HOUSTON – MMAjunkie.com is on scene and reporting live from Saturday’s UFC 166 event.
The card, which features a rematch trilogy fight between heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez and former champ Junior Dos Santos, takes place at Toyota Center in Houston. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FOX Sports 1 and Facebook.
Follow along with our round-by-round updates and official results beginning at approximately 6:15 p.m. ET (3:15 p.m. PT) for the preliminary card and 10 p.m. ET for the main card.
To discuss the show, be sure to check out our UFC 166 discussion thread. You can also get behind-the-scenes coverage and other event notes from on-site reporter John Morgan (@MMAjunkieJohn) on Twitter.
Enjoy the fights, everyone.
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KYOGI HORIGUCHI (12-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC) VS. DUSTIN PAGUE (11-9 MMA, 1-5 UFC)
Round 1 – Horiguchi moving laterally on the outside. Pague moves in on a clash of strikes and into a standing arm-triangle position. Horiguchi wiggles free to prevent the lock, and Pague drags him to the floor. Horiguchi stands, and Pague transitions perfectly to the back. He gets the right arm under the neck, but Horiguchi fights off the left and prevents a squeeze. Pague draped all over his opponent’s back. Horiguchi fights the arms and tries to pull free, but Pague has a body triangle locked in place. He is starting to slide down the back a bit, and he finally has to let go. Patience pays off for Horiguchi, and he turns in and presses against the cage. They finally break away with one minute left. Knee lands for Pague, but Horiguchi rattles off power punches in a flurry. Pague with a trip to the floor, and they end the round in a scramble. MMAjunkie.com gives a fun first to Pague, 10-9.
Round 2 – Horiguchi kicks the legs and fires in a right hand. His hands look quick to start the second. Big left floors Pague. Horiguchi rushes forward and jumps on top with a barrage of big punches. Pague trying to cover up, but he’s eating shot. Referee Herb Dean lets him work through the damage, and he finally ties things up. Pague sweeps to the top, but they scramble up to the feet. Horiguchi brings it right back down to the floor. He’s in half-mount, very high up on the side, and looking to punch. He finds room to work and brings heavy shots. He elevates and lands more leather. Pague getting bullied right now. Horiguchi works to his feet and just starts teeing off. Pague is hurt and simply covers up while Horiguchi pounds away. Dean gives him all sorts of time to recover, but it’s not happening. Fight over.
Result: Kyoji Horiguchi def. Dustin Pague via TKO (punches) – Round 2, 3:51
Recap: Kyoji Horiguchi pounds out Dustin Pague
Photos: Kyoji Horiguchi vs. Dustin Pague photos
Referee: Herb Dean
ANDRE FILI (13-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC) VS. JEREMY LARSEN (8-5 MMA, 0-3 UFC)
Round 1 – Fili walks forward with punches, but Larsen happy to answer in the pocket. Sharp flurries traded to start. Fili lands with a right hand that staggers Larsen. Into the clinch, and Fili lands a few crisp knees to the jaw. He drives Larsen to the floor. Larsen stands back up, fighting off punches. He ties things up against the fence and tries to recover. We finally break away, and referee Jacob Montalvo calls for doctors to come look at a Larsen cut over the eye. It’s nasty, but we’re going to fight on. Larsen swinging heavy on the restart, but Fili doing the same. Blood running down Larsen’s face. He catches a kick and pushes Fili to the floor. Fili gets his legs high and turns for the arm. Larsen pulls free, but Fili tries again. Not there, but he uses the scramble to escape to the feet. Jab lands for Fili as Larsen misses a haymaker. Larsen’s face a mess as the round ends, and MMAjunkie.com gives it to Fili, 10-9.
Round 2 – Doctor checks the cut over Larsen’s right eye again, but it’s not bleeding right now, so we carry on. Larsen comes out with urgency. Fili looks comfortable, but he eats a right hand. Fili working the jab, and Larsen bleeding again. Fili catches him again, this time with two hooks to the temple, and Larsen staggers back. He’s hurt, and he eventually staggers to the ground. Fili pounces with punches and gets the finish.
