UFC 201 LIVE RESULTS: Penick’s round by round report for “Lawler vs. Woodley” event from Atlanta

By Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

UFC 201
JULY 30, 2016

UFC Welterweight Champion Robbie Lawler returns to action tonight as the UFC returns to Atlanta for the first time in four and a half years with UFC 201. In addition, strawweights Rose Namajunas and Karolina Kowalkiewicz will attempt to secure a title fight in the night’s co-main event. We’ll have quick results on tonight’s preliminary card, with full play by play on the main card as it kicks off at 10PM ET, so follow along with us here all night!

Note for App Users: For fastest refresh rate on our fight result updates throughout the event, we recommend you visit our mobile-friendly browser-based website at http://www.mmatorch.com. Our App unfortunately doesn’t update article changes in real time, but our mobile site does, so there will be delays in live results on our app but not on our mobile site during the event.

Also for App users, swipe right to view next article, swipe left to view previous article.

=====UFC Fight Pass Prelims Quick Results=====

-Damien Brown def. Cesar Arzemandia via KO at 2:27 of the first round

-Michael Graves vs. Bojan Velickovic ends in majority draw (30-27, 28-28, 28-28)

=====Fox Sports 2 Prelims Quick Results=====

-Wilson Reis def. Hector Sandoval via submission (rear naked choke) at 1:49 of the first round

-Anthony Hamilton def. Damian Grabowski via KO at :14 of the first round

-Jorge Masvidal def. Ross Pearson via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)

-Nikita Krylov def. Ed Herman via KO (head kick) at :40 of the first round

=====Pay-Per-View Main Card=====

-Mike Goldberg and Joe Rogan on the call tonight. They welcome fans to the event, run down the fights to come on tonight’s card, and set up our opening bout.


ROUND ONE: We’re back to more of color options for fighters tonight. Serrano rocking yellow while Benoit’s in the blue. Benoit tried to press in early but Serrano landed a hard right hand. He missed an axe kick. He landed a kick. Serrano caught a kick, drove forward, picked Benoit up, and slammed him hard to the mat. Serrano tried to set up an arm triangle but Benoit nicely scrambled to escape and get to his feet. Benoit came forward and hurt Serrano with a two punch combo, but Serrano shot in, fought through a choke attempt and scored a second takedown into side control. Benoit again managed to escape to his feet. Serrano was bloodied up from the two punch combo a minute earlier. Benoit landed a big right hand out of the clinch. He swung and missed and backed out to reset. Benoit landed a nice kick that nearly landed flush on the jaw of Serrano. Serrano swung and missed a couple times, and Benoit calmly moved in for a hard leg kick. Serrano shot in but got stuffed easily. Benoit missed a kick and barely avoided an axe kick. Benoit landed a big body kick late. Benoit threw a punch after the horn, which then drew a shove from Serrano.

Penick’s Scorecard: 10-9 Benoit. Serrano’s two big slams might wind up stealing it, but all the damage that round came from Benoit.

ROUND TWO: Benoit was again the early aggressor. They traded kicks and some short attempts. Serrano shot in a minute in but got stuffed with a guillotine attempt. Serrano nearly connected on the axe kick again. Serrano got in close and Benoit tried to jump a guillotine choke. Serrano slammed him down hard to break the hold. Benoit eventually escaped from the bottom to reset, and Benoit seemed to be getting a little bit slowed down. They traded punches. Benoit landed a hard leg kick to counter a spin kick. Serrano ran in at Benoit and missed a strike. He shot in again and scored another takedown. He scored a little bit of offense on top, but Benoit again escaped before the horn.

Penick’s Scorecard: 10-9 Serrano. Not nearly enough offense from Benoit to offset the takedowns and control time.

ROUND THREE: Serrano quickly got the fight to the ground again, but did almost nothing in Benoit’s guard for a minute, leading to them getting stood up. Serrano then tried to quickly crawl in and he got cracked by a knee and planted on his back. He scrambled out to his feet. Serrano tried to somersault in which drew boos. He got in a kick. Benoit landed another counter-kick as Serrano jumped in. Serrano continued rushing in with ineffectual takedown attempts. Benoit landed a knee and stuffed another takedown. Serrano landed a body kick and circled out. Benoit landed a hard leg kick again as he slowly walked Serrano down. Benoit clinched up late. He landed a short forearm to the head and several punches to the body. He backed out with a short flurry that brought a nice right hand. Serrano shot in and got stuffed late before the horn.

Penick’s Scorecard: 10-9 Benoit? I guess. Could still go either way. Neither really did much that was effective in that round.

WINNER: Benoit via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)

STAR RATING: (**-) Not the worst fight, but lots of dull stretches, especially in that third round. Scores were to be expected given how the first and third rounds went.


