Beautiful and accurate punching combinations to the head and body
carried “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 12 alum Nam Phan to a
split decision over American Top Team’s Cole Miller
on Fox 4 “Shogun vs. Vera” on Saturday at the Staples Center in
All three cageside judges scored it 29-28, two of them in favor of
Phan (18-10, 2-3 UFC).
Phan landed one searing left hook after another, some of them to
the head, others to the body, during the entertaining 15-minute
affair at 145 pounds. Miller answered with stiff left jabs, right
crosses and front kicks, as the two spent a majority of the fight
jockeying real estate. Phan was most effective when he pinned his
foe’s back to the cage and unleashed in close quarters. Miller did
his best work in the center of the Octagon, where he could control
the distance with superior height and reach.
In the end, Phan landed at a higher rate and with greater impact.
He wobbled Miller with a left hook in the third round and continued
to attack the body with power and precision. Miller came on strong
in the latter stages of the fight, but his efforts were not enough
to avoid his third defeat in four appearances.
Davis Eye Poke Results in No Decision
An unintentional eye poke from Phil Davis
resulted in a no decision in his preliminary light heavyweight bout
with unbeaten newcomer Wagner
Prado. The match -- the first for Davis (9-1, 5-1 UFC) since
his loss to Rashad
Evans in January -- did not get out of the first round, leaving
Prado (8-0, 0-0 UFC) visibly distraught.
Yahya Choke Finishes Grispi
Three-time Brazilian jiu-jitsu world champion and 2007 Abu Dhabi
Combat Club Submission Wrestling World Championships gold medalist
Yahya submitted the reeling Josh Grisp with a north-south choke
in an undercard battle at 145 pounds. Grispi (14-4, 0-3 UFC) tapped
out 3:15 into round one.
Yahya (17-7, 2-1 UFC) struck for a takedown inside the first
minute, methodically transitioned to side control and deftly set up
the choke. Helpless to prevent the hold, Grispi was left with no
choice but surrender. Still only 23, the once promising prospect
has lost three fights in a row.
“Our team is called Constrictor Team because of those kinds of
chokes,” said Yahya, who has secured 15 of his 17 career victories
by submission. “We train those a lot -- every day.”
De Fries Choke Submits Thompson
MMA representative Philip De
Fries submitted Oli
Thompson with a second-round rear-naked choke in a preliminary
heavyweight tilt. Thompson (9-4, 0-2 UFC) conceded defeat 4:16 into
Fries File Photo
De Fries tapped out Thompson.
The two stalemated in the clinch for much of the first five
minutes. In the second round, De Fries (9-1, 2-1 UFC) floored his
foe with a straight right hand and later drove him to the ground
with a takedown. From there, he moved to Thompson’s back, sank his
hooks and finished it with the choke.
Gamburyan Outpoints Fellow Judoka Omigawa
Takedowns and high-impact strikes, several of them kicks, carried
“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 5 finalist Manny
Gamburyan to a unanimous decision over Michihiro
Omigawa in a preliminary featherweight matchup. All three
cageside judges scored it for Gamburyan (12-7, 3-5 UFC): 29-28,
29-28 and 30-27.
Faced with relentless aggression, Omigawa (13-12-1, 1-6 UFC) never
found a rhythm offensively. Gamburyan wobbled the judo black belt
with a head kick early in the final frame and sealed it with three
third-round takedowns. With that, the 30-year-old Armenian put the
brakes on a three-fight losing streak.
Newcomer Moraga Stops Gomez
Moraga dazzled in his promotional debut, as he stopped former
two-division Tachi Palace Fights champion Ulysses
Gomez on first-round strikes in an undercard duel at 125
pounds. Moraga (11-1, 1-0 UFC) brought it to a close 3:46 into
The wrestler shuttered Gomez’s submission game, forcing him into
exchanges in the standup and the clinch. Moraga pinned the
Californian on the cage and unleashed a pair of standing elbows
that marked the beginning of the end for Gomez (9-3, 0-1 UFC). He
finished it with a right uppercut and a left hook, as he posted his
fifth consecutive victory.
“I’m here to make the UFC happy,” Moraga said. “I’m here to do my
best and hopefully set the tone for the rest of the night.”