Result: Andre Fili def. Jeremy Larsen via TKO (punches) – Round 2, 0:53
Recap: Andre Fili stops Jeremy Larsen in UFC debut
Photos: Andre Fili vs. Jeremy Larsen photos
Division: Catchweight (Fili weighed 148.5 pounds)
Referee: Jacob Montalvo
TONY FERGUSON (14-3 MMA, 4-1 UFC) VS. MIKE RIO (9-3 MMA, 1-2 UFC)
Round 1 – Ferguson with a quick right hand. Rio looks to move inside, but Ferguson defends well and peppers him with strikes. Rio holds tight, but Ferguson pushes him away and looks to reset. Ferguson works a quick jab to the nose. Rio shoots in, but Ferguson sprawls well. Back to the feet. Ferguson strikes doing work on the feet. Rio tries again for the takedown, and Ferguson wraps up his neck and rolls for the D’Arce choke. He doesn’t get the tap on the first squeeze, but he continues to torque and adjust and eventually gets the finish. Impressive work from Ferguson.
Result: Tony Ferguson def. Mike Rio via submission (D’arce choke) – Round 1, 1:52
Recap: Tony Ferguson chokes out Mike Rio in return
Photos:Tony Ferguson vs. Mike Rio photos
Referee: Kerry Hatley
ADLAN AMAGOV (13-2-1 MMA, 2-0 UFC) VS. T.J. WALDBURGER (16-8 MMA, 4-3 UFC)
Round 1 – Texan Waldburger gets a warm welcome from the crowd. Low kicks traded to start. Waldburger goes again to the thigh as he circles right. Amagov misses a high kick. Amagov with a front kick, and Waldburger rushes forward but can’t get hold of his opponent. Spinning kick for Amagov, and he defends another takedown. Waldburger works in short knees as they battle against the cage. Amagov defends well and starts lacing punches. First he rattles shots to the body before landing heavy punches up top. Waldburger is hurt. Amagov sees it and keeps punching. Waldburger hits the floor, and Amagov continues to fire away. Waldburger is out cold. Impressive power from Amagov, and Waldburger is down for quite some time. It’s a scary scene, as he’s stretchered out of the octagon. He’s transported to a local hospital for evaluation but is said to have been responsive as he left the venue.
Result: Adlan Amagov def. T.J. Waldburger via knockout (punches) – Round 1, 3:45
Recap: Adlan Amagov knocks out T.J. Waldburger in first
Photos: Adlan Amagov vs. T.J. Waldburger photos
Referee: Jay Stafin
K.J. NOONS (12-7 MMA, 1-1 UFC) VS. GEORGE SOTIROPOULOS (14-6 MMA, 7-4 UFC)
Round 1 – Sotiropoulos circling to open. Noons looking to stay firm in the center of the cage. Noons trying to reach with his punches as Sotiropoulos stays on the outside. Crowd a little impatient. Noons going to the body, but Sotiropoulos staying well away to open. Crowd wants action. Noons being patient in the center, refusing to reach. Full-fledged boos from the crowd with two minutes left. Noons still leading to the body. Crisp left lands for Noons. Sotiropoulos wants Noons to come to him, but Noons sticking to his gameplan. Sotiropoulos reaches out and pokes the eye, and we have a brief stoppage. Noons a little more aggressive on the restart. A flurry sees Sotiropoulos fall to a knee, and Noons unloads in the final seconds. It was a slow round, but that fun aggression in the end draws a cheer. MMAjunkie.com gives the first to Noons, 10-9.
Round 2 – Noons brimming with confidence and wants to box. Sotiropoulos rifling off punches and has a high kick blocked. Sotiropoulos finding some success with his hands. Noons starting to reach forward, and he just avoids a pair of knees. Sotiropoulos tries to shoot in, but Noons is able to pull away. Boos coming back in from the crowd. Noons misses on a big uppercut. Big kick to the body for Sotiropoulos. Noons is stunned. Sotiropoulos pushes in and grabs a leg, eventually scoring a takedown. Noons crawls up to his feet and backs away to reset. Noons lands clean, but Sotiropoulos stands in the pocket. He mixes in a kick to the leg. Noons looks very comfortable, but Sotiropoulos is the busier fighter right now. Noons just misses on a few power shots. Sotiropoulos lands a nice left hand. Noons misses on a wild punch. MMAjunkie.com gives the second slightly to Sotiropoulos, 10-9.
