Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweights Neil Magny and Kiichi Kunimoto exchanged blows last night (Sat., Feb. 14, 2015) at UFC Fight Night 60 inside 1STBANK Center in Broomfield, Colorado.
After a highly impressive 2014 -- in which Magny won five straight bouts -- the Colorado native was set to break into the rankings sometime soon. Obviously, a victory over Kunimoto would definitely aid that goal.
On the other hand, Kunimoto entered this bout on a rather surprising win streak of his own. If he managed to break Magny's streak, "Strasser" would definitely be worthy of a ranked opponent.
Unfortunately for the Japan-native, Magny is the man who takes another step forward.
Magny kept the pressure on his opponent early. Rather than his usual movement-based boxing, Magny really walked his opponent down with long punches and then threw hard knees once Kunimoto was backed into the fence.
In order to avoid this barrage, Kunimoto changed levels and aimed for a double leg. However, Magny defended nicely and the two traded positions in the clinch. During these grappling exchanges, Magny was very active with his strikes and did plenty of damage.
Overall, it was a very dominant round for the Grudge MMA-trained fighter.
Magny quickly started the round by punching into the clinch and landing some nice knees. Kunimoto remained calm and finally succeeded in securing a body lock, which allowed him to land a quick trip into half guard. For a minute or so, Kunimoto controlled his foe from the top position.
However, when Magny sprung up and landed a heavy combination, badly rocking the Japanese fighter. Magny slipped on a knee strike but still managed to gain top position. Slowly, Magny advanced into back mount and nearly finished with ground strikes, but he ran out of time.
Another strong round for Magny.
Looking to continue his dominance, Magny quickly took his opponent down and moved into back control. From there, he flattened Kunimoto out and landed some nice strikes. When Kunimoto looked to push up and get his hips under him, Magny locked in a rear naked choke.
The crowd went wild for its hometown fighter.
Magny had yet another very strong performance in this bout. His striking was very crisp, as he battered his opponent both at range and inside the clinch. Outside of a single takedown, he largely nullified his opponent's offense.
In addition, Magny's more aggressive pursuit of the finish continued in this fight. Once Magny began to take control, he really upped the pressure and began slamming strikes into his opponent constantly. Of course, it greatly helps that Magny's conditioning is excellent, and he's used to the Colorado altitude.
At this point, Magny clearly deserves a ranked fighter. He's on a very long win streak, but it's not over top-tier competition. For his next bout, a fight with the winner of Demian Maia and Ryan LaFlare would make sense.
Kunimoto simply got overwhelmed in this bout. His minute of top pressure looked good, but outside of that, Kunimoto got battered. There's not a lot to take away from it; Magny was the better fighter in every area of the sport.
For the Japanese fighter's next bout, a match up with a lower tier welterweight like Igor Araujo could work.
At UFC Fight Night 60, Neil Magny put a beating on Kiichi Kunimoto. Is the lengthy welterweight a future title contender?
For complete UFC Fight Night 60 "Henderson vs Thatch" results and play-by-play click HERE.