It’s once again fight day here at LowKickMMA, and the talent on display tonight (Saturday, April 14, 2018) will come from in the form of UFC on FOX 29. Headlining the card are Justin Gaethje and Dustin Poirier, but there’s a whole bunch of great fights also taking place on the preliminary section of the card.
Antonio Carlos Junior vs. Tim Boetsch in a middleweight closes the preliminary card on FOX. In round 1, ACJ looks fast and sharp early. He’s using his jab well to set up the rest of his offense and he’s got Boetsch befuddled early. They trade big right hands then jabs. Boetsch clips him with an overhand and ACJ shoots. Boetsch stuffs the initial attempt but he’s stuck on the cage locked up with ACJ. The Brazilian tries tripping him then swinging to the back. ACJ gets his hands clasped under the hips and dumps Boetsch with 1:20 left. He’s threatening to take the back while landing hard ground and pound. He’s got the back, body triangle, and the rear-naked choke finish.
Ricky Rainey vs. Muslim Salikhov is next in a welterweight bout. In round 1, they’re feeling each other out with leg kicks so far. Rainey goes high but Salkhov catches it and almost dumps him. Rainey goes back to it. Salikhov hits a spinning back kick to the gut that pushes Rainey into the cage but he fails to follow up. Rainey has a jumping head kick blocked but Salkhov tries tying up. Rainey lands a right after they break. Salikhov has an overhand blocked. Low output so far. Rainey ducks under for a takedown but it’s stuffed. Rainey lands an overhand-left hook combo. Salikhov comes back with a spinning hook kick but can’t connect. He catches a body kick and hits Rainey with a 2-piece as he stands. In round 2, Rainey pressuring a bit more but having a hard time connecting. They trade leg kicks. Rainey grabs the Thai clinch and lands knees and short punches inside. Salikhov has a spinning backfist blocked then partially connects on an overhand. Rainey’s output has dissipated. Spinning back kick for Salikhov. A counter left drops Rainey at Salikhov’s feet and two standing-to-ground shots put him out.
Wilson Reis vs. John Moraga is next in a flyweight bout. In round 1, Moraga opens with a nice cross and a leg kick that off-balances Reis. Reis comes behind a flurry but wings at air. Moraga shucks off the first takedown attempt. Moraga looking good so far, maintaining space and keeping off the cage. Reis is stuck on the end of hard shots and is flinching away. Reis finally closes down Moraga, eats an uppercut, and is ensnared in a guillotine. He picks Moraga up and slams him but is still in the choke. They scramble with Reis ending up in side control. Moraga scrambles to his feet but Reis is stuck to him on the cage. Moraga lands elbows before trying to disengage. Reis has a head kick blocked but continues to pressure. He gets his hands on Moraga again for a takedown but Moraga sneaks out and nearly takes the back. Reis scrambles free and hits another takedown. In round 2, Reis is looking to close Moraga down again but “Chicano” is boxing much more effectively. He lands a flush left hook and his right hand. Reis shoots in and gets Moraga down on the second effort. He has Moraga on his seat at the base of the cage. Moraga stands and looks to wrap the neck before breaking off. Reis lands a stiff body kick that is returned. Reis attacks low on Moraga’s leg and flashes his hands enough to get Moraga’s guard up before shooting. Moraga stuffs it and gets off the fence quickly. Moraga attacking the body with big uppercuts and he hits a flush jump knee to the face. Reis takedown in the middle of the cage. Reis transitions to back control and is hunting the choke but Moraga manages to turn into guard with 20s left. In round 3, Reis doesn’t waste time taking the fight down in R3. Quality scrambles going on. Moraga up but Reis has double unders. Moraga breaks off and continues boxing up Reis. He partially lands a head kick now. Reis comes irresistibly forward throwing a combination and ducks under for another takedown. Moraga scrambles up but Reis takes him right down again. Reis’ problem is he hasn’t been able to do significant damage or seriously threaten a sub. Morega picked up the decision win.
