Before the UFC 154: "St Pierre vs. Condit" main card kicked off on pay-per-view (PPV) tonight (Sat., Nov. 17, 2012) from the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, an entire seven-bout "Prelims" under card was broadcast on Facebook and FX, respectively.
The final fight of the prelims on FX was a middleweight contest between sluggers Patrick Cote and Alessio Sakara and it went nearly exactly as expected. Cote rocked Sakara early, swarming the former boxer with a flurry of punches but Sakara hung tough.
Cote was perhaps a bit overzealous and got his position in the clinch reversed as Sakara battered him with two beautiful elbows to the temple which rocked him for the first time in his UFC career. Sakara kept the pressure on, attacking with punches and Cote attempted a desperation takedown to clear out the cobwebs.
While Cote was hanging onto Sakara's leg, Sakara battered him with hammer fists, although they were illegally thrown to the back of the head. The ref put a stop to the fight because Cote could no longer fight back, but after some discussion, it was ruled that Cote had won via disqualification as the fight was stopped after five straight illegal blows.
In a short light heavyweight bout, Cyrille Diabate made quick work of former heavyweight Chad Griggs. Griggs came out swinging, recklessly charging forwards with big punches but he walked right into a sharp counter from Diabate which hurt him.
Diabate followed Griggs to the ground and began attacking with strikes, even landing a couple knees that may have been illegal while Griggs was trying to put his hand on the ground. When Griggs attempted a single leg takedown, Diabate stayed on top of him, trapping an arm and sinking in a rear naked choke to force the first round tapout.
Two Canadian lightweight strikers battled for supremacy as John Makdessi took Sam Stout in a pretty entertaining stand-up affair. The story of this fight was Makdessi's left jab, which he utilized brilliantly to counter Stout's constant forward aggression.
Time and time again, Stout would step forward looking to land a simple 1-2 combination, but Makdessi would snap off a left jab, pop Stout's head back like a Pez dispenser and back away to avoid danger. Stout countered with some decent shots to the body and occasional leg kicks, but he simply couldn't do nearly enough with his punches to make up for Makdessi's precision punches.
The judges rightfully decided with Makdessi after 15 minutes, awarding him a unanimous decision.
In a featherweight bout between two long-time veterans, Antonio Carvalho and Rodrigo Damm fought a measured pace for three straight rounds. Carvalho found a home in the first round for some solid kicks to Damm's lead leg, bruising it badly and forcing some swelling, but he never followed up.
Damm did a good job of scoring with his punches, but he didn't have much of an answer for Carvalho's leg kicks. Neither man pulled the trigger much as both were pretty tentative, especially in the second round which was booed pretty heavily. When it was time to go to the judges, the damage Carvalho had done to Damm's leg was enough for him to scrape by with a close split decision.
A welterweight contest between grapplers Matt Riddle and John Maguire turned into a sloppy kickboxing affair as both men were content to stand and trade. Riddle constantly pressed forward for three straight rounds, coming up short with his big power shots, but landing most of his straight blows while Maguire did a decent job of scoring with counters while moving backwards.
Maguire attempted to get the fight to the ground a few times, but Riddle did a pretty good job of fending him off. In the end, Riddle's aggression was rewarded as the judges sided with him unanimously.
After some competitive stand-up, Gashimov shot in and stuck with his takedown attempt, eventually working "The Pride of El Salvidor" to the canvas. Once there, however, he realized he may have bitten off more than he could chew as Menjivar immediately began attacking off his back, nearly securing an armbar and then blasting Gashimov with an upkick as he re-entered his guard.
The second time was the charm for Menjivar as he again exploded his legs upwards and caught one of Gashimov's arms. This time, he rolled belly-down and forced the prospect to tap out after a brief instant of agonizing pain.
In the opening bout of the evening, Darren Elkins put a wrestling clinic on Steven Siler as both featherweights showcased their toughness and endurance. Elkins was surprisingly the aggressor on the feet, taking advantage of Siler's concern for the takedown, but the takedown came anyways.
Time and time again, Elkins shot in and dumped Siler on his back, and he wasn't content to just sit in his guard as he repeatedly worked to pass and attack with ground and pound and submissions. Siler was constantly working to get his guard back, but he had to gut through several submission attempts along the way.
When it was all said and done, Elkins easily cruised to a unanimous decision, taking all three rounds.
Here are the complete results from the UFC 154 preliminary card:
185 lbs.: Patrick Cote def. Alessio Sakara via DQ (shots to back of head) at 1:26 of round one
205 lbs: Cyrille Diabate def. Chad Griggs via submission (rear naked choke) at 2:24 of round one
155 lbs.: John Makdessi def. Sam Stout via unanimous decision
145 lbs.: Antonio Carvalho def. Rodrigo Damm via split decision
170 lbs.: Matt Riddle def. John Maguire via unanimous decision
135 lbs.: Ivan Menjivar def. Azamat Gashimov via submission (armbar) at 2:44 of round one
155 lbs.: Darren Elkins def. Steven Siler via unanimous decision
That's it for the "Prelims" portion of the UFC 154 fight card.
Be sure to hit up MMAmania.com's for up to the minute results and blow-by-blow coverage of the rest of the night's UFC 154 PPV action by clicking here.