The UFC makes its first (and only!) U.K. stop of 2012 today, with a card that’s low on star power but high on potential fireworks. If you’re reading this right now, it means you’re at least sort-of interested, and that’s good enough for us. So which heavyweight main-eventer is about to put himself “in the mix”? Can Dan Hardy string together his first back-to-back wins since 2009? Will Matt Wiman be just another notch on Paul “Sassangle” Sass‘s sassbelt? And WTF is wrong with Kyle Kingsbury, anyway? The answers to most of those questions will be revealed shortly.
Handling liveblog business for the UFC on FUEL 5 main card broadcast is George Shunick, who will be stacking round-by-round results after the jump beginning at 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m PT. Let us know how you feel in the comments section, and refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest. And as always, thanks for spending part of your weekend with us.
Welcome, fight freaks, to this
stacked relevant British card on Fuel TV. I expect most of you will be getting your updates on the internet for this event, considering half of you don’t have Fuel TV, and the other half can’t find it. Fortunately Potato Nation, that’s why we’re here. Now, on to the fights!
Prelim Results (as if you care):
Robbie Peralta def. Jason Young via Round 1 TKO
Gunnar Nelson def. DaMarques Johnson via Round 1 Submission
Brad Tavares def. Tom Watson via Split Decision
Akira Corassani def. Andy Ogle via Split Decision
Jimi Manuwa def. Kyle Kingsbury via Kingsbu’s eye being battered into oblivion (Round 2)
Now that that’s out of the way, on to our first fight.
Che Mills vs. Duane Ludwig
Round 1: The fighters touch gloves. Mills works dirty boxing the clinch, lands a knee and takes Ludwig down. Passes to side control. Ludwig sweeps, stands, eats a knee and is back underneath, pondering the futility of his actions. Mills working elbows from side control. Ludwig regains guard, Mills lands elbows. Ludwig goes for an armbar, Mills stands and misses a huge right hand. They stand, Ludwig collapses and points to his knee and it’s done. Replay shows his knee just gives out. Possibly a torn ACL.
Che Mills def. Duane Ludwig via knee implosion of Round 1 Very disappointing for Ludwig. Che Mills doesn’t look terribly thrilled either. Hopefully Ludwig will be able to recover and get back to fighting soon. He’s an entertaining guy who always brings the violence. Mills says he loves to fight for the fans and, ever receptive to transparent flattery, the mob showers him with adoration. First win for a British fighter so far.
Next up is a fight from the prelims: Robbie Peralta and Jason Young. I predict a 23 second knockout for Peralta. 23 seconds later, Robbie Peralta gets the knockout. Damn, I’m good.
Next up, British rising star John Hathaway takes on British submission specialist John Maguire. I’ll go out on a limb here and predict the Brit will take this one.
John Hathaway vs. John Maguire
Round 1: The welterweights touch gloves. They feel each other out for the first 30 seconds. Hathaway attempts a high kick, which is blocked. 1 minute in, little action. Hathaway lands a low kick. Hathaway moves forward, lands a few punches and a knee. They reset. 2 minutes in, nothing of significance has landed. Nice counter left by Maguire. Hathaway almost lands a head kick. Goes high again, and is blocked. Neither guy looks comfortable in their stand-up. Hathaway lands a take down, but his momentum sends him flying into the fence, well past Maguire. They stand. (Ugh.) Maguire lands a few nice shots. Maguire shoots, but Hathaway hits the switch and… they stand. The bell sounds. 10-10, really, but if I had to guess I’d say the judges lean Hathaway because he controlled the center of the Octagon.
Round 2: Hathaway telegraphs a right and misses wildly. Lands an inside leg kick. Hits a head kick! Hathaway leaps in a clinches with Maguire along the fence and takes him down. He’s in half guard, landing short hammerfists to Maguire temple. Maguire controlling his posture, attempts to sweep him. Hathaway stands, lowers into guard. Maguire attempts a triangle, now working out of half butterfly guard. Hathaway landing short shots, Maguire still controlling his posture. Hathaway stands, goes back into half guard. Now mixing shots to the body. Maguire regains guard, Hathaway stands again, then takes a knee and grabs half guard. Landing more punches, passes to side control. Hathaway landing shots to Maguire’s head, and Maguire is beginning to tire. Hathaway is relentless, if not terribly violent. He stands and the bell sounds. 10-9 Hathaway.
Round 3: The fighters touch gloves again. Hathaway misses a front kick. He’s pressing forward, though, and Maguire has no answer for him on the feet. Hathaway lands a knee against the cage. Maguire lands a left, but he hasn’t put together combinations and he’s having trouble getting inside on Hathaway. Hathaway isn’t landing anything of substance, though, but he’s controlling the fight. Hathaway finally lands a right hand following a blocked head kick. This is becoming a glorified sparring match. Maguire shoots and lands a takedown! Passes to side control. Can the gypsy jiu-jitsu expert get a submission with one minute left? Hathaway recovers half guard, now full guard. Hathaway throwing elbows from the bottom. They exchange, with Maguire seemingly content to sit in full guard. He stands and Hathaway lands upkicks as the bell sounds. 10-9 Hathaway, who should take the unanimous decision.
