For one night only, the KFC Yum! Center (actual venue name) will be replacing their Double Downs with a steady barrage of KNUCKLE SANDWICHES!!! SEE WHAT I DID THERE? OH SHIT, FORGOT TO TURN OFF CAPS LOCK. Round-by-round results from the Versus broadcast will be accumulating after the jump beginning at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT — right after a quick recap of the Facebook.com/UFC prelims. From Sanchez vs. Kampmann and Dollaway vs. Munoz to Bowles vs. Page and Stevenson vs. Castillo, it’s gonna be a solid night of free fights, so refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and drop your two cents in the comments section.
The Facebook Prelims
Joe Stevenson vs. Danny Castillo
Round 1: Gritty round contested mainly in the clinch and on the mat. Stevenson gets Castillo locked up against the fence and drills some knees into his head. Joe Daddy scores with a big slam. Stevenson looks for his savage guillotine on multiple occasions — including a brief attempt after Castillo nails a takedown — but Castillo stays calm and pulls out each time. Castillo is able to get some space and tee off with punches in the last minute of the round, evening things out a bit.
Round 2: More of a striking battle at first. Castillo jabbing well, pawing forward with the cross, landing a hard hook. Stevenson shoots in and slams Castillo again after a bit of struggle. Daddy in guard, briefly passes to half. He lands an elbow from the top. Castillo with some chopping elbows from the bottom. He’s locking down Stevenson, then escapes, grabs Stevenson’s waist, and nails Stevenson with a knee as Stevenson was momentarily grounded. He gets a stern talking to from the ref, but no point deduction. They spar to the bell.
Round 3: Castillo works the body. His boxing is sharp. Stevenson gets tired of being touched, and he shoots. Castillo sprawls out and starts kneeing Stevenson in the body while Joe is grounded, wisely avoiding another foul. Castillo tosses Stevenson to the mat. Stevenson gets up and tries his famous guillotine again. Castillo survives once again. He scrambles away and goes for more body knees. Stevenson stands with Castillo attached to him. Castillo with a takedown, and gets in a punch before Stevenson stands again. Stevenson is bloody. Castillo gets another takedown, scores mount, and slugs Stevenson to the bell. Great finish, and it might have clinched the fight.
Danny Castillo def. Joe Stevenson via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28 x 2). That’s three straight losses for Joe Daddy. Might be time for him to go away for a while. And speaking of win-or-go-home fights…
Steve Cantwell vs. Cyrille Diabate
Round 1: Diabate staying out of punching range, and smoothly landing his counter-strikes. The height/reach difference is kind of scary. Cantwell whiffing his overhand rights. Hard body kick from Diabate, but Cantwell grabs the follow-up kick, takes Diabate down and starts working for position. A little bit of GnP, but Diabate elbows right back. Cantwell lets Diabate get back up, but punishes him with a knee and punches. Diabate throws a flying double-knee. Cantwell lands a straight. Knee to the body from Diabate. Diabate lands a nasty knee to the face, then drops Cantwell with an uppercut. Cantwell manages to get up and survive the round, but he stumbles back to his corner as if in shock, like an I.E.D. just went off next to him. Time for Diabate to go in for the kill.
Round 2: Body kick Diabate. Diabate sort of playing with his prey, landing a shot, parrying. Diabate manages to take Cantwell down and slugs him in the ribs a few times before letting him back up. Diabate working his jab. He lands punch combos unanswered. Knee/uppercut/cross. Cantwell shoots in, Diabate sprawls and moves onto Cantwell’s back. Cantwell gets up, Diabate bashes him with uppercuts and elbows. A body kick, another knee. Cantwell tries to shoot again, Diabate sprawls and lands on top of him, in guard. Diabate throws down an elbow. Cantwell desperately rolls out of the way as the round ends.
Round 3: Diabate landing his leg kicks. And a hard body kick. And a knee. But he seems content to just ride out the fight against an opponent who really has nothing for him. It looks like a sparring match between an instructor and a student. Cantwell shoots, fails. Knee to the body and three dead-on punches from Diabate, who then goes back to the leg kicks. More knees, more punches, more uppercuts. Diabate doesn’t even bother keeping his hands up. The last bell rings. The crowd’s not entirely impressed by Diabate’s lack of killer instinct. It’ll be Cantwell’s third straight decision loss. This night’s kind of a bummer already.
Cyrille Diabate def. Steve Cantwell via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-25, 30-26). Total rout. Diabate says he’s been traveling a lot lately and it affected his cardio, but he’ll get the finish next time. Okay, turn on Versus…
Round 1: They come out slugging, as promised. Page launches a flying knee and nearly takes Page’s head off with a high kick. Page tries the flying knee *again*. Page gets tagged by a jab coming in for a leg kick. He whips a body shot, and lands a sharp leg kick. Bowles with an uppercut. Page scores with a knee and a kick to the body. Page stumbles Bowles with a leg kick. And another. Bowles lands an uppercut, then attacks, tossing Page down to the mat. He starts in with some furious GnP. Bowles sets up a guillotine choke when Page tries to roll out of the way, and puts Page to sleep with it. Great job by Bowles of staying composed during the onslaught and seizing his moment. It’ll be good to see him back in the bantamweight mix. Brian Bowles def. Damacio Page via submission (guillotine choke), 3:30 of round 1.
