Former UFC light heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida made his case for a middleweight title shot in his second bout at 185 pounds, scoring a clear cut five round unanimous decision over Gegard Mousasi in the UFC Fight Night main event at Arena Jaragua in Jaragua do Sul, Brazil.
Scores were 50-45 twice, and 49-46.
After a slow start, Machida struck first with a thudding kick to the body, but outside of a quick left counterpunch to the face in the final 90 seconds by “The Dragon,” there was precious little sustained action in the opening stanza.
Machida continued to keep Mousasi off-balance in round two, but the Netherlands product kept stalking, hoping to catch his opponent napping. That wasn’t happening though, as Machida cracked Mousasi with a left kick to the head. Mousasi took the shot well, but his offense needed to get in gear. It also didn’t help that every move from the Brazilian was met with roars from the crowd. Mousasi did start landing with leg kicks in the closing moments of the round, but it wasn’t enough to take it.
A fight broke out in the third, with Mousasi upping his work rate and Machida answering right back, cutting his foe on the nose as he unloaded with his left kicks. Finally catching Machida against the fence for a brief moment in the final two minutes, Mousasi let loose with a combination, but Machida shot out of range as quickly as he was in it.
Looking to switch things up, Mousasi went for the takedown early in the fourth and he got it, only to see Machida shoot right back to his feet. Midway through the round, Machida scored a takedown of his own, this one more substantial as he pinned Mousasi to the mat. But Mousasi reversed position smoothly, giving himself the best chance he had in the fight for mounting a serious offensive attack. An illegal upkick by Mousasi late in the round killed off any momentum he had though.
Despite holding a substantial lead, Machida pressed the action in the final round, eating a hard Mousasi jab that bloodied his nose in the process. With two minutes left, the fight hit the mat again, with Machida in the top position for a bit before he took Mousasi’s back. And while he wasn’t able to finish, when the bell sounded, there was little question that Machida was the victor.
With the win, Machida improves to 21-4; Mousasi falls to 34-4-2.
SOUZA vs. CARMONT
Rio de Janeiro’s Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza snapped Francis Carmont’s 11 fight winning streak in the co-main event, taking a unanimous decision victory in this meeting of middleweight contenders via scores of 30-27 and 29-28 twice.
Carmont used kicks to keep Jacare at bay in the opening moments of the fight, but a short right hand allowed the Brazilian to get close and take Carmont to the mat. From there, Souza took Carmont’s back and patiently went to work, eventually sinking in a rear naked choke. The Frenchman weathered this early storm though, escaping the choke and making it to the end of the round.
Souza was forced to use his striking in the second, as Carmont’s takedown defense was solid and his own standup game was working effectively as well, especially as the round progressed.
Jacare got the takedown quickly in the third, taking Carmont’s back with ease. Carmont got out of that position, but the Brazilian wasn’t letting him get back to his feet, keeping him pinned to the mat before taking the back again. Another rear naked choke attempt came up short, but Jacare’s ground dominance left no doubt as to who was getting the decision after the final bell sounded.
With the win, Souza improves to 20-3 with 1 NC; Carmont falls to 22-8.
> Watch: Souza's Post-Fight Interview
SILVA vs. SATO
Brazilian welterweight Erick Silva made short work of Japanese newcomer Takenori Sato, finishing off his foe via strikes 52 seconds into their bout.
Silva hurt Sato with the first kick he threw to the body, forcing the Tokyo fighter to immediately shoot for a takedown. Silva didn’t just hold Sato off, he landed with heel kicks to the head and followed with punches, prompting referee Mario Yamasaki to call off the bout.
With the win, Vila Vehla’s Silva moves to 16-4 with 1 NC; Sato 17-9-7.
> Watch: Silva's Post-Fight Interview
MUSOKE vs. ANDRADE
Sweden’s Nico Musoke made it two for two in the UFC, defeating Sao Paulo’s Viscardi Andrade in his return to the welterweight division.
Musoke’s unanimous decision read 29-28 on all three scorecards.
Andrade (17-7) had a good first round and it could have been a finishing one if he didn’t raise his hands after knocking Musoke down with a flush right hand midway through, giving the Stockholm native precious time to recover. Musoke ended the opening frame strong, and he also began the second well, working a variety of strikes that put Andrade on the defensive. A takedown at the halfway mark added to Musoke’s point total, and his ground strikes tagged the Brazilian repeatedly as well. And while not as flashy in the third, Musoke was just as effective, if not more so, as he controlled Andrade on the ground throughout, locking up the come from behind win that ups his record to 12-2 with 1 NC.
OLIVEIRA vs. OGLE
After seven decisions on the preliminary portion of the card, featherweight up and comer Charles Oliveira kicked off the main card with a third round submission win over Andy Ogle.
Ogle went right at Oliveira as the fight began, but it was the local favorite who took the lead, taking the Brit to the mat and taking his back. Ogle rose with Oliveira remaining on his back, but the Brazilian dragged him back to the canvas. Ogle’s defense was airtight, as he refused to let Oliveira sink in a rear naked choke, but it was a rough five minutes for “The Little Axe” regardless.
The bout went right back to the ground in round two, but this time the scrappy Ogle was able to wind up on top for a spell before getting back to his feet. He didn’t stay there long, as Oliveira got a quick takedown, but Ogle got back up just as fast. A choke attempt by Oliveira followed, but Ogle wasn’t going anywhere, and he got free again, even getting off some ground strikes before Oliveira regained control.
A short left hand dropped Ogle in the opening seconds of the final round, but the former TUF 15 competitor found a way to survive. His nine lives soon ran out though, as Oliveira pulled off a slick triangle choke that produced a tap out at 2:40 of the third frame.
With the win, Oliveira improves to 17-4 with 1 NC; Ogle falls to 9-4.