Frankie Edgar will just not let his legacy die. Not only has he left his lasting impression in the lightweight division, he now is making another run at a title, this one in the featherweight division. Granted he has already lost once to Aldo, and has others like Conor McGregor vying for a shot at the gold as well, Edgar made it clear that he should be in the mix as well. Sooner or later if a fighter keeps winning fights, a title shot will come right? It is a wait and see game for “The Answer” now, Dana White has some decisions to contemplate over the next few months.
Frankie Edgar defeats Cub Swanson via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) rd.5 – The take down defense let him down, Swanson just had no answer to Edgar’s wrestling. The first frame Cub displayed his power, catching Frankie with some clean punches, the round ended and Edgar’s corner decided it was time to switch game plans. Second round on out the New Jersey native drove Swanson to the ground, battering him with some ground and pound, while advancing in positions as he pleased. The fourth and fifth rounds were probably the worst, as Swanson laid defenseless while getting pummeled, as the final round ticked away Frankie was able to snatch up the submission. Swanson has got to be kicking himself, as he was a victory away from a title. Frankie just vindicated a title shot of his own, calling all UFC featherweight contenders out in succession. Both wanted a shot at the belt, seems as if only one will continue their path back to Jose Aldo.
Edson Barboza defeats Bobby Green via Unanimous Decision – Time for the UFC lightweight division to take notice, Edson Barboza is a lethal weapon. Just his kicks alone change levels so much it’s really hard to dictate where they are coming from. Credit to Bobby Green though; he walked right through some flush shots, and even a spinning heel kick, surviving the striking prowess of the Brazilian. The second round may have been what really defined the bout, as Barboza connected with multiple strikes, and had Green reeling with about a minute remaining. The loss ends Green’s eight fight win streak, and pushes Barboza potentially in the top ten of the lightweight division.
Chico Camus defeats Brad Pickett via Split Decision – A little bit too much dancing around for Camus than actual fighting. Pickett pressed the action, mixed his levels nicely, and put together strikes that were missing from his last fight against Ian McCall; but it just was not enough in the judges eyes. Both Camus and Pickett had their exchanges, with each coming out on the receiving end more often than not. A very difficult fight to judge, a 30-27 score was a bit overzealous by one of the judges. Pickett has now dropped two in a row in the flyweight division, potentially dropping him out of the ranks. The UFC flyweight division may welcome Camus to the top 15 though, with his successful debut.
Alexey Oleinik defeats Jared Rosholt via K.O. (Punch) rd.1 – A wrestler and a submission specialist, none may have guessed this fight would end with a devastating left hook knockout. The two traded early and often, with the American Rosholt winning the early exchanges against the cage. About midway through the first, the separation was finally had, with Alexey finding his range quickly. No grappling needed here, the heavyweight provided quite a bit of explosion on their feet this time. Rosholt suffers his second defeat in his career and his first knockout loss, it will be interesting to see how the young Texan responds in his next UFC bout.
Dustin Ortiz was defeated by Joseph Benavidez via Unanimous Decision – The gap between the number two ranked UFC flyweight and the 13th ranked flyweight showed significantly tonight. For every combination Ortiz threw Benavidez answered convincingly; every take down Ortiz went after, Benavidez out scrambled his foe and wound up in a better position. It just was not the night for Ortiz to climb the ladder, as Joe proved why he is part of the upper echelon in the division. If there were anytime for Ortiz to jump it was in the third round, Benavidez looked tired while wildly throwing haymakers throughout the round. All for not though, as Joseph Benavidez retains his position in the ranks.
Isaac Vallie-Flagg was defeated by Matt Wiman via Unanimous Decision – Isaac Vallie-Flagg repeatedly kept finding himself on the wrong end of the ground game, but for some reason, persisted on bringing it there. “Handsome” Matt Wiman did what he could inside, fighting off the dirty boxing inside the clinch from Vallie-Flagg. Despite the constant clinching, the fight itself was a great kick off to the main card for the UFC in Austin, Texas. Nothing wrong with some elbows flying and short punches exchanged, a very welcomed return to the octagon after a two-year absence for Matt Wiman.
In other notable bouts Paige VanZant enjoyed a successful debut in the UFC and broke Kailin Curran early, and finished her off in the third round. Akbarh Arreola also put on a surprise performance, beating the home town Texan, Yves Edwards. For the full results of the prelims please check down below.
Ruslam Magomedov defeats Josh Copeland via Unanimous Decision
Luke Barnatt was defeated by Roger Narvaez via Split Decision
Nick Hein was defeated by James Vick via Unanimous Decision
Yves Edwards was defeated by Akbarh Arreola via Submission (Armbar) rd.1
Kailin Curran was defeated by Paige VanZant via TKO (Strikes) rd.3
Doo Ho Choi defeats Juan Puig via TKO (Strikes) rd.1
Another successful showing in Texas for the UFC, Thanksgiving break is right around the corner, but then the UFC will be back inside the octagon as Robbie Lawler gets his second crack at the welterweight championship, and Johny Hendricks. As always, anything and everything UFC stayed tuned into the Guardian Liberty Voice.
Commentary by Justin Huffman
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Guardian Liberty Voice sports writer leading the coverage in MMA