Round 3 – Noons busy to open and looking to land heavy punches. He shakes off a takedown. Back to the body for Noons. Punches traded, but Sotiropoulos finishes with a kick to the leg. Sotiropoulos’s left eye busted up a bit, but he’s still punching away. Noons holding the center. He lands a crisp right. Big left lands, as well, and Sotiropoulos is cut on the forehead. Noons reaches on a punch and has to defend a takedown after the careless effort. He does, as well as another that comes in shortly after. Noons looks to be completely comfortable, but hie’s not really pushing the issue. He does rifle off uppercuts and do a fine job of defending another takedown. High kick scores for Sotiropoulos, but Noons isn’t hurt. Noons slips another high kick and lands to the body. Stiff right for Noons. Sotiropoulos still pushing in the final minute. Noons missing on a spinning backfist. Flurry from Noons to finish. MMAjunkie.com gives the third to Noons, 10-9, and awards him the fight 29-28.
Result: K.J. Noons def. George Sotiropoulos via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Recap: K.J. Noons gets past George Sotiropoulos
Photos: K.J. Noons vs. George Sotiropoulos photos
Broadcast: FOX Sports 1
Referee: Herb Dean
Judging: Troy Wincapaw (29-28, giving Noons rounds one and three), Sal D’Amato (29-28, giving Noons rounds one and three), Don Turnage (30-27)
JESSICA EYE (11-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC) VS. SARAH KAUFMAN (16-3 MMA, 0-1 UFC)
Round 1 – Kaufman moves forward, and the size difference between the two is immediately evident. The smaller Eye looks to move on the outside and attack. Punches traded, ad they move into the clinch. Eye presses Kaufman against the cage. Knees traded as Kaufman pushes off the cage, and they break away. Kaufman stalking from the center. Eye kicks the leg. Eye moving well, and she works a stiff jab. Kaufman pushes forward again and into a clinch. Eye gets underhooks and circles off the cage. Footstomps for Eye. Kaufman circles off and lands with hard punches, and Eye moves off the fence. Punches and knees traded inside. Eye is the quicker fighter, but she has yet to really hurt Kaufman. A sharp right does do some damage. Kaufman trying to keep strong in the pocket as Eye looks to continue to stick and move. Final minute. Kaufman kicks the leg. Round ends on the feet. MMAjunkie.com leans slightly toward Eye, 10-9.
Round 2 – Kaufman with her hand high, and she eats a right hand before coming back with a stiff jab. Thai clinch, and Kaufman gets the better of it. She’s definitely the more powerful fights. Stiff jab. Eye still moving well. She plants her feet and eats a straight. When she stops, Kaufman capitalizes. Kaufman’s left eye closing from the early blows. Eye lands an uppercut inside. Kaufman continues to walks forward. She lands two big right hands. They move into the clinch, and Eye stomps the foot. Kaufman punches her again as they move away. Kaufman presses into another clinch, and they trade knees inside. Kaufman looking to be heavy on her smaller opponent. Short elbow from Kaufman, and her eye is getting worse by the minute. It’s very dark and very swollen. Punches traded. Round ends again on the feet, and MMAjunkie.com sees another close one for Kaufman, 10-9.
