Light heavyweight Devin Clark(8-2) vs. Mike Rodriguez(9-2)
Preview: Devin Clark was first discovered on Dana Whites Looking for a Fight show. He has since won 2 of his 4 UFC appearances, and will be looking to avoid a second straight loss tonight. Mike Rodriguez last competed on Dana Whites Tuesday Night Contender Series and will be making his official UFC debut against Clark.
Round 1: And here we go. Clark doesn’t waste much time and closes the distance, and forces Clark against the cage. Rodriguez is the much longer fighter, but Clark is taking that advantage away by using this type of pressure. The ref steps in and they are separated. Rodriguez lands a big shot and Clark is down, he is looking for a body lock, but Rodriguez lands another nice right hand. Clark gets the body lock and again forces Rodriguez against the fence. He’s looking for a high-crotch single, but Rodriguez has some long legs and they’re making it difficult. Rodriguez attempted a flying knee but couldn’t connect and Clark takes him down. Clark takes the back and is landing short shots as the round ends. Rodriguez landed some nice shots, but Clark controlled the pace and landed several takedowns. Plus, he ended the round in top position. 10-9 Clark
Round 2: Rodriguez is looking good on the feet early and lands a nice knee to the body. Clark again pushes the fight to the cage, and he knows that Rodriguez can’t do much here. Nice short elbow by Clark as they separate. Rodriguez is showing himself to be the superior fighter on the feet. Clark is getting hit a lot and really isn’t offering any offense on the feet. Doesn’t matter though because he quickly closes the distance again and Rodriguez is back stuck against the fence. They separate but Devin Clark gets a big double leg and lands some solid shots on the ground. Rodriguez makes his way back to his feet, but he is having a hard time dealing with the pressure, and Clark is applying plenty of it. 10-9 Clark
Clark tags Rodriguez here in round 2! #UFC223 pic.twitter.com/ZU9up4hbwk
— UFC (@ufc) April 8, 2018
Round 3: Clark quickly gets another takedown and Rodriguez is showing his frustration. Clark has been relentless here, and it’s been his best performance. Rodriguez works his way up, only for Clark to take him right back down. Clark is in Rodriguez’ guard, which doesn’t seem to be very offensive. Clark is controlling the wrist and just won’t let Rodriguez up. Clark is landing some nice shots to the face and body. 10-9 (30-27 Clark)
Result: Devin Clark def. Mike Rodriguez via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Women’s flyweight Bec Rawlings(7-7) vs. Ashlee Evans-Smith(5-3)
Preview: Bec Rawlings is 2-4 in the UFC and is riding a three-fight losing streak. Evans-Smith is 2-3 and has lost two straight in the UFC. Evans-Smith holds a notable win over Marion Reneau in the UFC. On a side note she also has a victory over controversial fighter Fallon Fox.
Round 1: They’re exchanging early. Evans-Smith has a clear reach advantage and is landing lots of shots here early. Rawlings isn’t offering up much of anything aside from the occasional low kick. Evans-Smith isn’t showing her opponent any respect, and Rawlings needs to change that. 10-9 Evans-Smith
Round 2: Slow pace to start the second round. Rawlings is showing no sense of urgency in what is most likely a fight that she must win if she wants to keep her job. Nice right hand by Rawlings, but no follow up. Evans-Smith lands a knee and they briefly clinch but neither fighter lands anything of note. Rawlings is having some success landing her right straight and it seems to be slowing Evans-Smith down at least a little bit. Evans-Smith is back to keeping a pretty steady pace and landing. 10-9 Evans-Smith
They're swinging here in round 2!@RowdyBec vs @AshleeMMA on @FS1 NOW! #UFC223 pic.twitter.com/9bRlh3LV53
— UFC (@ufc) April 8, 2018
Round 3: Rawlings is throwing lots of jabs, but she probably needs a finish here. Nice left hook to the body by Evans-Smith. She has thrown 244 strikes according to Jon Anik. She has far outpaced Rawlings here tonight. Rawlings throws a low kick and Evans-Smith makes her pay with a left hook. Honestly Evans-Smith just appears to be a more skilled fighter all around. 10-9 Evans-Smith (30-27 Evans-Smith)
Result: Ashlee Evans-Smith def. Bec Rawlings via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27,30-27)
Lightweight #14Evan Dunham(18-6-1) vs. Olivier Aubin-Mercier(11-2)
Preview: Evan Dunham is one of the more experienced fighters in the UFC Lightweight division. He holds an 11-6-1 record in the UFC and is currently riding a 5-fight unbeaten streak (4-0-1). Aubin-Mercier has won 3 straight and is 6-2 overall in the UFC. Evan Dunham is a big step up in competition for him though, and his toughest test to date.
