4:20 — Max Holloway def. Leonard Garcia via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28). A more than spirited fight between the two, however it leaves Garcia with four losses in a row in the UFC. although he’s a fan-favorite it doesn’t bode well for his future.
4:30 — Next up is a heavyweight showdown, as Todd Duffee squares off against Phil De Fries
4:34 — Well, that didn’t take long: Todd Duffee def. Phil De Fries via KO at 2:04 of round one.
4:35 — Duffee returns to the UFC with a huge KO victory. Duffee is now 2-1 in his UFC career and as Joe Rogan just said, “you’re still one of the top heavyweight prospects in the UFC.” I agree, Joe. I agree.
5:00 — (NOTE: Major issues with the internet here at the MGM, so I do apologize if updates suddenly stop or cease for periods of time. It is not intentional.)
5:11 — It is now time for the lightweight showdown between Michael Johnson and Myles Jury.
5:14 — Jury spends most of the round in a dominant position after he swept Johnson to the canvas. Jury works a solid base and suprisingly controls the opening frame.
5:20 — Jury earns another surprising takedown midway through the second round and control the rest of the frame. Jury really suprising fans and pundits with this performance. A very solid showing thus far. Still a sparse crowd at the MGM, but certainly lively — especially after Dufee/De Fries and Garcia/Holloway
5:23 — With another trip takedown, Jury opens the final frame with another crafty display of clinch work over the favored Johnson. If Johnson doesn’t find a way to finish, he will be upset by the surging Jury, marking his first loss in three fights.
5:27 — Myles Jury def. Michael Johnson via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
5:28 — Jury really surprised fans with this performance. Not only did he stop Johnson’s three-fight win streak, but he also supplanted himself as a UFC fighter, making him 2-0 in the organization. However, I don’t know how much the fans enjoyed it; as one elderly female security guard said next to me: “These guys are boring.” How are you going to go against your Grandma, readers? You can’t, you just can’t. Insight from the older generation is priceless.
5:40 — Now we get the lightweight showdown we were supposed to get at the TUF 16 Finale: Melvin Guillard vs. Jamie Varner
5:47 — Varner was originally scheduled to meet Guillard at the TUF 16 finale but pulled out the day of the fight because of a vicious attack of the flu. We get a lackluster opening frame, with a (shocking) patient Melvin Guillard setting the pace and using leg kicks and jabs to keep a pressuring Varner at bay for most of the round. Tough to score, as Varner closes with a flurry and drops Guillard as the round ends.
5:52 — Guillard playing the methodical role in round two as Varner pressures — certainly a switching of roles it seems. Midway through the round Guillard eats a solid groin shot and it puts a bit of a halt to the entertaining fight. Varner takes round two with pressure alone.
5:57 — Varner stays relentless in the third round and controls most of the final frame with a nice takedown and great use of his solid wrestling base. Who would have thought that Varner would be the aggressor and Guillard a bit more reserved. Gonna be a close one, folks.
5:58 — Jamie Varner def. Melvin Guillard via split decision (30-27, 30-27, 27-30)
6:13 — Erik Perez vs. Byron Bloodworth, a bantamweight bout, is up next at UFC 155.
6:15 — Erik Perez def. Byron Bloodworth via TKO at 3:50 of round one. With his luchador mask in tow, Perez talks to Joe Rogan and informs him, “I’m hungry, I just want to eat some food.” That’s cool, Eric, me too.
6:15 — For “Goyito” this marks his third UFC first-round finish in as many career fights. He stands as one of the more inticing prospects in the UFC’s bantamweight division — that luchador mask can’t hurt either.
6:27 — Next up is a fight that I consider the front-runner for the pre-fight “Fight of the Night” award, as bantamweight’s Eddie Wineland and Bard Pickett battle in a guaranteed throwdown.
6:36 — Round one of Pickett/Wineland goes exactly as planned — tons of action, a couple knockdowns and the start of one really great fight. I don’t expect this to slow down one bit.
6:43 — Round two is similar to one, except the pace slows a bit. Both fighters are showing each other a ton of respect. Wineland is bleeding from the nose and right eye and Pickett begins to show some bruising as round two closes.
6:48 — Round three comes to an end after some solid action. The crowd hears some sparse booing, but it wasn’t warranted in this writers opinion.
