MONTREAL – It wasn’t the prettiest win, but a win nonetheless for Chris Camozzi against Canadian Nick Ring.
The American convinced two of three judges that he was the victor after three rounds that more resembled a sparring session than a fight.
The middleweight fight served on the pay-per-view main card of UFC 158, which took place Saturday at Montreal’s Bell Center. It followed prelims on FX and Facebook.
A confident Ring demonstrated a speed advantage early in the fight while peppering Camozzi with leg kicks that would pay dividends in later rounds. He also courted imminent danger while marching into exchanges with his hands at his sides. Camozzi, meanwhile, struggled to find his range and often missed on lunging combinations. A pair of right hands scored big for Ring near the end of the first frame.
Ring turned up the volume in the second and landed more leg kicks. But Camozzi began to pick up on the Canadian’s rhythm while landing a lunging right hand early that scored. Ring returned fire with a left hand, but Camozzi finally put his length to use with a knee up the middle that slammed into his opponent’s jaw. None of the shots Camozzi landed rocked Ring, but as the round came to a close, he began to look for a takedown.
With his right eye swelling, Ring continued to dance around Camozzi, who appeared to lose much of the momentum he picked up mid-fight. Neither man landed shots that did significant damage, and a flying knee from Camozzi provided the only punctuation to a lackluster round.
The scores of 29-28, 28-29 and 29-28 didn’t come as a surprise to Camozzi (18-5 MMA, 6-2 UFC), who picked up his fourth straight win in the 185-pound division.
“It was a really close fight,” he said afterward. “Nick is a great fighter. I thought I did enough to win, but you never know when you leave it to the judges.”
A disappointed Ring (13-2 MMA, 2-3 UFC) now goes back to the drawing board after a win over “The Ultimate Fighter 11? winner Court McGee.
Up-to-the-minute UFC 158 results include:
- Chris Camozzi def. Nick Ring via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
- Mike Ricci def. Colin Fletcher via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Patrick Cote def. Bobby Voelker via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Darren Elkins def. Antonio Carvalho via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 3:06
- Jordan Mein def. Dan Miller via TKO (strikes) – Round 1, 4:42
- John Makdessi def. Daron Cruickshank via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Rick Story def. Quinn Mulhern via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 3:05
- T.J. Dillashaw def. Issei Tamura via KO (knee and punches) – Round 2, 0:26
- George Roop def. Reuben Duran via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
For complete coverage of UFC 158, stay tuned to the UFC Events section of the site.
Matt Erickson and Ben Fowlkes contributed to this report on-site in Montreal.