Join us tonight on Bloody Elbow for live results, detailed play-by-play and discussion as UFC Fight Night 89: MacDonald vs. Thompson takes flight from the TD Place Arena in Ottawa, Canada.
In the headliner, Canada’s own Rory MacDonald faces off with unorthodox striker Stephen Thompson while always game Donald Cerrone meets welterweight veteran Patrick Cote in the co-main. Also on the main card: light-heavyweights Steve Bosse and Sean O’Connell, lightweights Olivier Aubin-Mercier and Thibault Gouti and flyweights Valerie Letourneau and Joanne Calderwood.
Live results and play-by-play will commence with the Fight Pass prelims at 6:45 p.m. ET. The full lineup and schedule follows. Check out this week’s MMA Vivisection for predictions, analysis and betting odds on the each match up.
(Fox Sports 1, 10:30 p.m. ET)
Rory MacDonald vs. Stephen Thompson
R1: Thompson flicks a front-leg side kick from range. MacDonald rolls into a heel hook from open space but Thompson steps out of the valiant attempt. Thompson blocks a high kick and glances with a left cross. MacDonald tries to roll into another leg lock but this one was a bit forced and easily avoided by Thompson.
Front kick to the gut from Thompson. Front-leg side kick to the body is there for “Wonderboy.” MacDonald forces a clinch and lands a short horizontal elbow before Thompson pushes him onto the cage. Thompson steps back and separates with a flurry but MacDonald defends it well. 10-10.
R2: Hesitant jousting on the fringe from both men. Thompson still prodding with side and front kicks. MacDonald forces a quick clinch and glances with a round knee to the body but Thompson quickly disengages. Another rolling leg lock attempt from MacDonald and it’s nowhere close.
MacDonald commits to a single leg and can’t get it, but he lands an elbow on the break. Hard front-leg side kick to the gut lands for Thompson. He throws another and tries to tack on a question-mark kick to no avail. Another front-leg side kick scores to the body. 10-9 Thompson.
R3: MacDonald knifes forward with a pair of clubbing right hands and the second lands clean. MacDonald glances with a step-back jab, then grazes with a left hook. MacDonald forces a clinch but it’s Thompson who takes him to the floor. MacDonald swivels for a leg lock and referee John McCarthy swats his toes off the cage as they were illegally intertwined in the fence mesh. Thompson backs out and resets on the feet.
Short right hand lands for MacDonald. Thompson pivots right and lands short on a one-two. They trade kicks to the body. Outside low kick from Thompson, who switches to orthodox and snaps a jab. MacDonald glances with a right upstairs. 10-9 Thompson.
R4: Thompson continues to dictate range with a wide array of kicks, step-back counters and stance changes. Thompson lands a left body kick but he eats a hard right to the mouth. Thompson answers back with a clean uppercut and a left cross to the body. Chopping outside low kick from Thompson.
The crowd starts to murmur their disapproval at the monotonous pace. MacDonald lands a jab and Thompson sticks a harder left in his face. Heavy front-leg side kick lands for Thompson and he follows it with two right hands off his back foot. 10-9 Thompson.
R5: MacDonald vaults out of his corner with an aggressive combo but Thompson calmly sidesteps it and moves out into open space. MacDonald lands a hard left hook but Thompson plugs him with a counter. MacDonald drills him with another right hand as Thompson’s circling out. Thompson lands a spinning kick to the face though it lands with the foot.
MacDonald nose had already been bleeding but the last kick has increased the flow. MacDonald shoots a double leg but Thompson reverses him, landing on top and in MacDonald’s half guard. Short right elbows to the face from Thompson, then he disengages and lets MacDonald up.
They touch up and unwind mutual combinations at each other. Another kick to the body from Thompson. MacDonald misses with a hook but glances with an uppercut. Thompson stays on his bike and launches kicks from distance until the bell rings. 10-9 Thompson. I have it 50-46 Thompson.
- Stephen Thompson defeats Rory MacDonald by unanimous decision (50-45 x2, 48-47)
Donald Cerrone vs. Patrick Cote
R1: Cote plugs Cerrone with an overhand right early. Cerrone changes levels and hits a deep double leg with impeccable timing. Cote with a closed guard and a strong right over-hook. Good posture and wrist control from Cote, who then attacks with an omoplata that’s dangerous enough to facilitate Cote’s escape. Cerrone steps back and sights in a left high kick that Cote partially blocks. Another well-timed blast double from Cerrone.
