In a controversial decision, former UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson edged a split-points decision over Josh Thomson. The two fought in the main event of UFC on Fox 10 which was held at the United Center in Chicago, USA on Saturday night (Sunday in Australia).
Thomson likely won the first two rounds of the contest which included the former Strikeforce lightweight champion taking his opponent’s back and working for submissions for a large portion of the opening round. By the third round, Thomson had suffered an hand injury which allowed Henderson (pictured left) back into the fight. The fourth round was evenly contested before Henderson came back in the last round. The judges were split in their verdict with one judge giving it 48-47 to Thomson while the other two gave it to Henderson 48-47 and 49-46. With the win Henderson moves a step-closer to getting another shot at a title. The 30 year-old is 20-3 as a professional and 8-1 in the UFC. Thomson drops to 20-6, 1 no-contest (UFC 1-1).
In a heavyweight clash, Stipe Miocic scored his biggest career win as he defeated 34 year-old Gabriel Gonzaga. Gonzaga was the more active fighter early landing some low kicks and getting off the better shots from the ouside. The early pressure seemed to slow in the second round as Miocic increased his intensity and landing jabs and straight punches. Miocic stayed out of the power punches in the last round and after Gonzaga slipped, Miocic landed some solid ground-and-pound until the buzzer. All three judges awarded the fight to Miocic 30-27, 30-27, 29-28 as the former golden gloves boxer moves to 11-1 (UFC 4-1). Gonzaga drops to 16-8 (UFC 11-7).
Donald Cerrone was motivated coming into his fight against Adriano Martins and it showed as the Jackson’s MMA fighter scored an impressive first-round victory. It would be Martins who started the bout with a hard kick to the body before Cerrone started to return fire with constant leg kicks, mixed in with some punches. Cerrone got a trip later in the round, and straight away moved to mount however the Brazilian fighter escaped back to his feet immediately. Cerrone landed a front-kick that landed, followed by a low kick. A final right high kick from inside landed flush on Martin as the Brazilian dropped forward unconscious. The win came 4:40 into the fight as “Cowboy” moved to 22-6, 1 no-contest (UFC 9-3). Martins drops to 25-7 (UFC 1-1).
27 year-old veteran Jeremy Stephens continued his resurgence as he scored his third consecutive win by outclassing Darren Elkins. Stephens controlled the fight from the go as he shrugged off the early takedown attempts from Elkins. On his feet the Alliance MMA fighter was getting the better shots off which included a left-hook that dropped Elkins to the canvas late in the second round. Elkins had his best opportunities in the last round as he locked up two guillotine attempts only for Stephens to escape. The judges unanimous awarded Stephens the fight 30-27, 30-27, 29-28 as he moves to 23-9 (UFC 11-8). Elkins drops to 17-4 (UFC 7-3).
The younger brother of UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis, 20 year-old Sergio Pettis dropped his first professional fight as TUF alumn Alex Caceres submitted the youngster with a rear-naked choke late in the fight. Pettis found his mark early however it all changed in the second-round as a combination from Caceres dropped his opponent. Pettis regained composure and landed some exchanges of his own. A failed takedown attempt in the third round allowed Caceres to land a whizzer where he was able to take the back and force the tap via a rear-naked choke. The end came late in the fight at 4:39 of the last round. Caceres moves to 10-5, 1 no-contest (UFC 5-3, 1 N/C) as Pettis drops to 10-1 (UFC 1-1).
Eddie Wineland bounced back to the winners column with a second round stoppage over Yves Jabouin. The 29 year-old American was made to work early as the first round ended fairly even before Wineland started to find his mark in the second round. Wineland then landed a nicely timed straight right that dropped his opponent before following him to the ground and ultimately finishing it with ground-and-pound. The end came 4:16 into the second round as Wineland moved his professional record to 21-9, 1 draw (UFC 3-3). Tristar gym member Jabouin drops to 19-9 (UFC 4-3).
In the battle between Yaotzin Meza and Chico Camus, both fighter utilised sweeps in an attempt to control the action from the top and as the fight went on it would be Camus who started to gain control. Early in the third round the 29 year-old Camus was able to move to mount where he dominated en-route to a unanimous points decision. Two judges awarded him the fight 29-28 with the other scoring it 30-27. Camus moves to 14-4 (UFC 3-1), while Meza drops to 20-9 (UFC 1-2).
31 year-old Brazilian fighter Hugo Viana immediately took control as he dropped his opponent Junior Hernandez with the very first strike he threw. He seemed a level above Hernandez for the first two rounds, landing at will while taking no damage in the process. Hernandez started to come into the fight late but it wasn’t enough as Viana won the unanimous decision 29-28 across the board. Viana moves his record to 8-1 (UFC 3-1) with his only loss coming to T.J Dillashaw. It was Hernandez’s second loss in as many UFC appearances as he drops to 13-6 (UFC 0-2).
Daron Cruickshank put on an impressive performance against Mike Rio and after escaping a leg-lock attempt in the second round, got back to his feet and landed a spinning wheel kick that rocked his opponent. Cruickshank immediately capitalised and stopped the fight with punches, 4:56 into the second round. With the win Cruickshank moves his record to 14-4 (UFC 4-2). Rio drops his third straight UFC fight to go 9-4 (UFC 1-4).
In a closely contested welterweight fight, George Sullivan edged a unanimous decision against fellow American fighter Mike Rhodes. Both fighters were cautious in the opening minutes of the fight before Rhodes secured the first takedown however Sullivan got a takedown of his own and was able to progress to mount. In the second round Rhodes hurt Sullivan with some big punches however as the fight went on Sullivan found his stride standing and ultimately edged the unanimous decision. All three judges awarded him the fight 29-28. It was Sullivan’s seventh straight win as the Pellegrino MMA trained fighter took his professional record to 15-3 (UFC 1-0). 24 year-old Rhodes drops to 6-2 (UFC 0-1).
In the opening fight of the card, heavy underdog Nikita Krylov needed only 25 seconds to stop American Top Team member Walt Harris. Kylov was eager to impress after a lacklustre UFC debut against Soa Palelei last year. Krylov landed a high right roundhouse kick that forced the American to cover up. Krylov immediately attacked and was able to drop Harris. Further ground-and-pound, forced the referee to halt the contest. With the win, Krylov moves his professional record to 16-3 (UFC 1-1), and quickly got on to twitter where he messaged the UFC president Dana White, “I hope you’ve been happier with my performance this time around, boss!”. Harris drops his professional record to 5-3 (UFC 0-2).
Main Card Results (Fuel TV):
- Benson Henderson def Josh Thomson via Decision (Split)
- Stipe Miocic def Gabriel Gonzaga via Decision (Unanimous)
- Donald Cerrone def Adriano Martins via KO (Head Kick), Rd 1, 4:40
- Jeremy Stephens def Darren Elkins via Decision (Unanimous)
Preliminary Card Results (Fuel TV):
- Alex Caceres def Sergio Pettis via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke), Rd 3, 4:39
- Eddie Wineland def Yves Jabouin via TKO (Punches), Rd 2, 4:16
- Chico Camus def Yaotzin Meza via Decision (Unanimous)
- Hugo Viana def Junior Hernandez via Decision (Unanimous)
- Daron Cruickshank def Mike Rio via TKO (Wheel Kick & Punches), Rd 2, 4:56
- George Sullivan def Mike Rhodes via Decision (Unanimous)
Preliminary Card (UFC Fight Pass):
- Nikita Krylov def Walt Harris via TKO (Head Kick & Punches), Rd 1, 0:25