UFC 143: Round-by-round recaps
UP TOO LATEThe team from Inside Fights dissects and discusses UFC 144: Edgar vs. Henderson immediately after the pay-per-view show.
UFC interim welterweight championship
Nick Diaz vs. Carlos Condit
No touch of gloves during referee instructions, instead, they grind heads and have to be separated. Leg kick from Condit is the first strike. Condit lands another leg kick and Diaz tries to swarm, but Condit tosses a knee toward his head and spins away. Switch kick from Condit slips high. Diaz is stalking Condit around the cage, pressing the fight. Condit continues to circle away. Alternating "Diaz" and "Condit" chants have begun to break out. Leg kick from Condit bury themselves in the leg of Nick Diaz. Spinning backfist from Condit slips over the top. Diaz is already talking smack. Spinning back elbow misses over the top. Jab lands Diaz and then a body-head combo from the former Strikeforce champ as well. Head kick from Diaz is blocked. Good Superman combo from Condit. Diaz crosses his arms and shows his frustrations with a jab that connects.
Head kick from Condit misses. Flying knee by Condit is caught, but Condit gets free. Spinning back elbow connects. Diaz is getting frustrated and continues to talk to Condit. There is a big bruise developing on the leg of Diaz. Good combination against the fence by Diaz. Punch-kick combos score against the fence for Condit. Condit lands a big shot to the body on Diaz. Diaz gets Condit against the fence and unleashes his trademark body combos. Condit slips away. More leg kicks from Condit. Diaz is following Condit around and you can tell that Condit is well prepared for Diaz' style.
Head kick misses early from Condit. Leg kick from Condit. Two big punches land on Condit and a big head kick connects on Diaz' head. Body, head, body combo by Diaz. Condit slips free with a combination of his own. Body shots from Diaz are countered with shots from Condit himself as he slips away. Condit is intelligent in his approach and wants no part of the attacks that sank BJ Penn. Right hand from Diaz is countered by a big leg kick from Condit. Leg kick from Condit smashes Diaz' leg. Body kick finds its home above the liver on Diaz. Another leg kick lands on Diaz and he's talking again. Flying knee misses from Condit following a right from Diaz against the fence. Condit has been moving away from Diaz all fight. It's a smart gameplan that seems to have Diaz off his game. He tries for a big hook to end the round but misses as Condit ducks under.
Leg kick connects twice for Condit. Diaz is getting frustrated as Condit slips away and ducks his punches. Condit is not allowing himself to be drawn into Diaz's fight. Diaz gesticulates and both fighters miss big hooks on the exchange. Diaz gets a hold of Condit's leg on a missed kick, but Condit gets up and lands a good combination on the way out. Diaz gets under a spinning backfist. Diaz waves his hands again, but comes to nothing. Uppercut and hook to the body from Condit. Knee to the body from Condit. Leg kick from Diaz. Right back with one of his own is Condit. Side kick from Condit as Diaz presses in. Condit lands another combination, but Diaz catches the leg. High kick from Diaz is blocked and Condit is able to spin away. Body kick from Condit is caught by Diaz to end the round and he hangs on to the foot long after the horn.
Body kick from Diaz to start. Another body kick from Diaz as Condit steps in. Diaz is throwing big kicks. Spinning backfist from Condit misses again. Head kicks from Diaz seem to be the flavor of this round. Big right misses from Condit. He follows it up with a push kick. Spinning back elbow to Diaz, but no damage is done as it connects on the shoulder. Spin wheel kicks from Diaz misses. Leg kick from Condit sinks into the muscle of Diaz. Right hand and high kick from Condit. Diaz locks up with Carlos and gets him against the fence, but Carlos Condit is able to slide free on the fence. In the center of the Octagon, Nick Diaz messes with his stances and moves hands vertical to horizontal before throwing an jab. Diaz finally gets his hands on Condit and takes his back, dragging him to the mat. Tight body triangle from Diaz and he's got a deep neck crank. Carlos walks the cage and gets out, but Diaz has his back still. The round ends with a big escape - Diaz needs to finish. They roll throw and both men grab a leg to end the fight. Massive show of respect as they hug to end the bout.
Winner and interim UFC welterweight champion: Carlos Condit by unanimous decision (48-47, 49-46, 49-46)
Roy Nelson vs. Fabricio Werdum
Roy Nelson's beard has grown back with a ton of gray in it. Nelson eats a body kick from Werdum. Nelson misses with a big right and slips and Werdum takes his back immediately. Nelson finds a way back to his feet, but he is caught in the clinch and Werdum is cranking knees to the arms. Dirty boxing from Nelson are landing as well. Nelson reverses the position and grinds Werdum on the fence. Werdum unleashes a big knee to the face of Nelson, who is bleeding like mad already. Quick stoppage for the doctor to check Nelson's nose, but he's good to continue. Nelson lands a punch and Werdum slips on the way out. Nelson steps in but is almost caught in an armbar. Nelson is free and tries to land some big strikes, but he lets Werdum to his feet. Wheel kick misses from Werdum.