Cerrone in half guard with a strong cross-face, then he goes cross-body, looking for a pass to mount. He gets it, then immediately takes Cote’s back and sinks on a body triangle. Cerrone gets under the neck briefly but Cote hand-fights the choke. Cote uses a kimura to shake Cerrone off of him. 10-9 Cerrone.
R2: Cerrone digs a right hand to the body, then blocks a Cote kick and lands a hard outside low kick. Cerrone bolts forward firing a combo as Cote covers up and defends. Another sharp outside low kick from Cerrone. Cote answers with a glancing one but Cerrone digs his shin with another. And another. Cote glances with a counter right. Cerrone glances with a counter left, then lands another low kick. Cote with an uppercut.
Cerrone again counters a Cote kick with a nasty inside low kick. No dice on Cerrone’s duck-under takedown but he didn’t really commit to it. Cerrone blasts Cote in the jaw with a left hook and adds in an inside low kick for good measure. Cerrone steps in to throw an uppercut back elbow but it’s his follow-up left hand that sinks Cote to the canvas. Cerrone backs off and lets him up, easily sidestepping Cote’s takedown attempt. Rear-leg teep scores to the body for Cerrone, and he follows with a sharp boxing flurry that ends with a body shot. 10-8 Cerrone.
R3: Cerrone opens with a crushing low kick. Cote commits to a one-two but Cerrone ducks it and drops him again with a left hook. Cote goes for a counter single an Cerrone backs off to let him stand up. Cote switches stances to protect his lead leg from the low-kick punishment, but Cerrone gladly obliges him by zinging his other leg with a low kick. Cerrone reaches out for the single collar tie and surprisingly throws a right high kick when he gets it.
Cote crumples to the canvas again courtesy of another Cerrone left hook and a straight right. This time Cerrone swarms Cote on the ground and finishes him with a flurry of strikes.
- Donald Cerrone defeats Patrick Cote by TKO (punches) R3 2:35
Steve Bosse vs. Sean O’Connell
R1: Bosse sits down on a pair of heavy rights early. They both sit down on consecutive right hands, both landing. Bosse follows with another clean right hand. Inside low kick from O’Connell. Bosse comes forward throwing more heaters but O’Connell plugs him with a quick left counter, then stays on the trigger and flattens Bosse with a charging left hook. Bosse goes onto his back and looks out or close to it, but he manages to recover with amazing quickness and fights back to his feet.
Bosse lands a hard right to break the clinch. O’Connell lands a body kick and again plugs Bosse with a left hook before clinching up. The pace finally normalizes as O’Connell keeps Bosse trapped on the cage. Bosse doubles up on rights to the body to separate, then lands a right cross in open space. Bosse whiffs on a spinning back fist. 10-9 O’Connell.
R2: They square off in the center, again sitting down on heavy combinations with Bosse getting the better of the exchange. O’Connell changes levels and puts Bosse on the fence to slow Bosse’s early momentum. Bosse hits a whizzer throw but O’Connell pops back up to his feet, but he can’t finish a single leg. Bosse steps back and glances with a one-two.
Bosse dips down for an uppercut but he gets blasted by a left hook from O’Connell. Bosse responds with another zinger of a right hand and O’Connell loses his balance while throwing an improbable kick. Bosse stands over the grounded O’Connell, spearing right hands to the body. O’Connell catches him with an up-kick. Bosse dives into O’Connell’s guard, looking for more right hands. O’Connell goes onto his left hip and Bosse drives a volley of hammer-fists into his melon. O’Connell works back to his feet but eats a right uppercut from the single collar tie. 10-9 Bosse.
R3: O’Connell brazenly steps into an incoming flurry to land an inside low kick. Another sequence wherein both men hunker down and heave heaters at one another, both landing solidly. O’Connell dodges a Superman punch and glances with a right. O’Connell, likely suffering from a broken nose, freezes Bosse with a clean left hook. It’s difficult to put these insane exchanges into words, but this is definitely a fan-friendly, mutual bloodbath.
