UFC Fight Night: Iaquinta vs. Cerrone
May 4, 2019
Ottawa, Ontario from Canadian Tire Centre
Live on ESPN+ (5 PM ET Prelims, 8 PM ET Main Card)
Cole Smith vs. Mitch Gagnon (Bantamweight)
Favorite: Mitch Gagnon -105
Round 1: 10-9 Smith
Round 2: They clinch early and Gagnon lands an uppercut as they separate. Smith is fighting at a bit of a range. He’s using front kicks and jabs to maintain it. Gagnon lands a hard jab and follows it up with an elbow against the fence. Smith works away from the fence and lands a nice combo ending with a low kick. Smith takes Gagnon down and sets two hooks after taking the back. Smith is threatening with a neck crank but gives it up to take the mount position. Smith transitions to the back and locks up a body triangle. Gagnon scrambles out of the position in the final seconds of the round. (10-9 Smith)
Round 3: Gagnon connects with a left hook to get things started. Smith lands a knee to the body. Gagnon connects with a big shot and Smith is hurt! Gagnon takes Smith down and attacks with an armbar! Smith is out but Gagnon sprawls a takedown and attacks with a guillotine! Smith could be int trouble here as this looks like a very tight choke! Smith is out with two and a half minutes left in the round. Smith is working from the top and from there he takes the back as Gagnon works for a better position. Smith is attacking with a rear naked choke but Gagnon is safe for now. (10-9 Gagnon) (29-28 Smith)
Result: Cole Smith def. Mitch Gagnon via Unanimous Decision
Analysis: This was the first fight for Mitch Gagnon if over three years. He looked rusty early on but really picked things up in the later rounds. As for Cole Smith, he really didn’t show anything spectacular aside from some good durability but this win gives him breathing room to continue his development.
Juan Adams vs. Arjan Bhullar (Heavyweight)
Favorite: Juan Adams -145
Round 1: Adams is testing the jab early on in the round. Bhullar is using some good head movement though. Adams rushes in and eats a right hand from Bhullar. Bhullar connects with a jab and then another! Adams isn’t showing much head movement and Bhullar seems to have noticed. Adams closes the distance and secures an under hook. Bhullar shakes him though, remember that he is an Olympic caliber wrestler. Adams secures another clinch and he’s working to force Bhullar against the fence. Adams lands a 1-2 and finishes the combo with a kick to the midsection. I really thought Adams would have the advantage when it comes to movement on the feet but Bhullar is looking crisper and technical so far. Adams appears a bit flustered perhaps, or maybe just not in rhythm yet. (10-9 Bhullar)
Round 2: Adams is pushing the pace early! He opens up with a flurry that forces Bhullar against the fence. They clinch, both are working for under hooks. Bhullar attacks for a single leg, drives forward and takes Adams down to the mat. Bhullar is working from the top half position. Bhullar lands a big elbow and uses it to try to get to mount. Adams bucks though and manages to keep Bhullar from passing. Adams has worked his way back to his feet and from there finds separation. Adams closes the distance again but he keeps losing the positional battles against the fence. (10-9 Bhullar)
Round 3: Adams opens the round with another flurry. Both guys appear relatively fresh, especially Adams. They trade right hands, and Adams then initiates the clinch. Both guys appear pretty tired by the mid-way point of the round. Lots of clinch fighting and wrist control but neither guy is landing much. Adams lands a knee to the body of Bhullar. Adams connects with a solid uppercut as Bhullar looks for a clinch. Bhullar completes a takedown and takes the top half guard position. Bhullar is opening up with some ground and pound in the final seconds of the round. (10-9 Bhullar) (30-27 Bhullar) Very close fight for the most part. Adams controlled most of the exchanges on the feet but Bhullar had success there and he dominated the ground aspects of the fight. The clinch was relatively even but Bhullar did score a takedown off a clinch.
