“UFC on FUEL TV: Barao vs. McDonald” took place Saturday inside Wembley Arena in London, England.
Renan Barao broke in his interim bantamweight title against Michael McDonald in the show’s featured attraction. Cub Swanson and Dustin Poirier met in the co-main event.
Here are the official results and play-by-play from tonight’s action:
(Facebook 12:15PM ET/9:15AM PT)
Phil Harris Defeated Ulysses Gomez Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
1stRound: Gomez working the leg kicks early. Harris takes an accidental kick to the groin and time is called. Game on. Harris catches a kick and trips him to the mat. After unloading a couple of strikes, he decides to not follow Gomez to the ground. Harris lands some right hands just before the horn blares. Gomez, 10-9.
2ndRound: Harris is starting to find his groove in the standup department. He tags him with a right hand and follows up with a leg kicks. Gomez eats a big right to the body. Gomez scores with a flying knee to the dome. Harris, 10-9.
3rdRound: Back-and-forth action in the first-half of the finals stanza. This scrap appears to be up for grabs. Harris catches a kick and throws a punch at the same time. The strike may not have been what caused the fall as much as the trip, but the judges might see it differently. That could be the difference in this close round. Harris bringing a flurry of punches before the last bell rings. Close fight. Harris, 10-9, and may have won, 29-28.
Vaughan Lee Defeated Motonobu Tezuka Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
1stRound: Lee scores with a knee to the midsection while in the clinch. Lee charges forward ans tags him with a one-two combination. Tezuka working hard for the takedown, has had him clinched against the cage for over a minute. Lee, 10-9.
2ndRound: Lee immediately secures a takedown, but is working for a heel-hook/knee bar from off his back. After a brief scramble, Tezuka ends up in top position. Very close frame to score. Tezuka, 10-9.
3rdRound: Tezuka has him clinched against the fence and is working for a single-leg takedown. He bails on the attempt after about a minute. He immediately shoots again. Lee’s takedown D has been outstanding tonight. Not much damage from either fighter. Lee, 10-9, and likely won, 29-28. It will come down to how the judges viewed the middle frame.
Tom Watson Defeated Stanislav Nedkov via TKO (Strikes) at 4:42 in the 2ndRound
1stRound: Watson working an efficient clinch game against the fence – short elbows, knees to the midsection and punches. Nedkov is getting handled in the clinch, he needs to keeps his distance. Well, then. Nedkov drags him to the canvas and is bringing the pain. That flurry may have stolen him the round. Nedkov, 10-9.
2ndRound: Nedkov takes him down within seconds and lands a couple of strikes on the ground. Watson works his way back up, but is planted right back down. They get to their feet. Watson landed a vicious knee to the stomach that took the wind out of Nedkov. Both landing solid shots in the clinch. Nedkov eating countless knees to the dome. Watson drops him with a flurry and finishes things with a couple more punches on the mat.
Andy Ogle Defeated Josh Grispi via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
1stRound: A scramble brings both fighters to the mat. Grispi tries a triangle choke from off his back. Ogle is still stuck in the submission, but doesn’t appear to be in extreme danger just yet. Ogle is grinding Grispi’s head against the fence and is peppering him with short punches, all while still caught in the triangle. Gripsi finally bails on the sub attempt. Ogle, 10-9.
2ndRound: Uppercut by Ogle. He takes Gripsi’s back after a scramble. Grispi eating big shots to the body. Ogle is smothering him on the mat, but hasn’t unleashed anything too devastating. Ogle, 10-9.
3rdRound: Ogle lands a kick to the body that takes the wind out of his opponent. He plants Grispi on his back and is working some solid ground-and-pound. Grispi was one of the world’s top featherweights a couple of years ago, this will be four straight losses. Grispi finally gets to his feet, but is instantly dragged back down. Ogle, 10-9, and likely ran the table, 30-27.
Danny Castillo Defeated Paul Sass via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
1stRound: Sass immediately jumps on him and tries a triangle choke on a standing Castillo. “Last Call” slams him to the mat and is working his ground game. Watson continues to look for submission from off his back. Castillo punishing the Brit after each failed sub attempt. Sass eats several vicious elbows. Castillo, 10-9.