Igor Pokrajac vs. Todd Brown, from the prelims. Remind me again who Todd Brown is? Pokrajac with a nice two-punch combo. Brown bulls Pokrajac into the fence and clinches. Pokrajac slips in a knee to Brown’s head. Brown with some knees to Pokrajac’s legs. They break. Pokrajac lands a jab, eats a counter. Brown chooses to clinch with Pokrajac on the fence again. Pokrajac with an uppercut. Brown separates, Pokrajac staggers him with a head kick. Pokrajac with punches, and one that bashes Brown to the mat. Brown grabs into a leg. Pokrajac frees himself and lands a brutal knee that drops Brown. Pokrajac swarms with punches until the horn sounds. Brown tries to get up, can’t. He rolls onto his back and the referee eventually calls it. Igor Pokrajac def. Todd Brown via TKO, 5:00 of round 1. Pokrajac thanks Louisville, the UFC, Joe Rogan, and wishes that the rest of the night’s fights are as interesting as his. And if he may, he requests his next fight be against Tito Ortiz. Oh man. Another one. How’s that feel, Tito? But at least Pokrajac would make more sense than Ryan Bader, considering he still has a losing record in the UFC.
In an interview with Rogan, Jon Jones talks about how he has his “butterflies in formation” for his fight against Shogun. See, if Charlie Sheen said that, we’d call him crazy. But when Jones says it? He’s…well, he’s a little crazy too.
Alessio Sakara vs. Chris Weidman
Weidman is a 4-0 newbie, and he’s a 2-1 favorite in this fight. I’m very curious to see what oddsmakers know about him that I don’t. A hard-hitting veteran like Sakara is no easy welcoming party.
Round 1: Weidman starts it off with a high kick. Weidman clumsily dashes in. Weidman beat both Phil Davis and Ryan Bader back in his wrestling days, apparently. Sakara launches forward with some punches and a leg kick. He throws that combo again. Weidman with a high kick, into a clinch. Weidman lands an elbow as Sakara separates. Weidman with the right straight. Sakara again with that three-punch/leg kick combo. The KFC Yum crowd chants “USA!” Weidman trying for a single-leg against the fence. Sakara defends it. Weidman comes in swinging but gets countered. Weidman with a body kick. Weidman tries for the double leg dive, Sakara stuffs it. Leg kick Weidman. Sakara is bleeding near his right eye. Weidman sticks the jab. Weidman swings, hits air. Weidman punches, shoots, Sakara stuffs. Weidman throws another high kick as the round comes to an end.
Round 2: Sakara jabbing. Weidman shoots for the single-leg, and gets it. Wiedman in Sakara’s guard. Weidman with a big punch, then an elbow. Weidman stands up to get some space and bashes Sakara with another punch. Sakara’s forehead is split open, spewing blood. Weidman in side control, grinding down with punches. Sakara establishes half-guard, then escapes, stands to his feet, and explosed on Weidman with strikes. Wiedman grabs Sakara and dumps him back on the mat. Alessio up again. The ref pauses the fight to get Sakara’s cut checked. Sakara wipes his blood on the ref’s shirt. Gross. Instead of freaking out, the ref just restarts the fight, and Sakara and Weidman start firing at each other. Sakara goes to the head and body. The round ends. Strong finish from Sakara after getting smashed for a good deal of the frame.
Round 3: Sakara slugs to the body. He still has a lot of zip on his punches in the third round. But Weidman converts another takedown and lands in side control. Wiedman stays busy with short punches and elbows. Sakara tries to shrimp out, but can’t. Weidman raises up and lands a pair of punches. The ref decides to stand them. Hey, he knows his audience. Weidman shoots and scores. Sakara hip-escapes, but Weidman stays on him and goes back to half-guard. Sakara pushes off and gets to his feet. Wiedman gets one more takedown and throws down punches until the last horn.
Chris Weidman def. Alessio Sakara via unanimous decision (30-27 x 3). A rookie dominates a vet on short notice, and the oddsmakers were dead-on. Weidman’s got potential.
Round 1: Dollaway grabs Munoz and takes him down. He considers a headlock, then lets Munoz up. Monoz lands a big right hand, then an uppercut that drops Dollaway. Munoz dives on and starts bashing down with follow-up punches. He lands two and Yamasaki calls it. Hmm…maybe a little early. Dollaway snaps back to his senses pretty quickly and isn’t pleased about what just transpired. The crowd doesn’t like it either. Mark Munoz def. CB Dollaway via TKO, 0:54 of round 1. Munoz tries to get the crowd back on his side by giving it up to Louisville and God. Eh, Yamasaki could have let Munoz punch Dollaway in the face a couple more times, but the Doberman was pretty much done.
