Dennis Bermudez celebrates his unanimous decision win during UFC on FOX 3 at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, N.J. on Saturday, May 5, 2012. Photo by Esther Lin via MMA Fighting
The action was intense during today's (May 5, 2012) UFC on FOX 3: "Diaz vs. Miller" preliminary card. Both the FUEL TV and Facebook portions were littered with exciting fights, and the final bout featured winner of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) season 13 in Tony Ferguson against TUF 12 finalist Michael Johnson.
Both men came out looking to stand and trade, but it was Johnson who drew first blood, landing a big left hand counter and dropping "El Cucuy" temporarily in a first round that was rather lacking in action until the final 10 seconds when Ferguson let loose with a big flurry.
Throughout the second and third, Johnson consistently landed the better strikes, repeatedly scoring with his left hook flush to Ferguson's face. It was a frustrating night for Tony Ferguson fans as he continued to showcase some of the poor defense he showed in his last bout and was unable to land any really sustained offense.
The judges agreed, awarding Johnson a unanimous decision with a 30-27 clean sweep across the boards, much to Ferguson's dismay, but he has no one to blame but himself.
The rest of the undercard was littered with some very entertaining action as well.
In the second to last fight of the undercard, flyweights John Dodson and Tim Elliot put on a hell of a show. Dodson was trying to land with more technique and power while Elliot fired back with crazy and wild attacks which included all kinds of flying and spinning offense.
Dodson controlled much of the action early but he apparently hurt his left hand during the second round and from that point on, Elliot took over, landing a much sustained offensive attack and clearly was able to win the third round. Unfortunately, it wasn't enough as "The Magician" was awarded the first two rounds on all three judges' scorecards. Dodson was victorious, but he might be sidelined for a while after breaking his hand.
Two talented young welterweights duked it out as British phenom John Hathaway had his way with previously undefeated German Pascal Krauss. Hathaway repeatedly scored some takedowns and utilized his slight reach advantage in the stand-up but the biggest factor for "The Hitman" were his knees. Hathaway dropped Krauss with a beautiful left knee in the first round and continued to land them throughout the event.
Krauss was simply outclassed in just about all areas and was forced to play defense for extended periods. Hathaway bloodied him badly with a knee in the third round and easily was able to coast to a unanimous decision victory.
in the first non-tournament flyweight fight in UFC history, 125 pounders Louis Gaudinot and John Lineker put on a massive show for the fans. Both men stood in the pocket and just threw bombs. Lineker was throwing more actively and effectively in the stand-up, keeping a tremendous pace and a long sustained offense but Gaudinot was able to secure takedowns to equalize.
The second round was all Lineker at the beginning, hurting Gaudinot badly but the green-haired warrior scored another takedown. After some nice ground and pound, Gaudinot aggressively jumped for a guillotine choke as Lineker tried to get back to his feet. It was tight and Lineker refused to tap and was choked unsonscious with just six seconds remaining in the stanza.
Lightweights Danny Castillo and John Cholish put on a slow-paced and rather grueling fight, just like Castillo wanted. Cholish was unable to get the fight to the ground and despite multiple tries. There wasn't much action but Castillo was able to do just enough in each frame, landing better strikes with a big right hand, even mixing in a few late takedowns to put stamps on the rounds to earn a unanimous decision.
In featherweight action, The Ultimate Fighter season 14 finalist Dennis Bermudez put on a wrestling clinic against Pablo Garza. Garza was very active off his back, especially in the first round when he threatened with submissions and actually hurt Bermudez with his upkicks, but Bermudez was relentless, repeatedly slamming Garza to the ground and working his strikes.
Bermudez wore Garza down as the fight wore on and the lanky 145-er put up increasingly less resistance, even giving up the mount in the end of the third round. Bermudez was awarded a dominant 30-27 unanimous decision on all three judges' scorecards.
Perhaps the biggest highlight of the undercard was the incredible one-round bout between Nick Denis and Roland Delorme in the bantamweight division. Denis started incredibly strong, crushing Delorme with some heavy shots, knocking him down with a brutal knee and scoring some takedowns but he got too reckless, leaving his hands down and Delorme wasn't as hurt as he expected. Delorme recovered and started catching Denis clean, actually hurting him.
When Denis got defensive, Delorme scored a big takedown and tapped him out with just one second remaining in the round with a rear naked choke. It was an incredible comeback and by far one of the most entertaining one-round fights of 2012. It will almost certainly make it onto the broadcast if any of the fights finish early.
Opening up the Facebook portion was a middleweight bout between Mike Massenzio and Karlos Vemola. Vemola originally entered the UFC as a heavyweight and may have finally found his home. After a rough first round where Massenzio showcased better striking and overall wrestling, Vemola came out swinging in the second round, blasting Massenzio with ground and pound before sinking in a fight-ending rear naked choke without putting his hooks in.
Here are the complete undercard results:
Michael Johnson def. Tony Ferguson via unanimous decision
John Dodson def. Tim Elliot via unanimous decision
John Hathaway def. Pascal Krauss via unanimous decision
Louis Gaudino def. John Lineker via submission (guillotine) at 4:54 of round two
Danny Castillo def. John Cholish via unanimous decision
Dennis Bermudez def. Pablo Garza via unanimous decision
Roland Delorme def. Nick Denis via submission (rear naked choke) at 4:59 of round one
Karlos Vemola def. Mike Massenzio via submission (rear naked choke) at 1:07 of round two
That's it for the "Prelims" portion of the UFC on FOX 3 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 on FOX main card action by clicking here.