ROUND ONE: Perez bounced a bit as he circled around. Rivera closed in and landed the first combination of the fight. He landed a hard left hand after Perez missed a strike. They traded strikes with Rivera getting the best of the exchange. Rivera again timed a counter well as Perez left himself wide open for it. Perez went for an uppercut, then a high kick. He had several strikes blocked. Rivera remained very methodical as he pressed forward, but he still got caught with a right hand as he moved ahead. Rivera landed a nice right hand in the center, then a kick to the lead leg. Rivera connected on a hard kick to the body. Both danced around each other a bit. Perez caught a body kick, and they traded strikes as Rivera was off balance. They traded punches again. Rivera landed another right hand. Rivera landed a kick and got taken down, but quickly bounced back up on the cage. Perez backed off and landed a punch, then popped in with a jumping knee to that landed. Rivera landed a hard right hand but got tripped up by a leg kick. Rivera landed a nice left hook. He missed a jump kick and some strikes behind it. Both missed thrown punches at the horn.

Penick’s Scorecard: 10-9 Rivera. Had more offense overall, though Perez began to pick up the pace late.

ROUND TWO: Perez came forward early and landed a good leg kick. He tripped Rivera up with another one and landed a strike as Rivera got to his feet. Rivera fired back. Perez connected on a grazing spinning back fist. Both continued to miss as they exchanged. The pace significantly slowed. Perez shot in, got shrugged aside, and barely avoided a big right hand. Rivera came up bleeding from something that didn’t seem to stand out. Perez continued to circle and at least feign activity. Rivera landed a few leg kicks and blocked a rush. They traded punches. Perez caught a kick and got a takedown, but Rivera quickly got up. Turns out the cut came from a spinning elbow. Perez continued to stay slightly more active than Rivera, though neither was really doing a ton. Rivera landed a hard left hand. They traded punches in the center, though again neither doing a ton. Perez landed a hard inside leg kick. Rivera landed a strike, then got backed up and taken down at the cage. He ended the round on top.

Penick’s Scorecard: 10-9 Perez. Rivera’s output decreased significantly from the first frame, and though Perez didn’t do a ton it was more than did Rivera.

ROUND THREE: They decided to throw caution to the wind and it was chaos from the outset. They beat each other up with exchange after exchange until Rivera literally floored himself with a swing and a miss. He couldn’t get back to his feet easily and Perez took top position. Rivera was bleeding badly from the cut on the side of his head. Perez stayed active enough with ground and pound in the guard. He postured up and landed some elbows. Things slowed down, leading to boos. That opening minute was ridiculous, and especially stupid for Rivera, who now has nothing left to offer. Perez continued to land strikes to the body and looked to advance his position while doing the bare minimum. Rivera finally got up to his feet. Perez backed off with an elbow and Rivera advanced. They traded strikes with Rivera’s face a complete horror show to the horn.

Penick’s Scorecard: 10-9 Perez. Rivera must have known he didn’t have much left in the tank, because that’s the only reason that opening minute would have made any sense for him. If he thought his only chance to win was getting a crazy knockout in a brawl, ok, but it left him with nothing else to fight back with once that failed.

WINNER: Perez (30-26, 30-26, 29-28)

STAR RATING: (**) That third round was fun and stupid for 45 seconds or so, but a lot of this fight was methodical and not all that great.


ROUND ONE: Ellenberger dropped Brown immediately! He rushed in and landed a strike that put Brown to the ground and tried to follow up, but Brown recovered and worked to his feet. Ellenberger cracked him again and Brown was wobbly. Brown landed a kick. Brown seemed to get his wits back and landed a right hand. He came back ahead and definitely had himself back to normal. Ellenberger, meanwhile, seemed gassed already. Ellenberger then dropped Brown with a kick to the body! Brown just crumpled, and Ellenberger started throwing bombs on the ground. Brown was in too much pain from the body kick to defend himself, and the fight was stopped. Well then. Hell of an upset.

WINNER: Ellenberger via TKO at 1:46 of the first round

STAR RATING: (***+) What an upset, and off a brutally visceral finish. Body shot stoppages just look so damned painful even watching it at home, and for a fighter like Matt Brown to just crumble because of it showcases that even further. Huge, desperately needed win for Jake Ellenberger.

-A fantastic new promo for UFC 202 airs. For as much as I wasn’t all that keen on booking McGregor-Diaz II initially for UFC 200, it can’t be denied that the rematch is going to be huge in three weeks.


ROUND ONE: Namajunas initially took the center, and the two circled around one another. Namajunas landed the first strike with a solid leg kick. Kowalkiewicz landed two hard kicks to the lead leg. Namajunas connected on a solid combination. Kowalkiewicz circled around and reset. Namajunas landed a good right hand. Very tentative pace from Kowalkiewicz here. Namajunas landed another really nice right hand. Namajunas went back to the lead leg kick. She got in with a left hand after missing a right hook. Namajunas again connected. She landed another really good right hand as Kowalkiewicz missed. Namajunas continued picking spots well. They traded strikes in the center. Namajunas slipped after a kick. Kowalkiewicz landed a hard right hand, taking advantage of the minor slip up. Namajunas landed an excellent left. Kowalkiewicz went back to the leg kick. Namajunas landed the leg kick again. They traded punches, but again Namajunas landed more. She avoided a couple of rushes from Kowalkiewicz. Namajunas landed two really nice right hands as Kowalkiewicz landed a couple knees. Namajunas went for a throw, nearly lost position, then got on top to end the round.