Round 1: Olivier Aubin Mercier looks a little rough early and Dunham is lands a nice jab. Aubin-Mercier looks for a clinch and gets it, control the wrist, and lands a hard knee to the body. Dunham is down! Dunham is turtled up and Aubin-Mercier is landing some bits shots! Its Over!
Result: Olivier Aubin Mercier def. Evan Dunham via TKO (Knee to body) Round 1, 0:53
Women’s strawweight #4Karolina Kowalkiewicz(11-2) vs. #8Felice Herrig(14-6)
Preview: Karolina Kowalkiewicz is a former title challenger. She holds a 4-2 record in the UFC and will be looking to win her second straight fighter after losing back to back. She also holds a notable win over current champion, Rose Namajunas. Felice Herrig is a long-time vet of the sport but is just now coming into her own. She is riding a 4-fight win streak and is 5-1 overall in the UFC. This will be her biggest test to date and could have title implications for both women.
Round 1: Felice Herrig fires the first shot and lands a solid right hand on Karolina Kowalkiewicz. Kowalkiewicz grabs a clinch and they are exchanging in a flurry. Herrig is throwing hooks that are forcing Kowalkiewicz backwards into the cage. Herrig looking for a hip toss but she can’t quite get it. Kowalkiewicz rolls for a kneebar but Herrig avoids it as the round ends. 10-9 Herrig
Round 2: Kowalkiewicz is looking a little better on the feet here in the early part of the round. Herrig was very aggressive in the first round, it will be interesting to see how this fight plays out for her. Kowalkiewicz is having success landing in the clinch, landing lots of knees and elbows. Kowalkiewicz is looking for a takedown against the fence and it looks like she’s going to get it. They’re exchanging a lot of combos on the feet and it seems like Kowalkiewicz is landing more than Herrig. 10-9 Kowalkiewicz
Round 3: Kowalkiewicz is getting in and landing shots and while Herrig is throwing big counters I don’t think she’s really connecting. She seems to have given up on her wrestling game and isn’t having a ton of success on her feet. Herrig is turning it up in the final moments of the round and she lands a hard shot that staggers Kowalkiewicz! She follows it up with a clinch though, maybe not the best decision if she is looking for a finish. Great fight. 10-9 Kowalkiewicz but it could go either way depending on how the judge weigh the final seconds of the third round. (29-28 Kowalkiewicz)
Result: Karolina Kowalkiewicz def. Felice Herrig via Split Decision (29-28,28-29,29-28)
Main Card (pay-per-view)
Lightweight Joe Lauzon(27-15) vs. Chris Gruetzemacher(13-3)
Preview: Joe Lauzon has been in the UFC since 2006 and debuted with a win over former World Champion Jens Pulver. He holds a 14-11 record in the UFC but has lost two straight. He is notable for his 15 Performance Bonus awards. Chris Gruetzmacher is a little newer to the scene. This will be his 4th fight in the UFC, and he is also on a two-fight losing streak.