Bosse catches O’Connell with a right hand. O’Connell answers with a left hook. Bosse with another right. O’Connell blocks a spinning back fist. As the icing on the cake, the fighters high five and then close the round wailing away on each other. 10-10. I have it a 29-29 draw.
- Steve Bosse defeats Sean O’Connell by unanimous decision (29-28 x2, 29-27)
Olivier Aubin-Mercier vs. Thibault Gouti
R1: They trade jabs to start things off. Aubin-Mercier goes for a single leg and uses it to push Gouti on the fence. Serious strength shown by Gouti in merely pushing Aubin-Mercier’s head down and shoving him away, then he lands a hard right. Aubin-Mercier lands a left high kick but it lands with the foot, and Gouti crams a heavy jab in his face. Aubin-Mercier shoots again, this time peeling Gouti’s hips off the fence and taking him down. Half guard for Aubin-Mercier with Gouti’s head on the fence.
Left hand to the forehead from Aubin-Mercier, then a few more punches. Gouti creates space and tries to stand up but Aubin-Mercier moves to back control with a waist lock. Aubin-Mercier gets sloppy, rolling into a leg lock and sacrificing top position. Gouti drubs him with a big shot as soon as he gets on top but he can’t keep Aubin-Mercier down. Gouti scores with an uppercut. Gouti comes forward with a glancing right, then lets his hands go to close the round, landing most of his four-punch combo. 10-9 Gouti.
R2: Gouti scores with another uppercut and initiates a clinch, but separates soon after. Aubin-Mercier lands a one-two but can’t force a clinch after the combo. Gouti walks into a jab. Now a straight/hook counter lands for Aubin-Mercier. Gouti lunges forward with a clubbing right but he’s taken down by Aubin-Mercier.
Aubin-Mercier manages to keep position and land semi-effective ground strikes, still keeping Gouti’s head pressed on the fence. Now two left elbows to the face from Aubin-Mercier. Gouti closes his guard but leaves his hips flat on the canvas. Two short right elbows get through for Aubin-Mercier. 10-9 Aubin-Mercier.
R3: Aubin-Mercier shoots a single leg early, pushing Gouti onto the fence. Aubin-Mercier switches to the body lock and hits a hip throw, then moves to back control with both hooks in. Now a body triangle for Aubin-Mercier, and he nearly gets under the chin with a rear-naked choke. Gouti goes belly down, then turtles, trying to shake Aubin-Mercier off.
Gouti, starting to look desperate, goes back to his belly, then is forced to tapout immediately when he turtles.
- Olivier Aubin-Mercier defeats Thibault Gouti by submission (rear-naked choke) R3 2:28
Joanne Calderwood vs. Valerie Letourneau
R1: Letourneau snaps off a quick counter jab and a front kick to keep Calderwood at bay. Letourneau lands two short, sweeping rights to the face as Calderwood clinches. Letourneau circles off the fence and lands a right to the head. Calderwood cross-faces but can’t create enough space to escape, but she does circle off the fence. Outside trip for Calderwood and Letourneau immediately looks to swivel for an armbar. Despite telegraphing her intent, Calderwood nearly gets caught in it. Calderwood postures up and fires a right hand, and Letourneau goes for another armbar. Calderwood backs off to defend and it’s enough room for Letourneau to escape.
Calderwood lands a right cross and glances with a left. Front kick to the body from Calderwood, then an unreal spinning back fist that drops Letourneau to the canvas. Calderwood pounces but Letourneau recovers quickly, defending well in full guard. Letourneau closes her guard and gets wrist control to slow the pace. Calderwood backs out to reset on the feet. Another front kick to the body from Calderwood. Letourneau lands a sharp right to the face. Calderwood answers with a stiff jab. Calderwood lands a right hand and follows with an elbow. 10-9 Calderwood.
R2: Letourneau catches Calderwood by surprise with a left kick. More front kicks to the body from Calderwood. Letourneau lands a jab and a left kick to the body. Calderwood just misses with a step-in uppercut elbow. Outside low kick glances for Letourneau, as does her jab. Clean jab this time from Letourneau but Calderwood answers with an outside low kick. And another, followed by a glancing right. Calderwood shoots and finishes an outside trip, landing in half guard.