The round has to go 10-9 to Werdum.
Roy Nelson is handling a lot of hard shots tonight, but is still getting beaten. Nice left lands for Nelson. Leg kick from Werdum. Werdum is chasing for the clinch, but Nelson fights him off with uppercuts. Again, Nelson gets free of the knees and is just walking these off so far. Werdum is dropping his hands to taunt Big Country. Werdum is getting the better of the exchange in the second round. Nelson is labored from the kicks to the legs and knees to the face he's seen. Right leg kick from Werdum. Nelson ducks under a big right, but eats a body kick. Nelson catches Werdum's leg, but swings and gets nothing. Last clinch before the round ends sees another clinch from Werdum, but a shot comes over the top from Nelson.
Jab connects from Werdum. Nelson gets a standing guillotine on Werdum, but releases it with a punch. Nelson catches a leg and gets Werdum against the fence. Knee to the head and a left hand from Werdum. Werdum is just connecting like mad tonight. Jabs en masse from Werdum. Front kick to the face connects on Nelson's chin. Two minutes to go and a head kick misses from Werdum. Knee to the side of the head out of the clinch by Werdum. Switch kick from Werdum is blocked.Thirty seconds to go and Werdum is almost put to sleep by a hook when he leaves his chin exposed. Good leg kicks from Werdum to keep Nelson at bay.
Werdum takes the round 10-9 and the fight 30-27.
Fabricio Werdum defeats Roy Nelson via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Josh Koscheck vs. Mike Pierce
Pierce is getting what he asked for tonight: a shot at Koscheck. A touch of gloves is ignored by Kos and Pierce goes for a single right away that is stuffed. Kos finds himself pressed against the fence. Body shots are finding their home on the fence from Pierce. Koscheck tries to get clear and he lands two short punches. Knee to the body from Koscheck, who is still bundled against the fence. Short elbow from Kos, followed by a right from Pierce. Koscheck stuffs a takedown and gets Pierce against the fence. Knees to the body from Koscheck. Both men are back in the center of the Octagon now and Kos presses forward. Two jabs find their home from Pierce. Big rights connect from each fighter but Pierce walks right through Koscheck's. Head kick is block by Pierce. Left hook connects from Pierce. Big right from Kos misses and Pierce grabs a single. Kos is pressed against the fence as the round ends.
Right hand from Pierce finds a home on Koscheck's chin. Single-leg is grabbed by Pierce and Koscheck reverses and has Pierce on the fence. Uppercut and right from Pierce as they leave the clinch. Jab lands from Pierce. Huge left misses by Kos. Pierce is getting in with the jab every time he throws it and Koscheck has just started to counter. Knee from Kos barely misses. Pierce walks him across the fence and grinds him into it. Pierce is active in the clinch. Kos is warned about an eyepoke. Back into action, Kos shoots in and gets his first takedown on the mat. Pierce is able to escape from a potentially bad situation and escapes the round on his feet.
Big right finally connects from Kos. Jab from Pierce. Pierce grabs the single-leg and he takes Kos down. Koscheck is immediately back on his feet. Koscheck presses Pierce into the fence. Back into the middle of the cage, Pierce lands two good shots in the clinch. Kos responds with a body shot of his own. Koscheck shoots for a takedown himself and is stalled against the fence. Another fingerpoke to the eye of Pierce earns Koscheck his last warning. Koscheck hasn't been able to get off the big shot and hasn't seen his shots work. Big flurry connects for Kos. Powerful double leg takedown from Kos but Pierce is back to his feet and unleashes a spinning back elbow coming out of the clinch. The horn sounds and both fighters raise their hands.
We have it 10-9 Koscheck in the third and 29-28 overall for Mike Pierce.
Josh Koscheck defeats Mike Pierce via split decision (28–29, 29–28, 29–28)
Renan Barão vs. Scott Jorgensen
Head kick from Barao is blocked. Spinning back kick from Barao barely misses. Jorgensen eats a leg kick, but sends one of his own. Flying knee from Barao, but Jorgensen recovers and tries for a takedown unsuccessfully. Big right misses from Barao. Jab continues to lab for Barao. Jorgensen shoots for a takedown, but Barao is able to defend. Right hand connects for Jorgensen. Leg kick followed by a right hand find their home for Jorgensen. Nasty leg kick from Barao. Barao reverses a takedown and presses Jorgensen to the fence. Spinning back kick lands for Barao, but it doesn't put Jorgensen down. The round ends with both fighters pressing in for some combos.