Round 1: Chris Gruetzmacher comes out with a body hook and it wakes Joe Lauzon up! Lauzon lands some hard shots and Gruetzmacher is backing up. Lauzon goes for an ankle but Gruetzmacher sprawls. Lauzon has his opponent in the butterfly guard and is now looking for a kneebar. This is a dangerous game that Gruetzmacher is playing. They are back on the feet and Lauzon is landing some nice shots including a front kick to the face. Lauzon is landing some nice elbows, he’s looking like the superior fighter on the feet and on the ground. Gruetzmacher is not fighting with the sort of pressure that he usually fights with. Just as I say that he moves in and lands a nice right hook, uppercut combination. Close round. 10-9 Lauzon
Round 2: Lauzon appears to be tired here. Gruetzmacher is landing some nice shots, the momentum has certainly shifted. Lauzons right is busted, and its clearly effecting his vision. He looks very sluggish and Gruetzmacher is starting to turn it up. Joe Rogan is basically giving a eulogy for Joe Lauzon right now…He’s always good for entertainment. Lauzon needs to make something happen though, he’s just a punching bag. Gruetzmacher has a clinch and is landing some sharp elbows, but Lauzon is starting to throw a few back. Lauzon looks like a character from the walking dead right now, and I don’t mean one of the live ones. Jab, straight right combo by Lauzon but he it didn’t have much power. Gruetzmacher is relentless. 10-8 Gruetzmacher.
Gruetzemacher pouring it on in round 2!@SodaPopFuzz #UFC223 pic.twitter.com/5mua9HW8xR
— UFC (@ufc) April 8, 2018
Joe Lauzons corner is not letting him go into the third round. Nice win for Gruetzmacher, and I don’t mean to sound like Rogan, but it seems like we might be seeing the end of Joe Lauzon here tonight. Tough loss for him.
Result: Chris Gruetzmacher def. Joe Lauzon via TKO (Corner Stoppage) Round 2, 5:00
Featherweight Zabit Magomedsharipov(14-1) vs. Kyle Bochniak(8-2)
Preview: Magomedsharipov is 2-0 in the UFC and has earned a performance of the night bonus in both victories. He is a former ACB Featherweight Champion and holds a 14-1 record overall. Bochniak is 2-2 in 4 UFC appearances and is coming off a victory over Brandon Davis.
Round 1: Bochniak is aggressive early and has Magomedsharipov backing up. Magomed just threw the fastest leg kick that I’ve seen in a while and followed it up with a nice left hand. He lands a nice body kick, his strikes come super-fast. Bochniak backs his opponent up with a left body shot and a nice overhand right. Magomedsharipov just threw a spinning back kick and followed it up with a switch kick, I think. Honestly it happened so fast that it was hard to tell. Bochniak has the right strategy but can’t land flush with the over hand. Magomedsharipov lands a hard-spinning back fist, but Bochniak is tough. 10-9 Magomedsharipov
Round 2: Magomedsharipov gets a body lock and was looking for a German suplex but Bochniak defended. Magomedsharipov gets the back, and quickly transitions to the top and is in Bochniak’s guard. Back on the feet and Magomedsharipov is picking Bochniak apart. They’re exchanging, and Magomedsharipov just…I don’t even know. He grabbed Bochniak by the face and threw him to the ground. Bochniak is looking for a triangle but can’t get it and they’re back on the feet. 10-9 Magomedsharipov
Round 3: Bochniak is coming into the round like a man possessed and is throwing for the fences. Magomedsharipov gets the takedown, and quickly takes the back. Bochniak is not giving up but he just doesn’t have much to offer at this point. Magomedsharipov went for an armbar, but Bochniak managed to shake him. Bochniak was looking for a single leg but Magomedsharipov countered. Bochniak is turning it up late! He is landing some big shots! Magomedsharipov is firing back! Damn that was a good fight. 10-9 Bochniak (29-28 Magomedsharipov)
WHAT. A. FIGHT!!! #UFC223 pic.twitter.com/o6XopswJOu
— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) April 8, 2018
Result: Zabit Magomedsharipov def. Kyle Bochniak via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Featherweight #11Renato Moicano(11-1-1) vs. #13Calvin Kattar(18-2)
Preview: Renato Moicano is undefeated except for a loss to current Featherweight top contender Brian Ortega. He is a BJJ Blackbelt and holds a 3-1 record in the UFC including a notable victory over top ranked Jeremy Stephens. Kattar is 2-0 in the UFC and 18-2 overall in his MMA career. Both are ranked in the top 15 and will probably break into the top 10 with a win.
