Stephen Thompson earns hard-fought win over Rory MacDonald
Second-ranked welterweight contender Stephen Thompson scored his seven straight win Saturday night with a hard-fought win over top contender Rory MacDonald in front of a hostile crowd in Ottawa, Canada.
Thompson used his speed and dynamic striking to keep MacDonald on his toes and prevent the former title challenger from getting off like he wanted to. MacDonald put his foot on the gas in the championship rounds but it still wasn’t enough to keep up with “Wonderboy”, who proved he was ready for a shot at the UFC welterweight title.
In the co-main event, Donald Cerrone put on the best performance of his long UFC career, dismantling former middleweight Patrick Cote over two and a half rounds before finishing the fight by TKO in the third. Cerrone, who is ranked in the lightweight top five, showed that he’s ready for the best of both divisions and said afterward that he’s hoping to return as soon as International Fight Week.
Highlighting the main card was a light heavyweight slugfest between winner Steve Bosse and Sean O’Connell that many are calling a Fight of the Year candidate. The two heavy hitters took turns blooding each other and dropping, and both were in jeopardy of going home with a loss at various points.
Canadian prospect Olivier Aubin-Mercier scored a hard-fought win over Thibault Gouti, who fought the Tristar fighter tooth and nail before succumbing to a rear-naked choke in the third round. And "Ultimate Fighter" season 20 standout Joanne Calderwood got a big win in the UFC’s first women’s flyweight bout as she picked apart Valerie Letourneau to kick off an exciting main card.
The UFC returns July 7 for the start of International Fight Week, when the promotion will host three events in three days, capped by the historic UFC 200.