Beyond the Octagon: UFC vets go 6-5 in U.S. shows

UFC, Bellator, and Strikeforce alumni peopled a busy weekend for domestic regional MMA shows, with veterans of the Octagon turning in mixed results, though…

By: Rainer Lee | 8 years ago
Beyond the Octagon: UFC vets go 6-5 in U.S. shows
Bloody Elbow 2.0 | Anton Tabuena

UFC, Bellator, and Strikeforce alumni peopled a busy weekend for domestic regional MMA shows, with veterans of the Octagon turning in mixed results, though that’s in large part due to them being matched up against one another. Case in point: Brock Jardine versus potent finisher Anthony Smith.

In the main event of Lincoln, Nebraska’s RFA 30, Smith (23-11, 2-0 Bellator, 0-1 UFC, 2-2 Strikeforce) continued his assault on the middleweight division, flooring Jardine (12-6, 0-2 UFC) with a straight right before finishing him with ground-and-pound three minutes into Round 1. The TKO win puts Smith on a six-fight win streak and ends a three-fight surge for Jardine.

Watch Smith vs. Jardine here. Fight starts at 2:10.

In the co-main event, Ryan Roberts (21-11-1, 0-2 Bellator, 0-1 UFC) saw a promising win streak come to a close following a strong three-round effort from Adam Townsend (14-3-0), who walked away with a unanimous decision victory and his eighth win in a row. Roberts, who’s recently claimed wins over L.C. Davis, Jeremy Spoon, Ramiro Hernandez, and Chase Beebe, falls to 5-1 since a 2011 appearance in Bellator.

And on Saturday, at Next Level FC 3 in North Carolina, Ultimate Fighter 13 rep Javier Torres (9-3-0) out-struck TUF 16 contestant Julian Lane (9-5-1) on his way to a split-decision victory. Lane, the former CES lighweight champion, moved up to middleweight for the bout. He’s lost two straight. Torres, who appeared on the reality show a mere two fights into his professional career, is 7-3 since his failed TUF bid.

Meanwhile, in  the main event of Wisconsin’s Chosen Few FC, Eric Schafer (14-7-2, 3-6 UFC) improved to 2-0 in his post-UFC career with a first-round arm-triangle choke of Eric Hammerich (7-11-0). In response to a fan who inquired about a fourth tour in the Octagon, Schafer demured: “I’m old as dirt,” he tweeted.

Schafer vs. Hammerich, as witnessed from the stands, can be seen here. Fight starts at 1:50.

And in beautiful Hammond, Indiana, UFC veterans Dan Stittgen (10-5, 0-2 UFC) and Jason Gilliam (14-7, 0-2 UFC) squared off for a main event bout with the United Combat League. Stittgen served as the opponent for Steven “Wonderboy” Thompson’s UFC debut, winding up on the wrong end of a rather spectacular knockout. He followed that up with an arguably winning effort against Marcelo Guimares, though Stittgen was ultimately handed a split-decision loss. As for Gilliam, his UFC career consisted of submission losses to Jamie Varner and Chris Lytle. In his latest outing the ground game would again prove to be Gilliam’s undoing, as Stittgen countered an opening kick with a double-leg, after which he steadily maneuvered into back mount, where he sunk in the rear-naked choke. With this submission, Stittgen claims the UCL welterweight title and improves to 3-2 in his post-UFC career.

Check out Stittgen vs. Gilliam here. Action at 2:00.

Last weekend also saw the dependably excellent Titan FC play host to some former UFC and Bellator talent. BE’s Michael Hutchinson has a full report on those fights here, but for those of you keeping score, there’s a breakdown of some post-UFC standings below.

Former Bellator lightweight contender Rick Hawn (21-4, 10-4 Bellator), the new Titan FC lightweight champion, defeated Pat Healy (29-20-1NC, 0-5-1NC UFC, 7-1 Strikeforce, 2-2 IFL) by split-decision. Hawn is 3-0 since his departure from Bellator; Healy falls to 3-1 since his release from the UFC in 2014.

Bellator tournament finalist Des Green slipped to 3-2 since his release from that organization as he dropped a unanimous decision to current Titan FC champion Andre Harrison (11-0-0).

With his second-round guillotine of Felipe Efrain (9-2-0), Tim Elliott (12-6, 2-4 UFC) pushes himself to 2-0 since being cut by the UFC last February.

Steven Siler (27-14, 5-4 UFC) tied up a guillotine choke of his own in Round 1 of his fight with Austin Springer (8-1, 1-0 Bellator), handing Springer his first defeat and improving to 4-1 since the loss to Noad Lahat that ended his UFC run.

And earlier that night, Zak Bucia (15-6, 1-2 Strikeforce) extended his win-streak to four with a second-round rear-naked choke of Rasul Shovhalov (11-4-0).

Finally, some late-breaking results from Argentina where, as part of Arena Tour 7, Delson Heleno (27-8, 0-1 UFC, 6-4 IFL) took a unanimous decision victory over Tim Ruberg (12-3, 2-0 Bellator). Heleno is 4-1 since his TKO loss to Francisco Trinaldo at UFC 147.

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