Letourneau, with her back on the fence, gets in kimura position, looking to switch to a straight armbar. She bails on it to get back to her feet. Calderwood breaks the clinch with a right elbow to the head. Letourneau lands a left kick to the body. Clean jab from Calderwood, who catches Letourneau’s kick and converts it into a takedown. Letourneau lands a sharp right hand off her back, forcing Calderwood to back out and stand up. Letourneau lands a kick to the knee and stands up. Calderwood closes the round with a spinning kick to the body. 10-9 Calderwood.
R3: Letourneau lands a jab and a left kick to the face. Calderwood answers with a left high kick that gets through. Calderwood steps off-center to land a straight right. They clinch up Letourneau using a knee shield with her back on the fence. They separate without incident. Calderwood buries a kick to the lower left ribcage of Letourneau, who visibly winces and drops her hands. Calderwood vaults forward, cracking her with a hard right to the jaw.
Calderwood lands to the body again and an odd moment ensues: Letourneau looks hurt but the ref steps in to separate, and the commentary team speculates that it’s due to a “wardrobe malfunction.” Calderwood cranks off a front-leg teep to the body and, this time, Letourneau turns her back and staggers away. Calderwood pounces with a knee, a right hand and a spinning back-fist that drops Letourneau, and the ref finally steps in.
- Joanne Calderwood defeats Valerie Letourneau by TKO (body kick and strikes) R3 2:51
(Fox Sports 2, 8:30 p.m. ET)
Jason Saggo vs. Leandro Silva
R1: Silva draws first blood with a heavy left body kick a minute in. Saggo catches a kick and sweeps out the support leg to put Silva on his back. Half guard for Silva as Saggo looks for a pass to side mount. Head and arm cradle for Saggo but he bails on it and bases down in Silva’s half guard.
Hard right elbow to the head from Saggo, and now he’s looking to step over and pin Silva’s left arm. Saggo keeps his heavy base in half guard and lands a solid volley of right hands. Silva shrimps and turtles, then escapes the front headlock to separate. Saggo counter jabs his way out of two striking blitzes from Silva. 10-9 Saggo.
R2: Silva half-lands a left high kick after a one-two. They both glance with left hands before Silva has another high kick blocked. Quick flurry lands for Silva, who then comes forward behind a knee to the body to put Saggo on the cage. Saggo is able to push away and separate unscathed.
Saggo goes inside with a low kick to set up a clean right high kick to the face, though it doesn’t land with much impact. Silva smiles it off. Silva forces a clinch but again can’t keep Saggo on the cage. Saggo changes levels with a double leg, then puts Silva on the fence with an under-hook. Silva fires a right on the clinch break. Silva lands a straight left to the body. Outside low kick is there for Silva, who closes the round with a takedown. 10-9 Silva.
R3: Spinning kick lands to the knee for Silva, opening the round with an atypical attack. Silva catches a telegraphed right body kick but can’t keep the leg trapped. Saggo with a body kick. Silva answers with a right downstairs. Silva with a counter left. Saggo switches stances and lands a hard one-two from southpaw. Silva returns fire but Saggo steps back and scores with a right.
Saggo shoots and puts Silva on the fence, separating with a step-back jab. Two glancing lefts from Silva. Silva has a spinning kick blocked. Saggo steps forward to land a right kick to the body. Silva waves Saggo in with a minute left and the crowd doesn’t like it. Short left lands upstairs for Silva. Silva catches a right kick and uses it to take Saggo down with a half-minute left, and he manages to land a short volley of hammer-fists before the bell sounds. 10-9 Saggo. I have it 29-28 Saggo.
- Jason Saggo defeats Leandro Silva by split decision (28-29, 29-28 x2)
Misha Cirkunov vs. Ion Cutelaba
R1: Cirkunov lowers his head and spears a long left hand into Cutelaba’s jaw. He looks for another but Cutelaba steps inside it and staggers him with a right cross counter. Cirkunov answers back with a straight left. Glancing inside low kick from Cutelaba. Lead right hook lands for Cirkunov, who then buckles the legs of Cutelaba with another straight left.