Result: Arjan Bhullar def. Juan Adams via Unanimous Decision
Analysis: Bhullar called out Andrei Arlovski in his post-fight speech… Arlovski has lost three straight. Feels like a guy just looking for an easy win over a notable opponent. Adams needs work, especially his cardio and his overall stand up game.
Matt Sayles vs. Kyle Nelson (Featherweight)
Round 1: (10-9 Sayles)
Round 2: Sayles is looking for a takedown to get things going. Nelson secures a headlock though and keeps the fight standing. Nelson is keeping the pressure up though. Sayles seems to have lost a bit of steam. Nelson scores with a takedown and moves right to the back. He locks up a body triangle and he’s now threatening with an RNC. Nelson has an arm under the neck and Sayles might be in trouble here. Sayles maintains composure though and breaks the grip to escape the choke. Nelson is still tight on his back though with just over a minute left. (10-8 Nelson)
Round 3: Nelson scores quickly with a takedown. Sayles scrambles back to his feet but Nelson is staying on him with takedown attempts. Nelson shoots in but Sayles sweeps him to end up on top. He attacks with an arm triangle choke and Nelson taps. Nice submission win there for Sayles.
Result: Matt Sayles def. Kyle Nelson via Submission (Arm Triangle Choke) Round 3, 3:16
Editor’s note: Cole Henry has experienced a power failure so I’ll be updating some quick results and thoughts from in the arena until he’s back up and running.
(5) Aiemann Zahabi vs. Vince Morales
Zahabi got a good reaction during intros but the crowd wasn’t too into the fight. Not much to this fight. It was pretty even and mostly standing. It looked like Morales won to me.
Result: 29-28 x 3 Morales by unanimous decision
(6) Macy Chiasson vs. Sarah Moras
Sarah took her down right away. She held her down for a few minutes but she lost position and Chiasson nearly pounded her out. Second round Chiasson stuffed a takedown, mounted her and finished the job.
Result: Chiasson by TKO round two
My apologies folks. My entire neighborhood lost power, we were out in the streets rioting with clubs and flaming torches, and I did a lot of things I regret. All that matters is that I’m back now…
Andrew Sanchez vs. Marc Andre Barriault (Middleweight)
Favorite: Andrew Sanchez -190
Round 1: Sanchez shoots and scores with a single leg to get things started. Sanchez is landing elbows from the top position. Good control by Sanchez here on the ground. Barriault is up but Sanchez is still in control with an under hook against the fence. Sanchez opens up with a few hard knees but backs off after eating a good shot from Barriault. Sanchez shoots again and gets Barriault down, but Barriault explodes back to his feet and lands a few good shots as the round ends. (10-9 Sanchez)
Round 2: Andrew Sanchez is a former Ultimate Fighter winner… just thought I would remind everybody. Barriault lands an overhand right. He’s starting to loosen up here on the feet. Sanchez connects with a nice 1-2. Barriault connects with a left hook and a pair of uppercuts. Sanchez separates and shoots. Barriault defends the takedown but eats some hard hooks for his efforts. Barriault is landing some VIOLENT elbows from inside the clinch with his back against the fence… great stuff here. Sanchez avoids a right hand and lands one of his own! Barriault is stalking and lands a left hook! And then another! Barriault is opening up but Sanchez is taking everything he is dishing out! What a fight! (10-9 Barriault)
Round 3: Lots of boxing to start the round. Sanchez drops for a single but Barriault uses the fence to keep himself up… Sanchez is controlling the action with a pair of under hooks and he uses them to take the fight down. He is now working from top half. Barriault stands up but Sanchez uses the opportunity to take his back. Sanchez has completely neutralized Barriault here in this third round, which is a shame because the second round was a lot of fun. Barriault jumps guard in the final seconds of the round but Sanchez escapes the guillotine attempt and lands a few shots on the ground as the round ends. (10-9 Sanchez)
Result: Andrew Sanchez def. Marc Andre Barriault via Unanimous Decision
Walt Harris vs. Sergey Spivak (Heavyweight)
Favorite: Walt Harris -150
Round 1: Harris is opening up early with some big shots! Spivak is down and out early in the first round! Walt Harris opened up and took Spivak out… no questions asked.
