Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweights John Makdessi and Shane Campbell collided last night (April 25, 2015) at UFC 186 inside the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Coming off a controversial decision loss more than a year ago, Makdessi was quite motivated to get back into the win column last night. Opposite Campbell, "The Bull" looked to prove himself the superior striker.
Meanwhile, Campbell was looking to take advantage of this short-notice opportunity. Paired off with a fellow striking specialist, Campbell was given an opportunity to demonstrate his excellent kickboxing ability.
He did just that, but it cost him dearly.
Campbell opened up with some hard kicks, while Makdessi caught and attempted to counter them with punches and takedowns. Campbell fought his way off the fence and continued to work with his kicks at range. In particular, Campbell was digging into his opponent's lead leg.
Despite Campbell's success with kicks, Makdessi was tagging him with punches each time he managed to close the distance. Then, Makdessi suddenly dropped his opponent with a big right hand and nearly finished the fight, but Campbell showed some nice recovery by getting back to his feet.
Campbell showed his heart by surviving the first knockdown, but the Karateka was not done. "The Bull" continued to hammer away at his slowing opponent, dropping him a second time with another right hand with just about 20 seconds left. This time, Makdessi didn't allow his opponent to recover, as he hammered away for the finish.
This was exactly the performance Makdessi needed after his controversial decision loss. He really stepped up his aggression and let loose with his right hand, which was a problem for him in the past. All in all, his aggression resulted in an impressive knockout win over a talented striker.
Though Makdessi looked strong overall in this fight, his problem with lanky kickboxers still exists. Campbell was doing serious damage to Makdessi's leg, and it may have had an effect if the fight had went longer. Still, this is a great fight for Makdessi, as he can continue to grow from what he learned while still enjoying the victory.
The UFC loves to pair Makdessi off with strikers for obvious reasons. For his next bout, Makdessi should pair off with fellow UFC 186 winner Chad Laprise, who's a talented kickboxer in his own right.
While Campbell ultimately lost in a bad way, it was still a pretty nice showing for a short-notice performance. Campbell is big for the division and kicks hard, so there's surely some entertaining match ups for him in the future. For example, the loser of Dustin Poirier vs. Yancy Medeiros would make for a great scrap. Alternatively, Bryan Barberena -- who lost a war to the aforementioned Laprise -- is also a viable opponent for the same reason.
At UFC 186, John Makdessi knocked out Shane Campbell after a rough start. Can the Karate striker climb the lightweight ranks?
For complete UFC 186 "Johnson vs Horiguchi" results and play-by-play, click HERE.