Round 3 – Crowd is electric to open the third. Eye lands a right hand, but Kaufman is right there to answer. Kaufman presses into a clinch and ties the body. Eye works in her arms and pulls free. Stiff right lands for Eye. She’s still light and quick. Kaufman coms back with two rights in tight. Kaufman grinding on the feet. Eye firing back with a jab, and she kicks the body. Kaufman again moves inside and looks to push her opponent against the fence. Eye works free and strikes as she pulls away. Kaufman scores a powerful right hand that wobbles Eye. Kaufman sees it and tries to capitalize. Eye wisely covers up and slows things down. She looks to be recovered, but she was hurt from that strike. Kaufman locks the body, and they trade knees. They separate with less than a minute. Eye’s left eye now swelling quickly. Kaufman feeling strong and flowing in the closing seconds. She punches until the final bell. Gutsy effort from both. MMAjunkie.com sees the third for Kaufman, 10-9, and gives her the fight 29-28. Could be close. Both women raise their arms.
Result: Jessica Eye def. Sarah Kaufman via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Recap: Jessica Eye takes split call from Sarah Kaufman
Photos: Jessica Eye vs. Sarah Kaufman photos
Broadcast: FOX Sports 1
Referee: Jacob Montalvo
Judging: Jon Schorle (29-28, giving Eye rounds one and two), Gino Garcia (28-29, giving Kaufman rounds two and three), Ruben Najera (29-28, giving Eye rounds one and three)
HECTOR LOMBARD (33-4-1 MMA, 2-2 UFC) VS. NATE MARQUARDT (32-13-2 MMA, 10-6 UFC)
Round 1 – Lombard walking forward and moving his hands.Marquardt retreating and looking to set something up from distance. Marquardt kicks the body. Lombard continues to give chase, and he signals for Marquardt to engage. Lombard leaps forward witha right hand. Marquardt moves in with strikes and then pulls away as Lombard tries to rifle off heavy hooks. Lombard firing huge hooks as he chases, and one finds the mark, scoring on the chin. Another lands to the top of the head. Marquardt is down, and Lombard pounces with more heavy shots. Fight over in brutal fashion, as four hammerfists put Marquardt out.
Result: Hector Lombard def. Nate Marquardt via knockout (punches) – Round 1, 1:48
Recap: Hector Lombard gets quick KO of Nate Marquardt
Photos: Hector Lombard vs. Nate Marquardt photos
USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie.com Rankings: Lombard, No. 13 middleweight
Broadcast: FOX Sports 1
Referee: Jay Stafin
TIM BOETSCH (17-6 MMA, 8-5 UFC) VS. C.B. DOLLAWAY (13-5 MMA, 7-5 UFC)
Round 1 – Boetsch lands an early right hand. He’s firing big punches. Dollaway moving forward and throws a kick, which Boetsch catches before sweeping him to the floor. Boetsch lands another right hand. Dollaway kicks the leg twice, chopping hard at his opponent. Dollaway kicks the body as well. He signals Boetsch to come at him. He chops the legs again and lands a left hand. Boetsch changes levels and scores a takedown, but Dollaway right back to his feet. Dollaway misses with a high kick. Dollaway finding success on the feet early on. Boetsch lands two punches and see,s a little wobbled, but he shakes his head and lifts his arms. Dollaway with swagger. He kicks the body hard and moves into the clinch. Dollaway doing his best Nick Diaz impression with his taunts. Boetsch has yet to capitalize on those moments. Round ends in the clinch, and MMAjunkie.com gives it to Dollaway, 10-9.
Round 2 – Boetsch short on a front kick, and Dollaway smiles and laughs at him. Dollaway shoots in on a single and gets Boetsch to the floor. Boetsch tries to settle in to guard, but Dollaway advances out to the side and then north-south. He teases the Peruvian necktie but can’t get it. Boetsch moves up to his feet. Dollaway drags him down again, but Boetsch is right back on his feet. Boetsch tries to lock a guillotine in a scramble, but Dollaway scores a trip that forces his opponent to release the hold. Still, Dollaway settles to his knees, with Boetsch on the back. Dollaway stands and turns in. He breaks away and turns his back as he looks to move away. Boetsch walks forward, and Dollaway scores another takedown. Boetsch tries to attack the right arm from his back. Dollaway sneaks his knee up to press down on Boetsch’s arm and keep his own limb safe. Dollaway drives elbows into the back and finishes the round on top. MMAjunkie.com gives him the second, 10-9.
