up Hunt, who did manage to stagger Overeem with an elbow. Earlier Mark had gone for a low leg kick on Alistair, that backfired and opened up a huge gash on Mark that continued to bleed down his lower leg. As the two once again found themselves against the cage, Overeem delivered a massive knee that put Mark to sleep at 1:44 of the third round. Mark left the cage immediately and was rushed to the hospital. It was reported that he had suffered a broken tibia, but those reports (including Marks own instagram) proved to be not true.With the KHABIB-TONY fight off the card, strawweights AMANDA “ABC” COOPER and CYNTHIA CALVILLO, 3-0 was making her UFC debut; was moved from the early prelims, to the main card. Cynthia got an early take down and attempted a D’Arce choke, but Amanda was able to wiggle away opening herself up to a rear naked one. Calvillo who URIJAH FABER calls “a little gangster” cinched in that RNC tight giving Amanda no choice but to tap out at 3:19 of the first round.
“SUGA” RASHAD EVANS coming off of 2 loses, was finally making his debut as a middleweight against Australian judo specialist DANIEL KELLY who had a 3 fight win streak. Evans definitely looked sharp coming out. BIG JOHN MCCARTHY had to bring in the cage side doctor after Kelly was poked in the eye. From there every time Rashad landed something, Daniel countered with 2 and 3 of his own. Evans, with about 45 seconds remaining did land some nice shots; but it had the feel of too little too late. Although Kelly looked the worse between the two; he was able to win the split decision victory. There was a lot of heat in the now co-main event between 5-1 DAVID TEYMUR winning his last 5 fights and 4 by KO/TKO; and 9-1 “GROOVY” LANDO VANNATA. Groovy was able to score early and often landing an array of kicks and punches, but David started landing counters. He was also winning exchanges. The pace was high level and was bound to slow down. Once that happened, more shots were landing. Teymur landed a superman punch that rocked Vannata followed up with some great knees in a clinch. David tried to take it to the mat a couple of times, but it never stayed there; as both men were trading on their feet and Groovy eventually was cut open. It went to the judge’s scorecards where David took the unanimous victory. This win should put Teymur in line to break into the top 15 lightweights and give him a match against possibly someone like EVAN DUNHAM or GILBERT MELENDEZ.
The welterweight title rematch from UFC 205 pitted champ TYRON “THE CHOSEN ONE” WOODLEY vs STEPHEN “WONDERBOY” THOMPSON. If both didn’t know each others game plans before the 1st fight, they definitely did this time. Tyron wants to take it to the mat and grind, where as Thompson wants distance and use his striking from multiple angles. Right off the bat it seemed clear that Tyron was okay with his back against the cage, as there was an extended feeling out process where neither fighter wanted to be the one to make a critical mistake. Wonderboy continued to be the more aggressor of the two, which isn’t really saying anything here. Woodley eventually charged out with a flurry that cut Thompson under his left eye. But in many peoples eyes Wonderboy had won the 1st two rounds. Tyron finally landed a take down against the cage and had Stephen’s arm pinned behind him. That’s when Tyron landed at will. As they stood back up Woodley was able to connect with some knees and a great left right combo. Both went back to their very cautious style of reactionary fighting and not so much initiating. So going into the final round it appeared as Thompson had a 3 round to one lead. You have to wonder if that’s what Woodley was thinking as well because he came out blazing in the 5th. Eventually he finally landed a swarm of shots and it was a right hook that dropped Wonderboy and more continued. It looked like John McCarthy wanted to stop it but didn’t. As in the 1st bout the judges decided this one. This time Tyron Woodley retains the belt via (*****a tad controversial****) majority decision.
With GSP now moving to welterweight there seems to be a clear path for Tyron to hold onto the belt (at least on paper) for awhile. DEMIAN MAIA has been waiting patiently for a title shot, a rematch vs RUTHLESS ROBBIE LAWLER can and should be made, and NEIL MAGNY, JORGE MASVIDAL, and CARLOS CONDIT should not be far behind on that waiting list. While Wonderboy will slip down the rankings may be next in line for DONG HYUN KIM, or GUNNAR NELSON.
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