Brad Tavares vs. Krzysztof Jotko in a middleweight bout opens the FOX preliminary bouts. In round 1, Tavares is tearing into Jotko’s lead leg, the only significant strikes to land so far. He goes to the body with a right. Jotko hits a leg kick but is having trouble pulling the trigger. Tavares misses on another lunging right but this time he hits the knee in the subsequent tie-up. Jotko hits a counter hook then a nice uppercut. Jotko shoots with/ 30s left but Tavares’ hips are too strong and he’s right back to his feet. Tavares hits a trip of his own and Jotko works up at the bell. In round 2, Tavares has a hard time tracking Jotko down but then catches him leaning into a head kick, follows it with a flying knee. Tavares has Jotko pinned to the fence and they exchange short punches. Jotko reverses the position and lands a knee. They trade position on the cage. Jotko finally forces them off the cage and hits a knee and a 2-piece on the break. Tavares hits a step-knee, right hand. Jotko is opening up. He misses a wheel kick and front kick to the face but not the straight left. In round 3, Jotko a little more active this round. He catches a Tavares body kick and forces him back to the cage but Tavares reverses and lands a big shot that drops Jotko and finishes up the fight.
Gilbert Burns vs. Lando Vannata in a welterweight bout finishes off the UFC Fight Pass preliminary card. In round 1, Burns is bombing with big single strikes, Moret struggling to get anything going. He presses forward and gets a little bit done in close quarters, eats a hard right. In round 2, another hard Burns body kick finds the mark, and a right. Burns misses a fastball right. Moret with inside leg kick and a hard left hand that seems to rock Burns. Burns wastes no time in tying up and he drags Moret down. Moret wall-walks but Burns has a body lock and pulls him down again. Half guard. Moret fires back with 2-piece combos but a Burns right rocks Moret and another sleeps him.
Shana Dobson vs. Lauren Mueller is next in a women’s flyweight bout. In round 1, Mueller pushes forward again. Dobson is backing straight up and getting clipped. Mueller landing harder so far. Nice counter right hand for Dobson, then another. Mueller responds with her own. Dobson catches a body kick and gets deep on her hips but Meuller shucks her off. In round 2, Dobson doubling up on the jab and lands a cross behind it. Mueller swings back on the counter. Hard overhand, body kick for Dobson. Dobson sticking the jab out. Mueller hits a body kick and follows it into a tie-up. She hits a knee and right to the body as Dobson breaks away. Dobson lands a right then a sidekick. Mueller looking to land a big counter but it’s Dobson with a flush left hook. Dobson misses a body kick but comes right back with a side kick that pushes Mueller back as she tries to close in. Nice counter right for Mueller that bloodies Dobson’s nose. In round 3, Dobson had a chance to take the back but Mueller gets up and turns to face. Mueller pressing Dobson into the cage now. They break and Dobson hits a nice body kick but her nose is clearly bothering her. Mueller catches a leg kick and dumps Dobson. Mueller pushes the legs aside, side control. Dobson trying to attack the body with punches and front kick. Mueller catches a kick and dumps Dobson again but Dobson pops up swinging. Tie up to end it. Mueller got the win.
Dhiego Lima vs. Yushin Okami is next in a welterweight bout. In round 1, Lima is flicking out leg kicks to start, but Okami shoots in on one for a takedown. Lima gets right to his feet but Okami is stuck to him, drags him down again. Okami pulls Lima right into back control but Lima gets his back to the mat and reclaims guard. Okami staying heavy on top. Okami is landing occasional ground and pound, moves to half guard. Lima hasn’t threatened to get up at all. Okami stands and lands a big right, dives back on top. Another big right for Okami. Lima scrambles to his seat but Okami threatens to take the back. In round 2, Lima limp-legs out of the single but Okami dives back onto a double against the cage. He has a rear waistlock and drags Lima down. Lima scrambles back to his feet but Okami is giving him no space. Okami gets a rear waistlock again and picks Lima up and dumps him. Lima scrambles right up but can’t escape Okami’s grasp. In round 3, Lima fires to the body but he can’t stop Okami from shooting and tying up. Okami drags him down and gets back control again. Okami continues his fight-long grind. Lima goes to his back in half guard. Okami isn’t close to finishing but Lima hasn’t been able to do anything about this shutout. Okami gets to mount and drops some punches to end it. Okami picked up the decision win.
