Dan Kelly (11-1) got dominated for the entire first round at UFC Fight Night 85 on Saturday night (March 19, 2016), but rallied back to finish Antonio Carlos Jr. (5-2 1NC) in the third round.
Kelly defeated Carlos Jr. by technical knockout inside Brisbane Entertainment Centre in Brisbane, Australia. The official time of the stoppage came at 1:36 of the third round.
Carlos Jr. landed a double-leg takedown early on in the opening round and immediately transitioned to the back of Kelly. "Shoe Face" secured a tight body triangle and began softening up the Aussie with punches as he looked to lock up a rear-naked choke.
The Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt continued to roll over in attempt to flatten out Kelly and then return to his back, all the while maintaining the body triangle and landing more punches. At the end of the round, Carlos Jr. switched to an arm bar, but could not lock up the submission before the round's conclusion.
In the second, the fight stayed on the feet for the first few minutes and Kelly -- a former judo Olympian -- did a solid job of defending the Brazilian's take own attempts. After a sprawl, Kelly took the back of Carlos Jr. and rode him while delivering solid punches. Carlos Jr. made it back to his feet and landed his second takedown of the fight. He once again transitioned to the back, but his hips were too high and Kelly slipped out the back door. Carlos Jr. rolled his ankle and fell to the mat before the round ended.
Carlos Jr. hit Kelly in the groin with a knee to start the third round and the referee halted the bout to give Kelly time to recover. Kelly sprawled on another takedown attempt and spun around and began teeing off on Carlos Jr.with big punches.
Outstanding win by Kelly, who got schooled on the ground for the entire opening round and roared back late to finish Carlos Jr. Kelly improves to 4-1. Carlos Jr. looked great early, but ultimately faded late and had no answer once Kelly took control of the bout. He falls to 2-2 1NC in UFC competition.
For complete UFC Fight Night 85 "Mir vs. Hunt" results, including play-by-play updates, click here.