Thiago Tavares vs. Shane Roller, from the prelims. It’s a kickboxing match from the outset. Roller attacks forward and smashes Tavares against the fence with a teep. But Tavares catches Roller with a left hook then lands a barrage of follow-up punches. Hard leg kick from Tavares. Roller shoots, clinches, and gets in a knee. Tavares turns him against the fence, gets in a knee of his own, and the round ends.
Round 2: Roller lands the straight. Tavares scores a takedown, but Roller stands up. Roller loads up and knocks Tavares’s brains out with a right straight. Tavares hits the deck, and Roller jackhammers him until the ref jumps in. Daaaaaaaamn.
Shane Roller def. Thiago Tavares via KO, 1:28 of round 2.
Before we get to the main event, here are the results of the other prelim bouts that we probably won’t get a chance to see. I know, spoiler alert…
- Takeya Mizugaki def. Reuben Duran via split decision (30-27, 29-28, 27-30. The guy who scored every round for Duran…his name wouldn’t happen to be ‘Cecil’, would it?)
- Dong Yi Yang def. Rob Kimmons via TKO, 4:47 of round 2
- Rousimar Palhares def. Dave Branch via submission (heel hook, obviously), 1:44 of round 2
Diego Sanchez vs. Martin Kampmann
Sanchez comes out to “La Bamba,” of all songs. The Los Lobos version. And he still manages to mean-mug during his entrance. Finally, when his team rolls out his sponsor-banner over the cage, he starts screaming “YES!” The Dream, everybody. Kampmann bumps his gloves into Sanchez’s chest during the face-off. YOU JUST SIGNED YOUR OWN DEATH WARRANT, BRO.
Round 1: Kampmann lands first with a group of punches. Sanchez responds, landing a short right. Sanchez grabs for the single-leg. Kampmann defends and counters with a pair of knees. Kampmann knocks Sanchez down with a straight right then grabs a headlock when Sanchez gets up. Sanchez tries for a single-leg, but can’t get it, and they separate. Kampmann lands another punch. Sanchez clinches and dives right into a knee. Kampmann shrugs him off. Kampmann with a 1-2. Sanchez is already bloodied. Sanchez shoots, Kampmann sprawls. Sanchez jumps forward with a right hook. Kampmann jabs, lands the right. Sanchez dives into a jab, works for a takedown against the fence. Kampmann lands a knee on the break. There’s the horn. It was all Kampmann. Sanchez looking ugly in every way.
Round 2: Sanchez is covered with his own blood, but he’s not giving up on the takedown strategy. Kampmann still successful in defending. Sanchez attacks, but gets his head popped back with a jab. Kampmann scores with a right straight. Sanchez clinches against the fence, drops for a takedown, doesn’t get it. Rogan comments on how flabby Sanchez looks. So what’s the right weight class for this dude anyway? Nobody knows. Sanchez lands on Kampmann and starts pouring it on. Kampmann survives the beating, but now he’s bleeding from a cut near his right eye. Sanchez shoots for a single leg, doesn’t get it. Kampmann lands the right, then a counter-left. Sanchez dives for a single. Kampmann lands a knee, but Sanchez goes for broke in the closing seconds of the round and rocks Kampmann against the fence in a wild brawling exchange. Sanchez could have evened things up on the scorecards.
Round 3: Kampmann lands his jab, and his right cross. Sanchez dashes forward with his right hand, then goes to the body. Sanchez shoots, Kampmann stuffs it and knees Sanchez in the head. Kampmann jabs, but gets caught with a right hook. Sanchez attacking again, but Kampmann avoids the onslaught this time. Kampmann stuffs another takedown, but Sanchez intentionally keeps his hands down to avoid getting kneed in the head. Kampmann kicks him the ribs instead and backs off. They trade punches. Sanchez finally scores a takedown, and it could be a difference maker this late in the fight. Kampmann gets up and they’re boxing again. Sanchez with the left uppercut, and a flurry of punches after it. Kampmann sticks the right, then shakes out his right hand. Something might be jammed or broken. Sanchez takes advantage, swarming Kampmann against the cage. Kampmann avoids, counters. Sanchez’s face, my goodness. Kampmann backpedals and jabs as Sanchez tries to bull rush him. That’s the fight. Sanchez’s cuts are almost as bad as the ones BJ Penn gave him. But he might have done enough to win, the crazy bastard.
Scratch that, Diego’s cuts are even *worse* than in the BJ fight. He can’t open either eye at this point. Diego Sanchez def. Martin Kampmann via unanimous decision (29-28 x 3). the crowd boos for some reason. Kampmann says he won all three rounds, and that he was landing cleaner shots. He’s very disappointed, and he probably broke his hand. Sucks man. But Sanchez was pushing the pace in the last two rounds and looked really dangerous when he was swarming on the Hitman. That’s the breaks. Rogan doesn’t agree with the decision either. Your thoughts? Let’s all get some sleep and re-group tomorrow…