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UFC 219 results from last night: Dan Hooker vs Marc Diakiese fight recap

MMA: UFC 219-Hooker vs Diakiese Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Lightweight scrappers Dan Hooker and Marc Diakiese last night (Dec. 30, 2017) at UFC 219 inside the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

An injury to John Lineker cancelled his battle with Jimmie Rivera, leaving a gap that this pair of fiery up-and-comers were happy to fill. Though still new to 155 lbs., Hooker entered this bout as the more experienced UFC fighter. Meanwhile, Diakiese quickly established himself as one of England’s best prospects but was handed his first professional defeat last time out. Both men were proven knockout artists and loved to throw down, so it wasn’t hard to see why the UFC chose this war to bolster the main card.

The fighters opened by flinging kicks at each other in an attempt to find range. He wasn’t able to land anything too significant at first, but Hooker did a great job of making his opponent miss, slowly getting closer with his own shots.

Overall, it was a really close round. Neither man landed with any consistency, with Diakiese holding the edge in volume while Hooker was the more accurate man. Hooker finished the round with a very brief takedown, but it was still hard to confidently give the round to either man.

Diakiese switched it up in the second, immediately taking the center and beginning to advance on Hooker with his fast strikes. His left hand began to connect from the Southpaw stance a bit, but Hooker soon answered with a nice combination of his own.

After a lengthy battle in the clinch, Hooker landed a takedown into the back mount. He wasn’t able to accomplish anything from there, but he did control position for a significant amount of time.

Diakiese spun into top position with a short amount of time left in the round, muddying the waters of an already close round and fight.

Once again, Diakiese opened the round with a lot of aggression and landed fairly well as a result. However, just as things seemed to be going his way, he dove for an ugly takedown. Hooker wrapped his neck quickly and sat back into the choke, flipping his foe over and bringing a sudden end to the bout.

It may have been a close bout for much of the fight, but Hooker was the far smarter and more efficient athlete throughout. He did a great job of feinting and making Diakiese miss, and while he was not able to capitalize early, it kept him safe.

Hooker had a difficult time landing on his faster opponent, but his grappling advantage was obvious as well. Once he was able to slow Diakiese down with takedown attempts, he largely dominated the grappling exchanges.

The guillotine at the end was just the cherry on top.

As for Diakiese, his inexperience was very much on display. When Hooker denied him his flashy kicks early, Diakiese had few technical adjustments. He landed when advancing, but it wasn’t sustainable, as Marc is not very comfortable walking his opponent’s down.

Throughout his entire UFC career, Diakiese has been muscling his way through takedown attempts. No one capitalized on it prior to this bout so effectively, but Hooker’s offensive jiu-jitsu proved the perfect foil for a sloppy shot.

Diakiese clearly has a lot of athletic talent, but he also needs more time in the gym to improve his fundamentals.

Last night, Dan Hooker strangled his opponent in the third round. Who should Hooker face next?

For complete UFC 219 “Cyborg vs. Holm” results and play-by-play, click HERE!