John Hathaway takes the unanimous decision (30-27′s all around). No surprises there. Hathaway looked unimpressive in victory and Maguire looked even more unimpressive in defeat. British MMA, people! At least it isn’t Ultimate Ball.
Paul Sass vs. Matt Wiman
Round 1: Two exciting lightweights about to square off. Sass’ ground game ain’t nothing to fuck with. They touch gloves, Sass grabs the single. That was quick. Working from full guard, he maneuvers them to the fence. Sass lands body shots as Wiman controls his posture. Nice elbows from Sass. Wiman answeering from the bottom. Sass goes for a leg lock, but can’t get it. Now he goes for an omoplata! Wiman escapes. Sass sweeps and gets the takedown. Sass goes for another ankle lock, abandons it. Now Sass is caught in a triangle! But he escapes. Wiman throwing elbows. Sass lands some huge shots from the top! Wiman going for an armbar. Sass throws a knee while defending. Wiman gets the armbar! That’s it, Wiman beats Sass at his own game. Easily the best fight so far.
Matt Wiman def. Paul Sass via armbar in one round. Matt Wiman is holding back tears in the post-fight interview. Not because he’s overwhelmed by emotions, but because interviewer Jon Anik smells like onions. Then he makes silly faces at cameras.
Now we’re treated to another prelim fight: Iceland’s Gunnar Nelson against DaMarques Johnson. Solid, entertaining affair that showed just why so many people are talking about Nelson as he submits Johnson with a rear naked choke in the first round. Dude fights with the calm, cold demeanor of certain other fighter from the northern wastes. He just needs a sweater with mystical violence-enhancing abilities.
Up next is possibly the most exciting fight of the night – which is saying something after Wiman vs. Sass – as Brad Pickett takes on Yves Jabouin. Really excited for this one. I think I’ll call my friends using my MetroPCS service while I reach for a NOS energy dri- oh god, these commercials are destroying my brain.
Brad Pickett vs. Yves Jabouin
Round 1: Fighters touch gloves, Pickett moves forward. Then he gets poked in the eye. He says he’s OK. Pickett swinging wildly while Jabouin going for kicks. Pickett lands a jab. Jabouin lands a high kick, followed by knees and kicks. Pickett lands a left hook. Jabouin land a kick. They exchange with both landing. Big knee from Jabouin, but Pickett lands counter hooks. Pickett lands an uppercut, followed by a hook. Jabouin lands a right straight. Pickett goes flying in with a hook. Right to the body by Pickett, Jabouin lands a spinning back kick, stuffs a takedown. OH MY GOD! Pickett lands a HUGE uppercut and Jabouin is OUT! Wow. Pickett plays to the crowd, possibly attempting to incite a riot. Replay shows Pickett followed up with two violent shots. No doubt there – Jabouin is out cold. KO of the Night, no doubt.
Brad Pickett def. Yves Jabouin via first round KO. Very thankful Pickett ended that fight in the first round – live-blogging bantamweights is not easy. Replays show Pickett did the Gangnam dance after the fight. Someone get a .gif of that ASAP. Well, that was satisfying. Pickett puts on his trilby hat, gives his interview in barely comprehensible Brit-speak, and leaves the cage. Like a boss.
Dan Hardy vs. Amir Sadollah
Woah, we get walkouts for this one! Amir walks out to unidentifiable dance music. The original MMA hipster enters the cage, and the lights go out right before Dan Hardy’s music hits. Hardy comes out with the trademark bandana and “England Belongs to Me” by the
Sex Pistols Cock Sparrer. (Dur.) The crowd eats it up and sings along.
Dan Hardy vs. Amir Sadollah
Round 1: The crowd chants “Hardy!” as Bruce Buffer announces the fighters, before booing Amir. (I’m not typing “Sadollah” over and over.) The Hardy chants come back for the staredown. Fight starts, they don’t touch gloves. Amir takes the center of the Octagon. Amir lands a kick and eats a counter. Hardy blocks some shots. Amir lands a low kick. Then another. Inside leg kick Hardy. Amir goes for a head kick and misses. They exchange, neither connecting with anything hard. Hardy lands a left hook. Then another. Low kick Amir. Inside leg kick Amir. Big right from Hardy. Another inside leg kick from Amir. Hardy is looking for the left hook and lands it. Misses with a right, but lands a jab. Amir returns the favor as the crowd chants “Hardy”. Sadollah gets a body lock and pushes Hardy into the fence. They exchange knees, and Hardy reverses position. Hardy lands an elbow and they exchange knees some more. They separate. Big shots from Hardy! Hardy grabs a Muay Thai clinch, lands some knees and they’re back on the fence. Another big elbow from Hardy. Amir counters with dirty boxing. The round ends as Hardy attempts a hip toss. 10-9 for the Brit.
