NEWARK, N.J. – Fans who didn’t show up in time for UFC 159's first fight missed an entertaining scrap as Steven Siler topped Kurt Holobaugh in an early “Fight of the Night” candidate.

The featherweight bout opened the preliminary card of today’s UFC 159 event at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. It streamed on Facebook ahead of additional prelims on FX and the pay-per-view main card.

The two set a torrid pace to open the fight while rifling off stiff low kicks and firing heavy leather up top. As they pushed into a Thai clinch, Siler drilled his opponent with several knees to the gut before wrapping the waist and slamming him to the mat. Holobaugh immediately rolled to escape, but Siler transitioned to the back, where he teed off with heavy punches while looking for an opportunity to sink in a choke.

As Holobaugh tried a rolling escape, Siler latched on to a deep rear-naked-choke attempt. With blood spewing from his mouth, Holobaugh somehow survived what looked to be a certain fight-ending hold and earned himself a second round.

Holobaugh tried to quickly reverse the momentum in the second round as he immediately dove into a guillotine choke. The move didn’t work, but after a few entertaining transitions, Holobaugh worked to top position and unleashed several heavy ground-and-pound blows. It was then Siler’s face that was bloodied as plasma streamed from his nose.

Siler scrambled to his feet with one minute remaining, and the two took turns teeing off before Holobaugh finished with one late takedown and a few odd punches to the leg before the bell sounded.

With the fight seemingly in the balance in the final frame, both fighters moved forward at the bell. Siler eventually moved back into the Thai clinch while working knees inside. Holobaugh worked the body with his hands. As the two continued to trade in the pocket, Holobaugh tried to move inside and look for a hip toss. Unfortunately for him, Siler countered perfectly and again secured the back as they fell to the canvas.

Siler tried again to lock in a choke from the dominant position, but a gutsy Holobaugh survived each attempt. Still, with Siler controlling the grappling in the latter half of the frame, he secured the win in an incredibly exciting fight. All three judges awarded him the contest with 29-28 scores.

After the fight, Siler revealed he found out earlier in the day that he’s now a father-to-be.

“I found out I’m going to be a daddy today, so this is without a doubt the best day of my life,” Siler said.

With the win, Siler (22-10 MMA, 4-1 UFC) improves to an impressive 4-1 in the octagon and rebounds from a November loss to Darren Elkins. Holobaugh (9-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC), a onetime Strikeforce vet, loses in his UFC debut but likely earned another look from the promotion.

“It was a great back-and-forth fight, and he has won three of his last four, so I know he deserves to be here,” Holobaugh said. “I’m just trying to figure out where I fit in.”

Up-to-the-minute UFC 159 results include:

  • Steven Siler def. Kurt Holobaugh via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

For complete coverage of UFC 159, stay tuned to the UFC Events section of the site.

Matt Erickson and Steven Marrocco contributed to this report on-site in Newark.

view original article >>

Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Fans invited to next month's Bellator Fan Fest with Angle, Ortiz, Couture, more

  • 27 days ago
  • 4 views

Bellator heads to Houston for next month’s “tentpole event.” Beforehand, fans can get up close and personal with some MMA legends.Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

10 reasons to watch UFC Fight Night 81, including end of 'real champ' talk

  • 27 days ago
  • 3 views

Fans who came to the UFC early in the Ronda Rousey revolution have witnessed a single live Dominick Cruz fight. Sunday’s UFC Fight Night 81 event presents a second opportunity to watch him – and it’s read news >>

Video: Headliner Dominick Cruz arrives to UFC workouts on crutches

  • 27 days ago
  • 26 views

BOSTON – Fans and media in attendance at UFC Fight Night 81 open workouts got a bit of a scare from headliner Dominick Cruz.Filed under: Featured, Featured Videos, News, UFC, Videos read news >>

Video: Dominick Cruz grateful for fans, sure of his place in MMA history

  • 27 days ago
  • 7 views

BOSTON – Former UFC and WEC champion Dominick Cruz remembers the days when nobody cared much about what he was doing. Interviews were carried out in casino hallways. Now, things are a bit different.F read news >>

Fans invited to next week's star-studded UFC 197 press conference in Vegas

  • 26 days ago
  • 8 views

Fans can get their first look at UFC 197’s headliners and co-headliners during a press conference next week in Las Vegas.Filed under: Featured Videos, News, UFC, Videos read news >>

UFC Fight Night 81 results: Eddie Alvarez edges Anthony Pettis by split decision

  • 24 days ago
  • 6 views

BOSTON – Eddie Alvarez made it his mission to get in close against Anthony Pettis and get him to the floor, even if at times it meant stalling out against the fence.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

UFC Fight Night 81 draws reported 12,022 fans for $1,300,000 gate

  • 24 days ago
  • 5 views

BOSTON – Sunday’s UFC Fight Night 81 event at Boston’s TD Garden drew an announced attendance of 12,022 fans and a live gate of $1,300,00.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

UFC Fight Night 81: Travis Browne vs. Matt Mitrione video highlights

  • 24 days ago
  • 107 views

When MMA fans look back on Travis Browne’s win over Matt Mitrione, it will likely be Mitrione’s eye that sticks in the memory. A thudding punch from Browne caused grotesque swelling over Mitrione’s r read news >>

CM Punk Reveals 8-Fight UFC Plan, Expects 'Disappointed' Fans After Debut Bout

  • 22 days ago
  • 25 views

CM Punk indicated that he has signed an eight-fight UFC deal and has prepared his detractors to be "disappointed" when he wins his debut clash later this year. The former WWE star is adamant that his read news >>

Diego Sanchez meets Jim Miller in UFC 197's featured Fight Pass prelim fight

  • 22 days ago
  • 7 views

The UFC’s new strategy of putting highly marketable bouts on the Fight Pass-streamed portion of its cards will continue in March. Filed under: News, UFC read news >>