2ndRound: Castillo easily scores a takedown. Sass tries an armbar, but Castillo picks him up and dumps him on his head. The referee stands them up for some reason. No problem for Castillo, he immediately puts Sass on his back. Castillo, 10-9.
3rdRound: I will give Sass this, he can take a beating and won’t stop looking for submissions. That being said, he’s getting trounces on the canvas. If you want a play-by-play, read what happened in the previous two stanzas. Castillo, 10-9, and cruises, 30-27.
Renee Forte Defeated Terry Etim via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
1stRound: Etim comes out fast, firing off a barrage of kicks. Forte has had him clinched against the cage for almost two minutes. They finally separate. Forte catches a kick and charges forward. He has Etim clinched against the fence again. Etim eats a short elbow. Etim tries a fancy spinning-back kick and gets taken down for a brief moment. Interesting round to score. Etim, 10-9.
2ndRound: Forte has him pressed against the fence and is kneeing the Brit’s thighs. Forte is starting to find his groove. He’s giving Etim the business. Forte drops him with a barrage of punches and follows Etem to the mat. He gets caught in Etim’s guard which has allowed him to recover. Forte advances to full mount and is laying the lumber. Etim was in trouble. Props to him for surviving the onslaught. Forte, 10-9.
3rdRound: Etim appears a little hesitant and Forte is taking advantage. The 13-month layoff seems to be affecting him quite a bit. Forte drags him to the mat and has half the round remaining to work. Not much damage inflicted by Forte, but he did enough to win the round and fight. Forte, 10-9, and probably won, 29-28.
(FUEL TV 3PM ET/Noon PT)
Matt Riddle Defeated Che Mills via Split Decision (28-29, 29-28, 30-27)
1stRound: Riddle scores a brief takedown. Mills comes back firing, but is a tad overzealous with his attack and gets taken down again. They are back up clinching against the cage. Riddle wrestles him to the mat and maintains the position until the horn sounds. Nothing to write home about… Riddle, 10-9.
2ndRound: Riddle secures a takedown with the greatest of ease. He advances to side-control. Mills is avoiding any major damage, but it doesn’t seem like he has much of a chance of getting back up after Riddle plants him down. Riddle takes his back and has a body triangle to secure position. He’s trying a rear-naked choke, but is out of time. Riddle, 10-9.
3rdRound: Riddle relentless with his takedown attempt, though Mills is thwarting his attempts thus far. Mills is once again looking up at the lights. Riddle staying just busy enough to ride out the decision win. Ho-hum. Signs of life from Mills, as he reverses. He’s standing over Riddle and allows him to get back up. Riddle, 10-9, and runs the table, 30-27.
James Te Huna Defeated Ryan Jimmo via Unanimous Decision (29-27, 29-28, 29-28)
1stRound: Te Huna doesn’t want to taste any of Jimmo’s power and immediately clinches him against the cage. The ref separates them due to inactivity. Jimmo floors him with a vicious head kicks. Jimmo follows him to the mat and is giving him the business. Te Huna may have weathered the storm, but is bleeding around his right eye. He got up for a brief moment, though Jimmo plants him right back down. Jimmo advances to side-control. Jimmo, 10-9.
2ndRound: Te Huna tries a single-leg takedown to no avail. Jimmo has him clinched against the fence. Te Huna reverses and slams his opponent to the ground. He’s working in side-control with over half the round remaining. Te Huna moves to full-mount. Jimmo is eating some serious shots – elbows and punches. Quite a turn of events. Te Huna, 10-9.
3rdRound: Jimmo thwarts a takedown attempt and has him clinched against the cage. Te Huna reverses scores with some powerful strikes. Te Huna wrestles him to the mat with two minutes left. Nice rally by Te Huna. Te Huna, 10-9, and likely won, 29-28.