Result: Walt Harris def. Sergey Spivak via TKO (Punches) Round 1, 0:50
Analysis: Walt Harris was the top heavyweight prospect in MMA years ago. He never lived up to that hype but he might finally be coming around. That was an absolutely phenomenal performance. Post-fight he called out Justin Willis for Abu Dhabi.
Merab Dvalishvili vs. Brad Katona (Bantamweight)
Favorite: Merab Dvalishvili -165
Round 1: Katona uncorks a nice left hand to get things going, but Merab returns one of his own. Merab connects with a left and then a right hook. From there he scores with a takedown. Katona pops right up though and we are back on the feet. Katona connects with a left hook and changes levels for a takedown. Merab is defending though and both men are working for a dominant position in the clinch. Merab scores with a takedown and he’s now working from top half. Katona recovers guard but Merab uncorks several hard shots as the round ends. (10-9 Merab Dvalishvili)
Round 2: Merab scores with a takedown right out of the gate. We have one and a half minutes left in the round and we are finally getting a stand up after quite a bit of inactivity. Katona eats a right hand to secure a body lock. He has one minute to make something happen here. Katona is scoring with some knees against the fence but Merab manages to take him down with a trip in the waning seconds of the round. (10-9 Dvalishvili) Not a very close fight… Dvalishvili’s wrestling is the story of this fight and Katona just doesn’t have an answer for it.
Round 3: Merab is looking to score with a single leg. Katona defends though and keeps the fight on the feet. That was a crucial move for him there. Merab shoots again and this time completes the takedown. He is working from top half guard with two minutes remaining in the fight. Both guys are busted open, its been a gritty fight but Dvalishvili has been the far superior fighter. Katona lands a nice up kick but it won’t be enough. (10-9 Dvalishvili) (30-27 Dvalishvili)
Result: Merab Dvalishvili def. Brad Katona via Unanimous Decision
Shane Burgos vs. Cub Swanson (Featherweight)
Favorite: Shane Burgos -150
Round 1: Burgos connects with a left hook/right hook combination and finishes it off with a kick to the midsection. Burgos has a quick jab and he is utilizing it well so far tonight. Swanson is mixing things up well here in the early part of the first round. Swanson connects with a left hook/Headkick combination but Burgos is durable. Burgos cracks Swanson again with that left hand. Swanson is landing but he’s having to really reach to connect with the much longer Burgos. (10-9 Swanson) Burgos did work with his jab but Swanson led the dance for the most part. His strikes were a bit more powerful and he threw and connected at a higher volume.
Round 2: Swanson lands a big right hand, first notable strike of the round. Burgos connects with a solid 1-2 and then an uppercut. Burgos connects with a right uppercut! Swanson returns a right straight! They’re trading leg kicks and punches, nobody is pulling ahead, very close fight. (10-9 Swanson?) Its really hard to say… this fight is very close, and neither guy is doing much to separate from the other.
Round 3: Swanson lands a low kick/Right straight combination. Double jab lands for Swanson. He’s mixing things up, attacking the head and the body. Swanson drops for a takedown, Burgos is defending, but Swanson is still on his back with a body lock. Swanson is maintaining the body lock and landing some hard knees to the body and legs of Shane Burgos. They return to the center at the two-minute mark. Burgos is starting to pick things up a bit, but Swanson tags him with a left hand to keep him honest. Swanson is looking for a takedown in the final moments but Burgos hits the fence to keep himself standing. (10-9 Burgos) Very hard fight to score… (29-28 Swanson) But it could go either way. Burgos has an argument for all three rounds as does Swanson.
Result: Shane Burgos def. Cub Swanson via Split Decision
Analysis: The score cards were all over the place. Burgos deserved the win and definitely deserves a higher number next to his name.
