UFC on Fox 26 takes place tonight in Winnepeg, Canada. The main card is absolutely stacked with the main event being a possible welterweight #1 contender match between former champ Robbie Lawler and former lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos. The co-main event was supposed to be Ricardo Lamas vs Jose Aldo, but with Aldo taking the rematch against Max Holloway, he was replaced by up and comer Josh Emmett. Rounding the main card out is a guaranteed barnburner between Mike Perry and Santiago Ponzinibbio and a light heavyweight match between Glover Teixeira and Misha Cirkunov.
I’m Matt Peterson, a former MMATorch contributor and I will be covering tonight’s main card for everyone. As always, stick with MMATorch for all live event coverage and all fight news.
Here are the results from tonight’s prelims.
Jordan Mein def. Erick Silva via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27).
Alessio di Chirico def. Oluwale Bamgbose via KO at 2:15 in Round 2.
John Makdessi def. Abel Trujillo via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27).
Nordine Taleb def. Danny Roberts via KO at 0.59 in Round 1.
Chad Laprise def. Galore Bofando via TKO at 4:10 in Round 1.
Julian Marquez def. Darren Stewart via submission at 2:42 in Round 2.
Jan Blachowicz def. Jared Cannonier via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28).
Glover Teixeira vs. Misha Cirkunov (205 lbs)
Round 1: Misha coming out with the jab and front kicks. Glover staying patient and utilizing side to side movement. Glover misses with left hook and Misha landing the jab. Knee up the middle from Misha. Combination from Misha lands. Misha landing and pushing Glover back to the fence. They clinch and Misha pushes Glover back to the fence. Clinch and Glover gets the takedown. Glover manages to roll and take Misha’s back. Glover sneaks the arm in and has the rear naked choke. Misha holds out and Glover rolls him over to back mount. Misha not moving and Glover is landing shots to the head. The referee is watching closely and waves the fight off. Big win for Glover Teixeira!
Glover Teixeira def. Misha Cirkunov via TKO (punches) at 2:45 in Round 1.
Peterson’s Analysis: That’s a big win for Glover right there. It was a question of how much the loss to Gustafsson affected him and if he might be slowing down a step. Misha was landing the jab well so Glover went to his grappling and that’s just what the doctor ordered. Will the win give him the next title shot? No idea but DC vs Glover has some merit to the idea.
Mike Perry vs. Santiago Ponzinibbio (170 lbs)
Round 1: Lots of movement from Santiago right away. Perry walking him down but no big strikes thrown early. Leg kicks from Perry. Perry still walking him down, Santiago darting left and right but not throwing much. Big right hook from Perry misses. Jab from Santiago. Big leg kick from Santiago. More leg kicks from Santiago and head kick misses. Slip from Santiago and he’s back up. Huge uppercut from Perry misses. Combo lands from Santiago. Huge overhand right from Perry lands and Santiago backpedals. Santiago survives and continues his movement. Perry lands again and Santiago lands a spinning back fist. Perry is down for a moment and then back up. Jab-right cross landing for Santiago. Head kick from Perry misses. Round ends with Perry stalking Santiago down.
Peterson’s Analysis: Perry 10-9. Close round but Perry landed the bigger shots toward the end.
Round 2: Perry comes out aggressive again. Overhand from Perry misses. Santiago landing the cleaner combos and lands a big leg kick. Perry clinches and they move to the fence. Santiago escapes. Left hand lands for Perry. Clinch from Perry and gets a takedown. Santiago is back up and escapes. Santiago goes back to the leg kick. Uppercut misses from Perry. Spinning backfist from Perry barely misses. Santiago is landing combos while Perry is winging strikes more now. Santiago landing big hooks and pushes Perry back to the fence. They trade hooks and Perry circles out. Left hook hurts Perry and he’s back against the fence. Santiago firing back but both guys are moving slow and they disengage. Both guys winging hooks in the center and Santiago is landing the better ones. Santiago is landing big shots on Perry against the fence again and Perry is very flat footed. Perry lands against the fence and the round ends.
Peterson’s Analysis: 10-9 Santiago. He landed the cleaner shots against Perry and both guys have slowed way down.
