And so, the UFC’s terrifying “two events in one goddamned day” campaign is officially underway. Luckily, the promotion is starting out slow, with a Fight Pass card in Berlin featuring a decent middleweight matchup (Mark Munoz vs. Gegard Mousasi) and a bunch of supporting fights that you couldn’t possibly care about. If you want to skip this one and come back later for the TUF Brazil 3 Finale liveblog, that’s totally fine. And if you want to skip that card as well, we can’t really blame you. I mean, for God’s sake, it’s Saturday. Invite your friends over for a barbecue. Spend time with your family. Read a book. Seriously, when was the last time you read a book? Remember how nice that was?
Since very few of you will be watching, we’ve decided to break in a new liveblogger to see how he performs under low pressure. So please give a warm welcome to our brand-new CagePotato Fight Pass Correspondent Bear Siragusa, who will be plugging live results from the UFC Fight Night 41 main card after the jump, beginning at 3 p.m. ET / noon PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and please shoot us your thoughts in the comments section or on twitter.
UFC Fight Night 41 preliminary card results
- Nick Hein def. Drew Dober via Split decision (30-27, 29-28 x 2)
- Magnus Cedenblad def. Krzysztof Jotko via submission (guillotine) at 4:59 of round 2.
- Iuri Alcantara def. Vaughan Lee via TKO at 00:25 of round 1
- Peter Sobotta def. Pawel Pawlak via unanimous decision (30-27 x 3)
- Maximo Blanco def. Andy Ogle via unanimous decision (29-28 x 3)
- Ruslan Magomedov def. Viktor Pesta via unanimous decision (29-28 x 3)
Please stand by…
Good afternoon, Guten tag, and Hyvää iltapäivää folks! Bear Siragusa here. After a few barn burners (Alcantara and his TKO of Lee = good candidate for POTN) it’s time for the Main Card. Some great fights ahead of us. Let’s do this.
Tom Niinimäki vs. Niklas Bäckström
Tom Niinimäki (27-5 MMA, 1-0 UFC) is a top Finnish featherweight. Defeated Rani Yahya via split decision in his UFC debut. Good stand up and submission skills. Former Cage featherweight Champ. Briefly retired from fighting in 2007 after a three fight losing streak. Returned in 2010 and has been undefeated in 11 fights since.
Niklas Bäckström is undefeated (7-0). Trains at Allstars Training center in Sweden together with Alexander Gustafsson. Bäckström is making his UFC debut. A striker, he has won three of his last four fights via TKO.
Both men have entered the octagon. Backstrom has a 4 inch reach/height advantage over Niinimaki. Backstrom with the leg kick. Niinimaki instantly takes the fight to the ground. A bit of a stalemate once they are on the ground, but they start jockeying for position. Niinimaki nearly has Backstroms back. Now they are on their knees, and Backstrom manages to get back up on his feet at the cage. Backstrom defending well. Niinimaki almost tosses Backstrom but Backstrom defends beautifully and puts Niinimaki against the fence. Niinimaki with some knees to the body. Backstrom with a Jumping guillotine. That looked tight but Niinimaki escapes and gets to his feet. A huge knee from Backstrom and a Bull Dog Choke. Niinimaki taps! Wow! Backstrom wins in his UFC debut. I can’t remember ever seeing a tap to the Bull Dog Choke. With three brothers I guess Backstrom had some practice with that submission.
Niklas Bäckström def. Tom Niinimaki via. submission (Bulldog Choke), at 4:14 of round 1.
Luke Barnatt vs. Sean Strickland
Luke «Bigslow» Barnatt is undefeated. At 6′ 6” he is one of the tallest middeweight’s. Barnatt fought for Team Sonnen in TUF 17.
Sean Strickland is also undefeated (14-0). Strickland submitted Bubba McDaniel in his UFC debut at UFC 171. This will be his second fight in the UFC. At 23, he is the youngest fighter on the card.
