Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returned to the hurt business last night (Sun., Jan. 14, 2018) for UFC Fight Night 124, which took place inside Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Missouri.
In the main event of the evening, Jeremy Stephens took it to Doo Ho Choi, knocking out “The Korean Superboy” in a highly-entertaining affair. In the co-main event, Jessica Rose-Clark handed Paige VanZant her second straight defeat after earning a unanimous decision win after 15 minutes of work.
Biggest Winner: Darren Elkins
Surprised? Don’t be, as “Damage” once again proved that no matter who bad he looks in a fight and how far behind he may be, he always finds a way to pull out a comeback victory to send his foes home with a loss. After getting clipped repeatedly by Michael Johnson, many felt Elkins wouldn’t be able to overcome it for his infamous comebacks. But, after smartening up and taking the fight to the ground, “Damage” managed to sink in a rear-naked choke to force the tap for Johnson who was making his Featherweight debut. That is now six straight wins for Elkins, who was quick to call for a No. 1 contenders fight during his post-fight interview. Whether or not he gets it remains to be seen, but one thing is certain, no one can deny Darren’s legitimacy as a potential title contender.
Runner Up (s): Jessica Rose-Clark and Jeremy Stephens
In only her second fight inside the Octagon, Jessica found herself staring down Paige VanZant in the co-main event of UFC Fight Night 124. Now granted, “12 Gauge” isn’t exactly a world-beater, but picking up a win over Paige is big for Clark given her popularity as one of the faces of the promotion. The win was big in more ways than one, as the win bonus will come in handy after Clark’s home was robbed and her cat was killed while $30,000 worth of property was stolen from her just days before her bout.
Jeremy Stephens looked crisp in his performance against Doo Ho Choi, which many expected to be a full five rounds of nothing but standup action. While the bout did play out on the feet, it didn’t last as long as many wanted, as “Lil’ Heathen” knocked out “The Korean Superboy” in the second round with a pair of right hands. Afterward, he took the chance to call out Brian Ortega, though UFC president Dana White didn’t seem too thrilled about that possible matchup during his post-fight interview. Nevertheless, Stephens can look ahead to a big fight in his next outing.
Biggest Loser: Paige VanZant
It took a whole year for “12 Gauge” to make her return to action, but Jessica Rose-Clark sent UFC’s “it” girl with her second straight loss after she dominated the fight from beginning to end.
It’s a tough skid for Paige, who has lost three of her last four, including getting choked out by Michelle Waterson in her previous bout. While back-to-back losses won’t signify the end for VanZant, it could spell the end to UFC’s pushing and promotion of a fighter who just cant seem to put it together.
To get full UFC Fight Night 124: “Stephens vs Choi” play-by-play updates and results click here.