punched his way back into the title discussion in the
Ultimate Fighting Championship bantamweight

In the main event of UFC Fight Night 223 on Saturday
at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, the “Kung Fu Kid” stifled the vaunted
wrestling of Ricky Simon
and outstruck him in increasingly one-sided fashion for four rounds
before putting things away with a blistering left hook early in
Round 5. The first round found Simon largely neglecting his
customary barrage of takedowns, and Song stuffed the few that did
come his way, setting the tone for the remainder of the fight. Song
found increasing success with his boxing as the fight went on,
catching Simon cleanly on numerous occasions, though what appeared
to be a knockdown by Song early in the second round turned out to
have been caused by an inadvertent clash of heads. A second
headbutt in Round 3 drew a protest from Simon, as both collisions
had occurred while Song lunged forward with his head down.
Nonetheless, Song was already very much in the driver’s seat when
he dropped Simon with a left hook in the waning seconds of Round 4.
The horn sounded before Song could follow up, but Simon was clearly
in trouble. The job that Song had begun with a left hook in Round
4, he finished with another one in Round 5:
Simon was caught cleanly once again, fell to his seat, and this
time there was no bell to save the American.
A stream
of unanswered punches on the ground prompted referee Herb Dean to
stop the beating at 1:10 of the final stanza. The win brought
Song’s Octagon record to 9-2-1 and put his loss to Cory
on a gruesome cut last September in the rear view;
Simon’s UFC record fell to 8-3 with the loss, which snapped a
five-fight win streak.

Borralho Throttles Oleksiejczuk

has become impossible to ignore in the UFC
middleweight division.

In the co-main event of “UFC Vegas 72,” Borralho (14-1, 1 NC) put a
round and a half of increasingly dominant work on Michal
(18-6, 1 NC) before finishing things with a tight
rear-naked choke. “The Natural” experienced some adversity early,
as Oleksiejczuk landed some solid blows and withstood Borralho’s
first couple of takedown attempts. However, once Borralho secured
his first takedown late in the round, his size, strength and vastly
superior grappling took over. Round 1 ended with Borralho
overwhelming Oleksiejczuk’s defenses on the ground, and the second
began right where the first left off. Borralho took Oleksiejczuk
down with a double-leg, returned him to the canvas after he stood
back up near the fence and then punished him with punches and
elbows while advancing to back mount and securing a body triangle.

From there, Borralho cinched up a rear-naked choke, eliciting the
tap from “Hussar” at 2:29 of Round 2.
The dominant win
extended the 30-year-old Brazilian’s unbeaten streak to 14 straight
bouts, including his pair of appearances on Dana White’s Contender Series in 2021 and his
first four UFC bouts. Oleksiejczuk fell to 6-4 with one no contest
in the Octagon, and 2-1 since moving from light heavyweight to

Vieira Weathers Storm, Strangles Brundage

He had to march through all kinds of hell to get there, but
put himself back in the win column with a second-round
submission win over Cody
in the middleweight feature bout. “The Black Belt
Hunter” was close to being finished in the first round, as Brundage
lit him up with punches early, opening a serious cut, then sprawled
on a desperation single-leg takedown attempt. After a timeout for
an inadvertent groin foul broke up a clinch exchange, Brundage
dropped Vieira with a big overhand right and sprawled on another
takedown attempt, punishing the Brazilian with punches from a
stalled position. Vieira recovered and finally secured a takedown
in the final minute and did enough damage to forestall a 10-8
round, but the frame still belonged to the American. The second
round opened with a takedown attempt by Vieira, which Brundage
elected to counter with a guillotine choke attempt. From there it
was all Vieira, who extricated his head from the choke,

threatened with an arm triangle and briefly took Brundage’s back
before finishing with the head-and-arm choke from top
The tap came at 1:28 of Round 2, bringing
Vieira’s UFC record to 4-2 and allowing him to bounce back from a
decision loss to Chris
in his last Octagon appearance. Brundage’s loss dropped
his UFC record to 2-3.

Padilla Blows Up Erosa

In what was becoming a theme for “UFC Vegas 72,” a debuting fighter
came through big, as Fernando
(15-4) detonated Julian
(28-11) with a pinpoint salvo of punches in the first
round. After a few tentative early exchanges by the rangy 6-foot,
1-inch featherweights, Padilla stung Erosa with a salvo of punches,
tagging him with deadly accuracy as he went careening across the
A right hand hurt “Juicy J” badly, and a second one dropped him.
Erosa stood back up, but referee Chris Tognoni was already
interposing himself for the stoppage.
Erosa protested
immediately, and may have had a point, but the result went down as
a TKO at 1:41 of the first round for the young Mexican, whose UFC
debut had to wait nearly two years as he resolved visa issues.
Erosa’s record fell to 6-7 across three separate stints with the
promotion, 5-4 since his most recent return in 2020.

De Lima Defeats Cortes-Acosta

Rogerio de Lima
(21-8-1) used a brutal stream of leg kicks and
a couple of opportunistic takedowns to earn a unanimous decision
over Waldo
(9-1) in their main card heavyweight showcase.
For a time, it seemed unlikely that the judges’ services would be
needed, as de Lima’s low kicks scored early and often, leaving
Cortes-Acosta’s left leg visibly damaged and compromised in
function. A big double-leg takedown led to a solid ground sequence
by de Lima, but may have been counterproductive, since it gave
Cortes-Acosta a reprieve from the kicking assault. The second round
was a near repeat of the first, including the late takedown, and
“Pezao” appeared to be very much in control of the fight as the
final frame began. That would be Cortes-Acosta’s best round,
however; his jab landed with increasing regularity and force as the
leg kicks dried up for de Lima. The Dominican did enough to win the
frame, but it would not be enough to sway the outcome of the fight,
as de Lima collected 29-28 scores from all three judges. The win,
de Lima’s third straight, elevated his Octagon record to 10-6, 6-3
at heavyweight; Cortes-Acosta’s first professional loss dropped his
tally in the promotion to 2-1.

Waters Pieces Up Quinlan

Stepping up on a week’s notice and just 15 days after winning the
vacant Legacy Fighting Alliance welterweight title,
(8-1) put in three rounds’ worth of dominant work
against Josh
(6-1). The 6-foot-5 Waters cuts a rare figure at 170
pounds and put his massive advantages in height and reach to good
use, frustrating his fellow LFA alum’s attempts to get into range
and busting him up with punches. Aside from a takedown and brief
ground sequence in Round 1, Waters appeared to win every minute of
the fight. Quinlan was game throughout, coming forward and looking
to land the big left hand with which he had hurt virtually all his
professional opponents, but simply had no answers. By the end of
Round 3, Quinlan’s face was swollen and bleeding, and after a
fight-sealing late takedown by Waters, the 30-27 scorecards were a
mere formality. The one-sided win marked a successful debut for the
towering Waters, while Quinlan fell to 1-1 in the UFC with his
first professional loss.

Continue Reading »
UFC Vegas 72 Prelims: Relentless Durden Smothers Johnson

Source link

Yadong Song Left Hook Stops Ricky Simon at UFC Fight Night 223