They clinch up and Cutelaba reverses a body-lock throw and lands in full mount. Cirkunov immediately bucks him off and they reset on the feet. Cirkunov just misses with a counter right hook. Cirkunov can’t finish a trip but he stays on Cutelaba with a right/left flurry. Cutelaba whiffs on a spinning back fist. Short right upstairs from Cirkunov. Cirkunov lands short on another straight left. 10-9 Cirkunov.
R2: Left hook off the back foot glances for Cutelaba. Cirkunov lands a short right. Another airball on Cutelaba’s spinning back fist. Cirkunov scores with a left. Cutelaba lands short on a right hand to the body. Crisp jabs getting through for Cirkunov from the fringe.
They clinch up in open space and Cirkunov separates with a right/left hook combo. The pace and voracity of the exchanges slows a bit in the last two minutes. They clinch up with Cirkunov putting Cutelaba on the fence. 10-10.
R3: Cirkunov lands a Superman punch and follows with a deep double leg takedown, landing in side mount. Cutelaba tries to push off the cage with his feet but Cirkunov anticipates it, then moves to arm-triangle position. Cirkunov hops over Cutelaba, who reacts too late, and wrenches the choke, forcing the tap.
- Misha Cirkunov defeats Ion Cutelaba by submission (arm-triangle) R3 1:22
Krzysztof Jotko vs. Tamdan McCrory
R1: Jotko heaves a hard one-two through McCrory’s guard, then steps back and plasters him with a searing overhand left. McCrory goes down and out.
Chris Beal vs. Joe Soto
R1: Soto tries a duck-under single leg but can’t get it. Outside low kick is there for Soto. Glancing left hand from Beal. Soto answers in kind but still can’t get deep enough to secure the single leg. Beal pivots left and peels off a right to the body, then one upstairs. Soto shoots a double and tries to pull guard but Beal’s not having it.
Quick three-punch combo lands for Beal. Now a four-punch outburst from Beal but Soto shells on it. Nice uppercut/hook combo from Beal, then another left/right flurry to close the round strong. 10-9 Beal.
R2: One-one-two from Beal to start the second, who’s looking sharp on the feet tonight. Snapping jab from Beal while backpedaling, then another left pivot to set up a right to the body and a left hook upstairs. Now a one-two-three from Beal, growing in confidence and rhythm. Soto a bit guilty of chasing Beal rather than cutting off the cage.
Soto steps into a stiff jab and it knocks Beal off balance. Soto tries to capitalize on the momentum with a controlled flurry, and has some success. Now Soto plugs Beal with a phantom punch that the commentary team doesn’t see, and it buckles the legs of Beal. Beal shoots a double and Soto falls back for a sacrifice guillotine. It’s deep and he uses it to sweep, then expertly flows into back mount with both hooks in. Soto switches to a body triangle and bangs right hands off Beal’s head. Beal goes two-on-one, trying to spin out, but Soto anticipates it and transitions to side mount. Knees to the ribs from Soto. 10-9 Soto.
R3: Soto, at the behest of his corner, comes out throwing busy jabs, looking to center Beal for a right cross. Martelo Capoeira kick by Soto whiffs. Beal backs Soto off with a tight combo, then dings Soto with a one-two. Now a clean right cross slams home for Beal. Hook/jab combo glances for Beal, who drills Soto with a left-hook counter on the next exchange.
Soto shoots a double and gets into the rear waist cinch, tripping Beal to the mat. Soto quickly puts both hooks in and starts fishing for a rear-naked choke. Beal tries to spin out and it enables Soto to get under the chin, and the tap comes shortly after.
- Joe Soto defeats Chris Beal by submission (rear-naked choke) R3 3:39
Fight Pass Prelims
(UFC Fight Pass, 6:45 p.m. ET)
Sam Alvey vs. Elias Theodorou
R1: Theodorou measures distance with his hand outstretched, flicking long left kicks from afar. Switch outside low kick for Theodorou, who’s being warned for his open fingers by referee John McCarthy. Alvey is just sitting back, waiting on Theodorou with an unnerving calm. Another outside low kick lands for Theodorou. Two more glance off Alvey’s lead leg. Front-leg side kick to the body from Theodorou.
