It’s time once again to see if the hype surround Irishman Conor McGregor is merited. Tonight’s installment of UFC action centers around the rising featherweight superstar and whether or not he’ll be able to finish opponent Dennis Siver in under two minutes (like McGregor has promised). Can he do it? Or will Siver upset the UFC’s grand plans of a McGregor vs. Jose Aldo superfight by scoring the (albeit somewhat improbable) win? I don’t know! But stick around and we’ll find out together!
Main card results – FOX Sports 1
-Norman Parke vs. Gleison Tibau
Round 1: Despite whatever considerable grappling skills these fighters possess, they choose to spend the first round kickboxing – Parke utilizing his rangier limbs to throw flashy kicks and long jabs, Tibau bobbing and weaving in close to box. It’s a pretty even contest. So much so that you kind of hope they do something different the next round.
Round 2: The striking exchange continues, although this time takedown attempts are mixed in. The Brazilian is successful in getting Parke down midway through the round, and when the Irishman pops back up, Tibau throws him back to the canvas. Again Parke is up, and when time expires he’s got a single-leg and trying to repay Tibau the favor.
Round 3: Parke keeps pressing forward, probing with a jab often and diving into the clinch every now and then, and at one point he even goes for a seo nage shoulder throw (he flubs it, but recovers instantly). Tibau doesn’t do much this round, which might translate into Parke taking it in the judges’ eyes. But then again, as per the Pendred/Spencer fight, these judges be crazy…
Result: Gleison Tibau def. Norman Park via Split Decision
-Uriah Hall vs. Ron Stallings
Round 1: Stallings may have been a ridiculously late replacement (he signed to fight on Monday!), but he knows what’s up, and after dodging a flying knee right out of the gate, he begins crowding Hall and doing his best to stifle the TUF star. But BOOM! goes the dynamite after three minutes, and Hall drops Stallings with a punch. He follows that up with a storm of leather raining down from above, and when Hall gestures for Stallings to get back up, referee Dean calls for the doctor because Stallings’ mangled eye is reminiscent of “The Walking Dead”. Thankfully, the doc calls the bout.
Result: Uriah Hall def. Ron Stallings via TKO (Doc stoppage due to cut) at 3:37, R1
-Benson Henderson vs. Donald Cerrone
Round 1: What does having fought twice already mean for these two warriors? It means that once the bout begins, Cerrone and Henderson stand about three and half feet away from each other and start banging. As elite 155 pounders, a whole range of weapons is at their disposal, and they use them – Cerrone firing front kicks to the body and a variety of punches, Henderson countering with side-kicks to the lead leg and counterpunches.
Round 2: Cerrone’s pace slows, and with Henderson suddenly checking more and more kicks, “Cowboy” seems to grow impatient – which translates into him lunging forward more and telegraphing his attacks. But he does get a few good licks in, and with a minute and a half he steps in and throws “Bendo” down and works a bit from top position. When they fight back to their feet, the striking contest resumes until the horn sounds.
Round 3: The entire round is spent with them going toe to toe, and in that span we see Henderson land a sneaky high-kick, Cerrone snag a takedown, and the two trade the kind of crisp, sharp blows that would’ve been too much for the vast majority of the rest of the division. Time expires and they’re swinging hard, and the outcome is left in the hands of the judges.
Result: Donald Cerrone def. Benson Henderson via Unanimous Decision
-Conor McGregor vs. Dennis Siver
Round 1: After flipping Siver the bird when the German refused to touch gloves, McGregor begins the fight by taking the center of the Octagon and forcing Siver to circle. What follows i s about a thousand examples of why the Irishman might be the one to dethrone champ Jose Aldo, and they come in the form of a fluid jumping side-kick that constantly keeps Siver at distance, a plethora of spinning techniques, and a left hand that relentlessly finds its mark and busts Siver up. The German survives to the horn, but you wonder how much longer after that.
Round 2: McGregor is patient, and doesn’t force the issue… which is why it takes him about a minute and a half to drop Siver with a left, slide into mount, and pound out the TKO victory. And the icing on the cake: As soon as the ref steps in, McGregor jumps the cage and rushes Jose Aldo, shouting at the champ sitting in the front row as security struggles to keep them apart.
Result: Conor McGregor def. Dennis Siver via TKO (Punches) at 1:54, R2