The UFC on FOX 17 mixed martial arts (MMA) event, which takes place TONIGHT (Sat., Dec. 19, 2015) from inside Amway Center in Orlando, Florida, will conclude a volatile and unpredictable calendar year of action for Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and it features a Lightweight title fight pitting champion Rafael dos Anjos against former foe Donald Cerrone.
The duo previously met in Aug. 2013, when Cerrone suffered the last loss of his ZUFFA run.
In the evening's co-main event, a Heavyweight bout three years in the making will finally settle the drama as ex-champion Junior dos Santos tangles with Dutch kickboxer Alistair Overeem.
Elsewhere on tonight's card is a Lightweight tussle between the explosive Michael Johnson and technical boxer Nate Diaz, as well as a women's Strawweight meeting between Randa Markos and Karolina Kowalkiewicz.
But before we can get to the main card, which will be televised on FOX beginning at 8 p.m. ET, fight fans will be treated to a set of nine "Prelims" exchanges starting on the Fight Pass digital streaming service at 3:30 p.m. ET, before landing on FOX Sports 1 at 5 p.m. ET for the final six tilts.
Below are the results for the three Fight Pass "Prelims" bouts:
Leon Edwards vs. Kamaru Usman
The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 21 winner Usman took a step up in competition when he faced the Brit Edwards.
Front kick right away from Edwards. Usman clinches. Good knee from the Englishman Edwards. Usman shoots for the single; Edwards defending well. He switches to the double leg. A quick knee to the thigh by Usman. The Blackzilians product gives up on it and we're out with 2:50 left. "Rocky" is very sharp on the feet so far. Usman shoots again and finds the takedown with 2:15 to go, breaking the rhythm of Edwards. Edwards utilizing a bit of butterfly guard. He's looking for the triangle choke and it's close. Usman is trying to shove his head into the chest and shake off the pressure. He's out with 30 seconds left and we're back up to the feet. More clinch work from the duo to close out the round.
Great knee to start round two by Edwards. Nice straight left. Usman scores with a big punch and secures another takedown. Side control for Usman, who has Edwards stuck against the cage. The 24-year-old Edwards is back up. Knees to the body by Usman. Dirty boxing coming from "The Nigerian Nightmare." He drops for a double leg attempt now. Usman gives it up now, and Edwards is looking for double underhooks. They break with 1:15 to shoot. Usman immediately shoots again and gets caught with a straight left coming in. The 27-year-old answers with a kick. Usman lands a couple knees in the clinch and gets his third takedown to close out round two.
A knee up the middle by Edwards to start the final round. Usman shoots and snags a takedown. He's got Edwards pressed up against the cage. He's pulling the legs away. Usman trying to get Edwards back. Big knees to the body of Edwards. They're back up with 3:20 left. Good control and dirty boxing in the clinch from the Division-II All-American wrestler Usman. A takedown for the Florida-based combatant, who settles into side control. Usman wants to hammer away now. He's got the back standing now. Usman nearly flattens him out. He's giving Edwards no space and rides out round three in a big way.
Usman runs his win streak up to six. Edwards falls to 10-3.
Result: Usman via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 29-28)
Hayder Hassan vs. Vicente Luque
Two stars from The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 21 ran it back in Orlando as Hassan took on Luque once again.
Hassan begins with a good leg kick. He's trying to maintain distance. Luque is putting the pressure on and has Hassan backpedaling. Hassan scores with the counter left a couple of times. A solid leg and body kick from Luque. Hassan shoots, but Luque locks up the anaconda choke and drops down. He finishes the fight with 2:45 left in round one.
"The Silent Assassin" moves to 8-5-(1), while Hassan falls to 6-3.
Result: Luque via first-round submission (anaconda choke)
Luiz Henrique vs. Francis Ngannou
Heavyweight prospects kicked off the tonight's action in the "Sunshine State."
Early leg kick from Ngannou. Henrique catches a kick, grabs the takedown and settles into full guard. The Brazilian starts landing heavy short shots. Henrique postures up and is careful not to eat an upkick. The Frenchman is doing a better job of controlling Henrique's posture. "KLB" moves into half guard. Big swing and miss from Henrique from in top position. Referee stands them up with 2:00 left. The 22-year-old Henrique sticks the jab in Ngannou's face and barrels his opponent into the fence. He's got one underhook, looking for leverage. Referee separates the two with 45 seconds left. Ngannou scores with a right hand. Henrique pushes forward and eats a counter right hook, shoots a single to end round one.
Ngannou is backing up Henrique, stalking him. Good right hand from the 29-year-old. Back in the clinch, Ngannou lands a knee. Henrique turns it into a double leg attempt. Great defense from Ngannou. Henrique gets right back to the clinch after a separation and begins working again. We're halfway through the fight and Ngannou scores with big combination and then lands a left uppercut to finish Henrique off at the 2:53 mark.
Ngannou tallies his fifth straight win, while Henrique sees his six-fight win streak snapped.
Result: Ngannou via second-round knockout