Round 3: Who would have seen this fight going to a third round? Leg kick from Perry and Santiago going to the jab. Slip from Santiago. Jab to the body from Perry. Body kick from Perry and he’s pushing the action this round. Jab and spinning backfist from Perry. Both guys working the jab this round and Santiago going for the leg kick more now. Perry is very wild with his strikes and Santiago lands the spinning back fist. Perry goes down and Santiago jumps on his back. Perry manages to get up with Santiago hanging on and he takes Perry back down. Another big takedown from Santiago and he switches to Perry’s back. They stand and Santiago stays on Perry’s back. They separate and Santiago goes back to the jab-right combo. Santiago landing against the fence and gets the double leg on Perry. Full guard for Santiago and they’re exhausted. Half guard for Santiago now and Perry can’t move. Short punches from the top and Santiago is putting pressure on Perry. Front headlock for Santiago and he’s controlling Perry. Perry manages to stand and he’s free. Santiago landing combos and Perry is exhausted. That’s all for this fight.
Peterson’s Analysis: 10-9 Santiago. Cleaner shots and the ground control seals the round. Should be a decision for Santiago but we’ll see what the judges think.
Santiago Ponzinibbio def. Mike Perry via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28).
Peterson’s Analysis: Decent fight but doesn’t bode well for Santiago against the elite in the division. Perry is a brawler and has clear weaknesses that smart opponents will exploit. Santiago got hit badly in this fight and the good strikers and wrestlers at 170 lbs will be a huge test for him. Maybe the winner of Magny-Condit would be a good test to see where his ceiling is at.
Ricardo Lamas vs. Josh Emmett (145 lbs)
Round 1: Blocked headkick from Lamas. Emmett taking the center and pumping a jab. Big combo from Emmett. Body shot from Emmett. Body kick from Lamas. Blocked right hook from Emmett. Big leg kick from Lamas. Emmett is throwing big power in his shots. Great combo from Emmett ending in leg kick and Lamas throwing high kicks. Another huge combo from Emmett. Lamas attacking the legs of Emmett. Another combo lands for Emmett and pushes Lamas back to the fence. Emmett is landing combos and Lamas is out! Huge left hook landed and that’s a huge win for Josh Emmett!
Josh Emmett def. Ricardo Lamas via KO at 4:33 in Round 1.
Peterson’s Analysis: Just wow. I was pulling for Lamas but Emmett was fighting a great fight. His combos were slick and had wicked power behind them. He’s a big featherweight and his size and technique should serve him well. A giant win over a big name in the division and Josh Emmett is a contender.
Robbie Lawler vs. Rafael dos Anjos (170 lbs)
Round 1: Both guys stalking each other. Leg kick from dos Anjos. Lawler stalking forward. Jab from Lawler. Both guys trade big shots quick. Missed leg kick from dos Anjos. Big left overhand misses from dos Anjos. Missed overhand right from Lawler. Big shots miss from both men. Lawler taking center with dos Anjos circling. Leg kicks landing for dos Anjos. Lawler lands a big combo and they clinch on the fence. Dos Anjos taking the Thai clinch and throwing knees that Lawler blocks. Lawler lands a right hook. Dos Anjos kicks low and lands a body kick. Leg kick from dos Anjos and Lawler lands another big combo. More Thai clinching from dos Anjos. Dos Anjos clinching Lawler against the fence. Both guys throwing knees in the clinch. Lawler spins and pushes dos Anjos to the fence. Dos Anjos looking hard for the Thai clinch. Both guys separate and throw big as the round ends.
Peterson’s Analysis: 10-9 Lawler. Super close round and could be scored either way. Both guys fighting very smart.
Round 2: Body kick from dos Anjos and Robbie landing big punches against the fence. Huge combo from Lawler and they both start throwing. Lawler is stalking dos Anjos down closely. Jab from Lawler and he’s pushing dos Anjos backwards. Lawler is picking his shots and dos Anjos moves forward behind the jab. More jabs from dos Anjos and a leg kick. Apologies, slight loss of TV channel and we come back to dos Anjos laying punches on Lawler against the fence. Lawler surviving and dos Anjos is laying it on. Lawler is still upright and dos Anjos may be punched out. Lawler pushes forward and now he’s walking dos Anjos back to the fence. Single leg attempt by dos Anjos that fails. Both guys have slowed the pace a bit. Lawler lets go with combos against the fence and dos Anjos clinches. Both men trading jabs now. Big hooks being thrown now and dos Anjos clinches again. Headlock attempt from dos Anjos and the round ends.