Alvey lands a right hook to the body. Right body kick from Theodorou betwixt McCarthy’s constant reminders to keep a closed fist. Chopping outside low kick from Alvey. Another right body kick from Theodorou, who closes the round throwing long kicks and circling out. 10-9 Theodorou.
R2: Theodorou sticks with the same strategy until he’s able to force a clinch. Alvey pushes him away and they reset in the center. Alvey blocks a body kick and counters with a sharp inside low kick. Telegraphed takedown with no set up from Theodorou and it’s stuffed easily by Alvey. Lunging lead uppercut from Alvey stuns Theodorou briefly.
Theodorou pushes him on the cage but Alvey circles off with an under-hook. Theodorou reverses position, then Alvey does with a body lock. They’re separated with just under 90 seconds left. Jumping switch kick from Theodorou is partially blocked by Alvey, but it lands with a resounding thud. Theodorou threatens to bounce off the cage with a Superman punch but settles for a clinch instead, though he again gives up under-hooks. Theodorou pummels under and separates. 10-9 Theodorou.
R3: More circling, feints and kicks from Theodorou. A right round kick slips under Alvey’s arm and into his ribs. After 2.5 rounds of overly complacent offense, the crowd starts to let Alvey hear it. They clinch up briefly and separate. Alvey steps in to glance with a short right hook. Alvey catches a side kick but can’t keep ahold of it.
Alvey continues to walk Theodorou into the corner, offering a meanie face as the closest variation of effective offense. Theodorou changes levels and puts Alvey on the cage. Alvey circles off, again with under-hooks, until Theodorou returns the favor. They switch positions again and are split up by the ref with 30 seconds left. Alvey catches Theodorou with a body kick in the closing seconds. 10-9 Theodorou. I have it 30-27 his way.
- Elias Theodorou defeats Sam Alvey by unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27 x2)
Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger vs. Randa Markos
R1: Markos lands a right hand upstairs, then glances with a right hook. Three-punch flurry from Markos glances. Markos puts Jones-Lybarger on the cage and lands a volley of right uppercuts from the single collar tie. Jones-Lybarger circles off the cage with a body lock. Short knees to the body from Jones-Lybarger before Markos separates. Jones-Lybarger glances with a one-two and Markos answers with a sharp right on her way into the clinch.
Markos hooks a leg and looks for a scissors single leg but Jones-Lybarger defends it and separates. Jones-Lybarger catches Markos off guard by changing levels on a collision, finishing a takedown. Markos rolls into a leg lock and straightens it out, going belly down for a heel hook. Jones-Lybarger slips her leg out of danger and Markos unloads an extended succession of left hands to the head. 10-9 Markos.
R2: Markos opens with a right hook to the head, then a straight right. Jones-Lybarger tacks a left hook onto a one-two and lands it. Markos goes for a duck-under takedown but Jones-Lybarger stops it and separates to reset in open space. Front kick to the body lands clean for Markos.
Markos counters a jab with a right over the top. They trade jabs. Jones-Lybarger scores with a left kick to the body. Markos again counters a jab but she’s unable to finish a double leg. Clean jab from Jones-Lybarger. Markos answers in kind. 10-9 Markos.
R3: No dice on the spinning back fist from Markos but she touches Jones-Lybarger with a quick one-two. Markos lands short on another one-two but this time Jones-Lybarger answers with a counter. Markos knifes into range and gets the rear waist cinch, momentarily taking Jones-Lybarger down. She’s back up and fighting off the takedown with her back on the fence a moment later.
Jones-Lybarger lands a knee to the body to create space, then separates into open space. Short jab from Markos, then a glancing check hook. Jones-Lybarger returns fire with a clean right cross, then a counter left hook. Markos lets both hands go in a straight-line rush but Jones-Lybarger manages to dodge the worst of it. Jones-Lybarger defends a takedown and puts Markos on the fence, but she can’t keep her there. Heavy step-in jab lands for Jones-Lybarger. They trade a series of jabs with Markos getting the better of the exchange. Markos closes the round with a spinning back fist. 10-9 Markos. I have it 30-27 Markos.