Round 3 – Dollaway asks the crowd for some noise to start the third. He looks fresh enough, moving and striking. He rakes the eye on an early exchange, and Boetsch’s winces in pain. Blood running down the cheek from a small cut just under the eye. Dollaway gets a warning for the infraction, and we fight on. They wing punches on the restart. Dollaway willing to stay in the pocket. Dollaway kicks the leg. Dollaway pokes the eye again, and Boetsch can’t believe it. Referee Kerry Hatley slow to step in. He does end up taking a point for the infraction. Could be costly. Boetsch lands a right hand on the restart. It catches Dollaway’s attention, but as Boetsch looks to move in and continues the attack, Dollaway drag him to the floor. Boetsch’s face covered in blood, but he powers up off the floor and gets back to the feet. Low kicks for Dollaway. Boetsch is tired. Dollaway with a big right hand. Boetsch comes back with one of his own. Dollaway getting the better of the late action. He thinks takedown but has to let it go. Dollaway to the back and scores a trip. Boetsch scrambles for the neck, but Dollaway pulls free. North-south, and Boetsch squeezes hard on the neck. He won’t get the finish. Wild fight. MMAjunkie.com gives the third to Dollaway, but with the deduction, it’s 9-9. Still, Dollaway takes the fight 29-27. Bizarre fight. Oh, it’s a bizarre score, too. Perfect.
Result: Tim Boetsch def. C.B. Dollaway via split decision (30-26, 27-29, 30-26)
Recap: After eye pokes, Tim Boetsch beats C.B. Dollaway
Photos: Tim Boetsch vs. C.B. Dollaway photos
USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie.com Rankings: Boetsch, No. 11
Broadcast: FOX Sports 1
Referee: Kerry Hatley
Judging: Jon Schorle (30-26), Gino Garcia (27-29), Ruben Najera (30-26)
JOHN DODSON (15-6 MMA, 4-1 UFC) VS. DARRELL MONTAGUE (13-3 MMA, 0-1 UFC)
Round 1 – Dodson in with a quick lead uppercut as the two look to box. Low kicks traded. Montague the bigger fighter, and he wants to work from range. Dodson wants to get in and out, and he lands a stiff right hand. Dodson punches the thigh. Left hand lands for Dodson Crowd getting a little restless, but Dodson has the timing to start. Leaping left floors Montague. He gets up, but Dodson is all over him. Dodson unloading with punches. Montague tries to gran the legs and slow things down. He can’t. Back to the feet. Dodson picking Montague apart. Montague lands a straight but eats a counter. Montague slips a punch, and somehow looks like he’s actually comfortable. Straight left hand lands again fro Dodson, and Montague is down, face-first. Referee Jacob Montalvo moves in, and Montague tries to grapple with him. Incredible win by Dodson, who takes off in celebration by leaping off the cage.
Result: John Dodson def. Darrell Montague via knockout (punches) – Round 1, 4:15
Recap: John Dodson drops brutal KO on Darrell Montague
Photos: John Dodson vs. Darrell Montague photos
USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie.com Rankings: Dodson, No. 3; Montague, No. 9
Referee: Jacob Montalvo
GABRIEL GONZAGA (16-7 MMA, 11-6 UFC) VS. SHAWN JORDAN (15-5 MMA, 3-2 UFC)
Round 1 – Gonzaga the bigger man, and he lands an early low kick. Jordan in the center. He moves back from another low kick. Gonzaga kicks the thigh. Jordan very patient to open. Jordan finally leaps forward with two punches, but Gonzaga slips them and clips him with a stiff counter right to the face. Jordan is hurt, and he falls to the canvas. Gonzaga immediately jumps on top with massive hammerfists, and this fight is over quick.