Peterson’s Analysis: 10-9 dos Anjos: Another great round and dos Anjos threw hard. Lawler fought smart and he may be the fresher fighter going into the third round.
Round 3: Lawler pushing forward again. Henri Hooft calling for Lawler to attack the body this round. More big hooks trading from the fence. Dos Anjos clinches and Lawler throws big hooks to the body. Dos Anjos drops and gets the double leg. Lawler is sitting against the fence and dos Anjos holds tight. Lawler spins and dos Anjos tries to get his back. Dos Anjos holding Lawler down against the fence and they stand. Lawler clinches and throwing body hooks once again. Dos Anjos stuck in the clinch and Lawler is bombing his ribs with hooks. Big hooks from Lawler and dos Anjos lands a big elbow that drops Lawler. Dos Anjos jumps on top and Lawler holds on. Dos Anjos moves into half guard and lands short elbows. Lawler surviving and moving but dos Anjos holding strong on top. Round ends with dos Anjos in top control.
Peterson’s Analysis: 10-9 dos Anjos. That flurry against the fence and the knockdown with top control gets a big round for Rafael. Will be interesting to see what Lawler brings back.
Round 4: Body kick from Rafael followed by another. Lawler may have an injured right knee and dos Anjos lands a kick to that leg. Combos from Lawler against the fence. Clinch by dos Anjos and hooks to the body from Lawler. Body kick from dos Anjos. Big combo in close from dos Anjos. Dos Anjos lands a big combo and clinches on the fence. Knees to the body from dos Anjos. Both guys trade big shots and separate. Missed uppercut from Rafael. Clinch from dos Anjos and he’s really pushing the pace this round. Dos Anjos continues to kick the injured leg of Lawler. Dos Anjos landing close punches and they clinch again. Great combo and a blocked headkick from dos Anjos. Pair of missed hooks from Lawler and dos Anjos throws a flying knee. Round ends with dos Anjos landing a big elbow.
Peterson’s Analysis: 10-9 dos Anjos. Lawler’s knee is messed up and dos Anjos is taking control.
Round 5: Apparently it’s the left leg of Lawler that’s messed up. Either way, he’s having trouble moving. Both guys trading jabs and kicks from dos Anjos. Hooks to the head lands for Lawler and dos Anjos fires back. Clinch from dos Anjos and he lands a short elbow. Double leg takedown from dos Anjos and Lawler holds on from the seat against the cage. Dos Anjos can’t move and they’re stood up. Jab from Lawler and dos Anjos back into the clinch. Takedown attempt from dos Anjos and he’s working Lawler in the clinch so far. Great short elbows from dos Anjos. Lawler is exhausted and dos Anjos is landing clean. Great work from dos Anjos in moving between takedown attempts, clinching and short strikes. Lawler pushes free with the jab and they trade strikes again. Lawler backs against the fence and a flying knee from dos Anjos. Dos Anjos grabs the clinch and he’s working Lawler now. Lawler needs something big this round. Round ends with Lawler hands down staring at Rafael.
Peterson’s Analysis: 10-9 dos Anjos. Really good round from Rafael. He fought smart and worked an amazing clinch and striking game. Should be decision for him.
Rafael dos Anjos def. Robbie Lawler via unanimous decision (50-45, 50-45, 50-45)
Peterson’s Analysis: Really great fight for Rafael dos Anjos. He’s looked great at 170 lbs and deserves the next fight for the title. He’s got skills that could pose a real issue for the champ Woodley and I’m excited to see what happens next.
Awesome card tonight. There were some great finishes from Teixeira and Emmett and we saw Rafael dos Anjos emerge as a huge contender for the welterweight title. It’s been my pleasure to be with all you guys for fight night today and be sure to stick with MMATorch for all your MMA needs!