- Randa Markos defeats Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28 x2)
Colby Covington vs. Jonathan Meunier
R1: Covington follows a tornado kick with a double leg attempt and Meunier counters with a kimura. Covington switches to a single leg, then slips behind Meunier into the rear waist lock. Meunier spins to face Covington but eventually succumbs to a trip. Meunier gets on all fours and puts his back on the cage, then lands a back elbow to the head. Covington now in the half back-ride but he’s unable to do much with it.
Covington fights to get a hook in but can’t. Meunier stands up and faces Covington but he’s bowled over by a clean double-leg takedown. Closed guard for Meunier with good posture control. Short left elbow sneaks through for Covington. They’re stood up with 30 seconds left. 10-9 Covington.
R2: Covington works for another takedown and, again from the rear waist cinch, gets it about a half-minute in. Meunier nearly executes a beautiful roll out but Covington regains top position. Meunier leans over for a kimura and ends up using it to bait Covington into a sweep, then Meunier rolls into a heel hook.
Covington regains his balance and lands hard rights to the head, forcing Meunier to bail on the leg lock. Covington gets the back ride again and lands short knees to the thighs. Meunier goes to all fours and again deftly rolls into a leg lock but Covington is ready for it. Now Meunier looks for a kneebar but Covington goes to the quarter nelson to break it. 10-9 Covington.
R3: Covington drops Meunier early with a spinning back fist, then returns to the back ride as Meunier’s recovering. This time Covington gets both hooks in and the rear-naked choke follows shortly after. Meunier taps.
- Colby Covington defeats Jonathan Meunier by submission (rear-naked choke) R3
Ali Bagautinov vs. Geane Herrera
R1: Bagautinov, in southpaw, opens with a front-leg side kick to the knee, but Herrera dodges the follow-up kick high. Herrera barely gets a glove in front of the next high kick to partially block it, however. Now Bagautinov kicks hard to the body, then sails an overhand left into Herrera’s jaw. And another big left hand that lands square. Bagautinov hops into range with a left/right and then scores with a short right.
Bagautinov hits a double leg and squirms out of an immediate triangle attempt from Herrera, passing to side mount in the process. Bagautinov postures up and drills Herrera in the ribs with right hands. Herrera twists into a leg lock, looking for a kneebar, then tries to switch to a heel hook. Bagautinov steps over and bombs more right hands to the head. Herrera persists with the leg lock in the 50/50 guard until Bagautinov dives back into his guard. Herrera lands an up-kick as Bagautinov hovers over him, throwing downward right hands. 10-8 Bagautinov.
R2: Inside low kick to spin kick from Bagautinov but Herrera evades it. He does not evade the scorching right cross that follows, and Bagautinov closes the combo with a double leg. Herrera again slings a leg over the shoulder and ends up with a reverse triangle, and it’s perilously tight. With considerable effort, Bagautinov peels his head loose and out of danger. Herrera goes for a counter double leg but can’t get it.
Now Herrera transitions to a heel hook but Bagautinov bases down and backs out to avoid it, and it allows Herrera room to stand up. Herrera hits the counter takedown this time, moving immediately to back control with both hooks in. Bagautinov goes two-on-one on Herrera’s right arm to spin into him, reversing into top position. Bagautinov postures up and plasters Herrera with huge punches, but Herrera is still seemingly indifferent to the heavy blows. Herrera battles to his feet and catches Bagautinov with a sharp flying knee to the face. 10-9 Bagautinov.
R3: Bagautinov, possibly drained from the exhausting pace, starts much slower in this round, circling out and keeping distance. Bagautinov unfurls a left high kick that Herrera blocks, then lands one to the body. Two inside low kicks from Bagautinov to set up a single-leg attempt. Herrera glances with a flying knee as Bagautinov tries to run the pipe on the single.
Herrera gets both feet on the floor but Bagautinov changes angles and switches to a double leg, finishing it and landing in side mount. Bagautinov steps over into half mount but Herrera regains half guard, then stands back up. Herrera sneakily switches to a kimura and uses it to roll Bagautinov over. Herrera has the shoulder lock set up perfectly but Bagautinov somehow rolls out of it and gets back to his feet. Herrera clips him with a perfectly timed knee as Bagautinov lowers his level. 10-9 Herrera. I have it 29-27 Bagautinov.
- Ali Bagautinov defeats Geane Herrera by unanimous decision (30-27 x3)
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