Penick’s Scorecard: 10-9 Namajunas. Very good round for “Thug” Rose. Outside of a couple clinch knees late, that round was all hers.

ROUND TWO: Namajunas landed a couple early strikes, but Kowalkiewicz got in close, grabbed a clinch, and landed a series of brutal knees. Namajunas drove her to the cage and landed a few strikes, but Kowalkiewicz fired off several more knees and elbows. Kowalkiewicz continued to hold off a takedown attempt from Namajunas. Rose landed a few body punches, but Kowalkiewicz was doing significant damage with knee after knee to the body. Namajunas finally snuck around Kowalkiewicz and tried to take her back standing, but lost the position. Kowalkiewicz hurt her with a hard elbow and got separation. Namajunas landed a big right hand. Then a combination. Kowalkiewicz landed two leg kicks, then Namajunas fired off another right hand. She landed a hard push kick that sent Kowalkiewicz back, advanced, and landed a right hand. Kowalkiewicz stuffed another takedown attempt, and got in more clinch offense. Namajunas pressed her to the cage and they traded knees. Namajunas backed out again. Kowalkiewicz landed a hard right hand, then Namjunas returned the favor. Namajunas landed a strike, but Kowalkiewicz grabbed another Thai clinch and landed several more knees. Namajunas’ offense was much more labored than early in the fight, and Kowalkiewicz continued doing damage. They traded strikes again. Namajunas went for a jumping knee that missed. They traded strikes at the horn.

Penick’s Scorecard: 10-9 Kowalkiewicz. And we’re all tied up. Hell of a round for the Polish fighter, who did a ton of damage in the clinch that frame.

ROUND THREE: Namajunas landed a big right hand to start off that opened a cut on the bridge of Kowalkiewicz’s nose. Kowalkiewicz got a brief clinch to deliver some more knees. Namajunas landed a front kick to the face. Namajunas landed a solid jab, though she missed the follow up strike. Kowalkiewicz missed a spinning back fist. They traded again in the center. Namajunas countered a rush with a solid strike, and Kowalkiewicz connected in return. They traded punches in the center. Namajunas landed another big right hand. She went for a takedown, got stuffed, but avoided a counter. Kowalkiewicz got in a bunch of offense against the cage, and wound up on top as Namajunas scrambled to get the fight to the ground. Namajunas attacked for an armbar but lost it and ate a strike. Kowalkiewicz fought out of a leg lock attempt and nearly passed, but Namajunas regained guard. Kowalkiewicz stood and ate an upkick. Namajunas went for an arm, almost got a sweep, but lost it. Namajunas again went for a late omoplata, lost it, and ate more strikes. She got to her feet and they traded to the horn. Damned good and competitive fight.

Penick’s Scorecard: 10-9 Kowalkiewicz. The work she did in the second allowed the third to happen, and after she got another big rush in the clinch the ground work sealed it. Very impressive performance from Kowalkiewicz, and the UFC may have themselves an all-Polish title fight on their hands at 115 lbs.

WINNER: Kowalkiewicz via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)

STAR RATING: (***) I don’t know how you possibly score the second or third for Namajunas, so that the 29-28 in her favor doesn’t make sense. Kowalkiewicz looked very good here, and though I think there are a lot of vulnerabilities Joanna Jedrzejczyk can exploit, she’s going to be a game challenger for that Strawweight Championship.


ROUND ONE: Lawler took the center and eyed Woodley down. Woodley pressed in and each of them were a bit hesitant to engage early. Woodley rushed and swung with a right hand, but Lawler caught him with a body kick first. Both missed a follow up strike and Woodley clinched up. They were broken up real quick by Dan Miragliotta. Lawler pressed in patiently and threw out a couple body kicks. The crowd chanted for Lawler, who continued circling around the outside. Woodley then caught Lawler with a huge right hand! Lawler went straight down, and Woodley finished him off with three quick strikes. Wow. I just don’t even know how to react to that.

WINNER: Woodley via KO at 2:12 of the first round

STAR RATING: (***) Stunning. Absolutely stunning. First KO loss for Lawler since Nick Diaz stopped him in 2004. Woodley came back after 18 months out in a shot that easily could have gone to a handful of other fighters over him, and he’s now brought about the seventh title change in 2016 in the UFC. Absolute craziness.

-Woodley sent a message to his kids that he’s now a world champion and anything is possible… Lawler said he sat back too much and didn’t do what he needed to do to defend against something he expected to face in the fight.

-That’s it for UFC 201! Thanks for joining us tonight. We’ll have reaction to the card and a crazy month of July into next weekend’s UFC Fight Night 92 event, which gives way to the only Saturday off on the UFC’s schedule until the end of October!

Note for App Users: For fastest refresh rate on our fight result updates throughout the event, we recommend you visit our mobile-friendly browser-based website at http://www.mmatorch.com. Our App unfortunately doesn’t update article changes in real time, but our mobile site does, so there will be delays in live results on our app but not on our mobile site during the event.

Also for App users, swipe right to view next article, swipe left to view previous article.

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