Result: Gabriel Gonzaga def. Shawn Jordan via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 1:33
Recap: Gabriel Gonzaga upsets Shawn Jordan with big TKO
Photos: Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Shawn Jordan photos
USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie.com Rankings: Jordan, HM
Referee: Jay Stafin
GILBERT MELENDEZ (22-3 MMA, 1-1 UFC) VS. DIEGO SANCHEZ (24-6 MMA, 13-6 UFC)
Round 1 – Sanchez rushes forward and set sup in front of Melendez. He catches a high kick and pushes Melendez to the floor, taking the back when Melendez turns. Melendez on his feet, but he shakes Sanchez off, and we reset. Melendez goes to the body. Sanchez looks to kick, and Melendez counters over the top. Melendez stalking, and he blocks a Sanchez high kick. Sanchez short on a takedown, and he eats a big knee and left. Somehow still standing. Sanchez shoots again, but Melendez sniffs it out and punches him before pulling away. Melendez outboxing Sanchez to open. He lands a big sweeping right hand. Melendez catches a Sanchez high kicks and shoves him to the cage. Sanchez cut by the left eye. Blood trickling down as he looks to attack. Sanchez misses another takedown. Two punches score for Melendez. Sanchez kicks the body. He’s losing, but he’s scrapping. Flurry from both to close. Right hand drops Sanchez, but he pops back up. Great round. MMAjunkie.com gives it to Melendez, 10-9.
Round 2 – Sanchez walks forward and tells Melendez to bring it. He wants to brawl. Melendez looking to be the more technical fighter. He’s doing that well once again. Sanchez looking to load up and score something big. He does land a right, but Melendez is right there in the pocket and answering. He nearly scores with a big knee. Cut is opening up, and it’s nasty. Referee Kerry Hatley wants to take a look, but we carry on after the doctor clears it. Sanchez knows he needs to do something, and he throws a leaping knee that misses. They flurry again against the cage. Unbelievable action. Melendez with a boxing clinic, as he lands straight punches and avoids the counter. Sanchez slips but gets back to his feet. Melendez’s counter right is on point and doing damage. Blood running down Sanchez’s face. Lead left for Melendez. Sanchez scores a takedown but can’t keep Melendez on the floor. The flurries continue, as Sanchez is all heart. He misses a takedown and blocks a knee. Cut is bad, and we might not get a third. Round ends, and MMAjunkie.com gives it again to Melendez, 10-9.
Round 3 – Sanchez is going to fight on. Melendez looks plenty fresh, and he resumes his attack. Big right hands traded but both. Melendez continues to get the best of the exchanges. Toe-to-toe blows, and Sanchez wants more. Incredible. He’s wearing a scowl on his face, and he wants to bang. Crowd is on its feet. Sanchez bloodied and battered, but my God is he fighting. Melendez picking him apart, but Sanchez keeps moving forward. As the blood flows, Hatley calls for time yet again. Sanchez wants to continue, and he’s going to get to do so. He kicks the body on the restart. Crowd chanting for “Diego!” He’s going to war. Unbelievable, Sanchez continues to move forward. He drops Melendez and takes the back. He can’t get it, so he moves into a guillotine. He tries to pull guard and squeeze, but Melendez slips free. Back on the feet. Building is electric. Melendez wraps the body in the final minute. Sanchez hits a beautiful switch, but Melendez pulls away. Front kick from Sanchez. They tee off for the final 10 seconds. Unbelievable. Fight of the year candidate. MMAjunkie.com sees the final round for Sanchez, 10-9, but gives Melendez the fight 29-28.
Result: Gilbert Melendez def. Diego Sanchez via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 29-28)
Recap: Gilbert Melendez tops Diego Sanchez in bloody classic
Photos: Gilbert Melendez vs. Diego Sanchez photos
USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie.com Rankings: Melendez, No. 4
Referee: Kerry Hatley
Judging: Troy Wincapaw (29-28, giving Melendez rounds one and two), Sal D’Amato (30-27), Don Turnage (29-28, giving Melendez rounds one and two).
