Before the UFC 159: "Jones vs. Sonnen" main card kicked off on pay-per-view (PPV) tonight (Sat., April 27, 2013) from the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., an entire six-bout "Prelims" under card was broadcast on Facebook and FX, respectively.
The final fight of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) 159 "Prelims" card on FX ended in unfortunate fashion as Yancy Medeiros was forced to quit at the 2:32 mark of round one after he dislocated or potentially broke his thumb in gruesome fashion off a Rustam Khabilov takedown. The two lightweight fighters seemed to be hitting their stride after a back-and-forth first two minutes, then in the blink of an eye it was all over. There's not much to say about the fight other than it was a disappointing ending to what could have been a very fun fight.
In a light heavyweight clash between Strikeforce alumni who were fighting in the UFC for the first time, Ovince St. Preux defeated Gian Villante by majority technical decision after two-and-a-half rounds of underwhelming fighting. Referee Kevin Mulhull called a stop to the fight early in the third when St. Preux landed and accidental eye poke and Villante stated he was unable to see. Once he realized the fight would be stopped, Villante pleaded for the referee to reverse his decision, but it was too late. Since the action had already spilled over to a third round, it went to the judge's scorecards where they assessed the contest up to that point. One judge saw the fight as even while the other two believed St. Preux was winning up to the stoppage. It was a highly controversial ending to a fight where Villante looked like he was going to rally back from a tough first round and St. Preux was fading as time went on. While the bout was far from a barnburner, the result was questionable and a rematch could certainly be in order.
Sara McMann made short work of Sheila Gaff with a first-round (technical) knockout victory in the third women's bantamweight contest in UFC history. Gaff had a perplexing strategy from the outset as she charged forward at the Olympic silver medalist in wrestling and was immediately taken down. From there, McMann took complete control as she beat up her German foe from the top, eventually securing the mounted crucifix position where she reined down punches and forced referee Gasper Oliver to stop the fight at the 4:06 mark of round one. The win pushed McMann's undefeated record to 7-0 and with a few more performances like she had at UFC 159 will be ready to challenge for the 135-pound title currently held by Ronda Rousey.
The first fight on the FX portion of the UFC 159 preliminary card saw Bryan Caraway step in for the injured Erik Perez on just six days notice to defeat Johnny Bedford by third-round submission. The two teammates from The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) season 14 appeared rather tentative throughout the contest, but it was Caraway's superior grappling abilities that was in the difference in what was otherwise a fairly competitive fight. At one point in all three rounds, "Kid Lightning" put Bedford on his back and worked his ground-and-pound and submissions. "Brutal" was never in any serious danger up until the third round when Caraway locked in a guillotine choke and stuck with it until Bedford tapped out. Caraway improved to 3-1 in the UFC and has finished his opponent by submission in all of those wins.
In featherweight action, Cody McKenzie handed Leonard Garcia a record-tying fifth consecutive UFC defeat as he dominated "Bad Body" en route to a unanimous decision victory. Garcia had no answer for the ground skills of McKenzie as The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) season 12 competitor owned Garcia in every position imaginable on the ground, doing everything but finish the Jackson's MMA product in the first 10 minutes. In the third, Garcia had his chance to score a knockout blow as McKenzie was willing to stand and trade strikes, but he couldn't make anything happened and is now a 2-7-1 in his past ten fights. McKenzie showed improvements to his skillset in his winning effort, but the story of the fight is what should be the overdue end of Garcia's UFC career.
Steven Siler and Kurt Holobaugh opened the UFC 159 fight card on Facebook with an exciting 15-minute battle that saw Siler emerge the winner by unanimous decision. The opening round was all Siler as he dominated the UFC newcomer on the ground and nearly finished the fight multiple times with submission attempts. In the second, Holobaugh flipped the script and found success with his striking -- both on the feet and on the ground. The fight came down to the final frame and it appeared Holobaugh was on his way to outworking Siler to a decision in the clinch, but a fatal mistake on a takedown attempt allowed "Super" to take his back and control his way to the win. After suffering a one-sided loss to Darren Elkins in his last fight, Siler got back on track with a gutsy win and improved to 4-1 under the UFC banner.
Here are the complete results from UFC 159 preliminary card:
155 lbs.: Rustam Khabilov vs. Yancy Medeiros - Khabilov wins via TKO (dislocated thumb) at 2:32 of round one.
205 lbs.: Ovince St. Preux vs. Gian Villante - St. Preux wins via majority technical decision (30-28, 30-29, 29-29) at 0:33 of round one
135 lbs.: Sheila Gaff vs. Sara McMann -- McMann wins via TKO (unanswered punches) at 4:06 of round one
135 lbs.: Johnny Bedford vs. Bryan Caraway -- Caraway wins via submission (guillotine) at 3:44 of round three
145 lbs.: Leonard Garcia vs. Cody McKenzie -- McKenzie wins via unanimous decision (30-27x2, 29-28)
145 lbs.: Kurt Holobaugh vs. Steven Siler -- Siler wins via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
That's it for the "Prelims" portion of UFC 159 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 159 main card action by clicking here.