Jorgensen goes for a double-leg, but Barao stuffs it. A nice three-punch combination lands multiple times from Barao. The fighters exchange leg kicks and Jorgensen is backing up a bit. You can see the reach disadvantage at play here as Jorgensen cannot counter. Jorgensen is hurt a bit and dives in and manages to pull guard. Barao is into Jorgensen's full guard after a short exchange from half guard. Jorgensen gets back to his feet and throws a good body kick after some short punches don't land. Spinning back kick to the body from Barao is blocked. Jorgensen goes for a jumping kick that misses. The leg kicks are chopping Jorgensen and he's not springing forward with the counters. The round ends with Jorgensen eating some more jabs.
Both fighters are connecting early. Barao is just throwing more accurately. Jorgensen realizes that he needs to push the pace (his corner is calling for it) but his disadvantage continues to be his reach deficit. Flying knee from Jorgensen misses. Barao misses with a big left. Spinning heel hook from Barao is partially blocked. Barao is bleeding from the nose still, but Jorgensen hasn't been able to do much more damage than that. A right uppercut knocks Jorgensen's head kicks. With ten seconds to go, Barao misses a spinning back kick. No real answers from Scott Jorgensen tonight, which is unfortunate. Barao was just had his number tonight.
10-9 Barao and a 30-27 win for Barao
Renan Barão defeats Scott Jorgensen via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27).
Ed Herman vs. Clifford Starks
(Coverage for this bout from 5thRound.com)
Starks tags him with a right uppercut, Herman comes firing back. Starks is really finding a home for his right hand, and that’s Herman’s face. Herman scores on a couple of knees to the grill in the Thai clinch. Starks clobbers him with another big right. Herman secures a takedown. Starks reverses and unloads some bombs.
The left side of Herman’s mug is jacked up, courtesy of Starks’ rights. The left side of Herman’s mug is jacked up, courtesy of Starks’ rights. Herman trips him to the canvas and immediately moves to full-mount. He takes his back and locks in a rear-naked choke with three minutes to go. It’s a wrap.
Ed Herman defeats Clifford Starks via submission (rear-naked choke) at 1:43 of Round 2.
Dustin Poirier vs. Max Holloway
Flying knee from Holloway is blocked. Countered by leg kicks and punches from Poirier. Two punches land from Poirier. Good counters from Poirier. Poirier catches a flying knee from Holloway and turns him against the cage. Big slam from the double leg by Poirier and he transitions to mount. Poirier goes for an armbar and hyperextends the elbow. Max Holloway is then stuck in a triangle. Poirier rolls it into a mounted triangle with an armbar and gets the tap for the submission victory.
Dustin Poirier defeats Max Holloway via submission (mounted triangle armbar) at 3:45 of Round 1.
Alex Caceres vs. Edwin Figueroa
Herb Dean draws refereeing duties for this bout. Left connects for both fighters. Bruce Leeroy throws one of the worst groin kicks you could ever see, or hear. Figueroa is down and rolling to the cage immediately. He's got five minutes to recover, but if he doesn't, I am pretty sure that no one would blame him. Figueroa is up and pounds the mat. He must have diamond [redacted].
The fight continues and Caceres lands a jab. Figueroa comes lunging in with a combo that misses. Left high kick from Caceres sees a foot slap Figueroa on the chin. Caceres eats a huge kick to the side of the head and Edwin tries to swarm for the finish. After a scramble back to their feet, Caceres ends up with Figueroa's back. Figueroa is free, but gets stuck squatting with Caceres on his back again. Caceres continues to work for finish, but cannot finish. Fluid grappling from Caceres, but Figueroa continues to counter and slip out of submission attempts. Great grappling exchange on the mat, with "Bruce Leeroy" taking the edge. He might not have finished it, but that was a solid round for Caceres.
Figueroa is coming hard for the head kick again. Combo that ends with a head kick from Caceres and Figueroa is dazed. Spinning backfist from "Bruce Leeroy" misses. Another nasty accidental kick to the groin from Caceres. We hear it all the time, but that's what happens with inside leg kicks on an orthodox fighter from a southpaw. Long break for Figueroa as he recovers. Caceres is walked to the center of the cage and has a two-point deduction assessed. Big flurry from both fighters. Caceres lands in bunches and then grabs Figueroa to the mat. Caceres begins working on the mat again, showing his massive advantage on the floor. Figueroa is really fighting off the rear naked choke, but Caceres switches to an armbar. Caceres cannot lock in an armbar and Figueroa gets back to his feet. Long strikes miss for Figueroa as the round ends.
