One of the UFC's best prospects looked to get a definitive victory in a rematch last night (Oct. 13, 2012) as Phil Davis took on Brazilian striker Wagner Prado on the UFC 153 main card in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Their last bout hadn't even lasted 90 seconds before an untimely eye poke forced a no contest, but this time, Davis put forth an extra effort to make sure he came away victorious.
"Mr. Wonderful" looked to utilize his wrestling, listening to his critics from his last bout and once he began to control Prado, it was only a matter of time.
So what helped Davis secure the fight-ending finish? And where do both men go from here?
Early on, it was another staring contest just like in the last fight as Davis waited for Prado to make a mistake and give him an opening to use his wrestling. It took just as long as the last fight, but the second Davis committed to a takedown, Prado was completely defenseless.
Davis ducked under a punch and blasted Prado to the canvas with a power double leg takedown, controlling the Brazilian from top position. The crowd wasn't happy about it, but this was exactly what Davis needed to do.
Prado's best defense was to grab the fence but even that couldn't stop Davis from dominating him positionally and dropping punches as well as controlling him from above. Davis couldn't finish him in the first round, but he clearly won it.
In the second, Prado was definitely much more intimidated after feeling Davis' grappling prowess and Davis used this to be more aggressive on the feet. The Team Alliance fighter threw punches and especially some kicks from a distance before closing ground with a knee and taking him down yet again.
This time, Davis went for the kill, dropping heavy ground and pound strikes and working for an arm triangle choke. When Prado escaped the arm triangle by twisting towards Davis, he left his neck completely exposed to Davis' signature anaconda choke. When Davis wrapped him up, gator-rolled him and squeezed tight, Prado was forced to instantly tap out.
For Wagner Prado, this was simply a case of being thrown too deeply into the fire for his first UFC fight. His ground game is not up to par to hang with the best light heavyweights in the promotion and Phil Davis is definitely one of the best. He was manhandled on the canvas and couldn't get anything going from an offensive perspective. Davis was just too much, too soon for him at this point in his career.
For Phil Davis, this was exactly the type of performance he needed to get back on track. He had been winless in his last two bouts, but this was a return to form that fight fans hadn't seen since his "Mr. Wonderful" submission of Tim Boetsch. He was physically imposing, dominant on the ground and absolutely smothering with his wrestling and grappling. He never gave Prado room to breathe once he closed the distance. It was about as solid of a performance as you could ask for.
So what did you think, Maniacs?
Were you impressed by Davis' dominance, or was this too easy for him? Are you back on the "Mr. Wonderful" hype train now?