Round 1: Calvin Kattar gets through with a big right hand early and has Moicano on his heels. Moicano seems a bit nervous since catching that right hand. His strikes are rushed, and they aren’t landing. Kattar is having some success with his jab but leaving himself open to leg kicks. Moicano is finding a rhythm with his leg kicks, and Kattar doesn’t seem to have an answer for them. Moicano is starting to get his confidence back as the round ends. 10-9 Moicano
Round 2: Kattar throws a right hand early but gets countered, and Moicano rushes in but can’t find an opening. Nice head kick by Moicano. The diversity of Moicano’s strikes is giving Kattar all sorts of problems. Kattar seems to have a standard American kickboxing style. Moicano is taking advantage of it. He went for a takedown, but Kattar shook it and they’re back in the center. More leg kicks by Moicano, still uncontested by Kattar. Jimmy Smith just noted that Kattar’s movement appears effected by the leg kicks, I agree. Moicano is butchering the left leg of Kattar who is starting to show his frustrations. 10-9 Moicano
Round 3: Kattar catches a low kick and takes Moicano down in the opening seconds but can’t keep him down. Kattar is attacking the body and really isn’t showing the effects of the leg kicks at this point, at least not to the degree that you would expect. Kattar is looking for the big shot but its evaded him all night and its continuing to do so. Moicano with a hard-right hand and he might have hurt Kattar there. Moicano backs Kattar up with a body kick and lands a nice uppercut as well. Calvin Kattar is bleeding everywhere, Jim Ross would be losing his mind if he was calling this fight right now. 10-9 Moicano (30-27 Moicano)
Result: Renato “Moicano” def. Calvin Kattar vis Unanimous Decision
Women’s strawweight championship (c)Rose Namajunas(8-3) vs. #1Joanna Jędrzejczyk(14-1)
Preview: This is the second time that these two have competed. Namajunas picked up a huge upset KO win in the first fight and will be looking to follow that performance up with something just as spectacular. She holds a 5-2 record in the UFC. Joanna Jedrzejczyk holds an 8-1 record and was the long-time champion before her recent loss to Namajunas.
Round 1: Joanna comes out aggressive throwing jabs and low kicks. Rose is taking her time and picking her shots. Rose lands a big right hand, her most notable strike of the round. Joanna is landing the low kick whenever she wants but they don’t have a ton of heat on them. Namajunas is going in, landing, and getting out and its frustrating Joanna a bit. They both land solid shots as the round ends but Namajunas landed the harder ones. 10-9 Namajunas
OH! @RoseNamajunas tags Joanna at the end of round 1!! #UFC223 pic.twitter.com/mwxx599dPb
— UFC (@ufc) April 8, 2018
Round 2: Namajunas lands some big shots early, and Joanna returns a jab of her own. Joanna is continuing to land leg kicks whenever she wants them. I think these could be a factor if this fight last into the later rounds. For now, that Namajunas is out striking a multiple time world muay thai champion. Namajunas gets a clinch and Joanna is briefly against the fence, but they quickly separate. Namajunas lands a hard-left hand, Joanna appears a bit lost right now. They are back against the fence, with Rose in control but Joanna is landing some nice knees as the round ends. 10-9 Namajunas
Round 3: Namajunas lands a big right hand to start the round, but Joanna laughs it off. We know what that usually means. Despite the very biased commentary from the UFC commentators right now, Joanna is having a few good moments here. She is landing the leg kick, but Rose is just keeping on her. Nice head kick by Joanna and she follows it up with a stiff right hand. Namajunas really needs to figure these leg kicks out, Joanna is landing them whenever she wants. Nice exchange, with both women landing, but as they separate Joanna landed another hard leg kick. Joanna is starting to land a lot more here, and Namajunas is looking tired. Namajunas needs to recompose herself. The championship rounds are ahead. 10-9 Jedrzejczyk
Round 4: Joanna opens with a hard leg kick. Rose is looking to establish the jab, but she isn’t finding it. Joanna is moving very well right now, and Rose appears a bit lost. Joanna is coming forward and Rose is bailing without looking for counters. Joanna has landed 32 leg kicks at this point, and they are dictating this fight. Rose must figure something out here. She is starting to find more success in these exchanges, and Rose is allowing it to happen. Joanna appears much more comfortable in this round that she has at any other point during the fight. 10-9 Jedrzejczyk
They're throwing leather in round 4!!