DANIEL CORMIER (13-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) VS. ROY NELSON (19-9 MMA, 6-5 UFC)
Round 1 – Both men moving laterally to open. Nelson with a left hand to start. Cormier answers back with a jab. He slips under a Nelson punches and drives in for a takedown. Nelson tries to push the head down, but Cormier just drives through and powers him to the floor. Cormier postures up and lands short punches from the top. Nelson spins and works to his feet. Cormier wraps the body and brings him down gain, but Nelson refuses to stay on the floor. Nelson grabs a kimura grip and tries to escape, but Cormier stays tied to his body. Cormier not giving Nelson any room to breathe. He lands a knee inside before they trade punches. Another knee from Cormier. Another, but this one is ruled low by referee Jacob Montalvo. Quick break in action. Cormier jabs on the restart. Nelson looking to land something big. He kicks the leg and misses on a right hand. Cormier scores two punches and just misses on a high kick. Cormier rifles off three punches and avoids another Nelson right. Round ends, and MMAjunkie.com gives it to Cormier, 10-9.
Round 2 – Cormier the quicker fighter to open the second. he’s moving in and out of range as Nelson looks to land a haymaker. Cormier kicks the thigh and fakes a shot before just missing on a punch up top. Cormier looks very fast and much more comfortable with his hands than in the past. He lands big punches up top ad tries again to take the action down. Cormier mixing up his attacks extremely well. He drops down for a takedown, but Nelson pops right back up to his feet. Cormier pressing in from the outside. Nelson tries to grab his neck, but Cormier pulls free. He punches Nelson in the groin, but Montalvo doesn’t see it. They sepaate. Big left hand for Cormier. Nelson does sneak in a short right. Cormier flurries a bit, and his combinations are impressive. Round ends, and it’s all Cormier, 10-9.
Round 3 – Cormier opens the third with kicks. Nelson trying to push inside, but he eats a right hand over the top. Crowd getting restless. Cormier continues to slip and move, and he chops at the legs. Cormier continues to change levels, mixing up his attacks. Spinning kick comes in from Cormier, who’s really opening up the arsenal. He kicks the body. Nelson stalking, but he can’t find the mark. Cormier outworking Nelson and shockingly beating him on the feet. He scores again with a heavy punch and drives through for a takedown. He scores it, but they move right back to the feet. Final minute. Nelson trying to get Cormier to overcommit and counter with a heavy shot, but it’s not happening. Cormier punches inside for Cormier. He hits Nelson with a left and a right. Nelson kicks the leg to send Cormier off-balance, but that’s it. Fight ends there. MMAjunkie.com gives the third to Cormier, 10-9, awarding him the fight 30-27.
Result: Daniel Cormier def. Roy Nelson via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Recap: Daniel Cormier stays unbeaten, tops Roy Nelson
Photos: Daniel Cormier vs. Roy Nelson photos
USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie.com Rankings: Cormier, No. 3; Nelson, No. 13
Referee: Jacob Montalvo
Judging: Jon Schorle (30-27), Gino Garcia (30-27), Ruben Najera (30-27)
CAIN VELASQUEZ (13-1 MMA, 11-1 UFC) VS. JUNIOR DOS SANTOS (16-3 MMA, 10-2 UFC)
Round 1 – Both fighters engage quickly. Dos Santos lands early and seems to stun Velasquez a bit. Velasquez immediately in with a takedown. Dos Santos gets back to his feet and is winging heavy, heavy punches. He scores with an uppercut. High pace to open, and Velasquez is looking to trade. Velasquez pushes into the clinch. Dos Santos defends against the fence. Knee inside. Dos Santos looks completely unconcerned. He misses a high kick but lands a left shortly after. Velasquez wraps the body and looks for the takedown. Not there, so he knees the legs. Second effort brings the action to the floor. Velasquez on top in half-mount. Dos Santos tries to push him back and create space. Velasquez won’t allow it, and he sneaks in a few elbows. Dos Santos turns to his knees. Velasquez can’t get the back. Dos Santos up on his feet. Velasquez stay inside and looks again for the takedown. Velasquez just misses a big punch. He’s grinding away. Dos Santos defending against the fence. He’s doing a good job of staying upright, but he’s struggling to mount a counter. Knees traded. Dos Santos backs away and misses a spinning kick at the bell. Good round, and MMAjunkie.com leans toward Velasquez, 10-9.
