By: Frank Hyden, MMATorch Senior Columnist
Bellator 256 and UFC Fight Night: Vettori vs. Holland were both this past weekend. Let’s get to the rundown.
GOOD/BAD- Goiti Yamauchi vs. Dan Moret
Moret drops Yamauchi in the first round but he’s right back up. They go to the ground and Yamauchi keeps trying to get the submission. The second round sees Yamauchi get a takedown and starts trying for the submission. Moret lands a few decent strikes in the third round but it’s not enough and Yamauchi gets the split decision victory from the judges. Good win for Yamauchi.
GOOD- Adam Borics vs. Jeremy Kennedy
The first round was close, with Borics landing some nice shots and Kennedy getting a late takedown. Borics bloodies up Kennedy in the second round and dropped him in the third round. Kennedy is more active with his grappling but Borics wins the decision. Good win for Borics.
GOOD- Cat Zingano submits Olivia Parker
Zingano got an early takedown and, after some good grappling from both of them, locks in an armbar and gets the submission. Good win for Zingano.
BAD- Liz Carmouche vs. Vanessa Porto
The first round saw little action aside from some Carmouche body kicks. Not much more going on in the second round except a Carmouche slam. The third round was more of the same. Carmouche showed good defense throughout the fight and that got her the decision victory. I didn’t like this fight much at all, but at least they were trying. Nice win for Carmouche.
GOOD/BAD- Ryan Bader vs. Lyoto Machida
This was the first match in the Bellator Light Heavyweight World Grand Prix. Machida landed some good body kicks in the first and Bader couldn’t get going. Bader did much better in the second round, though, getting a takedown and having some striking success. Machida did land some nice shots of his own, though. The third round saw Bader get another takedown and go to work, bloddying up Machida and grinding him. Bader got an early takedown in the fourth round and started grinding Machida down even more. The fifth round saw Bader get another early takedown and basically beat up Machida for the rest of the fight. It wasn’t the most exciting thing to watch, but it was very effective. Bader got the decision win and advances to the semifinals. Good win for Bader on a night where 4 of the 5 main card fights (and 10 of the 13 total fights) went the distance.
UFC Fight Night: Vettori vs. Holland
GOOD- Mike Perry vs. Daniel Rodriguez
Rodriguez came out with the better striking in round one. Perry got a takedown in the second round but Rodriguez with more powerful striking that’s wearing Perry down. The third round saw Rodriguez continue beating Perry up with varied striking. Perry kept coming but this was mostly Rodriguez, and he got the decision win. Good win for Rodriguez.
GOOD- Mackenzie Dern submits Nina Nunes
Nunes had some nice striking early but it didn’t last, as Dern got a takedown and went to work, locking in an armbar to force the tap. Good win for Dern.
GOOD- Julian Marquez submits Sam Alvey
Marquez showed some good striking in the first round, but Alvey landed some good shots of his own. Marquez got rocked early in the second round, then staggered Alvey with a counter right hand before hitting with a couple big left hooks that dropped him. He hammered Alvey a few times before locking in a raer-naked choke and getting the submission. Good win for Marquez.
GOOD- Arnold Allen vs. Sodiq Yusuff
Arnold got an early takedown and also landed some big left hands, including one that dropped Yusuff. Another Allen takedown and some striking exchanges ended the first round. They traded some nice strikes in the second round before Allen landed a headkick but Yusuff survived. Allen gassed in the third round and Yusuff was able to land some good strikes. It wasn’t enough, though, as Allen got the decision victory. Good win for Allen.
GOOD/BAD- Marvin Vettori vs. Kevin Holland
Vettori got the better of the exchanges in the first round. It was the same in the second round, with Vettori getting some takedowns. The third round saw more grappling from Vettori that Holland couldn’t stop. Wash, rinse, and repeat in the fourth and fifth rounds and that’s the fight. The effort was there but this made me want to change the channel. Like I’ve said previously, if a guy wins the first three rounds, the fight should be called. If you want to keep championship fights as they are now, that’s fine, but there was no reason for this fight to continue into the fourth and fifth rounds. Or at least the fight should have been called after the fourth round. The fourth round was just like the third round, which was just like the second round. So what happened in the fifth round? It was just like the fourth round. Why did we have to watch that? The whole idea that every main event has to be five rounds is arbitrary, it doesn’t have to be. Nobody was sitting on the edge of their seat during this fight hoping and praying for a fifth round. Holland took this fight on a week’s notice and just fought three weeks ago against Derek Brunson. I think it would have been okay to call this fight after the third or fourth rounds. Vettori said he wanted to rematch UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya after the win. It’s his fifth straight win so I could see the UFC going that way but this victory probably isn’t going to convince many people that Vettori would win that fight. Regardless, you do whatever it takes to win, even if it’s not very exciting. Good win for Vettori.
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