What a fight between @RoseNamajunas and @JoannaMMA! #UFC223 pic.twitter.com/Wu2rImxWUs
— UFC (@ufc) April 8, 2018
Round 5: Joanna lands a leg kick as the round begins. Namajunas lands a nice left hand! She follows it up with a straight right! She is looking good so far in this round. Namajunas is attacking, and Joanna is feeling the hurt. Namajunas lands a hard uppercut, and Joanna is showing a lot of damage on her face. Joanna looks for a high kick, but Namajunas gets an arm up. Joanna lands a hard-right hand with a minute left in the fight. Joanna with another hard leg kick. Rose gets a takedown late but isn’t doing anything with it. 10-9 Jedrzejczyk (47-46 Jedrzejczyk)
Result: Rose Namajunas def. Joanna Jedrzejczyk via Unanimous Decision (49-46,49-46,49-46)
Lightweight championship #2Khabib Nurmagomedov(25-0) vs. #11Al Iaquinta(13-3-1)
Round 1: Khabib gets a takedown early, but Iaquinta fights back to his feet. Khabib gets him right back down though, and briefly has the back. Khabib is landing some short ground and pound, and Iaquinta is stuck here. More of the same. Khabib picks Iaquinta up and puts him right back down. 10-9 Khabib
Round 2: Khabib gets an early takedown and is dominating with control. He gets the back with 2 minutes remaining in the round, and is looking for a rear naked choke, but Iaquinta escapes. Khabib is in full mount, and quickly gets the back again. He is looking for the rear naked choke again, but Iaquinta isn’t giving it up easily. 10-8 Khabib
Round 3: Iaquinta lands a jab to start the round. Khabib returns the favor. Khabib is landing the jab at will, and Iaquinta is just letting it happen. Khabib looks for a takedown but can’t get it. Nice right hand by Iaquinta. He is busting Iaquinta up with his jab. Nice jab by Iaquinta. Khabib has a good jab. 10-9 Khabib
Round 4: Iaquinta lands a nice jab. Khabib lands a nice right hook in return. Khabib went for an ankle pick bout Iaquinta shook it off and they’re back in the center. Nice body shots by Iaquinta. Iaquinta went for a takedown, Khabib shoot it, but Iaquinta landed a hard shot on the way out. Iaquinta just landed a hard-right hand, and another. 10-9 Khabib This is the most competitive fight we’ve seen Khabib in.
Round 5: Nice left hook by Iaquinta. This is a strange strategy for Khabib, but he is showing that he is better on the feet at least than I thought he was. Iaquinta fakes a takedown and lands a nice uppercut. Iaquinta just shook another Khabib takedown attempt. Khabib with a flying knee, and another takedown. He is controlling again, not much Iaquinta can do from here. Khabib was looking for a RNC but Iaquinta managed to escape. 10-9 Khabib (50-44 Khabib)
Result: Khabib Nurmagomedov def. Al Iaquinta via Unanimous Decision to become the UFC lightweight champion (50-43,50-43,50-43)
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