Round 2: Hardy checks a kick, lands a knee as Amir comes in. High kick blocked by Amir. Hardy lands a low kick. Nice counter left by Amir. Hardy snapping that left hook. Cross by Hardy. Right to the body by Hardy followed by an inside leg kick. Big right hand by Hardy. He’s in total control this round. Hardy lands a double leg! (What? Is this the real Dan Hardy we’re watching?) Sadollah stands, Hardy presses him against the fence. Amir trying to get a body lock, but he can’t get off the fence. Wait, yes he can. He reverses position. But then Hardy returns the favor. Nice left by Sadollah. They separate. Low kicks from Sadollah. Another double leg from Hardy! Throws an elbow to the body, Sadollah working from half butterfly guard. Now full guard. Ground and pound from Hardy. Sadollah angling for an armlock. Hardy landing hammerfists, almost in side control. The bell sounds, another round for Hardy.
Round 3: Counter left from Hardy. Hardy backing Amir up, but not laning too much. They exchange kicks. Hardy goes for a takedown, but Amir defends along the fence. They’re in the clinch again. Hardy lands a knee. Amir goes for a trip, doesn’t land it, but he switches position on the fence. They break. Hardy lands a left hook, dives in for a superman punch and Amir ducks and goes for a takedown. Hardy defends and they’re on the fence. Hardy looks like the fresher fighter. Amir goes for a head kick and slips. Hardy charges forward, grabs a body lock and nails the takedown. Hardy lands shots while Amir attempts triangles and armbars. Hardy lands some short elbows as he defends. Amir has trouble maneuvering with the fence in his way. More elbows from Hardy. Big ones now. Amir is cut. Hardy continues to punish him. Amir rolls out, shoots for a single. Hardy answers with a knee. Hardy lands a big combo punctuated by a left hook. Dominant round for Hardy, who should take all the rounds on the scorecards.
Hardy takes the decision 29-28 on two cards and 30-27 on the third. Hardy screams “OYYY-OYYYY!” or something in the microphone. The mob responds in kind. Hardy showed a new wrinkle in his game today, and it paid off for him. For Sadollah, it was a rough night, but still a solid fight. Hardy dances with his cornermen and leaves the ring. Those cheeky Brits. Next up: THE MAAAAAIIIIIINNN EVENT. OF THE EVENING!
Stefan Struve vs. Stipe Miocic
Stipe Miocic enters to Linkin Park, despite not being a prepubescent suburban white kid from 2002. -100 for you, sir. Stefan Struve enters to… Godsmack. The state of MMA entrance music is not looking too good right now.
Round 1: The fighters high five. Miocic takes the center of the Octagon. Immediately, it appears Miocic will have trouble closing the distance. He throws a left hook, right cross. Both blocked by Struve. Doubles up on the jab, but Struve backs away. Lands a body shot. And another. Inside leg kick by Miocic. He goes to the body again. And again. That looks like his gameplan. Struve moves forward, lands a left hook. Jab by Miocic. Miocic is beginning to get inside. Inside leg kick Miocic. Then an overhand right. Struve throws a head kick, thena flying knee. Miocic works the body some more. Knee by Struve. More shots to the body by Miocic, followed by a right. Struve hits a knee, Miocic takes him down but jumps out of a leglock attempt. They stand. Head kick Struve, but Miocic counters. Struve misses a knee. Another shot to the body. Miocic catches a kick, but misses the counter. More body work. Jab by Struve, then a knee. Big leg kick from Struve. Big jab from Miocic. The bell sounds, 10-9 Miocic.
Round 2: Inside leg kick Miocic. Big kick to the body by Struve. Miocic doubles his jab, but gets kicked in the balls on the way in. After a brief break, the action resumes. Left hook, cross form Miocic. He follows up with uppercuts. Inside leg kicks from both men, and Miocic escapes a clinch attempt. Struve is looking to take this fight down. jabs from Struve. Body shot from Miocic. Left hook from Struve, who is loosening up. Body shots from Miocic. Struve now rushes forward. Miocic is hurt. Struve throwing uppercuts. They break. Miocic still isn’t 100%. Struve landing uppercuts again. Miocic is retreating. But lands a BIG left hook. BIG right hand from Miocic. Both guys have been hurt. Miocic is wobbly, but landing heavy shots. Right from Miocic. Big combo from Struve! Body shot from miocic. Miocic slipped, Struve takes advantage and unloads on Miocic. Miocic stays on his feet, but he’s out of it. Herb Dean steps in and that’s all she wrote. Legit stoppage. Struve wins via TKO.
Stefan Struve def. Stipe Miocic by TKO in the second round. Struve looks much improved on the feet, at least when he actually decides to set his offense up with a jab. When he started doing that in the second round, he became a completely different fighter. Still, for a guys who’s so tall and has such a long reach, he really needs to find a way to be less hittable if he wants to contend for the title any time soon. As for Miocic, this is definitely a setback. He landed some serious shorts, but he couldn’t really get past Struve’s jab. That was the beginning of the end.
Speaking of the end, that’s it for the fights! You may now return to your normally scheduled Saturday programming of imbibing massive quantities of alcohol with your fellow amoral miscreants. Goodnight Potato Nation!