Round 2 – Velasquez forward quickly, and he swings away as he moves Dos Santos to the fence. He sweeps out a leg and gets Dos Santos on the floor, but the Brazilian stands right back up. Velasquez into the clinch and grinding away. He backs away and rattles off punches. Incredible pace and aggression to start from the champ. Dos Santos defending the takedown well, but he needs space to work. Velasquez won’t give it to him. Leaping lefts from Velasquez bring him into the clinch again. Dos Santos pushes him away, but it’s only temporary. Velasquez grinding. Dos Santos does scores in a scramble, but Velasquez is right back into the driver’s seat. Cage maintenance going on during the round, as three men work on the door to the fence. Fortunately, it doesn’t affect the action a few feet away. Velasquez punches away on the inside. Dos Santos gets some space to throw at the end, but it’s a Velasquez round on the MMAjunkie.com card, 10-9.
Round 3 – Velasquez barely looks to breathing hard. Dos Santos scores with a right hand in an early exchange, but Velasquez just walks right back into the clinch. Dos Santos gets some space and launches a big right, but Velasquez is stifling with the pressure. Velasquez drops for a takedown. Dos Santos defends and does land a right hand. He lands another shortly after, as well as a jab. Dos Santos with a front kick, and Velasquez pushes in for a takedown. Crowd boos it, and Velasquez starting to let go of the clinch earlier. Right hand over the top, for Velasquez, and Dos Santos is down. Velasquez jumps on top, but Dos Santos gets to his feet. He’s wobbly. Velasquez attacks, and it looks like referee Herb dean touches Velasquez on the shoulder, but e fight on. Dos Santos is exhausted and hurt, but he survive. He backs up to the fence and wants to throw. Final minute. Dos Santos with his hands down, and Velasquez is punishing him. If he would back away, he could probably finish the fight, but he continues to work inside. Round end, and MMAjunkie.com gives it to Velasquez, 10-8.
Round 4 – Dos Santos with an early jab, but Velasquez is inside immediately. Big right hand. He moves inside and knees the leg. Velasquez backs away and lands two punches. Just as he starts to ope up, he moves back into the clinch. Not sure if he’s extending the fight on purpose or simply being cautious, but Velasquez looks like he could end this at any moment. Dean watching very closely, and he seems ready to step in at any moment. Credit dos Santos for staying upright but he’s getting pummeled. Velasquez backs away, lands a few punches. He stomps the feet but is warned not to grab the cage. The action shifts to the gate that has been worked on, but it seems steady. Dos Santos’ face is badly swollen from the abuse. Velasquez still working inside and landing short elbows. Blood flowing freely from dos Santos’ face, and when they break, Dean calls in the doctor. The gash over the right eye is dripping blood, but we fight on. Dos Santos misses a huge right on the restart. Velasquez immediately back inside with punches into the clinch. They break, and Velasquez scores with a right. Blood just pouring down dos Santos’ face. Still, he fights on. Valiant effort from dos Santos, but Velasquez is completely dominating. Round ends, and MMAjunkie.com gives it to Velasquez, 10-8 once again.
Round 5 – Doctors in again to look at dos Santos, but they let him fight on. His face is an absolute mess, with the left eye closing and blood gushing from the right. Still, he walks out throwing bombs. He can’t land flush, and Velasquez moves in for a takedown. Dos Santos turns and moves to his knees before climbing up to his feet. Velasquez battling inside, landing short punches to the body. He backs away and pops dos Santos with a flurry before moving back inside. Dos Santos’ hands are by his side. His white shorts are stained pink from blood. He’s desperate, but he can’t secure anything. The action moves to the floor with dos Santos looking to wrap the neck. Velasquez pushes him over, and dos Santos’ head hits the canvas. He’ss done. He turtles up on his knees, and Dean mercifully calls an end to the assault as Velasquez looks to strike.
Result: Cain Velasquez def. Junior dos Santos via TKO (strikes) – Round 5, 3:09
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Recap: Champ Cain Velasquez stomps JDS in rubber match
Photos: Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos photos
USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie.com Rankings: Velasquez, No. 1; dos Santos, No. 2
Referee: Herb Dean