Derek Brunson vs. Elias Theodorou (Middleweight)
Round 1: Brunson scores with a takedown early. Elias is working to get up but Brunson takes his back and sets two hooks. Brunson is looking for an RNC but Elias is in a good position to escape, and he does just that. They’re up but Brunson is still controlling things, this time against the fence. Odd contrast of styles here. Elias is looking for a single leg but Brunson sprawls. Very tedious fight here… (10-9 Brunson)
Round 2: Elias is having more luck with his kicks in this round but he is also running away from a lot of these exchanges. His game plan just doesn’t seem to be working against Brunson, but Brunson isn’t exactly a ball of fire either. Elias connects to the body with a side kick. Brunson is having a difficult time getting a hold of Elias, he seems to just be following him waiting for something to happen. Brunson connects with a left hand but it mostly hit the shoulder. Brunson connects with a high kick but Elias appears to be okay. Elias connects again with a kick to the midsection. (10-9 Elias Theodorou)
Round 3: Brunson is looking for a takedown early and he gets it. That’s number 3 on the night for the former All American. Elias is up but Brunson takes him down again! Elias rolls through it though and we’re back on the feet. Brunson lands a straight right and then picks Elias up and slams him! Brunson is now working from side control! Elias is trying to stand but Brunson is controlling him with a clinch. (10-9 Brunson)
Result: Derek Brunson def. Elias Theodorou via Unanimous Decision
Donald Cerrone vs. Al Iaquinta (Lightweight)
Favorite: Al Iaquinta -105
Round 1: We see a couple of good exchanges to start the round. Neither guy appears to have found his rhythm yet though. Iaquinta connects with a counter right hand after catching a kick intended for his midsection. Iaquinta lands an uppercut at the one-minute mark. Iaquinta reaches in for a takedown and eats a kick to the face for his efforts. Good round. (10-9 Cerrone)
Round 2: Iaquinta is connecting early. He catches a kick and lands a right hand, just like he did in the first round. Cerrone is attacking the lead leg. Iaquinta connects with a left hook to the body, and then a right to the face! Iaquinta follows it up with another right hand! Cerrone connects with a low kick but Iaquinta counters with a right hand! Good round, Iaquinta just edged it in my opinion. (10-9 Iaquinta)
Round 3: Iaquinta connects with a jab and a body kick. Iaquinta is bleeding from around his right eye. Cerrone is bashing in the lead leg with kicks and Iaquinta isn’t countering nearly enough. Cerrone scores with a quick 1-2 combo! Iaquinta returns a right hand over the top! That combo from Cerrone busted open the bridge of Iaquinta’s nose. I thought Cerrone was targeting the lead leg this whole time but I thin its just been the left leg in general. It’s an absolute mess. Cerrone lands a well-placed jab and Iaquinta is down! Cerrone follows him and lands a few shots just before the round ends. (10-9 Cerrone)
Round 4: Cerrone lands a big front kick to the face! He follows it up with a shot that puts Iaquinta down! Cerrone tries taking the back but Iaquinta scrambles to his feet. Iaquinta is now busted open under the left eye… we have a crimson mask here folks, that’s for sure. Iaquinta connects with a nice left hook! He needed that and he’ll need more of them. Iaquinta connects again with the same left hook. It’s a nice set up, he fakes to the body and hits the head instead. Cerrone connects with a left hook and uppercut! Great fight but man… Iaquinta is taking a beating. (10-9 Cerrone)
Round 5: Iaquinta looks a lot fresher in this round considering how badly he’s been beaten in this fight. Cerrone is staying on him though and Iaquinta can’t seem to make him miss. Iaquinta grabs a leg for a single but Cerrone shakes him. They are trading in the final moments of the round. Cerrone leaps for a flying knee but misses! Iaquinta is down and Cerrone and landing shots from the top! What a fight! (10-9 Cerrone)
Result: Donald Cerrone def. Al Iaquinta via Unanimous Decision
Analysis: I’ll be the first to say that I thought Al Iaquinta was going to win… but Donald Cerrone beat him from start to finish. It was a hell of a fight, and Cerrone remains a top contender after all of these years.