This should be a great fight. Very different skill sets, but both undefeated. One fighter is going to walk away having made a big statement to the rest of the division, one will walk away disappointed.
Sean Strickland is tapping into his inner Fedor as he approaches the Octagon… He is looking extremely calm and collected.
Barnatt has a 1.5 inch reach advantage over Strickland but a five inch (!) height advantage.
They touch gloves and start to stalk each other. Not a lot of immediate action, feeling each other out. Barnatt starts jabbing, looking to find his range. Strickland is looking very relaxed, Barnatt is looking focused. The crowd starts to boo. The fighters respond and pick up the pace. Strickland starts peppering Barnatt with inside leg kicks. Strickland with a front kick. Strickland with a outside leg kick. Barnatt looking to change levels and find his range. Strickland with the outside leg kick on the left leg of Barnatt. That is going to start hurting if Barnatt can’t find an answer. Strickland teasing Barnatt with some lightning fast jabs. Strickland with another outside leg kick. Barnatt with a failed body kick. There is the buzzer and the crowd keeps booing
Open with a flurry and Strickland goes for the take down and gets Barnatt on his back. Goes for an Arm Bar, but Barnatt defends. Barnatt kicks Strickland off and stands up. They clinch but quickly separate. Now they are back on their feet. Strickland with a left hand jab. Strickland defends all of the strikes Barnatt throws. Strickland connects with a decent straight jab. Barnatt flurries and they clinch. Strickland defends and they are moving again. Barnatt connects with a straight right. Strickland felt that one. BIG right from Barnatt. Strickland absorbed and keeps moving. Barnatt seems to have found his range, Strickland seems to still be waiting for something. Strickland connects with a fast left. Buzzer and booing from the crowd.
They meet in the middle. Still feeling each other out. Barnatt expressed frustration between rounds that Strickland refuses to engage. Barnatt is stalking Strickland and Strickland is just backing up and defending with the occasional jab. Strickland is cut, from what I don’t think anyone knows. Barnatt absorbs a jab to the face. A big swing and a miss by Barnatt, he looks so frustrated. Barnatt connects and goes for the clinch, Strickland pushes him away. Strickland goes for Barnatts back but Barnatt bucks him off. Strickland goes for a leg submission and ends up in 50/50 guard. Barnatt escapes and gains his feet. Barnatt keeps stalking Strickland and has found his range with the right jab. Those jabs are not doing damage, but they will win him the decision. The final buzzer and the crowd boozes and Barnatt shakes his head. Strickland indicated after the buzzer that he had broken his thumb and was “fighting with one hand.”
Sean Strickland def. Luke Barnatt via split decision (29-28 Barnatt) (30-27, 29-28 Strickland)
Didn’t see that coming. It will be interesting to see if Strickland entered the cage witha broken hand or if he broke it during the fight. Winner via showing up.
Francis Carmont vs. C.B. Dollaway
Francis Carmont (22-8 MMA, 6-1 UFC) is ranked # 9 in official UFC middleweight rankings. Coming off a loss to Renaldo Souza. Fights out of Tristar Gym.
C.B. Dollaway (14-5 MMA, 8-5 UFC) finalist in TUF 7. Defeated Jason «Mayhem» Miller in Millers last UFC appearance. Last loss was via decision to Tim Boetsch at UFC 166 after being deducted several points due to eye pokes.
They touch gloves. Dollaway is staying low. Carmont with VERY high hands. Very different energy this fight. Big leg kick from Dollaway. Carmont switches stances. Connects with a big body kick. Carmont connects with a solid right hand. Dollaway is still on the aggressive. They trade kicks. Carmont starts teasing Dollaway. Dollaway connects and knocks Carmont down! He is all over him but Carmont defends and is on his feet. They both raise their hands and taunt each other. Carmont slipping shots and there is a flurry. Carmot connects with a spinning elbow. They separate, Dollaway with the outside leg kick. Carmont goes for the take down. Get’s the take down up against the fence. Dollaway reverses and the buzzer sounds.