6:50 — Eddie Wineland def. Brad Pickett via split decision (30-27, 30-27, 28-29)
6:53 — “I hit him hard, he’s got a head like a coconut,” says a victorious Wineland. This win marks the second win in a row for the Hoosier and sets him back on track towards the upper echelon of UFC batamweights.
6:55 — It’s almost time for the UFC 155 PPV portion coming up at 7 pm PST. Tune in, or keep it locked here on Examiner. Enjoy the fights!
7:08 — First fight on the UFC 155 PPV is Chris Leben vs. Derek Brunson
7:09 — Leben is coming off a year-long suspension and is looking to supplant himself among the UFC middleweight divison stalwarts with a win over Brunson. Leben most recently fought in a losing effort to Mark Munoz back at UFC 138 in November, 2011. Brunson is a late replacement and is coming over from the Strikeforce promotion.
7:21 — Brunson opens round one with an early takedown, eliminating any chance of an aggressive Leben clipping him early. Despite calls from the crowd for a standup, the disgruntled masses were forced to watch a dominant Brunson control all of the opening frame after his initial takedown.
7:24 — Leben pressuring in round two, but he’s leaving himself open and looking a bit tired. Brunson lands a few short punches and a takedown early. As the round ends both fighters are visibly winded. Round three could be very interesting; or not….
7:30 — Derek Brunson def. Chris Leben via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
7:30 — A rather lackluster affair for the two, as they became gassed and the pace slowed. However, stellar debut win for Derek Brunson.
7:49 — Next fight on the dockett is a middlweight rematch between Alan Belcher and Yushin Okami. Round one is already in the books and it was all Okami. He earned a takedown early and controlled Belcher for the entire round. Very similar to their first meeting.
7:51 — Okami pressures to open round two and secures a body lock.
7:58 — Round two was more of the same from Okami. Griding wrestling with unrelenting patience. Belcher is down 2-0 headed into the final frame.
8:02 — Despite clipping Okami early in the third round, the Japanese grinder gained his composure and whittled away at the third round and controlled Belcher the entire time.
8:05 — Yushin Okami def. Alan Belcher via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
8:15 — Tim Boetsch vs. Costa Philippou is up next at UFC 155 in a middleight title eliminator of sorts. Both are on four-fight win streaks and whoever comes out of this the victor has a real chance at meeting Anderson Silva in 2013.
8:18 — Round one of Boetsch/Philippou was a forceful frame that saw these two mastodons trade power shots risking a KO at any point. Philippou got floored at theend of the round and openend the door for Boetsch to steal it. Great opening frame. The crowd is happy, finally…
8:25 — Midway through round two, these fighters begin wildly exchanging and Boetsch takes a finger in the eye. Prior to that the round was tense and it looked as if anyone could be KO’d at anytime. Philippou earns a trip takedown with just over a minute left in the round and controls the remainder of the second frame. It looks to be even going to the third and final round.
8:28 — As round three starts Boetsch tells his corner that he can’t see anything. That makes sense because after the eye was poked, it instantly turned red and became puffy. Also, according to those around me, apparently Boetsch informed his corner after the first round that he broke his hand.
8:29 — Costa Philippou def. Tim Boetsch via TKO at 2:11 of round three
8:30 — That win for Philippou marks his fifth win in a row and it came against a top-tier opponent in Tim Boetsch. He may need one or two more fights, but Costa Philippou is a fighter to watch in 2013, no doubt.
8:36 — Next up is the co-main event of UFC 155; Jim Miller vs. Joe Lauzon
8:42 — And we’re off with Lauzon vs. Miller! Both open with leg kicks and combos — could very well be a standup war given their ground prowess.
(INTERNET PROBLEMS AT MGM)
UPDATE: Miller def. Lauzon via unanimous decision in a classic fight, apologies for lack of updates, but it’s hit or miss over here.
VELASQUEZ VS. DOS SANTOS IS UNDERWAY!
Round 1: An action packed round one saw Velasquez almost conquer Dos Santos, but the Brazilian survived in a test of will.
Round 2: Velasquez controls most of the round with takedowns and is beginning to wear on JDS. Round three is upon us now (9:31 PST)
9:43 — We are headed to the final round of Velasquez vs. Dos Santos 2. It’s been all Velasquez up until now. Dos Santos needs to finish or he’s losing his belt.
9:50 — It’s over, folks, Velasquez is taking this one home. The final round is in the books and it was all Cain Velasquez, your new UFC Heavyweight CHampion of the world! Official scoring to come momentarily.