After almost 14 months off, former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos made a triumphant return to the octagon by outlasting Stipe Miocic via unanimous decision in the main event of last night’s (Sat., December 13, 2014) UFC on FOX 13 from Phoenix, Arizona.
But the ultra-thin victory didn’t come without a decent amount of controversy, as many felt the rising Miocic did enough to unseat “Cigano” at the top of the 265-pound ranks. The Croatian slugger was seemingly picking dos Santos apart in the first two rounds, applying tons of pressure and landing several accurate power shots.
Yet “Cigano” was able to weather the storm and turn the tables with an absolutely vicious counter left hook in the third round. Dos Santos appeared to turn up his striking volume in the later rounds, especially in the fifth where he threw a much higher volume than Miocic (until the bout’s very end, that is).
Dos Santos also maintained excellent takedown defense by stopping 17 of Miocic’s 18 attempts, but he once again left the cage a battered and bloody mess. He was given the nod on the judges’ scorecards, although many were absolutely shocked at the 49-46 score for dos Santos.
Regardless, it was an entertaining back-and-forth war that served as a fitting end to a solid major network card, and one that’s still being debated as to whom the true winner was.
Who did you score as the victor last night?
Photo Credit: Mark J. Rebilas for USA TODAY Sports