Gunnar Nelson Defeated Jorge Santiago via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
1stRound: Santiago tags him with a right hand and follows up with a knee to the stomach. Nelson catches a kick and plants the Brazilian on his back. Santiago gets to his feet, but eats a left hand for his efforts. Nelson continues to change stances, which has confused his opponent. Nelson, 10-9.
2ndRound: Nelson goes on the attack and nails him with a one-two combo. He switches levels and drags Santiago to the canvas. Decent ground-and-pound from Nelson. He advances to full-mount, though only 30 seconds remaining in the frame. Several vicious punches by Nelson. Nelson, 10-9.
3rdRound: Santiago needs a finish, possibly to prolong his UFC career (again). Nelson scores with some punches. Leg kicks from Nelson. Nice straight right by Santiago. Nelson answers with an uppercut that stuns his opponent. Another huge uppercut by Nelson. Santiago continues to tee-off, tagging Nelson with a nasty right just before the horn blares. Nelson, 10-9, and probably won, 30-27.
Jimi Manuwa Defeated Cyrille Diabate via TKO (Doctor’s Stoppage – Possible torn calf) at 5:00 in the 1stRound
1stRound: Diabate has him clinched against the fence and is trying to land some knees. Manuwa catches a high knee and plants him on his back. Diabate fights to his feet. Manuwa nails him with a head kick. He throws Diabate to the ground, but lets him back up. Huge knee to the midsection by Diabate, but he gets taken down for his troubles. Manuwa, 10-9.
The cageside doctor calls the fight between rounds. Diabate might have a torn calf.
Cub Swanson Defeated Dustin Poirier via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
1stRound: Swanson is flinging the leather early. The featherweights exchange leg kicks. Poirier scores with a counter left hand. Swanson connects with a variety of punches. Poirier secures a takedown and ends up in the guard. Swanson fights to his feet. Tight round to score. Swanson, 10-9.
2ndRound: Swanson nails him with some body shots. Poirier starting to work his long left jab. Poirier looking for a single-leg takedown. Swanson’s strikes are sent with bad intentions. Swanson tries a spinning-back fist and gets planted on his back. Swanson used an omoplata to get back up. Another close five minutes. Poirier, 10-9.
3rdRound: Poirier immediately goes for a takedown. Swanson pushes him off, but Poirier comes firing back with his best shots of the fight. Solid jab by Poirier. Swanson picks him up and slams him down. He takes Poirier’s back with half the round remaining. Poirier almost shook him off, but Swanson ends up in top position after the scramble. He tags him with a couple of punches before Swanson lets him back up. Swanson tosses him back to the ground. Swanson, 10-9, and probably won, 29-28.
Renan Barao Defeated Michael McDonald via Submission (Arm-Triangle Choke) at 3:57 in the 4thRound (Barao retains UFC interim bantamweight title)
1stRound: Barao plants his challenger on his back in less than a minute. McDonald pushes to his feet. He charges forward and nails Barao with a right hand. He follows up with a left. Barao’s takedown gets stuffed. Barao shoots again, but eats several punches for his troubles. It appeared as though he floored the champ, but it’s possible Barao was dropping for a double-leg takedown at the same time. Barao now unloading countless shots to the dome while in the clinch. Barao lands a takedown just before the round ends. McDonald, 10-9.
2ndRound: McDonald opens up with a left hand. He scores with another left. Barao secures a brief takedown, though eats an up-kick. McDonald fights to his feet. McDonald takes a poke to the eye and time is called. Game on. McDonald eats a left hook. Barao starting to work his leg kicks. He then unloads a front kick to the face – a la Anderson Silva. Barao, 10-9. Barao is bleeding by his right eye.
3rdRound: Barao is much more confident with his attack. He’s charged forward two times with a barrage of punches. He drags McDonald to the canvas for a split second. Solid straight right hand from Barao. McDonald takes a spinning-back kick. Barao, 10-9.
4thRound: McDonald thwarts a takedown attempt. Barao tags him in the nose with a flying knee. McDonald’s output has really slowed. He takes McDonald down and jumps on his back. He transitions to an arm-triangle choke. McDonald held on for as long as he could, but was ultimately forced to cry uncle.