9-8 to Figueroa due to two-point deduction
You have to think that this fight is even now based on the two-point deduction in Round 2. Caceres is up two rounds, but the cards are probably even at this point. Superman punch from "Bruce Leeroy" connects. Jab from Caceres gets Figueroa moving back. Caceres takes Figueroa's back while standing, locking in a body triangle. Figueroa drops Caceres to the mat, but he loses out in the scramble and Caceres has his back. "Bruce Leeroy" is stacked against the fence and Figueroa drops long shots. Caceres tries for a triangle, but Figueroa slides free. Figueroa sees his back taken by Caceres again as the round ends, but nothing comes of it as the round ends.
10-9 Caceres and 28-27 for Caceres.
Edwin Figueroa defeats Alex Caceres via split decision (27-28, 28-27, 27-28)
Matt Brown vs. Chris Cope
Leg kick lands for Brown. Cope steps into a right hook. Good feeling-out process thus far. Cope misses on an exchange and is tied up by Brown and walked to the cage. Cope reverses and lands knees to the body. Elbow to the head from Cope. Coming off cage, Cope barely avoids a knee to the face. Takedown from Matt Brown, but Cope is right back to his feet, however, he is pressed to the fence. Brown reverses and tries to drop for a takedown. He gets a single, lifts Cope and sweeps the leg, but Cope is right back to his feet. Center of the cage, both fighters miss big punches. Two-punch combo lands for Brown. Big woo from Cope to end Round 1.
Right hand lands from Brown. Jab lands as Cope steps in. Brown catches a leg kick and unloads with a flurry on Cope. Cope is bloodied up now, but still looks happy to be out there. That dude is happy to be out there until he takes a HUGE right hook behind the ear. Brown follows with a left and drops him and comes in for the finish.
Matt Brown defeats Chris Cope via KO (punches) at 1:19 of Round 2
Matthew Riddle vs. Henry Martinez
Good opening leg kick and strikes from Martinez. Martinez keeps stepping forward, but Riddle counters with a body kick. Another body kick from Riddle is counter by a one-two from Martinez. Riddle steps in with strikes, but eats two from Martinez. Solid boxing from Martinez thus far. Halfway through the first stanza and there's a small cut under the left eye of Riddle. Riddle charges forward, but Martinez throws a flurry that connects. Both fighters are swinging with reckless abandon with just over a minute to go. Big right hand from Martinez. Front kick Riddle just misses, as does a knee to the head.
Riddle shoots for a takedown, but it is stuffed. Martinez continues to have an answer when Riddle steps in. Two consecutive exchanges have met with Riddle eating several big shots. Another series of strikes by Martinez lands clean on Riddle's chin. Both fighters are content to strike so far, with limited action in either the clinch or via takedowns. Solid jab by Riddle comes after a big missed head kick. Martinez comes back with good counter. Two kicks to the midsection of Martinez. The jab is landing now for Riddle and he's getting pumped. Good exchange sees Martinez covering up, eating kicks and punches to the arms. The round ends with Riddle smiling and the fighters touch gloves.
Riddle is landing kicks that are tightening Martinez up. Shot to the chin from Riddle. A huge bruise has formed on Martinez' side. Riddle continues to land the body kick and uses it to set up a nice takedown. Riddle gets to Martinez' back and is trying to flatten him out. Riddle lands elbows to the head before Martinez is able to stand up, but eats a head kick against the cage. Another takedown from Riddle and Martinez locks up rubber guard. Riddle slides him over against the cage wall and is back into full guard. Big punches and elbows to Martinez' head on the mat. Riddle works a ton of body shots on the mat as well and he just unleashes to win the third.
10-9 Riddle and 29-28 to Riddle on the Inside Fights scorecard.
Matthew Riddle defeats Henry Martinez via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
Rafael Natal vs. Michael Kuiper
(Coverage for this bout from 5thRound.com)
Natal tripped him to the canvas for a brief moment. Kuiper now has him clinched against the fence. Natal plants him on the mat more securely this time. Kuiper fights free and ends up in top position. Natal attempts an armbar to no avail. The Brazilian had four or five takedowns in the frame.
Kuiper is walking him down and throwing bombs. Natal answers with a one-two combo. And another big right hand to the grill. Kuiper can take a punch. Natal secures a takedown just before the horn blares.
Kuiper floors him with a right hook and goes in for the kill. Kuiper is laying the lumber, but Natal is doing a decent job of avoiding shots. Natal weathers the storm and picks Kuiper up and slams him to the ground. He advances to full-mount and tries an arm triangle, but there’s not enough time.
Natal, 10-9 and wins the bout, 30-27.
Rafael Natal defeats Michael Kuiper via decision (unanimous) (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Stephen Thompson vs. Dan Stittgen
(Coverage for this bout from 5thRound.com)
Thompson using diverse stances and kicks to keep his opponent confused. Nothing to write home about thus far. Spoke too soon, as Thomson puts Stittgen to sleep with a vicious head kick.
Stephen Thompson defeats Dan Stittgen via KO (head kick) at 4:13 of Round 1