Arjan Bhullar vs. Adam Wieczorek is next in a heavyweight bout. In round 1, Bhullar pressuring out of the gate. Wieczorek snaps out a 1-2 and a leg kick. Bhullar fires right back then rips Wieczorek to the mat easily. Bhullar in full guard at the base of the cage. So far he’s trying to make sure Wieczorek can’t wall walk and they battle for wrist control, so no damage yet. Bhullar landing mild ground and pound. Wieczorek trying to climb his guard up but no dice yet. Bhullar focusing on control and position. The ref stands them up with 35s left in round. In round 2, Wieczorek firing low inside leg kicks but Bhullar counters one with a hard right. Bhullar bulls forward, lands an uppercut, double leg. This time Bhullar steps into half guard immediately but Wieczorek threatens a kimura right away. He’s forced to bail on it after going to guard. Wieczorek gets an omoplata sweep and Bhullar has to tap.
Matthew Lopez vs. Alejandro Perez is next in a bantamweight bout. In round 1, Perez is firing leg kicks early. Lopez lands a pair of left hands. Perez scrambles out of his first takedown. They bang in the pocket and Lopez gets another takedown. Low leg kick for Perez. Lopez lands a big body kick, then a huge left hand and a right. He ducks under for a quick takedown and is threatening the back again. Body triangle for Lopez now. They are belly-up, Perez trying to punch behind him. He tries to turn over into guard again but the triangle stops him. In round 2, low leg kicks for Perez to start the round but he’s getting backed to the fence again. 3-2 for Lopez, nice jab for Perez. Lopez is looking slow on his feet here. Big Perez cross to the body. Lopez ducks under for a shot but quickly backs off. Perez much more active and fresh. Lopez lands a pair of lead rights upstairs but Perez comes back with a flurry. Lopez is landing with power but he’s standing right in front of Perez in bt power shots. Perez hits a nice knee before Lopez shoots. Perez is so much fresher he’s able to shuck it off and tee off on a gassed Lopez. They stop it!
Opening the UFC Fight Pass prelims is Luke Sanders vs. Patrick Williams in a bantamweight bout. In round 1, they’re feeling each other out here to start. Oblique kick for Williams, now a pair of leg kicks. A big left drops Williams. Sanders pressuring Williams a bit, he lands a big cross to the chest. Williams shoots but Sanders shucks him off. Sanders fires when Williams’ back hits the fence but Williams pivots out hits a big body kick and a 2-piece of his own, now has a rear waistlock. Sanders escapes and is backing Williams to the fence again where he lets his hands go. Williams ties up but can’t keep Sanders down. Sanders steadily applying pressure and Williams is fading badly, as expected, putting his hands on his knees at one point. In round 2, Sanders tried tying up briefly but bailed on it. He’s landing straight lefts and goes to the body but Williams lands a right hook that staggers and backs up Sanders briefly. Sanders’ relentless pressure is opening him up to big counters but Williams doesn’t look like he has enough left to capitalize. Williams misses an elbow on a clinch break. Williams lands a big straight right that staggers Sanders. In round 3, Williams opens the round with leg kicks again, Sanders seems tentative. He lands a counter cross. Williams catches a body kick and hits a hard counter leg kick. Williams kicking effectively here and Sanders is pressuring less, backing off more when Williams throws. A left from Sanders hurts Williams, nearly dropping him. Williams ties up temporarily. Sanders has his confidence back and he’s aggressive again down the stretch. A couple solid left hooks land for Williams but he eats a head kick and a left when his back hits the fence. Williams lands a big fight to end the fight. The judges gave the win to Saunders by decision.
Here are the results:
PRELIMINARY CARD (FOX/6 p.m. ET)
Middleweight: Antonio Carlos Junior def. Tim Boetsch by submission (rear-naked choke) at 4:28 of Round 1
Welterweight: Muslim Salikhov def. Ricky Rainey by knockout (punches) at 4:12 of Round 2
Flyweight: John Moraga def. Wilson Reis via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Middleweight: Brad Tavares def. Krzysztof Jotko by TKO (punches) at 2:16 of Round 3
PRELIMINARY CARD (UFC Fight Pass/3:30 p.m. ET)
Lightweight: Gilbert Burns def. Dan Moret by knockout (punches) at :59 of Round 2
Female Flyweight: Lauren Mueller def. Shana Dobson via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Welterweight: Yushin Okami def. Dhiego Lima by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-26)
Heavyweight: Adam Wieczorek def. Arjan Bhullar by submission (omoplata) at 1:59 of Round 2
Bantamweight: Alejandro Perez def. Matthew Lopez via TKO (strikes) at 3:42 of R2
Bantamweight: Luke Sanders def. Patrick Williams by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)