A lot of feinting. Carmont connects with a vicious body kick. Then a outside leg kick. Stuffs a takedown attempt and connects with a head kick. Dollaway is still attacking. Carmont misses with an Ax kick. Great inside leg kick from Dollaway. Carmont answers with a low kick of his own. Dollaway clinches and quickly gets the take down. Carmont has excellent take down defence, and Dollaway made that look easy. Dollaway works to get Carmonts back, but Carmont stands up. C.B. Dollaway drags him back to the ground. Carmont is really working for a kimura, but has to let it go They end up against the cage. Dollaway is on top. Carmont is really trying for the Kimura and gives up his back. Dollaway has one hook in. Carmont looks to his corner and there is the buzzer.
A slower start for Dollaway in round three, but Carmont connects quickly with the inside kick followed up by a side kick to the body of Dollaway. Carmont connects with a nice one/two jab. They clinch up against the face and breath for a moment. Dollaway explodes, takes Carmont down and gains his back with one hook in. Dollaway is looking to get his second hook in and is punishing the side of Carmonts head. Dollaway shifts and gets both his hooks in. Carmont twists and break Dollaways grip, spins to his feet and pins Dollaway up against the cage. Dollaway goes for the single leg and takes him down. He is in full mount and starts raining down elbows, Carmont gives Dollaway his back to avoid abuse. Dollaway has in one hook. Carmont twists out and almost gains his feet but Dollaway gets a leg and drags him back down. The buzzer sounds and both fighters raise their hands.
I honestly have no idea. Dollaway dominated the last round, but I think he lost the first.
C.B. Dollaway def. Francis Carmont via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27 x2)
Now for the Main Event:
Mark Muñoz vs. Gegard Mousasi
Mark Munoz (13-4 MMA, 8-4 UFC) is #7 in official UFC middleweight rankings. He has defeated the likes of Tim Boetsch, Chris Leben, Demian Maia, CB Dalloway and Kendall Grove. His last two losses came at the hands of Chris Weidman and Lyoto Machida.
Gegard Mousasi (34-4 MMA, 1-1 UFC) #11 in UFC middleweight rankings. Former Strikeforce light heavyweight champ, former Cage Warriors middleweight champ, former DREAM middleweight AND light heavyweight champ. Mousasi Defeated Mark Hunt in an DREAM open-weight bout. He moved back down to middleweight after signing with the UFC.
Both men are coming off loses to Lyoto Machida. Both have title aspirations. Mousasi wants to prove that he deserves the title shot, while Munoz has said that he wants to prove that he deserves to be in title contention and prove the he is not a gate keeper. The results of this fight will mean a lot for the future of an insanely deep division.
Mousasi has a 5 inch reach advantage… That’s nutty.
The crowd is almost silent in anticipation.
Munoz goes immediately for the takedown. Mousasi is keeping low. Munoz goes for the leg, gets it and lifts Mousasi up and slams him down. Mousasi gets up and connects with a kick. Mousasi is keeping his hands really low, Monuz clips him with a left and goes for the clinch. Mousasi defends and answers with a quick flurry. Munoz goes for the legs, defended by Mousasi. Mousasi rolls Munoz and ends up on top. Mousasi in half guard. Mousasi is dropping some huge elbows on Munoz’s face. Mousasi gets a head crank and forces Monuz against the fence on his back. Munoz gives him his back and Mousasi sinks in his hooks gets under the chin and WOW! TAPS MUNOZ!
He handled Munoz like Cormier handled Hendo. That was a statement! With that performance Mousasi has definitely broken in to the top ten.
Mousasi says he wants the winners of Luke Rockhold’s and Tim Kennedy’s next fights.
Gegard Mousasi defeats Mark Munoz via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 3:07 of round 1.